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  1. #1
    Small Wars Journal SWJED's Avatar
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    Default Stryker collection (merged thread)

    ... by Charlie at the OPFOR blog.

  2. #2
    Small Wars Journal SWJED's Avatar
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    Default Newest Stryker Vehicle Boasts More Firepower

    18 September Associated Press - Army's Newest Stryker Vehicle Boasts More Firepower.

    Soldiers at Fort Lewis have begun training on the Army's 10th and final version of the Stryker armored vehicle.

    Five years in the making, the Mobile Gun System looks a lot like its predecessors but has a 105 mm cannon, and Army officials say it packs more power than other versions armed with a heavy machine gun, a grenade launcher or anti-tank missiles...

    The MGS, as the Army calls the new vehicle, is designed to back up infantry with a gun that can blast through walls, knock out fortified sniper nests, stop other armored vehicles and clear streets of enemy fighters...
    The 49,000-pound MGS is operated by a three-man crew: a driver, a gunner and a vehicle commander, said Thomas Crooks, the company's service leader at Fort Lewis. The gunner and commander track targets on computer screens inside their hatches in the turret.

    The vehicle can carry up to 18 rounds, and the gun is loaded by an automated hydraulic handler. Its computerized fire-control system is virtually identical to the one in the M1 Abrams, the Army's main battle tank.

    The MGS will carry four types of ammunition: a depleted-uranium armor-piercing round, a high-explosive anti-tank round, a high-explosive plastic round for blowing through walls and barricades, and a canister round filled with 2,300 tungsten ball bearings for firing on enemy fighters.

    The MGS packs "exactly the same, if not a little more enhanced" firepower as the much heavier 70-ton Abrams tank, but is not as sturdy defensively, Cooper said...

    The MGS also does not need as much logistical support as the Abrams, gets better gas mileage and is built on the same basic chassis as other Stryker vehicles.

  3. #3
    Council Member Tom Odom's Avatar
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    Default Mobility Under Fire

    the MGS packs "exactly the same, if not a little more enhanced" firepower as the much heavier 70-ton Abrams tank, but is not as sturdy defensively, Cooper said...
    Dumb statement. An Abrams' armor is an OFFENSIVE tool because it provides mobility under fire. Too many folks tend to look at Strykers as tanks already and this sort of PR encourages that line of thought. A Stryker (MGS or otherwise) is a troop carrier. Period.

    For the risks of such thinking see: No. 12: Seek, Strike, and Destroy: U.S. Army Tank Destroyer Doctrine in World War II, Dr. Christopher R. Gabel. (PDF)
    at http://www-cgsc.army.mil/carl/downlo...ubs/gabel2.pdf

    Best

    Tom

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    Council Member RTK's Avatar
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    As an Armored Cavalry officer, I have some issues with all this.

    105mm v. 120mm: You've got to be kidding me that it has as much, if not more, than an Abrams.

    It carries less than half the UBL of an Abrams. After the ready rack is expended, you have to expose a soldier to reload the bloody thing.

    This is not a replacement to the MBT. It's an enhancement for Stryker units. Comparing the MGS to an Abrams is mixing apples and oranges.

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    Council Member pcmfr's Avatar
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    Ok, obviously SFC Cooper made a bit of a stretch comparing the firepower of this vehicle to an M1A, but don't you guys think this is a great thing to provide more infantry units in Iraq with better fire power? Also, the lighter weight, mobility, and logistics footprint makes MGS a good platform to support future expeditionary ops.

    Tanks are great, but we only have so many of them and they are a difficult to transport anywhere in a hurry and support them once we get there.
    Last edited by pcmfr; 09-19-2006 at 04:01 PM.

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    The mobile gun system isn't exactly easy to ship overseas in a hurry either - unless they've fixed the problem where you have to lift the turret off with a crane before the thing'll fit inside the airplane . . . .

    Still, the MGS will probably perform fine in the field - or at any rate it's problems will be more or less manageable. Systems aren't the most important issue here, it's doctrine and soldier training. If the army spent half the money that went into Stryker on counter insurgency training for the current (heavy) force, we'd have gotten a lot father a lot faster in Iraq.

    And no, the thing is not a tank. However, it won't be employed that way. Stryker doctrine calls for two mobile gun systems in each company to support infantry operations with direct fire. While the lessons of the Tank Destroyer Corps are important to keep in mind, the Army has (at least doctrinally) produced a micro-scale combined arms force in the Stryker company - direct fire, indirect fire, anti-tank weapons and infantry under a single command which will train together regularly. They should be vastly more effective thank Tank Destroyer battalions.

