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Thread: Why tanks need tracks?

  1. #1 Why tanks need tracks? 
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    Often tanks get out of order on the field is when their tracks get broken.
    But what is the sense for them to have tracks at all?
    Maybe its better to have just big metalic wheels?


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  3. #2  
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    As far as I know the tracks used to break down a lot in WWII, but not so much nowadays. Still, it would be interesting to hear from an expert on the advantages of tracks over wheels.


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  4. #3  
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    better traction
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  5. #4  
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    Better traction, yes. But the way tanks are used at the moment - they are going over flat deserts or town streets. Why do they need such traction?
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  6. #5  
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    they are going over flat deserts or town streets.
    "Flat" deserts aren't like an ironing board. They can still have rock outcrops, dips, slippery sand patches, boggy patches after rain. Good traction is still a worthwhile asset.

    They may no longer be much used in the old set piece battle configuration, but they're still pretty useful.
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    Remember - they would never use treads on Mars They are metallic wheels.
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  8. #7  
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    They don't "NEED" them, it just helps. We do have some wheeled tanks, you know.
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  9. #8  
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    If they didn't have tracks they wouldn't be tanks, they would be armoured vehicles.
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  10. #9  
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    Tanks a lot for all your answers.
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  11. #10  
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    The last few entries have been off topic: let's stay on track.
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    I think only mine was off-topic.

    I guess one can imagine a threaded tank would be able to climb a sand dune whereas a vehicle of the same weight and with the sane number of wheels would have trouble. But the reason the Mars rovers are not treaded is for the sake of less moving parts. Even so, one rover wheel promptly jammed and never recovered. Would they still be mobile if they had treads?
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  13. #12  
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Galt View Post
    The last few entries have been off topic: let's stay on track.
    Sometimes we have to tread a fine line to keep the discussion on track.
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  14. #13  
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    I am sure you all are aware that pressure is inversely in proportion to the area to which the force is applied. Now if wheels would have been used in sand or snow, they would sink and get stuck due to the small area of wheel that touches the ground, while if tracks are used more area is in contact with the ground thus the tank does not sink into the ground.

    This is why tracks are used.

    Another reason could be that tracks allow greater mobility over rough terrain.
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  15. #14  
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    More stable on rough terrain? Which type of design is more stable on the rough terrain of rock-strewn desert Mars:

    or

    I think the grip of the tread is the only reason treads are used. Like you said, going over sandy ground, wheels would get stuck. But the disadvantages of treads are complex design/ more can go wring, and potentially limited on rough terrain.
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  16. #15  
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheNorthStar View Post
    I am sure you all are aware that pressure is inversely in proportion to the area to which the force is applied. Now if wheels would have been used in sand or snow, they would sink and get stuck due to the small area of wheel that touches the ground, while if tracks are used more area is in contact with the ground thus the tank does not sink into the ground.

    This is why tracks are used.

    Another reason could be that tracks allow greater mobility over rough terrain.
    Bingo. Lowest ground pressure which is a tremendous advantage over snow, mud and sand. Treads also allow far better low speed maneuverability because they can easily pivot steer without needing extremely complex steering mechanisms. Lastly they can apply their power to move across that entire surface without complex mechanisms as well.
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  17. #16  
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    one of the Mars rover are abandoned because its wheel stuck...
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  18. #17  
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    Quote Originally Posted by msafwan View Post
    one of the Mars rover are abandoned because its wheel stuck...
    It travelled a little while with the stuck wheel. And ironically the stuck wheel "dug out" something interesting in the ground that we could later observe. It's great how they are able to make good use of a bad situation.
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