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Armor/AFV
For discussions on tanks, artillery, jeeps, etc.
How many shovels is enough?
barkingdigger
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Posted: Sunday, February 09, 2020 - 11:31 AM UTC
Just building a KaJaPa for the Tank Destroyers campaign, and I was surprised to see this little 4-man vehicle came with not one, not two, but four shovels! Were they so worried about digging in that everyone including the TC had a personal shovel, or was this a clever attempt to ensure that least one was left after thieving hands had helped themselves to a free shovel? Amusing guesses on a postcard...

Tank1812
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Posted: Monday, February 10, 2020 - 12:45 AM UTC
You can always find a Private with free hands that needs a purpose.
RobinNilsson
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Posted: Monday, February 10, 2020 - 02:03 AM UTC
Four showels dig faster than one.
Could it be that the showels/spades are part of their personal equipment?
Johnnych01
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Posted: Monday, February 10, 2020 - 02:16 AM UTC
Or ...... it could be if the crew had a severely hot curry the night before and all got short at once ...... when you gotta go ..you gotta go
Scarred
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Posted: Monday, February 10, 2020 - 06:05 AM UTC
Our vehicles had 4 man crews and each soldier carried an entrenching tool on his rucksack. Each vehicle had a set of pioneer tools. That's 5 shovels for a 4 man crew. Digging fighting positions went a lot faster without waiting for the shovel especially the crew served weapons, either a M60 or M2 depending on the rig.
barkingdigger
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Posted: Monday, February 10, 2020 - 06:12 AM UTC
I like the curry theory! These are long-handled AFV kit rather than personal gear/entrenching tools, and most other German AFVs seem to get by with only two. I can almost understand three for a crew of four, but the fourth implies the TC will be getting his hands dirty too...
Johnnych01
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Posted: Monday, February 10, 2020 - 07:27 AM UTC
Only thing I can think of is in that era is the W German stance was stay and defend where as main NATO plan was fighting withdrawal to channel to allow for reforger to happen, and being a tank destroyer, it would of had a pre planned defensive area/position to fight and die in, so more shovels to improve/conceal the wagon easier...
But I still like my curry idea
HermannB
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Posted: Monday, February 10, 2020 - 08:38 AM UTC
German Gründlichkeit!
Johnnych01
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Posted: Monday, February 10, 2020 - 08:42 AM UTC
Well said HH
mmeier
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Posted: Monday, February 10, 2020 - 09:24 AM UTC
Looking at this from Flickr they are not personal gear but vehicle gear.

But since the KaJaPa and RaJaPa where ambush vehicles I would not rule out that "everybody digs". After all they are not that heavily armored
Kevlar06
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Posted: Monday, February 10, 2020 - 11:38 AM UTC
Shovels come in very handy on tracked vehicles. They’re not so much meant for digging “fighting positions” (although they can be used for that) as they are for removing caked mud from the running gear, digging the track out when one is thrown (especially to the inside, where a hole must be dug to cut it or remove a section) or just digging your way out of a mire. I suspect that’s why there’s a long handled shovel on board for every crewman. Additionally, where the hull and gun are so low to the ground, they’ll come in very handy for digging and clearing a channel for the gun line of sight on the reverse slope of a hill or berm.
VR, Russ
Kevlar06
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Posted: Monday, February 10, 2020 - 11:41 AM UTC
Shovels come in very handy on tracked vehicles. They’re not so much meant for digging “fighting positions” (although they can be used for that) as they are for removing caked mud from the running gear, digging the track out when one is thrown (especially to the inside, where a hole must be dug to cut it or remove a section) or just digging your way out of a mire. I suspect that’s why there’s a long handled shovel on board for every crewman. Additionally, where the hull and gun are so low to the ground, they’ll come in very handy for digging and clearing a channel for the gun line of sight on the reverse slope of a hill or berm. You won’t find many long handled shovels on MBTs, primarily because doctrinally, they are designed to move and fight. But this vehicle is designed to “hide and fight”.
VR, Russ
BravoTwoZero
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Posted: Monday, February 10, 2020 - 11:44 AM UTC
ASU-85s also have 4 shovels
barkingdigger
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Posted: Monday, February 10, 2020 - 11:54 AM UTC
Fair enough - I can see a use for them all. Kinda reminds me of a building site years ago where they got so fed-up with ne'er-do-wells wasting time wandering the site "looking for a shovel" that they started handing them out to everyone at start of day, with the threat that anyone unable to produce their shovel when asked would be fired! Even the JCB drivers had one, and those guys were site royalty that NEVER climbed out of their cushy air-conditioned cabs to do anything menial with a hand tool...
Namabiiru
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Posted: Tuesday, February 11, 2020 - 12:30 AM UTC
Also remember that different kinds of shovels are suited to different uses. If you want to dig a hole, you need a spade. If you want to move a pile of dirt, you use a transfer shovel. For snow, snow shovel, etc. So the number of shovels isn't simply a function of the number of crew members available to dig, but also the various tasks for which you expect to need a shovel.

