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NORTHDUK

Mechanical Transport Colours and Markings

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NORTHDUK
I self moderated them as they were too large. I will post again when reduced, here are the first two.

These are excellent photographs. I can't comment on the user units but can identify the types.

The ambulance seems to be mounted on a Sunbeam car chassis but has Red Cross bodywork rather than an Army type as far as I can tell. The LGOC B Type 30cwt lorry shown in the UK is probably a converted bus rather than later wartime production directly for the WD. It has one of the early cab styles applied to converted vehicles in 1914. It's a pity that the bonnet side cannot be seen as it would give a definite identity to the individual vehicle. The LGOC did the conversions.

The next three are a Peerless TC, a Thornycroft J Type and an Albion A10. The markings on the Thornycroft are particularly interesting. Do you have any information on any of these vehicles?

Gordon McLaughlin

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cahoehler

MO

They have been restored by . . . .

Here are some others

1. Goslings' Autocar 30-cwt

514370872_b4d00a00f5_o.jpg

514370868_a66f504149_o.jpg

3. FWD Model B ammunition truck (might have been, should have been, could have been . . . ?)

514370882_56b1dfefd3_o.jpg

Carl

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Chris Henschke

‘I can't be sure about the colours of MT in the early stages of the war but I think grey is quite likely for vehicles already in service when war broke out. After that, other colours may have appeared fairly soon. A light-to-mid grey, which may have been called Service Colour, was used on guns and transport in the Boer War and for some time after it.’

Gordon,

From ‘the Specification of Material to be Supplied and Work to be done in the Building of...’ the;

Military Ambulance Waggon Mark II,

Transport Waggon Mk I (Heavy),

Transport Waggon Mk II (Light),

The painting is described as;

‘The whole of the wood and iron work to be primed, and afterwards to receive three coats of paint, four coats in all, finishing colour dark slate, all screw heads to be puttied up after priming. All the work to be finished with a smooth surface in a first-class manner. Lettering and No. of wagon to be done in white, as directed.’

The exception for the Ambulance Waggon was that the ‘hood frame, down to the level of the top panel, to be white. Outside only of tin boxes to be black…and afterwards varnished’

These are from Commonwealth of Australia specifications dated 1905.

Chris Henschke

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alfisherjr

I've followed this thread with interest . . . in fact, it's inspired me to consider modelling some WW1 softskins. But I have a question regarding vehicle id numbers. I thought that all transport vehicles had a WD prefix prior to the number; but saw several variations (e.g., 'HA') while inspecting the attached images. Would someone enlighten me as to what the format was used? Did they differ by region, periods, et cetera? Did subsidy vehicles have a different number sequence?

Much obliged for whatever info you can supply.

Al

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Great War Truck

Hi

I have just joined this forum and as my interest is WW1 MT i quickly found this thread. I was quite suprised to see several pictures of myself and my brother on it and amused to see our trucks described as "The Goslings".

Anyway, i very much hope that i can add to this forum with my personal knowledge amassed during our hobby of collecting WW1 trucks. This is our current project, a WW1 Dennis. The rebuild has come back from the bare bones and is taking a long time. Maybe by 2009 we will be finished.

DSCN2925.jpg

I think that the Harris Vulcan is till for sale (last i heard) and the brightly coloured FWD resides at Clintonville Wisconsin. It was the last one made for the military and was kept by the company. I believe that the colour scheme is original, although am uncertain whether any in this scheme ever made it to France.

Tim Gosling

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montbrehain

Hello and welcome , very nice to see another Truck returning from a near death experience :lol: I hope you may be able to contribute a few more pics to this thread over time ? Have you a rough idea on just how many trucks of the period 14-18 survive in Britain ? and if so where would be the best show/place to see the most together ? "MO"

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tocemma

Hello all,

Just had a quick look back through some of the postings on this thread. Several mentioned the use of 'shamrock or ace of clubs' This symbol, actually the ace of clubs, has long been used to identify the contents of packaging, often blue or black for rations.

It was in general use in the ASC and RASC in both World Wars. In the case of vehicles it was possibly applied to identify vehicles mainly used for carrying foodstuffs , most likely for marshalling purposes. Additionally in WW2 it was used in yellow to identify POL Petrol Oil Lubricants (before anyone responds 'what's the difference between oil and lubricants?') I'm just stating what the Army used as designation!! I'm not sure if the yellow was used during WW1 though. I have two ration boxes I found on the Somme in the 70's. One originally contained two SRD jars and one Meat and Veg tins. Both are marked with the ace of clubs. The box for rum jars is obviously also marked SRD. The ace of clubs was most likely in use at the Supply Reserve Deptford again for marshalling/stacking purposes.

It is still used on ration packs (or was until quite recently) to identify foodstuffs, perishables, keep in a dry place etc etc.

Hope this helps.

