NI tank

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NI tank.jpg
Place of origin Soviet Union
Service history
In service1941
Used bySoviet Union
WarsWorld War II
Production history
ManufacturerJanuary Uprising Mechanical Plant (Odessa)[1]
No. built69
Mass7 tonnes
Crew2 - 3


The NI tank (/ˈn/; Russian: Танк НИ tank NI, abbr. На испуг, Na ispug, literally "for fright"), was an improvised Soviet armoured fighting vehicle, based on an STZ-3 agricultural tractor, manufactured in Odessa during the Siege of Odessa.[1]


NI-1 Diagram: 1 — armoured hull, 2 — side armour, 3 — engine compartment, 4 — turret, 5 — fenders, 6 — track armour, 7 — machine gun armour, 8 — DShK machine gun, 9 — hook, 10 — toolbox, 11 — exhaust pipe, 12 — chassis beams, 13 — chassis front, 14 — tow hitch, 15 — idler, 16 — support roller, 17 — driving wheel, 18 — roller, 19 — DT machine gun

At the beginning of the war between the Axis and the Soviet Union, a majority of the factories were evacuated, including most of the equipment from the January Uprising Factory. There was machinery left and it was decided that it would be used to service battle-damaged tanks arriving from the front.[1]

When the army fighting on the outskirts of Odessa (the city defences held out for seventy-two days before the army pulled back) started experiencing shortages in tanks, the workers from the factory decided to build a fighting vehicle of their own design. Aided by the workers from other factories, January Uprising workers built a large metal box and put it on the tractor. Also added was a traversable turret with either a mountain gun or a large-calibre machine gun. The armour was a sandwich of thin naval steel or boiler plate and wood or rubber sheeting to improve protection against small arms. The resulting machine was unlike any other fighting vehicle of the time and made a loud noise when it moved.

Armament was varied to whatever was on hand, including machine guns ShVAK cannon, sub-turrets from T-26 Model 1931 tanks, new turrets with 37 mm Model 15R mountain guns or 45 mm anti-tank guns.[verification needed]

Production history[edit]

A total of 69 NI tanks were produced.[2]

Combat use[edit]

Romanian forces captured numerous tanks at the end of the siege, with 14 still being on hand as of 1 November 1942.[3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Н. И. Крылов. Не померкнет никогда. М., Воениздат, 1984. стр.107-109
  2. ^ Тыл советских вооружённых сил в Великой Отечественной войне 1941-1945 гг. // колл. авт., под ред. генерала армии С. К. Куркоткина. М., Воениздат, 1977. стр.438
  3. ^ Mark Axworthy, Cornel I. Scafeș, Cristian Crăciunoiu, Third Axis, Fourth Ally: Romanian Armed Forces in the European War, 1941-1945, Arms and Armour, 1995, p. 220
  • Tekhnika Molodezhi (1979). "Odesskiy Tank". Retrieved December 30, 2005. (in Russian)
  • Zaloga, Steven J., James Grandsen (1984). Soviet Tanks and Combat Vehicles of World War Two, p. 142. London: Arms and Armour Press. ISBN 0-85368-606-8.

External links[edit]