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Armor/AFV: What If?
For those who like to build hypothetical or alternate history versions of armor/AFVs.
Hosted by Darren Baker
IDF Panther Tank?
JDBart
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Auckland, New Zealand
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Posted: Sunday, July 24, 2011 - 11:10 AM UTC
loving it - hurry up and finish and get some paint onto this baby!!
crossracer
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Posted: Tuesday, July 26, 2011 - 10:26 AM UTC
Its a great idea, and very grounded in reality.
What if's are such a fun group to build.

Cant wait to see more.

Bill
Spades
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California, United States
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Posted: Wednesday, December 21, 2011 - 06:13 AM UTC
ok....so what happened here ? Did you ever complete it ? You were doing so well.........than..............POOF.

Hurry on back.
MikeRobinson
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Georgia, United States
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Posted: Sunday, February 12, 2017 - 06:38 AM UTC
Wish I could see more of what happened with this. Would love an update
Klinker
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Posted: Sunday, February 12, 2017 - 09:07 AM UTC
Thanks for the kind words folks...
Unfortunately the IDF Panther sit unfinished, Kids and real world stuff has got in the way (plus a lack of Modelling - Mojo)

But my intention is to get it done and a E50/75 with Mine Rollers (yet to be shown) finished this year, so stay with me I will get it done.
ReluctantRenegade
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Posted: Sunday, February 12, 2017 - 04:26 PM UTC
Thanks for bringing this back, will be following with great interest!

ReluctantRenegade
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Posted: Sunday, February 12, 2017 - 05:34 PM UTC

Quoted Text

Heck, didnt Israel use ME-109's in the beginning.



Avia S-199, to be more precise... https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Avia_S-199

And 98k rifles too... https://wwiiafterwwii.wordpress.com/2015/12/14/german-98k-rifle-in-israeli-service/
tankmodeler
#417
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Posted: Sunday, February 12, 2017 - 10:19 PM UTC
Duncan,

If it helps you get your mojo back, I loved the ide so much I did one for myself. Here are a few photos.





I swapped the commander to the other side, used an Urdan cupola, used the French 105, added applique armour to the hull and turret, "changed" the tranny and added gussets to the final drives.

I also up-engined it to the AVDS-1790 of the M60 and rearranged the air inlets to suit. The hull MG position is plugged for more ammo storage in the MG gunners spot and the bustle acts as counter balance and radio storage. I also remembered the spent casing door and added M60 smoke grenade launchers.

It's currently painted, but awaiting finishing. It's packed up until I re-establish my shop after moving house.

So dig yours out and get buildin'!
ReluctantRenegade
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Posted: Sunday, February 12, 2017 - 10:24 PM UTC
Paul, that is simply stunning! What kind of color are you gonna go for?

tankmodeler
#417
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Ontario, Canada
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Posted: Sunday, February 12, 2017 - 10:48 PM UTC
I used the '73 Israeli sand grey.

The markings are nominally for a reserve brigade during the assault into Syria late in the '73 war.

The backstory:

In my imaginary world, the IDF built their armour force around Panthers instead of Shermans during the 50s. The mods to the earliest IDF Panthers would have centred around fixing the mechanical deficiencies of the original. Probably a new engine and updated drive train, including strengthened final drive mounting (which you can see as welded gussets under the glacis) and strengthened swing arms and road wheels (which you can't see). The initial mods to the Shermans centred around it's biggest deficiency, poor firepower.

The second round of mods would be what you see here, an even further up-powered engine (the AVDS-1790) of the M60, the IR suppression system from the M60 plus the French 105. What you can't see here is the new tranny to go with it. The bustle is added partially to balance the 105 and partially to locate the radio up into the turret allowing the assistant driver to be eliminated and replaced with ammo stowage for the larger 105mm rounds.

It's at this stage that the up-armouring with homogeneous plate would have happened to reduce the instance of the armour shattering if overmatched. The new AVDS-1790 engine and tranny being more than capable of handling the extra 4 tons of armour and also providing a little extra speed and much more bottom end torque for quick acceleration and manoeuvering. The economy of the diesel was also much appreciated increasing the Panther's range even with the other benefits.

Operationally, during the 1973 war they served with reserve units and constituted the bulk of the second line blocking forces on the Jordanian front until shifted North to take part in the attacks into Syria. While technically seriously outmatched by Syrian T-55s and T-62s, the M51'5 potent 105mm gun and superior Israeli training and tactics meant that the Panthers actually came out well ahead in those tank on tank engagements of the last part of the war.

By 1975 or so the M51 Panthers were getting long in the tooth and the writing was clearly on the wall, but with 20+ years of service in the IDF there were a lot of spares for the remaining vehicles and they found ready homes with the Lebanese Christian forces and also in South America with the Argentinians and Peruvians operating them into the 90s.

Today the last few ex-IDF M51 Panthers serve in Peru as training tanks.

How's that for a comprehensive history that never was?

Paul
DG0542
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Posted: Sunday, February 12, 2017 - 10:50 PM UTC
Nice builds,

One question, wouldn't the IDF even after changing the engine and transmission, wouldn't they also change out the suspension? They seem to like the bogie system from the Centurion, and have a version on the Merkava, just to make repairs easier on the crews and get the vehicles back in service faster?

Just thoughts, but love the builds.

Derek
Cantstopbuyingkits
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European Union
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Posted: Monday, February 13, 2017 - 12:07 AM UTC
Why woukdn't the IDF tear off and plate over the empty Kugelblende, Paul?
PzDave
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Posted: Monday, February 13, 2017 - 12:12 AM UTC
Not as far fetched as some of the ideas floated here. The French Army had some in use after the war. Getting parts later could have been a problem. They would have had easy supply from Britain and USA with Centurions and Shermans etc. Don't forget the Israeli Air Force used Me-109's. Looking forward to seeing what you do with this.
m4sherman
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Posted: Monday, February 13, 2017 - 02:54 AM UTC
Both of these are inspiring. Now I need an IDF Panther! What comes to mind are the pictures of the damaged tanks being reworked in the factory late in the war.

Food for thought. The design that became the Centurion started not that long after the design for the Panther. If the Panther design had been continued after 1945 it could have evolved along the lines of the Centurions.
tankmodeler
#417
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Posted: Tuesday, February 14, 2017 - 01:53 AM UTC

Quoted Text

One question, wouldn't the IDF even after changing the engine and transmission, wouldn't they also change out the suspension? They seem to like the bogie system from the Centurion, and have a version on the Merkava, just to make repairs easier on the crews and get the vehicles back in service faster?


First off changing the suspension on an existing tank simply isn't worth the effort. The interior would have to be gutted, the hull sides reinforced to take the stresses, which further changes the interior, the dynamics of the ride change, etc. etc. Mostly, in this case, my assumption is that they IDF got these right after 1947, like they got their Shermans. At that point they didn't have the technical capability to make that sort of change, Once they did have the capability, the Centurions and M60s were coming into service and it wasn't worth the bother.

On the Sherman it was easy to swap out the VVSS for HVSS, on other tanks, not so much.
tankmodeler
#417
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Posted: Tuesday, February 14, 2017 - 01:55 AM UTC

Quoted Text

Why woukdn't the IDF tear off and plate over the empty Kugelblende, Paul?


Possibly would have, but for artistic reasons I wanted this to still immediately look like a Panther.(And another reason I didn't swap the suspension)

I wanted it to still have recognisable Panther traits while also looking very Israeli.
DG0542
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New York, United States
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Posted: Tuesday, February 14, 2017 - 02:59 AM UTC

Quoted Text


Quoted Text

One question, wouldn't the IDF even after changing the engine and transmission, wouldn't they also change out the suspension? They seem to like the bogie system from the Centurion, and have a version on the Merkava, just to make repairs easier on the crews and get the vehicles back in service faster?


First off changing the suspension on an existing tank simply isn't worth the effort. The interior would have to be gutted, the hull sides reinforced to take the stresses, which further changes the interior, the dynamics of the ride change, etc. etc. Mostly, in this case, my assumption is that they IDF got these right after 1947, like they got their Shermans. At that point they didn't have the technical capability to make that sort of change, Once they did have the capability, the Centurions and M60s were coming into service and it wasn't worth the bother.

