Iron Brigade...

...3rd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 4th (US) Infantry Division - 'German Tour' 2017, from Tankograd


Title: Iron Brigade

Author: Walter Bohm

Publisher: Tankograd

Tankograd American Special No.3034 provides a great selection of interesting detail on a wide variety of US military equipment, including both armoured and soft-skin vehicles.  It is an absolute delight for any modeller interested in modern US equipment.  The exercise took place in 2017, and was done to bolster the US support for her NATO allies with the deployment of the 3rd Armored Brigade to Germany.  It is a very different situation from the days of the Cold War, as both US and British troops have been withdrawn from what was the old West Germany.

The 64-page softcover book starts with the background text explaining the exercise and its' progress.  All the text, including all the photo captions, are provided in both German and English.  After that main text section, the remainder of the book, containing some 116 colour photos and 15 colour graphics, is broken down into 7 sections to provide details on the 7 battalions of the Combat Team.  Each of these is opened with a marvellous colour graphic showing the equipment organisation of the battalion, using fine colour profiles of the vehicles they use.  Three battalions have M1A2 Abrams MBTs and their support vehicles: another with M2A3 Bradleys: a Field Artillery Regiment with the M109A6 Paladin plus their M992A2 FAASV ammunition carriers: an Engineer Battalion: and the Support Battalion with a host of truck variants.

As I said at the outset, the super quality colour images provide a superb reference for modellers who like modern US equipment, both armour and softskins.  Abrams tanks were deployed in both plain green and plain sand paint schemes, as were many other vehicle types.  Trucks are shown with both standard and armoured cabs.  Engineer equipment includes the Breacher (an Abrams variant) as well as M60 AVLB, M88 ARV and Buffalo Mine Clearance vehicle and the NBCRV variant of the Stryker.  Perhaps the one photo I'd pick out is in the final section of the book, an M978A4 HEMTT Tanker Truck which displays an armoured cab and the rear pump unit painted in sand, while the chassis and tank unit are in European 3-colour camouflage.  Doing a model of this would be a particular visual treat.

Thanks to UK stockists Bookworld for my example.