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December 14, 2016
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March 12, 2002
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June 20, 1949
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? COUNTRY SUBJECT PLACE ACQUIRED Approved For Release 2002/08/14: CIA-RDP83-00415R003100040014-7 CLASSIFICATION CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE AGENCY REPORT NO. INFORMATI N REPORT CD NO, Czechoslovakia Skoda Works, Pilsens Development and Production of Tanks DATE OF IN 25X1A 25X1X DATE DISTR. 20 June NO. OF PAGES 5 NO. OF ENCLS. 2 tables (LISTED BE-OW) (2 paeoe SUPPLEMENT TO REPORT NO. 25X1A 25X1A 1. The development of fighting tanks by the Skoda Works begun in 19309 a coa- paratively late date. The reason for this late start was the general opinion prevailing in Czechoslovakia after World War I that the manufacture of nili- tary equipment had little or no future. 2. Although Czechoslovakia had a regular arpy, the budgetary allowance for the purchase of new eqairment was not sufficient to permit the acquisition of complicated machines of war. Prior to 1932, Skoda furnished the Czechoslo- vak Army with a fol.--uheel, pneumatic-tired armored car which weighed about eight tons and was driven by a 60-hp. water-cooled in-line engine which per- mitted a speed of i'3out 80 kn./hr. This armored car uae known by model num- bers PA-I, and -IV. The first three models were armed with machine guns, while the last one carried a 37.2 mn, gun in the turret. The PA-II had a welded armor of rounded shape which was quite expensive to pro- duce. These vehicles had a four-wheel drive and could go in both directions with the mane speel, since the steering gear was double and the whole arrange meat symmetrical. About 60 were turned out from 1924 to 1930. 3 The first tanks with tracks which the Czechoslovak Army acquired ware very light and were designed on the pattern of the British Garden Lloyd. These tanks wore not put out by Skoda but by Ceskomoravska Kolben-0anek (CO), which as the second largest firm producing machinery, was attempting to break .1.nto the arnanents field by manufacturing tanks, since guns were the established monopoly of Skoda. These vehicles, which weighed about two tons, had a thin armored. ease 6 to 1 mm. thick, were open at the top, and resembled the Bren- carrier of 1orld War II. About 80 ware ordered in 1931 and 1932, but Vey did not prove to be very satisfactory because of their tendency to mechgei- cal breakdowns and their limited cross-country capacity, which was due to short construction and a high center of gravity. 4, The next order was for a lioht tank weighing about 71 tons with a 37.2 mm, Skoda gun in the tirret. CKD delivered about 120 of these vehicles in 1932 and 1933. Once a-iin there were difficulties, largely because the tracke had a tendency to jump off when the tanks were backing up. CLASSIFCATION sTATLaix NAVY -rt NSRI: x _ . ARMY 71FicIrridorenoL.r. tr.n? 0177ICXALS OUT oiSR1BUTONT I t Approved For Release 2002/08/14: CIA-RDP83-00415R003100040014-7 Approved For Release 2002/08/14: CIA-RDP83-00415R003100040014-7 SECRET/CONTROL - U. OFFICIALS ONLY CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE AGENCY -2- 5. Skoda, seeing' the conmercial success of these tanks and at the sane time noting the mechanical difficulties, decided to push its own develepment of tanks. Various types which were worked out are described in the attached "List of Prototypes" (Table I). The first model to be put into production was anIk.ton tank called the Sella or the T-II (also Lt.vz.35? neaning light tank, model 1935). One hundred were ordered from Skoda and the same number from CKD, which was to use Skoda blue prints. The main feature of this model was the tracks and the bogies, which were especially designed to stay in place under the most severe conditions of cross-country driving. However, troubles of a different nature soon developed. The mechanisms for steering and gear-shifting were operated by compressed air, which had the advantage of easy handling but the disadvantage of complicated production and servic- ing as well as of the danger of freezing in winter because of the condensa- tion of eater. The gear shift had a very great range (1:12), but it had the disadvantage of using a sliding dog clutch type of two-speed