American WW2 Tanks - Photos, discoveries and surviving US tanks.
Latest hand-picked WWII news.
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The strange tanks that helped win D-Day
When allied forces landed on the Normandy beaches on D-Day, they did so alongside a fleet of bizarre tanks with special roles – brought into life by an eccentric British commander. The tanks were known, collectively, as Hobart`s `Funnies`. On the British and Canadian beaches where they were used – Gold, Sword and Juno – the landings were a massive success. Percy Hobart had realised that an invading force would need a lot more tank support – and they were most vulnerable when they were coming to shore. `If you put all your tanks in one landing craft, and that gets hit – how do you spread the risk?` The result was the Sherman DD (Duplex Drive) – the `swimming tank`.
Canadian built WWII-era M4 Sherman tank sells for $155,000
A WWII era tank was sold at auction to a private bidder for $155,000. The tank, officially called a Medium Tank, M4, is more often known as the M4 Sherman. Sherman tanks were the most commonly used tank by United States troops, as well as certain other Allied troops, during WWII. But the variant of the tank sold in the recent auction wasn`t just any Sherman M4; it was the very first Sherman tank produced by Montreal Locomotive Works for the Canadian army. Known in Canada as Grizzly I cruisers, only 188 of these slightly modified M4 tanks were produced in Canada between 1943 and 1944.
How To Build The M3 Grant Tank (footage from 1942)
This clip from 1942 shows the production of the medium Tank M3 `Grant` in the Chrysler Tank Arsenal, Detroit. The Medium Tank M3 was an American tank used during World War II. In Britain the tank was called by two names based on the turret configuration. Tanks employing US pattern turrets were called the `Lee`, named after Confederate General Robert E. Lee. Variants using British pattern turrets were known as `Grant`, named after U.S. General Ulysses S. Grant. Design commenced in July 1940 and the first M3s were operational in late 1941. The U.S. Army needed a good tank and coupled with the UK`s demand for 3,650 medium tanks, the Lee began production by late 1940. The design was a compromise meant to produce a tank as soon as possible.
M18 Hellcat Tank destroyer for sale
Manufactured by Buick of General Motors from 1943 to 1944, the M18 Hellcat is one of the most famous tanks used in World War II. Officially designated a tank destroyer, one example of the 2,507-unit production run is now for sale for $244,000. Northeast Military Vehicle Services LLC is informing that this Buick M18 Hellcat SN1240 is in excellent condition. That comes courtesy of a restoration that "cost over $300,000," making this blast from the past "totally turn-key." Though the turret is fully functional, the 76 mm AT M1A2 gun isn`t live, and the breech-loading weapon has been demilled.
The Sherman M4 Was the Little Tank that Could
The Sherman M4 tank is to WW2 like roadies are to rock concerts: it did an enormous amount of work, yet it received far less recognition than it deserves. Never intended to go head-to-head with the German Mark IV Panther and Tiger tanks that it would face, the Sherman nonetheless held its own against bigger and far more capable machines. Perhaps the Sherman`s greatest feature was the speed with which American factories could turn it out. In the later years of World War II, this proved to be the decisive advantage that gave the Allies victory over the Germans and their admittedly superior battlefield armor. US military planners wanted a tank that was mechanically simple, extremely reliable, and able to serve in a variety of combat roles. The M4 fit the bill.
Fort Polk Army base engineer battalion uncovers WWII era tank, either an M2A4 or an M3 Stuart
An engineer battalion from the Fort Polk Army base that has been clearing land for a small arms range at the National Guard`s Camp Beauregard in Pineville has uncovered a World War II-era tank. Richard Moran, the curator for the Camp Beauregard Louisiana Military Maneuvers Museum, tells The Town Talk ( http://townta.lk/17wkvbx) that the tank is either an M2A4 or an M3 Stuart tank. Moran says it is one of the earliest tanks mass produced for World War II. The tank is small by Army tank standards. It holds only three soldiers. It had been converted for non-military use and was likely used as a tractor after the war.
