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Aviation Collectables & Aviation Clothing - Stock Archive - Page 2

These are some of the SOLD items that have been listed on our website

There are a maximum of 20 items on each page - they are not listed in any particular order. As time goes by we will continue to add to this archive, so, hopefully it will become quite a large reference record. If you have a specific interest, try using the Search box below - this will search the entire stock database for any keyword(s) you enter.

1st January 2020 - update

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NewStock NEW STOCK In Stock IN STOCK Featured FEATURED Sold SOLD Sold - similar available SOLD - similar available  
Reference Stock Item   Description
6739 RAF K Dinghy Hand Paddles - Click for the bigger picture SoldRAF K Dinghy Hand Paddles - Standard issue with the fighter pilot’s K type single seat dinghy in WW11. These were designated with stores reference number 27C/1906 and were constructed from rubber stretched over a simple metal frame.

The user would insert his hands and wrist between the paddle and the elastic retaining bands and use to propel the dinghy through the water. This pair is in issued condition with some staining to one paddle as shown. Both are stamped CQD 1096/3 1 and further stamps reading R.F.D.36;‘RFD’ indicating this set was made by ‘RFD', which represents the company founder Reginald Foster Dagnall, who established the business in 1920. Despite not being in pristine this set gives the impression they have been issued and used so would add a touch of authenticity in an appropriate display and are priced to reflect their current condition.

6277 Private Purchase Goggle Mask Flying - Click for the bigger picture SoldPrivate Purchase Goggle Mask Flying - A very fine example of the private purchase pattern of similar design to the RFC Mk1 and Mk11 Ministry issue mask goggles, a set of which we have also listed today. These invariably do not carry any identifying marks so we are unable in this instance to say when or by whom they were made but interestingly an identical set is illustrated on page 136, bottom right middle photograph, of Mick Prodger’s excellent reference book ‘Vintage Flying Helmets’.

This set are in apparently unissued condition with the leather of the mask soft and supple with all the original brown finish in place. They feature tear drop frames in aluminium with hinged outer sections to facilitate lens changes. Clear lenses are fitted and are well above the average with just minor fogging to the edges. The interior is blanket lined with synthetic fur trip around the lens frames. The original cloth back strap is fitted with just minor rust to the metal adjuster slides. A very crisp example that would be impossible to improve upon and could date from WW1 through until the 1930’s.

Whist not quite a desirable as the Mk1 or 11 issue versions still a very good set and at a significantly keener price!

6794 RAF Trench Art 20 mm Shell Case Trench Art Lighter - Click for the bigger picture SoldRAF Trench Art 20 mm Shell Case Trench Art Lighter - An attractive example mounted on a turned wood base with the case then fixed to a plinth that may have been made from scrap Paxolin or similar synthetic plastic material. The Hispano-Suiza 20 MM HS-404 equipped virtually every British fighter aircraft during WW2 including later marks of the Spitfire, Hurricane, Typhoon, Tempest, Mosquito, Whirlwind, Beaufighter, P38 Lightning and many more. After some early teething troubles it proved to be an extremely effective weapon in both air to air and ground strafing roles.

This example is in first class condition and the cannon shell itself retains its copper band. The shell case has been sectioned and the top part is removable which then reveals a lighter mechanism fitted inside; we have bought and sold several similar examples over the years. We have not attempted to get this working and we can no longer guarantee its original purpose although it does look complete and the flint wheel still creates a good spark. Despite being completely inert to avoid any issues with customs we are restricting the sale of this item to UK destinations only. Stands 8 ½” tall including the base (22 cm)

5220 RFC Goggles Mask Flying MK11 - Click for the bigger picture SoldRFC Goggles Mask Flying MK11 - In the early days of aviation flight clothing was often adapted from civilian or motoring apparel and the practice continued into the early years of WW1. In the case of goggles many were private purchase and the mask model gave excellent face protection when used in conjunction with the RFC cowl helmet. By 1916/17 the WD started issuing an official flying goggles which were designated the Mk1, stores reference 22C/10 which were fitted with clear lenses and the Mk11, stores reference 22C/11, which were identical but featured tinted lenses. The same pattern was also sold by Triplex as a private purchase item post war and was used up until the 1930’s. Clearly the issue ones are the most desirable, scarce and as a result the most expensive to purchase today. Here we have a more or less text book example of this pattern.

