Sunday, 22 December 2013

The Last TK

These are photographs of a Polish TK-3 tankette. Fans of this particular type of vehicle might recognize it as serial number 194, with the proper name "szwadron śmierci" ("Death Squadron"). It was built on July 20th, 1936. Initially, it was used by the 10th Armoured Cavalry Brigade (10 Brygada Kawalerii Pancernej), but then it was captured by Soviet forces, along with 18 other Polish tanks and tankettes, and 2 German tanks. Two TK-S tankettes were sent to Kiev, where #194 was restored for testing, and eventually ended up in Hangar #7 (captured vehicles) at the Kubinka Tank Museum. 

CAMD RF 38-11355-12

"Technical Inspection Act

On January 14th, 1941, a commission consisting of chairman Military Engineer 2nd Grade comrade N.S. Salmin, and members Intendant-Technician 1st Grade comrade I.I. Stepanov, and Junior Military Technician comrade V.P. Gornih, as a result of orders from the assistant chief of the proving grounds, Military Engineer 1st Grade, comrade Gluhov, inspected a TK-3 (Polish tankette, #1621/109) for the purpose of recycling it as special metal and removing it from the proving grounds inventory. 

After familiarizing themselves with the proper documents and inspecting the vehicle, it was discovered that:
  1. The TK-3 Polish (captured) tankette that arrived at the proving grounds from repair base #7 was disassembled for parts in order to repair two TK-3 tankettes, #194/1725 and #128. The following parts were removed:
    1. Engine
    2. Side friction clutches
    3. Two fan covers
    4. Water cooling radiator
    5. One fan
    6. Driver's hatch
    7. Towing equipment
  2. The commission concludes that the hull of the tankette may be sent to the factory as coloured metal and removed from the inventory of the GABTU KA proving grounds."
#194 remains the only TK tankette with all original parts.

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