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Two Wooden propeller blades

Article about: Hi Guys, these came into work today. They are obviously old. One made by the well known aircraft makers, "Boulton Paul Ltd, Norwich". This one has a metal tipped end. The other is

  1. #1

    Default Two Wooden propeller blades

    Hi Guys, these came into work today.

    They are obviously old.

    One made by the well known aircraft makers, "Boulton Paul Ltd, Norwich". This one has a metal tipped end.

    The other is made by "Barker and Co. Coach builders, London".

    They are cut down and now are about 4 foot long. Condition has suffered with some screw holes too!

    Any info would be gratefully received.

    Cheers, Ade.
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture Click image for larger version. 

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  2. #2

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    Hi Ade,

    Although Boulton & Paul are probably remembered for their Defiant fighter, they also made propeller blades in WW1. The example you have is probably part of an FE2 four blade prop. I came across this picture which has the same pattern metal tip and also made by Boulton & Paul.

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    The other blade would also appear to be of WW1 vintage.

    Cheers,
    Steve.
    Author of... 'Belfast Diaries: A Gunner In Northern Ireland'... 'A Tough Nut To Crack: Andersonstown.. Voices From 9 Battery Royal Artillery In Northern Ireland'... 'An Accrington Pal: The Diaries of Pte Jack Smallshaw, September 1914 To March 1919'.

  3. #3

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    Thanks Steve! That is really helpful.

    Cheers, Ade.
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  4. #4

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    Barker & Co. were coach builders to Rolls-Royce before taking on war work making propellers from 1916 to 1918. I understand from looking around that they are rather rare to say the least, and have attempted to contact a chap who knows a lot more about them and sent him the link to this thread so maybe he'll take a squint and chime in if he so feels like it. That could prove interesting.

    Regards, Ned.
    'I do not think we can hope for any better thing now.
    We shall stick it out to the end, but we are getting weaker of course, and the end cannot be far.
    It seems a pity, but I do not think I can write more. R. SCOTT.
    Last Entry - For God's sake look after our people.'

    In memory of Capt. Robert Falcon Scott, Edward Wilson, Henry Bowers, Lawrence Oates and Edgar Evans. South Pole Expedition, 30th March 1912.

  5. #5

    Default

    Some information on the Boulton & Paul works in Norwich:


    As the first world war threatened, Boulton and Paul was asked asked to make aircraft. In 1915 its first prototype FE2B flew from the airfield at Cavalry Drill Ground on Mousehold Heath, reaching a top speed of 60mph .The famous Sopwith Camel fighter aircraft was built in Norwich, so named for its hump-shaped fairing covering the machine guns. Boulton and Paul made 28 Camels a week at the height of production, and a total of 2,500 military aircraft in all during the war. Initially all looked well for the aircraft arm of the company after the war. Under chief engineer John North, B&P produced an all-steel P10 biplane that was a great success at the 1919 Paris air show. Its Sidestrand bomber entered RAF service in 1929. Meanwhile B&P got involved in airship design .In the 1920s and early 1930s hopes were high these lighter-thanair vessels could be the passenger aircraft of the future. B&Ps innovative R101 airship easily crossed the Atlantic several times. When, in 1930, a B&P-made ship took off for a long-distance flight to India it could have been the beginning of the big time for air ships and the Norwich firm. VIPs Lord Thompson, the Air Minister and Air Vice Marshall Sir Sefton Brancker were on board. Sadly, the craft crashed into a French hillside en route; the two VIPs died along with two other passengers. Although B&P was exonerated of blame by an inquiry, there was no future for airships, something underlined when the Hindenburg went up in flames in America in 1937. Nor was there a future for aircraft manufacture in Norwich. The firm moved its aircraft arm to Wolverhampton, along with most of the 800-strong highlyskilled workforce. The firms Defiant fighter bomber featured in the Battle of Britain.


    During the second world war B&P took on the unglamorous, but vital, role of making prefabricated buildings for the armed forces. Many of these were shipped to the USSR by the notoriously dangerous Arctic convoys. Later they were important in supplying the equipment for troops at the D-Day landings in Normandy. This manufacturing made Norwich a target for German bombers; 100 of the workers became casualties in terrifying air raids which hit the city hard. In the post-war era the firm made a contribution to energy conservation, with its double-glazed high-performance windows. B&P also built Norwich Citys South Stand at nearby Carrow Road in the 1950s.

    A large firm but theres no evidence it was there any more.

    Boulton and Pauls engineering works at Thorpe Yard shut during the late 1980s. For much of the 1990s it presented a forlorn sight along with British Rails derelict sidings as the city entered a period of relative economic decline. By 1994 Norwich City Council, along with private stakeholders, presented the first renovation plans for the area. It cost 75m to first decontaminate the site, then raise the ground level to prevent flooding from the Wensum. Today, though not universally popular, Riverside has spearheaded the citys successful bid to become a retail and leisure centre. Gazeley Properties put up plush executive flats in the area once dominated by industry remembering the workers of previous generations with those two engraved pillars by the Novi Sad pedestrian bridge.

    (Reproduced from Eastern Daily Press)

  6. #6

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    Thanks Ned!
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