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FCM Modèle 36, FCM 36 Infantry Tank , Char Léger FCM-36

Design

Was designed along side the R-35. It was to accompany the infantry.

The prototype, without crew and ammunition, weighed 10 tons.

Built by the Société des Forges et Chantiers de la Méditerranée. First mass produced French vehicle to be diesel. 100 were ordered in 1936. 100 more going to be ordered but were too expensive.

The engine was built under licence from the British firm Ricardo. Was first French tank with a diesel engine.

The hull and turret were welded. There were mud chutes running along the top of the tracks.

The suspension was the same as the Char B1. It had four bogie wheels mounted in pairs on each side that were controlled by vertical coil springs. The was also an independent wheel in front.

Turret

It had an octagonal shaped turret (APX) with a non-rotating cupola at the back.

Armament

The majority of the FCM-36s had the 37 mm SA-18 L/21 gun installed, however a few may have had the 37 mm SA-38 L/33 gun installed.

Production

  • FCM-36: 100
    • Production: 1936 - ?, 1936 - 1939

Usage

Served alongside R-35.

The 100 vehicles that were built were assigned to two battalions. These were the 4e BCC and 7e BCC.

German Use

Specifications

  FCM Modèle 36, Char Léger FCM-36
Crew Commander, driver
2
Physical Characteristics  
Weight 26,500 lb,
12,800 kg, 12,350 kg
12 tons, 12.15 tons
Length 13' 10", 14' 3.25", 14.58', 14' 8"
4.16 m, 4.22 m, 4.47 m
Height 6' 6.5", 7' 0.6", 7' 0.61", 7.17', 7' 8"
2.33 m, 2.15 m, 2.21 m
Width

6' 4.75", 6' 10.5", 7'
1.95 m, 2.13 m, 2.14 m

Width over tracks  
Ground clearance 1' 2"
0.36 m
Ground contact length  
Ground pressure 10.67 psi
0.75 (kg/cm2)
Turret ring diameter  
Armament  
Main 1: 37 mm
1: 37 mm L/21
1: 37 mm Sa L/21
1: 37 mm SA-18 L/21
OR 1: 37 mm SA-38 L/33
Secondary  
MG 1: MG
1: 7.5 mm MG
1: 7.55 mm MG
MG - coaxial 1: MG
1: 7.5 mm MG
1: 7.5 mm MG31
Side arms  
Quantity  
Main 102
Secondary  
MG 3,000
Side arms  
Armor Thickness (mm) 40
Hull Front, Upper 25-40
Hull Front, Lower  
Hull Sides, Upper 20
Hull Sides, Lower  
Hull Rear 20
Hull Top 15
Hull Bottom 13
Turret Front 40
Turret Sides 40
Turret Rear 40
Turret Top 14
Engine (Make / Model) Berliet, Berliet Type MDP
Bore / stroke  
Cooling Water
Cylinders 4
Capacity 8.4 liter
Net HP 90, 91, 91@1,550 rpm
Power to weight ratio  
Compression ratio  
Transmission (Type) 5 forward, 1 reverse
Steering  
Steering ratio  
Starter  
Electrical system  
Ignition  
Fuel (Type) Diesel
Octane  
Quantity 69 gallons
260 liters
Road consumption  
Cross country consumption  
Performance  
Traverse 360°
Speed - Road 14.9 mph, 15 mph
24 kph
Speed - Cross Country 7.5 mph
Range - Road 140 miles
225 km, 230 km
Range - Cross Country 140 km
Turning radius 21' 4"
6.5 m
Elevation limits  
Fording depth 2' 6"
0.8 m
Trench crossing  
Vertical obstacle  
Climbing ability  
Suspension (Type) Helical springs
Clutches
Wheels each side 8 wheels in pairs plus 1 at front
8
Return rollers each side  
Tracks (Type)  
Length  
Width 1' 2"
320 mm
Diameter  
Number of links  
Pitch  
Tire tread  
Track centers/tread  

Sources:

  1. The Encyclopedia of Tanks and Armored Fighting Vehicles - The Comprehensive Guide to Over 900 Armored Fighting Vehicles From 1915 to the Present Day, General Editor: Christopher F. Foss, 2002
  2. Panzer Truppen The Complete Guide to the Creation and Combat Employment of Germany's Tank Force 1933-1942, Thomas L. Jentz, 1996
  3. Tanks of the World, 1915-1945, Peter Chamberlain, Chris Ellis, 1972
  4. World War I and II Tanks, George Forty, 2012
  5. Tanks of World War II, Duncan Crow, 1979
  6. The Illustrated Guide to Tanks of the World, George Forty, 2006
  7. Western Allied Tanks 1939-45, David Porter, 2009
20th Century American Military History Crucial Site