Allied use of zimmerit

Historical actual factual… it was deemed by the head shed that all the Cruiser tanks in North Africa were so unutterable crap, they were all written off charge as unfit for service and left behind in North Africa for the Invasion of Sicily and latterly Italy. They were used to the end in North Africa because they were there, but we never bothered with them after that except to use their spare chassis for secondary vehicles.


'Cruiser' tank as a definition had de factor become obsolete with the Cromwell that had the same armour and gun as 'Medium' tanks like a Sherman. The stupid definition persisted until 1946. After all, the very much stand its ground and pick a fight with a Tiger heavy hitter Comet was supposedly a 'Cruiser' tank.
See the Key word in your comments was "Obsolete". By the start of Italy the pre-war cruiser tanks were three or so years out of date.

Guess what, a Mk.V female is obsolete by today's standards, doesn't mean it was unutterable crap, does it?

By your standards all Panzers were unutterable crap. Lets compare raw numbers shall we? Luckily we have two tanks produced in 1937 by both nations, the A.13 and the Panzer III. Both had around the same number built, and went through a series of minor modifications and upgrades. So it's a pretty good test!

A.13Pzr III Ausf A through to D
Max armour14mm15mm
Crew45
Speed30mph21mph
Engine output340hp250hp
weight15 tons16 tons
Max penetration @30 deg slope56mm @ 91m with AP Mk.IT34mm @ 100m, with Pzgr39

Anyway you cut it the Panzer III is worse than the crusier. So logically, using your own argument, all Panzer are unutterable crap.

Or alternatively, they weren't and technology had moved on.

I dunno.. I don't have any research or evidence to back this up, but I suspect that the bedding etc was being used behind the existing armour to reduce spalling... From my own experience, fragmentation from the rear of armour along with general cr@p being chucked around by explosions is a major contributer to the injury burden. Anything you can do to capture this is generally a good thing. Matting and other thick material will capture and slow down fragments as well as reducing blast effects by a significant amount.

It was standard practice to hang rope curtains around the insides of fortress walls and gun turrets in the Victorian period for exactly this purpose, and I suspect this was added to by using the sailors hammock rolls in time of war. Rope curtains were also widely used in ammunition factories to kill the blast from things such as cordite presses and NG plants which were at high risk of exploding.

I used to get stroppy at folk for not clearing our the back decks of their WMIK and Jackal wagons and for stressing the importance of sweeping out empty brass.. I had to explain the likely trajectory of an empty case if the vehicle hit an IED...!
Ahh, I was taking the original statement as using the cloth as armour. But even your approach has its own negatives. Strapping protection on bridges of merchants tends to raise the centre of gravity by quite a serious amount, and can cause trouble with staying upright. Equally, how much can the structure take? I know in the Early years of the War in the UK one vessel was "protected" (technically it offered some protection...technically) by concrete slabs, and the entire bridge collapsed due to over loading.
There's all sorts of dire warnings from the Director of Naval Construction floating around on this, and how any protection effort on ships should be cleared with your local office first!
 

Cold_Collation

LE
Book Reviewer
I used to get stroppy at folk for not clearing our the back decks of their WMIK and Jackal wagons and for stressing the importance of sweeping out empty brass.. I had to explain the likely trajectory of an empty case if the vehicle hit an IED...!
Can you take that comment over to some of the online modelling forums?

The amounts of used brass, etc. seen in the backs of some vehicles is beyond nonsense.
 

HE117

LE
Ahh, I was taking the original statement as using the cloth as armour. But even your approach has its own negatives. Strapping protection on bridges of merchants tends to raise the centre of gravity by quite a serious amount, and can cause trouble with staying upright. Equally, how much can the structure take? I know in the Early years of the War in the UK one vessel was "protected" (technically it offered some protection...technically) by concrete slabs, and the entire bridge collapsed due to over loading.
There's all sorts of dire warnings from the Director of Naval Construction floating around on this, and how any protection effort on ships should be cleared with your local office first!
I don't think adding cloth etc would change the CofG that much provided it did not get waterlogged.. as to adding plastic armour, technically this would have had to be run past an Nav Arch who would have to annotate the ships stability book to reflect this.. although at the end of the day, it was a balance of risk issue?
 

HE117

LE
Can you take that comment over to some of the online modelling forums?

The amounts of used brass, etc. seen in the backs of some vehicles is beyond nonsense.
I would think such audiences would not respond to observations of reality.. tbh not that many troops entering theatre do either, until they encounter their first IED strike..!
 
I don't think adding cloth etc would change the CofG that much provided it did not get waterlogged..
You need the armour to use as backing first, that would effect the Centre of gravity.

as to adding plastic armour, technically this would have had to be run past an Nav Arch who would have to annotate the ships stability book to reflect this.. although at the end of the day, it was a balance of risk issue?
That was the beauty of plastic armour. It was light (enough), and lighter, and more effective than the other options.
 
"… On the right is a Covenanter tank, perhaps the only example of its kind to have arrived in North Africa...."


All the Cruiser tanks were unutterably sh*t, they were all left behind in North Africa and scrapped when Italy was invaded.

The Kiwis apparently fought any number of battles in North Africa in Covenanters....

There were apparently between 10 and 12 Covenanters delivered to the desert. The real problem was that by the time its cooling problems had been overcome it was already uncompetitive against German equivalents in service in the desert and not capable of any real stretch in either protection or firepower so as early as mid-1943 the Covenanter was declared obsolete for service in Europe.

Cue use as a bridgelayer chassis in weird places like Bougainville....and NWE!
 
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