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Tiger vs. Sherman videos

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Eh it's the history channel which for some reason loves to downplay the Sherman while up playing other things like the P51 and F6F.

 

Sherman was certainly not bad.  The Soviets really liked the sherman as did the British.

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Patton as usual was right. The Sherman was a war winner for us, because they were so reliable and available in such huge numbers with a great infantry support gun.

Should the M10 ever have existed? No, of course not. The Sherman 76 should have been developed in its place, but we stuck to the underlying wrong doctrine.

Should we have junked the M10/M36 family ASAP and converted all the TD units to American Fireflies? Of course, but we didn't.

Then later we should have converted some of the Sherman production lines to make the Persherman, with the T26 turret and short 90mm. That gun, with HVAP, could do both the infantry support job and the AT job. But, we didn't do that either.

It's a measure of how good the Sherman was that we won the war with it, in spite of making those three mistakes.

Shermans were still winning tanks in Israeli service in the 1973 Yom Kippur war, armed with French L/44 105mm guns firing multi-stage HEAT, fighting against T-54/55/62.

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The Sherman was a war winner from a strategic POV, but tactically is was poor to mediocre, and the tankers paid the price.

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The Sherman also met the design requirement that it be deliverable by LST so that you could put one on a beach. Armor won't do you much good if you cannot get it to where it is needed.

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1 hour ago, GrAnit said:

The Sherman was a war winner from a strategic POV, but tactically is was poor to mediocre, and the tankers paid the price.

For the first models, sure. For the 75mm against enemy armor, sure. But the Sherman fulfilled the role of the general workhorse better than any other tank for any side. Every country that got Shermans liked them. They were a solid platform that could be modified as the war went on to suit every need. 76mm upgun. 90mm upgun. 105mm upgun. Flamethrowers. Dozers. Mine clearers. Construction. Hauling. Additional armor. Very effective suspension and handling.

The reality is, no matter how much people don't want to put in the research or want to peddle misinformation, Shermans were not some awful design. If they were, they would have been replaced. Instead, they were refined, and continued to see use throughout the war, and after it into the wars that followed. It was only in the 80s and 90s, in the age of the Abrams and Leopards, that the base design could no longer be considered relevant. I'm not sure there's any other piece of military hardware that has lasted that long in active military use in modern times.

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2 hours ago, GrAnit said:

The Sherman was a war winner from a strategic POV, but tactically is was poor to mediocre, and the tankers paid the price.

It wasn't possible in mid WWII to build a tank that could not be killed by a well placed enemy first shot, and also was highly mobile, highly reliable, and manufacturable in huge numbers.

It has always been the case that the first tank to accurately fire is likely to win, or at least survive.

American tankers paid the price, not for having bad tanks, but for being the attackers. Defenders often get the first shot. 

Classically, attackers must have a 3:1 force ratio over defenders to expect to prevail. That's because defenders often get the first shot, and attackers thereby take losses.

We knew that going into WWII. We brought enough forces to get the job done, and those forces did get the job done...in large measure because our tanks were so mobile, so reliable, and available in such large numbers. 

The Germans almost never had enough enough tanks to adequately defend everywhere we had enough tanks to attack with.

 

Edited by jwilly
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Tiger wins. It's a no brainer. What is the argument here? Sherman couldn't pen a Tiger from the front at range. They had to flank or get real close.

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I don't know there was an argument at all. Just a conversation. That end part of the first video is brutal. Gotta feel for those poor guys inside once they take a penatrating shot. Interesting enough, one of the Brits survived a tiger round because it went straight through the tank and out the other side, just happening not to hit a person or fuel or amo. 

Even more interesting .. that effect is modeled in the game after the HE audit :huh:

Edited by choad

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Regarding the very famous video of the tank duel at Cologne Cathedral (some of my favorite WWII footage):

The first video has it wrong. The Sherman commander (whose left leg was blown off) actually died due to blood loss soon after. As I understand, *only* the other crewman (supposedly the gunner) survived. In other words, out of the Sherman crew, one and only one crewmember survived vs the Panther. On the other hand, despite multiple hits by the mighty Pershing (including some MG fire for good measure), AFAIK every single crewmember in the Panther survived the encounter (which seems miraculous when you watch the footage at normal speed).

Conclusion:
Panther = excellent tank

Sherman = hunk o' junk

 

Edited by xanthus

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2 hours ago, xanthus said:

Regarding the very famous video of the tank duel at Cologne Cathedral (some of my favorite WWII footage):

The first video has it wrong. The Sherman commander (whose left leg was blown off) actually died due to blood loss soon after. As I understand, *only* the other crewman (supposedly the gunner) survived. In other words, out of the Sherman crew, one and only one crewmember survived vs the Panther. On the other hand, despite multiple hits by the mighty Pershing (including some MG fire for good measure), AFAIK every single crewmember in the Panther survived the encounter (which seems miraculous when you watch the footage at normal speed).

Conclusion:
Panther = excellent tank

Sherman = hunk o' junk

 

Then you realize the tankers had a lower mortality rate compared to the infantry.  Sherman was far from a hunk of junk.

