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Chieftain accidents

Projectiles do not assist the obturation in any way, Blank rounds just cause noise and a lot of mess in the barrel that then has to be cleaned later. The obbies sealed the breach and were inspected by the gunfitter after each days firing before the crew could leave the range. Inadvertently firing bag charge only would have caused a large flash but not a flash-back.
You are wrong, I’ve seen it happen on the ranges at Hohne and it is also why the gun bunnies at Lulworth would NEVER allow a 120 to fire if a projectile had not been loaded.
 

Dryclad91

War Hero
You are wrong, I’ve seen it happen on the ranges at Hohne and it is also why the gun bunnies at Lulworth would NEVER allow a 120 to fire if a projectile had not been loaded.
I totally agree with Paymaster.
Obturation was achieved by a combination of the bag charge being ignited by the vent tube and the machined surfaces of the obturators being forced together to provide immense pressure to push the round down the barrel towards the target. Lack of a round up the breech would result in poor obturation, through insufficient pressure, and a large flame exiting the barrel and a certain amount of flashback in the turret.
I am sure that a "Cassette Head" from Lulworth Gunnery School will be along shortly to give the Pam 33? response with page number and paragraph.
 

Boxy

GCM
I always thought and understood that in Chieftain, CR and CR2 obturation was achieved by the breech only, ie the obturators.

I’ve definitely fired a small round blank charge whilst on a Waterloo day parade at the windmill in Sennelager
 

Boxy

GCM
You are wrong, I’ve seen it happen on the ranges at Hohne and it is also why the gun bunnies at Lulworth would NEVER allow a 120 to fire if a projectile had not been loaded.

How would they know? They’re either on the back decks, up the tower or in the unimog...

What about BATUS, who’s watching the turret crew then?
 
I always thought and understood that in Chieftain, CR and CR2 obturation was achieved by the breech only, ie the obturators.

I’ve definitely fired a small round blank charge whilst on a Waterloo day parade at the windmill in Sennelager
As I understand it, you are superficially correct, but in order for the breech obturation to be effective you need sufficient pressure applied to the breech obturators. If there isn’t a projectile present the usual propellant doesn’t burn fast enough/ generate the pressure and flame can get past the obturation.

A safe blank charge could be obtained with a different propellant formulation or a container that has enough structure to generate the required pressure.
 
How would they know? They’re either on the back decks, up the tower or in the unimog...

What about BATUS, who’s watching the turret crew then?
Well you do have to trust the crew sometimes, and in BATUS you would be dealing with trained crews whereas at Lulworth and Hohne a lot of the time it would be trainee Gunners and Loaders.

Or worst of all a Troop Leaders course!
 
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OK confession time, I have fired a bag charge without a projectile, it is not an experience that I would wish to ever go through again.

One of those range periods where an OC who didn’t have much of a grip, a 2iC who could have given Capt Bligh lessons in tyranny allied to a SSM who couldn’t count.

Ammunition on and off vehicles as we ended up exercising on the impact area over the weekend, crews swapping because of vehicle serviceability and associated cross loading of ammunition, all at a rush as the first week was fog bound and the second week heavy rain and gale force winds, all in all a disaster in the wings awaiting its call.

Jumped onto my own tank at a rush which had previously been used by more than one other crew that day so the ammunition stowage was not necessarily just as the loader would have liked. Commenced firing with a pair of Lulworth gunnery narks on the back decks. Pressure to get on with things was being applied from the tower in order to catch up as we did not want to have to return any ammunition at the end of the range period.

One of the gunnery narks knew my loader and entertained himself by questioning his parentage and speed of loading which distracted him somewhat. As a result there came a point in which I had reason to question whether he had forgotten to load a projectile, he assured me he had in the politest way he could manage without having to resort to that time honoured phrase of “with all due respect Sir”.

A short period of consideration and reflection commenced followed by a rapid search of the turret stowage to account for all rounds and charges, he assured me all was as it should be. At this stage the narks got involved as it was close to the end of firing for the day and they were cold and wet and had an urgent meeting in the bar so did not want any unnecessary delay. They both stated they thought a round had been loaded and that we were clear to continue the engagement, despite my concerns.

Having taken all the evidence into account and having covered my arse, I gave the order “Fire”, humongous great flash and accompanying cloud of acrid smoke enveloped the turret, both inside and out, not sure if the gun recoiled at all but the obturators must have worked after a fashion as we’re not engulfed in flames.

