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C3 Howitzer Replacement

FJAG

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SKT pm'd me to point out a couple of errors in what I mentioned above and, of course, he's quite right. So I thought I'd just make a short (for me) post to correct that.
The shut down of Total Force air defence was not because of cost of the reserve component. The shut down was for two major reasons: first, the five Res F troops were exclusively Javelin and for the sole purpose of augmenting 4 AD regiment which was in 4 CMBG at the time. When 4 CMBG shut down there was no longer a pressing need for the five Res F troops; and secondly, there was a need to "refresh" the Javelin stock which was expensive so the Javelin was shut down in favour of just keeping the ADATS which did not have a Res F component to it. Eventually when the ADATS was shut down it was for the cost of "refreshing' the system - MMEV hadn't panned out and the that project was shut down leaving ADATS limping along. Eventually with the changes to a strong STA component and the UAVs, the only thing left to cut ADATS. The biggest issues whenever it comes to capabilities is a) what priority do the PYs have in the bigger scheme of things and b) what cost is there to maintain training and a war stocks of ammunition through the equipment's life cycle. The weapon system itself is often the least expensive element in the equation.
Res F personnel costs are the least pricy component money wise but do add a readiness risk element.

The more recent history of Canadian air defence is as follows:

1) 4 AD Regt was formed during the 1987/88 reorganization under the Billion dollar Low Level Air Defence project whereby U AD Bty of 3 RCHA, V AD Bty of 5 RALC, and the Blowpipe troops from 1 and 2 RCHA were all stood down. 128 and 129 Airfield AD Btys in Lahr came under command of 4 AD as did a new battery 127 AD Bty. 119 AD Bty in Chatham and 4 AD Bty with the AD School in Gagetown remained in operation. The systems in use were the new ADATS, Skyguard, and the old Blowpipe. The old 40mm Boffins were divested;

2) In 1991/92 things reorganized again with the closure of 4 CMBG. At that time U, Y and V AD Btys were briefly stood back up in 1 RCHA (now in Shilo) and 2 RCHA and 5 RALC and then almost immediately stood down again and personnel redistributed as 1 AD Regt in Pembroke (with 89 AD Bty and 109 AD Bty), 18 AD Regt in Lethbridge (with 20th AD Bty and 39th AD Bty) and 58 BAA in Lévis were stood up with Javelin (which replaced Blowpipe in 1991) and authorized as Total Force units to take over the AD support to the three Reg F brigades (after their formation some courses would also be run for reservists on Skyguard and ADATS which remained with 119 AD Bty and 4 AD Bty);

3) Also in 1992 as 4 CMBG stood down, 4 AD Regt was reduced to nil strength but 119 AD Bty in Chatham and 4 AD Bty with the AD School remained;

4) In 1994 reactivation of 4 AD Regt was authorized as total force unit for stand up in 1996;

5) In 1996 4 AD Regt's HQ and 128 AD Bty were located in Moncton. 119 AD Bty merged into 4 AD Regt and it together with 210 Workshop were now located in Gagetown. 4 AD Bty and the AD School were absorbed into the Arty School. 1 AD Regt, 18 AD Regt and 58 BAA were now tasked to augment 4 AD Regt with a total of five Javelin troops and three ASCCs;

6) During the massive 2006 reorganization (where regular force FSCCs became larger, more FOO dets were authorized, three STA batteries were stood up and gun detachments were reduced from 54 to 24 thus requiring more Res F gun dets as augmentees) all Res F AD units converted back to field units - completed in 2007. Skyguard and Javelin went out of service in 2005. The ASCCs remained with 4 AD Regt which also starts focusing their training for a while as more of a Direct Fire Support unit with ADATS;

7) 2013 last year for 4 AD Regt - renamed and restructured to 4 Regt RCA (GS) (with 119 Bty, 127 Bty, and 128 Bty) - All remaining ADAT assets gone. 4 Regt (GS) currently provides ASCC, above brigade level FSCC and STACC, Medium Range Radars which are the ELM-2084 Multi-Mission Radar and CU172 Blackjack unmanned aerial systems.

