Become our sponsor and display your banner here
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 15

WW2 gunnery range - First visit for a year.....and what a result !

Article about: Hi all Well, today I returned to the gunnery range I 'found' last year. I was damn lucky as the farmer informed me he had just harvested and ploughed the fields so I had free reign over the

  1. #1

    Default WW2 gunnery range - First visit for a year.....and what a result !

    Hi all

    Well, today I returned to the gunnery range I 'found' last year. I was damn lucky as the farmer informed me he had just harvested and ploughed the fields so I had free reign over the whole area.

    Initially I concentrated on the aiming point for the 2 inch mortars, which I had pinpointed last year. I didn't do any detecting, just walked the field. After an hour I had to go back to the car as I couldn't carry any more stuff !!! Once back, I decided to head back to the area, (also pinpointed last year), where they were firing the 2 inch mortars from. I was getting a little disheartened as, after an hour of detecting, I had just a handful of smashed up 303s. Then I found a 2inch safety cap........and another.......and another. I slowed my walk and 'grid patterned' the little area to make sure I covered every spot. Quite a nice result in the end and confirmation of it being the firing point.

    Having cleared out that area, I went to search a field I had never detected before. First thing I found was a 2 inch para illum case in damn good nick, with even some paintwork still in place. A short distance away I got a No 36m base plug.......and another......and another........and soon realised I may have stumbled on the grenade practice area as well

    Not a bad 4 hours digging at all, and a relief to get back out there digging to be honest

    Take a look at the video of the dig.......

    Gunnery range - 2 inch mortar harvest - YouTube



    Here are the finds before any cleaning. I'll post more pictures once cleaned. I did give the base plugs a quick scrub to reveal the dates, (all 1943), along with 2 of the safety caps and the para illum round.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	DSC00140.JPG 
Views:	11 
Size:	185.0 KB 
ID:	553829

    No 36m base plugs, one filler plug and pieces of the striker column.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	DSC00142.JPG 
Views:	5 
Size:	122.2 KB 
ID:	553831

    303 cartridges, PIAT launcher cartridges, 303 bullets.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	DSC00143.JPG 
Views:	5 
Size:	114.5 KB 
ID:	553832

    Closer shot of the 2 inch mortar fins.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	DSC00144.JPG 
Views:	5 
Size:	218.9 KB 
ID:	553833

    No 161 fuzes, used with the 2 inch mortar round.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	DSC00145.JPG 
Views:	5 
Size:	207.0 KB 
ID:	553834

    Safety caps for No 161 fuze, all of which are marked 'Removed Before Firing' and some also appear to be maker marked.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	DSC00141.jpg 
Views:	5 
Size:	90.1 KB 
ID:	553830

    No 36M base plugs and filler plug cleaned.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	DSC00146.JPG 
Views:	4 
Size:	216.7 KB 
ID:	553835

    Two of the No 161 fuze safety caps cleaned. The one on the right appears to have a makers mark

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	DSC00148.JPG 
Views:	4 
Size:	157.1 KB 
ID:	553836

    The para illum 2 inch mortar after a quick clean. No other marks visible unfortunately.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	DSC00149.JPG 
Views:	0 
Size:	172.8 KB 
ID:	553837

    Last edited by Steve T; 08-16-2013 at 09:21 AM.

  2. #2

    Default

    You're going to need a bigger war room.

  3. #3

    Default

    Nah.......plenty of room left yet. Could also expand into the garage and/or one of the other bedrooms

  4. #4
    ?

    Default

    Quote by Steve T View Post
    Nah.......plenty of room left yet. Could also expand into the garage and/or one of the other bedrooms
    Maybe you should build a BIG dog house....just in case....
    JEDEM DAS SEINE

  5. #5

    Default

    Excellent result Steve, your stash looks bigger than I'd imagined well done, I Love that original paint still clinging to the para illum. Roll on seeing the cleaned up shots.

    LUCKYSTRIKE

  6. #6

    Default

    Thanks guys. I already have a dog house zwerge.......it's called the shed

  7. #7

    Default

    Link to video of the dig now added

    Gunnery range - 2 inch mortar harvest - YouTube

  8. #8

    Default

    Excellent vid!

  9. #9

    Default

    Thanks Reg

    Been cleaning some stuff.

    No 161 fuze safety caps.......

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	DSC00151.JPG 
Views:	5 
Size:	214.2 KB 
ID:	556220

    After cleaning I discovered I have three different variants. First off, impressed text, wide milling, (to aid grip when unscrewing), almost to base of cap.....

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	DSC00152.jpg 
Views:	3 
Size:	93.1 KB 
ID:	556221

    Raised text, some with wide milling as above, some with milling that only goes half way down the side of the cap. Interestingly, the ones with only half milling all appear to have both a makers mark and (possibly) a batch number as well.....

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	DSC00153.jpg 
Views:	2 
Size:	85.6 KB 
ID:	556222

    Makers mark.......batch numbers all different....

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	DSC00155.JPG 
Views:	2 
Size:	224.3 KB 
ID:	556223

    Lastly I have this little thing. Well, I say little, it is almost 2 inches in diameter. When first recovered I thought it was an old plug or possibly something off a bit of farm machinery. However, following the rule, 'Take everything home!!! Leave no 'crap' behind until you have positively ID'd it as crap when cleaned!!!!', I obviously took it home and cleaned it. Once I'd cleaned all the mud out of the domed portion, a small brass tube appeared which looks distinctly like a small booster or blast cap. When I cleaned the bottom, markings began to appear and, after some frantic scrubbing, a possible date....... 42.

    It looks like a blast/percussion cap from a large calibre shell. I have had a look through my various reference sources and can't match it up. Anyone recognise it ?

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	DSC00157.JPG 
Views:	3 
Size:	146.2 KB 
ID:	556225

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	DSC00156.JPG 
Views:	2 
Size:	221.9 KB 
ID:	556224

    If it is an cap/booster from a larger calibre shell, this will be the first evidence of such ordnance being used at this site. So far, all evidence points to it being small arms, 2 inch mortar, grenades and PIATs, with no evidence of anything else being used......until now??

    Cheers

    Steve T

  10. #10

    Default

    its the bit at the bottom of a 2" mortar illuminating round, as it sits in the picture the fins would be on top. If you look carefully you will see the 4 equally spaced holes around the chamfered part.
    Cheers
    Gary

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. WW2 gunnery range - Impromptu visit

    In Battlefield history and relics
    06-01-2013, 07:19 PM
  2. WW2 Gunnery range.....take 2 !

    In Battlefield history and relics
    06-01-2013, 11:45 AM
  3. 05-30-2013, 06:00 PM
  4. WW2 Gunnery range - Birthday visit ! July 27th 2012

    In Battlefield history and relics
    08-10-2012, 02:19 PM
  5. Afternoon at the gunnery range

    In Battlefield history and relics
    06-26-2011, 07:37 PM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •