Hey guys,

This is my first post here. I'm not in the Army but I'm considering it... are there any 19K'ers out there? I've got some questions...

Some of you are probably in Iraq... what do you do when you aren't waiting or doing maintenance on your vehicle? Do you go on daily missions or is it mostly patrolling? I know everybody wants to go home, but how is the mood over there?

I've been told that the Abrams was extremely armored. Does the enemy even have weapons that could take out an Abrams? The recruiter I've been talking to is a 19K who served in Kuwait and Bosnia. He was telling me that the Iraqi's weapons typically don't pose a threat to the crewmen inside. Is that right? Then what are the most important things to watch out for?

And finally does anyone have an opinion about being stationed at Fort Stewart?

Potentially PFC. Montee
Original Post
Been a 19K & 19D.......

Tankers do have the most armor on them out in the battlefield. The only thing you need to worry about on the battlefield is a high explosive mine that can shoot through the belly of the tank & snipers with high powered sniper rifles who catch idiots stickin their heads out of the turret hatches.

I did 19K over in the 2nd ID, 1-72AR "FIRST TANK" back in 97-98 (Camp Casey, Korea), 1-81AR back at Fort Knox (where tankers go to die), then I reclassed to Cav Scout....what a retard I was!

When tanks go down, depending on what the mission is and where its at, it could be taking naps in the tank with one guy monitoring the radio, it could be actually fixing the tank WITH the maintence guys (you break it and you get to help fix it), depending on how bad the tank is, some of the crew will go and fill other tanks but not usually, or you could be pulling watch with Night Vision and Thermals (at night). It just all depends on where you are at.

Fort Stewart is high deployability as is Carson, Hood & Riley. Be looking to be overseas for a while.....

I'm a drill sgt now in the Reserves.....best gig anywhere.

Do yourself a favor......Think about what you are doing. Are you going in for excitement? Or are you going in to learn a trade you can actually use when you get out? If the latter is your choice, ask yourself this. How many tanks in civilian life do you see used everyday?

Get a real job doing maintenance, inteligence, Nuclear Biological Chemical, MP.....something, other than being someone who know's how to fire a 120mm round doenst count for squat in the real world. Its nice and fun to know, but other than that.......

Drill Sarge LaHue.
As he said tanker's really have no skills for the outside world, but it is damn fun. I got out for 6 months after serving 4 years and now I am going back in. I miss the crap out of it. 70 tons +50mph + 120mm = lots of excitement.
ok, first things first... tanks are exciting sometimes, boring other times. Be careful who you listen to, not everybody knows what they're talking about. I've been a tanker for 16 years and am currntly assigned to 1st CAV in Baghdad. We patrol in hummers here, go out on tanks only seldomly. I've commanded tanks in the US, Germany and Kuwait, nothing quite like riding 70 tons of steele, but they require a lot of maintenance to keep running. I tell my soldiers that there is always something to do on a tank. Whether or not the enemy in Iraq has weapons that can disable a tank, the answer is yes. Almost any type of RPG or mine can disable components on a tank. However, destroying the tank and the crew is another story all together. Most of the damage that my unit has sustained to tanks has been superficial at best. The crew usually only receives cuts and scrapes. As for idiots sticking their heads out and getting shot, well, it happens but you can't ride without being able to see. Security and maintaining sectors are the important thing. Soldiers have to work together to accomplish a mission, that means covering each other's backs. Snipers? Iraqis really can't shoot that well, so if luck is against you, then it could happen. I was also a drill sergeant at Fort Knox. I was a real DS, in an armor unit for active duty, reserve and national guard soldiers. For two years i trained the nations best soldiers to become tankers. There is nothing easy about being armor, but the benefits are well worth it.
I'm a fairly new 19K. I was a split-option ARNG/SMP(ROTC) soldier, so I've got a little over two years in service, but just graduated from Knox on 1 OCT 04. We spent very little time on the tanks in training. The focus now is all about surviving in today's urban battlezone. We spent 2/6 days of FTX on the tanks, the other days we had paintball guns and lots of buildings in a mock city. Running the tank isn't too hard, a monkey could do it. For me, being mechanically illiterate, the maintenance is the worst thing. There are mechanics, but from what I saw, the tank commanders have to know how to do everything, because the tank doesn't break down in the garage magically... it's in the field. A lot of stuff you do is a bitch on the tank. We were told that 19K and 19D MOS' are going to be combined before too much longer, and that the Bradley Fighting Vehicle would be phased out as soldiers train on the Abrams and the Stryker and the HMMWV. I don't know the amount of truth behind that nor the time frame. I know I'm already in school being re-classed as a 19D, because when my unit comes home from Iraq (they're actually there as 11Bs) we are going to be one of those new Units of Action, and no one will be a 19K anymore. So, if you join as a tanker, be prepped to have a lot of fun, but also to do more walking than tanker used to. Also, I would suggest doing like I am myself, and getting a degree in something that you can actually use when you get out. I wouldn't give up being combat arms for anything, because you never get a chance to do this stuff anywhere else or actually FIGHT for your country in the same way, but you gotta remember that you won't [i:08bcd1bcd5]always[/i:08bcd1bcd5] be in the military.
What's the sound of my main gun, BOOM BOOM!
What's the sound of my 120, BOOM BOOM!

There's nothing like it in the world. There's nothing better than controlling a 70 ton beast. In basic, you won't spend alot of times on the tanks, but since my company got our new tanks after coming back from Iraq, we've been on them almost everyday. Training, maintenance, etc... But in Iraq, be prepared to spend most of your time walking or doing patrols on a HMMVW.
Hmm...isnt the Main gun and the 120 the same thing? Because the main gun is a 120 mm gun.

By the way. They still havn't combined the 19D and 19K's yet. I went to Basic sthis summer and I heard taht same crap but No matter what they're will always be tankers and they're little wannabe tanker counterparts (19D) Wink

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