So the correction is that the Total Force AD units (1 AD Regt, 18 AD Regt and 58 BAA) did not support 4CMBG but were in fact formed as 4 CMBG and 4 AD Regt were disbanded and were initially employed directly supporting the three Mechanized Brigade groups in Canada until tasked to augment 4 AD with five troops when if was reformed.

Sorry about that - mea culpa. The trouble is I knew all this and wrote a section in the book about it about four months ago. Mixed some apples with oranges here - temporary brain fart I guess. 🤷‍♂️

🍻
 
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daftandbarmy

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SKT pm'd me to point out a couple of errors in what I mentioned above and, of course, he's quite right. So I thought I'd just make a short (for me) post to correct that.


The more recent history of Canadian air defence is as follows:

1) 4 AD Regt was formed during the 1987/88 reorganization under the Billion dollar Low Level Air Defence project whereby U AD Bty of 3 RCHA, V AD Bty of 5 RALC, and the Blowpipe troops from 1 and 2 RCHA were all stood down. 128 and 129 Airfield AD Btys in Lahr came under command of 4 AD as did a new battery 127 AD Bty. 119 AD Bty in Chatham and 4 AD Bty with the AD School in Gagetown remained in operation. The systems in use were the new ADATS, Skyguard, and the old Blowpipe. The old 40mm Boffins were divested;

2) In 1991/92 things reorganized again with the closure of 4 CMBG. At that time U, Y and V AD Btys were briefly stood back up in 1 RCHA (now in Shilo) and 2 RCHA and 5 RALC and then almost immediately stood down again and personnel redistributed as 1 AD Regt in Pembroke (with 89 AD Bty and 109 AD Bty), 18 AD Regt in Lethbridge (with 20th AD Bty and 39th AD Bty) and 58 BAA in Lévis were stood up with Javelin (which replaced Blowpipe in 1991) and authorized as Total Force units to take over the AD support to the three Reg F brigades (after their formation some courses would also be run for reservists on Skyguard and ADATS which remained with 119 AD Bty and 4 AD Bty);

3) Also in 1992 as 4 CMBG stood down, 4 AD Regt was reduced to nil strength but 119 AD Bty in Chatham and 4 AD Bty with the AD School remained;

4) In 1994 reactivation of 4 AD Regt was authorized as total force unit for stand up in 1996;

5) In 1996 4 AD Regt's HQ and 128 AD Bty were located in Moncton. 119 AD Bty merged into 4 AD Regt and it together with 210 Workshop were now located in Gagetown. 4 AD Bty and the AD School were absorbed into the Arty School. 1 AD Regt, 18 AD Regt and 58 BAA were now tasked to augment 4 AD Regt with a total of five Javelin troops and three ASCCs;

6) During the massive 2006 reorganization (where regular force FSCCs became larger, more FOO dets were authorized, three STA batteries were stood up and gun detachments were reduced from 54 to 24 thus requiring more Res F gun dets as augmentees) all Res F AD units converted back to field units - completed in 2007. Skyguard and Javelin went out of service in 2005. The ASCCs remained with 4 AD Regt which also starts focusing their training for a while as more of a Direct Fire Support unit with ADATS;

7) 2013 last year for 4 AD Regt - renamed and restructured to 4 Regt RCA (GS) (with 119 Bty, 127 Bty, and 128 Bty) - All remaining ADAT assets gone. 4 Regt (GS) currently provides ASCC, above brigade level FSCC and STACC, Medium Range Radars which are the ELM-2084 Multi-Mission Radar and CU172 Blackjack unmanned aerial systems.

So the correction is that the Total Force AD units (1 AD Regt, 18 AD Regt and 58 BAA) did not support 4CMBG but were in fact formed as 4 CMBG and 4 AD Regt were disbanded and were initially employed directly supporting the three Mechanized Brigade groups in Canada until tasked to augment 4 AD with five troops when if was reformed.

Sorry about that - mea culpa. The trouble is I knew all this and wrote a section in the book about it about four months ago. Mixed some apples with oranges here - temporary brain fart I guess. 🤷‍♂️

🍻

So, in summary, 'raincoats on raincoats off' then? ;)
 

MilEME09

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So, in summary, 'raincoats on raincoats off' then? ;)
CAF does kinda run in circles, the more things change, the more they stay the same. Part of the problem is we get someone high up in Ottawa who comes up with a great long term strategic plan for the CAF, but won't be around long enough to execute it, so the next person thinks they have a better plan and switches to it. Rinse and repeat
 

Kirkhill

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SKT pm'd me to point out a couple of errors in what I mentioned above and, of course, he's quite right. So I thought I'd just make a short (for me) post to correct that.


