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M40/M43 - is it a keeper?

USA American Arty SPG M40/M43

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General_McMuschi #1 Posted 28 June 2018 - 08:02 AM

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I noticed other topics about this arty haven't been updated or commented on in a long time so I made a new topic. I would like to share my opinion and experiences with this arty, and see what other players think about this arty.

 

I started grinding American arty line many months ago because I want to get the M53/M55. I focused on grinding this line, starting from tier 5 arty that I had unlocked and the grind wasn't painful or bad at all so far.

I was expecting two arties from this line to be my all time keepers and my favorite arties in line - M44 and M53/M55, but I never ever expected that it will actually be hard to consider selling M40/M43 once I'm almost done grinding it.

 

At this point, I have 212 battles played in it, and only need to grind for 25k xp more to research the M53/M55. I have it a bit "pimped out" but not to the maximum. Here are my crew skills:

 

As you can see, I am working on my third set of skills. I've BiA on entire crew, 100% camo on all crew, and am working on snap shot, clutch braking, situational awareness, adrenaline rush and repairs. I use enhanced gun laying drive, rammer and camo net. For consumables, I still use automatic fire extinguisher simply because am waiting for consumable discount to buy a big number of food consumable/cola which I'll be using after the discount (there's really no point in carrying fire extinguisher, I can't remember being set on fire once). On this arty, it is very important to invest in good crew, getting good equipment for it and consumables because - it does pay off.

 

Mobility:

M40/M43 is not a very mobile arty, but it does have some mobility. It weights 39.5 tons, it has 500HP engine, it's power to weight ratio is ~13.4 hp/t and top speed is 38km/h.

In other words, you really have to get used to its mobility and always think ahead. It is not as slow as SU-14-2 or G.W. Tiger P, but it is also not as fast as Lorraine 155 51. It can react to situation and threats, and relocate, it just doesn't do it as well as French arties. Once you get used to this mobility, it is really not a problem.

 

Firepower:

It has a choice of two guns - 155mm M1A1 (which is a stock gun) and the main, fully upgraded gun 8 inch Howitzer M1. Both guns are a good choice and it's on the player to decide which suits their playstyle more.

The main advantage of using the 155mm gun is the rate of fire. My reload time with it (without using food) is 26s which is very good. This is especially good for battles when you get to be top tier and shoot tier 6,7 and 8 tanks, when you get big open maps with a lot of opportunities like Prokhorovka and you want to fire often (and counter battery), or when you get a really bad team which dies in first 5 minutes so you want to fire as much as you can in those 5 minutes. The gun also has 0.65 accuracy so - that's not bad at all for an arty. 4.6s of aiming time (with BiA+GLD it's 3.9s) is also very good! And lets not forget - with the smaller gun, you do get to carry a lot more ammo!

However, the penetration is the worst thing about this gun - it's only 39mm. When you are bottom tier - this is just not really enough and you can feel that you need a bigger gun to deal with such matchmaking.

 

This is the main gun on it and it's completely different. Reload time is pretty long, mine is 38s. But this gun can actually splash enemy tanks for hundreds of damage, and even pen some lightly armored vehicles for a ton of damage. As you can see, penetration has went up to 52mm which is actually more than I have on my tier 10 French arty! And this is "only" a tier 8 arty - so this is a pretty dangerous and good gun.

The worst thing about the gun is this 0.77 dispersion, and the aiming time is longer compared to the smaller 155mm gun. That's pretty bad but it usually just means that - if you are a patient player and give yourself time to aim well (and you have good crew) shots will usually land where you want them to. Usually, but not always :) Afterall, you do have a very long reload time so there's more than enough time to aim your shots well.

 

The gun I use is 8 inch Howitzer, simply because I feel like if I wanted to play arty with 155mm caliber, I'd play Lorraine instead because it gets a similar gun but it has more mobility.

 

There are few other things which are good to know when it comes to M40/M43:

1) It has -5 degrees of gun depression which makes it good at shotgun mode, this also makes it more dangerous than for example Lorraine 155 51 which is a tall vehicle with 0 degrees of gun depression. With -5 depression, you can shoot at closer range better than you would be able to if you had no gun depression.

