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Tapered Thickness of Panther Mantlet


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Through the years I've seen drawings which illustrated the tapering thickness of the Panther mantlet, where the thickness varied from 100mm at the center to about 75mm at the upper and lower edges.

To complete some studies for another thread it would be appreciated if someone would be so kind as to post up a section drawing of the mantlet that shows the thickness changes. My stuff is in storage (as usual), as we've just moved, and it's way in the back of the shed.

The IS-2 mantlet varied from 110mm to 75mm and one Russian book indicated that the mantlet thickness was 75mm.

Thank you.

Lorrin

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Originally posted by Redwolf:

I recently had a discussion on tanknet where somebody posted this drawing:

Mk5Turm.jpg

This thread is at

http://63.99.108.76/ubb/Forum13/HTML/003235.html

From that website.....

You seem to be misinformed on the nature of the mantlet. It is a superior mantlet. It virtually eliminates the lower edge effect with armor up to 215mm thick.

You also are missing the geometry of the situation. The driver isn't at the hatch. His body extends down toward below the hatch to almost the floor. So a round needs to only deflect at 95° from the normal.

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http://www.5ad.org/units/81st.html

Destroying Panthers

It was a German Mark V Panther and as soon as the crew saw the lighted road-block, they opened fire with its cannon. Lieutenant Coakley's tank returned fire but the rounds just bounced off the big German tank, which kept plunging ahead and firing at the same time. Its fire, however, was very inaccurate and the road block was not hit. A last desperate shot by Lieutenant Coakley's tank, fired at a range of less than five yards, hit the gun mantle on the German tank, ricocheted down through the top and set it on fire. The German driver, unable to control his tank, rammed it into the road-block.

The German tank was destroyed, one of its crew was killed, two wounded, another taken prisoner, but the last one got away. None of the "C" Company men was hurt. When the scene was surveyed the next morning the only damage found on Lieutenant Coakley's Sherman was a jammed turret which had been hit by the gun barrel of the Panther tank, although the latter had pushed it back several feet and had burned right in front of it all night.

Later in the day five more tanks tried to get by the road-blocks of "B" Company. The Germans were feeling the pinch of the pocket they had been caught in. This time the enemy moved out in the open country with most of the firing at a range of over 1,500 yards. After the fighting had raged for an hour, all but one of the German tanks were beaten back into the pocket. This one, a Mark V had received a direct hit in the suspension system but had kept on going until put out of commission by a 75mm APC from Lieutenant McNab's platoon. As in the case of the Panther destroyed the night before, the shell had hit the gun mantle and ricocheted into the top of the tank. When the German tank was searched after the battle it was found to be from the 2nd SS Panzer Division. Three of the infantry men with the road-block were wounded by machine gun fire, the only loss in "B" Company.

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Originally posted by Redwolf:

Mk5Turm.jpg

Note that the drawing on the left seems to show that the mantlet is thicker than the one on the right. This is similar to the Tiger I mantlet which is also thicker in some regions.

I believe the drawing on the left shows the area near the outer edges of the manlet and the drawing on the right shows the area towards the center near the gun.

The supposed 100mm mantlet 'vertical' vulnerability would then be a very small region indeed.

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http://www.geocities.com/Pentagon/Quarters/4635/tanks/panther/panther_inside.htm

This website gives an idea of the additional overlapping areas that the manlet and turret front offer.

Note the strip of turret armor beneath the lower curved mantlet appears to have two layers of thick material also. This is the turret ring area. It would appear to be stronger than the side vertical 110mm armor that is connected to the turret sides.

[ September 13, 2004, 08:21 AM: Message edited by: Mr. Tittles ]

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Originally posted by Mr. Tittles:

</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr />Originally posted by Redwolf:

Mk5Turm.jpg

Note that the drawing on the left seems to show that the mantlet is thicker than the one on the right. This is similar to the Tiger I mantlet which is also thicker in some regions.

I believe the drawing on the left shows the area near the outer edges of the manlet and the drawing on the right shows the area towards the center near the gun.

The supposed 100mm mantlet 'vertical' vulnerability would then be a very small region indeed. </font>

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I believe the drawing on the left shows the area near the outer edges of the manlet and the drawing on the right shows the area towards the center near the gun.

Aprox. translations are:

LEFT "Cut by cradles drillings"

and

RIGHT "Cut by view drilling for tower sight telescope"

Edited to add: Redwolf gets better and faster

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pzpantherG-mantlet.jpg

This drawing shows the turret front on a later panther G. Compare this to the cut out drawings and it seems the mantlet wraps around the outer edges (thats the white part of the cross sectional drawings that redwolf posted).

Note that the mantlet overlaps a seemingly curved area also (on the very right). Is this piece a cast item (I would assume)? The front turret armor plate sits behind this still. I have seen pics of the turret with the gun removed. There is a rectangular opening in the turret front that this assembly would fit in. Are the trunnions for the gun mounted in this piece and the mantlet/gun system held in place by a further piece of metal that is bolted to the drillings in the mantlet piece?

