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WW2 Gunnery range - February 2010

Article about: HI all I have been back to the gunnery range I know about and had a really good day. The place is jammed with stuff and I end up only searching an area about 10metres square each time I go b

  1. #1

    Default WW2 Gunnery range - February 2010

    HI all

    I have been back to the gunnery range I know about and had a really good day. The place is jammed with stuff and I end up only searching an area about 10metres square each time I go because there's so much stuff there !

    This visit was a bit of a 303 cartridge day although i did find some other nice bits as well.

    Everything with a date on is always between 1941 and 1944.

    Sorry for picture quality......my son is still using my DSLR.

    Firstly before cleaning.



    There isn't a picture of everything after cleaning like I normally do, simply because there was too much stuff to do a decent picture ! So here are the finds in groups after cleaning.

    firstly a couple of 303 cartrdiges. Well.....a lot actually. 240 to be precise Took bloody HOURS to clean ! Most are spent from Bren guns, although a few are Lee-Enfield. I tended to find them in 'batches', 30-40 in one hole kind of thing.



    An example of the headstamps



    And a strange one.....a 303 welded to a Lee-Enfield clip.



    Lots of spent bullets too. Mainly 303 but some 9mm and one 45cal.



    A strange can. I have kept this 'just in case' as it was found next to a 2 inch mortar cap so is probably the right era. Anyone recognise it as anything ?



    A 2inch mortar cap and the remains of the fin off one, with what looks like the remains of a smoke charge or possibly phosphorus.



    Lastly some bits of grenade.



    Some nice base nuts. A close up of 3 of them below. Also interesting is that one of them appears to be brass rather than the 'normal' metal. I never realised brass was used for these caps.



    And that's it

    Hope you like the stuff.

    Cheers

    Steve T
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture Before cleaning.jpg   Bullets.jpg  

    303's.jpg   303 HS.jpg  

    303 & clip.jpg   can.jpg  

    grenade bits.jpg   grenade nuts.jpg  

    mortar.jpg  

  2. #2
    ian
    ian is offline
    ?

    Default Re: WW2 Gunnery range - February 2010

    in the pics of the 5 303 cases
    thay have a rectangular strike on the base
    that can only have bin fired from a bren gun
    as far as i know at that time no other british 303 gun had a rectangular firing pin cheers ian
    the top two ?could be 1919a4 or number 4

  3. #3

    Default Re: WW2 Gunnery range - February 2010

    Yeah.....that's what i thought Ian ( above the picture I do say that most are from Bren guns ). Interesting that one of them has even got a extraction mark on the base. Well......more like a gouge actually

    Steve T

  4. #4
    ian
    ian is offline
    ?

    Default Re: WW2 Gunnery range - February 2010

    the extraction mark may denote a parsial miss feed
    as normaly the extractor does not mark the case
    cheers ian

  5. #5

    Default Re: WW2 Gunnery range - February 2010

    Crackin finds mate... sure is a little gold mine you've got yourself there!

  6. #6

    Default Re: WW2 Gunnery range - February 2010

    well done Steve, nice to find some complete 303's most of the one i find a broken or so brittle when you touch them they fall apart. Are you digging in sand?
    That brass grenade plug is quite rare i think?

  7. #7

    Default Re: WW2 Gunnery range - February 2010

    Woody - thanks mate

    Whitehunter - Yes it is sand so the cartridges have faired much better being in ground that is 'drier' thank soil. As to the brass grenade nut, this is the first one I have ever seen. Anyone know just how 'rare' they are ?

    Cheers

    Steve T

  8. #8

    Default Re: WW2 Gunnery range - February 2010

    Steve
    What a volume! there's some lovely finds, but I hope you didn't have to walk too far from your car because lugging that weight back must have been something. I know what you mean when you say cleaning them took bl##dy hours. I'm still slogging through all those tags I found! can only manage 40 a night.
    Your site looks very promising being a former range but always remain cautious because there's still likely to be a fair amount of unexploded ordnance.
    Keep up the good work.
    LUCKYSTRIKE

  9. #9

    Default Re: WW2 Gunnery range - February 2010

    Great stuff Steve thanks for sharing. They sure had some strong firing pins popping on that range. Nice clean, deep strikes. Where they shooting into a berm?

    Jay

  10. #10

    Default Re: WW2 Gunnery range - February 2010

    Luckystrike - Yeah it's a little gold mine....but you're right. A very good chance of lots of live ordnance there so I dig slow and careful

    Jay - Nah, the firing positions are all up and down the dunes with no specific point as a 'regular' firing position. The way I narrow the search down is to find dunes that had a good view of the beach, or ones taller than the rest in the local area, or ones with a view down one of the 'paths'. However, most of the grenade nuts/bits I usually find in a deep dip in the dunes.

    The range is a good square mile so I reckon, with the little patches I search when I go there, it'll take me about 700 visits to cover the whole place

    Cheers guys

    Steve T

    Glossary of terms

    Berm - A berm is a level space, shelf, or raised barrier separating two areas.


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