Inside the Chieftain’s Hatch: Stridsvagn m/42 part 1

Nicholas “The Chieftain” Moran gives us a Christmas Eve gift in the form of a video examining the Swedish Stridsvagn m/42 tank.

From the Vault: Trunnions on the Move

Today we present an article from the January-February 1986 issue of ARMOR magazine titled “Trunnions on the Move” by Robin Fletcher.  Although thirty years old, this article is still relevant for those with an interest in tank layout design, particularly issues involved in turret design.  With the end of the Cold War, much of the impetus to produce new MBTs using some of the alternative turret ideas explored in this article was lost.   However, the introduction of the new Russian Armata will no doubt reignite interest in some of these turret and gun mounting concepts.  We have posted the pages of the article in a photo gallery below, or the entire issue can be downloaded as a PDF here.

ISIS Captures Two Turkish Leopard 2A4 tanks.

Numerous sources are reporting that ISIS has captured two Leopard 2A4 tanks belonging to the Turkish Army.  Defense-blog.com has posted pictures of the tanks, which fell victim to ISIS after a failed offensive by Turkish troops near Al-Bab in Syria.

From Defense-blog.com:

wkhzzp69cgy-696x392Clashes between Turkish-backed Syrian rebels and Islamic State militants intensified around the northern Syrian town of al-Bab on Wednesday, killing 14 Turkish soldiers and 138 jihadists, the army said.

The fighting, in which 33 Turkish soldiers were also wounded, is some of the deadliest yet in Turkey’s nearly four-month-old “Euphrates Shield” operation in northern Syria.

Earlier ISIS propagandists have released pictures of the strikes on Turkish Leopard-2 main battle tanks in Syria.

German-made Leopard 2A4 tanks operated by the Turkish Armed Forces have been deployed to Syria for the first time since the start of Turkey’s Euphrates Shield incursion.

This follows a post from Defense-blog.com from last week reporting about two Turkish Leopard 2 tanks destroyed by ISIS ATGM teams.

5f7e74b0cde0Dec 14, 2016 – ISIS propagandists have released pictures of the strikes on Turkish Leopard-2 main battle tanks in Syria.

ISIS has targeted two Turkish Leopard 2A4s near Syria’s northern city of Al-Bab, making it the third anti-tank guided missile (ATGM) strike on Turkish Leopards in two days. Military experts believe that the tanks were hit with the Soviet-produced Fagot or Konkurs anti-tank guided missile system.

Earlier, Turkish troops in Syria, have lost the Leopard 2A4 tank, which was hit by an antitank guided weapons system near of Al-Bab. As a result of the missile hit, four armor crewmen were wounded.

German-made Leopard 2A4 tanks operated by the Turkish Armed Forces have been deployed to Syria for the first time since the start of Turkey’s Euphrates Shield incursion.

The quantity of deployed Leopard 2A4s could be estimated at around 50 tanks.

Photo of the Day: M47 Gets New Paint

Today’s POTD comes from nwfdailnews.com which is reporting on a M47 tank outside of American Legion Post 296 in Destin, Florida which is getting a new coat of paint.  Full story here.

m47-gets-paint

 

Elefant Arrives at Bovington Tank Museum

Last week one of the two remaining Elefant tank destroyers from WWII arrived at the Tank Museum at Bovington UK to be part of their upcoming Tiger Collection exhibit.  Here is an article from the Tank Museum about the arrival of this armored beast.

00-elefantengland-1Seventy-two years after it fell into Allied hands, one of the largest combat vehicles to see action in the Second World War has arrived safely at The Tank Museum in Dorset.

The 70 ton Panzerjäger Tiger (P), commonly known as Elefant, has undergone an historic 3,500 mile return journey across the Atlantic.

It was captured near Anzio, Italy, by US troops in June 1944 – and quickly shipped stateside for military evaluation.

Tank Museum Curator David Willey said: “Tiger tanks like this one have a powerful reputation which was underpinned with Nazi propaganda at the time.”

“This reputation has persisted beyond the war itself into books, films and video games.”

The tank is being loaned from the US Army Ordnance Training and Heritage Center at Fort Lee, VA, by The United States Army Centre of Military History and is one of just two surviving examples of the 91 Elefants that saw service with German forces.

It will be the first time that an Elefant has ever been seen in the UK.

“This mythical reputation, coupled with their rarity, is what makes them of such great interest.  But in truth, the myth has elevated them to be greater than the reality.” David added.

