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bigbobthewhiteWT

A34 Comet vs its peers?

How (IRL and in game) the A34 compares to its contemporaries?

 

I think by tonnage, armour, armament and mobility, the Comet is the perfect equivalent of the  T-34-85 and M4A3E8.

 

Somewhat, no direct german equivalent, as the PzKpfW IV ausf. H is much lighter and very inferior in armour and mobility, and slightly inferior in armament, while the Panther is simply overkill in armament and armour and not so different in mobility, while being much heavier and also less reliable and durable.

 

In the end I think the M4A3E8 is the best tank, the T-34-85 is also over the comet in my opinion because of simplicity, sloped armour and sheer number.

 

The gun on the comet is better in penetration than T-34, M4 and Pz 4, both with APCBC and APDS.

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The Comet has the highest penetration between all those 7xmm platforms indeed. This is mainly attributed to it only firing solid shot, which has higher penetration than APHE by definition. The amount of explosive in the 76mm on the E8 is good, but penetration suffers to 125mm penetration at 100m, a worse result than the 147mm penetration on the 77mm HV. I believe the reload speed is better sustained than on the T-34-85 due to shell size comparison and MAYBE the Comet is a bit roomier, though it being a Christie tank just like the T-34 means the space is up to debate, but the 85mm shells are longer, wider and heavier than 77mm HV shells. For the E8 to actually have its advantageous HE burster detonate most of the time, we need German criteria. This places the 76mm M1 at a penetration of 120mm with the HE burster nearly always intact, which is good since the gap between penetration with and without detonation is very small.

 

Yes, the 76mm has APCR, and good APCR at that, but the 77mm fires APDS. What I could get from extrapolation is 253mm penetration at point-blank, which is actually even better. Too bad it's all solid shot, which means it's not as good point-blank.

 

Ok, now onto the actual comparison. AT gun goes to the Panther with no doubt and the HE charge loss isn't really noticeable since the explosive filler was actually very similar and Spgr 42 was similar to Spgr 34, but the difference actually lies more in the Germans preferring Amatol over TNT. Still, this strangely gives an edge over the 76mm M1's HE shell (600g or so vs 300-400g). If that doesn't work though? The Pz IV is completely outclassed in here, so we'll give it a pass. Infantry gun? T-34-85 wins most of the time, the Comet and M4A3E8 lag behind. Panther is ironically 2nd, but comparing arcs, the Panther is less suited to smacking trenches compared to the T-34-85, which has sufficiently low enough muzzle velocity to have a good arc.

 

Mobility? Well, all tanks have good mobility here. Yes, even the Panther. Its traverse speed is actually quite fast, it's just the turret that suffered from being German, as in sucking bad at traversing. The hull traverse was fine, as was the cross-country speed. The Sherman is a bit iffy since it loses in turn radius but is ok in turn rate while still having a fast turret and it has ok cross-country speed, the T-34-85 is probably good in traverse as well, but the turret traverse took a hit to "only" 20 degrees per second and is still very good in cross-country. The Comet has Christie suspension and is quite light, so it wins in speed, but I can't find anything on its turret traverse for the most part, but it seems to turn well.

 

Gun mobility? Well the lowest would be the Panther, the highest is either the Sherman or the Comet. Or the Comet is tied with the T-34-85, but the latter has mediocre gun depression. The Comet is the clear winner in gun depression with no contest, outclassing even the Sherman. Panther still has -8, so it's good there. I'd take a Comet over a T-34-85 for going on hills.

 

Vision? The Panther has no gunner periscope, but has good quality interchangeable magnification optics in 1944 versions. Basically magnificent optics marred by dependency on the commander, for the better or the worse. The T-34-85 has a middle ground of magnification, having 4x magnification paired with gunner periscope but the FoV is worse than the 2.5x mode of the TzF 12 and better than the 5x of the same optics. Quality is to be debated, but generally when Germany wants high quality optics, they get high quality optics. Considering how legendary the StuG III's optics were at the time of their introduction, I'd say it depends. The Sherman runs with 5x magnification, 13 FoV, and has a gunner periscope. Quality is not as high apparently since the general idea was that Russian sights are superior to US sights according to what is said in Aberdeen, but Germans have advantages with SOME optics such as the StuG III's. No idea about the Comet.

