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  #1  
Old 24-06-18, 08:26
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Default Canadian Centurion tanks question

Did Canada ever use the Long Range hull like the Australians did with the bolt on 100 gallon tank?

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  #2  
Old 24-06-18, 19:50
Darrell Zinck Darrell Zinck is offline
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Hi

Hal Skaarup has a pic of the Cdn Mk 11 in Moncton. She has a 100gal tank.

http://silverhawkauthor.com/images/s...Moncton-rt.jpg
http://silverhawkauthor.com/armoured...swick_371.html

regards
Darrell
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  #3  
Old 24-06-18, 20:05
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Dan Martel Dan Martel is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jdmcm View Post
Did Canada ever use the Long Range hull like the Australians did with the bolt on 100 gallon tank?
As Darrell says, yes, Canada did. The Mk 11 Centurions in Europe were so equipped, and known as the Mk 11 LR (for long range). I think the Centurion in the CWM, which is a Mk 11, has the added gas tank, but darned if I can find a photo of it.

If you're really interested in Canadian Centurions, check out the threads on Modern Canadian Vehicles. Tons of information from very knowledgeable people.

Cheers,
Dan.

PS: Can't comment on that paint scheme for the Centurion in Moncton.

Last edited by Dan Martel; 25-06-18 at 01:19.
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  #4  
Old 24-06-18, 22:46
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Thanks so much for the replies guys, super helpful and very much appreciated!

Regards
John
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  #5  
Old 25-06-18, 15:24
Ed Storey Ed Storey is offline
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Default Centurion Mk 11

Here is a 1973 image of a Canadian Centurion Mk 11 in Germany. The CWM example was from LETE and therefore had been equipped to the latest Mk 11 modifications and this photograph shows it when it was still on outdoor display.

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  #6  
Old 03-07-18, 02:01
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Very cool, thanks Ed. Did we upgrade the tanks in Canada to the L7 105mm or did they all remain 20lbrs until retirement?
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  #7  
Old 04-07-18, 00:24
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Dan Martel Dan Martel is offline
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Not wanting to steal Ed's thunder, but I thought that a picture is worth a thousand words. During the summer of 1978, a young 2nd Lieutenant of The RCR was going through Phase III infantry officer training at CFB Gagetown, part of which involved directing tank fire. Each candidate was given one 20-lbr round to give to the crew, after which the round would be fired at a target, selected by the candidate, about a mile and a half away. There was lots of 20-lbr TP-T or training purpose-tracer available to fire. So, in 1978, it was 20-lbr's for Gagetown.

The first photo shows our hero with his very own tank round.

The second shows skid loads of 20-lbr TP-T.
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  #8  
Old 04-07-18, 04:31
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Wow, that is awesome Dan, what great memory that must have been, something I can only dream about, thanks so much for sharing that

Regards
John
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  #9  
Old 05-07-18, 02:05
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Default Mike Cecil

John,

I forgot to cite the most knowledgeable person I know about Centurions, who is also a member of this forum. Mike Cecil and I carried on a very informative thread about the tank, five years ago this month.

If you have any technical questions about the tank, send Mike a PM and he'd be glad to answer them. He was, and still is, very forthcoming to anyone on the forum with a question.

Cheers,
Dan.
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  #10  
Old 06-07-18, 00:55
Richard Whelan Richard Whelan is offline
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I served in Germany on Centurions from 1976 until we changed to rented Leopard and yes we love-ling filled those 100 gallon tanks everyday while on exercise. In fact I may still have the last time centurions were on parade. It was taken with a super 8 camera and really bad but I will look for it.
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  #11  
Old 06-07-18, 01:46
Mike Cecil Mike Cecil is online now
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Hi Dan,

Thanks for your comments. Was it really that long ago? Still, to place things in perspective: not so much knowledge on the Canadian Centurion, but there is much that is common across all the Centurion users.

