Academy M981 FISTV

They were pretty good vehicles. They still had problems keeping up with Abrams and Bradleys, but were not too slow. Was nice to have a warm, dry place to hang out in during crappy weather. The targeting head was good as it had a G/VLLD inside, pretty accurate.

Me too. When my M981 broke down at the NTC, my CO valued FA support and kicked the XO out of his Bradley, giving it to me to use. We strapped the G/VLLD to the top of the turret in front of the BC position and I had the first BFIST (Bradley Fires Integration Support Team), long before the M7A2 BFIST was fielded.

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When I first arrived in Baumholder the TO&E for the M60A1 tank companies had two extra tanks in the Company HQ. One of course was for the CO and the other was for the XO.

But since the XO was of course in charge of the Company Trains (Mess/Maint/Supply), he always wound up using a different vehicle, leaving that other tank as somewhat of a spare…OR for the use of the FO.

Turns out one night in the O Club my Bn Commander and one of the Tank Bn Commanders got in to a discussion about the skill level of FA vs Armor Second Lieutenants. We already KNOW that FA guys are WAY better map readers than INF/AR guys, but my Bn Cdr allowed that ANY idiot could hit a target that you are LOOKING at, but it took skill to hit one that was MILES away from the guns. (Never mind that of course I still had to “observe” it.)

So a bet was made that OUR junior 2LT (me) could learn how to qualify a tank on the gunnery range WAY faster than their guy could learn how to call for and adjust fire.

We won the bet. I’m not saying that the fact that my DAD was a career tanker had anything to do with it but… :rofl:

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Now that my RSOV and Oscar are completed, this one is back on deck as my main project. I created some brush guards for the rear antenna mounts using a straw as Gino suggested, and I made some antenna mount bases for the two for the forward antennas that Academy neglected to include.

Next up is getting stowage in place then it’ll be ready for priming & painting.

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The rear antenna guards came out looking nice. Great job.

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Thanks Gino. I can’t wait to get them primed and painted.

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Over the past few days I’ve been working on stowage for this beast… thank goodness for Tamiya, Value Gear, and my spares bin…

Aside from some MRE and bottled water cases to be added after priming and painting, this thing is ready for primer and paint now…

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Coming along great. The storage looks natural and well attached.

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Thanks! I just remembered how we wold strap stuff down all over our ITVs and used that for my guidance… :thinking: since the vehicles are cousins… :wink:

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Where did the rucksacks come from

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This looks fantastic Carlos! Nice tight build, awesome scratchbuilding and excellent stowage - I can tell it’s built by a man who’s ridden one (well, an ITV). Needs a couple of camping chairs and duffle bags up top.

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Thanks guys!

@Skyshark, the rucks are Value Gear items. I can’t get enough of their stuff!

@SSGToms, there are four duffle bags in pairs on the top deck on the right side, in front of and behind the forward turret support. I figured that the FO crews are somewhere between grunts and tankers, depending upon what task force their are part of… so yes to cots, but no to camping chairs. :wink:

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Say what? No camping chairs? I suppose no BBQ grill either?
Ken

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Must not be a National Guard vehicle.

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LOL! Nope… old school Cold War Regular Army that trained for WWIII… :smirk:

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I don’t know. I never saw any of that “unauthorized extraneous civilian BS” in my unit when I was on Active Duty in Germany.

When I left AD and went to a National Guard unit, I thought those guys were crazy! They packed stuff (AND found the time to USE it) that we NEVER did in Germany! :rofl:

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Smashing job so far , look forward to more progress.

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Thanks Johnny. Been kinda busy with work lately, so no updates yet. But hopefully I can get some primer on this weekend.

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That’s looking great with all the storage.

Cheers,
Ralph

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