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Allied-Axis Series
No. 5 and No. 8

Ampersand Publishing


S u m m a r y

Title, Description, Publisher, Media and Price Ampersand Publishing Allied-Axis Series No. 5: M8 Armored Car, Tank Transporters of World War II Part II, Japanese Type 89 Medium Tank, M1 and M1A1 Heavy Wreckers by the Ampersand staff; Ampersand Publishing, Delray Beach, Florida, 2002; 96 pp.; price $13-18 (no ISBN reference)

Allied-Axis Series No. 8: LVTs at the Front; German 10.5 cm howitzer (Part 2), Marine Corps Shermans of WWII, Kursk: Porsche's heavyweight in action by the Ampersand staff; Ampersand Publishing, Delray Beach, Florida, 2002; 96 pp.; price $13-18 (no ISBN reference)
Review Type: FirstRead
Advantages: Nice, new photo selection of subjects, many from private collections; good matchup with current model kits and modelers' interests
Disadvantages: Some subjects may seem too esoteric
Recommendation: Highly Recommended to all armor fans and modelers who want different markings and references


Reviewed by Cookie Sewell

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This year marked the first time at AMPS that Pat Stansell and his crew from Ampersand Publishing, the same people, who publish the magazine "Military Miniatures in Review", came to the show and set up a vendor's stand with a wide selection of their publications. These included the "Modeler's Guide to the Sherman" and the mockup copy of the forthcoming "Modeler's Guide to the Tiger", a number of issues of their magazine "Military Miniatures in Review" and also their historical journal "Allied-Axis" series.

"Allied-Axis" is a nice series of 96 page books in which they look at the counterparts on the Axis and Allied side in WWII. These volumes, numbers 5 and 8 of 9 published so far, continue the winning format that the series has pioneered. The books are short on text but long on high-quality, clear photographs of their subjects, many from private sources and thus fresh.

Volume 5 covers 10 more pages on the M26 Dragon Wagon with text by Pat Stansell, including the late war M26A1 softskin version that served long into the Cold War. Jim Hensley offers a short view of the relatively unknown Japanese Type 89 medium tank, followed by 28 pages on the operational use of the German Wespe and photos of the "runner" preserved in Koblenz. Another 28 pages cover the US M8 Armored Car as provided by Joe Porter. Lastly is a series on the M1 and M1A1 Heavy Wrecker done by Pat Stansell.

Volume 8 covers 10 pages by Pat Stansell on the German leFH 18 howitzer, the weapon most commonly misidentified by the WWII GI as the "Kraut 88" as they didn't realize it was the true maid-of -all-work German artillery piece. Next is a 20 page selection of WWII Marine Corps Shermans from the collection of Ed Gilbert. 42 pages of material on all types of LVT vehicles used in WWII is provided by David Harper and Pat Stansell. Last, 21 pages cover the initial (and not very auspicious) combat debut of the Porsche "Ferdinand/Elefant" at Kursk by Thomas Anderson.

Overall, the selection of photos is excellent and most of the text and descriptions very clear (one set confused IA as the identification for 1st Armored Division; it's not, it was the marking for 1st US Army). But when used in conjunction with other more technical references, they are very handy and also provide nice alternative markings for modeling projects.

NOTE: These are not currently being reprinted, and as they go out of print they disappear. Fair warning!

Cookie Sewell

Review Copyright 2003 by Cookie Sewell
Page Created 26 May, 2003
Last updated 24 August, 2003

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