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    Soviet IFV BMP-1 & BMP-2

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    SeigSoloyvov

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    Re: Soviet IFV BMP-1 & BMP-2

    Post  SeigSoloyvov on Mon Apr 17, 2017 9:47 pm

    PapaDragon wrote:
    SeigSoloyvov wrote:If they decide to upgrade mass amounts of BMP-2's that would mean other vehicles are far more behind than planned otherwise there is zero reason to put money into such a project if things like the Kurg are just around the corner.


    This would be geared towards exports. Lots of these things are in use around the world so it is a decent sized market. And does not look all that expensive. Remember, brand new 1000+ hp engine for T-72 costs in the ballpark of just 100.000$ so this kit is probably peanuts as well.

    Also, these vehicles will be going into reserve soon and it is always wise to keep your reserve up to date as much as possible.

    This logic makes sense if Russia already had all the Kurgs etc they wanted. If this was just to update some naval forces or back water reserve garrison units that use maybe a couple hundred BMP-2's that would be an understandable move. To upgrade thousands of them for domestic units doesn't.

    They don't they will not spend tons of money upgrading BMP-2's when they still have to buy tons of new vehicles to replace said BMP-2's.

    Export is another story but domestic? no way. Russian Mod would have to be pretty foolish to do this, not like they have unlimited money even my country who spends way more than them would have an issue with such a concept.
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    franco

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    Re: Soviet IFV BMP-1 & BMP-2

    Post  franco on Mon Apr 17, 2017 11:07 pm

    SeigSoloyvov wrote:If they decide to upgrade mass amounts of BMP-2's that would mean other vehicles are far more behind than planned otherwise there is zero reason to put money into such a project if things like the Kurg are just around the corner.


    So far ~400 were upgraded with another 580 in the second order for about ~1000. All mechanical and electronic upgrades so far with no weapons upgrade announced so far.
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    GarryB

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    Re: Soviet IFV BMP-1 & BMP-2

    Post  GarryB on Tue Apr 18, 2017 5:20 am

    If they decide to upgrade mass amounts of BMP-2's that would mean other vehicles are far more behind than planned otherwise there is zero reason to put money into such a project if things like the Kurg are just around the corner.

    No it would not.

    They are upgrading all in service equipment, it means nothing regarding the new replacement equipment in development.

    Looks like the "Berezhok" upgrade, not really wise to keep working on BMP-2s anymore since Kurganets is on the way, but still a good choice for exports to upgrade to, although BMP-3s would probly be a better investment for them.

    Upgrading the enormous existing fleet of vehicles makes rather more sense than saving money and spending it on the new vehicles to trickle into service in a year or twos time.

    It is a way to get existing forces used to more advanced and capable systems and also to get work for companies that will soon be producing new equipment for the new vehicles too.

    Also, these vehicles will be going into reserve soon and it is always wise to keep your reserve up to date as much as possible.

    They will go to reserve when there are enough new vehicles for operational use... which will take a few years to achieve.

    This logic makes sense if Russia already had all the Kurgs etc they wanted. If this was just to update some naval forces or back water reserve garrison units that use maybe a couple hundred BMP-2's that would be an understandable move. To upgrade thousands of them for domestic units doesn't.

    If there is an upgrade available for the fleet it makes sense to apply it when there is money available... it seems there is money available.

    Saving money for a vehicle not even in service yet and then to spend money on vehicles going into reserve is stupid.

    Spend the money now on in service vehicles. What works and what does not will show up in use and that can be applied to the new vehicles being developed.

    They don't they will not spend tons of money upgrading BMP-2's when they still have to buy tons of new vehicles to replace said BMP-2's.

    The BMP-1s will be replaced first... it will likely be 5-10 years before the BMP-2s are gone from frontline service... especially all its modifications and specialist versions.

    You get the best bang for your buck upgrading existing types already in service... not by saving your pennys for vehicles that are not in service yet.

    Export is another story but domestic? no way. Russian Mod would have to be pretty foolish to do this, not like they have unlimited money even my country who spends way more than them would have an issue with such a concept.

    Russian MOD does not upgrade their vehicles so they can be exported... that is not their function or their focus. If the Russian export company decides to export material it might offer upgrades but usually to seal the deal as a bonus. Ie free old vehicles and you pay for the upgrades to make them useful.

    So far ~400 were upgraded with another 580 in the second order for about ~1000. All mechanical and electronic upgrades so far with no weapons upgrade announced so far.

    So they have already upgraded half the vehicles they were planning to upgrade... there is no way they could have introduced 1,000 Kurganets vehicles to replace the BMP-2s in service for that sort of money in that sort of time... so it is money well spent.
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    0nillie0

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    Re: Soviet IFV BMP-1 & BMP-2

    Post  0nillie0 on Tue Apr 18, 2017 10:09 am

    GarryB wrote:
    So they have already upgraded half the vehicles they were planning to upgrade... there is no way they could have introduced 1,000 Kurganets vehicles to replace the BMP-2s in service for that sort of money in that sort of time... so it is money well spent.

