DanielR Profile picture
Jun 5 14 tweets 7 min read Read on X
1. The Loaf (Bukhanka), a van designed in 1965, has become russia’s main battlefield transport vehicle. The Loaf reveals a lot about how well russia is doing in Ukraine. Image
2. The Loaf has been produced since 1965 in several variants. Four-wheel drive is its most interesting feature, otherwise it is extremely basic. All ages of Loaves are seen on the battlefield: ancient to brand new. A 112 HP petrol engine means it is not fast. Image
3. The suspension is prehistoric. It has solid axels with leaf spring front and rear. Although it has a sway bar, this vehicle is unlikely to be good for high speeds. The Loaf is easy prey for Ukraine’s FPV drones. Image
4. An FPV drone knocked this Loaf onto its right side. This view of its underside shows the central engine along with the front and rear solid axels. There are no skid plates. More relevant, there is an unprotected fuel tank on each side.
5. The russians use Loaves to supply front lines and to escape from shelling. Hitting a fuel tank with an FPV drone will burn the Loaf. More importantly, it will burn what the Loaf is transporting including personnel, equipment, ammunition and weapons.
6. Why is russia using antiquated vans in a war? Fortunately, russian sources are exceptionally forthcoming when discussing Loaves because these vehicles are bought using donations and delivered by volunteers.
7. Russians state, “The delivery of ammunition and the removal of the wounded is simply impossible now without such vehicles. Large military vehicles are instantly attacked by FPV drones, which fly in swarms and fly 10-20 km from the LBS to our rear.”
8. Life of a Loaf is short. One group was happy their Loaf made 3 trips before being burned. Another says, “A year ago we made a purchase of vehicles for fighters - and now there is not a single one left. They do not last long in combat conditions.”
9. Ukrainians talk about Bukhankocide. “One of the roads of death for Russian logistics. Almost all transportation is on loaves and golf carts. Thanks to the good work of drones & artillery all the field roads and woods are littered with burned-out cars.”
10. Russia soldiers are burning through these vehicles, “The highest priority is the supply of vehicles - their shortage is now felt most acutely.” But this demand is driving up prices. A new Loaf is 1.5M rubles (about US$15k).
11. Russians say they desperately need Loaves to deliver supplies & transport personnel because there are no other resources. That is, they are not using armored vehicles because they do not have them. What happened to russia’s huge store of armoured vehicles? Image
12. The large-scale use of donated Loafs strongly suggests russia’s military is running low on armoured vehicles. Russian Telegram channels support this claim. Ukraine is destroying russia’s logistics by burning their Loaves.
13. A Loaf is likely great on a farm or for camping but its widespread use by russian soldiers indicates a serious lack of military vehicles. We know the Loafs are important to russians because they are now mounting (possibly incorrectly) electronic warfare systems on them. Image
14. Reading what the russians say about these vehicles is very insightful. Have a look yourself. If you found this thread interesting, please repost as a quote. Comments are appreciated. Also see my previous threads listed under, “Highlights” Image

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More from @DanielR33187703

Jun 2
1. Russian Telegram states, “we often see military equipment at the front tuned with metal meshes. The chain-link mesh creates a protective space over the car from enemy drops, and has already saved many lives.” But a Soviet-aera Saporoshez SAS 968 with an anti-drone cage? Image
2. The Saporoshez was made from 1971 to 1994 and has a 45 HP air-cooled V4. Apparently, it can reach 100 km/h (62 mph) in 32 seconds (one assumes unloaded). It seems unlikely this would outrun an FPV drone. Image
3. Also a sign that things are not going well for the russians: a Lada 2101 with some chicken wire is now considered a “military vehicle”.
Read 5 tweets
May 23
1. A russian group showed a short video of their #drone work bench and claimed it demonstrated how they are “FPV-geniuses”. Let’s have a closer look at their assembly work and decide for ourselves.
2. This is where 8 or so people (counting soldering pencils) are assembling drones. Curiously, there are two large workbench soldering stations but the battery-powered soldering pencils seem to be preferred. The workbench unit is overkill if only used for heat-shrink. Image
3. They all use the same tool kit that is made by iFlight. One interesting detail is that the soldering pencils included in the kit are powered by large LiPo batteries (like drones use) instead of mains power. The kits all look new. Image
Read 9 tweets
May 21
1. Anti-drone guns and other electronic warfare (EW) devices are incredibly important for defending against russian #drones in #Ukraine. These EW devices see harsh service and can be damaged or broken. How do soldiers know their EW devices are working properly? Image
2. A very common way to confirm proper operation is by using a spectrum analyser connected to an antenna. A common example is the tinySA shown here. But spectrum analysers are not simple to use, and not all soldiers are trained how to use one. A simpler method is needed. Image
3. Here is a tool being developed for performing quality assurance on electronic warfare devices. It measures output of EW on five different frequency bands. A green square indicates EW is transmitting and red (shown here) indicates no transmission.
Read 6 tweets
May 14
1. Effective or a russian scam? Low-cost electronic warfare systems (#jammers) are incredibly important when defending against #drones. In russia, many companies produce and sell drone jammers of varying quality. How does this example fare? Image
2. This jammer is sold as the, PARS-F “Filya" UAV countermeasure system. For no apparent reason, it comes in two case styles but are otherwise identical. The pouch probably holds a battery charger. It sells for a hefty 186000 rubles (US$2040). Image
3. It claims to operate on two bands, 840-960 MHz and 1160-1280 MHz with a radiated power up to 20 Watts and a (rather short) range of 300 m. It is easy to use: the exterior has a single (non-weather proofed) switch, LED indicator and a charge port. Image
Read 9 tweets
May 6
1. Various russian news outlets showed detailed images of a #drone captured by russia's armed forces. It turns out the drone is russian not #Ukrainian. Oops. Image
2. This drone has a number of distinguishing design features that identify who made it. The fuselage is made from plywood using rather nice joints and the fuel tank is slung underneath in an open frame. We seen this style of aircraft previously. Image
3. On December 7, 2023 I posted a thread on larger but similar russian drones. These had similarly designed and constructed plywood fuselages (note the joints). One drone also had the fuel tank slung underneath in an open frame. Image
Read 17 tweets
Apr 30
1. The #Ukrainian company Steel Hornets has been working on interesting munitions for Ukraine’s #drones. These include incendiaries that burn but do not explode. An interesting feature is that these munitions start burning as soon as they are dropped.
2. Here is a test of thier largest incendiary. The yellow stuff pouring off the plate is molten metal. This device quickly melted a hole through an 8 mm (0.3”) thick steel plate. 👀
3. Here is a test of the munition being dropped from a large Baba Yaga drone. Notice how it starts burning when released. It is designed to be released from heights of 30 m (100 feet) or less. It can also be attached to a kamikaze FPV drone.
Read 6 tweets

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