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MB_Avro_UK
12-04-2005, 02:14 PM
hi all,

As far as I'm aware,RAF aircrews did not carry sidearms e.g. pistols or revolvers.

US,LW,Russian,Japanese and Italian aircrew did??

If that is the case then I must ask why?

Perhaps it was because Britain had an unarmed Police force?

Best Regards,
MB_Avro

MB_Avro_UK
12-04-2005, 02:14 PM
hi all,

As far as I'm aware,RAF aircrews did not carry sidearms e.g. pistols or revolvers.

US,LW,Russian,Japanese and Italian aircrew did??

If that is the case then I must ask why?

Perhaps it was because Britain had an unarmed Police force?

Best Regards,
MB_Avro

MLudner
12-04-2005, 02:20 PM
They didn't? http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/blink.gif

I know ours - US - did .... and still do. Stupid not to.

joeap
12-04-2005, 02:25 PM
British police being unarmed should have nothing to do with it? What RAF crew flew planes armed with MGs cannon, bobms etc. but no pistols if they get shot down?

jds1978
12-04-2005, 02:26 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">MB_Avro_UK Posted Sun December 04 2005 13:14
hi all,

As far as I'm aware,RAF aircrews did not carry sidearms e.g. pistols or revolvers.

US,LW,Russian,Japanese and Italian aircrew did??

If that is the case then I must ask why?

Perhaps it was because Britain had an unarmed Police force?

Best Regards,
MB_Avro </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

i would be really surprised to find out that was the case http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/354.gif

PBNA-Boosher
12-04-2005, 02:43 PM
US Aircrews were issued with the .45 caliber Colt M1911A-1 Standard Army issue Pistol.

Also known as Colt .45

Great gun... great gun.

KRISTORF
12-04-2005, 02:50 PM
From what I have read, fighter pilots carried sidearms, however as for bomber crew I do not know

Daiichidoku
12-04-2005, 02:55 PM
many aircrew carried unauthorized firearms

heck, many brought all sorts of "contraband" up with them

many aircrew, esp fighter pilots, if issued with disearms, simply did not take them along, as they knew it would not stop a detatchment of troops sent to collect/hunt for him, and really didnt even want it around to make possibly trigger happy civilians OR military to get even more so

WOLFMondo
12-04-2005, 03:13 PM
I was reading about Italian aircrews in the Battle of Britain and the RAF was suprised when it found acrash landed Italian bomber to find the crew were all armed like infantry with rifles, side arms, steel helmets etc.

Taylortony
12-04-2005, 03:24 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by WOLFMondo:
I was reading about Italian aircrews in the Battle of Britain and the RAF was suprised when it found acrash landed Italian bomber to find the crew were all armed like infantry with rifles, side arms, steel helmets etc. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>


Thats cause they were expecting to get shot down lol.....a lot of RAF fighter pilots carried them, especially in the desert etc

Low_Flyer_MkII
12-04-2005, 03:24 PM
It was discretionary - some RAF aircrew took a revolver up with them to give themselves a faster end than burning to death, should the worst happen. Some took tommy guns up with them in case the opportunity to shoot up the enemy on a low-level pass should present itself.

PBNA-Boosher
12-04-2005, 03:30 PM
I remember hearing a story about a fighter squadron filling droptanks with beer, carrying them up on a short recon mission with them at high altitude. The beertanks came down cold and everyone had a cool drink afterward.

SkyChimp
12-04-2005, 03:32 PM
I suppose there is no way to know. Without doubt, some did, some didn't.

Daiichidoku
12-04-2005, 03:36 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by PBNA-Boosher:
I remember hearing a story about a fighter squadron filling droptanks with beer, carrying them up on a short recon mission with them at high altitude. The beertanks came down cold and everyone had a cool drink afterward. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>


it was known that many fighters would have "beer" drop tanks, to deliver to europe, shortly after D-Day

Taylortony
12-04-2005, 03:36 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by PBNA-Boosher:
I remember hearing a story about a fighter squadron filling droptanks with beer, carrying them up on a short recon mission with them at high altitude. The beertanks came down cold and everyone had a cool drink afterward. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>


You will be telling me they carried dry martinis next so they were shaken, not stirred http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif



serious they used to strap beer barrels on the wings to take out to the troops in europe, but as for altitude one would have have thought the gas would pop the cork out of the barrel at the rarified heights and one would pour a pint over several miles http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gifhttp://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gifhttp://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

SkyChimp
12-04-2005, 03:49 PM
German Condor pilots carried this very elaborate survival gun:

http://www.drillinggun.com/Dart/9/the-luftwaffe-drilling

Tooz_69GIAP
12-04-2005, 04:02 PM
There is a story I read in a book (forget which one) about a Spitfire squadron who were transferring over to France, and a good number of the pilots strapped beer barrels onto their aircraft.

