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M4A1E9 in Grafenwohr

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  • Michael Lembo
       I had a chance to take a closer look at the M4A1E9 that is displayed in front of the Post HQ in Grafenwohr. It was moved to the current location a few
    Message 1 of 6 , Sep 27, 2012
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         I had a chance to take a closer look at the M4A1E9 that is displayed in front of the Post HQ in Grafenwohr. It was moved to the current location a few years ago, was originally in front of the old 7th ATC HQ on the West end of the parade field. 
       
        The serial number is 52582, stamped in the upper right corner of the transmission housing (attached photo)  That number is also stamped into the dataplate location, but I did not get a good enough photo of it.  I checked the rear hull sides for a build number but there is nothing showing through the paint anywhere, on either side.  I could see a trace of the serial number on the front so I knew where to scrape, but since the build nos. are not always in exactly the same location, I can't just scrape up the sides digging for a number. It must be stamped lightly enough to not show through.  I will have to keep track of the re-paint schedules and try to get a look at the sides whenever it gets sandblasted/repainted.
       
        The escape hatch is in place and the other hatches are welded shut, but the loader's hatch just has a bolt stuck through the hasp and the hinges still move freely, so I was able to get inside. On the firewall the upper hull serial no. is 3499 (Continental, Wheeling), but the plate with the heat treatment no. is too rusted to read. There is still a mount in the loader's station for a VRC-3 radio, so it had that modification as well.
       
        The turret number is covered by spare track, so I looked for a number cast into the roof. Only part numbers were cast there but 1935 was stamped in just to the right of the removed spotlight mount.  On the back of the turret No.675 was stamped in. Since both those numbers end with 5, and 5 is the only cast number visible alongside the track blocks, I had to take them off to confirm the SN.  Under the first block on the right side of the turret was the number 935, I pulled the second one away far enough to see a "1" under it, so the turret is SN 1935, with a "2" above the cast numbers.
       
        I get 3085134 as an RN, would the mfg date be about Nov.44 like the one in Pilsen?
       
        If anyone wants more photos, let me know.
       
       
      Michael
       
    • Joe DeMarco
      Hi Michael, ... The key number for S/Ns 51850 thru 52680 would be 3032597, so 52582 = USA 3085179. ... Yes, the last 204 serial numbers listed above would have
      Message 2 of 6 , Sep 27, 2012
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        Hi Michael,
         
        >I get 3085134 as an RN
         
        The key number for S/Ns 51850 thru 52680 would be 3032597, so 52582 = USA 3085179.
         
        >would the mfg date be about Nov.44 like the one in Pilsen?
         
        Yes, the last 204 serial numbers listed above would have been Nov, 1944, which was the end of this particular Production Order.
         
        It's obvious that they are not, but if the build numbers were in strict sequential order with the serial number, 52582 would have been # 5563.
        That would refer to the 5563rd M4A1 both 75 & 76mm made by PSC.
         
        A colleague looked at the one in Sinsheim, & found a build number of 5589 - no serial number.
        If the Museum people there would want a "ballpark" registration number to paint on, 3085190 would probably be pretty close to the real one.
         
        >On the firewall the upper hull serial no. is 3499 (Continental, Wheeling)
         
        That also refers to the total number of both M4A1 75 & 76mm upper hulls C-W cast up to that point.
        On the other hand, General Steel ( G in a shield on the front ) started over at S/N 1 when they switched over to casting large hatch upper hulls.
         
        Just from looking at the build number on surviving examples, the final M4A1(76) Production Order also seems to have started over at 1 for some reason.
        Thus, I would expect the first one, S/N 67701 to have a build number of 1-1.
         
        Maybe you or P-O will come across that one one of these days?
         
        >On the back of the turret No.675 was stamped in.
         
        That may be the rebuild serial number stamped on by Bowen or whoever. 
        If that were the case, I think it would also be stamped in several places on the hull.
         
        The E9 is unusual. I doubt that would have been done during a postwar rebuild.
         
        Did you look at the Priest?
          
        Thanks as always,
         
        Joe
         
         
         
         

        Sent: Thursday, September 27, 2012 4:49 AM
        Subject: [G104] M4A1E9 in Grafenwohr

           I had a chance to take a closer look at the M4A1E9 that is displayed in front of the Post HQ in Grafenwohr. It was moved to the current location a few years ago, was originally in front of the old 7th ATC HQ on the West end of the parade field. 
         
