M2/M3 Bradley Reference

Great thread, I am here mostly for the pictures. I was in the 24th IN DIV and right after we got our brand new M1IPs the 11B’s started receiving their Bradley’s. It was a fun time working together in the field.

I do have a questions about the Bradley which has been on my mind for a while now. I noticed that on some versions there is a black cover on the left side next to the drivers compartment and also on the right side in the same general location. Looks like a rubber cover or something. What is that?? Not sure which variant has it, seems to vary.

Are you talking about the rubber flaps on the side skirts, like below?

If so, they are to store gear behind. The flap holds it on and makes a smooth surface over it so the gear doesn’t snag on obstacles and get torn off.


That’s the one. I am guessing the one on the right side has something to do with exhaust.

Nope, both are to hold gear and keep it from being easily torn off. It has nothing to do with the exhaust.

Makes sense now. Thanks.

I am just a DAT. :laughing:

Sorry, maybe dumb question, can I downgrade Kinetic M3A3 to make the model for Ukraine?

Yes, but it will take some work. In the below post (up a few), I lay out how to build either an M2A2 ODS-SA IFV, M3A2 ODS-SA CFV, or M7A2-SA BFIST.

M2/M3 Bradley Reference - Ukraine M2A2 ODS-SA

At a minimum, you have to leave off all the ERA, the CITV, and add back the missing right side of the turret stowage basket. This will get you an M3A2 ODS-SA Cavalry Fighting Vehicle (CFV), not an M2A2 ODS-SA Infantry Fighting Vehicle (IFV).

RonW sort of did it but went back further to a straight M3A2 from the '90s, below. Follow his lead but leave the T161 tracks and the Driver’s Viewer camera on the front slope.
Unfinished Business 2023 - M2A2 Bradley

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I always wondered that also until it was explained how the crew needs to jam a crap load off gear into it to get it further away from the vehicle so that the other bags tied to the side of the vehicle further down are not ripped off.

Another difference in the Kinetic kit worth mentioning - the cable steps along the side armor.
I remember someone complaining about that when the Orochi kit came out. Kinetic did not make these separate parts as did Meng and even Academy, yet no one finds it as offensive now. In fairness, it would have been a nice improvement yet not all is lost.
All of the Bradley builds I did back in the day (I can kind of date some of them going back to Iraq with the grey cutting matt) saw me simply slicing them away from the kit. I haven’t noticed anyone do that with these kits, but it adds much to the look in my opinion.


As I said, some shortcuts were taken in the Kinetic kit in the interest of saving the modeler money. And it’s a simple fix for that added realism.


First pics of Bradleys arriving in forward areas in Ukraine. Interesting digital camo on one.


It’s not so much that they got it wrong - the “wings” are actually rubber flaps that did belong there once. They are too thickly represented on the kits, but covered the gap behind the plates that the storage lockers were mounted on.
Not to be confused with the rubber shroud what housed the flotation curtain, which is another piece entirely.

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More M2A2 ODS-SA Bradleys in Ukraine. These are in a training area in Western Ukraine before heading east to the front. Assigned to the 47th Motorized Brigade of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.


Great photo of the ammo carried by an M3A3 of Task Force Saber in 2003

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Yup, lots of ammo carried. That is about how my HMMWV looked too. We had 2.5 x basic loads carried, plus a bunch of AT-4s.

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Adding some additional Hi-res images; if already posted, please delete.

Nice image of American M2A2 ODS-SA Bradleys, same model being provided to Ukraine.

M2A3 Bradleys at Graffenwoehr, Germany. Notice the temporary CARC Gren paint over the CARC tan base color.

M2A2 Bradley - 3rd Infantry DIvision, Iraq; 2003.

M2A2 with BUSK. - 4th Infantry Division, Iraq - Date Unknown.

Fresh off the factory M2A3s being delivered to Fort Riley.

A line of M2A2s being refueled during a training exercise - Place and date unknown.

A rare bird - an M2A3 Bradley in NATO 3-Color, assigned to the 7th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Infantry Division. Date and place unknown.

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Hi Gino. A question about tracks; Has the “Big Foot” been tracks totally phased out on the Bradley or is it still use? I’m waiting for the T-161 trax to be released separately to update a Meng M3A3 build.

It looks like most current ones use T-161 tracks. You may still see a few M2A3s with the Bigfoot tracks.