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M15 Combination Gun Motor Carriage

M15 Combination Gun Motor Carriage


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M15 Combination Gun Motor Carriage

The M15 Combination Gun Motor Carriage was an effective anti-aircraft weapon that carried a 37mm cannon and two .50in machine guns on the back of an M3 half-track and that saw combat with the US Army from the start of Operation Torch in November 1942 until the Korean War.

Development

Work on mounting anti-aircraft machine guns on a half-track began in October 1940 with the T1 Multiple Gun Motor Carriage, the first in a series of designs armed with twin .50in machine guns. Work on the T1E2, the precursor of the production M13 MGMC began in November 1941 and the M13 was accepted for production in July 1942.

In September 1941 work began on a project to mount a heavier anti-aircraft gun on a half track, with the designation T28 Combination Gun Motor Carriage. This carried an M1A2 37mm autocannon and two .50in machine guns (mounted above and to the sides of the cannon) on a large open mount carried on a rotating platform on the back of an M2 half-track. The mount was too large to fit within the normal armoured sides of the half-track and so the sides and rear walls of the fighting compartment were removed, leaving an open platform.

The twin .50in machine guns were usually used with tracer rounds to allow the gun crews to hit their target. Once the machine gun fire was accurate the 37mm gun would open fire, hopefully making more effective use of the more limited supply of 37mm ammo.

The Coast Artillery Board, which was then in charge of the development of anti-aircraft weapons, liked the overall design and gun mount, but preferred machine guns to cannon. In the spring of 1942 the T28 was cancelled and work moved onto the T37 Multiple Gun Carriage, which carried four .50in machine guns on the same mount.

T28E1

In June 1942 the Armored Force asked for a crash programme to develop a mobile anti-aircraft weapon for use in the upcoming North African campaign. The T28 project was revived as the design had reached a stage where it could easily be rushed into production. The only major change to the design was a switch from the M2 half-track to the slightly longer M3 half-track, and the vehicle was then accepted for production as the expedient standard T28E1. Eighty T28E1s were completed by August 1942, and most of them went to North Africa.

The Tunisian campaign was one of the few occasions when the US Army fought the Germans without air superiority and so the anti-aircraft weapons came into their own. The T28E1 claimed 78 victories in three months during 1943, with 39 German aircraft shot down during the fighting in the Kasserine Pass alone. At least one T28E1 was captured by the Germans during this battle and later used as a transport vehicle. The T28 was also used during Operation Husky - the invasion of Sicily and in the invasion of Italy. Some were used during Operation Dragoon, the invasion of the South of France in August 1944.

M15

In February 1943 production of the T28E1 resumed. It was reclassified as substitute standard and redesignated as the M15 Combination Gun Motor Carriage. The main difference between the T28E1 and the M15 was the introduction of a five-sided gun shield - this had an open back, flat sides, diagonal front corners and a flat front with a gap for the gun and provided some protection for the gun crews. The M15 also saw air cooled machine guns introduced, replacing the water-cooled models of the T28E1. A total of 680 M15s were produced between February and April 1943.

M15A1

The most numerous version of the vehicle was the M15A1. This had a number of improvements, including a new M3A1 gun mount with the twin machine guns below the 37mm gun instead of above it, a modified shield and new gun sights and a strengthened chassis.

1,652 M15A1s were built between October 1943 and February 1944, 1,052 in 1943 and 600 in 1944. The vast majority of these vehicles went to the US Army, although 100 were exported to the Soviet Union under Lend-Lease.

Service Record (M15 and M15A1)

The M15 was used alongside the M16 Multiple Gun Motor Carriage. Armoured divisions received anti-aircraft artillery weapons companies, each of which had eight M15s and eight M16s. They were also used in anti-aircraft artillery weapons battalions at corps and army level, each of which had thirty-two M15s and thirty-two M16s. These were used to protect high value targets such as bridges, head-quarters or rail junctions.

The M15 began to enter combat in Italy in the autumn of 1943, at first operating alongside the earlier T28E1 and the twin machine gun armed M13 Multiple Gun Motor Carriage. The M13s were later replaced by quad .50in armed M16s, but the M15 remained in use throughout the war.

