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M36/M36B-1 Tank Destroyer (Paperback)

Rare Photographs from Wartime Archives

WWII Tanks Photographic Books WWII Photographic Books Military

By David Doyle
Imprint: Pen & Sword Military
Series: Images of War
Pages: 128
ISBN: 9781526748928
Published: 30th April 2019

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Going into WWII, the prevailing strategy of the US command was that takns were not to be used to engage enemy tanks in combat. Rather, tanks were to be the armored spearhead to breach enemy positions. Enemy tanks were to be dealt with by specialized weapons, aptly named tank destroyers.

While the 3-inch weapon of the M10 was superior to that found on earlier US tank destroyers, it was still found to be inadequate against the ever-increasing weight of German armor. An even larger gun, the 90mm M3, was placed in a new, bigger open-topped turret on 100 new hulls purpose built for this, and by remanufacturing M10A1s, primarily from US-based training units. As the supply of these chassis was depleted, additional vehicles were created by converting Diesel-powered M10s, resulting in the M36B2. The M36B1 was built from the ground-up as a tank destroyer, using a hull based on that of the M4A3 but featuring a standard M36 turret. Examination of rare surviving vehicles indicate that the M36B1 hulls were manufactured expressly for this purpose, and were not merely M4A3 hulls that were converted.

While US antitank doctrine changed, rendering all the tank destroyers obsolete post-WWII, many of these vehicles were supplied to other nations, and in fact some survived as combat vehicles into the 21st century.

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About David Doyle

An avid military vehicle enthusiast whose collection includes 10 Vietnam-era vehicles, it not surprising that most of his 100+ published books focus on US military vehicles. In June 2015, he was presented the coveted Bart Vanderveen Award by the Military Vehicle Preservation Association, given in recognition of "…the individual who has contributed the most to the historic preservation of military vehicles worldwide."

Some of David Doyle's published works are - Panzerkampfwagen IV: The Backbone of Germany’s WWII Tank Forces; U.S. Half-Track Vehicles In Action; M151 Mutt In Action; The Complete DUKW Historical Reference; P-47 Thunderbolt In Action; B-17F Flying Fortress A Visual History of the B-17F Flying Fortress in WWII; USS Iowa (BB-61): The Story of "The Big Stick" from 1940 to the Present.

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