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Competition Suggestions

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Design a tank "walker" (bipedal, quadripedal, tripedal; whatever) that could reasonably be as effective as its tracked counterparts. Naturally we assume that the core elements that would allow the tank to walk will have been magic'd in. Maybe not an ideal competition given how much theory and how little practical experience can go into this. Obviously not a contest to be taken too seriously

 

Further elaboration: The core of this contest is mocking the concept of a walker tank; this is a joke contest, if at all. I'm not a materials expert, some weight limit would have to be determined based on the materials used in the walkers legs and method of propulsion, and the core of the walker would be designed around this weight limit. Designs would be judged by how close they can come to matching the effectiveness of contemporary tracked vehicles (by whatever metrics judges want to judge), because as hip as walker tanks are for 16 year old alt history artists, they're 1945 German R&D as far as practicality goes. I'd really like to see if we could come up with some standard metric for effectiveness for this, like "this vehicle made out of modern alloys and composites is actually not too bad, I'd rate it at .75 M4 Shermans". Probably want Solidworks for this one.

 

Alternative proposition: 16 year old alt-history artist edition; materials are now magic and designs don't need to make sense. Make your design as dumb as possible, and after all designs are submitted here, all of the designs will be uploaded on a single account to deviantart or AH or whatever along with descriptions. The winner will be the design that gains the most praise relative to how dumb it is. Bonus points for garnering praise for components that blatantly could not work (IE guns mounted on legs with no mechanism for reloading, crew compartment located directly inside of the engine, legs needing to move through other parts to function, etc). Any design software is on the table for this.

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Design a last-ditch weapon for fighting an industrial war in the mid-20th. The weapon can be an aircraft, afv or small arm, and must show a massive cost reduction over existing types while still having a comparable level of task effectiveness. Bonus points for showing a manpower reduction (both making and/or using), skill reduction (ditto) or supply-chain rationalisation.

Edit: the judging would depend on the category of weapon chosen for the contest. Modelling may be required to show that the weapon works to spec. The contestant would also have to provide a convincing rationale for how the expected savings in materials/manpower would be achieved, as well as describing the implementation in a realistic fashion.

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Modernize a Sherman of your choice for use as a modern infantry support tank!

How about APC, based on old tanks like M60s and T-55s?

 

Or design a modern Assault gun / Tank for a local conflict? 

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Bring a retarded idea to life!:

Hitler/Stalin/King Kerbal has given you a bunch of drawings for retarded weapons provided by an idiot relative. Your job is to bring these ideas to life in as practical a manner as possible without making the results look too different from the drawings.

Failure is punishable by death/gulag/volunteering for a mun shot.

Edit: drawings and descriptions of a selection of retarded weapons would be provided, but the contestants could also bring in their own, so long as it is someone else's work and has sufficient levels of description (size, mass, components, performance etc) to be modelled. Modelling would be done using something like KSP or simpleplanes, and the contestant would have to show that the design works to at least a limited extent (the closer you can get to the retarded design's paper stats the better). The contestant would also have to describe what changes were made to make the retarded idea work, with points for creative solutions that still allow the resulting design to look like the drawing it is based on.

For the purposes of judging, it should be assumed that the idiot relative is looking over everyone's shoulder and checking the contestant's work against his 'vision' for the weapon. So the contestant blatantly subverting it by, for instance, sneaking a turbojet into what is supposed to be a piston-powered supersonic fighter, would be grounds for death/gulag/mun shot.

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Bring a retarded idea to life!:

Hitler/Stalin/King Kerbal has given you a bunch of drawings for retarded weapons peovided by an idiot relative. Your job is to bring these ideas to life in as practical a manner as possible without making the results look too different from the drawings.

Failure is punishable by death/gulag/volunteering for a mun shot.

 

The GOOLAB needs more science personnel, comrade.

 

My vote is for a pendulum fallacy believing Munshot rocket.

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These are all interesting ideas.

Could everyone who's got an idea elaborate on it some more, please?

I'm looking for ideas on how these contests would be judged, and what software the contestants would need.

Okay.

