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Fort AP Hill / Fort Belvoir
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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Neil_Baumgardner
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Location: Arlington, VA
PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2012 9:29 am
Post subject: Fort AP Hill / Fort Belvoir

Looks like I will finally get onto AP Hill today, or maybe tomorrow. I'm also hoping to get into 1 or 2 other places, but they're more iffy - we'll see.

Let me know if there are any requests. I already have the SN guide downloaded and aim to get the Sherman's SN if I can.

Let me know if there are any other requests.

And no, I wont be going to check to see the Sherman range wrecks are still there after 50 years...

Neil


Last edited by Neil_Baumgardner on Tue Apr 17, 2012 11:46 am; edited 2 times in total
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the_shadock
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Location: Normandy, France
PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2012 11:34 am
Post subject: Re: Visiting Fort AP Hill

this where to look to see the M7B2 Serial Number, just above the differential cover bolt strip, quite easy to find :



The M4A3E8 SN should be read on the rear tow lugs.

P-O

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soldat_ryan @ hotmail.com

Looking for photos of Sherman manufacturer's plates
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Neil_Baumgardner
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2012 12:25 pm
Post subject: Re: Visiting Fort AP Hill

Visit did not go well. What they told me over the phone wss not the truth when I got there. Very bad experience, never going back again. Thankfully I wasnt arrested, just merely escorted off post.

Next visit should be more promising...
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Rick_Eshleman
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2012 5:50 pm
Post subject: Re: Visiting Fort AP Hill

Neil,
Sorry to hear you had a bad experience at AP Hill. I''m scratching them off my list of places to visit. Is Ft. Belvoir worth a visit? I'm still hoping to visit Ft. Lee this year, but if everything is covered or not open to public, may skip it for now. Has there been any problems for people trying to visit there?
When I last visited Aberdeen, I called 2 Public Affairs Offices to make sure I could get on Museum grounds, at least they were truthful!
Rick
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Neil_Baumgardner
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2012 7:22 pm
Post subject: Re: Visiting Fort AP Hill

So here's the story: I called ahead to see what I needed to do for photography. In contrast to what they told me on the phone, I discovered in person that the only photography allowed is for official publication/press - ie no personal photos.

Needless to say, after driving 2 hours, I wasnt happy. I expressed my frustration, but never raised my voice or anything like that. I pointed out that this higher security than I have seen in 10 years of visiting Army posts. He "suggested" that I be on my way lest I find the police stopping me due to my "bad attitude." I was flabbergasted.

I briefly stopped at the display, which is very forlorn, off in a corner and essentially forgotten. But I did not take any photos. I took a wrong turn on my way out and sure enough found two vehicles behind me with lights on. It was reported that I had been taking photos - which I hadnt. They checked my ID, my camera, etc. They thoroughly checked me out and then escorted me out.

Yes, I was stopped and escorted out (again, I was already on my way) due to having a "bad attitude."

Though I should clarify that the officers never said that and in fact were quite nice and polite (I'm sure I was the highlight of their week/month).

I should hasten to add AP Hill is the smallest Army post I have ever seen. I think the HQ had like 3 rooms. Having been to APG, Detroit Arsenal, Fort Bragg, Fort Jackson, Fort Meade, etc - I have to conclude that security restrictions are directly related to the isolation and size of a post, and inverse to its actual security concerns...

Needless to say I didnt need this trouble, and was glad to be on my way. To add injury to insult, I sprained my ankle after I fell leaving the HQ building. Like I said, I dont ever plan on returning. It's not worth it.

To paraphrase 2010: ATTEMPT NO ENTRY OR PHOTOGRAPHS THERE!


Last edited by Neil_Baumgardner on Mon Apr 16, 2012 7:38 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Neil_Baumgardner
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2012 7:33 pm
Post subject: Re: Visiting Fort AP Hill

Rick,
I dont know of anything at Belvoir to see - at least until the national museum is built and opens.

