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looking for a serial number

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  • metalscalemodels
    I have been this summer In Beffe Belgium, after spending a hollyday in France, I visit the Shermantank over there. I went there looking for serial numbers. I
    Message 1 of 29 , Oct 7, 2011
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      I have been this summer In Beffe Belgium, after spending a hollyday in France, I visit the Shermantank over there. I went there looking for serial numbers. I found nothing on the known places, towlugs etc. I did
      find a number of what i believe could be a sn number. It is stamped only on the right backside. Unfortunately it is not very clear. I hope someone can make something of it.

      Does anyone know also something about the unitmarkings of the 771st tankbt in januari 1945. I believe that was the unit where this sherman belong to.


      for the pictures: http://www.shermantank.nl/M4A3(76)W.htm



      regards,

      Johan Meijer
    • Joe DeMarco
      Hello Johan, It would certainly be interesting to be able to determine the history of that Sherman. It is an early Chrysler (Spring 1944) production vehicle as
      Message 2 of 29 , Oct 7, 2011
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        Hello Johan,

        It would certainly be interesting to be able to determine the history of
        that Sherman. It is an early Chrysler (Spring 1944) production vehicle as
        evidenced by the very low serial number of the E8020 casting (A11) & the
        early position of the forward cable clamp, behind, not on, the E8020 piece.
        Many of the bogie units that Chrysler used had dates cast on them, which can
        provide a clue about when the tank was made. I don't have any clear shots of
        the dates, but would guess they might be "3-44." The turret is also an early
        production casting (serial number A75) with a fitting (that was later
        eliminated) for a forward antenna mount. You can also see the "ghost" of the
        extra lifting ring just behind the forward antenna mount. Certainly the
        early turret & hull are appropriate together, but I would wonder why only
        the turret shows evidence of having had the metal rods that some US units
        welded on to hold foliage? Could the turret be from another tank? The engine
        deck panels are replacements taken from an M74. I'm sure that, as built,
        that tank would have had a 1-piece rearmost engine deck. Did you see any
        damage or penetrations on the tank?

        The numbers you saw stamped in the rear are probably just the part number &
        serial number of the individual piece of armor plate. On a clean Sherman,
        stamped numbers can be found on almost everything. One of our members
        sanded through many layers of paint to expose the serial number (43911) of a
        similar M4A3(76)VVSS in Clervaux. I expect the Beffe would have a lower
        S/N, but don't recommend sanding without getting permission. I've attached
        a photo I marked up to show people where to look for a loose build sequence
        number on a Chrysler. Sometimes it's possible to read that despite heavy
        paint. I expect the Beffe would have "76B" & then a number 300 or lower.

        Very impressive model, Johan! On a historical note, Chrsyler built Shermans
        with VVSS had pressed metal, spoked road wheels installed as original
        equipment. That's not to say they couldn't have been replaced with other
        types in the course of service, but probably not all of them.

        >I think the French did the box on all the vehicles they rebuild.

        OK, Michel.
        The Somua S35 at APG has "numbers in a box" stamped on the hull & turret.
        Also has "CAIL NO 42761" (attached) which I take to be the Matricule Number?
        French Lend Lease Shermans were obviously assigned Matricules, although I
        don't think anyone has ever reported finding one stamped into the armor.

        >If it's indeed RN 40152515 that would be SN 4052 isn' it?

        Yes.

        Joe


        --------------------------------------------------
        From: "metalscalemodels" <contact@...>
        Sent: Friday, October 07, 2011 10:21 AM
        To: <G104@yahoogroups.com>
        Subject: [G104] looking for a serial number

        > I have been this summer In Beffe Belgium, after spending a hollyday in
        > France, I visit the Shermantank over there. I went there looking for
        > serial numbers. I found nothing on the known places, towlugs etc. I did
        > find a number of what i believe could be a sn number. It is stamped only
        > on the right backside. Unfortunately it is not very clear. I hope someone
        > can make something of it.
        >
        > Does anyone know also something about the unitmarkings of the 771st tankbt
        > in januari 1945. I believe that was the unit where this sherman belong to.
        >
        >
        > for the pictures: http://www.shermantank.nl/M4A3(76)W.htm
        >
        >
        >
        > regards,
        >
        > Johan Meijer
      • metalscalemodels
        Hello Joe, The story goes that this Sherman ran on a mine. Afterwards it was puched of the road. I ve seen no evidence of any battledamage. I m almost sure
        Message 3 of 29 , Oct 9, 2011
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          Hello Joe,

          The story goes that this Sherman ran on a mine. Afterwards it was puched of the road. I've seen no evidence of any battledamage.
          I'm almost sure that there is no number at the side of the glacis.
          I've got no pictures of the bogies. I didn't know that was a point of interest..
          What evidence of the metal rods on the side of the turret do you see?

          thanks for your reply.

          Johan

          --- In G104@yahoogroups.com, "Joe DeMarco" <snick13@...> wrote:
          >
          > Hello Johan,
          >
          > It would certainly be interesting to be able to determine the history of
          > that Sherman. It is an early Chrysler (Spring 1944) production vehicle as
          > evidenced by the very low serial number of the E8020 casting (A11) & the
          > early position of the forward cable clamp, behind, not on, the E8020 piece.
          > Many of the bogie units that Chrysler used had dates cast on them, which can
          > provide a clue about when the tank was made. I don't have any clear shots of
          > the dates, but would guess they might be "3-44." The turret is also an early
          > production casting (serial number A75) with a fitting (that was later
          > eliminated) for a forward antenna mount. You can also see the "ghost" of the
          > extra lifting ring just behind the forward antenna mount. Certainly the
          > early turret & hull are appropriate together, but I would wonder why only
          > the turret shows evidence of having had the metal rods that some US units
          > welded on to hold foliage? Could the turret be from another tank? The engine
          > deck panels are replacements taken from an M74. I'm sure that, as built,
          > that tank would have had a 1-piece rearmost engine deck. Did you see any
          > damage or penetrations on the tank?
          >
          > The numbers you saw stamped in the rear are probably just the part number &
          > serial number of the individual piece of armor plate. On a clean Sherman,
          > stamped numbers can be found on almost everything. One of our members
          > sanded through many layers of paint to expose the serial number (43911) of a
          > similar M4A3(76)VVSS in Clervaux. I expect the Beffe would have a lower
          > S/N, but don't recommend sanding without getting permission. I've attached
          > a photo I marked up to show people where to look for a loose build sequence
          > number on a Chrysler. Sometimes it's possible to read that despite heavy
          > paint. I expect the Beffe would have "76B" & then a number 300 or lower.
          >
          > Very impressive model, Johan! On a historical note, Chrsyler built Shermans
          > with VVSS had pressed metal, spoked road wheels installed as original
          > equipment. That's not to say they couldn't have been replaced with other
          > types in the course of service, but probably not all of them.
          >
          > >I think the French did the box on all the vehicles they rebuild.
          >
          > OK, Michel.
          > The Somua S35 at APG has "numbers in a box" stamped on the hull & turret.
          > Also has "CAIL NO 42761" (attached) which I take to be the Matricule Number?
          > French Lend Lease Shermans were obviously assigned Matricules, although I
          > don't think anyone has ever reported finding one stamped into the armor.
          >
          > >If it's indeed RN 40152515 that would be SN 4052 isn' it?
          >
          > Yes.
          >
          > Joe
          >
          >
          > --------------------------------------------------
          > From: "metalscalemodels" <contact@...>
          > Sent: Friday, October 07, 2011 10:21 AM
          > To: <G104@yahoogroups.com>
          > Subject: [G104] looking for a serial number
          >
          > > I have been this summer In Beffe Belgium, after spending a hollyday in
          > > France, I visit the Shermantank over there. I went there looking for
          > > serial numbers. I found nothing on the known places, towlugs etc. I did
          > > find a number of what i believe could be a sn number. It is stamped only
          > > on the right backside. Unfortunately it is not very clear. I hope someone
          > > can make something of it.
          > >
          > > Does anyone know also something about the unitmarkings of the 771st tankbt
          > > in januari 1945. I believe that was the unit where this sherman belong to.
          > >
          > >
          > > for the pictures: http://www.shermantank.nl/M4A3(76)W.htm
          > >
          > >
          > >
          > > regards,
          > >
          > > Johan Meijer
          >
        • Joe DeMarco
          Hello Johan, ... I was thinking of the little loops that you can see welded on to the turret sides. I ve marked up & attached one of your photos. Those loops
          Message 4 of 29 , Oct 11, 2011
          • 0 Attachment
            Hello Johan,

            >What evidence of the metal rods on the side of the turret do you see?

            I was thinking of the little loops that you can see welded on to the turret
            sides. I've marked up & attached one of your photos. Those loops could be
            for the purpose of hanging crew junk, or holding chicken wire.
            Here's a blow up of a photo that I sent to Don M. when he was working on
            Cobra King. This was taken at Hammelburg in 1948. You can see the rods &
            wire that were added to the hull & turret. Don was able to find weld scars
            in the same position, as well as the same casting marks on the bow gunner's
            hatch, so we are almost certain that is a photo of CK. One wonders how it
            ended up there? Aside from being "First in Bastogne," was it also the Cobra
            King that was said to have been lost during the Hammelburg Raid? Both
            episodes involved C Co. / 37th Tank Bn, so don't see why not, but can't
            prove it.

            >The story goes that this Sherman ran on a mine. Afterwards it was puched of
            >the road. I've seen no evidence of any battledamage.

            In the course of researching your model, if you come across any further info
            about the history of the Beffe, would you please let us know?

            Joe


            --------------------------------------------------
            From: "metalscalemodels" <contact@...>
            Sent: Sunday, October 09, 2011 2:49 PM
            To: <G104@yahoogroups.com>
            Subject: [G104] Re: looking for a serial number

            > Hello Joe,
            >
            > The story goes that this Sherman ran on a mine. Afterwards it was puched
            > of the road. I've seen no evidence of any battledamage.
            > I'm almost sure that there is no number at the side of the glacis.
            > I've got no pictures of the bogies. I didn't know that was a point of
            > interest..
            > What evidence of the metal rods on the side of the turret do you see?
            >
            > thanks for your reply.
            >
            > Johan
          • Michael Lembo
            Hello all members.   I am a civilian contractor (US Army Retired) working at the US post in Hohenfels, Germany.  We have here an M4A1(76)W on display in
            Message 5 of 29 , Oct 11, 2011
            • 0 Attachment
              Hello all members.
               
              I am a civilian contractor (US Army Retired) working at the US post in Hohenfels, Germany.  We have here an M4A1(76)W on display in front of the HQ building.  It is unusual in that is has a muzzle brake and attachments on the mantlet for the canvas cover, but still has VVSS suspension.  I have only been able to find 3 wartime photos of an M4A1 in this configuration, and none of them have the mantlet cover attachments.  The Osprey book on the 76 Gun M4 says a small batch of these arrived in the ETO in the spring of '45.  It has too much paint for me to find a serial number, and it is right in front of the HQ, so I can't just walk up and start wire brushing the SN locations.  I am working on getting Command approval to investigate it.  I will send a photo as soon as I get one.  I am also working on restoring an M24 Chaffee which belongs to the Army here as well. If anyone has a database of serial numbers for these also, I need whatever info can be found on M24 Ser# 5540, Hull number is:  lightly stamped "H" followed by a deeper stamped "C", number 721, flanked by ordnance bombs.  It has floatation device attachments only on the rear, never were installed in front.  Has the early type antenna mount, but the later type gun tube (could be replaced tube).  It had all the 1950's commo modifications, but it has now been backdated to the original config.  Any info on these two will be greatly appreciated.
               
              Michael Lembo

              --- On Tue, 10/11/11, Joe DeMarco <snick13@...> wrote:

              From: Joe DeMarco <snick13@...>
              Subject: Re: [G104] Re: looking for a serial number
              To: G104@yahoogroups.com
              Date: Tuesday, October 11, 2011, 10:10 PM

               
              Hello Johan,

              >What evidence of the metal rods on the side of the turret do you see?

              I was thinking of the little loops that you can see welded on to the turret
              sides. I've marked up & attached one of your photos. Those loops could be
              for the purpose of hanging crew junk, or holding chicken wire.
              Here's a blow up of a photo that I sent to Don M. when he was working on
              Cobra King. This was taken at Hammelburg in 1948. You can see the rods &
              wire that were added to the hull & turret. Don was able to find weld scars
              in the same position, as well as the same casting marks on the bow gunner's
              hatch, so we are almost certain that is a photo of CK. One wonders how it
              ended up there? Aside from being "First in Bastogne," was it also the Cobra
              King that was said to have been lost during the Hammelburg Raid? Both
              episodes involved C Co. / 37th Tank Bn, so don't see why not, but can't
              prove it.

              >The story goes that this Sherman ran on a mine. Afterwards it was puched of
              >the road. I've seen no evidence of any battledamage.

              In the course of researching your model, if you come across any further info
              about the history of the Beffe, would you please let us know?

              Joe

              --------------------------------------------------
              From: "metalscalemodels" <contact@...>
              Sent: Sunday, October 09, 2011 2:49 PM
              To: <G104@yahoogroups.com>
              Subject: [G104] Re: looking for a serial number

              > Hello Joe,
              >
              > The story goes that this Sherman ran on a mine. Afterwards it was puched
              > of the road. I've seen no evidence of any battledamage.
              > I'm almost sure that there is no number at the side of the glacis.
              > I've got no pictures of the bogies. I didn't know that was a point of
              > interest..
              > What evidence of the metal rods on the side of the turret do you see?
              >
              > thanks for your reply.
              >
              > Johan

            • Joe DeMarco
              Hi Michael, The canvas mantlet cover was probably added during the post war years. If the tank has tracks or studs for tracks on each side of the turret, it
              Message 6 of 29 , Oct 12, 2011
              • 0 Attachment
                Hi Michael,
                 
                The canvas mantlet cover was probably added during the post war years. If the tank has tracks or studs for tracks on each side of the turret, it would indicate it was 1950s military assistance.
                 
                >so I can't just walk up and start wire brushing the SN locations.
                 
                That's OK because there's no evidence that Pressed Steel Car stamped the serial number anywhere on the exterior of any of its Shermans, anyway. Short of getting inside to look for the dataplate, if the tank has a USA Number beginning with 301 painted on, that might be real. There's a few of those in Europe that have somehow retained their original Registration Numbers. If not, France received over 400 M4A1(76)VVSS Shermans as MDAP, & they stamped the tank serial number on the front of many of their Shermans. You could try looking for that (5 digits) just to the right of the bow MG.
                 
                >I need whatever info can be found on M24 Ser# 5540
                 
                It would have been made by Massey Harris & would have been accepted in April 1945, too late to have been shipped overseas to serve during WW II. Sometimes you can find the USA Number stamped on the right front side of those. That one should be 30139099.
                 
                >It has floatation device attachments only on the rear, never were installed in front.
                 
                That's odd. Hunnicutt has it that, for M-H, the adaptors were installed on both front & rear at tank number 250. I take that to mean starting Jan 1945 at serial number 3349 & above. It's not like there are a lot of Massey Harris M24s around to examine, but it seems to check out on the few. I was assuming only a handful of Cadillac M24s would have had just the rear adaptors. It's always a pleasure to discover new stuff off the real thing, but if you don't mind my wanting to double check, where did you find the serial number you reported?
                 
                Joe
                 
                 
                 

                Sent: Wednesday, October 12, 2011 1:16 AM
                Subject: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany

                Hello all members.
                 
                I am a civilian contractor (US Army Retired) working at the US post in Hohenfels, Germany.  We have here an M4A1(76)W on display in front of the HQ building.  It is unusual in that is has a muzzle brake and attachments on the mantlet for the canvas cover, but still has VVSS suspension.  I have only been able to find 3 wartime photos of an M4A1 in this configuration, and none of them have the mantlet cover attachments.  The Osprey book on the 76 Gun M4 says a small batch of these arrived in the ETO in the spring of '45.  It has too much paint for me to find a serial number, and it is right in front of the HQ, so I can't just walk up and start wire brushing the SN locations.  I am working on getting Command approval to investigate it.  I will send a photo as soon as I get one.  I am also working on restoring an M24 Chaffee which belongs to the Army here as well. If anyone has a database of serial numbers for these also, I need whatever info can be found on M24 Ser# 5540, Hull number is:  lightly stamped "H" followed by a deeper stamped "C", number 721, flanked by ordnance bombs.  It has floatation device attachments only on the rear, never were installed in front.  Has the early type antenna mount, but the later type gun tube (could be replaced tube).  It had all the 1950's commo modifications, but it has now been backdated to the original config.  Any info on these two will be greatly appreciated.
                 
                Michael Lembo

                --- On Tue, 10/11/11, Joe DeMarco <snick13@...> wrote:

                From: Joe DeMarco <snick13@...>
                Subject: Re: [G104] Re: looking for a serial number
                To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                Date: Tuesday, October 11, 2011, 10:10 PM

                 
                Hello Johan,

                >What evidence of the metal rods on the side of the turret do you see?

                I was thinking of the little loops that you can see welded on to the turret
                sides. I've marked up & attached one of your photos. Those loops could be
                for the purpose of hanging crew junk, or holding chicken wire.
                Here's a blow up of a photo that I sent to Don M. when he was working on
                Cobra King. This was taken at Hammelburg in 1948. You can see the rods &
                wire that were added to the hull & turret. Don was able to find weld scars
                in the same position, as well as the same casting marks on the bow gunner's
                hatch, so we are almost certain that is a photo of CK. One wonders how it
                ended up there? Aside from being "First in Bastogne," was it also the Cobra
                King that was said to have been lost during the Hammelburg Raid? Both
                episodes involved C Co. / 37th Tank Bn, so don't see why not, but can't
                prove it.

