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    T-55 and BTR-T your views

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    d_taddei2

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    T-55 and BTR-T your views

    Post  d_taddei2 on Tue Nov 05, 2013 4:40 am

    Hi all, I am looking to engage in peoples views on the T-55 and BTR-T.


    First off the T-55 tank, being the most produced tank of all time and with many still in use around the world today, and with some notably the Egyptian Ramses 2 tank having some serious upgrades and modifications and Ukraine offering upgrade packages for the T-55, giving the tanks some equipment found on modern tanks. But just how effective are these tanks on a modern day battlefield with and without the upgrades????????? and are the upgrades worth it or does it make more sense to buy upgraded T-72B??????


    OK now onto the subject of the BTR-T, being designed for a small trooper carrier with urban combat abilities in mind and multiple weapon choices. With all the T-55 tanks still in many armies inventories, and the increase in terrorist activity in urban areas, you would think this conversion would be ideal, and cheaper than buying new vehicles and make use of the older T-55 hulls, but yet no orders (that i know of please share if you know of any). Also any views on the vehicle itself i.e what do you think of its capabilities etc. I know that the BMPT is also a urban vehicle but want to keep this out of this thread as this will appear in a future thread i will post.



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    flamming_python

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    Re: T-55 and BTR-T your views

    Post  flamming_python on Tue Nov 05, 2013 12:16 pm

    It's like with that FROG discussion we had

    A heavily upgraded T-55 can be a formidable foe

    But if given the choice, and if you don't have any T-55s to upgrade in the first place - you might as well go with the T-72

    Larger main gun calibre, more modern ammunition (I think only Israel has produced cutting-edge 100mm smoothbore ammo as of late), greater availability of ammo and spare parts (T-55 stuff is getting old and being withdrawn more and more from service), autoloader (not always an advantage if the crew is experienced, but the T-55s small crew compartment may exasperate difficulties for the loader), better armour and a probably a load of other specifics that I'm not knowledgeable about.

    The Kharkov's plant T-55AGM is probably the most extensive upgrade; it even replaces the main gun with a modern 120mm or 125mm calibre.

    But at the end of the day it's still just a T-55 no matter how pimped out. The market for upgraded and modernised T-55s came and went in the 80s.

    The T-72 is a newer frame, and what's more it's got a lot more upgrade options. Most of the newest Russian upgrades for urban warfare tanks or conversions into BMPTs or support vehicles - are for the T-72 models. There are some that exist for the T-62 and T-54/T-55, especially from the other ex-Warsaw Pact or ex-USSR nations; but the options are considerably fewer. And the price difference won't be significant. Probably in the case of the T-55AGM; it would actually end up being more expensive than most T-72 upgrades.
    Whether you gut the frame of a T-55 and replace it all with high-tech, or do the same with the T-72; the cost won't be much different.

    The main way it would be worthwhile is if you already have some T-55s in decent condition along with many crews and officers experienced with them, a supply/repair network already in place for them and no threats in the vicinity that would require larger gun calibres.
    For a country like Vietnam, or Peru it could be worthwhile to upgrade their T-55s instead of buying T-90s or T-72s let's say.
    Romania is pushing it; as their T-55s, even with reactive armour and Israeli shells - will be severely outclassed by Russian T-90s; but then they probably don't have the money for much else and want to support their domestic industry, so it makes sense as a stop-gap at least for them too.

    However, for any new buyer; the T-72 is the only sensible option. And secound-hand T-72s won't cost much more than secound-hand T-55s; there are massive amounts lying around of both models.
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    GarryB

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    Re: T-55 and BTR-T your views

    Post  GarryB on Tue Nov 05, 2013 10:15 pm

    The Russians have thousands of T-54/55s plus all the parts and spares to keep them operational, but at the end of the day unless you already have lots of them then it does not make sense to buy them cheap and then upgrade them... it might end up marginally cheaper than an upgraded T-72 but it will be an order of magnitude less effective too.

    I think the best Russian upgrade was the T-55M2 or something that had the hull extended with new more heavily sloped armour to offer better protection, new engine, new lighter wheels, plus the turret of a T-72BM.

