Friday 6 May 2022

New Shermans

January 30th, 1944

To L.P. Beria

On the topic of track slipping of modernized American M4A2 tanks in snow, I report that:

  1. Modernized M4A2 tanks began arriving in the USSR in the fall of 1943. These tanks have metallic tracks, while all earlier tanks had rubber-metallic tracks with special spurs that could be attached in the winter.
  2. It turned out that the metallic tracks get packed with snow while driving in winter and do not provide necessary traction, even though they have grousers. As a result, the tanks slip on roads and slide into roadside ditches.
  3. To correct the aforementioned issue, it is necessary to weld additional spurs onto every third track link.
  4. I ordered to:
    1. Only issue M4A2 tanks that arrived from America to units once additional spurs had been welded on.
    2. Weld on additional spurs on all 88 M4A2 tanks with metallic tracks that had already been issued to front line units by February 10th of this year.
Commander of the Armoured and Mechanized Forces, Colonel General of the Tank Forces, Fedorenko
Member of the Armoured and Mechanized Forces Military Council, Lieutenant General of the Tank Forces, Biryukov

CAMD RF F.38 Op.11355 D.2551 L.5
Printed in Glavnoye Bronetankovoye Upravleniye Lyudi, Sobytiya, Fakty v dokumentakh, 1943-1944 p.594

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