Sunday, 21 September 2014

Straussler's Tank

Barykov's trip to England to examine British tanks in 1934 contains much commentary on a tank built by Nicholas Straussler. I have extracted the parts dealing with this tank from the report and compiled them in a separate article.

"There is only one new and completely original design, Straussler's tank. England has no Straussler tanks. According to him, only one such tank was assembled in Hungary. The main components of the tank: engine, gearbox, reversing gear, control mechanisms, and some others are used in Straussler's armoured cars. I saw two of them in the assembly plant. The description of Straussler's tank and its engine, as well as photographs, were delivered earlier. Unlike Vickers' tanks, Straussler's tank is a complicated design that is difficult to produce.
...
As was said earlier, Straussler's tank is an exception [to the rule of simplicity] and has 8 forward and 8 reverse gears. The tank can move on wheels (although it cannot be called convertible drive, as the wheels do not turn, and the tank turns by applying brakes to one side).

The engine, 135 hp, has very high compression ratios and needs ethyl or benzole mixes, a very high quality of fuel. I composed a list of conditions for acceptance of Straussler's tank. Mainly, the conditions are as follows. The tank must be trialled for 500 km, and be guaranteed for 3000 km of operation in the Soviet Union. During these trials, the following cannot break: engine, any transmission component, suspension (including wheel rubber), fan belt, and the entire cooling system. If a part breaks, it will be replaced at the supplier's cost and the trials will be repeated. In the event of a breakdown of non-essential components, the stage of trials where the breakdown happened will be repeated. Additionally, Straussler must allow our representatives to be present during armour testing, welding, and hull QA. I considered and applied the suggestions of GVMU chief comrade Pavlunoskiy in order to create optimal conditions for experience transfer to us.

I ask you to send at least four competent engineers to test Straussler's tank. The first two will supervise the hull assembly and must be sent to England in the first half of January of 1935. "

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