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A Visit to Ft Lewis - Sheridan and Stryker
The AFV ASSOCIATION was formed in 1964 to support the thoughts and research of all those interested in Armored Fighting Vehicles and related topics, such as AFV drawings. The emphasis has always been on sharing information and communicating with other members of similar interests; e.g. German armor, Japanese AFVs, or whatever.
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Burik
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2006 9:28 am
Post subject: A Visit to Ft Lewis - Sheridan and Stryker

Hi Guys:

I got to see a recon version of the Stryker yesterday. I learned some new stuff about the vehicle. Nice amenities for the troopers these days. Lots better than what the M113 offers/offered. There is some sort of heater for food and hot water, all kinds of power sources, good ventilation. No A/C yet though, although the guys that showed me around have heard a few have A/Cs (for the computers of course - not the men).

The Cav museum had a pretty nice Sheridan out front too.

I hope these pictures aren't too big. If so, maybe they can be removed and I can just place a link to the photos.


Bob

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Doug_Kibbey
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2006 9:39 am
Post subject: Re: A Visit to Ft Lewis - Sheridan and Stryker

Don't worry about the pic size, Bob...the forum automatically resized them now..

nice pics!
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LavTech
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2006 9:57 am
Post subject: Re: A Visit to Ft Lewis - Sheridan and Stryker

By the way, AC is on the way for ALL varients. Part of a deal with GD to
make certain "issues" go away, as well as about $30 million in hold backs currently on the books, GD has agreed to install AC on all units at no cost to the Government. I believe previously fielded units will also be retrofitted with new AC.
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Hellfish6
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2006 10:16 am
Post subject: Re: A Visit to Ft Lewis - Sheridan and Stryker

That is a nice looking Sheridan. It doesn't look like MERDC camo, though...
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SFC_Jeff_Button
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2006 2:11 pm
Post subject: Re: A Visit to Ft Lewis - Sheridan and Stryker

That looks like a pretty modern / late model Sheridan. Does it happen to run and where at Ft Lewis is it located?

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Dontos
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2006 4:09 pm
Post subject: Re: A Visit to Ft Lewis - Sheridan and Stryker

Ft Lewis is near Tacoma Washington, South of Seattle.

Spent 3 1/2 years (1994-98) with Army Recruiting, 65 miles north, In Oak Harbor on Whidbey Island.

Don

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Burik
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2006 5:20 pm
Post subject: Re: A Visit to Ft Lewis - Sheridan and Stryker

I think Jeff might have meant where AT the base the Sheridan is located. It is in front of the Cav museum, which is a small building near the CAV headquarters, which are right next to the Chinooks. I don't know if other helicopters are there, but all I saw were a lot of Chinnoks hanging around the field, both with and without blades. Not being military, it is always a blast to drive around posts and seeing stuff like that.

Anyway, the Cav museum is moving to Germany with the 2nd Cav, which is being reflagged over there somewhere. THe curator was in the middle of packing up the collection. I don't think the Sheridan is going, since he has one waiting for him there. I was told this Sheridan was an old Vismod that some general or colonel made a handshake deal with his opposite at the NTC to get it to Ft Lewis, so the Cav could have one on display. To my untrained eye, it was in very good condition for a reconditioned Vismod. I forgot the sides were part styrofoam. It was fun to knock on the side and feel and hear a quite different sound than you are used to when knocking on a tank.

By the way, the post museum is in quite a nice building and it is a pretty good post museum. It is on the opposite side of the post and is visible from the highway. There is a very nice collection of vehicles there, including one of the Humvee prototypes, and a niceT-59 (I think) at the entrance.

This Stryker was built in 05 and so is kind of new still I suppose. It's funny; it does not seem people can make up their minds on certain terms when discussing the vehicle. I have heard the commander called VC, TC, and in the recon version even RVC. The men call the vehicle a truck, or even a ship. And it's kind of hard to keep up with some of the nuances of the Stryker, even though it has only been around 3 or 4 years. My NTC photos show an odd sort of stand-off plate armor on some vehicles, but it is only in certain spots (rear both sides, and a kidney shaped piece under the winch), then some slat armor vehicles move the lights to the side, but not all, as I checked on the internet. The guys told me that seems to be a unit specific thing. Some Strykers seem to have light guards and others don't. Then only a small % now have a horn (the one I am standing next to has one next to my rt hand).

The reason I was there was to do some research for a model article I will be writing once the model comes out later this year or early next year. But in many ways I ended up with more questions.

Interesting point about the A/C.