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Panther could have been excellent tank.
But, it is too costly, too slow out the factory door, and they had poor final drives, and short engine life.
You have a really good gun, and someone smart realized if you heavily angle the armor you dont need so much and it not need be so heavy.
But the design was not followed through to perfection, changes to it were too little, too late.
Not that the game would subject them to these things, or we would have quite a few broken down units all over on all sides.

The sherman is a good tank, not the best ever designed, but it is extremely practical.
It has high reliability, mobile, relatively low cost, decent fuel range, it had enough armor for the average encounter and enough gun for the largest part of the axis
armor which was not actually tons of tigers or panthers.

Tiger I went out of production, and a massive amount of them were lost on the eastern front, many to break downs or lack of fuel.
Panthers, they only managed to get about 6000 built total, not enough to continually combat 50,000 shermans with support units.
And Tiger II while cool as hell in a game aspect, was an abortion of sanity in a real life aspect.

The sherman was good enough for what was required, which was
be able to build as many needed very very fast
be reliable, run anyplace, beat it to death, and continue going
be able to defeat most targets at an acceptable rate
be able to withstand most anti armor attacks
The design was also very easy to modify and upgrade
 

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@merlin51 Don't forget, the Sherman also had ease of maintenance and an excellent HE shell for infantry support (at least the 75mm and 105mm versions).  

 

Also, the majority of those Tigers and Panthers were consumed on the Eastern Front.  So you are looking at an even greater disparity than a simple Germany vs US comparison would otherwise indicate.  

 

I believe at one point in the ETO, the US had enough tanks to give each of their Infantry divisions an organic armor battalion attachment if they wanted to.  That's an absurd amount of armor (but also a testament to how little infantry the US initially committed to the ETO compared to what they really should have; at one point they were desperately low on basic rifle battalions).  

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5 hours ago, xanthus said:

Regarding the very famous video of the tank duel at Cologne Cathedral (some of my favorite WWII footage):

The first video has it wrong. The Sherman commander (whose left leg was blown off) actually died due to blood loss soon after. As I understand, *only* the other crewman (supposedly the gunner) survived. In other words, out of the Sherman crew, one and only one crewmember survived vs the Panther. On the other hand, despite multiple hits by the mighty Pershing (including some MG fire for good measure), AFAIK every single crewmember in the Panther survived the encounter (which seems miraculous when you watch the footage at normal speed).

The Panther commander got out first, but had his bell rung or something...he fell off the turret then fell off the tank. The radioman, loader and driver got out from their respective separate hatches. The gunner was last coming out, and was in the commander hatch with flames coming out of it around him when the #3 hit penetrated the turret on a line that would have caused the shell and/or spall to go through his legs. Whatever occurred at that moment, the gunner apparently dropped back into the tank, which by then had a heavy propellant fire. One body was found in the tank the next day.

It's possible that something about hits 1 or 2 caused prior injury to the gunner, or that the already burning propellant fire had seriously injured him before he could get from his seat up to the commander hatch.

The commander survived the war. One of the other three crewmen died within days in hospital, perhaps from burns or an internal shrapnel injury or infection. 

Quote

 

Conclusion:
Panther = excellent tank

Sherman = hunk o' junk

 

Hogwash.  Any penetrating hit on any tank is a few seconds of hell followed by death or incomprehensible survival. Where the tank got hit and exactly what happened then was basically luck. After the change to wet ammo storage, Shermans burned less than German tanks. But, no WWII design factor could change the fact that immediately following a penetrating hit on any tank, there were pieces of razor sharp, yellow hot steel flying around at supersonic speed.

The only good measure of WWII tank quality was how many enemy kills the tank got before it was destroyed. Shermans were very, very good at infantry support, and got lots of kills that way.

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25 minutes ago, Capco said:

I believe at one point in the ETO, the US had enough tanks to give each of their Infantry divisions an organic armor battalion attachment

Not literally for all divisions, but just about all frontline Regimental Combat Teams (3 per division) in the spearpoint Armies had at least one company of tanks or tank destroyers detailed to them.

Only one "independent" tank battalion was assigned to the same infantry division from D-Day to the end of the war. All of the others were moved around as needed.

Clearly, though, the US Army came closest of all the WWII national armies to achieving an actual combined arms structure.

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Can’t vouch for veracity but I heard that the number of US tank crew KIA in ETO were 2,500 or thereabouts. Majority of them would have been Sherman crew - still, a surprisingly low number given the widespread ”Ronson” myth.

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In the end, what made the Sherman a great tank... was numbers. It outnumbered the German tanks by a ridiculous number. Numbers won the Tank war on the Western Front. 

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I read this book

https://www.thriftbooks.com/w/death-traps-the-survival-of-an-american-armored-division-in-world-war-ii_belton-y-cooper/275964/?mkwid=sckPaGqkw|dm&pcrid=70112871912&pkw=&pmt=&plc=&gclid=Cj0KCQjw1NzZBRCoARIsAIaMwuvRtD0fUOWoOh0yIssZ8WiooNiqYBUpZcwdAGrBkY8P4Qm1GnnhadYaAubTEALw_wcB#isbn=0891416706&idiq=8501771

DEATH Traps  and according to him cause he was in the unit of recovery and patch it up and get it back to the front line , the Sherman were far from stellar , the sheer numbers and infield repairs what made the Sherman a good tank.