The leather face mask remains supple and retains most of its original brown finish. To the left side and printed in gold leaf is the googles designation ‘Goggles mask Flying Mark 11’ so these are the tinted lens option; the lenses are without damage and are not suffering from fogging as is normally the case. The manufacturers details are also shown as being ‘The Triplex Mask & Lens Co Ltd’ followed by the all important RFC property mark of a War Department Broad Arrow and an ‘ A ’, designating the Air Branch, so no doubts this is a genuine RFC issue set. Clearly with use the gold leaf stamping invariably wears off or fades so this set is exceptional and the designation remains crisp and clear despite the 100 + years since it came out of the factory. The metal lens frame is blackened; early examples had chrome or nickel frames and the black variant was introduced to prevent glare. The classic ‘teardrop ‘ shape will be recognised in the next development of RAF goggles of the 1930’s, also confusingly referred to as Mk11 goggles, which remained in service until the Battle of Britain despite being technically superseded by the less favoured Mk111 and 111A patterns. A patent number 116597 is stamped into the frame. Inside the mask is lined with leather and fur trimming to around the lenses. The back strap is a simple adjustable elastic strap that shows some age wear and stretching but remains sound.

In summary a very fine and desirable RFC issue example that rarely turn up for sale in any condition so grab them whilst you can.

6738 RAF K Type Dinghy Hand Paddles - Click for the bigger picture SoldRAF K Type Dinghy Hand Paddles - Standard issue with the fighter pilot’s K type single seat dinghy in WW11. These were issued against stores reference number 27C/1906 and were constructed from rubber stretched over a simple metal frame.

The user would insert his hands and wrist between the paddle and the elastic retaining bands and use to propel the dinghy through the water. This is a good matched pair stamped with both stamped CQD 1096/3 and further stamps reading R.F.D.38 ‘RFD’ indicating this set was made by ‘RFD, which represents the company founder Reginald Foster Dagnall, who established the business in 1920. The reverse side is marked ‘35’. These are a matched pair and in excellent issued condition with just minor wear to the elastic section and age related storage marks.

6659 USAAF A-3 Parachute Harness - Click for the bigger picture SoldUSAAF A-3 Parachute Harness - Or to use its full title ‘Group 2 (Yellow) Parachute Assembly, Quick Attachable Chest, Type A-3 harness’. This pattern was developed in late 1943 and first saw operational service early in 1944. This example is a really first class replica and whilst used previously in the ownership of a re-enactor is remains in very clean original condition.

Stamped on one of the beige webbing straps, that also feature a central black fleck, is ‘Standard Parachute Corp ‘ and is dated May 1942 together with an AN acceptance stamp in a circle. The buckles and fittings are all made from cast alloy and the harness features the distinctive yellow felt coding to ensure aircrew selected the correct parachute pack from the stores. The A-3 carried the attachment hooks on the harness and the loops were on the pack but to confuse matters on the A-4 the reverse applied so the component parts were definitely not compatible! The set is completed by the correct olive drab pack pad that is nicely stamped ‘Back Pad part nos 42D2013 and ‘Date of manufacture May 1942’ and a further AN acceptance stamp. Originals of these are getting very hard to source now and this is reflected in their price. This replica provides a more economical alternative that will look good dressed on a mannequin or of course for the re-enactor looking for authenticity and it will only improve with usage.
6637 E.Vion Compass Type 112 - Click for the bigger picture SoldE.Vion Compass Type 112 - This little French compass came in in a box of assorted instruments and whilst we have never had the type here before believe it would have been fitted to the instrument panel of light aircraft such as the Fournier RF4 and RF5 & Vivat SDM and no doubt others. The data plate on the case confirms it was manufactured in November 1963 and the guarantee ran out one year later!The serial number is 3856 and it was made by E.Vion of Paris. Interestingly the front of the compass appears to be mounted upside down when compared with the compass card but that is how it came to us. The bolts to locate the rear cover are missing as is the damping oil. So we are offering this modest sized compass as a project or for spare parts and as detailed above it went out of guarantee 55 years ago! Instrument front plate measures 2.4” (6 cm)
6634 RAF Altimeter 6TM/9 - Click for the bigger picture SoldRAF Altimeter 6TM/9 - We are not entirely sure of the background to this instrument although the data plate on the reverse confirms it was made by Kollsman Instruments Ltd of Southampton. It also details Ref no 6TM/9 and 'Altimeter Synchrohotel'. On the side wall of the case is painted 'Barschle Adjusted 29.01.80'. The crisp dial is graduated in 1000 of feet with a subsidiary readout showing actual height. It also carries a further label confirming it has at some stage been repaired by Kollsman Instruments at The Airport, Southampton. Apologies for the vague description but we are sure the experts out there will know exactly what it is! Dial width 3.25" (8.5cm)

