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41 minutes ago, That_Baka said:

Anything BMPT can do in conventional conflict upgraded BMP-2/3 loaded with infantry can do better,cheaper and more realible.

 

How about take a hit from a RPG-29?

 

I'll take the BMP-T every time.

 

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47 minutes ago, Sgt.Squarehead said:

 

How about take a hit from a RPG-29?

 

I'll take the BMP-T every time.

 

A BMPT cannot take an RPG-29 anywhere but the front. Want something that also has frontal protection vs RPG-29 and still is far better for the role than BMPT? Take a T-15.

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BMPT that is offered by UVZ isn't even most optimised designs of BMPT-like vehicles (some of Soviet prototypes made more sense that UVZ creation for claimed job).

 

1) BMPT inflate manpower of the unit. For 2 BMPTs you need 10 people to train and support in the field. Russian tanks and current/future IFVs allow you to have 3 vehicles per 9 people. Army is saving money on every fucking bolt (T-72B3 pic should be here for no apperent reason), inflating number of people needed to crew a unit of vehicles isn't best decision from economical POV (salaries, social benefits and so on in peacetime, especially during local conflicts).

   Moreover, vehicle carry 5 people into battle, and simple logic speaks that this will increase chances of higher casualties per vehicle, especially because they are intended for urban warfare. One critical mistake done by single vehicle - more people would be at risk that in a 3-man tank. Best decision would be decrease number of humans in unit that you send on a frontline to risk their lifes, to decrease overall casualties. 

   I wouldn't mind higher number of soldiers (per vehicle) send to place where they have high chance of being killed if that vehicle provided serious increase in chances to win fight.

 

2) BMPT from UVZ isn't usefull in open fields. Everything what BMPT can do in field tanks can do better. BMPT's autocannons have inferior range and firepower than 125 mm gun, 125mm cannons also can be used to suppress enemies from max 12 km range using HEs with indirect fire. In open fields using ATGMs such as Ataka (which cost more than your usual Fagot or Konkurs that you got from free from Soviet Union) against infantry isn't best idea either. Instead of bying BMPTs designers could upgrade existing T-72B3s by installing programmable HEs and probem more or less solved. 

 

3) In urban-ish conditions tank gun is still more usefull than 2 30 mm autocannons -  for example in Syria militants in Eastern Ghouta created serious defensive lines with hardened MG nest, observation points and so on.  30 mm would have hard time to punch through it, thats why tanks or even 152 mm SPG like Akatsiya in direct fire are used to break through. Only useful role that BMPT can occupy is suppression, that is currently occupied by Shilka. But you don't need 5 guys to do this job.

 

4) In big cities with tall buildings ("true" urban warfare) tanks could be supported by infantry moving through buildings around it. Soviets in late part of WW2 developed and used rather effective tactics to do that. I don't think that problem of not being able to aim at enemies is frequent, but problem of spotting their movement and positions first - is. Moreover, enemies are usually trying to not engage targets from tall structures and keep themselfs closer to the ground so they will have higher maneuverability, ability to move through multiply buildings is easier to achive on ground/underground levels. The more they stay in same place, the higher is a chance to get smacked by something more serious than autocannons or tank cannon.

   So AFAIK main problem with enemy infantry in urban fights is ability to detect enemies first, before RPG gunner or other AT weapon team will engage you. After they fire it is either too late, or they are already running away, as fire from RPGs and ATGMs are not particularly noiseless and unnoticeable events, they will draw fire from every other vehicle/infatryman that saw that anyway.

   BMPT doesn't have anything more in that aspect than modern tank have. Thermal imagers and panoramic sights are not locked to BMPTs only. And problem of firing at targets beyond main gun elevation can be solved by RCWS with AGL in it, like Turkish upgrade of M60T apprently have, or Chinese RCWS. In fact our tanks already were tested with 30 mm autocannon in RCWS, they could just put AGS instead and problem with high recoil of 30 mm AC will be solved.