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    Council Member Cavguy's Avatar
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    Default "It's a piece of ... " Soldiers pan Stryker MGS performance in Iraq

    EDIT: Title should say "Performance"- didn't catch spelling and I can't edit it ....

    http://www.military.com/NewsContent/...160981,00.html

    Interesting Military.com article on the (lack of) success with the Stryker Mobile Gun System variant in Iraq. Interesting to assess how much is reporter spin of a few soldiers and how much is fact. Anyone been in an MGS?

    "I wish [the enemy] would just blow mine up so I could be done with it," said Spec. Kyle Handrahan, 22, of Anaheim, Calif., a tanker assigned to Alpha Company, 4/9’s MGS platoon.

    "It’s a piece," another MGS platoon member chimed in. "Nothing works on it."

    The gripes stem from a litany of problems, including a computer system that constantly locks up, extremely high heat in the crew compartment and a shortage of spare parts. In one case, a key part was held up in customs on its way to Iraq, a problem one Soldier recognizes is a result of a new system being pushed into service before it’s ready.

    "The concept is good, but they still have a lot of issues to work out on it," said Sgt. 1st Class Nathan Teimeier, Alpha, 4/9’s MGS platoon sergeant and a tanker by trade.

    According to a Jan. 28 report by Bloomberg News, the 2008 Pentagon Authorization bill included language limiting funds for the MGS pending an Army report on fixes to the vehicle’s growing list of problems. The Pentagon’s director of Operational Test and Evaluation said in his annual report the vehicle was "not operationally effective," Bloomberg reported.
    Last edited by Cavguy; 01-29-2008 at 10:37 PM.
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    Council Member Rob Thornton's Avatar
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    I was there when 1-24 did the FDE (Force Development Exercise) up in YTC (back in early 2004). The platoons that executed it did so in some adverse conditions - there was about 2 feet of snow on the MPRC (Multi-Purpose Range Complex). It was a LFX (Live Fire Excercise) done multiple times, and I thought it went pretty well. Part of my perspective may be biased as to having had to live with the ATGM (Anti-Tank Guided Missile which fired a TOW (Tube Launched, Optically tracked, Wire Guided) variant as the ILOV vs. having a 105mm main gun with a M240 (7.62mm) coaxial MG (the ATGM did not have a COAX - but had a M2 on a ring mount above the TC hatch. The MGS allowed for the tactics I wanted to employ.

    Now the things I did not like about the MGS - I'm 76" tall - it, more so then any other variant was not built for me! I also did not like the auto loader - but I don't like auto loaders period - but the construct for the variant they chose had one - vs. having a loader. I also did not like the alternative if the auto loader ever went down - supposedly it had an extremely low MBTF (Mean Time Between Failure) - but its still an auto loader - oh well - you give up something to get something, and that was not my decision.

    So - I can see where 19Ks would have real issue with the MGS when compared with a M1. That taken into account with the PSGs observations of the stuff that you'd think we'd have worked through already, and the introduction of an end item with limited CL IX would be grounds for some legitimate complaints. I'd also point out that the MGS was not designed to do the range of tasks that a M1 is - the MGS is an Infantry Support vehicle - not sure why we manned it with 19Ks - combined arms politics I suppose. I'll say I liked having 19Ks in the company, even if they were not totally happy with being Infantryman - but eventually they became some of the most valued soldiers in the company - and I used them in a variety of ways. The AT (Anti-Tank) capability in the Rifle Company comes from the 1 x Javelin per rifle squad (9 per company), and the AT capability in the SBCT comes from the AT company that is equipped with the ATGM variant (plus the total number of javelins through out the SBCT - I think the EN CO has some by MTO&E and maybe the RSTA sqdn too - not sure.

    Its interesting thing about expectations - they at least partly determine how soldiers will take to something. The truth is probably somewhere in the middle - hopefully - within reason - the things that can be corrected will be, but I think the first time a rifle squad on the ground gets fixed and is able to call forward an MGS to put a 105mm into a hardened enemy position, and then put very accurate and sustained suppressive fire on enemy supporting positions, it will have lived up to its intent - you could not do that with the ATGM in the same manner.

    As with all equipment and organizations - they are not going to be a total fit in all conditions - and that may be some of the frustration as well.

    Best, Rob
    Last edited by Rob Thornton; 01-29-2008 at 11:32 PM.

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    Council Member William F. Owen's Avatar
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    The biggest problem with MGS is the concept or the idea mated with some very marginal physics. It's not founded in any operational reality that I am aware of, and I guess came from sometime of "flow down" reasoning based on the idea that a SBCT had to have some type of "Big Gun", as an article of faith, rather than any OA that may have suggested otherwise.

