Yoozername wrote: ↑
25 Dec 2020 19:41
EwenS wrote: ↑
18 Sep 2020 12:23
Delwin wrote: ↑
16 Sep 2020 20:09
Also (finally) worse mobility than Sherman (with exception of B1 version - using the same chassis) - especially comparing to HVSS version.
First time I’ve heard that said. How so?
The M10 used the lower hull, engine and running gear from the original M4A2 Sherman, and the M10A1 the same from the M4A3 Sherman, complete with the VVSS suspension. They were about a ton lighter. The M36 was produced from remanufactured M10A1 hulls and later M10 hulls. The 187 M36B1 built on M4A3 hulls used the same VVSS suspension.
The HVSS suspension was a distinct improvement to the Sherman but no M4s were produced with it until Sept 1944 nor reached combat until Dec1944.
The M10 would then use the diesel engine (co-joined), and the M10A1 would use the gasoline Ford V8. The V8 would be better. I think the B1 would also have the V8.
In my opinion, they should have made more B1 by shipping kits. Basically just turrets with all the racks etc.
As an aside, i don't think HVAP or T33 ammunition may have reached the ETO troops in meaningful numbers in 1945. There was a short run of 3000 HVAP in Jan/Feb. 10,000 T33 (reworked M77) were made in March. Given the delay in shipping/distribution/training, it would be doubtful.
I'd disagree with you about generating M36 on the front line. Are you clear about the M36 development line?
It started in Oct 1942 with the first prototype turrets in Sept 1943. There was a lot of Army politics involved in moving it into production. Then there were trials and modifications to be made. So turret production couldn't start until Spring 1944.
In anticipation of the 90mm turret becoming available, in Jan 1944 300 brand new turretless M10A1 chassis were produced. The first 90mm M36 began rolling off the production line in April (25 vehicles), with all 300 completed by July.
They then turned to sourcing more hulls against additional orders for 300 in May 1944 and another 800 on 29th July after the fighting in Normandy revealed the need for the bigger gun. So total orders are now 1400.
During 1943 a total of 1413 M10A1 were built but all were retained in the USA for training purposes, an exercise that was winding down as units moved to Europe, thus making the hulls surplus to requirements. It was decided to convert them to M36. Initially only 913 could be located and these were converted between June and Dec 1944. As there was then seen to be a shortfall in the numbers of available new build and old M10A1 hulls (300 + 913 = 1213) v the orders for M36 (1400) it was decided to convert 187 M4A3 (with the Ford V8) tanks with 90mm turrets to create the M36B1. They were converted in Oct-Dec 1944.
And there the programme would probably have ended except that demand continued to rise. And the conversion program began again in May 1945. Another 200 M10A1 were found and converted between May and July 1945. Conversions were then focussed on the spare M10 in the USA with 724 converted from May to Aug 1945 as M36B2.
In terms of deployment, it generally took 4 to 5 months to get any piece of kit from the factory door in the USA to the front line in France. The first 40 M36 arrived in France in the first week of Sept 1944 i.e. well within that timeframe.
Given when 90mm turrets became available, it is impossible to see how shipping turrets to Europe to convert M10s already in theatre could possibly have resulted in the M36 arriving on the front line any quicker than historically. To get them sooner then the US Army has to realise earlier that it has a need for such a vehicle, expedite development and cut out the politics in the Army hierarchy.
Incidentally the first 2000 rounds of HVAP T4 ammunition arrived in France in Aug 1944 with first distribution to units on 11 Sept 1944 with more widespread use by Nov. An order for 20000 rounds of HVAP was placed in late summer and by Feb 1945 18000 rounds had been delivered to France with 42% being 76mm and the remainder 3" for the M10 tank destroyers. It was never plentiful with M4(76) being rationed to about 5 rounds per tank by Feb 1945. Some 6th Army units had virtually none in Dec/Jan 1944. The T30E16 90mm HVAP for the M36 began to appear in Jan 1945
One production problem was getting hold of the Tungsten for the core of the shells.