The class of super trucks in our army is usually dominated by KAMAZ, "Ural" and KrAZ. Lobastov "five hundred" MAZ to the elite list of military vehicles is rare. Correct this injustice Minsk Automobile Plant decided over 25 years ago. But it should be noted: the first MAZ entered service of the Belarusian army in 1998. After what had to undergo the same tests designers and factory workers before the Minsk trucks stood in the army operation?
Once the Minister of the automotive industry of the USSR signed an order under which Minsk-wheel-drive trucks were supposed to get a "free pass." Date of birth triaxial MAZ-6317 is considered to be in December 1986. However, the signature in the document does not mean that before that of Minsk "off-road" knew nothing - work to create such machines began long before and were then in full swing.
It so happened that in the Soviet Army in collusion table of ranks was clearly defined, trucks no automobile factories for what purpose. Designing your car, our compatriots sights on the future capacity of all-terrain vehicle at eleven tons. The maximum capacity of the Soviet Army had then KrAZ - 9, 5 tons. It is on this and focuses Minsk designers, defending their offspring.
By the time of the signing of the ministerial order prototypes were almost completed, and in 1987 the first large-tonnage truck Minsk saw the light. The case remained for small: as soon as possible to organize the tests and run the car into production.
In early 1988, the first samples of trucks were held at an accelerated rate of 200 break-kilometer track at the test site near Minsk. There were produced five experimental machines, but only three of them then went to his progress along the route Minsk - Surgut - Minsk. The two stayed in the factory to carry out laboratory tests.
Future Army trucks faced a difficult mission on the route - the harsh north, the mountain passes, the sands of the Karakum desert. The first part of the rally covered only the northern part of the Soviet Union. The plan Minsk cars had to overcome the ice crossing over the Irtysh River, and then prototypes "dumped" in the trackless swamps frozen, waiting for another test on ice crossing - this time across the Ob ...
The tests took place under very difficult conditions, something reminiscent of a military "road of life". According to the instructions, which were handed out to each test driver, while overcoming the ice crossing was forbidden to close the door.
Rounding out the route in Minsk in the factory, there was assessed the state of components and assemblies. And the fact that every single car under its own power returned to his hometown, speaks for itself.
Once the prototype is fully studied, experts made a number of proposals for the revision of certain elements of the structure. Further, as part of the same train car with modifications in the construction went on trial in the highlands and the Karakum.
Difficult parts of the route had to overcome a mountain pass Ak-Baital height of 4655 meters in Kyrgyzstan. At this altitude, even for people due to lack of oxygen and low atmospheric pressure have a hard time. The temperature at the bottom of 38 degrees in the shade, and there was snow on the top of ... In addition, due to the thickening fog visibility dropped to a few meters - and the path is very dangerous. However, our MAZ honorably withstood the test under its own power and returned to Minsk.
He would know if someone from the designers or test drivers that soon on future machines will be forgotten, and all test reports sent to gather dust in the archives ... But first, did not promise a fiasco, and February 14, 1990, it was found that the prototype testing weathered and are recommended for serial production for "decision to supply the Soviet Army as a backup for a special period».
Just a year later the Ministry of Defence of the USSR issued an order about the production of the vehicle by the Soviet Army and Navy of the USSR. But the "call" to the service he was not destined - the collapse of the Soviet Union has made adjustments to the fate of the truck.
State orders, which are counted as management of the plant, have been reported, and the private buyer only rarely acquired not cheap gimmick. Soon those machines and all began to forget ... A nice way to end our trucks could, in fact and it began.
That just did not do the plant staff to remind them of the new product ready! .. Even tried to give the truck its own name, as it was fashionable at that time in Europe. Among the possible options - "Bison", "Elisha," "Raid" ... But the people who lived by Soviet concepts had not received any of them - faceless indexes are still in vogue.
Soon, however, a number of military units there is a serious problem concerning the deterioration of the basic chassis for multiple launch rocket systems "Grad". To solve the actual problem of the best specialists of the Armed Forces. Out of this situation, there were two: to repair the car, buying spare parts from Russia, or convert weapons on the chassis of cars of domestic production. It was then that the Defense Ministry, and drew attention to domestic development, has become massively buying their military trucks.
All work on the replacement of the basic chassis MAZ-6317 were carried out by specialists of the Minsk Automobile Plant, the Military Academy, Science and Technology Committee and management of missile and artillery weapons of the Ministry of Defense.
Use as a launcher chassis MAZ-6317 allowed the designers to improve the layout scheme: MAZ has a greater length of the loading platform compared to the "Ural", which made it possible to establish between the cab and artillery units racks for 40 missiles. This made it possible to recharge the launcher without transport and loading vehicle and thus reduce the time up to the second volley.