   So instead of buying BMPTs engineers could put RCWS with AGS and add more sophisticated 360 degrees observation system with cameras/thermal imagers with software to detect movement, probably intergrate it into digital battlefield management system on top of that.

 

   UVZ's BMPT simply doesn't have any aspect that can't be intergrated on existing systems, without bloating human count per army unit. If they want BMPT/BMOP anyway, they should change design.

   What would i like to see instead of current vehicle is 2-3 man AFV with tank level of armor (including sides and rear, higher level protection of roof), armed with 40-60 mm autocannon with medium-high velocity shells and programmable HE-frags in unmanned turret. Vehicle will be able to engage infantry in trenches/cover with fragmentation (OICW on tracks, basically), can detect and destroy drones, and even ATGMs (like Pantsir claimed to be able to do), so it will have a place on open field combat of frontline SPAAG/APS with ability to suppress and kill lower priority targets like infantry (non AT teams), light AFVs, technicals and so on at same distances as tanks in direct contact to leave more important targets for tanks.

   Moreover, lower number of people inside of this vehicle will allow to decrease internal volume and this "BMPT" could be made smaller, and weight savings could be used to put more armor on this thing. That AFV needs serious protection from tandem HEAT from sides, rear and roof also should be able to hold direct hits from mortar rounds and light AT at considerable angles. Unmanned turret also should be able to hold well against 23 - 40 mm autocannons and RPG/ATGMs. Some sort of short range APS will be usefull.

   Vehicle should have serious package of passive sensors that are able to detect small drones at distance (including suicide drones) and ATGMs (incl. top attack) and destroy them with high probability. Same package of sensors will be usefull to detect and destroy infantry in fields/forested areas/villages/towns.

   Combination of weapon and sensors will make this "BMPT" capable to do things that no other AFV can do - tanks can't engage drones and ATGMs, Pantsir (or other SPAAGs) can't be deployed to frontline to cover them either without high risk to a crews. In urban warfare high caliber autocannon can deal with VBIEDs, technicals, an destroy infantry in protected areas (thanks to higher penetration of AP rounds than 30 mm and programmable HE-frags) and not just suppress them.     

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12 hours ago, LoooSeR said:

What would i like to see instead of current vehicle is 2-3 man AFV with tank level of armor (including sides and rear, higher level protection of roof), armed with 40-60 mm autocannon with medium-high velocity shells and programmable HE-frags in unmanned turret. Vehicle will be able to engage infantry in trenches/cover with fragmentation (OICW on tracks, basically), can detect and destroy drones, and even ATGMs (like Pantsir claimed to be able to do), so it will have a place on open field combat of frontline SPAAG/APS with ability to suppress and kill lower priority targets like infantry (non AT teams), light AFVs, technicals and so on at same distances as tanks in direct contact to leave more important targets for tanks.

   Moreover, lower number of people inside of this vehicle will allow to decrease internal volume and this "BMPT" could be made smaller, and weight savings could be used to put more armor on this thing. That AFV needs serious protection from tandem HEAT from sides, rear and roof also should be able to hold direct hits from mortar rounds and light AT at considerable angles. Unmanned turret also should be able to hold well against 23 mm autocannons and RPG/ATGMs. Some sort of short range APS will be usefull.

   Vehicle should have serious package of passive sensors that are able to detect small drones at distance (including suicide drones) and ATGMs (incl. top attack) and destroy them with high probability. Same package of sensors will be usefull to detect and destroy infantry in fields/forested areas/villages/towns.

   Combination of weapon and sensors will make this "BMPT" capable to do things that no other AFV can do - tanks can't engage drones and ATGMs, Pantsir (or other SPAAGs) can't be deployed to frontline to cover them either without high risk to a crews. In urban warfare high caliber autocannon can deal with VBIEDs, technicals, an destroy infantry in protected areas (thanks to higher penetration of AP rounds than 30 mm and programmable HE-frags) and not just suppress them.     

 

In this context what do you think of the depiction of a T-15 with a 57mm gun?