    Well from what i know the electronic upgrades consist of the integration of a new intercom and R-168 radio stations. I don't really know what is being upgraded mechanically.

    Imho this is more of an essential "update" to ensure these vehicles remain capable of inter-operation with the land forces, rather than an upgrade of the overall vehicle capabilities. It is clearly a short term thing. If they where planning on keeping large amounts of BMP-2's in frontline service for the next 10 years or so, imho we would see far more extensive upgrades being implemented. Both the Russian MoD, and the enemies of Russia have stated and acknowledged that the BMP-2 is no longer viable for modern high intensity conflicts.

    Imho the Berezhok upgrade which was announced but not yet implemented, is the true mistake here. If they would have done this when the kit first became available, i would understand this. But with the development of the Kurganets and other new vehicle families so far advanced, it would make more sense to simply wait for that development to be completed. And as the new vehicles enter service, use the technology in these vehicles to slowly start upgrading the BMP-2's in parallel with simplified packages. For example, integrate the gunner sight, and simplified FCS of Kurganets IFV, and develop new side skirts that can carry the add-on armor modules. Or simply remove the existing BMP-2 turret and replace it with the RWS for the Kurganets altogether. I think the key feature is that they need to find a way to upgrade the protection of the BMP-2, while retaining its mobility and low profile.

    Al tough this would be initially more expensive, i think the benefit of having frontline forces and reserves/second line forces using similar systems would be greatly beneficial in the longer term.

    In the future, BMP-2's could even be converted to operate fully unmanned alongside the kurganets or armata family.

    Even tho i always hoped that Berezhok would be implemented, imho its too little too late now. And i hope that in the future we can see a BMP-2 with some features of Kurganets instead.
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    GarryB

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    Re: Soviet IFV BMP-1 & BMP-2

    Post  GarryB on Tue Apr 18, 2017 11:18 am

    Why not apply the Berezhok upgrade?

    Modify it so that it contains components compatible with the new electronic and sensor suites being developed in the new vehicle family systems, but they cannot be completely transferred to the BMP series because they have unmanned turrets which none of the BMPs have.

    BMP-2s already have front mounted engines and rear mounted doors... so they are a step ahead of the BMP-3s in that regard.

    Fitting the Standard APS system should bulk up their armour protection and applique armour should further improve performance without increasing weight that much.

    You can't remove the turret and replace it with a RWS... where would the commander and gunner sit?

    Its main purpose is troop transport... let it continue to do that...

    Both the Russian MoD, and the enemies of Russia have stated and acknowledged that the BMP-2 is no longer viable for modern high intensity conflicts.

    With Kornets and RPG-28s about no western IFV is safe either...
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    0nillie0

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    Re: Soviet IFV BMP-1 & BMP-2

    Post  0nillie0 on Tue Apr 18, 2017 12:08 pm

    GarryB wrote:Why not apply the Berezhok upgrade?


    You can't remove the turret and replace it with a RWS... where would the commander and gunner sit?

    Its main purpose is troop transport... let it continue to do that...

    I agree on that. My personal opinion on the matter is that with the advances in computerized FCS and digital battlefield monitoring systems, a personnel carrier shouldn't require both a gunner and a commander. I think the commander can fulfill both roles from a single station, which would create additional space for a fully equipped dismount. As seen in the picture below, the BMP-2 can be converted for remote weapon station integration, while still maintaining a fairly large area available for dismounts. However, i do understand that there is a difference in doctrine and tradition between East and West, and that such as a drastic modification of the vehicle hull comes at a cost and may not be as efficient in practice.

    Inside of the BMP-2 upgraded by Excalibur Army : (note the commander and gunner stations at the front. The reconfigured hull reduces the transport capacity to just 6 fully equipped dismounts).



    With Kornets and RPG-28s about no western IFV is safe either...

    Yes this is true, and it is exactly the reason why Berezhok is so lethal. But this should not stop Russia from trying to improve the protection of its BMP-2 crews either. This can be done in a number of ways
    - Add active protection suite used in Kurganets/T-15
    - Add new addon armor used in Kurganets/T-15
    - Add addon armor kits already developed for previous iterations of the BMP-2M
    - Reconfigure the chassis so that there is no ammunition near the crew, and there are safer ways to exit the vehicle (replace the rear doors). IMHO is the main problem of the Berezhok upgrade. Ammo remains near crew, while side and rear armor remain equally vulnerable.  

    Or a combination of the above.

    Taking in to account doctrine and cost efficiency, the best way to go would probably be to add active protection in combination with increased firepower of the Berezhok. So in conclusion, i agree to that.
    But i also look at other possibilities.

