David Skinner’s 8cwt Humber turned out to be more of a project than he’d hoped but, as John Blackman reports, help was at hand
Admit it, when it comes to vehicles or jobs around the house or garden, most of us like to tinker to the best of our abilities and occasionally beyond; we enjoy the challenge of creating or repairing something and the satisfaction it gives us afterwards. But equally for most of us there comes a time when we face something which, because of the skill levels required or the time we have available (or both), is better handed off to a professional.
I first saw David Skinner’s 1940 8cwt Humber 4x2 way back in September 2009 when I photographed his Humber Super Snipe staff car (and very nice it was too; you can see the results in April 2010’s CMV). At the time, the vehicle was in bits, although David hoped to get it ready for the 2010 Guernsey liberation commemorations. He didn’t make that deadline… or that for the 2011 event, but by that time the realisation had dawned that despite everything that he had achieved mechanically, the project might best be passed to a professional to get it finished within a reasonable time span.
Geoff Fletcher looks at one of the most iconic military vehicles – the Jeep – but focuses on its service with British forces both during WW2 and after
The British Expeditionary Force had the best vehicles that could be provided when it deployed to France and then Belgium in September 1939. But by June 1940, vast quantities had been lost during the withdrawal from Dunkirk. Then, if that were not enough, the Italians declared war and the North African campaign began, creating an urgent need to equip new divisions that were being formed to defend British interests in the region, particularly the Suez Canal.
At the time, the British Army relied on commercial saloon cars plus a variety of motorcycles and motorcycle combinations for light transport, command and liaison tasks. There had been few attempts to find a purpose-made military vehicle to meet these various requirements and, in any case, given the pressing need for other types of vehicle it was extremely unlikely such a project would have been funded. However, on the other side of the Atlantic, the US Quartermaster Corps was funding the development of a light reconnaissance car… the Jeep.
It may be a small record, but it’s a record nonetheless; James Gosling’s GM Otter gives him a hat-trick of CMV covers. John Blackman has the story and, as ever, took the photos
James Gosling has a bit of a ‘thing’ about Canadian Military Pattern (CMP) vehicles and, in particular, the wheeled armour produced by GM Canada…the Otter light reconnaissance car, Fox armoured car and C15TA armoured truck. Now, that is the order in which the different types were manufactured, and it is also the order in which James acquired examples of each type. But the order in which he restored them was entirely back to front; first came the C15TA, which graced our January 2009 cover, then the Fox, which we featured in June 2010, and here we have, at last, the Otter.
Jim Kinnear visits a fascinating exhibition of military vehicles. All photographs by Andrey Aksenov
We all make plans of what we would like to do given the time, energy and financial resources. But no matter how well-laid, many such plans never materialise due to a lack of time, money, willpower or a change in wind direction. It is always therefore good to see the accomplishments of those who have dreamed up ambitious plans and made them into reality. An example of this in the sphere of military-vehicle collecting is the recently established Motors of War exhibition in Moscow.
Canadian Military Pattern trucks weren’t only popular with the Allies, they were also favoured by German forces, as Jochen Vollert reports
As early as the mid-thirties, the Canadian War Department’s Army Engineering Design Branch recognised the threat of a new world war. When looking at the motor pools at that time it became clear that the biggest disadvantage of military-vehicle production was the large variety of types; there were too many designs and too many manufacturers with their own agendas, all of which mitigated against any effort towards standardisation. To be ready for the coming threat, a whole new class of military trucks had to be invented, and a design with an enormous degree of standardisation was demanded as was the capability to produce it as one coherent truck-family at various manufacturers. The CMP (Canadian Military Vehicle Pattern) was born.