QF 17pdr - USA

Discussion in 'WW2 General' started by schwarzpanzer, Jul 27, 2006.

  1. schwarzpanzer

    schwarzpanzer Member

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2005
    Messages:
    663
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    I can't for the life of me understand why this weapon wasn't adopted by the USA and there is still anger about the amount of Allied/Soviet lives it could have saved.

    The NIH thing doesn't count, as the M1 57mm was a 6pdr and of course the 75mm was basically the French Soixante-Quinze.

    It could have replaced the US 57mm, 76mm even 90mm.

    Maybe even in certain circumstances the Bazooka.
     
  2. JeffK

    JeffK New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2006
    Messages:
    29
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    1
    The US had its 76mm (3") AT gun which it thought sufficient. Problems with the ammo fuzes saw it lumped with a bad reputation which wasnt dispelled when the ammo improved. There was also T8-90mm in the sidelines, same as in the M36 M26. I am sure if the USA fought a defensive war it would have made this (and I think a 105mm) available.

    However the USA fought an offensive war and needed a weapon to fit its Tanks and Tank Destroyers and Infantry weapons were given a low priority.

    PS, A 17pdr weighed 2.5 tons, a bit hard to carry over your shoulder.
     
  3. Smokey

    Smokey Member

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2004
    Messages:
    532
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    It seems the 17 pounder was not just an infantry anti tank gun, but also a tank gun and I think thats what schwarzpanzer meant - the 17 pounder seemed suitable to become the standard allied tank gun
     
  4. plan_D

    plan_D Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2004
    Messages:
    11,985
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    No it couldn't. The OQF 17 Pdr. was too large. The Sherman Firefly which had the OQF 17 Pdr. was an impressive tank on tank vehicle, but it wasn't ideal against infantry because the MGs had to be deleted to make room. The OQF 17 Pdr. would have been perfect for the larger tanks, but it was really only any good in small numbers with the other tanks. Which is exactly what the British did, a single Sherman Firefly would be present in every troop.
     
  5. JeffK

    JeffK New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2006
    Messages:
    29
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    1
    plan D,

    The 17pdr in the Firefly was intended to provided a gun to fight against Tanks, there were enough 75mm Shermans to take out any Infantry. It was also used in a "lightened" form as the 77mm in the Comet.

    By the time the bigger tanks (Centurion) was available, the 20pdr (84mm) Gun was available.
    Schwartzpanzer said:
    It could have replaced the US 57mm, 76mm even 90mm.

    Maybe even in certain circumstances the Bazooka


    I cant see it replacing the bazooka.
     
  6. plan_D

    plan_D Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2004
    Messages:
    11,985
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Before you jump in thinking I'm clueless, just test the water first.

    I was replying to this "the 17 pounder seemed suitable to become the standard allied tank gun" Which would not be possible, for the reasons I mentioned previously. The key word in the quote is "standard" which implies all the Allied tanks using this weapon. This would delete the 75mm armed Shermans ... which is what I was trying to say, you need the 75mm and 76mm armed Shermans to deal with the infantry.
     
  7. JeffK

    JeffK New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2006
    Messages:
    29
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    1
    No,

    I knew what you meant.

    The last bit was for Smokey (But I forgot I put your name at the top, Sorry)
     
  8. plan_D

    plan_D Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2004
    Messages:
    11,985
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Okay. It's good to see we have another interested in armour on here.
     
  9. schwarzpanzer

    schwarzpanzer Member

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2005
    Messages:
    663
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    That'spretty much it Smokey, but the 6pdr airborne, 105mm, 25pdr Bazooka etc should stay. I don't actually usually agree with the modern 1 size fits all motto.


    Hi JeffK,

    It was because APC/HE was used, instead of the APCBC/HE of later rounds. Fuses have nothing to do with KE armour penetration ability.

    The 17pdr was better than the US 76mm and even the M3 90mm you mention. The 90mm had advantages over the 17pdr, but not enough IMHO.

    The 17pdr was an ideal offensive weapon.

    Gun Howitzers were still needed tough, so the support weapons; British 25pdr and US 105 150mm Long Tom would still be needed.

    As a tank and AT weapon, the 17pdr was hard to beat.

    The Bazooka was used a bit too often, due to the M1 Gun's (6pdr) failings. The 90mm was a bit too big after that.

    That's kinda what I was getting at JeffK.

    The 1st Centurions used 17pdr's, the 20pdr was for the Korean War. The 32pdr was available - beast of a gun, as was its 3.7in base.


    PlanD,

    This move enabled more ammo storage and better armour, the hull 'bullet-hose' was a waste of space anyway. The co-ax and turret MG's weren't deleted. I don't think the cupola .50 was fitted to British Shermans anyway though?

    I believe this was a huge mistake. All that happened is a Panzer commander would target the single Firefly, then the Comets/M4's were easy pickings.

    5 Fireflies and even a Tiger or Panther would have a real hard time, even in numbers - when the element of surprise was lost.

    Good point PD, but the 17pdr could fire HE - making these obsoleto.

    It couldn't effectively use HEAT rounds, but I don't think this matters?

    I don't think smoke rounds were issued either?
     
