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United States' M3A3 light tank, Stuart Mk V

Photos

M3A3 Light Tank:
United States' M3A3 Light Tank
Aberdeen Tank Museum
M3A3 light tank5:
United States' M3A3 Light Tank
The American Arsenal
M3A3 light tank drawing5:
United States' M3A3 Light Tank drawing
The American Arsenal

Design

The M3A3 was standardized in August 1942, and classified as Limited Standard in April 1943.5

Had an improved turret with a bulge in the rear for the radio installed.5,7 Three additional periscopes are installed.

The 37 mm gun fired a 1.9 lb AP shell at a muzzle velocity of 2,900'/sec.7 The .30 cal MG fired at 2,800'/sec.7

The hull was redesigned with all welded one piece hull front.1,5,6 The front plate was extended which allowed for more room for storage and improved the safety for the driver and assistant driver.6 The driver's hatches are moved to the top of the hull. Periscopes are installed to provide vision for the driver and assistant driver. The sponsons were extended to the rear and this allowed for more gasoline and ammunition storage.7 A storage box is added at the rear of the hull.

A sand shield is extended over the top of the suspension.

Additional improvements included easier steering, improved fire protection and ventilation, detachable head lamps, and a detachable windshield. A Combination Gun Mount, M44, with a telescope was installed.5

Production

Phased out of production in 1943.

Specifications

  M3A3 (Stuart V), M3A3 light tank5
Crew Commander, gunner, driver, co-driver.3
42,3,4,5,7
Radio SCR-2455
Physical Characteristics  
Weight 12.3 tons4
29,700 lb7, 31,752 lb3,5
Length w/gun 14' 10"7, 16' 6"3,4,5
4.53 m2
Height 7' 6.5"3,4,5, 8' 8"7
Width 7' 4", 8' 3"3,4,5,7
2.46 m2
Width over tracks  
Ground clearance 16.5"5,7
0.42 m2
Ground contact length 116"7, 117"5
Ground pressure 10.4 psi7, 10.47 psi5
Turret ring diameter 46.75"5
Armament  
Main 37 mm M5 or M6 L/561
37 mm L/562
37 mm M53,5
37 mm4
37 mm M6, gyrostabilized7
OR 37 mm M63,5
Secondary  
MG 3: MG4
3: .30 cal Browning MGs3
MG - coaxial 1: .30 cal M1919A4 MG7
1: .30 cal Browning MG5
MG - hull 1: .30 cal M1919A4 MG7
1: .30 cal Browning MG5
MG - antiaircraft 1: .30 cal M1919A4 MG7
1: .30 cal Browning MG5
Side arms 1" .30 cal M2 tripod mount5
1" .45 cal submachine gun5
12: Hand grenades5,7
Quantity  
Main 1743,5,7
Secondary  
MG 7,5005,7, 6,400-8,2703
Side arms .45: 500 - 540, 5405
Grenades: 12 (4: Fragmentation Mk II, 2: Offensive Mk IIIA2, 4: Smoke WP M15, 2: Thermite Incendiary)5
Armor Thickness (mm) 103, 513
Hull Front, Upper 1.5"5, 1.5"@0°7, 1" - 1.5"4
38.12
Hull Front, Lower 5/8" - 1.75"5
Hull Sides, Upper 1"5, 1"@0°7
25.42
Hull Sides, Lower 1"5
Hull Rear 1"5, 1"@0°7
25.42
Hull Top 3/8"5
9.52
Hull Bottom 3/8" - 0.5"5
6.4 - 12.72
Turret Front 1.5"5, 1.5"@0°7
38.1 m2
Turret Sides 1.25"5, 1.25"@0°7
25.42
Turret Rear 1.25"5, 1.25"@0°
25.42
Turret Top 0.5"5, 0.5"@90°
9.52
Engine (Make / Model) Continental Wright2, Continental W-6703, Continental4, Continental W670-A7
OR Guiberson T10203, Guiberson T1020-45,7
Bore / stroke  
Cooling Air2,4,7
Continental: Air5
Guiberson: Air5
Cylinders Radial4, 72
Continental: Radial 75,7
Guiberson: Radial 95,7
Capacity  
Net HP 250@2,400 rpm2, 2504
Continental: 2507, 250@2,400 rpm5
Guiberson: 1857 , 220@2,200 rpm5
Power to weight ratio  
Compression ratio  
Transmission (Type) Synchromesh7
5 forward, 1 reverse2,7
Gear ratios - 1st gear 5.37:15
- 2nd gear 2.82:15
- 3rd gear 1.72:15
- 4th gear 1.09:15
- 5th gear 0.738:15
- reverse 6.19:15
Steering Controlled differential7
Steering ratio  
Starter  
Electrical system 12 volt5
Ignition  
Fuel (Type) Gasoline2
Guiberson: Diesel5,7
Continental: Gasoline5,7
Octane 805
Cetane 505
Quantity 54 gallons, 102 gallons5
151 liters2
Road consumption  
Cross country consumption  
Performance  
Traverse 360°3,7
Manual and hydraulic7
Speed - Road 31 mph7, 34 mph4, 36 mph3,5
57.9 kph2
Speed - Cross Country 15 - 20 mph4, 20 mph3
Range - Road 70 miles3,5, 125 miles7, 135 miles
120 km2
Range - Cross Country  
Turning radius 21'5
13 m2
Elevation limits -10° to +20°3
Fording depth 3'3,5, 3' 4"7
0.9 m2
Trench crossing 6'3,5, 7'7
Vertical obstacle 2'3,7
Climbing ability 30° slope7, 60%5
Suspension (Type) Vertical volute and trailing idler.3
Volute Springs2,5
Vertical volute springing7
Wheels each side 42
2 double wheeled bogies7
Wheel size 20x65
Return rollers each side 27, 3
Tracks (Type)  
Length Steel, rubber blocks and rubber bushed track pins7, Rubber block5
Width 11 5/8"5,7
295 mm2
Diameter  
Number of links 667, 132 or 1345
Pitch 5.5"5,7
Tire tread Rubber7
Track centers/tread 6' 1"5,7

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 American Arsenal, 1996
  6. Airfix Magazine Guide #26 American Tanks of World War 2, Terry Gander and Peter Chamberlain, 1977
  7. Tank Data 2, Aberdeen Proving Grounds Series, E. J. Hoffschmidt and W. H. Tantum IV, 1969
20th Century American Military History Crucial Site