Chieftain MBT - "Smokin'"

AlienFTM

MIA
Book Reviewer
J Bty had both the 438 and Striker. No idea haw many 438 troops but there was only one troop of Strikers.
I presume the Strikers were to work with the Recce Battlegroup (15/19H), also on CVR(T), and the 438s with the Infantry and Armour battlegroups on 432 and Chieftain.
 
As I've recalled a few times here, GW Troop, B Sqn, 15/19H fired "the last" RAC Swingfires from Mark 5 Ferrets at Otterburn in July 1977.

I was aware that at some future point but after my time, RAC got them back.
Late ‘84 we, Scots DG, got a troop, 8 438s and a FSC, maybe 2 FSCs? as well as 8 Scorpions
 
I honestly thought it was a battalion of QUEENS we followed (and a fellow Transfer-In I worked with at Worthy Down and IBM tended to back it up), but if you say it was a battalion of Angle Irons, that's an ironic symmetry.

At Catterick 75-6, we were next to a battalion of Angle Irons and again in Tidworth 76-7. To have followed 3 R Angle Irons in Alanbrook would completed the prial.
I was with 1 Combat Supplies Bn in 72-73 whose Mess was in Alanbrook next to the resident Bn. It was definitely the 3rd Bn Royal Angle Iron.. (Pompadours) as I was attached to them the following year and did a Derry tour with them over Christmas 74. I think they went off to Cyprus (Dekhelia) in 75.. I certainly met up with them there in the summer of 77 when I was working at JSPC(C).
 
Going back to the 70s and 80s I seem to remember that the RAF used AVTUR in Britain and AVTAG in Germany. No problem for Jags, F4s, Buccs etc, but the Harrier needed an engine re-tune in order to get the most out of the fuel. This was potentially critical when hovering.
I believe it was AVTAGs antisocial behaviour which caused it to be ditched by airlines.
Just after the leaping heaps arrived in RAFG we had to start adding something called Santolene-C to the AVTAG. There was no blending equipment available so a highly sophisticated technical procedure was introduced. A 45 gallon drum was filled with AVTAG and a set amount of the Santolene-C was poured from its own container into a graduated Tupperware jug. This was then poured into the 45 gallon drum, the bung was tightened and then the drum was rolled back and forth for precisely ten minutes to ensure the two substances were thoroughly mixed.

The drum was then lifted onto a barrel stand. When a bowser required filling, the tanker was dipped to ascertain the ullage and the required quantity of the Santolene-C/AVTAG mix was calculated from a matrix and the determined amount was decanted from the 45 gallon drum into a graduated bucket. The contents were then poured through the top hatch of the bowser which was then filled.

This procedure was carried out every time a bowser need filling irrespective of whether tthe fuel was destined for a Harrier.


There is the story of a station bonfire that didn't quite go according to plan. Somebody had been a bit over generous with AVTAG as a starter. Fortunately it was ignited remotely, as standing next to a bonfire as it heads for the moon would have no doubt resulted in an out of phase shreddy change.

T'weren't AVTAG...........it was....cough ....AVPIN...cough...allegedly. It was all smiles until the kerfeckinbooom!!! moment. Two warrant officers had a hats on/heels together/no coffee interview the following morning with a future MRAF; it was his wife who "lit" the bonfire.
 
This is the best of ARRSE. How it used to be.

Thanks, all.
Agreed but I wish I knew what all of the acronyms mean - Armoured Divs have a silly language all of their own :)
 
All these Chieftain stories make me howl.As a lifelong grunt I don't get some of the acronyms,avtag etc.I was only in Germany for less than a year before I got out,we were armoured at Warminster but I haven't been near a Warrior in twenty years.
I remember watching Chiefies blow up on the plain,sometimes they didn't even get over the start line at startex.
One of the Reme lads told me that the only time an L60 engine wasn't leaking oil,was because there was no oil in it.
 

AlienFTM

MIA
Book Reviewer
Late ‘84 we, Scots DG, got a troop, 8 438s and a FSC, maybe 2 FSCs? as well as 8 Scorpions
Late 84, 15/19H left for Bovy. Your CVR(T)s would have been 8* Scimitar, a Close Recce troop, presumably from whoever replaced 15/19H.

I presume your FSCs came as part of the ATGM contingent, cos our Close Recce squadron (A) didn't have any, and all Recce troop leaders took CVR(T)s.
 

AlienFTM

MIA
Book Reviewer
All these Chieftain stories make me howl.As a lifelong grunt I don't get some of the acronyms,avtag etc.I was only in Germany for less than a year before I got out,we were armoured at Warminster but I haven't been near a Warrior in twenty years.
I remember watching Chiefies blow up on the plain,sometimes they didn't even get over the start line at startex.
One of the Reme lads told me that the only time an L60 engine wasn't leaking oil,was because there was no oil in it.
It wasn't only Chieftains.

