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  #61  
Old 09-26-2011, 05:27 PM
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It's more along the lines of "secure it to the flatbed cargo area" than an M113 with wheels.
AH thank you I was trying to picture how that would work.
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  #62  
Old 09-26-2011, 05:39 PM
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One thing I have often wondered?

Since the GAU-8 30mm cannon round is effective enough against armored targets; while aren't there more weapon systems using the 30mm round?

Arguably it is effective though the A-10 is shooting at turret roof armor.

Why doesn't the Bradley and the LAV-25 have a single barrel auto cannon in the same 30mm round?

Why not a towed 30mm with a 4 or 6 round magazine for Light and Airborne Infantry? Something that would be like the 37mm or better yet the 2 pounder.

Commonality in ammunition across services should extend past small arms.

Imagine if the Navy and the Coast Guard was using 155 Artillery rounds with their own powder bags. Might surprise some pirates when DPICM goes off over their heads. Navy smaller vessels could have been using laser guided cannon rounds in the 90s disabling larger vessels and shore targets being lased by Naval warbirds.

Just food for thought.
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  #63  
Old 09-26-2011, 06:18 PM
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Originally Posted by ArmySGT. View Post
One thing I have often wondered?

Since the GAU-8 30mm cannon round is effective enough against armored targets; while aren't there more weapon systems using the 30mm round?

Arguably it is effective though the A-10 is shooting at turret roof armor.

Why doesn't the Bradley and the LAV-25 have a single barrel auto cannon in the same 30mm round?

Why not a towed 30mm with a 4 or 6 round magazine for Light and Airborne Infantry? Something that would be like the 37mm or better yet the 2 pounder.

Commonality in ammunition across services should extend past small arms.

Imagine if the Navy and the Coast Guard was using 155 Artillery rounds with their own powder bags. Might surprise some pirates when DPICM goes off over their heads. Navy smaller vessels could have been using laser guided cannon rounds in the 90s disabling larger vessels and shore targets being lased by Naval warbirds.

Just food for thought.
It may also have something to do with the depleted uranium AP round that the A-10 uses in the AT role. And, as you already mentioned, the fact that the GAU-8 is often employed against an AFV's thinner roof armor.

As for its use on helis and the LAV-25, the GAU-8 magazine is huge. Its ammo size/bulk would require much larger gun turrets and/or take up a lot more internal space. If the A-10 is built around the GAU-8, a heli or AFV would have to as well. The ability to carry more ammo is probably why the U.S. armed forces prefer 25mm to 30mm.
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  #64  
Old 09-26-2011, 06:25 PM
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It may also have something to do with the depleted uranium AP round that the A-10 uses in the AT role. And, as you already mentioned, the fact that the GAU-8 is often employed against an AFV's thinner roof armor.

As for its use on helis and the LAV-25, the GAU-8 magazine is huge. Its ammo size/bulk would require much larger gun turrets and/or take up a lot more internal space. If the A-10 is built around the GAU-8, a heli or AFV would have to as well. The ability to carry more ammo is probably why the U.S. armed forces prefer 25mm to 30mm.
Please read again. I was speaking about the 30mm round being adapted to other equipment not the GAU-8

The Giant Ass Unit is as you say, too large. However the round used in a single barrel cannon like an enlarged M242 would up gun other platforms considerably.
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  #65  
Old 09-26-2011, 06:31 PM
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The A-10 was a severe case of over-specialisation. It was desighned to kill Soviet tanks in WW3. Problem is, WW3 never happened.

While the old bird is still on the books, better and more effective alternatives exist. Experience has shown that the A-10 just isn't needed in her original role ad has been tasked in the Gulf and Afghanistan with operations better suited to COIN platforms.

I think half the reason the A-10 is still in service is because nobody is willing to accept that the West wasted so much money and resources in the cold war.

