Author Topic: Scorpion (CVR(T)) family (and Scorpion turret users) - Ideas and Inspiration  (Read 35527 times)

A couple of years ago, the Irish Army embarked on a Scorpion upgrade programme, with the plan to replace the Jaguar petrol engine with a Steyr diesel engine from the RG32M LTAV and replace the original track with Diehl tracks. Only one Scorpion was upgraded in this manner.

 




Offline Volkodav

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Interesting upgrade but I would have thought they would go for band tracks and I thought there were issues with the fumes of the 76mm being carcinogenic, hence why most nations have retired it.  The driver looks like he would have issues getting in and out of the hatch, with his shoulders pressed hard against the sides, means I probably shouldn't bother ever trying to get into one. :(

Offline Rickshaw

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He's a just a normal Irish lad.  He'd definitely have to wriggle a bit to get in and out of that hatch!  I suspect it might be a bit cramped with the hatch closed...

I'm surprised they only upgraded one and I'm also surprised they didn't replace the 76mm gun as well.  Not that there is much wrong with the 76mm gun, which a change to the propellants wouldn't hurt (if that was the reason why it was retired and the European Treaty on Conventional Weapons hadn't declared anything with a gun bigger than a 75mm a "tank" for counting purposes.).

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He looks like a 1/35 guy in a 1/48 tank.

Offline Weaver

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There isn't anything special about the 76mm's propellant as far as I know, the problem is just that it doesn't have a fume extractor to keep the fumes out of the turret. Like Rickshaw says, fumes were the given reason, but they might not have put much effort into solving it since the CFT gave an incentive to get rid of them anyway.
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Offline Volkodav

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Australia did get rid of them at the same time and while I don't know the official reason that was the anecdotal one given.

Offline Rickshaw

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I suspect we got rid of them because we didn't manufacture the ammunition ourselves...

Well, the Scorpions were always known as a "bit" of tight squeeze. 

I know the main reason the 76mm was retained was due to the types of ammunition it fired (mainly HE, HESH and Cannister) and that the AML-90's were retired leaving the Scorpion as the only Cav asset with anything bigger than a 30mm.  I know there has been a improved ventilation system was installed, but then again the crew still have to wear masks during a shoot (That could be health and safety gone mad).



Offline Volkodav

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Allow me to rephrase that, my old unit had previously been issued MRVs, with Scorpion turrets, and the story was that the fumes were carcinogenic and none of the options to fix the problem were viable (cost?) so they were withdrawn from service.  It was before my time but it is what I was told.

In the 90s, once something like that was known, it would not have been acceptable to continue exposing personnel to an easily avoidable hazard, just look how quickly the Nomad was retired once it was realised that fatigue cracks, in an impossible to inspect section of the tail, caused catastrophic structural failure.  Also once the ASLAV came on line the MRV was only used by reserve and School of Armour so it was no great loss and once it was a known risk its a no brainer that the government would have retired the capability rather than further expose troops.  Easy fix, discard the MRV and re-role the Light Horse as Light Armoured Reconnaissance / APC instead of Cavalry.

What I do wonder however is, if not for he health risks, the Beasts (MRVs) would have been retained for DFS by 5/7 RAR in their Mech Inf role, as well as the reserve units and we may even have seen Scorpion turrets retrofitted to some ASLAVs to provide a heftier HE round as a cheaper, already in service option to the turreted 120mm mortars that were considered in the abortive major re-organisation of the army planned for the late 90s.

All of this aside I have wondered if Australia would have adopted the CVR(T) FOV as the natural successor to the Saladin and Saracen had the FV430 FOV been selected over the M-113.

Offline Volkodav

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The thought crosses my mind that it is conceivable that a complete FOV could have been developed from the Stormer to replace the CVR(T) in the late 80s early 90s.  Maybe the driver could have been the Falklands and the realisation that there was a need for a medium weight force to support deployed light forces, not just in Falkland like scenarios but perhaps in Norway etc. where it was unlikely sufficient heavy armoured units could be deployed quickly.

