Sir John Valentine Carden survives.

So many gun nuts...what a bunch of nerds....but um yes they are ahem all quite correct.

The BESA was exactly the same weapon as the Czechoslovakian ZB37 Machine gun (they had 3 versions an AFV gun which the British copied as well as a fortress gun and tripod mounted version for the infantry and it fired the 7.92x57mm Mauser round from a 'non disintegrating 225 round belt' the same bullet used by the German Military for their Rifles (primarily KAR 98, G43) and machine guns (MG34 and MG 42 as well as the FG42 as well as their aircraft machine guns).

In order to expedite its introduction it was simply put into production with no changes - the delay in modifying it to .303 deemed far worse than the relatively small burden of supplying the different machine gun ammo to the tanks.

Now you will excuse me but I need to iron my anorak - its become creased.
 
7 October 1939. London, England.

The Under Secretary of State for War, Sir James Grigg, was lunching in his club with Peter Bennett, the Director-General of Tanks and Transport (DGTT) in the Ministry of Supply. Grigg had received a strongly worded letter the day before from General Roger Evans, commander of 1st Armoured Division. He shared the letter with Bennett and they talked through what they could do about it.

Evans had drawn Grigg’s attention to the ‘grave deficiencies’ in the organisation and war establishment of the Division. The plan was to have 1st Armoured Division ready to take to the field on 1 May 1940. With the mobilisation of the Division on 1st September the influx of reservists had meant that the Division was fully taken up with reorganisation and basic training. There was little scope for doing any training at Regimental level, never mind Brigade or Divisional level. This was partly because of the lack of vehicles, but partly also because of an outbreak of foot and mouth disease which limited the availability of training grounds.

Grigg wanted to know from Bennett what the Ministry of Supply was doing before he replied to the letter. Bennett had spoken to Leslie Burgin, the Minister, about the need to increase the production of tanks, and that therefore it needed to pushed up to the highest level of national priority. Bennett encouraged Grigg to do the same with his own Secretary of State for War, Leslie Hoare-Belisha. If the Cabinet could be persuaded of this, then it would make a difference to tank production over the next few months.

The war establishment for 1st Armoured Division that Evans expected was 58 A10s as ‘heavy cruisers’; 159 ‘light cruisers’ which would be a mixture of A9s and A13s; 24 CS cruisers, most of which would be A9s, and 108 light tanks. The Light tanks were meant to be the Mark VII (A17) with the 2-pdr gun, but since these were still to see the light of day, all were in fact the machine-gunned armed Mark VI. In addition to these 349 tanks, the Division expected to have seven Armoured Control Vehicles and 93 scout cars, of which they currently had not a one. With the current shortage of cruisers, the Armoured Division were equipped with more than 200 Mark VIs but really needed the cruisers. When the cruisers came along, the Light Tanks would be passed on to Cavalry Regiments being mechanised. Bennett noted that the order for 120 Mark VII had been allocated to North British Locomotives which meant that it could be mid-1940 before any of these tanks began to be available, far too late for the 1 May deadline.

Evans had made the decision that the Heavy Brigade would concentrate on the Vickers tanks: 58 A10s, 84 A9s, as well as the 24 A9CS versions, to ease the maintenance problems since all these tanks had the same engine and suspension. Made up of 2nd, 3rd and 5th Battalions RTR, the Heavy Brigade, with current production numbers, wasn’t expected to fully equipped until January. General Evans remarked that if the 40 A9 and A10s hadn’t been sent to the Mobile Division in Egypt, his Heavy Brigade would be closer to its completion.