That being said, i doubt you'd find many spare GAUs in the twilight war. Mainly because this is the war the A-10 was built for and it would be one of the planes that gets first crack at repairs and resources to keep airworthy, especialy later in the war when air superiority birds are few and far between and SAMs become equaly rare.
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  #66  
Old 09-26-2011, 06:53 PM
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It was WW2, and it was the Hs129B1 if I recall. Started life as a stock Hs129 (The A-10 of its day when mounted with a mix of 30mm cannon and MG's) and placed a magazine fed 7.5cm KwK40 gun from a Panzer IV where the cannons used to be. Insanely good at busting the heaviest tanks (as well as small warships), pilots loved it till the soviets twigged on, and started operating so that anything with a barrel that long and big in the air becomes the focus of all fighters in the area.
The same gun (or something similar) was tested in a version of the Ju 88 (there might have been a few built, but I don't remember).

And the US B-25 Mitchell had two versions with 75mm guns, but these were hand loaded and used against ships (some later models went with a lot of .50's in the nose instead, as it was more effective in strafing ships).

The Mosquito had a version built in smal numbers with a 57mm gun in a pod under the body, but again it was for use against shipping.
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  #67  
Old 09-26-2011, 07:05 PM
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Originally Posted by copeab View Post
The same gun (or something similar) was tested in a version of the Ju 88 (there might have been a few built, but I don't remember).

And the US B-25 Mitchell had two versions with 75mm guns, but these were hand loaded and used against ships (some later models went with a lot of .50's in the nose instead, as it was more effective in strafing ships).

The Mosquite had a version built in smal numbers with a 57mm gun in a pod under the body, but again it was for use against shipping.
The ground attack version of the B25 is rather cool, I'll be the first to admit, but there is three things to take into consideration:
1. The B25 is a much larger aircraft, with a much larger crew compared to the one single pilot in the Hs129.
2. The 75mm was a pack howitzer, not a panzer main gun.
3. Though much larger, it wasn't all that much faster nor armoured to speak of. Granted, this isn't that big a deal since it was to be used in area's that wasn't lousy with AAA.


That said (and yes, a few Ju88's was test fitted with a KwK40), the strafe-bomber version of the B25 has to my favorite version of all. How can you not like 8 50's and a Pack75 in the nose of *any* airplane? Dead sexy. I always loved the basic look of the Mitch, and the idea of a twin engine attack plane in my mind is just plain awesome. The Boston, the Invader, the one and only Mossy, you name it, the platform is just cool.


WW2 is something of a Passion of Mine. When I went to Uni, though I didn't go for a history degree, I spent more than a few semesters in courses on this period, as well as massive amounts of time on my own reading up on it.
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  #68  
Old 09-26-2011, 07:08 PM
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I think half the reason the A-10 is still in service is because nobody is willing to accept that the West wasted so much money and resources in the cold war.
I disagree. The A-10 filled a role that the Il-2 of WWII showed was useful if not vital. What would you have used as an anti-tank/ground attack aircraft? The Cobra? The F-16?
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Old 09-26-2011, 07:11 PM
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Originally Posted by 95th Rifleman View Post
The A-10 was a severe case of over-specialisation. It was desighned to kill Soviet tanks in WW3. Problem is, WW3 never happened.

While the old bird is still on the books, better and more effective alternatives exist. Experience has shown that the A-10 just isn't needed in her original role ad has been tasked in the Gulf and Afghanistan with operations better suited to COIN platforms.

I think half the reason the A-10 is still in service is because nobody is willing to accept that the West wasted so much money and resources in the cold war.

That being said, i doubt you'd find many spare GAUs in the twilight war. Mainly because this is the war the A-10 was built for and it would be one of the planes that gets first crack at repairs and resources to keep airworthy, especialy later in the war when air superiority birds are few and far between and SAMs become equaly rare.
Why is it still around? Because the Air Force holds, in their word "Air to Mud" missions in disdain. The Air Force is not very responsive to the wants and needs of the Army Brigade Commander. When the A-10 was announced as being retired from active Service; the Army began lobbying Congress to remove the prohibition against armed fixed wing aircraft. The AF reversed on their decision quickly not wanting to lose a large slice of the Defense budget.

The F-16D is a great strike craft. However it is not a Close Air Support aircraft and wouldn't survive long as such. The A-10 is great because it can come in low, slow, and have human eyes on the target.

The only thing the A-10 will be replaced with is another A-10 sparkling off the assembly line for many years to come.
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Old 09-26-2011, 07:19 PM
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I disagree. The A-10 filled a role that the Il-2 of WWII showed was useful if not vital. What would you have used as an anti-tank/ground attack aircraft? The Cobra? The F-16?
There was in fact a lot of talk, right up to the Gulf War, to make a version of the F-16 as a dedicated ground attack platform, supposedly to be designated the A-16.

One of the biggest problems with the A-10 has actually been the pilots; even to this day, many pilots do not want under any circumstances to be assigned to fly the A-10. It's mud-moving, it's not the kind of flying an Air Force pilot should have to do (I agree, I think the A-10s should be reassigned to the Army), the "not a pound for air-to-ground" attitude the old fighter mafia has (and now, these are the guys in charge of the Air Force in many circumstances) and damnit, the A-10's just not sexy.
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  #71  
Old 09-26-2011, 07:22 PM
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Originally Posted by 95th Rifleman View Post
The A-10 was a severe case of over-specialisation. It was desighned to kill Soviet tanks in WW3. Problem is, WW3 never happened.

While the old bird is still on the books, better and more effective alternatives exist. Experience has shown that the A-10 just isn't needed in her original role ad has been tasked in the Gulf and Afghanistan with operations better suited to COIN platforms.

I think half the reason the A-10 is still in service is because nobody is willing to accept that the West wasted so much money and resources in the cold war.
I'm not disagreeing with you but, from what I've seen, heard, and read, the guys over in 'Stan seem to really appreciate the A-10. The sound of that GAU is a morale booster to those it is fired in support of. I can only imagine what the Taliban think about the A-10.
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  #72  
Old 09-26-2011, 07:25 PM
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Please read again. I was speaking about the 30mm round being adapted to other equipment not the GAU-8
Upthread:

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I think they call that the Mk.44 Bushmaster II.
Ref: http://www.atk.com/Products/document...r%20Cannon.pdf

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  #73  
Old 09-26-2011, 07:28 PM
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The ground attack version of the B25 is rather cool, I'll be the first to admit, but there is three things to take into consideration:
As to size, the B-25 was also able to carry an impressive bomb and rocket load compare to the Hs 129 as well.

Quote:
2. The 75mm was a pack howitzer, not a panzer main gun.
No, it wasn't a howitzer, but it' wasn't a high velocity gun. A variant of it was used as the main gun of the M-24 Chaffee light tank.

Quote:
3. Though much larger, it wasn't all that much faster nor armoured to speak of.
Well, it had basic armor to protect against aircraft MGs, IIRC

Quote:
Granted, this isn't that big a deal since it was to be used in area's that wasn't lousy with AAA.
I think the Japanese AA gunners on the ships were better than that

Quote:
That said (and yes, a few Ju88's was test fitted with a KwK40), the strafe-bomber version of the B25 has to my favorite version of all. How can you not like 8 50's and a Pack75 in the nose of *any* airplane?
I believe the turret could be locked forward and it's guns fired by the pilot, so add two more .50's.
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  #74  
Old 09-26-2011, 07:32 PM
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The A-10's death has been announced many a time, but over and over, events prove a low, slow aircraft, with two eyeballs in it, and enough armour to ignore ground fire is a need that will never go away. The are crying out saying FO's with lasers and a orbiting BUFF, or a armed drone, but time and again, the A-10 remains the very best CAS aircraft out there.

The Germans with the 129, and the soviets with the IL-2 proved the usefulness, almost necessity, of such aircraft during the massive armour battles of the eastern front, as well as general close support during the second world war from Afrika (The 129's debut) to Italy and Russia.