reduction eear having a speed diffential of about 1:3.2 operated pneumatically. In opera- tion, this became the source of violent checks in the driving elements which caused mechanical breakdowns. After numerous and costly alterations an ac- ceptable compromise was reached and the the order was finally carried out, but no further orders were placed for this type of tank. 6. Profiting from these experiences, CKD developed a new model in 1937 which was auccessfel and was produced in large numbers during World War II. It was called the Lt.vz.38 (designated in German as Lpz 38t, meaning light tank model 1948 Czech). This new tank used a British planetary 5-speed Wilson gear box, which CKD was licensed to produce. 7. After elieeeating the most acute difficulties, Skoda succeeded in selling 126 of these Mieton tanks to Rumania. Afghanistan also placed a small trial order with Skoda for the same model in 1939, but it was never filled because of the imminent German attack on Russia. The ten tanks produced for this order mere later sold to Bulgaria. The same country received an additional 15 tanks of this type, 'which had been seized by the Germans in Rumania and reconditioned by Skoda. 8. During the first years of the war, Skoda turned to more extensive experimenta- tion, concentrating on a 17i-ton tank (see "List of Prototypes", Table I). This development was to some extent in collaboration with the Central Depart- ment for Experimentation, Ha PAU' 6 (Neffenprafermt No. 6), under Colonel Olbrich in Berlin. The first prototype of the 1 2 ton tank still used com- pressed air for steering and gear shifting. However, it was improved in such a say that it proved quite satisfactory. The two-speed reduction gear was built into the final drive, where the speed was less. This adjustment, to- gether with a powerful multidisc synchronization, eliminated the shocks, This model had double steering (radii of about 10 meters or turning on place) and curve steering (10 meters) worked mechanically without the use of compressed air. The air valve controller unit at the driver was electrically heated to prevent the moving parts from freezing. The results were vita satisfactory, and after many- trial runs, the manufacturing license was sold to Hungary, where the tank was turned out under the name of Turaey. Ahout 600 were manufactured during the course of the war by the lanfred-Weis Company, Budapest, TTaggontibrik Gygr, and Ganz in Budapest. The erice paid for the license was about 6,500,000 Protectorate crowns, 28 Protectorate crowns equaling S1.00. 9. Mechanical steering and shifting of gears was also developed. Compressed air was used to facilitate steering, particularly for blocking one track. The Rus- sian T-34 tank requires over 70 pounds of pressure on one steering lever to ac- complish this. With compressed air, it can be done with the touch of a Anger. =TETA= - U. S. ITFICIALS ONLY Approved For Release 2002/08/14: CIA-RDP83-00415R003100040014-7 25X1A Approved For Release 2002/08/14: CIA-RDP83-00415R003100040014-7 SECREVCONTROL - U.S. OFFICIALS ONLY CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE AGENCY - 3 - It was, however, at length ascertained that in the ease of a 171-ton tank, servo-acting brakes would fill the bill fairly well. Skoda tanks, begin- ning with the 2-ton model, had a system of track brakes in which the front tension pulls were effected by toothed sprockets meshing with brake drums and brakes. 10. Skoda has a patent for applying the braking action to the front or rear brakes, depending on whether the vehicle is moving forward or backward. In this way, the part of the track in contact with the ground is always under tension and cannot jump off. U. The use of compressed air for the operation of the brakes made it poesible to conduct air to the front or rear brakes with ease. The direction of the air flow was changed simultaneously with shifting into reverse. With the elimi- nation of the compressed air it was necessary to use a different system, which was also patented. In this system, the braking action applies to all four brakes simultaneously; the front brakes are designed for serve action when the tank is moving forward, and the rear brakes for serve action when the tank is moving backwards. Thio steering arrangement was used in prototype tanks Te13. T-p, and Te15 (see TableI). 