M41A1 Walker Bulldog

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Arcade Realistic Simulator

Arcade Realistic Simulator

Arcade Realistic Simulator

General info

M41A1 Walker Bulldog in the garage.

The M41A1 Walker Bulldog is a Rank IV American light tank with a battle rating of 6.0. It was introduced at the same time as the American ground tree in Update 1.45 "Steel Generals". A large improvement over its predecessor, the M24 Chaffee, it features a gun that can more adequately fight the tanks at its tier with an APDS round and has a very good mobility and low profile to move quickly against the enemy.

The main purpose, usage and tactics recommendations

General play style

Like the tanks that come before it, the Bulldog should be used as a rapid-deployment support vehicle in conjunction with heavier vehicles like the T32. It is best used to run rapid insertion and flanking operations while allowing the heavier tanks absorb the brunt of the enemy attack. The Walker Bulldog works well with M26 Medium tanks as the M26 has a harder hitting gun to support your advance, but you maintain a much better climb rate for hills and a much faster acceleration. The Bulldog's top speed does cap off-road, requiring you to make the most of the terrain.

Always remember that the Bulldog lacks any effective armour. In a frontal attack, it will be easily penetrated by almost anything the enemy throws at it. Try to use the terrain to hide yourself and relocate after shots. Also, attempt to engage targets who are busy or already engaged with one of your teammates. The Bulldog's 76mm gun has great penetration, but due to the solid shot AP rounds it has it is necessary to make your shots count by hitting either ammo racks or fuel tanks/engines to disable and or destroy an enemy vehicle. Equipping HVAP rounds later on makes it easier to destroy vehicles with better side armour such as the IS-3 which has a fairly strong side profile.

Vehicle characteristics

Tactics

The Bulldog is best playing a mobile role; trail the outskirts of the map and take shots at the enemy from a distance and keep relocating. Don't stand still for too long as one or two hits are usually enough to completely disable your tank.

While playing this tank, your biggest concern should be not to get hit by anything. Given its thin armour, anything that the Bulldog is facing will be able to deal heavy damage. In summary, the Bulldog is a very maneuverable tank and with practice is a very potent threat to your enemies.

Specific enemies worth noting

There aren't any specific targets worth noting as you'll be hurt by pretty much anything. You'll want to be careful with SPAAs as they can knock out your components with ease and even destroy you.

If you're up against heavy tanks, such as the Tiger 2H, don't bother trying to hit its front chassis armour even with APDS. The chances to penetrate this tank's upper glacis are very low. You're better off either ignoring him or aiming for his lower glacis and turret. Should you penetrate his lower glacis, the transmission is likely to catch on fire. When attacking the turret, aim for the gunner on the left (your right) of the gun. After that, disengage as the gunner will be replaced faster than you can reload. Fighting off heavily armoured targets takes a lot of practice, but the gun's accuracy and good penetration can be used to your advantage.

If at all possible try only to expose your turret. If you use the terrain to your advantage you'll usually be able to fire one to three shots, then start moving forwards and backwards, thus making it a lot harder for the enemy to hit you. Generally, you'll be able to get in two shots on most targets before they can fire back, and the M41A1 accelerates from 0 to 30km/h fast enough to become a hard target to hit if only the turret is exposed!

Counter-tactics

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Extremely agile tank.
  • Top speed of 72 km/h.
  • Fast turret traverse (30.6°/S).
  • Fast reload rate.
  • Respectable firepower when loaded with APDS.
  • APDS has high muzzle velocity, easy to hit targets at longer ranges.
  • Good flanker, but if you lose your momentum you're dead.
  • Good suspension; can drive away from steep downhills and jumps.
  • .50 cal AA machine gun with good coverage.

Cons:

  • Low torque, without downhill you won't reach higher speeds than 50 km/h.
  • Thin armour, even SPAA tanks will take you out given the opportunity.
  • Its poor engine is its biggest weakness, makes it a bad scouting unit.
  • Ammo storage in the front, next to the driver.
  • APDS shot causes only punctual damage (aim carefully).
  • No explosive filler on any AP shells.
  • Quite tall for a light tank.