Great images of yourself & live round. Rather than TP/T, I think these are 20 pdr (84 x 617R) HE/T rounds - indicated by the buff colour and thin red stripe. There were several marks of HE/T, along with a few different fuzes. Being late in the Centurion story (1978), the fuze is almost certainly the L17A4 - a point detonating (PD) fuze which evolved from a fuze originally developed for the Royal Navy, and adapted for use on 20-pdr when the Fuze 410 proved so problematic.

I seem to remember that Canadian Cents in Europe were Mk11 with 105mm L7 guns, while those in Canada remained as training vehicles with 20-pdr. The reference was, I think, Don Dingwall's Service Publications book on Canadian Cents, but I can't seem to locate it just now.

Mike
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  #12  
Old 06-07-18, 02:51
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Cecil View Post
Was it really that long ago?
Yes, it was.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Cecil View Post
...not so much knowledge on the Canadian Centurion, but there is much that is common across all the Centurion users.
Your technical knowledge of the tank crosses country lines. Seeing as how the Canadians bought their Centurion tanks from the British Army, what was standard for the Brits was just as applicable to the Canadians.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Cecil View Post
Rather than TP/T, I think these are 20 pdr (84 x 617R) HE/T rounds - indicated by the buff colour and thin red stripe. There were several marks of HE/T, along with a few different fuzes. Being late in the Centurion story (1978), the fuze is almost certainly the L17A4 - a point detonating (PD) fuze which evolved from a fuze originally developed for the Royal Navy, and adapted for use on 20-pdr when the Fuze 410 proved so problematic.
Again, I will defer to the Master. I just remembered the term "TP-T" from the Carl Gustav ranges. There was nothing like watching the tracer round travel a mile and a half in a second or less, than ricochet off the target into oblivion. I was always glad I wasn't on the receiving end.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Cecil View Post
I seem to remember that Canadian Cents in Europe were Mk11 with 105mm L7 guns, while those in Canada remained as training vehicles with 20-pdr. The reference was, I think, Don Dingwall's Service Publications book on Canadian Cents, but I can't seem to locate it just now.
Right again. Mk 11's in Europe (and one in Ottawa), the remaining tanks in Canada with 20-pdrs, although one always hears stories of some L7 equipped tanks in Canada, somewhere. Probably at the RCEME School.

Thanks again, Mike. I could talk Centurions all day.

Cheers,
Dan.
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  #13  
Old 07-07-18, 18:57
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Thanks for the replies as usual guys, I understand most of this has been discussed on the forum previously and is available with some research, but I do appreciate the quick answers. Hopefully since Mike isn't that far from me we can get together and talk "tanks" one day when he's in the area.

Regards
John
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  #14  
Old 08-07-18, 03:14
Mike Cecil Mike Cecil is online now
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Ahh! Slow old me - - had not put two and two together until now, John: I'm right in deducing that you are the owner of the ex-Australian, ex-'Courage Under Fire', ex-Fox Studio Centurion-cum-Abrams in the faaaar west of Canada. How is progress with the restoration?

And I will make the pilgrimage and visit one of these days.

Mike
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  #15  
Old 08-07-18, 19:54
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No Mike, that tank is owned by my friend Mark, he has re-done it again as an ersatz Abrams for use in film work. I am working on a different project at the moment, currently on the down low. But would be great if you are in the neighborhood to stop in at the shop for a visit.

Regards
John
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  #16  
Old 08-07-18, 22:19
eddy8men eddy8men is offline
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cent is a great tank to drive. i'm sure you'll enjoy it but the fuel bill might make your eyes water
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  #17  
Old 08-07-18, 22:38
Mike Cecil Mike Cecil is online now
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Apologies for my erroneous assumption, John, but now I have two reasons/people to visit in your neck of the woods.

