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Where Did All the Tanks Go?

Discussion in 'Armor and Armored Fighting Vehicles' started by Slackerprince, Dec 30, 2011.

  1. von Poop

    von Poop Waspish

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    IWM has some very good images under 'Battlefield Salvage':
    BATTLEFIELD SALVAGE FOR RAW MATERIALS | Imperial War Museums

    And then there's this from W&T:
    (Worth expanding fully - keep clicking - , to get an idea of the scale of the operation)
    View attachment 15914


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    Postwar:
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    A few of the recoverers:
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    In short - scrap is scrap, re-cycling's nothing new, and farmland/cities are not enhanced by hundreds of rusting hulks, so they were removed, mostly cut up, & melted down, sometimes sold on.

    Then there's the ones they're still finding, but that's for a different thread.

    ~A
     

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  2. lwd

    lwd Ace

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  3. brndirt1

    brndirt1 Saddle Tramp

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    I don't know how that would help meet LL requirements post war, but using tanks, de-mil or not was a bust.

    They just weren't designed for the pull needed for agricultural work. It was tried, both in America with the Sherman M4, and I would suppose in the USSR with the T34. They simply weren't geared or built as pulling units over days of use, and that is quite simply the designation of a "tractor". It pulls at low speed for hours on end, the "tank" was never designed for such work and any attempt to use them as "tractors" (no matter how cheap they were) was a failure.

    It was on the US end, I cannot imagine it wasn't on the Soviet end. I personally know of one family named Misener on the Marias River in Montana who bought two surplus M4's sans turrets thinking they could use them as crawler tractors. They were disabused of this notion in three months when everything on them other than the engines simply broke. Their M4s were sold for scrap in 1948, and only the engine of one was turned into a stationary power unit driving a pump. My Dad used to laugh as he told me about that episode every time we went fishing on the Misener river frontage, great northern pike spot.
     
  4. phylo_roadking

    phylo_roadking Member

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    Clint, there were however many instances of Shermans sans turrets being used as crawlers here in the UK - there's one still running in Norfolk IIRC, painted a nice bright read!...and of course there's the legendary Shervick Tractor project; Vickers were commissioned to take old Shermans, shorten the "wheel" base by removing a bogie on either side...and reverse the whole plot, so that it "drove" through the single speed reverse gear! :D They were shipped to Africa for the Groundnut (peanut growing) Scheme Tanganyika groundnut scheme - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia...

    The Shervick didn't last long out there....but according that NOTHING they used did, including ex U.S. Army Caterpillars! :eek:

    [​IMG]

    See what I mean about "reversed"?
     
  5. von Poop

    von Poop Waspish

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    The Aussies ran a good line in retired Armour as farm tractors, many restorations seemingly originating there now, and the dumps of M3s and Universal Carriers being well known.
    But then I always imagine the terrain there, and export distances for purpose-made stuff made the recycling more justified.
    scrapyard murrayville - Flickr: Search

    Then there's simple dumping.
    The US in particular seemed keen on pushing stuff over the sides of boats, given the sheer distance to get home for much damaged/obsolete stuff.
    (Some of it apparently eventually forming the equipment base of the putative IDF after some herculean recovery efforts).
     
  6. ArcticWolf

    ArcticWolf Member

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    Here's a pic of the South Alberta tanks at end of war

    [​IMG]
     
  7. LRusso216

    LRusso216 Graybeard Staff Member Patron  

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  8. wombat_of_war

    wombat_of_war Member

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    and then some ended up in places like mortar investments in the czech republic where the refurbish and sell things like old t-34's
     
  9. phylo_roadking

    phylo_roadking Member

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    Distance isn't the ONLY issue when it comes to Aussie armour...and restos ;)

    Reading an article a few months ago in CMV...apparently it's against the law to export an armoured vehicle OUT of Australia! A little wrinkle encountered by an ex-pat who exported a modern-ish British Scorpion TO Oz a few years ago! He can ONLY sell it there now, internally....!
     

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