Regards

Tocemma

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Great War Truck
Have you a rough idea on just how many trucks of the period 14-18 survive in Britain ? and if so where would be the best show/place to see the most together ? "MO"

That is a very interesting question, and my immediate response would be that there are probably more survivors than you would think. I have made a list of the ones that i know about in the UK. Give me a little while to dig it out and i will come back to you with more info.

Tim Gosling

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Great War Truck
Have you a rough idea on just how many trucks of the period 14-18 survive in Britain ? and if so where would be the best show/place to see the most together ? "MO"

I have just done some quick calculations and think that the number of surviving WW1 trucks in the UK, is somewhere in the region of 80. However, of those only about 35 are restored or being restored as WW1 military trucks. Most of them had spent more time in the hands of civilian contractors than they did the military so the others are civilian ones.

Most of these survivors are in private collections and only seem to turn up when the owner dies and the whole lot goes off for auction. Two recently sold (a Locomobile and an FWD) from an Oxford estate. There is a third one there a Pierce Arrow (or at least the chassis of one) which will also now be saved and should hopefully go to assist the restoration of another one.

Of the 35 i mentioned 2 (possibly 3) are replicas using Model t chassis. Not too difficult a replica to make.

The problems with these old trucks is that they are incredibly difficult to maintain, very slow, very thirsty on fuel, tyres are almost impossible to find and they are awkward to move around. You are therfore unlikely to see them at the big shows, unless someone is paying for it all. Saying that we did a show at Guildford some years ago where we had 6 together - which was quite a gathering. We do each year take three of our trucks to a small country show in Devon. We drive them there and back as it is only about 6 miles each way.

I hope that you find this of interest.

Tim Gosling

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montbrehain

Very interesting Tim , thank you very much. As you may have read earlier in this thread ? I mentioned that a decent book has never been released on the subject (not what I would consider decent anyway :lol: ). Would you agree with this, or do you know better ? I was told by an owner a while back exactly what you have just said. Because they are hard to maintain , slow , thirsty etc they don't appear to be on the top of everybody's wants list . Which in turn stops them making exceedingly big money . Do you have pics of the other trucks that survive (that you dont own ) ? I myself and I am sure other members would be pleased to see them. As I said earlier , this is turning in to a good thread . "MO"

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Great War Truck

Yes, there are not many good books on the subject. Lots of ones that skirt around their history but has never been tackled properly. Hopefully somthing will be done about this quite soon.

I would be delighted to add some more truck pictures to this thread of surviving WW1 trucks. Rather than put them all on in one go I will add them in dribs and drabs. To start off is this one of our Peerless TC4. We have purchased the remains of nine of these, but will have enough bits to do two of them when we get around to it. Apart from our two, we think that there is another nine restored (or restorable) in existence.

PeerlessUnloaded2.jpg

Sadly not all can be saved. These two are past redemption but have yielded some useful parts.

DSCN4667-2.jpg

Tim Gosling

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Great War Truck

here is another one in the restoration queue. As you can probably tell it is aThornycroft J Type, much like the one at Milestones and the one at Duxford (but without the gun).

PeerlessChassis2.jpg

Balanced on top of it is the inverted chassis for a Peerless.

Over the years we have acquired most of the bits to rebuild the J (including an engine returned from New Zealand) but we are still missing the diff. Anyone know where we might find one?

Tim

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Great War Truck

Another well known survivor is this R Type Pierce Arrow owned by the Grundons

PierceArrow.jpg

I beleive that there are three others in the UK, not including this one below, which is the sad destiny of most ww1 trucks.

IMG_0389.jpg

Fortunately, this one has just been saved from a visit by the scrap man and should yield some useful spare parts to complete another possible restoration. Despite being out in the weather for the past 40 years, the chassis showed little sign of decay. Just goes to show that the steel manufactured in the USA during the war was far less prone to rust that what we manufacture nowadays.

Tim

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montbrehain

Thanks for those Tim . Well worth posting. I see you mention the scrap man, well for those not in the know ? Scrap metal is currently at its highest value in years (thank the Chinese and the fact that everybody there wants a car now :o ). When this happens it generates probably what is the greatest danger to any old derelict vehicle. And that is scrap value. Its a good job you saved some of these when you did .

On a different tack... Earlier in this thread I posted a pic of a Karrier lorry. I have been told there is only 1 survivor . Is this true and if so do you have any photos . Also Do you have any of an Austin Lorry which I believe resides in Lincolnshire ? "MO"

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Great War Truck

Yes, i believe that you are right. There is only 1 WD Karrier surviving that i know of. I have been looking for a good picture and this is all i can lay my hands on right now, but i do have a better one somewhere if i can only find it. This is how it looked a few years ago. it has since changed hands at least once since this picture was taken. It shows the Karrier with an early style container on the back (which is actually what i was taking a picture of)

Karrier.jpg

This Karrier was actually built after the armistice so is post war, but is a WD lorry. It was in remarkable condition and needed very little done to it to get it going. Sadly with all these things the expertise and desire to return these early trucks to running condition is dieing out and it may well remain looking like this for the rest of its days. It is however, the last of its type so i am pleased that it has been saved.

