M31 U.S. Tank Recovery Vehicle Agrandir

M31 U.S. Tank Recovery Vehicle

Kit en plastique TAKOM au 1/35

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Takom 2088

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38,95 €

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Now, let's see a specialized vehicle, who worked hard to keep the tanks in action. We are talking about the M31 TRV (Tank Recovery Vehicle) derived from M3 Medium Lee.

History:

      The T2 (M31) was a conversion of the American M3 Lee Medium tank for use in the recovery of disabled armored vehicles during the Second World War. The designation T2 was later changed to M31.
M31 'Little Caesar' from 1/13th Armored, 1st Armored Division.
      British recovery vehicles were called Armored Recovery Vehicles (ARV), the US Army term for the M31 and M32 (based in M4 Sherman tank)  was Tank Recovery Vehicle (TRV). While the M3 Lee tank was taken out of front line service in Europe by 1943, the M31 remained in service till the war's end, never being fully replaced by the M32 TRV, The M31 made his debut in operational use with  1st Armored Division (Old Ironsides - US Army) in Tunisia, during 1943.
M31B1 (welded) recovering a M10 Wolverine, Anzio - 1944.
      The turret of the Tank Recovery Vehicle T2 (M31) mounts a Gar Wood power boom crane with 4,5 to 14 tons capacity, depending on how supports are deployed. These boom was attached in the 37mm gun's place. There is also a 30 ton winch mounted inside the hull which can operate with its cable over the boom crane or hooked directly to a load.
      The guns of M3 Lee were replaced by dummies to obscure the identity of the vehicle. The 75mm main gun was replaced by a hatch with a dummy gun barrel and the 37mm gun in the turret was replaced by a similar barrel welded at the rear portion of the turret.
M31 BIG WELDON in Italy, 1945. Notice the 75mm dummy gun barrel
      The turret machine gun mount was the British style seen on the cruiser tank Grant I instead of the normal Lee cupola. The crane could lift 4500kg without the supporting boom jacks extended, 5400kg with the jacks attached to the front hull, or 14,000kg with the support legs on the ground. A 27,000kg capacity winch was added in the fighting compartment, and the cable was spooled out of the turret and over the crane boom or out the rear of the TRV.
Internal winch (27 ton capacity)  in the fighting compartment of M31
      Tool boxes were also added to the rear sponsons and above the dummy 75mm gun.
M31 pulls a damaged M4 across a Bailey Bridge, Germany - 1944
Notice the spare vertical volute spring below the M31 comander
and the tool box above the 75mm dummy gun
Types:
  • M31 (based on M-3 Lee Medium Tank with Continental R-975-C1 9 cyl. radial gasoline engine, riveted hull)

      The M31B1, introduced in October 1942, was based on the M3A3 Lee, and the conversion was similar to the M31 except that the power takeoff on the diesel TRVs was at the front and powered by the engine, rather than being at the left rear and driven by the transmission on the radial gasoline-engined vehicles. This difference necessitated some modifications to the winch operator's position and controls. Almost 296 M31B1s were manufactured by Baldwin Locomotive works. M31B2, also built by Baldwin, was based on the M3A5 Lee.
M31B1 welded hull
      Just over 800 of the Tank Recovery Vehicle T-2 (M31) were produced in all variants, in service through 1945. The T2 (M31) was slowly replaced by the M32 Tank Recovery Vehicle, based on the M4 Sherman tank, starting in 1944.

 
 
      The British converted M3 Lee tanks (called Grant in the UK, with minor modifications) to armored recovery vehicles, known as the Grant ARV I. This is similar to the T-2 (M31) but of simpler design. When M31 vehicles were obtained by Britain under Lend-Lease, they were referred to as Grant ARV II. About 125 T-2 (M31) vehicles were sent to the Soviet Union during WW II. Other Allies also received units or converted their own M3 tanks.
      The M33 Prime Mover (for towing artillery) was based on the Vehicle, Tank Recovery, T2 (or M31) minus the crane, turret and recovery equipment, but with the 75mm dummy gun:
M33 prime mover (artillery tractor)
      As the M31 TRV was being replaced by the M32 Tank Recovery Vehicle, over 100 of the M31 TRVs were converted to the M33 Prime Mover in 1943-1944 to be used as an alternative to scarce high speed tractors.
M33 snorting when towing a 240mm howitzer near Mt.Porchia, Italy, 1944.

  • Echelle 1/35
  • Matériau Plastique
  • Nation USA