 

Cost? A single Panther costs 150k RM, or $60k. T-34-85s cost 165k rubles, or  somewhere as low as $20k. An E8 would cost somewhere around $53k. No idea about the Comet. Now, before getting hyped over the really low price of the T-34-85, do know that the ruble's power wasn't that high in the first place, and that Russia really had quite a bit of slave labor where prisoners get nothing. The US didn't have political prisoners in camps I can think of, so all the workers need to get paid. Yes, workers in Russia also got paid, but never the slave workers. Germany also has slave labor as well. To top that off, a T-34-76 mod 1941 cost 270k rubles, which is already at the $40k mark or so. The US rates the T-34 as a $50k tank or so, as in factoring in the idea that all workers should get paid unlike Russia that doesn't pay slave workers for obvious reasons.  So the Panther is more expensive, but not by that much. However, this does not count in parts.

 

What do I choose in the end? Either the T-34-85 or Comet. Panther is something for defense or slower pushes.

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the part about HE shell arc into trenches is pretty dubious, and you're very wrong, HE shell from panther  has 600-700 something MV (it's in the game can't check) while T-34-85 using AAA shells like Tiger 1, fires 810m/s HE shells.

 

Comet is one of the worst tanks for crew space, check the review by the chieftain. M4 and T-34 are far far more roomier, and the panther with its incredibly cramped turret is even better. ROF in the comet should be pretty terrible.

Edited by bigbobthewhiteWT
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the part about HE shell arc into trenches is pretty dubious, and you're very wrong, HE shell from panther  has 600-700 something MV (it's in the game can't check) while T-34-85 using AAA shells like Tiger 1, fires 810m/s HE shells.

 

Heh, guess that there is quite a brainfart. Weaker loads get me sometimes. Still, at least the HE charge of a D-5T is above all the tanks you've listed. This we can at least agree on.

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The Comet has the highest penetration between all those 7xmm platforms indeed. This is mainly attributed to it only firing solid shot, which has higher penetration than APHE by definition. The amount of explosive in the 76mm on the E8 is good, but penetration suffers to 125mm penetration at 100m, a worse result than the 147mm penetration on the 77mm HV. I believe the reload speed is better sustained than on the T-34-85 due to shell size comparison and MAYBE the Comet is a bit roomier, though it being a Christie tank just like the T-34 means the space is up to debate, but the 85mm shells are longer, wider and heavier than 77mm HV shells. For the E8 to actually have its advantageous HE burster detonate most of the time, we need German criteria. This places the 76mm M1 at a penetration of 120mm with the HE burster nearly always intact, which is good since the gap between penetration with and without detonation is very small.

Actually

 

The T-34/85(the later one) is going to have a better job at reloading. Keep in mind that the 77mm HV reloaded even slower than a 90mm when it was mounted in a pretty roomy Sherman Turret.

 

As for Mobility.

 

It does have the highest PSI out of the three tanks you're talking up. While it has 100 more horses than the Easy 8, it's also somewhat heavier as well.

 

 

 

 

 

The Sherman is a bit iffy since it loses in turn radius but is ok in turn rate

Well it's Turn rate is dictated by the Drivers Strength which the later (The "E8") was much better just at driving.

 

The Traverse on the Comet is 15 degrees per second, making it markedly inferior to both the T-34/85 and Easy 8. 

 

 

Also as for Guns

 

Keep in mind that the 17pdr is the least accurate Gun in the list unfortunately.

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Keep in mind that the 17pdr is the least accurate Gun in the list unfortunately.

 

Except that even though it's based on the 17 pdr, it isn't one. Even uses entirely different ammo. Accuracy issues stemming from the 17 pdr don't necessarily carry over at this point, so we can second guess here.

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Except that even though it's based on the 17 pdr, it isn't one. Even uses entirely different ammo. Accuracy issues stemming from the 17 pdr don't necessarily carry over at this point, so we can second guess here.

 

 

I know the ammo improved, but it's the company that it keeps.

 

The HVAP-T off of the 76mm was one of the most, if not most, accurate rounds used in WW2..

 

 

Granted part of the reason for the ADPS being inaccurate as all hell was a combination of the Early fireflys not having a 'ADPS" option on the Gunsight, as well as ****-poor ammunition Quality. 

 

 

The problem is I don't have dispersion Trial for proper ammunition that it'd have been using in the time frame.

