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Old 03-19-2017, 07:13 PM   #21
wildernessrider
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Re: WWII Motorcycle half-track

She has been racing this year, while I was mostly bench racing on the radio. I might need her to drive the beast so I can keep up!
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Old 07-18-2017, 07:52 PM   #22
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Re: WWII Motorcycle half-track

Yes it was surprisingly nimble. I used to work with an old German who rode BMW for the Wehrmact and occasionally rode one of those things. The proper name was Kettenkraftrad,
but as GIs in any army do they shortened it to ketten krad. They would exceed 45 MPH on the road. The front wheel was basically there to prevent it going endo on rough terrain.
It had very little steering effect. Like most tracked vehicles it steered by brakes on each side. They were continued in production a couple of years after the war for civilian farm use
But stopped in about 1947.
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Old 07-18-2017, 10:02 PM   #23
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Re: WWII Motorcycle half-track

They don't look like they are having fun? Of course not, look how cold it looks and Gerbings hadn't been invented yet!

Bet that thing would be fun over some Colorado passes, even if it rains. I want one.
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Old 08-19-2017, 08:59 AM   #24
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Re: WWII Motorcycle half-track

Quote:
Originally Posted by dukey33 View Post
Ural, eat your heart out....

http://www.foxnews.com/auto/2017/03/...auctioned.html

"Known as the Kettenkrad (a German portmanteau for "tracked motorcycle"), the NSU SdKfz is a small half-track with handlebars and a saddle up front and two jump seats in the rear."
A friends late father in law was on the Eastern Front and rode/ drove a BMW with a driven side car. My friend found a similar bike and had it completely restored with his unit numbers on the side car. I told him he should find him a Kettenkrad too! The old man still had his German army license to drive one of those.
Wish I could speak German or he English, it would have been an interesting conversation.

Last edited by Zonie; 08-19-2017 at 09:01 AM.
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Old 08-19-2017, 06:19 PM   #25
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Re: WWII Motorcycle half-track

The gas milage was lousy. My friend told me of a time they took the front wheel off and went careening about pretending to be out of control among some infantry guys who knew nothing about the machine.
He told another story about when he was in the Africa Corps when he and another BMW messenger were chasing a Brit on a Norton across a barren dessert. They topped a rise and the Norton was on the ground and the Brit rider was kicking at it and cussing up a storm.
They just stopped and watched until he tired out then took him prisoner. Still cussing the Norton for letting him down.
My friend was wounded in a big battle a short time later and was in an Italian hospital when Africa fell to the Allies. The was then sent to the Russian front and towards the end of the war, a mortar exploded in his face leaving him very ugly for the rest of his life. He was in a German hospital at the end of the war and was taken prisoner by the Brits who kept him as a POW for more than 5 years after the end of the war. Pows were kept to do work for the Brits as War reparations. The higher the rank the longer they were kept.
Karl was a sergeant and so did not go home as soon as the lower ranks.
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