m. Zgkw. 8 t (Sd. Kfz. 7): Medium Semitrack Prime Mover

m. Zgkw. 8 t (Sd. Kfz. 7): Medium Halftrack Semitrack Prime Mover

The medium semitracked prime mover, like all German semitracks, is highly maneuverable. Its maneuverability is due to an epicyclic-controlled differential drive for the track with a brake linkage connected to the front-wheel steering system. These brakes are applied to the epicyclic on the side to which the turn is being made when the front wheels are turned. This results in easy steering.

This vehicle has a seating capacity for 12 (with driver), a trailer load capacity of 8.5 tons and a maximum highway range of 155 miles on a fuel capacity of 50 gallons. Its combat weight is 12.7 tons.

Body cross members are made up of flat steel welded to form an I-beam construction. All brackets, supports, etc., are welded and a minimum of rivets and bolts are used. Rather than cut holes in the frame to attach the body, a C-clamp is used.

Both spring and torsion bars were utilized in its suspension. A transverse spring, concave downward, is used as the suspension for the front end. The track portion of this vehicle has a total of four springs, two on each side, that make up the spring suspension for the rear. In addition, the trailing idler of each track is mounted eccentrically on a torsion bar which allows the tracks to be readily adjusted.

The power plant is a Maybach, valve-in-head, 6-cylinder gasoline engine, rated 140 hp. at 2,600 r.p.m. The power train includes a feature well worth reviewing. Incorporated in the clutch assembly is a brake that is located to the rear of the clutch disks. When the clutch is disengaged, the brake functions and retards the speed of the drive shaft to the transmission. This results in very easy gear-shifting.

This semitrack is equipped with inertia starter in addition to the electric starter, and a cable winch, capable of lifting 3.8 tons, is fitted in the rear.


Weight         10.7 tons
Length 22 ft., 5 ins.
Width 7 ft., 10 ins.
Height 8 ft., 6 ins.
Ground clearance 15.7 ins.
Tread centers (Wheel, 78 ins.), (Track, 70 ins.)
Ground contact 7 ft., 4 ins.
Width of track 14 ins.
Track links 54
Pitch of track 7 ins.
Fording depth 25 ins.
Theoretical radius of action
     Roads 155 miles
     Cross-country 62 miles
     Roads 30 m.p.h. (est.)
     Cross-country 18 m.p.h. (est.)
     Front plate None
     Sides None
Trailer load 8.5 tons
Engine Maybach HL TR, 140 hp.
Transmission 4 speeds forward, 1 reverse, high and low range
Steering Epicyclic controlled differential
Crew 12

German: p. 54

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