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Leclerc Armour Discussion

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Looking at the gunshield again, can we be sure that the French can not match the Germans ability to armor their gunshield? The Leopard 2a4 has a fairly large mantlet (80 cm x 50 cm) as well but according to the LOS diagrams it seems to offer better protection. Why is that ?

Leopard2A4_LOS.jpg

o1bVJJj.jpg

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Looking at the gunshield again, can we be sure that the French can not match the Germans ability to armor their gunshield? The Leopard 2a4 has a fairly large mantlet (80 cm x 50 cm) as well but according to the LOS diagrams it seems to offer better protection. Why is that ?

Leopard2A4_LOS.jpg

o1bVJJj.jpg

the short and dirty is: it's not as thick. leclerc mantlet, including air gaps, is about 57cm thick.

leopard 2A4 mantlet, including air gaps is close to 78-80cm.

could be the french wanted the leclerc gun to be as lightweight and agile as possible, less mass for the elevation motor to move. one problem with the leopard gun you might've noticed in SB, is it's rarely in coincidence when moving over rough terrain. it can steal valuable milliseconds waiting for the gun to align with the sight for firing.

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Leclerc gun mantlet include in fact composite armor. I discovered it only recently. The only not covered part is the M2 barrel hole.

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Leclerc gun mantlet include in fact composite armor. I discovered it only recently. The only not covered part is the M2 barrel hole.

Thats good news. It seems to me that it would have been counter productive to have a ballistic window that size right in front.

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Froggy did you ever tell during or after your time with the Leclerc that you need to ideally look for a hull down position to hide the vulnerable lower glacis in particular?

Fighting from hull down is basic drill for all tanks, except may be T- tanks, as their gun depress is very low.

I wonder about one thing about Leclerc.

The turret bustle autoloader can be reloaded from the inside right? My question is, the turret needs to be traversed to specific position, this position is only 12 o'clock? Or there are also other possible loading positions for turret?

The under armor reloading position is 10 o'clock if only the gunner is doing it, and 7 o'clock is the commander help him, giving him ammo from behind the breech.

7 o'clock position is also used if you make an external reload from drum (but require the 3 members of the tank) or you replenish the drum.

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I had a big laugh when I read it

From May, 7 till June, 26, 2002 in Ukraine, on range near the Nikolaev area 2 French mechanized brigades exercised. Exercise took place in two stages: from May, 7 till May, 26 and from May, 27 till June, 26.

The First ferries with wheel engineering arrived: automobiles and wheel armoured troop-carrier (VAB). Immediately noticed - dimensions on armoured troop-carrier: very high. On all vehicles engines "Renault", on V.A.B - automatic 4 step transmission with the hydro transformer. And here it appeared that on small revolutions the armoured troop-carrier gets under way very badly, jerks, as if the driver is a trainee. And all armoured troop-carrier without exception suffer from this. Further: all wheel vehicles without system of regulation of pressure in tires that, naturally, not improves neither off-road capacity of machines or their survivability in fighting conditions.

Tanks, self-propelled artillery, IFV and other tracked vehicles arrived on May, 10 arrived, also recovery and engineering machines. Being the attendant on park, I could not get in the French field camp, but since May, 12 all fighting French vehicles with various, even the most insignificant malfunctions began to arrive to our park (also rented by the French) on repair and maintenance service.

Very much has liked CLD (?) on base TRM10000. it is the small crane, the equipment for evacuation of wheel and light tracked vehicles. Welding units, compressors etc. are transported on small single-axle trailers by light lorries Reno-TrM-2000, analogue our Gas - 66 practically all operations on maintenance service mechanized. Besides drivers, as well as other crew do not take part in repairs. I wish our army had their maintenance service...

Then tanks began to arrive to park, artillery, IFV. Again noticed the dimensions: you will not miss. But the French say, that "leopard - 2A5" is even higher, wider and longer, and "Abrams" is like a house.

Only aesthetically, on design, "Leclerc" makes very pleasant impression. It is possible even to tell, that it is beautiful. But dimensions :nearby T-64BV in this comparison is much better, and weight of 55 tons is too much. The gun, even externally, looks weaker then ours, ejector is absent.

From personal contact with the French tank men and mechanics as it was possible to find out a lot of interesting things. For example, tactics of "Leclerc" reminds tactics helicopters gunships: to jump out from of shelter, to carry out a fire mission, and quickly hide. For that - the engine with 1500 horsepower, and hydro mechanical 5 step transmission: But at a close acquaintance with "Leclerc" appeared, that though the engine is powerful, but tank turns in place with difficulty; it is impossible to stop one of tracks during turn , though it's possible to counter rotate them as on MTLB. Now about tracks. Those are cast from an aluminium alloy, accordingly durability of a tracks leaves much to be desired. A weak place are disk brakes of tanks: carbon overlays burn very fast. And to replace them, is necessary to dismantle the engine together with transmission though dismantle takes about one and a half hours.

