Afghan-Strong vehicle, strong seats or a strong compartment?

Discussion in 'The NAAFI Bar' started by gobbyidiot, Jul 12, 2009.

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  1. Just thinking, I suppose most vehicle designers try to prevent intrusion into the vehicle, the assumption being that everything is valuable. Putting a shield around the perimeter, making the whole vehicle strong, is heavy, so total weight becomes a problem and sets a limit to the degree of protection. But of course most of what is inside, push comes to shove, you can say, "F*ck it". The only thing you really want to protect is the people. The total volume occupied by the people is actually quite small. If you concentrate on protecting them for any given total weight you can up the protection dramatically.

    So, just for the sake of talking, suppose a seat was a 45 degree reclined shaped bed, half a ton of Chobham armour with a thick rubber liner to spread an accelaration, a full harness to make sure you didn't come out if it flew, and some extrusions from back to front to make sure you weren't crushed by the seat. You can then allow blast to go either side and take the kit. Total mass stays manageable, but the key protection soars. Advantage, you can retrofit that system to lots of different vehicles.

    Option two - separate the blokes from the kit. Huddle them in a small air-conditioned compartment (probably near the front of the cabin) and stack all the kit near the doors. Okay, a nuisance to have to grab everything, but if everybody was huddled away from the kit as tight as possible, say strapped in benches facing each other, again the level of protection for that small part can be multiplied threefold within the same weight total.

    [What would a dirt poor country do faced with a serious mine threat? Protect those who aren't needed to keep a watch, so that someone survives an initial mine attack. Buy some thick steel or concrete pipes from the oil or construction industry, two foot internal diameter, line them with rubber, fit a harness inside, weld a few hand holds in the facing wall, and stack them flat on whatever vehicle you have. TRoops in feet first with weapon, and strap in. If it flies the harness would keep you in and away from the ends, and the handholds mean you can get out. You can also doss on the journey. Not the quickest immediate de-bus, but that's what the imaginative poor would do.]
  2. Fantastic idea! Then if the vehicle tips over (it's been known to happen) and all the bods end up head down, all the "enemee" has to do is ramble across the upward, foot ends and loose off a shot or two into each pipe. Think of the savings on RPGs, IEDs etc.

  3. You need either more or less alcohol. I've not decided yet.
  4. I know a better idea. Why don't soldiers stop whinging and get on with the job knowing they may get blown up in whatever vehicle they're in. I've spent 4 operational tours driving around in a WMIK and have not whinged once about getting blown up. Man the fuck up. The army can be a dangerous job.
  5. Welllll, :D

    I did say this last bit was for the potless, not the first world. What would their alternative be? Armour the whole thing to first world standards - they don't have the money for the conversion or the fuel to move it. Ride around in unarmoured four tonners? Not attractive. As to a vehicle tipping and the enemy taking advantage, what's the alternative? If a four nonner took a trip down a hill you'd be dead anyway. Self-recovery would be facillitated by not being injured. Chance of something cylindrical parallel to the ground falling ten feet and ending up perpindicular - pretty slim.

    As I say, the last bit was about what the potless would jerry-rig.

    What about the rest? Armour the seats or a compartment?
  6. I suppose you could fit a small charge to the bottom of the tubes to fire the soldiers out. Would save tabbing?
  7. Better idea, why not just create semi autonomous killbots programmed to take out anyone without alcohol and pork in their bloodstream??

    OK it would be a bit of a bummer for teetotal vegetarians but thats a sacrifice I for one am willing to make.
  9. How old are you, GI?
  10. What, shaped like this?

  11. I was just about to mention that.
  12. Okay, but at the minute there is a reluctance to pay £500,000 a pop for strong vehicles for our own (relatively small numbers) of troops. The plan is for a massive Afghan National Army. Pakistan could easily end up with a massive problem. There's no reason why India might not end up with an insurgent problem. Looking at the big picture, the IED is going to be a worldwide threat. I don't see Western governments ponying up to pay for every friendly third world country to have mine-resistent vehicles. We might, however, be prepared to pay for compartments or seats to upgrade trucks, not for proof against anything but to provide a pretty high degree of protection.

    Equally, we could usefully engage in some technology transfer. Take, for example, a 45 degree reclined steel-reinforced concrete seat. Steel mesh adds a lot of strength (as opposed to hardness) to concrete. Imagine a British designed mould for a full length reclined concrete seat - you give it to the third world, they insert a seven foot by three foot section of bog-standard steel mesh from the construction industry, pour in cement, anchor harness bolts in the mesh/cement, and when it's dry you face it with some rubber. You mount it on the truck on a few old tyres.

    Now if we aren't experimenting like this right now, with some anaesthetised pigs and 400lb blocks of HE, then we need to take a look at ourselves. What protection does two and a half inches of steel reinforced concrete at 15 feet give? Deaf piggies with a grievance, but otherwise unharmed, or the makings of a decent BBQ? I don't know, but we need to find out, because this is the kind of intermediate technology that makes proxy-fighting by third world powers possible.

    The alternative?

    Well, we could insert the long finger up the anus, dip the clutch, flick the brain into neutral and wait for the ANA to have its back broken :roll:
  13. You need to reduce your dosage, mate.
  14. When you say £500K, can I point out the septic's APC cost somewhere in the region of £250Kish, I think?
  15. Oo oo I know; patrol surrounded by loads of water; couple of 40-gallon drums shoul do the trick. Then, when an IED goes off, simply body surf the shock wave on the water.

    Ooo oo, wait wait wait - better yet; why not encase everyone in 3-feet thick concrete, use old submarine periscopes for visibility and put them on either roller skates or a skateboard? Mobility provided by being towed around by very small, remote-control tractors?

    What about personal hang gliders? That way, not only would boot leather be saved, but really REALLY big rocks could be dropped on baddies?