                >The story goes that this Sherman ran on a mine. Afterwards it was puched of
                >the road. I've seen no evidence of any battledamage.

                In the course of researching your model, if you come across any further info
                about the history of the Beffe, would you please let us know?

                Joe

                --------------------------------------------------
                From: "metalscalemodels" <contact@...>
                Sent: Sunday, October 09, 2011 2:49 PM
                To: <G104@yahoogroups.com>
                Subject: [G104] Re: looking for a serial number

                > Hello Joe,
                >
                > The story goes that this Sherman ran on a mine. Afterwards it was puched
                > of the road. I've seen no evidence of any battledamage.
                > I'm almost sure that there is no number at the side of the glacis.
                > I've got no pictures of the bogies. I didn't know that was a point of
                > interest..
                > What evidence of the metal rods on the side of the turret do you see?
                >
                > thanks for your reply.
                >
                > Johan

              • Michael Lembo
                Hello Joe,      Thanks for the info.  I had considered the probability that the 76mm was upgraded post-war. The tank has a grunt phone on the hull rear
                Message 7 of 29 , Oct 12, 2011
                • 0 Attachment
                  Hello Joe,
                   
                     Thanks for the info.  I had considered the probability that the 76mm was upgraded post-war. The tank has a grunt phone on the hull rear and does have 3 track link sections on both forward sides of the turret.  It is of course possible the muzzle brake is a post war add-on, or the whole cannon could have been replaced.  I have been inside of it (the escape hatch is missing), but that was in 1995 and I don't have a photo of the data plate.  If I get "official" access to it again, I will go in and try to read the data plate. I will check next to the bow gun, but there is so much paint on it, I don't think there will be anything readable.
                   
                     As for the Chaffee,  The serial number is stamped in next to the bow gun, on a rectangular plate.  I had read somewhere that the hull numbers on the side below the driver's hatch were only on Cadillac M24's?  I have known about this tank also since 1994 when I first came to Hohenfels and the known history is that the tank was returned from Italian military service in the early '80's.  Since it had been military aid, I had assumed it was already here in Europe since the war, but I guess it is possible to have been shipped direct from the US.  While removing the paint I have found Italian flags painted in two places on the lower glacis plate and the Italian registration number (07059) on the back under the taillight.  This tank came back with a number of others, one of them is a static display also in front of the HQ building, the rest were shot up on the ranges years ago.  Luckily, someone decided to pull this one from the range in 1988 and make a parade or ceremony display out of it.  This one had not been hit by anything yet, so it was pulled into maintenance and a rudimentary restoration was done (engines restored to running condition, painted over dirt and rust inside and out).  It has been here since then, parked in a lot behind the PX and was only used at the opening ceremony of the German/American fest on this post every April.  It took me several years but I have convinced the command to let me do a full restoration and take it to the Czech Republic next year for their Liberation Day celebration in May.  It is now in maintenance here, though I am paying for all the parts and accessories myself, and doing the work on a volunteer basis.  I have it torn apart about as far as possible and have been removing old paint and rust for the last few weeks.  I should be ready to start repainting next month.  The data plates were replaced with Italian ones, so If anyone knows where I can get reproduction US ones, I definitely need them.  I have about 2 gigabytes of detailed photos of every inch inside and out, so if anybody needs info let me know.  I am pushing the "long emails" rule so I will end this one for now,  But I am also gathering info on 3 more Shermans on the US posts here: an M4A1(76) with HVSS and an M4A3(76) in Vilseck and an M4A3(76) in Grafenwohr.  The one with HVSS used to be on display next to Cobra King in the '90's.
                   
                  Michael

                  --- On Wed, 10/12/11, Joe DeMarco <snick13@...> wrote:

                  From: Joe DeMarco <snick13@...>
                  Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany
                  To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                  Date: Wednesday, October 12, 2011, 11:53 PM

                   
                  Hi Michael,
                   
                  The canvas mantlet cover was probably added during the post war years. If the tank has tracks or studs for tracks on each side of the turret, it would indicate it was 1950s military assistance.
                   
                  >so I can't just walk up and start wire brushing the SN locations.
                   
                  That's OK because there's no evidence that Pressed Steel Car stamped the serial number anywhere on the exterior of any of its Shermans, anyway. Short of getting inside to look for the dataplate, if the tank has a USA Number beginning with 301 painted on, that might be real. There's a few of those in Europe that have somehow retained their original Registration Numbers. If not, France received over 400 M4A1(76)VVSS Shermans as MDAP, & they stamped the tank serial number on the front of many of their Shermans. You could try looking for that (5 digits) just to the right of the bow MG.
                   
                  >I need whatever info can be found on M24 Ser# 5540
                   
                  It would have been made by Massey Harris & would have been accepted in April 1945, too late to have been shipped overseas to serve during WW II. Sometimes you can find the USA Number stamped on the right front side of those. That one should be 30139099.
                   
                  >It has floatation device attachments only on the rear, never were installed in front.
                   
                  That's odd. Hunnicutt has it that, for M-H, the adaptors were installed on both front & rear at tank number 250. I take that to mean starting Jan 1945 at serial number 3349 & above. It's not like there are a lot of Massey Harris M24s around to examine, but it seems to check out on the few. I was assuming only a handful of Cadillac M24s would have had just the rear adaptors. It's always a pleasure to discover new stuff off the real thing, but if you don't mind my wanting to double check, where did you find the serial number you reported?
                   
                  Joe
                   
                   
                   

                  Sent: Wednesday, October 12, 2011 1:16 AM
                  Subject: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany

                  Hello all members.
                   
                  I am a civilian contractor (US Army Retired) working at the US post in Hohenfels, Germany.  We have here an M4A1(76)W on display in front of the HQ building.  It is unusual in that is has a muzzle brake and attachments on the mantlet for the canvas cover, but still has VVSS suspension.  I have only been able to find 3 wartime photos of an M4A1 in this configuration, and none of them have the mantlet cover attachments.  The Osprey book on the 76 Gun M4 says a small batch of these arrived in the ETO in the spring of '45.  It has too much paint for me to find a serial number, and it is right in front of the HQ, so I can't just walk up and start wire brushing the SN locations.  I am working on getting Command approval to investigate it.  I will send a photo as soon as I get one.  I am also working on restoring an M24 Chaffee which belongs to the Army here as well. If anyone has a database of serial numbers for these also, I need whatever info can be found on M24 Ser# 5540, Hull number is:  lightly stamped "H" followed by a deeper stamped "C", number 721, flanked by ordnance bombs.  It has floatation device attachments only on the rear, never were installed in front.  Has the early type antenna mount, but the later type gun tube (could be replaced tube).  It had all the 1950's commo modifications, but it has now been backdated to the original config.  Any info on these two will be greatly appreciated.
                   
                  Michael Lembo

                  --- On Tue, 10/11/11, Joe DeMarco <snick13@...> wrote:

                  From: Joe DeMarco <snick13@...>
                  Subject: Re: [G104] Re: looking for a serial number
                  To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                  Date: Tuesday, October 11, 2011, 10:10 PM

                   
                  Hello Johan,

                  >What evidence of the metal rods on the side of the turret do you see?

                  I was thinking of the little loops that you can see welded on to the turret
                  sides. I've marked up & attached one of your photos. Those loops could be
                  for the purpose of hanging crew junk, or holding chicken wire.
                  Here's a blow up of a photo that I sent to Don M. when he was working on
                  Cobra King. This was taken at Hammelburg in 1948. You can see the rods &
                  wire that were added to the hull & turret. Don was able to find weld scars
                  in the same position, as well as the same casting marks on the bow gunner's
                  hatch, so we are almost certain that is a photo of CK. One wonders how it
                  ended up there? Aside from being "First in Bastogne," was it also the Cobra
                  King that was said to have been lost during the Hammelburg Raid? Both
                  episodes involved C Co. / 37th Tank Bn, so don't see why not, but can't
                  prove it.

                  >The story goes that this Sherman ran on a mine. Afterwards it was puched of
                  >the road. I've seen no evidence of any battledamage.

                  In the course of researching your model, if you come across any further info
                  about the history of the Beffe, would you please let us know?

                  Joe

                  --------------------------------------------------
                  From: "metalscalemodels" <contact@...>
                  Sent: Sunday, October 09, 2011 2:49 PM
                  To: <G104@yahoogroups.com>
                  Subject: [G104] Re: looking for a serial number

                  > Hello Joe,
                  >
                  > The story goes that this Sherman ran on a mine. Afterwards it was puched
                  > of the road. I've seen no evidence of any battledamage.
                  > I'm almost sure that there is no number at the side of the glacis.
                  > I've got no pictures of the bogies. I didn't know that was a point of
                  > interest..
                  > What evidence of the metal rods on the side of the turret do you see?
                  >
                  > thanks for your reply.
                  >
                  > Johan

                • Don Moriarty
                  Michael   Wow.  Awesome stuff! It nice to hear others are trying to preserve official vehicles like we had previously done here at Ft Knox.   Is this one
                  Message 8 of 29 , Oct 12, 2011
                  • 0 Attachment
                    Michael
                     
                    Wow.  Awesome stuff! It nice to hear others are trying to preserve 'official' vehicles like we had previously done here at Ft Knox.
                     
                    Is this one of the Vilseck Shermans?
                     
                    Regarding the M4A1(76).  There was one at Erlangen, along with Cobra King.  I thought it may have been moved when Ferris Barracks closed in 92-93.   From available photos, I thought that the one displayed beside Cobra King, in the 90's, was the same to have been moved from Erlangen.  Here are a couple of images of that particular M4A1(76).
                     
                    Regards
                    Don
                     
                     
                  • Michael Lembo
                    Hi Don,  I am not sure about the first one,  I will have to check if it has that rail along the upper side of the turret or traces where it once was.  The
                    Message 9 of 29 , Oct 12, 2011
                    • 0 Attachment
                      Hi Don,  I am not sure about the first one,  I will have to check if it has that rail along the upper side of the turret or traces where it once was.  The "Thunderbolt" marked one is probably the same one still there. It was also painted with the Thunderbolt markings in the '90s. It has now been repainted green overall with no markings and has been moved to just inside the front gate in Vilseck. I am scanning my older photos of the M4A1 in Hohenfels and will post them soon.
                       
                      Michael

                      From: Don Moriarty <donmor3@...>
                      To: "G104@yahoogroups.com" <G104@yahoogroups.com>
                      Sent: Thursday, October 13, 2011 2:46 AM
                      Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany

                       
                      Michael
                       
                      Wow.  Awesome stuff! It nice to hear others are trying to preserve 'official' vehicles like we had previously done here at Ft Knox.
                       
                      Is this one of the Vilseck Shermans?
                      http://i44.photobucket.com/albums/f25/Donmor3/AFV%20Register%20Index/M4A376Vilseck49.jpg
                       
                      Regarding the M4A1(76).  There was one at Erlangen, along with Cobra King.  I thought it may have been moved when Ferris Barracks closed in 92-93.   From available photos, I thought that the one displayed beside Cobra King, in the 90's, was the same to have been moved from Erlangen.  Here are a couple of images of that particular M4A1(76).
                      http://i44.photobucket.com/albums/f25/Donmor3/AFV%20Register%20Index/FerrisBarracksErlangenM4A176wHVSSin1973.jpg
                       
                      Regards
                      Don
                       
                       


                    • Joe DeMarco
                      ... Yes, those tanks were made ready for issue in the US before being sent out as military assistance in the early 1950s. The spare tracks were relocated to
                      Message 10 of 29 , Oct 13, 2011
                      • 0 Attachment
                        >The tank has a grunt phone on the hull rear and does have 3 track link sections on both forward sides of the turret.

                        Yes, those tanks were made ready for issue in the US before being sent out as military assistance in the early 1950s. The spare tracks were relocated to the turret from their original position on the upper rear hull, & an infantry phone was retrofitted, usually on the right rear. Early 76mm turrets, such as the Beffe, had an antenna aperture with blank off plate in front of the loaders' hatch. This was later eliminated from the casting. There must have been a change of heart about that, because many of the MDAP Shermans were retrofitted with a metal antenna fitting in that same spot, which I consider to be a good clue of an MDAP. Attached is a photo of a shrink wrapped M4A1(76)VVSS being loaded in Brooklyn in early 1951. This has an early turret with the split loader's hatch. I doubt if the gun on that turret had a muzzle brake originally. You can see the antenna fitting I was talking about. It wasn't necessary to relocate the spare tracks on the HVSS units that were sent. The shipping code on the front was censored for some reason, but in other shots, the destination port can be seen as TILE. Sometimes the guys find shipping code on their tanks, & ask about it. It was possible to determine that TILE was Cherbourg, so French MDAP.  

                        >I had read somewhere that the hull
                        numbers on the side below the driver's hatch were only on Cadillac M24's?

                        Yes, Cadillac built M24 s have been noted to have a build sequence number with a T prefix stamped on the left front (driver's) side. Massey Harris appears to have stamped it on the right side with an M-H prefix. You seem to be having a ball working on that. Have you seen any shipping code on your M24, maybe on the turret? Italy received over 400 M24s, & it might be useful to know what the port code was.

                        Joe




                        From: Michael Lembo
                        Sent: Wednesday, October 12, 2011 8:16 PM
                        To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                        Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany




                        Hello Joe,
                         
                           Thanks for the info.  I had considered the probability that the 76mm was upgraded post-war. The tank has a grunt phone on the hull rear and does have 3 track link sections on both forward sides of the turret.  It is of course possible the muzzle brake is a post war add-on, or the whole cannon could have been replaced.  I have been inside of it (the escape hatch is missing), but that was in 1995 and I don't have a photo of the data plate.  If I get "official" access to it again, I will go in and try to read the data plate. I will check next to the bow gun, but there is so much paint on it, I don't think there will be anything readable.
                         
                           As for the Chaffee,  The serial number is stamped in next to the bow gun, on a rectangular plate.  I had read somewhere that the hull numbers on the side below the driver's hatch were only on Cadillac M24's?  I have known about this tank also since 1994 when I first came to Hohenfels and the known history is that the tank was returned from Italian military service in the early '80's.  Since it had been military aid, I had assumed it was already here in Europe since the war, but I guess it is possible to have been shipped direct from the US.  While removing the paint I have found Italian flags painted in two places on the lower glacis plate and the Italian registration number (07059) on the back under the taillight.  This tank came back with a number of others, one of them is a static display also in front of the HQ building, the rest were shot up on the ranges years ago.  Luckily, someone decided to pull this one from the range in 1988 and make a parade or ceremony display out of it.  This one had not been hit by anything yet, so it was pulled into maintenance and a rudimentary restoration was done (engines restored to running condition, painted over dirt and rust inside and out).  It has been here since then, parked in a lot behind the PX and was only used at the opening ceremony of the German/American fest on this post every April.  It took me several years but I have convinced the command to let me do a full restoration and take it to the Czech Republic next year for their Liberation Day celebration in May.  It is now in maintenance here, though I am paying for all the parts and accessories myself, and doing the work on a volunteer basis.  I have it torn apart about as far as possible and have been removing old paint and rust for the last few weeks.  I should be ready to start repainting next month.  The data plates were replaced with Italian ones, so If anyone knows where I can get reproduction US ones, I definitely need them.  I have about 2 gigabytes of detailed photos of every inch inside and out, so if anybody needs info let me know.  I am pushing the "long emails" rule so I will end this one for now,  But I am also gathering info on 3 more Shermans on the US posts here: an M4A1(76) with HVSS and an M4A3(76) in Vilseck and an M4A3(76) in Grafenwohr.  The one with HVSS used to be on display next to Cobra King in the '90's.
                         
                        Michael




                      • Michael Lembo
                        I will check for antenna mounts on this M4A1 as soon I get a chance. I do see from my interior photos taken in 1995 that the decals inside are all still in
                        Message 11 of 29 , Oct 13, 2011
                        • 0 Attachment
                          I will check for antenna mounts on this M4A1 as soon I get a chance. I do see from my interior photos taken in 1995 that the decals inside are all still in English, so if the French or another country had it they never changed that.  We also have an M47 here that has French decals and French commo junction boxes still mounted.  This one has the split loader's hatch rather than the smaller single hatch. 
                           
                          The Chaffee has the hull number on the driver's side with HC as a prefix.  It seems to be set up contrary to the norm, since it appears to have MH numbers on the wrong side?  I will check for anything stamped on the right side hull tomorrow.  The only Italian info on it is the 07059 registration number and the flags.  The Italians must have had it in storage only, since nothing inside was modified or worn/damaged from their use.  The only modifications were the commo upgrades done while still in US service (VRC-3 mount suspended from ceiling in front of loader, with smoke mortar aperture changed to secondary antenna mount and grunt phone on right rear with internal cables running to the call box by the BOG and additional junction boxes by the cmdr & ldr for the VRC-3).  It still had the original fire control equipment (mount for M4A1 periscope instead of the post war mount for the M10 or M16 periscopes and the T94 telescope mount for the M71G telescope).  Externally the only upgrades were the front fender brackets for spare rubber track links and the horizontal fuel can holders near the rear fenders.  The roadwheels are mostly dated 1952 and 53, but the last one on the left is dated Nov.44.  Also had all the original headlight and taillight bulbs, some of them dated Nov.44 as well.  All of the hinges and springs and mounting points for equipment inside still had a heavy coat of old hardened up grease as if it had been mothballed.  It even still had antifreeze in the ammudamp containers. The registration number you sent me is the one I will put back on it: 30139099 (is there any way to tell for sure whether the S for commo suppression should be there also?),  but it is being restored to exactly resemble an M24 of the 2nd Cav.Group in 1945.  This project is mainly aimed at having it attend the Czech Republic's Liberation Day in Pilsen, but it will be US Army Europe's only working museum tank also and that gives it a lot of possibilities.  It will be a 2nd Cav. tank for several reasons, of all the US units I have identified as being in Czechoslovakia and having M24's:  9th AD, 16th AD, 4th AD (very few), 8th AD (only there 2 weeks after May9), 38th CavSqdn. of 102nd Grp, and F troops of 2nd and 42nd Cav.Sqdns. of 2nd Cav.Group,  only 2nd Cavalry still exists and they are now stationed in Vilseck, 45 minutes from the Czech border.  I let them know about it and now they are a sponsor for the whole project, which I needed, since I can't transport it myself and they will handle that.  I have a series of very clear detailed photos of F troop, 2nd Sqdn., 2nd Cav.Group on the streets of Klatovy, Czechoslovakia taken on May 6th 1945 which are being used as the models for this tank's eventual appearance.  The registration numbers are covered up by equipment stowage in all the photos, so I can use the real one without ruining the effect.  I still need a bunch of parts and accessories so if anyone has anything available I can post a want list.  I attached a photo of the hull number on the driver's side
                           
                          Michael

                          --- On Thu, 10/13/11, Joe DeMarco <snick13@...> wrote:

                          From: Joe DeMarco <snick13@...>
                          Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany
                          To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                          Date: Thursday, October 13, 2011, 4:55 PM

                           
                          >The tank has a grunt phone on the hull rear and does have 3 track link sections on both forward sides of the turret.

