World War II Vehicles, Tanks and Airplanes, picture of P-51 Mustang
World War II Vehicles, Tanks and Airplanes, picture of T-34/85
World War II Vehicles, Tanks and Airplanes, picture of Fw-190
World War II Vehicles, Tanks and Airplanes, picture of Churchill
wwiivehicles.com ©2016
Search:
United States' flag

United States' M3A1 light tank, Stuart Mk III

Photos

M3A1 light tank:
United States' M3A1 Light Tank
The American Arsenal

M3A1 Light Tank with a diesel engine:
United States' M3A1 Light Tank with a diesel engine
Aberdeen Tank Museum
M3A1 Light Tank drawing
United States' M3A1 Light Tank drawing
Aberdeen Tank Museum
M3A1 light tank's turret basket:
United States' M3A1 light tank's turret basket
The American Arsenal

Design

The M3A1 was standardized in August 1941. Started production in April 1942. The M3A1 was declared obsolete in July 1944.

Had gyrostabilizer installed and a turret basket with seats for the commander and gunner. Cupola was removed from new turret design. A periscope with 360° traverse was installed in the turret roof.

Riveted hulls in early production and then replaced by welded hulls.

The US Marine Corps requested the tanks have diesel engines installed and approximately 500 had radial air-cooled engines installed.

An improved radio and interphone system was installed.

Armament

Sponson machine guns removed. This allowed for more ammunition storage.

The Combination Gun Mount, M23, was installed and it had a periscopic sight.

The muzzle velocity of the 37 mm gun AP ammunition was 2,600'/sec and weighed 1.9 lb.

Variants

  • M3A1 Diesel: The 37 mm gun fired a 1.91 lb round at a muzzle velocity of 2,600'/sec.

