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When did the 4-tank platoons vs ACR force organization in the U.S.Army

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2 Questions.  When did the U.S. Army change the force structure to the 4-tank platoon? Rationale for this change?

 

ACR during the 1980s force structure leans toward groups of 9. Rationale for this difference? 

Edited by cobrabase

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Not sure you can compare the ACR Troop / Platoon structure to a Tk Coy / Pl structure.

 

They are built differently to reflect their different roles and employments.

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From '78 up to '83 cavalry platoons had nine vehicles, five M113s (two TOW or ITVs) and four tanks*.  Tank platoons had five tanks.  When exactly it switched to to the "modern" configuration probably coincided with the  introduction of the Bradleys and Abrams en mass to Europe, I don't know for sure.

 

The reasoning I was told for the change was twofold.  First, that five or nine vehicles were just too many for a novice officer to handle (I now believe this to be a result of a discussion between the Army and a couple of WWII former German officers, about their experiences on the eastern front, that happened sometime in the late '70s or early '80s).  Second, that the IDF only had four-tank platoons and that they were considered the best (read most experienced) fighting force that their ways should be emulated.

 

 

* This occurred after it was decided to quit using the M551 Sheridan in anything except airborne units.  These previous cavalry units had 10 vehicle platoons:  1 HQ pc, 1 scout section of 4 pcs, 1 rifle squad in 1 pc, 3 M551s, and 1 mortar squad in 1 pc.

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Some still did up til mid 90's   When I got to 2nd ACR in 87 they had 4-tank platoons. each troop consisted of 2 tank platoons of four tanks each, and 2 scout platoons with 6 vehicles each, 4 m113's and 2 itv's. them 6 Bradleys./

in 92, when I went to 3/4 cav, they still had the 3 platoon troops, with 3 tanks and 5 bradleys.  wasn't til somewhere in 94 or late 93 when they switched to the 4 platoon concept.

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14 hours ago, RENEGADE-623 said:

Some still did up til mid 90's   When I got to 2nd ACR in 87 they had 4-tank platoons. each troop consisted of 2 tank platoons of four tanks each, and 2 scout platoons with 6 vehicles each, 4 m113's and 2 itv's. them 6 Bradleys./

in 92, when I went to 3/4 cav, they still had the 3 platoon troops, with 3 tanks and 5 bradleys.  wasn't til somewhere in 94 or late 93 when they switched to the 4 platoon concept.

 

Also, I think that divisional armored cavalry squadrons were organized differently than squadrons in an armored cavalry regiment.  The initial concept for Division 86 divisional cav squadrons was that they would consist entirely of M3s.  Not sure if this was ever implemented.

 

Cobrabase, there are plenty of articles in Military Review and Armor Magazine in the 80's and 90's discussing armored cavalry structure and doctrine. This was an ongoing controversy .  All of these are available online (except for Armor Magazine between '75 and '82).

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On 10/17/2016 at 1:02 AM, TSe419E said:

Second, that the IDF only had four-tank platoons and that they were considered the best (read most experienced) fighting force that their ways should be emulated.

IDF tank platoons were decreased from 5 to 4 tanks in the mid 60's and then again from 4 to 3 tanks right after the 1967 war. So it's 3 tanks for almost 50 years by now.

Edited by Iarmor

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