Discussion in 'RAC' started by spank_the_monkey_to_death, Feb 24, 2008.
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Thought some of you guys would like to read this
Highlights the then, and now, woeful lack of investment in recce.
17 years=lots of reports=money spent=nil result.
Planning? Piss-up and breweries are two phrases that come to mind.
This is a joke right no one can surely be thinking of a two man crew
But mate, they're "experts" (1)
ex = has been.
spurt = drip under pressure.
Prior to the decision to introduce Chieftain one man and two man tanks were once again proposed. The idea being that as we were outnumbered,if we went to smaller tanks we would bring the numbers back up. Fanatastic armament as well recoilless guns!!!! I have drawings foro ne of these discovered when researching Chieftain. As said experts scary
When I did my Chieftain crew commanders course in '83 they were still talking about them down at the Armour School. The designs that they showed us had the two man crew either side of the main armament, almost like a small 'S' Tank design. I think they called them XPM's?
In the mid 90s I was invoved in trialing a working mock up of a two man med recce vehicle using a very hi tech control set up. It was never for production it was just a feasibility study. We (ie serving armoured soldiers) kept pointing out to the team (boffins overseen by a REME Major) that even though we could make the vehicle work there were other considerations. To start with there were simple issues like crew fatigue over long periods of operations, then issues like, maintenance of the vehicle especially heavy lifting such as track bashing etc, who was going to guard the vehicles and lastly tactical problems like foot recces and hide clearance.
Of course after a lot of industry (you guessed it BAE) investment nobody wanted to listen to us or record our points of view. I suppose i should not have been surprised but i was very frustrated at the time. Luckily it looks like it never went anywhere and besides we fight in a very different enviroment now.
Id have thought that the two man tanks of WW2 would have shown up all the faults, regardless of superior fire control systems etc. Nice to know though that we spent a lot of money for no reason.
The one thing that never ceases to amase me, is the continual re-invention of the wheel, thus spending huge wedges of dosh to tell us what we already know.
To be blunt, it's a simple delaying tactic. The military equivalent of a public enquiry or similar.
2 man recce cars?
I want one.
I can understand why some of the research that is done may appear to be wastefull from your side of the team, but from my side it does not always look that way. Often we are asked to see whether new technology can solve the problem in an affordable way, sometimes it can and you get new kit, some times it can't and you see the cash spent and nothing for it. Just think of the NVGs and TIs you used in GW1. And the stuff you are using today or gettng tomorrow will be better smaller lighter etc. Crew size should be determined by work load, those noisy b*st*rds in fast jets can whizz around very fast and fir weapons with a high degree of accuracy whils evading counter fire, perhaps moving some of that technology into tanks will eventually cut down the size of the crew and if you don't assess the progress in technology from time to time how do you find out when the change does become practical.
Sometimes looking at the people who design the equipment is scary. Anyone who has done Tidworth klknows that you are guinea pigs for all sorts of trials.
Involved on one and as i was the only Gunnery man not to escape the comments were "you brief the boffins" so away we went and they were talking about engaing movers, asked how we did it (9 dot sight) explained, silence for one minute then one of them says "we can vastly imporve on that, we will have a camera and radar all linked to an on board computer, this will "see" the round as it is fired note were it landed and apply the correction and fire the gun for you". Wow says I brilliant how big is it, he then waves arms around and saying its very small,mm it might have fitted in MK but thats about it. Showed him the space that a TLS took up and that was the ned of that.
Nopw I am sure we could do it now or very soon, the point being although he was a very clever person and designed things for AFV he never had actuallly seen one till then.
All well and good but the Fast Jet pilot works 10 minutes a day and has a crew of 20+ and a nice air base to back him up.
There is more than enough going on in an AFV just fighting the tank for a 2 man crew to manage. This problem is magnified at both troop and Sqn levels.
I am all in favour of better kit, but ther is a lower limit to a tank crew that can susstain itself in the field over an extended period and 4 is about right.
Yeah, one to get the scoff on and 3 to cam up!
Perhaps a 6 month hign intensity tour would inform you more. What planet are you on when you think armoured crews are given the same conditions as fast jet pilots. I know we do look rather good posing on our steeds but we do have a day job.
PE4 fix the panzer we are off for a gonk.
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