Specifications

  M3A1 (Stuart III), M3A1 light tank
Crew Commander, gunner, driver, co-driver.
4
Radio SCR-508
Physical Characteristics  
Weight 28,500 lb
12.2 tons, 12.7 tons, 14.3 tons
12,400 kg, 12,904 kg, 12,927 kg
Length 14.8', 14' 10", 14' 10 3/8", 14' 10.75"
4.52 m, 4.54 m
Height 7.5', 7' 6", 7' 6.5", 7' 7"
2.299 m, 2.3 m, 2.31 m
Width 7.3', 7' 4"
2.22 m, 2.235 m, 2.24 m
Width over tracks  
Ground clearance 15", 16.5"
0.42 m
Ground contact length 116", 117"
Ground pressure 10.56 psi, 10.6 psi
Turret ring diameter 46.75"
Armament  
Main 1: 37 mm M5 or M6 L/56
1: 37 mm L/56
1: 37 mm M5
1: 37 mm
1: 37 mm QF M6 L/53
1: 37 mm / 1.46" M6
OR 1: 37 mm M6
Secondary  
MG 4: MG
3: 7.62 mm MG
3: .30 cal Browning MGs
2: .30 cal MG
3: 7.62 mm / 0.3" MG
MG - coaxial 1: .30 cal Browning M1919A4
1: .30 cal Browning MG
1: 7.62 mm MG
MG - hull 1: .30 cal Browning M1919A4
1: .30 cal Browning MG
1: 7.62 mm MG
MG - sponson 2: 7.62 mm MG
MG - antiaircraft 1: .30 cal Browning MG
1: 7.62 mm MG
Side arms 1: .30 cal M2 tripod mount
1: .45 cal submachine gun
Hand grenades
Quantity  
Main 113, 116
Secondary  
MG 5,150, 6,400, 6,400-8,270, 8,270
Side arms .45: 500 - 540, 510
Grenades: 12 (4: Fragmentation Mk II, 2: Offensive Mk IIIA2, 4: Smoke WP M15, 2: Thermite Incendiary)
Armor Thickness (mm) 15 - 43, 10, 51
Front: 1.5"
Front: 38
Side: 1"
Side: 25.4
Hull Front, Upper 1.5", 1" - 1.5"
38.1
Hull Front, Lower 5/8" - 1.75"
Hull Sides, Upper 1", 1"@0°
25.4
Hull Sides, Lower 1"
Hull Rear 1", 1"@0°
25.4
Hull Top 3/8"
9.5
Hull Bottom 3/8" - 0.5"
6.4 - 12.7
Turret Front 1.5"
Mantlet: 1"
38, 38.1
Turret Sides 1.25"@0°, 1.25"
25.4
Turret Rear 1.25", 1.25"@0°
25.4
Turret Top 0.5", 0.5"@90°
9.5
Engine (Make / Model) Continental W-670, Continental Wright, Continental W-670, Continental W-970-9A, Continental, Continental W670-9a, Continental W670-9A
OR Guiberson T1020, Guiberson T1020-4
Bore / stroke  
Cooling Air
Cylinders Continental: 7, Radial, Radial 7
Guiberson: Radial 9
Capacity  
Net HP 250@2,400 rpm
250
Continental: 250@2,400 rpm
Guiberson: 220@2,200 rpm
Power to weight ratio  
Compression ratio  
Transmission (Type) Synchromesh
5 forward, 1 reverse
Gear ratios - 1st gear 5.37:1
- 2nd gear 2.82:1
- 3rd gear 1.72:1
- 4th gear 1.09:1
- 5th gear 0.738:1
- reverse 6.19:1
Steering  
Steering ratio  
Starter  
Electrical system 12 volt
Ignition  
Fuel (Type) Gasoline
Continental: Gasoline
Guiberson: Diesel
Octane  
Quantity 54 gallons, 56 gallons, 50 gallons jettisonable tank
151 liters
Road consumption  
Cross country consumption  
Performance  
Traverse 360°, hydraulic, hand
Speed - Road 34 mph, 36 mph
58 kph, 60 kph
Speed - Cross Country 15 - 20 mph, 20 mph
32 kph
Range - Road 70 miles, 124 miles
112.6 km, 113 km
Range - Cross Country 100 miles
Turning radius 21'
13 m
Elevation limits -10° to +20°
Fording depth 3', 42"
0.9 m, 0.91 m
Trench crossing 6'
1.83 m
Vertical obstacle 2'
0.61 m
Climbing ability 26° (50%) slope, 60%
Suspension (Type) Vertical volute and trailing idler.
Volute Springs
Vertical volute spring, 2 double wheel bogies
Wheels each side 4
Wheel size 20x6
Return rollers each side 2, 3
Tracks (Type) Rubber block
Length  
Width 11 5/8", 11.6"
0.295 m
Diameter  
Number of links 132 or 134
Pitch 5.5"
Tire tread  
Track centers/tread 6.1', 6' 1"
1.854 m
  M3A1 (Diesel) (Stuart IV)
Crew 4
Radio  
Physical Characteristics  
Weight 14.3 tons
Length w/gun 14.6'
Height 7.7'
Width 7.3'
Width over tracks  
Ground clearance 16.5"
Ground contact length 116"
Ground pressure 10.6 psi
Turret ring diameter  
Armament  
Main 37 mm
Secondary  
MG .30 cal M1919A5
2: .30 cal M1919A4
Side arms .45 1928A1 Submachine gun
Quantity  
Main 106
Secondary  
MG 7,220
Side arms 350
Armor Thickness (mm) Front: 1.5"
Side: 1"
Hull Front, Upper  
Hull Front, Lower  
Hull Sides, Upper  
Hull Sides, Lower  
Hull Rear  
Hull Top  
Hull Bottom  
Turret Front 1.5"
Mantlet: 1"
Turret Sides 1.25"
Turret Rear  
Turret Top  
Engine (Make / Model) Guiberson Buda T-1020 Series 4
Bore / stroke 4-cycle
Cooling Air
Cylinders R-9
Capacity  
Net HP 220
Power to weight ratio  
Compression ratio  
Transmission (Type) Synchromesh
5 forward, 1 reverse
Gear ratios  
Steering Controlled differential
Steering ratio  
Starter Electric
Electrical system 12-volt
Ignition Injection
Fuel (Type) Diesel
Octane  
Quantity 50 gallons
Road consumption 1.5 mpg
Cross country consumption  
Performance  
Traverse Oilgear hydraulic
Speed - Road 37 mph
Speed - Cross Country 15-20 mph
Range - Road 84 miles
Range - Cross Country  
Turning radius  
Elevation limits  
Fording depth 42"
Trench crossing 6'
Vertical obstacle 24"
Climbing ability 26° (50%) slope
Suspension (Type) Bogies bolted to the hull, support the vehicle on vertical volute springs
Wheels each side 4
Wheel size  
Return rollers each side 3
Tracks (Type)  
Length  
Width 11.5"
Diameter  
Number of links 67
Pitch 5.5"
Tire tread Rubber
Track centers/tread 6.1'

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. British and American Tanks of World War Two, The Complete Illustrated History of British, American, and Commonwealth Tanks 1933-1945, Peter Chamberlain and Chris Ellis, 1969
  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. The American Arsenal, 1996
  7. Tanks of World War II, Duncan Crow, 1979
  8. Battle Winning Tanks, Aircraft & Warships of World War II, David Miller, 2000
  9. Tank Data, Aberdeen Proving Grounds Series, 1968?
  10. Airfix Magazine Guide #26 American Tanks of World War 2, Terry Gander and Peter Chamberlain, 1977
  11. World War I and II Tanks, George Forty, 2012
20th Century American Military History Crucial Site