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What's going on there? Extending the tube a few feet isn't going to double its range.

 

Perhaps the "new breech design" permits higher chamber pressures?

Edited by TTK Ciar
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Chris gets excited about the even more weapon to end all wars. Again. Definitely this time. Even longer ranged HE projectiles fired in ever faster bursts from ever fewer guns in ever more remote firebases against ever more fleeting targets while the Air Force does the actual heavy lifting. Sigh.

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"According to Popular Mechanics, longer barrels allow the explosive gasses produced by burning propellant to act longer on the shell, so it gives the barrel at greater velocities."

 

The knowledge of the author is awesome. He refers to PM for common sense without any sign of shame.

 

 

The range figures are explainable by three factors

- increased charge power (possibly by increased chamber volume)

- longer barrel (adds a few % to range)

- gliding munitions with better ballistic coefficient and sectional density.

 

Essentially, they play catch up to Europeans and instead of admitting that they're 20 years late they pretend that the weapon performance gets increased way beyond what Europeans commonly have. Most of that increase comes from an exotic projectile design, though. It's all-too typical American weapons hyping unless they have some ETC tech involved.

 

The fact is that the U.S.Army and USMC artillery sucks right now. Most army brigades and the marines lack proper SPGs, all American land forces have inferior range compared to many Russian formations and many European, South Korean formations. The quantity of exotic rounds with higher range (late Excalibur batches) is largely irrelevant. The U.S.Army has MLRS, but save for GUMLRS hardly any munitions for it, and GUMLRS is no area effects munition, useless for suppression, incapable of laying smoke or providing any illumination. It's useless against moving targets and doesn't produce significant craters in roads.

 

This is the heritage of a stupid M777 program and a mismanaged overly sci-fi Crusader program.

They could have bought PzH2000 20 years ago, at less than half the per-unit price of Crusader.

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Chris gets excited about the even more weapon to end all wars. Again. Definitely this time. Even longer ranged HE projectiles fired in ever faster bursts from ever fewer guns in ever more remote firebases against ever more fleeting targets while the Air Force does the actual heavy lifting. Sigh.

 

It is kind of tradiitonal that US Artillery Corps is lagging behind the rest of the world me thinks. As lastdingo points out, they are playing catch up with this second step in a cunning plan. I guess they took a hint from the USN superbug. First was the M109A7 with the new bigger hulls and now the A8 with the new tube and its equipment. These "M109" A8 are like grandpa's axe: three new blades and eleven new shafts. But it is still the same axe!

Is the A8 automatically loaded?
Edited by Panzermann
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Is the A8 automatically loaded?

Per diagrams I found they might be including an autoloader. We'll see if it makes the budget or not.

 

A6 of course is still this.

 

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welcome to the sixties... Others have given their M109 automated rammers, that is they you only place the grenade on the tray and the rest is automatic.

 

Instead of the A8 US Artillery should have phoned Poland and/or Korea for K5 Thunders and sold the A7 for a song to countries like Bulgaria or Romania. But try to sell that to US Congress.

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Chris gets excited about the even more weapon to end all wars. Again. Definitely this time. Even longer ranged HE projectiles fired in ever faster bursts from ever fewer guns in ever more remote firebases against ever more fleeting targets while the Air Force does the actual heavy lifting. Sigh.

 

I don't "get excited" over weapons Simon - that's clearly your bag and I value your diversity. I just thought it was an interesting development. Sigh.

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Is the A8 automatically loaded?

Per diagrams I found they might be including an autoloader. We'll see if it makes the budget or not.

 

A6 of course is still this.

 

 

 

 

 

Watching the above honestly pisses me off when I compare it to this:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wlKlW1-7c5A

 

 

 

 

-K

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Chris gets excited about the even more weapon to end all wars. Again. Definitely this time. Even longer ranged HE projectiles fired in ever faster bursts from ever fewer guns in ever more remote firebases against ever more fleeting targets while the Air Force does the actual heavy lifting. Sigh.

Air Force ain't gonna do no heavy lifting with SA-20/21/22/23/24/25, etc. roaming around. Army better get their arty act together.

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They do it every day in Syria. With antiques. The trick is not to pick fights needlessly.

 

Chris...you have been extolling the magical +5 Excalibur and +8 GMRLS for years. Yet it is the plain +0 D30s and BM21s that are making the running by being present and in numbers. You really don't have to use antiques but you do need enough of them in the right time and place.

 

Your process is broke. You are the monarch with the new garments.

