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TOW on Bradleys


KillKess
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Unless fighting Syrians. In Syria M2/M3s can drive around all day without damaging an erect launcher. Reloading the launcher, however, is in Syria a -30 level maintenance task and vehicles must be sent to a direct support maintenance battalion for reloads.

Well if you are talking about what I think you are talking about, I've been lobbying to get that fixed for a while too (and the fact that M2/M3's in Syria can fire beyond the +/- 10 degree limit). :)

That's if we are both talking about the same thing. :)

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Yes, we are both speaking dialects of the Queen's English.

I saw your post and was heartened by your wish list.

I recall, however, being reassured on the board by one of the testers that issues with the launcher were known and were to be corrected. My recollection is that that reassurance was in response to a comment on a promo video prior to the release of version 1.0. This gives me pause as the same issue also pertains to the vehicles with the old ITV hammerhead, one of which was released in the Marines module. Plenty of new eyecandy there, but I've wondered whether there were any improvements under the hood (with regard to the armor modelling --- the rendering and infantry modelling improvements have been obvious). With the Chally 2 and the Brit module, I've wondered, given the opacity of the LOS-target acquisition-FOW modelling, whether the Chally 2 is just an M1A2 with a visual makeover. Certainly, there isn't enough space on any of the maps for the differences between the rifled and smoothbore barrels to be apparent. I reckon that there's a fair likelihood that the pretty pictures of the new NATO kit might also be little more than reskins.

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Well CR2 does have smoke as a nature so its not a complete M1 duplicate. :)

However I'm not privy to what's "under the hood" just the external workings (the difference between being a developer / coder and a beta tester).

Yes I should add the TOW Stryker to the "reload animations list" too.

Unfortunately I think "useful" map sizes wont happen until the number of polygons soaked up in the terrain / building detail can be addressed somehow (or we all get more powerful machines). 2 km x 2 km maps might be fine for MOUT but not manoeuvre (or at least how my, and your, people "manoeuvre").

Hopefully that's enough without incurring someone's wrath for discussing a different product here. :)

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So its quit realistic the way the m2 is simulated in SB....?

Whats the technical limitation of the launcher? I mean why it has to be in store position on the move? Its a big tactical drawback if youre on the offensive and you have to wait for the launcher to get into firing-position.

So whats going on there?

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So its quit realistic the way the m2 is simulated in SB....?

Yes

Whats the technical limitation of the launcher? I mean why it has to be in store position on the move? Its a big tactical drawback if youre on the offensive and you have to wait for the launcher to get into firing-position.

So whats going on there?

Well its a delicate piece of kit (with all sorts of linkages, etc.) plus if you drove around "deployed" all the time I'm sure you'd damage it on trees, etc. There would also be a weight distribution issue to consider.

The other thing to consider is that its not a quick response weapon. Unlike APFSDS, you can't just fire and in a second "from the hip" and hit a surprise target. TOW is designed pretty much to be used from a prepared (and definitely static) location where you can track a target.

The idea is to use its better range to stand off, acquire and engage targets.

Its a compromise that gives Bradley a "tank killer" capability without trying to mount a tank gun in the turret. The vehicle is meant to carry infantry and they have given up too many seats in the back already to accommodate the turret, TOW stowage, etc.

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Whats the technical limitation of the launcher? I mean why it has to be in store position on the move? Its a big tactical drawback if youre on the offensive and you have to wait for the launcher to get into firing-position.

You want the missile tubes to have some protection from shrapnel and small arms. Accordingly the launcher is armored. Even though the silhouette of the Bradley is huge, a small silhouette is always preferable. Thus, if possible, you don't want the launcher sticking out making the apparent size of the vehicle bigger than it needs to be. So you stow the launcher when not in use. The mechanism that erects the launcher from stowed to firing position is not strong enough to support the weight of the launcher if it starts bouncing around due to cross country movement. And the launcher doesn't need to be erect during movement because you can't move while you're tracking (giving flight commands to) a TOW missile anyway.

