Jump to content

Bofors....?


Recommended Posts

ISTR seeing what might have been called Green Archer on display at Duxford, which may have dated from about 1947. It went on to say that Green Archer took anti-aircraft gun technology about as far as it could but it was already rendered obsolete when it came into service because jets were simply too fast to hit by a man with a gun and the UK thereafter relied on missile technology and radar.

 

But, as usual, I could be wrong.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

As the merkins thought in Vietnam... ;-)

 

 

Absolutely: the Soviets were still using ZSU23/4s until ... have they got rid of them yet?

 

Typical NATO solution: go for high tech rather... come to think of the USN were still using CIWS to produce a wall of lead in front of their warships in ... do they still use CIWS?

 

Typical British solution: go high tech.

 

I have to say that in the summer of 77 we all went onto Salisbury Plain somewhere (the squadron leader knew where he was going: I only drove the Rover over over) and had a cabby at shooting down drones with the LMGs we were issued to mount on the gun rings of our Saracen ACVs. At the end of the day, apparently we hit one drone, because it ran out of fuel and was coasting out of arc in a straight line.

 

So when I say "you cannot hit a jet with a machine gun", what I meant was "the MOD decided that ..."

 

;o)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 4 weeks later...
  • 2 years later...
ISTR seeing what might have been called Green Archer on display at Duxford, which may have dated from about 1947. It went on to say that Green Archer took anti-aircraft gun technology about as far as it could but it was already rendered obsolete when it came into service because jets were simply too fast to hit by a man with a gun and the UK thereafter relied on missile technology and radar.

 

But, as usual, I could be wrong.

 

The equipment you were referring to , and displayed at Duxford, is actually the Fire Control Equipment No 7 (FCE7) for the Bofors, known as YELLOW FEVER. It could control two guns. A typical "gun sub" in the 60s consisted of 3 Leyland Martian gun tractors , a 40mm L/70 Bofors, an FCE7 and a Meadows 27 KVA generator. there were 4 gun subs to the troop, and two troops to the battery. The LtAD regiment had 2 gun batteries.

 

The FCE7 was introduced about 1960/61.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The tractors for ALL equipment in a LtAD gun-sub was the Leyland Martian. Each battery also had a Radar Set No4 Mk7 towed by an AEC Militant. 22 LtAD Regt originally had AEC Matadors for the gun-tractor role in 1960 before moving to BAOR, where they received the Leylands. They first got the FCE7 when at Gutersloh (Mansergh Barracks) The nickname for the FCE7 Yellow Fever was "Noddy Box".

Link to comment
Share on other sites

ISTR seeing what might have been called Green Archer on display at Duxford, which may have dated from about 1947.

 

 

The weapon you are refering to is Green Mace, one of the prototypes is also on display at the Firepower Museum in Woolwich. It was a 5 inch automatic AA gun developed for high flying fast aircraft. I used to see it when it was outside the Rotunda and wondered if it would have ever been practical, it weighed around 30 tons and had a very high profile, as well as C of G. My guess is that the proposed towing vehicle would have been the Leyland FV1201(A) 30 ton Heavy Artillery tractor, a giant of a truck being 11 feet wide, weighing around 41 tons when laden.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ah green Mace the mighty dinosaur of the 40's/50s images attached. 4.5" barrell water cooled breech, anti whip rod, twin auto loading chambers about 90rpm in short bursts, firing buttons by AEC (Same as london bus bell buttons). Back looked like thunderbird 2 because of chambers.

 

Met a bloke when I was working there had fired the damned thing ( from a distance) the guys from back of house were overjoyed to pick his brain. A visiting officer from shoebury later told me that film existed of it firing, three spent ejecting from chute and one from barrel in single view. Traced to RCS Shrivenham and copy obtained.

Green Mace 01.jpg

Green Mace 02.jpg

green mace cab.jpg

green mace chamber.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Around that date 1978/9 i was working in Folkestone and the old A20 ran right behind our depot the part called Churchill ave, on this goodley day i observed convoys of bofors and the radars towed by Militants coming in from Dover Docks. One large convoy came through about lunchtime so i followed them to Shornecliffe where they were refuelling before moving on this could have been 16th regt returning from Germany to pension off the guns. Plenty of landrovers, RLs and MKs to did i have a camera did i hell one of those days that i had left it at home otherwise i would have had some excellent shots

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...
The tractors for ALL equipment in a LtAD gun-sub was the Leyland Martian. Each battery also had a Radar Set No4 Mk7 towed by an AEC Militant. 22 LtAD Regt originally had AEC Matadors for the gun-tractor role in 1960 before moving to BAOR, where they received the Leylands. They first got the FCE7 when at Gutersloh (Mansergh Barracks) The nickname for the FCE7 Yellow Fever was "Noddy Box".

