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Everything posted by 10FM68

  1. I don't think this is actually a captured vehicle as such. It looks to me as though it has been used as a static crane - for unloading canal barges of gravel, perhaps? The rear bogie isn't straight, there is a missing bogie - no sign of any controls in the cab and it is settled on bits of plank in addition to its jacks. Just a thought.
  2. Here's a photo of typical UK-based NT trailers of the period. These are from HQ 19 Inf Bde deploying through Hamburg in the autumn of 1983 for exercises with 2 Div. They have no markings at all and the black paint is added pretty much at the whim of the painter - very often simply avoiding the tricky bits! The camouflage nets and hessian covers are tied on top of the trailers. There seems a lot of camouflage because this formation used complete hessian covers for their vehicles - rolls stitched together with green string - with black lines painted on in a rough brick pattern. These were used in the place of camouflage nets when camouflaged close to buildings - usually the HQ would be located in a "gut" - a German farmstead. The nets were only used when deployed into woods and fields. And, of course, nets were universally augmented by black hessian strips around the lower half of vehicles covering wheels and bogies as well as over windscreens and windows.
  3. No, it isn't 2 AGRA. That formation had gone by then, disbanded finally in 1962. I did know which regiment it was, but I can't remember. Wally is correct with the other Formation sign - it is London District, but, again I can't remember which regiment - though an RA specialist could work it out
  4. Steve, Here are a couple of photos of Martians which I took when I was a boy - so about 1968-70, something like that. They are of two separate TA units: the first is an AD regiment - with Bofors 40/70 and the other was a regiment equipped with 5.5" howitzers. They aren't great as it was a very simple camera and an even simpler person behind it!
  5. It would becaue RMP vehicles in Berlin were usually gloss black as in the case of the photos above. I would expect the RAF Police ones to be gloss RAF blue.
  6. If you think that's bad, just think how many Wehrmacht vehicles were left behind at the end of the war!
  7. Undercover Covers do a lot of British military canvas tilts etc, both stock items and bespoke. I do not know, however, whether they have SCC2 canvas, but they're worth talking to. The quality of their stuff is reportedly absolutely excellent.
  8. Have a look at your online entry - on the DVLA site and see whether your vehicle is now marked as exempt from MoTs. Mine had been so within a couple of days of having submitted the form, even though the V5 took a couple more weeks to come back to me.
  9. Were you still at Cove the following year on the night of the general election when the Sgts' Mess burned down?
  10. Bridging cranes were a nightmare. Our troop had a couple of Mk5s and a couple of Hydra Huskies when I was in Germany. Both spent more time in 37 Rhine Workshops than on the vehicle park - safe load indicators and boom extension sensors - they'd work their way through the line in the workshop, get to the end and go straight back to the beginning again as something or other would be out of date. The other thing was the pressure test certificate for the damn servicing trailer - the one piece of kit in the troop which never worked once during my 2 years in the troop. Even the Leyland Martian got a bit of a run out. We built an EWBB Bailey bridge over the main road for the Army Air Corps day using two Hydra Huskies - probably along the same lines as you did at Guildford - and at around the same time. We'd got as far as we could short of actually placing the span across the road for which we were going to get the police to close it for an hour or so. Typical conversation ensued - crane op, MPF, tp comd etc "nah, we don't need to wait, it'll only take us 10 minutes" (it was already dark and there was no traffic). So we did - but it was a close-run thing. Both cranes were at their limit - warning buzzer switched off - watching to see neither tipped by keeping an eye on the tyres - if the "squash" started to go out of them and they began to bounce we'd stop... But, we did it! Drama over, but the thought of tipping a crane onto the road when we were bending the rules was a bit "half-a-crown-sixpence"!
  11. The navigator can't be up to much, then - Valencia is in Spain!
  12. Armoured regiments in a District would be numbered in the series 20 - 49 the Gunners 140 - 149 and the Sappers 160 - 169. HQ & odds & sods 10 - 19. During the latter half of the 70s, though, The Blues and Royals were in Detmold and the Life Guards were the armoured recce regiment for 16 Parachute Brigade, so may have been using 16/2. But they were based in Windsor (Combermere Bks) and would have been providing the mounted troops for public duties. At the same time they generally had a squadron away in Northern Ireland and, later Cyprus. So, I don't know whether either of the Household Cavalry regiments at that time bore LONDIST markings. Have a trawl through photos on line, you may find the evidence you're looking for.
  13. Yes, these are standard markings for British military vehicles from the second half of the 1970s. LOND is London District and 73 is one of its infantry battalions. Field Force infantry battalions were numbered 7 - 11, Districts 70 - 119
  14. I share your interest in the products of the Rootes Group. I'd sell my soul for a Humber Box or a Snipe! Don't forget post-war Hillmans - the Husky was used in the 60s as a general runabout - replaced by the Morris Minor Traveller. (And I do hope the chaps above never succeeded in finding the fault under the bonnet!) And didn't the Queen's Baggage Train use Commers, later Dodges?
  15. This scam, probably the same scammer, was on eBay a few months back with the same vehicles - they aren't in Japan, but they are vehicles which are, or have been, on eBay being sold by their genuine owners. This white one was up for £30k back in March last year. It then came up for sale in October being offered by the scammer for considerably less. At that time, the scammer showed an address in Matlock, this time it's Newport. Quite a few of us simply report it to eBay, then it gets taken down, before the scammer starts again. I have no idea what would happen if you were to try to arrange a viewing - it's almost tempting to try! I'm sure there are loads more similar scams on eBay - just it's easier for us to spot the ones we recognise as odd. Having said that, I think the genuine owner's expectation of £30k for this is stretching it a bit - I'm sure it probably was owned by 27 Cdo Regt RA, but it would never have looked like that! PS - I see eBay have now removed the listing. Quite what the advert showing it as being in Japan is all about I don't know!
  16. The wool mix shirt came after the KF, first in a darkish khaki then in an olive green - which used to fade badly to an almost grey. KF shirts with collars attached, on the other hand were on issue from the end of the Second World war - once other ranks - ORs (your enlisted men) were allowed to wear the collar of the BD blouse open, they needed a shirt with a collar so a tie could be worn. The 1949-pattern battledress couldn't be done up at the neck so was always worn with a collared shirt and either a tie or, in the field, sometimes, a face veil. That shirt was made of khaki flannel. The shirt which followed the wool mix was the shirt GS which was more like a heavyweight cotton. And it's no good trying to judge orders of dress by looking at officers as they have traditionally dressed differently from the ORs with all sorts of variations, some small, others very obvious. For example even in the 1970s RE officers, on commissioning, were required to buy a light coloured khaki tie for wear with combat dress and a dark khaki tie for wear with Service Dress and barrack dress. Equally, in many regiments officers until the mid-70s wore puttees of a different quality and shade of khaki to ORs. And so it went on. Argyll & Sutherland Highlanders officers wore grey shirts - the King's Regiment officers wore a bluish-grey shirt and, during the decades of the KF shirt (and the wool mix shirt) officers regularly wore their No2/barrack dress shirts with combat and working dress, which, in most cases, were a light khaki (while officers of the Guards and one or two other regiments wore a shirt of a darker khaki than the KF!) Unlike most armies the British Army was never, and still isn't, truly unified. It is made up of a collection of regiments and each regiment has its own way of doing things and is allowed a great deal of freedom by the Army Dress Committee - though less now than in the past. The army was put together from regiments owned and raised by individuals, some of whom fought for the King and some of whom fought for Parliament during the Civil War - in other words, on opposing sides. Each regiment wore a uniform designed, chosen and paid for by the man who raised it - the Colonel - hence the start of all the differences which continue to some degree today. The trouble is, this is such an enormous subject it is impossible to cover all the variations, customs and so on in a thread such as this. So I'm going to stop now!
  17. Ratingen, I would suggest - about 12kms from Duesseldorf
  18. I think this photo was taken when the Cheshires were in Hong Kong 84-86. They have doubled up their water bottles and are wearing tropical DPMs while the observing NCO is in warm weather barrack dress and the civvy a lightweight suit. (Plus it's sunny - so they aren't in Wales anyway!)
  19. Was that the awful, cheap thing with buttons which were too small to stay done up and a collar which had no "stand" and used to stick up above the HD pullover collar like a pair of wings? Its only saving grace was that it wasn't scratchy, but it faded badly, the sleeves were too short - a horrible thing - its predecessors and its replacement which stayed until the end of combat shirts were so much better - mine still get an outing in retirement!
  20. In the above example, Clive, you quote blouses battledress - the word blouse was always used for a short jacket cut to the waist while a long one with a skirt below the waist could be a tunic, a jacket or a smock! Shirts were shirts, I think! As for the combat cap, I never really understood why they were so unpopular. They were modelled on the Norwegian cap with ear flaps for cold weather. I wore mine quite a bit in the field in preference to a beret. They had a peak which kept the sun or rain off the face, they were easy to keep in a pocket and easy to wash. Gen Moore wore his Norwegian one throughout the Falklands campaign and he was a Marine and certainly no "crow". And I have seen it worn in the field by individuals in SF quite happily. I see one was produced in multicam but I have never seen it worn - just appearing, new, for sale on eBay. The more popular beret, by comparison was useless in sunlight, useless in the rain, difficult to wash, bulky to keep in pocket and provided nothing beyond warmth for the top of the head. It is interesting to see how wearing headdress in the Army is itself becoming less common. Not long ago headdress was ALWAYS worn outside - no exceptions. Often it was worn inside as well. Then the Police gave up on it and, it seems the Army is following suit - saves them having to salute in public I suppose! I liked the bit about officers dressing the same in civvies! ... Might be true... a bit...!