The Light Brigade, made up of The Queen’s Bays, 9th Queen’s Royal Lancers and 10th Royal Hussars, would expect to each be equipped with 36 light tanks and 22 light cruisers. As the light tanks weren’t the desired A17 with the two-pounder gun, General Evans suggested that it would be better if they were equipped entirely with gun armed light cruisers. The Light Brigade’s current requirement of 72 cruisers would then rise to 174. Nuffield who was building the A13s, expected delivery of the 65 Mark Is to be completed in October, the Mark II with the thicker armour would start arriving from then on. By the end of January, it was expected that the Light Brigade too would be equipped with all its current requirement of 72 light cruiser tanks. If Evan’s request to have a full Brigade’s worth of A13s, that would take at least until the end of May to be done, providing that no other units received any production A13 Mark IIs.

While a full complement of tanks by the end of January was something to be grateful for, Evans noted that the Support Group was even slower at being formed than the tank regiments. There was no sign of the Royal Horse Artillery Regiment being assigned. He had been told that it might join them in France at some point after 1 May 1940. Likewise, the Light Anti-Aircraft/Anti-tank Regiment existed primarily on paper; of the two Motorised Infantry Battalions, one had been sent to Northern Ireland; and the Royal Engineers Field Squadron was deficient in its technical equipment, especially in regards of bridging equipment. The Royal Signals were 100 men short of their establishment; there was only one of the seven required RASC companies; and the RAOC were far short of what was needed, for example, they only had two of the eighteen breakdown lorries, and these were missing their trailers.

General Evans, however, had noted that ‘it is not the provision of material alone which forms the determining factor in our readiness to take to the field, but the provision of material in time to allow an adequate degree of training to be carried out before we go to war.’ He reminded Grigg that he had less than seven months before 1 May. It wasn’t just that he was deficient of important equipment, but also for the personnel trained to use it, as ‘It is not a matter of a week or two to complete our training on receipt of our equipment; it is a matter of months.’ He went on in his letter to say, ‘If this Division is to be ready to take to the field on 1st May 1940, the greater part of its equipment and armament must be in our hands at the beginning of the year; if it is not, the date of our readiness for war must be correspondingly postponed.’

The idea of a postponement wasn’t acceptable to anyone. If anything, with the situation unfolding in Poland, the need to get the 1st Armoured Division integrated into the BEF was all the more urgent. Thankfully Lord Gort was insisting that he didn’t want any more untrained and ill-equipped units under his command. The current situation of the BEF in France was bad enough without having yet another Division that would be better served getting themselves up to speed at home before being deployed across the Channel. The process of moving the BEF into position was proceeding as planned, but it was the largest scale operation undertaken by the Army since 1919, and therefore there were plenty of problems that Gort didn’t want to add to. John Grigg noted that the chances were that the shortages that Evans had identified in 1st Armoured Division were the result of the cupboard being stripped bare of anything useful by the regular forces making up the BEF.

Evans had also noted in his letter that when the tanks were delivered, they often were lacking their gun, which would be delivered separately and then have to be mounted and properly sighted. There was often a gap between the arrival of the tank from the manufacturer and the main armament being available. The bottleneck of producing enough 2-pdrs for both the increasing number of tanks and anti-tank regiments was proving to be a problem. This was made more complicated with the decision to move from the Vickers .303 co-axial machine gun to the BESA 7.62mm gun. There weren’t enough of the new Czech designed guns for training, never mind being available for tank use something that once again was a production problem. It would mean that later versions of the A13 Mark II would be equipped with a different co-axial machine gun. The A10 Mark IA and A13 Mark IIA, whose turrets would be redesigned to take the air cooled machine guns, would complicate logistics if they had to provide 7.62mm ammunition as well as .303 and 0.5 for the Vickers guns. The larger 15mm BESA which was also being introduced, was proving to be full of production bugs, delaying its availability. Evans did admit that if the Light Tanks were armed with this cannon in the Light Brigade, it would go somewhat towards improving their capability until the A13 cruisers were available.

Grigg noted that even if the production numbers of tanks was going to go up by giving a higher priority, the probability remained that the delivery of guns for the tanks wasn’t going to keep up. That was something that Campbell Clarke at Woolwich would have to deal with. It had been suggested that the Mark VII (A17) might have been armed with the Vickers 2-pdr pompom that was used on the A11. If that was possible, then it would save 120 QF 2-pdrs for the cruiser tanks. If Clarke could be convinced that the Light Tanks would be better off with that gun rather than a dedicated anti-tank gun, then it would help. Neither Grigg nor Bennett were convinced Clarke would agree.

