RE: Re: [MV] Civilain Vehicle targets

William George (
Wed, 06 Jan 99 20:59:15 Mountain Daylight Time

If reflective surfaces are a problem,I hope Saddam doesn't give his vehicles a nice shiny paintjob.
>Subject: RE: Re: [MV] Civilain Vehicle targets
>Date: January 06, 1999
>Several years ago, Ft Sill used junk civilian vehicles for targets. The
>problem now is safely using them. Since we use laser rangefinders many
>times to range targets, all reflective surfaces are problematic. While
>knocking out the glass and lights isn't too difficult, removing all chrome
>creates difficulties. Bumpers and chrome/polished wheels is time
>consuming and therefore expensive.
>I also have to agree about firing at realistic appearing targets. Having
>been a forward observer, firing at a piece of plywood or some such target
>is not very realistic. When you get a direct hit on a vehicle, you see it
>in the bright flash of the explosion. With a near hit, you see parts
>flying, even at long ranges. It gives you an appreciation of the
>firepower you are controling. A lowly PFC forward observer potentially
>controls more firepower than does a Armor Task Force (sorry Joe Baker! :)
>). He controls his direct support artillery and possibly much more
>reinforcing artillery if he has a really lucrative target.
>Also, vehicles are much more easy to identify than the typical soft target
>used in an impact area. Additionally, it trains observers how to pick
>camoflaged vehicles out of the vegatation. A few years ago, the post
>experimented with some very large DARTS for targets. They were cheap to
>produce and emplace as they were nothing more than a large pipe with some
>sheetmetal fins. They were airdropped from CH-47 Chinook helicopters.
>The problems were, they were hard to see at much range and they didn't
>hold up well to even 105mm arty, much less 155mm and 8 inch arty.
>While I am very interested in preserving old military vehicles, I
>understand the economy of using the M151s. Even if I didn't it would make
>no difference. I have the mission and I have to execute it.
>BTW, when I received the mission, it was prefaced by, "You are going to
>hate this, but..........
>My commander owns two restored 1955 Chevys and a 1972 Ford Mustang.
>As for what a MUTT looks like after taking a round...... Well, we had
>some shot up by the 120mm Smoothbore maingun of M1A1 tanks a few years
>back. Most of the vehicles were hardly recognizable as M151s. A few
>however were remarkably intact. One was sitting on its wheels and look
>absolutely normal with the exception of the hole in the floor where the
>tranny tunnel once was. The entire engine, transmission and transfer were
>laying about 25-30 feet away, still intact. It was obvious it had been
>ripped from the jeep, but it was otherwise in good condition. Really
>Sorry for being so long winded.
>Jim Rice
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