6636 RAF Air Speed Indicator Mk 1XA - Click for the bigger picture SoldRAF Air Speed Indicator Mk 1XA - The Mk1XA instrument (the 'A' signifying the dial is non-luminous) entered service in the 1930'sand replaced the V series of instruments and was the first to have a bakerite case and was standard fit in most British aircraft in WW11. Numerous versions were made each with a different speed scale; in this instance the speed is marked in M.P.H. as opposed to Knots and the scale runs from 2-240 MPH. This indicates this is an early instrument as on later ones the scale commenced at 5MPH. The branch connecting tubes emerge from the back of the dial which is nicely stamped with a Kings Crown and A.M. as well as a patent number. This instrument would have been fitted to a variety of aircraft but definitely the RAF Auster 1V & V. Whilst this instrument is offered for sale as a collectors item only it does still have an RAF Returned Equipment ticket attached which indicates when last checked it was pronounced 'Serviceable' by the assessing officer. Dial bezel dimension 3.6"(9.3cm)
6638 RAF Spitfire 2 Way Ignition Magneto Switchbox - Click for the bigger picture SoldRAF Spitfire 2 Way Ignition Magneto Switchbox - Another item that is now becoming increasingly hard to source. This is the classic short toggle type as fitted to the Spitfire and Hurricane, as well as wide variety of RAF aircraft of the WW11 era including the Tempest and Typhoon. It should not be confused however with the long toggle type that is more associated with the heavies.

This 2-way ignition switch box, is clearly marked on the case 'SWITCHBOX 2 WAY IGNITION' and 'Ref. No. 5C/548', and is located in the pilots instrument panel and forms an integral part of for starting the Merlin Engine. It is also marked with a crisp Kings Crown and A.M. below whilst one end of the case carries and ink stamp 'MK' with a '2' below. The brass front face is clearly annotated MAGNETO no 1 and No2 with 'ON' being in the up position and 'Off' in the down ; below the 'off' is painted in STI/ELEC/8. The switch springs are perhaps not as crisp as they once were but operate perfectly well but this item is for sale as a collectable and it can not be guaranteed for its original purpose. It would of course make a perfect addition to a Spitfire or Hurricane replica instrument panel or cockpit project.

Prices on these switch boxes are going up all the time and we have seen similar currently listed at £187 and an eyewatering £285! Ours is rather more modestly priced so grab it whilst you can as we have no more once this has gone.

OC450 RAF Aircraft Blind Flying Hood - Click for the bigger picture SoldRAF Aircraft Blind Flying Hood - This one is a first for the team at Oldnautibits HQ! This item came in with a number of other aviation related pieces we are currently listing, recovered from the garage of a retired Tiger Moth pilot. Whilst initially thinking this was the hood from an ancient MG, a little bit of online research confirmed it is in fact an RAF blind flying training hood, probably dating to the 1930's. We have found photographs of similar being fitted to the rear cockpits of trainers such as the DH82 Tiger Moth and the RAF Miles Magister. When the hood is opened up it enabled the instructor to simulate conditions of zero visibility for the fledgling pilot the back seat, whilst the instructor, in the front cockpit keeps his eyes peeled to check the accuracy of the flying and to keep a look-out for other aircraft!

The metal frame of this hood retains much of its original green paint and despite some rust appears to be in sound condition. The canvas and leather of the hood cover itself is in very poor condition but sufficient remains we believe to provide a decent pattern for a replacement hood to be constructed. Alternatively it may be possible to carry out sympathetic repairs or it could be left in 'as found ' condition, to display how basic flight training was carried out in the 1930's, when it was very much 'seat of the pants' stuff! Interestingly this hood has two blackened triangular windows that we have not seen on any period photographs. We speculate these may have been to allow minimal light into the blackout conditions within the cockpit, to aid reading of the basic set of panel instruments whilst preventing the trainee having a crafty visual to see how he was making out! The rear of the hood has 'lift the dot' fasteners to attach securely to the rear of the cockpit frame while the front would have been secured by straps An interesting training aid from a bygone age!