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8 minutes ago, Ramlaen said:

 

In this context what do you think of the depiction of a T-15 with a 57mm gun?

It is close, but it is still an IFV. Real BMPTs don't like to work at 2 jobs because they are to cool for that.  

   BMPTs like to take all your money on a smallest but most expensive shot in a bar and claim that they are your true best friends. 

 

   Speaking a bit more serious, sensors and 57mm AC version of unmanned turret for T-15 is yet to be seen, so I can't judge it.

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On 12/04/2018 at 6:34 AM, Mighty_Zuk said:

A BMPT cannot take an RPG-29 anywhere but the front. Want something that also has frontal protection vs RPG-29 and still is far better for the role than BMPT? Take a T-15.

Which Russian AFV can deal with RPG-29 today ?

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On 12/04/2018 at 12:28 PM, LoooSeR said:

1) BMPT inflate manpower of the unit. For 2 BMPTs you need 10 people to train and support in the field.

No. This is the contrary. It’s easier to train because tasks are easier. 

Did you train tank crew ? I did. 

Quote

Russian tanks and current/future IFVs allow you to have 3 vehicles per 9 people. Army is saving money on every fucking bolt (T-72B3 pic should be here for no apperent reason), inflating number of people needed to crew a unit of vehicles isn't best decision from economical POV (salaries, social benefits and so on in peacetime, especially during local conflicts).

This is why Merkava is a 4 men crew in an outnumbered country ?

It make me laugh to read such a thing when talking about Russian AFV. 

Quote

   Moreover, vehicle carry 5 people into battle, and simple logic speaks that this will increase chances of higher casualties per vehicle, especially because they are intended for urban warfare. One critical mistake done by single vehicle - more people would be at risk that in a 3-man tank.

Russian tanks are 3 men crew and... are zippo too. With a big ammo rack in the middle of the crew compartment. 

So, your analyses are funny. When a Txx is hit, it’s « earth, wind and fire ». 

 

BMPT have no big ammos in the crew compartment. It’s far safer than any other Russian AFV today. 

So, survivability of its crew is better, far better. 

 

Quote

Best decision would be decrease number of humans in unit that you send on a frontline to risk their lifes, to decrease overall casualties.

Decreasing the crew increases tiring. 

Did you fight in urban area ? I was trained to and I trained too. Your logic is an internet one. 

Quote

I wouldn't mind higher number of soldiers (per vehicle) send to place where they have high chance of being killed if that vehicle provided serious increase in chances to win fight.

BMPT was designed for this purpose and, considering Russian standards, it works. 

Quote

 

2) BMPT from UVZ isn't usefull in open fields. Everything what BMPT can do in field tanks can do better. BMPT's autocannons have inferior range and firepower than 125 mm gun, 125mm cannons also can be used to suppress enemies from max 12 km range using HEs with indirect fire. In open fields using ATGMs such as Ataka (which cost more than your usual Fagot or Konkurs that you got from free from Soviet Union) against infantry isn't best idea either. Instead of bying BMPTs designers could upgrade existing T-72B3s by installing programmable HEs and probem more or less solved. 

No. 

BMPTs are complementary to tanks. They are no supposed to replace them. 

Quote

 

3) In urban-ish conditions tank gun is still more usefull than 2 30 mm autocannons -  for example in Syria militants in Eastern Ghouta created serious defensive lines with hardened MG nest, observation points and so on.  30 mm would have hard time to punch through it, thats why tanks or even 152 mm SPG like Akatsiya in direct fire are used to break through. Only useful role that BMPT can occupy is suppression, that is currently occupied by Shilka. But you don't need 5 guys to do this job.

How Shilkas performed in Grozny ?

Just a question. 

Quote

4) In big cities with tall buildings ("true" urban warfare) tanks could be supported by infantry moving through buildings around it. Soviets in late part of WW2 developed and used rather effective tactics to do that. I don't think that problem of not being able to aim at enemies is frequent, but problem of spotting their movement and positions first - is. Moreover, enemies are usually trying to not engage targets from tall structures and keep themselfs closer to the ground so they will have higher maneuverability, ability to move through multiply buildings is easier to achive on ground/underground levels. The more they stay in same place, the higher is a chance to get smacked by something more serious than autocannons or tank cannon.

