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USAAF Groundcrew, unsung heroes on the ground


27thdivcollector
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27thdivcollector

Here is a photo of a couple of Luftkin tape measures, one 50 foot the other 25 foot. Both tapes have the leather embossed with "Air Corps, U.S. ARMY". Also in the picture are two dzus tools, these were used to open the hatches and panels on aircraft. Both are marked "SAAD" for the San Antonio Aero depot. The bottom example has brown bakelite handles and "AIR COPRS" embossed on them. The top example has plain wood handles, with SAAD and the part no. stamped into it.There is a third type that I know of, but as yet have not been managed to get one, which has plain black bakelite handles.

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i have just been looking at one of those tape measures Andy !!!

 

The lengths you'll go to in pursuit of your collecting, Carl! ;)

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27thdivcollector

OK YOU GUYS (Ian and Carl) what this thread is lacking is a nice photo of an A4 Mechanics Cap, I don't have one yet but I know the two of you have, so please can we see a nice photo of one magically appear here?

Thanks.

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littlebuddy

there you go Andy !!!! somthing to get you drooling !!!!! one day it might magiacally change into a 1911 !!!post-106122-0-13683200-1368281307.jpg

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littlebuddy

 

The lengths you'll go to in pursuit of your collecting, Carl! ;)

well, me being a joiner Ian i had to have a look at one !!! ;)

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27thdivcollector

Beautifull hats fellas, thanks for taking the time to photo them and post them on here, it is very much appreciated. Ian is yours a Goodwear too?

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Beautifull hats fellas, thanks for taking the time to photo them and post them on here, it is very much appreciated. Ian is yours a Goodwear too?

 

Yes...I should've photographed the label before putting it on the display head! :wacko: Seems like they were major contractors as they're name crops up often in relation to A4s.

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27thdivcollector

Thanks for that, all the ones I've seen have been Goodwear, I wonder who else made them?

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Thanks for that, all the ones I've seen have been Goodwear, I wonder who else made them?

 

Gary Eastman!! :lol:

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27thdivcollector

[

 

]Here is another mannequin, this time portraying a member of the USAAF Military Police. When the bomb groups first arrived at their stations in England, military police duties were performed by the ground personnel. The men served as MP's on a rotation system (took it turns), it wasn't until later on in the war that official Aviation Military Police Companies were sent to England to protect the bases and to Patrol the surrounding areas. This MP has been issued with the Springfield rifle, this along with the M1 carbine was a standard issue weapon for airfield defense.

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27thdivcollector

This is probably the most boring picture ever posted on this whole forum, however bare with me........

When I visited Thorpe Abbotts, 100th Bomb Group Memorial Museum I spoke to the curator about the various tools on display. I asked him about the various spanners (wrenches) on display, he explained that they were donated to the museum by a former crew chief Bob Spangler and that they were the very tools he used on the hardstand while stationed at Thorpe Abbotts. I made a note of the maker and set out to try and find some.

The spanners are made by Bonney, they are plated so that if dropped they wouldn't spark, the last thing you need on a hardstand are sparks when your surrounded by aviation fuel. The claw is stamped

"Bonney made in U.S.A." and forged into the shank is the wrod "Zenel". Zenel was a type of alloy used by Bonney from the late '30's to the early '50's. There is also a date code of two letters forged into one end of the shank. The first letter denotes the month of manufacture and the second the year.

S=1941

T=1942

U=1943

V=1944

W=1945

So, if you had a wrench that has the date code CU this would indicate that it was manufactured in March 1943.

Other wrenches used were made by Plum. Plum or Plomb tools which were stamped WF were part of a large military contract from the years 1942-1945. WF signifies that they were destined for the huge supply depot at Wrights Field.

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This is part of the ground crew of B-17F "Fast Worker II" She was in the 359th BS 303rd BG (H) at Molesworth England. It looks like they are all wearing knit caps.

Steve

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