I stuck my head out of the turret and asked the narks if they had seen whether we had hit the target or not as there was an abnormal about of obscuration, strangely they we’re not amused, but we’re in an awkward position as they had assured me that we were clear to fire. Strangely there was no comment from the tower and I can only assume their attention was elsewhere when we fired. Nothing was therefore said and we finished the serial early claiming some form of equipment failure.

It did leave us with the problem how to clean the MA and obturators and for the to pass the Gunfitters inspection, therefore the usual charges in the precursor of Crypto Currency were duly paid to all involved, it did leave us with an extra round and the problem of what to do with it, declare it and depend on the SSM’s poor maths or what. Eventually it was decided that we should get rid of it so my loader volunteered for Gd Comd one night and slipped it into one of the lakes down range.
 
...Pressure to get on with things was being applied from the tower in order to catch up as we did not want to have to return any ammunition at the end of the range period...

...it was close to the end of firing for the day and they were cold and wet and had an urgent meeting in the bar so did not want any unnecessary delay...

There but for the grace of god etc...

I wonder how many ammunition accidents include one or other of the above phrases in the report?

Paging @rickshaw-major
 

Fire4effect

Old-Salt
OK confession time, I have fired a bag charge without a projectile, it is not an experience that I would wish to ever go through again.

One of those range periods where an OC who didn’t have much of a grip, a 2iC who could have given Capt Bligh lessons in tyranny allied to a SSM who couldn’t count.

Ammunition on and off vehicles as we ended up exercising on the impact area over the weekend, crews swapping because of vehicle serviceability and associated cross loading of ammunition, all at a rush as the first week was fog bound and the second week heavy rain and gale force winds, all in all a disaster in the wings awaiting its call.

Jumped onto my own tank at a rush which had previously been used by more than one other crew that day so the ammunition stowage was not necessarily just as the loader would have liked. Commenced firing with a pair of Lulworth gunnery narks on the back decks. Pressure to get on with things was being applied from the tower in order to catch up as we did not want to have to return any ammunition at the end of the range period.

One of the gunnery narks knew my loader and entertained himself by questioning his parentage and speed of loading which distracted him somewhat. As a result there came a point in which I had reason to question whether he had forgotten to load a projectile, he assured me he had in the politest way he could manage without having to resort to that time honoured phrase of “with all due respect Sir”.

A short period of consideration and reflection commenced followed by a rapid search of the turret stowage to account for all rounds and charges, he assured me all was as it should be. At this stage the narks got involved as it was close to the end of firing for the day and they were cold and wet and had an urgent meeting in the bar so did not want any unnecessary delay. They both stated they thought a round had been loaded and that we were clear to continue the engagement, despite my concerns.

Having taken all the evidence into account and having covered my arse, I gave the order “Fire”, humongous great flash and accompanying cloud of acrid smoke enveloped the turret, both inside and out, not sure if the gun recoiled at all but the obturators must have worked after a fashion as we’re not engulfed in flames.

I stuck my head out of the turret and asked the narks if they had seen whether we had hit the target or not as there was an abnormal about of obscuration, strangely they we’re not amused, but we’re in an awkward position as they had assured me that we were clear to fire. Strangely there was no comment from the tower and I can only assume their attention was elsewhere when we fired. Nothing was therefore said and we finished the serial early claiming some form of equipment failure.

It did leave us with the problem how to clean the MA and obturators and for the to pass the Gunfitters inspection, therefore the usual charges in the precursor of Crypto Currency were duly paid to all involved, it did leave us with an extra round and the problem of what to do with it, declare it and depend on the SSM’s poor maths or what. Eventually it was decided that we should get rid of it so my loader volunteered for Gd Comd one night and slipped it into one of the lakes down range.

I’ve given that a like but it doesn’t feel quite enough. It’s a brilliant post because it gives an insight into the reality, practicalities and experience of routine soldiering that’s too often absent. It’s no wonder that the bedroom experts on bagged charges etc suddenly disappear when the adults start talking. You get the Magic Mushroom lookalike award for the AFV world.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
I always thought and understood that in Chieftain, CR and CR2 obturation was achieved by the breech only, ie the obturators.

I’ve definitely fired a small round blank charge whilst on a Waterloo day parade at the windmill in Sennelager
Let's call them Obturators for ease of explantation, they are seperately fitted pieces of equipment, Chieftain and Challenger obturators are not the same and the "seal" is not achieved by the breech[block] alone.
Take a step backwards to the days of one piece ammunition where the case was brass. Mechanical Obturators were not needed because on firing the brass case expanded in the chamber and achieved the "seal". Blanks which were available for the older 20 pounder and 105mm would not recoil the gun. For a blank to recoil a weapon a blank adapter has to be fitted, I have never seen or heard of a blank adapter for a tank main armament.
 