Specifications

Arcade Realistic Simulator

Arcade Realistic Simulator

Arcade Realistic Simulator

Armaments

1 x 76 mm M32 cannon (65 rounds)
1 x 12.7 mm M2HB heavy machine gun (2,175 rounds)
1 x 7.62 mm M1919A4 machine gun (4,900 rounds)

Main armament

1 x 76 mm M32 cannon
  • Ammunition Capacity: 65 Shells
  • Gun Depression: -10°
  • Gun Elevation: 20°
  • Turret Rotation Speed: 21.42°/s (Stock), 29.6°/s (Upgraded), 36°/s (Prior + Full Crew), 39.7°/s (Prior + Expert Qualif.), 42.3°/s (Prior + Ace Qualif.)
  • Reloading Rate: 7.6s (Stock), 6.7s (Full Crew), 6.2s (Prior + Expert Qualif.), 5.9s (Prior + Ace Qualif.)
1 x 76 mm M32 cannon
  • Ammunition Capacity: 65 Shells
  • Gun Depression: -10°
  • Gun Elevation: 20°
  • Turret Rotation Speed: 21.4°/s (Stock), 25.2°/s (Upgraded), 30.6°/s (Prior + Full Crew), 33.7°/s (Prior + Expert Qualif.), 36.0°/s (Prior + Ace Qualif.)
  • Reloading Rate: 7.6s (Stock), 6.7s (Full Crew), 6.2s (Prior + Expert Qualif.), 5.9s (Prior + Ace Qualif.)
1 x 76 mm M32 cannon
  • Ammunition Capacity: 65 Shells
  • Gun Depression: -10°
  • Gun Elevation: 20°
  • Turret Rotation Speed: 21.4°/s (Stock), 25.2°/s (Upgraded), 30.6°/s (Prior + Full Crew), 33.7°/s (Prior + Expert Qualif.), 36.0°/s (Prior + Ace Qualif.)
  • Reloading Rate: 7.6s (Stock), 6.7s (Full Crew), 6.2s (Prior + Expert Qualif.), 5.9s (Prior + Ace Qualif.)
Ammunition
Ammunition Penetration in mm @ 90° Type of
warhead
Velocity
in m/s
Projectile
Mass in kg
Fuse delay in m: Fuse sensitivity in mm: Explosive Mass in
TNT equivalent
in g:
Normalization At 30° from horizontal: Ricochet:
10m 100m 500m 1000m 1500m 2000m 0% 50% 100%
M339 Shot 180 177 161 143 126 98 AP 975 6.6 N/A N/A N/A -1° 47° 60° 65°
M352 Shell 12 12 12 12 12 12 HE 732 6.8 0.1 0.5 867.22 +0° 79° 80° 81°
M319 Shot 208 207 187 170 144 123 APCR 1262 3.2 N/A N/A N/A +1.5° 66° 70° 72°
M331A2 Shot 232 231 212 193 163 137 APDS 1231 1.5 N/A N/A N/A +1.5° 75° 78° 80°
Ammunition Type of
warhead
Velocity
in m/s
Projectile
Mass in kg
Screen radius
in m
Screen time
in s
Screen hold time
in s:
Explosive Mass in
TNT equivalent
in g:
M361 Smoke 713 7.1 13 5 20 50
Ammo racks
Ammo rack of the M41A1 Walker Bulldog
Full
ammo
1st
rack empty
2nd
rack empty
3rd
rack empty
Recommendations Visual
discrepancy
65 55 (+10) 39 (+26) 1 (+64) None No

Secondary armaments

1 x 12.7 mm M2HB heavy machine gun
1 x 7.62 mm M1919A4 machine gun

Crew

  • Commander
  • Gunner
  • Loader
  • Driver

Total: 4 Crew members

Armour

Armour type:

  • Rolled homogeneous armour
  • Cast homogeneous armour (Gun mantlet)
Armour Front (Slope angle) Sides Rear Roof
Hull 25.4 mm (60°) Front glacis
31.7 mm (45°) Bottom glacis
25.4 mm Front
19 mm Back
19 mm Top
25.4 mm Bottom
19 mm
Turret 31.7 mm 25.4 mm 25.4 mm 19 mm

Notes:

  • Suspension wheels and tracks are 15 mm thick.