                          Yes, those tanks were made ready for issue in the US before being sent out as military assistance in the early 1950s. The spare tracks were relocated to the turret from their original position on the upper rear hull, & an infantry phone was retrofitted, usually on the right rear. Early 76mm turrets, such as the Beffe, had an antenna aperture with blank off plate in front of the loaders' hatch. This was later eliminated from the casting. There must have been a change of heart about that, because many of the MDAP Shermans were retrofitted with a metal antenna fitting in that same spot, which I consider to be a good clue of an MDAP. Attached is a photo of a shrink wrapped M4A1(76)VVSS being loaded in Brooklyn in early 1951. This has an early turret with the split loader's hatch. I doubt if the gun on that turret had a muzzle brake originally. You can see the antenna fitting I was talking about. It wasn't necessary to relocate the spare tracks on the HVSS units that were sent. The shipping code on the front was censored for some reason, but in other shots, the destination port can be seen as TILE. Sometimes the guys find shipping code on their tanks, & ask about it. It was possible to determine that TILE was Cherbourg, so French MDAP.  

                          >I had read somewhere that the hull numbers on the side below the driver's hatch were only on Cadillac M24's?

                          Yes, Cadillac built M24 s have been noted to have a build sequence number with a T prefix stamped on the left front (driver's) side. Massey Harris appears to have stamped it on the right side with an M-H prefix. You seem to be having a ball working on that. Have you seen any shipping code on your M24, maybe on the turret? Italy received over 400 M24s, & it might be useful to know what the port code was.

                          Joe




                          From: Michael Lembo
                          Sent: Wednesday, October 12, 2011 8:16 PM
                          To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                          Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany




                          Hello Joe,
                           
                             Thanks for the info.  I had considered the probability that the 76mm was upgraded post-war. The tank has a grunt phone on the hull rear and does have 3 track link sections on both forward sides of the turret.  It is of course possible the muzzle brake is a post war add-on, or the whole cannon could have been replaced.  I have been inside of it (the escape hatch is missing), but that was in 1995 and I don't have a photo of the data plate.  If I get "official" access to it again, I will go in and try to read the data plate. I will check next to the bow gun, but there is so much paint on it, I don't think there will be anything readable.
                           
                             As for the Chaffee,  The serial number is stamped in next to the bow gun, on a rectangular plate.  I had read somewhere that the hull numbers on the side below the driver's hatch were only on Cadillac M24's?  I have known about this tank also since 1994 when I first came to Hohenfels and the known history is that the tank was returned from Italian military service in the early '80's.  Since it had been military aid, I had assumed it was already here in Europe since the war, but I guess it is possible to have been shipped direct from the US.  While removing the paint I have found Italian flags painted in two places on the lower glacis plate and the Italian registration number (07059) on the back under the taillight.  This tank came back with a number of others, one of them is a static display also in front of the HQ building, the rest were shot up on the ranges years ago.  Luckily, someone decided to pull this one from the range in 1988 and make a parade or ceremony display out of it.  This one had not been hit by anything yet, so it was pulled into maintenance and a rudimentary restoration was done (engines restored to running condition, painted over dirt and rust inside and out).  It has been here since then, parked in a lot behind the PX and was only used at the opening ceremony of the German/American fest on this post every April.  It took me several years but I have convinced the command to let me do a full restoration and take it to the Czech Republic next year for their Liberation Day celebration in May.  It is now in maintenance here, though I am paying for all the parts and accessories myself, and doing the work on a volunteer basis.  I have it torn apart about as far as possible and have been removing old paint and rust for the last few weeks.  I should be ready to start repainting next month.  The data plates were replaced with Italian ones, so If anyone knows where I can get reproduction US ones, I definitely need them.  I have about 2 gigabytes of detailed photos of every inch inside and out, so if anybody needs info let me know.  I am pushing the "long emails" rule so I will end this one for now,  But I am also gathering info on 3 more Shermans on the US posts here: an M4A1(76) with HVSS and an M4A3(76) in Vilseck and an M4A3(76) in Grafenwohr.  The one with HVSS used to be on display next to Cobra King in the '90's.
                           
                          Michael




                        • Michael Lembo
                          Hi Don,  I can confirm the ID of the M4A3(76) in the first photo you sent me, It is this one in the attached photo.  It is currently behind the Army health
                          Message 12 of 29 , Oct 13, 2011
                          • 0 Attachment
                            Hi Don,  I can confirm the ID of the M4A3(76) in the first photo you sent me, It is this one in the attached photo.  It is currently behind the Army health clinic in Grafenwohr.  I crawled inside a few months ago through the engine compartment and took a bunch of photos in there too.  I don't have a photo yet of the M4A3(76) in Vilseck, but I will send one as soon as can get to it again.
                             
                            Michael

                            --- On Thu, 10/13/11, Don Moriarty <donmor3@...> wrote:

                            From: Don Moriarty <donmor3@...>
                            Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany
                            To: "G104@yahoogroups.com" <G104@yahoogroups.com>
                            Date: Thursday, October 13, 2011, 2:46 AM

                             
                            Michael
                             
                            Wow.  Awesome stuff! It nice to hear others are trying to preserve 'official' vehicles like we had previously done here at Ft Knox.
                             
                            Is this one of the Vilseck Shermans?
                             
                            Regarding the M4A1(76).  There was one at Erlangen, along with Cobra King.  I thought it may have been moved when Ferris Barracks closed in 92-93.   From available photos, I thought that the one displayed beside Cobra King, in the 90's, was the same to have been moved from Erlangen.  Here are a couple of images of that particular M4A1(76).
                             
                            Regards
                            Don
                             
                             
                          • Tich
                            Hi Michael I ve been at Grafenwohr two weeks ago, but missed this one. Anyway thanks for posting the information, its the main source of our work at the
                            Message 13 of 29 , Oct 15, 2011
                            • 0 Attachment
                              Hi Michael

                              I've been at Grafenwohr two weeks ago, but missed this one. Anyway thanks for posting the information, its the main source of our work at the registers. May I use your picture at the afvregister (www.afvregister.org), credits to you will be added.

                              Michel

                              --- In G104@yahoogroups.com, Michael Lembo <opfor2nd@...> wrote:
                              >
                              > Hi Don,  I can confirm the ID of the M4A3(76) in the first photo you sent me, It is this one in the attached photo.  It is currently behind the Army health clinic in Grafenwohr.  I crawled inside a few months ago through the engine compartment and took a bunch of photos in there too.  I don't have a photo yet of the M4A3(76) in Vilseck, but I will send one as soon as can get to it again.
                              >  
                              > Michael
                            • Michael Lembo
                              Here are the photos I took of the M4A1(76) in Hohenfels in 1994 and 1995.  It is still in the same location as in the 95 photo, but repainted, now it has no
                              Message 14 of 29 , Oct 15, 2011
                              • 0 Attachment
                                Here are the photos I took of the M4A1(76) in Hohenfels in 1994 and 1995.  It is still in the same location as in the 95 photo, but repainted, now it has no red/white rings on the gun and no bumper numbers.  You can see in the photos, and I looked yesterday to confirm it is still there, it has the small metal antenna mount in front of the ldr. hatch.  I still need to climb on top to see if it has the blank off plate, or was retrofitted. 
                                 
                                Michael

                                --- On Thu, 10/13/11, Joe DeMarco <snick13@...> wrote:

                                From: Joe DeMarco <snick13@...>
                                Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany
                                To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                Date: Thursday, October 13, 2011, 4:55 PM

                                 
                                >The tank has a grunt phone on the hull rear and does have 3 track link sections on both forward sides of the turret.

                                Yes, those tanks were made ready for issue in the US before being sent out as military assistance in the early 1950s. The spare tracks were relocated to the turret from their original position on the upper rear hull, & an infantry phone was retrofitted, usually on the right rear. Early 76mm turrets, such as the Beffe, had an antenna aperture with blank off plate in front of the loaders' hatch. This was later eliminated from the casting. There must have been a change of heart about that, because many of the MDAP Shermans were retrofitted with a metal antenna fitting in that same spot, which I consider to be a good clue of an MDAP. Attached is a photo of a shrink wrapped M4A1(76)VVSS being loaded in Brooklyn in early 1951. This has an early turret with the split loader's hatch. I doubt if the gun on that turret had a muzzle brake originally. You can see the antenna fitting I was talking about. It wasn't necessary to relocate the spare tracks on the HVSS units that were sent. The shipping code on the front was censored for some reason, but in other shots, the destination port can be seen as TILE. Sometimes the guys find shipping code on their tanks, & ask about it. It was possible to determine that TILE was Cherbourg, so French MDAP.  

                                >I had read somewhere that the hull numbers on the side below the driver's hatch were only on Cadillac M24's?

                                Yes, Cadillac built M24 s have been noted to have a build sequence number with a T prefix stamped on the left front (driver's) side. Massey Harris appears to have stamped it on the right side with an M-H prefix. You seem to be having a ball working on that. Have you seen any shipping code on your M24, maybe on the turret? Italy received over 400 M24s, & it might be useful to know what the port code was.

                                Joe




                                From: Michael Lembo
                                Sent: Wednesday, October 12, 2011 8:16 PM
                                To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany




                                Hello Joe,
                                 
                                   Thanks for the info.  I had considered the probability that the 76mm was upgraded post-war. The tank has a grunt phone on the hull rear and does have 3 track link sections on both forward sides of the turret.  It is of course possible the muzzle brake is a post war add-on, or the whole cannon could have been replaced.  I have been inside of it (the escape hatch is missing), but that was in 1995 and I don't have a photo of the data plate.  If I get "official" access to it again, I will go in and try to read the data plate. I will check next to the bow gun, but there is so much paint on it, I don't think there will be anything readable.
                                 
                                   As for the Chaffee,  The serial number is stamped in next to the bow gun, on a rectangular plate.  I had read somewhere that the hull numbers on the side below the driver's hatch were only on Cadillac M24's?  I have known about this tank also since 1994 when I first came to Hohenfels and the known history is that the tank was returned from Italian military service in the early '80's.  Since it had been military aid, I had assumed it was already here in Europe since the war, but I guess it is possible to have been shipped direct from the US.  While removing the paint I have found Italian flags painted in two places on the lower glacis plate and the Italian registration number (07059) on the back under the taillight.  This tank came back with a number of others, one of them is a static display also in front of the HQ building, the rest were shot up on the ranges years ago.  Luckily, someone decided to pull this one from the range in 1988 and make a parade or ceremony display out of it.  This one had not been hit by anything yet, so it was pulled into maintenance and a rudimentary restoration was done (engines restored to running condition, painted over dirt and rust inside and out).  It has been here since then, parked in a lot behind the PX and was only used at the opening ceremony of the German/American fest on this post every April.  It took me several years but I have convinced the command to let me do a full restoration and take it to the Czech Republic next year for their Liberation Day celebration in May.  It is now in maintenance here, though I am paying for all the parts and accessories myself, and doing the work on a volunteer basis.  I have it torn apart about as far as possible and have been removing old paint and rust for the last few weeks.  I should be ready to start repainting next month.  The data plates were replaced with Italian ones, so If anyone knows where I can get reproduction US ones, I definitely need them.  I have about 2 gigabytes of detailed photos of every inch inside and out, so if anybody needs info let me know.  I am pushing the "long emails" rule so I will end this one for now,  But I am also gathering info on 3 more Shermans on the US posts here: an M4A1(76) with HVSS and an M4A3(76) in Vilseck and an M4A3(76) in Grafenwohr.  The one with HVSS used to be on display next to Cobra King in the '90's.
                                 
                                Michael




                              • Michael Lembo
                                Here are the interior photos taken in 1995 of the same M4A1(76) ... From: Joe DeMarco Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany
                                Message 15 of 29 , Oct 15, 2011
                                • 0 Attachment
                                  Here are the interior photos taken in 1995 of the same M4A1(76)

                                  --- On Thu, 10/13/11, Joe DeMarco <snick13@...> wrote:

                                  From: Joe DeMarco <snick13@...>
                                  Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany
                                  To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                  Date: Thursday, October 13, 2011, 4:55 PM

                                   
                                  >The tank has a grunt phone on the hull rear and does have 3 track link sections on both forward sides of the turret.

                                  Yes, those tanks were made ready for issue in the US before being sent out as military assistance in the early 1950s. The spare tracks were relocated to the turret from their original position on the upper rear hull, & an infantry phone was retrofitted, usually on the right rear. Early 76mm turrets, such as the Beffe, had an antenna aperture with blank off plate in front of the loaders' hatch. This was later eliminated from the casting. There must have been a change of heart about that, because many of the MDAP Shermans were retrofitted with a metal antenna fitting in that same spot, which I consider to be a good clue of an MDAP. Attached is a photo of a shrink wrapped M4A1(76)VVSS being loaded in Brooklyn in early 1951. This has an early turret with the split loader's hatch. I doubt if the gun on that turret had a muzzle brake originally. You can see the antenna fitting I was talking about. It wasn't necessary to relocate the spare tracks on the HVSS units that were sent. The shipping code on the front was censored for some reason, but in other shots, the destination port can be seen as TILE. Sometimes the guys find shipping code on their tanks, & ask about it. It was possible to determine that TILE was Cherbourg, so French MDAP.  

                                  >I had read somewhere that the hull numbers on the side below the driver's hatch were only on Cadillac M24's?

                                  Yes, Cadillac built M24 s have been noted to have a build sequence number with a T prefix stamped on the left front (driver's) side. Massey Harris appears to have stamped it on the right side with an M-H prefix. You seem to be having a ball working on that. Have you seen any shipping code on your M24, maybe on the turret? Italy received over 400 M24s, & it might be useful to know what the port code was.

                                  Joe




                                  From: Michael Lembo
                                  Sent: Wednesday, October 12, 2011 8:16 PM
                                  To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                  Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany




                                  Hello Joe,
                                   
                                     Thanks for the info.  I had considered the probability that the 76mm was upgraded post-war. The tank has a grunt phone on the hull rear and does have 3 track link sections on both forward sides of the turret.  It is of course possible the muzzle brake is a post war add-on, or the whole cannon could have been replaced.  I have been inside of it (the escape hatch is missing), but that was in 1995 and I don't have a photo of the data plate.  If I get "official" access to it again, I will go in and try to read the data plate. I will check next to the bow gun, but there is so much paint on it, I don't think there will be anything readable.
                                   
                                     As for the Chaffee,  The serial number is stamped in next to the bow gun, on a rectangular plate.  I had read somewhere that the hull numbers on the side below the driver's hatch were only on Cadillac M24's?  I have known about this tank also since 1994 when I first came to Hohenfels and the known history is that the tank was returned from Italian military service in the early '80's.  Since it had been military aid, I had assumed it was already here in Europe since the war, but I guess it is possible to have been shipped direct from the US.  While removing the paint I have found Italian flags painted in two places on the lower glacis plate and the Italian registration number (07059) on the back under the taillight.  This tank came back with a number of others, one of them is a static display also in front of the HQ building, the rest were shot up on the ranges years ago.  Luckily, someone decided to pull this one from the range in 1988 and make a parade or ceremony display out of it.  This one had not been hit by anything yet, so it was pulled into maintenance and a rudimentary restoration was done (engines restored to running condition, painted over dirt and rust inside and out).  It has been here since then, parked in a lot behind the PX and was only used at the opening ceremony of the German/American fest on this post every April.  It took me several years but I have convinced the command to let me do a full restoration and take it to the Czech Republic next year for their Liberation Day celebration in May.  It is now in maintenance here, though I am paying for all the parts and accessories myself, and doing the work on a volunteer basis.  I have it torn apart about as far as possible and have been removing old paint and rust for the last few weeks.  I should be ready to start repainting next month.  The data plates were replaced with Italian ones, so If anyone knows where I can get reproduction US ones, I definitely need them.  I have about 2 gigabytes of detailed photos of every inch inside and out, so if anybody needs info let me know.  I am pushing the "long emails" rule so I will end this one for now,  But I am also gathering info on 3 more Shermans on the US posts here: an M4A1(76) with HVSS and an M4A3(76) in Vilseck and an M4A3(76) in Grafenwohr.  The one with HVSS used to be on display next to Cobra King in the '90's.
                                   
