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John Kettler

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Everything posted by John Kettler

  1. Here's a very good TOS-1A weapon system description, specs, organization and more. One thing I note with interest is that the range for TOS-1 and TOS-1A is way within the range limits for 152 mm and 155 mm tube artillery, both of which are in the game. Believe some maps are long enough to allow on-board firing to full TOS-1A range, a measly 6 kilometers. Here is a research paper analyzing thermobaric weapons. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/322553927_Use_of_Thermobaric_Weapons Regards, John Kettler
  2. This article is coming up on two years old, but it does have information on the place of flame and thermobaric weapons in the Red Army's structure. https://nationalinterest.org/blog/reboot/cruel-and-unusual-meet-russias-new-flamethrower-battalion-189028 Regards, John Kettler
  3. Am aware of the Beast of Kandahar mishap/takeover and force down. But I think the S-70 design derives from the X-47B. In any event, ours is way ahead of theirs, to include autonomous in-flight refueling and CTOL (Carrier Takeoff and Landing). Also, would note that the S-70 is very much in the same size and payload class as the S-70. If I recall, the X-47B can carry a pair of 2000 pound class bombs, and a similar payload would be what I'd expect to see on the S-70. https://www.northropgrumman.com/what-we-do/air/x-47b-ucas/ Regards, John Kettler
  4. This T-14 Armata vs M1A2SEPV3 Abrams article is apparently a few years old, but I'd not seen it before. It's well worth a read. The big surprise to me is how relatively flimsy the T-14's turret is, relative to the Abrams's. As I expected, the writer gives the Abrams the edge on first detection, and we all know the implications of that! https://nationalinterest.org/blog/reboot/does-russia’s-armata-tank-have-reason-fear-m1-abrams-192386?page=0%2C1 Regards, John Kettler
  5. DerKommissar, Tremendous video for a song with pretty profound lyrics! Regards, John Kettler
  6. Though Russian language only, this video is a treasure trove ref primarily the BMP-2 but secondarily, the BMP-3. You can see the original BMP-2, the upgraded Afghanistan version I'd not seen before, turret face up armoring I say during the Cold War that was intended to defeat 25 mm Bushmaster fire, slat armor, drastically upgraded fire control, aftermarket upgrade paths, sensors, ammo and more. This is a great informational resource and image reference. One thin I noticed is that unditching beams are now painted the same color as the AFV, because contrast kills. The natural logs used to stand out sharply against the paintwork on the AFVs using them. Unlike the keyframe, almost all the BMPs shown are not just intact, but in some cases, factory fresh. Regards, John Kettler
  7. IMHO, Loved the SO vid and note with interest there is a Russian SOFLAM either fielded already or in trials. Revelation of the American version via CoD got some SEALs in deep trouble here in the US. Ref kamikaze drones, I understand the Turks are world class in this emerging important weapon category. Sgt.Squarehead, That was a very good and meaty report, so meaty am practically in shock. During the Cold War, something like the S-70 would've been picked up on recon sat coverage, and the analysis mill would've started churning. There would've been detailed engineering analysis contracts let to top aerospace firms and so on. Consequently, for the reporter not just to be allowed on the base and watch from afar but instead climb on it, sit in the control van, talk to the chief engineer and more just blows my mind. Would also note that if the serious RAM was applied, she'd be in something like a Tyvek body suit, because the RAM, at least, ours, is big time toxic and even a scratch can cause major problems. Have spoken to someone who worked on various US Stealth birds, so was speaking from experience. I Think FSB-GRU did quite a lot of unauthorized US technology transfer (how's that for a euphemism?) to make the S-70 possible. Regards, John Kettler