Designed by famed auto-engineer Ferdinand Porsche, the Elefant was a self-propelled anti-tank gun and member of the ‘Tiger family’ of Second World War German tanks.

Before serving in Italy, it took part in the Battle of Kursk, which remains the biggest tank battle in history.

Its final destination is The Tank Museum at Bovington in Dorset, where it will feature in ‘The Tiger Collection – the Tanks, the Terror & the Truth‘ exhibition sponsored by World of Tanks.

“Tigers are large and impressive by contemporary standards – but there is a moral responsibility to remember what they were used for and the regime who created them,” said David.

“Representing less than 7% of their wartime tank production, Tiger tanks failed to have a real impact and our exhibition will be presenting a more balanced account of these vehicles, along with views of veterans.”

Set to open in April 2017, the exhibition will bring every member of the Tiger tank family together in one space for the first time in history.  However, one example that has eluded the Museum will be appearing virtually, courtesy of exhibition sponsors World of Tanks.

“We’re taking our experience of creating historically accurate models for our World of Tanks video game and using this to create an exhibit to complete the collection,” said Richard Cutland, World of Tanks European Head of Military Relations.

“Using the latest digital technology, visitors will be able to see a full-sized Sturmtiger in the exhibition with the use of our Augmented Reality App.  We’re pleased to be supporting an exhibition of such international significance.”

Event Notice: Cleveland Tank Plant Homecoming Military Show and Swap Meet

cleveland-tank-plant-homecoming-military-show-and-swap-meet-logoFor those looking for something tank related to do this summer, The Military Vehicle Preservation Association has announced the  42nd Annual MVPA International Convention will be held in conjunction with the Cleveland Tank Plant Homecoming Military Show and Swap Meet, June 22 – 24, 2017 at the I-X Center.

The show will feature vehicles built at the former tank plant including the M41 Walker Bulldog Tank, M42 Duster, M56 Scorpion, M108 and M109 self-propelled howitzers, and M114 and M551 Sheridan armored vehicles. Also featured in show are military aircrafts, the Liberty Air Museum’s B-25J Mitchell, “Georgie’s Gal,” along with other member-owned aircraft. Known originally as the Cleveland Bomber Plant, and adjoining the Cleveland Hopkins International Airport, the building’s large doors are still in place and operational, allowing the display of flying military vehicles on the floor with the show’s ground-bound vehicles.

Cleveland Tank Plant Homecoming Military Show and Swap Meet Show Hours:

Thursday, June 22, 2017: 3:00 pm – 10:00 pm
Friday, June 23, 2017: 8:00 am – 10:00 pm
Saturday, June 24, 2017: 8:00 am – 6:00 pm

Ticket Pricing

Ticket pricing for the Cleveland Tank Plant Homecoming Military Show and Swap Meet to be held at the I-X Center June 22 – 24, 2017 was also announced today. General Admission will be $15. Children 12 and under are FREE. Military discounts with valid military ID are $12 and are available at the Box Office ONLY. Discount tickets will be available in the Spring of 2017 for $13 at all participating Discount Drug Mart locations. Information about online ticket sales will soon be available at www.IXClevelandTankShow.com.  A $1 service fee per ticket will be added to advance orders if ordered on-line. Group tickets are available by contacting Cyndee Young at cyoung@ixcenter.com or by calling 216-265-2657 Tickets will go on sale in the Spring of 2017.

For more on this event and for information on the history of the I-X Center (formerly the Cleveland Tank Plant), check out this article from the Norwalk Reflector.

Book Alert: A34 Comet Tank A Technical History

Earlier this month British tank researcher P.M. Knight published his new book A34 Comet Tank A Technical History on Lulu.  This book follows his previous works on British Cruiser tanks such as the Covenanter, Crusader and the Challenger.  This is a softcover book of 240 pages with black and white illustrations.

Publisher’s Description:

The A34 Comet was the ultimate iteration of the Cruiser series of fast, mobile tanks, and built on the hard lessons that had been learned with earlier designs. However, it was also brought into being at a time when British industrial capacity was nearing exhaustion, and when officialdom already had one eye on the transition to more profitable peacetime production. As such, the Comet saga was one of the husbanding of the scarce, and declining, resources available to the tank programme against the backdrop of a conflict whose end was already in sight. As this book demonstrates in depth, the result was a well-balanced design that optimised the possibilities presented by the previous Cruisers. However, it would be outshone by its ubiquitous successor, the A41 Centurion.

