14 The Tank That Changed the Course of the War

The Tank That Changed the Course of the War

Posted on June 19, 2012 by team

T-34 was made on a basis of a battle tank A-32 and accepted for service in 1939. The construction of this vehicle was a quantum jump in the Russian and world tank-building. For the first time it successfully combined antiprojectile armor, powerful weapons and reliable undercarriage.

High mobility was provided by the powerful diesel engine and wide track. High fabricability of the construction allowed to arrange its serial production at the lack of manpower qualified enough at seven factories. During WWII they were trying to develop the construction of the tank and simplify the technology of its production. In the years of war 52 thousand T-34 tanks were made to participate in the battles.


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14 Responses to “The Tank That Changed the Course of the War”

  1. petrohof says:

    if i had the money, one of the 52,000 would be in my front yard. the price has gone up a lot in recent years, one here now cost $125,000 or even more.

  2. JJ says:

    Just read the book about T-34 (or “Sotka” as Fins called them) tanks in war between Finland and Russia 1941-1944. T-34 was huge, fast and it had firepower that fins had never seen before. Fins had mostly old Renault and light Vickers Tanks. T-34 must have been scary thing to face in battlefield!

    • JuhaPekkaNurminen says:

      Not as much scary as if you have seen Tiger or Panther from your T-34, when you got one of them and not being killed, it was huge celebrated. The victory of T-34 was that they provided still close enough acceptable power against enemy vehicles, but being built with good self-repair ability and the most important- HIGH QUANTITY. Despite of that, average life of T-34 in the front lines was only couple of days, not weeks-months like german panzer, but for every destroyed were still coming new ones till the end of war…

      • Sebastiaan says:

        So funny, how people always seem to overvalue the German tanks. Just dig into theory on the Russian KV-2 and IS-2 tanks. Basically, Germany had to make the tiger to cope with those bastards. Russian high command (before the conflict between them) visited the German tankfactories without being impressed at all, as knowing they had way superior tanks back home…

        • Fred Johnson says:

          The German tanks had several problems, although they were very good tanks. It was more like a sports car on an open field instead of a road. And that’s NOT where you drive a sports car.

          They were engineered very well. And over engineered. That’s one reason they broke down so much, too complicated, very close tolerances etc… Like a sports car.

          Whereas the Russian tank was more simple, easier to fix if it broke, and they did do that often.

          The German (big) tanks were also VERY heavy. One problem they had, was they had a hard time crossing bridges because they were so heavy, lots of times, they had to go find another route to take. That takes time, distance, and fuel, which was in short supply at the time.

          The Russian tanks were built for standard roadway specs, they could cross just about anything and go just about anywhere.

          Plus, when it rained, all that weight just turned the ground into a HUGE mud hole. They were great in the open fields, when they were dry. But if it was the least bit wet, the battle was over before it even started. They just didn’t know it.

          If they could have fixed the problems that caused them to break down, they would have been “great tanks” in the way a sports car is “great”. It’s great for what it was designed for (except for the heavy weigh). Open field, forest, and town to town fighting. Very well, but too well, engineered. (which was typical of German stuff at the time too)

          The Russian T-34 was a “good” tank, it ran, it was fixable, it was lighter, and was “survivable” a lot of times, well, for at least some of the crew members.

          But it’s best asset was their numbers. It’s like getting swamped with gnats in the summer time. There were just too many of them.

          There were even times when the Russians simply ran their tanks up on the German Tigers to immobilize them. They didn’t have to shoot them. It worked too.

          Hitler had a thing for “bigger is better”. That’s why he loved big, almost useless guns like the Gustav Gun. It was a great gun, but it was almost useless BECAUSE it was so big. Same with the tanks. Turns out, smaller was better.

          Plus there’s the cost of manufacturing LOTS of BIG tanks. They take up so much time to build, and resources, you can build a dozen T-34’s in the time it takes to build one Tiger.

          But then again, Hitler was wrong about a lot of things.

        • LK says:

          The Russians had numerical advantage in the tanks department, actually in every war machine department. The German tanks were superior but they didn’t have nearly as many. In fact the Soviet doctrine always favored quantity over quality. That’s not saying the T-34 was not a good tanks in it’s own right but if the Germans had the same number of Tiger II as the Russians had T-34 the outcome would have been much different

          • slam13 says:

            Sorry, but Tiger is a heavy tank ant T-34 is a middle weight tank. You shoud ncompare T-34 with T-III and T-IV and compare Tiger with IS-2 or KV-2

        • OldBikr says:

          As a matter of fact they thought the Germans were hiding the good stuff from them, because they could not accept the Germans had such poor quality tanks.

  3. CZenda says:

    The first photo shows T34 with additional armor and fast-identification marking done with white stripes somewhere in Czechoslovakia. Ironically, the marking used on Soviet tanks during 1968 occupation looked very similar.

  4. Tovarich Volk says:

    The T-34 was an unpleasant surprise for the Nazi’s as was another item that’s often overlooked, the PPSh-41.

  5. Scrat says:

    The T-34 was an amazing tank for it’s class. It was considered a Medium tank, like the M4 Sherman or the German MK IV. It was not a heavy tank like the Tiger which was in a league all its own at the time. The T-34/85 was produced until 1993!!! and there was serious consideration of modernizing the armor fire controls gun and engine and turning it into a light tank for use in low level conflicts by the UN.

  6. Connor T says:

    What are those disc shaped things above the gun of tanks in the 19th and 18th picture? Spotlights?

  7. javox says:

    well USA thought the same about sherman, they knew they needed about 4 or 5 tanks for destroy a panzer, so they built as many as fast as they could

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