  8. Unless major fixes have been implemented, it appears that Russia's effort to shift strongly to UGVs ran badly aground in Syria when the URAN-9 in combat trials there ran into a host of difficulties that make normal teething troubles seem like small potatoes in sensors, suspension, FCS, data links and more. If they can get URAN-9 to work properly, then they may be able to shift, as planned in 2015, as much as 30% of their DF firepower by 2025 to UGVs (URAN-9 costs 1/5 of a T-90). URAN-9 is almost contemporaneous with CMBS. This article first appeared in January 2019. URAN-9 was in Syria in 2017, the same year as this video was posted. In the vid, URAN-9 is covered in depth starting at 4:45. The coverage is amazing, including man-portable control and dedicated multi-station UGV control vehicle, factory visit and more. Unfortunately, it's in Russian, and there are no English subtitles. https://nationalinterest.org/blog/reboot/russias-uran-9-robot-tank-was-disappointment-syrian-combat-testing-192048 Regards, John Kettler
  9. Below article has several embedded vids, and here's one of them. Lots to see here! Should be useful to the skin makers. https://youtu.be/g4tYqQuikYo https://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zone/24906/russia-uses-these-crazy-antique-jet-engine-equipped-trucks-to-blast-away-chemical-agents Regards, John Kettler
  10. For decades on the Forums, we have seen discussions rage about effective range vs maximum range for rifles with iron sights. As luck would have it, FB served me a tasty info plum, in the form of a guy who, using hand-loaded ammo and high ballistic coefficient bullets, hit a full size buffalo silhouette metal target from an astronomic 2.24 statute miles. This wasn't any sort of one shot, one kill situation. Quite the contrary. But it does show what can be done, and had there been a rifle squad standing in the area, several people would almost certainly have been hit, with bullets arriving sans any supersonic popping sounds because they were only going about 700 fps. The only clue, until the firing report eventually was heard (if it could be heard under the battlefield conditions, wind, etc., would've been a dust puff, splat sound in mud or a ricochet off something hard. Am not arguing this should be incorporated into CM, just that it gives a whole new level of meaning to those warnings on ammo boxes. The ammo used was more like sniper ammo, and the iron sights fitted were modern ones on an old Swiss 6.5 mm rifle. It may look like he's shooting from a bench rest, but the man is crippled in the right arm. He is supporting the front of the rifle with his left hand, while the apparatus, known as the Lead Sled, substitutes for being able to hold the rifle butt to his shoulder. https://www.fieldandstream.com/guns/world-record-open-sight-rifle-shot/?utm_medium=social&utm_source=Facebook&fbclid=IwAR009vYkcGdmeHUlCwLmpBhnpM_msv2QnYH9XD5m96y89A9XCypIROZzGfY Regards, John Kettler
  11. My first question: What is a timid mouse doing in a tank? Didn't know the Red Army had females in tank crews. Had only seen women as pilots or infantry, in terms of combat roles. That said, provided they can hack the various demands, women are great because they easily fit into and can get out of a tank rapidly, as shown by analogy with the tiny Chinese male tinkers at the Tank Biathlon. Small in stature and build as they are, their tanks look like heavy tanks. Wish I could've seen what preceded the refusal to reload in the vid you shared. Years ago, I read a great ISU-122 story. The komandir was female, and her husband was the driver mechanic. The comms got crossed up, so their argument got broadcast. They were in Berlin during the Battle of Berlin and were arguing over which street to get to the Reichstag! Regards, John Kettler
  12. Erwin, You're most welcome. BornGinger, That would've been something, especially with better quality footage. Aragorn2002 and Sgt.Squarehead, From what I've read, Russians urgently needing footgear could and did take boots from newly captured German and other POWs. Accounts I've read talk of worn out Russian boots with gaping holes in the bottom blocked with cardboard from within. And just yesterday, I read of a partisan who showed up at a destitute aged couple's home with his footwraps (Russians don't wear socks) in such tatters that the woman took the cloth off the icon and gave it to him. At war's end, there were Russian soldiers still in their 1941 uniforms! Regards, John Kettler
  13. For sure some of this is Operation Bagration footage, but other parts may or may not be. Even so, there is much to see and learn here, including camouflage methods used, clearing out German dugouts, extremely primitive footbridges, Il-2 bombing technique (surprising to me) and my personal favorite, German troops fighting mountsd with handheld weapon from an 250 halftrack. Big brass ones seem to have been standard issue on both sides! Regards, John Kettler
  14. Call it memorable! Regards, John Kettler
