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Help! Advice re: prime haulers/heavy tractors WWII

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I'm wondering if any of you armour buffs can help?

I'm building a dio of a B-17 fuselage (1/32) on a trailer, pulled by a suitable vehicle (1/35) - I want to do an 8th Air Force machine being recovered in England by both USAAF and US Army personnel & vehicles. If that's not possible, i would show the aircraft being recovered from the field in France post D-Day.

I bought the fantastic Accurate Armour Diamond T-969 Wrecker at great expense. I have the trailer from Tamiya's Dragon Wagon kit. I'll modify it into a 40 foot Federal C2 Trailer as used by the USAAF.

Halfway through building the Diamond T I realised that, d'uh, it isn't a hauler! It is capable of towing a trailer (with a towbar) but the trailer I'm building attaches to one of those Horseshoe-shaped trailer hitches on the rear of a suitable hauler. In real life the Federal did manufacture an optional dolly - for the 25 foot version of the trailer. I haven't seen any photos of it attached to the 40 foot trailer, although I suppose it was possible.

Either way - I doubt the Diamond T wrecker would be capable of pulling a 40 foot trailer with a B-17 fuselage on it (and don't forget it is just the fuselage) because even minus the wings, a B-17 fuselage has to weigh in the region of 9 to 10 tonnes.

Through souring the net I have ascertained that the Scammell Pioneer Tank Transporter is an option. Unfortunately we are talking Accurate Armour, and another £180.00 - which I just can't afford.

Option 2 would be the Real Model 1/35 Autocar U7144T Tractor - there are two problems here - the max towing capacity of the Autocar was 20,000 lbs - around 9.07 tonnes - I think just below what I need for this heavy load. Problem 2 is that the kit is apparently terrible

Option 3 would be another Real Models kit - the Federal 94x43. This vehicle had a towing capacity of 30,000 lbs (13.6 tonnes)

Option 4 - use the M-26 Dragon Wagon cab & depict it pulling the Federal C2 trailer

What I would like to know is:

1) does anyone know the actual weight of just a B-17 fuselage with wings & tailplanes (but not tail) removed?

2) Would the Federal 94x43 be able therefore to tow both the weight of a 40 foot trailer plus the B-17 fuselage?

3) Would it be realistic to depict said vehicle an trailer in a diorama based in late-War England?

4) If I have to use the Dragon Wagon cab as the prime hauler, again would it be realistic to show it in a diorama based in England? Was this vehicle used only in Europe?

I really appreciate any help here!


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