This is a comprehensive illustrated history of PT boats in World War II. The author, a lifelong student of PTs, briefly describes the pre-war experimental boat designs to give the reader a lead in to the war-time boats. He then covers the four classes of PT boats in service with the USN in World War II, describing the differences from boat to boat in detail.
Every weapon system used on board US PTs in WWII is described and discussed, from machine guns to rocket launchers. For the first time in any great detail, the author gives a history of the six known all gun gunboats which were converted from PTs (three Elco and three Higgins) and has both drawings and photos of these gunboats (including John F. Kennedy’s PT-59).
Model-builders will appreciate the drawings that contain actual color chips for the various camouflage systems applied to the boats. There are also many color photos to aide modelers in painting accurate paint schemes. The author also discusses and identifies each of the radars used on PT boats in the later stages of the war.
A substantial chapter on operational experience discusses how PT boats were used in every theater of war, from Pearl Harbor to D-Day and beyond. Finally, the author provides the fate of every PT boat that now survives.
One hundred forty-eight photographs and drawings.