Both men knew that there were so many new types of weapon being acquired that there was always going to be a backlog in fielding the necessary numbers. Bennett had visited the Royal Ordnance Factory in Nottingham where 2-pdrs were being produced, along with both 3.7-inch and Bofors 40mm AA guns. They were also in the running to build the new 5.5-inch medium gun for the Royal Artillery. The workforce in this factory, like all the others, was increasing. Delays in training new employees as well as delays in sourcing machine tools meant that it would take time before increased production was possible.

General Evans letter to Grigg had one last comment. He had recently been at Farnborough and seen the Valiant Mark I*, the cruiser version of the Valiant with the petrol engine and thinner armour, go through its paces. Evans had noted that it fitted the bill for a heavy cruiser much better than the A10. In fact, despite its weight and speed, he could see it being much more useful than all the current cruiser tanks. He had also seen the Valiant Mark I, which despite being named an Infantry Tank, was, to his mind, also a far better tank than the current crop of cruisers. He hoped that both models would be available as soon as possible, and if pressed, he believed the Mark I would probably be the better bet in the long run.

Over a brandy, Bennett and Grigg noted that they had both seen the proposal for Vickers Valiant Mark II whose turret had been designed with the new 6-pdr gun in mind. If they could persuade their respective Ministers to ask that a new production line for the new gun could be opened up as soon as possible, allowing for the early entry into service for that weapon, it would be a wise move. Bennett noted that the Vickers-Armstrong company had made bids for producing the 57mm weapon, as they had produced that bore of gun previously for the Royal Navy. Currently Woolwich hadn’t finalised the design for the gun carriage, and there were problems with the number of lathes available for the preferred L/50 calibre. Vickers were keen on going with a L/43 barrel for the tank gun, for which they had the necessary tooling, leaving the anti-tank gun for the Royal Artillery regiments to follow when the carriage was fully worked out. The two men agreed to bring that proposal before their respective Ministers. Grigg would bring the concerns of General Evans to the Secretary of State for War, but just about every commander in all three services were writing letters bemoaning the lack of preparedness for the conflict in which the nation was now embroiled.

Nice update, you may have just butterflied the Crusader as well.

If Vickers can get a look at a 6pdr and show a prototype 6pdr Valiant turret soonish, before the end of the year say, something Vickers would be more than capable of then that suddenly changes the dynamic of the UK tank procurement program.

At present you have Vickers making Infantry and cruiser tanks in the Valiant (with more of a focus on infantry tanks) that could soon be armed with a 6pdr. Depending on when the expected delivery of those tanks is, possibly as early as mid to late 1940, that changes how you look at all other tank projects.
The Covenanter has already gone and the Crusader is likely only going to start rolling off the production lines the same time as the 6pdr Valiant, only the Crusader has a 2pdr. Why would you wait that long for something that is edging it's way towards obsolescence already. Yes it may be a good design when it arrives but it's upgrade potential is limited. Why put resources into it if that is the case?
I could see a believable scenario where the MoS issue a revised specification for Nuffield that is a hybrid crusader/cavalier say 50-60mm of armour, a weight of around 22.5 tons and a three man turret with a 6pdr. Yes it will be delayed compared to the OTL crusader but the Crusader as is will likely look like it will need replacing before long anyway, you can keep going with A9's, 10's and 13's if you have to.
 