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Yes, sorry, I haven't been able to give the comps their due, as I have been mighty busy. Collimatrix, would you go ahead and start the second competition that we talked about?

 

KK.  Let me get the resources together, light the signal fires and put the slaves in their finest chains.

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Design a Volks/folke AFV.

 

 

Main focuses:

It has to be cheap, VERY cheap, as cheap as possible. This includes maintenance costs.

It has to provide better or equal capabilities to Infantry Mobility Vehicles.

Has to be able to be mass produced.
Man power is readily available, use it. 

It has to be able to operate in Arctic climates, which means -50 degrees and a lot of snow and frost. 
It has to be able to operate off road, so it can't be a Ferrari with a Minigun.

 

 

Infrastructure and cost restrictions:

It has to be easy to use, requiring minimal training. 

Has to be very reliable and require minimal maintenance. 

It can't use guided munition or FCS. 

Everything has to be off-shelf, no fancy weapons. 
You have to use infantry based weaponry. No AMOS mortar systems or MBT guns. Exception: Mothballed or dirt cheap equipment with tons of ammunition available. 

Max weight: 12 ton

 

Dimension restrictions:

Max width: 3,1m

Max height: 3,6m

Max length: 5,5m

 

 

Hardcore restrictions:

Has to have some anti-tank capability.

Can't use mothballed or dirt cheap non infantry weaponry. 

Has to be based on a existing vehicle.

 

Max length: 5m

Max width: 2,5m

Max weight: 8 ton.

 

 

 

This competition was inspired by my countries Homeguard. It uses 3% of the total defense budget, and still has 45 000 (to be reduced to 32 000 in 2017) combat ready soldiers at a 7 hour notice, it also defends all of the country.  Much cheaper compared to the Army with it's measly 4000 soldiers.

 

This causes everything in the Homeguard to only use the cheapest and most cost effective of equipment. This caused the army to scrap 100 Iveco LMVs instead of giving them to the Homeguard. Simply because they are too expensive to operate. 

 

So instead we got this thing, recently donated from the Special forces:

HVNETT__S167467.jpg?Width=1158&Height=65

 

We still use this thing. The MB G-wagon. And it still works, even though it is outrun by a tank and they are literally falling apart.

But the amazing thing about these is that they function as:

 

IMVs

Cargo transport.

Command post.

Command vehicle.

Forward observing vehicle.

Mortar carrier.

Ambulance. 

Tank destroyer.

Engineering vehicle. 

 

 

And this Multi III seen above, can mount a 12,7mm BMG or a 84mm Carl Gustav RFK and a MG-3 or a Minimi. It can also be modified to carry a mortar.

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Yet another design-a-tank competition:

Part 1:

It's 1938 and your company is trying to get in on the booming market for armoured vehicles. You've come up with a workable design, so now it's time to find some customers!

- Design a tank for sale to a particular country or countries. Projected sales should be at least 200 units all-in-all.

- A convincing, historically plausible rationale for why the sale should take place must be provided. Current inventory, industry, politics and practice of the client nation/s should be considered.

- No parts from after 1938 can be used, although you can speculate in terms of armament. Incorporation of components having commonality with those of your would-be client are a bonus.

- Describe the tank in detail, including where it would have issues or teething problems requiring further development.

Part 2:

It's sometime during the second world war, and the tank is still soldiering on. Although obsolescent, the needs of war mean that its current owners must find a way to wring the last possible bit of usefulness out of the design.

- Pick a point based in WWII (or just afterwards) and describe the modifications, upgrades, conversions etc made to the tank.

- Ownership may have changed based on the historical fate of the client nation. The tank may even still be in production in some form or another.

- Construct a plausible life/development history for the tank to get it to the chosen point.

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  • Similar Content

    • By N-L-M
      ATTENTION DUELISTS:
      @Toxn
      @LostCosmonaut
      @Lord_James
      @DIADES
      @Datengineerwill
      @Whatismoo
      @Kal
      @Zadlo
      @Xoon
      detailed below is the expected format of the final submission.
      The date is set as Wednesday the 19th of June at 23:59 GMT.
      Again, incomplete designs may be submitted as they are and will be judged as seen fit.
       