22. Considerable improvement was also necessary in the transmission gear. Skoda teaks of this type used a three-speed planetary transmission which was built into the engine fly-wheel. Its total range was about 1:3. To step this up to an over-all range of 1:12 or more, an auxiliary two-stage reduction gear was necessary with a range of at least 1:4- When the gear was shifted from third to fourth speed, two actions had to take place at the same time: the planetary transmission had to be brought from third back to first and the multiplication of the reduction gear had to be changed from 14 to 1:1. No driver could perforn these two operations manually, but it could be done easily with the use of compressed air. Also, the brake bands and the clutches of the planetary gear change can be easily and simply operated when compressed air is used. 13. The testing department Wa Pre 6 of the German High Connand was not in favor of using compressed air, mainly because personnel did not properly understand its operation, so that servicing was made difficult. Skoda yielded to pres- sure and worked out several experimental gear shift transmissions, largely of the planetary type. The final form was a five-speed gear box of planetary pre selective type. This feature was taken over from the Wilson transmission as manufactured by CKD. With this device it is possible, while the vehicle is running on one gear, to shift the gear lever to the next position and to make the change instantaneously by stepping on the clutch. This system has great advantages for tank; moving over difficult terrain such as mud or sand, sinme shifting with a slide gear transmission in this ease would be impossible. Too much time mould be eequired? and the vehicle -would cone to a stop before the gears could be shifted. 14? The next problem to be tackled was the compression by some other means than compreseed air of the heavy springs used to hold the brake bands and clutches in a locked position when speeds are changed. A snecial patented servomotor las worked out alonil the lines of a friction clutch, deriving power from the engine. When the engine stalled with a speed engaged, it could be started up again by putting the reverse lever into neutral. The reversing was done in final drive, where the driving bevel pinion meshed with two ring gears engaged alternately by a dogeclutch. In this way, all speeds could be used forward as well as backward. SECRET/CONTROL - U. S. OFFICIALS ONLY Approved For Release 2002/08/14: CIA-RDP83-00415R003100040014-7 25X1A Approved For Release 2002/08/14: CIA-RDP83-00415R003100040014-7 SECRET/CONTROL - U.S. oFFICIALS ONLY CENTRAL ITIVELLIGENCE AGENCY - 4 - 15. The brake and gear shift assemblies described above were first used in pro- totype T-13, a vehicle which was otherwise of little interest. After the value of the new mechanical features had been demonstrated, a larger tank, the T-231 weiehing 171 tons, was built. This experimental vehicle covered over 8,000 km. in good order. A few breakdowns occurred in the transmission (the second gear shift), but it was possible to eliminate then by redesign- ing a few parts. 16. In 1942 the Germans projected a fast light tank weighing 101 tons. Skoda was invited to build four prototypes, and a similar order was placed with CKD. Skoda built the T-15 tank along the lines described above, and one of the vehicles underwent a severe road test of some 6500 km. at Kunmers- doe near Berlin, the testing ground of Na Frill' 6. However, before the development of the prototype was completed, the interest of Ha Pasilf 6 seemed to have vanished, and the test proved to be of a different nature from what Skoda had expected. Three firms presented experimental vehicles: German -AN, CKD, and Skoda. Hhile MAN and CKD had front driee, the Skoda tank was rear-driven. The Kumnersdorf proving ground was sandy, and the tests conducted there were designed to demonstrate that a rear drive Will wear out the tracks sooner than a front drive on sandy terrain. The assump- tion proved correct. There were several breakdowns in the transmission, but they were of the sane nature as those in the case of the T-23 and could be eliminated. 