Jump to content

British APC/IFVs, why doors and no ramp?


Loopycrank
 Share

Recommended Posts

Originally this was going to be a question about the warrior IFV and its unusual power door, which only occasionally smashes poor squadies' heads:
 

 

 

This seems like a patently stupid way to design an IFV.  It's all the weight and complexity of a power ramp, only not as good, and more dangerous.

And then I realized it's not just Warrior, it's FV 432 and Spartan too!

Why didn't the British put ramps on their APCs and IFVs?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Replies 67
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Quote

This seems like a patently stupid way to design an IFV.

I do not think so.  What can the ramp do better than the door?  More width?  More convenient?  Hm, not really.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Didnt Soviet vehicles have a ramp so you could mount an 82mm mortar on it? Which im sure is a good idea, but as FV432's had a hatch to fire out of, there was arguably no reason for one. Even weapons like Wombat were mounted externally, so no need for internal carriage where a door might have been awkward.

Im not sure  its a real problem, its an IFV, not a landing craft.  :)

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Swedish IFVs have "always" had hatches, and not power assisted either to the best of my knowledge. I think one reason is that it's quicker to get a hatch open than waiting on the ramp (unless you've parked at an angle I suppose). The Swedish army tested the M113 so the idea has been at least looked at.

/R

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, Stuart Galbraith said:

Didnt Soviet vehicles have a ramp so you could mount an 82mm mortar on it?

No, doors.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 hours ago, Loopycrank said:

This seems like a patently stupid way to design an IFV.  It's all the weight and complexity of a power ramp, only not as good, and more dangerous.

And then I realized it's not just Warrior, it's FV 432 and Spartan too!

Why didn't the British put ramps on their APCs and IFVs?

I think it's just a different design philosophy. 

From guys I know who used the Bradley they complained about how slow the ramp was to drop. Both the Bradley and the older M113 series had a door inside the ramp. With the limited number of dismounts in a Bradley the door is probably as quick an exit as the ramp when you factor in the time it takes to drop the ramp. 

What is the biggest thing you would be loading in a Bradley? Probably the spare hell fire missiles, and spare 25 mm ammo. Maybe a little awkward getting them through the doors as opposed to using the ramp but not a huge issue.

A ramp is a nice to have thing if the complexity and cost are not prohibitive. But not an absolute necessity.  Tanks don't have ramps and have to load large main gun rounds.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 hours ago, Stefan Kotsch said:

I do not think so.  What can the ramp do better than the door?  More width?  More convenient?  Hm, not really.

Ramps allow easier egress and ingress by far.  This is one of those things where the fact that it's the overwhelmingly dominant design choice should be a clue.  M113 has a ramp.  CV-90 has a ramp.  Type 89 has a ramp.  Marder has a ramp.  Puma has a ramp.  Lynx has a ramp.  K21 has a ramp.  Redback has a ramp.  Hell, even Kurganets has a ramp!

It's not like there's a raging debate between two schools of thought on this.  There is an obviously correct design solution that everyone chooses given the chance, and not choosing it is conspicuous.

What's more, as I explained, the Warrior somehow manages to throw away the one, dubious advantage a door has by going with a power operated door that's just as slow, heavy and complicated as a ramp!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, 17thfabn said:

A ramp is a nice to have thing if the complexity and cost are not prohibitive. But not an absolute necessity.  Tanks don't have ramps and have to load large main gun rounds.

Not ramps, but there's a large number of tanks made with especially large doors to very quickly resupply and rearm, especially with big main gun rounds.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Loopycrank said:

Ramps allow easier egress and ingress by far.  This is one of those things where the fact that it's the overwhelmingly dominant design choice should be a clue.  M113 has a ramp.  CV-90 has a ramp.  Type 89 has a ramp.  Marder has a ramp.  Puma has a ramp.  Lynx has a ramp.  K21 has a ramp.  Redback has a ramp.  Hell, even Kurganets has a ramp!