                                  Michael




                                • Joe DeMarco
                                  Hi Michael, Thanks for sharing your pix. That tank has one of the earliest 76mm turrets seen on the first batch of M4A1(76)s built by Pressed Steel. They did
                                  Message 16 of 29 , Oct 16, 2011
                                  • 0 Attachment
                                     
                                    Hi Michael,
                                     
                                    Thanks for sharing your pix. That tank has one of the earliest 76mm turrets seen on the first batch of M4A1(76)s built by Pressed Steel. They did not have the little ventilator housing on back. The turret was made by Union Steel who cast the serial number fairly large on either side of the turret. It's hidden by the spare tracks on that one, but I would think the turret S/N would be lower than maybe 460. That tank was refurbed in the US, so the turret may not be original to that particular hull, but the whole package would make a good subject for the first M4A1(76)s that were used by the US Army in Europe. Something like Lafeyette  Poole's "In The Mood." The gun is a replacement; it would have been built with a straight, unthreaded gun.
                                     
                                    >It is currently behind the Army health clinic in Grafenwohr.
                                     
                                    Don & Michael, that M4A3(76) looks like a real WW II Sherman to me. Among others, the 7th AD put those bars on the turret. Maybe someone could go over there & check that one out sometime? It might have a history.
                                     
                                    Joe
                                     
                                     
                                     
                                     

                                    Sent: Sunday, October 16, 2011 2:01 AM
                                    Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany

                                    Here are the interior photos taken in 1995 of the same M4A1(76)

                                    --- On Thu, 10/13/11, Joe DeMarco <snick13@...> wrote:

                                    From: Joe DeMarco <snick13@...>
                                    Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany
                                    To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                    Date: Thursday, October 13, 2011, 4:55 PM

                                     
                                    >The tank has a grunt phone on the hull rear and does have 3 track link sections on both forward sides of the turret.

                                    Yes, those tanks were made ready for issue in the US before being sent out as military assistance in the early 1950s. The spare tracks were relocated to the turret from their original position on the upper rear hull, & an infantry phone was retrofitted, usually on the right rear. Early 76mm turrets, such as the Beffe, had an antenna aperture with blank off plate in front of the loaders' hatch. This was later eliminated from the casting. There must have been a change of heart about that, because many of the MDAP Shermans were retrofitted with a metal antenna fitting in that same spot, which I consider to be a good clue of an MDAP. Attached is a photo of a shrink wrapped M4A1(76)VVSS being loaded in Brooklyn in early 1951. This has an early turret with the split loader's hatch. I doubt if the gun on that turret had a muzzle brake originally. You can see the antenna fitting I was talking about. It wasn't necessary to relocate the spare tracks on the HVSS units that were sent. The shipping code on the front was censored for some reason, but in other shots, the destination port can be seen as TILE. Sometimes the guys find shipping code on their tanks, & ask about it. It was possible to determine that TILE was Cherbourg, so French MDAP.  

                                    >I had read somewhere that the hull numbers on the side below the driver's hatch were only on Cadillac M24's?

                                    Yes, Cadillac built M24 s have been noted to have a build sequence number with a T prefix stamped on the left front (driver's) side. Massey Harris appears to have stamped it on the right side with an M-H prefix. You seem to be having a ball working on that. Have you seen any shipping code on your M24, maybe on the turret? Italy received over 400 M24s, & it might be useful to know what the port code was.

                                    Joe




                                    From: Michael Lembo
                                    Sent: Wednesday, October 12, 2011 8:16 PM
                                    To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                    Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany




                                    Hello Joe,
                                     
                                       Thanks for the info.  I had considered the probability that the 76mm was upgraded post-war. The tank has a grunt phone on the hull rear and does have 3 track link sections on both forward sides of the turret.  It is of course possible the muzzle brake is a post war add-on, or the whole cannon could have been replaced.  I have been inside of it (the escape hatch is missing), but that was in 1995 and I don't have a photo of the data plate.  If I get "official" access to it again, I will go in and try to read the data plate. I will check next to the bow gun, but there is so much paint on it, I don't think there will be anything readable.
                                     
                                       As for the Chaffee,  The serial number is stamped in next to the bow gun, on a rectangular plate.  I had read somewhere that the hull numbers on the side below the driver's hatch were only on Cadillac M24's?  I have known about this tank also since 1994 when I first came to Hohenfels and the known history is that the tank was returned from Italian military service in the early '80's.  Since it had been military aid, I had assumed it was already here in Europe since the war, but I guess it is possible to have been shipped direct from the US.  While removing the paint I have found Italian flags painted in two places on the lower glacis plate and the Italian registration number (07059) on the back under the taillight.  This tank came back with a number of others, one of them is a static display also in front of the HQ building, the rest were shot up on the ranges years ago.  Luckily, someone decided to pull this one from the range in 1988 and make a parade or ceremony display out of it.  This one had not been hit by anything yet, so it was pulled into maintenance and a rudimentary restoration was done (engines restored to running condition, painted over dirt and rust inside and out).  It has been here since then, parked in a lot behind the PX and was only used at the opening ceremony of the German/American fest on this post every April.  It took me several years but I have convinced the command to let me do a full restoration and take it to the Czech Republic next year for their Liberation Day celebration in May.  It is now in maintenance here, though I am paying for all the parts and accessories myself, and doing the work on a volunteer basis.  I have it torn apart about as far as possible and have been removing old paint and rust for the last few weeks.  I should be ready to start repainting next month.  The data plates were replaced with Italian ones, so If anyone knows where I can get reproduction US ones, I definitely need them.  I have about 2 gigabytes of detailed photos of every inch inside and out, so if anybody needs info let me know.  I am pushing the "long emails" rule so I will end this one for now,  But I am also gathering info on 3 more Shermans on the US posts here: an M4A1(76) with HVSS and an M4A3(76) in Vilseck and an M4A3(76) in Grafenwohr.  The one with HVSS used to be on display next to Cobra King in the '90's.
                                     
                                    Michael






                                  • Don Moriarty
                                    Joe   I figured the possiblity that the 1949 Photo of the M4A3(76) was a nonoperational wartime leave behind .  The fact it was a static at the Constab
                                    Message 17 of 29 , Oct 16, 2011
                                    • 0 Attachment
                                      Joe
                                       
                                      I figured the possiblity that the 1949 Photo of the M4A3(76) was a nonoperational wartime 'leave behind'.  The fact it was a static at the Constab Tank School made it that much more interesting, especially since the Constab Force had so few tanks.  
                                       
                                      I figured it was long gone though.
                                       
                                      It would be pretty cool to trace its possible history.
                                       
                                      Regards
                                      Don
                                    • Michael Lembo
                                      Hello Joe,       First chance I get to go back to Graf, I will go back inside, crawl all the way in to the driver compartment and try to get a number off
                                      Message 18 of 29 , Oct 16, 2011
                                      • 0 Attachment
                                        Hello Joe, 
                                             First chance I get to go back to Graf, I will go back inside, crawl all the way in to the driver compartment and try to get a number off the data plate.  It looks like the data plate is on the wall beside the driver's knee, is that the correct location?  Where should I look if a number is on the outside of that one? 
                                            As soon as I get access to the M4A1 in Hohenfels, I will check its data plate too and see if I can read anything behind the spare track links.  I assume that if you get the serial number you would be able to tell if the hull is as old as the turret? At any rate, I would like to get the original registration numbers for all of these and then see if I can get the garrison commands to authorize painting those on. 
                                           The other M4A3(76) that is in Vilseck looks pretty much the same as the one behind the Graf clinic.  I can't get in it, at some point it had pickets welded across the engine compartment bottom opening. I will get photos as soon as possible.
                                           The attached photo is the driver compartment of the M4A3(76) behind the Graf clinic, I have no idea how long the swastica has been painted in there. Is there any other angle of the interior that would be useful to see? I have about 30 photos inside of it.
                                           I have another unusual aspect of the Chaffee, the final drive housings don't have any part numbers on them.  Most photos don't show these clearly, but the other Chaffees around here I have looked at all have D60548 and D305 7  cast into them.  The numbers are on both the early ones and the late ones with floatation attachments. This one has nothing on either housing. Also, there are no numbers in the right side of the hull below the bow gunner hatch, only on the left side.
                                         
                                        Michael

                                        --- On Sun, 10/16/11, Joe DeMarco <snick13@...> wrote:

                                        From: Joe DeMarco <snick13@...>
                                        Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany
                                        To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                        Date: Sunday, October 16, 2011, 3:26 PM

                                         
                                         
                                        Hi Michael,
                                         
                                        Thanks for sharing your pix. That tank has one of the earliest 76mm turrets seen on the first batch of M4A1(76)s built by Pressed Steel. They did not have the little ventilator housing on back. The turret was made by Union Steel who cast the serial number fairly large on either side of the turret. It's hidden by the spare tracks on that one, but I would think the turret S/N would be lower than maybe 460. That tank was refurbed in the US, so the turret may not be original to that particular hull, but the whole package would make a good subject for the first M4A1(76)s that were used by the US Army in Europe. Something like Lafeyette  Poole's "In The Mood." The gun is a replacement; it would have been built with a straight, unthreaded gun.
                                         
                                        >It is currently behind the Army health clinic in Grafenwohr.
                                         
                                        Don & Michael, that M4A3(76) looks like a real WW II Sherman to me. Among others, the 7th AD put those bars on the turret. Maybe someone could go over there & check that one out sometime? It might have a history.
                                         
                                        Joe
                                         
                                         
                                         
                                         

                                        Sent: Sunday, October 16, 2011 2:01 AM
                                        Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany

                                        Here are the interior photos taken in 1995 of the same M4A1(76)

                                        --- On Thu, 10/13/11, Joe DeMarco <snick13@...> wrote:

                                        From: Joe DeMarco <snick13@...>
                                        Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany
                                        To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                        Date: Thursday, October 13, 2011, 4:55 PM

                                         
                                        >The tank has a grunt phone on the hull rear and does have 3 track link sections on both forward sides of the turret.

                                        Yes, those tanks were made ready for issue in the US before being sent out as military assistance in the early 1950s. The spare tracks were relocated to the turret from their original position on the upper rear hull, & an infantry phone was retrofitted, usually on the right rear. Early 76mm turrets, such as the Beffe, had an antenna aperture with blank off plate in front of the loaders' hatch. This was later eliminated from the casting. There must have been a change of heart about that, because many of the MDAP Shermans were retrofitted with a metal antenna fitting in that same spot, which I consider to be a good clue of an MDAP. Attached is a photo of a shrink wrapped M4A1(76)VVSS being loaded in Brooklyn in early 1951. This has an early turret with the split loader's hatch. I doubt if the gun on that turret had a muzzle brake originally. You can see the antenna fitting I was talking about. It wasn't necessary to relocate the spare tracks on the HVSS units that were sent. The shipping code on the front was censored for some reason, but in other shots, the destination port can be seen as TILE. Sometimes the guys find shipping code on their tanks, & ask about it. It was possible to determine that TILE was Cherbourg, so French MDAP.  

                                        >I had read somewhere that the hull numbers on the side below the driver's hatch were only on Cadillac M24's?

                                        Yes, Cadillac built M24 s have been noted to have a build sequence number with a T prefix stamped on the left front (driver's) side. Massey Harris appears to have stamped it on the right side with an M-H prefix. You seem to be having a ball working on that. Have you seen any shipping code on your M24, maybe on the turret? Italy received over 400 M24s, & it might be useful to know what the port code was.

                                        Joe




                                        From: Michael Lembo
                                        Sent: Wednesday, October 12, 2011 8:16 PM
                                        To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                        Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany




                                        Hello Joe,
                                         
                                           Thanks for the info.  I had considered the probability that the 76mm was upgraded post-war. The tank has a grunt phone on the hull rear and does have 3 track link sections on both forward sides of the turret.  It is of course possible the muzzle brake is a post war add-on, or the whole cannon could have been replaced.  I have been inside of it (the escape hatch is missing), but that was in 1995 and I don't have a photo of the data plate.  If I get "official" access to it again, I will go in and try to read the data plate. I will check next to the bow gun, but there is so much paint on it, I don't think there will be anything readable.
                                         
                                           As for the Chaffee,  The serial number is stamped in next to the bow gun, on a rectangular plate.  I had read somewhere that the hull numbers on the side below the driver's hatch were only on Cadillac M24's?  I have known about this tank also since 1994 when I first came to Hohenfels and the known history is that the tank was returned from Italian military service in the early '80's.  Since it had been military aid, I had assumed it was already here in Europe since the war, but I guess it is possible to have been shipped direct from the US.  While removing the paint I have found Italian flags painted in two places on the lower glacis plate and the Italian registration number (07059) on the back under the taillight.  This tank came back with a number of others, one of them is a static display also in front of the HQ building, the rest were shot up on the ranges years ago.  Luckily, someone decided to pull this one from the range in 1988 and make a parade or ceremony display out of it.  This one had not been hit by anything yet, so it was pulled into maintenance and a rudimentary restoration was done (engines restored to running condition, painted over dirt and rust inside and out).  It has been here since then, parked in a lot behind the PX and was only used at the opening ceremony of the German/American fest on this post every April.  It took me several years but I have convinced the command to let me do a full restoration and take it to the Czech Republic next year for their Liberation Day celebration in May.  It is now in maintenance here, though I am paying for all the parts and accessories myself, and doing the work on a volunteer basis.  I have it torn apart about as far as possible and have been removing old paint and rust for the last few weeks.  I should be ready to start repainting next month.  The data plates were replaced with Italian ones, so If anyone knows where I can get reproduction US ones, I definitely need them.  I have about 2 gigabytes of detailed photos of every inch inside and out, so if anybody needs info let me know.  I am pushing the "long emails" rule so I will end this one for now,  But I am also gathering info on 3 more Shermans on the US posts here: an M4A1(76) with HVSS and an M4A3(76) in Vilseck and an M4A3(76) in Grafenwohr.  The one with HVSS used to be on display next to Cobra King in the '90's.
                                         
                                        Michael






                                      • Joe DeMarco
                                        ... Yes. In the photo you posted, the serial number would be found stamped into the upper right corner of the plate. That one looks like it might actually be
                                        Message 19 of 29 , Oct 16, 2011
                                        • 0 Attachment
                                          >It looks like the data plate is on the wall beside the driver's knee, is that the correct location?
                                           
                                          Yes. In the photo you posted, the serial number would be found stamped into the upper right corner of the plate. That one looks like it might actually be readable, while the M4A1's appears to be badly rusted.
                                           
                                          >Where should I look if a number is on the outside of that one?
                                           
                                          The Graf M4A3(76) was made by Chrysler & you might be able to read the serial number off the rear towing lugs if there is not too much paint.
                                           
                                          >I figured the possiblity that the 1949 Photo of the M4A3(76) was a nonoperational wartime 'leave behind'.
                                           
                                          Don, here's another photo of it, where you can see damage to the road wheels. From Michael's photo, it looks like some different track links were added at some point.
                                          It would be nice to be able to put a serial number with those Constab pix.
                                           
                                          >I figured it was long gone though.
                                           
                                          Well, I didn't have it listed in my rather poor notes about Shermans overseas, & Michel apparently didn't know it was there, so it seems like it's a "new" surviving Sherman discovery.
                                           
                                          The little J hooks, the bars on the turret & the absence of any upgrades "say" WW II configuration to me. Michael, if you get a chance to visit, please look around for damage, & maybe look under at the belly plate. Is there any evidence of fire on the inside? I doubt that came from a range; think it was placed there as a monument early on.
                                           
                                          >I assume that if you get the serial number you would be able to tell if the hull is as old as the turret?
                                           
                                          Yes, I suspect that turret would have been original to a Jan thru March 1944 production M4A1(76). The tank serial number would have been in the 37xxx  or 38xxx range.  The tracks & road wheels look like replacements, but the bogie units with the straight return roller arms are appropriate to the early M4A1s. The tracks on the turret are probably on there good, but you might be able to find the turret S/N cast & stamped on the forward part of the roof.
                                           
                                          I suspect the monument tank in La Roche en Ardennes was a battle casualty of the 2nd or 3rd AD. Unfortunately, the guys who refurbed that were not able to find the serial number, & I guess they didn’t have time to do "archeology" on the paint layers to look for original tactical markings.
                                           
                                           
                                          >This one has nothing on either housing.
                                           
                                          That could just be a case where the maker put the casting marks of the final drive housings on the inside? Sherman hatches are like that.
                                           
                                          Joe
                                           
                                           
                                           
                                           
                                           
                                           
                                           

                                          Sent: Sunday, October 16, 2011 11:25 AM
                                          Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany

                                          Hello Joe, 
                                               First chance I get to go back to Graf, I will go back inside, crawl all the way in to the driver compartment and try to get a number off the data plate.  It looks like the data plate is on the wall beside the driver's knee, is that the correct location?  Where should I look if a number is on the outside of that one? 
                                              As soon as I get access to the M4A1 in Hohenfels, I will check its data plate too and see if I can read anything behind the spare track links.  I assume that if you get the serial number you would be able to tell if the hull is as old as the turret? At any rate, I would like to get the original registration numbers for all of these and then see if I can get the garrison commands to authorize painting those on. 
                                             The other M4A3(76) that is in Vilseck looks pretty much the same as the one behind the Graf clinic.  I can't get in it, at some point it had pickets welded across the engine compartment bottom opening. I will get photos as soon as possible.
                                             The attached photo is the driver compartment of the M4A3(76) behind the Graf clinic, I have no idea how long the swastica has been painted in there. Is there any other angle of the interior that would be useful to see? I have about 30 photos inside of it.
                                             I have another unusual aspect of the Chaffee, the final drive housings don't have any part numbers on them.  Most photos don't show these clearly, but the other Chaffees around here I have looked at all have D60548 and D305 7  cast into them.  The numbers are on both the early ones and the late ones with floatation attachments. This one has nothing on either housing. Also, there are no numbers in the right side of the hull below the bow gunner hatch, only on the left side.
                                           
                                          Michael

                                          --- On Sun, 10/16/11, Joe DeMarco <snick13@...> wrote:

                                          From: Joe DeMarco <snick13@...>
                                          Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany
                                          To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                          Date: Sunday, October 16, 2011, 3:26 PM

                                           
                                           
                                          Hi Michael,
                                           
                                          Thanks for sharing your pix. That tank has one of the earliest 76mm turrets seen on the first batch of M4A1(76)s built by Pressed Steel. They did not have the little ventilator housing on back. The turret was made by Union Steel who cast the serial number fairly large on either side of the turret. It's hidden by the spare tracks on that one, but I would think the turret S/N would be lower than maybe 460. That tank was refurbed in the US, so the turret may not be original to that particular hull, but the whole package would make a good subject for the first M4A1(76)s that were used by the US Army in Europe. Something like Lafeyette  Poole's "In The Mood." The gun is a replacement; it would have been built with a straight, unthreaded gun.
                                           
                                          >It is currently behind the Army health clinic in Grafenwohr.
                                           
                                          Don & Michael, that M4A3(76) looks like a real WW II Sherman to me. Among others, the 7th AD put those bars on the turret. Maybe someone could go over there & check that one out sometime? It might have a history.
                                           
                                          Joe
                                           
                                           
                                           
                                           

                                          Sent: Sunday, October 16, 2011 2:01 AM
                                          Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany

                                          Here are the interior photos taken in 1995 of the same M4A1(76)

                                          --- On Thu, 10/13/11, Joe DeMarco <snick13@...> wrote:

                                          From: Joe DeMarco <snick13@...>
                                          Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany
                                          To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                          Date: Thursday, October 13, 2011, 4:55 PM

                                           
                                          >The tank has a grunt phone on the hull rear and does have 3 track link sections on both forward sides of the turret.

