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Lancashire Fusilier

WW1 Military Motors - 1916 set x 50 cards

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Lancashire Fusilier
" At the start of WW1, the Austin Motor Company designed and produced a new armoured car both for the British Army and also for export, mainly to Russia. The vehicle, known as Austin 1st series, was based on a passenger car chassis with rear axle drive. The wheels were wooden spoked, with pneumatic tyres and an additional set of combat wheels with full rubber tyres were also carried.

The vehicle was armed with two Maxim machine guns mounted in separate turrets placed on both sides of the hull behind the driver's cab. The vehicle was protected by armour plates 3.5 mm thick screwed to a body frame. The crew of four, a commander, driver and two gunners, had access to the vehicle via a door on the left side of the cab or via big two-leaf rear door. On 29 September 1914, 48 armoured cars were ordered. One armoured car costing 1,150 pounds.

On 6 March 1915, the Russians ordered 60 vehicles of an improved design, known as Austin 2nd series. This time the chassis of a 1.5 ton truck with a more powerful engine was used. The hull was shorter, with thicker armour, the driver's cab roof was modified to improve machine guns' angle of fire. Less welcome was a removal of rear access door. The army also decided it wanted a rear driving post, so after arrival to Russia all vehicles were fitted with a redesigned rear hull section, which housed a second driving post and additional hatch. Another upgrade was the addition of side shields to the machine guns.

Sixty units of Austin 3rd series were ordered on 25 August 1916. The vehicles were similar in characteristics to the 2nd series, but had modified rear hull with driving post, MG shields, bulletproof glass in the front vision slots and lacked big side windows.

Yet another version, with strengthened chassis and double rear wheels, sometimes referred to as Austin model 1918, was ordered in 1917 but due to events in Russia none were delivered, and these vehicles saw service with the British Army on the Western Front.

The Austin Armoured Car weighed over 5 tons, and had Austin 4-cylinder in line, 4 stroke 50 hp engine, had a four forward and one reverse gearbox, 4 x 2 wheel drive, and a speed of 35 mph. "

Photo shows an Austin Armoured Car, Model 1918 with double rear wheels, on the road to Harbonnierers.

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Lancashire Fusilier

Official photograph from the Second Battle of the Somme, shows an Austin Armoured Car setting out on reconnaissance near Biefvillers, 25 August 1918.

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Lancashire Fusilier

A battle damaged Austin Armoured Car Model 1918, the photograph is dated 4 August, 1918.

LF

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Lancashire Fusilier

Austin Armoured Car - 1st Series - in its original British configuration.

LF


Austin Armoured Car - 2nd Series - in its original British configuration.

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Lancashire Fusilier

Austin Armoured Car - Model 1918 - note double rear wheels.

LF

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Lancashire Fusilier

Austin Armoured Car - Russian modified 2nd series.

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Lancashire Fusilier

Austin Motor Company photograph promoting their Armoured Cars.

LF

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Lancashire Fusilier

Example of an Austin Armoured Car ' doctored ' photograph, we have the original photograph showing the Austin Armoured Car with no markings, and also two photographs with vehicle markings added.

LF

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Lancashire Fusilier

The British Army's use of the Austin Armoured Car bodies continued after the end of WW1, here we see an Austin Armoured Car of the Royal Tank Corps, escorting a food convey during the 1926 General Strike.

In some cases, the Austin Armoured Car body was fitted to a Government surplus ' Peerless' chasis.

LF

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Lancashire Fusilier

Further post WW1 use of the Austin bodied Armoured Car, on duty outside Mountjoy Prison, Dublin during the 1920 IRA Hunger Strikes.

LF

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johnboy

Post #707. Odd front tyres again.

Seeing the later vehicles on pneumatics makes me wonder which were best, Bumpy ride on solids. No punctures,Possibly because of width, more chance of sinking in the mud.

Pneumatics would give a smoother ride. They would be more susceptible to punctures obviously. Shrapnel under the mud and water. Probably more downtime repairing and replacing tyres.

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Lancashire Fusilier

Post #707. Odd front tyres again.

Seeing the later vehicles on pneumatics makes me wonder which were best, Bumpy ride on solids. No punctures,Possibly because of width, more chance of sinking in the mud.

Pneumatics would give a smoother ride. They would be more susceptible to punctures obviously. Shrapnel under the mud and water. Probably more downtime repairing and replacing tyres.

johnboy,

As was previously mentioned, for the Austin ACs, pneumatic tyres were fitted and additional combat wheels with full rubber tyres were also carried.

Attached is a photograph of Austin 1st Series Armoured Cars sold to the Russians, and those vehicles are fitted with the ' suction pad ' type of combat tyres.

LF

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johnboy

johnboy,

As was previously mentioned, for the Austin ACs, pneumatic tyres were fitted and additional combat wheels with full rubber tyres were also carried.

Attached is a photograph of Austin 1st Series Armoured Cars sold to the Russians, and those vehicles are fitted with the ' suction pad ' type of combat tyres.