The more recent history of Canadian air defence is as follows:

1) 4 AD Regt was formed during the 1987/88 reorganization under the Billion dollar Low Level Air Defence project whereby U AD Bty of 3 RCHA, V AD Bty of 5 RALC, and the Blowpipe troops from 1 and 2 RCHA were all stood down. 128 and 129 Airfield AD Btys in Lahr came under command of 4 AD as did a new battery 127 AD Bty. 119 AD Bty in Chatham and 4 AD Bty with the AD School in Gagetown remained in operation. The systems in use were the new ADATS, Skyguard, and the old Blowpipe. The old 40mm Boffins were divested;

2) In 1991/92 things reorganized again with the closure of 4 CMBG. At that time U, Y and V AD Btys were briefly stood back up in 1 RCHA (now in Shilo) and 2 RCHA and 5 RALC and then almost immediately stood down again and personnel redistributed as 1 AD Regt in Pembroke (with 89 AD Bty and 109 AD Bty), 18 AD Regt in Lethbridge (with 20th AD Bty and 39th AD Bty) and 58 BAA in Lévis were stood up with Javelin (which replaced Blowpipe in 1991) and authorized as Total Force units to take over the AD support to the three Reg F brigades (after their formation some courses would also be run for reservists on Skyguard and ADATS which remained with 119 AD Bty and 4 AD Bty);

3) Also in 1992 as 4 CMBG stood down, 4 AD Regt was reduced to nil strength but 119 AD Bty in Chatham and 4 AD Bty with the AD School remained;

4) In 1994 reactivation of 4 AD Regt was authorized as total force unit for stand up in 1996;

5) In 1996 4 AD Regt's HQ and 128 AD Bty were located in Moncton. 119 AD Bty merged into 4 AD Regt and it together with 210 Workshop were now located in Gagetown. 4 AD Bty and the AD School were absorbed into the Arty School. 1 AD Regt, 18 AD Regt and 58 BAA were now tasked to augment 4 AD Regt with a total of five Javelin troops and three ASCCs;

6) During the massive 2006 reorganization (where regular force FSCCs became larger, more FOO dets were authorized, three STA batteries were stood up and gun detachments were reduced from 54 to 24 thus requiring more Res F gun dets as augmentees) all Res F AD units converted back to field units - completed in 2007. Skyguard and Javelin went out of service in 2005. The ASCCs remained with 4 AD Regt which also starts focusing their training for a while as more of a Direct Fire Support unit with ADATS;

7) 2013 last year for 4 AD Regt - renamed and restructured to 4 Regt RCA (GS) (with 119 Bty, 127 Bty, and 128 Bty) - All remaining ADAT assets gone. 4 Regt (GS) currently provides ASCC, above brigade level FSCC and STACC, Medium Range Radars which are the ELM-2084 Multi-Mission Radar and CU172 Blackjack unmanned aerial systems.

So the correction is that the Total Force AD units (1 AD Regt, 18 AD Regt and 58 BAA) did not support 4CMBG but were in fact formed as 4 CMBG and 4 AD Regt were disbanded and were initially employed directly supporting the three Mechanized Brigade groups in Canada until tasked to augment 4 AD with five troops when if was reformed.

Sorry about that - mea culpa. The trouble is I knew all this and wrote a section in the book about it about four months ago. Mixed some apples with oranges here - temporary brain fart I guess. 🤷‍♂️

🍻

In 87 were U, V, 128 and 129 all equipped with the 40mm Bofors "Boffins"?
 

FJAG

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So, in summary, 'raincoats on raincoats off' then? ;)
SKT and I've had a small discussion off line as a result of which I've reached the conclusion that the ability to maintain some form of Total Force air defence would have been even less expensive and complex than I previously thought.

