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UNIQUE ID 1049: M4A1 SHERMAN DUPLEX DRIVE AMPHIBIOUS TANK

Piana Delle Orme, Borgo Faiti, Italy

(Location: Piana Delle Orme)


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Sample Photo from Tank with UniqueID 1049


Unique ID: 1049
Added to Database: October 2009
Last Edited: October 2009
Type (ID): Sherman Duplex Drive (1410)
Model (ID): M4A1 Sherman Duplex Drive (1411)
Location Category (ID): Piana Delle Orme (5610)
Location (ID): Piana Delle Orme (5610)
Serial Number:
Registration:
Name:
Other Identification: Fitted with steel chevron track.
Collection Reference:
Links:
References:
Associated Tanks:

Location History:
(see map)

1: USA (Country of origin)
2: Piana Delle Orme, Borgo Faiti, Latina, Lazio, Italy (Current location)


Text in original Preserved American Tanks publication:

[No entry]

Text in Preserved American Tanks Update:

[No entry]

Text in original Preserved Tanks In Italy publication:

Between 5th and 20th July 1944 a Sherman DD sank in the Gulf of Salerno. The tank was destined for Battipaglia Training Center where the 753rd Tank Battalion, 6th Army Corps, was stationed and where it was preparing for the imminent landing in the South of France (Operation Dragoon). In Battipaglia was the ITC - Invasion Training Center – where the armoured battalions were being trained to use the new amphibious tanks that had been employed in Normandy on 6th June 1944 for the first time. The training course lasted three weeks.
During one of these training courses a DD tank bumped against an LCT projection and damaged the floating system and sank. Unfortunately the driver died during the sinking; he was TEC4 Walter Kumecki, fom Michigan, USA, but Polish by birth. He now rests in the American War Cemetery of Nettuno.
The recovery of the tank is attributed to a group of friends from Salerno, keen on sub-aqua diving, who informed the US Navy about their discovery. From the USA the recovery and rescue ship Grasp arrived in order to recover the DD and take it to the Fort Knox Museum. But this operation – documented in a film made by B&B Film – was not successful and the tank sat on the seabed again.
On 18th May 2002, after some arrangements settled with B&B Film - which exclusively owns images of the recovery and restoration - Piana delle Orme succeeded in the recovery. This was from a depth of 24m, and as lifted the tank weighed 35t. It then took 16 hours to transport it from Salerno to the museum.
Even after recovery, the restoration presented considerable difficulties, and eventually took 6000 working hours. Large amounts of mud and sand were removed from inside the hull. Each part was dismantled, cleaned up and treated with particular anticorrosive chemical components. The Tank Museum of Bovington in Britain collaborated on the restoration by supplying the construction plans and the details of the DD tank. Some parts of the engine have been replaced with original spare parts, all the gears and the movement mechanisms have been dismantled and reinstated. 100m of iron pipe was used to rebuild the skirt frame, along with 95m of rubber pipe and 60m2 of rubberised fabric to rebuild half of the skirt. The Duplex Drive system has been reinstated: the valves pump up the rubber tubes, the skirt raises and the tracks move with the propellers. It is displayed with half the skirt in place so its mechanism can be seen more easily.


Images - Photographs and NavPix (click to expand or browse)

August 2008

Right view
1: Right view

Taken: 22 August 2008
Contributor: P. Seravalli
Photo ID: 2369
Added: 28 December 2009
Filename: Dig_Sher...
Views: 211
Select/Has Priority: 21/0
    

 

Rear right view
2: Rear right view

Taken: 22 August 2008
Contributor: P. Seravalli
Photo ID: 2370
Added: 28 December 2009
Filename: Dig_Sher...
Views: 220
Select/Has Priority: 21/0
    

 

Exhibit label
3: Exhibit label

Taken: 22 August 2008
Contributor: P. Seravalli
Photo ID: 2371
Added: 28 December 2009
Filename: Dig_Sher...
Views: 187
Select/Has Priority: 21/0
    



Exhibit label
4: Exhibit label

Taken: 22 August 2008
Contributor: P. Seravalli
Photo ID: 2372
Added: 28 December 2009
Filename: Dig_Sher...
Views: 178
Select/Has Priority: 21/0