LVA-3D LVA-3E

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2017-12-04

NOTES

 

LVA-3D  Bushhammer

LVA-3E  Bushmonger

 
The story which didn't happen ... outside Atlantic Air Combat
  See also : AAC Data Sheet
 
 
Illustrations :
 LVA3D.Bushhammer
 LVA3E.Bushmonger
Illustrations :
 
 
Related Pages :
 LVT - Background Notes
 
 

INTRODUCTION

The LVA-3D and LVA-3E are fictional Landing Assault Vehicles of US origin.  Designed in 1944, and massively produced in the early months of 1945, it came too late to see action during WWII.  Here is the story that didn't happen

LVA-3D Bushhammer

After the toll claimed by the first assault landings of 1942, improvement first came in the form of armoured and fire support variants, either with a 37mm tank gun (LVT-1(A) or a 75mm howitzer (LVT-4(A).  Good enough to take care of pill boxes, but not really tailored to dispose of late production ennnemy tanks.  While the US Army and Marine Corps made do with what was on hand, the Soviets who already had received scores of LVTs under the lend lease programme, insisted to have a better weapon installed, with the 75mm multipurpose gun of the Sherman having their preference.

But it wasn't exclusively a matter of fire power, as these vehicules improved vehicles would either carry a gun or troops - what the Soviets wanted was a fully multipurpose vehicle doing both.  And if Japanese had a decreasing number of aircraft available to oppose landings, the situation was very different on the Eastern European front.  Not only did the Red Army face tanks of all kinds and very strongly reinforced positions, but the Luftwaffe wasn't out of the sky yet.  So the Soviet Union had been begging for an anti-aircraft variant too.

With most earlier production facilities taken up by the mass production of the LVT-4, the US choosed to maintain the LVT-3 production lines open, albeit to assemble a sligthly revised model : the LVA-3D (initially intended to mean "Destroyer").  A lengthened LVT-3 hull would accommodate what essentially was a Sherman medium tank turret located forward to a fully enclosed troop/cargo compartment, but with the original M3 gun being replaced by the lighter M6.  Initially intended for aircraft use (B-25G/H), and actually on the M24 Chaffee light tank, this gun shared the ammunition and balistics of the M3.

The troop/cargo compartment was shorter but covered with an armoured hood divided in two parts which could flip open if necessary, each panel containing three hatches.  The standard LVT-3 carried 24 geared up soldiers, but the LVA-3D shorter rear area would only carry half that number.

The M6 gun had a one-axis gyrostabilizer, not precise enough to allow firing on the move but enough to keep the reticle on target, allowing quick accurate firing whence stopped.  82 shell were carried in the confine of the turret command module.

Atop of the turret was the standard .50 cal Browning gun on an anti-aircraft mount for which 1,000 round were available.  As the Red Army was not a big user of the US heavy machine gun, having one of their own, their LVAs were equipped with a .50 cal DShk HMG.

Like the standard LVT-3, the LVA-3D could carry some cargo, although a meager 3,500 lbs compared to the 9,000 lbs the LVT-3 could hold.  Still, that was good enough to carry a fully laden M48 Jeep and the compromise to accept for the assault vehicle being multipurpose, a Jack of all trade but not a master of none as it did what it was designed for.

LVA-3E Bushmonger

The US had been playing with various dedicated anti-aircraft vehicles, like installing a 40mm Bofors on a Sherman or squeezing 6 BMG in the turret of the T77 MGMC.  But in order to maintain standardization and speed up production, the US choose not to re-invent the wheel and copy what the Canadian had done with their SPAAG iteration of the (cast) Sherman turret for their Skink.  Flattered to see their work recognized, the Canadian extended a hand in the form of Canadian manufactured LVA-3Es, for the US, Britain, themselves, and for the Soviet Union.  The Skink turret had initially being designed for Oerlikon 20mm auto-cannons before the similar Posten gun was imposed by Britain.  Canada further improved this rugged gun by doing away with the clip ammo clips.

The guns were now belt fed from drums located in the bilge beneath the turret, very much like on a bomber aircraft.  The setup allowed a better sustained rate of fire than ammo clips.  Weapons differred from one customer to the other, the Canadian ended up producing three variants :

LVA-3E1 with 4ื.50 cal

M2HB

(12.7ื199mm)

HMG (USA)

(4ื750 rounds)

LVA-3E2 with 4ื.50 cal

DShk

(12.7ื108mm)

HMG (USSR)

(4ื750 rounds)

LVA-3E3 with 4ื20mm

Polsten

(20   ื110mm)

A–C (Canada, Britain)

(4ื500 rounds)

The switch to the Browning BMG was the result of an American request, mimicked by the Soviets.  Then, other than having a quad of heavy machine guns or auto-cannons replacing the anti-tank gun, the capacity of the vehicle remained the same, still able to carry a dozen of soldiers or the ubiquitous M38 general purpose vehicle or 3,500 lbs of cargo, either bulk or on six USAF type pellets (45"ื35") .