                                          Yes, those tanks were made ready for issue in the US before being sent out as military assistance in the early 1950s. The spare tracks were relocated to the turret from their original position on the upper rear hull, & an infantry phone was retrofitted, usually on the right rear. Early 76mm turrets, such as the Beffe, had an antenna aperture with blank off plate in front of the loaders' hatch. This was later eliminated from the casting. There must have been a change of heart about that, because many of the MDAP Shermans were retrofitted with a metal antenna fitting in that same spot, which I consider to be a good clue of an MDAP. Attached is a photo of a shrink wrapped M4A1(76)VVSS being loaded in Brooklyn in early 1951. This has an early turret with the split loader's hatch. I doubt if the gun on that turret had a muzzle brake originally. You can see the antenna fitting I was talking about. It wasn't necessary to relocate the spare tracks on the HVSS units that were sent. The shipping code on the front was censored for some reason, but in other shots, the destination port can be seen as TILE. Sometimes the guys find shipping code on their tanks, & ask about it. It was possible to determine that TILE was Cherbourg, so French MDAP.  

                                          >I had read somewhere that the hull numbers on the side below the driver's hatch were only on Cadillac M24's?

                                          Yes, Cadillac built M24 s have been noted to have a build sequence number with a T prefix stamped on the left front (driver's) side. Massey Harris appears to have stamped it on the right side with an M-H prefix. You seem to be having a ball working on that. Have you seen any shipping code on your M24, maybe on the turret? Italy received over 400 M24s, & it might be useful to know what the port code was.

                                          Joe




                                          From: Michael Lembo
                                          Sent: Wednesday, October 12, 2011 8:16 PM
                                          To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                          Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany




                                          Hello Joe,
                                           
                                             Thanks for the info.  I had considered the probability that the 76mm was upgraded post-war. The tank has a grunt phone on the hull rear and does have 3 track link sections on both forward sides of the turret.  It is of course possible the muzzle brake is a post war add-on, or the whole cannon could have been replaced.  I have been inside of it (the escape hatch is missing), but that was in 1995 and I don't have a photo of the data plate.  If I get "official" access to it again, I will go in and try to read the data plate. I will check next to the bow gun, but there is so much paint on it, I don't think there will be anything readable.
                                           
                                             As for the Chaffee,  The serial number is stamped in next to the bow gun, on a rectangular plate.  I had read somewhere that the hull numbers on the side below the driver's hatch were only on Cadillac M24's?  I have known about this tank also since 1994 when I first came to Hohenfels and the known history is that the tank was returned from Italian military service in the early '80's.  Since it had been military aid, I had assumed it was already here in Europe since the war, but I guess it is possible to have been shipped direct from the US.  While removing the paint I have found Italian flags painted in two places on the lower glacis plate and the Italian registration number (07059) on the back under the taillight.  This tank came back with a number of others, one of them is a static display also in front of the HQ building, the rest were shot up on the ranges years ago.  Luckily, someone decided to pull this one from the range in 1988 and make a parade or ceremony display out of it.  This one had not been hit by anything yet, so it was pulled into maintenance and a rudimentary restoration was done (engines restored to running condition, painted over dirt and rust inside and out).  It has been here since then, parked in a lot behind the PX and was only used at the opening ceremony of the German/American fest on this post every April.  It took me several years but I have convinced the command to let me do a full restoration and take it to the Czech Republic next year for their Liberation Day celebration in May.  It is now in maintenance here, though I am paying for all the parts and accessories myself, and doing the work on a volunteer basis.  I have it torn apart about as far as possible and have been removing old paint and rust for the last few weeks.  I should be ready to start repainting next month.  The data plates were replaced with Italian ones, so If anyone knows where I can get reproduction US ones, I definitely need them.  I have about 2 gigabytes of detailed photos of every inch inside and out, so if anybody needs info let me know.  I am pushing the "long emails" rule so I will end this one for now,  But I am also gathering info on 3 more Shermans on the US posts here: an M4A1(76) with HVSS and an M4A3(76) in Vilseck and an M4A3(76) in Grafenwohr.  The one with HVSS used to be on display next to Cobra King in the '90's.
                                           
                                          Michael







                                        • Michael Lembo
                                          Hello Joe,    I have a Lt.Col. working to get me official access to the two Shermans to check serial numbers and make current photos.  In the meantime here
                                          Message 20 of 29 , Oct 20, 2011
                                          • 0 Attachment
                                            Hello Joe,
                                               I have a Lt.Col. working to get me official access to the two Shermans to check serial numbers and make current photos.  In the meantime here is a photo of the left side of the M4A3 in Graf.  It has that lifting eye by the loader's hatch, which I have only seen in one or two wartime photos, might be another identifying feature?  Also, do you think the fact that the headlights and headlight guards were already gone in the 1949 photo could indicate that tank once had extra armor plates attached to the glacis?
                                             
                                            Michael

                                            --- On Mon, 10/17/11, Joe DeMarco <snick13@...> wrote:

                                            From: Joe DeMarco <snick13@...>
                                            Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany
                                            To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                            Date: Monday, October 17, 2011, 3:33 AM

                                             
                                            >It looks like the data plate is on the wall beside the driver's knee, is that the correct location?
                                             
                                            Yes. In the photo you posted, the serial number would be found stamped into the upper right corner of the plate. That one looks like it might actually be readable, while the M4A1's appears to be badly rusted.
                                             
                                            >Where should I look if a number is on the outside of that one?
                                             
                                            The Graf M4A3(76) was made by Chrysler & you might be able to read the serial number off the rear towing lugs if there is not too much paint.
                                             
                                            >I figured the possiblity that the 1949 Photo of the M4A3(76) was a nonoperational wartime 'leave behind'.
                                             
                                            Don, here's another photo of it, where you can see damage to the road wheels. From Michael's photo, it looks like some different track links were added at some point.
                                            It would be nice to be able to put a serial number with those Constab pix.
                                             
                                            >I figured it was long gone though.
                                             
                                            Well, I didn't have it listed in my rather poor notes about Shermans overseas, & Michel apparently didn't know it was there, so it seems like it's a "new" surviving Sherman discovery.
                                             
                                            The little J hooks, the bars on the turret & the absence of any upgrades "say" WW II configuration to me. Michael, if you get a chance to visit, please look around for damage, & maybe look under at the belly plate. Is there any evidence of fire on the inside? I doubt that came from a range; think it was placed there as a monument early on.
                                             
                                            >I assume that if you get the serial number you would be able to tell if the hull is as old as the turret?
                                             
                                            Yes, I suspect that turret would have been original to a Jan thru March 1944 production M4A1(76). The tank serial number would have been in the 37xxx  or 38xxx range.  The tracks & road wheels look like replacements, but the bogie units with the straight return roller arms are appropriate to the early M4A1s. The tracks on the turret are probably on there good, but you might be able to find the turret S/N cast & stamped on the forward part of the roof.
                                             
                                            I suspect the monument tank in La Roche en Ardennes was a battle casualty of the 2nd or 3rd AD. Unfortunately, the guys who refurbed that were not able to find the serial number, & I guess they didn’t have time to do "archeology" on the paint layers to look for original tactical markings.
                                             
                                             
                                            >This one has nothing on either housing.
                                             
                                            That could just be a case where the maker put the casting marks of the final drive housings on the inside? Sherman hatches are like that.
                                             
                                            Joe
                                             
                                             
                                             
                                             
                                             
                                             
                                             

                                            Sent: Sunday, October 16, 2011 11:25 AM
                                            Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany

                                            Hello Joe, 
                                                 First chance I get to go back to Graf, I will go back inside, crawl all the way in to the driver compartment and try to get a number off the data plate.  It looks like the data plate is on the wall beside the driver's knee, is that the correct location?  Where should I look if a number is on the outside of that one? 
                                                As soon as I get access to the M4A1 in Hohenfels, I will check its data plate too and see if I can read anything behind the spare track links.  I assume that if you get the serial number you would be able to tell if the hull is as old as the turret? At any rate, I would like to get the original registration numbers for all of these and then see if I can get the garrison commands to authorize painting those on. 
                                               The other M4A3(76) that is in Vilseck looks pretty much the same as the one behind the Graf clinic.  I can't get in it, at some point it had pickets welded across the engine compartment bottom opening. I will get photos as soon as possible.
                                               The attached photo is the driver compartment of the M4A3(76) behind the Graf clinic, I have no idea how long the swastica has been painted in there. Is there any other angle of the interior that would be useful to see? I have about 30 photos inside of it.
                                               I have another unusual aspect of the Chaffee, the final drive housings don't have any part numbers on them.  Most photos don't show these clearly, but the other Chaffees around here I have looked at all have D60548 and D305 7  cast into them.  The numbers are on both the early ones and the late ones with floatation attachments. This one has nothing on either housing. Also, there are no numbers in the right side of the hull below the bow gunner hatch, only on the left side.
                                             
                                            Michael

                                            --- On Sun, 10/16/11, Joe DeMarco <snick13@...> wrote:

                                            From: Joe DeMarco <snick13@...>
                                            Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany
                                            To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                            Date: Sunday, October 16, 2011, 3:26 PM

                                             
                                             
                                            Hi Michael,
                                             
                                            Thanks for sharing your pix. That tank has one of the earliest 76mm turrets seen on the first batch of M4A1(76)s built by Pressed Steel. They did not have the little ventilator housing on back. The turret was made by Union Steel who cast the serial number fairly large on either side of the turret. It's hidden by the spare tracks on that one, but I would think the turret S/N would be lower than maybe 460. That tank was refurbed in the US, so the turret may not be original to that particular hull, but the whole package would make a good subject for the first M4A1(76)s that were used by the US Army in Europe. Something like Lafeyette  Poole's "In The Mood." The gun is a replacement; it would have been built with a straight, unthreaded gun.
                                             
                                            >It is currently behind the Army health clinic in Grafenwohr.
                                             
                                            Don & Michael, that M4A3(76) looks like a real WW II Sherman to me. Among others, the 7th AD put those bars on the turret. Maybe someone could go over there & check that one out sometime? It might have a history.
                                             
                                            Joe
                                             
                                             
                                             
                                             

                                            Sent: Sunday, October 16, 2011 2:01 AM
                                            Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany

                                            Here are the interior photos taken in 1995 of the same M4A1(76)

                                            --- On Thu, 10/13/11, Joe DeMarco <snick13@...> wrote:

                                            From: Joe DeMarco <snick13@...>
                                            Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany
                                            To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                            Date: Thursday, October 13, 2011, 4:55 PM

                                             
                                            >The tank has a grunt phone on the hull rear and does have 3 track link sections on both forward sides of the turret.

                                            Yes, those tanks were made ready for issue in the US before being sent out as military assistance in the early 1950s. The spare tracks were relocated to the turret from their original position on the upper rear hull, & an infantry phone was retrofitted, usually on the right rear. Early 76mm turrets, such as the Beffe, had an antenna aperture with blank off plate in front of the loaders' hatch. This was later eliminated from the casting. There must have been a change of heart about that, because many of the MDAP Shermans were retrofitted with a metal antenna fitting in that same spot, which I consider to be a good clue of an MDAP. Attached is a photo of a shrink wrapped M4A1(76)VVSS being loaded in Brooklyn in early 1951. This has an early turret with the split loader's hatch. I doubt if the gun on that turret had a muzzle brake originally. You can see the antenna fitting I was talking about. It wasn't necessary to relocate the spare tracks on the HVSS units that were sent. The shipping code on the front was censored for some reason, but in other shots, the destination port can be seen as TILE. Sometimes the guys find shipping code on their tanks, & ask about it. It was possible to determine that TILE was Cherbourg, so French MDAP.  

                                            >I had read somewhere that the hull numbers on the side below the driver's hatch were only on Cadillac M24's?

                                            Yes, Cadillac built M24 s have been noted to have a build sequence number with a T prefix stamped on the left front (driver's) side. Massey Harris appears to have stamped it on the right side with an M-H prefix. You seem to be having a ball working on that. Have you seen any shipping code on your M24, maybe on the turret? Italy received over 400 M24s, & it might be useful to know what the port code was.

                                            Joe




                                            From: Michael Lembo
                                            Sent: Wednesday, October 12, 2011 8:16 PM
                                            To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                            Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany




                                            Hello Joe,
                                             
                                               Thanks for the info.  I had considered the probability that the 76mm was upgraded post-war. The tank has a grunt phone on the hull rear and does have 3 track link sections on both forward sides of the turret.  It is of course possible the muzzle brake is a post war add-on, or the whole cannon could have been replaced.  I have been inside of it (the escape hatch is missing), but that was in 1995 and I don't have a photo of the data plate.  If I get "official" access to it again, I will go in and try to read the data plate. I will check next to the bow gun, but there is so much paint on it, I don't think there will be anything readable.
                                             
                                               As for the Chaffee,  The serial number is stamped in next to the bow gun, on a rectangular plate.  I had read somewhere that the hull numbers on the side below the driver's hatch were only on Cadillac M24's?  I have known about this tank also since 1994 when I first came to Hohenfels and the known history is that the tank was returned from Italian military service in the early '80's.  Since it had been military aid, I had assumed it was already here in Europe since the war, but I guess it is possible to have been shipped direct from the US.  While removing the paint I have found Italian flags painted in two places on the lower glacis plate and the Italian registration number (07059) on the back under the taillight.  This tank came back with a number of others, one of them is a static display also in front of the HQ building, the rest were shot up on the ranges years ago.  Luckily, someone decided to pull this one from the range in 1988 and make a parade or ceremony display out of it.  This one had not been hit by anything yet, so it was pulled into maintenance and a rudimentary restoration was done (engines restored to running condition, painted over dirt and rust inside and out).  It has been here since then, parked in a lot behind the PX and was only used at the opening ceremony of the German/American fest on this post every April.  It took me several years but I have convinced the command to let me do a full restoration and take it to the Czech Republic next year for their Liberation Day celebration in May.  It is now in maintenance here, though I am paying for all the parts and accessories myself, and doing the work on a volunteer basis.  I have it torn apart about as far as possible and have been removing old paint and rust for the last few weeks.  I should be ready to start repainting next month.  The data plates were replaced with Italian ones, so If anyone knows where I can get reproduction US ones, I definitely need them.  I have about 2 gigabytes of detailed photos of every inch inside and out, so if anybody needs info let me know.  I am pushing the "long emails" rule so I will end this one for now,  But I am also gathering info on 3 more Shermans on the US posts here: an M4A1(76) with HVSS and an M4A3(76) in Vilseck and an M4A3(76) in Grafenwohr.  The one with HVSS used to be on display next to Cobra King in the '90's.
                                             
                                            Michael







                                          • Michael Lembo
                                            A few more questions about the M4A3(76) in Graf:  In the attached photo of the driver/bog compartment, what is the device mounted on top the transmission with
                                            Message 21 of 29 , Oct 20, 2011
                                            • 0 Attachment
                                              A few more questions about the M4A3(76) in Graf:  In the attached photo of the driver/bog compartment, what is the device mounted on top the transmission with pipes and belts that appear to be driven by the drive shaft?  I can't find that in any other photos, usually there is only a spare periscope holder or box for the driver's hatch hood.  In the photo of the smoke mortar mount (I took that as a reference for the replica I am having made for the Chaffee) does the blackened wall behind the mortar mount look like soot from a fire to you? 