It's not like there's a raging debate between two schools of thought on this.  There is an obviously correct design solution that everyone chooses given the chance, and not choosing it is conspicuous.

What's more, as I explained, the Warrior somehow manages to throw away the one, dubious advantage a door has by going with a power operated door that's just as slow, heavy and complicated as a ramp!

I would think there have been studies done on various IFV and personnel carriers with troops dismounting and remounting using doors and ramps .

How long does it take for the doors on the Warrior to open? How long does it take for a ramp to drop where troops can exit? 

The only direct experience I've had was with the M113 and M577. Rear door opened easily. Ramp dropped fairly quickly slow to raise.

I think some one will come along in a bit with some input on the British Army's thinking on the issue.

Edited by 17thfabn
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, 17thfabn said:

I would think there have been studies done on various IFV and personnel carriers with troops dismounting and remounting using doors and ramps .

How long does it take for the doors on the Warrior to open? How long does it take for a ramp to drop where troops can exit? 

The only direct experience I've had was with the M113 and M577. Rear door opened easily. Ramp dropped fairly quickly slow to raise.

I think some one will come along in a bit with some input on the British Army's thinking on the issue.


There have been such studies, here is a summary of one of them:

https://apps.dtic.mil/sti/pdfs/ADA490527.pdf

Note that the vehicle in question has a ramp.

 

2 hours ago, Stefan Kotsch said:

We come now to the area of religion.

 

[In earnest.  There is not "The correct solution".]

 

This is wishy-washy thinking in the extreme.  Yes, technical solutions to a given problem will come with an array of advantages and disadvantages.  That does not mean that one solution cannot be obviously holistically better than another.

Or do you have a different explanation for the lack of gasoline engines, interleaved road wheels, full-caliber AP, stereoscopic rangefinders, and Horstmann suspension on modern tanks?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

8 hours ago, Stuart Galbraith said:

Even weapons like Wombat were mounted externally, so no need for internal carriage where a door might have been awkward.

 

I may be misinterpreting you Stuart, but FV432 Wombat mounting was an internal ramp, and not externally fixed? I always figured it was rolled up the ramp through the door first off, as on landrover.

1959667576_wombat3.jpg.101667eb9060741a1

 

edit: video 

 

Edited by FLOZi
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Is there ever a equirement to open up the back whdn the vehicle is moving...can ramp do this?

Edited by WRW
Crap spelling
Link to comment
Share on other sites

If a ramp is the one true solution, then we missed it again with Ajax.

http://www.defencephotography.com/blog/2013/our-unique-look-at-scout-sv.html

Door with a hatch in it there. It seems to be the same for ASCOD, too so it wasn't changed by UK requirement.

I suspect that mounting a heavy door with side hinges rather than bottom ones would allow a more compact power mechanism as you're not fighting gravity to close it.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Quote

... obviously stupid way of designing ...  ; ... lack of ... Horstmann suspension on modern tanks?  ... ;

I cannot make friends with such absolutisms.  Otherwise we would have to blame the Merkava designers for stupidity as well.  Or the British 120 mm rifled gun. Stupid?
It is quite obvious that this is not the case.
The ramp is rotated 90 degrees and built in as a door.  Is that stupid just because few designers do it that way? That doesn't convince me.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, Stuart Galbraith said:

I do wonder why he is so exercised about the Warriors door, when the obvious problem with Warrior is no stab, and at least in the early ones, no power elevation.

Are you kidding?  Warrior had so many deficiencies relative to the early models of Bradley that it's difficult to pick any single "obvious" problem.  No stabilizer, no belt feed (belt-fed weapons were relatively new, having only been invented about ninety years prior), no thermals, no ATGMs on most vehicles, no ability to fire the ATGM from under armor; the lack of a ramp is interesting because while the other issues are just typically boneheaded MoD penny wise and pound foolish corner cutting, the fact that other British APCs are laid out the same way suggests it's a national eccentricity.

