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Friday, November 24, 2017
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Walk Around Photo Feature

Subject: Dodge WC-51 'Weapons Carrier'

The Dodge Weapons Carrier was developed for the U.S. Army to fill the need for a Multi-role 4 wheel drive vehicle to carry and tow heavier payloads than the Jeep could to places it would be unwise or unsuitable to send a truck.

The Basic versions were the Dodge WC-51 (without winch), and the Dodge WC-52 (with Winch) the common names used for this vehicle were Beep (big Jeep), and Weapons Carrier (due to the name WC and because they were used to tow artillery pieces and sometimes carry heavier weapons around the battlefield). The WC in the name stands for the following.. W for 1941 and C for half-ton rating. The C code was retained for the ¾ ton and 1½ ton 6×6 Dodges. Even though they were called Weapons Carriers, one of their primary roles on the battlefield was to carry troops and ammunition to where it was needed. The basic vehicle was so versatile that it was adopted for many specialized variants.

The vehicle was of simple but rugged construction powered by a 92hp 6 cylinder engine, with 4 forward gears and 1 reverse, also fitted with a transfer case sending power to the front wheels. Road Speed on level ground was approx 54 mph and an average range of 240 miles. The 10 inch ground clearance made it very good for off road use. The winchs on the earlier WC-52 had a rating of 5,000, and the body of the vehicle was specifically designed to accommodate this. On the later versions of the WC-52 this was increased to 7,500 lbs. These simple but rugged vehicles were used for many years after WWII by various countries.

123,541 of the WC-51 Truck, Cargo, 3/4 ton, 4x4 w/o Winch Dodge (G502) Weapons Carriers were built. The open cab pickups could be fitted with an optional M24A1 machine gun mount, which bolted across the front of the bed. The mount could carry the M1918 Browning Automatic Rifle, the M1919 Browning machine gun, or the M2 Browning machine gun.

This one is a restored and running example of this unique WWII workhorse. The Photos were taken at the Reading WWII Weekends where is was displayed as a living history exhibit.

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