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1st CAV M4A3 (105) VVSS repaint...
The AFV ASSOCIATION was formed in 1964 to support the thoughts and research of all those interested in Armored Fighting Vehicles and related topics, such as AFV drawings. The emphasis has always been on sharing information and communicating with other members of similar interests; e.g. German armor, Japanese AFVs, or whatever.
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SFC_Jeff_Button
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PostPosted: Thu May 08, 2008 2:48 pm
Post subject: 1st CAV M4A3 (105) VVSS repaint...

This Sherman is serial number 56625, reg # 30103307. This is the fifth M4A3 (105) VVSS made by Chrysler, in MAy 1944. It still has the original 1 piece engine deck lid, found on very early models. It also does not have the fittings on the left rear sponson that was used to carry the aiming poles. The missing fitting is limited to onlt a handful of early models. There were 3,039 M4A3 (105's) bulit from May 1944 to June 1945. The first 500 had the VVSS system and 2,539 were built with the HVSS (Easy Eight) system. This tank is the fifth of the 500 made.
According to records at the U.S.Archieves, this tank was issued to the 1st Armored Regiment, (later 1st Tank Battalion) in Italy, 23 July 1944.
One other M4A3 (105) VVSS is in Luxemborg and one was recently found in Iraq. The vehicle in Iraq was probably captured from the Iranians and was sent to them through MAP, (Military Assitance Program) of the 1950's.

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Neil_Baumgardner
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PostPosted: Thu May 08, 2008 6:12 pm
Post subject: Re: 1st CAV M4A3 (105) VVSS repaint...

Jeff,
Thanks for the info & pics!

There are 14 M4A3(105)s that I am aware of in the US. Not sure how many are VVSS though admittedly...

American Society of Military History Museum in South El Monte, CA
Marine Corps Air Ground Center Twentynine Palms, CA
Russell Military Museum in Russell, IL
Veterans Memorial Park in South Holland, IL
Ropkey Armor Museum in Crawfordsville, IN (SN 58068)
Winnebago County Court House in Forest City, IA (SN 17837)
Veterans Memorial Park in Emporia, KS
Patton Museum of Cavalry and Armor at Fort Knox, KY (SN 72912, recovered from Iraq)
Veteran’s Memorial in Tekamah, NE
1st Cavalry Division Museum at Fort Hood, TX
Henry Machine Gun Range (target) at MCB Quantico, VA
American Legion Post 439 in Melrose, WI
Memorial Park in Tomahawk, WI
American Legion Post 44 in Wabeno, WI

Its actually somewhat surprising there's as many survivors as there are considering the relatively limited production run.

Neil
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Neil_Baumgardner
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PostPosted: Thu May 08, 2008 6:20 pm
Post subject: Re: 1st CAV M4A3 (105) VVSS repaint...

Jeff,
Thanks for the info & pics!

There are 14 M4A3(105)s that I am aware of in the US. Not sure how many are VVSS though admittedly...

American Society of Military History Museum in South El Monte, CA
Marine Corps Air Ground Center Twentynine Palms, CA
Russell Military Museum in Russell, IL
Veterans Memorial Park in South Holland, IL
Ropkey Armor Museum in Crawfordsville, IN (SN 58068)
Winnebago County Court House in Forest City, IA (SN 17837)
Veterans Memorial Park in Emporia, KS
Patton Museum of Cavalry and Armor at Fort Knox, KY (SN 72912, recovered from Iraq)
Veteran’s Memorial in Tekamah, NE
1st Cavalry Division Museum at Fort Hood, TX
Henry Machine Gun Range (target) at MCB Quantico, VA
American Legion Post 439 in Melrose, WI
Memorial Park in Tomahawk, WI
American Legion Post 44 in Wabeno, WI

Its actually somewhat surprising there's as many survivors as there are considering the relatively limited production run.

Neil
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MarkHolloway
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PostPosted: Thu May 08, 2008 6:27 pm
Post subject: Re: 1st CAV M4A3 (105) VVSS repaint...

So, was this used as artillery or as a tank? Neutral

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binder001
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PostPosted: Thu May 08, 2008 7:44 pm
Post subject: Re: 1st CAV M4A3 (105) VVSS repaint...

- MarkHolloway
So, was this used as artillery or as a tank? Neutral


Both in a way. The 105mm Shermans (M4 and M4A3) were NOT intended as field artillery weapons. They were a battalion commander's own artillery for suduing enemy positions.

