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Weapons you MOST like to learn about...

Discussion in 'General Military Arms & History Forum' started by Guest, Mar 3, 2003.

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    Guest Guest

    polishshooter
    Senior Chief Moderator Staff
    Posts: 1241
    (7/13/01 11:50:41 pm)
    Reply | Del All Weapons you MOST like to learn about...
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    Since I like polls, and I like to know what the public wants, let's know your passion.

    Results (total votes = 11):
    Small Arms, Machine Guns, Grunts 9 / 81.8%

    Artillery, Anti-tank, Anti-Air, "support" 1 / 9.1%

    Aircraft/Air Forces 1 / 9.1%

    Tanks, SPGs, AFVs 0 / 0.0%

    Ships/Naval/Submarines 0 / 0.0%

    Vote Now
    Patina is an acquired taste.

    17th FA Bn
    V.I.P. Member
    Posts: 8
    (7/14/01 7:51:02 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: Weapons you MOST like to learn about...
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    I'm a junkie for weapons effectiveness stats. Is this a curable disease? You see data from different sources that has widely different figures.

    Also, what was Army ordinance thinking in 1944/45 when they sent our divisions into Europe to face the Germans with 57mm anti-tank pop guns?

    I'd love to get hold of some of the old field manuals that were issued to our troops telling them where a given weapon could penetrate a tank at a given range.

    Xracer
    Moderator
    Posts: 608
    (7/14/01 8:59:27 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: Weapons you MOST like to learn about...
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    All of the above.

    kdubaz
    Moderator
    Posts: 254
    (7/14/01 11:57:48 am)
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    Ditto Xracer - I can't pick just one of the above - like'um all!
    Keep below the ridgeline!

    polishshooter
    Senior Chief Moderator Staff
    Posts: 1250
    (7/14/01 12:35:16 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: Weapons you MOST like to learn about...
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    Yeah, me too. I get into "modes," where for a period of time I only read about Naval, or planes, or grunts, or???. Or else to a specific time period. I even find myself referring to me "spending time in the Spanish-American War..."
    I usually find myself drawn to Infantry and support, though.

    The 57mm was as much politics, and doctrine, and an overabundance of production and personnel.

    We entered the war with the 37mm as our main AT gun, long after all the other armies had gotten rid of it. We had nothing else, although the "stopgap" 1897 French 75 that was our main field artillery piece until 1940, pressed into TD service on the M3 Halftracks, did pretty darn well against even the Tiger Is in Africa.

    I have no clue why we just didn't put IT back into production with a better wheeled carriage, and made IT the infantry gun. It had decent AT power, being equivalent to the Sherman's 75, good HE power, AND we had alot of experience and troops trained with it. I guess we wanted something "new," even if it wasn't "better."

    The British had developed the 57, to upgun their 2 pounders, mainly to have better penetration and SOME HE capability, and shared it with us early, we put it into production because we panicked not having any "real" AT guns, and made thousands of them, even though they were already too small before they were issued.

    We gave a ton of them to the Russians in lend lease, most mounted on M3 H/Ts, the Russians adopted them as the SU57, and used them until the 50s, gave them to the Warsaw Pact, who used them until the 60s or later.

    Anyway, we had the "Tank Destroyer Force" doctrine, the concept fought by the tankers and every other branch, which was given the same status as Armor, Infantry, Artillery, Engineers, and AAF. Lots of politics involved, and a pretty big force in it's own right. Inside the TD Force, was more fighting, whether all TDs should be self-propelled, or some towed.

    The "Empire building" generals in the TD Force wanted to keep as many men as possible, so they developed the SP and towed together, and used the many available 57s as a nucleus of the towed until the 3"/76mm was available.

    Even after it became available, what do you do with all the 57s? Use them for SOMETHING.

    Thus, give them to the infantry.

    They were actually pretty good against bunkers, pillboxes, light skinned vehicles, and even tanks IF you could ambush them from up close, and from behind. They had more punch than a bazooka, and if a SPG wasn't available, were easier to "manhandle" in the front lines for direct fire than anything larger.

    But you are right, they seemed to be a waste of manpower, the Infantry was always short of men, while all those TD troops would have made good infantry.

    BUT when NOTHING else was available, the 57 was better than NO AT capability, and better than a bazooka in the defense.

    Interestingly, it was the experience of the 57 that made us refuse the excellent 17 pounder when the British offered it to us. We didn't need ANOTHER weapon/ammunition type gumming up the supply/production lines, and 57 production was humming along, why switch?

    If only we hadn't adopted the 57, and waited, the 17# would have been GREAT in the same role, and maybe even gave us a better gun for both the M4 and the M10 and M18 TDs.

    But I never need my glasses when I use my "hindsight..."


    Patina is an acquired taste.

    17th FA Bn
    V.I.P. Member
    Posts: 8
    (7/14/01 1:44:23 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: Weapons you MOST like to learn about...
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    One big advantage of a s.p. tank destroyer over a towed gun, if you don't stop the enemy tank, at least you can get out of Dodge quickly.

    A U.S. Infantry Regiment would have had 1 full anti-tank company plus 1 anti-tank platoon per Battalion, for the equivalent of two companies. 200-300 men tied down with a marginal weapon is a lot of waste.

    I had read the the Russians wouldn't even use our 57mm gun, theirs was much better. They loved our vehicles, so if they got U.S. half tracks, they would put their own guns on them.

    polishshooter
    Senior Chief Moderator Staff
    Posts: 1258
    (7/15/01 12:14:21 am)
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    When they formed the "1st Polish Army," made up of polish soldiers that "escaped" to Russia, and Russian Officers, (because they had murdered most of the "captured" polish officers and officer cadets in the Katyn Forest), they gave most of the SU57s to them as an "Armored Brigade." They actually did pretty good work, but then give a polak ANYTHING and a German to shoot at and they will do pretty good with it...and the Russians had to do it before the "Home Army" made up of exiles in England got there, and also give the poles someone to shoot at besides Russians, they like to do that even more than Germans.
    Patina is an acquired taste.

    Investig8tor
    V.I.P. Member
    Posts: 73
    (7/16/01 9:50:38 pm)
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    My wife won't let me have a tank. Hell, she doesn't know about the second gun cabinet yet:LOL
    SO I have to settle for small arms.

    polishshooter
    Senior Chief Moderator Staff
    Posts: 1347
    (7/20/01 10:46:57 pm)
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    Someday I WILL own an M4, or else an M5...

    Knew a farmer back home in NY who had a surplus Sherman without a turret back in the 60s-70s that used it to get his corn in when it was too wet for a tractor, had the grousers on the tracks and everything.

    I wonder if he still has it? May have to pay a visit next time we go to see my mom.
    Eibar Pimp. "Pssst! 'Ay Meester..."

    17th FA Bn
    V.I.P. Member
    Posts: 10
    (7/23/01 8:42:42 pm)
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    I want to get an M8 "greyhound" armored car when I get rich (still haven't figured out how to do that). With 6 wheel drive it would be a great off road vehicle and still be street legal. If a 57 chevy turns heads this would swing um around even faster.

    kdubaz
    Moderator
    Posts: 347
    (7/23/01 11:05:00 pm)
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    An ol' boy down south of me has a place in the country - has a DUKW that he parks alongside his half-track. Every once in a while he fires them up and drives the desert trails. Quite a sight!
    Keep below the ridgeline!
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