If your going to change the Lion from petrol to diesel, handbuilt aluminium individual cylinders to cast iron monoblock cast in banks of four with ports to turn it into a two stroke with a blower, the question is when does it stop being a Lion?
Well, handbuilt steel to monobloc AL or Fe. There was very little of the original 1938 Wright R-3350 left by 1945
Putting sleeve valves in is no more complicated than putting in any other type of valve in,
1607032454012.jpeg

Piston porting.
1607032517652.jpeg
1607033874538.jpeg

when at BDC, the air is forced thru passages that are closed as the piston rises.
It's old, done on the Monosoupape from WWI, but without much boost provided bu the other pistons moving, so didn't 'breath' as well
1607032715790.jpeg
with a single exhaust poppet valve run by a pushrod.
Two stroke Uniflow is a good design for the least complexity(fewer parts, cheaper,less to break) and weight, while doing decent power

Opposed Piston Engines just have pistons doing both intake and exhaust duties
1607033608252.jpeg
 
Last edited:
Great Update! One thing I noticed though: The BESA was 7.92. Not 7.62. No NATO calibre yet I'm afraid

Great update. Just a quick note - I think you mean 7.92 rather than 7.62 for the BESA.

So many gun nuts...what a bunch of nerds....but um yes they are ahem all quite correct.

The BESA was exactly the same weapon as the Czechoslovakian ZB37 Machine gun (they had 3 versions an AFV gun which the British copied as well as a fortress gun and tripod mounted version for the infantry and it fired the 7.92x57mm Mauser round from a 'non disintegrating 225 round belt' the same bullet used by the German Military for their Rifles (primarily KAR 98, G43) and machine guns (MG34 and MG 42 as well as the FG42 as well as their aircraft machine guns). In order to expedite its introduction it was simply put into production with no changes - the delay in modifying it to .303 deemed far worse than the relatively small burden of supplying the different machine gun ammo to the tanks.
Now you will excuse me but I need to iron my anorak - its become creased.
Okay already, fixed it. Sheesh! Gun nuts! Sorry, writing without checking notes.
Allan.
 
The benefit of the Lion is that you already have a known design. Changing to a monobloc iron casting is not changing it's function but moving away from 4 stroke to 2 stroke is an unnecessary change. As for supercharging. Well the existing superchargers are made for constant speeds not across the rev range down to tick over so again that would be a real change to a new untried Roots type.. Not to mention the increase in charge temperature which will ill sit with Pool Petrol. There was a reason they took the centrifugal superchargers off the Merlin in making Meteors.

Really these Lions will be most easily made as petrol without a dieselisation, normally aspirated and the only major change which will help them be made in early quantity is replacing the built up cylinders with iron monobloc cylinder blocks. In the spirit of 'it ain't broke so don't fix it'. Play around with trial models for later updates but a simple petrol Lion will get into the tanks faster. Already you have a gun bottle neck and don't need an engine one too. How are we doing for sights, gearboxes, differentials and brakes?
 
Hey, I'm a Kiwi (born, if not bred), so I can understand trying to have a bit of pride in your country. And a vehicle like the Sentinel is something to be proub about too, it's just that Australia had so many other industrial commitment that, ultimately, setting up a proper production line of the things wasn't worth it.
In the end perhaps but you are applying 20/20 hindsight. At the time it was still unknown what was likely to occur. You cannot second guess what the Australians did. What they did was work with what they had and they made it, against all odds, work. The Sentinel had it's share of problems but it was their first tank, their first effort. The British in OTL made more than enough stuff ups and eventually produced the best tank in the world in 1945 the Centurion. However the Centurion was based on all those mistakes. Without them would the Centurion ended up the same? I doubt it. The Sentinel was based on it's own reasonings. It was an adequate vehicle, indeed a more than just adequate.
 
As always I have been reading the various posts and comments with interest, particularly those regarding the possible issues regarding the use of armoured cars in the top end of Australia. Being British and never despite visits to Australia, I have never been to this area, in ether the dry or wet, so please forgive me if I am completely wrong in what I am about to say. The problem from what I can understand is that armoured cars, would be completely useless during the wet, given the poor to none existence, of any suitable roads in the area. Though they would be very useful during the day season, far more useful than tanks. As I understand it, during the wet virtually all roads would be impassable for wheeled vehicles, and movement near impossible, other on the few all weather roads.

