While keeping Ft Bragg’s Patriot batteries ready for action, we’ve come up with a few tips to help other Patriot units:
- Drain the PAC-2 launching station LMRD and the PAC-3/MSE launching station J-box/LSDU at least weekly. Drain daily in humid areas. We’ve had trouble with moisture collecting in the boxes and causing major electrical damage, as in hundreds of thousands of dollars. It takes only five minutes to drain them, so to say the least, it’s worth the extra time.
- Don’t force the fiber optic cables that run from the ECS to the launcher. Sometimes the cable connectors don’t want to turn when you unscrew them. But forcing them breaks the connector’s glass ferrules. Then the connector has to be replaced. Help connectors turn by lubing the connector and jack threads with a spray lubricant like NSN 6850-00-838-7789. This NSN brings a box of 12 16-oz cans.
- Keep your feet off the launcher J4, J10 and J11 cables. During timed drills especially, Soldiers sometimes step on the cables as they rush through their tasks. That can break a cable’s wiring, which usually means replacing the cable.
- Launcher switch trips? Check volt-age first. If the PAC2 LEM 28VDC switch flips to the center position when you power up the launcher, check the generator’s output before doing any trouble-shooting. It should be 400 hertz and 208 volts. If it isn’t, adjust the generator and try again. That often solves the problem.
- Lube the AMG feed horns monthly. The antennas are often left erected for long periods, which means corrosion can lock up the feed horns. Sometimes the only fix is to replace the whole antenna. So lower the antennas at least once a month and lube the feed horns with spray lubricant, NSN 6850-00-838-7789.
- Keep the launching station actuator arms covered when you’re not operating. The arms have a cover, but they often disappear or get in such bad shape they do little good. Then the arms have no protection from the elements. If the covers disappear or wear out, cover the arms with tarps. Order more covers with NSN 1420-01-354-9685.
CW3 Trenard Conyers
CW2 Diana Peters
SFC Joseph Evans
SGT Kenneth Hickman
Editor's Note: These are indeed Patriot tips to salute. Thanks.