      FINAL SUBMISSION:
      Vehicle Designation and name

      [insert 3-projection (front, top, side) and isometric render of vehicle here)



      Table of basic statistics:

      Parameter

      Value

      Mass, combat


       
      Length, combat (transport)


       
      Width, combat (transport)


       
      Height, combat (transport)


       
      Ground Pressure, MMP (nominal)


       
      Estimated Speed


       
      Estimated range


       
      Crew, number (roles)


       
      Main armament, caliber (ammo count ready/stowed)


       
      Secondary armament, caliber (ammo count ready/stowed)


       

       
      Vehicle designer’s notes: explain the thought process behind the design of the vehicle, ideas, and the development process from the designer’s point of view.

      Vehicle feature list:
      Mobility:

      1.     Link to Appendix 1- RFP spreadsheet, colored to reflect achieved performance.

      2.     Engine- type, displacement, rated power, cooling, neat features.

      3.     Transmission- type, arrangement, neat features.

      4.     Fuel- Type, volume available, stowage location, estimated range, neat features.

      5.     Other neat features in the engine bay.

      6.     Suspension- Type, Travel, ground clearance, neat features.

      Survivability:

      1.     Link to Appendix 1 - RFP spreadsheet, colored to reflect achieved performance.

      2.     Link to Appendix 2- armor array details.

      3.     Non-specified survivability features and other neat tricks- low profile, gun depression, instant smoke, cunning internal arrangement, and the like.

      Firepower:

      A.    Weapons:

      1.     Link to Appendix 1- RFP spreadsheet, colored to reflect achieved performance.

      2.     Main Weapon-

      a.      Type

      b.      Caliber

      c.      ammunition types and performance (short)

      d.     Ammo stowage arrangement- numbers ready and total, features.

      e.      FCS- relevant systems, relevant sights for operating the weapon and so on.

      f.      Neat features.

      3.     Secondary weapon- Similar format to primary. Tertiary and further weapons- likewise.

      4.     Link to Appendix 3- Weapon system magic. This is where you explain how all the special tricks related to the armament that aren’t obviously available using Soviet 1961 tech work, and expand to your heart’s content on extimated performance and how these estimates were reached.

      B.    Optics:

      1.     Primary gunsight- type, associated trickery.

      2.     Likewise for any and all other optics systems installed, in no particular order.

      C.    FCS:

      1.     List of component systems, their purpose and the basic system architecture.

      2.     Link to Appendix 3- weapon system magic, if you have long explanations about the workings of the system.

      Fightability:

      1.     List vehicle features which improve its fightability and useability.

      Additonal Features:

      Feel free to list more features as you see fit, in more categories.

      Free expression zone: Let out your inner Thetan to fully impress the world with the fruit of your labor. Kindly spoiler this section if it’s very long.


       Example for filling in Appendix 1
    • By N-L-M
      Restricted: for Operating Thetan Eyes Only

      By order of Her Gracious and Serene Majesty Queen Diane Feinstein the VIII

      The Dianetic People’s Republic of California

      Anno Domini 2250

      SUBJ: RFP for new battle tank

      1.      Background.
      As part of the War of 2248 against the Perfidious Cascadians, great deficiencies were discovered in the Heavy tank DF-1. As detailed in report [REDACTED], the DF-1 was quite simply no match for the advanced weaponry developed in secret by the Cascadian entity. Likewise, the DF-1 has fared poorly in the fighting against the heretical Mormonhideen, who have developed many improvised weapons capable of defeating the armor on this vehicle, as detailed in report [REDACTED]. The Extended War on the Eastern Front has stalled for want of sufficient survivable firepower to push back the Mormon menace beyond the Colorado River south of the Vegas Crater.
      The design team responsible for the abject failure that was the DF-1 have been liquidated, which however has not solved the deficiencies of the existing vehicle in service. Therefore, a new vehicle is required, to meet the requirements of the People’s Auditory Forces to keep the dream of our lord and prophet alive.