    At the end of the day there are enough T-72s around for a cheap tank to upgrade and I would go for a Burlak upgrade myself where there is no ammo in the crew compartment... it is all in the under floor autoloader system, and the turret bustle with 22 rounds under floor and a further 31 rounds in the rear turret bustle including long penetrator rounds.

    The idea of the BTR-T is as a use for all those existing T-55 chassis, so basing it on the T-72 or later model would make more sense as commonality of parts and systems would make it cheaper.

    It makes sense to go for a modern gun so 120mm smoothbore western gun or 125mm smoothbore Russian gun makes the most sense in terms of operational use as you can use all the latest ammo without having to develop your own.

    The key point is that if you want a capable upgraded vehicle then the things that are going to be expensive like thermal sights and fire control systems are going to be about the same price for any vehicle you buy it for... the difference is that while they will all be able to see a similar distance and communicate the same way with less than 120/125mm guns they wont be able to shoot as far as effectively... so a 100mm rifled T-55 gun might be effective to 1.5km, with the large calibres being more effective to double that range. While the armour of the T-55 might protect the vehicle from 4km range hits with the T-72BM level vehicle the protection might require enemy vehicles to get within 2km to be effective... the obvious difference as shown in Desert Storm... an enemy can stand outside the range of your guns and still penetrate your armour... though with modern optics you will be able to see it all happening...

    T-55 was a good solid reliable tank, but when you don't have any in service it is not the best choice as a new tank even with upgrades.

    Upgraded T-72s or T-90s would be a better basis for an armour park and you can make BMPT and BTR-T vehicles and indeed MSTA vehicles based on them to take advantage of shared components/engines etc etc.


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    d_taddei2

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    Post  d_taddei2 on Sat Nov 09, 2013 5:53 pm

    Hi thanks for the replies.
    Obviously if an army has loads of T-72 tanks it makes sense to convert them to BMPT and loads of T-55 tanks to BTR-T its just a shame that no army has decided to do this i think these conversions are really usefull, especially at supporting tanks in urban areas, and with the current threat of terrorism. Even just having a company or two would make a difference you wouldnt lose as many tanks and men. And both platforms are decent, and can have armour upgrades. They also have the bonus of having spares and maintainence knowledge. It baffles me as to why amries havent adopted these upgrades. I think the Syrian armed forces would have welcomed such upgrades while fighting the terrorist/rebels. Just a shame they didnt have these systems in place before if all kicked off.

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    GarryB

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    Re: T-55 and BTR-T your views

    Post  GarryB on Sun Nov 10, 2013 8:43 am

    Most of the armies that have them have neighbours with similar vehicles so the need for upgrades is not pressing.


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    Regular

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    Re: T-55 and BTR-T your views

    Post  Regular on Sun Nov 10, 2013 11:01 am

    Not to mention that even if they are in need of upgrades not all the countries can afford even keep them running in good order. Other armies have incompetent or weak leadership and they are left what they have for years and years to come no matter if situation have changed. Syrian war should be an example to other ME countries to emphasise less on conventional warfare and more on insurgency. With strong interior troops Syria wouldn't have to experience full out war.
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    runaway

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    Re: T-55 and BTR-T your views

    Post  runaway on Tue Nov 12, 2013 9:14 am

    Syrian army troops would need the BTR-T, its just perfect in the role there. Also as Syria have lots of old T-55 which doesnt stand up in Tank role, as IFV it would be great. Send 100 T-55 to Omsk and get 100 BTR-T back, that would be a good test and a real boost for ground troops.
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    d_taddei2

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    Post  d_taddei2 on Tue Nov 12, 2013 6:03 pm

    runaway wrote:Syrian army troops would need the BTR-T, its just perfect in the role there. Also as Syria have lots of old T-55 which doesnt stand up in Tank role, as IFV it would be great. Send 100 T-55 to Omsk and get 100 BTR-T back, that would be a good test and a real boost for ground troops.

    Its a real shame that they didnt get them upgraded before it all kicked off, i think the rebels/terrorists would be having a hard time if they had them. They would have been usefull in Chechnaya aswell.

