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Armor/AFV: Modern - USA
Modern Armor, AFVs, and Support vehicles.
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M109 short barrelled 105mm
knewton
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Posted: Wednesday, May 08, 2019 - 06:13 PM UTC
Aka the M108, seen at http://moxingfans.com/m/view.php?aid=5796 should make someone happy.

I expect it will be an improvement over the Italeri kit.
Vodnik
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Warszawa, Poland
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Posted: Wednesday, May 08, 2019 - 06:32 PM UTC

Quoted Text

Aka the M108, seen at http://moxingfans.com/m/view.php?aid=5796 should make someone happy.

I expect it will be an improvement over the Italeri kit.



I don't know why you would call it M109. There was a lot of differences between M108 and even the early short barreled M109, not just the gun itself. It is just that: M108. Same basic components, but a different vehicle.

And being an improvement over the Italeri kit isn't particularly difficult, as that kit was crap. When I built mine, in the end I used only a few parts from the Italeri kit, the rest is either scratchbuilt, taken from Kinetic M109A2, aftermarket or from AFV Club M109A2...

M4A1Sherman
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Posted: Wednesday, May 08, 2019 - 10:01 PM UTC

Quoted Text


Quoted Text

Aka the M108, seen at http://moxingfans.com/m/view.php?aid=5796 should make someone happy.

I expect it will be an improvement over the Italeri kit.



I don't know why you would call it M109. There was a lot of differences between M108 and even the early short barreled M109, not just the gun itself. It is just that: M108. Same basic components, but a different vehicle.

And being an improvement over the Italeri kit isn't particularly difficult, as that kit was crap. When I built mine, in the end I used only a few parts from the Italeri kit, the rest is either scratchbuilt, taken from Kinetic M109A2, aftermarket or from AFV Club M109A2...




What ever it's called, I Want it... I've always wanted one of these, other than the old ITALERI kit of same...

The rest of the stuff in that AFV CLUB display is also VERY WELCOME!!!

Anyone notice that there wasn't anything in that display in "tri-color" AXIS camo..?
HeavyArty
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Posted: Thursday, May 09, 2019 - 09:37 AM UTC

Quoted Text

Aka the M108, ...

I expect it will be an improvement over the Italeri kit.



Yes, it an an M108, 105mm SP gun. It used the same chassis and turret as the M109, with a smaller gun.

Of course it is an improvement over the 40 year old Italeri kit. The new AFV Club M108/M109 kits are very nice.
knewton
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Posted: Thursday, May 09, 2019 - 09:53 PM UTC

Quoted Text

I don't know why you would call it M109. There was a lot of differences between M108 and even the early short barreled M109, not just the gun itself. It is just that: M108. Same basic components, but a different vehicle.



Hi Pawel,

Maybe more people will be familiar with the M109 than the 108, or incorrectly identify the 108 as an M109. As for being a better kit over the Italeri offering, of course it will be, there is 30 years difference, so I was being polite.

Nice kit, too, by the way.
gmat5037
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Hawaii, United States
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Posted: Thursday, May 09, 2019 - 10:49 PM UTC
Off topic, but I'm really waiting for the Korean War Centurion Mk III. Wish that replacement wheels were easy to find.

Grant
HeavyArty
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Posted: Thursday, May 09, 2019 - 11:42 PM UTC

Quoted Text

Maybe more people will be familiar with the M109 than the 108, or incorrectly identify the 108 as an M109.



Especially if people like you keep incorrectly identifying it and not correct the missidentified post. It is an M108. You should call it an M108.
BootsDMS
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England - South West, United Kingdom
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Posted: Friday, May 10, 2019 - 02:43 AM UTC
For pity's sake will someone please retitle this thread as "M108"?

I would be very grateful for any assistance in bringing the venerable Italeri kit up to spec (not least as it's in my stash) - I hope to produce a Belgian version in due course.

All help welcome.

Brian

Garrand
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Pennsylvania, United States
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Posted: Friday, May 10, 2019 - 04:11 AM UTC
I've been working on an Italeri M108 off & on for a little while now. The biggest 2 changes are to delete the box shaped bulge on the turret roof (refer to reference pictures) as this was added for the M109 to give the 155mm a little extra clearance IIRC. And to convert the hull rear door to 2 parts rather than 1 part. There are probably a few other differences, but those are the 2 most important changes that I know of so far...

I plan on marking mine as a Belgian machine too. I was using the Verlinden book on the M108/109 for reference.

