Tank ID Help request?

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42rocker
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Tank ID Help request?

Post by 42rocker » Mon Feb 27, 2012 9:45 pm

lowertank1.jpg[/attachment ]As the title states, please help ID this tank. This is one of the tanks that my father was around. He served as driver then moved up to tank commander and then moved up to tank instructor before he transfer to the Army Air corp. Photo was taken 1943-1944 time period. I have another pic with my father standing next to one of the tanks that I'll post later. At this time I think that it's a Sherman M4a1, that said I'm working on it. Most of my reference books are on German tanks. Main thing that I noticed is the rounded like front rather than the flat sloped M4a4 style. I can work on the wheel types later. However any general or detailed info would be great. Plans are to make a model and put a figure in front of it, coping a photo of my father standing next to the side of his. Not sure on scale yet think it will be 1/35, while I have a 1/16 King Tiger kit I'm not sure I want one that big to pass on. Now hopefully I can get the picture added. If you see this without a pic I'm working on it. If you need a more detailed pic pm me and we can go from there. Also photo was taken stateside. Thanks for any info. Later 42rocker [attachment=0]lowertank1.jpg
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Re: Tank ID Help request?

Post by 42rocker » Mon Feb 27, 2012 9:48 pm

Well that was interesting... I got the tank pic posted and lost the text. So lets try for the text again.

As the title states, please help ID this tank. This is one of the tanks that my father was around. He served as driver then moved up to tank commander and then moved up to tank instructor before he transfer to the Army Air corp. Photo was taken 1943-1944 time period. I have another pic with my father standing next to one of the tanks that I'll post later. At this time I think that it's a Sherman M4a1, that said I'm working on it. Most of my reference books are on German tanks. Main thing that I noticed is the rounded like front rather than the flat sloped M4a4 style. I can work on the wheel types later. However any general or detailed info would be great. Plans are to make a model and put a figure in front of it, coping a photo of my father standing next to the side of his. Not sure on scale yet think it will be 1/35, while I have a 1/16 King Tiger kit I'm not sure I want one that big to pass on.
Now hopefully I can get the picture added. If you see this without a pic I'm working on it. If you need a more detailed pic pm me and we can go from there. Also photo was taken stateside.

Thanks for any info.

Later 42rocker

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Re: Tank ID Help request?

Post by Chuckm » Mon Feb 27, 2012 11:00 pm

Looking in the book M4 Sherman by George Forty, on page 62 is a side shot of a M4A1 in British service in the Desert.

It is the closest thing I can find in the book with the cast hull and turret.

Hope that helps,

Chuck McClurg
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Re: Tank ID Help request?

Post by amafrank » Tue Feb 28, 2012 12:32 pm

You might try contacting someone at the Virginia Museum of Military Vehicles or the Ropke Armor museum. Both have websites and knowledgeable people that could help. We went to the big militaria show at Beltring in England last summer with one of the guys from VMMV. He knew details about the tanks I didn't even know existed.
I don't have web or email addresses for either place but I know they both have websites. Google may not really be your friend but it will find the websites.


Frank

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Re: Tank ID Help request?

Post by 42rocker » Tue Feb 28, 2012 2:07 pm

Thank You both for your info. This next pic is a photo of my father in front of his tank. The name on the side of the tank is "Eligible". This tank is slightly different that the tank in the other pic.
I would be Thankful for any info.

Thanks 42rocker
smallHaroldTankEligible.jpg
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Re: Tank ID Help request?

Post by 42rocker » Tue Feb 28, 2012 2:12 pm

small2HaroldTankEligible.jpg
Lets try again on the photo. Hopefully you will be able to see a bitter one.

Later 42rocker
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Re: Tank ID Help request?

Post by Taurus454 » Thu Mar 01, 2012 8:24 pm

Yes, I'm well over 90% positive that both are straight M4's.

Thomas E. Maloney SR

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Re: Tank ID Help request?

Post by 42rocker » Fri Mar 02, 2012 12:39 am

Thanks to all that gave info. After more reading in the direction that you folks have sent me on, I bought a
"Dragon 1:35 M4A1 75mm Sherman Early Version MISB Kit 6048" which I believe will be something that I can made look like Dad's tank. Plans are to make a nice 8x10 photo for the background then build the kit and a figure to "try" to copy the picture. Then put a case around it. Something to pass on. After the Tank corp Dad went into the Army Air corp. Then Dad went to OCS and jump school and after doing more teaching at jump school (Fort Benning) then got shipped off to join the 11th Airborne then got to be one of the first 500 or so into Japan. General Douglas Mac Aurthur showed up a day later to set up to sign the Peace Agreement ending WW2. Somehow I have not put together a plan to show him jumping. Have photos of when he jumped about age 60.
Any rate have a Great one.....

Later 42rocker

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Re: Tank ID Help request?

Post by TactAdv » Fri Mar 02, 2012 9:59 pm

Okay....been away for awhile.

It is not an early A1; the tell-tale characteristic of the early A1 was the installation of two, fixed firing M1919A5 guns(fixed as in bolted in place in both azimuth and elevation, i.e, no way of moving the gun to aim save moving the hull), to the left(center hull) of the flex 'A5 gun in an early ball-mount.

