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Jim Bow
09-28-2015, 01:37 PM
DUKWs have been in our local news lately. They're being labeled as "assault vehicles", but I always thought they were cargo carriers for use at beachheads that had no facilities. They could bring cargo to troops that had moved inland. That brings me to wonder, how did they enter the water?
Were they dropped from davits? Perhaps some sort of cargo ship with a bow ramp, too big to get close to shore? LSTs were huge, but they were able to beach themselves.

Any historians in the house?

Norman Bernstein
09-28-2015, 01:55 PM
DUKWs have been in our local news lately. They're being labeled as "assault vehicles", but I always thought they were cargo carriers for use at beachheads that had no facilities. They could bring cargo to troops that had moved inland. That brings me to wonder, how did they enter the water?
Were they dropped from davits? Perhaps some sort of cargo ship with a bow ramp, too big to get close to shore? LSTs were huge, but they were able to beach themselves.

Any historians in the house?

I recently read 'Neptune', a book about the preparations for D Day in Normandy. In the book, they described a number of different classes of landing support ships, of which, the well-known LST was just one... there were a number of other types, including types that could approach the beach, but were not actually designed to land on it.

I'm curious as to how many DUKW's were sold in the surplus market after the war, and how it is that so many cities have them now as amphibious tour vehicles.... there seem to be a dozen of them in Boston alone. I'm wondering where parts are obtained, or manufactured, and how they can be restored and maintained.

Garret
09-28-2015, 01:58 PM
As I understand it, mechanically they are Deuce & 1/2's with a floating body on 'em - so the parts are readily available.

They drive up or down a beach easily & I'm sure can be lowered into the water from davits.

Lew Barrett
09-28-2015, 02:09 PM
Mediocre trucks, lousy boats...perfect for hauling tourists. But sometimes not. Must have been frightful in bad seas.

John of Phoenix
09-28-2015, 02:22 PM
From the US Army Transportation Museum -

DUKW
Amphibious 2-1/2 ton

Delivering cargo directly to/from the beaches.

The DUKW was an amphibious version of the 2-1/2 ton General Motors cargo truck. It was developed by the U. S. Army during World War II as a means to deliver cargo from ships at sea, directly to shore.

http://www.transchool.lee.army.mil/museum/transportation%20museum/dukw.htm

http://www.transchool.lee.army.mil/museum/transportation%20museum/images/duk1.jpg

The unsuccessful SEEP (Sea Jeep)
http://www.transchool.lee.army.mil/museum/transportation%20museum/images/duk2.gif

Norman Bernstein
09-28-2015, 02:29 PM
The question still remains: are all the DUKW's we see being used as tour vehicles, actually WWII surplus? Where do the parts come from (not talking about engines, those have probably been repowered with modern engines, anyhow), but I'm talking about water-sealed axles, brake parts, and so on.... I'm wondering if the parts aren't being manufactured in the aftermarket.

Garret
09-28-2015, 02:35 PM
Ones I've seen have all original parts - including engines. Don't know if there are aftermarket suppliers

Jim Bow
09-28-2015, 04:26 PM
I spoke to a DUKW owner at a military vehicle gathering in Issaquah, WA. He bought his from an importer who bought them from the Greek government in the mid 1980s. He said that previous to the Greek sales, most of the DUKWs were surplus that were probably either never used or were used for training in the US.
Side note: most of the half tracks that collectors have were either stateside surplus, or else came from a similar Israeli army sale, also in the 80s. Israel still manufactures replacement tracks for collectors.

Rob Hazard
09-28-2015, 04:55 PM
I don't know if anyone has mentioned it so far, but Rod Stephens, Olin's brother, was one of the lead men in the development of the DUKW.

BrianW
09-28-2015, 05:29 PM
http://www.dukw.com/

I used to check that site out from time to time. Sitka's harbor and surrounding streets are a natural for a dukw tour.

Osborne Russell
09-28-2015, 06:51 PM
There's a hilarious though hair-raising DUKW story in Waves And Beaches by Willard Bascom. I think in the introduction.

Gerarddm
09-29-2015, 01:30 AM
#12: Yes, I was just going to mention that. Amazing that basically it came out of Sparkman and Stephens. Dorade they ain't.

Figment
09-29-2015, 08:41 AM
I used to check that site out from time to time. Sitka's harbor and surrounding streets are a natural for a dukw tour.

I had the same thought when I was there!

Old Dryfoot
09-29-2015, 08:44 AM
We've got them too.

http://www.travelhouse.ch/CMS/18/3508698/2/victoria-hippo-tour.jpg

Peerie Maa
09-29-2015, 08:51 AM
I looked at one to use as a surf fishing truck/boat. Imagine being able to drive out to the sand bars and breaks that are out of casting distance. It's also the first vehicle with the ability to adjust tire pressure from the driver's seat...very handy for the beach.

Unfortunately, NY has about a dozen different laws against using them on public roads, waters and beaches.

The Soputhport shrimp fishermen build their own.
https://underagreysky.files.wordpress.com/2012/12/chris1.jpg?w=500

oznabrag
09-29-2015, 08:57 AM
We actually have two, competing outfits.
http://www.orangewoodinn.com/images/apg_1340133282.jpg

http://s3.amazonaws.com/rg_production/gallery_pictures/pictures/1926/xl_image-1b.jpg?1410986197

StevenBauer
09-29-2015, 10:14 PM
Those aren't DUKWs! Those are modern amphibious vehicles.

How'd you like to have one of these babies?


http://i146.photobucket.com/albums/r241/bauerdad/Talismans%202010%20cruise%20with%20Acacia/100_0044.jpg

Yes, It really is that big.

http://i146.photobucket.com/albums/r241/bauerdad/Talismans%202010%20cruise%20with%20Acacia/100_0045.jpg


http://i146.photobucket.com/albums/r241/bauerdad/Talismans%202010%20cruise%20with%20Acacia/100_0046.jpg

Nicholas Carey
09-30-2015, 12:00 AM
#12: Yes, I was just going to mention that. Amazing that basically it came out of Sparkman and Stephens. Dorade they ain't.


Yes, but still Sparkman & Stephens' most successful design: something like 24,000 built.