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lavictoireestlavie

Merkava armor layout and protection estimates

Hello everyone ! Has anyone of you guys ever made a KE and CE or LOS protection diagram for any Merkava tanks for possibly adding a Merkava to SB Pro PE as a partially playable unit ? Any feedback would be appreciated.

As far as i could gather the individual Merkavas seem to have the following traits:

Merkava I - Features plain steel and spaced armor. The turret protection seems to be primarily focused on the frontal 30 degree arc. The side turret sides seem to offer compartments that can serve as spaced armor.

Merkava II - Features plain steel and spaced armor with special armor bolted to sides and top of the turret. Just like Mk I, the turret protection seems to be primarily focused on the frontal 30 degree arc. The turret protection arc seems to be greatly expanded with the Merkava 2 Dor-Dalet

Merkava III - Features plain steel and spaced armor and composite armor. The turret protection seems to be more balanced and seem to encompass more than the frontal 30 degrees. Merkava 3 Baz comes with bolt on turret roof armor modules. The Merkava 3 Dor-Dalet greatly expands the all around protection arc.

Merkava IV- Features plain steel and spaced armor and composite armor. The turret armor seems to offer all around protection. extensive roof protection is another feature.

A common feature seems to be that the none of the Merkavas seem to have any composite modules inside the lower frontal plate. Estimates for the protection a typical Merkava propulsion block offers seems to range read for between 80-200 mm for KE projectiles and 200-400 mm of CE projectiles.

All Merkavas past Mk I seem to feature heavy duty side skirts that follow almost the entire length of the hull.

Some Images:

Merkava 4 turret shell:

8498487516_ab88a71d75_b.jpg

Merkava 3 (early) lower front plate:

8498487746_5db7e5ea9d_b.jpg

Merkava 3 (early) turret with armor modules:

8498488782_3f8a54439f.jpg

Merkava 2 hull:

8498510612_7a2e1c304e_z.jpg

Merkava 4 hull with armor modules:

13122649833_51cbaaf143_z.jpg

Merkava 4 turret with armor modules:

13122551255_ffec4fa871_z.jpg

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Merkava 4 turret:

13122552835_82b74aae54_b.jpg

Merkava 3 Baz armor addons:

13122846704_e167d2d732_b.jpg

Hull layouts of typical Merkava based vehicles:

24467376921_9ca7ebe2f6_z.jpg

Heavy duty side skirts of a Merkava 4 tank:

24254135480_a80b6f66a3_q.jpg

Merkava 2 hulls:

23921488414_4686e1d322_z.jpg

Merkava 1 or 2 hull back-end:

24467363301_0390d4ca7e_z.jpg

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Merkava 4 side hull sponson area during assembly:

24254125000_cabb4942aa_z.jpg

Merkava 4 hulls during various stages of construction:

24181890479_63193a92be_z.jpg

Merkava 4 hulls during various stages of construction:

23922861863_e0b9abfc42_z.jpg

Rolf Hilmes' armor diagram for the Merkava 1 front hull:

24254106740_d94a369a16_q.jpg

Merkava 3 turret shell:

24254097540_e3c877a432_b.jpg

Merkava 3 turret shell:

24441334152_d47a4fec69_b.jpg

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Merkava 3 turret shell:

23922839483_658a0dd0a1_b.jpg

Merkava 3 turret shell:

23921454194_6b74e0f0b4_b.jpg

Merkava 3 turret shell:

24254101450_20d4ea1903_b.jpg

Merkava 3 turret module:

24254100850_904dba6a73_b.jpg

Merkava 3 Dor-Dalet armor detail:

24441330992_4771c5ee20_z.jpg

Merkava 3 IMI M251 gun detail:

8498487854_129a679e12_b.jpg

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Hello everyone ! Has anyone of you guys ever made a KE and CE or LOS protection diagram for any Merkava tanks for possibly adding a Merkava to SB Pro PE as a partially playable unit ? Any feedback would be appreciated.

Oh I hope so!!

I think in the deep dark past I saw some estimates, somewhere. But I'm sure they were inaccurate. May have been in Army Recognition.

Jumps up and down in excitement :clap::clap::clap:

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Merkava 3 or 4 driver station:

72add7ac0f22_zpswyh6afdl.jpg

Merkava 1 rear hull with hatch:

228924_900_zpsxuewm0t3.jpg

Merkava 1 and T-72 size comparison:

1371830349_6-vysota-bashni_zpsc4g1rarj.jpg

Merkava (3?) rear hull stowage with ammunition bins:

TANK--Merkava1_zpslzn0hiou.jpg

View from Merkava 3 driver seat back towards the fighting compartment:

TANK--Merkava4_zpstiiqaf0c.jpg

Merkava 1 right rear ammunition bin with opened rear hatch:

4e67e9e10b07_zps4gfjrikm.jpg

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Merkava 1 cast turret machine drilling:

3b2d17b25130_zpsdqrtmykj.jpg

Merkava 4 hull during assembly:

Merk4_hull9_zpskhgiam6i.jpg

Merkava 1 location of spaced armor/storage inside the turret:

