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Uk Surges Ahead With Challenger 2 Upgrade


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It might have been better to have a fleet of common hulls, with turrets fitting 30mm and others fitting 100mm, so you end up with a mix of both variants in a platoon, as the Iraqi's tried to do with both BMP's. Ive never been convinced of the idea having 2 different armaments in a single vehicle is a good idea. Look at how many nations have tried fitting autocannons in MBT's, its never worked out particularly well.

 

Again, you are trying to apply entirely different logic to this one. 100mm on BMP-3 is not MBT's gun, BMP-3 is not MBT. 100mm is a cheap, low velocity and very light for it's caliber HE thrower. Don't think about 30mm as a "secondary weapon" - it is not. Neither is 100mm. They just have different enough roles that it is hard, if not impossible to combine them in the single weapon.

As for combining 30mm and 100mm on different vehicles, it would be worse solution, since 100mm armed vehicles would be useless vs lot of targets, while 30mm armed vehicles would not have been an improvement over previous generation. Plus it is harder to command effectively mixed plts.

We might argue about original requirement, but BMP-3 armament fulfilled them quite well.

Things changed meanwhile, offering some alternatives to a requirements of "more HE" (through they are also heavily compromised, some of them even more than BMP-3), but it did not prevent it from being export success - more BMP-3s were exported than CV-90s or... Bradleys, Warriors and Marders combined...

So obviously someone else other than Soviets thought it was a good idea.

Edited by bojan
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You put two wholly different weapons on a vehicle, you are making it harder to train the crew, and you are making stowage of ammunition more awkward than it needs to be. Im not aware the latter is a great problem in BMP 3, but I would be deeply surprised if the former isnt.Then the weight of the extra armament is taking away what could be extra armour protection. That could be an issue as they hang more and more ERA on them. And its supposed to swim as well!

 

The Arabs also bought Leclerc, AMX32 and Challenger 2. They have some odd tastes, right? :)

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It might have been better to have a fleet of common hulls, with turrets fitting 30mm and others fitting 100mm, so you end up with a mix of both variants in a platoon, as the Iraqi's tried to do with both BMP's. Ive never been convinced of the idea having 2 different armaments in a single vehicle is a good idea. Look at how many nations have tried fitting autocannons in MBT's, its never worked out particularly well.

 

It has never been clear to me why putting an auto-cannon, a coax MG, and an ATGM on the same vehicle, as done on many western IFV, is completely manageable and fine, but putting an autocannon, a coax MG, and another cannon that can also fire ATGM is somehow a big issue for training or employment.

 

Now is it worth the the space/weight to have both on one chassis? That's an open question and it depends a lot on the target set you envision. If you envision the IFV spending a lot of time in an HE throwing, anti-strongpoint mode, a 100mm cannon round is going to be a lot more space and cost efficient than using an ATGM from a western IFV. I think you've actually made the case for this in another thread; if a main function of AFV is as an "Infantry Bully", then the 100mm starts to look very useful and it's the ATGM we should be wondering about . . .

 

But as far as an Infantry bully, which is what we developed tanks for in the first place, what we have works fine. Most of what Challenger 2 was doing in Iraq was killing infantry or destroying strongpoints.
Edited by CaptLuke
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Well an MG is easy, most soldiers know how to use one in basic training. As for ATGM's, most IFV's dont carry them. Only Russia and the US tend to do that today.

 

Is a heavy cannon an elaboration? Well its heavy, it takes up space for ammunition, you take up room for a bigger stab than you would presumably need for just an Autocannon, and if you are planning on having any fire control system beyond a graticule, then you presumably need it to be capable of not only handling the 100mm gun, but the autocannon and possibly even the MG as well. And you fit all that in a vehicle which has to be relatively small, and carry 7 or 8 Infantry dismounts. Which to my mind looks a tall order. And thats before you are even thinking about tube launched weapons, which dont need a fire control much, but its surely not making an expensive vehicle any cheaper. And then its got to swim, and for what is an expensive vehicle, you are not really getting a vehicle with any better armour than a BMP2.

 

I can entirely see a 100mm gun on a fire support IFV just fine. Makes perfect sense. I can see 30 or 40mm's, even 50mm's on IFV's just fine. I just dont get the idea why putting it all in the same vehicle is a great idea. And judging by a whole generation of new IFV's Russia has developed since that dont do it that way, presumably it doesnt to them either.

 

The British Army had mixed platoons of Scorpions and Scimitars in some regiments, and that seemed to work. I see no reason why it couldnt work with an IFV with a common hull and different turrets.

 

Look, its just my opinion. What do I know? I will say in wargaming it, it certainly hands out punishment. It just cant take it.

Edited by Stuart Galbraith
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You put two wholly different weapons on a vehicle, you are making it harder to train the crew...

 

Not in any measurable way. Both 30mm and 100mm use same FCS, you only select which weapon you want to use. It is no more difficult than selecting between HE and AP with 30mm. Yes, crew has to know which target is best engaged with which weapon...

Generally weapon training, even for a complicated weapon systems is way "easier" (takes less time) than training operating in formation. So whole "problem" is non-issue.

Edited by bojan
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...And judging by a whole generation of new IFV's Russia has developed since that dont do it that way, presumably it doesnt to them either...

And again you are assuming based on the current times. There were no really functional RCWS in 1989. There was no (well, there was, but it was horribly expensive thing) multi-function fuses for AC ammo. Etc. It is like saying "none is building self-propelled guns w/o turret ATM, so those must have been a mistake historically".

Edited by bojan
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...Then the weight of the extra armament is taking away what could be extra armour protection....

Whole combat loaded turret weights 5t which is less than an empty CV9035 turret.

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I've always thought the BMP-3 would have pleased Krushchev to no end...here's a complicated box that seems well-suited for the nuclear battlefield and even has its own toilet. Awesome...why not put a gun/missile firing system on it? After all, guns-bad, missiles good, right? Now that other BMPs are available with Kornets strapped to their turrets (actually, Kornets are pretty much everywhere), the combined gun/missile system on an IFV seems even less needed. If it's about throwing HE rounds, then get something that's really good at doing that...IMO, the BMP-3 looks like an old idea that somehow made it to production.

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Somewhat modified BMP-3 weapon suite, like ditching tube-launched ATGM in favor of classical external box make it quite better. 100mm is very good at HE, especially with dedicated 3UOF19 round with thinner walls than the old T-54/55 HE projectile crammed to new case. Fragments spread zone is close to 122mm howitzer and 125mm tank HE.

Edited by bojan
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For throwing HE, now there is a 57mm medium velocity gun, LShO-57, which comes with a larger HE load than the BMP-3 armament complex. It is paired with Kornet ATGMs and Bulat micromissiles.

 

https://pbs.twimg.com/media/EWHwF1gXgAELBmM.png

The Russians have such nice autocannons. They must have more than they have applications for them....

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