                                              --- On Mon, 10/17/11, Joe DeMarco <snick13@...> wrote:

                                              From: Joe DeMarco <snick13@...>
                                              Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany
                                              To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                              Date: Monday, October 17, 2011, 3:33 AM

                                               
                                              >It looks like the data plate is on the wall beside the driver's knee, is that the correct location?
                                               
                                              Yes. In the photo you posted, the serial number would be found stamped into the upper right corner of the plate. That one looks like it might actually be readable, while the M4A1's appears to be badly rusted.
                                               
                                              >Where should I look if a number is on the outside of that one?
                                               
                                              The Graf M4A3(76) was made by Chrysler & you might be able to read the serial number off the rear towing lugs if there is not too much paint.
                                               
                                              >I figured the possiblity that the 1949 Photo of the M4A3(76) was a nonoperational wartime 'leave behind'.
                                               
                                              Don, here's another photo of it, where you can see damage to the road wheels. From Michael's photo, it looks like some different track links were added at some point.
                                              It would be nice to be able to put a serial number with those Constab pix.
                                               
                                              >I figured it was long gone though.
                                               
                                              Well, I didn't have it listed in my rather poor notes about Shermans overseas, & Michel apparently didn't know it was there, so it seems like it's a "new" surviving Sherman discovery.
                                               
                                              The little J hooks, the bars on the turret & the absence of any upgrades "say" WW II configuration to me. Michael, if you get a chance to visit, please look around for damage, & maybe look under at the belly plate. Is there any evidence of fire on the inside? I doubt that came from a range; think it was placed there as a monument early on.
                                               
                                              >I assume that if you get the serial number you would be able to tell if the hull is as old as the turret?
                                               
                                              Yes, I suspect that turret would have been original to a Jan thru March 1944 production M4A1(76). The tank serial number would have been in the 37xxx  or 38xxx range.  The tracks & road wheels look like replacements, but the bogie units with the straight return roller arms are appropriate to the early M4A1s. The tracks on the turret are probably on there good, but you might be able to find the turret S/N cast & stamped on the forward part of the roof.
                                               
                                              I suspect the monument tank in La Roche en Ardennes was a battle casualty of the 2nd or 3rd AD. Unfortunately, the guys who refurbed that were not able to find the serial number, & I guess they didn’t have time to do "archeology" on the paint layers to look for original tactical markings.
                                               
                                               
                                              >This one has nothing on either housing.
                                               
                                              That could just be a case where the maker put the casting marks of the final drive housings on the inside? Sherman hatches are like that.
                                               
                                              Joe
                                               
                                               
                                               
                                               
                                               
                                               
                                               

                                              Sent: Sunday, October 16, 2011 11:25 AM
                                              Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany

                                              Hello Joe, 
                                                   First chance I get to go back to Graf, I will go back inside, crawl all the way in to the driver compartment and try to get a number off the data plate.  It looks like the data plate is on the wall beside the driver's knee, is that the correct location?  Where should I look if a number is on the outside of that one? 
                                                  As soon as I get access to the M4A1 in Hohenfels, I will check its data plate too and see if I can read anything behind the spare track links.  I assume that if you get the serial number you would be able to tell if the hull is as old as the turret? At any rate, I would like to get the original registration numbers for all of these and then see if I can get the garrison commands to authorize painting those on. 
                                                 The other M4A3(76) that is in Vilseck looks pretty much the same as the one behind the Graf clinic.  I can't get in it, at some point it had pickets welded across the engine compartment bottom opening. I will get photos as soon as possible.
                                                 The attached photo is the driver compartment of the M4A3(76) behind the Graf clinic, I have no idea how long the swastica has been painted in there. Is there any other angle of the interior that would be useful to see? I have about 30 photos inside of it.
                                                 I have another unusual aspect of the Chaffee, the final drive housings don't have any part numbers on them.  Most photos don't show these clearly, but the other Chaffees around here I have looked at all have D60548 and D305 7  cast into them.  The numbers are on both the early ones and the late ones with floatation attachments. This one has nothing on either housing. Also, there are no numbers in the right side of the hull below the bow gunner hatch, only on the left side.
                                               
                                              Michael

                                              --- On Sun, 10/16/11, Joe DeMarco <snick13@...> wrote:

                                              From: Joe DeMarco <snick13@...>
                                              Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany
                                              To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                              Date: Sunday, October 16, 2011, 3:26 PM

                                               
                                               
                                              Hi Michael,
                                               
                                              Thanks for sharing your pix. That tank has one of the earliest 76mm turrets seen on the first batch of M4A1(76)s built by Pressed Steel. They did not have the little ventilator housing on back. The turret was made by Union Steel who cast the serial number fairly large on either side of the turret. It's hidden by the spare tracks on that one, but I would think the turret S/N would be lower than maybe 460. That tank was refurbed in the US, so the turret may not be original to that particular hull, but the whole package would make a good subject for the first M4A1(76)s that were used by the US Army in Europe. Something like Lafeyette  Poole's "In The Mood." The gun is a replacement; it would have been built with a straight, unthreaded gun.
                                               
                                              >It is currently behind the Army health clinic in Grafenwohr.
                                               
                                              Don & Michael, that M4A3(76) looks like a real WW II Sherman to me. Among others, the 7th AD put those bars on the turret. Maybe someone could go over there & check that one out sometime? It might have a history.
                                               
                                              Joe
                                               
                                               
                                               
                                               

                                              Sent: Sunday, October 16, 2011 2:01 AM
                                              Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany

                                              Here are the interior photos taken in 1995 of the same M4A1(76)

                                              --- On Thu, 10/13/11, Joe DeMarco <snick13@...> wrote:

                                              From: Joe DeMarco <snick13@...>
                                              Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany
                                              To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                              Date: Thursday, October 13, 2011, 4:55 PM

                                               
                                              >The tank has a grunt phone on the hull rear and does have 3 track link sections on both forward sides of the turret.

                                              Yes, those tanks were made ready for issue in the US before being sent out as military assistance in the early 1950s. The spare tracks were relocated to the turret from their original position on the upper rear hull, & an infantry phone was retrofitted, usually on the right rear. Early 76mm turrets, such as the Beffe, had an antenna aperture with blank off plate in front of the loaders' hatch. This was later eliminated from the casting. There must have been a change of heart about that, because many of the MDAP Shermans were retrofitted with a metal antenna fitting in that same spot, which I consider to be a good clue of an MDAP. Attached is a photo of a shrink wrapped M4A1(76)VVSS being loaded in Brooklyn in early 1951. This has an early turret with the split loader's hatch. I doubt if the gun on that turret had a muzzle brake originally. You can see the antenna fitting I was talking about. It wasn't necessary to relocate the spare tracks on the HVSS units that were sent. The shipping code on the front was censored for some reason, but in other shots, the destination port can be seen as TILE. Sometimes the guys find shipping code on their tanks, & ask about it. It was possible to determine that TILE was Cherbourg, so French MDAP.  

                                              >I had read somewhere that the hull numbers on the side below the driver's hatch were only on Cadillac M24's?

                                              Yes, Cadillac built M24 s have been noted to have a build sequence number with a T prefix stamped on the left front (driver's) side. Massey Harris appears to have stamped it on the right side with an M-H prefix. You seem to be having a ball working on that. Have you seen any shipping code on your M24, maybe on the turret? Italy received over 400 M24s, & it might be useful to know what the port code was.

                                              Joe




                                              From: Michael Lembo
                                              Sent: Wednesday, October 12, 2011 8:16 PM
                                              To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                              Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany




                                              Hello Joe,
                                               
                                                 Thanks for the info.  I had considered the probability that the 76mm was upgraded post-war. The tank has a grunt phone on the hull rear and does have 3 track link sections on both forward sides of the turret.  It is of course possible the muzzle brake is a post war add-on, or the whole cannon could have been replaced.  I have been inside of it (the escape hatch is missing), but that was in 1995 and I don't have a photo of the data plate.  If I get "official" access to it again, I will go in and try to read the data plate. I will check next to the bow gun, but there is so much paint on it, I don't think there will be anything readable.
                                               
                                                 As for the Chaffee,  The serial number is stamped in next to the bow gun, on a rectangular plate.  I had read somewhere that the hull numbers on the side below the driver's hatch were only on Cadillac M24's?  I have known about this tank also since 1994 when I first came to Hohenfels and the known history is that the tank was returned from Italian military service in the early '80's.  Since it had been military aid, I had assumed it was already here in Europe since the war, but I guess it is possible to have been shipped direct from the US.  While removing the paint I have found Italian flags painted in two places on the lower glacis plate and the Italian registration number (07059) on the back under the taillight.  This tank came back with a number of others, one of them is a static display also in front of the HQ building, the rest were shot up on the ranges years ago.  Luckily, someone decided to pull this one from the range in 1988 and make a parade or ceremony display out of it.  This one had not been hit by anything yet, so it was pulled into maintenance and a rudimentary restoration was done (engines restored to running condition, painted over dirt and rust inside and out).  It has been here since then, parked in a lot behind the PX and was only used at the opening ceremony of the German/American fest on this post every April.  It took me several years but I have convinced the command to let me do a full restoration and take it to the Czech Republic next year for their Liberation Day celebration in May.  It is now in maintenance here, though I am paying for all the parts and accessories myself, and doing the work on a volunteer basis.  I have it torn apart about as far as possible and have been removing old paint and rust for the last few weeks.  I should be ready to start repainting next month.  The data plates were replaced with Italian ones, so If anyone knows where I can get reproduction US ones, I definitely need them.  I have about 2 gigabytes of detailed photos of every inch inside and out, so if anybody needs info let me know.  I am pushing the "long emails" rule so I will end this one for now,  But I am also gathering info on 3 more Shermans on the US posts here: an M4A1(76) with HVSS and an M4A3(76) in Vilseck and an M4A3(76) in Grafenwohr.  The one with HVSS used to be on display next to Cobra King in the '90's.
                                               
                                              Michael







                                            • Don Moriarty
                                              Michael   That is really cool.  Yes the soot residue indicates an interior fire.  It appears to be heavily charred.  It may or may not indicate wartime
                                              Message 22 of 29 , Oct 20, 2011
                                              • 0 Attachment
                                                Michael
                                                 
                                                That is really cool.  Yes the soot residue indicates an interior fire.  It appears to be heavily charred.  It may or may not indicate wartime related damage unless the hull has been breached or there is indications of a penetrating impact.
                                                 
                                                The 'item' above the transmission is very interesting, I'm clueless.  An 'aux' pump for a plow perhaps, or .....something. 
                                                 
                                                I can't tell for sure, but it appears that the manufacturer data plate is there (!!)  If so that will possibly provide some good intel.  On your next interior visit take a spray can of wd40 & a green scrub pad.  You might be able to get manufacturer date stamp & SN.  That would be a good bonus for identification purposes.
                                                 
                                                Very Interesting.  I'd love to dig thru the debris,....no telling what might be found, besides obvious post-wartime junk.  That is what was so cool about cleaning out Cobra King.  Perhaps this tank has a story to tell also....just a thought.
                                                 
                                                Regards
                                                Don
                                              • Joe DeMarco
                                                ... The T23 Medium Tank had some kind of lifting device for removing the power pack. There s a photo of it in Hunnicutt s Pershing book. The turret included
                                                Message 23 of 29 , Oct 21, 2011
                                                • 0 Attachment
                                                  >It has that lifting eye by the loader's hatch, which I have only seen in one or two wartime photos, might be another identifying feature?
                                                   
                                                  The T23 Medium Tank had some kind of lifting device for removing the power pack. There's a photo of it in Hunnicutt's Pershing book. The turret included some fittings for the device, including the extra lifting ring. They had a couple T23s at Aberdeen, & I've attached pix of the fittings. Chrysler had some of those "XLR" turrets left over after the T23 program was cancelled, & used them on their first M4A3(76)s. They arrived in the ETO & MTO in late Aug, 1944. There are plenty of period pix of "XLR" Shermans. Tanks like that & the early M4A1(76)VVSS's would have served through to the end, or until they couldn't.
                                                    
                                                  >Also, do you think the fact that the headlights and headlight guards were already gone in the 1949 photo could indicate that tank once had extra armor plates attached to the glacis?
                                                   
                                                  I don't think extra armor (expedient Jumbo) because it would leave a lot of weld scars which don't seem to be present, plus, why would someone bother to put the gun travel lock back on?
                                                   
                                                  The lifting ring on the right front appears to have been repaired or replaced. Is that a replaced wheel with no rubber on the left?  You might check the bogies for dates cast on them, if you have a chance.
                                                   
                                                  >what is the device mounted on top the transmission with pipes and belts that appear to be driven by the drive shaft?
                                                   
                                                  I'm thinking that tank might have had an M1 Dozer kit installed. Note that there are some studs projecting out of the return roller arm holes on the middle bogie on the right, & perhaps on the left as well. These would have been the attachment points for the blade set up.
                                                   
                                                  >does the blackened wall behind the mortar mount look like soot from a fire to you?
                                                   
                                                  Yes. But not in the fighting compartment?
                                                   
                                                  This seems like a tank that might have an interesting history, so hope you can get permission to dig around in there, Michael. Don found a bunch of TMs & SNLs inside the Manual compartment in CK. Unfortunately, no one wrote anything personal in them. I don't think anyone has ever found a "Motor Book" in a Sherman. Maybe the Graf still has some of those things?
                                                   
                                                   
                                                  Joe
                                                   

                                                  Sent: Thursday, October 20, 2011 2:36 PM
                                                  Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany

                                                  Hello Joe,
                                                     I have a Lt.Col. working to get me official access to the two Shermans to check serial numbers and make current photos.  In the meantime here is a photo of the left side of the M4A3 in Graf.  It has that lifting eye by the loader's hatch, which I have only seen in one or two wartime photos, might be another identifying feature?  Also, do you think the fact that the headlights and headlight guards were already gone in the 1949 photo could indicate that tank once had extra armor plates attached to the glacis?
                                                   
                                                  Michael

                                                  --- On Mon, 10/17/11, Joe DeMarco <snick13@...> wrote:

                                                  From: Joe DeMarco <snick13@...>
                                                  Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany
                                                  To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                                  Date: Monday, October 17, 2011, 3:33 AM

                                                   
                                                  >It looks like the data plate is on the wall beside the driver's knee, is that the correct location?
                                                   
                                                  Yes. In the photo you posted, the serial number would be found stamped into the upper right corner of the plate. That one looks like it might actually be readable, while the M4A1's appears to be badly rusted.
                                                   
                                                  >Where should I look if a number is on the outside of that one?
                                                   
                                                  The Graf M4A3(76) was made by Chrysler & you might be able to read the serial number off the rear towing lugs if there is not too much paint.
                                                   
                                                  >I figured the possiblity that the 1949 Photo of the M4A3(76) was a nonoperational wartime 'leave behind'.
                                                   
                                                  Don, here's another photo of it, where you can see damage to the road wheels. From Michael's photo, it looks like some different track links were added at some point.
                                                  It would be nice to be able to put a serial number with those Constab pix.
                                                   
                                                  >I figured it was long gone though.
                                                   
                                                  Well, I didn't have it listed in my rather poor notes about Shermans overseas, & Michel apparently didn't know it was there, so it seems like it's a "new" surviving Sherman discovery.
                                                   
                                                  The little J hooks, the bars on the turret & the absence of any upgrades "say" WW II configuration to me. Michael, if you get a chance to visit, please look around for damage, & maybe look under at the belly plate. Is there any evidence of fire on the inside? I doubt that came from a range; think it was placed there as a monument early on.
                                                   
                                                  >I assume that if you get the serial number you would be able to tell if the hull is as old as the turret?
                                                   
                                                  Yes, I suspect that turret would have been original to a Jan thru March 1944 production M4A1(76). The tank serial number would have been in the 37xxx  or 38xxx range.  The tracks & road wheels look like replacements, but the bogie units with the straight return roller arms are appropriate to the early M4A1s. The tracks on the turret are probably on there good, but you might be able to find the turret S/N cast & stamped on the forward part of the roof.
                                                   
                                                  I suspect the monument tank in La Roche en Ardennes was a battle casualty of the 2nd or 3rd AD. Unfortunately, the guys who refurbed that were not able to find the serial number, & I guess they didn’t have time to do "archeology" on the paint layers to look for original tactical markings.
                                                   
                                                   
                                                  >This one has nothing on either housing.
                                                   
                                                  That could just be a case where the maker put the casting marks of the final drive housings on the inside? Sherman hatches are like that.
                                                   
                                                  Joe
                                                   
                                                   
                                                   
                                                   
                                                   
                                                   
                                                   

                                                  Sent: Sunday, October 16, 2011 11:25 AM
                                                  Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany

                                                  Hello Joe, 
                                                       First chance I get to go back to Graf, I will go back inside, crawl all the way in to the driver compartment and try to get a number off the data plate.  It looks like the data plate is on the wall beside the driver's knee, is that the correct location?  Where should I look if a number is on the outside of that one? 
                                                      As soon as I get access to the M4A1 in Hohenfels, I will check its data plate too and see if I can read anything behind the spare track links.  I assume that if you get the serial number you would be able to tell if the hull is as old as the turret? At any rate, I would like to get the original registration numbers for all of these and then see if I can get the garrison commands to authorize painting those on. 
                                                     The other M4A3(76) that is in Vilseck looks pretty much the same as the one behind the Graf clinic.  I can't get in it, at some point it had pickets welded across the engine compartment bottom opening. I will get photos as soon as possible.
                                                     The attached photo is the driver compartment of the M4A3(76) behind the Graf clinic, I have no idea how long the swastica has been painted in there. Is there any other angle of the interior that would be useful to see? I have about 30 photos inside of it.
                                                     I have another unusual aspect of the Chaffee, the final drive housings don't have any part numbers on them.  Most photos don't show these clearly, but the other Chaffees around here I have looked at all have D60548 and D305 7  cast into them.  The numbers are on both the early ones and the late ones with floatation attachments. This one has nothing on either housing. Also, there are no numbers in the right side of the hull below the bow gunner hatch, only on the left side.
                                                   
                                                  Michael

                                                  --- On Sun, 10/16/11, Joe DeMarco <snick13@...> wrote:

                                                  From: Joe DeMarco <snick13@...>
                                                  Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany
                                                  To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                                  Date: Sunday, October 16, 2011, 3:26 PM

                                                   
                                                   
                                                  Hi Michael,
                                                   
                                                  Thanks for sharing your pix. That tank has one of the earliest 76mm turrets seen on the first batch of M4A1(76)s built by Pressed Steel. They did not have the little ventilator housing on back. The turret was made by Union Steel who cast the serial number fairly large on either side of the turret. It's hidden by the spare tracks on that one, but I would think the turret S/N would be lower than maybe 460. That tank was refurbed in the US, so the turret may not be original to that particular hull, but the whole package would make a good subject for the first M4A1(76)s that were used by the US Army in Europe. Something like Lafeyette  Poole's "In The Mood." The gun is a replacement; it would have been built with a straight, unthreaded gun.
                                                   
                                                  >It is currently behind the Army health clinic in Grafenwohr.
                                                   
                                                  Don & Michael, that M4A3(76) looks like a real WW II Sherman to me. Among others, the 7th AD put those bars on the turret. Maybe someone could go over there & check that one out sometime? It might have a history.
                                                   
                                                  Joe
                                                   
                                                   
                                                   
                                                   

                                                  Sent: Sunday, October 16, 2011 2:01 AM
                                                  Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany

                                                  Here are the interior photos taken in 1995 of the same M4A1(76)

                                                  --- On Thu, 10/13/11, Joe DeMarco <snick13@...> wrote:

                                                  From: Joe DeMarco <snick13@...>
                                                  Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany
                                                  To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                                  Date: Thursday, October 13, 2011, 4:55 PM

                                                   
                                                  >The tank has a grunt phone on the hull rear and does have 3 track link sections on both forward sides of the turret.