On the Sherman it was easy to swap out the VVSS for HVSS, on other tanks, not so much.



Paul,

In the context of my question, you'd have to go back to the first post where he said that Israel would make their own Panthers. So wouldn't it be easier to mount a boogie system then double torso bars in that context?
bots1141
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Posted: Tuesday, February 14, 2017 - 05:38 AM UTC

Quoted Text


Quoted Text


Quoted Text

One question, wouldn't the IDF even after changing the engine and transmission, wouldn't they also change out the suspension? They seem to like the bogie system from the Centurion, and have a version on the Merkava, just to make repairs easier on the crews and get the vehicles back in service faster?


First off changing the suspension on an existing tank simply isn't worth the effort. The interior would have to be gutted, the hull sides reinforced to take the stresses, which further changes the interior, the dynamics of the ride change, etc. etc. Mostly, in this case, my assumption is that they IDF got these right after 1947, like they got their Shermans. At that point they didn't have the technical capability to make that sort of change, Once they did have the capability, the Centurions and M60s were coming into service and it wasn't worth the bother.

On the Sherman it was easy to swap out the VVSS for HVSS, on other tanks, not so much.



Paul,

In the context of my question, you'd have to go back to the first post where he said that Israel would make their own Panthers. So wouldn't it be easier to mount a boogie system then double torso bars in that context?



Since the IDF liked the Centurion so much I would imagine that they would have built a Panther using the same horstmann suspension.
tankmodeler
#417
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Posted: Tuesday, February 14, 2017 - 10:37 PM UTC

Quoted Text

Paul,

In the context of my question, you'd have to go back to the first post where he said that Israel would make their own Panthers. So wouldn't it be easier to mount a boogie system then double torso bars in that context?



Well, my build doesn't live in the world of Israelis building their own Panthers, however, for completion's sake, the Israelis didn't have any possibility of making their own tank of any kind in 1947 or for many years thereafter.

If you were looking at a medium tank to build and pattern your new armoured force after in 1947, you'd have likely picked the Centurion right off the bat versus trying to modify Panthers and get a totally new industry off the ground at the same time. If the Israelis had built Panthers any time before 1956 they would have almost _had_ to keep them exactly as the Germans built them with only very small changes. They simply didn't have the heavy industrial capacity to do anything else.

Paul
tankmodeler
#417
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Posted: Tuesday, February 14, 2017 - 10:43 PM UTC

Quoted Text

Since the IDF liked the Centurion so much I would imagine that they would have built a Panther using the same horstmann suspension.



No, that doesn't make any sense at all. Take a look at the timelines. We're talking about the IDF acquiring (build or buy) Panthers in the 1949-1955 period. They had not operated any Shot's by then and so, didn't know they liked the Horstmann suspension (assuming they do).

By the time they had operated the Cents for any length of time we're into the mid-late '60s at which point the Panthers would have been strictly second line vehicles and definitely not worth the massive effort of changing the entire suspension if they had been using it acceptably for 15 years already.

But, this is a fantasy world anyway. In my version they didn't, if in your version they put Horstmanns on, they did. I'd love to see such a model.

Paul
DG0542
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Posted: Wednesday, February 15, 2017 - 02:11 AM UTC

Quoted Text


Quoted Text

Paul,

In the context of my question, you'd have to go back to the first post where he said that Israel would make their own Panthers. So wouldn't it be easier to mount a boogie system then double torso bars in that context?



Well, my build doesn't live in the world of Israelis building their own Panthers, however, for completion's sake, the Israelis didn't have any possibility of making their own tank of any kind in 1947 or for many years thereafter.

If you were looking at a medium tank to build and pattern your new armoured force after in 1947, you'd have likely picked the Centurion right off the bat versus trying to modify Panthers and get a totally new industry off the ground at the same time. If the Israelis had built Panthers any time before 1956 they would have almost _had_ to keep them exactly as the Germans built them with only very small changes. They simply didn't have the heavy industrial capacity to do anything else.