Plenty of times they patched holes washed out the Tank , repainted and put a new crew in without telling that new crew what really happened to the old one.

While the German when they broke down or got a Panzer dmg they just abandoned it . So running low on Panzer was sooner or later a given . I highly recommend that book.

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56 minutes ago, dre21 said:

I read this book

https://www.thriftbooks.com/w/death-traps-the-survival-of-an-american-armored-division-in-world-war-ii_belton-y-cooper/275964/?mkwid=sckPaGqkw|dm&pcrid=70112871912&pkw=&pmt=&plc=&gclid=Cj0KCQjw1NzZBRCoARIsAIaMwuvRtD0fUOWoOh0yIssZ8WiooNiqYBUpZcwdAGrBkY8P4Qm1GnnhadYaAubTEALw_wcB#isbn=0891416706&idiq=8501771

DEATH Traps  and according to him cause he was in the unit of recovery and patch it up and get it back to the front line , the Sherman were far from stellar , the sheer numbers and infield repairs what made the Sherman a good tank.

Plenty of times they patched holes washed out the Tank , repainted and put a new crew in without telling that new crew what really happened to the old one.

While the German when they broke down or got a Panzer dmg they just abandoned it . So running low on Panzer was sooner or later a given . I highly recommend that book.

I was never sold on that book. To put it better than I can, here's someone way smarter:

"The website Tank and AFV News as well as historian Robert Forczyk were critical of the book and the reliance it has garnered online and in media coverage, writing:

As a memoir, it is meandering and repetitive, far too often wandering away from the authors personal experiences into the realm of speculation. As a history it is lacking, containing no end notes, foot notes or bibliography. And finally, as an indictment of the M4 Sherman tank, the book is filled with so many factual errors and outright falsehoods, it cannot be taken seriously on this count either.[6]"

Edited by Mosizlak

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The issue with death traps is that all Belton Cooper did was recover knocked out Sherman's.  It is very clear why he held the sherman in low regard since all he saw were knocked out ones.  

 

Had a similar memoir been written about a German tank recovery soldier then he'd have the same outlook on German tanks.

 

The sherman was actually a very safe tank to serve in.  This is because armor thickness isnt the factor that makes a tank safe it's how fast you can get out before bad stuff happens.  The sherman has large escape hatches for the crew memebers which mean they can get out fast in the case of a penetration.  To add on to that, with wet ammo storage they also burned less than their counterparts.  Giving the crew an even longer time to get out before a potential ammo coockoff.

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1 hour ago, Mosizlak said:

I was never sold on that book. To put it better than I can, here's someone way smarter:

"The website Tank and AFV News as well as historian Robert Forczyk were critical of the book and the reliance it has garnered online and in media coverage, writing:

As a memoir, it is meandering and repetitive, far too often wandering away from the authors personal experiences into the realm of speculation. As a history it is lacking, containing no end notes, foot notes or bibliography. And finally, as an indictment of the M4 Sherman tank, the book is filled with so many factual errors and outright falsehoods, it cannot be taken seriously on this count either.[6]"

So it's a Historian! does that mean he was there or is a  so called expert cause he read a shut load of books and now calls himself an expert?

I think I take the word of someone that recovered Shermans in the field and had to wash out the blood and guts of his fellow country men over a self proclaimed Historian  any day but that is just me.

 

Historians always remind me of the BullShark expert that stood in the water with about 5 or 6 of them swimming around him and the camera man.  Saying as long as we stand still nothing will happen , 30 seconds later his calf muscle was gone ( great video on YouTube if u want to see it ) 

Right there and then I self proclaimed myself a Bulls hark expert too and said as long as you stay out of the water they won't and can't bite you, guess what I still have my calf muscles or yet have to loose a body part to a shark . So who is now the expert between us 2. 

 

Edited by dre21

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Believe whatever you want. 

I'll believe the facts.  I've read Death Traps and the review I posted is pretty much spot on. When your author gets simple things wrong, simple facts that you can check yourself, credibility goes out the window. 

 

PS: If the sherman was such a death trap, why did the US army lose less than 1500 tankers in the war? Look it up. 

Edited by Mosizlak
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11 hours ago, jwilly said:

But, no WWII design factor could change the fact that immediately following a penetrating hit on any tank, there were pieces of razor sharp, yellow hot steel flying around at supersonic speed.

 

100% false as evidenced by this game.

I've played for 17 years and what you describe doesn't happen in WWIIOL. Absolutely, unequivocally not. After almost two decades of info on the damage model and everything going on under the hood, and endless assertions about fidelity, I make the following conclusion: Since it does not happen in this game (i.e. claims that penetrating rounds harmlessly go through tanks like swiss cheese but cause no crew injury, and that this is "realistic" because "shrug"), then I don't believe that what you describe happens in real life.

In other words, unless the trajectory of a penetrating round includes the position of the crew members at the time of penetration, then the crew incur NO DAMAGE and may continue to operate the tank normally as if nothing had happened.

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