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View Full Version : Excellent Read, 'From the Frontlines' A P51 Armourers story from '44-'45..



Xiolablu3
03-06-2008, 03:33 AM
Some very good info and funny stuff in here :-

http://www.cebudanderson.com/viewfromtheline.htm

A short excerpt from it :-

Being very late at night, all sorts of mechanics, armorers, and radiomen were all over that jacked-up aircraft like bees in a hive. In order to swing the landing gear, the battery switch had to be in the ON position. The armorers had removed the 37mm cannon to clean and service it and had just reinstalled the gun. There was ammunition in the ammo can. The armorers then somehow turned on the sun switch and the cannon fired one round. Even though it was a practice round, with blue projectile, it had a tracer compound, and it made a spectacular sight as it went over the farmer's chicken house and, of course, the unexpected blast got everyone's attention. This was especially so for a prop man who was working on a tall crew chief stand in front. He had just bent over to retrieve the large half-circle wrench which was used to tighten the prop hub nut. His timing was perfect for survival - while he was bent over the gun fired - right where he would have been in another second or tow. This may have been the only time a 37mm cannon of a P-39 was fired while it was on jacks!

Once we were told to bury some condemned ammo so it would not find its way into our aircraft. We had an air-cooled .50 with spade grips for defense purposes mounted on a weapons carrier. We took the ammo over to the North Sea in the back of our truck and proceeded to shoot it up--that was easier and a lot more fun that burying it. Our targets were the unneeded English beach defenses erected to repel the 1940 German invasion that never materialized. These defenses included pillboxes, mines buried in the beach, and the Beatty scaffolding that lined the shores to impede the progress of landing craft. One armorer would stand in the back of the truck to watch the corners disappear from a blockhouse. The occasional explosion of a land mine was a bonus. No one ever questioned this questionable activity!

Xiolablu3
03-06-2008, 03:33 AM
Some very good info and funny stuff in here :-

http://www.cebudanderson.com/viewfromtheline.htm

A short excerpt from it :-

Being very late at night, all sorts of mechanics, armorers, and radiomen were all over that jacked-up aircraft like bees in a hive. In order to swing the landing gear, the battery switch had to be in the ON position. The armorers had removed the 37mm cannon to clean and service it and had just reinstalled the gun. There was ammunition in the ammo can. The armorers then somehow turned on the sun switch and the cannon fired one round. Even though it was a practice round, with blue projectile, it had a tracer compound, and it made a spectacular sight as it went over the farmer's chicken house and, of course, the unexpected blast got everyone's attention. This was especially so for a prop man who was working on a tall crew chief stand in front. He had just bent over to retrieve the large half-circle wrench which was used to tighten the prop hub nut. His timing was perfect for survival - while he was bent over the gun fired - right where he would have been in another second or tow. This may have been the only time a 37mm cannon of a P-39 was fired while it was on jacks!

Once we were told to bury some condemned ammo so it would not find its way into our aircraft. We had an air-cooled .50 with spade grips for defense purposes mounted on a weapons carrier. We took the ammo over to the North Sea in the back of our truck and proceeded to shoot it up--that was easier and a lot more fun that burying it. Our targets were the unneeded English beach defenses erected to repel the 1940 German invasion that never materialized. These defenses included pillboxes, mines buried in the beach, and the Beatty scaffolding that lined the shores to impede the progress of landing craft. One armorer would stand in the back of the truck to watch the corners disappear from a blockhouse. The occasional explosion of a land mine was a bonus. No one ever questioned this questionable activity!

steiner562
03-06-2008, 06:33 AM
Excellent read http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif

Daiichidoku
03-06-2008, 07:30 AM
50. cals bust bunkers!

danjama
03-07-2008, 07:42 AM
thanks that is brilliant, a rare perspective!