6632 Air Ministry Inclinometer Reference 6A/389 - Click for the bigger picture SoldAir Ministry Inclinometer Reference 6A/389 - Officially called a ' Fore-and-Aft Level, Type B' these were first described in the 1934 edition of AP1275. The type 'B' variant superseded the Type 'A' which was used on RNAS aircraft during the 1914-18 war. This updated version was significantly lighter and was used in a variety of RAF aircraft of the 1930's, including the DH82 Tiger Moth, Bristol Bulldog, Gloucester Gladiator and many more. It remained in service until the more sophisticated blind flying instruments panels were introduced which included an Artificial Horizon.

This example is in really crisp original condition with a white oblong dial graduated clearly from zero in the centre indicating flat and level flight. It then caries a scale going up to 20 degrees in a climb and 20 degrees in a dive so effectively the instrument gave a visual indication of the angle of the aircraft through the air and effectively worked in the same way as a spirit level, but in the vertical plane. The 'A' version of instrument originally contained a red dye but this was found prone to fading so was uprated with a black dye on later models. The dye is still present in this example and whilst we can't warrant its accuracy it seems to work as was intended back in the 1930's. It is made from what looks like Bakelite and is fully stamped with REF. No. 6A/389, a Kings Crown, A.M. and a serial number 145752. On the reverse of the dial is an ink manufacturers or inspectors stamp ; we are unsure who made this example but the main makers were either Short & Maison or Reid & Sigrist Ltd. The dial measures 5.5" (14 cm).These instruments are becoming increasingly difficult to find now so grab the opportunity whilst it is available. It is the first one of the kind we have had in for a considerable time and when it is gone it is gone!

4522 RAF Mk1V Flying Goggles 22C/111 - Click for the bigger picture SoldRAF Mk1V Flying Goggles 22C/111 - The Mk1V series of flying goggle, stores reference 22C/111, was designed specifically for use with the RAF B type flying helmet, with the large elasticated loop straps designed to encircle the bulbous zipped receiver housings. First introduced by the Air Ministry in June 1940, the concept behind the design was sound but the manufacture of them proved a nightmare! Our set are the incredibly scarce original variant and features a complicated double panel laminated glass hinged lens arrangement, with the outer lenses frame swivelling outwards. The design was further compromised as the sun filter 'flip shield' with an external coiled spring arrangement was found to be incredibly weak and invariably broke off in service.

The Mk1V were also found to be heavy in use, so with all these problems the Air Ministry specified the MK1V A of a similar deign but without the hinged windows but made of a plastic material. These however proved to be hardly any lighter and very few were made and were in turn replaced by the final variant the Mk1VB, which is the pattern that most often surfaces today. These redressed many of the issues described, were more robust, eliminated the opening window frames and had a stronger flip shield arrangements. Weight remained an issue, although the introduction of riveted guide plates to locate the goggles on the B helmet helmet, helped to an extent. The 1VB was issued in some quantity and remains the most common of the variants that turn up today.

Our example is a rare early survivor and is pretty much in text book condition. The black painted frame is excellent with just a little wear around the flip shield mount; the delicate flip shield, stores reference 22C/113 'Screens anti -glare', as previously described, is surprisingly undamaged. The lenses are above the average with just minor fogging. The leather nose cover and chamois backing are excellent, but the black rubber face pads are slightly distorted and hardened, as always seems to be the case, but this does not detract from a display point of view. The elastic loops and sprung cloth covered straps are in top condition, as is the leather back strap with good clear embossing with nice firm Kings Crown, A.M. Mk1V 22C/111 and makers details Levers Optical Co Ltd.

Not much more than we can add other than Mk1V's in any condition hardly ever appear on the market now and to find a pair in top condition as these is an exceptional opportunity that we are unlikely to be able to repeat anytime soon.

3723 6D/101 MK111B*Oxygen Connector - Click for the bigger picture Sold6D/101 MK111B*Oxygen Connector - These increasingly rare connectors were standard RAF issue in the late 1930's and in the early stages of WW11 and in use during the Battle of France and the Battle of Britain. They were used to connect the D mask oxygen hose to the aircraft oxygen system. Whilst the A and B variants look identical the A had no internal valve with just a rubber washer fitted to provide an effective seal to the aircrafts oxygen system. This evolved into the more refined B which is fitted with a sprung non-return valve which automatically closes when the connector is removed from the system.