While I like the 16 - I like it a lot - the F16 can not take over the role of Close Air Support. It doesn't have the legs, doesn't carry enough, and can't take anything more than a hard sneeze before being rendered non-airworthy. As a strike aircraft? Sure. Do it right proper - even if the 15E is even better.

Sure, the A10 is still around because they don't want the Army to get its paws on it to a large degree, but it still wouldn't be the case if the aircraft in general is so close to perfect for its role its amazing. And the A10 makes a superb COIN aircraft. Able to loiter for ever and a day, has enough hanging off the wings that it can react to damn near any request put to it...


and Paul?


Speak for yourself. The A-10 is just dead sexy in its own way - not the glamour of a runway model, true.. but more along the lines of the hometown girl who just has it all together.
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  #75  
Old 09-26-2011, 07:48 PM
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Originally Posted by copeab View Post
As to size, the B-25 was also able to carry an impressive bomb and rocket load compare to the Hs 129 as well.



No, it wasn't a howitzer, but it' wasn't a high velocity gun. A variant of it was used as the main gun of the M-24 Chaffee light tank.



Well, it had basic armor to protect against aircraft MGs, IIRC



I think the Japanese AA gunners on the ships were better than that



I believe the turret could be locked forward and it's guns fired by the pilot, so add two more .50's.
*looks*


Ah, yes... the original field built B/A-25's was made with Pack Hows (and not just any it turns out, seems the originals was fitted with the US built versions of the French 75 of legend)... but yes, later versions that was factory made did have a low to medium velocity 75 (The M5/T13E) . Still not in the same league as the KwK as the M2/M3/M5/M6 of Lee/Sherman/Chafee usages was quite frankly horrid in an Anti Armor Role. Every test performed by both the allies and the Axis agreed: The Low/Medium Velocity cannon was a non-starter when it came to tank killing. Which, to be fair, wasn't what the gun was designed to do.

US doctrine at the time had it that Tanks was under no circumstances, to look for a fight with another tank. They was supposed to support the Infantry with accurate HE fire. Hence, the large (for its time) calibre and the low velocity. This allowed for a much larger explosive load in the shells. For AT work, in 1940-1941 the US army was convinced the M3 37mm gun was more than adequate for AT work: Even though the Brits was coming to the conclusion that the 40mm 2 pounder wasn't going to cut it, and the Germans had already switched to the 50mm PaK38 and was already introducing the high velocity 75mm PaK40. Which is why as soon as we got involved in the war that the Tank Destroyer came into being. Based off of the M4 Hull, and equipped with medium/high(ish) velocity naval 3" gun. This, and not the M4, was what was supposed to engage tanks.

US Tank Doctrine as to use, arming, and training was damn near criminal during WW2.

Of course, reality being reality, it didn't work out that way. It wasn't till late 44 did the US finally get around to mounting the 76mm gun - equal to the performance of the german KwK40 first seeing use in '42. And the Brits came around even sooner with the 17 pounder upgrade in late 43 - offered to the US, but turned down because the brass of the time was convinced that the M3 gun was more than equal to the task. And lets not get into the 75mm KwK42/L70 which vastly outperformed any gun - including the 90mm - the allies put into service.
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  #76  
Old 09-26-2011, 08:33 PM
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The dinky little F16 CAS project, the A16, was a joke. The 4-barrel variant of the A10's gun they decided to try and strap on was, even at a third of the weight and half the barrels enough to shake the aircraft so bad it threw off any chance of hitting the broad side of a barn. The '10 is a slow-and-low bird. Trying to use the F16 like that is like trying to arm a Ferrari with TOW missiles and calling it a tank.

Yes, the USAF has tried to retire the A10 time and again and time and again they've found that they've needed it.