Tim Gosling

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Great War Truck

This photo is a slight improvement. At least you can see the rad.

MyPictures0437.jpg

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Great War Truck
Nice Photos Carl , Did you see the ones that were on just before you posted yours ? must have been removed ? Here,s another of a four wheel drive 4 wheel steering, seems nothing is new"MO"

post-13272-1179831352.jpg

Was this photo taken from the set of Michael Collins? I found the video in a school fete for 50p and having watched it did not see it in the film. I know the Quad was taken to Ireland for film work at some stage. Does anybody know if it featured in a different film?

Thanks

Tim

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montbrehain

Yes I did take that one while working on Collins. But as you say it did not appear in the final cut . Tim are there any good shows where Great war vehicles may be seen this year or are you attending any ? "MO"

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Great War Truck
Yes I did take that one while working on Collins. But as you say it did not appear in the final cut . Tim are there any good shows where Great war vehicles may be seen this year or are you attending any ? "MO"

Well we will be taking two of ours to Honiton Hill show Devon in August and we are curently in negotiation to get three others to also come and also a WW1 Holt gun tractor. I will let you know if it comes off but there are a lot of issues involved.

Tim

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Runflat

Hi, I've just joined this forum, so apologies for this delay in answering the opening question to this string. I'm looking at a friend's copy of a document obtained from, I think, the Imperial War Museum. It's called, "Extracts from General Routine Orders issued to the British Army in the Field - Part II Quartermaster General's Branch" by Field-Marshall Sir J D P French GCB, OM, GCVO, KCMG and dated 1st December 1915. It has this to say about markings:

"(GRO 944) - All motor cars and motor lorries must have their official registration number painted on the bonnet and also on the back of the vehicle. This number is to painted on both sides of the bonnet in white paint, in a conspicuous position at the back where it is not likely to be obscured by the tyres, tarpaulins or other obstructions. The size of the figures in all cases is to be as under:-

For motor cars - 4in. high, 1/2in. wide

For motor lorries - 6in. high, 5/8in. wide

A broad arrow is to be placed on top or on one side of the numbers, according to the shape of the bonnet, as may be found most convenient. No numbers or letters are to painted on the bonnets or on the backs of the vehicles except the official registration number. (26.6.15)"

Of course what happens in reality at a local level is another matter...

Oh, before I sign off, there was a suggestion that the picture of the ambulance is of a Sunbeam. This is not so. It is either a Buick or a GMC - I think I can just make out enough of the pattern of vents on the bonnet side for me to plump for GMC.

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4thGordons

While the vehicle experts are assembled:

Could someone identify these (two?) lorry types for me?

Apologies for the quality the original is small and somewhat damaged.

Many thanks

Chris

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RobL

The ones closest to the camera are Lancia 1Z's, Italian but also supplied to the British. As for the ones further back, I can't say - i'd hazard a guess at them not being British though, the semi circular hoops for the rear bed and the relatively large number of spokes on the wheel should help with identification though

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Great War Truck

Sorry Rob

The ones to the right are Fiat's. Very similar in appearance to the Lancia, but the bonnet slopes slightly more. Strangely enough, they were used in large numbers by the AEF.

The ones to the left are Republic trucks. Quite unusual to see pictures of them in army service.

Tim (too)

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4thGordons

Thanks Rob/Tim,

Given the source of the picture it is possible the trucks are from TMU 526. (or they may be transport attached to an AEF Aero Squadron, I need to check the chronology to establish which is more likely) Would the types suggest either to you?

Thanks again,

Chris

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Great War Truck

Here is a photo of a surviving WW1 Republic in the USA. Another one was up for sale on E Bay recently (restored as 1st Aero Squadron i think) but did not sell. I have been looking for photos of it without success.

Republic.jpg

There is very little info on Republic trucks during WW1, however between 1912 and 1918 over 30,000 had been made ranging from 3/4 ton to 3 1/2 ton, almost all of which were of course for the domestic market. It is almost certain that the ones in your photo are Air Service (which was initially a division of the Signal Corps) ones as the orders for Republic trucks by the MTC were cancelled before any had been provided. The Signal Corps however (like many other branches of the army) did their own thing and bought whatever commercial chassis were available at the time. Republic also of course went on to build the Heavy Aviation for the AS and Signal Corps.

It is impossible to tell who is using the Fiats as the AEF bought large numbers of them and distributed them where necessary. I hope to find out more info on them but it seems the US Army recorded very little on the trucks that they borrowed or purchased from their allies. Interesting photo of yours by the way. Do you have the location of it?

Tim

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