    Edit*
    One other issue i have with Berezhok is the fixed grenade launcher. I rather wish they could integrate a commander sight similar to that on the T-14 and T-90MS, which is combined with a weapon station. Imho the grenade launcher is more efficient if it can operate independently from the turret. But this off course is wishful thinking.
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    VladimirSahin

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    Re: Soviet IFV BMP-1 & BMP-2

    Post  VladimirSahin on Wed Apr 19, 2017 2:34 am

    So the upgraded BMPs are the BMP-2M variant (berezhok turret)??
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    AlfaT8

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    Re: Soviet IFV BMP-1 & BMP-2

    Post  AlfaT8 on Wed Apr 19, 2017 4:27 am

    GarryB wrote:
    Looks like the "Berezhok" upgrade, not really wise to keep working on BMP-2s anymore since Kurganets is on the way, but still a good choice for exports to upgrade to, although BMP-3s would probly be a better investment for them.

    Upgrading the enormous existing fleet of vehicles makes rather more sense than saving money and spending it on the new vehicles to trickle into service in a year or twos time.

    It is a way to get existing forces used to more advanced and capable systems and also to get work for companies that will soon be producing new equipment for the new vehicles too.

    Looks like i was dead wrong, that's not the Berezhok upgrade, not sure what 2M variant that is, Vanilla 2M+cage/side armor?? scratch

    Well if they can get them upgraded at a good pace, than sure.

    kopyo-21

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    Re: Soviet IFV BMP-1 & BMP-2

    Post  kopyo-21 on Wed Apr 19, 2017 6:03 am

    AlfaT8 wrote:
    GarryB wrote:
    Looks like the "Berezhok" upgrade, not really wise to keep working on BMP-2s anymore since Kurganets is on the way, but still a good choice for exports to upgrade to, although BMP-3s would probly be a better investment for them.

    Upgrading the enormous existing fleet of vehicles makes rather more sense than saving money and spending it on the new vehicles to trickle into service in a year or twos time.

    It is a way to get existing forces used to more advanced and capable systems and also to get work for companies that will soon be producing new equipment for the new vehicles too.

    Looks like i was dead wrong, that's not the Berezhok upgrade, not sure what 2M variant that is, Vanilla 2M+cage/side armor?? scratch

    Well if they can get them upgraded at a good pace, than sure.
    BMP-2M: three projects with the same name:

    1. Joined project with BMP-3 turret (100mm combined 30mm gun)
    2. Tula "Berezhok" upgrade with 30mm 2A42 gun, Ags-30 30mm grenade and Kornet laser beam riding ATGM
    3. Kurgansky "Brezhok" upgrade with embodiment, 30mm 2A42 gun and Ataka radio guided ATGM

    https://topwar.ru/21909-bmp-2m-tri-proekta-s-odnim-imenem.html


    Last edited by kopyo-21 on Thu Apr 20, 2017 12:38 am; edited 1 time in total
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    Book.

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    Re: Soviet IFV BMP-1 & BMP-2

    Post  Book. on Wed Apr 19, 2017 6:41 am





    Ru do the Moderna. Berezhok
    http://bmpd.livejournal.com/2517253.html
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    franco

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    Re: Soviet IFV BMP-1 & BMP-2

    Post  franco on Fri Sep 29, 2017 2:16 pm

    Ministry of Defense signs contract for the modernization of 540 BMP-2 and BMD-2's with Tula. Perhaps the long awaited Berezhok upgrade but it is not stated as such.

    http://function.mil.ru/news_page/country/more.htm?id=12144005@egNews
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    franco

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    Re: Soviet IFV BMP-1 & BMP-2

    Post  franco on Fri Sep 29, 2017 11:37 pm

    The Tula plant BMP-2M upgrade http://bastion-karpenko.ru/bmp-2m/
    and BMD-2M http://bastion-opk.ru/bmd-2m/
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    GunshipDemocracy

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    Re: Soviet IFV BMP-1 & BMP-2

    Post  GunshipDemocracy on Thu Oct 05, 2017 11:21 pm

    franco wrote:The Tula plant BMP-2M upgrade http://bastion-karpenko.ru/bmp-2m/
    and BMD-2M http://bastion-opk.ru/bmd-2m/

    Actually if you follow this link
    http://bastion-karpenko.ru/bmp-2m/

    you can find info about also increased protection (slightly though) mine protection, side curtains for cumulative "deflectors" and armor piercing 12,7mm rounds.
    Wieght of additional screens will not hinder floating abilities.


    They say also engine and suspension will be upgraded too.

    BTW if AGS-30mm will work well on Berezhok upgrade WTF this was removed for Terminator ?!
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    franco

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    Re: Soviet IFV BMP-1 & BMP-2

    Post  franco on Fri Oct 06, 2017 2:42 am

    A 540 total should equal 3 BMP regiments / brigades (9 battalions, 40 per) and 2 BMD regiments (6 battalions, 30 per).
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    0nillie0

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    Re: Soviet IFV BMP-1 & BMP-2

    Post  0nillie0 on Fri Oct 06, 2017 10:27 am

    GunshipDemocracy wrote:
    franco wrote:The Tula plant BMP-2M upgrade http://bastion-karpenko.ru/bmp-2m/
    and BMD-2M http://bastion-opk.ru/bmd-2m/


    BTW if AGS-30mm will work well on Berezhok upgrade WTF this was removed for Terminator ?!