You'll find there's more COIN built in to the A10 than not: remember the A-X program was started in part not because of "Hey lets build a bird that can fly into the teeth of the red hordes" but because of lessons learned with the A-1 in Vietnam. The Avenger can carry a mixed bag of HEAP and HE/I rounds. That's not just 'cause they make pretty colors when they hit, either.

There's nothing "embarrassing" about the money spent on the A10; there's been plenty of conflicts where its proven its dollar value by consistently hitting targets, and bringing its pilots back.

I have a book on A10 development by Mike Spick that goes in to design decisions and where they came from at length. I'll dig it up tomorrow and find some salient quotes.
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Old 09-26-2011, 08:40 PM
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Hey here we go guys...









They appear to be the same two vehicles just from multiple angles, but that's what they look like I reckon.

While cool, I sure as shit wouldn't wanna be in the cab...

"Hey, Ivan, we can't get those guys in the back, but one round through the cab and they're stuck!" brr
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Old 09-26-2011, 09:55 PM
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I won’t repeat what’s been said about the A-10’s wonderful attributes other than to echo everything that has been said about the beauty of a machine designed to fly low and slow, take plenty of punishment, loiter all day, and deliver a range of fires to service a variety of targets. The negative attitudes expressed about have been expressed many times since the end of the Cold War. The A-10 doesn’t remain on duty because someone is embarrassed about creating an awesome and awesomely cost-effective fighting machine. The A-10 stays in the inventory because there is nothing else that can do its job the way the A-10 does it.

Combat aircraft should not be asked to perform multiple roles. In most cases, combat aircraft are obliged to take on multiple roles because air force budgets won’t allow for the kind of specialization that makes for a truly dominant aircraft in one area. The Tornado, a truly splendid aircraft, is a good example of how budgetary considerations drive combat aircraft to perform multiple jobs. By all accounts, the Tornado does very well at its jobs—especially ultra-low penetration of hostile airspace. However, aircraft optimized for a given role have the edge over a jack-of-all-trades—even if that jack is about as good as one can expect jack to be. It’s no coincidence that during the Cold War the air forces with the most money to spend produced the widest variety of designs.
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Old 09-26-2011, 10:59 PM
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I can't agree with that, Web. I think the future of aircraft is for the most part multirole aircraft -- particularly with fighters. Look as the F-22 -- tactically, it's basically useless these days; they are one-trick ponies (built specifically to fight other aircraft), have extremely air-to-ground capability, despite what the USAF and some congressmen and senators tried to do to make it look like it had a viable air-to-ground capability, and stealth isn't really necessary against most current and projected possible enemy aircraft, by some estimations as much as 25 years in the future. The BVR capabilities of the F-22 can keep it out of almost any direct dogfight, but most of that suite can be retrofitted to existing aircraft. And stealth carries with it the need for a smooth planform, which severely limits munitions-carrying capability. And they're expensive. Give be more F-16Cs or new F-16Es, or Strike Eagles instead of a few F-35s, and just have a few F-35s around to crack those tough, electronics-heavy environments instead of replacing whole aircraft types with them. The F-117 and the B-2 proved stealth's potential in limited circumstances, but once the electronics-heavy targets are cracked, they are just strike aircraft with limited capabilities (or with the F-22, a fighter with virtually no other capability), and the non-stealth aircraft carry the battle.

I didn't cry a tear when they stopped F-22 production; aircraft of that type were necessary in a Cold War scenario, but not now, and their electronics suite seems like its in a perpetual beta stage. I agree with the experts who think that the F-35 needs more testing before its viable and will almost certainly miss its projected in-service date -- and a lot of Europe, South Korea, and reportedly Australia, potential customers of the F-35, agree. And even then, they should be produced only in limited number for a limited role. Further stealth production should await weapons which are smaller but have the same punch -- and the SDB depends on a combination of GPS and laser guidance to make its small warhead effective.
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Old 09-26-2011, 11:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Panther Al View Post
US Tank Doctrine as to use, arming, and training was damn near criminal during WW2.
I definitely agree with you here, although I would point out that Speer noted that war production of tanks in Germany was partially predicated on battle-environment need; fewer were produced and sent to Italy because the Germans assumed that Italy - and based on initial surveys with their own tanks, they were right - was poor tank country.

