ww2 British Vehicle Markings

Discussion in 'Vehicle Names and Census Numbers' started by morrisc8, Jan 9, 2021.

  1. morrisc8

    morrisc8 Under the Bed

    jeep RN Dec 1945 UK. 46147RN jpg close up.jpg Original Photos from my collection. Photo 1. RN Jeep Dec 1945. Photo 2 BEF 1939. Photo 3 MC Egypt ?.
    Keith
    jeep RN Dec 1945 UK.jpg bikes humber.jpg Army bike tilly.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2021
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  2. morrisc8

    morrisc8 Under the Bed

    Original Photos from my collection. Photo 1 and 2 . Shot up Morris trucks BEF 1940.
    Keith
    morris 1940.jpg morris aos 23 bef (2018_01_13 18_51_57 UTC).jpg
     
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  3. morrisc8

    morrisc8 Under the Bed

    The US made a cammo booklet as well in 1942. from my collection. Never seen a jeep painted like that.
    Keith
    cammo USA 1942.jpg US Army manual FM 5-21 1942 jeep cammo  Bantam.jpg
     
  4. morrisc8

    morrisc8 Under the Bed

    Vehicle Markings India 1945 and the CMF RASC hardback book i had printed came in the post today.
    Keith
    veh signs books.JPG rasc veh signs.JPG rasc veh signs book.JPG veh markings india.JPG
     
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  5. Excellent!

    In Vehicle Markings India 1945, is 387 Coy RASC featured? When they were equipped with DUKWs, they had yet another version of the Duck marking whose colours I am curious to know. See for example IWM SE1554:
    [​IMG] THE BRITISH ARMY IN BURMA 1945. © IWM (SE 1554)

    Michel
     
  6. KevinT

    KevinT Senior Member

    Hi Michel,

    I was curious about the census number? 330952. This falls in 258957 - 340999 not taken up.

    Cheers

    Kevin
     
  7. Hello Kevin,

    Yes, all the Burma Ducks in photos and films seem to have census numbers in the 330xxx series. Also curiously, they do not have a prefix (which should be P for amphibians).

    They all belong to 387 Coy (Amphibian) RASC and apparently all had names prefixed with HMA (presumably His Majesty's Amphibian) and starting with the Platoon letter. Some are mentioned in captions of IWM films (regrettably not online):
    HMA AGGRESSOR (film MWY 68)
    HMA APACHE (JFU 10)
    HMA BULLDOG & HMA BURSLEM (MWY 235)
    HMA BUTCHER 330443 & HMA GARWELL? 330693 (more likely BARWELL) (JFU 232)

    Plus this one which I read as HMA AURORA? 330947 (BP 1145.06):
    1145_06_191 DUKW 330947 AoS 73 - Burma.jpg
    The formation sign is 33 (Indian) Corps. See for example IWM INS 4072:
    INS 4072 - 33 Indian Corps.jpg

    Michel

    [Edit: added links to the various films or captions]
     
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2021 at 11:00 AM
  8. KevinT

    KevinT Senior Member

    Hi Michel,

    Brilliant find thank you.

    I think you are right t is BARWELL (translates as stream of the Boar), which is a place in Leicestershire. The stream (brook) is now a tributary of the River Trent. BURSLEM ( part of Stoke on Trent ) is a town on the Fowlea which is also a tributary of the river Trent. These two names keeping watery connections by the look of things.
    Shame about the films on being online.

    Cheers

    Kevin.
     
  9. morrisc8

    morrisc8 Under the Bed

    Sorry no
     
  10. Thank for your reply. I was afraid so. But the colours may be inferred from the other Duck signs as being a white (obviously) duck with yellow (also obviously) feet and beak over a black (?) background. A slightly more contrasted, if smaller, view of the sign from IWM photo SE2288:
    SE2288 - Duck sign.jpg

    This DUKW might be HMA BUTCHER 330443 mentioned in film JFU 232...

    Michel
     
  11. KevinT

    KevinT Senior Member

    Hi Michel,

    Did a quick search but didn't find anymore named DUKW's in Burma.
    But found this PREFABRICATED PORTS; MULBERRY PORTS. JUNE 1944, OFF ARROMANCHES. THE ARRIVAL OF THE PARTS OF THE MULBERRY PORT, THE SINKING OF THE BLOCK SHIPS TO FORM A PROTECTIVE BREAKWATER FOR THE PORT, AND THE SINKING OF THE "PHOENIXES" AND "WHALES" THAT MAKE UP THE MULBERRY. in NWE.
    I cannot quite make out the first part but the second part is CANNONBALL ( I think ) although it could be CARNIVAL.

    Also so far Burma DUKW's don't seem to have a P prefix, those in Italy seem to use the L ( 3 ton Lorry ) prefix and those in NWE use the P ( Amphibian ) prefix.

    Cheers

    Kevin
     
  12. Yes, this is a US DUKW "salvaged" by the MULBERRY Harbour Master's team.

    I have the full name somewhere, but I do not know if this duck qualifies for your list of British (or Commonwealth) vehicle names, unless it is interpreted as "in British use" :D

    Michel
     
  13. Mary Cole

    Mary Cole Member


    My father served with 387 Coy amphibious dukw’s. The photo is of them in the Chindwin river in late 1944 after they had help build the longest pontoon bridge of WW2, over 1000 ft long. They were actually 2 Division when formed and were dismounted for the battles of Kohima and Imphal. It wasn’t until 12th December 44 when they came under command of 33 Corps and therefore carried the 33 Corps signage. The 73 on the side was actually green and red, an anomaly for WW2 and they reverted back to the yellow, blue and white post war. 387 Coy won 1 military cross and 5 military medals in one day for their bravery in crossing the Irrawaddy river under sustained and accurate enemy fire. Driver Harry Bryar was killed on 26th February due to a well imbedded Japanese machine gun position in the east bank of the river. They didn’t leave Burma when 2 Div infantry was withdrawn in April 45 and they went on to serve in Singapore and Hong Kong before being repatriated in mid 46. My father was brought home in November 45 having contracted tropical disease.
     

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