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Air Dropped One Man Radio Shack Shelter S-57/SG


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I just received a phone call response to a WWII Militaria Wanted ad I run in my community newspaper. So I asked what do you have. He responded " I have a one man radio shack shelter that was designed to be air dropped onto pacific islands during WWII for observation purposes." After thinking KFC, I asked him to describe it and even after his description I had not a clue what he was talkiing about. He only lives 10 minutes from my house so I paid him a visit and the attached pictures are the result.

 

It looks like small, sheet metal box like structure, with a door, screen door, windows and vents built into it. The designation is Shelter S-57/GR as shown on the large data plate. The man is currently using the shelter as a storage shed so I couldn't get any good pictures of the inside, but he said that the remnants of a built in folding cot are inside on one wall. Also there are hookups for radio gear into the ceiling, into what I assume are antennea mounts on the roof.

 

So if the Army wanted to easily drop a radio operator into the boonies and provide him a water tight, storm proof, insect proof shelter and place to set up his radio, this would have been ideal. It is in remarkably good shape for having been out in the elemnts for half a century. Unfortunately, I have no place to keep it out of the elements, so I will have to pass on this purchase. Too bad!!

 

As always, all comments, additional information and corrections are welcome!!

 

Bob

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"No bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. He won it by making the other poor, dumb, bastard die for his country" George Pattons speech to the Third Army.

 

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More views.

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"No bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. He won it by making the other poor, dumb, bastard die for his country" George Pattons speech to the Third Army.

 

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Inside Views.

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"No bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. He won it by making the other poor, dumb, bastard die for his country" George Pattons speech to the Third Army.

 

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Hello Bob. I'm glad to see you are still with us. I thought maybe there was a cave in at the cave.

 

That is an interesting item. Surely you can fit it in somewhere. Living room, dining room, something...

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PLEASE NOTE: THIS COMMUNITY MEMBER, SADLY, HAS PASSED AWAY

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Brother Craig, yes, the rumors of my death have been greatly exaggerated! Work and family has been a real time black hole over the last two months, so have barely been able to read the forum, let alone post to it. Things should be getting better and I will be my normal, verbose self in no time!!

 

Bob

"No bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. He won it by making the other poor, dumb, bastard die for his country" George Pattons speech to the Third Army.

 

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kjones5452, You are correct!! The screen doors on my house are not in that good of condition!! There is not a single flaw on that screen door!! Amazing, that in the last 50 years at least one tool or item stored in that shelter wouldn't have poked a hole in that screen!!

"No bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. He won it by making the other poor, dumb, bastard die for his country" George Pattons speech to the Third Army.

 

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And it is in pretty good condition to boot!

 

-Ski

In Memory Of......
Pte Harold Griffiths, 1805, 1/6th Manchester Regt, KIA June 4th, 1915 in Gallipoli
Cpl Isaac Judges, 40494, 6th East Yorkshire Regt, KIA October 3rd, 1917 in Ypres
May they rest in peace.....

MSgt - USAF Retired

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Craig, No worries mate it's not going anywhere. It hasn't moved an inch in the thirty years the guy has had the property!! Do you think it is from WWII? I can't find word one on the web about this beast!!

 

Bob

"No bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. He won it by making the other poor, dumb, bastard die for his country" George Pattons speech to the Third Army.

 

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Craig, No worries mate it's not going anywhere. It hasn't moved an inch in the thirty years the guy has had the property!! Do you think it is from WWII? I can't find word one on the web about this beast!!

 

Bob

 

Bob,

 

It might date back to WWII, but my guess is that it's from the mid 50's to early 60's. Just my $.02.

 

David Albert

dalbert@sturmgewehr.com

NRA Life Member
Past President, The American Thompson Association
American Society of Arms Collectors
Ohio Gun Collectors Association
Carbine Club
Garand Collectors Association

International Ammunition Association
Contributing Writer, Small Arms Review Magazine
Co-Author, "Thompson Manuals, Catalogs, & Other Paper Items" Collector Guide
One of the "Other Authors" of "The Ultimate Thompson Book," by Tracie L. Hill
Eagle Scout, and Member of NESA

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Surely among all the members from around the globe, there's at least one or two from the Seabees or Engineer

branches that have handled and/or set these up, and can also decipher the model/serial number.

