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The History of Half-tracks, by the Chieftain - WW2 Documentary Special

World War Two2024-05-02
The Great War#Wold War Two#WWII#WWI#Axis#Pacific War#European War#TimeGhost#WW2#Indy Neidell#Indy Neidell WW2#Second World War#World War Two Day by Day#World War Two in realtime#World War Two YouTube#YouTube#Documentary#Historian#History
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💫 Short Summary

The history and development of half-tracks from the 1890s to World War II, including designs by Kegresse, Linn, and Virgil White. The US and German half-tracks in WWII, focusing on simplicity and capability respectively. German half-tracks had heavy-duty tracks and specialized models for different roles. The importance of half-tracks in German military operations, including the Schwerer Wehrmachtsschlepper and Maultier. The decline of half-tracks post-WWII, with Czechoslovakia as a notable producer, and the transition to full-track vehicles.

✨ Highlights
📊 Transcript
The history of half-tracks dates back to the late 19th century with Lombard log haulers and Adolphe Kegresse's rubber track design.
03:42
Adolphe Kegresse's system became the most common type used in combat vehicles like the Austin-Putilov armored car.
H. H. Linn also played a role in popularizing half-track designs in the early 1900s.
Citroen-Kegresse half-tracks were successful in various European armies during WW2.
In the US, Virgil White invented the Snowmobile, leading to the development of the T1 half-track armed with a Cadillac V8 engine.
Development of US half-tracks in WW2.
06:16
US half-tracks, starting with the T5, were based on a simple truck design with good traction and steering capabilities, allowing for mass production.
The vehicles were used for different roles like mortar carriers and anti-aircraft vehicles.
Germans focused on specialized half-tracks tailored for specific uses, with longer track lengths and Schactellaufwerk suspension for a smooth ride.
German half-tracks in World War II.
12:47
German half-tracks had heavy-duty tracks with individual links for traction, lower running resistance than American tracks.
They featured a track steering system for improved maneuverability, but added complexity and cost.
Different models were developed for artillery hauling, anti-aircraft defense, and tank recovery.
Armored half-tracks had good armor protection but were limited in supply, showcasing versatility and importance in German military operations.
Discussion on the development and use of German half-tracks during World War II.
20:04
The Maultier was specifically designed for the Eastern Front and over 22,000 vehicles were produced.
The SdKfz 2, also known as kettenkrad, was a motorcycle half-track that gained popularity after the war.
Japanese developed their Type 1 Ho-Ha half-track influenced by German designs.
Despite over 100,000 half-tracks being used in WWII, the design fell out of favor post-war, with Czechoslovakia being a notable producer.