   So AFAIK main problem with enemy infantry in urban fights is ability to detect enemies first, before RPG gunner or other AT weapon team will engage you. After they fire it is either too late, or they are already running away, as fire from RPGs and ATGMs are not particularly noiseless and unnoticeable events, they will draw fire from every other vehicle/infatryman that saw that anyway.

This is is not the question here. 

Because BMPTs with tanks can manœuvre with infantry too. 

 

Quote

BMPT doesn't have anything more in that aspect than modern tank have. Thermal imagers and panoramic sights are not locked to BMPTs only. And problem of firing at targets beyond main gun elevation can be solved by RCWS with AGL in it, like Turkish upgrade of M60T apprently have, or Chinese RCWS. In fact our tanks already were tested with 30 mm autocannon in RCWS, they could just put AGS instead and problem with high recoil of 30 mm AC will be solved.

BMPTs are the only AFV to watch in 5 directions and to fire at 3 of them. 

 

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55 minutes ago, Serge said:

Which Russian AFV can deal with RPG-29 today ?

Dude I literally said it in the sentence you quoted. A T-15.

And whatever its side armor is, I bet it's a whole lot better than what the BMPT affords, because judging by the position of the grenade launchers, there is physically not enough room for any meaningful amount of armor.

 

28 minutes ago, Serge said:

This is why Merkava is a 4 men crew in an outnumbered country ?

It make me laugh to read such a thing when talking about Russian AFV. 

No, this is why a Carmel, a future AFV that will set the parameters for the IDF for what the next generation of MBTs, IFVs, APCs etc etc will have, has only a crew of 2. Also why the future howitzer may have a crew of 3 in total as well, instead of the current 9.

Here are a few things to consider:

1)Israel is not that outnumbered. With a population of 8.5 million it can very well staff its military and still have frequent debates about what to do with the many surplus servicemen that it has nowhere to assign to.

2)There are many considerations to take into account before even talking about population - cost of having a larger crew (more salaries), cost of having to provide services to more men (food, water, personal equipment), cost of enlarging the supply chain to accommodate to the manpower growth (more trucks, more drivers for these trucks, more guards for larger convoy protection). Social benefits as well. In the IDF, we have special grants for every servicemen that he can spend on acquiring higher education, or something to live off before he could find a decent job, or cut a small piece off the mortgage on a house. Combat soldiers get even more funding in that they have special subsidies on top of that, for higher education. It could amount to them practically getting twice that grant. That's a substantial amount of money, you know. They also get LOTS of subsidies during service for a LOT of private businesses. Now imagine Russia also has some form of subsidies for its servicemen. Again, it costs a great deal of money.

 

39 minutes ago, Serge said:

Russian tanks are 3 men crew and... are zippo too. With a big ammo rack in the middle of the crew compartment. 

So, your analyses are funny. When a Txx is hit, it’s « earth, wind and fire ». 

That just proves Looser's point more, you know. If a tank is highly vulnerable to any form of penetration, and say, all crew is lost, then whenever a tank is penetrated and lost you lose 3 men instead of 5.

You know, let me just go back to the previous point. Russia, after WW2, had a HUGE deficit in men. Doubling the crew is a great way to repeat that.

Also, with higher rates of mortality in the armored corps, it's going to be hard to convince new servicemen to choose armor. You could force them, but then they wouldn't perform nearly as well as motivated men.

 

42 minutes ago, Serge said:

So, survivability of its crew is better, far better. 

Shoot anything larger than a 14.5mm bullet at its side armor and one of the grenade launcher operators loses his ball catch partner.

 

44 minutes ago, Serge said:

Decreasing the crew increases tiring. 

But replacing 2 grenade launcher operators with 6 to 9 infantrymen will really help reducing strain off the crew.

