The Higgins 78 ft PT-71 is a rank II American motor torpedo boat with a battle rating of 2.0 (AB/RB/SB). It was introduced in Update 1.79 "Project X" as part of the fleet closed beta test.
Survivability and armour
The PT-71 has the following structural layout:
- Hull: 40 mm, wood
- Superstructure: 15 mm, wood
It has a crew of only 12 but is capable of surviving losing up to 9 members before being destroyed. All of its components packed together with little room to spare so penetrating shots will likely hit modules as well as damaging the hull. With no additional armour besides the wood it is composed of, this is not a ship that can take very much damage.
|Game Mode||Upgrade Status||Maximum Speed (km/h)|
The PT-71 is a very mobile ship and boasts an excellent speed of 74 kph, able to keep up with all but the fastest of Russian MTBs. The PT-71 has a displacement of 49 tons.
Modifications and economy
The four 12.7 mm AN-M2 machine guns have a great rate of fire allowing it to deal plenty of damage quickly. It is best used at ranges under 1 km, any further and the bullets do significantly less damage and require more compensation for the ballistics. Since the guns rely on sheer rate of fire to destroy enemies, it is capable of engaging both naval and air targets. The recommended belt is APIT. It has slightly less penetrating than AP but gains the ability to set fires.
The 20 mm Oerlikon on the rear of the boat covers the rear blindspot of your quad machine guns. Since the 20 mm has far less damage output compared to the four machine guns, the 20 mm cannon should only be used when the enemy is in that rear blindspot.
Torpedoes are not particularly useful at the PT-71's BR. They should only be used to against slow moving gunboats or spammed towards commonly traveled chokepoints.
Usage in battles
The 78 ft PT-71 can be considered a direct upgrade to the reserve tier Higgins 81 ft PT-6 and should be played similarly. The quad machine guns benefit from a great vantage point, and can both be fired directly forward making relatively quick work of most opponents you will face. The 20 mm Oerlikon Mk.II also packs a good punch, and, considering its positioning, has a decent field of coverage as well.
The optimal angle to engage other boats is to sail directly at them. You reveal only your bow and bridge to enemy fire while all four of your machine guns can pepper them with bullets. When going up against bigger ships use your speed, evasive manoeuvres, and natural cover to approach and drop torpedoes as closely as possible. Then turn tail and run, using your 20mm and smoke to shake off any pursuers. Alternatively, some players choose to forgo torpedoes altogether favouring a lower chance of ammo detonation over the ability to engage bigger ships. All in all, the 78 ft PT-71 is a versatile boat that is not lacking in any department except for armour (but this is the standard at the rank), and it is a good boat for those just getting into Naval Battles.
Pros and cons
- Good rate of fire as well as damage output
- Guns face no obstructions (other than each other)
- Equipped with four torpedoes
- Good speed
- No armour (though this is standard for the rank)
- Small boat means all components are packed closely together, a big hit anywhere on the ship can be deadly
PT-71 was laid down on December 2, 1941 by Higgins Industries, in New Orleans, Louisiana. It was launched on May 4, 1942, and was completed on July 20, 1942. It was commissioned on April 27, 1943 as the USS PT-71, and it was assigned to Motor Torpedo Boat Squadron FOUR (MTBRon 4) under the command of Lt. Comdr. William C. Specht, USN. MTBRon 4 was the training squadron for motor torpedo boat crews, based at MTB Squadrons Training Center, at Melville, Rhode Island.
PT-71 was transferred to Motor Torpedo Boat Squadron SIXTEEN (MTBRon 16) under the command of Lt. Comdr. Russell H. Smith, USN, on January 20, 1943. MTBRon saw action during the Aleutian Campaign.
On March 13, 1943 PT-71 was transferred to Motor Torpedo Boat Squadron SEVENTEEN (MTBRon 17) under the command of Lt. Comdr. Russell B. Allen, USN. MTBRon 17 was assigned to the Hawaiian Sea Frontier. On April 16, 1943 the PT-71 was transferred back to MTBRon 4.
On March 18, 1944 the ship was transferred to Motor Torpedo Boat Squadron TWO - (MTBRon 2) under the command of Comdr. John D. Bulkeley, USN. MTBRon 2 was assigned to the Office of Strategic Services, and was located in the English Channel. Between May and October of 1944 the squadron carried out 20 missions, landing supplies and personnel in enemy occupied territory. On October 11, 1945 PT-71 was struck from the Naval Register. It was stripped and destroyed on October 21, 1945 at Samar, in the Philippines.
PT-71 had a displacement of 56 t, a length of 71 ft, a beam of 20 ft 8 in, and a draft of 5 ft 3 in. It was powered by three 1,500 shp Packard W-14 M2500 gasoline engines, and had three shafts. The armament consisted of four 21" torpedoes, one 40mm mount, and two twin .50 cal. machine guns. The crew complement was 17 sailors and officers, and it had a maximum speed of 40 knots.
Excellent additions to the article would be video guides, screenshots from the game, and photos.
Links to articles on the War Thunder Wiki that you think will be useful for the reader, for example:
- reference to the series of the ship;
- links to approximate analogues of other nations and research trees.
- Radigan, Joseph M. PT-71. NavSource Naval History. http://www.navsource.org/archives/12/05071.htm
|Higgins Industries Ships|
|Motor Torpedo Boats (PT)|
|81' PT Prototype||PT-6|
|78' PT||PT-71 · PT-200|
|Motor torpedo boats||PT-3 · PT-810 · PT-811 · PT-20 · PT-103 · PT-109 · PT-314 · Thunderbolt (PT-556)|
|PT-565 · PT-200 · PT-71 · PT-6|
|Motor gun boats||PTF-7 · PT-59 · USS Tucumcari|
|Motor torpedo gun boats||USS Asheville · LCS(L)(3) · USS Candid|