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  1. #1
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    lead banded 4.5 inch howitzer shell - why?

    good morning, please see the attached photos of a 4.5inch howitzer shell. Forget the colour, it probably isn't original but see the base and interestingly, the lead drive band. I'm fairly sure that the band is original, apart from the detailed machining, it is stamped with a broad arrow, an R and a crown. But what purpose would it have been made for?

    any thoughts?

    thanks, Dave
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  3. #2
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    bumb this thread
    Any Live or Dug ordnance shown by me has been disposed of by EOD personnel .

  4. #3
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    MRCW - Possibly - Midland Railway Carriage & Wagon Co., Ltd., Midland Works, Washwood Heath, Birmingham.

    What makes you think it's lead and not tinned copper?

    How high is that protusion on the base? How wide is the recess (approx 3.375")? How deep is the recess (approx .365") excluding the protusion?

    TimG

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    Hi
    What is the lenght without fuze and protusion base?
    In the picture the lenght seem very long...
    Are you sure the driving band is in lead? because i've already seen driving band, adapter and fuze painted grey...
    Regards

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    hi Doctor & TimG, I'll get back to you with measurements, the band is solid lead that can be marked with a finger nail, definitely not plated or painted copper.

    Dave

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    good morning, sorry for the delay in adding the extra details, its that time of year!

    height of protrusion above the base of the shell - 5mm

    depth of recess into the base of the shell - 8mm

    internal diameter of recess - 86mm

    length of shell, excluding the fuze, and to the base of the shell, excluding protrusion - 344mm

    hope that helps

    merry christmas to you all

    Dave

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  9. #7
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    The dimensions correspond with those of the recess for the base plate. As a generalisation, there are two methods of securing the base plate in the bottom of the projectile. The first and apparently preferred method is that both the plate and base of the projectile are threaded, the plate is screwed into the base. In the approved alternative method, the plate has a chamfer on its external face and is 'riveted' in place using the protrusion. The diameter of the recess on your specimen is the same as specified on the riveted method.

    Thus it would appear yours is an unfinished projectile. I would suspect that someone has added a lead driving band in lieu of the copper band, it appears very well done.

    TimG

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    Many thanks Tim, that’s very interesting. As you say, the band has been very well made, most likely in the ordnance factory. Strangely, despite its age the lead is not too badly marked.

    thank you

    Dave

  11. #9
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    Tim,

    What is the R stamp on the lead band, by the broad arrow? Is it the "Recovered Shell Stamp" (stamp GAS 14)? - for "HE shells recovered from empty firing proof and repaired for service". Might a proof shell for say proving fuzes have had the base plate not fitted?



    Tom.

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    Tom,

    I doubt it, if it were, I would think it would be the body that would be stamped. I would have thought that for any proof/testing purposes a fully finished projectile would be used. If it was for proving fuzes, it should in theory be stamped "P of F" - Proof of Fuzes"

    TimG

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