Wednesday 7 May 2014

T-50's Case Part 3: Reasons for T-50 Production Lag and Protest

Continued from part 2.

"Part 3: Reasons for T-50 production falling behind quota

The main reasons are:
  1. The incorrect choice of placing factory #174 on the grounds of the Chkalov factory (not enough space).
  2. Lack of a local metallurgical production base in the Chkalov region, and a lack of necessary equipment for starting one, in addition to lack of temporary half-processed shipments from Kirov and STZ factories.
  3. Lack of equipment at factory #174 due to non-deliveries of assigned equipment, and confiscation of equipment sent to factory #174 for temporary use at the Kirov factory in September of 1941 (70 units).
  4. A lack of technological expertise, both due to a lack of technological help from the People's Commissariat of Tank Production, as well as technical mistakes of the factory management.
  5. Factories attached to factory #174 are weak, and cannot compensate for missing equipment. Compared to all other tank factories, factory #174 received the least support.
Part 4: Protest against removing the T-50 from production

Kirov factory's proposal to remove the T-50 from production is based on the following reasons:
  1. Production of V-4 engines for the T-50 impedes production of V-2 engines for the KV tank. There is a shortage.
    This assertion is false. The V-4 engine differs little from the V-2, and takes 20% less time to produce. Our three engine factories can produce 90 engines per day, with a demand of 60 engines per day. I propose to remove 8-9 V-2 engines to allow for production of 10-12 V-4 engines, in the event that these engines can be compensated for at STZ. Later, this can be compensated by building a factory in Barnaul that can output 50-60 V-4 engines per day instead of the scheduled 35 per day. It will be possible to partially cover the output of one factory with American engines.
  2. Cooperation between factory #174 and Kirov factory on forging and casting reduces production of KV tanks. The same can be said about the cooperation of factories #37 and #183.
    This assertion is also wrong. The powerful forge of the Kirov factory can produce 12 thousand tons of parts, but only gave 4 thousand in December of 1941, compared to the factory plan of 7 thousand and the acknowledgement of factory workers that 8.5 tons was possible. This kind of weak use of the forge says nothing about its limitations.
    One only needs to look at GAZ and STZ, that produce a colossal amount of goods (cars, tractors, tanks, mortars, car parts, shells, detonators, etc) thanks to correct organization of technologies and use of production capacity.
    Sadly, even though Kirov factory was freed from other goods, its production capacity is used poorly, which led to not only the removal of T-50 from production, but delays at factory #183 and #37. At the same time, despite a surplus of tools, after removing the T-50, Kirov factory treats factory #174 as its subsidiary, farming out KV parts to it. Despite an overabundance of equipment at the Kirov factory, they are receiving an extra 1000 machines, which is incorrect and excessive.
  3. There are no 45 mm guns for the T-50 tank.
    I don't know how many guns are built, but GAU KA requested factory #183 to ready a reserve source of 45 mm guns in case they needed to equip the T-34 in lieu of a 76 mm gun. It seems that there is a disagreement as to the availability of these guns.
    Alternatively, the turret of the T-50 is big enough for a ZiS-5 gun or 37 mm AA gun, with the added possibility of AA fire.
  4. The T-50 tank is not mastered by production.
    This is incorrect. After testing several tens of vehicles, the T-50 can be considered ready for mass production. Simplifications drastically simplified its production. Existing defects are well studied and easily removable."

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