T-18 tank

T -18 ( MS ) (model 1928)

The T -18 was the first built in larger series of Soviet tanks. The original name MS-1 goes back to the former designation system and represents Maly Soprowoschdenija (Russian Малый Сопровождения, small, part-time) and describes the task as accompanying and support vehicle of infantry - later the name in T -18 has been changed.


Mid- 1926 was designed for the armored vehicle, a three - year plan, which emanated from the concept of an infantry to break through two opposing infantry divisions to 10 km depth. Several foreign patterns were examined for their adequacy, in particular the French Renault FT -17 seemed suited for infantry support. Some Renault have been reconstructed, but ultimately unsuitable ( too much mass, too slow and generally too low and at long range not accurate armament ) and considered too expensive.

The Italian Fiat 3000 was finally selected as the better output pattern in particular because of its higher speed and its smaller dimensions and projected onto its base from mid- 1926 5-t- tank. The first prototype was ready for testing from March 1927 and was known as the T- 16th In comparison to the Renault - replica he was lighter, smaller, faster and cheaper, but still had some problems, which required a revision of the draft. So the chassis was extended by a roller and designed the drive system. Mid-May was the new prototype available and took as " Little support tank model 1927 MS-1 ", success at. Since the proposed armament was not yet available, initially a mock was built. The official acceptance by the Red Army in June and was generally positive. On February 1, 1928 108 tanks were ordered, which should be delivered 1928-1929, 30 in 1928, the production was launched at a plant in May 1929, added a second -. Nevertheless, production was slow and only 96 of the planned vehicles were delivered, but the production of another 300 piece was the same until the end of 1930 demanded. The tank was armed in addition to the 37 mm Hotchkiss cannon with two MG DT, one of which ° angle to the cannon was installed in the tower in 45 and the second served as a reserve.


In 1929 appeared in the deployment of troops weaknesses; Attempts to improve the off-road capabilities were not successful. At the same time mid 1929, revised the structure and doctrine of the Red Army towards the construction and the use of armored and mechanized units, for which the T -18 but was outdated. But there was still no successor in sight pattern, the T -18 was necessarily maintained as a transitional pattern and addressed various modernization measures. Thus, a more powerful engine ( 40 hp ) was fitted with a new gearbox, thus increasing the speed, but the installation of a modern 37- mm gun could not be realized. The tower has been revised, the reserve -MG away and the installation of a radio device allows, with only a few tanks were such. The so updated tanks were referred to as " MS-1 (T- 18), model 1930". Overall, these initiatives have had but not the hoped-for improvements, so that was initiated in late 1929 with the development of a new support tank T-20. The T -18 Model 1930 remained until the appearance of the T -26 production in late 1931.

In 1933 another attempt to modernize by the chassis was designed similar to the T-26, but this proved a complete failure.

In 1937 it was decided to modernize all outdated armored vehicles from the period before 1930 so that they should meet modern application requirements - the T -18 played a special role in this modernization program. First, it was decided to incorporate the transmission of T-38, for which the engine room had to be modified. The tower was renovated and partially built a new 45 -mm cannon. The so- modernized tanks were designated T -18M, it was converted industrially by the manufacturer. But this modernization did not bring the desired results - the speed was just under 25 km / h is still too low (calculated, 35 km / h) was, and the focus of the tank so far hiked back that he was unstable on slippery surfaces and no major hills more could tackle. Overall, the combat value in comparison to the costs of modernization was totally inadequate. Nevertheless, sporadic T -18 in 1941 came in reserve units for combat, where they proved the corresponding opposite patterns against inferior as hopeless.

Specifications (T -18 Model 1930)

  • Battle ground: 5.3 t
  • Length: 4.50 m
  • Width: 1.80 m
  • Height: 2.20 m
  • Ground clearance: 0.31 m
  • Ground pressure: 3.7 N / cm ²
  • Engine power: 29 kW ( 40 hp )
  • Speed ​​: 17,5 km / h ( road )
  • Climbing ability: 35 °
  • Transverse inclination: 30 °
  • -Border capacity: 1,80 m
  • Climbing Ability: 0,55 m
  • Fording: 0.80 m
  • Fuel supply: 110 l
  • Driving range: 120 km
  • Armament: 1 cannon 37 mm ( Hotchkiss or PS-1, 97 grenades ), 2 MG DT ( in single copies 1 MG 6.5 mm ( Fedorov, 1800 cartridges) )
  • Fight record Cannon: 104 grenade cartridges
  • MG DT: 2016 cartridges