    The Aussies put a 76mm gun a an M-113 using the turret we had on the Saladin 6x6, and then there was the 90mm Cockerill eqipped CVR-T. Those worked, because they were comparatively simple and easy to do. MGS strikes me as the opposite.
    Infinity Journal "I don't care if this works in practice. I want to see it work in theory!"

    - The job of the British Army out here is to kill or capture Communist Terrorists in Malaya.
    - If we can double the ratio of kills per contact, we will soon put an end to the shooting in Malaya.
    Sir Gerald Templer, foreword to the "Conduct of Anti-Terrorist Operations in Malaya," 1958 Edition

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    Council Member Rob Thornton's Avatar
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    Hi Will,

    I think either of the two calibers you mentioned would have been adequate to provide me what I was after. When we had the ILOV ATGM I made a pitch to field us the CARL G as part of the package - based on what I'd seen it do it looked plenty adequate. I don't think it ever made it up too high

    I've seen the MGS fire its 105 over the side (gun perpendicular to the hull) - there was no issue I could see. I'd heard there were issues prior to that, but when I saw it live fire - no issues. Maybe they'd fixed it by then - I don't know.

    Ideally - what I'd like is a system that could be both mounted, fired and reloaded from inside, but.. could be dismounted when conditions made that more advantageous. I'd at least like a capability that I could dismount - there is just something about showing up somewhere with something the enemy did not anticipate and helped me achieve tactical surprise. While the AT-4 84mm is not a terrible thing, it does not have the variety of ammunition available to the Carl G, and as such is more limited. Having commonality in the CL V to be used in the vehicle mounted system and the one you could use on dismounted operations would be better. This is all pretty much OBE though - we got what we got, better to focus on the best ways to employ it.

    best, Rob

  11. #11
    Council Member William F. Owen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob Thornton View Post
    Hi Will,

    I think either of the two calibers you mentioned would have been adequate to provide me what I was after. When we had the ILOV ATGM I made a pitch to field us the CARL G as part of the package - based on what I'd seen it do it looked plenty adequate. I don't think it ever made it up too high
    It is extremely technically simple to fire Carl-Gustav 84mm from a remote weapons station, and to have an auto-slew that allows it to be re-loaded in the same way M2 reloads TOW.

    What is more, thanks to the auto-stabilised fire control and range finder, the round can go 1,500m and even hit slow moving targets at 1,000m.

    Javelin can be very easily fired from a remote weapons station, and would be cheap and easy to retro-fit on Stryker or similar vehicle.

    This is why I believe MGS is a confusion of form over function.
    Infinity Journal "I don't care if this works in practice. I want to see it work in theory!"

    - The job of the British Army out here is to kill or capture Communist Terrorists in Malaya.
    - If we can double the ratio of kills per contact, we will soon put an end to the shooting in Malaya.
    Sir Gerald Templer, foreword to the "Conduct of Anti-Terrorist Operations in Malaya," 1958 Edition

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    Council Member Van's Avatar
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    Rob,
    Re:
    MGS fire its 105 over the side (gun perpendicular to the hull) - there was no issue I could see. I'd heard there were issues prior to that
    -
    According to an eye witness, during the Saudi trials for LAV 105 system in the mid-90s, firing in this attitute caused the frame of the vehicle to warp.
    As you say, they may have fixed the problem by now.

    Doctrinally, the whole concept of 'tank destroyers', lighter armored vehicles with big guns, has always been problematic. The MGS was originally fielded in platoons of 3 vehicles, and an experienced armor NCO commented that all that arrangement was good for was TOC security, as the vehicles could not work in wing (two vehicle) teams. Given the intense 'infantry-centric" attitudes of the brains at work there at the IBCT (especially GEN Eaton), they may have envisioned tasking out single vehicles to support infantry companies or platoons, a concept that tankers choke on for good reason.

    Actually, our language talking about this says a lot about the problem. The MGS is not a tank. But we don't have a clear designation for the folks who operate it. They'll either be disgruntled tankers who want a real tank or disgruntled infantry who want a real IFV (or to walk).

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    Registered User mgscommander14's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cavguy View Post
    EDIT: Title should say "Performance"- didn't catch spelling and I can't edit it ....

    http://www.military.com/NewsContent/...160981,00.html

    Interesting Military.com article on the (lack of) success with the Stryker Mobile Gun System variant in Iraq. Interesting to assess how much is reporter spin of a few soldiers and how much is fact. Anyone been in an MGS?
    I am a MGS Platoon Sergeant in 1-38 INF 4/2 BDE. I have fielded the MGS in combat in both Baghdad and Baqubah Iraq. The vehicle is designed to breach walls, clear obstacles, engage threats with any of the 3 weapons systems (105mm main gun, 7.62 machinegun, or .50 cal machinegun).

