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M4A3 105mm Howitzer at Ft Hood...
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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Location: Ft Hood, TX
PostPosted: Wed Aug 16, 2006 2:26 am
Post subject: M4A3 105mm Howitzer at Ft Hood...

This caught my eye because its not an M4A3E8, and because of the scars on its side. I would bet she was a range target at one time. You can see some serious gouges on her side and holes in a couple road wheels, esspecially the last one. There is no engine in this and the paint is so thick it sickening. No visable markings. It sits at the corner of the 1st Cav parking lot as you enter the museum area. The other corner had the M43 I posted. I got this picture at 17:15hrs today so excuse the glare from the sun. The left hatch as you look head-on at it was un-secure. But I about burnt my hand on another Sherman about 10 minutes earlier so I didn't climb aboard and snap pictures. Perhaps this weekend in the morning hours. Enjoy.

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toadmanstankpictures
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 16, 2006 4:15 am
Post subject: Re: M4A3 105mm Howitzer at Ft Hood...

Cool!! A VVSS M4A3(105)!! Jeff, you are my new hero!!

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binder001
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 16, 2006 11:37 am
Post subject: Re: M4A3 105mm Howitzer at Ft Hood...

Thanks for posting these photos. I remember that someone had once mentioned an M4/105 or M4A3/105 at Ft. Hood. Not too bad of shape. From the nicks in the sides I'm guessing this one was out on an artillery or mortar range for a while.

By the way, as to the plaque for the tank - they weren't just for "infantry close support missions". The WW2 tank battaion had an Assault Gun Platoon as part of the HQ Company. Originally three 75mm howitzers ( Howitzer Motor Carriage M8), they were upgraded to 105mm M4 in early-mid 1944, and the M4A3 105s came in fall 1944. The original three howitzer tanks were joined by one per company HQ section, but some units apparently used all six together. They were the tank battalion commander's own artillery support. The assault gun platoon lacked a fire direction center, but they could be tied in to DIVARTY.

Interestingly, this is the one Sherman that could penetrate a Panther from the front! The 105mm HEAT round could pierce the Panther's armor, but obviously required a good hit (and most WW2 105 howitzer tanks had only MANUAL turret traverse, although this was addressed later in production).

Gary
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SFC_Jeff_Button
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 4:00 am
Post subject: Re: M4A3 105mm Howitzer at Ft Hood...

Toadman, as your new "hero", I must ask, is this a herd to find tank and if so, why?

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toadmanstankpictures
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 4:54 am
Post subject: Re: M4A3 105mm Howitzer at Ft Hood...

- SFC_Jeff_Button
Toadman, as your new "hero", I must ask, is this a herd to find tank and if so, why?


In my experience, it seems that the majority of surviving M4A3(105)'s have HVSS. Most likely, they were converted post-war from VVSS to HVSS, much like many of the M4A3(76)'s were.

I know that one of the ones found in Iraq had VVSS. Other than that one and one in Luxembourg, I don't really know of too many more with VVSS.

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SFC_Jeff_Button
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 19, 2006 3:32 am
Post subject: Re: M4A3 105mm Howitzer at Ft Hood...

Toadman or anyone else, do we have any build numbers and possible serial numbers for these?

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SFC Jeff Button "High Angle Hell"
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Roy_A_Lingle
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 19, 2006 4:16 pm
Post subject: Re: M4A3 105mm Howitzer at Ft Hood...

Hi Jeff! Hi Folks!

- SFC_Jeff_Button

do we have any build numbers and possible serial numbers for these?


I can't help with the serial number question, but per Hunnicutt the build numbers were:

M4(A0) 105 was 1,641 built from Feb 1944 to March 1945.
593 were shipped to the United Kingdom, Lend-Lease.
Last 841 vehicles where build with the HVSS (Easy Eight) system

M4A3 105 was 3,039 built from May 1944 to June 1945.
First 500 had the VVSS system with 2,539 build with the HVSS (Easy Eight) system.
I guess that would make this vehicle one of only 500.