I met Zero Alpha when she was the Paymaster's nanny. She knew when I wouldn't be meeting her that night when she took her charge to play group and there was a dead CVR(T) on every corner and traffic light.
 
You provided our ATGM assets throughout my time.

Have you seen your Striker at Bovy, subtly grafittied by my old mucker Steve Davies RIP, GW Troop 15/19H, who got a job at Bovy and promptly marked the J Bty marked Striker and the Mark 5 Ferret with GW Troop 15/19H stickers?

Stickers were still there last time I looked.
I was REME, not RHA! J Bty loved putting stickers on vehicles, as you can see in this pic that I took in early 1978 in Barker Barracks:
https://www.arrse.co.uk/community/threads/military-modelling.62648/page-387#post-8225525
 
I was posted to Barker Barracks in either October or November 1977 to join J Bty RHA who were converting to Swingfire. They moved into Barker at the same time as 25 Fd Regt, who came down from Munsterlager. I'm not sure who 25 took over from but I'm sure that QRIH were the resident tanky mob at the other end of the barracks.
45 Medium Regt , we had M110 and M109s... moved from Padders to Hohne , bastards took me with them just so they could **** me about, because I was posted to Berlin in 4 weeks , I then took 2 weeks leave to get the quarter sorted , packed and get Doris and son ready for the move... Berlin Armd Sqn , B sqn RSDG , fine bunch of guys, then C sqn RH

talking about dri-clads , there wasa driclad park at the back of 45 workshops, they were all Cents , UK sold the turrets to Switzerland for them to use mounted onto concrete bases up some mountain afaik
 
Did any nation ever get Chieftains that didn't have horribly bad engines?
Yes, Iran, they eventually got the Shir 1 or Khalid as it was also known. It was a Chieftain with a CV12 engine, it was what Chieftain should have been from the start. They have one at the Tank Museum and it growls with power! As for the L60? Leyland headed the design team and made sure their engine got selected. Had we not ripped up our agreement with Israel and refused to sell them Chieftain who knows what might have happened? Seeing as they put a decent American diesel in Centurion when they got it, I doubt they would have stuck with the L60, Imagine Israel putting US engines in Chieftain even as the British Army was taking deliveries of L60 Chieftains? When it was shown that the Israeli tanks were faster and more reliable than ours, we would have had no choice but to follow suit.
 
The nearest I came to being lynched was for getting the Sqn fitters to lift a (Cheiftain) pack so that a faulty ME fuel pump could be replaced on a MedMan.

Alas the pump proved not to be faulty but I was forgiven. An AVO test on the cable side plug had showed 24V so it must be a faulty pump right? But it turned out (and no-one would have guessed this) that the (female) pins in the plug had over time worked their way back into the shroud. Result was AVO prods (being nice and long) reached the cable side pins to show 24V, alas the pins on the fuel pump were not as long so they did not make a circuit when the connector was screwed on.
 
The nearest I came to being lynched was for getting the Sqn fitters to lift a (Cheiftain) pack so that a faulty ME fuel pump could be replaced on a MedMan.

Alas the pump proved not to be faulty but I was forgiven. An AVO test on the cable side plug had showed 24V so it must be a faulty pump right? But it turned out (and no-one would have guessed this) that the (female) pins in the plug had over time worked their way back into the shroud. Result was AVO prods (being nice and long) reached the cable side pins to show 24V, alas the pins on the fuel pump were not as long so they did not make a circuit when the connector was screwed on.



We've all been there M :wave:
 
We've all been there M :wave:
I wished I was somewhere else when it became clear the pump was fine. But even better than that was one of the other ECEs of the time, GUE generator knackered so out comes the whole lot, no fun job that as we know. Pop the news generator on, fit the whole caboodle only to find it still does not work. New genny is knackered pronounced our man to the near mutinous and now highly sceptical fitter crew. Out it all comes again, new, new genny on, all back in again and this time it works. As a newly minted ECE he had to be quite confident to deal with that and insist he was right.
 
I wished I was somewhere else when it became clear the pump was fine. But even better than that was one of the other ECEs of the time, GUE generator knackered so out comes the whole lot, no fun job that as we know. Pop the news generator on, fit the whole caboodle only to find it still does not work. New genny is knackered pronounced our man to the near mutinous and now highly sceptical fitter crew. Out it all comes again, new, new genny on, all back in again and this time it works. As a newly minted ECE he had to be quite confident to deal with that and insist he was right.
Ever do an RBJ?
 
Strangely enough only for a Cent AVRE during my time in but even more strangely enough I do have a Cheiftain RBJ to remove and check over in the coming weeks. Not quite sure on the date yet but it will be fun I am sure :)

Wow, still got your hand in then.

BTW you've said Cheiftain twice now....
 

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