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Armor/AFV: Allied - WWII
Armor and ground forces of the Allied forces during World War II.
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Condition OF M26 Tanks In Korea
long_tom
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Illinois, United States
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Posted: Thursday, December 26, 2019 - 09:02 AM UTC
I wanted to depict the Tamiya M26 Pershing as used in the initial stages of the Korean War. I've seen the black and white pictures, but I wondered about the conditions of the tanks themselves, since they had been hastily refurbished before being sent to fight. Should I assume in new condition, or worn out and there was the minimum of repair to make them work?
SWATdoc
#503
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Posted: Thursday, December 26, 2019 - 02:01 PM UTC
Hello Tom,

A book that I read, which I believe was entitled US Marine Tanks in Korea, there was a lot of anecdotal information provided on the M26. There seemed to be quite a rush to gather enough of them and to ensure that they were properly equipped for battle. If my memory serves correctly, there was an issue where an early shipment of M26's were flooded while enroute to ROK and the ensuing headache with electrical components.

As I write this, I do not recall the name of the honorable veteran who authored this excellent book.

Respectfully,

Allen
Tank1812
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Posted: Thursday, December 26, 2019 - 02:57 PM UTC
Oscar Gilbert is the Marine who wrote the book. The transport was for Marine unit 4th Tank Batt. out of San Diego.
TopSmith
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Posted: Thursday, December 26, 2019 - 03:34 PM UTC
I would expect most arrived in good shape. I expect there was a bit of mud/ dirt/ snow/ice to be found on them shortly though.
Garrand
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Posted: Friday, December 27, 2019 - 01:56 AM UTC
Keep in mind the tanks were probably no more than around 5 years old by the time they hit Korea, so I doubt they were rusty hulks. A lot of the issues they had IIRC were with replaceable components, like the dreaded fan belts issue.

Damon.
GreenBooRay
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Posted: Friday, December 27, 2019 - 03:07 AM UTC
Tom,

Given the accuracy (or lack thereof) of Wikipedia...check out this on the M-26 in the Korean War ... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M26_Pershing

I built a dio of an M-26 from C Co. 73rd Armor in the battle at the "Bowling Alley" (near Taegu in Aug 1950) some time ago and during my research for that project read from several sources that the M-26's used early on came from the divisions stationed in Japan (and Ordnance storage). Others' comments re: their mechanical issues syncs up with what I've read as well.

Best regards,

Steve

gmat5037
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Posted: Friday, December 27, 2019 - 05:20 AM UTC
Three M26s were located at the Tokyo Ordnance Depot and assigned to three crews lead by Lt. Samuel R. Fowler, and after a brief familiarization and testing of their guns were shipped to Chinju. The substitute fan belts installed stretched after a short time which would immobilize the tanks. On July 28, they were waiting for new fan belts at Chinju, when the NK forces entered the city. The US forces evacuated while Fowler's detachment waited to be returned by rail. But they then were engaged by NK forces with Fowler being wounded. Trying to retreat, they were blocked by a blown bridge. While trying to make a litter for Fowler, they were ambushed with some including Fowler seeking cover under the bridge. One tank had a driver who rescued 6 men but the other 8 under the bridge were killed or captured. The lone tank reached the Nan River where the overheated engine stalled and could not be started. So all three M26s were lost.
From Hunnicutt's Pershing book. The others came from CONUS save for a company's worth that came from the Hawaii National Guard and were assigned to B company 89th Tank Battalion.
One of the M26s assigned to Lt. Fowler. Hunnicutt lists the date as 22 Jul. 1950. Either way this is too early for any of the CONUS or USMC Pershings to be in Korea. Sn noted 30127945
https://www.businessinsider.com/the-uss-best-tank-in-world-war-ii-rarely-saw-combat-2018-7
M26s supporting the 27th RCT LIFE 8th Aug 1950
http://www.gstatic.com/hostedimg/47332f0c4c0bc472_large
grant
trickymissfit
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Posted: Friday, December 27, 2019 - 08:30 AM UTC

Quoted Text

I wanted to depict the Tamiya M26 Pershing as used in the initial stages of the Korean War. I've seen the black and white pictures, but I wondered about the conditions of the tanks themselves, since they had been hastily refurbished before being sent to fight. Should I assume in new condition, or worn out and there was the minimum of repair to make them work?



If you've ever watched the film series World's Greatest Tank Battles on PBS, the one on Korea is a must watch. I knew Bob Dillon quite well, and he was sharp as a tack till death. He told me once that there were two or three types of M26 tanks in Korea. They were issued the M26a I think, but when they got in trouble, they raided the tank wharhouses in Germany. Many of these were the T26. (Which T26?) He saw two or three different track styles. He said there were a few field more done to them ( like moving the travel lock). Remembered one tank that only had a small section of fenders left on one side. Said spare parts for the first year or so were hard to come by.
One thing Bob often said was that the M26 was in constant revision during its life span. The M46 combined most of the revisions as well as some others.
Gary
long_tom
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Posted: Friday, December 27, 2019 - 09:50 AM UTC
Thanks. From the pictures I've seen in Tank Armor In Korea (most US Marine tank pictures), the first ones definitely looked like they weren't different than the ones that fought in WW2 itself in Germany. I deliberately wanted to do a M26 that looked as much like it did during WW2 as possible for one scenario.
Frenchy
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Posted: Friday, December 27, 2019 - 10:12 AM UTC
Related thread :

http://www.armorama.com/modules.php?op=modload&name=SquawkBox&file=index&req=viewtopic&topic_id=189242&page=1

H.P.
ALBOWIE
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Posted: Friday, December 27, 2019 - 05:40 PM UTC

Quoted Text


Quoted Text

I wanted to depict the Tamiya M26 Pershing as used in the initial stages of the Korean War. I've seen the black and white pictures, but I wondered about the conditions of the tanks themselves, since they had been hastily refurbished before being sent to fight. Should I assume in new condition, or worn out and there was the minimum of repair to make them work?



If you've ever watched the film series World's Greatest Tank Battles on PBS, the one on Korea is a must watch. I knew Bob Dillon quite well, and he was sharp as a tack till death. He told me once that there were two or three types of M26 tanks in Korea. They were issued the M26a I think, but when they got in trouble, they raided the tank wharhouses in Germany. Many of these were the T26. (Which T26?) He saw two or three different track styles. He said there were a few field more done to them ( like moving the travel lock). Remembered one tank that only had a small section of fenders left on one side. Said spare parts for the first year or so were hard to come by.
One thing Bob often said was that the M26 was in constant revision during its life span. The M46 combined most of the revisions as well as some others.
Gary



The M26A1 (the budget upgrade of the M26) was only used by the Marines (5 TB from memory). The M26 in use may have included some of the few hundred WW2 T26E3 (later standardised as the M26) but these would have been brought up to M26 Standards just having a different Glacis/Blower mount bulge). The M46 was what was recommended after WW2 to address known shortcomings of the T/M 26. Due to post war budgets only some of the changes such as the new Gun were made as the M26A1. The M46 was all of the changes (New power pack etc)

Al