Lakota
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Posted: Tuesday, February 11, 2020 - 12:55 AM UTC

Quoted Text

Also remember that different kinds of shovels are suited to different uses. If you want to dig a hole, you need a spade. If you want to move a pile of dirt, you use a transfer shovel. For snow, snow shovel, etc. So the number of shovels isn't simply a function of the number of crew members available to dig, but also the various tasks for which you expect to need a shovel.


I buy my crew several types and brands of snow shovels. Everyone has their favorite so there is no "borrowing". But I digress...
Take care,
Don "Lakota"
Kevlar06
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Posted: Tuesday, February 11, 2020 - 06:12 AM UTC
When I was in 2ID In Korea, before the 1988 Olympics, we used to see “three man shovels” in use on construction projects everywhere. This consisted of a wide spade shovel with a grommet hole in each upper corner, to which a rope was tied. One guy would jam the spade in on an angle with his foot, and the other two guys on each end of the ropes would pull it out with a shovel full of dirt. Not a very efficient use of manpower, but in reality, they could work longer without as much fatigue with this method. It was a treat to see a well coordinated “shovel team” work, as they could really move along. On the other hand, a poorly coordinated “team” resembled the “Three Stooges”. When I returned to Korea in 2000, these “three man shovels” were nowhere to be seen, and neither were the “one eyed dragon” three-wheeled “agricultural motorcycles”— they had all been displaced by “more modern” “ western style” equipment. I also digress, but it’s amazing the variety of use for a simple ancient tool. One shovel for three guys vs four shovels for four guys!
VR, Russ
Scarred
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Posted: Tuesday, February 11, 2020 - 06:32 AM UTC

Quoted Text

When I was in 2ID In Korea, before the 1988 Olympics, we used to see “three man shovels” in use on construction projects everywhere. This consisted of a wide spade shovel with a grommet hole in each upper corner, to which a rope was tied. One guy would jam the spade in on an angle with his foot, and the other two guys on each end of the ropes would pull it out with a shovel full of dirt. Not a very efficient use of manpower, but in reality, they could work longer without as much fatigue with this method. It was a treat to see a well coordinated “shovel team” work, as they could really move along. On the other hand, a poorly coordinated “team” resembled the “Three Stooges”. When I returned to Korea in 2000, these “three man shovels” were nowhere to be seen, and neither were the “one eyed dragon” three-wheeled “agricultural motorcycles”— they had all been displaced by “more modern” “ western style” equipment. I also digress, but it’s amazing the variety of use for a simple ancient tool. One shovel for three guys vs four shovels for four guys!
VR, Russ



For those who do not know what a 'one eyed dragon' is here's a vid of one they were also known as 'one eyed water buffalos' and 'rice paddy assault vehicles'. You could find them on road with a trailer full of people heading to town even saw them on Route 1, a major highway.

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=xRyQtNZiqbo

Kevlar06
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Posted: Tuesday, February 11, 2020 - 07:12 AM UTC

Quoted Text


Quoted Text

When I was in 2ID In Korea, before the 1988 Olympics, we used to see “three man shovels” in use on construction projects everywhere. This consisted of a wide spade shovel with a grommet hole in each upper corner, to which a rope was tied. One guy would jam the spade in on an angle with his foot, and the other two guys on each end of the ropes would pull it out with a shovel full of dirt. Not a very efficient use of manpower, but in reality, they could work longer without as much fatigue with this method. It was a treat to see a well coordinated “shovel team” work, as they could really move along. On the other hand, a poorly coordinated “team” resembled the “Three Stooges”. When I returned to Korea in 2000, these “three man shovels” were nowhere to be seen, and neither were the “one eyed dragon” three-wheeled “agricultural motorcycles”— they had all been displaced by “more modern” “ western style” equipment. I also digress, but it’s amazing the variety of use for a simple ancient tool. One shovel for three guys vs four shovels for four guys!
VR, Russ



For those who do not know what a 'one eyed dragon' is here's a vid of one they were also known as 'one eyed water buffalos' and 'rice paddy assault vehicles'. You could find them on road with a trailer full of people heading to town even saw them on Route 1, a major highway.