 

46 minutes ago, Serge said:

BMPT was designed for this purpose and, considering Russian standards, it works. 

And for this purpose it doesn't need the AGLs at all.

 

48 minutes ago, Serge said:

BMPTs are the only AFV to watch in 5 directions and to fire at 3 of them. 

The 2 AGL operators have only a very limited view and can only see what's directly in front of them. The driver can only look forward through periscopes, but look to the rear through cameras. So unless it's reversing, the driver and 2 AGL operators are looking at the same direction.

Gunner is looking at where the barrels are pointing, and commander can observe through panoramic sight. So that's observation in 3 directions, and when reversing in 4 direction. 

The commander has no weapons of his own, but the gunners do. If the gunner is firing the autocannons in the frontal direction, then the BMPT can only fire in 1 direction simultaneously. If he's firing somewhere to the side or rear, then the BMPT is only capable of firing in 2 directions.

 

If there really is such insistence on 5 crewmen, I don't see why not make the BMPT a 3-man crew vehicle, and have the other 2 transported via a truck or a light armored vehicle, and do rotations with the original crew. That way, they can also be trained in gunner and driver roles, so they can actually replace a downed crewman.

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55 minutes ago, Mighty_Zuk said:
2 hours ago, Serge said:

 

Dude I literally said it in the sentence you quoted. A T-15.

And whatever its side armor is, I bet it's a whole lot better than what the BMPT affords, because judging by the position of the grenade launchers, there is physically not enough room for any meaningful amount of armor.

 

The grenade launchers appear to be unconnected to the crew compartment, their box is above the hull roofline. Any side armour protecting the crew will be completely underneath the grenade launchers, not outboard of them

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2 hours ago, Serge said:

No. This is the contrary. It’s easier to train because tasks are easier. 

Did you train tank crew ? I did.

   I was speaking about number of crew from economical POV. 5 is bigger number than 3, and obviously cost more. Or you want to get those additional 2 guys without paying them anything? I am not speaking about logistical chain. Infantry will be deployed in warzone anyway, BMPT can't clear rooms deep inside of buildings and is not as mobile inside of ruined urban areas as infantry can be. 

 

2 hours ago, Serge said:

This is why Merkava is a 4 men crew in an outnumbered country ?

It make me laugh to read such a thing when talking about Russian AFV.

   I was not speaking about outnumbering enemies. My words, that you quoted, never even mentions that. It would be easier to discuss things if you would respond to points made in a post.

   You can laugh as much as you want, but my point still stands as you did not put any arguments against it.

 

2 hours ago, Serge said:

Russian tanks are 3 men crew and... are zippo too. With a big ammo rack in the middle of the crew compartment. 

So, your analyses are funny. When a Txx is hit, it’s « earth, wind and fire ». 

   Point was that in case of penetration of the BMPT 5 people are at risk, in case of penetration of the T-72/80/90 - 3 people are at risk. Level of risk can be managed in a tank can by loading only autoloader, modification of tanks like T-72B3 UBKh and so on. 

   Also, in BMPT HEAT jet can hit 3 people, as there are plenty of trajectories that allow to line 3 humans, while in a tank HEAT jet will not be able to directly hit all 3 crewmembers because HEAT jets are not traveling in triangles. Which means that even if HEAT jet penetrate and not hit other crewmembers with shrapnel/spalling, chances of higher number of crew members being injured or killed are still higher than in similar event inside of the 3 man crew tank.

   But you still can laugh, i guess. 

 

2 hours ago, Serge said:

Decreasing the crew increases tiring. 

Did you fight in urban area ? I was trained to and I trained too. Your logic is an internet one. 

   I want to decrease crew to the level of normal Soviet/Russian tank, i don't think they will be so overworked than 2 nearly useless gunners will help much. And if command put not enough manpower to deal with a planned work, than a vehicle design will not be able to solve that.