2) It isn't expensive to play. I actually make profit with it after almost every battle. I usually make 15-20k profit after repairing it and resupplying ammo which isn't that much credits but - considering the current matchmaking tier 8 vehicles get, and the fact that it's an arty - 15-20k average profit is pretty good (with a premium account).

3) Gun arc/gun traverse to each side is 18 degrees. This is better than most other tier 8 arties, the only arty that has wider gun arc is the British FV207 with 22 degrees on each side. This means you still have to move your tracks often, but not as often as most other same tier arties have to and it's an important thing.

 

What I'd like to know - are there other people here who actually kept M40/M43 for fun, even after researching M53/M55?

I'm aware M53/M55 is going to be even better for me but M40/M43 just feels like a hidden gem in this line. Many people overlook it and underappreciate it and that seems to be simply because - this is a very specific arty that works best in experienced hands when pimped out with good crew + crew skills, equipment, food. Once you figure out how to play it properly, and know what it's good at and what it's bad at, what it can and cannot do - and have great map awareness and smart positioning - it can be a beast and so fun to play. I don't feel like I'm even grinding it at all, I'm playing it for pure fun lately. 

 

What's your opinion and experiences with M40/M43?

 

 


Edited by General_McMuschi, 28 June 2018 - 10:22 AM.


Darth_Clicker #2 Posted 28 June 2018 - 03:12 PM

    Lieutenant Сolonel

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Currently I have both the M43 and M55 (as well as the M12, M44 and T92HMC) permanently in my garage.  I have 2230 battles in the M43 and "only" 1442 battles in the M55.  I think I sold the M43 for a very brief time, but I am not sure as it has been a few years ago if I did.  M43 is definitely a keeper in my opinion in its current form.  I don't have anything to add to what you have written except that with BIA and Cola my reload time is 37.17 seconds and my accuracy is 0.69. So, the standard numbers are not what is capable.  If you add improved equipment and use crew directives you can reduce everything even further.  

 

I find the M44 to be one of the best overall artys in the game.  It is just a really solid piece.  It also has 108mm of frontal armor which is a bit unusual in the world of arty.  It will bounce some shots from time to time and comes in handy when a pesky light or medium tries to ram after the bounced shot for the quick kill.

 

And concerning the lack of mobility, I use a medium spall liner on mine due to the fact that it is often in battles with higher tier artys with large splash radii and the lack of mobility doesn't allow it to move forward fast enough to avoid the splash of counter arty.  It also helps with ramming a bit.


Edited by Darth_Clicker, 28 June 2018 - 03:18 PM.


General_McMuschi #3 Posted 29 June 2018 - 06:41 AM

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I'm going to keep it then. It's actually so enjoyable now when I have it with good crew and everything. :)

 

M44 is, I agree, an amazing arty. I hope it doesn't get changed or nerfed in future, because it is very fun to play and 100% an all time keeper.

 

I'm still getting used to the nice splash damage of the 8 inch Howitzer, because being very used to French arty line (not playing arty lines with huge guns yet) made me not use splash much and not expect much from splash damage - but, when not playing an French arty, splash is excellent and often does more than direct hit. I love having splash damage on arty, I just don't feel like ready yet to play big slow fat arties with powerful splash like SU-14-2 or high tier Germans.

 

Using spall liner is something I didn't even think of, it's a good idea. The other day I got splashed for half of my HP in my M40/M43 by an enemy GW Tiger P who wasn't even shooting at me, who saw a tracer of friendly GW Tiger P on Mines and I was at the wrong place while relocating and received splash damage. But I still think camo net is a better option for me personally, because I often use it like I have an invisible bush in front of me to hide behind. I take positions where I don't have cover but I use my camo rating as a sort of cover (BiA+camo crew+camo net+camo paint) and rely on it.