The M15 was used during Operation Dragoon, the invasion of the south of France of August 1944, where it was initially used in the anti-aircraft role as the Luftwaffe attacked the beachheads.

The M15 took part in the D-Day landings, with some landing on D-Day itself. The M15 was then used for the rest of the campaign in north-western Europe. There was rarely a major threat from the Luftwaffe, and so the M15 was often used as an infantry support weapons. Some were involved in the battle for Bastogne during the Battle of the Bulge. This period also saw the last major clashes with the Luftwaffe, and so for a brief spell at the end of 1944 and early in 1945 the M15 reverted to its original anti-aircraft role.

The M15A1 saw limited service in the Pacific. Some were used during the American return to the Philippines, especially on Luzon, and during the battle of Okinawa in the summer of 1945.

The Ordnance Department made a number of attempts to mount a 40mm Bofors gun on a half-track without success - the heavy gun produced too much recoil to be an effective anti-aircraft gun on the light half-track chassis. However there was one successful conversion, with the unofficial name of 'M15 Special'. This was produced at the Coopers Plains 99th Ordnance Depot near Brisbane, Australia. The Bofors gun was installed in an eight-sided turret on the back of a variety of half-tracks (probably not including the M15, despite the unofficial name). This conversion was no more stable than the official ones, but it was never intended to use it as an anti-aircraft weapon. The modified weapons were issued to the 209th AAA Battalion, which used them as an infantry support weapon during the fighting on Luzon.

The M15 was one of the few half-track based weapons to remain in use after the Second World War. It saw combat during the Korean War, alongside the M16, where once again it was used as an infantry support weapon. The M15 had largely been phased out by the end of the Korean War.


History

Between the world wars, the US Army sought to improve the tactical mobility of its forces. With the goal of finding a high-mobility infantry vehicle, the Ordnance Department had evaluated the half-track design by testing French Citroën-Kégresse vehicles. The White Motor Company produced a prototype halftrack using their own chassis and the body of the M3 Scout Car.

The design, using as many commercial components as possible to improve reliability and rate of production, was standardized in 1940 and built by the Autocar Company, Diamond T Motor Company, and the White Company.

Offered with a choice of White 160AX or IHC RED DIAMOND 450 engines, the M3 was driven through a manual constant-mesh (non-synchromesh) transmission with four forward and one reverse gear, [ 1 ] as well as a two-speed transfer case. [ 1 ] Front suspension was leaf spring, tracks by vertical volute spring. [ 1 ] Braking was vacuum-assisted hydraulic, [ 1 ] steering manual, without power assist. [ 1 ] The electrical system was 12-volt. [ 1 ]

The M3 was the larger counterpart to the M2 Half Track Car. The M2 was originally intended to function as an artillery tractor. The M3 had a longer body than the M2 with a single access door in the rear and seating for a 12-man rifle squad. Ten seats were arranged down either side of the vehicle, with three in the cab. Racks under the seats were used for ammunition and rations additional racks behind the seat backs held the squad's rifles and other stowage. A small rack for mines was added on the outside of the hull just above the tracks. In combat, most units found it necessary to stow additional food, rucksacks and other crew stowage on the outside of the vehicle. Luggage racks were often added in the field, and very late vehicles had rear-mounted racks for this crew stowage.

Early vehicles had a pintle mount just behind the front seats mounting a .50-caliber (12.7 mm) M2 Browning machine gun . The later M3A1 adopted a raised, armored 'pulpit mount' for the .50-caliber, and .30-caliber (7.62 mm) machine guns could be used from mounts along the sides of the passenger compartment. Many M3s were later modified to the M3A1 standard. The body was armored all around, with an adjustable armored shutter for the engine's radiator and a bulletproof windscreen.

The halftracks were initially extremely unpopular and dubbed "Purple Heart Boxes" (a grim reference to the US Army's decoration for combat wounds) by American troops. [ 2 ] Chief complaints centered around the complete lack of overhead protection from airbursting artillery shells and that the armor was inadequate against machine gun fire. [ 2 ]

Total production of the M3 ran to nearly 41,000 vehicles. To supply the Allied nations International Harvester produced several thousand of a very similar vehicle, the M5 half track for Lend-Lease.


