Sunday 16 March 2014

Hasan Tank Combat

"Notes on known defects and deficiencies of our tanks and recommendations on their correction

T-26 vehicle
  1. The oil radiator can be reached by an enemy that can pierce it with a bayonet. It should be covered with rotating overlapping armour plates.
  2. Old tanks can't lock their driver's hatch. There were cases where the enemy could open it and kill the crew. We have many tanks like this.
  3. You can't use the fan, as it increases the possibility of the crew being harmed by bullets and lead splashes. Make the fan like on the BT tank.
  4. Gases collect at the top of the turret, which reflects on the crew's health. There were cases of CO poisoning. It is necessary to put a fan at the top of the turret next to the periscope.
  5. The air, due to gunpowder gases, high temperature, sweat, and other causes, is difficult to breathe. The tank should be equipped with chemically filtered breathing tubes.
  6. The suspension is not protected from the outside.
  7. The tank is hit frequently. The turret and hull armour should be streamlined.
  8. The turret attachment is insufficiently rigid. There were several cases of turrets falling off.
  9. Loss of tracks. The suspension cannot keep up with the mobility required from a tank. Sharp turns cause the track to slip off, and you cannot function without sharp turns on the battlefield.
  10. Many cases of rubber tires flying off the road wheels.
  11. There were cases when shells jammed hatches. In the event that the tank caught fire, the crews could not exit the tank, and burned up.
  12. It is hard to see out of the tank. Several old variants of tanks have no observation ports at all in the turret, and existing ones are insufficient for full observation.
  13. Tanks burn strongly due to gasoline, rubber bandages, and frequent painting due to holidays and inspections from important commanders. When painting tanks, remove the old layer, and do not paint over it.
  14. There is a dead zone where the enemy is immune to the tank's weapons. The enemy could climb on the tank, hit it with crowbars, loosen the gun, destroy instruments and devices, pour gasoline on it, and set it on fire. It is necessary to have high explosive rounds in all tanks. Provide pistol ports for the driver on the sides.
  15. The battery is placed in the tank poorly, and impedes observation and the use of pistol ports.
  16. The tank moves slowly through swamps and gets stuck frequently. 
  17. The driver sees the enemy in front of him, but cannot fire at him.
  18. The front plate of the tank is vulnerable. There were many tanks with frontal penetrations. The front of the tank must be sharp.
  19. Commanders' tanks are distinct from others. In battle, the enemy fires at those tanks first.
  20. It isn't possible to replace the 1st and 2nd cylinder sparkplugs on the move, as the frame is too close to them.
  21. The ventilation hatch can fit a grenade through it. There were cases where this happened.
  22. Shells penetrate armour frequently. The following armour is vulnerable: front horizontal, driver's hatch, hull and turret walls.
  23. There is nowhere to urinate during battle.
  24. There is nothing the crew can use to fight fires.
  25. Heat in the tank leads to high consumption of drinking water.
  26. There were cases where the enemy could freely place a grenade in the rear compartment.
  27. There is a periscope for observation, but it is inconvenient to use during battle.
BT vehicle
  1. The front part of the tank is hit with shells frequently.
  2. The tank has a hard time traversing swamps.
  3. The driver cannot fire.
  4. The hatches are circular, and you cannot use them to take cover when leaving the tank.
Otherwise, the vehicle has the same problems as the T-26.

Overall notes
  1. Drivers are unprepared to drive with hatches closed, observe from the turret, use terrain for cover, and approach the enemy stealthily.
  2. The brake signal must be on at all time when moving at night.
  3. Tanks should help each other in battle. If a tank loses a track, another tank must cover the crew. If samurai climb up on the tank, another must destroy them with the machinegun. Everyone must feel that his comrades will not abandon him in trouble. 
  4. Company command trucks should be armoured, as they have to follow the tank until the attack, and sometimes during the attack. When the vehicle breaks down, it should be towed to cover and repaired. The trucks should match the brand of trucks in the company. 
  5. When evacuating a tank, it is desirable to hook on the tank without leaving the engineering vehicle. Add a hatch next to the tow hook.
  6. Outline markings, especially white ones, make it easier for the enemy to aim at the tank.
  7. Move from wood fired field kitchens to gas kitchens, as it is difficult to find firewood.
  8. Practice evacuation of a damaged tank from the battlefield.
  9. In order to evacuate damaged tanks, have vehicles with Komintern tractor winches. The off-road performance of this vehicle must be better than the tank's.
  10. Wheeled vehicles should not supply tanks with ammunition, fuel, or other supplies. It is necessary to have tracked armoured transports, preferably short ones, so that they may move unnoticed. Fuel vehicles should have nozzles to fuel up five tanks simultaneously, and each must have a self-evacuation device.
  11. Add a hatch in the bottom of all tanks to gain access to components that require periodic lubrication.
Composed by participant in the Hasan lake battles, engineer Starkov
February 26th, 1939
One copy printed on March 15th, 1939"


  1. Did In read that right? Samurai?

    1. Yes, the Soviets tended to refer to the Japanese soldiers as "samurai"