Damon.
knewton
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Posted: Friday, May 10, 2019 - 07:56 AM UTC
OK, Gino, point made. Yes, I’d be peeved if someone labelled a STuG III a Panzer III, or visa-versa.
LonCray1
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Posted: Monday, May 13, 2019 - 04:04 AM UTC
I can't be the only one who thinks that M108 suffers from, er, gun envy. So - stupid question for the artillery folks: why would you want a smaller gun in combat? Is there a reason for putting a smaller round down range? Why have a big tracked vehicle that's capable of firing big rounds in M109 form - using all the same fuel and crew and other resources - to fire smaller rounds at the enemy? When they upgraded the M1 tank to 120mm, they didn't keep 105mm Abrams tanks (though they do have the 105mm Stryker).
HeavyArty
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Posted: Monday, May 13, 2019 - 04:24 AM UTC
The M108 was a hold-over from WWII thinking where there were 105mm SP (M7 Priest) to keep up with the half-track mounted infantry and Shermans, which were considered infantry support tanks, not main battle tanks. The mindset was different then and the US didn't have good SP 155mm howitzers until the very end of the war (M40). The closed fighting compartment was to protect the crew from shrapnel and small arms fire. Good ideas, just too big of a vehicle for such a small gun. The M108 was not very successful and only used in limited numbers in Vietnam.

Towed 105mm howitzers usually support light infantry, airborne, and air assualt forces. These forces are normally either trucked around, move on foot, or air inserted by helicopters or parachute. The lighter artillery supports them better since it can also be brought in by truck or air. The distances they move and engage the enemy at are shorter as well. They are supported by a few 155mm towed howitzers to give them a deeper punch when needed too.

Heavier, M109 SP 155mm howitzers usually support heavy armored/mechanized infantry units. The SP howitzers can keep up with the armored vehicles and fire deeper since the battlefield is usually more stretched out.

The Stryker 105mm MGS (Mobile Gun System) is a totally different animal. Basically, the Stryker units needed a limited anti-armor capability and demolition gun. The 120mm gun used on the Abrams is too big for the Stryker chassis and there were a bunch of 105mm guns left after the Abrams was upgunned. It worked and gave the Stryker units the extra punch they needed, while still being light enough to fit the Stryker concept as a medium, quickly deployable unit.
thathaway3
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Posted: Monday, May 13, 2019 - 05:21 AM UTC
Exactly as Gino said. Mechanized units (Armor and Mech Infantry Divisions) need to have their supporting artillery to have the same mobility (i.e. tracked SP) as the maneuver units, primarily so they can keep up. A 155 mm round is much better than a 105 mm round in terms of bursting radius and killing power (and range), so as long as you can have a platform which can keep up with the units in contact to provide DIRECT support, you'd go with that. And then you'd have a heavier weapon with longer range to provide GENERAL Support for the entire division.

Airborne/Air Assault and non-mech infantry units don't move around on tracked vehicles so their support artillery doesn't need to either, thus lighter guns and so generally a 105 mm is chosen for the DS mission and a heavier weapon like the 155 is used for GS.

It's about the best balance of support, and mobility to match the capability of the supported unit.
trickymissfit
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Posted: Monday, May 13, 2019 - 09:09 AM UTC

Quoted Text

Exactly as Gino said. Mechanized units (Armor and Mech Infantry Divisions) need to have their supporting artillery to have the same mobility (i.e. tracked SP) as the maneuver units, primarily so they can keep up. A 155 mm round is much better than a 105 mm round in terms of bursting radius and killing power (and range), so as long as you can have a platform which can keep up with the units in contact to provide DIRECT support, you'd go with that. And then you'd have a heavier weapon with longer range to provide GENERAL Support for the entire division.

Airborne/Air Assault and non-mech infantry units don't move around on tracked vehicles so their support artillery doesn't need to either, thus lighter guns and so generally a 105 mm is chosen for the DS mission and a heavier weapon like the 155 is used for GS.

It's about the best balance of support, and mobility to match the capability of the supported unit.



In rough country, the SPG is pretty much limited to roads and trails for placement. While a towed gun can be placed most anywhere. Speed is also the great factor, and there the towed gun is King. Plus the towed gun is a little more accurate. ( Note: not enough to worry about). Just depends on the job requirements.
I happened to have been placed with the gun crew that held the U.S. hip shoot record at three minutes and forty nine seconds to round out. They still hold the record by the way.
I've done that with an M109, and M110. Took close to ten minutes. Maybe faster now, but can't see it under five minutes. Nothing wrong with five minutes, as long as it's not someone in dire straits.
Back to the M108; I learned to drive a track on them. Seemed like nobody liked them! I shot them a little bit, but was told they were being phased out. They did send a few to Vietnam, but the 109 was the SPG they preferred. Up north it was the M110/M107 platform. The 109 was much closer to what they wanted, but also a constant work in progress. I trained on the very first issued ones, and couldn't wait to get that outta my life. New ones are much better inside, but are also just something to get by with. Better stuff is on the way.
Gary
TheoBraat
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Posted: Monday, May 13, 2019 - 10:01 AM UTC
Ok, a M108 from either AFV Club or HobbyFan; that is nice - although I prefer it to be an official AFV Club kit (no warpy resin like with some HF kits).

