FORT SNELLING MILITARY MUSEUM


All vehicles are on public display.  Motorized vehicles are on static display only (not operational) unless otherwise noted below. 

PERSONNEL CARRIERS
M3A1 Half Track

(Before and After)

(Operational)

The M3A1 Half Track was the fourth version of the half track vehicle series, the first being the M2.  The half track vehicle was designed to provide improved cross-country performance over the scout cars so troops could give better support to advancing armored columns.  It was used as a personnel carrier, prime mover, gun motor carriage, mortar carrier, and antiaircraft weapons station.

Although numerous models were built, the power train and basic chassis were standardized.  The main differences were in the configuration of the rear body behind the driver's seat.  Built on a modified truck chassis, the vehicle was equipped with driving front and rear axles.  The rear axle drove the track with a drive sprocket replacing the wheel of a conventional truck.  Since the drive sprocket was much smaller than the front wheels, the front and rear axles had different gear ratios to compensate.  The frame on the early models was a single channel, but those tended to break above the rear axle housing.  Later models had a double frame to address this problem.

The vehicles were built with or without PTO-driven front winches or a roller assembly for crossing ditches which prevented the front end from digging in.  Also optional on the M3A1 were mine racks and rear stowage racks. 

The L-head engine used in the White, Autocar, and Diamond T models was designed specifically for these vehicles, but was used in civilian trucks after the war.  The front, back, and sides were made of flat face-hardened 1/4 inch armor plate held together by countersunk armored screws.  The floor was made of sheet metal, often a smaller pattern diamond plate.

Unlike the M2 which was equipped to carry 1o men and had rear-mounted fuel tanks, the M3A1 could carry 13 and had the fuel tanks mounted forward behind the driver's seat.  The pedestal machinegun mount that was bolted to the frame of the M3 was eliminated in the M3A1 and replaced by a circular ring mount and three fixed pintle sockets.

A total of twelve versions of the half track, models ranging from the M2 to the M16A1, were built between 1938 and 1944 by White, Autocar, Diamond T, and International Harvester.  Click here to see the restoration

M59 Armored Infantry Vehicle

(To be restored)

The M59 was a full-tracked armored personnel carrier.  Since the entire body was of welded steel construction, it was fully amphibious on inland waterways.  A trim vane on the front improved movement in the water.

The M59A1 was basically the same unit as an M59, except that rather than having a pintle-mounted .50 caliber machinegun in front of the commander's hatch, a small revolving turret with the machinegun mounted in it was used.  The back half of the turret lifted up as the commander's hatch.

Operated by a crew of two, the vehicle had bench seats to accommodate 10 troops with equipment.  Entry was made through a rear door in the the rear ramp or by lowering the rear ramp.  Track shrouds on the sides cut down on dust and aided propulsion in water.  The M59A1 was equipped with an infrared night vision system.

Built by FMC Corp. in San Jose, California from 1952 to 1957, the M59A1 was powered by two General Motors 302 six-cylinder, in-line, 127 hp engines coupled with General Motors Hydramatic 301MG transmissions with 4 speeds forward and 1 reverse.  With a top speed of 32 mph and a fuel capacity of 136 gallons, it had a cruising range of 120 miles.  

M84 mortar carrier

(To be restored)

 

M106A2 tracked 4.2 inch mortar carrier

(Operational)

The M106 is a light weight, low-silhouette Armored Personnel Carrier designed to transport a 4.2 inch mortar and crew. The vehicle is capable of amphibious operation on inland lakes and streams, extended cross country travel over rough terrain, and high speed operation on improved roads and highways. Movement of the tracks propels and steers the vehicle on both land and water. It's low weight allows it to be air transportable. Built in the early 1960's by Food Machinery Corporation of San Jose, CA, it is one of a large variety of vehicles using this same chassis and power train. This vehicle has seen extensive combat experience in Vietnam and in all theaters of war all over the world. It was one of the U.S. Army's first diesel powered vehicles, utilizing the diesel's fuel efficiency and lower flammability. It is used by almost every free country, with over 120,000 being built, it is the most popular tracked vehicle ever built. It is built of aluminum, weighs 21,000 tbs., and is operated by a crew of four men. The Detroit Diesel engine provides top speeds of 40 mph.

M114 command and reconnaissance carrier

(One of two) (Operational)

The M114 is a lightweight, low-silhouette vehicle, designed for command and reconnaissance missions. The vehicle is capable of operation with a fully rated load over unimproved roads, trails, hilly country, loose snow. soft marsh, rock strewn areas, and inland waterways under all seasonal conditions in arctic, temperate and tropical zones. Movement of the tracks propels and steers the vehicle on both land and water. The low net weight of the vehicle enables it to be transported by cargo aircraft and dropped by parachute. The commander's hatch rotates 360 degrees with it's .50 caliber machine gun and mount. It is constructed of aluminum, weighs 13,100 lbs., uses a gasoline Chevrolet V-8 engine and transmission, and was manufactured by the Cadillac Division of General Motors in the early 1960's. It saw service in Vietnam, had a three man crew, and a top speed of 35 mph.

 

M548A1 Tracked Cargo Carrier

(Operational)

This supply vehicle is based on the same chassis as the M113 family of armored personnel carriers. This unit is unarmored and it's mission was to supply artillery units with ammunition. The large rear door provides easy loading of material. The tracked chassis provides the ultimate cross country and amphibious capabilities. It is operated by a driver and an assistant.

 

M706 "Commando" V100
amphibious armored reconnaissance and security vehicle

(Before and After)

(Operational)

The V100 was a highly mobile, fully amphibious armored car used for reconnaissance, convoy escort, riot control, security and as a personnel carrier. The vehicle protected the crew from small arms fire, grenades and anti-personnel mines. All surfaces were angled for maximum deflection. The armor is up 1/4 inch thick. The vehicle is powered by 215 hp, 361 cu inch Chrysler V8 engine. Its 4 wheel drive, run flat tires and high clearance give it excellent mobility. It has a 550 mile range. Cadillac Gage built them in the mid- to late- 60s. They were used mainly by military police units and saw extensive service in Vietnam as road patrol vehicles.

 


 

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THIS PAGE LAST UPDATED

7/18/2011