What choice of front road wheels would you choose for your M3 halftrack?

I have the Dragon M3 GMC Halftrack in the stash and was looking at replacing the front road wheels. Panzer Art has 2 sets available. The question I ask to the wise ones is which one to pick. One has the Firestone Logo on it the other has the Goodyear logo on it. If I were to build it say for the North African or Sicily campaigns, which one should I use ?

These directional


or these non-directional


My personal preference, which may well be historically incorrect, would be the directional tyres.
I believe that these were the first type of tyres, in the US and then when shipped to Nort Africa and then gradually replaced by the non-directional

In Nort Africa and Sicily the early directional tires were common. In my T19 build, I used the Hussar 35054 wheel set.

Here you’ll find several pics of U.S. half-tracks captured by German troops at Kasserine (Tunisia 1943) : most of them are fitted with directionnal tires…



I have used the Hussar set Rick mentions and was very happy with it. It is a set that has 3 types of tyres and two types of wheel rims:

Don’t be put off by the lack of manufacturer name. Look at photos and many show no name on the side wall, as per the pics in the review.

Terry also did other wheel reviews if you wish to have a look - scroll to the bottom of this page:

Well all. You added another variable in my quest for front wheels. Did not think about if they were directional or non-directional. The two Panzer Art sets I found despite different tire brands are non-directional so skip them. I may take up Rick’s suggestion and grab the Ultracast set. Thanks for the input. But just curious when did the US switch to non-directional ? If I decide to build another I want to make sure when I decide the choice of markings that I have the matching tire.

:beer: :nerd_face: :beer:



This little piece of text was interesting:
“Thus, while even properly modern inflated tires will have bulged sidewalls, in WW II there should be no noticeable sidewall bulging. Both radial and bias ply tires will have a small flat spot in contact with the ground, however.”


“Directional tread was a descendant of agricultural or tractor tires with chevron lugs. It was commonly seen on half-tracks and scout cars early in war. This tread was recommended to be the “maximum traction” tread style January 1942 (OCM 17704) but the non-directional Mud and Snow tread was adopted instead in March (OCM 17926), and the directional tread was rarely seen after that. The biggest problem with this tread style was that the tires became “handed” and could only be used on one side of the vehicle.”


Any chance of them being mixed and matched due to availability issues ? Thought I remember seeing pics of a half track or truck with different types of tires on it, not that you would want to do that on your model.

Looks like they must of went ahead and went through remaining stock. Frenchy’s link of captured Halftracks from Kasserine Pass battle still using the directional tires almost a year after the March '42 recommendation to just use the non-directional tire. So I would assume you would see a combination of both uses.

:beer: :nerd_face: :beer:

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Likely not a mix of directional and nondirectional. There were limits as to the difference in diameter of tires on an axle. Mixing worn and new tires can cause handling problems and leads to excessive wear on the tires and axle components.


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