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Dragon Wagon Part 2

M123, M123C, M123A1C, M123E2 & M746

Ampersand Group via Casemate

978-1-944367-00-8

 

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Mention the name Dragon Wagon, and everyone that is familiar with the phrase automatically thinks of the WWII M26, with its distinctive armoured cab and huge trailer.  Whilst these vehicles did soldier on after the end of WWII as Prime Movers, the American Army were looking for a replacement in anticipation of the heavier tanks and vehicles that were already in design.  Mack designed what was to become the M123 Dragon Wagon, with the hope of mating it to a multi-fuel capable engine, but had to compromise and install a diesel instead due to the lack of power that could be achieved from multi-fuel engines at the time.  Attention was paid to standardisation of parts to ease the maintenance burden and help reduce the budget, and the type carried on in service long after the original replacement, with the stop-gap M746 8-wheeled tractor being replaced directly by the now standard M911 HET that is still in use today.

 

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This new title by David Doyle from the publishing arm of Hobbylink Japan with the tag line of "A visual history of the US Army's Heavy Tank Transporter 1955-1975", giving a big clue to what you'll find inside. If you've read my review of the other books of the series from the same author and publisher (here), you'll know what to expect in terms of formatting and quality. Inside the sturdy card binding are 120 pages on glossy stock in a landscape A4(ish) format, with over 250 illustrations, some of which are contemporary, others from preserved examples in museums. As usual, the format begins with a very short introduction, followed by the aforementioned photos, which have been helpfully broken down between the following variants:

 

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  • M123
  • M123C
  • M123A1C
  • M123E2
  • M746

 

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Due to the era of operation, many of the later photos are in colour, as are the photos of the preserved examples, all of which benefit from clear and detailed captions that describe any salient aspects of the photo that may escape the casual observer.

 

 

Conclusion

If Prime-Movers are your thing, this book makes a natural bridge between the WWII Dragon Wagon and the M911 HET, bring you nearly up-to-date with the US Army's heavy lifters.

 

Highly recommended.

 

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Review sample courtesy of

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