It's really hard to figure out why it happened the way that it did. Yes, there were very clear funding pressures and a very clear re-orientation as to what the role of the CAF, and particulalry the Army, should be. I've always blamed the then transformation process as being a spiritual and cultural change that went overboard with abandoning any association with being a Cold War army while overreaching in embracing the new save-the-world from failed states medium-weight, agile force.

I know that there were people fighting that trend, but they were drowned out by the zealots. The problem is that there is an almost pathological rejection within the Army's senior leadership to give to the reserves any responsibility or equipment or funding to maintain key niche skills except the ones that the Reg F has foisted on them and doesn't want (like LUSAR). Sure LUSAR is necessary but don't try to dress up grunt work as a raison d'être when your Army is incapable of full spectrum warfare.

One thing; as your force shrinks, it becomes ever more difficult to maintain doctrine, skills, and capabilities vibrant. All these deteriorate to the point where it becomes impossible to simply refresh them and instead you need to go through tortuous reinventing the wheel spasms. You could keep an air defence capability alive by having a few dozen PYs and a few hundred reservists work on dry field exercises and simulators, be seen out and about by the other arms and incorporating them in their own training, and then, when the need finally arrives all you need to do is by a few missiles. In the meantime a small inexpensive element within the Army keeps us in the game.

It's not just 'greatcoats on, greatcoats' off (I'm from the Army before they gave us frivolous kit like raincoats - we had ponchos for the field only) we've been stripped down to the skin in far too many cases and they're trying to see if they can flense some capabilities these days. The problem is oh so compounded by a moribund procurement system that is incapable of putting greatcoats back on when the funding is finally seen as essential.

I keep saying, stop blaming the politicians. Politicians give the CAF over 20 billion every year which gets pissed away. Politicians are the amateurs in this game. Like any amateur they need to be guided and informed by the professionals so that they clearly understand the issues. And there have been some extremely stupid amateurs along the way including the last one. Jeffrey was able to get that massage through to the politicians as to what we were incapable of doing at the turn of the century and with time we cut back on commitments and opened some taps for funds but at the same time lost ourselves in the direction forward. Under Henault and his predecessor there were some interesting initiatives vis a vis the reserves but they went off the rails and were lost in the dust with Hillyer.

- we're in a snow streamer off Lake Huron today and it seems I may need to get our snow blower active at last. I always get owly when it snows especially when I'm about to cancel a trip down south because ... Florida. I'm not really a winter person even when winters here aren't anywhere as crappy as Manitoba winter were. I'm a have a beer while floating in the pool kind of guy.

🍻
 

FJAG

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In 87 were U, V, 128 and 129 all equipped with the 40mm Bofors "Boffins"?
Not sure about 87 - SKT may be able to answer that. My time was in the late 70s early 80s with 2 and 3 RCHA. The U (3 RCHA) and V (5RALC) batteries (and the AD troops in 1 and 2 RCHA) were basically operationally tasked with Blowpipe but we in Shilo (and I think Valcartier) did have a Boffin site in order to train folks destined for the two airfield defence batteries. 128 and 129 batteries had Boffin sites around the two airfields at Lahr and Baden and Blowpipe as well.

I've never checked into the accuracy of this information but at the time we went back into air defence in the 70s was rumored to be that NATO was providing funds for base and airfield improvement but it required an active airfield defence system. To access that money we dug the old 40mm Boffins from the Bonaventure out of storage and augmented them with Blowpipe. The fact that Blowpipes also worked for field forces was a bonus. It was a major coup when Canada committed a billion dollars to the LLAD project to buy Skyguard and ADATS. The late 1970s / early 1980s were a good time for gunners, L5s mostly gone and M109s in the regiments, air defence's future looking bright, RV81 showing we were serious about trying to make a division work. Good times.

As to 1987. It was a time of change as LLAD came on line. As 4 AD stood up in November, 128 and 129 were converting to Skyguard and ADATS. Each battery had four Skyguard sections with a radar and two guns each plus one troop of four ADATS. 127, the new battery was tasked for 4 CMBG and had 12 ADATS. 119 Bty back in Canada had both Skyguard and ADATS. Blowpipe was still around in those days but I do not know how they were distributed within 4 AD or 119 Bty at that time as I was by then concentrating on being the legal advisor to Manitoba Militia District.