  15. Was looking for Russian/Soviet training films on DailyMotion, and this got kicked up when I used KW "battalion". The IDF approach to having female infantry is not the same as the way the US trains female soldiers and Marines. Unlike the US, where both genders must meet the male standards, their loads are lighter, their marches shorter to accommodate the physiological differences. IDF brass, at least back then, were taking serious heat but stood to their guns because of the huge leverage afforded by having a much larger pool of potential soldiers to draw upon. There are female combat infantry commanders who command men as well as women. Something I found remarkable was the extraordinary heterogeneousness of the troops. As a bonus, there's some great imagery of the https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mitznefet_(Israeli_military) and other IDF kit. Regards, John Kettler
  16. Sgt.Squarehead, US Army FSTC (Foreign Science and Technology Center's branch chief for Target Signature and Image Metrology, Tom D'Isepo, briefed us on this when I was on the WASP brilliant swarm missile program. Don't know whether FSTC invented the technique I described or got the idea elsewhere and ran with it. Thought it was truly ingenious and a huge money saver, for the old school method involved building at least a breadboard seeker, placing it in a tower, then looking at real targets at expected approach angles, target geomentry and engagement ranges based on seeker acquisition range. We had a specially built rooftop installation on one of the buildings where I worked, and from there they tested lots of different seeker against the bailed National Guard tank I spoke of. And that sort of thing was but a step toward field tests with the seeker up in a helicopter and operating against something resembling a real target array in a Western Europe simulating environment. The FSTC method allowed a great deal of preliminary work on the missile guidance system's computer to be done to "train" it to find the right targets and attack only those. A HUNDRED bucks plus to do a 1/72 scale tank model? Seems pretty extreme to me. There's a guy named Gustav Haug who does tons of dazzling work in 1/72 scale, and I invite you to feast your eyes on his glorious minis at the link. https://www.facebook.com/GustavHaugOMM Regards, John Kettler
  17. MIkeyD, This means Spanish troops equipped with wine filled bota bags will have a tactical edge in not being detected, right? On. a more serious note, smell's a big deal in the field, which is why LRRPs in the Vietnam War, used nothing the natives didn't as far as soap and other things because otherwise it would be a dead giveaway to hostiles downwind. Have read that Japanese troops found Americans smelled like brass, because they ate meat and that, going the other way, the Japanese smelled like fish because of their diet. And only a couple of weeks ago, I read the Germans could easily smell Russian troops because of the pungent mahorka tobacco they smoked and that impregnated their clothing and, as we say in CBRN world, outgassed. But long before we ever get into detection by smell, would love to see detection affected by optical contrast, since it's a key aspect of target detection. Also, there's an IR phenomenon called thermal crossover in the morning and evening which background and object temperature become the same, rendering even whole bridges temporarily IR invisible. From what I've read, this is not a total deal breaker for modern systems, but was very much a big deal with earlier generation ones. Here's a discussion of an array of issues affecting military electro-optical systems. Too bad Dad's not still alive, for he was a Senior Systems Scientist at Hughes Electro-Optical & Data Systems Group. The Thermal Weapon Sight for CSW, IW, etc., was his baby, and he'd worked anything and everything in the E-O field, including the Shiva laser for nunclear fusion. https://www.globalsecurity.org/intell/library/policy/army/fm/34-81-1/appf.htm Regards, John Kettler
  18. dbsapp, Was stopped momentarily in my tracks because I thought it said "that make it less masochistic..." Thought, until I discovered I'd misread, that was quite the harsh characterization of the game. Regards, John Kettler
  19. Vergeltungswaffe and Sgt.Squarehead, According to a book referenced by Eero Juholoa over on the CoC Wargame FB group, there were five types of track, apparently pretty similar, and one that was possibly experimental. The KV-1 pics I've seen didn't have the kind of track I posted about, so thanks for your help. The reference in question is a tome from Panzerwrecks and has a "I've been REALLY good this year, Santa" price point. Regards, John Kettler