Rubber bandages on rollers are (also aluminium) are very thin and frequently fail . And a suspension of tanks (as "Leclerc", and AMX-30/32) is very soft: under weight of the person who has jumped on board the tank, weighing 55 tons dips down. Because of it in turns leading roller wheel leaves the gears and starts grinding them down.

Now about the engine. Start of the engine - electric (only), but capacity ampere is small (125AA), therefore it is necessary to start a turbo generator (as on "Shilka" or "Tunguska"), and only then to start a diesel engine. At working diesel engine the turbine does not stop, and is the basic source of power supplies of the tank. Accordingly very noisy, and the effect on fuel is considerable. Fuel - only aviation kerosene. A stock of fuel - 350l and 2 barrels of 200 litres.

The armour though thick, but without rational corners, vertical. Smoothness of the turret is achieved by plastic boxes, removable. Onboard screens - steel, thickness of 10-12 mm. A thickening of screens in a forward part - one more layer of screens, atop of the basic. But any dynamic protection is not present. And the onboard armour in the engine area is very thing.

On this point our T-64 looks very healthy, and the French recognize it.

Dimensions and weight of a power-plant and transmission impress: almost in 3 times the weight – 6200kg is more than engine and KPP of T-64. The engine is located is longitudinal, at the left (on a course) from the engine - a turbo generator, above KPP - two centrifugal fans and radiators. The exhaust gases from the turbine and from the engine go upwards, and air from the fan - downwards. Even the French recognize, that it creates a considerable unmasking from the column of a smoke above the tank and clouds of a dust behind the machine.

Before installation of the engine on the tank, it with the help of repair cables and hoses connect to the tank, gets started, and check work of all systems of the engine in different modes on an onboard computer. If something not so, eliminate on a place, and only after that the engine and transmission are mounted on the tank.

Workplaces of crew of the tank very convenient. The commander has computer, which one display at the commander, and the second - at gunner. The information on them displayed identically and simultaneously. The gun is protected by sleeve made from fabric. There is a air-conditioner and a heater. The commander and gunner occupy and leave the places without problems, and the mechanics - driver only then when the tower is revolved strictly directly, but can get out and through a tower.

For evacuation of such a heavy tank on base of "Leclerc" the special tractor is created: the same tank, but without a gun and autoloader. In a tower instead of it the various equipment for repair is located. Crane on the tractor is absent. The embrasure of a gun is closed by Plexiglas. This tractor can as be used and for training driving the mechanics - driver.

For the driver are available a steering wheel inside which various buttons are located: headlights, dimensions, turns, a signal etc.; two pedals: "gas" and "brake"; the panel of devices, levers of mode of operation KPP and a reverser. The seat rises and falls together with these levers with the help of a hydraulic jack.

The common impression which was stated by our tank men, is those: the tank convenient, comfortable for crew, but weak and unreliable.

For information this what the motorpool looks like:

attachment.php?attachmentid=12901&stc=1&d=1395048989

56e83cffdf808_Chenillespetit.jpg.7649da3

56e83cffdf808_Chenillespetit.jpg.7649da3

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So basically the Leclerc is a sexy looking beast that shoots and scoots , that can accelerate quite quickly but does not turn on a dime well. A tank that does require considerable care and maintenance.

So the Ukrainians got the impression that the Leclerc tank is easy to operate, and comfortable for the crew but weakly protected and technically unreliable?

By the way, does the ballistic computer allow the user to calculate a solution up to 5000m ?

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Its always and everywhere like this: you'll find any reason why YOUR gear is better...after all you'll get nothing else and still your life depends on it.

Edited by Grenny

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Love the ukrainians, tankers manoeuver slowly to take care of their shitty pavement; end up with the conclusion that the powerpack isn't powerfull enough to make a neutral pivot...

They should claim that 56+ tons is damn too high for a tank, especially when you see the place they gave to the french. The tanks were litterally sinking into the ground after heavy rains...

@Grenny : Well, it remains the same. The specs are not the same in the different armies so better comply with the army's tactics. Reason Why comparaison between Merkava and other tanks are quite invalid.

@Lavic : No, but you can trickshot by changing the ammo temperature in the FCS.

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So how far out can the Leclerc engage targets using the ballistic computer, 4000m just like the Leopard 2A4/5 ?

With just the laser range finder input, 4000m.

