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Book Review
M939 Truck Family in Detail
M923, M925, M929, M931 and OIF M939 Guntrucks
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by: Mario Matijasic [ MAKI ]


Originally published on:
Armorama

Introduction:

The M939 truck is a general-purpose military vehicle, introduced in 1983. Primarily designed for tactical, off-road use, with a top speed of 65 mph and an automatic transmission, it was a Product Improvement Package of the older M809 series tactical truck. The M939 series 5-ton 6x6 truck was produced in a wide array of M-number models, with over 30.000 units in service with the US Military.

One of the latest photo manual titles from Wings & Wheels Publications (WWP) covers this particular series of vehicles: M939 Truck Family in Detail.

Review:

I got the book at a model show and browsed through it immediately. At first glance the book looks really good; it is printed on a high-quality paper, well structured, professionally presented and full of large full color photos. Here are the basic facts:

Title: M939 Truck Family in Detail
Publisher: Wings & Wheels Publications (WWP)
Code: G031
Authors: František Koran, Ralph Zwilling
Format: softcover (22x24 cm)
Pages: 120
Color: full color
Language: English
ISBN: 978-80-87509-26-5
Retail Price: $42 (€30)

As stated in the introduction, the M939 series truck was produced in a wide array of M-number models. The designation M939 actually refers only to the bare chassis with cab, with individual numbers for the complete vehicle. This title covers M923, M925, M929 and M939 OIF Guntrucks. The M923 is the basic version of the M939 series, a cargo flatbed for transporting materials or people. The M923 with a winch is designated M925, and M929 is a dump truck.

The book is organized in 16 chapters:

• Introduction (002-003)
• M923 Walkaround (004-011)
• M939/A1 Series Details (012-033)
• M939 Series Interior (034-043)
• M939 Series Details (044-051)
• M923/925 Cargo Body (052-057)
• M939 Series Chassis (058-071)
• M923 Trucks (072-081)
• M925 Trucks (082-096)
• M927 Trucks (097)
• M929 Trucks (098-101)
• M931/M932 Truck Tractors (102-109)
• M969A2 Fuel Semitrailer (110-113)
• M934 Expansible Van (114-115)
• M936 Wrecker (116-117)
• M942 Antenna Mast (118-120)

The first chapter of the book, introduction, gives short info on the M939 truck family by explaining its origins, adding some technical details and designating different truck versions. The photo reference manual starts with the M923 walkaround, an 8-page long chapter showing the exterior of several slightly different M923 trucks, some with M2 gun platform, soft-top cab, canvas tilt roof, shelter carriers, even couple shots of OIF Guntrucks. The next chapter, M939/A1 series details, spans over 22 pages and displays the M939 series in great detail: the hood with hood grille, hood locks, headlights and side lights, as well as inside the hood details. This chapter also contains detailed photos of Cummins NHC 250 and Cummins 6CTA8.3 engines, with number of diagrams included... a true gem for all those thinking of modeling the open hood vehicle. Some transmission details and an extensive hard top cab details are included as well. The M939 series interior chapter follows, with 10 pages full of hard top cab interior details: windshield and door interior, roof, instrument panel in full detail, steering wheel, central panel, heater box, cab floor, driver's seat with spring system, right seat with the battery box. The book continues with additional 8 pages of M939 series details, showing truck exterior: left side with air cleaner filter, fuel tank, air cleaner intake tube and spare wheel holder with crane, right side featuring two stowage boxes, exhaust with protection grille and antenna mast. Following chapter is dedicated to M923/925 cargo body. These 6 pages show cargo body with dropsides, the rear wall with brake lights and mudflaps, openings for the wooden uprights of the canvas roof frame and troop benches. The M939 series chassis chapter spans over 14 pages and is full of M939 frame details, front axle with brake lines, steering rods, transfer case and the shafts, rear axles as well as wheels and rims for various M939 configurations. The chapter also includes number of diagrams showing the chassis in even more detail. Next up are the chapters showing different M-number truck models... first is the 10-page long chapter on M923 trucks, displaying M923A1 trucks in slightly different variations, M923A1 Guntrucks from Iraq and M923A1 with shelter, as well as relatively rare M923A2 version. The following chapter is all about M925 trucks, with 15 pages showing the M923 with large winch behind the front bumper. This chapter shows the extra interior details including the central panel with winch control levers and winch details. It also includes photos of several M925A1 Guntrucks from Iraq, and a M925 fitted with SPARK, displaying the modular mine roller system attached to the front and the back of the vehicle in great detail. The M927 trucks are shown on a single page, while the M929 trucks got 4 pages, with several photos showing M929 Guntrucks from Iraq. The M931/M932 truck tractors are next, with 8 pages displaying the truck tractors with different trailers, as well as M932 Guntrucks from Iraq. The M969A2 fuel semitrailer is shown in a separate chapter spanning 4 pages. The M934 expansible van is shown on the following 2 pages, as well as the M936 wrecker. Finally, the M942 antenna mast is displayed on the last 3 pages.

Conclusion:

This is an exceptional photo reference book for anyone interested in M939 series truck. As with all WWP titles, the first thing one notices in this book are the photos: over 370 color detail and full page photos are of the highest quality possible, showing detailed views of various different M939 versions inside and out. A big plus for me are the “in action” photos of Guntrucks in Iraq. The information about the M939 truck family is given in a short and concise form; the photo captions explain various details presented in the photos and clarify differences between various vehicle models.

So, if you have any of the Italeri's M-series kits (M923A1, M923 „Hilbilly“ Guntruck, M925 or M925 Shelter Truck) and you are thinking of adding some extra details to it, this book is definitely a must.
SUMMARY
Highs: Printed on a high-quality paper, professionally presented and loaded with large full color photos. Even though the photos are definitely the best part of the book, the info given is very interesting as well.
Lows: None.
Verdict: Highly recommended.
Percentage Rating
95%
  Scale: N/A
  Mfg. ID: G031
  Related Link: WWP website
  PUBLISHED: May 13, 2014
  NATIONALITY: United States
NETWORK-WIDE AVERAGE RATINGS
  THIS REVIEWER: 93.37%
  MAKER/PUBLISHER: 93.10%

Our Thanks to Wings & Wheels!
This item was provided by them for the purpose of having it reviewed on this KitMaker Network site. If you would like your kit, book, or product reviewed, please contact us.

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About Mario Matijasic (Maki)
FROM: CROATIA HRVATSKA

You wonder how did this addiction start? I was a kid when my dad broght home a 1/72 Concord airplane; we built it together as well as couple of other airplanes after that. This phase was just pure fun: glue, paint, decals in no particular order... everything was finished in a day or two. Then I disc...

Copyright ©2018 text by Mario Matijasic [ MAKI ]. All rights reserved.



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