RMAF Alouette III Gunship - Sgt(U) Peter Nunis (firing post demonstration)
Question: What causes the Alouette III Gunship's barrel to become red-hot while firing?
Answer: Non-stop continuous firing of the canon for several minutes.
Question: How to avoid red-hot barrel?
Answer: Fire 5 to 7 burst per minute.
Question: How to detect red-hot barrel while firing?
Answer: Air gunner will notice a red glowing at the front part of the barrel.
Question: How to cool the red-hot barrel?
Answer: By using an outside air or wind flow of the gunship which has a cooler outside air temperature (OAT) compared to ground temperature.
For in altitude flying condition:
- Stop firing immediately and informed the pilot.
- Switches the canon to safety.
- Do not touch the hot barrel.
- Remove the ammo link from the canon.
- Open the canon bridge block as to allow vast gushing air flow circulation.
- Remove the empty shell bag.
- Swing the canon at its maximum to the right pointing the barrel in the forward position flight path.
- Fly the gunship in this canon position for several minutes as the gushing airflow that passes through the front of the barrel right into barrel end tip that eventually will cool down the barrel.
- Informed pilot when you are ready for the next 'firing order'.
This barrel cooling technique was best applied to any gunship during heavy air to ground firing. The other technique was 'Airborne Barrel Change' which was considered hazardous to the crew and gunship.