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going to correct the Ukrainian officer:

Originally Posted by Ukrainian Officer after French training exercice in Cheroky lane, Ukraine

From May, 7 till June, 26, 2002 in Ukraine, on range near the Nikolaev area 2 French mechanized brigades exercised. Exercise took place in two stages: from May, 7 till May, 26 and from May, 27 till June, 26.

it was a TaskForce of the 2nd Armoured Brigade and not 2 mechanized brigade.

The First ferries with wheel engineering arrived: automobiles and wheel armoured troop-carrier (VAB). Immediately noticed - dimensions on armoured troop-carrier: very high. On all vehicles engines "Renault", on V.A.B - automatic 4 step transmission with the hydro transformer. And here it appeared that on small revolutions the armoured troop-carrier gets under way very badly, jerks, as if the driver is a trainee. And all armoured troop-carrier without exception suffer from this. Further: all wheel vehicles without system of regulation of pressure in tires that, naturally, not improves neither off-road capacity of machines or their survivability in fighting conditions.

The jerk appears if you don't put the gearbox on neutral when you are not moving. VAB T20-13 were equipped with tires pressure regulation, the other have been equipped after the deployment. Tires includes a run flat system.

Tanks, self-propelled artillery, IFV and other tracked vehicles arrived on May, 10 arrived, also recovery and engineering machines. Being the attendant on park, I could not get in the French field camp, but since May, 12 all fighting French vehicles with various, even the most insignificant malfunctions began to arrive to our park (also rented by the French) on repair and maintenance service.

One of the purpose of the exercise was to overload mechanics to seen what is really needed during a massive projection of armored force.

Most of the tanks were new, and they had to be controled every 50h for warranty purpose.

Very much has liked CLD (?) on base TRM10000. it is the small crane, the equipment for evacuation of wheel and light tracked vehicles. Welding units, compressors etc. are transported on small single-axle trailers by light lorries Reno-TrM-2000, analogue our Gas - 66 practically all operations on maintenance service mechanized. Besides drivers, as well as other crew do not take part in repairs. I wish our army had their maintenance service...

We came with more tanks than crew, allowing us to keep training without interference of a tank making a maintenance visit.

Then tanks began to arrive to park, artillery, IFV. Again noticed the dimensions: you will not miss. But the French say, that "leopard - 2A5" is even higher, wider and longer, and "Abrams" is like a house.

Only aesthetically, on design, "Leclerc" makes very pleasant impression. It is possible even to tell, that it is beautiful. But dimensions :nearby T-64BV in this comparison is much better, and weight of 55 tons is too much. The gun, even externally, looks weaker then ours, ejector is absent.

even if it looks weaker, it is in fact more rigid, and its life is longer than the T-64 one.

From personal contact with the French tank men and mechanics as it was possible to find out a lot of interesting things. For example, tactics of "Leclerc" reminds tactics helicopters gunships: to jump out from of shelter, to carry out a fire mission, and quickly hide. For that - the engine with 1500 horsepower, and hydro mechanical 5 step transmission: But at a close acquaintance with "Leclerc" appeared, that though the engine is powerful, but tank turns in place with difficulty; it is impossible to stop one of tracks during turn , though it's possible to counter rotate them as on MTLB. Now about tracks. Those are cast from an aluminium alloy, accordingly durability of a tracks leaves much to be desired. A weak place are disk brakes of tanks: carbon overlays burn very fast. And to replace them, is necessary to dismantle the engine together with transmission though dismantle takes about one and a half hours.

it is possible to make a pivot on one track, but du to weak bitume, the first time we do it, we make a large hole! (see pic)

We have, for the first time, broke a track there, because prior to the deployment, we mounted new sprocket with longer teeth, designed for the iron tracks, and not the alloy one. It required to increase the track tension, but they forget to mention it (from 105bar to 130).

it take only 15mn to dismantle the power pack from the tank.

Rubber bandages on rollers are (also aluminium) are very thin and frequently fail . And a suspension of tanks (as "Leclerc", and AMX-30/32) is very soft: under weight of the person who has jumped on board the tank, weighing 55 tons dips down. Because of it in turns leading roller wheel leaves the gears and starts grinding them down.

see previous quote about track tension.

Now about the engine. Start of the engine - electric (only), but capacity ampere is small (125AA), therefore it is necessary to start a turbo generator (as on "Shilka" or "Tunguska"), and only then to start a diesel engine. At working diesel engine the turbine does not stop, and is the basic source of power supplies of the tank. Accordingly very noisy, and the effect on fuel is considerable. Fuel - only aviation kerosene. A stock of fuel - 350l and 2 barrels of 200 litres.

one battery is 12V/125A, but there is 3 row of 2 for the power network (24V/375A).

The turbomachine is there to feed the diesel engine with air, so it's normal operation to be started first... and not shut it of!

Turbomachine includes a 9kW generator (working as a APU) that stops when the diesel engine is running, a 20kw generator animated by the diesel engine taking the relay.