One of these pilots (I think it was a Norwegian, not sure) apparently encountered a german fighter. The Spitfire pilot rocked his wings frantically to show he wasn't hostile, and it must have worked as the German flew up alongside the Spitfire, and the Spit pilot pointed downwards to his barrell, and the German smiled and gave him a thumbs up, and flew away!

That's how I remember it, but my recollecton is a little sketchy. I'll need to dig around for that book, I think I still have it.

MB_Avro_UK
12-04-2005, 04:26 PM
Hi all,

Having started this post I am still a bit confused (I suffer from a diagnosed medical condition http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/34.gif).

As far as I'm aware,RAF Bomber crews did not carry side arms. Is this correct?

Was it standard for RAF fighter pilots to carry side arms? I don't think that BoB pilots carried side arms ???

Best Regards,
MB_Avro

Monty_Thrud
12-04-2005, 04:40 PM
No...it wasnt standard...but ..yes they did...think about it...i'm over enemy territory...like lemmy says...just in case...kill 'em all

Low_Flyer_MkII
12-04-2005, 04:41 PM
I've had a long day and I'm going to bed. I'll post tomorrow with further details, references and anectdotes to elucidate upon my earlier reply. Of interest, the Short Sunderland was equipped with an armoury - rifle racks, Lewis guns etc; Al Deere took exception to Douglas Bader's comments about his squadron being 'line-shooters' for tucking pistols into the top of their boots. Stay tuned. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

SUPERAEREO
12-04-2005, 04:45 PM
Don't think BoB pilots carried side arms, but I read somewhere that prior to the deployment of RAF fighter units to advanced airfields in France just after D-Day, a good number of pilots armed themselves with pistols and hunting knives for the occasion.


S!

SOLO_Bones
12-04-2005, 04:51 PM
I can only tell you what my father told me. He was a RCAF Bomber Pilot stationed with the RAF. They did NOT carry sidearms. If they were shot down, the Germans would shoot them as they floated to the ground if there was any indication of a firearm. I guess to take no chances.

At least thats what the aircrew thought anyway. Whether the Germans really were that trigger happy or not, I don't know. The important thing is that the gossip on the base said they were.

Hydra444
12-04-2005, 04:53 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by PBNA-Boosher:
US Aircrews were issued with the .45 caliber Colt M1911A-1 Standard Army issue Pistol.

Also known as Colt .45

Great gun... great gun. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Ya don't say http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-surprised.gif Thank you for clarifing that for the rest of us http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/53.gif

SkyChimp
12-04-2005, 05:00 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by PBNA-Boosher:
US Aircrews were issued with the .45 caliber Colt M1911A-1 Standard Army issue Pistol.

Also known as Colt .45

Great gun... great gun. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Yes, the M-1911 was a great gun. Sometimes referred to as the "Colt .45" - wrongly. THE Colt .45 was the Colt Single Action Army "Peacemaker" in .45 Long Colt.

http://www.armchairgunshow.com/images/11SA-5163e.jpg

blairgowrie
12-04-2005, 05:03 PM
I have pictures of Tempest pilots and they all appear to be wearing sidearms. Maybe it was a question of where they flew. In 1940 most of the fighting took place over the UK.

In 1944 when the Tempests were introduced, most of the flying took place over occupied territory. I wouldn't fancy getting a pitchfork in my chest.

Fox_3
12-04-2005, 06:02 PM
Many RAF pilots carried service revolvers as part of theirbasic flying kit in North Africa and Burma.

MB_Avro_UK
12-04-2005, 06:18 PM
so...RAF Bomber crews did not carry side arms...and neither did Battle of Britain fighter pilots.....so when did circumstances change and why ??