I'm startin to get curious cause I didn't even know something like this existed.

Can the owner shed any light, or did he get it as surplus?

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kjones5452, The owner got this shelter, that was already setup and being used as a garden shed, when he bought the house/property. He gave me as many details as was told to him by the previous owner.

 

Bob

"No bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. He won it by making the other poor, dumb, bastard die for his country" George Pattons speech to the Third Army.

 

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Make a heck-of-a sweat box.You should buy it and tell the wife its the new infa red sauna.Hang a heat bulb in it and your good to go!!!

 

RD

In Memoriam:
Lieutenant J.Kostelec 1-3 First Special Service Force MIA/PD 4 March 1944 Italy
I HAVE SEEN THE ENEMY AND IT IS DAYLIGHT
Forget about the tips..We'll get hell to pay (AC/DC)
"If you cant get out and run with the big dogs then sit on the porch and bark at the cars going by.."

Have you Hugged a Clown Today?

You Cant Get A Sun Tan On The Moon..





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Well, due to Robins abrupt declaration that the shelter is Post WWII manufacture, there goes the romantic vision of a lone Aussie Coast Watcher manning it on a Pacific island during WWII. So now the question is, what could have been its real function in a post WWII world and where would it have been used? Where was a need for an isolated, one man radio shack after the Pacific fighting ended after WWII? I doesn't look like it was designed for cold/arctic weather use, but for a more temperate, tropical climate. Afterall, we know there is at least 193 of the things made, if the serial number on the data plate is to be believed, so there must be some mention of them somewhere.

 

BTW. Robin, what year do you suppose this was made from the contract info. This would help the investigation tremendously.

 

Bob

"No bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. He won it by making the other poor, dumb, bastard die for his country" George Pattons speech to the Third Army.

 

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Bob

 

Any chance you know some Air Force guys or have an Air Guard or Reserve unit close??I am thinking you could ask a retired guy if he recalls them.We have a unit here that is pretty much or was a radar unit and now is a Test Squadron.They still have all these portable radar units and trailers/man shacks as they do a lot of that type work.After 9/11 they developed a system of inward looking radar for threats inside the US.Believe it or not there was no or very little capanility for this pre9/11.Everthing they expalined was an outward threat radar.Just an idea.

 

RD

In Memoriam:
Lieutenant J.Kostelec 1-3 First Special Service Force MIA/PD 4 March 1944 Italy
I HAVE SEEN THE ENEMY AND IT IS DAYLIGHT
Forget about the tips..We'll get hell to pay (AC/DC)
"If you cant get out and run with the big dogs then sit on the porch and bark at the cars going by.."

Have you Hugged a Clown Today?

You Cant Get A Sun Tan On The Moon..





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Are you sure it isn't an officers' field latrine..a kind of military Portaloo?!

 

Sabrejet ;)

"We shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be. We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender!"

 

Winston Churchill

" Life is what happens to you when you're busy making other plans."

John Winston Lennon

 

 

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  • 4 years later...

hi ramrob.i have spent ages looking for info on one of these shacks.i joined recently.my dad bought one of these back in 1990 very cheap it was .it has sat here ever since .the serial number is 602.by the way i am in the uk.thanks for your post rob.hope someone will read it.i dont have an inkling how to put any pictures but will try to get the younger genaration to do it for me.thanks alan

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  • 11 months later...

hi ramrob.i have spent ages looking for info on one of these shacks.i joined recently.my dad bought one of these back in 1990 very cheap it was .it has sat here ever since .the serial number is 602.by the way i am in the uk.thanks for your post rob.hope someone will read it.i dont have an inkling how to put any pictures but will try to get the younger genaration to do it for me.thanks alan

 

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