    What is your source on the removal of AGS-30?

    AFAIK the latest iteration (showcased in Syria) combines the older chassis with the newer turret.
    Older chassis retains 2x 30mm AGS-30 launchers covering the frontal arc.

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    GunshipDemocracy

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    Re: Soviet IFV BMP-1 & BMP-2

    Post  GunshipDemocracy on Fri Oct 06, 2017 2:48 pm

    0nillie0 wrote:
    GunshipDemocracy wrote:
    franco wrote:The Tula plant BMP-2M upgrade http://bastion-karpenko.ru/bmp-2m/
    and BMD-2M http://bastion-opk.ru/bmd-2m/


    BTW if AGS-30mm will work well on Berezhok upgrade WTF this was removed for Terminator ?!

    What is your source on the removal of AGS-30?

    AFAIK the latest iteration (showcased in Syria) combines the older chassis with the newer turret.
    Older chassis retains 2x 30mm AGS-30 launchers covering the frontal arc.




    Terminator 2. Check in any bastion source or wiki or GurKhan blog.
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    GarryB

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    Re: Soviet IFV BMP-1 & BMP-2

    Post  GarryB on Sun Oct 08, 2017 12:10 am

    My understanding is that the new Terminator has three crew instead of five so it does not have the extra two crewmen in the hull to operate the two 30mm grenade launchers.
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    0nillie0

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    Re: Soviet IFV BMP-1 & BMP-2

    Post  0nillie0 on Mon Oct 09, 2017 11:56 am

    Terminator 2. Check in any bastion source or wiki or GurKhan blog.

    Yes, that is picture of BMPT-72 aka "Terminator 2" from Army 2015.

    Recent pictures of terminator shipped to Syria in 2017 for evaluation :



    Note the crew stations for AGS-30 are still there. These pictures also appeared on Ghurkan blog

    Why place the new turret on the old chassis, if you plan to use the new turret and new chassis for domestic trials?
    At any rate, i think they should find a different solution for the AGS-30. perhaps combine the commander sight with RWS like in T-90 upgrade.
    Crew should be 3.
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    GarryB

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    Re: Soviet IFV BMP-1 & BMP-2

    Post  GarryB on Tue Oct 10, 2017 8:03 am

    The problem there is ability to engage separate targets.

    The point of bow mounted weapons is to be able to fire upon targets in front of the vehicle.

    The job of the commander is to find both threats and targets... the driver will be instructed to point the nose 9ie heaviest armour) towards the greatest threats, which will mean both grenade launchers can engage the greatest threats too... whether they are ATGM teams or aircraft or whatever the gunner might be directed to engage the threat while the bow gunners can engage targets of opportunity.

    Needless to say the commanders job is to tell the driver where to drive and give the gunner the target that needs to be engaged first with any other target handed off to a bow gunner.

    Having just three crew means the bow guns would be pointless as there would be no one to operate them.

    If you want to suggest the commander use those then you are ignoring a century of battle experience.

    It is a full time job for the commander to direct the gunner and the driver and to look for new targets and new threats.
    Personally I would like to see the two bow grenade launchers replaced with flat external gun mounts with a PKP and a Balkan 40mm grenade launcher.... both very compact weapons... on on the front corner of the hull and one on the rear corner of the hull so front and rear and sides can be covered by both weapons with say 270 degree arcs of fire.

    I think the two 30mm cannons of the Terminator should be replaced with a single twin barrel 323mm cannon as fitted to the late model Mi-24, and a 120mm rifled gun mortar fitted, plus either a 57mm grenade launcher or a long barrel Balkan 40mm grenade launcher.

    If they are going to be testing it it makes sense to test the latest turret but also the old chassis with the grenade launchers.
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    0nillie0

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    Re: Soviet IFV BMP-1 & BMP-2

    Post  0nillie0 on Tue Oct 10, 2017 10:22 am

    GarryB wrote:The problem there is ability to engage separate targets.

    The point of bow mounted weapons is to be able to fire upon targets in front of the vehicle.

    The job of the commander is to find both threats and targets... the driver will be instructed to point the nose 9ie heaviest armour) towards the greatest threats, which will mean both grenade launchers can engage the greatest threats too... whether they are ATGM teams or aircraft or whatever the gunner might be directed to engage the threat while the bow gunners can engage targets of opportunity.

    Needless to say the commanders job is to tell the driver where to drive and give the gunner the target that needs to be engaged first with any other target handed off to a bow gunner.

    Having just three crew means the bow guns would be pointless as there would be no one to operate them.

    If you want to suggest the commander use those then you are ignoring a century of battle experience.

    It is a full time job for the commander to direct the gunner and the driver and to look for new targets and new threats.
    Personally I would like to see the two bow grenade launchers replaced with flat external gun mounts with a PKP and a Balkan 40mm grenade launcher.... both very compact weapons... on on the front corner of the hull and one on the rear corner of the hull so front and rear and sides can be covered by both weapons with say 270 degree arcs of fire.

    I think the two 30mm cannons of the Terminator should be replaced with a single twin barrel 323mm cannon as fitted to the late model Mi-24, and a 120mm rifled gun mortar fitted, plus either a 57mm grenade launcher or a long barrel Balkan 40mm grenade launcher.

    If they are going to be testing it it makes sense to test the latest turret but also the old chassis with the grenade launchers.

    You make a good point. The bow mounted weapons are there for a reason. Still, i think it would be a nice addition for the commander to have his own grenade launcher to engage targets of opportunity. When operating in a high intensity combat situation. Also, removing ammo away from any crew members is always good, and also reducing the amount of potential KIA's per vehicle.

    One solution i have been thinking of could be to use a more compact, mast mounted sight for the commander (something along the lines of Rafael Minipop). The mast of the sight could run trough the remote weapon station, similar to what we see in for example in the BRDM-2 upgraded by Aselsan. Here we see the observation mast which runs trough the weapon station, allowing the mast to rotate independently from the weapon station, while not interfering with its line of sight.

    In the case of the Terminator, the grenade launcher can be set up at the location of the current commander sight. It can be directed by the FCS to cover the frontal arc of the chassis by default, regardless of the turret azimuth. However, if the situation requires it, it can also engage targets in line of sight with the turret. The commander can also take over control of the weapon, automatically slewing it to his own independent mast mounted sight and fire on targets of opportunity.

    The weapon would be controlled by a 4th crew member which is seated where one of the current AGS operators are located. Basically he would need just enough room for a controller, FCS control panel and small LCD screen, which displays image from a low-level TV camera which is fixed to the weapon station. When he is in control of the station, the stabilized sight is slewed automatically to the front. He can also engage targets off center from the hull. The gunner and commander can both take over, and this gives the weapon pretty much 360 degree coverage (including the front) without interfering with the commander sight, which runs trough its center and is elevated above it.
    This also reduces the total crew to 4 instead of 5, or even a basic 3 man setup if the situation so requires it.

    Now there are issues with this setup :
    Firstly it will increase both production and training costs
    Secondly, the Russians have a good doctrine of using reasonably well protected electro-optics. A mast mounted sight will always be more vulnerable, but it also has advantages.
    Third : the FCS becomes more complex, the crew station needs to be big enough to fit all these components etc...
    Fourth : Manually aimed and operated weapons are unhindered by electronic warfare and jamming etc.

    Personally, i don't see this happening as it just does not really fit Russian military doctrine. But perhaps other nations can try this on their terminator copies, which will undoubtedly follow in the future.
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    The-thing-next-door

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    Re: Soviet IFV BMP-1 & BMP-2

    Post  The-thing-next-door on Tue Nov 28, 2017 12:02 pm

    Modernization efforts in the realm of lightly armored vehicles and fire support vehicles seem to be coming along nicely all Russia needs now is some decent 30mm APFSDS rounds for the damn things and then they will be far ahead of the west.

    Also does anyone else think that mounting Verbas on all your APCs and IFVs is a good idea for anti air?
    I do so love anti air weapons.
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    Isos

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    Re: Soviet IFV BMP-1 & BMP-2

    Post  Isos on Wed Dec 20, 2017 6:33 pm

    Found on Facebook page of Tank chaser.



    Insufficient Armament: BMP-1 vs T-55

    One of the things never really decided for the BMP-1 was the official proper tactical use. In the beginning, the vehicle was – like the BTR class vehicles (BTR – „bronetransporter“ is a Russian word for an APC) – intended only for the infantry transport and support role. In this however, the BMP-1 was even worse than the older BTR’s, as it had no other suitable weapon than a single PKT machinegun – its main weapon, the 2A28 Grom – was only theoretically useful in fighting enemy armored forces.

    The 2A28 Grom is a 73mm smoothbore low-pressure gun, its primary purpose firing HEAT shells at enemy armored targets (HE-Frag shells were only introduced later on in mid-70’s). It was not selected as the best weapon for the future Soviet IFV, it was chosen simply because no other gun was available. This unfortunate situation was partially caused by the overseer of the BMP-1 development, GRAU (Main Missile and Artillery Directorate), as opposed to the „usual“ armor development overseer, GBTU (Main Armor Directorate). From the names of these Soviet institutions, their line of thought is not that hard to fathom. GRAU was heavily influenced by Khruschev government’s incompetence and placed their bet on a losing horse: early missiles. When this line of thought turned out to be wrong, they naturally did not want to be the ones to be held responsible and continued to refuse any blame.

    GRAU in turn had no lighter, automatic cannon available and did not oversee any institute or bureau that would be capable of designing one, as most were disbanded in the early 60’s. Automatic guns were only developed by the Soviet air force and the navy, but those fell under different government officials, not affiliated with GRAU. What made the matter even worse was the fact that certain GRAU generals „fell in love“ with the 2A28 caliber, promoting it as „the most powerful gun ever mounted on an IFV“. When actual officers in charge of these vehicles complained about the gun’s poor performance and accuracy, they were accused of poor maintenance and insufficient training with all the complaints being silently swept under the rug. But the rumors slowly made their way up the Soviet ranks and in the end, GBTU forced the issue by organizing official shooting trials at Kubinka proving grounds. A BMP-1 was to fire against an obsolete T-55 tank at 800 meters (the target was not moving). And the result of the trials? Of 50 shots, only 17 did hit the tank - others were carried off their trajectory by the wind. The shells that did hit made their impacts under different angles – some ricocheted, some did not, but in the end, not a single shell managed to penetrate the vehicle. After the trials, a driver just drove off with the undamaged tank – a fitting testament to the inefficiency of the Grom gun

    BMP-2 vs T-72

    This particular trial (see - Insufficient Armament BMP-1 vs T-55 ) finally caused a scandal in Soviet ranks and the ministry of defense immediately ordered the vehicle to be modified in order to increase its firepower. As a part of this initiative, it was to be fitted with a dual-axis stabilizer and with the newest generation of anti-tank missiles. What followed however was to be the proof of the fact that strange IFV development process filled with blunders was by no means exclusive to the Americans.

    For one, a serious flaw of this initiative proved to be the demand for a one-man turret. A single crewmember turret was proven to be ineffective many times in history, making the decision to use it once again quite strange. But that was not to be the last issue – two Soviet design bureaus and plants were tasked with cooperating on the BMP vehicle improvement and with building a prototype of the said vehicle – ChTZ (Chelyabinsk Tractor Plant) and KMZ (Kurgan Mashine Construction Plant). In the past, ChTZ did win the BMP-1 design competition, but the contract actually went to KMZ (citing ChTZ’s „lacking production capacities“) creating bitter rivalry amongst the two bureaus. How well that „cooperation“ went is anyone’s guess – nevertheless, both design bureaus were merged into one temporary bureau, called OKB Bosk (OKB means „experimental design bureau“ in Russian).

    At first, ChKZ tried to use the fact favor of GRAU and decided to improve the Grom gun. The result was an experimental vehicle designated Object 768 with a one-man turret and an improved 73mm gun, designation „Zarnitsa“. This weapon used the same ammunition as the Grom, but its barrel was longer, resulting in improved accuracy and range. To silence the cries of Soviet soldiers for a better infantry support weapon, they paired the gun with one 12,7mm NSVT machinegun. Since both guns did not fit the original turret and additional space for the stabilizer mechanism was required as well, ChKZ reworked the turret and increased its size. This turned out to be a problem as well, since the increased weight of the weapons and turret caused the vehicle to lose its amphibious capability. This in turn was „solved“ by making the hull longer and adding the seventh roadwheel while the turret was shifted to the back. This „modification“ did not bother the ChKZ designers at all – after all, they wouldn’t have to actually produce the hull, as it was to be manufactured by their competitor, KMZ.

    In the end, the weight was increased to 13.5 tons and despite the fact the hull was now 83 centimeters longer, only six infantrymen could fit inside this vehicle. This issue in turn caused notable lack of enthusiasm in GBTU (to put it mildly) but despite the objections the Object 768 was finished and ready for trials by the end of 1972. In the end however, the project was significantly delayed by the „competition“ – the KMZ representatives in the OKB were adamant: the vehicle has to be based on the current, existing BMP hull, as the „modifications“ ChKZ proposed would require a complete overhaul of the entire assembly line. And so the „cooperation“ was de-facto over before it even began. The KMZ designers then decided to comply with the army requests and proposed a vehicle equipped with an effective automatic gun, capable of infantry support role (at this point, the 73mm guns were still firing HEAT shells only, HE-Frag would come only two years later) and of fighting enemy soft targets, slower aircraft and – most notably – helicopters, that were becoming very popular with NATO at that point.

    The KMZ BMP-1 successor design came to be under the leadership of B.N.Yakovlev. His proposal, designated Object 675, was to be equipped with a two-man turret and an automatic 30mm cannon paired with a 7,62mm machinegun. In order to knock out enemy armored targets, the vehicle was to be also armed with one 9K111 „Fagot“ anti-tank guided missile launcher (NATO codename: AT-4 Spigot) or with the 9M113 „Konkurs“ (NATO codename: AT-5 Spandrel) system. The guidance system for the missiles was to be – unlike in the improved BMP-1P (Object 765) - located inside the hull so the operator wouldn’t have to be unprotected while controlling the missile.

    The work on the design began in 1972 and the deadline was practically impossible: three months. This was caused again by GRAU stating that it’s more than enough time since technically the entire project is just a „modernization“ and not an entirely new armored vehicle project (which it – in reality – practically was due to the amount of required modifications). The prototype was to be built within a year – and while the preliminary project was indeed ready on time, to actually build the vehicle was another matter entirely.

