M37 Gun Truck Questions


Senior Chief/Moderator
Super Moderator
Steel Soldiers Supporter
Cheyenne, WY
So the M37 is way smaller than a deuce, so what did they carry in the back and how was it stowed? Any inside pics would be great. Thinking of building one with my 2nd M37.


Well-known member
Steel Soldiers Supporter
Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
Individual and vehicle load outs have changed very little from the 50's
until now out side of improved fire arms.
The document is so large I cannot get it to post.

Here is the recommended load out:

You need to substitute period fire arms for the ones listed here as some of these were just a thought then:

(1) Individual basic load recommendation:

M16 210 rounds 1 tracer : 2 ball
M203 40 rounds (mix HE – 30 / Smoke – 10)
M249 1,000 rounds (preferably in drums)
M2 500 rounds 4:1
M240B 1,600 rounds 4:1
MK-19 128 rounds
Hand grenade 4

(2) Vehicle combat load:
Additional basic load as listed above in the vehicle,
configured so it can be used while driving and easily taken from the cab if dismount
becomes necessary.
In addition, the following should be in all vehicles:

HC smoke grenade 2 White star cluster 2
Red smoke grenade 2 Red star cluster 2
Violet smoke grenade 2 Green star cluster 2
Yellow smoke grenade 2 White parachute flare 6
Green smoke grenade 2

a. Harden vehicles with sand bags, steel plating, wire mesh, ballistic blankets,
extra fragmentation vests, or any other material that will add protection
while not handicapping mobility.

b. Ammunition allocation and location needs to be standardized with both
an individual basic load and a vehicle combat load.

5. Intelligence is often the weak link in the mission planning process.
Units need to develop a system of receiving daily intelligence briefs,
posting the map in the company operations room.


Super Moderator
Super Moderator
Jim have Dan stop on his way down to your place as I have 2 doors and a front bumper that need to go your way. All are totally rust free. The bumper came off of the blue AF M37. The bolts had not one spec of rust on them so it was just like taking the nuts off of a new vehicle. The parts on the other 2 M37s are ok but not as nice, One has a non stuck engine with all the issue items on it, also have 3 good (need rad shop to check them) radiators if you need one for the gun truck.
Last edited:


Active member
So the M37 is way smaller than a deuce, so what did they carry in the back and how was it stowed? Any inside pics would be great. Thinking of building one with my 2nd M37.
I got pics, I will dig them out sometime soon. I'm not up for typing all day so I will give you the short end description on what your looking for. Steel plate, some was scratch stuff laying around and others had pieces of the kits that were made for deuces and 5 tons for troop protection. NO SANDBAGS!!!! those went by the wayside in 67-68 after the Monsoons when they got wet. The M-37 will sag like no other once the steel is on. As for loadout. There WAS NO TOAE. Table of authorized equipment for a Gun Truck in Vietnam. It was whatever a crew could get their hands on. Your not going to mount 4 ma deuces in a M-37 very well so in country, One M2 and maybe a M60 mounted in one truck. One well known one had a twin 60 mount that was scratch built that worked fine. Will need a radio in the back to stay on frequency with other GT's in a convoy so an RT-524 mounted in the corner will work. Plenty of ammo for whatever your main fire suppression is. You will also need whats called a "ditch gun". If Victor Charles gets close to the road, he could get close enough to where the main gun cant be brought to bare to his location. This is where a ditch gun can be brought over the side for close support. The driver will have his hands full working the kill zone but there are times where he might have a min to get behind an M79 and put a few rounds out. So that's a start for firepower.
Convoys are long, slow and hot. "dust cutters" of a good beverage should be on board. Not need to be cold but Hams or Budweiser purchased from the PX or possibly traded from the Air Force at Pleiku. C rations are a definite, ditch the ham and mutha ****ers as those were usually pitched to the kids in the small villages that looked for handouts as convoys went through. Peaches and Pound Cake were saved in the evening back at base or on RON (remain over night) at a firebase or Bridge. GT's were often used for this type of duty after hours. So after hours, reading material on the truck. Playboys and car magazines were at the top of the hot items. More dust cutters or "Other" types of relaxation method could also be found. In the central highlands, spending the night in a truck meant you needed a Wooby (poncho liner) or Field jacket. I know a few drivers that kept sleeping bags with them for just these occasions. If you don't have the room, just go tropical and sleep under the truck and forget above as that was done too.


SMSgt, USAF (Ret.)
Steel Soldiers Supporter
Laramie County, Wyoming
Thank you for the info! Is it safe to assume that most every gun truck, regardless of size, could be equipped the same way? My War Wagon has:
plywood backed sheet metal for armor, three M23 equiliberator mounts with ammo trays for three .50 M2’s, one ground M60 ditch gun, one M-16A1 personal weapon, 4 plus lemon grenades, 2 spent smoke grenades, one spent LAW rocket tube, gas mask, canteens, two litters, two fold up cots, RT-524 radio with the correct antenna mount and antenna, VIC-1 intercom with headsets and stations for four personnel, stand alone speaker, water cooler (correct model for the late ‘60’s), Mermite can, foot locker stuffed full of misc stuff, 140+ .50 ammo cans, which covers the floor, several 7.62 ammo cans for the M-60, linked dummy .50 and 7.62 for the weapons, helmets, flack vests and first aid kit in a 20mm ammo can. Note: all weapons are replicas or spent real ones that can no longer be reused.
still looking for a M79 replica. I found a source for 40mm grenades for the M-79. I’m saving up my pennies until I can buy them. Also looking for another M23 and another M2 so the rear mount can be a double mount.
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