LF

They are the ones I referred to as 'sheep foot'

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Lancashire Fusilier

This German photograph, shows an Austin Armoured Car ( 2nd Series ) previously sold to the Russian Army, which was one of a number of military vehicles captured by the Germans when they took Tarnopol ( Ukraine ).

LF

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Lancashire Fusilier

An Austin Armoured Car ( 3rd Series ) captured by the Austro-Hungarians and used by their K.u.K. Autotruppe.

LF

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Lancashire Fusilier

A mid-1920s Royal Tank Corps., Austin Armoured Car Model 1918.

LF

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Great War Truck

That one is sitting on a Peerless chassis. Super photo though.

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Great War Truck

They are the ones I referred to as 'sheep foot'

I think those tyres are actually cylinders of wood pressed in to holes in the rim. An expedient used when the shortage of rubber became critical. I wonder how many miles you could do on a set? Instead of carrying a spare tyre you had a sack of wood cylinders to bang in to the holes. or as an alternative a whittling knife and a branch from a tree.

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Lancashire Fusilier

That one is sitting on a Peerless chassis. Super photo though.

The Austin Armoured Car bodies were made at Austin's Longbridge factory, and some of the Austin Armoured Car bodies were fitted to surplus Peerless chassis.

As yet, I have not worked our how to easily identify those ACs fitted with a Peerless chassis, is it the wheels ? or are there any other recognisable 'Peerless ' chassis features ?

I assume, even for those Austin Armoured Cars fitted on a Peerless chassis, the work was still completed at Longbridge.

Here is a photograph of new Austin Armoured Cars leaving Austin's Longbridge factory, with the ACs covered in slogans and banners referring to their intended military use.

Regards,

LF

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Lancashire Fusilier

A long way from Longbridge, an Austin Armoured Car 3rd Series, photographed in Helsinki, Finland in 1919, sporting a pre-Nazi use swastika emblem.

LF

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Lancashire Fusilier

Two Austin Armoured Cars 1st Series sold to the Russians, shown in combat.

LF

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Lancashire Fusilier

A unit of Russian White Army Volunteers, with their Austin Armoured Cars 3rd Series.

Often, the Russian Austin Armoured Cars were each given ' names ', a common practice by the Russians, the names in this case being painted on the AC's turrets.

LF

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Lancashire Fusilier

An Austin Armoured Card 3rd Series, sold to the Russians, photographed with the AC's crew.

LF

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Lancashire Fusilier
One of the lesser known makes of military vehicles used by the British Army both during and after WW1, was the American produced Jeffery ' Quad ' four-wheel drive general purpose vehicle, and also their ' Quad ' Armoured Car version.

Founded in 1902 by Thomas Jeffery, The Jeffery Motor Company of Kenosha, Wisconsin, U.S.A. had been approached by the American Army in 1912 to develop a general purpose truck to replace the U.S. Army's one and a half ton horse/mule drawn wagons.

Jeffery's intention was to develop and produce a vehicle having an impressive combination of four-wheel drive, four-wheel steering and four-wheel brakes. Following a year of design and testing, Jeffery's ' Quad ' four-wheel drive vehicle was ready for production.

One of the early promotional advertisements for the ' Quad ', showed the ' Quad ' vehicle being able to climb a 49 degree gradient fully loaded.

Jeffery's original ' Quad ' vehicle was powered by a Rambler 4-cylinder 21 hp engine, however, this engine was soon replaced with a Buda 4-cylinder 28 hp ( yielding 52 hp at 1,800 rpm ) engine. The Quad Armoured Cars, were armed with either Benet-Mercier or Vickers machine guns.

In the first year, Jeffery produced some 2000 ' Quad ' trucks.

Apart from supplying the ' Quad ' vehicle both as a general purpose truck and also as an Armoured Car to the U.S. Army, Jeffery also sold them to Canada, England, France and Russia.


As an interesting aside, Charles Jeffery, the son of the company founder Thomas Jeffery who had died in 1910, was travelling to Europe to deliver a shipment of Quad vehicles aboard the Liner ' Lusitania ' when on May 7, 1915 the Liner was torpedoed and sunk by a German submarine, with Charles Jeffery being one of the lucky 761 survivors, another 1198 persons died in the sinking.
On his return to America in the Summer of 1916, Charles Jeffery sold the Company to Charles W. Nash of Nash Motors, which resulted in the marketing of the ' Nash Quad '.


Between 1913 and 1928 almost 42,000 ' Quads ' were produced, and even as late as the 1920s the British Royal Tank Corps were still using the ' Quad ' Armoured Car on the North West Frontier.


The photograph shows the prototype version of the Jeffery ' Quad ' Armoured Car.


LF










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Lancashire Fusilier

The photographs show early field trials of the Jeffery ' Quad ' 4-wheel drive vehicle, which was produced both as a general purpose truck and also an armoured car.

LF

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