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Fv439 Ptarmigan


Dougy FV432
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Hello All,

 

I know it's a bit cheeky, but i seem to have got a bit bogged down with my 432 website. When I went to get some pics of the 439, there is obviously two different types.

 

A... Does any one know what the proper description for a 439 is.

 

B... What was it's purpose.

 

C... What is the difference between the two, in as far as what are thier roles.

 

I have asked as I want to get the site as accurate as possible as I seem to be getting a lot of interest nowadays.

 

Thanks in advance for any info.

 

Regards

 

Dougy

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When I went to get some pics of the 439, there is obviously two different types.

 

... Does any one know what the proper description for a 439 is.

 

Six types actually, as at 1970. Hope this is of interest:

 

App1480.jpg

 

Whilst I've got the opprtunity Doughy, may I ask have you or any of your contacts ever come across drawings or mock ups of the FV426?

Edited by fv1609
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Hello All,

 

Thanks for all of your replies. Unfortunately I am no nearer to understanding the 439. Is it similar to the Bedford Ptarmigan, which I thought was a means of communicating on all levels from mobile phone to the Army's own Broadband!

 

Mike, thanks for the link to the army recognition website, I'm not sure of how many of the vehicles are actually 439s, they look more like command variants.

 

Alan, great photos, must admit that I haven't bought CMV mag for a long time, but sent the the Girlfriend on a mission when I heard about Geoff's article, very interesting, can't wait for the other episodes. Unfortunatly the pics you have posted are what I believe to be the Fv436 Green Archer and the Fv436 Cymbeline, not a Fv439 Ptarmigan.

 

Clive, Thanks for info, makes some sense to the types I have seen. As for the Fv426. According to the Profile AFV Weapons No 53 the FV432 Series by Christopher Foss, the 426 was the Orange William Anti-tank Guided weapon vehicle. Sorry no pics in there, but some of the Fv421, best described as a Stalwart on tracks!

 

Regards

 

Dougy

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The FV439 is, as far as I know, NOT used for Ptarmigan. FV432s are used for the "nodes". Whether the FV439 is used for the Triffid RR set, I don't know - as this was fielded after my demob.

 

The FV439 in the RR mode (2x SRC50/R236) had a 40ft Clarke mast and 2x Onan 3.5 KVA generators mounted on the roof (the latter in an armoured bin). It wasn't capable of swimming with the flotation screens (too heavy)

 

Each Brigade HQ (both Main and Step-up) had 3 FV439s (1 of each type). With only 8 Brigades active during the 70s , there weren't that many built.

 

Basically they were used to provide a multi-channel, direct-wave, secure communications liink between Brigade HQ and the Division Communications Centre (Comcen). Six secure channels were provided - 1 for multiplexed telegraph links, 4 via the automatic exchange and 1 "manual intercept" (manual exchange in the Msg Centre vehicle)

 

Below is a pic of the "Log-periodic" antenna used with the C50. The mast it's on weighed about 1/4 ton.

 

C50system5.jpg

 

some pics of FV439s in B&W can be found on the "Panzerbaer" website

 

Roger

Edited by schliesser92
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Clive, Thanks for info, makes some sense to the types I have seen. As for the Fv426. According to the Profile AFV Weapons No 53 the FV432 Series by Christopher Foss, the 426 was the Orange William Anti-tank Guided weapon vehicle. Sorry no pics in there, but some of the Fv421, best described as a Stalwart on tracks! Regards Dougy

 

Well even a pic of FV421 would be nice to see. I have the design spec for the FV426, but even the PRO has no illustration of it. I was in contact with someone who drew his interpretation of what FV426 would look like based on the specs & what must have been a FV421. It did have a very Stalwart look to it.

 

BTW my avatar is Orange William, hence the interest.

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Alan wow, you is de man! Never seen that before, so I assume that is FV421 ie a load carrier & perhaps FV420 was the APC?

 

I can see how the FV426 would lend itself to that parentage. The Orange Williams were fired out of the sides of it & great emphasis was made on its wading capabilities. I'll go & read up the specs again.

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Chris, well that would be nice to see, whatever state it's in. I was told about 15 years ago that there was something left of a FV426 on the IoW. But I have doubts that a vehicle got that far in development.

 

I think it will be just as elusive or unlikely to be made as the FV4010 Heavy tank destroyer. Go on Chris please tell me someone has got one of those as well!

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The FV439 is, as far as I know, NOT used for Ptarmigan.

 

 

 

 

Dougy,

 

This chap is right..............I will explain. Back in 1985, I was sent to sort out an engine problem on a FV432 Mk2/2 at a contractors premises. They were making the prototype installations for Ptarmigan and had L/R 1 tonne hard body, Chieftain, CVR(T), etc there. From information gleaned, this 432 Mk2/2 was designated as SAS COMCEN. There was something else that we had not seen before. The vehicle had just been rebuilt and all the interior covers around the engine bay were of a new tight fitting and sealed design and was told it was NBC proof.

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Hello All,

 

Brilliant!!!

 

Does this mean Fv439 shouldn't be followed by the name Ptarmigan?

 

Trying to remember how to upload pics so you can see the 2 types that I have pics of that seem to match what Roger has stated.