🍻
 
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Kirkhill

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Not sure about 87 - SKT may be able to answer that. My time was in the late 70s early 80s with 2 and 3 RCHA. The U (3 RCHA) and V (5RALC) batteries (and the AD troops in 1 and 2 RCHA) were basically operationally tasked with Blowpipe but we in Shilo (and I think Valcartier) did have a Boffin site in order to train folks destined for the two airfield defence batteries. 128 and 129 batteries had Boffin sites around the two airfields at Lahr and Baden and Blowpipe as well.

I've never checked into the accuracy of this information but at the time we went back into air defence in the 70s was rumored to be that NATO was providing funds for base and airfield improvement but it required an active airfield defence system. To access that money we dug the old 40mm Boffins from the Bonaventure out of storage and augmented them with Blowpipe. The fact that Blowpipes also worked for field forces was a bonus. It was a major coup when Canada committed a billion dollars to the LLAD project to buy Skyguard and ADATS. The late 1970s / early 1980s were a good time for gunners, L5s mostly gone and M109s in the regiments, air defence's future looking bright, RV81 showing we were serious about trying to make a division work. Good times.

As to 1987. It was a time of change as LLAD came on line. As 4 AD stood up in November, 128 and 129 were converting to Skyguard and ADATS. Each battery had four Skyguard sections with a radar and two guns each plus one troop of four ADATS. 127, the new battery was tasked for 4 CMBG and had 12 ADATS. 119 Bty back in Canada had both Skyguard and ADATS. Blowpipe was still around in those days but I do not know how they were distributed within 4 AD or 119 Bty at that time as I was by then concentrating on being the legal advisor to Manitoba Militia District.

🍻

Thanks FJAG,

So at the height of the Cold War the sum total of our Anti-Air Defences were 4 km Boffins and Mach 1.5, 3.5 km Blowpipes with the Boffins manually controlled and directed and the Blowpipes flown to the target via a radio link and a joystick.

And it wasn't until 1987 that we actually got radar cued Air Defence systems with the Oerlikon Skyguard and ADATS with Skyguard going out of service 18 years later in 2005 and ADATS being withdrawn from service in 2013 after 26 years of service.

I think we can make a case that beyond one brief, shining moment, from 1987 to the fall of the wall in 1992, the CAF has never seen GBAD as an issue, much less a priority.
 

FJAG

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Thanks FJAG,

So at the height of the Cold War the sum total of our Anti-Air Defences were 4 km Boffins and Mach 1.5, 3.5 km Blowpipes with the Boffins manually controlled and directed and the Blowpipes flown to the target via a radio link and a joystick.

And it wasn't until 1987 that we actually got radar cued Air Defence systems with the Oerlikon Skyguard and ADATS with Skyguard going out of service 18 years later in 2005 and ADATS being withdrawn from service in 2013 after 26 years of service.

I think we can make a case that beyond one brief, shining moment, from 1987 to the fall of the wall in 1992, the CAF has never seen GBAD as an issue, much less a priority.
That depends on what one calls the "height of the cold war".

Until 1960 we had the Reg F 1 LAA Regiment in Picton which had 40mm Bofors and later 90mm M33Cs. In 1957 one battery was stood down but we kept the guns and a bit of the regiment and retained the Militia LAA units until the whole shebang was stood down in 1960. After that we had nada until 1975 when the Boffin and Blowpipe VLLAD system was stood up.

Just as a point, In 1959 the Canadian Army had six light and nine medium Militia anti-aircraft regiments. There were also twenty-one Fd Regts and six medium regiments, a Locating Regiment, a number of independent batteries and (get this) the 15th Harbour Defence Troop (Don't ask me - I know nothing about it and I'll let you Google it on your own).

When I joined the Militia in 1965 in Toronto, my regiment (the 7th Toronto) had just been created as an amalgamation of the 29th Fd Regt (SP), the 42nd Medium Regt and the 1st Locating Regiment all from Toronto. We've shrunk a lot as the Cold War progressed. Even then numbers were an issue. This is the regiment just after it formed (don't look for me, I joined a few months after it was taken)

7th Toronto Regiment 1965.jpg

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Blackadder1916

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Not sure about 87 - SKT may be able to answer that. My time was in the late 70s early 80s with 2 and 3 RCHA. The U (3 RCHA) and V (5RALC) batteries (and the AD troops in 1 and 2 RCHA) were basically operationally tasked with Blowpipe but we in Shilo (and I think Valcartier) did have a Boffin site in order to train folks destined for the two airfield defence batteries. 128 and 129 batteries had Boffin sites around the two airfields at Lahr and Baden and Blowpipe as well.