Then reports of lighter weight M4s traversing the terrain formerly considered "no-go" for tanks began to filter in...

Of course, we thought the same thing about Korea and Vietnam, and in both places once we committed our armor and used it properly it did very well. Or as well as could be expected.
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Old 09-26-2011, 11:35 PM
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I think the future of aircraft is for the most part multirole aircraft -- particularly with fighters.
That's because no one can pay for specialized aircraft anymore. Your point about the reality of funding is well-taken. I don't want our national treasure going into a host of specialized aircraft. My point, though, is that a tool developed for a single purpose does that job better than a tool developed for multiple purposes. An auto technician may have a Leatherman, but he uses tools from his set of specialized tools for the overwhelming majority of his work.

Let's see what happens with unmanned combat aircraft before we write off the specialized combatant.

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I didn't cry a tear when they stopped F-22 production; aircraft of that type were necessary in a Cold War scenario, but not now, and their electronics suite seems like its in a perpetual beta stage. I agree with the experts who think that the F-35 needs more testing before its viable and will almost certainly miss its projected in-service date -- and a lot of Europe, South Korea, and reportedly Australia, potential customers of the F-35, agree. And even then, they should be produced only in limited number for a limited role. Further stealth production should await weapons which are smaller but have the same punch -- and the SDB depends on a combination of GPS and laser guidance to make its small warhead effective.
Don't get me started on the F-35. The allies have been suckered and pressured into supporting a bad product. I'm very concerned that this one is going to bite us at a time we'd very much prefer not to be bitten.
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Old 09-26-2011, 11:41 PM
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Then reports of lighter weight M4s traversing the terrain formerly considered "no-go" for tanks began to filter in...

Of course, we thought the same thing about Korea and Vietnam, and in both places once we committed our armor and used it properly it did very well. Or as well as could be expected.
We should have developed an MBT for WW2. We didn't because we adhered to the laws of mass production--which, I suppose, is simply sticking with one's strengths. Goodness knows the mobility of the M4 was a strength, too. What a shame the low survivability cost so many American tankers so dearly. I would have loved to see what the Pershing could have accomplished in Europe.
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Old 09-27-2011, 02:01 AM
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Just released in the U.S. (9/20). Got my copy in the mail today.

http://www.amazon.com/Vietnam-Gun-Tr...6659770&sr=8-1

I've only had a chance to thumb through it and read most of the picture captions. Good stuff, so far.

I'm certain gun trucks would become a feature of the Twilight War, especially after the advent of the cantonment system. Cantonments, although in many ways self sufficient, would still need periodic replenishment of things like large caliber ammo and other valuable items that could not be manufactured locally. A cantonment's far-flung outposts (patrol bases, forward operating bases, fire bases, etc.) would also need resupply from the parent units main hub. Areas between cantonments and outposts would likely see predation by deserters, marauders, opportunistic civies, enemy raiders, etc. High-value convoys would need to be guarded against such threats and their simply wouldn't be the line or MP units to do the job. Motor transport units would have to guard themselves, and the venerable gun truck would see a renaissance.

Do any of you know much about motor transport units? Motor vehicles are at a premium late in the Twilight War. Would individual divisions have their own organic long-range transport units or would such line haul convoys be the specialty of Corps HQs? I'm trying to think of how gun truck units would be organized for a little project that I'm working on for the forum.

Also, what trucks was the U.S. military using up until 1997 or so?