    Since GRAU was still insisting on their preferred weapon (the 73mm Zarnitsa) and wanted to have nothing to do with the development of a new 30mm cannon in order not to have to admit their own mistake, B.N.Yakovlev was forced to look for help elsewhere, contacting the air force design bureau CKB-14 commanded by A.G.Shipunov and V.P.Gryazev and asking them whether they’d develop the automatic gun for him. In order to keep the deadline for the project, the gun would have to be ready in six months – this deadline was met with very negative reaction, V.P.Gryazev stated that developing a gun that fast was unheard of and with proper testing it would take at least five years. In the end however, Yakovlev managed to convince him since there was an ongoing rivalry between Gryazov and GRAU from the time when GRAU engineers proposed to remove all the guns from the airplanes and use only missiles instead, which was something he as a gun designer did not like for obvious reasons. Needless to say, by turning to Gryazov instead of complying with the use of the Zarnitsa gun, KMZ did not make any new friends in GRAU either.

    In order to design the new gun for the BMP, Gryazov took the GSh-6-30 rotary aircraft cannon that used the powerful 30x165mm round, propelling the 400g projectile to 800 m/s. He basically removed one of the six guns along with the chamber and breech system and used it as a single-barrel weapon. While the solution was viable, GRAU interfered yet again with the development – the gun was fired electrically, but the chief of GRAU technical department, A.A.Grigoriev, insisted on mechanical firing mechanism. The argument for this was that the gun „must be possible to be fired even if there is one last man alive in the vehicle with nothing left but his bare hands“.

    As a result of this demand the breech had to be redesigned. While at it, GRAU demanded yet another modification of the gun – it had to have variable rate of fire (specifically for the soldiers to be able to fire only at half RPM – 300 instead of 600) „in order to conserve the ammunition“ This request completely ignored the fact that the gun rate of fire was limited by 8 round bursts anyway and the real reason for it was not as much ammo conservation as it was an attempt to bury – or at least delay – the development. Even without the GRAU interference the development was problematic as it was with the mechanical firing mechanism quite unreliable and the gun overheating. GRAU officers frequently joked: „What’s the rate of fire of that gun? 600 rounds per minute, but only once a month“

    Another issue with the gun was its low accuracy. The gun, installed in the BMP turret, was simply incapable of hitting anything. It took three design bureaus and several GBTU experts to finally figure out in the end that the gun was completely fine, the real problem was in the stabilization of the entire turret: the stabilizing mechanism was incorrectly calibrated and the gun oscillation – instead of being negated by the stabilizer – actually added to it, causing abysmal loss of accuracy when using the stabilizer. This problem was finally fixed by certain modifications to the stabilizer itself (non-linear stabilizing).

    The final – and most annoying – issue with the gun came from an unexpected source: the ammunition. Simply put, it was creating too much gunpowder residue and the gasses quickly filled the crew compartment. When the vehicle was trialed in front of a GRAU committee, the KZM testers switched the compartment ventilators off in order to try to prevent vehicle power grid fluctuations that could interfere with turret controls. As a result, the soldiers present had to drag them out of the vehicle half-suffocated to death from the fumes and had to take them to a local hospital, much to the cynical amusement of the GRAU officials overseeing the tests. The gun designers proposed to use a mechanism that would use secondary burn of the gunpowder fumes after each shot. The only result of this initiative was that after the mechanism was implemented, backfire blasts were coming from the breech after every shot, covering half of the combat compartment in flames – the testing crews were not amused a single bit.

    New Solutions

    In the end, the situation was so bad that the developers actually considered mounting the gun externally, creating a vehicle called Object 680, which had a very flat turret with the gun mounted on the rear part of the turret roof. The ammunition feed was located inside the turret. This solution had to be scrapped as well, as the turret could not be protected from WMD’s due to the leaky ammunition feed shaft and it was also not possible to run a powerful ventilator, required to keep the fumes from firing the gun from suffocating the crew, as it interfered with the compartment overpressure and the vehicle was no longer gas-protected. In the end, a rather complicated solution was invented, involving the ventilator running only when the gun was firing, but this caused more delays and the development ran well into 1975.

    The gun was by no means the only sore point. With the modifications and the new turret, the vehicle was 1370kg heavier, which caused it to lose the amphibious capability (the Americans ran into the same issues with Bradley, which was – theoretically – capable of swimming). The designers tried to lose some weight by using better steel (that could be thinner, providing the same amount of ballistic protection), different tracks and modified suspension, but the savings of roughly 400 kg were not enough. In the end, the issue was solved by adding floaters filled with foam to the extended side mudguards of the vehicle.

    Trials

    Finally, in October 1975, Object 768 and Object 675 were to be trialed in front of the minister of defense, Marshal A.Grechko at Kubinka (along with another Soviet light tank prototype).

    The ChKZ proposal with its prolonged hull was not considered a good solution by the officers, since the BMP-1 production was expensive and requiring as it was and A.Grechko was not keen on requesting more money for a complete assembly line overhaul for a project that took so long to develop. Furthermore, there were issues with the one-man turret and the suspension.

