Well, I returned to the airbase I visited last weekend with the hope of digging the dump. I duly arrived at the farm early in the morning and spent a good 30 minutes chatting to the landowner. The conversation got round to the dump, at which point he told me he had dumped about 4 feet of soil on top of the dump about 10 years ago. DAMMIT !!
So, I decided to go detecting in a wooded area next to the old tech site/main hanger, in the vicinity of my P51 radio shelf find.
To begin with, things were rather disappointing with very few detections, and those I got were usually shotgun shells. It would seem as though his assertion that the site had been 'done to death' over the years was accurate. It also started peeing it down and I was soon soaked to the skin. However, I was determined to come away with something and took an unusual course of action for me. I had spotted a small clearing in the middle of a massive stack of 6 foot high nettles and brambles the size of small houses, and plunged in, wading through the plants from hell !!! After 15 minutes of cursing, swearing, yelps of pain and general shouting, I reached the clearing. It was about 20 feet square and covered in small nettles and other plants. On went the detector and I initially thought water had got into the case as it would simply not shut up. Where-ever I scanned, beeps came forth. I edged back into the brambles/nettles and moved in from the edge and began to pinpoint separate signals. First one, small piece of airframe. Second, another bit of airframe. Third, a 50 cal...........and so on. I was in the clearing for an hour and more or less dug the whole bloody thing !
So, for a site that had been searched numerous times, I had found the spot that nobody had previously dared to venture into. Just goes to show, sometimes it is worth losing half a pint of blood and all feeling in both legs below the knee, (DAMN NETTLES !)
This is what I ended up with. Lots of bits of metal !
Odd little alloy pipe with a brass sleeve.
A piece of lead with 38/20 and 1952 on it. Kept it because I was curious as to what it was off !
This big bit of airframe was originally in one piece but broke in half during recovery. No markings on it that I can find but an interesting lump and certainly off an aircraft, given the alloy and rivets. Each piece is 18inches by 6 inches.
Anyone ID it ?
And lastly, the finds that made the trip worthwhile. Even though I already have hundreds of 50cals, I'll never get tired of digging them up and adding them to my collection !!!
Curiously, every single one of them is unfired, (caps soaked in WD40 to kill them off ).
All WW2 dated and mixed manufacturers.
Not a great visit, but you can't turn your nose up at 20 free .50cal WW2 dated cartridges