Matilda Diaries: Matilda Breech Operation

This short video is part of the Tank Museum “Matilda Diaries” series, documenting their restoration of a Matilda II tank.

Tank Chat #29 Daimler Dingo Scout Car

Here is the latest installment in the Tank Museum’s series of “Tank Chats” featuring historian David Fletcher.

AFV News from around the Net

Time for another installment of AFV News from around the Net.  Click on the article headline to go to the full piece.

 

Defense News – Kuwait Wants Abrams Tank Upgrades

kuwaiti_m1_abrams_tanksWASHINGTON — Kuwait wants to upgrade and extend the life of its aging principal tank fleet for an estimated $1.7 billion, according to the Defense Security Cooperation Agency.  The State Department notified Congress on Dec. 12 of the possible Foreign Military Sale (FMS) to Kuwait to recapitalize its 218 M1A2 Abrams tanks.  The prime contractors are General Dynamics Land Systems and Joint Services Manufacturing Center in Lima, Ohio, as well as Kongsberg Defense Systems, Raytheon, Meggitt Defense Systems, Northrop Grumman, DRS Technologies, Lockheed Martin and Honeywell.

 

IHS Jane’s – Russian Army eyes MBT upgrades

1153740_-_mainRussia may upgrade parts of its T-72 and T-90 main battle tank (MBT) fleets with the automatic target tracker (ATT) and fire control computer (FCC) installed in the Armata T-14 MBT, which is now entering production at UralVagonZavod’s Nizhny Tagil facility.  The installation of the ATT and the FCC from the T-14 Armata will improve the first round hit capability of the older T-72 and T-90 MBTs under adverse battlefield conditions, as well as reducing the workload on the gunner.  Once locked on, the ATT constantly tracks the target and lays on the 125 mm smoothbore gun as well as taking into account inputs from the sensors, such as the speed and direction of the platform, condition of the gun, and ambient weather. The gunner then decides when to engage the target.

 

The National Interest – The U.S. Army’s Radical Idea to Save Its Tanks from Enemy Missiles

Remember that shield that Captain America uses? The one that deflect bullets?  Well, the U.S. Army wants the same kind of shield. But not for the infantry. It’s a shield for tanks  The Army is asking industry to to develop moveable tank armor that, like Captain America’s shield, can stop an incoming missile.  The specifications call for a mechanism that can move an armor panel, at least 1-foot-square in size, to a distance of 10 inches horizontally. And do so within less than five seconds. The armored panel would be an extra layer of protection attached to the outside of the vehicle, and remotely controlled by the crew.

 

Defense News – BAE Systems Delivers First Amphibious Combat Vehicle Prototypes to Marine Corps

1434590717481WASHINGTON — BAE Systems delivered to the US Marine Corps the first of its Amphibious Combat Vehicles (ACV) 1.1 prototypes, catching up to a service-set schedule which had slipped due to a bid protest.  One of the key program objectives was to get the vehicles out to the Marines as quickly as possible, Erwin Bieber, BAE’s president of platforms and services sector, said during a Tuesday ceremony at the company’s York, Pennsylvania, facility where BAE has spent a little more than a year building the first eight-wheel drive ACVs. “It’s amazing to think about the fact that the team is delivering three months early against the contract commitment,” he said.

 

IHS Jane’s – Ukroboronprom inaugurates new production facility at the Kiev Armoured Plant

Ukrainian state-owned defence industrial holding group Ukroboronprom has announced that its Kiev Armoured Plant subsidiary has completed the development of a new production centre to permit the construction of bodies for BTR-3 armoured personnel carriers (APCs).  Ukroboronprom said on 15 December that the establishment of the assembly and welding plant will allow the group to increase production when required and to reduce costs.  The BTR-3 was originally designed and produced by the Kharkiv Morozov Machine-Building Design Bureau, which also sits under Ukroboronprom.

 

IHS Jane’s – Germany donates Marder 1 IFVs to Jordan

p1692698Germany handed over an initial instalment of Marder 1 infantry fighting vehicles (IFVs) to Jordan on 11 December.  The Jordan Armed Forces (JAF) released a statement saying that an initial batch of 16 Marders from a total of 25 had been donated by Germany.  The German Ministry of Defence released a video of the handover ceremony in which Defence Minister Ursula von der Leyen said the first instalment consisted of 16 Marders and that another 34 would follow. She said the IFVs would help Jordan fight the Islamic State militant group. Germany is also providing 70 trucks and 56 minibuses to the Jordanian military.