Wednesday 6 September 2017

Tetrarch Overview

"Office of the Commander of the Armoured and Mechanized Forces of the North Caucasian Front
August 9th, 1943

To the GABTU BTU Chief, Engineer-Colonel Afonin

In reply to your inquiry, I report the tactical-technical characteristics of the British MK-7 tank:
  1. Full weight: 8.0 tons
  2. Main dimensions:
    1. Length: 4.0 m
    2. Width: 2.4 m
    3. Height: 2.17 m
    4. Clearance: 0.4 m
  3. Armament:
    1. Cannons: 1, 40 mm
    2. Machineguns: 1 coaxial 7.92 mm (BESA)
    3. Shells: 50
    4. Machinegun rounds: 2025
  4. Armour thickness:
    1. Front: 15 mm
    2. Side: 15 mm
    3. Turret: 15 mm
    4. Roof and floor: 4-6 mm
  5. Number of gears: 4 forward and 1 reverse
  6. Maximum speed on a highway: 60 miles (96 km) per hour.
  7. Average speed on a highway: 30 miles (48 km) per hour
  8. Engine:
    1. Type and power: gasoline, horizontal cylinders, water cooled, 120 hp
    2. Fuel capacity: 150 L
    3. Fuel used: B-70, KB-70
    4. Oil used: MK
  9. Observation devices:
    1. Vision blocks and periscopes: 4
    2. Telescopic sights: 1
  10. Crew: 3
The MK-7 is a light and speedy tank, designed for escorting columns of cars (presumably). The armour is thin and poor in quality, it can be penetrated by fragments of mines. The tank is turned with a steering wheel. The steering wheel is connected to the front wheels by control rods, which break often.

The tank's suspension is equipped with hydraulic shock absorbers. On bad roads they weaken, and if the shock absorber rods break (this has happened), the shock asborbers cannot hold the hull and the road wheels fold in underneath it.

Another design flaw of the MK-7 is the quick wearing down of the 1-2 gears, reverse gear, and final drive gears.

  1. The MK-7 tank has a high speed due to its comparatively powerful engine (120 hp).
  2. Its weak suspension, gearbox, and final drives mean that it should be used on good (not rocky) roads.
  3. The tank turns poorly, and should only be used on flat terrain where sharp turns can be avoided.
  4. The tank has weak armour (significantly weaker than that of domestic light tanks), which does not protect the crew well.
It is reasonable to use the MK-7 tank to escort convoys when there is a danger of being ambushed by enemy submachinegunners. 

The MK-7 can also be used to pursue and cut off a hurriedly retreating enemy, when his anti-tank defenses are completely upset.

Assistant to the Armoured and Mechanized Commander of the North Caucasian Front, Engineer-Lieutenant Colonel Kalinin"

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