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M5
M5A1


Half-track Personnel Carrier M51-5
M5: General
Date of first acceptance December 1942 Total acceptances 4625
Manufacturer International Harvester Corp. Crew 13 men
M5: Dimensions
Combat weight 20,500lbs
9300kg
Height over .50cal MG 108"
274cm
Length with winch 249.06"
632.61cm
Width over mine racks 86.875"
220.66cm
Front tread 66.5"
169cm
Rear tread 63.8"
162cm
Wheelbase 135.5"
344.2cm
Ground clearance 11.2"
28.4cm
M5: Armament
Type Mount Ammunition Traverse Elevation
.30cal M1919A4 MG Flexible on pedestal mount M25 4000 rounds 360°
(manual)
Manual
M5: Armor
Assembly
Welding
Hull
Rolled homogeneous steel
Location Thickness Angle from vertical
Radiator louvres .31"
.79cm
27°
Windshield cover .625"
1.59cm
23°
Sides .31"
.79cm
Rear .31"
.79cm
Hood top .31"
.79cm
83°
M5: Automotive
Engine International Harvester RED-450-B; 6 cylinder, 4 cycle, in-line gasoline
Horsepower Net: 143@2700rpm Torque Net: 348 ft-lb@800rpm Fuel capacity 60gal
230L
Transmission Spicer 1856 constant mesh, 4 speeds forward, 1 reverse
Steering Steering wheel
M5: uspension
Type Road wheels Track return rollers
Front: Semi-elliptic longitudinal leaf spring
Rear: Vertical volute spring
Front: Steel ventilated disc
Rear: 1 bogie/track;
4 dual/bogie
1 dual/track
Drive sprockets Idlers Shock absorbers
18-tooth front drive Spring-loaded at rear of track On front wheels
M5: Track
Center guide band type
Width 12"
30cm
Pitch 4"
10cm
Pitches/track 58 Track ground contact length 46.75"
118.7cm
M5: Performance
Max level road speed 42mph
68kph
Max grade 60%
Max vertical obstacle 12"
30cm
Min turning diameter 59'
18m
Max fording depth 32"
81cm
Cruising range ~200mi, roads
~320km, roads


The M5 resulted from the fact that White, Autocar, and Diamond T could not keep pace with the demand for half-track personnel carriers, and was analogous to the M3 half-track. The front wheels on IHC half-tracks could be engaged for cross-country travel as well. M5s differed in several respects from the M3, however. The M5's fenders were flat in cross-section, and the M5 was never fitted with the large fender-mounted headlights. International Harvester used rolled homogeneous steel armor on their vehicles, which allowed plates to be welded together, giving IHC's half-tracks a smoother appearance than the bolted half-tracks. The rolled homogeneous armor could also be formed, and IHC's half-tracks featured rounded rear corners, which contrast to the right-angled corners on the machines with face-hardened armor. Homogeneous armor lessened the chance of injury due to bullet splash and flying cap screws which could be dislodged when hit, but it was not as strong as face-hardened plate. This meant that the armor on IHC's half-tracks needed to be thicker than the face-hardened armor of the M3 to offer the same protection. The M5 was therefore fitted with heavier axles and hull strengthening components, but its performance still essentially equalled that of the lighter M3. The M5's length with the anti-ditching roller was 242.19" (615.16cm).

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Half-track Personnel Carrier M5A12-5
M5A1: General
Date of first acceptance October 1943 Total acceptances 2959
Manufacturer International Harvester Corp. Crew 13 men
M5A1: Dimensions
Combat weight 21,500lbs
9750kg
Height over .50cal MG 108"
274cm
Length with winch 249.06"
632.61cm
Width over mine racks 86.875"
220.66cm
Front tread 66.5"
169cm
Rear tread 63.8"
162cm
Wheelbase 135.5"
344.2cm
Ground clearance 11.2"
28.4cm
M5A1: Armament
Type Mount Ammunition Traverse Elevation
.50cal M2HB MG Flexible on ring mount M49 700 rounds 360°
(manual)
Manual
.30cal M1919A4 MG Flexible on pintle mounts 7750 rounds 360°
(manual)
Manual
M5A1: Armor
Assembly
Welding
Hull
Rolled homogeneous steel
Location Thickness Angle from vertical
Radiator louvres .31"
.79cm
27°
Windshield cover .625"
1.59cm
23°
Sides .31"
.79cm
Rear .31"
.79cm
Hood top .31"
.79cm
83°
M5A1: Automotive
Engine International Harvester RED-450-B; 6 cylinder, 4 cycle, in-line gasoline
Horsepower Net: 143@2700rpm Torque Net: 348 ft-lb@800rpm Fuel capacity 60gal
230L
Transmission Spicer 1856 constant mesh, 4 speeds forward, 1 reverse
Steering Steering wheel
M5A1: uspension
Type Road wheels Track return rollers
Front: Semi-elliptic longitudinal leaf spring
Rear: Vertical volute spring
Front: Steel ventilated disc
Rear: 1 bogie/track;
4 dual/bogie
1 dual/track
Drive sprockets Idlers Shock absorbers
18-tooth front drive Spring-loaded at rear of track On front wheels
M5A1: Track
Center guide band type
Width 12"
30cm
Pitch 4"
10cm
Pitches/track 58 Track ground contact length 46.75"
118.7cm
M5A1: Performance
Max level road speed 42mph
68kph
Max grade 60%
Max vertical obstacle 12"
30cm
Min turning diameter 59'
18m
Max fording depth 32"
81cm
Cruising range ~200mi, roads
~320km, roads


The M5A1 was fitted with the .50cal ring mount over the assistant driver's position, and a socket mount for the .30cal MG was attached on either side and the rear of the passenger compartment.

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References

  1. TM 9-707 Basic Half-Track Vehicles (IHC) (Personnel Carrier M5, Car M9A1, Multiple Gun Motor Carriage M14, and Similar IHC Vehicles). Washington, DC: War Department, 21 May 1943.

  2. Hunnicutt, R.P. Half-Track: A History of American Semi-tracked Vehicles. Navato, CA: Presidio Press, 2001.
    Reprinted from Half-Track, R.P. Hunnicutt ©2001, available from Presidio Press, 505B San Martin Drive, Suite 160, Navato, CA 94945.

  3. Crismon, Fred W. U.S. Military Tracked Vehicles. Osceola, WI: Motorbooks International, 1992.

  4. Chamberlain, Peter, and Chris Ellis. British and American Tanks of World War Two. Frome, England: Cassell & Co., 2000.

  5. Siemers, Cary. "USA's Half Tracks." World War II Tanks & Vehicles and Advanced Squad Leader. 4 Jul 2001. 8 Aug 2001 <http://www.siemers.com/wwii/USA/Halftracks.htm>.



Last updated 17 Jun 2009.

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