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From US Army Training Film TF6-3646 “Weapons of the Field Artillery”
Reupload of a previously uploaded film with improved video & sound.
Public domain film from the US National Archives, slightly cropped to remove uneven edges, with the aspect ratio corrected, and one-pass brightness-contrast-color correction & mild video noise reduction applied.
The soundtrack was also processed with volume normalization, noise reduction, clipping reduction, and/or equalization (the resulting sound, though not perfect, is far less noisy than the original).
The M107 175 mm self-propelled gun was used by the U.S. Army from the early 1960s through to the late 1970s. It was part of a family of self-propelled artillery that also included the M110 and was intended to provide long-range fire support in an air-transportable system. It was exported to several other countries including Germany, South Korea, Spain, Greece, Iran, Israel, Italy, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, and Turkey. The M107’s combat history in U.S. service was limited to the Vietnam War and also saw extensive combat use in Israeli service. The M107 was the last self-propelled gun (high velocity, low trajectory, long range) in the U.S. Army inventory. It shared many components with, and in many cases was replaced by later versions of, the M110. Although withdrawn from U.S. service in the late 1970s it continues in service with some armies as of 2010.
Design and Production History
During the 1950s the standard of US Army motorized 203mm artillery was the M55, based on the chassis and the turret of the M53 155mm Self-Propelled Gun, which used some components from the M48 tank. The weight of the M55, at 44 metric tons, prohibited air transportation and its gasoline engines limited its range to approximately 260 km, as well as presenting an explosion hazard in combat.
This led the U.S. Army to issue a requirement for a new series of self-propelled artillery: lighter to be transportable by air, while continuing the practice of deriving several vehicles from the same chassis which simplified maintenance and training. The Pacific Car and Foundry (Paccar) company developed several prototypes. The 175 mm T235 self propelled gun and 203 mm T236 self-propeleld howitzer were driven by a diesel engine and, aside from the different armament, were essentially the same vehicle. They were introduced into U.S. Army service as the M107 and M110 in 1962 and 1963, respectively.
Paccar received the M107 and M110 design contracts and initial manufacturing single source bid from Detroit Arsenal… Two other firms also produced the M107: FMC, between 1965 and 1980, and Bowen-McLaughlin-York.
Both the M107 and M110 use the same drive train components as the M578 Light Recovery Vehicle…
Many of the M107’s were rebuilt into the M110A2 configuration.
Both the M107 and M110 are based on a common chassis which features five road wheels on either side of the chassis with idler arms attached to torsion bars, tracks driven from the front by a 450 hp General Motors turbo supercharged diesel…
The M107’s combat experience with the U.S. military was almost entirely limited to the Vietnam War. There it proved its effectiveness by having one of the longest ranges of any mobile artillery piece operated during the Cold War. The M107 was able to launch a 147 lb (67 kg) projectile out to 21 miles (34 km), at 0 deflection and 800 mil (45°) elevation. This range advantage, along with the ability to rapidly move from its last position, made it an effective weapon for destroying North Vietnamese Army and Viet Cong command, control, communications facilities and supply trains while evading counter-battery fire from the longest-range Soviet counterparts. This was proven in 1968 at Khe Sanh.
The M107 also had disadvantages. In addition to its long range it was also noted for its inaccuracy at longer ranges. The gun was assigned to corps artillery units and a number of M107/M110 composite units were formed allowing the option of responding with the longer range M107 or the more accurate M110…
The M107 was also used by the Israel Defense Forces in the various Arab–Israeli conflicts. When these guns were outranged by rocket fire from Tyre, they were upgraded with the addition of extended range, full bore ammunition and new powder supplied by Gerald Bull’s Space Research Corporation. This allowed operations over 50 km with increased accuracy.
The M107 was retired from the U.S. Army in the late 1970s but it continues to see use in many armies around the world…