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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

SCOUT REGIMENT and SIGNALLING TELESCOPES


philsr
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It would seem that H. C. Ryland made a few Mk VIs as well as B C and Co.

However the one that I have just got is the only Becks Mk VI that I have seen.

Regards

philsr

Yes, and now you mention it I think I've seen 1 or maybe 2 VIs made by OIP Gand of Belgium too.

Regards,

MikB

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  • 4 weeks later...
Guest miroku

Hi everyone,

Can I firstly thank you all for the time and effort you put into researching and doccumenting such historical items. I have found this thread extremley intersting and informative. The reason for my post is to provide details of another "Consol" for your records, it is much the same as the one philsr has but the *'s are deeply engraved on this one which is marked as follows -

TEL:SIG:MK IV** ALSO G.S

"CONSOL"

TORONTO

1917

NO 509

NO is actually N underscore o followed by the 3 downward arrows inside the C.

The eyepiece is stamped O.S.|6|6 S.A.

The scope is leather covered and has the 3" sun shield, there are two areas of stiching from where straps seem to have been fitted although it is complete with its leather lens cap and strap which are unmarked. The area behind the sun shield and around the front and rear lens seem to have had a black finish applied very similar to modern reproduction "antique brass"

Unfortunatley the scope is not mine and I have been asked to sell it on Ebay. In the listing I will add a thank you to you for providing the research information and will also make a small contribution from the sale price.

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Graham,

Thanks for that, the more data the better!

Whoever Consol were, they must have been a very low volume producer.

The few that turn up are all dated 1917 and the highest serial number that I have is less than 600.

Philsr

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Gentlemen,

Another to add to the information on this page.

My father's telescope, which I believe he bought in a surplus store years & years ago, has come to reside with my telescope stands at last. It's covering is brown leather.

The brass body is marked:

TT & H Ltd

1917

No 23739

Tel Sig (Mk IV) ALSO G.S.

\|/

/|\

There are two eye piece lens. One is about 7cms long, and is unmarked, except for a broad arrow, the other lens is about 4 cms long and is marked

“WW & W Ltd HIGH”

If anyone sees the lens carrier or telescope strap. Please let me know.

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Gentlemen,

Another to add to the information on this page.

My father's telescope, which I believe he bought in a surplus store years & years ago, has come to reside with my telescope stands at last. It's covering is brown leather.

The brass body is marked:

TT & H Ltd

1917

No 23739

Tel Sig (Mk IV) ALSO G.S.

\|/

/|\

There are two eye piece lens. One is about 7cms long, and is unmarked, except for a broad arrow, the other lens is about 4 cms long and is marked

“WW & W Ltd HIGH”

If anyone sees the lens carrier or telescope strap. Please let me know.

It was made by Taylor, Taylor and Hobson (more recently known as Rank Taylor Hobson). They were prime contractors and design authority for the Mk.IV, at least in 1916.

The longer eyepiece lens is the 15x 'Low' power, and the 'High' is 30x.

WW&W are a bit of a puzzle. The only "W"s I can think of are Wray Bros (and I don't know how many there were :D ) and W. Ottway of Ealing. Philsr got any ideas there?

Regards,

MikB

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WW&W are a bit of a puzzle. The only "W"s I can think of are Wray Bros (and I don't know how many there were :D ) and W. Ottway of Ealing. Philsr got any ideas there?

Regards,

MikB

My mistake the marking is

WW & S Ltd

HIGH

Sorry for creating the confusion.

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My mistake the marking is

WW & S Ltd

HIGH

Sorry for creating the confusion.

Could have been Wm Whiteley & Sons of Prospect Iron Works, Lockwood, Yorks,

or maybe William Weston & Sons of Brum?

Can't think of a well-known optics maker with those initials.

Regards,

MikB

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Without going through the x5 pages on this can anyone give me an idea on the one to keep I have the Scout Regt 'scope in its carrying case and the Sigs 'scope with the carrying strap attached to the covers plus the spare lens in its own small case. Also if poss the going rate for both as one has to possibly go?

-------------------------------

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QUOTE (Neil B @ Jun 9 2008, 10:23 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Without going through the x5 pages on this can anyone give me an idea on the one to keep I have the Scout Regt 'scope in its carrying case and the Sigs 'scope with the carrying strap attached to the covers plus the spare lens in its own small case. Also if poss the going rate for both as one has to possibly go?

