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United States' M3A1 medium tank

Photos

M3A1 Medium Tank:
United States' M3A1 Medium Tank
Aberdeen Tank Museum
M3A1 Medium Tank:
United States' M3 Medium TankU.S. Ordnance Dept.

Design

  Shell Type Weight Muzzle velocity
75 mm M22,3 AP2,3 14.4 lb2,3 1,290'/sec2, 1,850'/sec3
37 mm M62,3 AP2,3 1.9 lb2,3 2,600'/sec3, 2,900'/sec2
.30 Cal MG     2,800'/sec2

Cast hull.1,2,7 Cast upper hull.1 Late models had escape hatch in hull floor instead of side doors.

Diesel version

Had Guiberson diesel engine.7

Production

Produced by American Locomotive Company.1

Usage

Was first model to be used by British against the Germans at Sidi Rezeg, Libya in November 1941.3

Specifications

  M3A1 medium tank, Lee II
Crew Commander, driver, loaders(2), gunners(2).4
61,2,4,5,6, 73
Radio SCR-5081
Radio - command SCR-5061
Physical Characteristics  
Weight 32 tons3
60,000 lb1,5,6, 63,880 lb2
27,900 kg
Length 18' 6"1,2,3,4,5,6
5.64-6.12 m
Height 10' 3"1,2,4,5,6, 10.25'3
Width 8.95'3, 8' 11"1,2,4,5,6
Ground clearance 17 1/8"1,2,6, 17.1"3
Ground contact length 147"1,2,3
Ground pressure 12.9 psi, 13.25 psi2, 13.36 psi1,6, 13.5 psi3
Turret ring diameter 57"2,6
Armament  
Main 75 mm M21,4
75 mm5
75 mm M2, L/313
75 mm M2, gyrostabilized2
OR 75 mm M31,4
Secondary 37 mm M51,4
37 mm5
37 mm M6, L/533
37 mm M62
OR 37 mm M61,4
MG 3-4: .30 cal Browning MGs4
3: MG5
3: .30 cal M1919A4 and M1919A5, coaxial, hull, cupola3
MG - cupola 1: .30 cal M1919A4 MG2
1: .30 cal M1919A4 Browning MG1
MG - coaxial 1: .30 cal M1919A4 MG2
1: .30 cal M1919A4 Browning MG1
MG - hull 1: .30 cal M1919A4 Browning MG1
2: .30 cal M1919A4 MG2
Side arms Hand grenades1,2
.45 cal submachine gun1
Quantity  
Main 461,2,4, 503
Secondary 1781,2,3,4
MG 9,2001,2,3,4
Side arms Grenades: 121,2
.45: 1,9001
Armor Thickness (mm) 124, 374, 1.5" - 2"5
Front: 2"3
Side: 1.5"3
Hull Front, Upper 2"1, 2"@0°2
Hull Front, Lower 1.5"1
Hull Sides, Upper 1.5"1, 1.5"@0°2
Hull Sides, Lower 1.5"1
Hull Rear 1.5"1, 1.5"@0°2
Hull Top 0.5"1
Hull Bottom 0.5" - 1"1
Turret Front 2"3, 2.25"1, 2.25"@0°2
Turret Sides 2"3, 2.25"1, 2.25"@0°2
Turret Rear 2.25"1
Turret Top 7/8"1
Engine (Make / Model) Continental R-975-EC26, Continental R-975-C16, Continental R-9755, Guiberson Diesel3, Wright Whirlwind (gasoline)3, Continental R975-EC12, Guiberson T-14002
OR Continental R-975-EC11
Cooling Air1,2,3,6
Cylinders 93,5,6, R-91,2
Wright: R-93
Net HP 3405, 340@2,400 rpm1,6
Diesel: 3452, 350@2,400 rpm3
Gasoline: 3402
Wright: 420@2,000 rpm3
Transmission (Type) Synchromesh1,2
5 forward, 1 reverse1,2
Steering Controlled differential2
Starter Electric3
Electrical system 24-volts1,3
Ignition Diesel: Injection3
Gasoline: Magneto3
Gear ratio - 1st gear 7.56:11
- 2nd gear 3.11:11
- 3rd gear 1.78:11
- 4th gear 1.11:11
- 5th gear 0.73:11
- Reverse gear 5.65:11
Fuel (Type) Gasoline2,3,6
Diesel2,3
Octane 801,6
OR 921,6
Capacity 175 gallons1,2,6
796 liters
Gasoline: 185 gallons3
Diesel: 175 gallons3
Fuel consumption - Road Gasoline: 0.6 mpg3
Diesel: 0.8 mpg3
Fuel consumption - Cross country  
Power to Weight Ratio  
Performance  
Traverse 37 mm: 360°1,2,4, power or manual2
75 mm: 15° left, 15° right1,2,4
Hydraulic or hand3
Speed - Road 25 mph2,3, 26 mph1,4,5,6
34 kph
Speed - Cross Country 4-20 mph3, 16 mph4
Range - Road 120 miles1,4,6
193 km
Gasoline: 120 miles2,3
Diesel: 140 miles2,3
Range - Cross Country  
Turning Radius 37'1,6
18.9 m
Elevation Limits 75 mm: -9° to +20°1,2,4
37 mm: -7° to +60°1,2,4
Fording depth 3' 4"1,2,4,6, 42"3
Trench crossing 6.2'1, 6' 2"2,6, 6' 3"4, 7.6'3
Vertical Obstacle 2'1,2,34,6
Climbing ability 30° slope2, 31° (60%) slope3, 60%1
Suspension (Type) 3: Vertical Volute bogies3,7
Vertical volute springing1,2
Wheels each side 3x23, 3 two wheeled bogies2
Wheel size 20" x 9"1
Wheel size - idler 22" x 9"1
Return rollers each side 32,3
Tracks (Type) Rubber block or rubber bushed, double pin shoe1,3
Steel blocks with rubber pads, rubber bushed track pins2
Length  
Width 16"2,3, 16.5"4, 16 9/16"1
Number of Links 791,2,3
Pitch 6"1,2,3
Tire Tread Rubber2
Track centers/tread 81"2, 6' 11"1,4,6, 6.9'3

Sources:

  1. The American Arsenal, 1996
  2. Tank Data 2, Aberdeen Proving Grounds Series, E. J. Hoffschmidt and W. H. Tantum IV, 1969
  3. Tank Data, Aberdeen Proving Grounds Series, 1968?
  4. 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
  5. Tanks of the World, 1915-1945, Peter Chamberlain, Chris Ellis, 1972
  6. AFV 11: M3 Medium (Lee/Grant), Peter Chamberlain and Chris Ellis
  7. Tanks of World War II, Duncan Crow, 1979
20th Century American Military History Crucial Site