Mike
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  #18  
Old 20-07-18, 04:11
Malcolm Towrie Malcolm Towrie is offline
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Hi, I'm a volunteer "fixer" at the Ontario Regiment Museum in Oshawa, Ontario. We have a project to get one of our Canadian Cent's up and running this year. Not pristine, but running. We just bought a nice Mk 4b engine for it.
I'm a newbie at this so I have been trying to figure out what Mk of Cent we have. It has the armoured fuel tank on the back, a 20 lbr gun, but it it doesn't appear to have the voltage regulator box in the hull for the engine-mounted generator. I have searched on what the various Mks are but it's confusing. Can anybody help me with what we have here?

Malcolm
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  #19  
Old 20-07-18, 05:21
Mike Cecil Mike Cecil is online now
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Hi Malcolm,

A couple of questions to assist with the ID:

Does it have the additional armour plate welded to the upper glacis plate?
Is the co-ax mounting for a .30 cal Browning MG?
Is there a hatch or a welded plate on the rear of the turret?

Regards

Mike
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  #20  
Old 21-07-18, 01:03
Malcolm Towrie Malcolm Towrie is offline
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Mike,
I can see no evidence of a layer of armour welded over the original upper glacis plate.

I have attached photos of the co-ax mount and the rear of the turret. Hopefully, those will answer your other two questions.

Malcolm

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  #21  
Old 21-07-18, 02:06
Ed Storey Ed Storey is offline
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Default Centurion

Two questions:

1. Have you asked the Ontario Regiment Museum which Mark of Centurion it is and if so what have they said?

2. Is there any evidence inside of a brass plate with the vehicle's serial number, this will be two numbers-two letters-numbers and what is it?
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  #22  
Old 21-07-18, 02:09
Mike Cecil Mike Cecil is online now
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Hi Malcolm,

I'm a bit puzzled by your images, as the interior shot appears to show a .50 RG and .30 Co-ax combination MG mount, which would indicate the main armament would be a 105mm, rather than a 20-pdr. Do you have any images of the front of the turret and main armament, please? The turret is also fitted with a rear basket to hold the searchlight normally fitted along with the Infra-Red equipment.

A Centurion:
(1) with 20-pdr, without up-armouring, and fitted with a long range rear fuel tank, and a co-ax of a .30 cal, would be Mk.5 LR.
(2) with 105mm, and as above, would be a Mk.5/2 LR
(3) with 105mm, , fitted with 50 RG, , IR sights and searchlight and as above, would be a Mk11 LR

I'm not aware that Canada ever fitted the .50 RG to tanks equipped with the 20-pdr main armament - as far as I know, Australia was the only Centurion operator with that particular combination.

Regards

Mike
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  #23  
Old 21-07-18, 02:46
Malcolm Towrie Malcolm Towrie is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed Storey View Post
Two questions:

1. Have you asked the Ontario Regiment Museum which Mark of Centurion it is and if so what have they said?

2. Is there any evidence inside of a brass plate with the vehicle's serial number, this will be two numbers-two letters-numbers and what is it?
I've asked various people here, old hands and people who have worked on the tank before, and none have been completely sure what Mk it is.

I'll have look for the plate.
Malcolm
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  #24  
Old 21-07-18, 10:28
David Herbert David Herbert is offline
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Could it be an ex British one ?

David
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  #25  
Old 21-07-18, 14:33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Malcolm Towrie View Post
I've asked various people here, old hands and people who have worked on the tank before, and none have been completely sure what Mk it is.
Malcolm,

It must have come from somewhere. The museum must have records. However, pending the discovery of a paper trail, the more photos of the tank you post, from all angles, the easier it will be for Mike and the others to identify it. I would think a photo of the top and bottom of the glacis plate would allow Mike to determine if it had been up-armoured.

It's also got a very strange paint job, like it was a monument piece at one point.

Good luck on the project. It would be nice to see one up and running.

Cheers,
Dan.
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  #26  
Old 22-07-18, 03:14
Malcolm Towrie Malcolm Towrie is offline
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An old hand told me today the Cent came from St. Hubert Base in Quebec. We got it when the base was closed down. I see from Wikipedia St. Hubert was primarily an air force base, so this surprises me a bit. It was closed down in the mid 90's. I've only been at the museum for a few years but I'll go out on a limb and say that not much if any paperwork exists or changes hands when an old beater gate-guard is given to a museum willing to take it. But I will ask about paperwork, just in case.

