The 1st Armoured Regiment Association held an open day to view the Abrams Battle Tanks
This day was only open to members. It was held at the Puckapunyal Tank Museum, and we were given access to climb all over and into a Abrams Gun Tank and also a Hercules M88A2 ARV. The only restrictions were no photos inside the tanks, otherwise it was all there to see
We moved into the tank hangers passed a heap of Leopards and inside was an Abrams gun tank and an ARV, complete with walk up steps. Beside the right wall were five more gun tanks.
We climbed aboard and my first impression was --- small--- inside! I went to the ARV first as the gun tank was covered with people. You had to enter from the side hatch and crawl around to your position---and that was more or less where you stayed. Access through the top cupola and hatches would be a bit better I imagine. Every thing was white and clean, looked great.
The Hercules M88A1 -- note the old men steps, boy were they needed
Rear view of the Hercules M88A1
Side on view
The right headlight assembly---everything looks like its meant to stay
The front winch note the two hatches above
The hangers looked over size but all the Leopards are now outside and only about seven Abrams were inside
They sure have a nice emblem
Across on the Gun Tank it was all go -- a steady stream of people into the drivers seat and the turret -- everyone seemed to feel it was cramped
The operators hatch -- note the lock down device and the 360 swing on the scope
The operators machine gun mount -- note slide at the bottom
The slide that the Machine gun runs on
The drivers compartment the steering yoke is pulled right out - it just slides in and out as required --Gear change is an auto selector on the front of the hatch No double the clutch or stick change on these beauties -- but where has all the fun gone!
The drivers position!
The drivers hatch just swings aside
I have the opinion that unless the gun is pointing at 3 o'clock or 9 o'clock the driver cannot exit the tank --I would not feel all that comfortable in there
As these are all shot on my digital camera I was able to upload them today, I have some more on my 35mm which I will have developed tomorrow and may add a couple more !