 

I think it would actually be a good idea to carry Gasoline consumable in this arty, but I haven't tried it yet. If I buy a lot of food consumables (cola) and gasoline consumables when we have discount (which I'm expecting soon, maybe for this upcoming weekend special), I'll try it out. Gasoline should be helpful with the mobility, and should make it a bit more mobile (it should probably be useful combined with BiA crew + clutch braking skill).

But if I carry gasoline+cola, I don't know if I should carry repair kit or first aid for third consumable, it's hard to decide which one is more important. I don't want my ammo rack broken, or loader dead through entire battle.

 

edit: I was right, we are having consumable discount this weekend, time to spend some credits!


Edited by General_McMuschi, 29 June 2018 - 08:17 AM.


NoobySkooby #4 Posted 02 July 2018 - 11:37 AM

    Brigadier

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Oh yes it is a keeper but the cost of the shells in the top gun is scary, that said the damage it deals with the premium ammo will definitely put the troll face on your face:trollface:

Frenzier #5 Posted 10 July 2018 - 01:13 AM

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M40/M43 felt meh recently, i enjoyed the G.W. Tiger P the most of the tier 8s, along with the Lorraine, but the Lorraine does not hit as hard.



General_McMuschi #6 Posted 11 July 2018 - 02:45 PM

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View PostNoobySkooby, on 02 July 2018 - 11:37 AM, said:

Oh yes it is a keeper but the cost of the shells in the top gun is scary, that said the damage it deals with the premium ammo will definitely put the troll face on your face:trollface:

 

Actually, somehow this arty suits me perfectly when it comes to credits - I will almost never loose credits playing it, most of the time I'll do small profit of 15-20k per average battle.

 

I've just recently finally finished grinding M40/M43 and researched and bought M53/M55 and - not only have I decided that M40/M43 is a keeper that deserves it's own good crew, but I'm not even motivated to play my (now stock) M53/M55 because I've seen how poor the camo rating of it is. M40/M43 is a perfect arty for me personally, it will be unlikely M53/M55 will get any better.

 

Anyway, M40/M43's credit earning potential is one of the reasons why I decided to keep it - it has similar gun to M53/M55 but gets better matchmaking so earns more xp and credits. 

 

Then again, if I'm playing simply for credits and want to play arty, I'll choose M44 rather than M40/M43.

 

P:S: I've used premium ammo, experimented with it to see if it's worth it, I didn't get a trollface... premium rounds aren't really worth it, standard rounds are perfectly fine on 8 inch Howitzer gun.



Darth_Clicker #7 Posted 18 August 2018 - 03:03 PM

    Lieutenant Сolonel

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http://wotreplays.eu...licker-m40_m43  is a good battle that I had yesterday.  The ending was especially exciting for this old arty player.  After the battle, the Strv player on the enemy team sent me a PM and simply said "nice carry".  I thanked him for the nice comment as it was certainly unexpected.

So, yes...the M43 is a keeper. Notice the 240 blocked damage....that is a rarity in arty world but the m43 can do it sometimes.

 

Now if I can just finally get my 2nd MOE on it.  Lots of good players playing this thing....

 

Posted Image


Edited by Darth_Clicker, 18 August 2018 - 03:04 PM.


Darth_Clicker #8 Posted 20 August 2018 - 01:49 PM

    Lieutenant Сolonel

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I finally got my 2nd MOE on the M43.  Now the 3rd.....:B

 

Posted Image



General_McMuschi #9 Posted 24 August 2018 - 09:03 PM

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View PostDarth_Clicker, on 20 August 2018 - 01:49 PM, said:

I finally got my 2nd MOE on the M43.  Now the 3rd.....:B

 

Posted Image

 

Wow! Well done, very impressive :) and good luck getting the third mark! 

 

I'm still stuck on mediocre 74ish % on M40/M43 because I guess I feel in love with my M53/55. :medal:



Darth_Clicker #10 Posted 25 August 2018 - 11:04 AM

    Lieutenant Сolonel

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Thanks General.  It wasn't easy to do.  I have an extreme amount of respect for the players that have 3 marks.





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