Bob
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MarkHolloway
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 27, 2006 12:31 am
Post subject: Re: A Visit to Ft Lewis - Sheridan and Stryker

I'm a little confused. The 2nd Cav museum is at Fort Lewis? Thought it was at Fort Polk. (?)

That looks to be a fine specimen of a Sheridan. Of course that's the M551A1 with the laser range finder in the commander's cupola. My humble opinion-This vehicle is in way to good of shape to have come from the NTC. The one's out there were pretty well used up and some of the mods would have been pretty obvious. Like a lot of them had gun tubes cut of and I would think that there would be mounting brackets all over the place for the VISMOD attachments.

I'm betting that this vehicle came from the 82nd AB. There is a row of bolts across the front at the bottom. These are for the Mine Protective Kit. I think only the Airborne would have had mine kits removed (for weight considerations). Everyone else used them as far as I know. There are some Sheridans that never had a mine kit but these versions did not have the holes where the bolts go. The bolts are just 'dust covers' on this version. Another thing to note is this Sheridan has a few 'modern' upgrades. Like the slave receptacle on the outside to the right (as facing it) of the driver's hatch and the newer style bustle rack. So this vehicle was in servive until the very end. So I'm pretty sure this would have come for Fort Bragg. Any, it is in very good condition. The Sheridan at the Chaffee gate at Knox, on the other hand, has a whole bunch of parts missing. It's not nearly as good as this one.

It's early in the morning and when I saw the 'white dome' in the bustle rack I thought it was a commercial GPS untit like commercial trucks use!


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Roy_A_Lingle
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 27, 2006 12:42 am
Post subject: Re: A Visit to Ft Lewis - Sheridan and Stryker

Hi Don! Hi Folks!

Thanks for the photos!

- Burik

I was told this Sheridan was an old Vismod that some general or colonel made a handshake deal with his opposite at the NTC to get it to Ft Lewis, so the Cav could have one on display. To my untrained eye, it was in very good condition for a reconditioned Vismod.


Untrained eye? Surprised
If that was an ex-11th ACR vismod, somebody has done a LOT OF WORK to restore it. In all the photos I have seen of 11th ACR NTC vehicles, the surf board, the hinges for the surf board, the covers and lock down straps for the floatation screen were all long gone. I wonder where they got replacement parts from.

If I was to guess, I would think that vehicle came from the 3rd/73rd Armor when it stood down rather that the 11th ACR when they turned in the last of their vismod hulks.

- Burik

It's funny; it does not seem people can make up their minds on certain terms when discussing the vehicle. I have heard the commander called VC, TC, and in the recon version even RVC.


I think you may find that what the troopers call the commander of the vehicle maybe based on their MOS. I would bet that Scouts and Tankers (trained at Ft. Knox) are using TC and Infantrymen (trained at Ft. Benning)are the ones using the term VC.

- Burik

The men call the vehicle a truck, or even a ship.


I can see them calling it a truck, after all it does have wheels and is as large as truck. As for ship? Have you been talking to ex-sailors?

- Burik

And it's kind of hard to keep up with some of the nuances of the Stryker, even though it has only been around 3 or 4 years. My NTC photos show an odd sort of stand-off plate armor on some vehicles, but it is only in certain spots (rear both sides, and a kidney shaped piece under the winch), then some slat armor vehicles move the lights to the side, but not all, as I checked on the internet. The guys told me that seems to be a unit specific thing. Some Strykers seem to have light guards and others don't. Then only a small % now have a horn (the one I am standing next to has one next to my rt hand).

The reason I was there was to do some research for a model article I will be writing once the model comes out later this year or early next year. But in many ways I ended up with more questions.


I think we are going to see a lot of minor 'nuances' between the older vehicles and as newer block builds are modified due to 'lessons learned'. It maybe that there are a number of small 'nuances' between the difference mission types.

I think it will be interesting to see which block build the new Stryker kit will be based on. For all you model builders, remember Tamiya's first M1/105 Abrams? Many reviewers bad mouthed that kit because it didn't look like the Abrams they had seen. What they didn't know was that kit was based on a very limited block build. There were only two tank battalions at Ft. Hood, Texas that were equiped with that version(block build) of the M1/105. For the most part, Tamiya got the kit right.

My 2 cents,
Sgt, Scouts Out! Smile

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mike_Duplessis
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 27, 2006 8:48 am
Post subject: Re: A Visit to Ft Lewis - Sheridan and Stryker

For Stryker novices, note the commander's station does NOT have a remote mg station but a good old-fashioned swivel mount. Also note the extended extra-tall wire cutter on the bow - another distinguishing feature of the recon variants.

