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Australian WWII - Far North Queensland Metal detecting and recovery

Article about: Hi Blokes ~ I am posting this as an going blog for interested parties that have been following my fossicking of (extensive) WWII ~ Far North Qld Australia . This area has been described in r

  1. #641


    Yes indeed!

  2. #642


    I think your 2" Mortar Bomb is a smoke bomb judging by the number of vent holes in the base which looks to be 4.
    Yes you are dead right there ~ as I surrendered it ! Yes ~ But it was my very first 'live' find and being the naive little WWII detectorist I did not realise that the charge was a 12 gauge shot and being a paper case had totally disintegrated and the power would be more likely inert ~

    So I gave it to the QLD Explosives and mines folks who knew their stuff ~

  3. #643


    Three folk hunt ~ agreed from the Get- Go we would all rally even if it was raining on Saturday morning ~

    All went to schedule and we met up at the local road house and headed off around 08.00 ~ very light drizzling rain ~

    Skies did not look good and the drizzle continued bar for a brief interlude mid morning with sunshine ~

    Dwayne and Sue check out the nearby creek bed/ banks and surrounds ~

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    A very slow start and not looking good for a large WWII camp site ~ my first find was a small 'ladies' buckle in two pieces ~ which was to later prove to be a much earlier than 1940s era ~

    Then an axe head ~

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    Not a lot associated with AIF and WWII

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    It was not until we moved as a group the the north that targets started to appear ~ but what curious was that there was a lot of ‘double rivet studs and brass flat washers around 3/16” ! ??

    Long story short we found what we believe was a very early 1900s residence and stables !

    I found a nice 1910 Australia KG V shilling ~ then Sue cam e up with a 1884 penny ~ and a 1877 3d ~

    Dwayne was struggling !

    It was a curious mix of WWII and “colonial” bits ~ We debated the scene and seems there was 1800's residence and this site was then occupied by troops in WWII ~ I found what turned out to be a nice AMF tunic button which cleaned up nicely with a mere buff ~

    Then I found a Rifle stock back plate ~ and it is ‘huge’ with huge <3/8”> mount screws ~ I also found lots of strange caliber shell cases + brass shot gun cases ~ ??

    I also found a partial Sun baker ~ opps !~ Rain soaker ~ Ceramic Ink well ~ Sue was confident it was much much earlier than WWII period ~

    We worked our way back to camp for smoko around 11.30 ~

    By then I was soaked ~ the Auscam needs proper re-oiling ~ The plastic pants ~ never worn ~ the elastic is U.S. and my boots were leaking and saturated.. but as I said ~ “Best to be wet and warm ~ rather wet and cold ~!”

    So after Smoko we decided to push and do an hour or so elsewhere before calling it a day as we were all saturated and wet through ~ so what did we have to lose ?

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    The second site was even slower start but managed a few bit sna pieces includign a glass ink bottle , a primer flash tube.

    Home by 18.45 soaked drenched but a great day ~ ( Sue kicked on for an hour by herself ~ )

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    General concensus is the Ceramic ink well is a WWI issue as it is not marked and the base is not glazed!

    The glass one is definitely WWII period as it was found in such a dump !

    Then the detective work kicked in ~ Good friend in Holland identified the butt plate correctly, and affiliated with the number of cartridge cases I also dug ~

    Some more research and the cartridge bases I found in the same spot are ~base diameter is < 17.0 > mm!! No headstamp ~ too far gone !

    But in short we feel confident the rifle here was a P-54 Snider / P-53 Enfield~ The cartridge was 16.8 mm base dia. and the projectile ~ .570 cal. round !

    New replacement plate from IMA US

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    7Th Corp Stirlingshire Rifle volunteers 1853-1860. Holding M1853 66 Snider-Enfield

    Last edited by AT P Sweep; 05-26-2016 at 01:26 PM.

