M1-Series Tanks…Wring Out Sponge to Prevent Shorts

Crewmen, taking a minute to wring out a sponge could save you from shorts in the electronic components that sit under the breech of your M1-series tank.

The recoil fluid residue collector sponge is in a tray right under the gun mount. It soaks up excess FRH that leaks out during firing. Leaking FRH is completely normal, by the way.

However, you have to wring out the sponge every day after firing. If you don’t, the sponge gets saturated and the excess FRH leaks down onto the electronics gear, causing shorts.

But be sure you wear long sleeves, gloves, goggles and a faceshield when you wring out the sponge. FRH contains a chemical (tricresyl phosphate) that can cause paralysis if it’s taken internally, so dispose of it properly. FRH can also be absorbed through the skin, so wash thoroughly with soap and water if you get any on you.

Wringing out the sponge is covered in the AFTER operations tables for your M1A1 and M1A2 tank.

It’s listed as Item 65 in TM 9-2350-264-10-3 (Sep 11, w/Ch 2, May 13) and Item 10 in TM 9-2350-388-10-3 (Dec 12).

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