I also visited Lee - much better reception of course. There's only a few items on display - including the big bomb, M3 Bradley, M74 and Pershing launcher. All of the other Ordnance Museum items, except for Anzio Annie, are now inside expandable structures - which frankly is better than they have had in 70 years. One bit of news is that the Army coastal rail gun that was formerly at Dahlgren is now on display by the new Ordnance campus.

I'll have more about the Lee visit later.

Neil
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Neil_Baumgardner
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2012 7:36 pm
Post subject: Re: Visiting Fort AP Hill

I should also add that this should be a cautionary tale. Be careful out there. Not every post has the same regulations. Some of the smaller ones are particularly zealous. Get as much permission in advance as you can, and try to confirm every little detail.

Be safe.

Neil
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Rick_Eshleman
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2012 7:46 pm
Post subject: Re: Visiting Fort AP Hill

Neil,
Sorry to hear about your experience, but it will save others hassles. Hope the ankle is feeling better! I visited many bases (Aberdeen, Ft. Indiantown Gap, New Cumberland Depot, etc, and never experienced anything like you have! Worst I ever got was an SP at Washington DC Naval Imaging Command yelling at me for no reason, which I then and now just laugh off!
I have some vacation this summer, and plan on hitting Ft. Lee and maybe some other spots. Ft. Belvoir, years ago, was supposed to have test areas for engineering equipment, I never had chance to go there. It's gotten worse since 911 to enjoy visits to bases. You could at one time just drive by the empty Guard shack on Rt 22 at Aberdeen and go straight to the Museum! Can't even go onto base that way anymore! Take care, Rick
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Neil_Baumgardner
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2012 7:57 pm
Post subject: Re: Visiting Fort AP Hill

Rick,
Many years ago the Engineering Proving Grounds were located at Fort Belvoir - what is now called the "North Area" - that is where the T28 and at least one of the T30s was found. The EPG closed with the Engineering Corps' move to Fort Leonard Wood in 1988. You can look on a map and see lots of new construction and woods. The North Area is also where the future National Museum of the US Army (NMUSA) will be.

AFAIK, there is no armor anymore at Belvoir - that's what I have been told several times, and I have never seen any there myself. There may be some 75mm pack howitzer salute guns (as on most posts), but no artillery other than that.

Neil


Last edited by Neil_Baumgardner on Tue Apr 17, 2012 11:45 am; edited 2 times in total
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armyjunk2
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2012 10:25 am
Post subject: Re: Fort AP Hill

Is this a really old Google Earth pic ??? its what they have up now..

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Neil_Baumgardner
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2012 10:57 am
Post subject: Re: Fort AP Hill

armyjunk2,
Is that Belvoir? Can you provide the cross-street or coordinates?

Neil
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Neil_Baumgardner
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2012 11:33 am
Post subject: Re: Fort AP Hill

Good find. Looks like a T-72 and a BMP? I'll have to make some phone calls...

binged.it/HQuFc1

Neil
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armyjunk2
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2012 11:36 am
Post subject: Re: Fort AP Hill

38.719246° -77.156113° is this still Belvoir??
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Neil_Baumgardner
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2012 11:43 am
Post subject: Re: Fort AP Hill

Yep, that's the main campus - just not a part I've been by before. Already made some phone calls - gonna make sure all Ts are crossed and Is are dotted before I do anything. Thankfully its just a few miles away, so I wouldnt waste too much time - but I dont want to see blue lights again...

Hopefully they'll be more receptive...

Neil
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Neil_Baumgardner
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2012 11:43 am
Post subject: Re: Fort AP Hill

Yep, that's the main campus - just not a part I've been by before. Already made some phone calls - gonna make sure all Ts are crossed and Is are dotted before I do anything. Thankfully its just a few miles away, so I wouldnt waste too much time - but I dont want to see blue lights again...

Hopefully they'll be more receptive...

Neil
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