   I don't know what you were training to do, but as the Chieftain said "it doesn't matter" if we speak about vehicle design. Point still stand - 5 crew members inside of the vehicle increase internal volume that needs to be armored, in urban conditions on a modern battlefield with powerfull tandem HEAT warheads on everything (RPGs, ATGMS, top attack ATGMs, and so on) additional armor will not be useless. By deleting 2 barelly usefull gunners internal volume can be decreased, leaving saved weight to be used for additional protection. Instead of soft bags ERA that BMPT had in Syria (on photos at least), they could attach something much more serious, increase protection of roof and mine protection of hull.

   My internet logic is based on simple math and you didn't addressed points made. "I am d'Artagnan and you are not" is not exactly helps to understand your position any better. 

 

2 hours ago, Serge said:

BMPT was designed for this purpose and, considering Russian standards, it works.

   It is great that it was designed for this purpose, point was that what we see isn't worth all downsides/cost/price it brings with it. "Russian standarts" are not very high by your own words describing Russian tanks as "zippos" just 2 quotes above. But in case of BMPT those standards should become much better all of the sudden?

 

2 hours ago, Serge said:

No. 

BMPTs are complementary to tanks. They are no supposed to replace them. 

   Exactly. We introduce another vehicle that will put additional work on ligistics to be supported, while this BMPT is nearly useless in open fields compared to a tank.

   So, if we will bring X number of tanks and Y number of BMPTs in open fields fight, and put logistical support (fuel, ammunition) for X+Y number of vehicles (i guess supporting BMPT will be nearly same logistical work as support a tank, as chassis, weight and so on are similar) anyway, why not to change Y number of BMPTs to Y number of additional tanks and get better firewpower with lower manpower used in the end? Or just modify current vehicles with better FCS and programmable HEs, so you don't need that Y number of tank-level logistical hungry vehicles in the field in the first place? Sounds more effective use of resources for me.

 

2 hours ago, Serge said:

How Shilkas performed in Grozny ?

Just a question. 

   I don't know, never researched that. I was speaking about SAA operations in urban areas, where they used Shilka to suppress targets, and i said that BMPT can be used in same role, but 5 man crew isn't needed to do that (although additional armor was needed) either.

 

2 hours ago, Serge said:

This is is not the question here. 

Because BMPTs with tanks can manœuvre with infantry too. 

Tanks can work with infantry and with proper RCWS supported by better observation system will not need BMPTs - that was my point. 

 

2 hours ago, Serge said:

BMPTs are the only AFV to watch in 5 directions and to fire at 3 of them. 

   Ability to detect enemies first doesn't directly correlate with ability to look in more directions. Thermal imagers increase chances to see target way more that just what human eye can see with low-magnification optics. Having working recon forces, drones to spot, system that allow to detect enemies through their attempts to mask their forces and conceal movement + digital battlefield managment system to quickly exchange info will be more usefull that dude looking into piece of glass in limited arc ever be. Especailly because both AGS gunners in BMPT in same direct as gunner usually look, they can be easily suppressed in effectivness by good thermal imager and big screen in convenient place + commander have big panoramic sight. 

   And those 2 AGS gunners will be nearly useless in open fields, again, as they have inferior systems to detect concealed targets that high-mounted commander panoramic sight with thermal imager. 

 

 

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1 hour ago, Serge said:

Before answering, read the subject.

T15 is just parading on the Krasnaya ploshad. Like 57mm, it does not exist yet.

So far I've only seen the BMPT parading there as well. Not in any active unit. So what's the difference?

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3 hours ago, Serge said:

This turret is in active service today in the Russian AFV fleet ?

Do you have photos ?

It is already adobted by Russian Navy.And BMP-3 Dragoon turret and Derivatsiya SPAAG is proceeding testing .

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Fascinating debate gents.....It does seem that moving at least one GL to a a RWS slaved (or attached) to the commander's panoramic sight would be a good idea, maybe backed up with a HMG. 

 

The driver could presumably control a forward mounted weapon when not driving, so two of the current crew could be removed for an overall slight increase in firepower and protection.....Maybe someone should sketch it up, would be a cool weapon?