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Simon, I simply sometimes express opinions about how things are or would be done by modern militaries in the modern world. I don't base my ideas on Russian fanboi assessments of low budget counter insurgency wars using 1950s kit and expendable proxies. I'm not sure how you forsee the air force doing the heavy lifting within the kind of IADS envelope the Russians could easily put up, nor how having their artillery outrage ours would help but I'm sure when the balloon goes up you will rock up in an armoured truck with a 120mm mortar on it and show the professionals how it should be done.

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Is the A8 automatically loaded?

Per diagrams I found they might be including an autoloader. We'll see if it makes the budget or not.

 

A6 of course is still this.

 

 

 

 

 

Watching the above honestly pisses me off when I compare it to this:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wlKlW1-7c5A

 

 

 

 

-K

 

Could you explain why to an ex sailor?

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Chris gets excited about the even more weapon to end all wars. Again. Definitely this time. Even longer ranged HE projectiles fired in ever faster bursts from ever fewer guns in ever more remote firebases against ever more fleeting targets while the Air Force does the actual heavy lifting. Sigh.

 

It is kind of tradiitonal that US Artillery Corps is lagging behind the rest of the world me thinks. As lastdingo points out, they are playing catch up with this second step in a cunning plan. I guess they took a hint from the USN superbug. First was the M109A7 with the new bigger hulls and now the A8 with the new tube and its equipment. These "M109" A8 are like grandpa's axe: three new blades and eleven new shafts. But it is still the same axe!

Is the A8 automatically loaded?

 

From my ex-sailor understanding, U.S. artillery and doctrine was the best(?) in WW2. What has happened since then?

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U.S.Army and USMC arty has become well-equipped with electronic gadgets for postiionfinding, orientation, muzzle velocity measurement, ballistics computing, digital transfer of missions, counter-arty radars, some guided rounds and recently some dedicated all-round 24/7 counter-mortar radars. The logistics with palletised shells and rocket sixpacks are decent.

 

It did however suffer from four developments;

  • they faced WWI-esque but 1970's tech Iraqis in 1991 and won easily, afterwards they faced even worse if not non-existing arty adversaries
  • the failure of the gold-plated too ambitious Crusader project (which yielded a design that costed multiple times as much as the in the menatime world-leading PzH 2000)
  • utterly outsized attention to helicopter-mobile 155 mm (the attention-grabbing M777), which utterly needlessly metastised into non-helo-mobile brigades because no wheeled SPG was developed.
  • the de facto cluster munitions ban, which took away MLRS' and 155 mm main munition type and most of their lethality

The cancellation of Crusader without a successor meant that the U.S.Army didn't make the move towards L/52 barrels, or even only 1980's tech L/45 barrels. They stuck with L/39 barrels and accordingly smaller propellant chambers and even stuck to this modest gun (coupled with lots of electronics) in the original FCS NLOS-C.

There was furthermore some misguided attention paid to resupply tech up to ideas about hwo to transfer munitions while under total NBC protection.

Nowadays the U.S.military is stuck with MLRS/HIMARS for which few munitions are available, 155 mm Frankenstein monster M109 with a gun that's been outclassed since the early 80's and some towed M777 that are conceptually largely stuck in 1942 IF NOT WORSE (see the traverse angle, which is put to shame by the very first split trail carriage's!) in the motorised rifle brigades (a.k.a. Stryker or medium brigade combat teams) and the infantry/light brigades as well as the Marketing Corps.

 

 

Besides, U.S. artillery wasn't really the best arty in WW2. It had plenty hardware to work with, but little experience and mostly quickly-trained personnel including inexperienced officers.

British and German arty had a very high level of quality and much more experience (and Germany had much more varied experiences), and the Russians certainly had overwhelming quantity.

Americans are telling the story that the U.S.Army had the best arty in WW2, of course.

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Is the A8 automatically loaded?

Per diagrams I found they might be including an autoloader. We'll see if it makes the budget or not.

 

A6 of course is still this.

 

 

 

 

 

Watching the above honestly pisses me off when I compare it to this:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wlKlW1-7c5A

 

 

 

 

-K

 

Could you explain why to an ex sailor?

 

Compare the manual workload in the M109 to the Pz2000. Several men vs one; compare the old 5"/38 mount to the modern Mk45. It also appears that the German gun has provision for manual operation if necessary, due to damage or wear.

Edited by shep854
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Stagnation.