There were more subtle distinctions in the production of the A1's than in any of the other variants, though the A1's all shared some common traits, the most common being the fully sand-cast upper hull and turret. All A1's were made by three Mfgrs, all old-line locomotive companies- ALCO, Baldwin, and Lima. The A1 was not a settled, or stable, variation and during the time the variant name was used a lot of changes appeared, some by Mark covering the vehicle specification, some used by individual Mgrs to suit their production means, and some annoyingly for no apparent reasons other than for testing or to use up older parts. Such things as wide variations in lower hull fabrications, glasis plate thickness and angle, track and suspension variations, and even gun mantlets were common throughout the A1 period before wide-scale standardization occurred. This was also the period when the myriad of powerplant options were beginning to appear and therein became one of the most prominent differences between named specific models later on.

An "M4A1" can look like, and be, a LOT of different things but thanks to the nuances, or general lack of caring about the issue by the various GOV people involved early on, the A1 model is generally considered to be known by a few common traits most prominently the narrow track suspension(all early vertical volute type), rubber impregnated tracks, cast upper hull and turret, small gun mantlet with the low velocity 75mm gun, often multiple fixed M191A5 MG's in the lower hull front, a fabricated two or three piece lower hull, rivted construction with no weldings, and any of the early lower power power plant packages, such as the early R-985 radials of twin-ed inline 6's.

Your particular pictured vehicle displays most of these characteristics for an "A1", but it would probably be best described as a "late M4A1" due to the absence of the additional fixed MG's and some other smaller details I see. Also too, early marks of the M4A2/3 designation crept in when the only meaningful changes were largely internal, i.e., engine packs, so it is very subjective in many ways without knowing the actual construction number of the individual vehicle.

The M4 vehicle was always very much a specification in a absolutely constant state of flux during its entire period of being manufactured, so one must always take any "firm" identification of any such one particular vehicle with a large grain of salt. It was a very confusing program even to those involved in its manufacture and there was a very wide latitude given each individual industrial concern involved, the only absolute forced upon them often was the instruction to make as many as they could as fast as they could.

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Re: Tank ID Help request?

Post by 42rocker » Sat Mar 03, 2012 12:22 am

TomH and everyone else. I posted 2 pics (one has 2 pics in it) that pic was of one tank and the tank that I'm mainly interested in was the one with my Father standing on the ground next to it. The one with the fancy front sproket.
Noting that main interest is in the last pic posted with my Father standing on the ground. What can be said about that tank. I just received a Dragon kit which is M4A1 75mm Early Version #6048. I believe that of all of the tank kits that I have looked at, that this is the closest one out there. I'm looking and thinking that I might be able to build it out of the box and be closest to the one in the pic.

Thanks to all for any thoughts on this project. Hopefully following is a pic of the tank model that I bought.
model.jpg
Thanks again for any input.

Later 42rocker
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Re: Tank ID Help request?

Post by TactAdv » Sat Mar 03, 2012 12:35 am

All the M4 series, and the earlier M3 series from which they were based on, share a common final drive arrangement, i.e, a forward mounted transmission and the front drive sprocket arrangement.

Your model there is, essentially, about as close as you can reasonably expect to come from a generic model kit; from there you will need to carefully replicate the specific details visible in your Fathers' pictured vehicle.

-TomH
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Re: Tank ID Help request?

Post by cptdarling506 » Sat Mar 03, 2012 5:16 pm

Could it be one of them inflatable rubber dummy Tanks?you know,the ones made to fool the Hun before D-day.

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Re: Tank ID Help request?

Post by 42rocker » Sat Mar 03, 2012 9:54 pm

TomH
As always Thanks for your input.

cptdarling506
Well in some ways you are correct about a rubber blow up tank. There is one in the background on the picture on the cover of the Dragon model 6048 plastic model box. The top pictures are of real tanks that were being used in the training of tankers here in the states.

Later 42rocker

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Re: Tank ID Help request?

Post by 42rocker » Mon Mar 05, 2012 12:09 am

This is a test.... Don't do it if you don't want to.
That said I opened up a photo bucket account and wanted to test it with one of the above pics.
Still looking for info. I'll try posting what I have later.

http://s1168.photobucket.com/albums/r488/photo42rocker/

Above photo bucket link is the same photo as above, as stated just a test. Thanks

Later 42rocker

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Re: Tank ID Help request?

Post by 42rocker » Mon Mar 05, 2012 12:10 am

Link in worked for me. I'll have to add some mg42 pics later.

Later 42rocker

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Re: Tank ID Help request?

Post by Colorado1919 » Mon Jun 18, 2012 12:51 am

42rocker
How is the model coming? This is the first time I've seen this thread. The model you have is fine for the picture of your fathers tank. Your fathers tank is the late version of the M4A1 with 56 degree hull front. The vision slits and fixed hull guns had been deleted from production but it still has the small gun shield. The model looks really good to build a model of your fathers tank. Very few of the M4 series had the fixed guns because they were useless.
The tanks with 47 degree hull fronts are considered the late versions. Then they went from the VVSS to HVSS suspension.
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Re: Tank ID Help request?

Post by 42rocker » Tue Oct 16, 2012 8:00 pm

Just got back to this.
Thanks everyone for your input. A slow project but I'm working on it at times.

Later 42rocker

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