Best Regards,
MB_Avro

Tooz_69GIAP
12-04-2005, 07:17 PM
My guess would be, if you're flying operationally over enemy territory, you have a sidearm for if you are shot down.

If you're flying over your own territory, i.e. as in the Battle of Britain, there's no need to carry a sidearm, so you don't.

Fox_3
12-04-2005, 07:18 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by MB_Avro_UK:
so...RAF Bomber crews did not carry side arms...and neither did Battle of Britain fighter pilots.....so when did circumstances change and why ??

Best Regards,
MB_Avro </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

The sidearm was basically a survival tool in the less civillized and populated theatres should you have to bail.

There are a lot nastier things in deserts and jungles than enemy soldiers.

ImpStarDuece
12-04-2005, 07:31 PM
Quickly flicking through the reference books I have with pilot uniform profiles it seems that pistols were not standard kit for RAF pilots in Europe during WW2. None of the ETO based pilots seem to have a guncase or pistol on their person.

However, it seems that pilots based outside of Europe did, particularly Commonwealth troops. The three profiles I have of pilots with personal weapons are for two Australians and a New Zealander, operating in the Western Desert or the CBI theatre.

So it seems that while it may not of been standard issue for European pilots, it may of been in areas where survival after a bail-out could be considered a little dicey.

I do remember watching a movie based on a Spitfire PR pilot who got shot down in the Ardenne forest and was picked up by a group of G.I.s. One of the few weapons the party had was the pilots Webbley revolver. It was supposedly based on fact, so perhaps pilots began to carry pistols later on in the war?

Enforcer572005
12-04-2005, 07:45 PM
They pretty much did what they wanted to....many of them carried webbleys, others had an assortment of unofficial sidearms. im not familiar wiht the official policy, but i know that thru the yrs, aircrews of all air forces improvised alot, regardless of the policy or orders. Alot of americans also carried SMith and Wesson or colt revolvers, as Govt model colt autos were at times in short supply.

When i worked at a police dept in the late 70s, another dispatcher, who was also an officer,asked me to clean his sidearm; i was surprised to see that it was an ancient Colt revolver similiar to the old Lawman design, but in 38spcl. It had RCAF stamped on the barrel, and had british proofmarks on it. He had served in the RCAF as a bomber crewman during the war, and this was the weapon he "aquired" while serving over Europe.

TAW_Oilburner
12-04-2005, 08:43 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by PBNA-Boosher:
I remember hearing a story about a fighter squadron filling droptanks with beer, carrying them up on a short recon mission with them at high altitude. The beertanks came down cold and everyone had a cool drink afterward. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

If you read Blackburn's history of VF-17 they talk about being able to take 4 or the 6 ammo crates out of the corsair and pack cases of beer in the wings.

Waldo.Pepper
12-04-2005, 09:06 PM
For the German side, during the Battle of Britain, from Steinhilper's book Spitfire on my Tail, after a certain date the Luftwaffe forbade their crews from carrying sidearms. (Don't have the book I lent it out to a friend!)

The reason? An officer was downed in the channel and used it to take his own life. High command did not want a repeat of this incident. No idea how completely this order was carried out.

Daiichidoku
12-04-2005, 09:09 PM
somebody mentioned knives

i read at least one account that a pilot and somer others in his sqd carry a knife to cut tangled chute lines, or even RT leads/oxygen etc
in a bailout

mandrill7
12-04-2005, 10:05 PM
Aircrew carried sidearms over Germany to prevent them being lynched by civilians. Civilians killing aircrew was pretty common after the big bomber raids. I guess if your friends and family have just been burnt or blown apart, you're keen to get some payback.

It's mentioned in at least 1 reputable book.

polak5
12-04-2005, 10:47 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Tooz_69GIAP:
My guess would be, if you're flying operationally over enemy territory, you have a sidearm for if you are shot down.

If you're flying over your own territory, i.e. as in the Battle of Britain, there's no need to carry a sidearm, so you don't. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Exactly i mean why carry that extra weight if ur not gona need it.
Anyway off hand i remember an account in wich a RAF pilot tried to shot at a group of tankers with a sidearm as they tried to help him. This took place in Africa.
Panzer aces.