Armored Victory 1945: US Army Tank combat in the European Theatre from the Battle of the Bulge to Germany`s surrender
Armored Victory 1945 - from well known author and Military Modelling regular Steve Zaloga - is the kind of photo record that is so popular with modellers in particular. It is actually the second of a two-volume set (the first being `Armoured Attack 1944`) covering US Armour in the North West European campaign. The 500-page second book takes us on from the Battle of the Bulge, where the first volume stopped, through to the end of the war with Germany, plus a little bit beyond.
King Tiger vs IS-2: Operation Solstice 1945 by Dave Higgins (book review)
"King Tiger vs IS II" compares two well known heavy tanks used at the end of the Second World War, the German King Tiger (AKA Tiger II), against the Russian IS II (AKA Joseph Stalin tank).
American WWII tank commander Bill Pospisil recalls advancing into Nazi Germany with the 3rd Army
Bill Pospisil, who was assigned to a specialized unit of the 748th Tank Battalion which developed tank night-fighting tactics, rose to the rank of sergeant and became a tank commander. Pospisil said Sherman tank commanders were well aware of the odds they faced if they engaged German tanks: "We knew they had a better tank than we did, and they had a better gun than we did. If those Germans would have had the money and the materials we had available in the U.S., we never could have whipped them." The combat risks caught up to Pospisil in April 1945 during the fight for the city of Neumarkt: "We were at an intersection, and there was another tank a block away, and a German 88 got us both."
M4 Sherman to be restored by a tank driving site in Leicestershire, UK
Armourgeddon - a tank driving site near Leicester, UK - has acquired an American WW2 tank in their collection of driveable military vehicles. The M4 Sherman, which may have seen action on the D-Day, was the main tank used by the U.S. Army during the Second World War.
The M4 Sherman was a relatively poor tank design - a problem which was "fixed" by producing them 50,000 - enjoying a bad reputation among the troops because of its thin armor. Not surprisingly, it had some pretty grim nicknames: The British called them "Tommy cookers" because when they got hit with a petrol engine they burnt rapidly, while the Germans nicknamed them "Ronsons" because of the lighter slogan "light first time, every time".
Curtis Grubb Culin III invented WWII "Tank Tusks" to break through anti-tank obstacles and hedgerows
Curtis Grubb Culin III invented the item that helped Allied tanks plow through the German anti-tank obstacles and the hedgerows of Nazi-occupied Normandy. He devised a modification to go on the front of the Sherman tank, enabling it to drive through the hedgerows - instead of going over the hedgerows and revealing the tank`s vulnerable underside. Sgt. "Bud" Culin developed the modification, demonstrated them to his captains, and then saw his plans spread to over half of the American tanks. Lt. Gen. Omar Bradley stated it would revolutionize warfare, and ordered as many "Culin Cutters" as possible be made.
WWII Sherman tank restored in time for Operation Market Garden anniversary
A tank which saw combat with Nottinghamshire`s Sherwood Rangers in one of the biggest WWII battles has been restored. The 30-tonne Sherman tank, named "Robin Hood," was used during 1944`s Operation Market Garden. It will go on display at the Dutch National Liberation Museum for the 66th anniversary of Operation Market Garden. 7 Sherwood Rangers veterans plan to travel to Holland to see the tank. Operation Market Garden (17-25 September 1944) saw 86,000 paratroopers, air and ground units took part in a very risky mission to seize control of bridges and river crossings in the Netherlands and Germany.
American M4A1 Sherman tank liften from Manila Bay
The Philippine coast guard says the wreckage of an American tank has been lifted from Manila Bay more than 60 years after the end of Second World War. The M4A1 Sherman tank was accidentally recognized stuck in mud underwater by a dredging company near the mouth of Pasig River. The tank had no turret or tracks. Recently a Japanese 105 mm cannon was recovered nearby. Manila saw fierce combat between Japanese and American troops during the liberation of the Philippines in 1945.
Kevin Kronlund collects tanks and World War II vintage military vehicles
If we ever have to fight WW2 again, Kevin Kronlund is ready. He`s saved the wheels that saved democracy. He has one of the comprehensive collection of WW2 vintage military vehicles in USA. It includes jeeps, trucks, half-tracks, staff cars, bulldozers, artillery pieces and a Sherman tank. His barns in Spooner, Wisconsin, are packed with 80 military vehicles, from the tiny Cushman scooter (made to be dropped by parachute behind enemy lines during the D-Day) to the colossal 90,650-pound tank retriever (the biggest wheeled vehicle the US Army used during the war). The cannons and machine guns can`t fire any longer, but everything else has been restored.