 

Back to the 420 series, apparently they are

 

fv421 Load carrier

fv422 APC

fv423 Command vehicle

fv424 Royal Engineers Section vehicle

fv425 REME Section vehicle

fv426 Orange William Anti-tank Guided Weapon vehicle

 

Regards

 

Dougy

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The FV439 was purely BRUIN !

and useed by the following Units:

 

4 (Guards) Bde HQ & Signal Sqn, 6 (Mech) Bde HQ & Signal Sqn, 7 (Armoured) Bde HQ & Signal Sqn,

11(Mech) Bde HQ & Signal Sqn, 12 (Mech) Bde HQ & Signal Sqn, 20 (Mech) Bde HQ & Signal Sqn,

plus the two brigades that 3 Division reformed with when it lost it's airportability role and deployed to the Soest area

 

Roger

Edited by schliesser92
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Back again,

 

Roger, I'm afraid I am even more confused than when we started.

 

In laymans terms what is "Bruin" and you refer to RR mode????

 

Does any one know how the fv439 seems to have been linked to the name Ptarmigan.

 

 

Richard, I did notice when I was looking at the 439's that their engine panels were different, sure I took some pics of it. Also the type below with the electrical connectors had a completely modified NBC housing.

 

Hopefully these will work

 

fv43901.jpg

This is a pic of the 2 different 439s together

 

 

 

 

fv43904.jpg

This is the one that has the Scam 12 mast

 

 

 

fv43906.jpg

rear view of the mast type.

 

 

 

fv43902.jpg

This type has a large set of connections under the armoured shroud.

 

 

 

fv43905.jpg

This is inside the one with electrical connections, had a couple of what seemed to be teleprinters.

 

 

 

Regards

 

Dougy

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Richard, I did notice when I was looking at the 439's that their engine panels were different, sure I took some pics of it. Also the type below with the electrical connectors had a completely modified NBC housing.

 

 

 

Dougy,

 

As I said, it was in 1985 that I worked on that particular 432, and cannot see from your photo whether it is the same. Having worked on quite a few since then, never come across this modification again, although all the re-engined ones may well be upgraded.

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That's it I'm definitely confused now

 

If it is in the "Ptarmigan" role was it a "fv439 Ptarmigan" or a "fv432 ptarmigan",

and is Ptarmigan the communications station that can connect from mobile phone to larkspur to clansman and broadband, and is it the same kit on the Bedford MJ.

If it is a Ptarmigan fv43* did it still have the armoured generators on the roof giving it the same profile as the ones in my pics above. What era would these been in service??

 

As it seems these vehicles in my pics seem to be fv439 "BRUIN" am I pointing in the right direction?? There has been mention of 3 versions of this vehicle, I only have pics of 2 types, does anyone know what would the 3rd type look like, Roger!!!!?

 

Pic of the NBC housing, only the type with the electrical connection shroud had this, the one with the mast seemed standard.

fv43907.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pic of the modified engine housing panels,

fv43908.jpg

 

 

Sorry for all the questions, is it just me or is anyone else confused

 

 

Thanks for everyones input so far, it is all invaluable and appreciated.

 

Regards

 

Dougy

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Wow Alan, you are coming up with some fab pics. Where are they coming from? who owns them? And you can guess my next question, who would I have to ask to use them on my website? But more to the point what is the last set, have zoomed in and it says FV431?

 

Roger, I have just come across your reply to the sankey communications trailer thread, and you have mention the BRUIN again, which appears to be Larkspur based, would this been superseeded by clansman or should I have entered this thread into the I must be stupid section.

 

Regards

 

Dougy

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Dougy it was definitely FV439 in two formats:

 

Carrier, Personnel, Fulll Tracked, SAS/SMC FV439 Ptarmigan -Asset Code 0736-3000

 

Carrier, Installation, Ptarmigan/Triffid FV439 Radio Relay Access (Tracked) - no Asset Code quoted

 

I am not quoting this from some military author, these are the deisgnations used in Army Code No.12123 Part IV 1999

 

Ptarmigan replaced Bruin.

Bruin came into service in 1967.

Ptarmigan design began in 1973.

Prototype Ptarmigan was introduced in 1978

In 1980 the contract was awarded to Plessey to introduce the system over a 4 year period.

Officially entered service in 1985.

In 1987 contracts were awarded for the second phase of the system.

Triffid was the UHF radio relay (RR) link within the Ptarmigan system & contracts were awarded in 1987.

 

Given the complexities of the system, it was not going to all fit in a FV439. This would explain the different types, for the RR side or the line use & switching. I have to say I am rather overwhelmed by the complexities & versatlity of the system!

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Dougy it was definitely FV439 in two formats:

 

Carrier, Personnel, Fulll Tracked, SAS/SMC FV439 Ptarmigan -Asset Code 0736-3000

 

Carrier, Installation, Ptarmigan/Triffid FV439 Radio Relay Access (Tracked) - no Asset Code quoted

 

I am not quoting this from some military author, these are the deisgnations used in Army Code No.12123 Part IV 1999

 

Ptarmigan replaced Bruin.

Bruin came into service in 1967.

Ptarmigan design began in 1973.

Prototype Ptarmigan was introduced in 1978

In 1980 the contract was awarded to Plessey to introduce the system over a 4 year period.

Officially entered service in 1985.

In 1987 contracts were awarded for the second phase of the system.

Triffid was the UHF radio relay (RR) link within the Ptarmigan system & contracts were awarded in 1987.

 

Given the complexities of the system, it was not going to all fit in a FV439. This would explain the different types, for the RR side or the line use & switching. I have to say I am rather overwhelmed by the complexities & versatlity of the system!

 

Erm, so what are the ones that Withams are selling ?

 

Phil

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