Stackhouse25th
12-05-2005, 12:15 AM
If I was in the US Military flying F15's or something like that over Iraq I would definitely have Two(2) S&W Performance Center .45's with match grade ammunition (JHP's). I would be very heavily armed. So if I ever had to eject, I wouldnt surrender I would go down shooting.

For others, surrender is an option they choose, but not for me.

Udidtoo
12-05-2005, 01:05 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Low_Flyer_MkII:
I've had a long day and I'm going to bed. I'll post tomorrow with further details, references and anectdotes to elucidate upon my earlier reply. Of interest, the Short Sunderland was equipped with an armoury - rifle racks, Lewis guns etc; Al Deere took exception to Douglas Bader's comments about his squadron being 'line-shooters' for tucking pistols into the top of their boots. Stay tuned. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

About that earlier reply. I can totally relate. I hate with a capital H getting burned. Even small ones just irritate me no end.

I can't even imagine the agony that a pilot stuck in cockpit because of a jammed canopy and burning must have gone through until finally losing conscience or impacting the ground or water. I do know that the unthinkable, at least for me would look very attractive were I on fire.

HotelBushranger
12-05-2005, 01:16 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by PBNA-Boosher:
I remember hearing a story about a fighter squadron filling droptanks with beer, carrying them up on a short recon mission with them at high altitude. The beertanks came down cold and everyone had a cool drink afterward. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

I dunno what your story is, but in my biography of Clive Caldwell, Australia's top ace, it talks of his time in Darwin with No 2 Fighter Wing. They'd but beer cans in cannon tubes and fly them up and they'd be chilled. Another method was to put a stubbie in 100 Octane fuel. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

Oh and btw, I'm pretty sure RAF bombers had sidearms - No 38 service revolvers.

HotelBushranger
12-05-2005, 01:18 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Stackhouse25th:
If I was in the US Military flying F15's or something like that over Iraq I would definitely have Two(2) S&W Performance Center .45's with match grade ammunition (JHP's). I would be very heavily armed. So if I ever had to eject, I wouldnt surrender I would go down shooting.

For others, surrender is an option they choose, but not for me. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

I wonder if you would say the same thing if you were actually there in a real life situation.

Unknown_Target
12-05-2005, 05:34 AM
IIRC, RAF pilots did carry sidearms, but not all of them did.


Here's something interesting about that beer though - I remember reading that when B-24's were based out of Italy, there were many instances when ground crews would stash cans of beer in the airplane. When it took off and came back from the raid, they would land and the beer would be nice and cold from flying at 30,000 feet http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

ploughman
12-05-2005, 06:33 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by SkyChimp:
German Condor pilots carried this very elaborate survival gun:

http://www.drillinggun.com/Dart/9/the-luftwaffe-drilling </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

What a beautiful gun. Strange that Fw-200 pilots were issued it, looks like it'd be more comfortable on a grouse moor.

berg417448
12-05-2005, 08:39 AM
I've read about that weapon being standard on other larger Luftwaffe aircraft as well.

Doolittle81
12-05-2005, 11:27 AM
Does anyone know of any stories of downed pilots(US or RAF) who reported having fired their firearms, then were captured (or actually escaped/exfiltrated back to friendly territory)?

I would think that any downed pilot who actually fired his sidearm at enemy troops or civilians...well...would probably not have been captured alive to write such memoirs. If their goal was Death before Capture, then they apparently would have achieved it. A sidearm almost certainly would not change a downed pilot's situation, to the positive, one bit.......except in a very rare and unlikely situation such as one might see in a Hollywood movie.

Nevertheless, flying in Vietnam, I did carry the issued S&W .38, with its six rounds. It was somehow psychologically comforting.

As for a knife, as mentioned earlier, every pilot would carry a knife, or Two...it's for a huge variety of survival purposes..both in the air, in the chute, and later during any Escape and Evasion attempts.

MLudner
12-05-2005, 11:38 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Daiichidoku:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by PBNA-Boosher:
I remember hearing a story about a fighter squadron filling droptanks with beer, carrying them up on a short recon mission with them at high altitude. The beertanks came down cold and everyone had a cool drink afterward. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>


it was known that many fighters would have "beer" drop tanks, to deliver to europe, shortly after D-Day </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

How many got dropped behind German lines?

