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Polish Tracks and Wheels vol.3


nmayhew
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Polish Tracks and Wheels vol.3


Adam Jonca
Mushroom Model Publications
Available from MMP Books for 

 

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This is a new series on me, so I was quite interested to take a look at what is quite a niche subject within the field of pre-War armour, which in itself is very much the bridesmaid to the bride of vehicles in World War Two proper. As the title suggests, this is the third such volume. It is A4 soft cover and 88 pages long, and as far as I can tell follows the format of the first two books.

 

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The sub-title of the book is 'Polish Vickers Part 2', which adequately sums up the contents and subject matter. In the mid to late 1930s Poland procured a number of foreign tank designs, and not just those from Vickers of Great Britain - the likes of Renault and Hotchkiss are dealt with in vol.1. My understanding, however, is that the Vickers tanks were the most numerous - at least in terms of numbers of different designs, rather than actual tanks. As such, two of the three books cover Polish Vickers tanks.

 

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These Polish Vickers were not necessarily exports in the traditional sense: whilst a number of complete vehicles were produced in Britain by Vickers and then exported to Poland, many of the designs were to be produced either in part or wholly in Poland. There was it seems quite a lot of discussion regarding precisely what could be produced under license, with often significant parts or sub-assemblies effectively vetoed by the British Army. This dynamic ultimately determined what exactly the Poles could get their hands on: the British only let go what they did not want, need or deemed technologically obsolete. They weren't always correct in this judgment, but that certainly seems the bottom line to me.

 

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The tanks covered are (all) Vickers: Medium Tank Mark D; Six Ton tank; Vickers-Carden-Loyd Mk.VI; 4 Ton Artillery Tractor; Light Tank 4 Ton; Light Amphibious Tank; 7TP tank, twin and single turrets; Light Tank V / 7TP; and finally the reinforced 7TP tank. Each of the vehicles is dealt with in turn, with descriptions of development, technical data etc accompanied by numerous black and white photos and colour profiles. The last two chapters account for just under half the book, and cover the 7TP tank at war, firstly in Polish service, and then when pressed into the German armoured divisions once Poland had succumbed. The Wehrmacht actually features strongly in both of these chapters, as the 'in Polish service' bit is really a collection of photos showing Germans looking at 7TPs they have knocked out! Either way, many of the pictures are very sharp indeed.

 

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Conclusion
Well I have to admit that the subject matter is pretty obscure, but if you are interested in either early British tank design, Polish armour before occupation, or indeed early German 'beute' armour, then this will be a very useful book. It is nicely laid out, and although the English translation can be at times a bit 'clunky', it generally reads well. As mentioned, the standard of photos and artwork is very good.

 

Recommended

 

With thanks to MMP for the review sample. To purchase directly, click THIS link.

 

Nicholas Mayhew

 

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