A guy who worked on the tank a few years ago showed up today so I picked his brains. He showed me the two large tapped holed in the top of the mantlet where a mount for the spotlight was attached. He confirmed what Mike said about the part of the bustle designed for storing the light.

He also told me he believed the CFR number painted on the tank, 52-S-100S (see photo) is a typo and should be 52-8-1008 (or was it 52-81008?).

He confirmed the upper glacis plate doesn't have the additional welded armour. There are no brass plates inside the tank. He showed me 4 tapped holes in the left hand wall of the driver's compartment where a plate used to be.

He confirmed there were 2 coax machine guns installed but he was surprised to hear this indicated a later Mk as he thought it was a Mk 5/2. His theory on the 20 pdr is that it was installed when the 105 was removed for use elsewhere.

He showed me where a 50 cal was mounted on the commanders cupola.

There is a small control panel in the turret that refers to IR lighting.

He also suggested that the impecunious Canadian army was selective on what upgrades were installed, based on need and cost, so some cherry picking was done. Maybe that explains an unusual mix of upgrades?

I have attached some photos of the front of the turret as Mike requested.

Thank you for your help on this. It's a fascinating exercise.

I'd be happy to take more photos if it would help.

Malcolm

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Last edited by Malcolm Towrie; 22-07-18 at 06:00.
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  #27  
Old 22-07-18, 05:48
Mike Cecil Mike Cecil is online now
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That looks like a 105mm gun profile to me, but I'd have to see more of it to confirm, especially the fume extractor. Mind you, it is possible to jamb either a 20 pdr barrel or a 105mm barrel into the same breech and mounting.

I'm betting it's a "Tank, Medium Gun, Centurion Mk 11 LR".

The tank would be fitted with two co-ax weapons, but one is the Ranging Gun, the L6A1, .50-cal, which is restricted to firing 3-round bursts at each depression of the firing pedal (actually, to be precise, three single rounds, controlled by a controller box). So the .50 is not strictly used as a co-ax machine gun, hence the name 'ranging gun'. It was originally termed a Ranging Machine Gun, but the terminology was altered to reflect its true application as a ranging gun only.

However, the controller could be overridden by the loader/operator by hand, in which case the weapon reverted to true automatic operation.

Mike
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Old 22-07-18, 06:08
Malcolm Towrie Malcolm Towrie is offline
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Sorry, Mike, I didn't realize you wanted to confirm that the gun was a 20 pdr. I can tell you it has no fume extractor at all. Does that confirm it is a 20 pdr? If not, I'll take more photos.

Malcolm
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  #29  
Old 22-07-18, 06:46
Mike Cecil Mike Cecil is online now
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Probably, Malcolm - the early-issue 'A' Barrel of the 20-pdr had not fume extractor, whereas both the 'B' barrel and the 105 mm did have a fume extractor fitted (but with different 'looks': the 20pdr had round ededges and concentric to the barrel, the 105 had squared edges and was eccentric).

I suspect, though, that what we are seeing is a Mk11 LR with a 20-pdr barrel fitted. Maybe the museum could locate an L7 105-mm barrel and do a swap?

I'll likely be in your area in November, (considering heading to a history conference at RMC Kingston): maybe I can drop by for a peek?

Mike

Last edited by Mike Cecil; 22-07-18 at 06:56.
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  #30  
Old 22-07-18, 14:16
rob love rob love is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Malcolm Towrie View Post

He also told me he believed the CFR number painted on the tank, 52-S-100S (see photo) is a typo and should be 52-8-1008 (or was it 52-81008?).
52-81008 was in the series of numbers for the Centurian tanks. I believe they started at 81000 and went up from there. The ARVs were in the same block. It is just as possible the last digit is a 5 on yours. It would seem that deterioration or a quick paint job in it's past lost the original numbers.
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