APFSDS vs Safe

Someone posted this on the BOCN forum.


Darn, I put my money on that safe!!!

Nice I wish they would have hit it with the dart the safe would have been in better shape

That reminds me of the saying: “Gunner, Sniper, Sabot” is NOT an appropriate use of ammunition.

Great video, Falcon! Super sweet TPFSDS-T projectile! I’d love to ad that one to my collection.


I saw a similar one for sale a on a military collectables stall at a flea market a few years ago in the UK. The guy who owned it has since moved out of the country, no idea what happened to it unfortunately.

It is a beauty for sure! I have not seen it before this video. I wonder if it is fin stabilized or cone stabilized?

Jason, the projectile L23A1 is fin stabilized. Notice how well protected the fins are before firing. Propelling charge L8 or L8A1 is used. kotsch88.de/m_120mm-L11.htm

What was that projectile they hit the safe with? HEAT? HEP? HESH?
Is that ammunition fixed or seperate loading? Looks like the main gun is rifled, not smoothbore? I thought smoothbore was all the rage these days…especially when firing APFSDS type projectiles.


Thanks for the great link Western. The L23A1 is a tactical projectile and not a TP round like they fired in the safe video according to that link. I have never seen the exact TP projectile used in that video before now. Most TP tank gun ammunition is designed with some type of built in range reduction design element like a cone stabilizer that uses the LKL principle or some type of breakup feature after a certain known distance. Since the sabot was a bright blue color it had to be TP and not a tactical fired round. I loved that link you sent and totally nabbed a few great reference photos for my collection :-) Thanks big time! I would guess that the TP round they fired was the TP counterpart to the projectile you mentioned as it has a very similar profile?

AKMS, The Challenger uses a rifled barrel and fires separate loading ammunition. [color=#FF0000]To the best of my knowledge[/color], tanks with rifled barrels typically fire Saboted ammunition that utilize a driving band that freely slips or rotates around the sabot petals as the projectile travels out the barrel. With this design, the the projectile does not spin stabilize threw a rifled barrel.


[quote=“APFSDS”] [color=#FF0000]To the best of my knowledge[/color],


You are right Jason.

Thanks EOD! I was not 100% positive :-) You rule!


Just watched the video again, and Western, is right that the TP round is designated L23A1. You can clearly read L23A1 on one of the blue sabot petals. The link posted shows the L23A1 as a black saboted tactical round. Perhaps the UK designated both the tactical and target practice rounds with the same model designation?


Yes the blue color is Practice (see text PRAC on projectile) same design but without the tungsten projectile. This of course to reduce practice cost.
black= L23A1
blue = L23A1 Practice

Thanks Western!

Nothing like learning something new :-) In the US, TP tank ammunition has completely different designations then there tactical counterparts and in most cases look nothing like the tactical round. They only match the tactical rounds trajectory out to a certain known distance. I like this L23A1 Practice round as it silhouette looks almost identical to the tactical L23A1 except for the color and materials used :-) The US M865 TPCSDS-T round used as our 120mm TP round still uses a tungsten penetrator.


Jason, you are the expert on this but now you are suprising me. To my limited information the US M865 TPCSDS-T uses a steel penetrator. Can you confirm this is a tungsten penatrator?
What about the M865E2 ? This was made by reutilizing components from M829 APFSDS-T.

You are correct! Not sure why I said tungsten. I must be mental! The M865 uses a steel inner core in its penetrator :-) I am not sure about the E2. I do not know if we ever adopted the E2? I have 3 different M865 variants in my collection so far but no E2’s represented (yet). The hunt is on.