So the question I want to ask is, would this apply to any Japanese invasion force too. And if so why would they invade during the wet, and would such an invasion be subject to major health problems such as insect born illness, in addition to the logistical problems, and problems with the local wildlife and indigenous peoples. I would think, and I am probably wrong, that the Japanese if they were to invade, would only do so during the dry season. And if they did then armoured cars, would in fact be a better option than tanks. Given the massive distances involved, and the much higher speeds of armoured cars in relation to tanks. A mix of armoured cars and truck borne infantry, along with towed artillery and support elements would I believe be the best option to defend the top end.
RR.
Yes, insect borne diseases were a problem in the Top End before the end of WWII. DDT is what saved Australians from Malaria and various other insect born diseases. The Top End was officially declared Malaria free in 1981. It took extensive aerial spraying of DDT to eliminate the Mosquitos that carried it. Plus of course, strict disciplinary issue of preventative drugs and Mosquito nets. I knew the academic who the Australian Army employed in New Guinea to investigate the incidence of Malaria (Frank Fenner who later won a Nobel Prize for Medicine as a Virologist). His simply but effective recommendation was issue everybody with a Mosquito net and make them use it. Cut down the incidence of Malaria substantially.

Short story? Yes, the Japanese would have been subject to Malaria and other insect borne diseases. While they had captured the world's major suppliers of Quinine in SE Asia, they didn't make extensive use of it. Their troops were often hores de combat as a consequence. Any invaders would have been similar. Australian troops weren't immune to the diseases, they were just better prepared.

The Top End was a wild place. If you read the history of the Nackaroos - the Northern Australian Survelliance Service - they wrote about visiting places on the north coast where the sharks would throw themselves onto the beach as they passed and the crocodiles would lurk at night in the various river systems. The Australians found it hard to visit, let alone live there. The Indigenous Australians had existed for 75,000 years there but they had a hard life. The Japanese would have suffered horrendous casualties if they invaded anywhere else than Darwin from the wildlife and the natives. The Australians who lived up there were a tough bunch. Their greatest fear were the Drop Bears. Lurking in the trees overhead...
 
The benefit of the Lion is that you already have a known design. Changing to a monobloc iron casting is not changing it's function but moving away from 4 stroke to 2 stroke is an unnecessary change.
Really these Lions will be most easily made as petrol without a dieselisation
That would be the easy way, keep them Gasoline.
Thing is, already is in the TL that it was to be made a Diesel. Two Stroke or Four, from an existing engine with minimum change?
#1 change, fuel must be injected into the head, so you can run this at high compression, 14:1 than as a a distillate engine, where the fuel is atomized before the intake manifold, and could use no more than 5:1 compression

So with a four stroke, you need an injection pump that will pulse the fuel to the injector at the right time, at very high pressure to each cylinder
1607058309890.png


US Winton, EMD and Detroit diesels use Unit Injectors, where the high pressure pump and injector is all in one unit in the cylinder head, driven by a cam

So what's all that mean? Plumbing is easier with Unit Injectors, that squirt once every revolution, all the very high pressure stuff is going on in the head, rather than external lines. Leaking high pressure lines will harm mechanics. If there is an ignition source, that high pressure diesel acts like a flamethrower

Back to the Lion, a change to the overhead cams lets a unit injector to be easily added

You get far more power as a two stroke. a 426cu, 7 liter 6-71 Diesel is just under 200hp
the four stroke Soviet V-2, 2368 cu, 39 liter V-12 was 500. An early DD style two stroke of that size would be 1000HP

As for supercharging. Well the existing superchargers are made for constant speeds not across the rev range down to tick over so again that would be a real change to a new untried Roots type.
The Detroit diesels used the roots to move air, but not much boost, like 2-3 psi,
Doesn't have to be Toots, either,
Graham Motors had belt driven centrifugal superchars in thousands of their cars before WWII, they were not much more boost than the above, yet made for very streetable power adders.
Or hotrodders would add a pair, like on this Hudson Hornet

Not to mention the increase in charge temperature which will ill sit with Pool Petrol. There was a reason they took the centrifugal superchargers off the Merlin in making Meteors.
while the German were planning on putting superchargers on their Maybachs.

