Track Usage In the Fifth Army, 1944
Modeling the U.S. Army in WWII

What to Make of It All

Beyond providing modelers with a good snapshot of the tracks used by different vehicles, the "Remaining Life" percentage column is a good indicator of how much wear should be shown on the tracks and suspensions on the vehicles of a given unit. This number is also as good as any for choosing how much weathering to apply to the vehicle in general.

As the tables show, the track type used by a particular unit or vehicle was far from uniform. Where different types were available, units were more likely than not to use two, three, or even four track styles than a single style. The only uniformity evident is the absence of metal tracks on M7 and M10 motor carriages, but even the users of these vehicles where not fixed to a single style of rubber track.

Overall, these tables ought to help answer the eternal question: "Which tracks do I use?" At least for the MTO.


Annex 4 to Ordnance Operations Bulletin No. 271; 19 August 1944.

Bi-Weekly Report on Activities of Army Ordnance Service [Fifth Army] covering period 1800 3 August 1944 to 1800 17 August 1944; 22 August 1944.

Department of the Army Supply Catalog ORD 9 SNL G-199, Carriage, Motor, 105-mm Howitzer, M7B1; January 1952.

Department of the Army Technical Bulletin TB ORD 391, Tracks Currently Applicable; 23 August 1950.

Fifth Army History, Part VI, Pursuit to the Arno; 1945.

Ordnance Department Technical Committee Meeting Minutes
- OCM 17722, Adoption of Rubber Block, Rubber Jointed Track, Drg. D48076, For Medium Tanks, M3 and M4; 29 January 1942.
- OCM 19105, Tracks for Light and Medium Tanks - Preference Ratings; 29 October 1942.

United States Army in World War II, The Technical Services, The Ordnance Department: Planning Munitions for War; 1955.

War Department Technical Bulletin TB ORD 80, Use of Rubber and Steel Tracks; 18 April 1944.

War Department Technical Bulletin TB ORD 139, Instructions Governing Removal, Inspection, Classification, Reconditioning, and Disposition of Tracks and Bogies; 1 August 1944.



Modeling the U.S. Army in WWII © 2002—2007 Timothy S. Streeter