       
      Over the past decade, the following threats have presented themselves:

      A.      The Cascadian M-2239 “Norman” MBT and M-8 light tank

      Despite being approximately the same size, these 2 vehicles seem to share no common components, not even the primary armament! Curiously, it appears that the lone 120mm SPG specimen recovered shares design features with the M-8, despite being made out of steel and not aluminum like the light tank. (based on captured specimens from the battle of Crater Lake, detailed in report [REDACTED]).
      Both tanks are armed with high velocity guns.

      B.      The Cascadian BGM-1A/1B/1C/1D ATGM

      Fitted on a limited number of tank destroyers, several attack helicopters, and (to an extent) man-portable, this missile system is the primary Cascadian anti-armor weapon other than their armored forces. Intelligence suggests that a SACLOS version (BGM-1C) is in LRIP, with rumors of a beam-riding version (BGM-1D) being developed.

      Both warheads penetrate approximately 6 cone diameters.

      C.      Deseret tandem ATR-4 series
      Inspired by the Soviet 60/105mm tandem warhead system from the late 80s, the Mormon nation has manufactured a family of 2”/4” tandem HEAT warheads, launched from expendable short-range tube launchers, dedicated AT RRs, and even used as the payload of the JS-1 MCLOS vehicle/man-portable ATGM.
      Both warheads penetrate approximately 5 cone diameters.

      D.      Cascadian HEDP 90mm rocket
      While not a particularly impressive AT weapon, being of only middling diameter and a single shaped charge, the sheer proliferation of this device has rendered it a major threat to tanks, as well as lighter vehicles. This weapon is available in large numbers in Cascadian infantry squads as “pocket artillery”, and there are reports of captured stocks being used by the Mormonhideen.
      Warhead penetrates approximately 4 cone diameters.

      E.      Deseret 40mm AC/ Cascadian 35mm AC
      These autocannon share broadly similar AP performance, and are considered a likely threat for the foreseeable future, on Deseret armored cars, Cascadian tank destroyers, and likely also future IFVs.

      F.      IEDs

      In light of the known resistance of tanks to standard 10kg anti-tank mines, both the Perfidious Cascadians and the Mormonhideen have taken to burying larger anti-tank A2AD weaponry. The Cascadians have doubled up some mines, and the Mormons have regularly buried AT mines 3, 4, and even 5 deep.

      2.      General guidelines:

      A.      Solicitation outline:
      In light of the differing requirements for the 2 theaters of war in which the new vehicle is expected to operate, proposals in the form of a field-replaceable A-kit/B-kit solution will be accepted.

      B.      Requirements definitions:
      The requirements in each field are given in 3 levels- Threshold, Objective, and Ideal.
      Threshold is the minimum requirement to be met; failure to reach this standard may greatly disadvantage any proposal.

      Objective is the threshold to be aspired to; it reflects the desires of the People’s Auditory Forces Armored Branch, which would prefer to see all of them met. At least 70% must be met, with bonus points for any more beyond that.

      Ideal specifications are the maximum of which the armored forces dare not even dream. Bonus points will be given to any design meeting or exceeding these specifications.

      C.      All proposals must accommodate the average 1.7m high Californian recruit.

      D.      The order of priorities for the DPRC is as follows:

      a.      Vehicle recoverability.

      b.      Continued fightability.

      c.       Crew survival.

      E.      Permissible weights:

      a.      No individual field-level removable or installable component may exceed 5 tons.

      b.      Despite the best efforts of the Agriculture Command, Californian recruits cannot be expected to lift weights in excess of 25 kg at any time.

      c.       Total vehicle weight must remain within MLC 120 all-up for transport.

      F.      Overall dimensions:

      a.      Length- essentially unrestricted.

      b.      Width- 4m transport width.

                                                                    i.     No more than 4 components requiring a crane may be removed to meet this requirement.

                                                                   ii.     Any removed components must be stowable on top of the vehicle.

      c.       Height- The vehicle must not exceed 3.5m in height overall.

      G.     Technology available:

      a.      Armor:
      The following armor materials are in full production and available for use. Use of a non-standard armor material requires permission from a SEA ORG judge.
      Structural materials:

                                                                    i.     RHA/CHA

      Basic steel armor, 250 BHN. The reference for all weapon penetration figures, good impact properties, fully weldable. Available in thicknesses up to 150mm (RHA) or 300mm (CHA).
      Density- 7.8 g/cm^3.