History

Between the world wars, the US Army sought to improve the tactical mobility of its forces. With the goal of finding a high-mobility infantry vehicle, the Ordnance Department had evaluated the half-track design by testing French Citroën-Kégresse vehicles. The White Motor Company produced a prototype halftrack using their own chassis and the body of the M3 Scout Car.

The design, using as many commercial components as possible to improve reliability and rate of production, was standardized in 1940 and built by the Autocar Company, Diamond T Motor Company, and the White Company.

Offered with a choice of White 160AX or IHC RED 450 engines, the M3 was driven through a manual constant-mesh (non-synchromesh) transmission with four forward and one reverse gear, [ 1 ] as well as a two-speed transfer case. [ 1 ] Front suspension was leaf spring, tracks by vertical volute spring. [ 1 ] Braking was vacuum-assisted hydraulic, [ 1 ] steering manual, without power assist. [ 1 ] The electrical system was 12-volt. [ 1 ]

The M3 was the larger counterpart to the M2 Half Track Car. The M2 was originally intended to function as an artillery tractor. The M3 had a longer body than the M2 with a single access door in the rear and seating for a 13-man rifle squad. Ten seats were arranged down either side of the vehicle, with three in the cab. Racks under the seats were used for ammunition and rations additional racks behind the seat backs held the squad's rifles and other stowage. A small rack for mines was added on the outside of the hull just above the tracks. In combat, most units found it necessary to stow additional food, rucksacks and other crew stowage on the outside of the vehicle. Luggage racks were often added in the field, and very late vehicles had rear-mounted racks for this crew stowage.

Early vehicles had a pintle mount just behind the front seats mounting a .50-caliber (12.7 mm) M2 Browning machine gun. The later M3A1 adopted a raised, armored 'pulpit mount' for the .50-caliber, and .30-caliber (7.62 mm) machine guns could be used from mounts along the sides of the passenger compartment. Many M3s were later modified to the M3A1 standard. The body was armored all around, with an adjustable armored shutter for the engine's radiator and a bulletproof windscreen.

The halftracks were initially extremely unpopular and dubbed "Purple Heart Boxes" (a grim reference to the US Army's decoration for combat wounds) by American troops [ 2 ] . Chief complaints centered around the complete lack of overhead protection from airbursting artillery shells and that the armor was inadequate against machine gun fire. [ 2 ]

Total production of the M3 ran to nearly 41,000 vehicles. To supply the Allied nations International Harvester produced several thousand of a very similar vehicle, the M5 half track for Lend-Lease.


Sommaire

Naissance du projet Modifier

La recherche d'un canon antiaérien mobile pour la protection des troupes mécanisées et des colonnes de ravitaillement lança le développement de plusieurs projets, l'un débouchant sur la création du M16 MGMC et l'autre sur le M15. Pour ce dernier il s'agissait alors d'associer au châssis du M2 Half Track le canon antiaérien de 37 mm . Mais à l'automne 1942, l'U.S. Navy, alors chargée de l'étude sur l'artillerie antiaérienne, abandonne le projet car elle était plus séduite par l'utilisation de mitrailleuses. Néanmoins, quelques mois avant la débarquement en Afrique du Nord, elle relance l'étude de ce projet pour ses propres intérêts.

Projet T28 Modifier

Développement Modifier

Le projet fut donc remanié à la hâte, aboutissant finalement à l'union d'une tourelle antiaérienne et du châssis du M3 Half-track, plus long que le M2. La tourelle était équipée d'un canon M1A2 de 37 mm à tir rapide (dont l'élévation atteignait les 85°), ainsi que deux mitrailleuses M2 Browning de calibre .50 BMG servant à ajuster le tir par leurs balles traçantes. Comme l'invasion approchait, on procéda tout de suite à la production de ce modèle en nombre limité, l'Afrique du Nord servant ainsi de terrain de test à grande échelle. Autocar produisit 80 unités de T28E1 avant l'invasion et les confia au corps expéditionnaire.