          The serial number is 52582, stamped in the upper right corner of the transmission housing (attached photo)  That number is also stamped into the dataplate location, but I did not get a good enough photo of it.  I checked the rear hull sides for a build number but there is nothing showing through the paint anywhere, on either side.  I could see a trace of the serial number on the front so I knew where to scrape, but since the build nos. are not always in exactly the same location, I can't just scrape up the sides digging for a number. It must be stamped lightly enough to not show through.  I will have to keep track of the re-paint schedules and try to get a look at the sides whenever it gets sandblasted/repainted.
         
          The escape hatch is in place and the other hatches are welded shut, but the loader's hatch just has a bolt stuck through the hasp and the hinges still move freely, so I was able to get inside. On the firewall the upper hull serial no. is 3499 (Continental, Wheeling), but the plate with the heat treatment no. is too rusted to read. There is still a mount in the loader's station for a VRC-3 radio, so it had that modification as well.
         
          The turret number is covered by spare track, so I looked for a number cast into the roof. Only part numbers were cast there but 1935 was stamped in just to the right of the removed spotlight mount.  On the back of the turret No.675 was stamped in. Since both those numbers end with 5, and 5 is the only cast number visible alongside the track blocks, I had to take them off to confirm the SN.  Under the first block on the right side of the turret was the number 935, I pulled the second one away far enough to see a "1" under it, so the turret is SN 1935, with a "2" above the cast numbers.
         
          I get 3085134 as an RN, would the mfg date be about Nov.44 like the one in Pilsen?
         
          If anyone wants more photos, let me know.
         
         
        Michael
         


      • Michael Lembo
        Hi Joe,    There are two Priests in Graf now, the M7B1 in front of the HQ next to the M4A1E9 is the one I found with the rebuild RN stamping, 40152515.  I
        Message 3 of 6 , Sep 28, 2012
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          Hi Joe,
             There are two Priests in Graf now, the M7B1 in front of the HQ next to the M4A1E9 is the one I found with the rebuild RN stamping, 40152515.  I did not have a chance to go inside of it to look for a serial number yet. 
           
             The other one is an M7B2 on the parade field in front of the old 7th ATC HQ, where the E9 used to be.  This one has SN 4602 in a box just above the transmission housing.  I could see a "5" showing through the paint just above the SN, thought it might be a stamped RN like on the B1, but it turned out to be just a double stamped 5 with a gouge next to it. Might have been intended to be "51".  I got inside this one, but did not find a serial number anywhere else inside.  The hull wall next to the driver's knee had nothing, not even a mounting point for a dataplate.  This one also has a French rebuild plate on the front hull stamped ABS No.102 6-1964.
           
          Michael

          From: Joe DeMarco <snick13@...>
          To: G104@yahoogroups.com
          Sent: Friday, September 28, 2012 1:57 AM
          Subject: Re: [G104] M4A1E9 in Grafenwohr
           
          Hi Michael,
           
          >I get 3085134 as an RN
           
          The key number for S/Ns 51850 thru 52680 would be 3032597, so 52582 = USA 3085179.
           
          >would the mfg date be about Nov.44 like the one in Pilsen?
           
          Yes, the last 204 serial numbers listed above would have been Nov, 1944, which was the end of this particular Production Order.
           
          It's obvious that they are not, but if the build numbers were in strict sequential order with the serial number, 52582 would have been # 5563.
          That would refer to the 5563rd M4A1 both 75 & 76mm made by PSC.
           
          A colleague looked at the one in Sinsheim, & found a build number of 5589 - no serial number.
          If the Museum people there would want a "ballpark" registration number to paint on, 3085190 would probably be pretty close to the real one.
           
          >On the firewall the upper hull serial no. is 3499 (Continental, Wheeling)
           
          That also refers to the total number of both M4A1 75 & 76mm upper hulls C-W cast up to that point.
          On the other hand, General Steel ( G in a shield on the front ) started over at S/N 1 when they switched over to casting large hatch upper hulls.
           
          Just from looking at the build number on surviving examples, the final M4A1(76) Production Order also seems to have started over at 1 for some reason.
          Thus, I would expect the first one, S/N 67701 to have a build number of 1-1.
           