                                                                   ii.     Aluminum 5083

      More expensive to work with than RHA per weight, middling impact properties, low thermal limits. Excellent stiffness.

       Fully weldable. Available in thicknesses up to 100mm.
      Mass efficiency vs RHA of 1 vs CE, 0.9 vs KE.
      Thickness efficiency vs RHA of 0.33 vs CE, 0.3 vs KE.
      Density- 2.7 g/cm^3 (approx. 1/3 of steel).

      For structural integrity, the following guidelines are recommended:

      For light vehicles (less than 40 tons), not less than 25mm RHA/45mm Aluminum base structure

      For heavy vehicles (70 tons and above), not less than 45mm RHA/80mm Aluminum base structure.
      Intermediate values for intermediate vehicles may be chosen as seen fit.
      Non-structural passive materials:

                                                                  iii.     HHA

      Steel, approximately 500 BHN through-hardened. Approximately twice as effective as RHA against KE and HEAT on a per-weight basis. Not weldable, middling shock properties. Available in thicknesses up to 25mm.
      Density- 7.8g/cm^3.

                                                                  iv.     Glass textolite

      Mass efficiency vs RHA of 2.2 vs CE, 1.64 vs KE.

      Thickness efficiency vs RHA of 0.52 vs CE, 0.39 vs KE.
      Density- 1.85 g/cm^3 (approximately ¼ of steel).
      Non-structural.

                                                                   v.     Fused silica

      Mass efficiency vs RHA of 3.5 vs CE, 1 vs KE.

      Thickness efficiency vs RHA of 1 vs CE, 0.28 vs KE.
      Density-2.2g/cm^3 (approximately 1/3.5 of steel).
      Non-structural, requires confinement (being in a metal box) to work.

                                                                  vi.     Fuel

      Mass efficiency vs RHA of 1.3 vs CE, 1 vs KE.

      Thickness efficiency vs RHA of 0.14 vs CE, 0.1 vs KE.

      Density-0.82g/cm^3.

                                                                vii.     Assorted stowage/systems

      Mass efficiency vs RHA- 1 vs CE, 0.8 vs KE.

                                                               viii.     Spaced armor

      Requires a face of at least 25mm LOS vs CE, and at least 50mm LOS vs KE.

      Reduces penetration by a factor of 1.1 vs CE or 1.05 vs KE for every 10 cm air gap.
      Spaced armor rules only apply after any standoff surplus to the requirements of a reactive cassette.

      Reactive armor materials:

                                                                  ix.     ERA-light

      A sandwich of 3mm/3mm/3mm steel-explodium-steel.
      Requires mounting brackets of approximately 10-30% cassette weight.

      Must be spaced at least 3 sandwich thicknesses away from any other armor elements to allow full functionality. 81% coverage (edge effects).

                                                                   x.     ERA-heavy

      A sandwich of 15mm steel/3mm explodium/9mm steel.
      Requires mounting brackets of approximately 10-30% cassette weight.
      Must be spaced at least 3 sandwich thicknesses away from any other armor elements to allow full functionality. 81% coverage (edge effects).

                                                                  xi.     NERA-light

      A sandwich of 6mm steel/6mm rubber/ 6mm steel.
      Requires mounting brackets of approximately 10-30% cassette weight.
      Must be spaced at least 1 sandwich thickness away from any other armor elements to allow full functionality. 95% coverage.

                                                                 xii.     NERA-heavy

      A sandwich of 30mm steel/6m rubber/18mm steel.
      Requires mounting brackets of approximately 10-30% cassette weight.
      Must be spaced at least 1 sandwich thickness away from any other armor elements to allow full functionality. 95% coverage.

      The details of how to calculate armor effectiveness will be detailed in Appendix 1.

      b.      Firepower

                                                                    i.     2A46 equivalent tech- pressure limits, semi-combustible cases, recoil mechanisms and so on are at an equivalent level to that of the USSR in the year 1960.

                                                                   ii.     Limited APFSDS (L:D 15:1)- Spindle sabots or bourelleted sabots, see for example the Soviet BM-20 100mm APFSDS.

