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LtGeorge

T-72 - what's the verdict?

209 posts in this topic

No, there is (still) no official Data (same to Chobham), but if you compare

http://collinsj.tripod.com/protect.htm#16

you will see: all speculations!

German Army, KMW and Rheinmetall never list what they do to the armor of Leop 2.

My Argument is, when it´s possible to upgrate the given Armor of Leop 2A0 - 4, why they upgrate to a Leop 2A5 ?

I once see Trials shooting 125 mm at front Armor Leop 2 in Meppen 1986 and I see no Needs to upgrate the Front armor of Leop 2.

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Which ones were upgraded to a5´s? I thought a4´s underwent the upgrade.

I dont realy understand that logic: Following your agument there is no need for any a5´s or a6 out there. The space in the "cavities" inside the turret armor it limited. You can put better inserts in there but there is a constructional limit. You basicly always stay at the same maximum LOS-thickness.

leo2a413.gif

Not the best picture but enough to illustrate.

With the addon-armor of a5 and up you can further improve the protection without changing the basic turret design.

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So, now we are Miles away from your basic question.

Which ones were upgraded to a5´s? I thought a4´s underwent the upgrade.

Nope, it was a Mix of 8th Batch Hulls and 1st - 3rd Batch Turrets.

I dont realy understand that logic: Following your agument there is no need for any a5´s or a6 out there. The space in the "cavities" inside the turret armor it limited. You can put better inserts in there but there is a constructional limit. You basicly always stay at the same maximum LOS-thickness.

We´re talking about Mid 80´s Leop 2, didn´t we ? We are talking about Chobham Armor, didn´t we ?

So talking of penetration in a "LOS- thickness" is nonsens. Chobham works other ways!

The Need for a "Mannheimer Konfiguration" was given by the use of New KE Projectiles. But this was at Mid 90´s, so Year´s after what you are questioning for.

leo2a413.gif

Not the best picture but enough to illustrate.

With the addon-armor of a5 and up you can further improve the protection without changing the basic turret design.

Only way to improve a existing Turret is to change used Materials or to saddle it up, as A5..

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Some T-72 observations after playing the Slovenian Defense scenario a few times:

- I didn't have much problems hitting targets, but that's not surprising as the scenario provides close engagement ranges. Several times I felt that HEAT rounds went over even though they shouldn't - it was close range (500m?) and my lase was OK I think.

- BMPs (even BMP1s) are dangerous - even the "puny" cannon of BMP1 can do some nasty damage (if I'm not confused and it was AT-4 or something)

- speaking of damage - no GAS is VERY annoying. I tried shooting with unity sight, it's madness (tried maybe 4 times on a tank max 500m out).

- infantry is scary - very hard to spot, very dangerous at close range. I generally avoid them (which is OK in this scenario)

- you have to remember to dump the lase when shooting coax, otherwise you'll get WTF moments. Also, the coax and 12.7 burn through their belts very fast.

- when using HEAT on BMPs, I had quite a lot of moments when the hit didn't destroy them, just damage. And it's a lot worse with sabot of course - generally I felt that BMP were harder to destroy than T-55s, probably because I either made neat little holes in them with sabot or my HEAT was making fun of me ;)

- I guess I got used to pressing V quite quickly - and it has the benefit that I can override the TCs order for specific ammo. I noticed that TC was calling sabot on BMPs quite often - maybe because there were trees nearby?

- reloading the autoloader is very slow - I usually reloaded only a few round and went back to action.

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The pathetic reverse speed made me flip... I need to get out quickly when I **** up. Not my cup of tea but a cool addition to the list of tanks anyway! I'm sure a lot of people will have a good time in it (like I said about my ex).

That is why one should pay special attention in finding firing positions. First of all the firing position needs to be such that only a short reversing puts the tank in cover. In addition, if not attacking, the escape routes from positions must be such that reversing is not needed.

I think there are exactly two things that were a real problem with T-72M1: reverse gear and night capability. Nightvision is so bad that there was actually a discussion about using the tanks with white light instead of the IR-beam. White light would at least ruin the IIT's or render them useless for the opposition. Blinding xenon beams with starshells would have been quite possible way to fight.

Other than that I think the tank is great. Especially for Finnish army it was a very good choice. We have very few open areas so shooting distances are short. Most often anything from 20 to 500 meters. Maybe in some places kilometer-two or so. So the lead computing becomes less important. Also amoun of armor isn't that big of deal when lot of the shots are flanking shots and almost all are shot from within very short distances. Small size plays in favour of the T-72 as well as it needs a lot smaller depression to be hidden from view. Thus I would appreciate the small size over the armor because often the first to shoot kills.

Tank is very mobile and the track is very good. In my time we didn't de-track a single vehicle (Leo2 is not so good). Tank works well in snow and has a good auxiliary heater that allows it to be started and operated in extremely low temps. Tanks were also quite reliable. Of course they would break down from time to time, but mostly it was something the company could fix themselves.

