Iron Heart Armament Iron Weasel Weapon Platform:

Iron Heart Armament produced a large variety of combat vehicle designs before being conquered by the Coalition Rifts including several tank designs. These designs include the Iron Hammer battle tank, the Iron Maiden Armored Personnel Carrier, and the Iron Eagle combat helicopter. The sales of all of these products paled in comparison to the sales of the Iron Weasel. It is not as well known by scholars due to the design having been left off of several Iron Heart Armament catalogs. Many Mercenary Companies love the light and nimble design and the design is very popular. While not technically a tank, the tracked vehicle carries incredible firepower for its size and is very affordable. The main weakness with the design is a lack of armor and is called a "weapons platform" to reflect this lack of armor. The price of even the nuclear version was not much more than most power armors. Since the capture of Iron Heart Armament by the Coalition, production of these vehicles have ceased although large numbers have been produced and are expected to be in service for decades to come. It is quite likely that one or more manufacturing companies in the future will copy the design and begin production on a similar or identical design. Already, several companies are producing space parts for the weapon platform.

The Iron Weasel is much smaller than other designs produced by Iron Heart Industries but like virtually all ground vehicle designs produced by Iron Heart Armament, it is a tracked design. Due to the Iron Weasel's lightweight design, less than four tons, the ground pressure is far less than other Iron Heart designs. This results in a tracked vehicle which is both faster and able to perform in more mountainous and rocky terrain than other Iron Heart designs. Top speed is about 80 mph on most reasonably decent roads, a bit less on rough terrain. Power on conventional versions is provided by a lightweight gas turbine engine or through super efficient batteries. Battery powered version are very popular with the light weapon platforms simply being recharged from larger fusion powered vehicle. Nuclear powered versions use the same fusion reactor which is standard in the Mountaineer A.T.V. and provides virtually unlimited endurance at a very economical price. The only real weakness which the Iron Weasel is that it considered to have is light armor. The Iron Weasel is only slightly better armored than the Northern Gun Sampson power armor. Standard crew for the Iron Weasel is two, one driver and one commander / gunner. It mounts most of the standard electronics carried on other Iron Heart designs.

There are three main versions of the Iron Weasel. One version is armed with a 30 mm chain cannon similar to the cannon carried on the Iron Eagle combat helicopter while the other version is armed with eight medium range missiles as its main weaponry. The primary version's 30 mm chain gun was developed to be lighter in weight compare to the standard cannon mounted on the Iron Eagle. Some sources give the 30 mm chain gun on the Iron Eagle a weight of 2 tons but in fact is less than 400 lbs. This is reduced in the version carried by the Iron Weasel by using lighter weight composites but also through reducing the armor protecting the weapon. Ammunition carried for the 30 mm cannon is reduced from two thousand rounds carried on the Iron Eagle to eight hundred rounds. The chain cannon is useful against both ground targets and against aircraft. Coaxial to the 30 mm cannon, the Iron Weasel mounts the same laser which is mounted in many of the Iron Heart designs in a separate turret. This gives the weapon platform the ability to engage targets without using the main gun. Weight of the laser mount is around 45 lbs, reduced from the standard weight of around 60 lbs for versions carried in most Iron Heart designs. On each side of the hull of the tracked vehicle are four mini-missile tubes for a total of eight tubes. A total of twenty-four mini-missiles are carried. The medium range missile carrying version is used for long range missile artillery but can also be very effective at close range against heavily armored opponents. For self defense, the missile variant also carried the mini-missile launchers carried on the standard model and mounts the light laser mount although in a turret in the front of the hull. Finally, there is a third version which is armed by a 120 mm mortar. It is not mounted in a full turret and has limited traverse. It has several advantages over the missile armed version due to greater payload and much less expensive ammunition cost. It carries thirty rounds ready to fire. It has an automatic loader so there is no need for manual loading. One weakness is that the vehicle must plant itself so that it can fire due to its extremely light weight. For self defense, the vehicle is armed with a defense laser and side mounted mini-missile mounts. All three versions mount smoke dispensers.

Model Type:Iron Weasel IHeavy Chain Gun Model
Iron Weasel IIMedium Range Missile Model
Iron Weasel III120 mm Mortar Version
Class: Weapon Platform
Crew: Two (Pilot and Gunner)
Troop Transport Capabilities: None

M. D. C. by Location:

Heavy Chain Gun Model
Weapon Turret:180
IH-280-LW 30 mm Chain Gun (In Turret)50
IH-34-XT Coaxial Laser (In Turret)40
Medium Range Missile Model
MM-8 Medium Range Missile Launcher150
IH-34-XL Laser Turret (Forward)40
120 mm Mortar Model
Weapon Mount150
IH-120-MT 120 mm Heavy Mortar (In Mount)60
IH-34-XL Laser Turret (Forward)40
Support Feet (4)25 each
MLRS-12 Mini-Missile Launchers (2, Sides):30 each
Smoke / Gas Dispensers (2):15 each
Reinforced Crew Compartment:60
[1] Main Body:280
[2] Treads (2):40 each

[1] Depleting the M.D.C. from the main body will shut the tank down completely, rendering it useless.
[2] Depleting the M.D.C. of a tread will immobilize the tank until it is replaced. Replacing a tread will take 1D6x10 minutes by a trained crew (2 replacements are carried on board) or three times as long by the inexperienced. Changing the tread is only possible when the vehicle is not under attack.

Ground: 80 mph (129.7 kph), on land; it cannot travel on or underwater. The vehicle is designed to traverse virtually all terrain and can climb at up to a 60% grade although at a much slower speed (About 10% of maximum road speed). It can also climb barriers and ford trenches. The vehicle can also handle side slopes of up to 30%.
Maximum Effective Range: 800 miles (1290 km) with a full tank of fuel (Diesel or Gasoline) or via electric motor before needing refueling; unlimited if nuclear (20 year life).

