From the Vault: PS Magazine articles on M60 Tank

Today we present a couple articles from PS Magazine detailing the maintenance and operation of the M60 MBT.  The first article is a three part series called “Your M60” which ran in 1961.  The second article is a two part “Be Your Own Inspector” article which appeared in 1966.  PS Magazine is an illustrated “comic” style magazine put out by the US Army since 1951 to teach soldiers best practices in preventative maintenance.  These articles might be a trip down memory lane for any retired tankers that frequent this site.  For others, these articles may impress upon them the complexity and work required to properly maintain a cold war era MBT.

Your M60 Tank Part 1 (1961)

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Entire PS Magazine archive available online

PS magazine 163 coverWhen people think about great comic book art of the last 60 years, they generally think about publishers like DC Comics, Marvel, or Image. Certainly, they don’t usually think of the US Army or of maintenance journals. That is, unless they are familiar with PS Magazine, the Preventive Maintenance Monthly published by the US Army since 1951. With the US Army involved in the fighting in Korea in the early 50’s, they decided they needed a new tool for teaching soldiers proper maintenance procedures. During WWII the army had had good luck with the instructional publication Army Motors, which featured characters drawn by Corporal Will Eisner, an established comic-book writer-artist-editor. In 1951, the Army hired Eisner to create similar instructional material for its new publication, PS, The Preventive Maintenance Monthly. Eisner served as the publication’s artistic director from 1951 through the end of 1971. The magazine’s artists have included Eisner, Murphy Anderson, Joe Kubert, Dan Spiegle, Scott Madsen, Malane Newman, Alfredo Alcala, and Mike Ploog. As of 2010, Kubert is the art contractor for the magazine, having begun his PS work in 2001. Kubert is widely known amongst comic book readers for his work on DC war comics such as Sgt. Rock and G.I. Combat.

There is much of interest in these magazines for people interested in post-war US tanks and armored vehicles. In particular, people may enjoy the “Your M48A2” article in issue 91 or the M60 article in issue 163.

The complete archive of PS Magazine is availabe for download in PDF format at The PS Magazine Archive. Issues can also be downloaded at VCU Libraries Digital Collection (this site has downloads of all the index issues, very handy!) For the most recent issues, go to the LOGSA website.