To this end the Stormer was developed to replace, not just the CVR(T) FOV but also the F432 as well as forming the basis of a new light/medium tank/tank destroyer.  The was possible because the base vehicle was not just larger than the Spartan but also very slightly larger than the M-113 (not sure on internal arrangements and space though).

End result a FOV consisting of:
- Scout vehicle with 25-35mm auto cannon in a two man turret, with two to four dismounts
- Light/medium tank with 60mm or greater HV gun
- Tank Destroyer with 77/84/90/105mm gun
- CS with 88/90/95/105mm CS gun
- 107 or 120mm turreted breach loading mortar
- AIFV with one man turret or RWS
- APC
- SPG
- Ambulance
- Command
- Recovery
- Fitters
- Engineers
- ATGW
- FO
- LAAD

When Australia was looking to upgrade the M-113 following the cancellation of Project Whaler Alvis could have proposed local production of the Stormer FOV instead, including marketing and production rights throughout SEA.

Offline Weaver

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There was a Scorpion/Scimitar-style vehicle developed on the Stormer platform, called the Stormer 30. It had a low hull, a two-man turret, a 30mm chain gun and two TOWs. I don't think they sold any.

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Offline Volkodav

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Yes you had that photo on page one ;)
I could also imaging a 105mm or definitely a 60mm HV gun.

As I see it the Stormer was a perfectly good enough FOV that came out at a time when NATO was going heavier, then caught out when they went light and predominately wheeled.  It would have been perfect for tracked mech (as opposed to armoured) infantry brigades, the perfect substitute for all the "Gavin" fanboi concepts.  Basis of a heavier armoured option for the Royal Marines, something cheaper (therefore more likely to get across the line) than the Cavalry's cancelled Tracer.

Ultimately (my parochialism showing through) something that a business case could have been made for local construction in Australia instead of wasting so much time and effort on the totally tactically useless AS3 and 4 upgrade to the M-113.  Do the usual Aussie thing and order something smaller, lighter and less "warrie" than actually needed, so as not to offend the wishy washy baby boomers in the media, public service and politics who are afraid our neighbours may be offended if we procure anything too obviously effective, then  spend years and billions of dollars trying to make it as capable and effective as what we should have bought in the fist place.  End result, we try and evolve the Stormer into a Bradley/Warrior/CV90, which the M-113 was never be but the Stormer maybe could have done.

All that's needed is a stormer kit or kits.

A hindsight thing but Australian production of the Stormer to replace the M-113 and reequip most of the RAAC would likely have proven cheaper than the M-113 AS3/4 upgrade, provided higher capability, longer, lower cost service life, as well as permitting the separation of LAND400 project into two distinct projects. i.e. Australia could have gone from procuring LAVII (with locally produced turrets) to local manufacture of Stormer (instead the M-113 upgrade), Bushmaster, Hawkei to a LAV II replacement (probably locally produced) building an effective and sustainable (if not competitive) industry around the perfectly good enough Stormer.
« Last Edit: March 26, 2016, 01:10:24 PM by Volkodav »

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Offline Volkodav

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Cool, yep I forgot about them, will ring the bank about mortgaging the house Tuesday.

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Cool, yep I forgot about them, will ring the bank about mortgaging the house Tuesday.

Ah, a man who understands his priorities...and is prepared to face the consequences from SWMBO. ;)
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Offline Volkodav

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That's cool, she has just treated herself curtesy of a Catch of the Day make up sale.

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Re: Scorpion (CVR(T)) family (and Scorpion turret users) - Ideas and Inspiration
« Reply #66 on: September 24, 2016, 08:00:57 AM »
Proposed Spartan with TOW:

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Offline Weaver

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Re: Scorpion (CVR(T)) family (and Scorpion turret users) - Ideas and Inspiration
« Reply #67 on: September 24, 2016, 04:57:32 PM »
Nice one - never seen that pic.