... I am holding in his hand a small metal key. The same can be applied to open the door lock to the apartment door, or even a mailbox. And that is the key to the iron "heart" of 330 horsepower, hard to believe.
Not far from me alone there are two domestic truck. It's time to wake up these "bison" from the factory hibernation!
Coming close to them, understand: tame them can only real man. That is quite understandable - a powerful machine, it was created for the "call" to the army. Of course, modifications to these civil MAZ also exist, but they are - as the true defenders - have not lost due straightening drill, always ready to show its power in a military training ground.
Army weekdays involve the use of a car to the fullest. And military truck must be able not only to transport personnel, but also to drive for a gun and other weapons. For this purpose the vehicle is equipped with coupling and winch with a pulling force of up to 120 kN. And Minsk designers installed the winch is not in the back or front of the machine, as in the GAZ-66 and ZIL-131, and in the middle of the chassis with the output cable into the back of the car. The MAZ also provided an option fixing the drive winch on the front bumper - for self.
On all-wheel drive truck is equipped with two plastic fuel tanks with a total capacity of 550 liters. Because of transportable fuel reserves maximum range without refueling is 1200 km. KAMAZ-4310, note reserve of only 890 km, and "Ural" -4320 on one refueling overcomes distance and even less - 780 kilometers.
The wheel does not have a drive in his usual sense - steel rim is attached directly to the hub. However, even without the weight of the wheel disc is quite impressive. For this reason, the drive "reserve" has a hydraulic lift.
MAZ MAZ-6317 and 5316 are equipped with an extended cab with one bed for the rest of the crew. Seats in the "sleeping bag" quite a lot - average growth driver can easily fit into a rug. And for the comfort of the cabin MAZ, it seemed to me, it is not inferior to berths in a train compartment. Among other amenities, it is equipped with a variety of cells and pockets.
The driver's seat is no different from those in other trucks, it is equipped with a mechanism of suspension. As for convenience, I can not say, but it is hardly a soft cloth seat with headrest upholstered leatherette worse uralovskoy "shops" ... it is regulated well and combined with adjustable steering column allows you to choose the best option of landing at the wheel.
Externally military trucks differ from the "civilized" version with just a few subtle elements - round headlights and split into two halves strip windshield. This was done at the request of the customer. In a circular optics is much easier to adapt svetomaskiruyuschee device, and a smaller area of the windshield less exposed to chips and cracks. In view of the off-road part of the car would have been unpleasantly after each trip through the woods to a service center to replace the glass ... Planck, which is divided "Lobovyk" does not prevent review. The panel and instrument cluster on a military truck traditionally modest, but quite informative.
The car performs well on the paved road and off-road conditions. However, one has only to leave the asphalt as MAZ completely changes your temper. It seems that the army truck is interested in a new track and verify their strength ... the first time I understood the example of a car, what does that mean - "hit in their native element." Yaroslavl V-shaped like eight Minsk SUV pushed further and further into the forest. There was a feeling that the machine itself asked, "Driver, press the pedal harder!»
But off-road speed is felt much stronger than on the hard dirt road. It is enough to mark 50 km / h on the speedometer, the driver nearly got up from his seat and grabbed the stronger "steering wheel". The passenger is at such moments generally flies up to the ceiling of the cabin. But even here there are secrets. With a centralized system can reduce tire pressure from the cab ...
On the maneuverability and flotation is almost no effect, but in a "cabin" will be an order of magnitude more comfortable. Smooth running (if I may say so on the truck) provides a fairly simple and proven suspension: front - spring, rear - spring-balance-. It has a positive effect for the stability of the vehicle on a hard profiled ground.
Lifting the machine overcomes easily without much effort - of course, with proper gear selection. Slopes at the Belarusian "trehoski" do not cause difficulties - let us not forget that this car was tested in the mountains and is equipped with a motor (mountain) brake.
Domestic trucks are still available on our army weapons in various modifications. And during the time of operation for drivers and repairmen happened admit ambiguous opinion about the quality of MAZ. Someone thinks that modern technology can not in general be made safer with the soul of Soviet trucks ... Young people, on the contrary, prefers domestic cars. Someone tearfully parted with a valid "Ural" and reluctantly transplanted behind the wheel of MAZ other proudly look at the new trucks ...
Author: Alexander Ivanov, the military news agency "Vayar." Photo: Arkady Sobolev
Do not berate yourself for too urapatriotichny plot. But in general, most importantly, what would like the military ... and they have the choice of a particular has never been something.