  20. Sgt.Squarehead, Misunderstood you, but I still think it could down helcopters. Found a really useful Wiki page on muj weapons of the Soviet-Afghan War. Among other things, it shows the UK was the second largest western MANPADS supplier, with 50 Blowpipe launchers and 6 Blowpipe missiles per launcher. Stingers supplied amounted to 800 total. 160 Milan launchers were delivered by France in 1988 vs 80 TOW. No missile count provided for either. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_military_equipment_used_by_mujahideen_during_Soviet–Afghan_War According to a spook directly involved in getting weapons to the muj, Milan did to tank formations what the Stinger did to helicopter squadrons. Called it "devastating." Milan was deployed on orders of the White House and was supplied after the Stingers were sent in. https://books.google.com/books?id=a3Z_AwAAQBAJ&pg=PA103#v=onepage&q&f=false Regards, John Kettler
  21. Sgt.Squarehead, According to information I've seen, the muj got MANPADS: Redeye (IR-guided tail chase only) via CIA, some small quantity of Blowpipe (MCLOS) from UK (source unknown) and, ultimately, Stinger (all-aspect IR) from the CIA. When I was at Rockwell, I got to watch the Pentagon's FOUO Betamax video of the Stinger in action with the muj, and it was eating up helicopters and fighters (saw no Su-25) being used for ground attack. Offhand, I see no reason why Milan couldn't (kinematics permitting) be used effectively against a helicopter. In one of the Mi-24 vids I saw, there was mention of a HOT air-to-air kill on an Iranian ground attack aircraft in the Iran-Iraq War, and the Russian CLGMs were designed to deal with ATGM armed attack helos as well as ATGM launchers on the ground outside of effective tank cannon range. Am aware of the Mi-24 snatch but will certainly watch the video. Good spot on the engineering vehicle. Image was too poor for me to ID. The ZU-23 on the back is an obvious field expedient to provide capability against high elevation threats. ZU-23 admirably suited as a day-ruiner for muj! Regards, John Kettler
  22. This is a must see, because almost the entire thing is about operations in Afghanistan. Has tons of footage showing not just helo ops but the country, terrain, the people, the muj, Soviet troops and weapons, etc., and is on YT. Am not providing a link because there is some gory stuff in the video, and I don't wish to get a rocket from the Mods for violating the no gore stricture. Regards, John Kettler
  23. The_Capt Read the complete (and wanted more info) GAO Report and the core text (not all the links) on the WarThunder link. Pretty bleak reading on the amicide and supply fronts. Speaking of amicide, after looking at a number of Russian attack helicopter thermal displays, would say the Russians have a similar plight--being able to shoot farther than they can ID targets from. Things may be better with the T-14 Armata, which has the licensed Thales Catherine TWS. But for CMCW purposes, that's irrelevant. What for sure is true, though, in-game is that the US has a clear night fighting advantage over the Russians because of their total dependence on pretty short range active IR. Must say the GAO is very hard to please, rating 90% combat availability as merely Good. Compared to some weapon systems I've dealt with, that's walks on water level combat availability. for example, in the late 70s and early 80s, F-14 availability was 60%, a figure so low that two carriers were needed in order to effectively fight, with one doing nothing but putting up CAP and E-2s, while the other flew strike missions. The next day, the roles were reversed. Regards, John Kettler
  24. Bufo, Thanks! Looks like a dandy setup for funneling a KE penetrator or an explosion (complete with high velocity frags) into the fighting compartment. Note the apparent shot trap feeding projectiles to the driver's optic. Not smart. By contrast, the T-14 Armata has no such vulnerability, for there are no direct optics leading into the fighting compartment. All external viewing is done through cameras (and in the case of the APS, MMW radar). The driver's position looks horribly uncomfortable and highly likely to produce leg cramps. Regards, John Kettler
  25. Sigh. Wrote the wrong country. The Marines savaged Saddam's tank force in Kuwait, not Iraq. Sorry about that! Regards, John Kettler
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