Tuesday, 19 December 2017

Tougher Armour

"Order of the People's Commissar of the Defense Industry #337ss
Moscow
August 23rd, 1938

To carry out government order #198/ss/ov issued on August 7th, 1938, and to further improve tanks and armoured cars by increasing their armour, I order that:

The Chief of the 7th Directorate, comrade Tsvetaev, and the director of the Izhor factory, comrade Kazakov, must:
  1. Accelerate experimental work on trials of tank armour 30-70 mm thick. Report on the results of the trials by September 20th, 1938.
  2. Summarize all materials on experiments with spaced armour, and present final conclusions on the use of this armour by September 20th, 1938.
  3. Produce and present the NKO with an armoured car on the ZIS-6 chassis with armour that protects from armour piercing bullets from the front at any range by December 1st, 1938.
  4. Within a month, develop a plan for improvements to the armour of T-26, T-28, and BA-10 tanks and armoured cars, according to the attached list (## 1, 4, 5, 7, 8).
    When developing the plan, consider the necessary time to prepare for production.
The Chief of the 7th Directorate, comrade Tsvetaev, and the director of the Mariupol factory, comrade Gormashev, must:
  1. Perform trials of 50 and 60 mm thick surface hardened or homogeneous applique armour (the applique armour us either surface hardened or homogeneous, the main armour is homogeneous) of identical thickness to the main armour. Compare the resistance of this armour to resistance of homogeneous armour of equal thickness, and report to me by September 20th, 1938.
  2. Complete all work and report to me by September 20th, 1938, on trials of two-layer armour, resistance compared to homogeneous armour of equal thickness, and the specifics of production (difficulty, percent rejection, etc), as well as the feasibility of use of this armour.
  3. Within a month, develop a plan for improvements of the armour of BT-7 and T-35 tanks, according to the attached list (## 1, 3, 6).
    When developing the plan, consider the necessary time to prepare for production.
The NKOP Chief Inspector must ensure that this order is carried out, and report to me on its progress one month from now.

People's Commissar of the Defense Industry
M. Kaganovich"

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