Statistical Data:
Height: 6.2 feet (1.88 meters)
Width: 6.1 feet (1.85 meters)
Length: Hull: 11.3 feet (3.45 meters) With Barrel Forward (30 mm version): 15.3 feet (4.65 meters)
Weight: 3.85 tons (3.5 metric tons) fully loaded
Cargo: Minimal storage space; about two feet (0.6 meters) for extra clothing, weapons, and personal items. Two Wilk’s 447 laser rifles and one WI-23 Missile launchers with 2 loads each are stored in a compartment behind the driver's seat.
Power System: Combustion or electric engine or nuclear (20 year duration)
Black Market Cost: All Versions: 650,000 with combustion engine, 800,000 for an electric motor, 1.8 million with a nuclear engine (lifetime of 20 years).

Weapon Systems:

  1. Main Weapon: The cannon and missile launchers are mounted in a full turret with a full 360 degree rotation with the chain cannon able to be aimed upwards 60 degrees. Mortar is more limited with the able to angle up to eighty-five degrees upwards but can only move about fifteen degrees to either side of centerline. The weapon mount is controlled by the commander / gunner inside the turret compartment.
    1. IH-280-LW 30 mm Ramjet Chain Gun: Lighter weight version of the cannon carried in the Iron eagle attack helicopter. The 30 mm cannon fires heavy ramjet rounds with armor piercing warheads which inflict as much damage as most heavy rail guns. The ramjet rounds inflict great damage and can quicky punch through the front armor of a tank or the main armor of a giant robot.
      Maximum Effective Range: 6,000 feet (1,830 meters).
      Mega Damage: 2D6x10 for a burst of 20 rounds, 3D6 for each round.
      Rate of Fire: Equal to the gunner's hand to hand attacks; each burst counts as one melee action.
      Payload: 800 round drum magazine (40 bursts.) Reloading is done inside the vehicle and takes two melee rounds (30 seconds) for two crewmen or passengers and six melees (90 seconds) if only one person is involved or the people aren't trained in the reload procedure.
    2. Medium-Range Missile Launcher (Medium Range Missile Model): A medium range box launcher is mounted instead of the main cannon. Launcher is usually controlled by the gunner, but can be fired by the driver or commander if the gunner is injured. Launcher is normally outfitted with High-Explosive, Fragmentary or Plasma missiles. The launches can engage air and ground targets.
      Maximum Effective Range: Varies with missile types, medium range missiles only (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
      Mega Damage: Varies with missile types, medium range missiles only (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
      Rate of Fire: Can fire missiles one at a time or in volleys of two (2), or four (4) missiles.
      Payload: 8 medium range missiles.
    3. IH-120-MT 120 mm Heavy Mortar (Mortar Model): Can angle up to 85 degrees and is designed with an auto-loader. It is extremely useful in the short range indirect fire roll. The vehicle must drop feet and plant before firing due to its light weight. Range is less that true artillery but is still extremely effective in indirect fire roles. There are special guided rounds available although rare. See Battlefield Mortars for Rifts for more details.
      Maximum Effective Range: 3,280 feet (1,000 meters) to 23,620 feet (7,200 meters) depending on number of charges used. Minimum range is 660 feet (200 meters) to 5,250 feet (1,600 meters) depending on charges used.
      Mega-Damage: By mortar round type See Battlefield Mortars for Rifts for more details: Fragmentation 2D6x10 (50 feet/15.2 meters), High Explosive 3D6x10 (30 feet/9.1 meters), Armor Piercing 3D6x10 (20 feet/6.1 meters), Plasma 4D6x10 (40 feet/12.2 meters), and has a vast number of other type of rounds as well).
      Rate of Fire: 12 to 16 rounds per minute depending on number of charges (three to four per melee) for one minute, 8 rounds per minute after one minute of fire depending on number of charges (two per melee.)
      Payload: 30 rounds total
  2. IB-34 Laser Mount / Turret (1): On the 30 mm cannon armed model, this weapon is mounted in the turret beside the main cannon and is fired by the gunner / commander as a secondary weapon. The weapon is used against infantry and light targets not worth a shot from the main gun. On the medium range missile launcher version and mortar version, the lasers are mounted in a separate turret in the front of the vehicle. The weapon consists of two laser cannons firing simultaneously at the same target. In vehicles without nuclear engines, the laser is powered by a rechargeable battery.
    Maximum Effective Range: 4,000 feet (1,200 meters)
    Mega-Damage: 6D6 M.D. per dual blast.
    Rate of Fire: Can shoot up to six times per melee.
    Payload: 1000 dual blasts if conventionally powered. Unlimited if vehicle has a nuclear engine.
  3. MLRS-12 Multiple Launcher Rocket System (2): An MLRS-12 mini missile launcher is built into each side of the combat vehicle. Launcher is primarily controlled by gunner but can be controlled by the pilot or commander as well. Each holds 12 mini-missiles and can rotate 360 degrees and can be raised 60 degrees.
    Maximum Effective Range: Varies with mini-missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
    Mega-Damage: Varies with mini-missile type. Typically armor piercing and plasma (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
    Rate of Fire: Can fire mini-missiles one at a time or in volleys of two (2) or four (4) mini-missiles.
    Payload: 24 total, 12 mini-missiles in each launcher.
  4. Smoke/Gas Dispensers (2): A smoke/gas dispensing unit is attached to each side of the Weapon Platform. The dispenser releases a dense cloud of smoke that covers a 40 foot (12.2 m) area in front of the vehicle, It can also release tear gas.
    Payload: 20 total; 10 charges each; typically all smoke.

Special Equipment:

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Writeup by Kitsune (E-Mail Kitsune).

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