Each 1943-type US medium tank battalion was authorized an Assault Gun Platoon in the Bn HQ company. This was three M8 HMC's that were replaced by M4's with 105mm howitzers (circa late spring/early summer of 1944) and later supplemented M4A3s when they became available. In addition to the three-gun Assault Gun Platoon, each medium tank company was authorized one 105mm medium tank, making a total of six M4-series tanks with 105mm howitzers in each tank battalion. Note that the 2nd and 3rd Armored Divisions did not get their 105's at the same time as they stayed with the 1942 TO&E. They did get the 105's but later in the fall.

Each Armored Infantry Battalion in the 1943-pattern divisions were authorized a three-gun Assault gun platoon also. Originally these were M8 HMC's. I'm not sure when, or if, they received 105mm Shermans.

The 105mm howitzer gave a powerful punch to the M4, however the original production Assault Guns did NOT have power traverse for the turret. The 105mm Howitzer M4 was based on the standard 105 and (if I remember correctly) a manually operated breech block. Repeatedly manhandling a 105mm howitzer round inside the M4 turret had to a real pain for the loader.

To the US Army in 1943-44 the tank was primarily supposed to deliver HE shell versus AP shot. According to Baily's "Faint Praise" before DDay the ETOUSA at one time proposed that 50% of the tanks in the ETO should be 105mm howitzer types.

So, it's a tank, but it's the tank battalion commander's personal artillery asset too.

Gary
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binder001
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PostPosted: Thu May 08, 2008 7:49 pm
Post subject: Re: 1st CAV M4A3 (105) VVSS repaint...

- Neil_Baumgardner
Jeff,
Thanks for the info & pics!

There are 14 M4A3(105)s that I am aware of in the US. Not sure how many are VVSS though admittedly...Neil


The Nebraska and Iowa ones are HVSS. They can be seen in two of my albums at;
picasaweb.google.com/gebinder01

I remember seeing a photo of the Kansas M4A3 105 and it had HVSS also.

Gary
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Joe_D
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PostPosted: Thu May 08, 2008 10:02 pm
Post subject: Re: 1st CAV M4A3 (105) VVSS repaint...

Here's the former US, Iranian, Iraqi, now US Patton Museum M4A3 105mm, pictures taken Summer 2003, Udari Desert, Kuwait.

Larger Image>ComCentral

Larger Image>ComCentral

Notice the T-55 track laying on the ground. The Iraqis put it on when they had it on display. The track was not recovered.

Joe D
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SFC_Jeff_Button
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PostPosted: Fri May 09, 2008 11:10 am
Post subject: Re: 1st CAV M4A3 (105) VVSS repaint...

Does anyone have pictures of the Iraq M4 now that it's at the museum? When did it arrive there? I'm curious as to how they plan to restore it or leave it as it's seen here?

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toadmanstankpictures
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PostPosted: Fri May 09, 2008 2:55 pm
Post subject: Re: 1st CAV M4A3 (105) VVSS repaint...

- SFC_Jeff_Button
Does anyone have pictures of the Iraq M4 now that it's at the museum? When did it arrive there? I'm curious as to how they plan to restore it or leave it as it's seen here?


Welcome back, Jeff!

I have some pics of it from May '06: Iranian M4A3(105)HVSS. I'm sure others will have more current pics.

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toadmanstankpictures
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PostPosted: Fri May 09, 2008 2:56 pm
Post subject: Re: 1st CAV M4A3 (105) VVSS repaint...

- Neil_Baumgardner
Jeff,
Thanks for the info & pics!

There are 14 M4A3(105)s that I am aware of in the US. Not sure how many are VVSS though admittedly...

American Society of Military History Museum in South El Monte, CA
Marine Corps Air Ground Center Twentynine Palms, CA
Russell Military Museum in Russell, IL
Veterans Memorial Park in South Holland, IL
Ropkey Armor Museum in Crawfordsville, IN (SN 58068)
Winnebago County Court House in Forest City, IA (SN 17837)
Veterans Memorial Park in Emporia, KS
Patton Museum of Cavalry and Armor at Fort Knox, KY (SN 72912, recovered from Iraq)
Veteran’s Memorial in Tekamah, NE
1st Cavalry Division Museum at Fort Hood, TX
Henry Machine Gun Range (target) at MCB Quantico, VA
American Legion Post 439 in Melrose, WI
Memorial Park in Tomahawk, WI
American Legion Post 44 in Wabeno, WI

Its actually somewhat surprising there's as many survivors as there are considering the relatively limited production run.

Neil


Jacques Littlefield has a M4A3(105)HVSS in his collection.

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