    It has been used in all types of operations since in theater. I am a fan of the vehicle because itís fast, quiet, highly mobile in tight environments, and provides a sense of fear in insurgents that may prevent them from conducting attacks on my unit.

    I have bashed, beaten, and abused this vehicle and she's still going strong. Some vehicles have those gremlins that keep causing problems for some MGS's and there are a few mods that need to be made such as the design of the 7.62 coax mount. Some MGS's such as mine have no stoppages and some have a lot. These kinks will be worked out.

    The vehicle will not replace the M1 series. (But) I think that we now have the ability to control the battlefield both open terrain and urban with the addition of this vehicle.

    I have combat proven this vehicle on everything from RPG teams to HBIEDís (house borne improvised explosive devices). I have breached walls and houses, engaged multiple snipers with machinegun, destroyed VBIEDs, destroyed IEDs, you name it we have done it. It is a great platform for Iraq urban environment. It will not replace tanks but has tank defeating capability. Some vehicles have issues and some don't Ö..nothing new to the army. I find my platoonís vehicle reliable. It has 4 sights, day and thermal capability with 360 degree viewing.

    The articles on military.com (anti-MGS) came from a young soldier in another battalion of 4/2 bde who has not given the public the whole story. I have contacted him and what he says is not really vehicle related but chain of command related. I can answer any questions you may have. Want to see it in action!!! www.youtube.com/tankcommander33

    SFC Collum

    smash1

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    Council Member Cavguy's Avatar
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    SFC Collum,

    Thanks for the on the ground perspective. Part of what makes this site great. If you haven't already, put a comment in the introduction thread with your background.

    Thanks again for contributing, and keep your head down!
    "A Sherman can give you a very nice... edge."- Oddball, Kelly's Heroes
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    Council Member gute's Avatar
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    Default The Stryker Brigade Ten Years Later

    The Stryker vehicle and Stryker brigades have discussed on this site numerous times, but I don't believe it has been recently. I believe the first Stryker brigade was operational in 2002. What's the analysis of the brigade structure, vehicle performance, tracks v. wheels debate, the RSTA concept/organization, and brigade doctrine? In other words has the Stryker been a success or failure?

    Also, based on what has been learned with operational deployments to Afghanistan and Iraq, what changes should be made to the brigade?

    Hopefully, those with knowledge and experience with the Stryker brigade will weigh-in.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gute View Post
    The Stryker vehicle and Stryker brigades have discussed on this site numerous times, but I don't believe it has been recently. I believe the first Stryker brigade was operational in 2002. What's the analysis of the brigade structure, vehicle performance, tracks v. wheels debate, the RSTA concept/organization, and brigade doctrine? In other words has the Stryker been a success or failure?

    Also, based on what has been learned with operational deployments to Afghanistan and Iraq, what changes should be made to the brigade?
    And why doesn't US Army employ any Strykers with a 25mm turret ?
    Last edited by davidbfpo; 05-24-2013 at 01:30 PM. Reason: missed square bracket. Fix quote.

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    Council Member gute's Avatar
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    I would think that putting a 25mm turret on the Stryker would limit the number of dismounts. A 25mm RWS might be too much gun for a vehicle that is considered an APC and not an IFV. The Army may not have put a 25mm on the recon versions because it would defeat the purpose of the Stryker RSTA squadrons - stealth based recce. Jcustis probably has a better answer.

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    Council Member Fuchs's Avatar
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    There was a general problem with Stryker hull height and cargo bay height in C-130. The MGS version already exceeds C-130 dimensions IIRC, and lifting the vehicle with C-130J was the rationale behind using a <20 ton vehicle. A turret was thus not acceptable. The handful of MGS is an exception and can get the privilege of C-17-only airlift.

    They could mount some lightweight autocannon such as 20 mm M621 or 30 mm ASP-30 on a mount like those used for .50cals, though.

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    Council Member jcustis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gute View Post
    I would think that putting a 25mm turret on the Stryker would limit the number of dismounts. A 25mm RWS might be too much gun for a vehicle that is considered an APC and not an IFV. The Army may not have put a 25mm on the recon versions because it would defeat the purpose of the Stryker RSTA squadrons - stealth based recce. Jcustis probably has a better answer.
    Strykers didn't make it to the dance during the invasion, so that's a big unknown. I think we can surmise that it would have faired as well as the USMC's LAV-25, but keep in mind the success is more than a vehicle. It's a mix of doctrine, supporting arms, organization, etc.

    Air mobility by a C-130 is an outdated standard that should have never been forced in the first place.
    Last edited by jcustis; 05-25-2013 at 06:28 AM.

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