Superchargers can do a little boost, or a lot of boost. That supercharger could put out 20psi boost at sea level, few engines can take that. To not blow up Merlins on the taxiway, they were limited to 2.5psi by the boost regulator.
It was just wasteful for a 2 stage, 2 speed S/C on a tank.
Do recall that the R-975 in every M3,M4 and M18 AFV had a supercharger with a small amount of boost.
 
Last edited:
US Winton, EMD and Detroit diesels use Unit Injectors, where the high pressure pump and injector is all in one unit in the cylinder head, driven by a cam
I wonder what the odds are for Perkins to 'invent' the common-rail diesel injection system, or maybe it's simply too early for that tech to be viable in this application.
Well now! A quick wiki-dive reveals Vickers (surprise, surprise!) first used a common-rail diesel in marine engines back in 1916! I wonder if it makes sense to use a rail instead of unit injectors for the diesel Lion if extra pressure is desired.

regarding the possible issues regarding the use of armoured cars in the top end of Australia
I've wondered about this myself, as well as the assertion of tracked tanks being able to do it with any better proficiency. I used the Daimler cars as my example for their legendary ability to traverse mud and slop where tanks might bog down from simply being heavier.
Anyway, Australia will sort itself out when the time comes. For now I'm pleased to see the Val being recognized as 'that tank should suit us just fine'.
 
In the end perhaps but you are applying 20/20 hindsight. At the time it was still unknown what was likely to occur. You cannot second guess what the Australians did. What they did was work with what they had and they made it, against all odds, work. The Sentinel had it's share of problems but it was their first tank, their first effort. The British in OTL made more than enough stuff ups and eventually produced the best tank in the world in 1945 the Centurion. However the Centurion was based on all those mistakes. Without them would the Centurion ended up the same? I doubt it. The Sentinel was based on it's own reasonings. It was an adequate vehicle, indeed a more than just adequate.
Is it really hindsight on my part if I'm simply agreeing with the choices that were made OTL? And yes, the Sentinel is indeed something to be proud of for Australia to be proud of. As a tank it had many faults, but it was at least usable, which is more than could be said of some of what Britain was producing at the time (e.g. the Covenanter)! Indeed, some of the developments that went into the Sentinel (e.g. the casting of the hull) would have been impressive for a much more heavily industrialised country, never mind one like Australia.

Of course, with the Valiant in play, that need likely disappears.
 
Last edited:
I love a Detroit Diesel two stroke engine, they sound great and deliver loads of power. They have issues the same as any other engine, cracked liners, cracked heads and a fondness for the injectors to stick open at full chat, which leads to a significant emotional event if you don't choke the air inlet quickly.

Sadly the diesel Lion will not use the two stroke system as there is no precident for Perkins to develop it, no driver for them to have the idea of using the 2 stroke system as it just does not exist as a concept for motor vehicles in the UK as of yet, Fodens FD will start development towards the end of the war and the Commer TS 3 is developed in the 50s. Some Doxford large scale marine engines used the 2 stroke system but nothing small enough to fit in a tank.

Perkins will base it on an existing set of castings scaled up to fit the dimensions of the Lion combustion chambers with a massively beefed up bottom end to take the torque, I belive that Perkins used a high compression mechanical pump with individual injectors driven and timed off the engines timing gears, though I am a little unsure of that detail.

The only way in for the 71 series engines might be that GM offer to set up a plant under the Vauxhall name to produce the engines for use in UK vehicles. Given the timelines involved its probably unlikely to happen, though a Bedford V12 two stroke engine in a Valiant 2 would give it all the power it needs.
 
