I. Tankettes and Light Tanks

UpdatedJanuary 24, 2004

***Tank speed here is maximal, range is given on byroads.
  1. T-27 tankette
  2. MS-1 (T-18M) tanks
  3. T-37/T-37A/T-37RT/OT-37(BHM-4)
  4. T-38/T-38RT
  5. T-26
    1. T-26M31/T-26M31RT (two turrets)
    2. OT-26(KhT-26)
    3. T-26M33/T-26M33RT/T-26A(T-26-4)
    4. ST-26
    5. T-26-1/T-26-1 with anti-aircraft MG
    6. TT-26+TU-26
    7. OT-130
    8. OT-131/OT-132/OT-133
    9. Self-propelled guns
  6. BT series
    1. BT-2M32/BT-2M33
    2. BT-5/BT-5RT
    3. BT-5 (BHM or BHM-2)
    4. BT-7M35(with cylindrical turret)/BT-7M37(with conical turret)
    5. BT-7M35RT(with cylindrical turret)/BT-7M38RT(with conical turret)
    6. BT-7M
    7. BT-7A
  7. T-50
  8. T-40/T-40S/T-30-recon tanks
  9. T-60
  10. T-70
  11. T-80

up1. T-27 Tankette

The SINGLE serial type of tankette in RKKA. Based on the English made Carden-Loyd Mk VI. Analogues: French tankette UE, Polish tankettes TKS, TK3, Italian -CV3/33,CV3/35 tankettes

Comments: Were used in cavalry divisions in 1941. Were also utilized in Crimea landing operation on Dec.,1941. Mostly were used as artillery prime movers.

up2. MS-1 (T-18M)

Based on Renault FT-17 French tank. After modernization in 1930 was named T-18M

Comments: Were used as static pillboxes on the Western frontier in June 41. According to some sources 10-20 of them were used in some mixed tank divisions. To my knowledge, they could take part in Moscow battle.

up3. T-37/T-37A/T-37RT/OT-37(BHM-4) Recon Amphibious Tanks

T-37A had a bit more strong armor. T-37RT had radio. OT-37(BKhM-4) - flame thrower tank
Comments: T-37 and T-38 were used in the first months of the war. I have information of their usage in Sevastopol 1941-42 and in the landing operation in Crimea at Dec, 1941. Last operationally use: 1943, when almost all T-37/38 were collected for Svir' river crossing operation. These tanks were used in recon battalions of mechanised corps (67 units in each), mechanised regiments (30 units in each), tank battalions of infantry divisions, and recon companies of tank brigades. At least 7 T-37 were used in the Moscow battle in the 107th Mech. Division (data on Oct. 01, 1941)
See also Galleries section

up4. T-38/T-38RT Recon Amphibious Tank

Modification of T-37 tank model. T-38RT had radio
Comments: see T-37 comments A few modifications were made on a little group of machines (T-38M, T-38M2, T-38TT(remote control tank group)) Also on the base of the T-38, together with "Komsomolets" prime movers, the ZIS-30 self-propelled gun (1941) Weapon: 57mm AT gun. Of which 100 units were made. Used in Moscow battle (80% of all built)

up5. T-26

23 modifications were made on series. Only the main variants are listed here. Was constructed on the base of the English "Vickers-6 tons" ("Vickers-E"). Analogues: Polish tank 7TP See also Galleries section
up5a. T-26M31/T-26M31RT (double-turreted)
RT modification had radio

For additional info check Galleries section
up5b. OT-26(KhT-26)
Flame thrower tank. Comments: had one turret For additional info check Galleries section
up5c. T-26M33/T-26M33RT/T-26A(T-26-4)

with one cylindrical turret. RT modification was equipped by radio
For additional info check Galleries section
up5d. ST-26

Combat-engineer's tank. (bridge-layer)
For additional info check Galleries section
up5e. T-26-1/T-26-1 with Anti-aircraft MG

With conical turret (had modification with straight and inclined under-turret's box)
For additional info check Galleries section
up5f. TT-26+TU-26
Remote control group TT-26 flame thrower tank (Flame thrower apparatus+7,62MG), TU-26 tank of remote control (45mm gun+7,62mm MG)
Comments: Last time were seen loaded on a train near Ryazan town ready to be evacuated to the rear. Were permitted to be used only under extreme circumstances. A battalion of such tanks was used in the Winter War.
For additional info check Galleries section
up5g. OT-130
Flame thrower tank (1938)

For additional info check Galleries section
Based on T-26-1
For additional info check Galleries section
up5i. Self-propelled guns based on a T-26 hull

