HVM Firing Camp Hits


Evening all!!

A quick one for the cloud punchers in here!

I was one of the first to achieve a live hit at Manorbier back in 1994 when 9Bty first converted to HVM.

I'm just curious how many more lads have managed to ditch the target drone in the sea?

During my time hits were very few, in initial conversion F troop hit fcuk all, D Troop 2 (myself the second) and E troop had a couple as well.

What is the count on hits nowadays?


Just a quick note to non Air Defence aware peeps - when on firing camp, you fire a live missile at a target drone which is about 2-3kms out. If your shot passes within 3 metres of the drone, you are awarded a "technical hit" - ie if it was a normal sized aircraft then it would have been hit (the drone has a wingspan of less than 2 metres).

Every now and again though, we get it perfect and the drone is taken out the sky. Brilliant for the operator, not so good because the range has to close for a couple of hours whilst whats left is fished out the sea.

Hopefully the tradition still exists where the operator who gets a live hit recieves the propellor of the drone he shot down.

Ive still got mine, and it still has pride of place!
Are these the same drones which react to badly radiowaves?
I spent a five day ex in benbecula trying to shoot one down with a Nokia. The sultan of brunei was up there for a rapier demo at the time.
Should mention that it was an infantry ex and at the time I had nothing to do with the gunners.


No, and thanks for the irrelevance.

I asked a genuine question, if no-one on arrse is in the AD environment that can answer (i dont believe that for a start!) then just let this thread die.

Just wondering what the total is 12 years later! But some sort of record must be kept.

I dont expect there to be a hall of fame or anything, but some sort of record must be kept by the HVM operating Regiments (12, 47 etc) and Manorbier range itself.

I'm simply curious how many more Air Defenders have knocked the drone out the sky with HVM since my day!

Try GTT as they started to compile the stats for Manorbier and Utska in 2000, I don't know if they still do. You might get an answer, or if the figures are particularluy bad, a polite f**k off.
i know that at one time shorts used to present you with a tie and a zippo for a direct hit but i dont know if this is still the case.
Not to take anything from your good shooting but the action of actually knocking the drones out of the sky is more luck than judgement.
I’m not referring to a “hit” as that is down to the operator’s skill, but the drone is designed to withstand a number of hits and it requires a vital component to be damaged to knock it down.
Remember the wingspan may be 2 metres but the engine, fuel and RC pack are about the size of a fist.
I remember at 18 having my first go on a GPMG in the AA role, on my second 50 rd belt I hit and knocked down the one and only drone (No operator skill what so ever). My jubilation and excitement was short lived when I seen the rest of my Coy all stood there with 100 rds each and nothing to shoot at.
I hit the drone in 2000 which pissed most of my troop of because i had been in the command post since just after doing my hvm converstion in 95

I did not get the prop but i did get a tie and a large metal coin (for want of a better discription) engraved with my name on it.
A couple of guys in my unit have hit the drone and got the propeller. Last year my old unit 104 regt RA (V) had the best firing camp in 5 years.


I do remember a firing of Blowpipe that left the range as the operator was 6 foot 15 or something ginormeous.

With the current standard of missile and AU, direct hits are pretty common (about 5 for a Bty firing camp of 25-30 missiles). The banshees are also covered in fin scars after a days flying, so many darts narrowly miss them. Considering the small size of the target, the small size of the darts and their spread this proves that the system and the operators are first rate - the operator can be dead-on with the aiming ring and have a very steady track but the spread of the darts can mean the darts pass around the banshee. 21 Bty conducted an MPC in Nov (having returned from 6 mos out -of-role on HERRICK and not having touched the kit for over a year. They achieved 2 direct hits from 12 shoulder launched and 2 direct hits from 22 LML launches. Their technical hit rate was above 80%. SP HVM stats are even better.


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