A M4 Sherman tank confirmed to be the "Cobra King" - The first tank to reach Bastogne
A WWII-era M4 Sherman tank on display at Rose Barracks in Vilseck, Germany has been confirmed to be the "Cobra King," the first tank to reach encircled American troops holding Bastogne. U.S. Army officials announced the discovery, timed to co-occur with the Dec. 26, 1944, anniversary of the Company C, 37th Tank Battalion`s famed arrival in Bastogne. The tank was id`ed by serial and registration numbers. Officially designated as an M4A3E2 Assault Tank, the Sherman "Jumbo" was built in mid-1944 at the Detroit Tank Arsenal. Only 254 of the tanks were built.
The Detroit Arsenal Tank Plant was once the largest in the world
Before fighting broke out between the Allies and the Axis powers, there had never been an effort in the U.S. to coordinate the manufacturing of battle tanks. Also, there was a great deal of skepticism in senior military ranks about the need to mass produce tanks - until Nazi Germany achieved alarming success with Blitzkrieg. With its vast experience with cars and trucks, Detroit was logical location for tank-building program. The result was a massive facility called the Detroit Arsenal Tank Plant - the largest tank building facility in the world. At its peak it was running 24 hours a day and 5,400 workers turned out 1,000 tanks a month.
How do you lose a 15-ton battle tank - American Legion searching M3A1 light tank
U.S. Department of Defense donated an Army tank to the American Legion Post in Sussex Borough to pay tribute to the World War Two veterans. Now Uncle Sam wants its 15-ton tank back, but no one knows where it is. In a letter to American Legion Post 213 Commander Herman Terpstra, the Department of Defense requested that the group return an M3A1 light tank. The letter states that the Legion post is expected to send back either a color photo of the tank or evidence of its whereabouts or bear responsibility for the cost of the vehicle. Since the letter, Cherkas has been busy researching what happened to the so-called "Stuart" or "Honey" tank.
World War II US D-Day invasion tank M5 unearthed under a street in France
French bomb disposal experts were called in to make sure the military vehicle posed no danger before it was dug out from its muddy grave in near perfect condition. Council workers came upon the M5 tank as they went through routine repairs to the road in Chartres. It is thought the battle tank from the 31st Tank Battalion formed part of the invasion force that liberated France from the Nazis. Residents recalled the tank entering the cathedral city where it had been performing reconnaissance when it either ran out of fuel or broke down. When France was freed it was pushed down a hole and entombed.
Firm delivers US Sherman M4 E9 tank to a military vehicle collector
A huge US Sherman M4 E9 tank was transported from Boroughbridge by Sowerby Bridge firm Stoneywood Motors. "...this was something we don`t do every day," said Steve Fielding. The tank, used as a climbing frame in a children`s park in California, was bought by Ken Pugh, a collector of military vehicles. Pugh said it was built during the war and was used as a static tank in the war film Flags of our Fathers. "There are only about half-a-dozen of these tanks left in the world." He has a collection of World War II military vehicles including jeeps and troop carriers and plans opening a museum.
Tank veteran`s memories
Louis Baczewski keeps his faded WWII tank driver`s license with him all the time. His memories are tied to it. On Veterans Day, he dons his U.S. Army dog tags and wears them proudly, remembering a younger man who achieved the rank of sergeant and drove a tank with the 3rd Armored Division, 33rd Armored Regiment, D Company. He survived the Battle of the Bulge when many others didn`t, including his tank commander - and his assistant driver got killed by a German sniper. During the Battle of the Bulge his unit lost 15 battle tanks. The entire 3rd Armored Division lost 163 light and medium tanks. He saw a tank in front of his explode, burning the men inside to death.