                                                  Yes, those tanks were made ready for issue in the US before being sent out as military assistance in the early 1950s. The spare tracks were relocated to the turret from their original position on the upper rear hull, & an infantry phone was retrofitted, usually on the right rear. Early 76mm turrets, such as the Beffe, had an antenna aperture with blank off plate in front of the loaders' hatch. This was later eliminated from the casting. There must have been a change of heart about that, because many of the MDAP Shermans were retrofitted with a metal antenna fitting in that same spot, which I consider to be a good clue of an MDAP. Attached is a photo of a shrink wrapped M4A1(76)VVSS being loaded in Brooklyn in early 1951. This has an early turret with the split loader's hatch. I doubt if the gun on that turret had a muzzle brake originally. You can see the antenna fitting I was talking about. It wasn't necessary to relocate the spare tracks on the HVSS units that were sent. The shipping code on the front was censored for some reason, but in other shots, the destination port can be seen as TILE. Sometimes the guys find shipping code on their tanks, & ask about it. It was possible to determine that TILE was Cherbourg, so French MDAP.  

                                                  >I had read somewhere that the hull numbers on the side below the driver's hatch were only on Cadillac M24's?

                                                  Yes, Cadillac built M24 s have been noted to have a build sequence number with a T prefix stamped on the left front (driver's) side. Massey Harris appears to have stamped it on the right side with an M-H prefix. You seem to be having a ball working on that. Have you seen any shipping code on your M24, maybe on the turret? Italy received over 400 M24s, & it might be useful to know what the port code was.

                                                  Joe




                                                  From: Michael Lembo
                                                  Sent: Wednesday, October 12, 2011 8:16 PM
                                                  To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                                  Subject: Re: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany




                                                  Hello Joe,
                                                   
                                                     Thanks for the info.  I had considered the probability that the 76mm was upgraded post-war. The tank has a grunt phone on the hull rear and does have 3 track link sections on both forward sides of the turret.  It is of course possible the muzzle brake is a post war add-on, or the whole cannon could have been replaced.  I have been inside of it (the escape hatch is missing), but that was in 1995 and I don't have a photo of the data plate.  If I get "official" access to it again, I will go in and try to read the data plate. I will check next to the bow gun, but there is so much paint on it, I don't think there will be anything readable.
                                                   
                                                     As for the Chaffee,  The serial number is stamped in next to the bow gun, on a rectangular plate.  I had read somewhere that the hull numbers on the side below the driver's hatch were only on Cadillac M24's?  I have known about this tank also since 1994 when I first came to Hohenfels and the known history is that the tank was returned from Italian military service in the early '80's.  Since it had been military aid, I had assumed it was already here in Europe since the war, but I guess it is possible to have been shipped direct from the US.  While removing the paint I have found Italian flags painted in two places on the lower glacis plate and the Italian registration number (07059) on the back under the taillight.  This tank came back with a number of others, one of them is a static display also in front of the HQ building, the rest were shot up on the ranges years ago.  Luckily, someone decided to pull this one from the range in 1988 and make a parade or ceremony display out of it.  This one had not been hit by anything yet, so it was pulled into maintenance and a rudimentary restoration was done (engines restored to running condition, painted over dirt and rust inside and out).  It has been here since then, parked in a lot behind the PX and was only used at the opening ceremony of the German/American fest on this post every April.  It took me several years but I have convinced the command to let me do a full restoration and take it to the Czech Republic next year for their Liberation Day celebration in May.  It is now in maintenance here, though I am paying for all the parts and accessories myself, and doing the work on a volunteer basis.  I have it torn apart about as far as possible and have been removing old paint and rust for the last few weeks.  I should be ready to start repainting next month.  The data plates were replaced with Italian ones, so If anyone knows where I can get reproduction US ones, I definitely need them.  I have about 2 gigabytes of detailed photos of every inch inside and out, so if anybody needs info let me know.  I am pushing the "long emails" rule so I will end this one for now,  But I am also gathering info on 3 more Shermans on the US posts here: an M4A1(76) with HVSS and an M4A3(76) in Vilseck and an M4A3(76) in Grafenwohr.  The one with HVSS used to be on display next to Cobra King in the '90's.
                                                   
                                                  Michael







                                                • Kurt Laughlin
                                                  Hi Michael: I recall you mentioning that you were photographing the various Shermans at Hohenfels and elsewhere. I am compiling a document showing the various
                                                  Message 24 of 29 , Dec 11, 2011
                                                  • 0 Attachment

                                                    Hi Michael:

                                                     

                                                    I recall you mentioning that you were photographing the various Shermans at Hohenfels and elsewhere.  I am compiling a document showing the various casting markings and variations on the larger Sherman pieces (turret, gun shields, rotor shields, driver’s plate [E8020], and differential housings).  If you have photos that include this information I would appreciate getting copies, if you have the time.  Please let me know if you are amenable to this.

                                                     

                                                    Thanks for your help,

                                                    KL

                                                     

                                                    From: G104@yahoogroups.com [mailto:G104@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Michael Lembo
                                                    Sent: Wednesday, October 12, 2011 1:16 AM
                                                    To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                                    Subject: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany

                                                     

                                                     

                                                    Hello all members.

                                                     

                                                    I am a civilian contractor (US Army Retired) working at the US post in Hohenfels, Germany.  We have here an M4A1(76)W on display in front of the HQ building.  It is unusual in that is has a muzzle brake and attachments on the mantlet for the canvas cover, but still has VVSS suspension.  I have only been able to find 3 wartime photos of an M4A1 in this configuration, and none of them have the mantlet cover attachments.  The Osprey book on the 76 Gun M4 says a small batch of these arrived in the ETO in the spring of '45.  It has too much paint for me to find a serial number, and it is right in front of the HQ, so I can't just walk up and start wire brushing the SN locations.  I am working on getting Command approval to investigate it.  I will send a photo as soon as I get one.  I am also working on restoring an M24 Chaffee which belongs to the Army here as well. If anyone has a database of serial numbers for these also, I need whatever info can be found on M24 Ser# 5540, Hull number is:  lightly stamped "H" followed by a deeper stamped "C", number 721, flanked by ordnance bombs.  It has floatation device attachments only on the rear, never were installed in front.  Has the early type antenna mount, but the later type gun tube (could be replaced tube).  It had all the 1950's commo modifications, but it has now been backdated to the original config.  Any info on these two will be greatly appreciated.

                                                     

                                                    Michael Lembo

                                                    --- On Tue, 10/11/11, Joe DeMarco <snick13@...> wrote:


                                                    From: Joe DeMarco <snick13@...>
                                                    Subject: Re: [G104] Re: looking for a serial number
                                                    To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                                    Date: Tuesday, October 11, 2011, 10:10 PM

                                                     

                                                    Hello Johan,

                                                    >What evidence of the metal rods on the side of the turret do you see?

                                                    I was thinking of the little loops that you can see welded on to the turret
                                                    sides. I've marked up & attached one of your photos. Those loops could be
                                                    for the purpose of hanging crew junk, or holding chicken wire.
                                                    Here's a blow up of a photo that I sent to Don M. when he was working on
                                                    Cobra King. This was taken at Hammelburg in 1948. You can see the rods &
                                                    wire that were added to the hull & turret. Don was able to find weld scars
                                                    in the same position, as well as the same casting marks on the bow gunner's
                                                    hatch, so we are almost certain that is a photo of CK. One wonders how it
                                                    ended up there? Aside from being "First in Bastogne," was it also the Cobra
                                                    King that was said to have been lost during the Hammelburg Raid? Both
                                                    episodes involved C Co. / 37th Tank Bn, so don't see why not, but can't
                                                    prove it.

                                                    >The story goes that this Sherman ran on a mine. Afterwards it was puched of
                                                    >the road. I've seen no evidence of any battledamage.

                                                    In the course of researching your model, if you come across any further info
                                                    about the history of the Beffe, would you please let us know?

                                                    Joe

                                                    --------------------------------------------------
                                                    From: "metalscalemodels" <contact@...>
                                                    Sent: Sunday, October 09, 2011 2:49 PM
                                                    To: <G104@yahoogroups.com>
                                                    Subject: [G104] Re: looking for a serial number

                                                    > Hello Joe,
                                                    >
                                                    > The story goes that this Sherman ran on a mine. Afterwards it was puched
                                                    > of the road. I've seen no evidence of any battledamage.
                                                    > I'm almost sure that there is no number at the side of the glacis.
                                                    > I've got no pictures of the bogies. I didn't know that was a point of
                                                    > interest..
                                                    > What evidence of the metal rods on the side of the turret do you see?
                                                    >
                                                    > thanks for your reply.
                                                    >
                                                    > Johan

                                                  • Michael Lembo
                                                    Sure, I have taken a few hundred photos of 3 of these Shermans so far, inside and out.  It may be easier if I send them to you on a CD.   Michael
                                                    Message 25 of 29 , Dec 12, 2011
                                                    • 0 Attachment
                                                      Sure, I have taken a few hundred photos of 3 of these Shermans so far, inside and out.  It may be easier if I send them to you on a CD.
                                                       
                                                      Michael

                                                      From: Kurt Laughlin <fleeta@...>
                                                      To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                                      Sent: Sunday, December 11, 2011 10:49 PM
                                                      Subject: RE: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany
                                                       
                                                      Hi Michael:
                                                       
                                                      I recall you mentioning that you were photographing the various Shermans at Hohenfels and elsewhere.  I am compiling a document showing the various casting markings and variations on the larger Sherman pieces (turret, gun shields, rotor shields, driver’s plate [E8020], and differential housings).  If you have photos that include this information I would appreciate getting copies, if you have the time.  Please let me know if you are amenable to this.
                                                       
                                                      Thanks for your help,
                                                      KL
                                                       
                                                      From: G104@yahoogroups.com [mailto:G104@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Michael Lembo
                                                      Sent: Wednesday, October 12, 2011 1:16 AM
                                                      To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                                      Subject: [G104] Tanks in Hohenfels, Germany
                                                       
                                                       
                                                      Hello all members.
                                                       
                                                      I am a civilian contractor (US Army Retired) working at the US post in Hohenfels, Germany.  We have here an M4A1(76)W on display in front of the HQ building.  It is unusual in that is has a muzzle brake and attachments on the mantlet for the canvas cover, but still has VVSS suspension.  I have only been able to find 3 wartime photos of an M4A1 in this configuration, and none of them have the mantlet cover attachments.  The Osprey book on the 76 Gun M4 says a small batch of these arrived in the ETO in the spring of '45.  It has too much paint for me to find a serial number, and it is right in front of the HQ, so I can't just walk up and start wire brushing the SN locations.  I am working on getting Command approval to investigate it.  I will send a photo as soon as I get one.  I am also working on restoring an M24 Chaffee which belongs to the Army here as well. If anyone has a database of serial numbers for these also, I need whatever info can be found on M24 Ser# 5540, Hull number is:  lightly stamped "H" followed by a deeper stamped "C", number 721, flanked by ordnance bombs.  It has floatation device attachments only on the rear, never were installed in front.  Has the early type antenna mount, but the later type gun tube (could be replaced tube).  It had all the 1950's commo modifications, but it has now been backdated to the original config.  Any info on these two will be greatly appreciated.
                                                       
                                                      Michael Lembo

                                                      --- On Tue, 10/11/11, Joe DeMarco <snick13@...> wrote:

                                                      From: Joe DeMarco <snick13@...>
                                                      Subject: Re: [G104] Re: looking for a serial number
                                                      To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                                      Date: Tuesday, October 11, 2011, 10:10 PM
                                                       
                                                      Hello Johan,

                                                      >What evidence of the metal rods on the side of the turret do you see?

                                                      I was thinking of the little loops that you can see welded on to the turret
                                                      sides. I've marked up & attached one of your photos. Those loops could be
                                                      for the purpose of hanging crew junk, or holding chicken wire.
                                                      Here's a blow up of a photo that I sent to Don M. when he was working on
                                                      Cobra King. This was taken at Hammelburg in 1948. You can see the rods &
                                                      wire that were added to the hull & turret. Don was able to find weld scars
                                                      in the same position, as well as the same casting marks on the bow gunner's
                                                      hatch, so we are almost certain that is a photo of CK. One wonders how it
                                                      ended up there? Aside from being "First in Bastogne," was it also the Cobra
                                                      King that was said to have been lost during the Hammelburg Raid? Both
                                                      episodes involved C Co. / 37th Tank Bn, so don't see why not, but can't
                                                      prove it.

                                                      >The story goes that this Sherman ran on a mine. Afterwards it was puched of
                                                      >the road. I've seen no evidence of any battledamage.

                                                      In the course of researching your model, if you come across any further info
                                                      about the history of the Beffe, would you please let us know?

                                                      Joe

                                                      --------------------------------------------------
                                                      From: "metalscalemodels" <contact@...>
                                                      Sent: Sunday, October 09, 2011 2:49 PM
                                                      To: <G104@yahoogroups.com>
                                                      Subject: [G104] Re: looking for a serial number

                                                      > Hello Joe,
                                                      >
                                                      > The story goes that this Sherman ran on a mine. Afterwards it was puched
                                                      > of the road. I've seen no evidence of any battledamage.
                                                      > I'm almost sure that there is no number at the side of the glacis.
                                                      > I've got no pictures of the bogies. I didn't know that was a point of
                                                      > interest..
                                                      > What evidence of the metal rods on the side of the turret do you see?
                                                      >
                                                      > thanks for your reply.
                                                      >
                                                      > Johan
                                                    • metalscalemodels
                                                      Hello all, I found a picture of the Beffe Sherman. On that picture there are some numbers visable. It looks like: 3051319. It is hardly to see so i can easely
                                                      Message 26 of 29 , Sep 30, 2013

                                                       Hello all,


                                                      I found a picture of the Beffe Sherman. On that picture there are some numbers visable. It looks like: 3051319. It is hardly to see so i can easely be wrong. Is this a possible reg. number? 


                                                      regards,

                                                      Johan Meijer



                                                      ---In G104@yahoogroups.com, <g104@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

                                                      Hello Johan,

                                                      It would certainly be interesting to be able to determine the history of
                                                      that Sherman. It is an early Chrysler (Spring 1944) production vehicle as
                                                      evidenced by the very low serial number of the E8020 casting (A11) & the
                                                      early position of the forward cable clamp, behind, not on, the E8020 piece.
                                                      Many of the bogie units that Chrysler used had dates cast on them, which can
                                                      provide a clue about when the tank was made. I don't have any clear shots of
                                                      the dates, but would guess they might be "3-44." The turret is also an early
                                                      production casting (serial number A75) with a fitting (that was later
                                                      eliminated) for a forward antenna mount. You can also see the "ghost" of the
                                                      extra lifting ring just behind the forward antenna mount. Certainly the
                                                      early turret & hull are appropriate together, but I would wonder why only
                                                      the turret shows evidence of having had the metal rods that some US units
                                                      welded on to hold foliage? Could the turret be from another tank? The engine
                                                      deck panels are replacements taken from an M74. I'm sure that, as built,
                                                      that tank would have had a 1-piece rearmost engine deck. Did you see any
                                                      damage or penetrations on the tank?

                                                      The numbers you saw stamped in the rear are probably just the part number &
                                                      serial number of the individual piece of armor plate. On a clean Sherman,
                                                      stamped numbers can be found on almost everything. One of our members
                                                      sanded through many layers of paint to expose the serial number (43911) of a
                                                      similar M4A3(76)VVSS in Clervaux. I expect the Beffe would have a lower
                                                      S/N, but don't recommend sanding without getting permission. I've attached
                                                      a photo I marked up to show people where to look for a loose build sequence
                                                      number on a Chrysler. Sometimes it's possible to read that despite heavy
                                                      paint. I expect the Beffe would have "76B" & then a number 300 or lower.

                                                      Very impressive model, Johan! On a historical note, Chrsyler built Shermans
                                                      with VVSS had pressed metal, spoked road wheels installed as original
                                                      equipment. That's not to say they couldn't have been replaced with other
                                                      types in the course of service, but probably not all of them.

                                                      >I think the French did the box on all the vehicles they rebuild.

                                                      OK, Michel.
                                                      The Somua S35 at APG has "numbers in a box" stamped on the hull & turret.
                                                      Also has "CAIL NO 42761" (attached) which I take to be the Matricule Number?
                                                      French Lend Lease Shermans were obviously assigned Matricules, although I
                                                      don't think anyone has ever reported finding one stamped into the armor.

                                                      >If it's indeed RN 40152515 that would be SN 4052 isn' it?

                                                      Yes.