Engine & mobility

Weight: 23.0 ton

Max Speed: 80 km/h
Stock

  • Engine Power: 775 hp @ 2800 rpm
  • Power-to-Weight Ratio: 33.69 hp/ton
  • Maximum Inclination: 40°

Upgraded

  • Engine Power: 954 hp @ 2800 rpm
  • Power-to-Weight Ratio: 41.48 hp/ton
  • Maximum Inclination: 43°
Weight: 23.0 ton

Max Speed: 72 km/h
Stock

  • Engine Power: 442 hp @ 2800 rpm
  • Power-to-Weight Ratio: 19.22 hp/ton
  • Maximum Inclination: 40°

Upgraded

  • Engine Power: 500 hp @ 2800 rpm
  • Power-to-Weight Ratio: 21.74 hp/ton
  • Maximum Inclination: 41°
Weight: 23.0 ton

Max Speed: 72 km/h
Stock

  • Engine Power: 442 hp @ 2800 rpm
  • Power-to-Weight Ratio: 19.22 hp/ton
  • Maximum Inclination: 40°

Upgraded

  • Engine Power: 500 hp @ 2800 rpm
  • Power-to-Weight Ratio: 21.74 hp/ton
  • Maximum Inclination: 41°

Modules and improvements

Tier Mobility Protection Firepower
I Tracks Parts Horizontal drive
II Suspension, Brake system FPE Adjustment of fire, Airstrike, M319 shot
III Filters Crew replenishment Elevation mechanism, M331A2 shot
IV Transmission, Engine Artillery support, Improved optics, M361

Recommendation:
As with most tanks, it is recommended to first unlock Parts and FPE before upgrading anything else.

After that, you'll want to go for the APDS shells; these shells have a very high value of penetration and will let you damage heavier tanks. After you've gotten the ammo, go for the upgraded Engine and Transmission as it will help you to accelerate faster. The rest is up to your preference.

History of creation and combat usage

Development

The U.S. Army light tank in the later part of World War II, the M24 Chaffee, was a promising design but was deemed not effective for the future of armour encounters. Though its role as a scout was seen as needing the 75 mm gun, the army wanted a tank with a better gun to have a more equal chance against tanks. The project began as the T37 program in 1947 with the focus of being air-transportable with an anti-tank capability in the form of a 76 mm gun and a rangefinder. The adoption of a simplified rangefinder had the project designation changed to the T41. After testings and evaluations, the T41 model was accepted into service as the M41 Little Bulldog , with production starting at Cadillac Cleveland Tank Plant in 1951. The name Little Bulldog stayed until General Walton Walker, the first commander of the 8th US Army in Korea, died in a car accident, so the tank was renamed into the M41 Walker Bulldog in remembrance. Production went from 1953 to somewhere in the late 1960s with about 3,728 units produced.

The M41 light tank would go on to replace the M24 Chaffees by 1953. The M41 had a crew of four, commander, gunner, loader, and driver. The tank had a profile of under 9 feet and 19 feet long. The tank was lightweight at 23.5 tons and thus had rather thin armour, with the front armour only 25.4 mm thick (sloped at 60 degrees for about 50 mm effective). However, the tank was very agile with its torsion bar suspension and Continental AOS 895-3 series 6-cylinder gasoline engine of 500 hp which could deliver a road speed of 45 mph with a 100 miles operating range. Unfortunately, the tank was criticized for being noisy, a fuel-guzzler, rather heavy, and the American crewman found the Bulldog's interior to be quite cramped. Despite that, it delivered speed, firepower, and reliability in a light tank format. Several upgrades were made on the M41 with better technology, the M41A1 had a hydraulic turret traverse with more ammo storage, the M41A2 had a new fuel system, and the M41A3 are old M41A1 tanks with the new fuel system from the M41A2.

