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Armor/AFV: What If?
For those who like to build hypothetical or alternate history versions of armor/AFVs.
Hosted by Darren Baker
Kpz.70 MBT Modernized
ColinEdm
Staff MemberAssociate Editor
ARMORAMA
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Alberta, Canada
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Posted: Monday, January 09, 2017 - 09:20 AM UTC
Starting another build for a client, this one is something a bit different...what if the Bundeswher had proceeded with production and deployment of the Kpz.70 MBT? Would it still be in service today after upgrades and modifications, and how would it look? I will be starting with Dragon's *gasp* Black Label MBT 70/Kpz.70...

I have received a few a/m parts with it, including some Leo 2 120mm barrels and antennae, NATO camo net and foliage:

This was followed up with some Bradley ERA from Legend Productions, I can probably use it for the skirts and front of the hull unless I decide to scratch up some MEXAS style applique armour...

A Trophy system from Black Dog I'll see if I can make work:

Various Leo I & II bits and bobs...

And I think I'll get a RWS to replace the 20mm autocannon. This should be a fun one, stay tuned!
m4sherman
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Arizona, United States
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Posted: Monday, January 09, 2017 - 09:28 AM UTC
This looks like a fun project.
LeoCmdr
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Alberta, Canada
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Posted: Monday, January 09, 2017 - 10:59 AM UTC
Perfect kit for an upgraded "what if"! Have fun with the build. I am sure your client will be very happy.
MattSz
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California, United States
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Posted: Monday, January 09, 2017 - 02:49 PM UTC
Interesting subject, for sure. I'm looking forward your progress.
mshackleton
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England - South East, United Kingdom
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Posted: Monday, January 09, 2017 - 03:52 PM UTC
I will watch this with interest. MBT-70 is one of my all time favourite tanks. I have a FaceBook page here https://www.facebook.com/groups/MBT70/ and it would be nice to see your build there as well:-) There are some of my Leopard Workshop sets that would have been useful, but I see you have found alternatives!
landshark4
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Alabama, United States
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Posted: Monday, January 09, 2017 - 04:20 PM UTC
I was looking at doing the same thing if the MBT70 had entered service with the Americans. After 40 years of modifications like the M1, what would it have looked like during the invasion of Iraq or during the ensuing insurgency? Would the 20m canon remained or replaced by a tow or a minigun? Would the turret look the same or changed with space or chobham armor? Would the pneumatic suspension remain? What about side skirts?
Sabot
Joined: December 18, 2001
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Posted: Monday, January 09, 2017 - 08:00 PM UTC
I plan on doing something similar with a US MBT70. Using a regular cupola for the commander and maybe removing the 20mm. Also may consider replacing the gun/missile launcher with a standard thermal shrouded 105 or 120. MASSTER camouflage scheme from the 70s
mmeier
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Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany
Joined: October 22, 2008
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Posted: Monday, January 09, 2017 - 08:20 PM UTC
The 20mm would be the Rh202 of the Marder-1 IFV not the Hispano-Suzia(sp?) used on the prototype. Maybe by 2017 the 30mm from the Puma or the 35mm of the Gepard will be considered. And/or the "Stinger pods" seen in some Gepard "improvement studies". If OTOH the "anti air" capability of the 20mm is no longer considered useful (Back then the AA tank was the M42 "no radar ma" Duster not the "Two of them Pa" Gepard) than maybe we see a 40mm "Granatmaschinenwaffe" there instead (better against infantry)

Gun would most likely be the 120mm Rheinmetall (The germans prefered that over the gun/launcher). And we will see the EMES15 fire control elements of the Leo2

Depending on when it goes into service it will have either the Leopard 2 stye "composite" armor or the older Leo 1A3/A4 style armor. In the latter case a lot more add-on armor will be needed. Maybe go "Leo1A5" style there


