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Re: [G104] Auto industry Vs. Locomotive works production & Ram influence on the Sherman

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  • Paul Roberts
    ... Part of the problem with Ram production was that _Canadian_ locomotive plants had even less experience that even their American home-office plants. Having
    Message 1 of 34 , Nov 1, 2003
      Dana J Nield wrote:

      >Hi everyone,
      >
      >I'm doing some research tonight on my on-again-off-again book on the
      >Canadian Ram Tank. While reading Edward Nurse's Masters Thesis on Canadian
      >Tank production, I've come across some problems with his conclusion. In it
      >he states that one of the problems that caused delays in Ram production was
      >the fact that it was built by a Locomotive works which did not have any
      >experience in rapid mass production. Therefore, he believes that the Auto
      >Industry would have likely been a better candidate for tank construction.
      >
      Part of the problem with Ram production was that _Canadian_ locomotive
      plants had even less experience that even their American home-office
      plants. Having to get drawings for the 6 pdr from the UK delayed the
      introduction of that weapon and essentially created the 2 pdr armed Mk I
      where it was never planned for or wanted. Being low man on the totem
      pole to get parts from the US would also delay Canadian production. If a
      US contract needed a part at the same time a Canadian contract needed
      it, you know where it went. These weren't large delays, but we were at
      the end of two supply chains. There were bound to be delays.

      That said, there were also differences between locomotive companies.
      CP's Angus shops built Valentines but were bloody awful at it, at least
      from a production point of view. Their delays were very pronounced at
      the beginning of the program and numerous messages from the local Cdn
      Army Rep back to headquarters seem to despair of ever getting anything
      done efficiently at the Angus shops. I think it is telling that they
      were not asked to produce more vehicles after the Valentines were
      complete. The Montreal Locomotive plant, in contrast, built all the
      Rams, 188 Grizzlies (m4A1 and then went on to build 2500 Sextons. They
      must have been doing at least some things better than Angus Shops.

      >Does he have a point or is this sadly misplaced Canadian nationalism?!
      >
      Misplaced nationalism. If you look at the dates for Sherman production
      and look at the commonality between the Lee, Ram and Sherman you can
      clearly see that Ram and Sherman design work was happening at just about
      the same time. Both the Ram and Early Sherman were clear adaptations of
      the Lee hull and automotive drive train. The Ram turret ring was the
      same as that of the Lee and incorporated the same gyrostabilizer for the
      6 pdr as was used in the Lee for the 37mm. The Lee itself was a stop gap
      until the US casting houses could learn to make larger turret castings.
      The Ram, being a bit later obviously came by just as that was possible.
      The Sherman, being a shade later (a month or two, no more) could use the
      same technology. The decision to use a 75mm in a turret was made before
      the Lee was put into production, so the concept of a large gun in the
      main turret was clearly in place in the US before the Canadian design
      team started work. If the Sherman had had a 60" turret ring instead of
      69", it would have ended up looking exactly like the Ram and vice versa.
      All of the interior components and the crew station layouts are very
      similar between the Ram and Sherman. The only real difference is the 9"
      of turret ring diameter and the effect that has on the placing of items
      on and in the hull. everything else is a wash in terms of the design.

      Given the almost complete overlap in the two vehicles design phases I
      would say it is much more likely that ideas were traded from one team to
      the other, even if only by the conduit of their shared suppliers. The
      Ram team decides to place the interior components in such a fashion and
      tells the casting house to ensure it all fits. The Sherman team has a
      meeting with the casting house and is told how the Canucks are placing
      their components thus and so and how much more efficient it seems to be.
      Hmmm good idea, lets place ours the same way, but now make room for this
      assembly over here and make the hull casting such and such. The Ram guys
      are back a couple of weeks later and lo and behold the American assembly
      is soon part of the spec for the Ram. The incredible commonality between
      the designs ensured that some cross pollination would occur, if only
      through their suppliers. The fact that they both started from the same
      parent vehicle, the Lee, completed the story.

      Paul
    • Brandon K.
      No unfortunately. The engine bay was closed, and I only had an hour to spend before I had to leave for the airport. BK ... __________________________________
      Message 34 of 34 , Jan 23, 2004
        No unfortunately. The engine bay was closed, and I only had an hour to spend before I had to leave
        for the airport.

        BK
        --- Johan M <metalscalemodels@...> wrote:
        > Hi Brandon,
        >
        > Nice pictures of the shemans. Espacialy the M4A1 E9.
        >
        > Did you also took pictures of the engine bay of the M4A3? I'll be very
        > interested!!
        >
        > Johan
        >
        > http://www.geocities.com/oldshermans/index.htm


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