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 "#837681
April 6th, 1945

The NIBT Proving Grounds tested Tiger Ausf.B road wheels on a T-34-85 tank. Trials showed that these wheels are more reliable than those used on the T-34-85 tank.

No defects aside from the loss of the disk attachment cone at 1058 km and four cases of burst welding seams on the rims were observed during 1500 km of travel (of those 567 were on a highway with an average speed of 42.3 kph).

The destruction of rims can be avoided by casting them whole.

Considering the low lifespan of T-34-85 road wheels, I consider it reasonable to produce a batch of road wheels with internal rubber lining like on the Tiger Ausf.B and test them.

Preliminary design for such road wheels was made at factory #183. To finalize the design it is necessary to:

  1. Make sure that the tightness of the rubber can be adjustable.
  2. Reduce the weight.
I ask you to instruct factory #183 to produce 5 sets of these wheels in April to test 2 at the factory and 3 at the proving grounds.

Attached in the NIBT proving grounds report on the trials of Tiger Ausf.B wheels.

I ask you to reply with your decision,
Deputy Chief of the GBTU, Lieutenant General of the Tank Engineering Service Lebedev
Chief of the GBTU Tank Directorate, Engineer-Colonel Blagonravov"

CAMD RF F.38 Op.11355 D.2715 L.79
Printed in Glavnoye Bronetankovoye Upravleniye Lyudi, Sobytiya, Fakty v dokumentakh, 1944-1945 p.455

"April 24th, 1945

Practice in use of medium tanks shows that wheels with an outer rubber rim create better conditions for the running gear and result in higher mobility for the tank.

Reliability of track links, ball bearings and axles is much higher in wheels with an outer rubber rim than with inner shock absorption. For the above reasons, it is preferable to use road wheels with outer rubber rims for medium tanks.

Considering the tendency of medium tanks to increase in weight, factory #183 was tasked with developing road wheels with internal shock absorption. The design of these wheels is simpler than the Tiger Ausf.B wheels you recommended, and the full set of factory #183 wheels weighs 1000 kg less than the Tiger Ausf.B wheels.

Factory #183 is presently preparing to produce a trial batch of wheels with internal shock absorption.

People's Commissar of Tank Production Malyshev"

CAMD RF F.38 Op.11355 D.2715 L.98
Printed in Glavnoye Bronetankovoye Upravleniye Lyudi, Sobytiya, Fakty v dokumentakh, 1944-1945 p.473


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