  10. Glider

    Glider Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2005
    Messages:
    6,160
    Likes Received:
    128
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Consellor
    Location:
    Lincolnshire
    I think you will find that the 17pd was issued in limited numbers simply because it was initially available in limited numbers. As supplies improved the ratio of 17pd to 75mm improved and towards the end of the was it was often closer to 50/50.

    The 17pd did fire HE but it was recognised as not being as good a shell as the 75mm.

    Small but interesting point, some units preferred to keep their 17pd Firefly together in one platoon to act as an organised unit to tackle the Panthers ect. These were in a minority but it did happen on occasions
     
  11. plan_D

    plan_D Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2004
    Messages:
    11,985
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    I wouldn't blame them in situations where the opponent was known to be heavy in armour. It's a waste of a good anti-armour tank to send them in a situation against a heavily infantry bias opponent.
     
  12. mosquitoman

    mosquitoman Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2005
    Messages:
    2,990
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Occupation:
    student
    Location:
    Saffron Walden/Sheffield
    Home Page:
    How could anything replace the bazooka- infantry will always need a good handheld AT weapon
     
  13. Gnomey

    Gnomey World Travelling Doctor
    Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2004
    Messages:
    41,730
    Likes Received:
    517
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Doctor
    Location:
    Portsmouth / Royal Deeside, UK
    Home Page:
    Panzershrek or Panzerfaust were better...
     
  14. Tony Williams

    Tony Williams Member

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2004
    Messages:
    273
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    Occupation:
    Freelance gun and ammunition writer and editor
    Home Page:
    Penetration of the Allied guns of around this calibre was approximately as follows (at 1000 yards/30 degree impact, with APCBC ammo):

    75mm gun = 60 mm
    76mm gun = 90 mm
    77mm gun = 100 mm
    17 pdr = 120 mm

    As a matter of interest, the 57mm/6 pdr could penetrate around 85 mm, which explains why it was retained by the British as a tank gun alongside the 75mm. With APDS, penetration of the British guns was considerably increased.

    A couple of other comments:

    The 77mm is often described as a "more compact" version of the 17 pdr, possibly because it fired the same projectiles, but in fact the cartridge case was much smaller and less powerful. In the pic below (from the Ammo Photo Gallery on my website), the 76x420R is the 77mm, the 76x583R is the 17 pdr (with APDS).

    Defective fuzes can certainly hurt the penetration of APHE ammo, if they detonate on impact, before the shell penetrates. They are meant to detonate after penetration.

    Performance of the 76mm was disappointing, it should have been as least as good as the 77mm but the AP shell was not as good.

    Tony Williams: Military gun and ammunition website and discussion forum

    [​IMG]
     
  15. schwarzpanzer

    schwarzpanzer Member

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2005
    Messages:
    663
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    Hi Glider,

    I think it should have entered mass production, replacing most other types on assembly lines. It could even have replsaced the Soviet 57mm, 76mm 85mm guns! As soon as the 'Pheasants' showed their worth - that should have been it.

    That is weird, I didn't know that. Thanks Glider. I'm sure with some work it could have been as good though?

    That makes sense. Thanks again.

    True, but there was never a Panzer far away. The Allies never intended tank-to-tank fights, but it was inevitable. The Shermans and Cromells were just target practice. The PzIV special was numerous and known, it should have been forseen. What a waste of Allied lives.


    The M1/6pdr Bazooka were used a little too much IMO. The 17pdr as a hidden dual-purpose gun (similar to how the PaK's were used) would make things a little less frantic?


    Hi Tony Williams,

    I know the 6pdr was good, it was also low-slung, portable and tried-and-tested. Also 17pdr production wasn't tooled up enough...

    It suffered from shatter-gap though, but SVDS would probably offset this? BTW The shell 3rd from the left on that pic, is that 6pdr SVDS?

    I know the 77mm shell was less powerful and shorter than the 17pdr's - so it was easier to handle in a turret - but IIRC it was wider?:confused:

    I guess a detonation could blow the penetrator apart? Thanks for that, never thought.:oops:

    Was it the shell or the gun?

    The best gun should have had the Brit AP ammo and the US HE IMHO.

    The US prefered AP/HE though and I doubt would have accepted the (superior IMO) Brit solid-shot thinking, even though lives were lost as a result. Still, they learnt their lesson and adopted the 105mm later.
     
  16. Tony Williams

    Tony Williams Member

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2004
    Messages:
    273
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    Occupation:
    Freelance gun and ammunition writer and editor
    Home Page:
    The initial problem with the 17 pdr's HE shell was that the chamber pressures for the high-velocity gun were much higher than for the 75mm, so the shell needed thicker walls and could hold less HE. Later, the HE shell was loaded to a much lower velocity than the AP, which enabled a better shell to be used.

    Yes.

    No - as you can see, the cartridge case was shorter and narrower, and held a lot less propellant. It was actually the same cartridge case as was used by the 3" 20cwt AA gun, which was in service from WW1 until after WW2. The 77mm was loaded to a higher pressure though.

    The shell. Ballistics of the gun were similar to the 77mm.

    Tony Williams: Military gun and ammunition website and discussion forum
     
Loading...

Share This Page