    Another issue was the armament - GRAU traditionally supported the ChKZ prototype with the 73mm Zarnitsa gun but in the end, the 30mm 2A42 gun was supported by the minister of industry Bachirev and the deputy chief of GABTU, lieutenant-general Ryabov. The result of this discussion was effectively a stalemate. Annoyed by this standoff, Grechko ordered KMZ to build their own prototype with the 73mm gun – this design was named Object 681 and the work and trials took three more years. On the other hand, ChKZ - slowly losing the fight - realized that if they wanted to win, they’d have to design a vehicle equipped with an automatic cannon as well. In the end, they designed a vehicle with the same armament as the KMZ prototype (30mm) combined with their own prolonged hull. This project failed for the same reason the original ChKZ prototype did – low suspension reliability and price.

    In the meanwhile, more discussions took place about the future of the BMP. At one point, there was an idea to actually produce both the 30mm and 73mm versions, which was scrapped due to the issues with logistics. The lines were drawn – GRAU insisted on 73mm, GBTU insisted on 30mm and neither side was ready to back down even a bit.

    After years of pointless bickering, Grechko’s patience ran out and he ordered full set of comparative trials to finally find the answer to the future of the BMP program armament. These tests took place by the end of 1978 at Alabino proving grounds near Moscow and everyone important to the program was there. The vehicle crews were provided by the 2nd Guards Motor Rifle Division „Tamanskaya“. Participating were the KMZ prototypes with both 30mm and 73mm armament.

    The tests showed once for all that the 30mm gun was more suitable than the 73mm one when it came to accuracy and GRAU was practically defeated, but they had one last trump card to play: the penetration tests. GRAU managed to convince the commander of the army, general Pavlovsky, to perform shooting tests against real targets, hoping that the 73mm Zarnitsa would prove its worth by penetrating enemy armor. With all the other positions and arguments lost, it was all or nothing for GRAU.
    The tests took place against two worn-out T-72 tanks and once and for all have shown the dominance of the 30mm gun. While neither of the guns was able to knock out any of the tanks completely (something the Zarnitsa supporters claimed to be possible), the 30mm gun caused significant external damage by destroying optics, external fuel tanks and one small 30mm shell even jammed one of the turrets. With these results, GRAU was forced to concede defeat. 30mm Object 675 would finally be accepted in service later on as the BMP-2. As a last act of defiance however, GRAU representatives decided that the BMP-2 production would not exceed 10 percent of the total BMP-1 production.
    With these results, in the end, both sides – NATO and the Warsaw Pact - finally got their IFV’s in the early 80’s, reaching the same conclusion through a relatively different (yet bumpy) development process.
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    Interlinked

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    Re: Soviet IFV BMP-1 & BMP-2

    Post  Interlinked on Thu Dec 21, 2017 2:19 am

    Isos wrote:Found on Facebook page of Tank chaser.

    Copied word for word from these pages:

    https://aw.my.com/us/news/general/painful-birth-bmp-2-part-1

    https://aw.my.com/us/news/general/painful-birth-bmp-2-part-2

    Textbook case of plagiarism.


    Last edited by Interlinked on Thu Dec 21, 2017 4:50 am; edited 1 time in total
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    GarryB

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    Found on Facebook page of Tank chaser.

    Post  GarryB on Thu Dec 21, 2017 9:00 am

    Found on Facebook page of Tank chaser.

    What a very warped view that has.

    The vehicles vying for the title of BMP included a range of types including all wheeled, Half tracks, and fully tracked vehicles with a range of weapons including a vehicle armed with a 30mm cannon.

    The choice of the fully tracked vehicle with a 73mm gun was made because the ATGM of the time... the AT-3 has a dead zone of 300-400m where the missile is not under full control so enemy tanks in that area would be safe if facing a BMP armed with a 30mm cannon.

    The 73mm gun was for hitting enemy tanks at less than 400m which it should be able to do... the round itself is very similar to the RPG-7 of the time and therefore would also have been less influenced by the wind a the shorter ranges... I would expect 50 out of 50 misses against a tank sized target at 800m with an RPG -7, so it does not surprise me they didn't have better results with the 73mm gun.

    The BMP-2 had the AT-4 and AT-5 ATGM with a minimum range of about 25-35m so the requirement to be able to deal with tanks at close range was eliminated.

    The two man crew turret was also selected because in what was now called the  BMP-1 the commander often shifted the gunner to the hull position behind the driver so he could get a better view of the battlefield in the turret...
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    0nillie0

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    Re: Soviet IFV BMP-1 & BMP-2

    Post  0nillie0 on Tue Feb 20, 2018 4:05 pm

    kopyo-21 wrote:Does anyone know about this BMP-2 variant? The gun looks strange but it obviously is 2a72. This gun looks quite the same the 2a72 gun on the BMP-3 dislayed in Kubina museum.


    Seeing as this BMP is now an exhibition in a military museum, i would not read too much into the weird barrel. It most likely is a normal BMP-2 with some weird paint scheme and a mockup weapon which unforunatly does not look like a 2A42 cannon. Or perhaps they did use a 2A42 barrel but cut off the muzzle brake to fill it up and make it unusable in case of theft.

    It is normal for outdoor military exhibits to use mockup guns. They do not always look as they should.

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    Re: Soviet IFV BMP-1 & BMP-2

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