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American Bulldogs.
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Mig Eater
Defense Minister


Joined: 13 Nov 2003
Location: Eindhoven

PostPosted: Fri Jun 13, 2014 10:48 am    Post subject:  American Bulldogs.
Subject description: Light Tank, Anti-Aircraft and Artillery.
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This news post looks at the American Post-War family of vehicles based on the M41 chassis. The M41 Bulldog and M42 Duster have actually been in D-day for sometime, however their voxels were very inaccurate and in desperate need of replacing. As I was redoing them I thought I'd also make several other units based on the M41 too (including some non-American variants that I'll post at a later time #Tongue ).

If you want to see more information and pictures on any of these units click on the images to go to their D-day wiki pages.

M41 Walker Bulldog

Designed to replace the M24 Chaffee development started in 1947 on the T37, which used a new experimental rangefinder and British fire control system. While advantageous this experimental system was deemed too complex and in need of further development. With the outbreak of the Korean War in 1950 the need for a new tank to replace the M24 Chaffee was even greater as it was struggling to defend against the enemy T-34/85 tanks. So work quickly moved onto the T41E1 which used a new rounder turret and simplified rangefinder, it was rushed into production in 1951 as the M41 Little Bulldog. It was soon renamed the Walker Bulldog after US Army General Walton Walker who died in a traffic accident in 1950 while in Korea.

M41A1 Walker Bulldog

The M41 Walker Bulldog was rushed into production in 1951 to fight in the Korean War, some had even arrived in Korea before official testing had finished and the design standardised. Because of this the design suffered from several flaws, the M41A1 was put into production in 1954 in hopes to fix these issues. The original electrical turret traverse system was deemed to slow and so it was replaced in the M41A1 with a new hydraulic system which not only increased the turret's rate of turn but was also more compact and allowed more rounds to be stored in the turret. Another problem was that debris could get stuck between the tracks and fenders and cause the tracks to be thrown off the wheels and damage the tank. To fix this the side skirts were removed, track defectors were added under the fenders and the fenders were also rounded off on the ends. Over 2,300 M41A1 Walker Bulldog's were built and used until 1969 when it was replaced by the M551 Sheridan. Many were then sold to other countries where they were further upgraded with bigger guns and more powerful engines, some of these tanks are still in service today.

M42 Duster

The M42 Duster was designed in 1952 to replace the M19. The twin 40mm Bofors guns used on the M19 were still an effective anti-aircraft weapon system though, so the M41 was simply modified to use the turret from the M19. In 1963 the M42 was removed from front line duty and replaced with the medium range HAWK missile system. However in the 1966 the US Army in Vietnam lacked any close anti-air defense and so the M42 was recalled back into service, the North Vietnamese air force however never became a threat. The M42 was instead used to great success as a ground support vehicle, its 40mm guns being able to deal heavy damage to unarmoured targets.

M44

Built to replace the M41 in 1953, the M44 was based on a reversed M41 chassis with the engine at the front and the fighting compartment at the back. It used the same 155mm howitzer as the M41 but instead of being in the open it was now placed within an armoured crew compartment.

M52

Development of the M52 started in 1951 along with the M44. Both used the same chassis, which was modified from the M41. Unlike the M44 the M52 used a fully inclosed turret equipped with a nuclear, biological and chemical protection system so it could be used on a contaminated battlefield. Development dragged on for several years an went thorough several prototypes. One of which put the ventilation system next to the engine exhaust, which resulted in dangerous level of carbon monoxide being vented into the turret! By 1955 all the problems were worked out and the the M52 was put into production. Over 680 were built and many were later sold to other countries who still use them today.
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