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New 'Franken-Tanks' Discovered !!
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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Dontos
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 16, 2009 8:45 pm
Post subject: New 'Franken-Tanks' Discovered !!

Hey all

These photos were forwarded to me. They were taken over the weekend, during a local MVPA 'trail ride' in the area of the old 'GMD' recovery area.



Regards
Don
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MarkHolloway
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 17, 2009 1:14 pm
Post subject: Re: New 'Franken-Tanks' Discovered !!

Wow! That's an M48 hull. I'll bet there weren't many of these built.

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panamadan
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 17, 2009 2:03 pm
Post subject: Re: New 'Franken-Tanks' Discovered !!

Don,
What is the GMD area? Is this tank buried or been outside a LONG time?
Dan
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Dontos
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 18, 2009 4:40 pm
Post subject: Re: New 'Franken-Tanks' Discovered !!

Dan

'GMD' or 'Ground Mobility Division' taught Tank Mechanic Track Vehicle Recovery, that these vehicles were a part of.

I have bee further informed that this is 4 seperate vehicles, and the hulls are M48A1's. Although I have not been provided with any additional photos, I was also told that there was an M103 & an M103A1, in the cluster of vehicles.

I am hoping that other individuals present may have taken additional photos. I'll post whatever else I am forwarded.

Regards
Don
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Joe_D
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 18, 2009 5:27 pm
Post subject: Re: New 'Franken-Tanks' Discovered !!

I see an M60A3 in the mix (top left picture, bottom right) Shocked ,

Also, the "Franken Tank" that's stood on to take the pictures in the bottom images appears to be to an M48A3/A5 hull (I believe it's the same one that's missing the right track and idler in the top right picture). Give away is the area where the pack should be and in the front image you can see the comp idler re enforcing extension boss that was used when the hulls were upgraded from A1's to A3's. Pretty sure this is the same one that had been posted a while back in a different location.

Barrel in the bottom left image looks like the old 120mm used on M103's.

Gotta be a reason for the consolidation, most likely they are cleaning up the area since that class is also moving to Fort Benning Sad , These old girls might be scrapped real soon, be a shame to let them get away without salvaging some decent parts.

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Geoff_walden
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 22, 2009 4:47 pm
Post subject: Re: New 'Franken-Tanks' Discovered !!

I don't want to start an unfounded rumor, but I heard that there were 21 (yeah, 21!) M2A1 Medium Tanks dug up on Fort Knox this past week. This was supposed to be at GMD as well. I talked to some guys at GMD on Friday, and they said they had heard the same thing, but it wasn't at GMD - it was out in the range or impact area somewhere.

A guy I work with was tasked to certify that these tanks are clear of ammo, and he was asking me for an ammo storage plan or load plan. He didn't actually see the tanks himself.

Did anyone else hear this? This sounds suspiciously like the tanks shown above, except misidentified (badly!) by someone.

Geoff Walden
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Dontos
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 22, 2009 5:14 pm
Post subject: Re: New 'Franken-Tanks' Discovered !!

Geoff

I've heard a number of urban legends regarding stuff on Ft Knox, but nothing about M2A1's.

Between the ranges, GMD, & Zussman there is a lot to be discovered and/or accounted for.

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Don
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Michel_Krauss
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 22, 2009 6:02 pm
Post subject: Re: New 'Franken-Tanks' Discovered !!

Hi folks,

sorry to bother, maybe an strange question

what is an "Franken-Tank" and what is so special about them ?? Confused Confused

All I see is an tank hull in the M48-M60 style with an very special turret

Michel

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Joe_D
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 22, 2009 8:02 pm
Post subject: Re: New 'Franken-Tanks' Discovered !!

Michel,

Name was coined on this site when referring to these creations. All have old M60A2 turrets that were excess when the tanks were turned in and converted to AVLB bridgelayers. These turrets were placed on obsolete hulls (Mostly M48/M48A1) and were used for hard targets at Fort Knox. One eventually ended as a display tank in front of the VFW in Valley Station Kentucky. The rest as far as we know are the ones on the ranges at Fort Knox. Seems to be unique to that post as far as I know.