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=xRyQtNZiqbo




Yes— I was on a 20 mile forced march around Dongduchon in July 1987, and had taken “point” just as one came careening around the corner on a very narrow side road, loaded with about ten people. To avoid a potentially life ending collision, I dove head first into a “turtle ditch” (a concrete culvert about 3ft deep and 2 feet wide) alongside the road, with a full 50lb ruck. These ditches are normally filled with really nasty stuff. Mine had about a foot of slimy water and a lot of “orange belly” toads. I spent about 2 seconds in there, when I came out, I had toads clinging all over my ruck and LBE, and was covered in a mass of slimy green algae. To this day, I have great respect for those “one eyed dragons”. When I got back to Camp Casey, my team gave me “the order of the amphibian”, and it was quite a topic that night in the mess— after I got cleaned up.
VR, Russ
Scarred
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Posted: Thursday, February 13, 2020 - 06:25 AM UTC

Quoted Text


Quoted Text


Quoted Text

When I was in 2ID In Korea, before the 1988 Olympics, we used to see “three man shovels” in use on construction projects everywhere. This consisted of a wide spade shovel with a grommet hole in each upper corner, to which a rope was tied. One guy would jam the spade in on an angle with his foot, and the other two guys on each end of the ropes would pull it out with a shovel full of dirt. Not a very efficient use of manpower, but in reality, they could work longer without as much fatigue with this method. It was a treat to see a well coordinated “shovel team” work, as they could really move along. On the other hand, a poorly coordinated “team” resembled the “Three Stooges”. When I returned to Korea in 2000, these “three man shovels” were nowhere to be seen, and neither were the “one eyed dragon” three-wheeled “agricultural motorcycles”— they had all been displaced by “more modern” “ western style” equipment. I also digress, but it’s amazing the variety of use for a simple ancient tool. One shovel for three guys vs four shovels for four guys!
VR, Russ



For those who do not know what a 'one eyed dragon' is here's a vid of one they were also known as 'one eyed water buffalos' and 'rice paddy assault vehicles'. You could find them on road with a trailer full of people heading to town even saw them on Route 1, a major highway.

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=xRyQtNZiqbo




Yes— I was on a 20 mile forced march around Dongduchon in July 1987, and had taken “point” just as one came careening around the corner on a very narrow side road, loaded with about ten people. To avoid a potentially life ending collision, I dove head first into a “turtle ditch” (a concrete culvert about 3ft deep and 2 feet wide) alongside the road, with a full 50lb ruck. These ditches are normally filled with really nasty stuff. Mine had about a foot of slimy water and a lot of “orange belly” toads. I spent about 2 seconds in there, when I came out, I had toads clinging all over my ruck and LBE, and was covered in a mass of slimy green algae. To this day, I have great respect for those “one eyed dragons”. When I got back to Camp Casey, my team gave me “the order of the amphibian”, and it was quite a topic that night in the mess— after I got cleaned up.
VR, Russ



Ah yes, the good old benjo ditch. There was one cutting thru our section of Camp Humphreys that many drunken soldiers have fallen in. I watched one guy jump into it from the road bridge that crossed over it. We hosed him off and sent him to the MASH to get checked out. He was lip dragging drunk from a night in the 'ville.
petbat
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Posted: Thursday, February 13, 2020 - 09:00 AM UTC
The extra shovels were to give kids something to do



jon_a_its
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Posted: Thursday, February 13, 2020 - 11:03 PM UTC

Quoted Text

For those who do not know what a 'one eyed dragon' is here's a vid of one they were also known as 'one eyed water buffalos' and 'rice paddy assault vehicles'. You could find them on road with a trailer full of people heading to town even saw them on Route 1, a major highway.
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=xRyQtNZiqbo



My German Grandad ran youth hostels in Braunlage & Hohegeiss in the '70's-'80's & had one of these.

It had accessories, a rotovator, grass cutter,& a Snow Plough! I was then too young to drive it, but rode as ballast!
Scarred
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Posted: Friday, February 14, 2020 - 12:01 AM UTC
We had an old David Bradley walk behind tractor. It came with a burned out 1/4 hp gas engine. It was my project in Jr. High school small gas engines class. We got the old engine repaired and running for about $30. The teacher had a D.B. tractor when he was a kid and we retrofitted it with a 10hp gas engine that would fit under the hood. We had a lot of implements like plow, disk, mower, tiller and a bunch of others. It was handy for the garden and keeping berry brambles and nettles under control. With the new engine I could change out the pulley and get some speed. I'd hook my little brothers red rider wagon behind it and tear up the road. I'd get my friends and we'd go bombing down the road. Of course the wagon would flip throwing us around but it was fun.