Au combat Modifier

L'armée américaine déploya ses T28E1 lors de la campagne de Tunisie, sans connaître réellement leurs capacités, simplement parce que le besoin l'exigeait avant l'arrivée d'un véhicule plus performant. Pourtant, au cours des trois mois de combat sur ce théâtre d'opération, ces véhicules répondirent aux attentes des troupes américaines. Sur cette seule période, ils revendiquèrent la destruction de 78 appareils allemands, dont 39 dans la seule bataille de la passe de Kasserine. Les T28E1 s'avérèrent particulièrement efficaces contre les chasseurs bombardiers Stukas.

M15 CGMG Modifier

Production Modifier

Les résultats satisfaisants conduisirent à la production en masse du T28 dès février 1943 , date à laquelle il fut standardisé sous le nom de M15 Combination Gun Motor Carriage (CGMC). Un seul changement résulta des tests en combat réel : l'ajout d'un bouclier de protection pour l'équipage de la tourelle. Quelque 680 de ces véhicules furent produits entre février et avril 1943 . Le poids excessif de la tourelle à laquelle on avait ajouté le bouclier conduisait cependant à une surcharge pour la châssis M3, et de la nouvelle combinaison de cette même tourelle avec le châssis M3A1 naquit le M15A1. 1652 furent produits entre octobre 1943 et février 1944 .

Au combat Modifier

Le M15 équipa, comme son frère le M16, les compagnies et bataillons antiaériens. Le manque de cibles aériennes à partir de la fin de l'année 1944 conduisit à leur utilisation de plus en plus fréquente comme véhicules de soutien d'infanterie. 100 de ces véhicules furent de plus envoyés en URSS dans le cadre du Lend Lease.

Guerre de Corée Modifier

Les deux modèles furent réutilisés après la Seconde Guerre mondiale, notamment pendant la guerre de Corée, mais montrèrent leurs limites pendant cette campagne. L'U.S Army décida alors d'exporter certains de ces modèles afin d'équiper l'armée japonaise ou d'autres troupes alliées de l'OTAN.


Overview [ edit | edit source ]

The battle of France saw the birth of Blitzkrieg when German tanks were employed in an offensive role en masse for the first time. US tank doctrine envisioned mass enemy armored thrusts piercing through front lines, and to combat this perceived threat they called for a fast, well-armed tank destroyer that could react to such an attack. The M10 was one of the first tank destroyer models introduced into U.S. service after its entry into World War II. It combined a Sherman chassis with the 3-inch M7 anti-aircraft gun mounted on an open-top turret. To be fast, it had to sacrifice armor. The combination of an open top and thin armor made the tank destroyer vulnerable to German anti-tank weaponry, but especially small arms and artillery. Advantages of an open top included ease of communication, a quick way to get out of the tank when hit and great visibility, helping crew members spot tanks from afar.

The destroyer, formally designated 3-inch Gun Motor Carriage M10, was developed by the Fisher Body division of General Motors and Ford Motor Company in early 1942. It mated a modified M4A2 (M4A3 in M10A1 models) Sherman chassis with the M7 76.2mm gun in a rotating turret. It was a reliable and powerful weapon during its production run from September 1942 to December 1943. Although its main gun was eventually found to be ineffective against heavier German tanks such as the Panther. The kind of battlefield that bare witness to massed armoured attacks as envisioned by US tank doctrine was never fully realised and the tank destroyer often fulfilled the role of direct and indirect fire support. While the M10 TD had its shortcomings, tank destroyer battalions equipped with the Wolverine still caused many German armour losses. It proved to be a potent general support unit pressed into many roles.

The nearly 6,500 M10s produced remained in service until the end of the war. A further 1648 vehicles were supplied to the United Kingdom, which converted 1017 of them into the 17-pdr armed Achilles. Around 200 Wolverines were also supplied to the Free French army.

Unlike their American Counterparts who had their Anti-Tank Battalions attached, 2e Blindée had their Anti-Tank element  Régiment Blindé de Fusiliers-Marins was organic to their division.  Sub-lieutenant Philippe de Gaulle son of the General Charles de Gaulle served with the Régiment Blindé de Fusiliers-Marins.