  4. #644


    Thats my dads blitz

  5. #645


    Hey guys thanks for all the information about the local area i have a bit of a collection of my own. Is there a way to go on a feild trip

  6. #646


    Does anyone know what this is?
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture 20160718_203833.jpg  

  7. #647


    Well ben a few days between drinks ~ Merete has been battlign with a toxic large toe and had lost the big toe and the second toe after gangrene and staff ~ then finally lost the big toe fortunately with no repocussion such s inbalance or handicap~

    I tell you sem folks are a &*^(*^&*( lot tougher than I think I could ever be with her 18 months of agony and in and out of hospitals ~

    Then I have to return to Brisbane for a operation so MD has suffered badly despite the local dam being at 46% ~ but friends have done some good hunts ~

    For example we have been working 1800s site and resulting in 1840 1/2 crown and several 1881 shillings not to mention small change ~ including coppers and misc relics.

    But if I retire tomorrow I am a happy man as I was hanging out for a Unit military badge ~ and on a short hunt ~ I am big on spontaneous two hour hunts of late ~ Just a sign of the times ~

    Then one of my short solo hunts in the Herberton high country I dug a crunched up washing scourer ~ I took a second look and burst out ~ "NO WAY!!"

    I saw beyond the crunched up bundle ~ I said to the MD Gods~ "Please don't let it break please ~ please ~ "

    I slowly and carefully unfurled it ~ only one small but crucial link broke ~ It had been twisted 180 degrees laterally and then folded in half and scrunched into a ball and thrown!

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    It took some positively identifying as the only reference on line was to a same being listed on EBay in NZ but this reference is/ was totally wrong IMO ~

    It was spot on from the blokes here on site that we confidently identified it ~ Thanks Blokes ~

    But I did find a single (indirect )reference in one paragraph section !

    Survey, Meteorology and Calibration

    Artillery survey is concerned with providing fixation (ie exact location) and orientation (where grid North is) to the guns, and other equipment and places. The goal of this survey is to provide this data accurate to the map grid in use, 'theatre grid'.

    As an intermediate step surveyed points could be put on a common grid, so that batteries are correct in relation to one another but not to the map. The mechanics of survey involve measuring bearings and distances (‘traverses’) using some form of triangulation from survey control points and related trigonometric calculations.

    These traverses 'carried' fix and orientation from a known point to an 'unknown' one. However, battery surveyors calculating from sun or star observations could provide accurate orientation earlier than accurate fixation could usually be carried (weather permitting).

    The topographic surveyors, who produced the data for map making, established their own triangulated survey control points, typically on high ground.

    These control points were seldom dense enough on the ground or in the right places for artillery use so artillery surveyors created their own additional ones called 'Bearing Pickets' (BP), they provided data for both fix and orientation. When the front was static surveyors would create a network of BPs in the likely gun areas so units moving in could quickly get onto theatre grid.

    Royal Artillery Methods in World War 2

    Then I also scored a Dutch coin and a Dutch service button which came as surprise as I for did not realise that there were any Dutch servicemen in this area in WWII.

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    So tight times but some successes ~

  8. #648


    Sad to hear of your health troubles but good to hear of your dedication!

  9. #649


    Cheers mate ~

    I feel fine but my issue was spotted in a routine check up ~ not inhibited in any ~ but for time ~ as it were ~

    At Ms M is on the mend and she is fighting fit if not just a tad lighter in the right foot ~ She won't be balleterinering but can still dance ~

    And I owe a big thanks to you and AIF or the tip on the Badge and it being an Artillery Surveyor's badge !

  10. #650


    Another little Gem I recovered ~ in fact I found a second one with ten days of the first ~ the second is basically trash ~ and will be disposed of!

    Impact #117 primer.. Not to be played with or bandied around with ~

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    To all tense and purpose these things are a tad dangerous! ~ but in theory being they are simple enough ~

    But I have our local UXO expert coming to take the best one away and check to make sure it is de-armed and then he will return it ~

    He even offered to give me a 25 lber HE projectile shell case to fit the primer ~ but I already have a case to suit ~ this will be then added to the recovered shell case (which I scored only several weeks back as well ) ~ projectile to form a complete ( de-armed ) unit ~

    Suggestive make up with a 25 lber Smoke shell I also have ~

    I realise that for many many of the members on site thsi is no big deal but for us Down Under it is !! LOL

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    Also dug several mortar primer charges ~

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