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Soviet Union's T-40 light tank

Design

The T-40 was created during 1940 as a replacement for the T-37 and T-38.2,5,6,8 Earlier light tanks were vulnerable to machine gun fire and to shell splinters so N. A. Astrov, at a research department of Zavod Nr 37, was instructed to design to new light tanks to overcome these difficulties.1 One of these new models was to be amphibious.1

To speed up production as many parts of the T-40 came from car and trucks parts.5,8

In the Water

It had a 4-blade ship's propeller and was steered by two rudders.1,2 Had a welded body and the hull resembled a boat's.1,2 There were additional float chambers installed at the rear to improve its performance in water.2,8 The hatches were hermetically sealed.1

Turret

The turret was mounted to the left with external roller mantlets.2 The main weapon in the turret was the 12.7 mm DSchK 38 machine gun and it had a coaxial 7.62 mm DT machine gun.2

  Type Velocity Penetration
100 m 300 m
12.7 mm BST2 (armor piercing)2 895 m/sec2 10 mm2 8 mm @ 60°2

Engine

The T-40's engine and gearbox were based on an automobile's.2 It was the GAZ 202 which could produce 85 HP.2

Prototype

The T-30A prototype was tested in July and August 1939.1

Production

The T-40 was accepted for production on December 19, 1939.1

  • T-40: 2202, 2255,8
    • Production: 1940 - ?5
      • 1941: 411,2
      • 1942: 1811,2
    • Manufacturer: Factory No. 37 in Moscow

Variants

  • T-30A: Amphibious prototype.1
  • T-30B: Amphibious prototype.1 Non-amphibious prototype.5 Had more armor.1
  • T-40: Amphibous.5,6 Was designed to be built by factories that produced automobiles. Early production had the 12.7 mm installed. First used in the Winter War with Finland. Issued to reconnaissance and liaison units at beginning of 1941.
  • T-40A: Amphibious.6 Increased armor.6 Limited production as it was no longer amphibious as the extra weight caused it to lose its buoyancy.
  • T-40S: Non-amphibious version.5,6 Was rushed into production at time of German invasion.5 Was redesignated T-60.5
  • T-40?: Mounted by placing Katyusha rocket launcher.5

Usage

The Red Army started to equip reconnaissance and armored liaison units in early 1941.

Finland

The T-40s thin armor made it very vulnerable during fighting in Finland during 1939.8