  21. I can't answer your question about sizes of shirts, but as for the rest the answer is "fashion". It became very popular to blouse the combat jacket by tying the bottom drawcord tightish at the waist and then pulling the skirt down. This resulted in the skirt pockets being folded in two and, if a belt were worn, its being round them making using the pockets impossible. At the same time it bulked out the upper part of the jacket making it look a bit like a battledress blouse. It was a very popular thing to do for a while, but, to me, never made any sense and I didn't copy it. The hood was very rarely attached - some units didn't even issue it to their soldiers. Generally it was scorned because our training NCOs rightly railed against anything which reduced a soldier's senses in the field and wearing a hood diminished hearing - particularly if it was raining - so it was seen as being something no frontline soldier wished to do. But, again, fashions change and later the smock was issued with a hood (as was, of course, the SAS smock even at that time). So, merely fashion. The same applied to the combat cap - when the DPM version first appeared it had a great following, even being worn with a capbadge - for a very short time before it became unpopular for some reason - it was always more useful in the field than the alternative at the time which was a beret (the wearing of helmets in the field only became universal with the introduction of the plastic one, prior to that the "tin hat" was worn only in defence or under direct fire being carried for the rest of the time). The credibility of the combat cap sank yet further as it became used as a headdress for recruits who had yet to earn the right to wear their regimental headdress by "passing off the square". Regarding holding up combat trousers... fashion. At one time it was seen as very unprofessional to wear combats with a stable belt - your 58 pattern belt or something similar which avoided your having to break down your webbing, (you were only issued one web belt) such as a spare 37, 44 or 58 pattern web belt or the awful dark green plastic woven belt would be used. Later, it became fashionable for units to wear the stable belt with combat dress as it probably is currently. Some regiments and corps adopt habits frowned upon by others and customs come and go. in the 1960s, early 70s anyone likely to wear radio headsets used the "double pull" on his beret - cap badge in centre and roughly equal amounts of cloth each side. That went right out of fashion by the mid 70s. 20 years later it was popular to wear the beret with the badge over the left ear while Paras wore theirs rather like a flat cap with the spare cloth pulled forward over the forehead. Shrinking berets, on the other hand was always popular after the end of national service! Looking at your photo above you will see that the full length of the boot is left clear of the trouser ends. Again that was a fashion when high boots were introduced replacing ankle boots and puttees or web anklets. Prior to that it had been fashionable to pull the bloused trouser ends as far down as possible concealing nearly all but the body of the boot. Nowadays, it seems, the fashion is not to blouse the trousers at all. All these things change over time. But, it is a really useful way to date old photos!
  22. I agree, you're doing a fantastic job. I am simply awestruck by the skills some of you on this forum have. And the doggedness to tackle what often seem to be hopeless cases, or projects way beyond the capabilities of one man. There should be a special thread somewhere on here with just the words and photos of the restorer for us to scroll through on winter nights to appreciate the work done and enjoy looking at the finished result without the superfluous comments ,like mine! But, anyway, well done and, while I'm about it, Merry Christmas to you all on the forum.
  23. That was certainly an interesting link Tony offered to the MOULD site, but, as Richard says, the vehicle above has no connection. The MOULD vehicles were, according to Fletcher/Taylor 109" CLs in the ERM batch 03HJ71 to 04HJ03. 22 were insertion vehicles and 11 repair vehicles. They were also supported by CL GS stores vehicles. He is correct in that they were fitted with jerrican holders on the front and, in the photo he shows of them in civilian garb, the holders are all visible. As are the civilian style chrome aerials on the front wings and the diagnostic roofrack which was of very substantial construction. I doubt they would have been winterised - they had no overseas deployable role (hence their being CLs) and vehicles were only converted where there was a likelihood of their being deployed to the NATO flanks - 3 Cdo Bde, the RAF Harrier force, AMF(L) and so on. No, I think the vendor is on the right lines - he has an FFR with the correct details - even the lifting rings on the front bumper appear in the "in-service" photograph and the roof rack is of a regular pattern. The ERM is right, the fact that it's an FFR etc etc. As for what was inside, well it would have been equipment sourced from a number of different places and they were very heavily laden. Here are a couple more photos of the troop on exercise in Norway - again credit to the copyright owner on the internet.
  24. This topic cropped up a couple of years ago on this forum. As shown above, the mount was intended for the B vehicle fleet generally and a large number of short-barrelled .5" Brownings were procured. They were put in storage but appeared pretty much for the first time for OP CORPORATE. There are a few pictures floating about of their being used on ground mounts. The cupola ring was similar across the fleet identified by the little ball mounts. At some point the idea faded away as, for example, it was only the early batches of Bedford RLs which had them, the later ones having a simple plain cupola with no mounting. I think someone on the forum imported some of the mounts and passed them on to members.
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