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Jeff Leach
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Post by Jeff Leach » 15 Jan 2012 09:17

Found this interesting bit of trivia

The 70th Armored Regiment (70 отдельный бронетанковый полк) was equiped with at least three companies of T-27 tankettes on 20.07.1941 [TsAMO f.229 op.161 d.83 l.9].* Here the Regiment was supporting the 3rd Airborne Corps. This unit was later reorganized, 15 August 1941, as the Tank Battalion of the 4th (Army) Security Regiment.

Internet sources only say that the T-27 did see some combat early in the war but not which units it served in. Has anyone seen any other references to it being used in combat?

* Edit: a later document list four companies with T-27s

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Re: T-27

Post by Ironmachine » 15 Jan 2012 12:27

Don't know if you already found that:
The last mentioned combat use of T-27s was during the Battle for Moscow (winter 1941-42): on December 1, 1941, some T-27 tankettes supported the attack of the 71st Independent Marine Brigade in the Yakhroma area.

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Re: T-27

Post by AVV » 15 Jan 2012 14:09

A photo and a picture of T-27 used as prime mover for 45 mm AT guns in late 1941 see here:
http://www.armchairgeneral.com/rkkaww2/ ... 27_img.htm

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Juha Tompuri
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Re: T-27

Post by Juha Tompuri » 15 Jan 2012 14:19

leachjeff wrote: Has anyone seen any other references to it being used in combat?
Here a photo from Alakurtti, Lapland:
http://www.pkymasehist.fi/phpBB2/viewto ... f=21&t=645

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Re: T-27

Post by igor_verh » 15 Jan 2012 16:14

By 1941, the total number of T-27 is estimated at 2558 (other sources - 2154) units are on the move was at least 1134.
Determine how many able-bodied tankettes was in the border counties on June 22, 1941 is hardly possible, although some data on this subject are available.
1st Mechanized Corps, the 1st Armored Division - 307 tanks, 40 tankettes. Division actively participated in the summer-fall battles at Leningrad and Karelia, data on the use of T-27 has not yet been found.
4th Mechanized Corps, 32th Tank Division - 361 tanks, 38 tankettes were equally distributed between the 63rd and 64th tank regiments, all were lost by the end of July.
9th Mechanized Corps, the 35th Armored Division - the data on the number of tanks apart. According to some sources, the division possessed 141 T-26 and an ХT-26, on the other the number of tanks was 141 per unit (79 T-26 with 45-mm cannon, 40 machine-gun T-26, 4 T-26 with 37-mm cannon, 1 ХT-26, 10 "trucks - conveyors" T-26T and 7 T-27). In any case, all the T-27 was lost by the end of July.
The 10th Mechanized Corps, 24 Panzer Division - 282 tanks, two of them tankettes. Use is unknown.
The 15th Mechanized Corps, 37 Panzer Division - 316 tanks. In the evening on June 22 in the area Kremenets (Кременц), to the rear of Defense, was abandoned about 30% of its members, including 46 tanks, of which 20 were tankettes T-27. The commander of the 74th Tank Regiment, was to deploy a perimeter defense of the city and to deter the advancing German troops until the arrival of reinforcements. Unfortunately, to learn more about the fate of these T-27 was not possible. On June 23 at the outskirts of the city of fierce battles and by the end of the day there were only seven able-bodied cars of the BT-7 and T-26 that kept the defense before the 1st of July. The main forces of the division suffered a loss even more devastating - August 10, survived only five tanks BT-7, a T-34 armored cars and eleven BA-10.
The 18th Mechanized Corps, 47 Panzer Division, 94th Tank Regiment - part of this began to form in March 1941, and initially it there were only 36 tankettes, of which 24 were in good condition. T-27 used for training of personnel, but because of the high degree of wear, most of them are out of order during the first two months. Subsequently, the division received the tanks T-26 and BT-7, as well as armored cars BA-10.
The 24th Mechanized Corps - 185 tanks, of which 7 tankettes. By early July, all the T-27 were lost or abandoned after fighting in the Ukraine.
However, occasional use of the T-27 continued. July 13, 1941 in the area Kazatin (г.Казатин, Ukraine) was surrounded the 87th Tank Regiment, a week earlier passed in obedience to "a group of Sokolov division commander." This compound was collected from the remains of the 8th and 15th mechanized corps, having very different materiel. In its structure there are at least two battalions of T-26 and BT Battalion flamethrower tanks (probably ХT-26 and XT-130), several units of T-34 and KV-1, as well as armored vehicles and tankettes. After fierce fighting near Berdichev (Бердичев), "a group of Sokolov", was cut into pieces and each division has chosen independently from circle. The command of the 87th Regiment formed a de-blocking unit, which includes six BT, three armored vehicles, two anti-tank batteries, infantry battalion with six guns and a wedge. On the night of July 14, the main forces broke through German defenses loose, but the only T-27 was apparently lost.
Of course, the use of tankettes was a necessary measure, but the popularity of T-27 did not add it. Beginning in July-August 1941 in the Red Army tank units were actively used in combat armored tractors T-20 "Komsomolets" and quite "ancient" light tanks MC-1. The last attempted to upgrade by installing a 45-mm gun, which gave very positive results - at least for now T-18 could successfully fight against the German light tanks and armored vehicles, as evidenced by reports of the first months of the war. Another noteworthy, but little-known fact - at the very beginning of the war near the T-27 side by side their fellow Polish - tankettes TKS, seized as booty after the "liberation campaign" against Poland in September 1939
Apparently, more than half the T-27 by September 1941 and remained in the territory occupied by the enemy, but the amount available to the Red Army tankettes still remained significant. They were used in the formation of the division militia, armed with weapons were stored in warehouses. In addition to the old Japanese rifles and French guns the First World War, they also received a T-27. At least tankettes were transferred to six of them (2-th,7-th,8-th ,9-th ,10-th and 35 th Division). Separete battalions of tankettes were in the structure of 16-17 units of T-27, and only the 10th Division, holding the defense in the Dorogobuzh (Дорогобуж), has 33 tankettes.
Nevertheless, the transfer of tankettes began in combat units much earlier. In particular, the order of August 8, 1941 units of the 14th Army, from the parts of the 1st Cavalry Regiment, supplemented by the "new" technology, among whom were 40 tankettes, four BA-10 and eleven BA-20. What were the technical condition of tankettes - remains unclear. Perhaps the T-27 were used as artillery tractors.
We now proceed directly to the facts of combat use of T-27 on the outskirts of Moscow. One of the best examples of tankettes using can serve memories of a direct participant in the fightingas Kendzerskogo A.U (Кендзерского А.Ю).
Note the date - October 1941 - apparently, there is an error in the date or place as "victorious" attack at Yelnya finished the complete defeat of several Soviet divisions in September.