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Dryclad91

War Hero
OK confession time, I have fired a bag charge without a projectile, it is not an experience that I would wish to ever go through again.

One of those range periods where an OC who didn’t have much of a grip, a 2iC who could have given Capt Bligh lessons in tyranny allied to a SSM who couldn’t count.

Ammunition on and off vehicles as we ended up exercising on the impact area over the weekend, crews swapping because of vehicle serviceability and associated cross loading of ammunition, all at a rush as the first week was fog bound and the second week heavy rain and gale force winds, all in all a disaster in the wings awaiting its call.

Jumped onto my own tank at a rush which had previously been used by more than one other crew that day so the ammunition stowage was not necessarily just as the loader would have liked. Commenced firing with a pair of Lulworth gunnery narks on the back decks. Pressure to get on with things was being applied from the tower in order to catch up as we did not want to have to return any ammunition at the end of the range period.

One of the gunnery narks knew my loader and entertained himself by questioning his parentage and speed of loading which distracted him somewhat. As a result there came a point in which I had reason to question whether he had forgotten to load a projectile, he assured me he had in the politest way he could manage without having to resort to that time honoured phrase of “with all due respect Sir”.

A short period of consideration and reflection commenced followed by a rapid search of the turret stowage to account for all rounds and charges, he assured me all was as it should be. At this stage the narks got involved as it was close to the end of firing for the day and they were cold and wet and had an urgent meeting in the bar so did not want any unnecessary delay. They both stated they thought a round had been loaded and that we were clear to continue the engagement, despite my concerns.

Having taken all the evidence into account and having covered my arse, I gave the order “Fire”, humongous great flash and accompanying cloud of acrid smoke enveloped the turret, both inside and out, not sure if the gun recoiled at all but the obturators must have worked after a fashion as we’re not engulfed in flames.

I stuck my head out of the turret and asked the narks if they had seen whether we had hit the target or not as there was an abnormal about of obscuration, strangely they we’re not amused, but we’re in an awkward position as they had assured me that we were clear to fire. Strangely there was no comment from the tower and I can only assume their attention was elsewhere when we fired. Nothing was therefore said and we finished the serial early claiming some form of equipment failure.

It did leave us with the problem how to clean the MA and obturators and for the to pass the Gunfitters inspection, therefore the usual charges in the precursor of Crypto Currency were duly paid to all involved, it did leave us with an extra round and the problem of what to do with it, declare it and depend on the SSM’s poor maths or what. Eventually it was decided that we should get rid of it so my loader volunteered for Gd Comd one night and slipped it into one of the lakes down range.
06FA56,

I remember an incident on a firing range.
While stood in the SQMS marquee waiting for the range "Bockies" to heat up, and listening to the range serials to be completed a very large "Wooomf" was heard. Looking towards the firing point we all saw a large amount of flame and semi burnt cordite spewing from the barrel of the engaging callsign, and a cloud of black smoke and the shocked turret crew coming out of the turret hatches. Bag charge no round.

Another incident, during trade test firing, I was taking my new B3 gunner through his qualifying shoots.
Gunnery god on the rear of the turret giving directions as to engagements suggested a MRS check followed by a quick Hesh shoot. My loader, hearing the order to "Load Hesh", very quickly slammed round and charge up the spout, closed the breech, made the guard shouting "Loaded" at the same time. Sadly the gunner was clutching his firing grip and switch causing the gun to fire as the guard was made. Surprise all round, gunnery god not wishing to get a bollocking from the range tower suggested I declare "target stop". Looking down range there was a transport target at 600m flapping in the wind. He passed his trade test but to this day I still remind him of his "premature discharge".
 

kalliste

Clanker
I spoke to a Chieftain driver in '82 (I'm guessing it was about then) who said he'd demolished a house in Germany by not being able to stop on a slippery road. He wiped off the driving lights but the Chieftain was otherwise undamaged.
 

Bardeyai

Old-Salt
I spoke to a Chieftain driver in '82 (I'm guessing it was about then) who said he'd demolished a house in Germany by not being able to stop on a slippery road. He wiped off the driving lights but the Chieftain was otherwise undamaged.
Challenger conversion training: slipped on black ice going round a corner, went sideways and ended up in a ditch. Mercifully we managed to get out, without paying REME their normal tithe for rescuing us.

Equally, I also once had a "mishap" and took out some man sized targets down range with HESH ( actually SHUSH PRAC) My Commander declared " Target, target stop!" and we got away with it. Mercifully the beating was adminstered later with the soft part of his fist.
 

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