Monday, 5 December 2016

LONG RANGE DESERT GROUP & S A S presented by BB

This is a mixed bag of info and presentation, because I often wonder upon other pathways but upon the whole I think all are  relevant because in hind sight they have a link with one another. Be they model kit or toy soldier or indeed the photographs shown too.                                                               

THE 30 cwt CHEVROLET TRUCK


These days I find myself collecting model soldiers then painting them.I paid way over the odds for this kit,but it is well worth the money that I spent on it because it is hard to come by these days.                                                                      




                                                                 Sorry for fuzzy picture.


This Revell Kit has four figures so that is good whereas the 1/72 scale Dragon Kits have only has one so those buying them  means resorting to conversions. I trolled my way through old and newer kits but buying boxes just to swap a few heads over is not a good deal. As for these Dragon Kits  at over £17.00 each I do not recommend anyone buy them.                                                                                 

  However the larger sizes I do.                                             


                                                                                              
The remains of one recently found somewhere in North Africa.



 The British obtained 30 of these in May of 1942 in N Africa and they where factory fresh and straight off the boat.These were manufactured in steel, and the cargo from that supply ship got even better because of the addition of jeeps. With these the mixed bag of L.R.D.G. along with the S.A.S. carried out daring guerrilla type raids on airfields and fuel dumps far behind the enemy lines.
David Stirling had a bounty of £20.000 placed upon his head by orders from Hitler. No doubt to be paid in forged British £5.00 Notes. My Brother in Law Arthur Cealy was in the S A S during this time period although he never spoke of it. I was not yet born when he married what would be my oldest Sister Grace in 1948. Many years later in May of 1985,he showed me his discharge papers from the British Army,and simply said,"I was there." On the paper was written, ' This man is employable.' and it was signed by his Commanding Officer.


David Sterling is seen here relaxed and standing alongside Paddy Mayne who is sitting in the jeep.
Sterling would be captured later  and Paddy Mayne would take command of the S A S.
However that is a whole new chapter of a true story book adventure perhaps for another time?

                              IN BRIEF:  THE IMITATION GAME

By 1941 ULTRA,was playing a Top Secret game of cat and mouse with the German U Boats in the Atlantic. What ships could Britain afford to lose and still remain in a position to win the Atlantic war. Then the war itself. It was down to higher mathematics  linked to ENIGMA, being read at Bletchley, (Code Named Station X), by Code Breakers. A handful of people in a tiny room knew where every U Boat was, and where every Allied Convoy was heading.
Intelligence is helpful, but of course the ultimate fact was that, that terrible war would be fought on every side engulfed in it by the people of those nations involved.

It has since been reckoned by mathematicians and historians and Governments alike, that the war was shortened by over 2 years by all those serving at Blecthley, saving over Fourteen Million Lives.
With the advent of Master Computers,The Secret  of ULTRA, was released in the year 1975.



Bletchley Above


I make mention of this fact because if that Cargo ship bound for North Africa had been sunk the war in N Africa and elsewhere would have turned out very differently. True raids would have still taken place but with converted inferior machines. The Allies were in for a tough fight in North Africa and they knew it. So as we look back ,the "What If ?" Question,is always relevant.                                      
                                       
                                                                                                                                


A Photograph of those times gives a little insight into daily life aboard these crates that skimmed well the sandy waves of a sea of sand.
                                                                                                      

Once the truck is onto the rolled out mats, ( one seen above on the left) ,it will be out of that boggy sand and away to wherever it was destined to end up.

The Lewis Gun from The  Great War,was always found to be reliable and one is fitted onto that truck in the picture above.





The Vickers Machine Guns were also mounted in the back of those trucks too ,along with 30 cal Browning Machine Guns,twin Vickers, twin Bren , and twin Lewis Guns.


Below the twin Mk1 Bren Gun  fitted with two one hundred 303 cal round magazines plus   collection   bags. Designed for aircraft protection, but it seems a few went missing.



It`s OK,It`s a Friendly! It is a British Bristol Beaufort flying low North Africa. By the position of the guys feet behind the Truck they were unconcerned about this low flying attack aircraft.


                           Preparing to set out above, while below catching some shade in the desert.


Although there is a jeep in the Revell 1/76 scale boxed kit I decided on buying 1/35 scale kits too,because the why? of it lay in the David Stirling photograph itself. This will be made much clearer by the end of this topic.


                                                              THE JEEPS

One of the most famous Pictures to come out of that war.  Sterling`s Lads. These jeeps were butchered down to make them lighter,and then loaded with Petrol & Water and lots of obsolete fire power,food and ammo. O`,yes the lads manage to slip into them too at a tight pinch.



The twin Vickers seen above were developed for aircraft defence in WWI,and were rapid firing guns designed for aerial combat  when a target might only be in the sites for a short time.

I managed to obtain this seven figure set for £14.50 free post on E Bay they are over £18.00 elsewhere. So I saved a little cash. However having 7 figures meant that I`d need 3 jeeps,and the Dragon kits cost a staggering £22.00 each. So I needed to look elsewhere.
So I bought three jeeps from TAMIYA,at £10.00 each,and they have two figures to a jeep. So yes extra figures,but it was the standing figure I needed from the first set along with the rest of the group.



  
                                                                            
                                                                                         
With these jeeps I will now have the complete David Sterling and Paddy Mayne,
photograph modelled in 3D

With a saving of £30.


That is Good.


A FEW MORE PICTURES OF THOSE SPECIAL AIR SERVICE LADS ON THAT DAY



A FEW OF THE LONG RANGE DESERT GROUP



UPDATE :  I managed to buy the  TAMIYA  1/35 scale British LRDG Truck with figures. 
The saving of £30.00 more than paid for this kit. Beautiful Box Art. BB



BRITISH ARMY NORTH AFRICA 1942 (E 12353)   Two fully loaded LRDG ( Long Range Desert Group) Chevrolet 30cwt trucks, 25 May 1942.:





                            As we leave these guys thanks for looking. BB

10 comments:

  1. Looks fantastic...and hot...and desertic!

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    Replies
    1. Hi Phil,thanks for commenting. It was and still is horridly hot,but not all soft sand, more like compacted hard cat or dog litter. The fine dust getting into the eyes was a big problem for these guys on patrol. BB

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  2. Some of my chilhood heroes... and adulthood too ;) cheers Beano!!!

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    Replies
    1. RMacedo,thanks for commenting.
      As I began to write of these guys Donkeys years ago,I realized they were for the most part normal young men,but saying this, most excelled in this type of warfare that went way beyond the call of regulated duty. BB

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  3. Replies
    1. Hi Michal,
      thank you for commenting. I`m glad you liked the topic.
      This was an abridged version to ward off boredom for reader. Thanks for your visit. BB

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  4. No pun intended but it's a cool post BB. I think these guys and their exploits were the stuff of many a boyhood daydream!

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    Replies
    1. Hi Russ, friendly puns are always welcome,after all Beano means lots of fun. I`m glad you liked this posting.
      For some those daydreams would become a reality because those of 22 regiment S A S, and others are still in the thick of it today. Thanks for your visit. BB

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  5. Entertaining and informative - thanks for this Paul!

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    Replies
    1. Hello Evan,always good to see a fellow from OZ,has paid me a visit.Many of your country men served alongside these guys that I wrote of. Thanks for your comment. BB

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