I am begining to suspect that the 100mm mantlet vulnerability may only be a small strip along the turret frontal facing and may not even extend very far at all along the mantlet face.

[ September 13, 2004, 09:28 AM: Message edited by: Mr. Tittles ]

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http://www.geocities.com/Pentagon/Quarters/4635/tanks/panther/panther_inside.htm

Look at number 6, the gun cradle. It appears to run across the back of the mantlet also. While probably not armor itself, it does seem to give even more 'behind-mantlet' mass. The gun cradle appears to be a rectangular shape and perhaps that is what the slots behind the mantlet are for. If you look at the cross sectional drawings, there are two slots that appear to run the length of the mantlet on its back side.

[ September 13, 2004, 11:34 AM: Message edited by: Mr. Tittles ]

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Originally posted by Mr. Tittles:

http://www.geocities.com/Pentagon/Quarters/4635/tanks/panther/panther_inside.htm

Look at number 6, the gun cradle. It appears to run across the back of the mantlet also. While probably not armor itself, it does seem to give even more 'behind-mantlet' mass. The gun cradle appears to be a rectangular shape and perhaps that is what the slots behind the mantlet are for. If you look at the cross sectional drawings, there are two slots that appear to run the length of the mantlet on its back side.

Thanks to all who responded for all the drawings and stuff.

Regarding the above quote, that material underlying the curved mantlet appears to be an extension of the turret front armor which curves upward. Do you think so? Anyway, it's a very good observation.

If the underlying material is an extension of the turret front armor (110mm), it would add a rather large amount to the resistance of the lower mantlet area and make it almost inpenetratable.

What do all of you think?

Lorrin

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Originally posted by Redwolf:

I recently had a discussion on tanknet where somebody posted this drawing:

Mk5Turm.jpg

This thread is at

http://63.99.108.76/ubb/Forum13/HTML/003235.html

The drawing on the left may be the area where the trunnion mounts connect. During our research on the Panther mantlet there were areas on the far left and right, extending from below to above centerline, where the thickness was 125mm to 135mm.
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If the underlying material is an extension of the turret front armor (110mm), it would add a rather large amount to the resistance of the lower mantlet area and make it almost inpenetratable.

What do all of you think?

The turret front armor 110mm appears to be a separate plate. This curved piece (trunnion carrier?) may be a casting of different thickness but it does seem to underlap the mantlet.

Also the gun mounting cradle also backs up the mantlet. The gunners sight must poke through this cradle as does the coax MG.

Anyone have interior pics of this area?

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The cross sectional drawing on the left side appears to have openings through the mantlet which may be for the bolts that hold the mantlet. The translation presented earlier in this thread indicates that the left cross section is taken through the mount. The thickness where the trunnion mount appears to be is consistent with the 125mm-135mm figure that Robert Livingston measured off a German design drawing.

The trunnion mount area is very small, most of the mantlet between the coax MG hole and the gunner vision opening would be like the right hand drawing, about 100mm thick. The trunnion mount area also does not have much vertical thickness on Robert Livinsgton's drawing.

The curved piece that underlies the bottom of the mantlet may be a splash guard that prevents HE fragments from entering the interior by getting around the mantlet bottom.

Robert Livingston's mantlet drawing in our book shows the trunnion mount area just to the left of the coax machine gun opening, and just to the right of the gunners vision hole.

The upper mantlet edge appears to be much thinner than 75mm. I'll attempt to measure off the drawing.

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Originally posted by Mr. Tittles:

</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr />Originally posted by Redwolf:

I recently had a discussion on tanknet where somebody posted this drawing:

Mk5Turm.jpg

This thread is at

http://63.99.108.76/ubb/Forum13/HTML/003235.html

From that website.....

You seem to be misinformed on the nature of the mantlet. It is a superior mantlet. It virtually eliminates the lower edge effect with armor up to 215mm thick.

You also are missing the geometry of the situation. The driver isn't at the hatch. His body extends down toward below the hatch to almost the floor. So a round needs to only deflect at 95° from the normal. </font>

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Originally posted by Redwolf:

I recently had a discussion on tanknet where somebody posted this drawing:

Mk5Turm.jpg

This thread is at

http://63.99.108.76/ubb/Forum13/HTML/003235.html

The chin mantlet appears to be a little over 100mm thick in the most likely areas to get hit, and the irregular thickness areas may be very limited in size. The Germans tested the chin mantlet by firing a 50mm round at it, and a 100mm thickness would be consistent with the test requirements for 100mm cast armor (50mm Pzgr 39 O.K., without cap).
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Originally posted by lorrin:

</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr />Originally posted by Redwolf:

I recently had a discussion on tanknet where somebody posted this drawing:

Mk5Turm.jpg

This thread is at

http://63.99.108.76/ubb/Forum13/HTML/003235.html

The chin mantlet appears to be a little over 100mm thick in the most likely areas to get hit, and the irregular thickness areas may be very limited in size. The Germans tested the chin mantlet by firing a 50mm round at it, and a 100mm thickness would be consistent with the test requirements for 100mm cast armor (50mm Pzgr 39 O.K., without cap). </font>
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