P.S. If you like guns and trucks and special forces, I also recommend this Osprey title:

http://www.amazon.com/Special-Operat...d_bxgy_b_img_b
My local B&N has the SpecOp vehicle book but not the one on guntrucks. I picked up the copy today and have been reading through it. Personaly as the Twilight war goes on you will be seeing alot more Non-Standard Tactical Vehicles and a number of "Warpig" style Motherships in the units that are still moble even if they are just running supplies between cantonments.
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Old 09-27-2011, 02:37 AM
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Personaly as the Twilight war goes on you will be seeing alot more Non-Standard Tactical Vehicles and a number of "Warpig" style Motherships in the units that are still moble even if they are just running supplies between cantonments.
And for the really desperate, there are concrete armored crs.
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Old 09-27-2011, 03:58 AM
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Default Convoy Escort

One of your best options for a convoy escort is a HMMWV Avenger - it has an M3 HMG which is perfect for the role and it's not as if you have any aircrft to use them on...
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Old 09-27-2011, 04:24 AM
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One of your best options for a convoy escort is a HMMWV Avenger - it has an M3 HMG which is perfect for the role and it's not as if you have any aircrft to use them on...
Those Stinger pods are kinda dead weight. Although ... possibly one could have unguided rockets made locally to fire from the pods (direct fire), although it may not depress low enough for relatively close targets.
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Old 09-27-2011, 04:27 AM
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There was in fact a lot of talk, right up to the Gulf War, to make a version of the F-16 as a dedicated ground attack platform, supposedly to be designated the A-16.

One of the biggest problems with the A-10 has actually been the pilots; even to this day, many pilots do not want under any circumstances to be assigned to fly the A-10. It's mud-moving, it's not the kind of flying an Air Force pilot should have to do (I agree, I think the A-10s should be reassigned to the Army), the "not a pound for air-to-ground" attitude the old fighter mafia has (and now, these are the guys in charge of the Air Force in many circumstances) and damnit, the A-10's just not sexy.
The RAF has a similar issue, they are always taking flak from the Army for their tardiness in CAS roles. I think every air force has this problem. pilots want to be either taking down enemy aircraft or bombing strategic targets.

The USMC has the right idea with an air element desighned to support the infantrymen. USMC aviators feel a close bond to their ground pounding comrades and this is due to their training and indoctrination.

I do think Armies (assuming the funding is available) should handle their own CAS requirements. The British Army does to a certain extent as the Apaches are assighned to Army Air Corps.
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Old 09-27-2011, 05:22 AM
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Don't get me started on the F-35. The allies have been suckered and pressured into supporting a bad product. I'm very concerned that this one is going to bite us at a time we'd very much prefer not to be bitten.
Oh sh*t. Is that the general consensus I wonder? 'Cause here in Australia we're kind of banking on the F-35. Our old-style FA/18s are getting a bit long in the tooth, we've retired all our F-111s and we've bought a few Super Hornets as a stopgap measure while we wait for the F-35. If that project falls in a heap we're going to have a pretty horrible capability gap.

Of course one could argue that with such an iddy biddy defence force, Australia is always going to suffer capability gaps. We may be a wealthy nation on a per capita basis but we just don't have the population base to support a truly capable armed forces.
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Old 09-27-2011, 06:19 AM
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Oh sh*t. Is that the general consensus I wonder? 'Cause here in Australia we're kind of banking on the F-35. Our old-style FA/18s are getting a bit long in the tooth, we've retired all our F-111s and we've bought a few Super Hornets as a stopgap measure while we wait for the F-35. If that project falls in a heap we're going to have a pretty horrible capability gap.

Of course one could argue that with such an iddy biddy defence force, Australia is always going to suffer capability gaps. We may be a wealthy nation on a per capita basis but we just don't have the population base to support a truly capable armed forces.
UK is in the same pickle, we are banking on the F-35 to provide us with a carrier aircraft when we eventualy get our new Elisabeth.
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Old 09-27-2011, 06:19 AM
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Of course one could argue that with such an iddy biddy defence force, Australia is always going to suffer capability gaps. We may be a wealthy nation on a per capita basis but we just don't have the population base to support a truly capable armed forces.
Hire the Swiss. They'll stand at your shores, pikes in hand
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