                                                      Joe


                                                      --------------------------------------------------
                                                      From: "metalscalemodels" <contact@...>
                                                      Sent: Friday, October 07, 2011 10:21 AM
                                                      To: <G104@yahoogroups.com>
                                                      Subject: [G104] looking for a serial number

                                                      > I have been this summer In Beffe Belgium, after spending a hollyday in
                                                      > France, I visit the Shermantank over there. I went there looking for
                                                      > serial numbers. I found nothing on the known places, towlugs etc. I did
                                                      > find a number of what i believe could be a sn number. It is stamped only
                                                      > on the right backside. Unfortunately it is not very clear. I hope someone
                                                      > can make something of it.
                                                      >
                                                      > Does anyone know also something about the unitmarkings of the 771st tankbt
                                                      > in januari 1945. I believe that was the unit where this sherman belong to.
                                                      >
                                                      >
                                                      > for the pictures: http://www.shermantank.nl/M4A3(76)W.htm
                                                      >
                                                      >
                                                      >
                                                      > regards,
                                                      >
                                                      > Johan Meijer
                                                    • Joe DeMarco
                                                      Hi Johan, That tank has some early features which would suggest it was made by Chrysler around April or May 1944. I m pretty sure that the USA Number assigned
                                                      Message 27 of 29 , Oct 1, 2013
                                                      • 0 Attachment
                                                        Hi Johan,
                                                         
                                                        That tank has some early features which would suggest it was made by Chrysler around April or May 1944.
                                                        I'm pretty sure that the USA Number assigned to that would have been 8 digits long, beginning with 30100xxx.
                                                        Thanks for posting the image.
                                                        A period photo is an excellent "back door" to the Registration Number of a surviving tank. 
                                                        Unfortunately it doesn't seem like it would be possible to get a good read of the numbers from that photo.
                                                        Perhaps there are some other pix from the same time period that would clearly show the Registration Number?
                                                         
                                                        Joe
                                                         
                                                         
                                                         
                                                         
                                                         

                                                        Sent: Monday, September 30, 2013 4:22 PM
                                                        Subject: RE: Re: [G104] looking for a serial number [2 Attachments]

                                                         Hello all,


                                                        I found a picture of the Beffe Sherman. On that picture there are some numbers visable. It looks like: 3051319. It is hardly to see so i can easely be wrong. Is this a possible reg. number? 


                                                        regards,

                                                        Johan Meijer



                                                        ---In G104@yahoogroups.com, <g104@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

                                                        Hello Johan,

                                                        It would certainly be interesting to be able to determine the history of
                                                        that Sherman. It is an early Chrysler (Spring 1944) production vehicle as
                                                        evidenced by the very low serial number of the E8020 casting (A11) & the
                                                        early position of the forward cable clamp, behind, not on, the E8020 piece.
                                                        Many of the bogie units that Chrysler used had dates cast on them, which can
                                                        provide a clue about when the tank was made. I don't have any clear shots of
                                                        the dates, but would guess they might be "3-44." The turret is also an early
                                                        production casting (serial number A75) with a fitting (that was later
                                                        eliminated) for a forward antenna mount. You can also see the "ghost" of the
                                                        extra lifting ring just behind the forward antenna mount. Certainly the
                                                        early turret & hull are appropriate together, but I would wonder why only
                                                        the turret shows evidence of having had the metal rods that some US units
                                                        welded on to hold foliage? Could the turret be from another tank? The engine
                                                        deck panels are replacements taken from an M74. I'm sure that, as built,
                                                        that tank would have had a 1-piece rearmost engine deck. Did you see any
                                                        damage or penetrations on the tank?

                                                        The numbers you saw stamped in the rear are probably just the part number &
                                                        serial number of the individual piece of armor plate. On a clean Sherman,
                                                        stamped numbers can be found on almost everything. One of our members
                                                        sanded through many layers of paint to expose the serial number (43911) of a
                                                        similar M4A3(76)VVSS in Clervaux. I expect the Beffe would have a lower
                                                        S/N, but don't recommend sanding without getting permission. I've attached
                                                        a photo I marked up to show people where to look for a loose build sequence
                                                        number on a Chrysler. Sometimes it's possible to read that despite heavy
                                                        paint. I expect the Beffe would have "76B" & then a number 300 or lower.

                                                        Very impressive model, Johan! On a historical note, Chrsyler built Shermans
                                                        with VVSS had pressed metal, spoked road wheels installed as original
                                                        equipment. That's not to say they couldn't have been replaced with other
                                                        types in the course of service, but probably not all of them.

                                                        >I think the French did the box on all the vehicles they rebuild.

                                                        OK, Michel.
                                                        The Somua S35 at APG has "numbers in a box" stamped on the hull & turret.
                                                        Also has "CAIL NO 42761" (attached) which I take to be the Matricule Number?
                                                        French Lend Lease Shermans were obviously assigned Matricules, although I
                                                        don't think anyone has ever reported finding one stamped into the armor.

                                                        >If it's indeed RN 40152515 that would be SN 4052 isn' it?

                                                        Yes.

                                                        Joe


                                                        --------------------------------------------------
                                                        From: "metalscalemodels" <contact@...>
                                                        Sent: Friday, October 07, 2011 10:21 AM
                                                        To: <G104@yahoogroups.com>
                                                        Subject: [G104] looking for a serial number

                                                        > I have been this summer In Beffe Belgium, after spending a hollyday in
                                                        > France, I visit the Shermantank over there. I went there looking for
                                                        > serial numbers. I found nothing on the known places, towlugs etc. I did
                                                        > find a number of what i believe could be a sn number. It is stamped only
                                                        > on the right backside. Unfortunately it is not very clear. I hope someone
                                                        > can make something of it.
                                                        >
                                                        > Does anyone know also something about the unitmarkings of the 771st tankbt
                                                        > in januari 1945. I believe that was the unit where this sherman belong to.
                                                        >
                                                        >
                                                        > for the pictures: http://www.shermantank.nl/M4A3(76)W.htm
                                                        >
                                                        >
                                                        >
                                                        > regards,
                                                        >
                                                        > Johan Meijer
                                                      • shermans in holland
                                                        Hi Joe, Thanks for your info, There are not a lot of old pictures on the www about this Sherman. I ve got some older pictures, but they are not good enough to
                                                        Message 28 of 29 , Oct 1, 2013
                                                        • 0 Attachment
                                                          Hi Joe,
                                                          Thanks for your info,
                                                          There are not a lot of old pictures on the www about this Sherman. I've got some older pictures, but they are not good enough to show a number. So i'll keep on searching and i hope i will find it some day!
                                                           
                                                          Johan


                                                          Van: G104@yahoogroups.com [mailto:G104@yahoogroups.com] Namens Joe DeMarco
                                                          Verzonden: dinsdag 1 oktober 2013 16:34
                                                          Aan: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                                          Onderwerp: Re: Re: [G104] looking for a serial number

                                                           

                                                          Hi Johan,
                                                           
                                                          That tank has some early features which would suggest it was made by Chrysler around April or May 1944.
                                                          I'm pretty sure that the USA Number assigned to that would have been 8 digits long, beginning with 30100xxx.
                                                          Thanks for posting the image.
                                                          A period photo is an excellent "back door" to the Registration Number of a surviving tank. 
                                                          Unfortunately it doesn't seem like it would be possible to get a good read of the numbers from that photo.
                                                          Perhaps there are some other pix from the same time period that would clearly show the Registration Number?
                                                           
                                                          Joe
                                                           
                                                           
                                                           
                                                           
                                                           

                                                          Sent: Monday, September 30, 2013 4:22 PM
                                                          Subject: RE: Re: [G104] looking for a serial number [2 Attachments]

                                                           Hello all,


                                                          I found a picture of the Beffe Sherman. On that picture there are some numbers visable. It looks like: 3051319. It is hardly to see so i can easely be wrong. Is this a possible reg. number? 


                                                          regards,

                                                          Johan Meijer



                                                          ---In G104@yahoogroups.com, <g104@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

                                                          Hello Johan,

                                                          It would certainly be interesting to be able to determine the history of
                                                          that Sherman. It is an early Chrysler (Spring 1944) production vehicle as
                                                          evidenced by the very low serial number of the E8020 casting (A11) & the
                                                          early position of the forward cable clamp, behind, not on, the E8020 piece.
                                                          Many of the bogie units that Chrysler used had dates cast on them, which can
                                                          provide a clue about when the tank was made. I don't have any clear shots of
                                                          the dates, but would guess they might be "3-44." The turret is also an early
                                                          production casting (serial number A75) with a fitting (that was later
                                                          eliminated) for a forward antenna mount. You can also see the "ghost" of the
                                                          extra lifting ring just behind the forward antenna mount. Certainly the
                                                          early turret & hull are appropriate together, but I would wonder why only
                                                          the turret shows evidence of having had the metal rods that some US units
                                                          welded on to hold foliage? Could the turret be from another tank? The engine
                                                          deck panels are replacements taken from an M74. I'm sure that, as built,
                                                          that tank would have had a 1-piece rearmost engine deck. Did you see any
                                                          damage or penetrations on the tank?

                                                          The numbers you saw stamped in the rear are probably just the part number &
                                                          serial number of the individual piece of armor plate. On a clean Sherman,
                                                          stamped numbers can be found on almost everything. One of our members
                                                          sanded through many layers of paint to expose the serial number (43911) of a
                                                          similar M4A3(76)VVSS in Clervaux. I expect the Beffe would have a lower
                                                          S/N, but don't recommend sanding without getting permission. I've attached
                                                          a photo I marked up to show people where to look for a loose build sequence
                                                          number on a Chrysler. Sometimes it's possible to read that despite heavy
                                                          paint. I expect the Beffe would have "76B" & then a number 300 or lower.

                                                          Very impressive model, Johan! On a historical note, Chrsyler built Shermans
                                                          with VVSS had pressed metal, spoked road wheels installed as original
                                                          equipment. That's not to say they couldn't have been replaced with other
                                                          types in the course of service, but probably not all of them.

                                                          >I think the French did the box on all the vehicles they rebuild.

                                                          OK, Michel.
                                                          The Somua S35 at APG has "numbers in a box" stamped on the hull & turret.
                                                          Also has "CAIL NO 42761" (attached) which I take to be the Matricule Number?
                                                          French Lend Lease Shermans were obviously assigned Matricules, although I
                                                          don't think anyone has ever reported finding one stamped into the armor.

                                                          >If it's indeed RN 40152515 that would be SN 4052 isn' it?

                                                          Yes.

                                                          Joe


                                                          --------------------------------------------------
                                                          From: "metalscalemodels" <contact@...>
                                                          Sent: Friday, October 07, 2011 10:21 AM
                                                          To: <G104@yahoogroups.com>
                                                          Subject: [G104] looking for a serial number

                                                          > I have been this summer In Beffe Belgium, after spending a hollyday in
                                                          > France, I visit the Shermantank over there. I went there looking for
                                                          > serial numbers. I found nothing on the known places, towlugs etc. I did
                                                          > find a number of what i believe could be a sn number. It is stamped only
                                                          > on the right backside. Unfortunately it is not very clear. I hope someone
                                                          > can make something of it.
                                                          >
                                                          > Does anyone know also something about the unitmarkings of the 771st tankbt
                                                          > in januari 1945. I believe that was the unit where this sherman belong to.
                                                          >
                                                          >
                                                          > for the pictures: http://www.shermantank.nl/M4A3(76)W.htm
                                                          >
                                                          >
                                                          >
                                                          > regards,
                                                          >
                                                          > Johan Meijer


                                                          Geen virus gevonden in dit bericht.
                                                          Gecontroleerd door AVG - www.avg.com
                                                          Versie: 2014.0.4142 / Virusdatabase: 3604/6712 - datum van uitgifte: 09/30/13

                                                        • Billy Ray
                                                          Joe, I sure hope my Dad s Sherman an M4A3 105mm Big Bertha shows up some day... Billy Ray Son of a Tanker 777th Tank Battalion Sent from my iPhone
                                                          Message 29 of 29 , Oct 1, 2013
                                                          • 0 Attachment
                                                            Joe, 
                                                            I sure hope my Dad's Sherman an M4A3 105mm "Big Bertha" shows up some day...
                                                            Billy Ray
                                                            Son of a Tanker
                                                            777th Tank Battalion

                                                            Sent from my iPhone

                                                            On Oct 1, 2013, at 4:24 PM, "shermans in holland" <contact@...> wrote:

                                                             

                                                            Hi Joe,
                                                            Thanks for your info,
                                                            There are not a lot of old pictures on the www about this Sherman. I've got some older pictures, but they are not good enough to show a number. So i'll keep on searching and i hope i will find it some day!
                                                             
                                                            Johan


                                                            Van: G104@yahoogroups.com [mailto:G104@yahoogroups.com] Namens Joe DeMarco
                                                            Verzonden: dinsdag 1 oktober 2013 16:34
                                                            Aan: G104@yahoogroups.com
                                                            Onderwerp: Re: Re: [G104] looking for a serial number

                                                             

                                                            Hi Johan,
                                                             
                                                            That tank has some early features which would suggest it was made by Chrysler around April or May 1944.
                                                            I'm pretty sure that the USA Number assigned to that would have been 8 digits long, beginning with 30100xxx.
                                                            Thanks for posting the image.
                                                            A period photo is an excellent "back door" to the Registration Number of a surviving tank. 
                                                            Unfortunately it doesn't seem like it would be possible to get a good read of the numbers from that photo.
                                                            Perhaps there are some other pix from the same time period that would clearly show the Registration Number?
                                                             
                                                            Joe
                                                             
                                                             
                                                             
                                                             
                                                             

                                                            Sent: Monday, September 30, 2013 4:22 PM
                                                            Subject: RE: Re: [G104] looking for a serial number [2 Attachments]

                                                             Hello all,


                                                            I found a picture of the Beffe Sherman. On that picture there are some numbers visable. It looks like: 3051319. It is hardly to see so i can easely be wrong. Is this a possible reg. number? 


                                                            regards,

                                                            Johan Meijer



                                                            ---In G104@yahoogroups.com, <g104@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

                                                            Hello Johan,

                                                            It would certainly be interesting to be able to determine the history of
                                                            that Sherman. It is an early Chrysler (Spring 1944) production vehicle as
                                                            evidenced by the very low serial number of the E8020 casting (A11) & the
                                                            early position of the forward cable clamp, behind, not on, the E8020 piece.
                                                            Many of the bogie units that Chrysler used had dates cast on them, which can
                                                            provide a clue about when the tank was made. I don't have any clear shots of
                                                            the dates, but would guess they might be "3-44." The turret is also an early
                                                            production casting (serial number A75) with a fitting (that was later
                                                            eliminated) for a forward antenna mount. You can also see the "ghost" of the
                                                            extra lifting ring just behind the forward antenna mount. Certainly the
                                                            early turret & hull are appropriate together, but I would wonder why only
                                                            the turret shows evidence of having had the metal rods that some US units
                                                            welded on to hold foliage? Could the turret be from another tank? The engine
                                                            deck panels are replacements taken from an M74. I'm sure that, as built,
                                                            that tank would have had a 1-piece rearmost engine deck. Did you see any
                                                            damage or penetrations on the tank?

                                                            The numbers you saw stamped in the rear are probably just the part number &
                                                            serial number of the individual piece of armor plate. On a clean Sherman,
                                                            stamped numbers can be found on almost everything. One of our members
                                                            sanded through many layers of paint to expose the serial number (43911) of a
                                                            similar M4A3(76)VVSS in Clervaux. I expect the Beffe would have a lower
                                                            S/N, but don't recommend sanding without getting permission. I've attached
                                                            a photo I marked up to show people where to look for a loose build sequence
                                                            number on a Chrysler. Sometimes it's possible to read that despite heavy
                                                            paint. I expect the Beffe would have "76B" & then a number 300 or lower.

                                                            Very impressive model, Johan! On a historical note, Chrsyler built Shermans
                                                            with VVSS had pressed metal, spoked road wheels installed as original
                                                            equipment. That's not to say they couldn't have been replaced with other
                                                            types in the course of service, but probably not all of them.

                                                            >I think the French did the box on all the vehicles they rebuild.

                                                            OK, Michel.
                                                            The Somua S35 at APG has "numbers in a box" stamped on the hull & turret.
                                                            Also has "CAIL NO 42761" (attached) which I take to be the Matricule Number?
                                                            French Lend Lease Shermans were obviously assigned Matricules, although I
                                                            don't think anyone has ever reported finding one stamped into the armor.

                                                            >If it's indeed RN 40152515 that would be SN 4052 isn' it?

                                                            Yes.

                                                            Joe


                                                            --------------------------------------------------
                                                            From: "metalscalemodels" <contact@...>
                                                            Sent: Friday, October 07, 2011 10:21 AM
                                                            To: <G104@yahoogroups.com>
                                                            Subject: [G104] looking for a serial number

                                                            > I have been this summer In Beffe Belgium, after spending a hollyday in
                                                            > France, I visit the Shermantank over there. I went there looking for
                                                            > serial numbers. I found nothing on the known places, towlugs etc. I did
                                                            > find a number of what i believe could be a sn number. It is stamped only
                                                            > on the right backside. Unfortunately it is not very clear. I hope someone
                                                            > can make something of it.
                                                            >
                                                            > Does anyone know also something about the unitmarkings of the 771st tankbt
                                                            > in januari 1945. I believe that was the unit where this sherman belong to.
                                                            >
                                                            >
                                                            > for the pictures: http://www.shermantank.nl/M4A3(76)W.htm
                                                            >
                                                            >
                                                            >
                                                            > regards,
                                                            >
                                                            > Johan Meijer


                                                            Geen virus gevonden in dit bericht.
                                                            Gecontroleerd door AVG - www.avg.com
                                                            Versie: 2014.0.4142 / Virusdatabase: 3604/6712 - datum van uitgifte: 09/30/13

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