-------------------------------

If the Scout Reg is a BC & Co or KEC, I think it's the better general purpose telescope - lighter, less clumsy and with a wider field of view - so that's the one I'd keep.

If in nice clean condition, well photographed and described, either could go to £200 or more on the bay - though the Sig would need a WW1 date on it to do that. You should also set the auction to end at a time when lots of folk are on the web - like a Sunday evening.

Regards,

MikB

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Could have been Wm Whiteley & Sons of Prospect Iron Works, Lockwood, Yorks,

or maybe William Weston & Sons of Brum?

Can't think of a well-known optics maker with those initials.

Regards,

MikB

How about William Watson and Son?

They made Sel Sigs Mk IIs and Mk IIIs and we know that eyepices got swapped around.

Philsr

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Gentlemen,

Another to add to the information on this page.

My father's telescope, which I believe he bought in a surplus store years & years ago, has come to reside with my telescope stands at last. It's covering is brown leather.

The brass body is marked:

TT & H Ltd

1917

No 23739

Tel Sig (Mk IV) ALSO G.S.

\|/

/|\

There are two eye piece lens. One is about 7cms long, and is unmarked, except for a broad arrow, the other lens is about 4 cms long and is marked

“WW & W Ltd HIGH”

If anyone sees the lens carrier or telescope strap. Please let me know.

If you go to thread 'TEL SIG MK ALSO GS', there are contact details for Jon Moore who makes very good straps etc.

He has recovered and supplied a new strap for one of my telescopes.

He can probably make whatever you want, the lens carriers turn up on Ebay, but good original straps not already attached to a telescope are rare.

Philsr

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Thanks for the prompt reply Mike:-)) Just dug them out yes the SRT MKII with looks like an s after it? But is BC & Co. in a small drum logo. Also othe number is 24673 along with the OS numbers & WD arrow but no date. the case top has impressed on it R.O Milne & writen on the side E. Dudley. R. Milne. looks like...Scots Bays.

As to the survey on this thread, this one is the Sig MKVI also GS....by HCR & Son

No 5885 OS number under and arrow, but no date again?

---------------------

If the Scout Reg is a BC & Co or KEC, I think it's the better general purpose telescope - lighter, less clumsy and with a wider field of view - so that's the one I'd keep.

If in nice clean condition, well photographed and described, either could go to £200 or more on the bay - though the Sig would need a WW1 date on it to do that. You should also set the auction to end at a time when lots of folk are on the web - like a Sunday evening.

Regards,

MikB

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Gents,

On my survey so far, all the H.C.R Tel Sig Mk VIs are undated.

I think that MikB will confirm that Mk VIs are post WWI.

Also virtually all Tel Sct Reg Mk IIs are undated, I have only one listed, dated 1940.

That one did not have the OS number.

Philsr

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Gents,

On my survey so far, all the H.C.R Tel Sig Mk VIs are undated.

I think that MikB will confirm that Mk VIs are post WWI.

Also virtually all Tel Sct Reg Mk IIs are undated, I have only one listed, dated 1940.

That one did not have the OS number.

Philsr

Yes, the Mk.VI was introduced by LoC para. A1398 in Jan 1926, at the same time as upgrades to the Mk.IV to MkIV**. The two marks are virtually identical. I've no info when the Sig ceased production, but it still wasn't offically obsolete in '41 - it went to a Mk.VII in Aug '39 with a vulcanised rubber cover instead of leather, and the two preceding marks were upgraded to Mk.IV*** and Mk.VI* to match. But I've never seen any beyond Mk.VI and think the run must've been very short.

Dating seems to have stopped about 1919 or -20; if you see Sigs dated after this, be suspicious.

It came back briefly for early Scout Regs, especially in 1940 - 41, though I've seen a KEC one dated '43 that looked genuine. It does seem to be excluded if there's an OS number.

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Gents,

Didn't the Consol Tel Sig do well, 200 quid, it just goes to show what a good description can do.

I have just bought what appeared to be a fairly grotty Becks Tel Sig Mk IV to break up for spares.

When it arrived, it was much better than it appeared in the photographs, but it was another MkIV** with the 'Arrow over I'.

So it won't get broken up, but that's two Becks 'Indian' scopes in only a month or so.

Philsr

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  • 3 weeks later...

Scholars,

I've just bought a telescope with the following markings on the rayshade:-

S.2.(P)

33

/|\

This is not a GS or Signalling telescope, but an absolute top-of-the-range 2 1/2" civilian big-game telescope in nickel silver by Negretti & Zambra.