 

I was going to mention the Armor but....mm we all know it's got the worst out of the lot in that area. As for your HE shell stuff

 

The reason the 85mm was preferred had to do with it also just having more shell to explode and fragment in the first place, as well as a slightly lower M/V which is actually less about 'arc' and more about limiting the amount of distance the shell travels from Fuze trigger to Detonation. As the Shell doesn't instantly explode (unless it has a SQ fuze which the Germans and Russians didn't possess and I don't think the British used it on their 17pdr rounds...and the US 76mm was just inferior given that it only had about 2/3s the explosive the 75mm US round had). Because simply put.

 

 

Having a HE round dig 2 meters into the ground by your target is F-all useless. Which is one of the few reasons the German Infantry preferred the short-barreled 75mm over the long one (that and somewhat the arching fire bit)

Edited by Sakuzhi
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Actually

 

The T-34/85(the later one) is going to have a better job at reloading. Keep in mind that the 77mm HV reloaded even slower than a 90mm when it

was mounted in a pretty roomy Sherman Turret.

 

That was a 17 pdr not a 77mm the complete rounds are very different sizes - and it does not matter how slow the 17 pdr was in the Sherman turret as it has no bearing on the 77mm in the Comet turret (breach placement, length of round, weight of round have more to do with it). Also note it was not a Firefly conversion but a standard M4 fitted with a 17 pdr so no extended turret bustle. 

 

As for Mobility.

 

It does have the highest PSI out of the three tanks you're talking up. While it has 100 more horses than the Easy 8, it's also somewhat heavier as well.

 

Pure PSI is not the be all and end all of mobility, lots more factors combine. The Comet could climb a higher step, cross a wider ditch, was faster, climb a steeper grade, smaller turning circle, lower centre of gravity to name just a few things. 

 

Well it's Turn rate is dictated by the Drivers Strength which the later (The "E8") was much better just at driving.

 

The Comet could neutral turn, turn radius is dependent on speed, gear, type of gearbox not just arm strength. 

 

The Traverse on the Comet is 15 degrees per second, making it markedly inferior to both the T-34/85 and Easy 8. 

 

 

Also as for Guns

 

Keep in mind that the 17pdr is the least accurate Gun in the list unfortunately.

 

The 17pdr and 77 mm are not the same weapon,

The 77mm did not have the issues of Sabot separation which made the early 17pdr APDS rounds less accurate at range (oddly the Canadian manufactured APDS rounds did not require the fix done to the British manufactured rounds to improve them - and that is without proper proof testing - something the rounds at Insigney were lacking)

The 17pdr APCBC (standard round) was as good as the US 76mm HVAP rounds (which were very rare) at penetration (slightly better in some tests) while being almost as accurate. 

Edited by Freddy31621
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img528.jpg

From left to right: 6 pdr 7 cwt APDS (57 x 441R); 75mm US/UK tank (75 x 350R); 17 pdr APDS (76.2 x 583R) and 77mm APCBC (76.2 x 420R)

 

As you can see. Size wise it was about as large as the US 75mm shell. A bit heavier though. So it was a lot easier to handle than the much larger 17 pdr round.

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Actually

 

The T-34/85(the later one) is going to have a better job at reloading. Keep in mind that the 77mm HV reloaded even slower than a 90mm when it was mounted in a pretty roomy Sherman Turret.

 


 

Keep in mind that the 17pdr is the least accurate Gun in the list unfortunately.

the 77mm HV was never fitted to a Sherman, it was only ever fitted to a Comet. I don't think it could be slower than a 90mm the ammunition was quite compact, smaller in physical size to a 90mm round.

 

a fairer comparison to the 90mm would be the 20pdr.

 

the 17pdr may not be the most accurate, but it had higher penetration than the 76mm and the 85mm as it used APDS

Edited by fdsdh1
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the 17pdr may not be the most accurate, but it had higher penetration than the 76mm and the 85mm as it used APDS

 

Not really, it's because it fired solid shot, which has higher penetration than APHE, and at a muzzle velocity of 2.9k ft/s. APDS is just the icing on the cake that allows 17 pdr platforms to deal with Panther UFPs at standard combat ranges, which is better than even 90mm HVAP against Panthers at that point.

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Panther > Sherman FireFly > Comet > T34/85

 

BR could be: 5.3   vs  min 4.7 max 5.7

 

would fight against:

 

normal difficulty:

T34/85 (D-5T), M4A1 (76), M4A2 (76), PzIVH, Kw85, 

 

hard difficulty:

Tiger H1, Panther D, IS1, M4A3E2 Jumbo (76)

Edited by LxMxWx
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and I definitely wouldn't say the panther is the best. 45 tonnes with that armour..?

