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Chinese Type 99 MBT

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As I've mentioned before here on the forum...originally, I thought that the Type 98 and ZTZ-99's turret armor module's small compartment was used to house composite material...it even resembles the holes in BDD turret boxes. Maybe the Chinese were using polyurethane and steel plates like the Russians had with BDD? More recently however, I've come to the conclusion that the compartment really has nothing to do with the module's composite array...at least not directly. In my opinion (and the pic below seems to support this theory), the compartment is actually used to provide access to the mounting hardware that attaches the armor module to the turret. Clearly the modules are made (like the Israeli modules they are derived from), to be quickly removed if damaged or if they need to be upgraded. Where else could they be attached, where the crew could remove them? The Type 96 uses a series of clearly visible external bolts to mount the composite armor modules to the turret...these bolts are not used on the Type 98 or ZTZ-99. I can imagine the crew storing the wrench and lugs necessary to remove the modules in the same compartment...for safe-keeping. The crew would simply remove the compartment cover, loosen the mounting bolts, and lift the complete module/pack by using the three lifting "eyes" and the boom from a near-by recovery vehicle. Hmmm...


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It´s the finns. I´ve done it twice with a T-55, with all web gear. Seems to me that they´ve left the web gear behind. I´m not that big myself, and even i felt some pressure under the T-55. Some bigger guys sometimes got caught in the bolts or cracks or whatever protruding objects of the tank and got dragged on for metres, before the tank stopped. :P

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Um, it's not THAT long. :blink:  The "barrel" on the pic is either the thermal sleeve being removed or there are two barrels superimposed, one farther forward but behind the tank's own barrel. The spare barrel, perhaps?



Yes, it is.

Just a little comparison with Obj. 219A (so T-80 silhuette):


Thanks to ImageShack for Free Image Hosting

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Not proportioned correctly. The Type 99 has a longer hull and turret than the Russian Ts.



In the picture he posted the gun mantlets are lined up, so proportionality is not an issue.




In any case, according to Sino Defense the hull of the Type 99 is 1m longer than that of the T-72, while Wikipedia says that the entire length of the tank, gun foward (I assume) is 11m. That's about 3.1m of overhang. In a bad measurement with a ruler and using the image you uploaded I guessed that gun length to the front of the hull is ~4.8m That's a total length of 7.9m for the gun. All these measurements are, of course, extremely off, but assuming it is lower the length of a 125mm L/55 would be 6.875m, so L/55 sounds about right.

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Part of the thermal sleeve has been removed. It can be observed on the right of the fume evacuator.

For using the crane and sling without damaging the thermal sleeve, this part has to be removed. If yoo look carefully (the barrel is also painted) you can observe it.


Observe also the tronconic shape on the left of the silver part. I think that the barrel is close to be completely removed and the barrel can be observed almost enterely.


Observe this picture of the same operation (silver part and center of gravity):


This picture supports my opinion.

Edited by Cavalier
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Not proportioned correctly. The Type 99 has a longer hull and turret than the Russian Ts. The gun is longer than the Russian 2A46M though. It COULD be an L-55 for all I know.




Hull - yes.

turret - No.

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