Paul



Using your logic they would have simplified the suspension because it would use less of the industrial capacity. By 1956 they would have probably used the US Torsion bar. They would have been exposed to simpler torso bars through the M48 and the T-54/T-55.
m4sherman
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Posted: Wednesday, February 15, 2017 - 06:04 AM UTC

Quoted Text


Quoted Text


Quoted Text

Paul,

In the context of my question, you'd have to go back to the first post where he said that Israel would make their own Panthers. So wouldn't it be easier to mount a boogie system then double torso bars in that context?



Well, my build doesn't live in the world of Israelis building their own Panthers, however, for completion's sake, the Israelis didn't have any possibility of making their own tank of any kind in 1947 or for many years thereafter.

If you were looking at a medium tank to build and pattern your new armoured force after in 1947, you'd have likely picked the Centurion right off the bat versus trying to modify Panthers and get a totally new industry off the ground at the same time. If the Israelis had built Panthers any time before 1956 they would have almost _had_ to keep them exactly as the Germans built them with only very small changes. They simply didn't have the heavy industrial capacity to do anything else.

Paul



Using your logic they would have simplified the suspension because it would use less of the industrial capacity. By 1956 they would have probably used the US Torsion bar. They would have been exposed to simpler torso bars through the M48 and the T-54/T-55.



I was thinking about the manufacturing angle. What if the post WWII German tank force was based on their best tank, but "Westernized". The suspension on the M26/M46/M47 was designed for a tank about the same weight as the Panther.

I found a Tamiya G on the cheap shelf at the local shop that I am going to rework into a IDF Panther. I ordered one of the old Italeri M47's to donate the suspension, rear sprocket drive, and assessory parts as if the tank was built after 1945 using the more reliable US components.

That tank will be the basis for the planned improved IDF Panther. One of a group of Panthers sent to the IDF as part of the reparations from Germany.

Given that the Panther turret was much wider than it needed to be for the 75mm, and the very strong construction due to the weight and recoil of the 75mm, I see no problem with the 105 being mounted by the IDF.

Add the M48A3 engine, adapted from the Centurion layout, and a few other hull modifications and I think it will make an interesting project. Not sure what all the problems will be, and the only hindrance will be not going too crazy.
tankmodeler
#417
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Posted: Thursday, February 16, 2017 - 01:12 AM UTC

Quoted Text


Quoted Text


Quoted Text

Paul,

In the context of my question, you'd have to go back to the first post where he said that Israel would make their own Panthers. So wouldn't it be easier to mount a boogie system then double torso bars in that context?



Well, my build doesn't live in the world of Israelis building their own Panthers, however, for completion's sake, the Israelis didn't have any possibility of making their own tank of any kind in 1947 or for many years thereafter.

If you were looking at a medium tank to build and pattern your new armoured force after in 1947, you'd have likely picked the Centurion right off the bat versus trying to modify Panthers and get a totally new industry off the ground at the same time. If the Israelis had built Panthers any time before 1956 they would have almost _had_ to keep them exactly as the Germans built them with only very small changes. They simply didn't have the heavy industrial capacity to do anything else.

Paul



Using your logic they would have simplified the suspension because it would use less of the industrial capacity. By 1956 they would have probably used the US Torsion bar. They would have been exposed to simpler torso bars through the M48 and the T-54/T-55.


Disagree.

While the Horstmann suspension might be a bit simpler to manufacture, remember we're talking about them starting an entire industry here. If they have the whole drawings for the Panther, as is, then it's far easier to tool up for that than to have to redesign _anything_ including designing a new Horstmann suspension (unless they stole the design from the Brits were not talking to the Israelis at this point) and making the necessary mods to the Panther to fit either a new or stolen Horstmann suspension.

But, as I said, in the time we're talking about the Israelis didn't have the industrial capacity to doo any of this.

Similarly they didn't see any details of American or Russian torsion bar suspensions until later in the 60s by which time they were getting Centurions and M48s of their own and no need to totally manufacture their own tank or carve up the "Panthers" which would be obsolescent at that point.

Paul
tankmodeler
#417
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Posted: Thursday, February 16, 2017 - 01:33 AM UTC

Quoted Text

I was thinking about the manufacturing angle. What if the post WWII German tank force was based on their best tank, but "Westernized". The suspension on the M26/M46/M47 was designed for a tank about the same weight as the Panther.