17. While experimenting with new types of tanks, the department for the nanue facture of military vehicles at the Skoda works was turning out 6-6 trucks for Rumania, and later, between 1941 and 1944, 3-ton half-tracks of Hanomag design, called Hk1-6, were produced for the German Army. In 1942 arrange- ments were made for working in collaboration with Dr. Porsche, a German en- gineer and designer who was born in Reichenberg/tiberec, Bohemia, and who had known the Skoda Harks for many years. Dr. Porsche had designed the gas- electric transportation system for heavy artillery pieces (305-mm. and 420-mn, mortars) used by the Austro-Hungarian Arny in the First Horld 'Jar. He was also the designer of several successful Mercedes racing cars and contributed tc the design of the Volkswagen now being manufactured at Fallereleben in the British Zone of Gernany. His headquarters were at Stutteart (Dr. h. c. Ferd. Porsche Konstruktions Gesellschaft G.m.b.H.) during Horld Har II and now seems to be atGnAnd in Carinthia (Austria). 18. !hen the German High Command decided to introduce the 60-ton Tiger tank, Porsc/ was invited to collaborate. He advocated a gas-electric drive which for years had given good service in hauling heavy loads. Other tank manufacturers stron opposed the idea because it would entail an exeensive job of conatrection and extensive use of corper in the gas-electric vehicles. Nevertheless, experinent-, vehicles, called the TigereFerdinand? were designed, and Skoda cooperated in ds signing and producing the first experimental number (38). Skoda made only certa_s assemblies. The conception of the vehicle was not disclosed to Skoda engineere Later, an improved model, the n1801?, was introduced. The final development was the "Maus", a supertank of 130 tons, which will be dealt with in a srecial repf 19. The production of half tracks and of Porsche tank assemblies was finally dis- continued in order to concentrate on the production of tank destroyers Fej.a8t also called G-13. Since samples of this vehicle were turned over to the Ameri- can Army after the liberation of Pilsen, it is not considered necessary to go deeper Into the technical details, which can be seen, in their main points at least, in Table II. The program was initiated in January 1944, but by the end of the year only 300 destroyers had been delivered. In 1945 another 601 were turned out at the average rate of 150 a month, 20. Although this vehicle had certain disadvantages such as low motive poeer? highly loaded tracks, and unevenly loaded boeies caused by the off-center location of the gun, the tank still represents a powerful defense weapon in Approved Fir,wpf, pof/o8/T14_:sC4.-ERK813,,70g4I17003100040014-7 25X1A Approved For Release 2002/08/14: CIA-RDP83-00415R003100040014-7 ? SECRET/CONTROL - U.S. OFFICIALS ONLY C:NTRAL INTELLIGENCE MENCY - 5 - view of its heavy armor and higleTomered gun (V-900, 7.5 cm. caliber). There continued to be considerable interest in it after the war. After long hesi- tation, largely due to lack of funds, the Czech government ordered 20 new vehicles and had 50 reconditioned Which had been left behind in Czechoslovakia by the retreating German Army. 21. The price paid for these vehicles is not known to source, but it is thought to have been low. Czech military authorities pay only for new material, labors and overhead, since they consider all war material left at Skoda to be a war prize. 22. A more satisfactory deal was concluded with the Swiss Technical 71arfare Section (Kriegstechnische Abteilung KTA) in Berlin, which ordered 8 tank destroyers in 1946 for delivery in December of that year, another 100 in 1947 for delivery between June and December, and another 50 in 1948, for delieery before the eed of that yearo The price for each vehiCle was approximately 53,000 Swiss france representing about 50 percent of the actual post-war cost, but since many parts and assemblies were left over from the ear, the cost was actually well covered.. The Swiss Government will probably not order any more of these vehicles because of the recent political changes in Czechoslovakia. SECRET/CONTROL - U.S. OFFICIALS ONLY Approved For Release 2002/08/14: CIA-RDP83-00415R003100040014-7 25X1A Approved For Release 2002/08/14: CIA-RDP83-00415R003100040014-7 SECRET/CONTROL - U.S. OFFICIALS ONLY CET:TIAL INTMLIGENCE AGENCY TABLE I Skoda Yr aldht 111.12n2 1.122i=12.4 n'anufacture Mu-4 or T-1 1932 2.5 S-II' 1932- 18 1938 T2-D 1937 5.6 T-13 1939 14 __________________ S-lie or 1938 17.5 T-21 ? efiar 41.2111 MI/ 1938 17.5 T-22 1940 17.5 Engine Tr422: mission 4-cyl.pan- Slide gear cake, 40hp. 6-speed, 3- air-cooled 40km/h, front drive. 