Maintenance side wasn't that much fun (as I heard), as it was Soviet ergonomics all the way. Sometimes changing a single component would involve removing several other components from the tank. And it is not modular by any means: engine comes of in 30 minutes only with help of explosives.

But what can I say, I love it. I wouldn't have hesitated to go into a battle in one. As said, she has her small flaws, but isn't true love looking past the flaws and doing well with what you have. :)

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We´re talking about Mid 80´s Leop 2, didn´t we ? We are talking about Chobham Armor, didn´t we ?

So talking of penetration in a "LOS- thickness" is nonsens. Chobham works other ways!

The Need for a "Mannheimer Konfiguration" was given by the use of New KE Projectiles. But this was at Mid 90´s, so Year´s after what you are questioning for.

Wouldnt you agree that even Chobham armor works better the greater its thickness is?

Given a fixed size for the armor inlet you cant improve LOS, you simply can improve the materials used.

Only way to improve a existing Turret is to change used Materials or to saddle it up, as A5..

And that, as far as i´ve read, is what happened between versions a3 and a4. They changed the materials and the layering of the armor inlets.

But anyway, you say its a rumor so everyone else must be wrong. Thx for your conclusive proof.

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@Jippo

Thanks for an interesting perspective. Quite an eye opener seeing something like this from someone who has actually crewed one.

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@Jippo

Thanks for an interesting perspective. Quite an eye opener seeing something like this from someone who has actually crewed one.

My pleasure. I have some old pictures too, but I don't know if I should post them here? If it is ok and people want to see them it'd be no problem for me.

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Wouldnt you agree that even Chobham armor works better the greater its thickness is?

Given a fixed size for the armor inlet you cant improve LOS, you simply can improve the materials used.

What ?

And that, as far as i´ve read, is what happened between versions a3 and a4. They changed the materials and the layering of the armor inlets.

But anyway, you say its a rumor so everyone else must be wrong. Thx for your conclusive proof.

OK. I`ll stop to feed the Troll. Do you have any Documents for this, no ! Read your "Books" and try to understand.

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What ?

OK. I`ll stop to feed the Troll. Do you have any Documents for this, no ! Read your "Books" and try to understand.

So far it´s you who should try to proof something. It was actually you who provided a source for my statement about the upgraded armor. Besides "You dont know, i know better" you havent shown much of a proof for your thesis.

These are no proofs, but at least something that indicates some more people think there was some kind of change:

The Leopard 2A4 has improved armour over the very first versions, and fire supression and other passive protection systems, which have since become standard.

steelbeasts.com

Das Baulos 6 mit 150 Fahrzeugen ging zwischen Januar 1988 und Mai 1989 in Produktion. Der Panzerschutz wurde an Turm und Fahrgestellfront nochmals verbessert und die Fahrzeuge erhielten neue schwere Kettenschürzen. Darüber hinaus kamen jetzt wartungsfreie Batterien zum Einbau.

panzerbaer

Baulos 6 verfügte ab dem 97. Fahrzeug über einen verbesserten Panzerschutz der Turm- und Wannenfront, eine neue schwere Kettenschürze, neue Diehlkette, wartungsarme Batterien und instandsetzungsfreundliche Leitradabdeckungen.

http://www.scale87.de

alongside the upgraded turret with the added bonus of flat titanium/tungsten armour.

http://www.armedforces-int.com

The Leopard 2A4 became the most numerous of the Leopard 2 series. For the most part, it is identical to the Leopard 2A3, but it also featured upgrades to the automatic fire detection and suppression system and a new digital fire control module able to compute fire with newer projectile types. However, the most substantial change was the replacement of part of the turret armor with a titanium/tungsten/steel sandwich

http://www.pmulcahy.com/tanks/german_tanks.html

1987 6. Baulos (150); die Hälfte davon mit verbesserter Panzerung

http://www.whq-forum.de/cms/27.0.html

Also Paul Lakowski would agree in his "Armor Basics" Snippet.

That was about 2 mins of googling, i stop here due to lack of time.

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alongside the upgraded turret with the added bonus of flat titanium/tungsten armour.

http://www.armedforces-int.com

LOL, believe what you want to, LOL .

After 8 Years of Service with this Machine it´s to boring to talk to People like you, try to find their knowledge from Books or the Internet.

I hope you never read "jump from the Bridge"!

Last post to This Topic.

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Well if you want to know how it went in its first TGIF "hit out", I've posted a URL to the AAR from our TGIF engagement last week.

A mixed M1A1 (105mm variant) / M2 Coy (9 x M1A1, 4 x M2) imposing delay on a larger Soviet force (Bn +) set in 1988.

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/19518131/Head%20to%20Red-Deli_121711MARKGIBSON-P1504.rar.zip

Red was manned by experienced players who knew the ground and the vehicle.

