Become our sponsor and display your banner here
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 12

Browning .303 turret cases

Article about: Hello all, I have scoured the internet for the answer to this question and can't seem to find the answer anywhere so I'm coming to the forum with this rather lame question. Humour me: What h

  1. #1

    Default Browning .303 turret cases

    Hello all,

    I have scoured the internet for the answer to this question and can't seem to find the answer anywhere so I'm coming to the forum with this rather lame question. Humour me:

    What happened when a case was fired from a turret mounted RAF Browning .303 machine gun? Would it be ejected out into the night and sail down to Germany below, or would it remain on board the aircraft in a container or on the belt?

    If anyone can set me straight, I'd be very grateful!

    Thanks,

    Simon

  2. #2

    Default

    Are you referring to the machine guns mounted in the likes of bombers for anti-aircraft purposes? Brass catchers were often employed for machine guns of all sizes; cloth bags mounted over the ejection port to prevent fired brass from flying about inside the cabin.

    In the case of wing-mounted .303 machine guns, like those mounted on Spitfires and Hurricanes, the fired cases were simply ejected out of ports on the underside of the wing.

    Regards, B.B.
    ''Everyday you think of living. We are born to die, but I appreciate life. We live day by day, and I always say: yesterday is history, today's reality, and tomorrow's a dream.' -- Henry Flescher, Holocaust Survivor -- March 14, 1924 - August 29, 2018

  3. #3

    Default

    Hi B.B,

    Many thanks for your reply.

    I suppose I'm specifically referring to the type of turrets you'd find on a Wellington bomber. The reason I ask is that I have acquired some pieces from a crashed Wimpey, which include spent .303 rounds. Some were obviously live and had exploded in the fire but one was complete and had been struck by a firing pin. I had always been under the impression that fired cases were ejected from the aircraft so was a little surprised to find that one would still be on the aircraft.

    Simon

  4. #4

    Default

    I'm glad I was able to provide some help!

    If they didn't use brass catchers, there is the possibility that spent brass would simply be ejected into the cabin area. But I can't imagine that was common practice, for the aforementioned reasons.

    Looking at external and internal photographs of the turrets, I can't see any external ejection port. Though it's hard to see, looking at the internal photograph, there appear to be a pair of hollow chutes for the spent brass. Due to the angle, it's hard to make out. But they appear to sweep forwards, out of the front of the turret and into the open air.

    Browning .303 turret casesBrowning .303 turret cases

    Doing my best detective work here! Hopefully someone who knows the ins and outs of WWII aircraft better than me comes along soon.

    B.B.
    ''Everyday you think of living. We are born to die, but I appreciate life. We live day by day, and I always say: yesterday is history, today's reality, and tomorrow's a dream.' -- Henry Flescher, Holocaust Survivor -- March 14, 1924 - August 29, 2018

  5. #5

    Default

    Quote by Simon127 View Post
    The reason I ask is that I have acquired some pieces from a crashed Wimpey, which include spent .303 rounds. Some were obviously live and had exploded in the fire but one was complete and had been struck by a firing pin.
    I think that's your answer... brass catchers used but its quite likely that, during the crash & fire, one was disturbed / damaged / burnt & cases dropped out (along, in a similar way, with live rounds from the feed path).

    Pure speculation on my part but can see it happening.

  6. #6

    Default

    A little off topic but in the general theme. Years ago as a volunteer I was involved in the restoration of the Auckland MOTAT museum Lancaster rear turret. This aircraft built in 1945 was armed with twin 50 calibre machine guns and with that heavy brass the spent cases were expelled down a chute into the night. As you can see in the photo. Actually the ammo was not stored in the turret at all, but in the tail fuselage of the aircraft and feed down tracks to the guns.

    Browning .303 turret cases

  7. #7

    Default

    Apart from the tail turret which had two channels beneath the gun barrels for spent cartridges to fall away the nose and upper turrets collected spent cartridges in canvas bags.

  8. #8

    Default

    Gents,

    Thanks so much for all your input on this thread. It's very much appreciated. This demonstrates once again why forums like this are so valuable.

    Attached are a couple of photos of the finds from the site. These include the spent and reassembled (ball) case and two exploded ones. Everything is fully inert.

    https://i.imgur.com/Xe1dtj7.jpg

    https://i.imgur.com/gxwZ5mw.jpg

  9. #9

    Default

    its always preferred to post the actual pics here..rather than just a link...just FYI

  10. #10

    Default

    A helpful guide here for using the forum uploader:

    Visual Guide to Upload Photos

    Rather than using external photo hosting sites, which tend to become obsolete after a period of time, the forum uploader stores the photographs in the forum's database, ensuring that they can be maintained as part of the collective pool of information here.

    Regards, B.B.
    ''Everyday you think of living. We are born to die, but I appreciate life. We live day by day, and I always say: yesterday is history, today's reality, and tomorrow's a dream.' -- Henry Flescher, Holocaust Survivor -- March 14, 1924 - August 29, 2018

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. John M. Browning's son Lt. Val Browning with the M1918 Browning Automatic Rifle.

    In WW1 Allies: Great Britain, France, USA, etc 1914 - 1918
    08-01-2015, 08:36 AM
  2. 01-12-2015, 10:50 PM
  3. 01-05-2015, 05:30 PM
  4. 12-17-2014, 06:20 PM
  5. 10-06-2012, 03:53 PM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •