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"Cadillac Gage V-100 Commando Walk Around
Review by Franz Tinio-Lopez
Author : David Doyle
Product Type: Softback Book
80 pages, color photographs and several line drawings of vehicle variant details.
Squadron Signal's new book on the Cadillac Gage V-100 Commando fills in the gap between the WW2 armored cars like the M8 / M20 Greyhound and the present day USMC LAV25 and later US Army Stryker based LAV III. Several publications have covered the Vietnam use of the XM706, the US military designation of the V-100 Commando. It is in the Walk Around Color Series, Number 5798. ISBN no is 9780897475747
"I started on the book in June 2008," book author David Doyle wrote. He photographed the vehicles of Jeff Symanski in Virginia and Alan Wise at Ohio. Don Greer created the art work for the book's front and back cover. Matheu Spraggins did the line drawings that show the differences among the early and succeeding production models of the V-100.
There are three versions of the V-100 featured in the book. The first is an early model with the angular wheel corners, with double gun and view ports on the upper hull. Doyle notes that vehicles with production serial numbers before 10586 or 10619 had these multiple gun and view ports. And also that vehicles 10595 and later had raised driver and observer hatches (p.19).
A late production example XM706E1 (possibly production serial no. 10631) is finished in a NATO 3 color camouflage pattern. It has upgrades like smoke dischargers and add-on external machine gun mounts on the rear hull deck and on the T50 turret roof. This is what a mid-production model of the V-100 could look like if it were upgraded with later model parts after an overhaul or rebuild. The photo on page 20 shows the vehicle before the .50 Cal. pintle is added to the turret roof. A great feature is the scorched paint from the welding of these mounting blocks can be seen in the inside image of the turret on pages 34 and 35.
The last 40 pages covers USAF XM706E2 (serial no. 10892) with its four sided parapet and folding roof doors. Cadillac Gage offered a similar configuration as a 81mm mortar carrier. There are enough interior photos in the book for the dedicated modeler to fill-in their models and accurately represent the underside suspension and drive components of the vehicle.
Squadron's V-100 Walk Around book with its detailed images is great source for the model builder Particularly with the release of Hobby Boss 1/35 M706). It is an essential complement to Richard Lathrop's "...V-100 Commando 1960-71" book by Osprey Publishing and R. P. Hunnicutt's Armored Car: "A History of American Wheeled Combat Vehicles" by Presidio Press.
However there is only one photo of the engine compartment. Photos of the engine compartment with the interior panels removed would allow model makers to fill in the engine compartment. Hopefully we may see photos from veterans of a working vehicle interior on the web. Follow the images bellow to different websites with images of the M706.
Thanks to my credit card for the review copy.
Book images on Amazon.com
Websites featuring the V-100 Commando / M706.
Steel Soldiers Forum
Franz Tinio-Lopez © March 3, 2009