Has anyone else spotted the M113 on the right in the photograph. It seems to have a small turret of some sorts, and has a .50 on top; could it be an Okinawa turret (which didn't come with an extra .50 though) or what?
Gentlemen, your opinions please
Frenchy
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Posted: Monday, May 13, 2019 - 10:15 AM UTC

Quoted Text

Has anyone else spotted the M113 on the right in the photograph. It seems to have a small turret of some sorts, and has a .50 on top; could it be an Okinawa turret (which didn't come with an extra .50 though) or what?
Gentlemen, your opinions please



http://armorama.kitmaker.net/modules.php?op=modload&name=SquawkBox&file=index&req=viewtopic&topic_id=277294&page=1

An Okinawa turret would be welcome though...

H.P.
TheoBraat
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Posted: Monday, May 13, 2019 - 10:34 AM UTC
Thanks H.P. for that link; a very welcome version for all Aussie armour fans.

I guess that we will have to leave an Okinawa turret to firms like Legend or TMD .. ?
knewton
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Posted: Monday, May 13, 2019 - 04:23 PM UTC
What, specifically, is an “Okinawa turret”, please? I did search it before asking, but there was nothing clearly identified as such. TIA.
Frenchy
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Posted: Monday, May 13, 2019 - 04:45 PM UTC
It was a pre-ACAV gun shield for the TC (manufactured in a large US Army Ordnance Depot in Okinawa) :

https://www.armorama.com/modules.php?op=modload&name=SquawkBox&file=index&req=viewtopic&topic_id=239677&page=1

H.P.
LonCray1
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Posted: Tuesday, May 14, 2019 - 03:05 AM UTC
Thank you Gino and Tom and Gary - excellent answers and now I understand a lot better.
thathaway3
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Posted: Tuesday, May 14, 2019 - 03:08 AM UTC

Quoted Text

Plus the towed gun is a little more accurate. ( Note: not enough to worry about). Just depends on the job requirements.
Gary



Not sure why you believe a towed howitzer is more accurate than a self propelled howitzer.

Generally speaking the CEP (circular error probability) for artillery ammunition is based on the round and charge not the platform which fires it.

I've got a bunch of my old TFT's(Tabular Firing Tables) from my time as FDO in the basement and I'll double check, but pretty sure it's the ammo and NOT the platform the tube is mounted to which makes the difference.
HeavyArty
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Posted: Tuesday, May 14, 2019 - 03:57 AM UTC
I have to agree with Tom here. A towed gun is not inherently more accurate than an SP gun. It comes down to the projo CEP, powder temp, MET, etc. that effects accuracy.
ArtyG37B
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Posted: Tuesday, May 14, 2019 - 11:20 AM UTC
Not sure what Gary is talking about. I my experience SPGs are faster than tow in both ways. faster moves and faster emplacement. also there's just some places track can go that a towed piece can't. just my 2 cents worth.
Garrand
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Posted: Wednesday, May 15, 2019 - 04:17 AM UTC

Quoted Text

Not sure what Gary is talking about. I my experience SPGs are faster than tow in both ways. faster moves and faster emplacement. also there's just some places track can go that a towed piece can't. just my 2 cents worth.



I think that depends entirely on the method of towing. If your field piece is towed behind a truck, than a tracked SP system is absolutely going to go more places. But if its a sling load under a helicopter, that opens up a lot of other options your SP cannot have.

Damon.
thathaway3
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Posted: Wednesday, May 15, 2019 - 05:02 AM UTC

Quoted Text


Quoted Text

Not sure what Gary is talking about. I my experience SPGs are faster than tow in both ways. faster moves and faster emplacement. also there's just some places track can go that a towed piece can't. just my 2 cents worth.



I think that depends entirely on the method of towing. If your field piece is towed behind a truck, than a tracked SP system is absolutely going to go more places. But if its a sling load under a helicopter, that opens up a lot of other options your SP cannot have.

Damon.



Damon is exactly correct. Just because an artillery piece is referred to as a "towed" piece, that doesn't always mean its prime mover is a truck. If it IS a truck, then compared to an SP it will have less mobility, and likely will take more time to have first rounds down range in a hasty fire mission or "hip shoot" as it's referred to.

But place that same piece under a helicopter, then it will be able to get from one place to another much faster than if it were being towed behind a vehicle of some sort, AND will absolutely be able to be emplaced in spots simply not accessible by any other means, like for example placed on a barge in the middle of some body of water. But I'd also suggest that while it might be able to get from point A to point B faster this way, I have my doubts on whether it's able to respond to a request for a hasty mission as quickly as either an SP or if it were being towed.

Anybody out there have experience with hasty fire missions when the piece is being sling loaded under a helicopter?