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Mystery WWII Site find

Article about: Hope I am in the right place for this ~ Any help appreciated ~ I found in a WWII AIF (Australian 2/32 -Rats of Tobruk- ) camp site ~ (Post Africa campaign and well after the unit/s returned

  1. #1

    Default Mystery WWII Site find

    Hope I am in the right place for this ~ Any help appreciated ~

    I found in a WWII AIF (Australian 2/32 -Rats of Tobruk- ) camp site ~ (Post Africa campaign and well after the unit/s returned to Australia to be retrained in jungle training and the Pacific campaign against the Japanese forces.

    I detected and dug this in a scrap fire pit of bottles and scrap steel ~ Stainless steel and numbered ~

    It is 130 mm & 90mm wide and 330 mm long ~ but I think the "jagged end " has been deliberately cut off or modified (?)

    I have seen similar soem where but cannot 'finger' this item ~

    In prospective :

    The debate is the part number is not relative to Military parts list/s- catalogues ~

    That stainless was not used in aircraft in WWII ~ ( I challenge this as a recent find of a P40 Kitty Hawk .50 cal wing ammo box dispels that theory ~

    Thanks for any input `
    Stuart SS

  2. #2


    I am Just guessing here. Feed tray from an aircraft machinegun????

    I specialize in M1 carbines and Lugers.

  3. #3


    Hi John

    Thanks for your input ~

    Actually one of the MD blokes down south of us actually recently found a SS ammo box from a P40 Kitty Hawk .but there is no resemblance to what he found and what I dug up ~


    One very logical feed back I have had is that it may be part of the cockpit canopy from a fighter ~

    Locally we had ~ B17s, P40, P38 and Aircobras !

    Then there was an array of Australian and UK fighter bombers from Boomerangs, Beaufort bombers and fighters ~ plus Mosquitoes ~ and the list goes on ~

  4. #4


    Hi, I think you may have a section of a bomb shackle - used to mount the bomb on the aircraft. I have a complete one for a 100 lb bomb, they would attach to the device and sling it onto the mount underneath or on the aircraft wing. This appears to be just a section of one, and they are stainless steel i believe. Google a couple for photos. Numerous sizes were made I believe. Good luck.

  5. #5


    You ripper Dannon

    Found a picture too

    Will find more details and post ~ thanks mate !!

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    Hi Stu,
    Have a look at the Budd RB Contestoga RB 1. Developed during WW2 and was made from Stainless.
    It was developed for the USN and first flew in 1943 I believe. It was never an operational airframe but one for your WW2 SSteel aircraft argument mate.

    Love your work cobber
    All the best

  7. #7


    Well~ We have found it .. Thanks to Danno81

    WOO HOO ~

    Thanks to a USA (Arizona) War member I have positrively identified the item or part of ~

    Been researching all afternoon with one in delude!

    It is a Bomb rack !!

    BUT ~ WHAT a fantastic find..

    AND as Mareeba was a bomber and fighter base ~ just maybe this was retrieved from a Battle damaged they did fly combat flights daily out of Mareeba and other north QLD aerodromes ~ or perhaps it was retrieved from a battle damaged plane in New Guinea and returned to Tinaroo (?)


    These were fitted to an array of aircraft , mostly USA P40, P38, P39. B17, B24 ~ ect.


    (pages 95- 102)

    HyperWar: Aircraft Airmament

    Shackles are used instead of racks in planes which carry their bombs on vertical rails attached to the side of a bomb bay or at the centre of the bay.

    As you know, shackles are not permanently fastened to the plane like racks, but are attached with a hinged connection to hooks on the rails in the bomb bay. Shackles can be, and often are, fastened to the bomb before it is mounted to the plane.

    Army-type airplanes usually suspend bombs internally, and many Navy planes are Army types taken over by the Navy—such as the Liberator and the Mitchell.

    On these, the Mk 5 shackle is used. This is very similar to Army shackles—in fact, can be used interchangeably with Army equipment.

    As you can see from figure 53, the operating mechanism of the Mk 5 shackle has no direct connection with the plane. The two levers sticking up from the shackle, which control the releasing and arming mechanisms, mate with slots on a RELEASE MECHANISM attached to the plane.

    Figure 54 shows a release mechanism. The levers of the release mechanism can be operated from the bomber's compartment, electrically or manually. There are two types of release mechanism, the A-2 and the N-2. In both types, the bomb can be released manually, but only in the unarmed condition.

    So, manual release is used ONLY to JETTISON bombs. Manual release, moreover, is always in salvo—all the bombs in the bay are dropped at once.

    When bombs are to be dropped armed, they are always released ELECTRICALLY. The A-2 type mechanism provides only for selective—one at a time-electrical release. The N-2 mechanism permits EITHER

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Thanatos ~ that is a very interesting plane.. thanks ~

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    See if you can find the makers mark or inspection stamp on it anywhere. This is usually a code number in a small circle, or possibly a little motif. This may give us a better clue as to what aircraft it was from. However, remember a lot of these parts were interchangeable between aircraft type so it may not help at all !! Be interesting to see if there is a makers mark on it though......

  9. #9



    Do you mean there may be another number apart from the 41G 4563 number? I will check it out for sure ~

    Stuart SS

  10. #10


    Yes Stuart. But the makers marks and/or inspection stamps tend to be very small and sometimes only half or badly stamped so they aren't immediately obvious.

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