 

Front is a thing of legends, sides are mediocre.

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100mm mantlet?

 

No, the UFP. That thing is amazing IRL. The mantlet is weak compared to the UFP though.

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No, the UFP. That thing is amazing IRL. The mantlet is weak compared to the UFP though.

 

Yea but turret armour is FAR more useful than hull armour imo

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Comet > Firefly > Panther > T-34

Panther have better Armor ( 80mm 55° ), Cannon ( KwK42 2° best cannon in WWII ), Optics and Good Speed ( 55Km/h max ).

 

 

I repeat:

Panther > Sherman FireFly > Comet > T34/85

 

 

 

Firefly ammo:

Loading_17_pounder_rounds_into_Sherman_F

 

Comet ammo:

Loading_ammunition_into_Comet_tank_1945_

Edited by LxMxWx
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Panther have better Armor ( 80mm 55° ), Cannon ( KwK42 2° best cannon in WWII ), Optics and Good Speed ( 55Km/h max ).

 

 

I repeat:

Panther > Sherman FireFly > Comet > T34/85

 

The Panther is also more expensive despite the presence of forced labor (since a Panther made in the US is going to be more expensive since all workers receive some degree of payment, so a Panther is even closer to being as expensive as a Pershing, which costs $83k), and while its optics are good in the late A and all G versions, that's all the tank gets for the gunner. This means that if the commander fails, you can REALLY kiss the tank's situational awareness goodbye, even if this is already a general rule in tank combat. The gun mobility in enclosed spaces also becomes a thing for debate, as the Panther's gun by far has the highest profile. I'd say it's an iffy thing.

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Firefly ammo:

snip

 

Comet ammo:

snipysnip

 

Those pictures are actually interesting in the fact that it shows the easier handling of the 77mm ammo, those guys seems to be able to handle them with one hand . :)s

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yeah panther > comet...

 

Panther > T-72 dude.

 

As usual the same fanboys who put gun penetration and frontal armour as the SOLE factors which make a good tank.

 

The comet outdoes the panther in every important aspect, still has respectable armour (and that's not even mentioning the interesting spaced armour arrangement on the sides thanks to the christie suspension, panther can only dream to have such an armour which negates most WW2 low caliber HEAT shells) on the front hull (usually out to 100mm with addon plates), pretty good on turret and mantlet, impressive gun depression, much faster ROF thanks to handier shells, and enough penetration anyway to kill pretty much any tank if would face, panther included (tiger 2 excluded).

 

The comet is the pinacle of british cruiser tanks, a fantastic engine, a fantastic mobility, low silhouette, nice gun, cheap enough, good quality armour, reliable and dependable.

 

Comet is vastly > to firefly, which is barely a good tank killer with terrible ergonomics, based on early sherman hulls with weak and slim suspension, very poor mobility and pretty useless armour. As I said, the M4A3E8 is still better than the comet in my opinion, but the M4A3E8 and firefly are vastly different in performances. Why? cause M4A3E8 had nice frontal armour, fantastic cheap cost and reliability, and simply better ergonomics, safer ammo storage, almost as much penetration.

 

The T-34-85 I rate it > to comet for production, service life and firepower reasons, and also much cheaper, simpler to maintain, and the diesel engine that gives amazing range. In a 1 vs 1 duel however i'd put my money on the comet.

 

Panther is easily last in this list of "top medium tanks", simply because of its terrible design and technical flaws.

 

The only problem with the comet was that it came too late to make a difference, had it be available instead of the cromwell and centaurs, it would have been easily the best tank of the european front. With M4A3E8 that is.

 

 

I'd see the comet easily at 6.3  6.7 BR, but maybe 6.7 is too much. Need to see what the penetration will be. ~150 and ~220 for its APCBC and APDS should be enough to justify such a high BR, and not forgetting its mobility and gun depression.

 

The comet variant Avenger, will surely kick *** with its mobility but improved firepower in the form of the 17pdr.

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simpler to maintain,

 

Just want to mention this a little.

 

I've worked at a local tank museum, the T34/85's we had were really horrifically unreliable. Prone to breaking down at the drop of a hat even after a full maintenance overhaul. Our Sherman's were much better behaved. We were restoring a Cromwell to be a runner as well, but that project got knocked on the head due to costs.

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