Yes it is a big drawback to have to get into position to fire a TOW. But you have to. Think of the TOW as the modern day analog of a WWII era towed antitank gun. (Disregarding the sillyness about the American doctrine of mounting AT guns on thinly armored platforms and calling them 'tank destroyers') At higher tactical and operational levels, AT artillery units could be considered to have been used offensively to support the flanks of advancing units, to create kill sacks to trap manuevering opponents, et cetera. But at the lowest tactical level, AT guns were not offensive weapons. They needed to be unlimbered and sited. Much like the TOW.

That Steel Beasts actually accurately models the plusses and minusses of weapons systems is why it is the game that it is.

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The mechanism that erects the launcher from stowed to firing position is not strong enough to support the weight of the launcher if it starts bouncing around due to cross country movement.

This has caused situations where the TOW gets jammed in the upright position disabling it entirely.

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(Disregarding the sillyness about the American doctrine of mounting AT guns on thinly armored platforms and calling them 'tank destroyers')

What silliness? It worked, didn't it? Their kill ratios were somewhere like five-to-one in favour.

NTM

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What silliness?

NTM

God bless the contrarian Irish. :-) I suppose asking that something be disregarded is a sure way to have it brought right back up.

Maybe I could have chosen a better term than silly. But the tank destroyer concept itself was certainly disregarded. Tankers now have their very own branch rather than existing in a subset of the infantry or artillery.

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American planners didn't explicitly intend to use Sherman tanks in the anti-tank role, they were conceived of as open country cavalry tanks designed to exploit rear areas- which they could do well; the tank destroyer concept was supposed to fill that niche, by use of speed which was to make up the deficit of heavy armor.

I think what GO might be indicating is a questionable compromise- a tank destroyer which unlike German or Soviet designs in more than a superficial way behaves like a tank- rather than a gun mounted in a mobile chasis, you have a turreted vehicle, albeit with an open top, so crews were vulnerable to overhead bursts, hand grenades, rifle or MG fire, and even the weather. In closed terrain or in an urban environment such as those in Normandy, crews could face problems from hidden AT guns, mortars, StuGs and armored troops supporting the tanks and strongpoints positioned off axis to plaster them as they attempt to maneuver. The 75 mm anti-tank guns or the panzergrenadiers covering the flanks of a Tiger were often more deadly than the Tiger tanks themselves. In effect, the American tank destroyers might incidentally find themselves fulfilling the roles of tanks as a consequence of circumstances- which they weren't ideally suited.

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well, it is silly if you use tank destroyers like tanks.

they're better suited for defensive operations in defilades.

Yes- to be fair however, they didn't have the advantage of premonition, the roles of tanks were still being worked out from experience up to that point; after all, all roles fulfilled by the concept of a main battle tank really had not yet been invented or at least put into use, they were working off the consensus of specialization- heavy tanks, medium tanks, cruiser tanks, breakthrough tanks, infantry tanks, and so on.

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I hate to say this, but I think a dedicated "tank destroyer" would do quite well on the modern battlefield in a defensive role. With advancements in remote technology, and computers, a setup like the Stryker AGS with a smaller chassis, say a old M551 hull, with a 120mm Automated gun turret and a limited 12-24 round hopper would present a EXTREMELY small target when hull down, and a very dangerous threat to any armoured vehicle. And would actually be considerably cheaper to produce and lighter so can be more mobile. Alot of advantages to a cheap "tank destroyer". Unfortantly using something like the Bradley as a tank destroyer is asking too much of a already over worked chassis. That quite frankly is mediocre at best. Not to say the M2/M3 isnt good at that role... but it hasnt faced a true test. God forbid you place Bradleys against a dedicated tank force of T80s and support from a Motor Rifle company with BMP2s (or BMP3s).