 

My militant served with the 22LtAD, I don't have the B service card to hand, but I remember that was the only Regt shown on it, i think it was in the early 1960's.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Around that date 1978/9 i was working in Folkestone and the old A20 ran right behind our depot the part called Churchill ave, on this goodley day i observed convoys of bofors and the radars towed by Militants coming in from Dover Docks. One large convoy came through about lunchtime so i followed them to Shornecliffe where they were refuelling before moving on this could have been 16th regt returning from Germany to pension off the guns. Plenty of landrovers, RLs and MKs to did i have a camera did i hell one of those days that i had left it at home otherwise i would have had some excellent shots

 

Memory (could be flawed) suggests to me that 16 Light AD were at Dortmund about 1978 along with an awful lot of RA assets including 3RHA whose J Bty provided Swingfire support for 15/19H. I am sure 16 LAD were also 3 Armd Div assets because they popped up on OrBats that I saw, but as divisional Recce Regt, we never saw AD assets.

 

Memory suggests that at some time between 1978 and 1982, 16 LAD were replaced by 12 LAD. Which ties in with your post.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ah green Mace the mighty dinosaur of the 40's/50s images attached. 4.5" barrell water cooled breech, anti whip rod, twin auto loading chambers about 90rpm in short bursts, firing buttons by AEC (Same as london bus bell buttons). Back looked like thunderbird 2 because of chambers.

 

Met a bloke when I was working there had fired the damned thing ( from a distance) the guys from back of house were overjoyed to pick his brain. A visiting officer from shoebury later told me that film existed of it firing, three spent ejecting from chute and one from barrel in single view. Traced to RCS Shrivenham and copy obtained.

 

I cant' swear to it being the EXACT same model. But I saw what APPEARED to be one of these guns outside a hanger at Duxford IWM collection. Hopefully, it has been preserved & in thier collection now?

Mike.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Memory (could be flawed) suggests to me that 16 Light AD were at Dortmund about 1978 along with an awful lot of RA assets including 3RHA whose J Bty provided Swingfire support for 15/19H. I am sure 16 LAD were also 3 Armd Div assets because they popped up on OrBats that I saw, but as divisional Recce Regt, we never saw AD assets.

 

Memory suggests that at some time between 1978 and 1982, 16 LAD were replaced by 12 LAD. Which ties in with your post.

 

I joined 16 in 1978 14 bty they were in Kirton Lindsy and had been for a bit It was an an old Defiant fighter base (polish Sqns I beleve) there were two btys with Rapier fsb1 and 30 bty still had 40/70 Boffers and a mix of Millitant and Leyland Martins I was there for the final firing over the old airfield. A Looooooooooooooooooong time ago

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Firepowers Green Mace is the only one extant, there were other experiments including a single autofeed barrel powered by a couple of B40 engines and a conveyor belt either side at the rear for loading the shells.

 

The experiments did lead to the 4.5" automatic Naval gun.

 

They (Duxford) may well have done an exchange for something then? Museums do move things around to better thier collections.........:-\

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Memory (could be flawed) suggests to me that 16 Light AD were at Dortmund about 1978 along with an awful lot of RA assets including 3RHA whose J Bty provided Swingfire support for 15/19H. I am sure 16 LAD were also 3 Armd Div assets because they popped up on OrBats that I saw, but as divisional Recce Regt, we never saw AD assets.

 

Memory suggests that at some time between 1978 and 1982, 16 LAD were replaced by 12 LAD. Which ties in with your post.

 

 

I don't think that the LtAD units (Bofors ,Thunderbird and Rapier) were Division assets. Certainly in the 1960s, when 22 LtAD moved from Pembroke Dock to BAOR, they were grouped together (12, 16 and 22 plus the two Thunderbird units) into 7th Artillery Brigade. This , of course, could have been changed, as the only Artillery Brigade I can find is the 1st (HQ Hildesheim), which had the Heavy and Missile stuff.

 

I would assume that they became divisional assets when they changed from Rapier to Stormer/ HVM.

 

Incidentally, the cyclic rate of fire for the L70 Bofors was 240 rpm, although only 160-180 rpm was practicable, and then the barrel started to get a little warm! The only aircraft shot down by a British Bofors in "peacetime" was an Indonesian Hercules over Borneo (40 Bty "The Old Rooks" from 22 LtAD Regt, I believe).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 12 years later...

Just been doing a bit of research on the history of the kit I used in Germany, No 735 Radar Signals Unit (also known as the Mobile Radar Bomb Scoring Unit. We always refers to the radars as the AA7 Mk4 Gun Laying Radar but it looks like it is a repurposed “Yellow Fever” system. They were used in Germany to simulate SA3 and SA6 missile systems and were instrumental in the work up phase for GW1 . When our unit shut in late 91 they were scrapped, although I have the fire control panel to remember a great tour. 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...