This was the first Stryker type lost in Iraq I believe, hit by an IED on the road to Samarra and burned-out within the first couple weeks of deploying.
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Burik
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 27, 2006 5:01 pm
Post subject: Re: A Visit to Ft Lewis - Sheridan and Stryker

The 2nd Cav moved to Ft Lewis after OIF1. Their museum of course moved w/ them. Now they are headed to Germany and the museum is packing up to go with them.

I don't know about the Sheridan being ex-Vismod, but that is what the curator told me. I think he mentioned they did a lot of work to get it looking like it does now. I won't be able to clarify this as I think by the next time I get up there the museum curator will be gone.

Heh, heh, Roy - I have not been talking to ex-sailors. I think that goes to show how men will come up with their own nomenclature at times, and so you never know what you will get. I think you are right that the MOS probably has a factor in the terms. But, note that tank terms come from the navy dictionary (hull, sponson, bow, ...). I think I read somewhere that the early tanks from WWI were referred to as ships at times. I am sure this NCO I spoke w/ did not make that connection.

An odd thing about the recon variant is that the TC is meant to be in a permanently buttoned up position. The crew consists of three men. The gunner is in the hatch pointed out by Mike. I was told the TC uses the left rear hatch to get better situational awareness. I would post a couple of more pics but my lovely wife has now blocked all photos sites, which includes my Photobucket! Now I have to wait til she gets home.

So, Mike, do you know a lot about the Stryker? Maybe I should be asking you some questions for my article, offline?

Cheers.

Bob
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JG300_Hunt
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 27, 2006 10:07 pm
Post subject: Re: A Visit to Ft Lewis - Sheridan and Stryker

Actually, 2nd Cav is not moving to Germany. 1st Brigade / 25th Infantry Division is moving to Germany. They will re-flag as 2nd Cav once there. The actual 2nd Cav which moved to Fort Lewis will re-flag as 2nd Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division. Another Stryker Brigade is planned for here (Lewis) to become 1st Brigade, 2ID. That being said and all, not sure if they have plans on moving the museum with 1st Brigade or keeping it here at Lewis where 2CR is currently.

Burik - you are absolutely correct, the Fort Lewis museum is definately a sight worth taking in if one has the chance. Great museum compared to most I have visited over the years.

The Airfield here also hosts Blackhawks and even a few Kiowas here. The Chinooks are also present. We have been known to jump out the back of those once in awhile for Airborne ops, even the occasional Blackhawk has hosted our crazy adventures Smile

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MarkHolloway
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 28, 2006 11:25 pm
Post subject: Re: A Visit to Ft Lewis - Sheridan and Stryker

Hmm, I still think the Sheridan is WAY to nice to be an NTC variant. The museum curator at Yuma Proving Ground used to be the 2CR curator. I'll send him an e-mail if I can remember his name. At any rate, outside of the Littlefield collection, that's the best preserved M551 that I've seen. Once again, since the mine plate was removed I'd bet it was an 'Airborne Tank'.

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jcneel
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 29, 2006 4:26 am
Post subject: Re: A Visit to Ft Lewis - Sheridan and Stryker

Looking at the M551A1 - is it a TTS version? I thought that the later ones had different smoke grenade launchers on them? I've seen photos of other static display Sheridans that have the laser range finder on the commander cupola but still had the older style smoke launchers. Did the 82 Airborne Sheridans in Desert Shield carry both types or just the later style with smaller quad launchers? I'm looking to do a DS version using my Academy kit (yeah, I know it has issues).

Thanks

cn
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Doug_Kibbey
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 29, 2006 7:59 am
Post subject: Re: A Visit to Ft Lewis - Sheridan and Stryker

- jcneel
Looking at the M551A1 - is it a TTS version? I thought that the later ones had different smoke grenade launchers on them? I've seen photos of other static display Sheridans that have the laser range finder on the commander cupola but still had the older style smoke launchers. Did the 82 Airborne Sheridans in Desert Shield carry both types or just the later style with smaller quad launchers? I'm looking to do a DS version using my Academy kit (yeah, I know it has issues).

Thanks

cn


I believe those are the last/latest style smoke launchers on the vehicle...the earlier ones were more crude and simple looking. I can't answer the questions about the 82nd vehicles with any certainty, but it would surprise me to learn that any DS-deployed vehicles still carried the old type launchers. I didn't serve on any M551's with TTS, after my time....but I did test the laser rangfinder and most of that apparatus was in the cupola, as you note.

This is one of the most complete Sheridans I've seen in recent years, apart from the MVTF one. Notice the open transmitter door with the lens peeking through...it even appears to have the official barrel tampon in place, but it's hard to tell from this pic.
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