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JG300-Ascout
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 22, 2009 8:11 pm
Post subject: Re: New 'Franken-Tanks' Discovered !!

- Dontos
Geoff

I've heard a number of urban legends regarding stuff on Ft Knox
Regards
Don


Some things aren't legends, or accounted for....

...like a circular area at CTA (near the river) about 100 meters in diameter where nothing grew or lived. I've seen the effects of defoliation, and that doesn't explain it.

No idea what was behind it.

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Dontos
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 23, 2009 6:32 am
Post subject: Re: New 'Franken-Tanks' Discovered !!

This is the first 'Franken-Tank' located in Valley Station Ky.



Regards
Don
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Michel_Krauss
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 23, 2009 7:07 am
Post subject: Re: New 'Franken-Tanks' Discovered !!

Joe-D,

thanks for the explanation, so it is an sort of Frankenstein tank

Is putting an obsolete turret on to an obsolte hull not an lot of work for an hard target?
I guess that the M48 hull's have been from complete M48 tanks, so hull with turret

And if it have been complete M48 tanks, what use was there for these M48 turret's?

Michel

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Doug_Kibbey
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 23, 2009 9:07 am
Post subject: Re: New 'Franken-Tanks' Discovered !!

- Dontos
This is the first 'Franken-Tank' located in Valley Station Ky.
Regards
Don


Whaddaya' know....the same guy who mis-spelled my name on a couple of my orders is apparently still out there!
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Joe_D
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 23, 2009 11:45 am
Post subject: Re: New 'Franken-Tanks' Discovered !!

Is putting an obsolete turret on to an obsolete hull not an lot of work for an hard target?


No, not really with these examples. Turret ring and diameter is the same between M48 and M60, 85 inches. Unbolt the turret ring and the slip ring connections and that's it. M88 has enough lift capability. Only problem would be the crew platform on the M60 series hangs lower than for the M48. In this case that wouldn't matter since those M60A2 turrets didn't come with the platforms (both examples I inspected didn't have them). Just place on top and your done, using just enough bolts for transport. Anniston Army Depot had many M60A2 turrets left over when the converted the hulls to AVLB's

And if it have been complete M48 tanks, what use was there for these M48 turret's?


I still wonder about that myself. With the exception of the one that uses a later M48A3/A5 hull, all the other "Frankentanks" I've seen use M48A1 hulls. The M48A3/A5 hull may have been damaged and unrepairable. I'm pretty sure the turrets from these were sold as parts after being upgraded to 105mm with M60A3 fire control components. Taiwan comes to mind (CM-11). These M48 Hulls would be pretty much useless to anyone since they would require a major retrofit to bring up to M48A5/M60A3 standards. I'm guessing Fort Knox requested some hard targets and Anniston Army Depot created these from junk laying around. They used to do a demonstration Combined Arms Live Fire Exercise once a year that destroyed a lot of old tanks (Do they still do this Don ?). Last time I was there they used a bunch of really nice M60A3's for Targets Crying or Very sad

Anyway, that's my theory

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JimWeb
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 23, 2009 11:56 am
Post subject: Re: New 'Franken-Tanks' Discovered !!

- Joe_D


I still wonder about that myself. With the exception of the one that uses a later M48A3/A5 hull, all the other "Frankentanks" I've seen use M48A1 hulls. The M48A3/A5 hull may have been damaged and unrepairable. I'm pretty sure the turrets from these were sold as parts after being upgraded to 105mm with M60A3 fire control components. Taiwan comes to mind (CM-11). These M48 Hulls would be pretty much useless to anyone since they would require a major retrofit to bring up to M48A5/M60A3 standards. I'm guessing Fort Knox requested some hard targets and Anniston Army Depot created these from junk laying around. They used to do a demonstration Combined Arms Live Fire Exercise once a year that destroyed a lot of old tanks (Do they still do this Don ?). Last time I was there they used a bunch of really nice M60A3's for Targets Crying or Very sad

Anyway, that's my theory


Yeah I can confirm that the turrets went to Taiwan.

Also some M60A2 turrets went there as well and were supposed to have been used on fortifications. About two years ago one of the european ammunition manufacturers got a big order from Taiwan for 152mm HEAT ammunition which one assumes were for these turrets.

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