At times this forum is fantastic.
I make the (slightly) bold claim that in TTL the Crusader has the potential to either get cancelled or very heavily modified to the point it is pretty much a new tank.
Everyone else is engrossed in an in depth (and quite fascinating) discussion on diesel engines.
 
I'm beginning to wonder how long before this devolves into discussions about trains, given all the engine fixation... :p
Better Diesel engines than food, I suppose...
 
I'm beginning to wonder how long before this devolves into discussions about trains, given all the engine fixation... :p
Better Diesel engines than food, I suppose...

Well with LMS not building the covenanter anymore plenty of opportunity for plenty more of them.
 
Thanks again for the overnight discussion. Gun nuts and petrol heads (is there such a thing as a diesel head?). I'm completely mechanically illiterate, so the discussion is helpful.
Again, a few specifics:
Can we please stick to the threads general direction rather then get off on tangents....
The reason why i read this thread is the quality of the POD and the butterflies i can see. It is not good to derail a thread.
There's always a bit of going off on tangents, which generally is OK, but I wonder sometimes how many of the tangents come up more regularly than others.
Also thanks.
Looking at likely production figures, the Valiant replaces the Valentine (8,275), Covenanter (1,771), plus you're probably taking production from the Cruiser Mk IV (955), Matilda II (2,987), Crusader (5,300), the entire Cavalier project (500), and maybe some of the Cromwell (4,016) and Churchill (5,640) production. I think it's fair to say you could probably see at least 15,000 Valiants getting produced ITTL. This thing is going to be Britain's equivalent to the M4.
I was going for Britain's equivalent of the Panzer IV, but having a British tank that can honestly be in the same class as T34, PzIV and M4 is a win.
I also wonder if they've moved to three-shift, round-the-clock production, or whether they're still on one-shift rates.
That's a good question, don't know. Part of the discussion about moving to the highest production priority probably has something to do with that.
seeing as Britian is already building bofors i wonder how easy/difficult would it be to use those instead of pompom?
We might see it as a SPAAG, but the Bofors are in huge demand for the Royal Artillery light AA regiments, there won't be enough of them for use in tanks.
Nice update, you may have just butterflied the Crusader as well.
If Vickers can get a look at a 6pdr and show a prototype 6pdr Valiant turret soonish, before the end of the year say, something Vickers would be more than capable of then that suddenly changes the dynamic of the UK tank procurement program....
The Covenanter has already gone and the Crusader is likely only going to start rolling off the production lines the same time as the 6pdr Valiant, only the Crusader has a 2pdr. Why would you wait that long for something that is edging it's way towards obsolescence already. Yes it may be a good design when it arrives but it's upgrade potential is limited. Why put resources into it if that is the case? I could see a believable scenario where the MoS issue a revised specification for Nuffield that is a hybrid crusader/cavalier say 50-60mm of armour, a weight of around 22.5 tons and a three man turret with a 6pdr. Yes it will be delayed compared to the OTL crusader but the Crusader as is will likely look like it will need replacing before long anyway, you can keep going with A9's, 10's and 13's if you have to.
Interesting, hadn't really thought of that, but it more likely speeds up a Cromwell. There's still a lot of love for Christie suspension and the fast tank. That specification takes you into Cromwell territory, which if the UK fielded in 42 would have been considered a good tank, less so in '44.
This is why I love this website, i'm learning huge amounts about ye olde engines because of ya'll!
Likewise.
At times this forum is fantastic.
I make the (slightly) bold claim that in TTL the Crusader has the potential to either get cancelled or very heavily modified to the point it is pretty much a new tank.
Everyone else is engrossed in an in depth (and quite fascinating) discussion on diesel engines.
There's a lot going on, its hard to keep up sometimes.
I'm beginning to wonder how long before this devolves into discussions about trains, given all the engine fixation... :p
Better Diesel engines than food, I suppose...
The one thing that we haven't had so far, or coffee...

Thanks again everyone for your participation.
Allan
 
Top