bookLes CHARS B
B1-B1 bis-B1 ter

Pascal Danjou

Published by: Trackstory
25 rue des Jardins 91160 Ballainvilliers,
Paris, France

ISBN 2-9520988-4-4

56 pages soft cover

Review by Terry Ashley

Trackstory have published a number of small reference books (mainly on French Army equipment) and this title deals with the Chars B, B1bis and B1ter and is just the thing for the new Tamiya kit.

The 175mm x 245mm soft cover book has 58 pages with many B&W wartime photos of Chars Bs plus colour profile illustrations showing the many and varied camouflage schemes as well as sets of 1:35 and 1:72 plans.

The text is in both French and English and includes a brief history of each unit using the Chars B as well as for the photo captions and this includes a list of the differences between the B1 and B1bis which should be very useful.

The photos are mostly semi-close up allowing details to be easily seen and there are also some shots of the development tanks and some interior shots showing the main gun position as well as a couple of the 75mm and 47mm gun mounts separate from the vehicle to show additional details.

The wartime photos are very useful in showing the vehicle details such as storage, (very little externally actually) as well as a few showing the crew uniforms and the weathered paint finishes and some of vehicles in German use including the 10.5cm leFH 18/3 auf Geschutzwagen B2(f) and flamethrower versions.

Of particular interest are the photos showing the three different style of turrets fitted to the B, B1 and B1bis as well as brief sections on the B1ter (‘bis’ is French for second version and ‘ter’ is for third version) as well as some of the mock up of the late war L’ARL44 with a conventional turret and massive 90mm main gun which never saw the light of day.

Towards the back is a section with colour illustrations showing the markings of each unit using the Chars B plus brief notes on each including larger illustrations of selected French vehicles with more elaborate camouflage schemes and examples in German use).

This is followed by a list of all vehicle numbers and associated vehicle name that should be very useful followed by five view 1:35 and 1:72 plans of the B1 and B1bis.

This small book is packed with useful information, photos and colour illustrations of the Chars B and if you only had one reference book of the Chars B this would be the choice being inexpensive and packed with useful info and being bi-lingual will widen the appeal.

Highly recommended.

Sample pages

See the Trackstory website for details of other Trackstory titles.

Thanks to my Credit Card and Blast Models for the review book.

Page created June 2, 2006

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