U.S. Water Cans
Modeling the U.S. Army in WWII


U.S. water jerry cans were distinguished from gasoline cans by the cam lever cap, which was hinged at the topside of the lip of the can's wide mouth. The two-pronged lever flipped to release the pressure holding the cap in place. The fuel can, of course, used a screw top.

I've used resin water cans made by Resicast and found them to be a good product, and Formations has met them with an equally as good rendition.

In this set, Formations provides 12 cans, three cast into vehicle racks with straps, and nine loose cans.

Construction is simple. Carefully remove the can, handle, and cap from the carriers. Trim the backside of the cap so it sits flush on the raised mouth of the can and the two prongs of the lever rest on the handle. Formations kindly provides three extra handles and spouts to cover "any assembly mishaps." And we've all experienced a few of those, haven't we?

Formations has molded the cap and lever assembly as one piece, whereas Resicast's cap and latch are separate pieces which enable the top to pivot upward as in real life (but the fit isn't foolproof). Formations' cap seems a bit under scale compared to period photos, but Resicast's cap corresponds better to these pictures.

Neither Formations nor Resicast cans reproduce the joined seam that runs vertically down the back spine of the can. In this regard, they are both beaten by a new offering from Tasca, to my knowledge the first U.S. water jerry can in styrene. And it's hollow.

So, while this can offers a good crisp casting and is easily built, this is a very rare instance where Formations may not be the final word.

Review sample courtesy of Formations.



Modeling the U.S. Army in WWII © 2002—2007 Timothy S. Streeter