It can only have come to bear the Broad Arrow by donation or WD procurement.

Does anyone have details of the classification and markings of such instruments?

Regards,

MikB

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Hi Mike

Is it a marking like on civilian type binoculars that were pressed into service and given a rating with the S1 ,S2, S3 markings.

so S.2.(P) is for civilian telescopes pressed into service, with a rating for use?

Jonathan

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Yes, I got that far - the 'S' probably denotes 'Special' as in binos - but what do the gradings signify?

I can't imagine the '(P)' would signify 'Pressed', because AFAIK there were only voluntary sale/lend/donation schemes, not confiscation. Bearing in mind the thing cost about 7 weeks' average wages in WW1 times, the sort of folk who would own it might be rather difficult to confiscate from, too.

I wondered about 'Procured' or 'Purchased'.

Regards,

MikB

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Hi Mike

I no a friend has the list of the 'S' Series and the gradings. I will try and get them from him.

The 'S' gradings rate from front line trench use, to lesser quality home service, from memory

I have never seen the 'P' before I guess it will come to light.

Jonathan

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  • 1 month later...

Gents,

I have just bought a 1909 Ross Tel Sig Mk II off the Bay.

The interesting thing is that it does not have the usual " also GS " suffix.

Does anyone else have any Ross Tel Sig Mk IIs and do they have the suffix or did it come in with the Ross Mk III?

My very battered 1905 Clarkson and Co Mk II does have the suffix.

Any thoughts?

Philsr

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I've seen Mk.IIs without the 'Also GS' but no Mk.IIIs. It's a new one to me that a 1909 copy doesn't have it but a 1905 does. I had assumed that with the advent of telephones and wireless, and with 20th C wars being conducted in overcast European climates, the Army became concerned that the obsolescence of the heliograph for signalling might mean the loss of its telescopes, so it quickly added the suffix to say: "Hey look, we use them for all this other stuff too!" :D

Regards,

MikB

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  • 1 month later...

Gents,

After about a year collecting data, it's about time for an update of highest numbers.

Tel Sig also GS Mk I

No data.

Tel Sig also GS Mk II

Clarkson date 1905 number 2807

N and Z date 1903 number 927

Ross date 1909 number 4122

W. W. and Son date 1909 number 4701

Total - 12557

Tel Sig also GS Mk III

N and Z date 1915 number 10212

R and J Beck date 1915 number 9166

Ross date 1915 number 7447

T. T and H date 1914 number 5050

T and S date 1914 number 4206

Ottway date 1913 number 8182

W. W. and Son date 1915 number 5954

Total - 50217

Tel Sig also GS Mk IV

B and C date 1918 number 34949

Consol date 1917 number 545

Dalmeyer date 1917 number 16055

N and Z date 1917 number 24698

R and J Beck date 1919 number 34406

T. T and H date 1918 number 35644

Ryland date 1918 number 33456

Total - 179753

Tel Sig also GS Mk VI

B and C no date number 7216

R and J Beck date 1928 number 255

Total - 7471

That gives a total of 249,998 and no surprise the numbers of telescopes and manufacturers go through the roof when WW1 starts.

The above is taken from a sample of 120 scopes which have appeared on the net in the last year.

If you have one of these scopes, please send me more data.

Philsr

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Gents,

Currently on the Bay a Telescope F.A. Mk V dated 1917 serial no 450.

Could F.A. stand for Field Artillary?

I have never seen one of these before and this one is out of my price range anyway.

Has anyone any information on this type of scope.

Philsr

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Field Artillery is right, I think. I've only seen one once before, and it was a fair bit better than the one on offer now - I think it was Ottway or Ross, but I'm fairly sure it wasn't N&Z. N&Z didn't carry on with them as a commercial scope after the war, like they did with the Sig Mk.IV - nothing like it is in their 1921 catalogue.

I suspect this might've been the telescope that lived in the case behind the shield on the 18 pdr.

Regards,

MikB

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  • 1 month later...

Gents,

I have just bought a battered 1902 W. Watson and Son Tel Sig Mk II off the Bay.

The interesting thing is that years ago someone tried to polish off the 'Tel Sig MkII also GS' inscription, you can still just make it out.

Legitimate disposals had the Government Arrow cancelled or nothing done at all.

Could this one have be souveneered or fallen off the back of an Army lorry?

Any thoughts?

Philsr

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