Contents

The M19 MGMC had similar specifications to the M24 Chaffee. It was 17.9 ft (5.46 m) long, 9.33 ft (2.845 m) wide, and 9.83 ft (2.997 m) high. It had a weight of 38,499 lb (17,463 kg), and was powered with a 220 hp (160 kW) Twin Cadillac Model 42, twinned-V-8 engine installation (two Model 42 Cadillac automobile V-8s driving a common gearbox). It could achieve a speed of 35 mph (56.3 km/h), and had a range of 150 mi (241 km). The vehicle was operated with a crew of six. Ώ]


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Sommaire

Les spécifications du M16 étaient similaires à celles du M3 Half-track. Il mesurait 6,5 m de long (avec un empattement de 3,44 m), 2,16 m de large, 2,34 m de haut et pesait 9,9 tonnes courtes (9 t) [ 2 ] . Sa suspension consistait en une volute verticale de ressorts à lames pour les roues [ 3 ] .

Il était propulsé par un moteur à essence White 160AX de 128 chevaux (95 kW) et 6 cylindres de 386 pouces cubes (6 300 cc). Il avait un taux de compression de 6,3:1 et un réservoir de carburant de 230 l (60 US gallons). Il pouvait atteindre une vitesse de pointe de 67,1 km/h (41,7 mph), une autonomie de 282 km (175 miles) et un rapport poids/puissance de 15,8 chevaux par tonne [ 3 ] . Il disposait d'un armement principal de quatre mitrailleuses de 12,7 mm dans un support quadruple M45 Quadmount et d'un blindage de 12 millimètres à l'avant et sur les côtés [ 2 ] .

Le M16 était une amélioration de la mitrailleuse lourde M2 Browning de calibre 50 équipée des M13 MGMC et M14 MGMC (construits respectivement sur un châssis semi-chenillé M3 et M5) [ 4 ] . Il était basé sur un modèle antérieur du M13 (le T1E2 [ Note 1 ] ), mais l'affût Maxson M33 était remplacé par le Quadmount M45 et le châssis demi-chenille M2 était remplacé par le châssis M3 [ 5 ] .

Ce prototype était initialement désigné comme le T61 MGMC, mais après des essais à Aberdeen, il a été accepté comme le M16 Multiple Gun Motor Carriage. Quelques corrections ont été apportées sur un véhicule pilote au début de 1943 (notamment l'ajout d'un bouclier de canon) avant le début de la production [ 6 ] .

Au total, 2 877 ont été produits par la White Motor Company pendant la période allant de mai 1943 à mars 1944, tandis que les 568 M13 et 109 half-tracks T10 ont également été convertis en M16 [ 7 ] , [ 8 ] . La production des M13 et M14 a été arrêtée au profit de la production des M16 et M17 (un M16 construit sur un châssis de demi-piste M5) [ 5 ] .

Le M16 MGMC est entré en service au début de 1944, le M13 ayant été retiré de la circulation peu après. Le M16 était surnommé "le hachoir à viande" pour sa puissance de feu mortelle, et était extrêmement populaire auprès des troupes. En plus de son rôle anti-aérien, le M16 était utilisé pour le soutien de l'infanterie, souvent accompagné du M15 Combination Gun Motor Carriage. Le M17 MGMC a principalement servi avec l'Union soviétique dans le cadre de l'opération Bagration et de quelques autres batailles [ 1 ] .

Le M16 a été utilisé par les forces américaines lors de la campagne d'Italie, l' opération Overlord, la bataille d'Arracourt et la bataille des Ardennes en Europe du Nord [ 9 ] . Un petit nombre a été fourni au Royaume-Uni et à la France dans le cadre d'un prêt-bail [ 10 ] . Le véhicule a également été largement utilisé pendant la guerre de Corée par l' armée sud-coréenne, le Corps des Marines des États-Unis et l'armée américaine [ 5 ] .

Les avions étant de plus en plus perfectionnés au cours de la durée de vie du M16, son rôle d'arme anti-aérienne mobile s'est limité. Pendant la guerre de Corée, il a principalement servi dans le rôle d'appui au sol, où il était très efficace [ Note 2 ] . Fin 1951, il a été déclaré "standard limité" et largement retiré du service de l'armée américaine en Corée, bien que quelques exemplaires aient servi jusqu'à la fin de la guerre [ 11 ] . Il a été déclaré obsolète par l'armée américaine en 19 [ 6 ] .


Watch the video: Building Tamiya M8 Howitzer Motor Carriage. From Start to Finish. (July 2022).


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