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9 minutes ago, Sgt.Squarehead said:

Fascinating debate gents.....It does seem that moving at least one GL to a a RWS slaved (or attached) to the commander's panoramic sight would be a good idea, maybe backed up with a HMG. 

 

The driver could presumably control a forward mounted weapon when not driving, so two of the current crew could be removed for an overall slight increase in firepower and protection.....Maybe someone should sketch it up, would be a cool weapon?

Or just create a whole tower, with the dual 30mm guns at the bottom with ATGMs to the side, on top of it 2 AGLs attached in the same manner as the autocannons, and on top of them 2 HMGs again in the same manner. A panoramic sight at the very top, one former AGL operator sitting on the sight, with the other sitting on his head (both, of course, protected with the best Blyatnik-3 gear), acting as one majestic periscope. 

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      The T-80 shooting down jets by hitting them behind the horizont 
          
    • By Collimatrix
      At the end of January, 2018 and after many false starts, the Russian military formally announced the limited adoption of the AEK-971 and AEK-973 rifles.  These rifles feature an unusual counterbalanced breech mechanism which is intended to improve handling, especially during full auto fire.  While exotic outside of Russia, these counter-balanced rifles are not at all new.  In fact, the 2018 adoption of the AEK-971 represents the first success of a rifle concept that has been around for a some time.

      Earliest Origins


      Animated diagram of the AK-107/108
       
      Balanced action recoil systems (BARS) work by accelerating a mass in the opposite direction of the bolt carrier.  The countermass is of similar mass to the bolt carrier and synchronized to move in the opposite direction by a rack and pinion.  This cancels out some, but not all of the impulses associated with self-loading actions.  But more on that later.

      Long before Soviet small arms engineers began experimenting with BARS, a number of production weapons featured synchronized masses moving in opposite directions.  Generally speaking, any stabilization that these actions provided was an incidental benefit.  Rather, these designs were either attempts to get around patents, or very early developments in the history of autoloading weapons when the design best practices had not been standardized yet.  These designs featured a forward-moving gas trap that, of necessity, needed its motion converted into rearward motion by either a lever or rack and pinion.
       

      The French St. Etienne Machine Gun
       

      The Danish Bang rifle
       
      At around the same time, inventors started toying with the idea of using synchronized counter-masses deliberately to cancel out recoil impulses.  The earliest patent for such a design comes from 1908 from obscure firearms designer Ludwig Mertens:


       
      More information on these early developments is in this article on the matter by Max Popenker.
       
      Soviet designers began investigating the BARS concept in earnest in the early 1970s.  This is worth noting; these early BARS rifles were actually trialed against the AK-74.
       

      The AL-7 rifle, a BARS rifle from the early 1970s
       
      The Soviet military chose the more mechanically orthodox AK-74 as a stopgap measure in order to get a small-caliber, high-velocity rifle to the front lines as quickly as possible.  Of course, the thing about stopgap weapons is that they always end up hanging around longer than intended, and forty four years later Russian troops are still equipped with the AK-74.

      A small number of submachine gun prototypes with a BARS-like system were trialed, but not mass-produced.  The gas operated action of a rifle can be balanced with a fairly small synchronizer rack and pinion, but the blowback action of a submachine gun requires a fairly large and massive synchronizer gear or lever.  This is because in a gas operated rifle a second gas piston can be attached to the countermass, thereby unloading the synchronizer gear.

      There are three BARS designs of note from Russia:

      AK-107/AK-108
       


      The AK-107 and AK-108 are BARS rifles in 5.45x39mm and 5.56x45mm respectively.  These rifles are products of the Kalashnikov design bureau and Izmash factory, now Kalashnikov Concern.  Internally they are very similar to an AK, only with the countermass and synchronizer unit situated above the bolt carrier group.