31.4.32212-2.1 .4=zasi Cs122 1 light MG 6-8 mm. welded 25X1A Renar'k ? - still - the fa-L-T 6-cyl. in- 3-speed epi- 1 gun 4.7 2 vehics lino, 190hp. cyclic & 2-sp in turret deny, water-cooled slide-gear re- *-2 MGs? MNO. duction, 2-25 front 30mm km/horear drive oides 22mm, riveted case Diesel, 4-cyl. in- line, 55hp. water-cooled Slide gear, 6-speed, 3- 36km/h front drive 1 gun 4.7 in front wall, 1 light MG, front 30mm. sides 16mm. rive ease. 4-cyl in- 5-speed epi- line, /30hp, cyclic, spring water-cooled & serve orerat. 3-32km/h, reax. drive 8 cyl. "if, 3-speed api- 240hp, water- cyclic & 2- cooled sp., slodog- clutch reduo- t 3-4510016 rear drive MI. SNP 1 gun 3.72 in turret+ 2 NGs, front 51mm, sides 25mm.? riv. CASA I gun 4.7 in turret 2 MGs front 35mm. sides 20mm.? riv. case Ainae Still the fax;tc,rg Still the f:LtorT 8-cy1. V, 5-speed epi- 220hp, cyclic Nil- tater-cooled son" change gear, 4.5-42 km/h, rear drive furnished without use- pons. front 30mm, sides 21mm, riv. ease 644 Engine transm_ from deliv. MHO 8-cy1.1? 3-speed epi- furn, with- 260hp, cyclic t 2-pp, out weapons water-coolad slide dogclutch front 50mm reduct 3.5-477m/ sides 20mm h, rear drive riv. ease. AMP KIP tem aaa APPLovad Eor.Belost202/118/1,4 :.c1A.-?RDE83.7.00415.E001QC1040014-7_ FIPP.T1-771T/MnTwri. nvITTnTAts ONLY Built order at fe.r. ? Approved For Release 2002/08/14: CIA-RDP83-00415R003100040014-7 SECRET/CONTROL - U.S. OFFICIALS ONLY CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE AGENCY TABLE I -2- Skoda Year of Neight Engine Designation Manufacture la_kna Trans- mission Ualmaal Amaral aaaa T-23 1940 18 8-cyl.V, 5-speed epi- 1 gun 4.7 260hp, cyclic, spring in turret water-cooled 7 serve-operat.4.2 MGs 4-45km/h, rear front 50mm drive sides 22mm, riv. case Remarks1 Still at factory T-15 1942- 10.5 8-cy1:7, 5-speed epi- 1943 230hp? cyclic, spring water-cooled ec serve-opepat. 5-60km/h? rear drive 1 gun 3.7 (not fur- nished) front 50m, sides 15mm? welded case Built tm order ci OKH? om still at factory SECRET/CONTROL - U.S. OFFICIALS ONLY Approved For Release 2002/08/14: CIA-RDP83-00415R003100040014-7 25X1A S-Ila or T-II SECTZTAOTT7R1L - U. OFFIGIALS ONLY CEUT:1AL ITITELLIGENCE AGMOY TABLE II (a) ggsjgatir MHO (Gmech.)slova Ministry of Natiolal D3- fensu) 3-IlaR Rumanian army S-Ila Bulgarian army S -Id Yugoslav ari,v ..4 UPIftz Topir of L.,migjza moidgcti on 100 1936 - Ic,37 Approved For Release 2002/08/14: CIA-RDP83-00415R003100040014-7 25X1A TIMM I gun 37.211 -1-0:77et 2 126 1937- 1939 se.X. TO 1940 11 1937 6.5 4.1 Tiger- Ferdinand Nibelangen- Uerk, St. Valentin, Oct Mark 38 1942 - 1943 1 gun 37.2m front mall, 1 lient En whole not '.LUrn:Ishad vehicle 60 toze nlaus" siaa, s its AM Vt. Pzj. 38 (t) 0 n or G-13 die Pre mai Psj. 38 (t) or 0-13 8 1943 - 1944 not furnished 1944 uhol not furnish_ vehicle about 130 tons about 90 air mai Kriego-Techn 158- nische Alston- ung in BerU, Switzerland 38 (t) m N 0 or G-13 20 Ir ,WiSO 4.7? 494 NOS .4 4.74. .4 1944 - 1945 4 44 mall. 1 1M uith AA mounting 1946 - 1948 Gab 41111511 ice 1947 04. 14,4 4[44 nor. ft a. a 3aaWcurnoT, - 71.5. (iFFICIALS ONLY Envire CITTaALmTmLIGENcE AGENCY TAMS II (b) Font- r12-s 25m. 4-cYl. sides 19m., rivit- 225 hp, d case. Inter-cooled Imaaadam 3-speed epicyclic 4- 2-opeed slide dog- clutch reduction, 3- 351m n, rear drive promIda Steering and gear change operated by compressed air ems if ae. ? 91111P aim ad. vais amr? Mr. 1,24 011. ,ont plate, 30mm. 6-cyl. pamaka. 'foe 16mn., riveted gas, 60 hp, air- cooled furnished &Ala. not furnished 6-sreed slide gear 3-381cmih, front drive ?31,4 944- lika? .00 awn if if ba. 1.4 1544 ALM 440 .411. .1411b iNt Oa/ fa* ona. pl.: 7 60rat. 6-cyl. , :aided gas, 160 hp., Inter-cooled WNW 411,4 4i4 71 Furnished final drive only, using epicyclic gear reduction it& 414. URA .r if fa* MEV iSao 40. WOW /44 5-speed epieye-ic a1sonn, 4,5-38knVh, font drive. OOP Aim gib .444 One R4g. .1111? 4ina. 444 ?l.11 4746 RN. 4.4 46.? COS .10 690a 4415. Approved For Release 2002/08/14: CIA-RDP83-00415R003100040014-7 *MD a 1(5.? a. air 'Furnished also; bogies, tracks rez tension pulleys if 14.1i 4.11 0/1 One 414. Sas It 01. Offa. Aka. Transmissions, ar7rJn. cases &I guns not by Skoda. Vbhiclq signed by M. 14111., Vai MIA 4.4t 444 171 OLT:a AGID 444 040 AB. 2 AMR. 25X1A