Post-War Upgrade

After the war, American Army considered for a while replacing the M2HB with USAF AN/M3 .50 cal machine guns for their 1200 rpm rate of fire (the double of their own M2HB) but didn't carry on with it and Britain was happy with the 20mm Polsten Mk.II gun which they later exported to Argentina.  The Soviets however decided in the mid-fifties to replace their DShk 12.7mm with the more poweful 14.5mm KPV heavy machine guns as it offered more munch at longer range albeit at the cost of some of the ammunition supply, down to 600 rounds.

The LVAs in Atlantic Air Combat™

The type is thus common to all AAC™ navies so equipped, varying only in their AA armament; leading to the following variants and operators :

LAV3D1 Bushhammer Personnel Carrier & Fighting vehicle 1ื75mm tank gun 1ื

12.7 mm

AA gun M2HB
LAV3D2 Bushhammer Personnel Carrier & Fighting vehicle 1ื75mm tank gun 1ื

12.7 mm

AA gun DHSK
LAV3E1 Bushmonger Personnel Carrier & SPAAG – 4ื

12.7 mm

AA gun M2HB
LAV3E2 Bushmonger Personnel Carrier & SPAAG (variant) – 4ื

 20.0 mm

AA gun OEPL
LAV3E3 Bushmonger Personnel Carrier & SPAAG (variant) – 4ื

14.5 mm

AA gun ZU14

The presence of LVAs will be associated with landing of forces, the key ones being mentioned in the table below.  During WWII, the number of LVTs involved in beach assault landings varied from 120 to 785 in the 11 listed events mentioned on the background page.  In Atlantic Air Combat™, the number of LVAs will be contained between 25 and 180.

The LVA-3D/E in perspective

Specifications

LVA-3D1 LVA-3D2 LVA-3E1 LVA-3E2 LVA-3E3 LVT-3

Quantities

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ 2,962

Production

1945 1945 1945 1945 1945 1943-1945

Gun: main (field)

1ื75mm M5 1ื75mm M5 – – – –

Gun: AA

1ืM2HB 1ืDHSK 4ืM2HB 4ืM2HB 4ืZU14 1ื50cal

Ammunitions

1ื1000 1ื1000 4ื750 4ื750 4ื750  

Length

363" 363" 363" 363" 363" 313"

Width

128" 128" 128" 128" 128" 128"

Fuel capacity

130.US 130.US 130.US 130.US 130.US 130.US

Weight: combat

35,000 lb 35,000 lb 35,000 lb 35,000 lb 35,000 lb 26,600 lb

Weight: full

38,500 lb 38,500 lb 38,500 lb 38,500 lb 38,500 lb 38,600 lb

Crew/Troop (285 lb)

3+12 3+12 3+12 3+12 3+12 3 + 24

Cargo

3,500 lb 3,500 lb 3,500 lb 3,500 lb 3,500 lb 9,000 lb

Loading ramp

Rear Rear Rear Rear Rear Rear

Engine(s)

2ืV8 Turbo 2ืV8 Turbo 2ืV8 Turbo 2ืV8 Turbo 2ืV8 Turbo 2ืCadillac,V8

Power

2ื150 hp 2ื150 hp 2ื150 hp 2ื150 hp 2ื150 hp 2ื110 hp

Speed land/sea

27 10 kmh
27 10 kmh
27 10 kmh
27 10 kmh
27 10 kmh
27 10 kmh

Range land/sea

240 120 km
240 120 km
240 120 km
240 120 km
240 120 km
240 120 km

  AAC™ Operators

 

Force Landings Events

LVA-3D1 LVA-3D2 LVA-3E1 LVA-3E2 LVA-3E3 Defenders 3rd Party

1963.__

 Aaland

–

30

–

–

15

 

–

  

1963.__

 Kiel

–

200

–

–

90

  

–

  

1964.__

 Walcheren

90

–

–

30

–

–

–

1964.__

 North Cape

40

–

25

–

–

–

  

1964.__

 Rio Gallegos

15

–

10

–

–

 

–

   

1964.__

 Pta Arenas

20

–

–

10

–

 

–

  

1964.__

 Durban

–

120

–

–

60

  

–

 

1964.__

 Canaries

–

60

–

–

30

  

–

–

1964.__

 Dakar

–

90

–

–

45

  

–

–

1965.__

 San Carlos

90

–

–

60

–

  

–

  

1966.__

 Acores

60

–

45

–

–

–

 

 

1967.__

Svalbard

20

–

–

10

–

–

  

 
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