1417805100-merkava-mk-1-turret-spaced-armor_zps9baegacg.png

Merkava 1 turret storage/spaced armor:1401099968-merkava-mk-ii-turret-side-spaced-armor_zpsogfpsifh.png

Merkava 4 during construction:

22803040a53a_zpsqwxrsv8e.jpg

Merkava IV and Namer during construction:

KMmphrH_zpsqy78op75.jpg

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Merkava 1 fighting compartment viewed from the rear:

2b3e05f1ca9b_zpsyjv8rbqm.jpg

Merkava 3 gun assembly with mantlet:

img067del-web_zpsmpwh6rt5.jpg

Namer front hull detail:

Ic8K0go_zps6ylfkp66.jpg

Merkava 3 120 mm M251 gun assembly:

img066del-web_zps6tcfrvzc.jpg

Merkava 1:

112112476_original__25__zpsjq6dzgpp.jpg

Merkava 1 view towards the driver compartment:

13122871674_a750744fe8.jpg

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Merkava (3?) rear compartment:

MerkavaInteriorWithCanistersAtDoor1.jpg

ATGM Damaged Merkava 4 from 2006 Lebanon war:

523d16cce37c.jpg

Destroyed Merkava 2 from 2006 Lebanon war:

26.jpg

right rear ammunition bin most likely detonated allegedly through an RPG hit through the rear hatch.

Merkava 1 crew compartment floor:

9618713307_9b751b7955_b.jpg

Merkava 1 - View upwards into the crew compartment:

9618710011_1056617761_b.jpg

Merkava 4 turret damage from 2006 Lebanon war:

30857515149962.jpg

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I think the lack of armour in the hull area is due to the experience from the 1973 Yom Kippur war.

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From one of my post 1 year ago:

1) The Merkava 1-4 large lower glacis offers poor KE (less than 300 mm RHAe) and mediocre CE protection (about 500-700 mm RHAe), very similar to the basic Challenger 1 and 2. The upper glacis seems to offer decent protection against KE and CE rounds (500+ mm RHAe).

2) The Merkava 4 seems to offer superior protection against CE projectiles along the hull sides, compared to the Leopard 2a4-2a6, M1A1 HA, M1A2 SEP, Leclerc s2/s3.

3) Mobility kills would be a regular occurance in all Merkava type tanks, when dealing with with any 500+ mm RHAe CE/KE projectiles.

4) The best way to use a Merkava type tank is a in a prepared defensive position where the vehicle can at least go hull down. A strategy that should also be used by Challenger 1 and 2 tanks.

5) The Merkava 1 and 2 is inferior to both the Leopard 2a4 (1987) and M1A1 HA (1988) in protection (particularly the hull), firepower and mobility.

6) A potentially large heat signature at the front of the vehicle could make a Merkava a prominent target through an enemy FLIR.

Am i correct with these assumptions?

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I think the lack of armour in the hull area is due to the experience from the 1973 Yom Kippur war.

I know that the tank turrets seemed to have received the most HEAT projectile hits but why would they neglect to armor the lower front hull? It only seems to contain a fuel tank more or less. It seems that any KE round beyond the capabilities of a BM-9 or a basic RPG 7 CE round would lead to a mobility kill of the tank.

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lower front hull is protected by the engine and gearbox.

the tank was already hitting 60 tons, so the designers needed to get creative.

Edited by dejawolf

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Awards

I know that the tank turrets seemed to have received the most HEAT projectile hits but why would they neglect to armor the lower front hull? It only seems to contain a fuel tank more or less. It seems that any KE round beyond the capabilities of a BM-9 or a basic RPG 7 CE round would lead to a mobility kill of the tank.

The Idea is the engine absorbs the spalling, and not the crew.

A tank is easier to replace than a soldier.

The design ethos of the Merkava is to provide the best chance of survival to the crew.

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Thank you all very much!

Merkava 2 Cutaway:

24489628522_947df99f7d_z.jpg

Even the bulges on either turret side seem to be spaced.

Merkava 1 Turret model with modelled compartments:

24230187789_daa00c5c8f_z.jpg

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About the Merkava I:

Major General Tal and his team, through the exhaustive ballistic examinations of the 1973 war, were able to produce a working idea of what the Israeli tank had to be like. The primary concept was to make every part of the tank play its part in the crew protection. This conceptual idea became known as "spaced-armour".

Every physical aspect of the tank , from fuel , ammunition and tools, performed a distinctive defensive function. The Israelis would rather their tanks suffer a mobility kill than lose a vital trained crew.

The tank's design incorporated a low slope configuration into the hull and the the turret design to decrease angular impact of incoming antitank shells and missiles.

The tank's armour protection is layered all around the tank, with the tank's system spread all around the crew and ammunition to provide extra protection. Three more factors contributed to the tanks resilience: the lack of flammable materials n the crew compartment and the storage of the main gun ammunition below the turret ring.

The Mk I's 62 main gun rounds were carried in three distinct manners: 6 rounds were stored directly below the turret ring in a ready-to-fire mode, 12 rounds were stored in the base of the rear hull in two round containers; and the remaining 44 rounds were kept in special paletised four round containers at the very rear of the tank.

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