That tank will be the basis for the planned improved IDF Panther. One of a group of Panthers sent to the IDF as part of the reparations from Germany.



A nicely internally consistent story that only, really requires enmity between the Soviets and Western allies to ramp up more quickly than it did at the end of the war, allowing a German army to be reinstated much earlier than it was in real life. Possibly Patton's desired conflict with the "Reds" after Germany capitulated with an armistice only after B29s drop a nuke on a Soviet Army concentration in Eastern Germany.

Germany isn't partitioned and is allowed to rebuild it's army as a bulwark against the Soviets in Poland starting in 1947 (say).

Quoted Text

Given that the Panther turret was much wider than it needed to be for the 75mm, and the very strong construction due to the weight and recoil of the 75mm, I see no problem with the 105 being mounted by the IDF.


That was my thought as well. In fact, it might have been able to withstand the high pressure 105 from the AMX 30 if the turret bearing race was upgraded along with the trunions.


Quoted Text

Add the M48A3 engine, adapted from the Centurion layout, and a few other hull modifications and I think it will make an interesting project. Not sure what all the problems will be, and the only hindrance will be not going too crazy.


You may need to lengthen the rear hull area to accommodate the transmission in the AVDS 1790 power pack. Eliminating the sharp rear angle would probably do it, and allow for more volume for fuel. One thing I discovered is that the rear hull of the Panther is very tall. It's much, much deeper than the engine bay of the M48-M60.

If the driver was reclined a bit and the tranny was in the stern, you could probably shave almost a foot off the hull height to the turret ring.

Paul

Paul
DG0542
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Posted: Thursday, February 16, 2017 - 02:05 AM UTC

Quoted Text


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Quoted Text


Quoted Text

Paul,

In the context of my question, you'd have to go back to the first post where he said that Israel would make their own Panthers. So wouldn't it be easier to mount a boogie system then double torso bars in that context?



Well, my build doesn't live in the world of Israelis building their own Panthers, however, for completion's sake, the Israelis didn't have any possibility of making their own tank of any kind in 1947 or for many years thereafter.

If you were looking at a medium tank to build and pattern your new armoured force after in 1947, you'd have likely picked the Centurion right off the bat versus trying to modify Panthers and get a totally new industry off the ground at the same time. If the Israelis had built Panthers any time before 1956 they would have almost _had_ to keep them exactly as the Germans built them with only very small changes. They simply didn't have the heavy industrial capacity to do anything else.

Paul



Using your logic they would have simplified the suspension because it would use less of the industrial capacity. By 1956 they would have probably used the US Torsion bar. They would have been exposed to simpler torso bars through the M48 and the T-54/T-55.


Disagree.

While the Horstmann suspension might be a bit simpler to manufacture, remember we're talking about them starting an entire industry here. If they have the whole drawings for the Panther, as is, then it's far easier to tool up for that than to have to redesign _anything_ including designing a new Horstmann suspension (unless they stole the design from the Brits were not talking to the Israelis at this point) and making the necessary mods to the Panther to fit either a new or stolen Horstmann suspension.

But, as I said, in the time we're talking about the Israelis didn't have the industrial capacity to doo any of this.

Similarly they didn't see any details of American or Russian torsion bar suspensions until later in the 60s by which time they were getting Centurions and M48s of their own and no need to totally manufacture their own tank or carve up the "Panthers" which would be obsolescent at that point.

Paul



You keep going back to the tooling up issue...the hardest part of setting up a manufacturing base is actually tool making. Depending on the timeline, and based on their experience in 1948 making Armored Cars they would have simplified. This is quite normal process. Also the Panther type suspension was way over engineered, except for the French Prototypes it was largely dropped post war. By the time they would have been manufacturing the 1950's the French already had the M47 Tank, and would have shared their information with Israel and they would have used a simpler to manufacturer torso bar set up. Also they would have changed the Transmission.

Just having the drawings doesn't mean that its easier to build. Having worked over twenty years in manufacturing as a designer/draftsman. It is based on what you have to build your tooling.