1987 . . . Boffins and Blowpipes . . . Lahr

1987-930-l-40-60-boffin-anti-aircraft-gun.jpg

1987-910-blowpipe-guided-missile.jpg

The church steeple in the background is in the village of Schuttern where I lived from 1990 to 92. I suspect that the gun position was located in this vicinity Google Maps
 

exspy

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Until 1960 we had the Reg F 1 LAA Regiment in Picton which had 40mm Bofors and later 90mm M33Cs. In 1957 one battery was stood down but we kept the guns and a bit of the regiment and retained the Militia LAA units until the whole shebang was stood down in 1960. After that we had nada until 1975 when the Boffin and Blowpipe VLLAD system was stood up.

As I recall, the Canadian Army's air defence capability was stood down to use the manpower and budget to bring the Army into the nuclear club. Without disbanding the Reg F air defence, a unit which only existed in Canada and not in Germany, there would not have been the resources required for the creation of the two Surface-to-Surface Missile batteries. Air defence was not a priority for the Army. The brigade group in Germany was under the protective umbrella of the BAOR and the threat of Soviet bombers coming over the ice cap had been replaced by ICBM missiles countered by RCAF Bomarcs. Airfield defence was even less of a priority as there were no airfields in Germany for the Army to protect, the helicopter pad at Fort Chambly notwithstanding.

It wasn't until the CF concentrated all of their personnel and equipment on two air bases in southern Germany that airfield defence became important.

The RCAF operated their four airfields in France and Germany with no airfield defence at all for 17 years.

Cheers,
Dan.
 

FJAG

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As I recall, the Canadian Army's air defence capability was stood down to use the manpower and budget to bring the Army into the nuclear club. Without disbanding the Reg F air defence, a unit which only existed in Canada and not in Germany, there would not have been the resources required for the creation of the two Surface-to-Surface Missile batteries. Air defence was not a priority for the Army. The brigade group in Germany was under the protective umbrella of the BAOR and the threat of Soviet bombers coming over the ice cap had been replaced by ICBM missiles countered by RCAF Bomarcs. Airfield defence was even less of a priority as there were no airfields in Germany for the Army to protect, the helicopter pad at Fort Chambly notwithstanding.

It wasn't until the CF concentrated all of their personnel and equipment on two air bases in southern Germany that airfield defence became important.

The RCAF operated their four airfields in France and Germany with no airfield defence at all for 17 years.

Cheers,
Dan.
I think that you are right Dan. I believe in the fifties and into the early sixties there was also a very large percentage of the RCAF dedicated to air defence both at home and abroad. With the rise of the Soviets and the formation of NATO and NORAD, the RCAF auxiliary was authorized fifteen squadrons and eventually actually formed around 10 which ended up flying state-of-the-art Sabre jets from most major cities until around the end of the fifties.

Air Defence command eventually ended up with the Bomarcs and CF101 Voodoos with nuclear missiles. In Europe we brought in the CF 104 in on the nuclear strike role but one shouldn't forget it was originally developed as an air superiority fighter and was used as such by other countries.

Air defence is a cyclical priority for the Army. At times significant and at times non-existent. PYs, or lack thereof, and conflicting tasks screw the artillery over on a continuing basis.

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So, in summary, 'raincoats on raincoats off' then?

And left to our own designs, unfettered by CF-wide circular management, we do it to ourselves. I was only in 13 years and saw at least 2 full cycles of "dispersed gun positions" and "not dispersed gun positions" lol And we can't blame procurement - I think the biggest procurement hurdles associated with that exercise was tannoy wire
 

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Given the recent restructure - I guess M777 is back to the best solution - until AD is sorted.
 

daftandbarmy

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And left to our own designs, unfettered by CF-wide circular management, we do it to ourselves. I was only in 13 years and saw at least 2 full cycles of "dispersed gun positions" and "not dispersed gun positions" lol And we can't blame procurement - I think the biggest procurement hurdles associated with that exercise was tannoy wire

We're not alone. The Artillery are prone to 'wandering away' from their bread and butter tasks.