          Maybe you or P-O will come across that one one of these days?
           
          >On the back of the turret No.675 was stamped in.
           
          That may be the rebuild serial number stamped on by Bowen or whoever. 
          If that were the case, I think it would also be stamped in several places on the hull.
           
          The E9 is unusual. I doubt that would have been done during a postwar rebuild.
           
          Did you look at the Priest?
            
          Thanks as always,
           
          Joe
           
           
           
           

          Sent: Thursday, September 27, 2012 4:49 AM
          Subject: [G104] M4A1E9 in Grafenwohr

             I had a chance to take a closer look at the M4A1E9 that is displayed in front of the Post HQ in Grafenwohr. It was moved to the current location a few years ago, was originally in front of the old 7th ATC HQ on the West end of the parade field. 
           
            The serial number is 52582, stamped in the upper right corner of the transmission housing (attached photo)  That number is also stamped into the dataplate location, but I did not get a good enough photo of it.  I checked the rear hull sides for a build number but there is nothing showing through the paint anywhere, on either side.  I could see a trace of the serial number on the front so I knew where to scrape, but since the build nos. are not always in exactly the same location, I can't just scrape up the sides digging for a number. It must be stamped lightly enough to not show through.  I will have to keep track of the re-paint schedules and try to get a look at the sides whenever it gets sandblasted/repainted.
           
            The escape hatch is in place and the other hatches are welded shut, but the loader's hatch just has a bolt stuck through the hasp and the hinges still move freely, so I was able to get inside. On the firewall the upper hull serial no. is 3499 (Continental, Wheeling), but the plate with the heat treatment no. is too rusted to read. There is still a mount in the loader's station for a VRC-3 radio, so it had that modification as well.
           
            The turret number is covered by spare track, so I looked for a number cast into the roof. Only part numbers were cast there but 1935 was stamped in just to the right of the removed spotlight mount.  On the back of the turret No.675 was stamped in. Since both those numbers end with 5, and 5 is the only cast number visible alongside the track blocks, I had to take them off to confirm the SN.  Under the first block on the right side of the turret was the number 935, I pulled the second one away far enough to see a "1" under it, so the turret is SN 1935, with a "2" above the cast numbers.
           
            I get 3085134 as an RN, would the mfg date be about Nov.44 like the one in Pilsen?
           
            If anyone wants more photos, let me know.
           
           
          Michael
           
        • Michael Lembo
            Here is a photo of the wall in front of the Driver s position in the M7B2. The later paint is falling off revealing the US paint and stowage markings
          Message 4 of 6 , Sep 28, 2012
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              Here is a photo of the wall in front of the Driver's position in the M7B2. The later paint is falling off revealing the US paint and stowage markings underneath.  Makes me think this is a good candidate for paint Archaelogy, but being an M7B2 only markings of a post-war unit would likely be found. Also attached is a photo of the SN and the 5 above it.  I can see a decent looking Ford GAA through the access panels in the firewall, just going to waste in a display vehicle.
             
            Michael

            From: Joe DeMarco <snick13@...>
            To: G104@yahoogroups.com
            Sent: Friday, September 28, 2012 1:57 AM
            Subject: Re: [G104] M4A1E9 in Grafenwohr
             
            Hi Michael,
             
            >I get 3085134 as an RN
             
            The key number for S/Ns 51850 thru 52680 would be 3032597, so 52582 = USA 3085179.
             
            >would the mfg date be about Nov.44 like the one in Pilsen?
             
            Yes, the last 204 serial numbers listed above would have been Nov, 1944, which was the end of this particular Production Order.
             
            It's obvious that they are not, but if the build numbers were in strict sequential order with the serial number, 52582 would have been # 5563.
            That would refer to the 5563rd M4A1 both 75 & 76mm made by PSC.
             
            A colleague looked at the one in Sinsheim, & found a build number of 5589 - no serial number.
            If the Museum people there would want a "ballpark" registration number to paint on, 3085190 would probably be pretty close to the real one.
             
            >On the firewall the upper hull serial no. is 3499 (Continental, Wheeling)
             
            That also refers to the total number of both M4A1 75 & 76mm upper hulls C-W cast up to that point.
            On the other hand, General Steel ( G in a shield on the front ) started over at S/N 1 when they switched over to casting large hatch upper hulls.
             
