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German troops repairing tracks of a Tiger I heavy tank, Italy, Feb 1944, photo 1 of 3

Caption     German troops repairing tracks of a Tiger I heavy tank, Italy, Feb 1944, photo 1 of 3 ww2dbase
Source    ww2dbaseGerman Federal Archives
Identification Code   Bild 101I-310-0898-25
More on...   
PzKpfw VI Ausf. E 'Tiger I'   Main article  Photos  
Photos in Series See all photos in this series
Added By C. Peter Chen

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Licensing  Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0 Germany License (CC BY-SA 3.0 DE).

See Bild 101I-310-0898-25 on Wikimedia Commons

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Visitor Submitted Comments

1. Commenter identity confirmed Bill says:
8 Feb 2011 09:11:01 AM


This is back breaking work, making it even more difficult in the mud!
Everything is heavy, gotta be careful and take your time. Putting the tracks back on is done by muscle power alone, as the tank
moves very slowly forward, the rest of the crew holds and guides the track up over the idiler or front sprocket, guiding along the road wheels and link the ends together.
Still its not an easy task to do servicing
heavy equipment in mud of Europe, or the Heat of Southeast Asia.


I've had experiences changing tracks on
Self-Propelled Howitzers, I don't know how its done today maybe some machine does that for you. But if its still done manually by muscle power, God bless'em.
2. Commenter identity confirmed Bill says:
8 Feb 2011 09:20:02 AM

Looks like those tankers, are repairing the
suspension arms, for the road wheels, gotta
break the track, remove the four front road
wheels thats work, hard work.
The Tiger was just over-engineered did the
designers or engineers ever think about the
mechanic, those men are real experts in keeping machines running.
3. Commenter identity confirmed Bill says:
14 Feb 2011 03:13:02 PM


Check out the torsion bars lying on the ground, I've changed tracks and roadwheels, its hard backbreaking work.

Lets get back to the Tiger, everything on it is heavy one roadwheel is 77kg thats 169lbs!
the Tiger has three roadwheels per axle thats
twentyfour per side.
Later model Tigers had two roadwheels per axle to speed production, but thats still
sixteen roadwheels per side and I don't think the weight of the wheels changed..


The drive sprocket, that big wheel in the front was casted from manganese steel it had ten spokes and twenty teeth. What does the
sprocket do. It pulls the tracks over the roadwheels and the road wheels roll on the tracks the idler wheel at the back continues to guide the tracks as it returns back to the sprocket.
Hope I've remembered it right. Even the word
"Tank" sounds heavy and any armored vehicle that runs on tracks isn't as heavy as a "Tank" , but its still a pain to repair and maintain.
4. Commenter identity confirmed Bill says:
28 Aug 2013 03:54:27 PM


If the electric started failed, the crew had to use the backup inertia starter or "Schwungmasse" don't you like these German compound words.


A crewman had to work at the rear of the tank, and used what was called the Schwungmasse a heavy tool to start the engine by hand. He starts to rotate it, to build up enough speed, once it reaches 60rpm, he pulls a lever below the hand cranking arm, this pushes the drive pinion onto the fly wheel making the engine start.

Tiger crews were the most experienced tankers in the panzer arm. They were not only the driver, gunner, loader, radio operator and commander but
were also trouble shooters and mechanics to keep the tiger in service.
Say I'm no expert but I do the best I can if anyone else has more information, post it here at ww2db...

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