       

      Close up of synchronizer and dual return spring assemblies

      This is configuration is almost identical to the AL-7 design of the early 1970s.  Like the more conventional AK-100 series, the AK-107/AK-108 were offered for export during the late 1990s and early 2000s, but they failed to attract any customers.  The furniture is very similar to the AK-100 series, and indeed the only obvious external difference is the long tube protruding from the gas block and bridging the gap to the front sight.
       
      The AK-107 has re-emerged recently as the Saiga 107, a rifle clearly intended for competitive shooting events like 3-gun.
       

       
      AEK-971

      The rival Kovrov design bureau was only slightly behind the Kalashnikov design bureau in exploring the BARS concept.  Their earliest prototype featuring the system, the SA-006 (also transliterated as CA-006) also dates from the early 1970s.



      Chief designer Sergey Koksharov refined this design into the AEK-971.  The chief refinement of his design over the first-generation balanced action prototypes from the early 1970s is that the countermass sits inside the bolt carrier, rather than being stacked on top of it.  This is a more compact installation of the mechanism, but otherwise accomplishes the same thing.


       

      Moving parts group of the AEK-971

      The early AEK-971 had a triangular metal buttstock and a Kalashnikov-style safety lever on the right side of the rifle.



      In this guise the rifle competed unsuccessfully with Nikonov's AN-94 design in the Abakan competition.  Considering that a relative handful of AN-94s were ever produced, this was perhaps not a terrible loss for the Kovrov design bureau.

      After the end of the Soviet Union, the AEK-971 design was picked up by the Degtyarev factory, itself a division of the state-owned Rostec.



      The Degtyarev factory would unsuccessfully try to make sales of the weapon for the next twenty four years.  In the meantime, they made some small refinements to the rifle.  The Kalashnikov-style safety lever was deleted and replaced with a thumb safety on the left side of the receiver.


       
      Later on the Degtyarev factory caught HK fever, and a very HK-esque sliding metal stock was added in addition to a very HK-esque rear sight.  The thumb safety lever was also made ambidextrous.  The handguard was changed a few times.



      Still, reception to the rifle was lukewarm.  The 2018 announcement that the rifle would be procured in limited numbers alongside more conventional AK rifles is not exactly a coup.  The numbers bought are likely to be very low.  A 5.56mm AEK-972 and 7.62x39mm AEK-973 also exist.  The newest version of the rifle has been referred to as A-545.

      AKB and AKB-1


      AKB-1


      AKB


      AKB, closeup of the receiver

      The AKB and AKB-1 are a pair of painfully obscure designs designed by Viktor Kalashnikov, Mikhail Kalashnikov's son.  The later AKB-1 is the more conservative of the two, while the AKB is quite wild.

      Both rifles use a more or less conventional AK type bolt carrier, but the AKB uses the barrel as the countermass.  That's right; the entire barrel shoots forward while the bolt carrier moves back!  This unusual arrangement also allowed for an extremely high cyclic rate of fire; 2000RPM.  Later on a burst limiter and rate of fire limiter were added.  The rifle would fire at the full 2000 RPM for two round bursts, but a mere 1000 RPM for full auto.

      The AKB-1 was a far more conventional design, but it still had a BARS.  In this design the countermass was nested inside the main bolt carrier, similar to the AEK-971.

      Not a great deal of information is available about these rifles, but @Hrachya H wrote an article on them which can be read here.
       
       
    • By LostCosmonaut
      Something I haven't seen discussed on this site before; Soviet/Russian efforts to domesticate foxes by breeding for domesticated behavior. Article in Scientific American here; https://blogs.scientificamerican.com/guest-blog/mans-new-best-friend-a-forgotten-russian-experiment-in-fox-domestication/
       
      Interesting that there were physical changes correlated with the behavioral changes the Russians bred for.

       
      Buy one for only $7,000! https://domesticatedsilverfox.weebly.com/aquiring-a-tame-fox.html
       

      (not entirely unlike a dog I guess)
       
       
      It seems like a pretty cool idea to drunk me, though I don't have a spare 7,000 dollars laying around (thanks student loans!). Also, I don't think my cat would approve.
       
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