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That is why one should pay special attention in finding firing positions. First of all the firing position needs to be such that only a short reversing puts the tank in cover. In addition, if not attacking, the escape routes from positions must be such that reversing is not needed.

I think there are exactly two things that were a real problem with T-72M1: reverse gear and night capability. Nightvision is so bad that there was actually a discussion about using the tanks with white light instead of the IR-beam. White light would at least ruin the IIT's or render them useless for the opposition. Blinding xenon beams with starshells would have been quite possible way to fight.

Other than that I think the tank is great. Especially for Finnish army it was a very good choice. We have very few open areas so shooting distances are short. Most often anything from 20 to 500 meters. Maybe in some places kilometer-two or so. So the lead computing becomes less important. Also amoun of armor isn't that big of deal when lot of the shots are flanking shots and almost all are shot from within very short distances. Small size plays in favour of the T-72 as well as it needs a lot smaller depression to be hidden from view. Thus I would appreciate the small size over the armor because often the first to shoot kills.

Tank is very mobile and the track is very good. In my time we didn't de-track a single vehicle (Leo2 is not so good). Tank works well in snow and has a good auxiliary heater that allows it to be started and operated in extremely low temps. Tanks were also quite reliable. Of course they would break down from time to time, but mostly it was something the company could fix themselves.

Maintenance side wasn't that much fun (as I heard), as it was Soviet ergonomics all the way. Sometimes changing a single component would involve removing several other components from the tank. And it is not modular by any means: engine comes of in 30 minutes only with help of explosives.

But what can I say, I love it. I wouldn't have hesitated to go into a battle in one. As said, she has her small flaws, but isn't true love looking past the flaws and doing well with what you have. :)

Actually not having an auxillery sight largely decreases your chances of survival.

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LOL, believe what you want to, LOL .

After 8 Years of Service with this Machine it´s to boring to talk to People like you, try to find their knowledge from Books or the Internet.

I hope you never read "jump from the Bridge"!

Last post to This Topic.

Tell me, how often have you seen the armor inserts during the 8 years?

And honestly: You realy lack in discussion-culture.

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Actually not having an auxillery sight largely decreases your chances of survival.

No, not really, at least I do not think so. If the tank gets hit it is likely you're dead anyway, so it doesn't matter. If the tank survives it is close to cover (if you really haven't fucked up), so into cover and out of the battle. Another try, another day.

Also, if it is a knife fight like the fights are up here it is quite possible to use the gunners front looking prism and the PKT tracers as spotters. This prism is a really nice feature by the way, especially in the woods. (This is a feature I believe a Leo 2 lacks.)

(Remember I just write my opinions from my own limited prespective and surroundings.)

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Tell me, how often have you seen the armor inserts during the 8 years?

And honestly: You realy lack in discussion-culture.

there's no conclusive evidence that supports there's a difference between the leopard 2A1-A4. a guy called spielberger says that "all the leopard 2s include spaced armour".

thats the reference we have for the leopard 2A1 to A3 armour.

however this could mean several things.

in 1995-1997, janes and osprey reports that the leopard 2 has multilayered composites in the turret, and multilayer spaced armour in the hull.

Edited by dejawolf

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Also, if it is a knife fight like the fights are up here it is quite possible to use the gunners front looking prism and the PKT tracers as spotters. This prism is a really nice feature by the way, especially in the woods. (This is a feature I believe a Leo 2 lacks.)

That's a great tip - didn't think of that when I needed it, of course :)

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there's no conclusive evidence that supports there's a difference between the leopard 2A1-A3. a guy called spielberger says that "all the leopard 2s include spaced armour".

thats the reference we have for the leopard 2A1 to A3 armour.

however this could mean several things.

in 1995-1997, janes and osprey reports that the leopard 2 has multilayered composites in the turret, and multilayer spaced armour in the hull.

Thx deja, i apreciate your comment. But actually our little dispute was about the possible difference between the A1-A3 variants and the A4. I never said a word about differences between A1s to A3s. You might have anything to add?

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As far as I see it, the idea of an armor insert retrofit isn't without plausibility. But plausibility is not proof. The data are classified, therefore we can't verify such a speculation.

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Generally these arguments develop from a difference in experience versus speculation. I still have people argue with me that the armor package is different between the HA and HC variants of the M1A1. I but know, from experience, that the real differences are mostly cosmetic.

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I got to drive one of these for the first time tonight and really enjoyed it. I was afraid that the "low tech" fire control was going to be a problem, but I was almost better with it than I was with the Abrams or Chally. :shocked:

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Generally these arguments develop from a difference in experience versus speculation. I still have people argue with me that the armor package is different between the HA and HC variants of the M1A1. I but know, from experience, that the real differences are mostly cosmetic.

And in the wonderful need to standardize an acronym. ;)

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