IIRC, there was a similar mounting developed for the Blowpipe/Javelin triple pedestal launcher.
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Offline Jeffry Fontaine

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Re: Scorpion (CVR(T)) family (and Scorpion turret users) - Ideas and Inspiration
« Reply #68 on: September 25, 2016, 03:24:07 AM »
Based on the very long tube on the TOW launcher that must have been from a very long time ago or Alvis did not have an up to date sales brochure on the TOW system.  Still an interesting concept that might have been a real winner.  Now how about the turret from the M901 ITV or the M981 FIST vehicle mounted on the Spartan?  I suspect that might be asking for too much of the Spartan hull in real life but as a what-if it would be interesting. 
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Re: Scorpion (CVR(T)) family (and Scorpion turret users) - Ideas and Inspiration
« Reply #69 on: September 25, 2016, 03:32:08 AM »
IIRC, there was a similar mounting developed for the Blowpipe/Javelin triple pedestal launcher.

Your not thinking the Stormer are you?


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Offline Weaver

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Re: Scorpion (CVR(T)) family (and Scorpion turret users) - Ideas and Inspiration
« Reply #70 on: September 25, 2016, 07:25:07 PM »
Based on the very long tube on the TOW launcher that must have been from a very long time ago or Alvis did not have an up to date sales brochure on the TOW system.  Still an interesting concept that might have been a real winner.  Now how about the turret from the M901 ITV or the M981 FIST vehicle mounted on the Spartan?  I suspect that might be asking for too much of the Spartan hull in real life but as a what-if it would be interesting.

As I understand it the M901 turret could topple an M113 if deployed incautiously on a cross slope, so I'm imagine it's a none-starter for the narrower-but-just-as-tall Spartan.

The Stormer 30 pictured earlier in the thread has two TOWs, so you might imagine a Spartan/Stomer following it around with reloads. Still not as neat as a Striker though. I wish they'd kept developing Swingfire with competetive warheads: it had a lot of potential.
"I have described nothing but what I saw myself, or learned from others" - Thucydides

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Offline Weaver

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Re: Scorpion (CVR(T)) family (and Scorpion turret users) - Ideas and Inspiration
« Reply #71 on: September 25, 2016, 07:27:43 PM »
IIRC, there was a similar mounting developed for the Blowpipe/Javelin triple pedestal launcher.

Your not thinking the Stormer are you?


No I know about Stormer. The thing I'm thinking of was much less high-tech, basically a Blowpipe LML mounted in the troop compartment and sticking up though an open roof hatch with the gunner operating it manually in the usual way. I can find pictures of Spartans with single Blowpipe gunners standing up in the hatch and firing the normal single tube from their shoulder, but not the triple version.
"I have described nothing but what I saw myself, or learned from others" - Thucydides

"I've jazzed mine up a bit" - Spike Milligan

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Offline Gingie

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Re: Scorpion (CVR(T)) family (and Scorpion turret users) - Ideas and Inspiration
« Reply #72 on: September 26, 2016, 10:23:01 AM »
basically a Blowpipe LML mounted in the troop compartment and sticking up though an open roof hatch with the gunner operating it manually in the usual way.

We used Javelin LML in M-113's in that exact set up. Wonder if it might have been a FV 432 you were thinking of?

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Re: Scorpion (CVR(T)) family (and Scorpion turret users) - Ideas and Inspiration
« Reply #73 on: September 27, 2016, 04:39:44 AM »
I wonder about a fixed gun (ala Strv 103) tank destroyer variant.  Basically remove the turret and put something such as a 105mm in a fixed mount (probably built up a bit to accommodate gun etc).
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Offline M.A.D

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Re: Scorpion (CVR(T)) family (and Scorpion turret users) - Ideas and Inspiration
« Reply #74 on: September 30, 2016, 10:48:52 PM »
I wonder about a fixed gun (ala Strv 103) tank destroyer variant.  Basically remove the turret and put something such as a 105mm in a fixed mount (probably built up a bit to accommodate gun etc).

I like it!! :P

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