Specifications

  T-40
Crew Commander, driver
23,5,6,7,8
Physical Characteristics  
Weight 12,980 lb8, 13,007 lb5
5.5 tons2,6, 5.8 tons3, 5.9 tons5, 6 tons7
5,900 kg3,5,8
Length 13' 6"3,6,13' 5.8"5,8, 13' 5.9"5, 14'7, 14' 6.25"
4.11 m3,5,8
Height 5' 8"7, 6' 4.8"5,6,8, 6' 5"3, 6' 6", 6' 11.5"
1.95 m3,5,8
Width 8' 3", 7.65'6, 7' 7.7"5,8, 7' 8"3,7,
2.33 m3,5,8
Ground clearance 1' 2"
Ground contact length 7.66'6
Ground pressure 6.55 psi
Turret ring diameter  
Armament  
Main 1: 12.7 mm DShK 38
1: 12.7 mm DSchK 38 MG2
1: 12.7 mm DShK MG3,5,6
1: 12.7 mm MG7,8
OR 1: 20 mm6
1: 20 mm ShVAK 20
Secondary 1: 7.62 mm MG7
MG  
MG - coaxial 1: 7.62 mm MG2
Side arms  
Quantity  
Main 5506
Secondary  
MG 2,0166
Side arms  
Armor Thickness (mm) 6 - 135, 7 - 143,5, 8 - 148, 147
Hull Front, Upper 136, 14
Hull Front, Lower 13
Hull Sides, Upper 10, 136
Hull Sides, Lower 10
Hull Rear  
Hull Top 6 - 106
Hull Bottom 6, 6 - 106
Turret Front 7 - 146, 14
Turret Sides 10
Turret Rear  
Turret Top  
Engine (Make / Model) GAZ-2022,5,6,8
GAZ7
Bore / stroke  
Cylinders 62,6,7
Net HP 705,8, 852,6,7
Power to weight ratio  
Transmission (type)  
Fuel (type) Gasoline5,6,8
Octane  
Capacity  
Performance  
Traverse 360°
Speed - Road 27 mph3, 27.3 mph5,8, 28 mph6,7
44 kph2,3,5,8
Water speed 4 mph7, 6.2 mph, 6.5 kph2
Speed - Cross Country 18.6 mph
Range - Road 210 miles7, 222 miles6, 223.7 miles5, 224 miles3,8
360 km3,5,8
Range - Cross Country 115 miles6
Turning radius  
Elevation Limits +40°
Fording depth Amphibious3,8
Trench crossing 6' 1"5, 10' 2.8"8
1.85 m5, 3.12 m8
Vertical Obstacle 2' 3.6"8, 2' 3.75"5, 2' 2"
0.7 m5,8
Climbing ability  
Suspension (Type) Torsion bar1,2,6
Wheels each side 47, 5
Return rollers each side 37
Track length  
Tires  
Track width 7"6
Track centers/tread  
  T-40A
Crew 26
Physical Characteristics  
Weight 6.2 tons6
Length 14'6
Height 6.48'6
Width 7.65'6
Ground clearance  
Ground contact length 7.66'6
Ground pressure  
Turret ring diameter  
Armament  
Main  
Secondary  
MG  
Side arms  
Quantity  
Main 5506
Secondary  
MG 2,0166
Side arms  
Armor Thickness (mm)  
Hull Front, Upper 146
Hull Front, Lower  
Hull Sides, Upper 146
Hull Sides, Lower  
Hull Rear  
Hull Top 6 - 106
Hull Bottom 6 - 106
Turret Front 7 - 146
Turret Sides  
Turret Rear  
Turret Top  
Engine (Make / Model) GAZ-2026
Bore / stroke  
Cylinders 66
Net HP 856
Power to weight ratio  
Transmission  
Fuel type Gasoline6
Octane  
Capacity  
Performance  
Traverse  
Speed - Road 26 mph6
Water speed  
Speed - Cross Country  
Range - Road 210 miles6
Range - Cross Country 100 miles6
Turning radius  
Elevation Limits  
Fording depth  
Trench crossing  
Vertical Obstacle  
Climbing ability  
Suspension (Type)  
Wheels each side  
Return rollers each side  
Track length  
Tires  
Track width 7"6
Track centers/tread  
  T-40 1940
Crew 21,2
Physical Characteristics  
Weight 5.5 tons1
5,590 kg1
Length 4.43 m1
13' 6"1
Height 2.12 m1
6' 11"1
Width 2.51 m1
8' 3"1
Ground clearance  
Ground contact length  
Ground pressure  
Turret ring diameter  
Armament  
Main 1: 12.7 mm MG1
1: 12.7 mm DShK 1: MG6
OR 1: 20 mm1,6
Secondary  
MG 1: 7.62 mm MG1
Side arms  
Quantity  
Main  
Secondary  
MG  
Side arms  
Armor Thickness (mm)  
Hull Front, Upper  
Hull Front, Lower  
Hull Sides, Upper  
Hull Sides, Lower  
Hull Rear  
Hull Top  
Hull Bottom  
Turret Front  
Turret Sides  
Turret Rear  
Turret Top  
Engine (Make / Model)  
Bore / stroke  
