In WWII Sherman tanks were outfitted with a tank scope or rather telescope. These scopes became extremely popular after the first Star Wars movie came out as rabid fans tried to replicate the Han Solo, Luke Skywalker and Storm Trooper blasters. The company that produced these was the Minneapolis Honeywell Regulator Company (M.H.R. Co.). The most sought after model is the M19, which was produced in 1941 and 1942.
A Brief History of the M.H.R. Co.
Honeywell came into being through the invention of the damper flapper, a thermostat for coal furnaces, by Albert Butz, in 1885 and subsequent innovations in electric motors and process control by Minneapolis Heat Regulator Company tracing back to 1886. In 1906, Mark C. Honeywell founded Honeywell Heating Specialty Co., Inc. in Wabash, Indiana. Honeywell’s company merged with Minneapolis Heat Regulator Company in 1927. The merged company was called the Minneapolis-Honeywell Regulator Company.
During the War most companies turned from civilian production to war time production. In 1941, the Army needed the enlistment of the Minneapolis-Honeywell engineers to develop an effective automatic bomber pilot. The goal was to develop a mechanism to provide precise readings and coordinates at high-altitude. M.H.R. also went to work producing intricate fire control system for artillery and tanks. One of the more well know products, was the M19 Telescope used by M3 Sherman tanks. It also is the one the favorite Star Wars items that Star Wars fans are constantly scouring the internet for.
Here is a list of common Searches
- M19 Tank Scope
- M19 Telescope
- DL-44 Scope
- Han Solo Scope
- Blaster Scope
Below is a list of known M.H.R. Co. Telescopes used in tank production.
- M19A1 used in Medium tank M3 (M19 is different as it does not have an opening to allow for illumination, it had an electrical illumination) M19 monocular telescope, x1.25, 10deg FoV, 910m (1000 yards) scale for AP. The M19 was used for 37mm guns on M3 medium
- M38, M38A, M38A2 used in Medium tank M4 series
- M40A2 used in Light tanks M3 M5 M5A1 series.
Here are 2 versions of the M19 Tank Telescope. The only difference seems to be the slice cut out in the round port in the 1942 version.
Here is an M19 1942 Telescope. Notice it still has the 1941 round port.
Above is comparisons of the M19, M38, M40 and the M38A2. As you can see, the M19 is a little smaller. The M38, M40 and the M38A2 are around 5 1/4 inches long. I have also seen pictures of the M77 that looked both like the M19 and the M38A2
Apparently you can covert the Telescope to a 30x telescope. The M38 is a 1.44x telescope.
Here is an M38 scrapped clean of the black paint revealing the beautiful brass finish.
Star Wars fans have also produced both resin and metal replicas of the M19.
M19 Telescope Tutorial (Do It Yourself)
Search Terms People Used To Find This Article
- M38 tank scope