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I hate to say this, but I think a dedicated "tank destroyer" would do quite well on the modern battlefield in a defensive role. With advancements in remote technology, and computers, a setup like the Stryker AGS with a smaller chassis, say a old M551 hull, with a 120mm Automated gun turret and a limited 12-24 round hopper would present a EXTREMELY small target when hull down, and a very dangerous threat to any armoured vehicle. And would actually be considerably cheaper to produce and lighter so can be more mobile. Alot of advantages to a cheap "tank destroyer". Unfortantly using something like the Bradley as a tank destroyer is asking too much of a already over worked chassis. That quite frankly is mediocre at best. Not to say the M2/M3 isnt good at that role... but it hasnt faced a true test. God forbid you place Bradleys against a dedicated tank force of T80s and support from a Motor Rifle company with BMP2s (or BMP3s).

the german jaguar 1 is probably the best western tank destroyer available. its protected from medium calibre rounds, the missile sets up extremely quickly (5 seconds), and the hull-down profile is virtually non-existent.

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I hate to say this, but I think a dedicated "tank destroyer" would do quite well on the modern battlefield in a defensive role. ...

While that works well if you can ensure the enemy does what you want (i.e. I'll set up a defensive position here, with an Engagement Area here and I'll use Tank Destroyers as they are my best defensive platform), unfortunately he tends not to. :)

The advantage on an MBT is that it tends to be a "generalist" and has the flexibility to respond to a fluid situation. If the plan changes from defensive to offensive or if there is a breakthrough on an unexpected flank, then MBT's can respond.

The problem with using specialist vehicles is that they can't adapt to a changing situation and tend to be employed out of role as often they are all there is. You don't often have the luxury of saying well that unit are Tank Destroyers so I can't commit them and I'll use this spare Tank formation that I had just sitting around doing nothing. :)

As during the Second World War, non turreted Jadgpanzers and SU / ISU vehicles were great for defence when you knew the enemy was most likely to advance into your frontal arc but on the attack, having to turn the entire vehicle to engage target that appeared on the flanks did tend to put them at a disadvantage compared to turreted AFV's. The US experience is documented above and I think the UK experience with Archer, etc. where the gun was fixed pointing over the rear deck (i.e. optimised for driving away after the engagement) is even clearer. :)

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I hate to say this, but I think a dedicated "tank destroyer" would do quite well on the modern battlefield in a defensive role. ...

While that works well if you can ensure the enemy does what you want (i.e. I'll set up a defensive position here, with an Engagement Area here and I'll use Tank Destroyers as they are my best defensive platform), unfortunately he tends not to. :)

The advantage on an MBT is that it tends to be a "generalist" and has the flexibility to respond to a fluid situation. If the plan changes from defensive to offensive or if there is a breakthrough on an unexpected flank, then MBT's can respond.

The problem with using specialist vehicles is that they can't adapt to a changing situation and tend to be employed out of role as often they are all there is. You don't often have the luxury of saying well that unit are Tank Destroyers so I can't commit them and I'll use this spare Tank formation that I had just sitting around doing nothing. :)

As during the Second World War, non turreted Jadgpanzers and SU / ISU vehicles were great for defence when you knew the enemy was most likely to advance into your frontal arc but on the attack, having to turn the entire vehicle to engage target that appeared on the flanks did tend to put them at a disadvantage compared to turreted AFV's. The US experience is documented above and I think the UK experience with Archer, etc. where the gun was fixed pointing over the rear deck (i.e. optimised for driving away after the engagement) is even clearer. :)

the german jaguar 1 is probably the best western tank destroyer available. its protected from medium calibre rounds, the missile sets up extremely quickly (5 seconds), and the hull-down profile is virtually non-existent.

Sure but again optimised for the defensive battle (defending the thin sliver of West Germany from the Soviet / Warsaw Pact hordes) and arguably lacking the flexibility to be used in an offensive role. :)

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... arguably lacking the flexibility to be used in an offensive role. :)

There's still "support by fire" as a possible mission. Given that they have a longer range (based on what was expected to be the 120mm performance; 3750m vs 1500m) they would be employed about 1500 to 2000m behind the forward edge of the battle area.

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There's still "support by fire" as a possible mission. Given that they have a longer range (based on what was expected to be the 120mm performance; 3750m vs 1500m) they would be employed about 1500 to 2000m behind the forward edge of the battle area.

Agreed, but again it could be argued that that's a defensive role within a larger offensive operation.

Just like "support by fire" and "attack by fire" are similar but different. :)

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