Cylinders  
Net HP  
Power to weight ratio  
Transmission  
Fuel type  
Octane  
Capacity  
Performance  
Traverse  
Speed - Road 45 kph1
28 mph1
Water speed  
Speed - Cross Country  
Range - Road  
Range - Cross Country  
Turning radius  
Elevation Limits  
Fording depth  
Trench crossing  
Vertical Obstacle  
Climbing ability  
Suspension (Type)  
Wheels each side  
Return rollers each side  
Track length  
Tires  
Track width  
Track centers/tread  
  T-40 1941
Crew 22
Physical Characteristics  
Weight 5.5 tons2
Length 4.11 m2
Height 1.95 m2
Width 2.33-2.35 m2
Ground clearance 0.34 m2
Ground contact length  
Ground pressure 0.46 kp/(cm2)2
Turret ring diameter  
Armament  
Main 1: 12.7 mm DSchK 38 MG2
Secondary  
MG 1: 7.62 mm DT2
Side arms  
Quantity  
Main 5502
Secondary  
MG 2,0162
Side arms  
Armor Thickness (mm)  
Hull Front, Upper 10 - 132
Hull Front, Lower  
Hull Sides, Upper 132
Hull Sides, Lower  
Hull Rear 102
Hull Top 62
Hull Bottom 6 - 102
Turret Front 14 - 152
Turret Sides 102
Turret Rear 102
Turret Top 72
Engine (Make / Model) GAZ-2022,3
Bore / stroke 4 stroke2
Cylinders 62
Net HP 85@3,600 rpm2
Power to weight ratio 15.4 HP/ton2
Transmission  
Fuel type Gasoline2
Octane  
Capacity 206 liters2
Performance  
Traverse  
Speed - Road 44-45 kph2
Water speed 5-6 kph2
Speed - Cross Country  
Range - Road 185-360 km2
280 miles2
Range - Cross Country  
Turning radius  
Elevation Limits  
Fording depth Amphibious2
Trench crossing 1.7m2
Vertical Obstacle 0.6 m2
Climbing ability 34°2
Suspension (Type)  
Wheels each side  
Return rollers each side  
Track length  
Tires  
Track width  
Track centers/tread  
  T-40 S
Crew 24,6
Physical Characteristics  
Weight 6.1 tons6, 6.2 tons4
Length 13.9'6, 14'4
Height 6.38'6, 6.48'4
Width 7.65'4,6
Ground clearance  
Ground contact length 7.66'6
Ground pressure  
Turret ring diameter  
Armament  
Main 1: 12.7 mm4
1: 12.7 mm DShK MG6
OR 1: 20 mm4,6
Secondary  
MG 1: MG4
Side arms  
Quantity  
Main 5506
Secondary  
MG 2,0166
Side arms  
Armor Thickness (mm) 10 - 144
Hull Front, Upper 146
Hull Front, Lower  
Hull Sides, Upper 146
Hull Sides, Lower  
Hull Rear  
Hull Top 106
Hull Bottom 106
Turret Front 7 - 146
Turret Sides  
Turret Rear  
Turret Top  
Engine (Make / Model) GAZ-2026
Bore / stroke  
Cylinders 66
Net HP 854,6
Power to weight ratio  
Transmission  
Fuel type Gasoline4,6
Octane  
Capacity  
Performance  
Traverse  
Speed - Road 26 mph4,6
Water speed  
Speed - Cross Country  
Range - Road 216 miles6
Range - Cross Country 110 miles6
Turning radius  
Elevation Limits  
Fording depth  
Trench crossing  
Vertical Obstacle  
Climbing ability  
Suspension (Type)  
Wheels each side  
Return rollers each side  
Track length  
Tires  
Track width 7"6
Track centers/tread  

Sources:

  1. Russian Tanks of World War II Stalin's Armored Might, by Tim Bean & Will Fowler, 2002
  2. Russian Tanks and Armored Vehicles 1917-1945, by Wolfgang Fleischer, 1999
  3. 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
  4. Tanks of the World, 1915-1945, Peter Chamberlain, Chris Ellis, 1972
  5. The Encyclopedia of Weapons of World War II, Chris Bishop, 1998
  6. Airfix Magazine Guide 22 Russian Tanks of World War 2, John Milsom and Steve Zaloga, 1977
  7. Tanks of World War II, Duncan Crow, 1979
  8. Armored Fighting Vehicles, 300 of the World's Greatest Military Vehicles, Philip Trewhitt, 1999
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