The Staghound armored car was designed and built in the US for use by Britain. It also saw service with Canadian, Australian, New Zealander, and Polish troops.
The book was written by David Doyle. It was published in 2009 by Ampersand Publishing (ISBN 978-0-9773781-6-6). The book has 128 11"x8.5" landscape formatted pages with English text. There is a 4-view (top, left, front, rear) 1/35 scale drawing of the final production version of the Staghound I. All photos are black and white, with color photos of a restored Staghound I on the front and back covers. There are no color profiles. The emphasis here is on the vehicle itself, not colors and markings, unit histories, or combat reports.
This consists of two pages covering the development of the T17, T17E1, T17E2, and T17E3. There is a photo of the M3A1E3, T13, and 5 photos of the T17 (2 pilot models, 3 production models). Most of the text describing the Staghound is here, so the rest of the book can be dominated by photographs.
The majority of the book covers the T17E1 Staghound 1 armored car. 69 pages (70 photos) are devoted to period pictures, most with one picture per page. I can't tell you how much I appreciate this. It seems other publishers try to cram as many photos per page. Since period photos were mostly covering the vehicle in general, it can be tough to see details in tiny photos.
The 1/35 plan seems to be scaled properly.
16 of those pages are of assembly line photos. There are nice pictures of the front axle, engine, engine compartment, turret basket, rear of fighting compartment, driver's station, and a No.14 wireless set being lifted onto a Staghound.
Beyond the assembly line, photos cover early and late variants (captions explain the differences), an experimental armament with 8 rocket launchers, a radio relay vehicle with no gun in the turret, a command variant with no turret, wading trunk mounts (for D-Day), the front-opening commander hatch modification, and a Staghound With bridging trestles. There are no pictures of the wading trunk itself or of the variant with the 60lb. aerial rocket rails mounted on the turret.
The last 32 pages (105 photos) are devoted to two restored Staghound Is. Although the detail photos are grouped with 3 or 4 photos per page, that is ok as they are focusing on a small area that is quite visible in a smaller photo. There are photos of external details like tool stowage, the engine deck, external fuel racks as well as interior shots of the hull and turret (18 photos!). There is even a photo of the engine compartment exhaust!
The T17E2 was an anti-aircraft variant with a new turret mounting two .50cal machine guns. There are 6 pages (19 photos) with six of the photos of the unrestored late model Staghound II at the Military Vehicle Technology Foundation.
There is 1 photo of the pilot, 1 photo of the early version, while the rest are of the late model. Although there are no close-up detail photos of the turret interior, there are external photos looking down into the turret as well as some of the turret on the assembly line before installation and while being lowered into the hull.
The T17E3 mounted the turret of the M8 Howitzer Motor Carriage. There are 2 pages with 1 photo each. Since this variant didn't see production, I can't say I miss the coverage.
The Staghound II was a modification where a 3" long barreled howitzer replaced the 37mm of the Staghound I turret to provide close support against targets requiring more HE power than the original gun could provide. There are 2 pages with 1 photo each, one of which I have seen before.
The Staghound III mounted a Crusader III turret with a 75mm gun. There are 7 pages with 28 period photos, with 3 pages (18 photos) covering a Staghound III being restored in Denmark. There are also photos showing the modifications made to the top of the Crusader III turret for the Staghound III, as well as a photo of the driver's position, 6pdr ammunition bin (where the assistant driver used to sit) and a view of the fighting compartment with the turret off (but the basket still in place).
This is a "must have" for detailing both the inside and outside of the Staghound I kits. It is also useful for the T17E2 and Staghound III, but unfortunately coverage could not be as thorough as the Staghound I. I just can't gush enough about having those nice large period photos.
Highs: One period photo per page. Great photo selection for the Staghound I concentrating on the vehicle, including the interior. Great captions.Lows: Not as much coverage of T17E2, Staghound II, Staghound III as I would have liked (although I think the author would also have liked that as well).Verdict: Fantastic reference for super detailing Staghound kits, most especially the Staghound I.
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