Combat usage

The M41 Walker Bulldog first saw use in Korea in a limited combat run. The tanks, still labeled their experimental designation T41, were sent for field testing on design deficiencies. It is unknown what other purposes they served there except for the tests. Their first major conflict once adopted by the U.S. Army was in Vietnam, mainly by replacing the M24 Chaffees in service with the South Vietnamese army (ARVN) at the time. The M41A3 tanks arrived in January 1965 and were instantly popular; not only for their advantages, but the previously cramped interior for American crews were actually perfect fit for the smaller Vietnamese armour crewman. The Bulldog went on to fight in the Vietnam War as a reliable war machine. The Bulldog had an advantage due to its light weight in maneuvering in the jungle terrain of the region. In 1971, Operation Lam Son 719, the disruption of the North Vietnamese Army supply lines had the M41 Bulldogs play a major role, accompanied by two airborne battalions and two cavalry regiments. Penetrating deep into enemy lines, the 17 M41 tanks engaged and destroyed six Soviet designed T-54 tanks and other lighter armoured vehicles. This engagement came at a lost of 5 M41 and 25 armoured personnel carriers. By 1973, the ARVN still used about 200 M41 tanks while the American units transition over to the M48A3 Patton tanks in Europe and Stateside. The M41 light tanks were also exported to various other countries. Today, Guatemala, Somalia, Taiwan, Uruguay, and Vietnam still use the M41 Walker Bulldog, some via upgrading the tanks to extend their service life.

The M41 Walker Bulldog design was advanced for the time, giving a relatively light weight tank the firepower to take on other tanks of its time period. The chassis was even used on the M42 Duster Anti-Air gun and the M75 Armored Personnel Carrier. The drive, engine, transmission, and auxiliary engine also were used in the M44/M52 155 howitzer. By 1969, the US Army began replacing the M41 with the newer M551 Sheridan Armored Airborne Reconnaissance Assault Vehicle (officially not a "light tank") which had a 152 mm cannon that could fire shells and anti-tank missiles. The M551 Sheridan could be used in roles that the M41 Walker Bulldog couldn't do, such as be air-dropped and amphibious, but was rather unreliable. This made the M41 Walker Bulldog to be the last American "light tank" produced and the last made before the classification between tank classes based on weight and role ended.

Screenshots and fan art

Camouflages & skins

Skins and camouflages for the M41A1 from live.warthunder

Videos

Pictures & fan art

VUnLik9m.jpg 259HY53m.jpg

Additional information (links)

Official War Thunder forum article: [Vehicle Profile] M41 Walker Bulldog [Decal Included]

References


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us_m41_walker_bulldog.png

Icon-country-usa.png M41A1 Walker Bulldog
Nation USA
Type Light tank
Rank 4
Battle Rating
6.0
6.0
6.0

   Metric✓       Imperial   

   Metric       Imperial✓   

Characteristics
Weight
23,000 kg
50,706 lb
Number of Crew 4
Hull armour thickness
25.4/25.4/19.0/19.0 mm
1.0/1.0/0.75/0.75 inches
Statistics
Engine power (stock)
775 hp
442 hp
442 hp
Engine power (upgraded)
954 hp
500 hp
500 hp
HP/ton ratio (stock)
33.69
34.24
19.22
19.52
19.22
19.52
HP/ton ratio (Upgraded)
41.48
42.14
21.74
22.09
21.74
22.09
Max speed
80 km/h
50 mph
72 km/h
45 mph
72 km/h
45 mph
Main Weapon
1 x 76 mm M32 Cannon
Ammo stowage 65 rounds
Vertical guidance -10°/20°
Secondary Weapon
1 x 12.7 mm M2HB Heavy machine gun
Ammo stowage 2,175 rounds
Mount Pintle mount
Vertical guidance -10°/70°
Horizontal guidance -60°/60°
1 x 7.62 mm M1919A4 Machine gun
Ammo stowage 4,900 rounds
Mount Coaxial
Economy
Required RP 63,000 RP
Vehicle cost 210,000 SL
Crew training cost 61,000 SL
Max repair cost*
1,610 SL
2,070 SL
1,770 SL
Free repair time (Stock)
2d 23h
5d 16h
5d 09h
Free repair time (Upgraded)
23h 47m
1d 21h
1d 19h
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