Tag Archive for 'czech'

Pz. Kpfw. 38 (t): Light Tank (Czech)

Pz. Kpfw. 38 (t): Light Tank (Czech)

This is the Czech tank L.T.H. The chassis of this vehicle is frequently converted by the Germans for use as a self-propelled mount for artillery pieces, such as the 7.5 cm. Pak 40 and 7.62 cm. Pak 36 (r) anti-tank guns, and the 15 cm. s.I.G. 33. The primary characteristics of the Pz. Kpfw. 38 (t) are its four large Christie-type bogie wheels of equal size; two top rollers forward; flat-topped turret with prominent cupola, and a square gun mantlet covering the whole front of the turret.

The turret is round with a square front. It has a traverse of 360° and an internal diameter of about 48 inches. Its floor does not revolve. The traversing gear, which is fast and light in action, is operated by a wheel on the left-hand side of the gunner. The bulge at the rear of the turret is fitted for ammunition storage.

All main construction is riveted with the exception of the top of the superstructure, which is bolted. The turret front has a basic armor of 25 mm with an additional 25 mm plate. The front vertical plate is similarly armored; the side superstructure armor is 30 mm in thickneses.

The suspension consists of four 30-inch diameter rubber-tired wheels on two bogies with half elliptic springs, a high front sprocket 22 1/4 inches in diameter and a rear idler. There are two return rollers mounted well forward. The track is of the outside center guide type, with single pin secured by circular clip.

The tank is powered by a Praga T.N.H.P.S. O.H.V. 6-cylinder, water-cooled, gasoline engine, rated 125 h.p. at 2200 r.p.m. The ignition is Bosch magneto.

The armament consists of a 3.7 cm. gun and one light machine gun coaxial in the turret, and one light machine gun in the front superstructure.


Weight         10 tons
Length 15 ft., 3 ins.
Width 7 ft.
Height 7 ft., 2 ins.
Ground clearance 15 ins.
Tread centers 5 ft., 9 1/2 ins.
Ground contact 8 ft., 6 3/4 ins.
Width of track 11 ins.
Pitch of track 4 1/2 ins.
Track links 89
Fording depth 3 ft.
Theoretical radius of action
     Roads 140 miles
     Cross-country 100 miles
     Roads 26 m.p.h.
     Cross-country 18 m.p.h.
     Front plate 25 + 25 mm
     Sides 30 mm
Armament One 3.7 cm. gun
Two light M. G.’s
Ammunition (rds.)
Engine 125 h.p. Praga O.H.V.
Transmission 5 speeds forward, 1 reverse
Steering Epicyclic clutch brake
Crew 4

German: p. 18

7.92 mm M.G. 37 (t) (Brno): Heavy Machine Gun (Ex-Czech)

7.92 mm M.G. 37 (t) (Brno): Heavy Machine Gun (Ex-Czech)

The M.G. 37 (t), 7.92 mm machine gun is one of the weapons taken over by the Germans after the occupation of Czech territory. It is gas-operated, belt-fed, air-cooled, and has a flexible mount.

The M.G. 37 has been designed for use on tanks and other Armored Force vehicles, but it is also effective as a heavy ground machine gun when mounted on a tripod.

The firing-control mechanism used in this weapon is different from that in other tank-mounted guns. Adjustments can be made for rapid and slow fire by use of a pivoting buffer system, and full-automatic or semi-automatic fire by use of an indicator on the trigger casing. A buffer is used to reduce the shock of the recoiling parts, and to insure smoother action. Initial cocking is accomplished by moving the cocking slide forward, the sear in this gun being moved to the front. By moving forward instead of to the rear, the type of cocking in this weapon makes it more adaptable for use in confined spaces such as tanks or other vehicles.

The weapon, being of Czech origin, uses an action similar to that of such guns as the Czech ZB, the Bren, and the British Besa. It is possible to change the barrel very easily on this weapon, although it is not a quick-change barrel. The gun does not have to be dismounted when this change is made.


Caliber         7.92 mm (.312 in.)
Weight 45 lb., 10 oz.
Length 43 1/2 ins.
Weight of barrel 14 lb., 14 oz.
Length of barrel 28 7/8 ins.
Operation Gas-operated
Feed Belt-fed
Rate of fire         520 rds./min.—slow
820 rds./min.—fast

German: p. 216

4.7 cm Pak (t) (Skoda): Antitank Gun (Ex-Czech)

4.7 cm Pak (t) Skoda: Antitank Gun (Ex-Czech)

The 4.7 cm Skoda semi-automatic, antitank gun is now apparently obsolescent.

The tube, of monobloc construction, is threaded to take a single baffled muzzle brake and flash hider; the rear is screwed on to the breech ring. The gun recoils on vertical slides riveted to the piece. The breechblock is of the vertical sliding wedge type. The piece is cocked automatically when the breechblock is opened, but provision for cocking by hand is also made.

The recoil mechanism, housed in a cylinder above the piece, consists of a spring recuperator and a buffer cylinder containing water and glycerine.

The top carriage which pivots in traverse on the lower carriage consists of a circular steel base housing machined to hold the trunnion seats for the cradle. The traversing mechanism consists of a handwheel, flexible joint, worm and worm wheel. A grip handle acts as a separate clutch for disengaging the free traverse. The elevating mechanism has a handwheel, beveled gears, flexible joints, shaft, worm and worm wheel.

The carriage has split trails of welded steel construction spread to an angle of about 52° for firing support. In traveling position, they are locked to the axle, and the piece which is rotated through an angle of 180° rests over the trail legs. The wooden-spoked wheels are fitted with steel rims and mechanical brakes which are operated by a hand lever.

The shield is rectangular with a double curve on the top and a cut-away portion for the wheels on either side. It is constructed of a thin 5 mm sheet of armor and has a rectangular sighting aperture on the left-hand side.


Caliber         47 mm (1.85 ins.)
Weight (complete) 800 lb. (approx).
Length (overall), (travelling position) 162 ins.
Length of tube 6.25 ft.
Breech mechanism Vertical sliding wedge; semi-auto.
Firing mechanism Inertia
Recoil mechanism Hydro-spring
Rifling 20 lands and grooves; R.H. twist
Muzzle velocity (A.P.) Wt. 3.6 lb.—2540 f/s
Elevation 30°
Depression -4°
Traverse 45° scaled—360° free
Ammunition H.E.; A.P. (Uncapped)

A.P. shot against homogeneous armor
Range Thickness of armor in inches
Yards   30°   Normal
300           2.3         3.0
500   2.2 2.8
700   2.0 2.6
1000   1.8 2.4

German: p. 127