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Allied Coastal Forces of World War II, Vol. II: Vosper MTBs and US Elcos


By John Lambert and Al Ross

Barnsley, UK: Seaforth Publishing, 2019

11.25 x 9.5 inch format, hardback, 256 pages

B&W photos, line drawings, bibliography.

MSRP £40.00

ISBN: 978 1 5267 4755 6





Summary: Great book!


First of all, this book has a really long title, so henceforth we will refer to it as ACF2. Second, the authors of this fine volume should not be strangers to anyone who has been building ship models for any length of time. The late John Lambert was a world-class technical illustrator, and his drawings and plans have been serving as the basis for scratch builds and super-detailing for decades. Al Ross is of course one of the in-house designers for BlueJacket Shipcrafters, and his designs have a well-deserved reputation for historical accuracy.


This edition of ACF2 is a reprint of the 1990 original, itself a companion volume to ACF1, which covered Fairmiles and US subchasers. The printing, binding, and dust jacket art are top-notch and what we have come to expect from Seaforth. It is safe to say that if you are a builder of either of the types covered by ACF2, then you will want to have this book as a reference. The keyed drawings are crisp, extremely detailed, and plentiful throughout the book, covering every possible aspect of construction from hull framing to armaments and equipment. The relevant drawings are usually accompanied by photos of the item depicted. Both are interwoven with a rich text that details how the boats were specifically designed with their intended use in mind, including, for example, a discussion of the particular challenges of designing a boat meant to operate at high speeds.


Beyond the technical aspects of the boats taken as a whole, additional sections are devoted to camouflage (color line drawings of color schemes are included, labeled with Admiralty and USN official colors), weapons and mounts, machinery, lists of every Vosper and Elco boat built along with its final disposition, and a list of surviving boats. In this 256-page volume, there are literally only 15 pages that don’t have at least one (usually more) drawing, photo, list, or some combination of the three on them. It’s definitely worthy of its coffee-table size footprint and is as interesting to casually flip through as much as it is a veritable trove of information on these sometime overlooked contributors to the allied war effort. If you are a serious modeler or just a fan of naval small craft, you will doubtlessly be pleased to add this work to your collection.




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5 hours ago, ccoyle said:

 ... I'm sure that it is likewise outstanding

It is. I was privileged to be invited to the Coastal Forces Veterans reunions for the last couple of years they were held here in the UK and these were the go-to books, often brought along and displayed on the table for anyone to consult. I think that is a pretty good recommendation.

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