I recall, shortly after the Falklands War, that General Hew Pike (CO 3 PARA during the Falkalnds War) issued an edict that started with something like "The Artillery will support the Infantry.... " and went on from there...
 

FJAG

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Given the recent restructure - I guess M777 is back to the best solution - until AD is sorted.
Despite my constant carping that a towed gun as the wrong solution for a mechanized brigade (notwithstanding that SBCTs are still using M777s until they find something better) I like the M777 for light and airmobile forces. It's self-surveying capabilities do make it a good piece of kit for dispersed operations and we have enough of them to properly support one light brigade (especially if the two remaining gun batteries come from the reserves who have already proven that they can produce the gun line and command post personnel for that)

My hope is that by going to one Reg F battery, at least two of the guns per regiment can be located closer to where reservists ought to be trained (their armouries). The maintainer issue needs to be seriously solved for that.

The last napkin force I created actually worked on the basis that the five required close support regiments would have an M777 battery in each of the Reg F brigades but all other batteries RFL 1 and RFL 2 would be equipped with 105mm C3s as their "operational" guns (while they last). My thought for that was that if you put them into operational roles, maybe someone down the line would finally tweak to the fact that they need to be replaced with something more "deployable".

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Despite my constant carping that a towed gun as the wrong solution for a mechanized brigade (notwithstanding that SBCTs are still using M777s until they find something better) I like the M777 for light and airmobile forces. It's self-surveying capabilities do make it a good piece of kit for dispersed operations and we have enough of them to properly support one light brigade (especially if the two remaining gun batteries come from the reserves who have already proven that they can produce the gun line and command post personnel for that)

My hope is that by going to one Reg F battery, at least two of the guns per regiment can be located closer to where reservists ought to be trained (their armouries). The maintainer issue needs to be seriously solved for that.

The last napkin force I created actually worked on the basis that the five required close support regiments would have an M777 battery in each of the Reg F brigades but all other batteries RFL 1 and RFL 2 would be equipped with 105mm C3s as their "operational" guns (while they last). My thought for that was that if you put them into operational roles, maybe someone down the line would finally tweak to the fact that they need to be replaced with something more "deployable".

🍻
Agree on the fact the 777 isn't ideal for Mech - but neither is the LAV ;)
With 1 Gun Bty per Reg Force Reg - I would hope that means that a Second gun Bty (and ideally 3rd) could be stood up RFL2 to be manned by Res - given they have stripped most of the other stuff out of the Batteries - fielding a gun line - and CP/ACP isn't too tough for the Res Arty crowd at all.
 

FJAG

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Agree on the fact the 777 isn't ideal for Mech - but neither is the LAV ;)
With 1 Gun Bty per Reg Force Reg - I would hope that means that a Second gun Bty (and ideally 3rd) could be stood up RFL2 to be manned by Res - given they have stripped most of the other stuff out of the Batteries - fielding a gun line - and CP/ACP isn't too tough for the Res Arty crowd at all.
A gun battery is one of the easiest thing to train and field (given the equipment) with the most challenging part being vehicle technicians and a trained weapons tech. A Rad tech would be nice but your sigs sgt can switch out spares until someone from higher comes down to fix things.

One thing about RFL 2 units. They need to be over strength in all ranks. That's to both provide for a bigger pool of volunteers for routine stuff and to allow for the mass of DAG Reds when you do finally have to activate the battery.

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Kirkhill

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A gun battery is one of the easiest thing to train and field (given the equipment) with the most challenging part being vehicle technicians and a trained weapons tech. A Rad tech would be nice but your sigs sgt can switch out spares until someone from higher comes down to fix things.

One thing about RFL 2 units. They need to be over strength in all ranks. That's to both provide for a bigger pool of volunteers for routine stuff and to allow for the mass of DAG Reds when you do finally have to activate the battery.

🍻

As a planning basis how about recruiting a battery of volunteers to be able to generate a troop for the field?
 
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