Neville Smith, wargames with radio controlled WWII battle tank models
Neville Smith has spent $11,000 on 11 radio-controlled tanks to use in scaled-down World War II themed battles. His tanks range from the famous German Tiger 1 to the American Sherman. Each 1/16 scale model costs $1000-$2000 and takes weeks to assemble. "I guess the fact you can shoot one another and play games with the tanks won me over." When he isn`t assembling tanks Smith spends hours fashioning toy soldiers and artificial trees to use on the battlefield. Those come in handy at gatherings of radio-control tank lovers. The group was formed by Smith and has 20 members throughout New Zealand. Auckland enthusiasts meet regularly to battle their tanks in wargames.
Belgians to restore historic American M4 Sherman tank at Bastogne
An American tank got blasted, though not by one of the usual suspects. Of all people, it was a group of Belgians, and they sprayed the armored vehicle hard enough to peel paint. One of the participants, a soldier, even called the experience a privilege. "I never thought that one day I would work on that tank," said Adjutant Daniel Libert, a maintenance chief at a Belgian military arsenal in Rocourt. If all goes as planned, the Sherman M4 tank, that has been absent from McAuliffe Square in Bastogne, will return by Memorial Day. Bastogne is linked to the largest land battle in U.S. military history: the Battle of the Bulge.
Sherman tank gunner during WWII in 7th Armored Division (Article no longer available from the original source)
Lloyd Hull has no idea if he ever killed anyone while firing the big gun on his Sherman tank during World War II. He was a member of the 7th Armored Division, landing well after D-Day, and taking part in the Battle of the Bulge. He was member of the 736th Tank Battalion and a gunner for an M4 Sherman tank: "It was a 76 mm, but nowhere as good as that German 88. Now there was a weapon." Hull noted that infantrymen would always be happy to ride the tanks or shelter behind their armor. "But when fighting started, they`d jump off and move away. They never wanted to be inside a tank while the fighting was going on and I would have jumped off too if I could have."
M-5 Stuart Light Tank put together collected pieces (Article no longer available from the original source)
Johnny Jay and his friend George DeBonis supplied the military heavyweights for the Memorial Day parade. The two have been collecting military vehicles for about 20-25 years. Their M-24s, Jeeps and 7-ton reconnaissance Scout trucks are a few of the rare objects in the universe not readily available on the Internet. "The M-5 (Stuart Light Tank) we put together from pieces we collected from here, there, and everywhere." DeBonis purchased the M-24 WWII tank 15 years ago from a collector in Indianapolis.
Combat hero Dietz : Sherman tanks and panzerfaust squads
Elements of the 38th Infantry Battalion, spearheading the 7th Armored Division, approached the town of Kirchain. GI Jankowski in Dietz`s 12-man squad was aboard the third Sherman tank in a line when a German soldier "stood up and fired a bazooka at the lead tank. We all scrambled off the tanks. Then I saw Dietz running and firing into the foxholes. He was grabbing the mines and throwing them off the bridge. As he stood up to signal that the route was clear he was killed by an shot from the left flank." Medal of Honor citation credits Dietz with wiping out 3 two-man panzerfaust (bazooka) squads and leaping into the water to disconnect explosives wired to the bridge.
Classic vehicles - Ferrets and Lynxes and Sherman tanks
Ferrets and a black-smoke-belching diesel-powered vintage Sherman make up part of the 72 vehicle collection of the Oshawa Aeronautical, Military and Industrial Museum located at the municipal airport, which served as a Second World War Commonwealth air-training base. One of the goals of the museum volunteers is to have all the vehicles actually run, and more than 40 currently do. A tour begins with the artifact section before moving out to the machinery hanger. This is tightly packed with a Sherman and Chaffee tank, Bren gun carrier, Chevy staff car, a Willys Jeep, a M37 Dodge Power Wagon...
Museum acquired a rare M-36 Jackson tank destroyer (Article no longer available from the original source)
Tank destroyers were meant to combat the big-gunned, heavily armored German Tigers and Panthers that "badly outclassed" the American Sherman tanks during the war. They were basically fast, lightly protected gun platforms firing shells that could penetrate the German armor. Their survival — and that of their crews — depended on speed and elusiveness, rather than heavy armor. Only about 1,500 M-36s were manufactured, and they reached the front in 1944, replacing older, smaller tank destroyers like the M-10 Wolverine and M-18 Bearcat.