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Latest trip - USAAF gunnery range - March 2010

Article about: Hi all A few years back I stumbled across a beach, purely by accident, on which I found a couple of 50cal bullets. Returning a few weeks later with my MD, I found a bucket full of them and p

  1. #11

    Default Re: Latest trip - USAAF gunnery range - March 2010

    Bird Dog

    I shall be talking to PB again very soon as I intend going back to station 172. I have an idea where some of the 'components' of the base were and will try and pinpoint them on this visit.

    Interestingly I only found one 50 cal case. This leads me to believe the guys at the range were a LOT better at collecting and recycling the cartridges. Far more so than guys on USAAF bases who used to scatter them about like confetti

    I have a couple of ideas where some may have been dumped though (after speaking with PB) so hopefully I'll have better luck this time.

    Thanks

    Steve T

  2. #12
    ?

    Default Re: Latest trip - USAAF gunnery range - March 2010

    As an aside, I've found copies of the wartime records for Station 172 in the archives of AFHRA at Maxwell AFB, copies of which which should be with me in a few weeks.
    One file includes the official 1st Combat Crew Gunnery School History, which should be interesting reading.

    All the best,
    PB

  3. #13

    Default Re: Latest trip - USAAF gunnery range - March 2010

    Nice piece of investigative work there PB. The records will most certainly be interesting.

    If they have any nuggets of information which indicate good search areas, let me know and we'll take a trip down there.

    Cheers

    Steve T

  4. #14

    Default Re: Latest trip - USAAF gunnery range - March 2010

    Excellent finds Steve & Whitehunter!

    If ever in North Yorkshire, try the cove at Ravenscar. Aside .303 and the occasional 7.62... Musket Balls. (and for those inclined that way, there's plenty
    of fossils fallen from the cliffs on a daily basis!)

    Martyn.

  5. #15
    ?

    Default Re: Latest trip - USAAF gunnery range - March 2010

    I was passing Station 172 today due to another job and though it would be rude not to stop for a few minutes......

    I was able to find some of the original target railtrack that I needed to check the gauge of still in situ, and even the backfilled inspection pit for the target trolley where it's garage once stood.
    I also was able to do a brief survey of what seems to have been the site of the main lecture/instruction complex.

    Photo's of a few finds discovered with the Mk.1 Eyeball to follow in the morning.

    TTFN,
    PB

  6. #16

    Default Re: Latest trip - USAAF gunnery range - March 2010

    Quote by Paul B View Post
    I was passing Station 172 today due to another job and though it would be rude not to stop for a few minutes......
    And it would have most certainly been rude

    Quote by Paul B View Post
    I was able to find some of the original target railtrack that I needed to check the gauge of still in situ, and even the backfilled inspection pit for the target trolley where it's garage once stood.
    I also was able to do a brief survey of what seems to have been the site of the main lecture/instruction complex.

    Photo's of a few finds discovered with the Mk.1 Eyeball to follow in the morning.

    TTFN,
    PB
    Excellent ! Get them posted quick......this years 'monster' blitz week is next weekend.....7th, 8th,9th and 10th of May !

    Got my mothers 'holiday cottage' all booked up and the wife smoothed over. It is 10 miles from station 172 so it will be being visited

    Cheers

    Steve T

  7. #17

    Default Re: Latest trip - USAAF gunnery range - March 2010

    Steve,

    Please don't keep us in suspense ... we'd all love to see the photos of what you found ... I've been waiting all day


    Quote by Paul B View Post
    Photo's of a few finds discovered with the Mk.1 Eyeball to follow in the morning.

    TTFN,
    PB

  8. #18
    ?

    Default Re: Latest trip - USAAF gunnery range - March 2010

    Quick snap of the lumps that came home with me:

    Plenty of .50 Cal Blue-tipped M8 API projectiles, a few black-tipped AP projectiles and some shredded tracer projectiles.
    Tracer doesn't seem to have survived well here, probably as the projectiles would be pretty much hollow by the time they struck the target/shingle banks.

    A pair of .30 Cal AP projectiles turned up this time, along with a solitary cast brass wing-nut from an ammo box.

    All the best,
    PB
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture A10bits-s.jpg  

  9. #19

    Default Re: Latest trip - USAAF gunnery range - March 2010

    Paul,

    Nice finds ... especially with eyes only ... particularly impressed with the ammunition box wing nut ... I'd love to find some wing nuts to go with my .50 cal shipping crate that I recovered from a barn 'somewhere in england' back in the 1980s (when one could still find such things)

    All the best,
    Gremlin

  10. #20
    ?

    Default Re: Latest trip - USAAF gunnery range - March 2010

    Ta Gremlin,

    Boxes in barns certainly aren't as common as they once were, but they are still turning up on occasion.
    My AN/M126A1 nose fuze crate (for M47 100lb incendiary bombs) came from a shed at Grafton Underwood about 20 years ago, but within the last 12 months a pair of finger-jointed wooden .50 cal crates were recovered from a shelf at another former 8AF base nearby.
    I'll try to remember to get some photos of them at the weekend.

    All the best,
    PB

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