Oh and side skirts/Kettenblenden. All german MBTs use them and they where tested on a prototype by the germans.
LeoCmdr
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Alberta, Canada
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Posted: Tuesday, January 10, 2017 - 03:58 AM UTC
It would be great to see some creative line drawings of "what if" modernized Kpz70s for even more inspiration.
ColinEdm
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ARMORAMA
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Alberta, Canada
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Posted: Tuesday, January 10, 2017 - 10:07 AM UTC
Ask and you shall receive! I marked up some MBT-70 line drawings with my thoughts. My client wants to stick with an MG3 so I may have to re-jig the gunner/loaders hatch and peri sight to make room. Maybe getting rid of the 20mm autocannon and moving the hatch there?
mshackleton
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England - South East, United Kingdom
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Posted: Tuesday, January 10, 2017 - 01:12 PM UTC
If you are using a 120, the missile sight on the left side of the turret can go or be replaced by something else - built-in searchlight perhaps instead of on top the mantlet? The gunner's sight, top right corner of the turret, should look more like the EMES 15 sight on Leopard 2.
The commander's panoramic sight (centre on the roof) should be more like the PERI on Leopard 2A4 at least, or 2A5. The huge commander's night site on the right can go as that is now combined in the PERI. Maybe move the PERI to replace the night sight and give the MG3 it's own mount.
Perhaps a remote weapon station instead of the cannon like this http://www.armorama.com/modules.php?op=modload&name=Reviews&file=index&req=showcontent&id=12843&utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=facebook
GrafAkula
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Berlin, Germany
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Posted: Tuesday, January 10, 2017 - 01:35 PM UTC
What a nice project! I'll follow it with great interest!

IMO it would be a realistic change if you build a symmetrical turret layout by removing both the missile optic and the 20 mm gun base. Then I would use a Leopard 2 turret roof, at least the commanders hatch and the gunners hatch with a MG3 mount.


Cheers

Thomas
ColinEdm
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Posted: Wednesday, January 11, 2017 - 06:29 AM UTC
Some good ideas being tossed out here, I think I will rejig the turret shape and hatch locations to more closely match the Leo arrangement. Thanks all!
TopSmith
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Washington, United States
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Posted: Wednesday, January 11, 2017 - 08:04 AM UTC
Realistically there would not be a 20 or 30mm. It would be the remote controlled machine gun, especially in today's urban environments. maybe one from a Marder. Probably Would have side skirts like a Leo 1 or 2 depending on the year you are depicting. There will be smoke launchers. There is the option of using the add on armor tiles from the Marines M60 A1 That might be in the time frame you are thinking or a Leo 1 type spaced turret armor. Don't forget the drivers side mirrors the Germans like to use. Think about a wind sensor. Slat armor? Update the track and sprokets
barkingdigger
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ARMORAMA
#013
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England - East Anglia, United Kingdom
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Posted: Wednesday, January 11, 2017 - 02:54 PM UTC
There's tons of scope here! One thing I'd do (having built the kit) is replace the iffy DS tracks with decent indy-link Leo 2 track from Bronco.
tanknick22
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United States
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Posted: Wednesday, January 11, 2017 - 03:34 PM UTC

Quoted Text

Realistically there would not be a 20 or 30mm. It would be the remote controlled machine gun, especially in today's urban environments. maybe one from a Marder. Probably Would have side skirts like a Leo 1 or 2 depending on the year you are depicting. There will be smoke launchers. There is the option of using the add on armor tiles from the Marines M60 A1 That might be in the time frame you are thinking or a Leo 1 type spaced turret armor. Don't forget the drivers side mirrors the Germans like to use. Think about a wind sensor. Slat armor? Update the track and sprokets



where would you mount the mirrors since the driver is located in the turret?
The MBT70 was a unique tank in where the drivers position was in the left side of the turret and rotated.
it was designed to allways face forward no matter which direction the gun was pointed, casung the drivers to get dizzy
ColinEdm
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Alberta, Canada
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Posted: Sunday, January 15, 2017 - 12:44 AM UTC
Getting started on the build now. First, some rather mundane fixes of some of the kit shortcomings. The radiator grills do not have the correct number of 'fins' (half of what there should be) so I added new ones from strip styrene. No PE was included with the kit so I had to cut out my own screens from some PE mesh I had.


Turned out decently I think.

