tank reload mechanism - Page 2

March 7th, 2004  
CHECK! Auto loaders do not make sense in a tank. However, the developed for the Crusader SP Howitzer is darn impressive (I've seen the video). Inside an indirect fire systems is one of the places where the improved rate of fire makes sense!

Before you all tell me that the Crusader is dead, no it isn't! A good deal of the equipment and systems developed for it will be used on the Future Combat Systems Indirect Fire Vehicle. 8)
March 8th, 2004  
Yeah, but the actual Crusader vehicle as we know it has gone the way of the Dodo. We will never see it, same as the Commanche. As far as the FCS, I don't think we'll see an actual production vehicle in the next ten years.
March 8th, 2004  
The current plans call for the first FCS unit long before that and like all things in R&D/Budget Land, we will have to wait and see.

Crusader lives on in the heart of the FCS Indirect Fire Vehcile - sometimes concepts are more durable than project names
March 29th, 2004  
Originally Posted by dragon_master_gunner
I agree. The Autoloader concept will be debated until the cows come home, But I am pretty sure the US/NATO will never adopt one. It's too much trouble and too unreliable for any prolonged us.
Wow, i would defenetly want to see that video, if you are able to find it?
July 2nd, 2004  
there is another problem you guys never ever addressed, when an Abrams or Merkava fires, with the manual loader, your guns stays on target, so you know he is dead, or can be shot at again quickly, with the autoloaders, the gun moves the whole thing, off target *hey, let's shoot him, he's reloading* and up to the tank version of "attention" and last tiem i checked, it might take a few seconds to move a heavy turret, even with a good turret traverse motor, you can't just sup them up like car engines, so in takin' the gun off target, opening up a world of hurt for your tank, possibly added time that was supposed to be taken off of the reloading sequence, as well as all those other thigns, the mechanics, the gunenrs arm being used for ammo, all that , and with the russian tanks being speed and firepower over armor, you need that manual loader, not something that would be good for artilery mass bombardments
July 2nd, 2004  
btw gunner13 , t-90 is a t-72 based.
October 23rd, 2010  
The Leopard 2 with a manual loader has their gun swing up for the gunner to ram in a new round. In reality, the gunner sight stays still while the gun swings up. When it comes to turret depression, it's rather quick, due to being gravity assisted.
October 27th, 2010  
For me the Stridsvagan 103 (S-Tank) is the best example. Being a fan of it I can give some good detail on it. As mentioned it holds 50 rounds and can fire 15 rounds a minute. At the back is a auto-ejector which ejects all cases automatically once fired. The area must be re-stocked before use so as to have enough rounds. As to your question about the movement of the turret ect. I'm not sure about other models but the S-Tank has come up with a simple solution. The fact is the gun is fixed. You move it side to side by moving the vehicle itself. The tilt and angle produced is created by hydraulics on the tank. Another feature that the auto-loader creates is that the tank can only fire while stationary. This means it is primarily a defensive vehicle and why many people classify it as a tank destroyer rather than a tank.

As onto the benefits and disadvantages of it there are a few.

The main advantage can be seen in the S-Tank. The S-Tank has a crew of three but can also be manned by one person, the driver. He resumes the role of commander, driver and gunner. This is a major advantage because it means you can have more vehicles on the battlefield at one time providing more fire-power. You also don't have to worry about human error slowing down reloading time and reloading time is always consistent. I'm not sure about other vehicles but 50 rounds is quite alot and I'm guessing an auto-loader provides more rounds.

While the advantage of having a one man crew does provide more vehicles on the battlefield it also has many disadvantages. Firstly, the reason why there are so many roles is because they have specialist jobs. A driver is in charge of making sure the vehicle get's where it needs to go. A gunner makes sure the gun hit's it's target. The commander makes sure everyone does their job properly. To do all of this on your own is incredibly difficult. This was also evident in the First World War when tanks were manned by 2 people and the commander not only controlled the tank but he also drove it and fired it. This was so complicated that tanks became incredibly inefficient and lost their purpose. However, with something like the S-Tank, which is a tank destroyer, this may not be so much of an issue but it still poses as one. Another issue of a one man crew is the morale. I don't know about you but if I was in an armoured vehicle on my own facing 20 MBT's I would probably poo myself. I would be very inclined to run off. The crew provides the important morale to get the job done. While human reloading error is sorted with an auto-loader many would argue this is only half as bad as if the computer on the auto-loader failed. While human error would slow down reloading time, the failure of the computer on an auto-loader would render the vehicle useless and therefore it would have to be taken our of battle which could be to a severe disadvantage to the plan of operation. Another disadvantage, though I am not sure if this has been overcome, is that while you may be able to fit in more rounds you may not be able to fit in a wide majority as the computer may not load different types of shells properly and could cause the vehicle itself to blow up.

While an auto-loader is a great idea I believe on a MBT it doesn't serve a purpose. In an MBT you the morale of your crew and you really don't want your computer to cut out on you while assaulting. Although this can happen on your driving electronics, at least you can still man the gun to protect yourself while help comes. However I wouldn't rule out it's use altogether. It's use on one man vehicles could be handy. Especially on armoured cars and tank destroyers. Especially tank destroyer's where you could have more tank destroyers protecting an area than you would if you had tank destroyers with a 4 man crew. But that's my personal opinion.
October 27th, 2010  
Perhaps with the Japanese Type-10 they will finally crack it - hell, if anyone can do, I'd guess the Japanese can - if you look at the newer Honda robots, they've come pretty close to cracking accurate humanlike movement - and an autoloader is just an arm.
The real innovation will be when they get it to work no matter the position of the gun - if they get it that good, I can see them going onto more and more tanks.
But we'll have to see.