AFVisual 018: Late War U.S. Tanks,
the Pershing, Chaffee and M40 SPG
by David Doyle
Letterman Productions, no ISBN, 108 pages.
I think we’ve all been looking forward to this one with its coverage
of the WW2 Pershings, and the wait has been worthwhile. I’ve included
the covers in the page count above, because both the front and back show
wartime colour photos of Chaffee and Pershing respectively. On the inside
there are no fewer than 61 pages of Pershing photos, many full-page, ranging
from shots on the production line and wartime walkarounds taken at APG
to photos of Zebra Mission training in Germany and active service. There
is also a great section of photos of the damage suffered by Fireball and
by the nameless number 22 tank when they were hit by German fire –
24 full-page photos showing lots of detail and the tanks’ markings.
To round Pershing coverage off there are 14 pages with 47 detail close-ups
and Tech Manual extracts, including fighting and driving compartments
– excellent! In amongst all this are some lovely shots showing just
how muddy a Pershing’s suspension could get, and these are well
worth close study before weathering a model.
Next are two pages on the Super Pershing, the first with a nice full-page
shot of the T26E1 on which it was based and the other with four photos
showing the added armour before the addition of the bat-wings to the turret.
Unfortunately none are rear vies, but what’s here is still very
The Chaffee gets the following 23 pages, starting with four pages giving
12 general views plus one of the unusual Chaffee built with the suspension
and tracks of a German halftrack. Then there are 6 pages of active service
photos, averaging 2 to a page, followed by 13 detail closeups and Tech
Manual excerpts at 4 to a page and including turret interior and engine
Finally the M40 gets 17 pages, starting with the pilot T83 and showing
how the production vehicle differed from it. Here there’s a nice
shot of a T83 with track extenders fitted to its HVSS steel chevron tracks,
but only three shots of the Zebra Mission vehicles and one of an M4 in
Korea. The remaining six pages have 24 detail closeups of the Patton Museum’s
M40, and all of this will be very useful when we see the long-expected
This is a great addition to the bookshelf, with clear reproduction of
the photos and informative captions to them, and has the best photo coverage
I’ve seen of the WW2 Pershings.
My thanks to the author for the review copy.