"I was the 19th year. I worked in Moscow on a large carpool a machine repairman. We did not call because we had a "reservation". Then came a young man - an agitator of the district Komsomol committee and said, "Guys, you're young. You can go to the front as volunteers ". "Well, we went. Moreover, almost all gone, headed by our headman, Ivan Kutuzov.
We got to 32th Division Krasnopresnenskaya militia (32-ая Краснопресненская дивизия народного ополчения) . In this division was a separate tank company, commander was a Patsenko and political commissar Yudovich. In service companies was 17 tankettes T-27. Just a toy. Reservations weak. Motor weak from M-1. The crew consisted of two people - a shooter and the driver, though the commander was considered a driver. Well, what's the commander! We were all equal. All control - throttle and stick - you pull over, tankette will turn to the left, on my own - to the right. Get into this tankette had through the roof lid with a hook, as on the window frame. I am with my growth there barely was placed. In the company commander had a tankette more - T-40. Forgot to say that tankette was armed with a machine gun DT, which was only three disks. What do you think? People did not have enough guns! There was even ordered to undress and bury dead naked, and clothes to give a living.
In the late summer - early autumn, sent us to the front.
We were lucky - just slipped through Vyazma, and immediately the Germans aircrafts flew to the station. We have not got, and at the station they are mixed with the ground. First, our division was thrown to the suppression Vyazmenskaya landing. Part of the German left, and we killed some. Then we were transferred under Yelnya that the 8th October we took back. In these battles, everything was almost lost - we have only one tankette hit. And the 17th of October, as I remember, because it was my birthday, we raskoloshmatili. My tankette hit. It came from shooter side - that is mine, or shell. I do not know. In short, Yuri Shakhov, my shooter, shrapnel ripped open his stomach and his guts spilled on the engine. And I hurt the rebound in the head, and blood flooded my eyes. I thought I was killed. Then I rubbed my eyes, I saw - Yuri wheezing. I got up and saw the muzzle of a rifle, "Rus, give up!" And I have no weapon, only two grenades which lay at the feet! And for them to bend over! And he just click! I also have nowhere to go! .. I am now for this German pray to God ... Why did he not pulled the trigger? Well, I threw this hook, cap and got picked up ... "

Another tried to use the T-27 to support the amphibious assault. Perhaps the only case of tankettes in this capacity took place in autumn 1941, when two or three T-27 were loaded on the trawler, which was to deliver troops to Evpatoria. Here, more appropriate would be to use floating T-37A and T-38, only the command of the fleet did not have them in their possession. Troopers have landed, but the ship was damaged by fire from the shore and sank.
One of the last mention of the T-27 refers to 1 December 1941. On that day, a few T-27 supported in the attack Iakhroma (Яхрома) 71-th separate naval infantry brigade. Just how successful was for the crews of the attack tankettes history is silent.
However, the longest-serving wedgies on the eastern borders of the USSR. Of course, the beginning of the war, they have not considered full-fledged fighting machines, but as educational tools, they could well be used further. Under the act the presence of armored vehicles in the Far East on September 30, 1945 (!). There were 56 T-27 and another 52 cars that are defined as "tankettes". Most interesting is that all of them were registered serviceable.
Several tankettes also used in the armies of the enemy. Thus, during the retreat of Soviet forces in Ukraine and Belarus, had to leave in about a suitable condition for use dozens of T-27. Most of them went to the Germans, and, judging by the information available, in 1941-1942. they were used as escort vehicles and transporters light guns. Some tankettes got as trophies of the Hungarian army, but their application until the information has been found.
According to the reports of the Romanian army, which seized the summer of 1941 rich booty in the Ukraine, has also become a "happy owner" of several T-27. At least, on 1 November of that year, among 125 captured tanks including two tankettes, which were used for training personnel and as carriers.
Russian source about T-27:
http://pro-tank.ru/bronetehnika-sssr/ta ... ketka-t-27
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