 

2 hours ago, Stefan Kotsch said:

I cannot make friends with such absolutisms.  Otherwise we would have to blame the Merkava designers for stupidity as well.  Or the British 120 mm rifled gun. Stupid?
It is quite obvious that this is not the case.
The ramp is rotated 90 degrees and built in as a door.  Is that stupid just because few designers do it that way? That doesn't convince me.

Oh yes, how silly of me.  The soldiers ingressing and egressing the vehicle will just rotate their local gravitational vector ninety degrees and then a door becomes just like a ramp.

This is utter foolishness.  I cannot believe that you're so triggered over the phrase "obviously correct" solution that you're arguing this nonsense.  How is a power door better than a ramp?  The argument that the motors are lighter is silly.  The difference in weight and bulk in an electrical motor that can swing a door vs lifting a ramp is utterly trivial to the overall design of an IFV.  The difference in complexity is trivial also; if the door actuator is what is going to make or break your IFV, maybe you should just buy IFVs and not try to make them.

Which is what the British should have done with Warrior; aside from seating arrangements, the early Bradley enjoys a substantial list of advantages.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I remember a news footage from 1991, from the beginning of land operation in Iraq, with US soldier slipping on Bradley's ramp and falling on his lower back in the front of camera. Maybe this hazard should be noted as a small disadvantage of designs with ramp ;)

Edited by Przezdzieblo
Link to comment
Share on other sites

10 hours ago, WRW said:

Is there ever a equirement to open up the bCk whdn ghe vehicle is moving...can ramp do this?

I was told by an old REME vet about his experience towing an M113 with another M113.  At some stage the ramp of the towing M113 not only opened but came completely off. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

34 minutes ago, Loopycrank said:

Are you kidding?  Warrior had so many deficiencies relative to the early models of Bradley that it's difficult to pick any single "obvious" problem.  No stabilizer, no belt feed (belt-fed weapons were relatively new, having only been invented about ninety years prior), no thermals, no ATGMs on most vehicles, no ability to fire the ATGM from under armor; the lack of a ramp is interesting because while the other issues are just typically boneheaded MoD penny wise and pound foolish corner cutting, the fact that other British APCs are laid out the same way suggests it's a national eccentricity.

 

Oh yes, how silly of me.  The soldiers ingressing and egressing the vehicle will just rotate their local gravitational vector ninety degrees and then a door becomes just like a ramp.

This is utter foolishness.  I cannot believe that you're so triggered over the phrase "obviously correct" solution that you're arguing this nonsense.  How is a power door better than a ramp?  The argument that the motors are lighter is silly.  The difference in weight and bulk in an electrical motor that can swing a door vs lifting a ramp is utterly trivial to the overall design of an IFV.  The difference in complexity is trivial also; if the door actuator is what is going to make or break your IFV, maybe you should just buy IFVs and not try to make them.

Which is what the British should have done with Warrior; aside from seating arrangements, the early Bradley enjoys a substantial list of advantages.

The reason why there is no missile on the vehicle is doctrinal. . It's like blaming an SLR for being single shot. A Bradley turret version was available, but the army didn't want it.

Why doesn't it fire on the move? Because it would cost too much for the MOD to replace the FV432 (ultimately it never did), and because the British Army fought from overwatch. It was designed for the quaint world of WW3 when all its targets were supposed to come to it.

Why does it use a Rarden, to keep commonality with Scimitar. The reason why the Rarden looks old fashioned, it is. It's one of the first ( think possibly the first) 30mm gun in a NATO ifv, from the early 70's. Should it have been replaced for warrior, yes. Does it matter? Not really. Anyone who prays and sprays with a Bradley probably shouldn't be in the gunners seal

Tell you what, have you read Richard Holmes Dusty Warriors? You should. It will give you a good feel for what the Soldiers liked and disliked about it on a deployment in Iraq in 2004. It might surprise you.

Edited by Stuart Galbraith
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
 Share


×
×
  • Create New...