            Just from looking at the build number on surviving examples, the final M4A1(76) Production Order also seems to have started over at 1 for some reason.
            Thus, I would expect the first one, S/N 67701 to have a build number of 1-1.
             
            Maybe you or P-O will come across that one one of these days?
             
            >On the back of the turret No.675 was stamped in.
             
            That may be the rebuild serial number stamped on by Bowen or whoever. 
            If that were the case, I think it would also be stamped in several places on the hull.
             
            The E9 is unusual. I doubt that would have been done during a postwar rebuild.
             
            Did you look at the Priest?
              
            Thanks as always,
             
            Joe
             
             
             
             

            Sent: Thursday, September 27, 2012 4:49 AM
            Subject: [G104] M4A1E9 in Grafenwohr

               I had a chance to take a closer look at the M4A1E9 that is displayed in front of the Post HQ in Grafenwohr. It was moved to the current location a few years ago, was originally in front of the old 7th ATC HQ on the West end of the parade field. 
             
              The serial number is 52582, stamped in the upper right corner of the transmission housing (attached photo)  That number is also stamped into the dataplate location, but I did not get a good enough photo of it.  I checked the rear hull sides for a build number but there is nothing showing through the paint anywhere, on either side.  I could see a trace of the serial number on the front so I knew where to scrape, but since the build nos. are not always in exactly the same location, I can't just scrape up the sides digging for a number. It must be stamped lightly enough to not show through.  I will have to keep track of the re-paint schedules and try to get a look at the sides whenever it gets sandblasted/repainted.
             
              The escape hatch is in place and the other hatches are welded shut, but the loader's hatch just has a bolt stuck through the hasp and the hinges still move freely, so I was able to get inside. On the firewall the upper hull serial no. is 3499 (Continental, Wheeling), but the plate with the heat treatment no. is too rusted to read. There is still a mount in the loader's station for a VRC-3 radio, so it had that modification as well.
             
              The turret number is covered by spare track, so I looked for a number cast into the roof. Only part numbers were cast there but 1935 was stamped in just to the right of the removed spotlight mount.  On the back of the turret No.675 was stamped in. Since both those numbers end with 5, and 5 is the only cast number visible alongside the track blocks, I had to take them off to confirm the SN.  Under the first block on the right side of the turret was the number 935, I pulled the second one away far enough to see a "1" under it, so the turret is SN 1935, with a "2" above the cast numbers.
             
              I get 3085134 as an RN, would the mfg date be about Nov.44 like the one in Pilsen?
             
              If anyone wants more photos, let me know.
             
             
            Michael
             
          • Tich
            Michael The RN 40152515 should be SN 4052, if my math is correct, and should be the 263th M7B1 build. The dataplate at a priest is located in front of the
            Message 5 of 6 , Sep 28, 2012
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              Michael

              The RN 40152515 should be SN 4052, if my math is correct, and should be the 263th M7B1 build.

              The dataplate at a priest is located in front of the driver, above the "window". However there is no SN there, the only place I have ever found a serial on a Priest is on the rear plate below the left taillight.

              Michel
            • Michael Lembo
              Hi Michel,   I had already discussed the M7B1 with Joe, he gave me the same serial no.  There is no dataplate in the M7B2 anymore.  Did you check inside the
              Message 6 of 6 , Sep 28, 2012
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                Hi Michel,
                  I had already discussed the M7B1 with Joe, he gave me the same serial no.  There is no dataplate in the M7B2 anymore.  Did you check inside the B1 already?  I will be back in Vilseck/Graf in about two weeks, I had it on my list to check inside the B1 then.  I am back at home now and will be able to resume sending you vehicle data this weekend.
                 
                Michael

                From: Tich <michelvanloon@...>
                To: G104@yahoogroups.com
                Sent: Friday, September 28, 2012 8:21 PM
                Subject: [G104] Re: M7 Priests in Graf.
                 
                Michael

                The RN 40152515 should be SN 4052, if my math is correct, and should be the 263th M7B1 build.

                The dataplate at a priest is located in front of the driver, above the "window". However there is no SN there, the only place I have ever found a serial on a Priest is on the rear plate below the left taillight.

                Michel

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