Does Merkava IV with Trophy have barrel stripe?

I’m referring to the stripe that runs down the barrel, not the rings. Does this latest version of the Merkava carry that? Anyone know?

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Whats the reason for it?

Pure speculation - it wouldn’t be to reflect light to cool the barrel - from that 1st pic, it’s not wide enough, plus the fibreglass thermal shroud should do that already?

Also interesting contrast to how the jubilee clamps are applied, more familiar with chieftain where the joint is aligned on the sides, not the top of the barrel.


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Line of sight indicator to assist the TC.


I learn something new here every day.

I’ve never heard them referred to as “Jubilee Clamps”.

I’ve never been a tanker but I was a mechanic for nearly 40 years. In the US automotive industry, they’re called band clamps in most applications.

Very cool. I’ll file this with Oetiker clamps and Adel clamps.

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Yes the Brits refer to them as Jubilee Clamps, was new to me when I crash coursed Chieftain.

LOS indicator - that makes sense.


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Well, I was a TC in the US Army and would have never thought of it in that function.

Yes, when the TC lines the stripe up with the target, he knows it is within the gunners view. I had a groove carved on top of my M85 sight housing on the cupola for the same reason. If the copula was locked down, aligning the groove with the target assured the gunner was close to the target. If you fly over the tank while it is engaged, you can see the direction to the target.

I’m just about to start Meng’s Merkava Mk IVM - inspired by @Jan_Degryse and his build, and @ReluctantRenegade invaluable insight into the vehicle - and so this was of interest to me (i’m new to modern armour full stop, so am a knowledge sponge right now).

The kit provides markings for five different vehicles, of which i shall be building variant ‘C’ (for no other reason than I like the unit insignia on the rear of the turret more than the others).

However, only in the painting guide for vehicle ‘A’ does it show this white stripe:

For vehicle ‘C’ (and in fact, all the other remaining vehicles) only side views are provided.

So, would they ALL have used this marking along the barrell?

One further question - maybe somebody knows - I want to give the running gear some authenticity and intend to apply a certain amount of paint chipping. What colour (if any) was used as the primer coat?

That’s the company CO’s vehicle, AKA ‘Gimel’. Command vehicles of companies, battalions and brigades usually carry a large, rather artistic unofficial insigia of their respective units attached to the rear turret basket. In this case, that’s the insignia of ‘Pluga Mem’ (company M), dubbed as ‘Magen’ (shield).

All SHOULD have them, but not all of them do.


Red oxide primer.


That is very valuable information, thank you Israel.

As the instructions do not specifically call out a longitudinal white stripe for vehicle ‘C’, it will only get 3 x axial stripes. Also valuable to have an interpreter like yourself to pick the bones out of the description - I mean, i’d never have known that Gimel meant OC or Commander.

I suppose i now have to ask if that would have added more antenna to the the vehicle, I think the standard is two.

I can also make use of my old red oxide primer used on WWII German armour - looks like the springs are chipped but appear to be just a camouflage colour over bare steel.

This is an interesting shot, it tells me these clamps are not the same as the Chieftain ones, which have two clamp portions either side of the side, versus Merkava with single clamp.
I guess that’s just product improvement over time, fewer parts to lose?


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The company manufacturing jubilee clips was founded in 1921 by Commander Lumley Robinson RN, after he patented the worm drive hose clip, which he named ‘Jubilee Clip’; although we don’t know where he got the name from. Jubilee® remains a registered trademark and is known throughout the world.

It was originally a worm drive type clamp, and i think maybe that is what it might be called sometimes in USA?

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So what exactly is the bulge in the barrell that those clamps are holding fast?

On the Merkava or Chieftain ?

I suppose I should of answered there and then lol … On the Merkava, its the fume extractor (some call it the bore Evacuator) basically it removes gasses and residue in the air from the barrel once the gun has been fired.

On the Chieftain image the JC’s are just holding the thermal sleeve in place. Not really sure of the need of them on the Merkava one though as the fume extractors are normally secured direct onto the barrel.

I believe it’s the same for Merkava, holding the thermal sleeves in place.

@Khouli - When I built this kit I also bought the book Number 21 by Desert Eagle publishing.


I believe the authors helped Meng with the details of the kit and some of the tanks in the marking scheme are covered in the book itself. It was a handy reference for painting and weathering too.

ג - Gimel, the third letter of the Alephbet, is used to indicate a commanding vehicle.

The company CO’s vehicle is marked with a single Gimel:

ד - Dalet, the fourth letter of the Alephbet, marks the company XO’s vehicle:

The battalion CO is 10 Gimel:

The battalion XO is 11 Gimel:

The brigade CO is 20 Gimel:

The brigade XO is 21 Gimel:


Correct. The standard setup of a non-command vehicle (anything below Gimel/Dalet) would be two: a thick off-white for a reciever/transmitter, and a thin green for a reciever.

Indeed, that’s a good match.

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