Really combat handcarts

In the US Army, handcarts for various purposes have been widely used for a long time. All of them can be considered the heirs of the wooden M1917 Ammunition Cart, used during the WWI. At first it was used to transport ammunition boxes to a machine gun.

The assortment of machine guns corresponded to those used in the army. It could be: Colt Vickers M1915, Lewis Gun M1917, Colt Automatic Gun M1914.

Over time, the machine guns became more elegant and on the same cart it was possible to place the machine gun itself and supplies for it.

In 1927, progress won the final victory and the M1 bogie was implemented for the Browning M1917A1 water-cooled machine gun.


However, this did not part with the daddy M1917 Ammunition Cart

In the 30s, a number of bogies were adopted, the founders of which were the M3 and M3A4 bogies, which were completely the same except for the wheels.

The earlier M3 was equipped with 4 “x18” motorcycle wheels on a straight axle,


and the later one is cast aluminum in the size 4 “x12” on an offset axle.

I hope the difference between the two types of axles will become clear from these photos.

In general, there were at least two more types of tires.

And at least one more type of disc

In addition to the classic trolley movement

rope pulls were provided, to connect a couple more people to this process


However, if it was really lazy, then by reconnecting the crossbar, freeing the towing device

the cart could be hooked up to a wide range of tugs

The cart itself could be transported as if packed

just disassembled

In WWII, the United States was armed with several modifications of the cart.

Interestingly, for each type of carts, its own cover was determined. So for the M3 and M3A4 general purpose the flat case M500 was used

M4 / M4A1 and M3 / M3A4 for transporting the  .30 M1917A1 Browning machine gun

case used here M501


M5 / M5A1 , M3 / M3A4 for transporting the .50-caliber M2 Browning machine gun 

Used an M502 case but did not find an image.

M6 / M6A1 , M3 / M3A4 for transporting 81mm mortar M1

case M503

In 1944 it was developed by modification of the RL-35 cart for signalers.


There is a strong belief that these carts were exclusively in the airborne units.

But this is not the case. This device is the standard weapon of the US Army.

After the WWII, this direction did not die out, after 1949, modifications from M7 to M8 appeared, etc.



And why am I all this? And to the fact that a young Chinese company from Hong Kong Gecko Models just recently announced the release of

35GM0041 M53 Scooter Cushman w/John Wood M3A4 Utility Hand Cart Mod.1943 & US Paratroops (Set 1)







Czech PlusModel has a whole line of products

373 U.S. handcart M3A4 374 U.S. reelcart RL35 400 U.S. handcart M3A1 w/Browning 0,3

and a couple more combo sets

438 U.S. Airborne scooter with reel 439 U.S. Airborne scooter with machine gun


Well, the oldest manufacturer is the American (who would have doubted) Masterpiece Models with a set

MMUTL001 Hand Utility Cart












Approximately something similar was with the British, but there it is really for the landing – because it is foldable. You have already encountered it in a set from Bronco

AB3567 WWII British Airborne Weapon & Equipment Set






which was discussed in the section on bicycles. The manufacturer could not resist and repeated in another set

CB35192 WWII British Paratroops in Action Set B






Which is probably good, because until then this device was only available in a metal set from the English Wolf Hornet Models

WAA 03 British Airborne Trolley













PS (17.03.2021) But the German parachutists, it turns out, had their own similar devices, which were displayed in a set from the Chinese Dragon

6070 German Fallschirmjäger (Crete 1941)

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