For additional info check Galleries section
  1. SU-5-1 (76,2 mm gun M1902/30) (1934-35) - 6 units built
  2. SU-5-2(122mm howitzer M1910/30) (1937) - 6(?) units built
  3. SU-5-3 (152,4 mortar M1931) (1934) - 3 units built
Total number: 15 units, according to other source - 28-30 units (including 24 SU-5-2)
  1. SU-6 - Anti-Aircraft self-propelled gun (76.2mm AA gun) - a small series (4 units)
For additional info check Galleries section
Comments for all T-26:
In 1940, after the Winter war (in Finland) some tanks (~100) were given additional armor screens. For additional info check Galleries section Such modification were made on tanks of 1939 year production with conical turret and inclined under-turret's box and on tanks made in 1936-37 with cylindrical turret and OT-133 tanks. Their weight was increased by 2.3 - 2.5 tons and front armor was increased up to 60mm. Sometimes they were called T-26E. They were overweighted! Number of all flame thrower tanks based on T-26 - 1336 units. Total number produced: 11,218 units In RKKA (on 01.01.1941) there were 9665 T-26 tanks of all modifications. Also a captured T-26 were utilized in the Finnish army (For additional info check Galleries section). They were used next to the Fins "Vickers-6tons" tanks. The main differences between the Vickers and T-26 were in armor (on T-26 more heavy) and gun (37mm gun Vickers vis. 45mm - T-26) I also have information that Finnish Vickers tanks were called T-26E. A few captured Vickers tanks were used by RKKA in 1941 in the battle for Leningrad.

up 6. BT series

Analogues: Polish tank 10TP, English tank "Crusader" The BT series were constructed based on J.W.Christie's tank (USA) and had several modifications. All BT tanks could move both on wheels and on tracks. But in memoirs I couldn't find any examples of using wheel moving mode in action. All tankmen were complaining of a bad tracks of an old tans (including BTs). They too often were loosing their tracks on marches. BT-1 index was assigned to original Christy's tank. Existed BT-3 -4 -6 -8 tanks. In several sources I met different descriptions of BT-3 and BT-4. Later I hope to place here more detailed info. BT-6 tank was an experimental one. BT-8 more often was called BT-7M.
up6a. BT-2M32/BT-2M33

up 6b. BT-5/BT-5RT
RT modification was equipped with radio

up6c. BT-5 (BKhM or BKhM-2)
Flame thrower

up6d. BT-7M35(with cylindrical turret)/BT-7M37(with conical turret)
Comments: The BT-7M35 used the same turret as the BT-5
up6e. BT-7M35RT with cylindrical turret)/BT-7M38RT(with conical turret)
RT modifications was equipped by radio. Since 1938 were building with conical turret
up6f. BT-7M
Equipped with diesel engine
up6g. BT-7A
Index "A" means "Artillery" tank

Comments to all BTs
The BT-tanks had NO official names, all such used in literature are therefore UNOFFICIAL nicks. The most commonly used ones for BTs' were "Betushka" or "Beteshka". Their origin stems from the Russian pronunciation of the "BT" abbreviation -[ b e t e']. This abbreviation can be interpreted as "High Speed tank" Like the BTs, some other tanks also had unofficial nicks, for example the T-34 is always named "Tridtsat'chetviorka" (very hard to spell for foreigners). This origins from its number and can be translated as "34th". Several dozens of conversions were made by Finland with the captured BT tanks. The 114mm howitzer was mounted on their hull. These self propelled guns were named BT-42. They were recaptured in 1944 in Vyborg vicinities. The total number of BT tanks in RKKA on 01.01.41 - 7463 units of all modification. Besides the major types, some experimental tanks were based on the BT chassis. Some of them even took part in battles. BT-20 (A-20) single unit was utilized in the Moscow battle. I can name only several of them: PT-1, T-43-1, T-43-2, BT-IS, BT-SV-2, T-46-1, T-25, ST-35
up7. T-50

Comments: 8 T-50 took part in Moscow battle in 150 tank. brigade. A few tanks were captured by Finns and were used there. On Oct. 1, 1942 27 T-50 (+5 T-34) were used by the 488th Separate Tank Battalion of Caucasian Front
up8. T-40/T-40S/T-30-recon tanks

T-40 was an amphibious tank, other were common ones
In RKKA on June, 22-1941 - 233 units
Comments: in RKKA all subtypes were called T-40 and there were no distinctions between them in documents. The last T-40 known to be used was in the summer of '42.
up9. T-60
Further development of T-40.
Comments: No principal modification were made. A small series of rocket launchersBM-8-24 (1941) were also based on T-60 chassis.
up10. T-70/T-70M

T-70M had enlarged tracks and modified running gear. Deep modification of T-60

Comments: In some literature there is information that some of them were equipped with cast or welded turret. (cast turret on latest modifications 1942)
up11. T-80
Further development of T-40-T-70 line
Comments: Could be used as anti-aircraft tank.