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The Vimoutiers Tiger - a history

Article about: by lebus12 On the first picture, it's me!(This picture is mine, but one time on the web, it's finished!) In the 60's-70's, I was every month in the Falaise pocket! Thank you Lebus for provid

  1. #81

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    What else can we sleuth?
    Well as most know, Winston Ramsey and the 'After the Battle' team did a write up in the May 1975 issue and took a cracking colour photo of it 'in situ'.

    The Vimoutiers Tiger - a history

    We can clearly see the remains of the zimmerit paste coating on the hull sides and the gun mantlet - so ANY restoration MUST reinstate that - it would be false not to IMO!!!

    Also, the white painted muzzle - again, NOT there in the 1960's photos and probably done for safety reasons...?

    The Vimoutiers Tiger - a history

    Anyway, the more you look, the more it reveals ......
    Cheers, Dan
    Last edited by Danmark; 03-05-2021 at 09:17 PM.
    " I'm putting off procrastination until next week "

  2. #82

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    OK, one more bit of trivia - the tracks of the Tiger. Look at the left and right side views -

    The Vimoutiers Tiger - a history The Vimoutiers Tiger - a history

    They run opposite ways ( see the step that connects each link? )
    Standing at the front of the tank, the left track has the step pointing back and the right side has the step pointing forward ..... what? Are they put on the wrong way?

    Well, no - these are the WIDE combat tracks and on these ones ( not the narrower shipping tracks ) the way the drive sprocket connects with each track, it is off center, which means a LEFT and a RIGHT track would be needed - so to avoid that ( and the need to carry two types of spare links ) they used the SAME track turned backward for the opposite side. These front photos explain better than I can ...

    The Vimoutiers Tiger - a historyThe Vimoutiers Tiger - a history

    You can see the section of the track that the tooth of the sprocket engages into - on the inside and how it is off centre on the outside ...... interesting, eh?
    Last edited by Danmark; 03-05-2021 at 09:29 PM.
    " I'm putting off procrastination until next week "

  3. #83

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    I do believe a full restoration is needed, it is a huge tourist attraction for the area, it needs help.

    Looking at the great pictures here, this tank has huge potential.

    There could be DVD's made of the restoration, t/shirts, Sweatshirts, donations.

    All would bring in valuable cash towards the cost.

    Imagine paying 10 Euro's to have your name put on a big plaque, in a hall where the Tiger could be put during the restoration?

    Imagine seeing it at Bovington next to OUR Tiger 131?

    How many would pay to see that?, it's all money!

    A full restoration would take years, I would love to see it being taken apart and given the care it needs.

    Imagine going to Normandie and seeing the different stages of the work in progress?

    Online videos could be made to keep the latest news up to date, the list is endless.

    This dear old lady would be back where she belongs.

    She would be the most famous Tiger of them all.


    It's the least she deserves, finger out you restoration guys!

    I love this Tiger and I make no apology.
    Last edited by The Devil's Bank; 03-06-2021 at 08:07 PM.

  4. #84

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    This is the earliest photo I could find online of the Tiger - maybe M.Morat the scrap dealer?
    But who really knows? I suppose it was taken not long after hostilities ceased as the suit is very 1940's.....

    The Vimoutiers Tiger - a history

    A couple of things to note - the gun is facing forward - this would be across the road somewhat, and it is understandable that it was ( pushed / dragged ) around to face down the road and out of "harms way". Also is that the machine gun still in the front or just a piece of drain pipe?? ( If the former, I bet that didn't stay there long!! )

    The next earliest is one taken by our own Michel (Lebus12) in the late 1960's with the vegetation encroaching on it's hind quarters.

    The Vimoutiers Tiger - a history

    Then the ATB colour photo from the mid 70's The Vimoutiers Tiger - a history just before it was stripped of its damaged skirts, mufflers and ( presumably ) blasted clean of all that zimmerit "rubbish" and gaudily painted...... sigh

    The Vimoutiers Tiger - a history

    This was still on the same side of the old road and without the purpose made concrete plinth to support the hull because of the collapsed suspension - just an earth mound at this date.
    " I'm putting off procrastination until next week "

  5. #85

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    Yes, I was young in this time...!
    I met Mme Morat in her field, in this time, I had in the idea to buy one Flak Panzer ! Impossible.
    The best Militaria forum in France is here : http://deutsch-militaria.forumactif.us/

  6. #86

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    Quote by lebus12 View Post
    Yes, I was young in this time...!
    I met Mme Morat in her field, in this time, I had in the idea to buy one Flak Panzer ! Impossible.
    He was a She!!?....I just assumed the "scrap dealer" would be male
    " I'm putting off procrastination until next week "

  7. #87

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    Maybe it was on "HER" land?

    We can only thank her for stopping it being removed/scrapped and lost for ever.

    How long ago was that?

    Surely the Tigers time is NOW!

  8. #88

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    Mme Morat had her stock in Trun.
    The best Militaria forum in France is here : http://deutsch-militaria.forumactif.us/

  9. #89

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    The Vimoutiers Tiger - a history
    The best Militaria forum in France is here : http://deutsch-militaria.forumactif.us/

  10. #90

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    I am confused - having read in several different documents the names 'MORAT' and also 'MAURAT' ( both French surnames ) and also M. ( for Monsieur ) and Mme ( for Madame ) Were they husband and wife / brother & sister scrap dealers or just TWO unrelated individuals or a simple spelling error?

    The Vimoutiers Tiger tale says "a scrap dealer named M. MORAT purchased the tank for scrapping but was unable to move it. ( it doesn't say if he was from Trun or not ) When he died ( presumably in the early 1970's? ) his sister sold it to a scrap dealer in Caen and that set off a chain of events in which the town purchased it and the ATB team were instrumental in publishing its situation and subsequent retrieval all within a short number of years in the mid 1970's.

    I have also read of a Monsieur Hoebig who supposedly was once the owner of the Trun scrapyard - but maybe that was earlier on as Madam Maurat was the one who sold the yard's treasures to the Saumur in 1980 ( maybe a daughter rather than a sister or wife if it was so many years later? )

    Can anyone clear the confusion???
    " I'm putting off procrastination until next week "

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