Spot Report!
Sgt, Scouts Out! Smile

Found that when I tried to use the letter 'E' with the number '8', a smilie face would show in my message. That is why I used the words 'Easy Eight'.

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toadmanstankpictures
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 19, 2006 4:26 pm
Post subject: Re: M4A3 105mm Howitzer at Ft Hood...

- SFC_Jeff_Button
Toadman or anyone else, do we have any build numbers and possible serial numbers for these?


I'd check with Joe DeMarco or Kurt Laughlin for s/n's.

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SFC_Jeff_Button
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2006 2:49 am
Post subject: Re: M4A3 105mm Howitzer at Ft Hood...

Man-o-man I cant wait till this weekend, and here's why. I found today that this 105mm Sherman is unsecure!!! I could see the data plate but it was 17:30hrs, my son was with me, traffic was flowing by, and the MP station was about 75meters off the gun barrel. I did not want the MP's or museum personnel have a cow with me for climbing in, but its gonna happen this Saturday morning. I just hope the data plate is readable. I was blown away that the MG was still in the hull, albeit welded in place. The other pictures are for Joe DeMarco because they will help him ID and register this M4 for future reference. Toadman, is this "Hero" material still? haha

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SFC Jeff Button "High Angle Hell"
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Doug_Kibbey
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2006 11:08 am
Post subject: Re: M4A3 105mm Howitzer at Ft Hood...

Holy Moly...a real M37 (or M1919A4E1?)! I notice no pistol grip for dismounted operation, so maybe an M37 fitted to this vehicle?

I actually trained on the pistol grip version and thought "Jeez, this thing is older than my father!"
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bsmart
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2006 3:26 pm
Post subject: Re: M4A3 105mm Howitzer at Ft Hood...

Isn't that round piece at the rear with the extension angling downward the pistol grip? I wonder if the gun is welded in place or just rusted in place?

What's the NSN for WD-40 It looks like we need a couple gallons.

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toadmanstankpictures
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2006 4:17 pm
Post subject: Re: M4A3 105mm Howitzer at Ft Hood...

- SFC_Jeff_Button
Toadman, is this "Hero" material still? haha


This is totally cool! Yeah, its "hero" material! I may have to find away to hire you to take mucho pics for me! Laughing Laughing

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SFC_Jeff_Button
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2006 4:26 pm
Post subject: Re: M4A3 105mm Howitzer at Ft Hood...

This MG has the pistol grip. I don't know if its welded inside the hull, butt it was welded on the outside. I really wanted to climb right in but I wasn't dressed for it and I thought the museum helpers might still be around. If I dont get back inside Saturday, I will Sunday.

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SFC Jeff Button "High Angle Hell"
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Doug_Kibbey
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2006 4:43 pm
Post subject: Re: M4A3 105mm Howitzer at Ft Hood...

- bsmart
Isn't that round piece at the rear with the extension angling downward the pistol grip? I wonder if the gun is welded in place or just rusted in place?

What's the NSN for WD-40 It looks like we need a couple gallons.


Jeez, you're right...couldn't make it out before. Would that be correct for the vehicle in that location? Would you even need that charging handle extension on the bow gunner weapon?

It's been a long time....
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clausb
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 25, 2006 5:55 pm
Post subject: Re: M4A3 105mm Howitzer at Ft Hood...

- toadmanstankpictures
In my experience, it seems that the majority of surviving M4A3(105)'s have HVSS. Most likely, they were converted post-war from VVSS to HVSS, much like many of the M4A3(76)'s were.

I know that one of the ones found in Iraq had VVSS. Other than that one and one in Luxembourg, I don't really know of too many more with VVSS.


Some early M4A3(105) VVSS were converted in the 1950ies with 75mm gun turrets and 76mm M1A1 guns, at least the serial numbers suggest that this is how they created M4A3E4s that went to Denmark through MDAP.

Claus B
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