M29 Weasel...

 

...Tracked Cargo Carrier & Variants, from Pen and Sword

 

Title: M29 Weasel

Author: David Doyle

Publisher: Pen and Sword

ISBN: 978-1-52674-356-5

Another in a recent batch of Images of War titles from author David Doyle. This time he has turned his attention to the little M29 Weasel.  The book opens with an introduction that gives the story of the development and early trials vehicles for over-snow operations. There was a requirement from the British Government for an over-snow machine to support the likes of raids into Norway. They were needed to be small, in order to be air-portable by glider, or even parachute dropped by Lancaster.

Then we get the three main chapters of the book, which are largely filled by a series of very detailed, modern colour photos of preserved examples. The first chapter showcases the T15, which went into production as the M24.  This one is a vehicle I knew next to nothing about beforehand, and was interested to see the inward cambered roadwheels. Next is the T24, which was standardised as the M29, the Weasel very much as became recognisable, with the flat nose at the front. That leaves it to the final chapter to deal with the M29C, when the floatation chambers were added to it front and back, giving it the boat shaped look, and twin rudders at the back which improved manoeuvrability in water. At the back of the book we get to a selection of archive images showing the Weasel service, which went beyond WW2 to Korea, and in French service in Indo-China (Vietnam). As well as troops or cargo, the Weasel proved useful for casualty evacuation and laying signal wires. Some very useful references for modellers throughout the 146 pages.

It's interesting to get such a detailed look at the little Weasel. It also reminded me of my own father's comments about taking many truck loads of them up to the front in preparation for the Rhine Crossing. If he were still with us I am sure he would have enjoyed seeing this book.

Thanks to Pen and Sword for this review copy.

Robin