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MBT gun number

Discussion in 'Post-World War 2 Armour' started by Blaster, Aug 1, 2006.

  1. Blaster

    Blaster New Member

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    In a book I saw a picture of a tank with two main guns beside each other. Are two guns better than one or not? I mean, why do most (if not all) MBTs have only one main gun yet that tank had two?
     
  2. Ricky

    Ricky New Member

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  3. FNG phpbb3

    FNG phpbb3 New Member

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    2 guns are not better than one

    Firstly these guns are actually very heavy so to have two would increase the overall weight of the tank.

    secondly the guns are very big within the turret which would mean that you either need a large possably odd shaped turret or you would have to down size the gun to get 2 into the same turret. 2 smaller guns is not better than 1 big one.

    finally modern tanks with laser ranger finding, IR night vision, vertical and horizontal electronic stabilising and an aiming computer that probably puts my PC to shame should hit a good percentage of targets with the first shot. Parrallel barrels only really help when you want to fire, then fire again at the same or close target very quickly. Though to be honest reload speeds for a well trained tank crew probably make having a second barrell not much faster.

    FNG
     
  4. Blaster

    Blaster New Member

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    No, actually, it's turret looked more like that of an M26. And it was a Chinese tank, by the way.
     
  5. Ossian phpbb3

    Ossian phpbb3 New Member

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    Anti-aircraft tank, possibly?

    The Soviet ZSU-23/4 had 4 x 23mm in the turret

    IIRC there was an unsuccessful US one with 2 x guns and there is also something based on the leopard 1 with 2 x 35mm


    Tom
     
  6. smeghead phpbb3

    smeghead phpbb3 New Member

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    perhaps it was this French light tank, the EVEN ELC? Also I believe that the 35mm German AA vehicle designed upon the Leopard 1 chassis is called the FlakPz 1 A2 Gepard...
     
  7. Simonr1978

    Simonr1978 New Member

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    Wasn't there also a twin gun Panther version proposed which crops up periodically?

    The problem with twin guns as far as I can see it is that armour penetration seems to be a very much All-or-nothing affair. With the exception of damaging external components such as tracks, you either punch a hole in the enemy tank or you don't.

    If you fail to punch a hole in the enemy tank with, say, one 37mm cannon then you're unlikely to be successfull with a twin, triple or even quad gun mount.

    If you're successfull in punching a hole in an enemy tank, then putting a second round into the same tank is likely to be nothing more than overkill and a waste of ammunition.

    Mounting twin cannon in one turret pretty much by definition means that the cannon themselves will be smaller individually than if a single cannon were mounted, or the turret and tank would need to prohibitively large and expensive.

    The only times where multiple cannon are desirable is where the penetration of individual shells is not too much of an issue (Such as AAA platforms), so these are likely to be the only place you'll see them, where smaller, lighter shells but the greatest possible rate of fire is required, but not likely in an MBT.
     
  8. Oli

    Oli New Member

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    Except for the Ares 75mm! This was designed to have armour penetration equal to, or exceeding, the L7 105mm and fire at 40 rounds per minute. The idea was to fit it to light vehicles and use the rate of fire to "scrub" armour away on heavier MBTs until one achieved penetration.
     
  9. Zhukov_2005

    Zhukov_2005 New Member

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    Blaster, is this what you are refering to?

    [​IMG]

    This is the ZSU-57-2 (Zenitnaya Samokhodnaya Ustanovka (anti-aircraft, self-propelled system). It is armed with twin cannons firing a powerful 57x480 round. It's chassis is borrowed from the T-54, and the turret is open and protected by 15mm of armour. All reports I've read did not favour this vehicle; it was terribly inaccurate due to poor sights, unresponsive fire controls, and had a very slow turret traverse rate. Not many were made, but the Chinese developed their own (Type 80), but it uses, IIRC, the PT-76 chassis. North Korea also produces a version based on China's T-54/55 copy, the Type 59.

    Here's an interesting article on North Vietnam's use of the ZSU-57-2:
    http://www.gruntonline.com/Order%20of%2 ... rmour2.htm
     
  10. Blaster

    Blaster New Member

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    I see that everyone's working hard to help. Probably to everyone's dissappointment, though, the tanks that have been brought up are all not what I had in mind. The ZSU-57-2 is the closest to what I'm thinking about. The only difference is that the turret wasn't so fat-looking and squat. It was like the turret of the M26 or the Panther.
    Hope that helps.
     
  11. Ricky

    Ricky New Member

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    Can you find a picture that you can post here, or even post a link to?
     
  12. Gryle

    Gryle New Member

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    It's been tried a few times in various configurations, the US M6 Heavy tank with a 76mm and a 37mm gun, the german Maus with a 128mm and a 75mm, and you could possibly even include the early Centurions with a 76mm and a 20mm, none of which went anywhere (or at least in that configuration).

    Multiple guns of the same calibre are only really useful in terms of the total rate of fire, or possibly redundancy, so only really crop up on air defence vehicles like the Skink, Duster, Gepard, and ZSU types where they are firing at a target that may only be in range for a few seconds so it's important to get as many rounds off as possible.

    Blaster, I don't think the M26 was ever fitted with twin guns, there were plans drawn up for an anti-aircraft Panther, the Coelian or something but I don't believe it was ever built, but being German you can find pictures of models of it all over the 'net. But I don't know of any Chinese tanks like that.
     

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