Re: Military loads.
Daniel A. Mitchell
Or a museum, VFW hall, or other display, or being shipped overseas to some friendly 3rd-world army. Many obsolete military vehicles end up in such places. Some (often large groups) are then shipped back to the USA for rebuilding or modernization, then returned to their current owners. Also, commercial weapons dealers buy such for resale, and ship them wherever needed.toggle quoted messageShow quoted text
As one example …
I’m a crew member on a restored M-18 “Hellcat” tank destroyer. The M-18s were all built by Buick Motors (General Motors) here in Flint, MI. Ours was shipped to Europe in 1944. They ended up in Europe at the end of WWII. Most of the European countries lost all their military equipment during the war. The surplus USA equipment cost more to return to the USA than it was worth, so it was given away to friendly nations to rebuild their armies. Next, our M-18 was shipped back to the USA for rebuilding by a private contractor, then it was shipped back to Europe, and ended up in the Yugoslavian Army. Then, with the collapse of the Soviet Union, Yugoslavia descended into civil war in 1991. Our then ancient M-18 found itself back in combat again. Then the United Nations stepped in and removed all their heavy weapons. Six of the M-18s were purchased by a weapons-dealer in Great Britain, and shipped there. Our local (Flint, MI) Sloan Museum got word of it and arranged to have General Motors purchase one for their “Buick Collection”. Buick built no cars in 1944, just Hellcats, so it’s the only "1944 Buick" there is. Anyway, in 2002 it was shipped back to the USA, to Flint, and we spent two years doing a complete restoration of it to running condition. So … it went back and forth across the Atlantic FOUR times, plus a trip to England, and at least four trips to/from several locations in the USA over a 60-year period. LOTS of history for this vehicle, and a LOT of time being moved about. Now it’s back home.
I’d love to do an HO model of a few Hellcats beign shipped out of Buick on the Pere Marquette RR. We have photos of solid trains of them, two to a flat car. Sometimes they were tarped, and at least one was crated (why ?). Unfortunately, despite all the HO military vehicles produced by many manufacturers, and some 3D printed ones, nobody’s yet done a decent M-18. Future project ...