Don Juan wrote: ↑
06 Dec 2022 11:20
Erik1 wrote: ↑
06 Dec 2022 05:28
I asked Bruce on Youtube if the 5000 km/overhaul figure was some pre-made recommendation or came from the troops in combat reports, he said combat reports. I got the impression he meant it's for the whole drivetrain, not just engine.
If mean distance between overhauls is a good measurement of reliability it makes sense that the Tiger had a higher figure than Pz III and IV since there are several combat reports saying the Tiger is more reliable than those tanks. If Pz III was already between 2000-2500 km and overhaul kms = reliability is true, the Tigers figure must be way up there.
Well the Panther, which was ten tons lighter than the Tiger, had a version of the same Maybach HL230 engine, and by mid-1944 they had managed to get this up to a life mileage of approximately 1000 km (700 miles), so it's intriguing that a similar engine in the heavier Tiger would have five times the life mileage.
But...if these combat reports confirming 5000 km overhauls really exist then I am prepared to be amazed.
Afaik two things were going on with the Panther's engine, one was that the Panther's waterproof engine compartment caused the engine to run hot and easily overheat when pushed in combat. This could've lowered its lifespan compared to when it was used in the Tiger. The problem was fixed only somewhat. The second was that the manufacturing quality of the maybach deteriorated during the war according to someone here. Sabotage were reported but mostly it was due to declining material quality and rushed manufacturing.
About it being reliable in the Tiger, Jentz writes:
"The first production series Tiger Fgst Nr 250001 with Motor Nr 46052 was only run-in for 25 km by Henschel before being sent to Kummersdorf for testing. During a test drive on 28 May 1942, with only 52 km on the odometer, a blockage occurred in the steering gear. This Tiger quickly went through the original and two replacement engines (Motor Nr 46051 from July lst to 3rd, Motor Nr 46065 from 6 to 8 July) and was fitted with a fourth motor, Nr 46066, after 13 July. By 3 August 1942, this Tiger had covered a total of 1046 km; by 31 March 1943 a total of 5623 km; and by 31 July 1943 a total of 7736 km.These figures clearly demonstrate that once the Tiger had overcome its teething troubles, it could withstand a lot of purposefully administered abuse during test programmes."
From a combat report:
"Regarding the overheating engines, the HL 210 engine caused no troubles during the recent time. All occurring breakdowns resulted from the low quality of driver training. In several cases engine failures have to be put down to the missing remote engine thermometer. Five engines have reached more than 3,000 km without essential failures."
The mechanics at Bovington laughed in a video about the Tigers engine being "boring" because there's never any problems with it.
Otoh Alfred Rubbel, commander of a Tiger battalion, said after the war that the engine usually didn't last 1000 km and that the fuel pumps lasted 500 km, but perhaps this a little later in the war when the newer, lower quality engines started to be issued.
I'm far from knowledgable about tanks though, unlike yourself, so I don't know how meaningful this evidence is.
And about the 5000 km figure being in the Tiger-fibel, maybe it was taken from troops in combat and then put in the book. The Tiger-fibel has pictures of destroyed Tigers so it was clearly made or was updated at the time when the Tiger was in combat.