There has to be something else going on. What? I don't know, but the M109 has so totally evolved that there is nothing left of the original design, not even anything left of the 109A2. New gun, new turret, new turret drive system, new fire control system, new ammunition, new ammunition stowage, new gun loading, new hull, new engine, new suspension. The only thing that I can see that has remained original is the M2 machine gun and its 500 rounds of ammunition. Scratch that, likely as not the M2 has been upgraded to the M2A1.

 

Could be that some modicum of inter-weapon system training is going on. The same soldiers that are on the M109 today may find themselves in a unit with M198s or M777s sometime next year. Could be. Could also be that the US Army Artillery branch just doesn't want to realize a systemic cut in personnel, which it inherently would with a gun crew reduced by two or more soldiers each. I don't pretend to know the why, but it isn't because "That's how we've always done it" because the only thing that hasn't changed is the manual loading. And to some degree, that has changed as well.

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What's going on there? Extending the tube a few feet isn't going to double its range.

 

Perhaps the "new breech design" permits higher chamber pressures?

Adding 19 calibers, or almost 10 feet of tube isn't just adding a few feet, it makes the tube almost 50% longer. Couple that with the new ammunition, new breech, and new muzzle brake as mentioned, yes, quite likely the range can be doubled.

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The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different outcome. This is what this is, more of the same. Bigger chamber, longer tube, more range and guided projos. The last addresses dispersion but trades away sheafs while it is all about the reduction in tubes and manpower as well as the unwillingness to hazard ever dwindling assets. Training and equipping for a war that will never be fought at the expense of those that are being fought.

 

This is of course a feature of the procurement process as far as defense contractors go since you will always have the system that 'gets the job done' just round the corner if they sign up for it and there's always a few bucks lying around to fund development. Billions were pissed away on what are little more than Powerpoints for a litany of programs that delivered almost nothing. The circle jerk of civil service, military planners and contractors comes at the expense of the taxpayer. It's all built on a lie. No one in NATO has been counterbatteried practically ever. It's a capability that comes from higher echelon and concentrated artillery assets. Yes, it could happen if you decided to rumble with the Russians on their frontier but that is probably what you really should avoid unless you are stupid. Wait...….

 

Even the Russians, who have a spiritual affinity for artillery have drawn back from wunderkanone. The backbone of their supporting fires is a modernized 2S1. Their 152mm MSTA-B is not even as impressive as the Cold War 2S5 Giantsint and they continue to use Peon and Tyulpan. But they have enough of them and some old stuff to dust off if needed. It was with these meagre and 'obsolescent' systems that they pulverized the Ukrainians in 2014. Their Koalatsiya SPG is basically at tech demonstrator stage and there is little pressure to field it. Recapitalizing older systems is a far better return on investment.

 

The current disconnect between theory and practice is pretty large. Flying M777s into remote firebases seems like a great idea until you realise you have to fly in all that ammo too. And drive in a prime mover. At which point you could have just hitched it up and towed it along. If that didn't beat the shit out of the chassis and you are discouraged from too much towing. The howitzer truck is the cheap and dirty solution. Those are operative words. Making them all singing and dancing brings you back to square one. I kinda like the innovative advanced primer ignition type proposals being shown. Basically the gun assembly is moving forward as you fire to nullify much of the recoil stroke. This allows for a lighter recoil and trunnion assembly. Functions like a 20mm Oerlikon.

 

A medium, 6" class gun with a L39 L23 tube would be handy as hell. Curiously the most accurate guns are often under 30 calibers simply because short barrels are stiffer. They have simply taken a M777 tube as a tech demonstrator.

 

The 105mm Hawkeye on Humvee

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JwXwwdBogBo

 

https://www.armytimes.com/news/your-army/2018/11/06/a-potential-mobile-artillery-dynamic-duo-for-the-army-hawkeye-and-brutus/

Edited by Simon Tan
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welcome to the sixties...

Sixties... You know... 2S3...

 

As for Simon - backbone of russian artillery now is 2S19 Msta (not Masta), there are very few 2S34 which are modernized 2S1 and 2S35 Koalitsya-SV (not Koalatsiya) is not tech demo but proper prototype which is planned for deployment. Yeah...

Edited by GARGEAN
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wiki´s russian entry on 2s3 and 2s19 said that troops preferred older one because more reliable and handy. (of course possibility of ukrainian disinformation agents and google translation issues). did that mean that the decent rear door as in 2s3 is better in everyday use than rear-engined chassis+turret system as in 2s19 /GCT AUF1?

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