Friendly_flyer
12-05-2005, 12:24 PM
The standard British side-arm in WWII was the Enfield revolver in .380. It had a sawn-off hammer spur to avoid it catching in equipment when drawn. Though a nice enough design, it was not exactly a looker:

http://www.midwestordnance.com/enrev-2.jpg

Because a shortage of side-arms, some aircrew and other servicemen not likely to find themselves using their side-arm, where given outdated Webleys. Now, that is a good looking revolver:

http://www.australian-armour.com/throssell_webley.jpg

But as stated by a number of people here, quite a few airmen did not bring their side-arm. A cockpit is cramped as it is.

ploughman
12-05-2005, 01:30 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Doolittle81:
Does anyone know of any stories of downed pilots(US or RAF) who reported having fired their firearms, then were captured (or actually escaped/exfiltrated back to friendly territory)?

I would think that any downed pilot who actually fired his sidearm at enemy troops or civilians...well...would probably not have been captured alive to write such memoirs. If their goal was Death before Capture, then they apparently would have achieved it. A sidearm almost certainly would not change a downed pilot's situation, to the positive, one bit.......except in a very rare and unlikely situation such as one might see in a Hollywood movie.

Nevertheless, flying in Vietnam, I did carry the issued S&W .38, with its six rounds. It was somehow psychologically comforting.

As for a knife, as mentioned earlier, every pilot would carry a knife, or Two...it's for a huge variety of survival purposes..both in the air, in the chute, and later during any Escape and Evasion attempts. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Not during World War II, but I think I read about some downed Tornado crewman having a blast at some Iraqi troops with his pistol during the 1991 Gulf War. As I recall he decided pretty quickly, once on receipt of some fairly vigorous automatic rifle fire, to stop.

Stuka_G10
12-05-2005, 02:05 PM
I've got a tape of an interview with an RAF Battle of Britain veteran. He says that he was shot down over the channel. A boat came to pick him up, so he fired his revolver into the air to let the boat know where he was.

Aaron_GT
12-05-2005, 02:45 PM
Skychimp wrote:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">German Condor pilots carried this very elaborate survival gun: </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Similar weapons were issued to US heavy bomber crews in the Pacific, as was a .22 rifle. I think the intention was for them to be used against wild animals for defence or to provide a capability to hunt and supply food until such time as rescue was possible.

Aaron_GT
12-05-2005, 02:48 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">The standard British side-arm in WWII was the Enfield revolver in .380. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

A lot of M1911s and Browning Hi-Powers were also issued to UK troops. I am not sure if they were ever issued to aircrew, though.

SOLO_Bones
12-05-2005, 06:23 PM
[quote]Posted Mon December 05 2005 17:22
quote:
Originally posted by HotelBushranger:
Oh and btw, I'm pretty sure RAF bombers had sidearms - No 38 service revolvers.


I can only relate to you what I'm told from somebody that was actually there. Most of the bomber crews did not carry sidearms on operations. They were issued firearms but only used them to shoot rabbits and rats at the airbases.
This decision came from scuttlebut talked about at two different operational squadrons, Lancaster Finishing school, Heavy Conversion Unit and Operational Training Unit. So I don't think my fathers Crew was unusual in not carrying sidearms.

Enforcer572005
12-06-2005, 12:08 AM
in the USAF museum, there is a nickel plated Browning high power (9mm-been in production since 1935, used by both sides in ww2) that a downed skyraider pilot in Vietnam used extensively to hold off enemy troops until he was rescued....I think by another A-1 landing and picking him up under fire.

The 14 rd capacity and his extra magazines came in handy. A revolver is almost useless...ill never understand why they were sometimes issued in vietnam. This guy used his own weapon, and was glad of it.

If you take a browning, or even a .45 auto Colt (same designer-John Browning) and lay a 2"in barrle SW m-10 .38 cal revolver on it, you will see that the automatic actually takes up little more space lengthwise, and is considerably flatter, and far more easily carried. Revolvers were obsolete for military use by WW1, but have persevered for some reason.

the Drilling shotgun/rifle combos was also often issued to STuka crews. They were produced by Colt-Saur in the 70s again, and were very nice rifles. Our bomber crews in the 60s onward (dunno about now) carried a Savage break top rifle, .22 over 20ga i think, for survival purposes.

