Tuesday, July 26, 2011

U.S. WW II GMC DUKW-353 & Cleaver-Brooks Amphibian Trailers

The Truck, 2 1/2-Ton, 6x6 Amphibian (GMC DUKW-353) was initially developed and procured by the Quartermaster Corps (QMC) and transferred to the Ordnance Department, effective August 01.1942 and standardized in Octobcr 1942. The National Defense Research Council (NDRC), succeeded by the Office of Scientific Research and Development (OSRD) had taken the responsibility to work out a concept of amphibian trucks in 1941. In April 1942, authorization was given for the development of a DUKW prototype. The hull was designed by Sparkman and Stephens Inc., New York, based on the automotive components of the standard G-508 series GMC plus specific amphibious features like the water propulsion mechanism, bilge pump system and watertight power train components. The first prototype was successfully tested in June 1942 and an initial order was placed for 2,000 vehicles. A total of 21,147 were built until production was terminated in August 1945. The DUKW was exclusively built by the Yellow Truck & Coach Manufacturing Co. (renamed GMC Truck & Coach Division in late 1943), a subsidiary of the General Motors Corporation, at their Pontiac, Michigan plant and also later at the St. Louis, Missouri, Chevrolet plant.