For the Record: Fixing the T-15 in HD
Hello everyone, continuing with the series of the “fixing” articles (because yes, some vehicles do need some serious fixing), we’ll have a look at the T-15 premium tier 3 light tank. Now, it’s a premium tank so we can’t really consider any serious nerfs, but okay. The T-15 was a light scout tank developed by Škoda. Several prototypes were made and it was tested along with Panzer 38t nA and the Luchs in comparative trials at Kummersdorf, where it failed due to its poor reliability. The design was new and had many teething problems. The vehicle to come out the best from the trials was actually the nA, but politics intervened and in the end, the Luchs was produced instead. T-15 prototypes were returned to Škoda, where they remained until the end of the war. After the war, one was heavily modified to produce the T-15A/T-15S/T-16, but that’s a story for another time. Now, before we start, one interesting thing. I noticed that with the Panzer 38t nA (yea, I know, TNH n.A., but let’s use the WoT terms for less confusion). Sometimes, the characteristics of the tank are inconsistent between two major sources, that deal with these vehicles: Doyle (Panzer Tracts) and the Czech authors (Pejčoch, Francev). I had a look at historical Czech reports (courtesy of Mr.Francev) and they are consistent – with the Czech authors. Could Doyle have it wrong? Could the German reports be wrong? I don’t know. But I will be using Czech sources for this article, notably I.Pejčoch (Obrněná technika, Lehké tanky). Anyway, the T-15. Now, there’s actually nothing THAT much wrong with the T-15. Considering the fact that it’s a premium vehicle, they didn’t have to invent fake turrets or guns, they just took that one model, based on (the few) photographs already published and the drawings of course. The model looks BASICALLY okay. Without the internal developer tool, I can’t tell the model’s dimensions properly, but generally, they are roughly okay. If anything, the model looks perhaps a bit taller than it should be, but that’s just the perspective. Traditionally, the armor is not that correct in these old models (and yes, this model is very old), but here, it’s actually fine. The only two things I noticed is that the turret sides should be 20mm thick (not 25mm) and the turret roof should perhaps be 8mm thick instead of 15mm, but that’s pretty much all. The gun is roughly correct – the thing is, this gun is the A19, not the KwK 38 and should be designated as such. Just a matter of renaming it I guess. The engine is unhistorical though – no, this was not Praga NRI, the vehicle was equipped with Škoda T-15 V8 10,8 liter engine, producing 220 horsepower. The loss of horsepower (the one in the game has unhistorical 274hp) could be compensated by the improvement of terrain passability, which, as it often again is with these old models, is relatively higher (1,03/1,14/2,06). The speed is correct otherwise and the rest are just balancing parameters. The biggest future improvement I can see in this sense is the improved model quality, following the acquisition of more and better photos from Czech archives, which is already in progress. I am not sure this vehicle actually NEEDS any buffs – it could certainly get some, but most are from after the war. Actually, a variant with a different turret by Daimler-Benz and 50mm L/60 was also considered, but as far as I know, no drawing was published of that and it was almost certainly never built.