FV433 Abbot is a self-propelled artillery vehicle from the 1960s designed to replace the Sexton and used extensivly by the British army. It’s basis lies in the FV432 armoured personel carrier, with which it shares many components, this modified hull is also the basis for the Falcon SPAA. Its turret houses the L13A1 105mm lightweight field gun which could fire a variety of round out to ranges in excess of 17 kilometers.
A need arose to replace the ageing Sexton self-propelled gun. Over two years from 1958 Vickers set out to design a small, highly mobile with a short deployment time and a capable gun. By basing this design on the existing FV432 armored personnel carrier production costs could be reduced, as well as easing repair and logistics for the production vehicle by having a high degree of part commonality. The turret was placed at the back of the vehicle with the transmission and engine placed at the front of the vehicle. The vehicle was fitted with a floatation screen to help it cross water.
After some trouble deciding on which engine to fit Abbot with, Vickers finally decided on the multi-fuel K60 6-cylinder engine was selected. In 1964 the full scale production started with a total of 234 vehicles being produced overall.
Despite being heavily based of the FV432 its hull does differ slightly in shape, with the Abbot taking on a more squashed appearance, it was 5.8 meters long, 2.6 meters wide & 2.7 meters high.
The armour of the Abbot was only thick enough for shell splinters and small arms fire as it was not expected to combat enemies head-on. It consisted of 12mm hull front and side steel plate, 10mm rear hull and 6mm floor.
The driver was located in the front right of the hull next to the engine block, at the rear of the tank a large hatch for ingress and egress of the turret is located, it was often left open during firing for crew comfort and to exhaust fumes.
The engine was the K60 multi-fuel providing 240 horsepower at 3750 rpm and a maximum speed of 29 mph
The turret was capable of full 360-degree rotation with the capability to elevate the gun up to +70 degrees and depress to -5 degrees. Traverse was powered by an electric motor, elevation was done by hand. Armour on the turret is 10mm all-around with a 12mm roof .
The small turret contained three men; the commander, gunner and loader, with the gunner located at the front right of the turret with the commander behind him and the loader over the gun breach to their left.
The gun is a 3.8 meter long L13A1 105mm semi-automatically loaded howitzer capable of firing 6-8 rounds in a minute. A total of 40 rounds are carried, including smoke, HESH and HE. It was chosen in order to facilitate the light-weight of the Abbot – as well as its excellent range and lethality, a feature allowing it to be more easily transported with the post-war BEF to the future battlefields that were envisioned overseas.
The commanders’ position has a rotating cupola and a mounting for a Bren or later GPMG machinegun is affixed to its front. It also had 6 smoke dischargers on the front of the turret, three per cheek. There was no in-built night vision or thermal system for any of the crew.
The gun used a two-part bag-charge system, with the projectile loaded by the semi-automatic rammer and the propellant – placed in a brass casing – inserted by hand after it, this allowed the crew to set the range using the lower of higher velocity of the gun. A total of 8 bags could be used per-casing allowing for a range of different velocities with the same projectile.
|Multi-fuel K60 6-cylinder horizontally opposed
|240 horsepower at 3750rpm
|105mm L13A1 howitzer
|HE, HESH and smoke
|-5 to +70° hand cranked
|Smoke dischargers, three per cheek
Thanks for making it this far, apart from the new gun being perhaps a bit weak with only 105mm HE and HESH and there being at least three different versions of the Abbot – not different enough to really warrant a different vehicle so I’ve largely excluding talking about them (different engine versions and a “value” stripped down Abbot sold to India) – confusing the statistics somewhat, I don’t think there would be any real issues forthcoming adding this to the game.