    I wonder if they will include such a vehicle when the Russians bring out there new set of vehicle boomerang etc.
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    Re: T-55 and BTR-T your views

    Post  Regular on Tue Nov 12, 2013 9:39 pm

    Russia don't need HAPC for Chechnya or other Caucasus region or in any near future. Kamaz Typhoons are perfectly suited for Caucasus as interior troops are doing all the fighting. You can't really roll in a tank anymore and people still have to use roads.
    But for countries like Syria and for Israel HAPC is a must.
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    medo

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    Re: T-55 and BTR-T your views

    Post  medo on Tue Nov 12, 2013 9:58 pm

    d_taddei2 wrote:
    runaway wrote:Syrian army troops would need the BTR-T, its just perfect in the role there. Also as Syria have lots of old T-55 which doesnt stand up in Tank role, as IFV it would be great. Send 100 T-55 to Omsk and get 100 BTR-T back, that would be a good test and a real boost for ground troops.
    Its a real shame that they didnt get them upgraded before it all kicked off, i think the rebels/terrorists would be having a hard time if they had them. They would have been usefull in Chechnaya aswell.

    I wonder if they will include such a vehicle when the Russians bring out there new set of vehicle boomerang etc.
    BTR-T was ans idea from the nineties, but T-55 is just to old for anything. But if needed Russian army still have BMO-T vehicles based on T-72, which could be used as heavy APC.
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    flamming_python

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    Re: T-55 and BTR-T your views

    Post  flamming_python on Wed Nov 13, 2013 8:43 am

    Regular wrote:Russia don't need HAPC for Chechnya or other Caucasus region or in any near future. Kamaz Typhoons are perfectly suited for Caucasus as interior troops are doing all the fighting. You can't really roll in a tank anymore and people still have to use roads.
    But for countries like Syria and for Israel HAPC is a must.
    It would definately have been useful in Chechnya in the 90s; when mass urban warfare was a reality and there were constant ambushes. An APC with near MBT-level protection could have saved many lives.
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    Pugnax

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    T-55

    Post  Pugnax on Wed Nov 13, 2013 10:59 pm

    The T-55 gets a bad rap for being vulnerable...its an old platform but deserves a place of honour.Morozovs T-55AG would be a great asser in countries where fire support is required and a threat by western powers unlikely.Surprisingly a large number of 55s that were knocked out in GW1 were repairable whereas 72s were obliterated.It might simply be that the 72s were overkilled but the old 55 soldiers on.
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    collegeboy16

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    Re: T-55 and BTR-T your views

    Post  collegeboy16 on Wed Nov 20, 2013 12:51 pm

    best use for T-55 would be as gate guards... Razz  lol! 
    as an HAPC they would do great, esp. if you invested the extra to move the engine to the front, thicken up the base armor, put some decent ERA along with APS. also BMPTs, ditto with HAPC, except engine replacement, plus getting bmpt combat module.
    BTR-T is not that bad, just that like BMP-3 you have all these hatches for your troops to come out of because the engine sits at the back.
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    d_taddei2

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    Russia and the T-55

    Post  d_taddei2 on Mon Aug 11, 2014 1:30 am

    Hi all, wonder if anyone can answer my question. The T-55 was the most produced tank in the world and is still in use today, some with some pretty good upgrades like Eygpts Ramses II, and upgrades are still available for them. But what i want to know is what did Russia do with its T-55's? did they scrap them, sell them, store them, etc, i know they had developed the BTR-T which used the chassis and to which i thought was a good a vehicle and a good use for the old tanks (but no orders have been placed). Infact i think the use of Ramses II and the BTR-T working together would be great idea. Russia seems to horde vast quantities of armoured vehicles i.e BMP1&2, MT-LB, BRDM-2, BMD1&2, and BTR 60/70/80, any info on these would be great too.
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    Werewolf

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    Re: T-55 and BTR-T your views

    Post  Werewolf on Mon Aug 11, 2014 3:02 am

    AFAIK about T-55 lot of them are used to train tank drivers and mechanics on them also quite a few are used to become BTRT transporter but also doubt that lot of BTRT are made of older T-55's.
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    Mike E

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    Re: T-55 and BTR-T your views

    Post  Mike E on Mon Aug 11, 2014 3:16 am

    Werewolf wrote:AFAIK about T-55 lot of them are used to train tank drivers and mechanics on them also quite a few are used to become BTRT transporter but also doubt that lot of BTRT are made of older T-55's.

