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Mk F3



Overview


Mk F3

Mk F3 self-propelled howitzer in firing position with jacks lowered.
Source: www.chars-francais.net - © Copyright lies with original owner

Origin
France
Type
Self-propelled howitzer
Entered service
1963
Status
Limited service
Development
1956 - 1961
Developer
France - Artelier de Construction Roanne (chassis)
France - Atelier de Construction de Tarbes (ordnance)
Production
1959 - 1980's?
Producer
France - Creusot Loire
Number produced
621
Designations
Cn-155-F3-Am (French army)
Canon de 155 mm Mle F3 Automoteur
AMX-155 (manufacturer designation)
Notable users
France
Morocco
Argentina

Description


Introduction

The Mk F3 is a tracked self-propelled 155mm howitzer of French origin. It was developed in the early 1950's for the French armed forces. Over 600 had been produced when production stopped several decades ago. The Mk F3 is one of the smaller 155mm self-propelled howitzers ever produced.

Design

The Mk F3 is based on the AMX-13 tracked light tank chassis. The commander and driver are seated to the left of the engine. The ordnance is mounted at the rear with two spades being lowered before firing. The shells and gun crew are transported by a truck or AMX VCA tracked ammunition carrier.

Firepower

The Mk F3 is fitted with a 33-caliber 155mm howitzer which is loaded and aimed manually. The sustained rate of fire is 1 round per minute. The US M107 projectile can be fired out to 14.7 km and an increased velocity French HE round out to 20 km. There is no secondary armament.

Protection

The steel armor protects the driver and commander against small arms fire and shell splinters. The other crew members are unprotected as the ordnance is mounted in the open. No NBC or fire suppression systems are fitted.

Mobility

The Mk F3 is based on the tracked AMX-13 chassis and has a reasonable cross country performance. A SOFAM 250hp diesel engine provides propulsion. Maximum speed is about 60 km/h on roads. The Mk F3 is not amphibious.

Users

The Mk F3 was adopted by over a dozen nations. With most nations it has been replaced by more capable self-propelled howitzers. The Mk F3 remains in active use with a limited number of nations.

Details


Facts Mk F3
General
Origin
France
Type
Self-propelled howitzer
Crew
2 (commander, driver)
6 gun crew on transport vehicle
Dimensions
Weight
17.4 t combat load
Length
6.22 m gun forward
Width
2.7 m
Height
2.09 m in travel configuration
Main armament
Type
155mm 33-caliber howitzer
Mount
Gun mount at hull rear
Ammunition
None on Mk F3
Elevation
+0° to +67°, manual
Traverse
20° left, 30° right, manual
Rate of fire
1 rpm
Range
14.7 km with M107 shell
Up to 20 km with French ammunition
Chassis
Chassis type
Tracked chassis, 5 roadwheels
Layout
Drive sprocket front, rear wheel doubles as idler
Ground pressure
0.84 kg/cm²
Suspension
Torsion bar
Automotive
Engine model
SOFAM model 8Gxb
Engine type
8-cylinder water-cooled petrol
Power output
250 hp at 3.200 rpm
Transmission
Manual, 5 forward, 1 reverse
Fuel
450 L
Mobility
Speed
60 km/h on road
Range
300 km on road
Turn radius
Skid turns
Power to weight ratio
14.4 hp/t
Obstacle crossing
Ground clearance
0.48 m
Wall
0.6 m
Trench
1.5 m
Gradient
40 %
Fording
1 m
Protection
Armor type
Steel
Armor thickness
10 to 20 mm
NBC system
None
Smoke system
None
Equipment
Night vision
Yes, for driver

Media


Related articles


M41 Gorilla

The Mk F3 was developed to replace the ex-American M41 Gorilla in French service.