Monday, November 06, 2006


Why I would prefer a track to a wheeled vehicle


I've pulled more Cougars and Bisons out of the ditch and bogs than I care to count.

The best at this was the very light and nimble cargo carrier M548 now all but a memory like the recce vehicle Lynx.

The one thing I never understood with tracks is why the drive sprocket isn't incorporated into the drive train. That is to say if your track gets blown of by a land mine or breaks the vehicle becomes immobilized.

I shouldn't say I don't understand because I do the M113 with it's front drive train sprocket is designed to keep the tension on the top of the track and the Leopards are designed with a rear drive sprocket that incorporates live track as a tensioner.

Now if the road wheels were somehow connected to the drive train so that if you were to lose a track you would still have limited mobility. As it is if you lose or break a track on our Leopards tanks or now defunct M113's the vehicle becomes a sitting duck. Where as if the road wheels were somehow powered you could lose a track and still have limited mobility depending on the terrain.

Or if the tracks were somehow held together with cabling to make them more resistant to breakage. This could actually be a very easy and quick fix by incorporating cable into the end connectors of existing tracks.

I've knocked down trees as big as 1 foot in diamitre in a M113 and went places a wheeled vehicle could only dream about. Even the LAV III with all of it's technological advancements is no match for a M113 when it comes to off road abilities.

As good as the new LAV III's are I would still take a track any day of the week for it's mobility and durability, with lots and lots of sand bags :(
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