One of the japanes army aces (gotta look up his name) shot down a chinese airman (both flying biplanes), and landed at the crash site, approached the chinese pilot and got into a gunfight with him......he won, despite using a useless japanese design. He picked up the chinese pilots Mauser HSC .380 auto and carried it from then on. This was in an osprey book on JAAF aces.

Friendly_flyer
12-06-2005, 04:11 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Enforcer572005:
The 14 rd capacity and his extra magazines came in handy. A revolver is almost useless...ill never understand why they were sometimes issued in vietnam. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

You are absolutely right, except for two factors:

I - British conservativism
II - Automatic pistol mechanisms and ice, snow or mud.

In the climatical zones where the US usually conducts military operations, there are very few reasons to prefer revolver. As a Norwegian, I see the point though. On Svalbard (island not to far from the Pole), people goes armed for polar bear protection. The side-arm of choice is the revolver. I tried the very reliable Glock in the army. When temperature sinks below minus 30 Centigrade, it was best employed as a club.

It may be that the combination of jumping from airplanes at high altitudes and perhaps landing it the Alps would favour revolvers over pistols.

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">AaronGT: A lot of M1911s and Browning Hi-Powers were also issued to UK troops. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

I think automatic pistols first of all went to the army, though I€m not sure.

Low_Flyer_MkII
12-06-2005, 01:25 PM
Right, here we go.
I've read so much on WWII RAF lately that my eyes hurt. I have at my disposal, officially commissioned references, biographies, autobiographies, standard recommended works, lesser known histories, interviews I conducted myself a long time ago and websites too numerous to mention. I can find lots of references to Battle of Britain pilots taking revolvers/pistols with them - as we've touched on, many were terrified of burning to death so took a quicker alternative, there are records of firing pistols to attract air-sea rescue vessels, as posted. I can find no official regulation that states a pilot shall carry a side-arm, ergo I conclude that while certainly carried, these weapons were carried at the pilot's own discretion, as I posted earlier.
As an interesting aside, I discovered that Bomber Command crews, frustrated at dropping nothing more menacing than leaflets during the early stages of the war, took to dropping empty beer bottles over built up areas - believing that the noise of these vessels bouncing off of German rooftops would at least keep the enemy awake. South African bomber crews became so nortorious for this practice during the Libyan campaign, that they are given special mention in the officially commissioned history.

MB_Avro_UK
12-06-2005, 03:14 PM
Low_Flyer

Thanks for the info http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif

So it would appear that RAF Bomber crews did not carry sidearms in the ETO.

I have a few pictorial references to RAF Battle of Britain pilots but none were carrying firearms. Although a 'few' were carrying a pint of beer http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-surprised.gif

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v82/MB_Avro/aaf.jpg

Best Regards,
MB_Avro

Enforcer572005
12-06-2005, 07:11 PM
Friendly flyer....that's interesting, about the glock in the cold. Thats the first ive ever heard of that, having owned 4 in 9mm and 10mm;they would feed any bullet design, even empty casings,but its not that cold here in the southern US. Im wondering exactly what effect it had...did condensation freeze on the slide, or what?

Its usually the revolver that is open to mud and dirt causing problems, since they have so many openings into the mechanism, while the auto has but one. in the yrs I was into competition pistol shooting, collecting, and as a licensed dealer in firearms, the only problems i had wiht reliability were wiht
revolvers, even SW designs (especially them) and a Colt Python (tolerances too close for dirty propellants). Most of the reliability problems wiht autos are linked to bullet design (some like the browning and colt only like full metal jacket round nose bullets unless modified), or defective/damaged magazines.

Ive never had the oportunity to use weapons in extreme cold like in the Arctic, so I am really curious as to the effects on a design like the Glock. INteresting that they carry revolvers for protection up there (.44 Mag class I assume). Thanx for that info..... http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-surprised.gif

fighter_966
12-07-2005, 01:35 AM
What I have heard they had Fn highpowers and Webley revolvers but may be im wrong