To substitute for the main armament of the tank «Type 59» Chinese engineers in the 1970s are beginning to work on the creation of a new main tank for its own armed forces. The project has received the title of WZ-1224, while the solutions used in the design of the tank were new to China. The main solutions are:
— complicated welded tower;
— engine is more powerful;
— automatic loading mechanism;
— 120mm smoothbore gun;
— modern OMS.
Development of tank cannons Chinese engineers were conducted quite a long time, but the creation of guns does not go beyond the creation of the prototype. To overcome this threshold assist technology tank guns purchased from the Israeli side, but built on them guns on the arms will not be accepted. Chinese military went over and got hold of the usual method in Russian Union tool 2A46 125mm caliber. Modern at the time MSA had a ballistic computer, combined sights commander and gunner with integrated IR channel.
Battle was 3 man crew:
— driver-mechanic which was located in the front left side of the tank in the VA;
— gunner, who was placed in the office tower in the left part of it;
— commander of the military machine, which was placed in the office tower on its right side.
The tower is part of themselves in the tool basic caliber. 120mm smoothbore gun received a stabilization in two planes, the barrel is made without the hood (used Israeli technology), and ejector tool for Chinese engineers to make the guns without the help of others. Feeding niche of the tower was fenced off from the habitable interior space armored bulkhead, in a segregated area established type of mechanized combat pack of 17 unitary munitions (It should be noted that the development of auto-loading mechanism was completed in the end nothing — China’s own development engineers have failed to bring to the brain ). Additional ammunition are arranged in the inner space separation tower. If the Chinese engineers and planned to install tank additional weapons, then at the Experimental swatch it has not been established, although there was a machine gun turret hatches before commanding the type of «Type 59». Performing hatches commander and gunner also got from the «Type 59». Automatic fire extinguishing system and protection against weapons of mass destruction came in the standard equipment of the new tank.
In logistics, located in the rear of the chassis, installed eight-diesel engine with air cooling of the «Maybach» capacity of about 1,000 hp (On the test engine gave out about 740 hp). The cooling system is arranged in the German style — two ring radiator. This diesel-known German company carried out in China under license. In China, the diesel used in the civilian sphere — was set to heavy machinery and river / sea vessels with small displacement. But for a new diesel tank was rather languid — the highest speed that the most experienced managed to develop a standard for testing was equipped on the roads up to 65 km / h and unequipped roads and areas up to 45 km / h
Running WZ-1224 included 12 Ridged rubber-coated rollers reference type 6 and type of supporting rollers with rear-wheel drive. Caterpillar track got rubberized iron hinge and asfaltnohodnye shoes. Running was created by Chinese engineers in the U.S. analogy can be used for that or just copied some elements of American M47/M48. These tanks are fully able to get to China from Pakistan, where they were in service with the Pakistan military. The tanks also could get into China from Vietnam who have stayed there (or were captured) during the just ended war.
Armoured protection of the tank consisted of a one-piece rolled sheets, which were installed under the project and the calculated angles. Because the body armor out quite high, its increment sampled using the expensive armored plates, particularly in the frontal part of the tank. The tower forms part of the development can be had for enhancing body armor protivokumulyativnymi filler.
The fate of the project WZ-1224
It is understandable that were built seasoned standards that are passed various tests and in-depth. Tests layout WZ-1224 finished in 1979, only been achieved over 200 hours at 1500 miles. During the tests, it was found out that virtually all of the new and improved solutions are not so in the real criteria. The tower portion of a smoothbore gun and an automatic loading mechanism has failed to show the required properties of automatic fire, the accuracy of results, combat effectiveness. The power has not shown the desired properties of speed and had great gas mileage.
After the tests the tower part of the shift, and tank with cast steel part of the tower to finalize the required features, changing equipment and components, which ultimately led to the development of a new project entitled WZ-1226 and the subsequent creation of an experienced reference the main tank.
The main features:
— fighting weight — about 44 tons;
— settlement — 3 persons;
— total length with a gun — 9 meters;
— width — 3.3 m;
— Height — 3 meters;
— clearance — 47 cm;
— the armament — 120mm smoothbore gun;
— Power — diesel MB8V331TC41;
— capacity of about 1,000 hp diesel engine;
— speed up to 65 km / h;
— 17 unitary ammunition rounds;
— Obstacles: height up to 0.9 meters, the water up to 1.2 meters, width up to 2.6 meters.
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