I boxed in the underside of the radiator grills with some sheet styrene, painted black so you don't see the big empty inside. I found the upper hull to be rather floppy so I added some extra bracing. I also blanked off the side grill which is open.

The lower hull was a bit warped so I added some bracing to the lower hull to force the upper sides out a bit and straighten things out.

Oddly, the sponson floors on the lower hull sit too low, so you can actually see through the side grill if it is not blanked off.

As I will be adding skirts, I am not sure yet if I will do anything about this. More to come!


mshackleton
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England - South East, United Kingdom
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Posted: Sunday, January 15, 2017 - 02:33 AM UTC
As you have found out, the edge of the sponson runs across the back of the grille. As you say, you are fitting skirts, so the fact that the sponson bottoms and the hull sides don't follow the same contours won't matter - apart from the grille problem. Box it off or just put a blanking plate behind the grille. What were Dragon thinking??
ColinEdm
Staff MemberAssociate Editor
ARMORAMA
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Alberta, Canada
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Posted: Sunday, January 15, 2017 - 03:34 AM UTC
Yep, put a blanking plate behind the grill, we'll see how the skirts fit and if I need to fill the sponson bottoms. Joined the upper and lower hulls, some warping will require a bit of fill on both sides.

Trimmed the travel lock brackets off the front, I will likely relocate it to the rear engine deck. Did a bit of work with the Legend M2 Bradley resin ERA kit, it is almost as if it was made for this kit! The front section is an almost perfect fit, just have to remove one row:


Then added the side piece with headlamp bracket, then trimmed down the rights hand piece:

Slick as gopher grease!
barkingdigger
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ARMORAMA
#013
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England - East Anglia, United Kingdom
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Posted: Sunday, January 15, 2017 - 05:02 AM UTC

Quoted Text

What were Dragon thinking??



You assume they were thinking?

Colin, I like what I'm seeing! The only issue with a rear travel lock is the driver will have to see over the turret bustle on route marches given his position! I'm guessing anything less than 100ft away will be "below the horizon" for him...
BootsDMS
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England - South West, United Kingdom
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Posted: Sunday, January 15, 2017 - 05:32 AM UTC
I have plans to portray (let alone build one day!) my Commander Models MBT 70 as a What-If, also in MASSTER camouflage but with only a few mods.

I am following this with great interest; I would just point out though that as far as I'm aware, there was a TV camera mount installed on the glacis to aid the driver who, as has been identified earlier, was installed in the turret.

You might therefore, wish to allow for an aperture within the additional armour, to replicate this.

Just a thought; keep up the very good and interesting work.

Brian
ColinEdm
Staff MemberAssociate Editor
ARMORAMA
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Alberta, Canada
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Posted: Sunday, January 15, 2017 - 05:57 AM UTC
Hmm, good points Tom and Brian! Well, just have to adjust things a bit!
m4sherman
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Arizona, United States
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Posted: Sunday, January 15, 2017 - 09:44 AM UTC
Looking good so far. Perhaps given the advancement in video cameras in the last 40 years all you need is a small lens and cable?
mshackleton
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England - South East, United Kingdom
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Posted: Thursday, January 19, 2017 - 04:02 AM UTC

Quoted Text

The only issue with a rear travel lock is the driver will have to see over the turret bustle on route marches given his position! I'm guessing anything less than 100ft away will be "below the horizon" for him...



The Germans used a travel lock at the front. Only the Americans put it at the back. As Tom says, not the brightest of ideas.
ColinEdm
Staff MemberAssociate Editor
ARMORAMA
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Alberta, Canada
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Posted: Sunday, January 22, 2017 - 05:32 AM UTC
Some more goodies arrived in the mail this week:

The PzH2000 skirts are a nice fit, I just have to extend the fenders a bit and add a filling blank for the front part where they angle up. I will also add a mounting bracket along the side of the hull.

New fender extensions:

They will line up with the skirts when everything is finally assembled. I will also add some more detail to the top of the fenders.

I will also add some mudflaps to the back. I will try to keep this blog updated every Sunday (except this coming week - taking my boys snowmobiling in the mountains!) Cheers