                                                                  iii.     Limited tungsten (no more than 100g per shot)

                                                                  iv.     Californian shaped charge technology- 5 CD penetration for high-pressure resistant HEAT, 6 CD for low pressure/ precision formed HEAT.

                                                                   v.     The general issue GPMG for the People’s Auditory Forces is the PKM. The standard HMG is the DShK.

      c.       Mobility

                                                                    i.     Engines tech level:

      1.      MB 838 (830 HP)

      2.      AVDS-1790-5A (908 HP)

      3.      Kharkov 5TD (600 HP)

                                                                   ii.     Power density should be based on the above engines. Dimensions are available online, pay attention to cooling of 1 and 3 (water cooled).

                                                                  iii.     Power output broadly scales with volume, as does weight. Trying to extract more power from the same size may come at the cost of reliability (and in the case of the 5TD, it isn’t all that reliable in the first place).

                                                                  iv.     There is nothing inherently wrong with opposed piston or 2-stroke engines if done right.

      d.      Electronics

                                                                    i.     LRFs- unavailable

                                                                   ii.     Thermals-unavailable

                                                                  iii.     I^2- limited

      3.      Operational Requirements.

      The requirements are detailed in the appended spreadsheet.

      4.      Submission protocols.

      Submission protocols and methods will be established in a follow-on post, nearer to the relevant time.
       
      Appendix 1- armor calculation
      Appendix 2- operational requirements
       
      Good luck, and may Hubbard guide your way to enlightenment!
    • By Sturgeon
      I woke up one day and decided "why not design an entirely new rifle from scratch, and live blog it?" So here we are.

      About ten minutes in and we've got the beginnings of a receiver extrusion made from 7075 T6 aluminum:
       

       
      Currently I think the rifle will be in 5.56mm. It will not use STANAG magazines. @Ulric plz halp design new mag?
    • By Sturgeon
      The year is [year]. You are a [thing] designer working in/for [country/nation state/corporation]. The [things] of the rival [country/nation state/corporation] have recently *gotten meaningfully better in some specific way* and/or *the geopolitical and/or industry circumstances have significantly changed*. You have been tasked with designing a [thing] to meet the needs of this new and changing world!
       
      If that made you laugh, maybe you've participated in a design competition before, here or on another forum. I've been a contestant or judge five or six design competitions by this point, and I'd like to highlight a mistake I've seen people make often that I think could hurt your chances. And that is, designing something for the wrong time period, specifically designing something that is too early for the period in which the competition takes place.
       
      Quick: When you think about US rifles in World War II, what comes to mind? A lot if you would answer with the M1 Garand, I'd bet. If I went on another forum and started a "Design a Rifle: USA 1944" thread, I bet I'd get a lot of entries that took their cues from the M1 Garand - but the M1 wasn't designed in 1944, it was designed in the late 1920s. In attempting to "fit in" to the time period of the competition, they would have in fact submitted a design that is 15 years too late! The an appropriately dated entry would be something like a T25 Lightweight Rifle, which is associated mostly with the late Forties and early Fifties, but whose design began in the mid 1940s. Using the M1 Garand as a model for your 1944 design would result in something like a slightly refined Garand with a box magazine slapped on, putting you well behind the curve!
       

       
      The T25 was what 1940s designers thought the rifle of the future would look like. Keen SHitters will notice the joke about the M14 in the above paragraph.
       
      Tanks and other vehicles are the same way. The M48 is associated with the Vietnam era, but its development began in 1953. The Space Shuttle is associated closely with the 1980s, but design work on it began in the late 1960s, before the first man ever set foot on the Moon. The MiG-15 is associated with the Korean War, but Soviet jet fighter designers at that time were already putting pencils to paper on what would become the MiG-21.
       
      It's tempting to create a design that looks like it would fit right in to the battles we know and associate with whatever time period a competition covers. Yet, the real-world designers fighting those battles from their drafting tables were already imagining the next thing, and even what would come after that, in turn. Design competitions are just for fun, but in some ways they are also practice for the real thing, so don't get stuck in the past!
       
       
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