No aviation fuel, but standard gasoil.

Some (~5) turbomachines were broken because the crew of the boat stole gasoil from fueler and put water in them...

The armour though thick, but without rational corners, vertical. Smoothness of the turret is achieved by plastic boxes, removable. Onboard screens - steel, thickness of 10-12 mm. A thickening of screens in a forward part - one more layer of screens, atop of the basic. But any dynamic protection is not present. And the onboard armour in the engine area is very thing.

On this point our T-64 looks very healthy, and the French recognize it.

In his wet dream only!

Dimensions and weight of a power-plant and transmission impress: almost in 3 times the weight – 6200kg is more than engine and KPP of T-64. The engine is located is longitudinal, at the left (on a course) from the engine - a turbo generator, above KPP - two centrifugal fans and radiators. The exhaust gases from the turbine and from the engine go upwards, and air from the fan - downwards. Even the French recognize, that it creates a considerable unmasking from the column of a smoke above the tank and clouds of a dust behind the machine.

Before installation of the engine on the tank, it with the help of repair cables and hoses connect to the tank, gets started, and check work of all systems of the engine in different modes on an onboard computer. If something not so, eliminate on a place, and only after that the engine and transmission are mounted on the tank.

Workplaces of crew of the tank very convenient. The commander has computer, which one display at the commander, and the second - at gunner. The information on them displayed identically and simultaneously. The gun is protected by sleeve made from fabric. There is a air-conditioner and a heater. The commander and gunner occupy and leave the places without problems, and the mechanics - driver only then when the tower is revolved strictly directly, but can get out and through a tower.

Display of gunner and TC are independant, they can perform different tasks on them, and the TC as a mode to copy the gunner display on his display (basicaly to monitor what he is looking at, without slave his periscope on the gun).

For evacuation of such a heavy tank on base of "Leclerc" the special tractor is created: the same tank, but without a gun and autoloader. In a tower instead of it the various equipment for repair is located. Crane on the tractor is absent. The embrasure of a gun is closed by Plexiglas. This tractor can as be used and for training driving the mechanics - driver.

ARV were not delivered yet to our unit, the 2 available were in Kosovo. A T3 was modified to recover tanks instead of the current method of using a tank of the same platoon as tractor. As it was a temporary solution, the gun mont was closed with a plexy glass. Later, 9 T3 an T6 were modified as MARS for units wainting their ARV.

For the driver are available a steering wheel inside which various buttons are located: headlights, dimensions, turns, a signal etc.; two pedals: "gas" and "brake"; the panel of devices, levers of mode of operation KPP and a reverser. The seat rises and falls together with these levers with the help of a hydraulic jack.

The common impression which was stated by our tank men, is those: the tank convenient, comfortable for crew, but weak and unreliable.

Their T-64 were not operationnal, and have been paint over rust and mud, without moving them (there was paint on the ground!)

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Like Grenny sorta already said, I guess it is a common trait do deride the other sides equipment. Thanks for clearing thins up, Froggy.

BTW, would you consider these to come close to the truth ? :

Series 1

13240714695_1b035c9aa3_o.jpg

Series 2

13240845433_dc9fe996dd_o.jpg

Series 3

13240850353_6aacfd1f38_o.jpg

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Its not so much about deriding others. But whats this officer suposed to say to his men: our tanks are rusting steelcoffins and we're all gonna die...?

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Its not so much about deriding others. But whats this officer suposed to say to his men: our tanks are rusting steelcoffins and we're all gonna die...?

Well that's what Glorious Comrade General Markovskievitch says.

Eh, we knew what we were getting into when we signed up.

:)

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Like Grenny sorta already said, I guess it is a common trait do deride the other sides equipment. Thanks for clearing thins up, Froggy.

BTW, would you consider these to come close to the truth ? :

Series 1

13240714695_1b035c9aa3_o.jpg

Series 2

13240845433_dc9fe996dd_o.jpg

Series 3

13240850353_6aacfd1f38_o.jpg

real thing:

KM4l9a6.jpg

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Dejawolf, i have seen the picture. I was more concerned about the actual LOS thicknesses. Thanks again !

well, you can see in that picture that LOS thickness behind the sight is overestimated in those drawings. the weld line is clearly visible, and there's even an opening down showing no armour below right behind the weld.

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well, you can see in that picture that LOS thickness behind the sight is overestimated in those drawings. the weld line is clearly visible, and there's even an opening down showing no armour below right behind the weld.

13296060905_6b737a5f32_o.jpg

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So, the Leclerc Série 2 would have the same protection level as the Leopard 2A4 although having a turret which is 3 tonnes heavier than its German counterpart. :heu:

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