    Do you know how many BTRTs have been made? I couldn't find the number if my life depended on it!
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    Werewolf

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    Re: T-55 and BTR-T your views

    Post  Werewolf on Mon Aug 11, 2014 3:34 am

    Mike E wrote:
    Werewolf wrote:AFAIK about T-55 lot of them are used to train tank drivers and mechanics on them also quite a few are used to become BTRT transporter but also doubt that lot of BTRT are made of older T-55's.

    Do you know how many BTRTs have been made? I couldn't find the number if my life depended on it!

    Sorry, can't find any recent informations on it either.

    Most information on inet i can find are at least 5 years and some even 20 years old.
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    Mike E

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    Re: T-55 and BTR-T your views

    Post  Mike E on Mon Aug 11, 2014 3:47 am

    Same here... Sad
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    Re: T-55 and BTR-T your views

    Post  higurashihougi on Tue Aug 19, 2014 1:33 pm

    There is an Russian upgrade version named T-55AM which retain the 100mm gun but have additional ERA and stronger engine, and ATGM for the 100mm gun. A good export model/upgrade service for poor countries, but I wonder if the Russian can upgunned a bit. For example replace the 100mm with the 115mm one.

    Both the Israeli T-55M3 have the L7 105mm and the Ukrainian T-55AGM have a 125mm gun.

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    Re: T-55 and BTR-T your views

    Post  Asf on Tue Aug 19, 2014 4:23 pm

    Mike E wrote:
    Werewolf wrote:AFAIK about T-55 lot of them are used to train tank drivers and mechanics on them also quite a few are used to become BTRT transporter but also doubt that lot of BTRT are made of older T-55's.

    Do you know how many BTRTs have been made? I couldn't find the number if my life depended on it!
    Only prorotypes and about 30 for Bangladesh only.

    Russian army uses some number of BMO-T

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    Re: T-55 and BTR-T your views

    Post  Asf on Tue Aug 19, 2014 4:26 pm

    higurashihougi wrote:There is an Russian upgrade version named T-55AM which retain the 100mm gun but have additional ERA and stronger engine, and ATGM for the 100mm gun. A good export model/upgrade service for poor countries, but I wonder if the Russian can upgunned a bit. For example replace the 100mm with the 115mm one.
    There were many upgrades of T-55 (T-55AMV, for example). But Russia didn't change it's cannon. Only some ukraininan/eastern europe developers did it in 90s

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    Re: T-55 and BTR-T your views

    Post  Asf on Tue Aug 19, 2014 4:30 pm

    But what i want to know is what did Russia do with its T-55's?

    They were upgraded several times till late 80s, for Naval Infantry for example, but nowadays they are a subjected for to be replaced and are all mostly stored or recycled. Never hard of them being sold (officially)
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    Mike E

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    Re: T-55 and BTR-T your views

    Post  Mike E on Tue Aug 19, 2014 8:42 pm

    Asf wrote:
    Mike E wrote:
    Werewolf wrote:AFAIK about T-55 lot of them are used to train tank drivers and mechanics on them also quite a few are used to become BTRT transporter but also doubt that lot of BTRT are made of older T-55's.

    Do you know how many BTRTs have been made? I couldn't find the number if my life depended on it!
    Only prorotypes and about 30 for Bangladesh only.

    Russian army uses some number of BMO-T
    I thought that the BMO-T was based on the T-72...
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    medo

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    Re: T-55 and BTR-T your views

    Post  medo on Tue Aug 19, 2014 9:31 pm

    Mike E wrote:
    Asf wrote:
    Mike E wrote:
    Werewolf wrote:AFAIK about T-55 lot of them are used to train tank drivers and mechanics on them also quite a few are used to become BTRT transporter but also doubt that lot of BTRT are made of older T-55's.

    Do you know how many BTRTs have been made? I couldn't find the number if my life depended on it!
    Only prorotypes and about 30 for Bangladesh only.

    Russian army uses some number of BMO-T
    I thought that the BMO-T was based on the T-72...

    It is based on T-72.
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    Mike E

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    Re: T-55 and BTR-T your views

    Post  Mike E on Tue Aug 19, 2014 10:00 pm

    I was correcting Asf... Anyway, Russia could probably make some quick cash by selling BTR-Ts to smaller countries...

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