Oxygen was supplied by a constant flow rather than a demand valve system and entered the mask by a breathing hose. Interestingly prior to 1941 this was insulated with a cloth covering ; our example still retains the cut end of that oxygen hose which is just rubber so it is assumed this one is a later issue example. In a Spitfire the male connector was mounted on the starboard side of the cockpit above the chassis control lever. Made from solid brass this example is clearly stamped with stores reference 6D/101 (the 6D prefix indicating Oxygen equipment) whilst the reverse side is stamped Mk111B* and above GB6 in a circle, as well as a Broad Arrow property mark. The sprung valve remains firm and whilst for sale as an aviation collectable we see no reason, if you happen to have a Spit to plug it into, it would work as intended back in 1940.

These are almost impossible to source now with thousands being scrapped for their brass post war so grab this rare survivor whilst you have the chance!

1489 RAF 1930 Pattern Flying Helmet with History - Click for the bigger picture SoldRAF 1930 Pattern Flying Helmet with History - Often overlooked by collectors but an early and important part of the evolution of RAF issue flying helmets. This design replaced the RFC Mk1 helmet and was the predecessor of the B helmet that entered service in 1935. Issued against stores reference 22C/57 many helmets were modified by the addition of flap type receiver housings, designated 22C/57, to accommodate radio-telephones or acoustic Gosport Tubes. Others are documented to have had 'B' type receiver cups fitted and adapted to take the D oxygen mask and so served into the early part of WW11.

This example remains as issued without flaps being fitted and the dark chestnut leather remains in remarkably good condition. These helmets carried a wide chin strap and a large buckle fastening ; the strap remains in sound condition although three of the metal eyelets are missing. The leather covered buckle, often a weak point, is close to mint. Inside the chamois lining is excellent but shows normal service wear commensurate with use. In the crown is an original manufacturers label and whist the writing has more or less worn away we can just decipher the maker is H.Bendall who went on to supply the 'B' helmet to the Air Ministry. We can not decipher the size or date although an ink stamp shows '9' and '33' so have assumed it was manufactured in 1933. It also carries a further ink stamp that M +2. The only real issue with this helmet, as is often the case with the 1930 pattern, is the interlining has hardened and crystallised but this does not impact from a display point of view. The velvet brow and chin strap lining remains sound.

What makes this already scarce and early helmet even more interesting is that it comes with provenance of the original owner, having been purchased from his family back in 2003, since when it has resided in my own personal collection. It was owned by Cecil Ferdinand Chinery, who was born 1 March 1896 and who served with the Royal Naval Air Service (RNAS) in the last year of WW1. Post war he transferred to the fledgling RAF and served in Palestine and also flew in various air displays at Hendon in the interwar years. He continued to serve into WW11 but in a non-flying capacity, including time based at RAF Cardington. The family told me they had had a photograph of Wing Commander Chinery shaking hands with King George V1 whilst on an official visit, but now sadly mislaid. He was appointed a Commander of the Military Division of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire Military Division (OBE) on 11 July 1940. All too often the stories associated with the kit we purchase has been lost down the years but this is certainly the exception and a letter confirming the provenance will be supplied to the new custodian.

4753 Private Purchase 1930's Flying Helmet by S.Lewis - Click for the bigger picture SoldPrivate Purchase 1930's Flying Helmet by S.Lewis -

A classic example of an inter War period flying helmet manufactured by S.Lewis. Inside the crown of the helmet is stitched a high quality woven label confirming ''S. Lewis's OF RACING FLYING & MOTOR CLOTHING FAME' with an address at 27, CARBURTON STREET LONDON. W.1. TEL. MUSEUM 4793 followed by 'No Connection with any other firm.' This was added to avoid confusion, as another manufacturer of the period operated under the trading title of ' D.Lewis of Great Portland Street, London' and the two firms wanted to establish their own identities. We have found a period S.Lewis advertisement on line featuring an identical helmet dated 1930 (marked at 25/9 to those of us who remember 'old' money!) and the pattern remained in use throughout the 1930's and into WW11.

Whilst a private purchase item many RAF pilots preferred to use these in preference to the issued item and Bob Stanford Tuck is a classic example. Added to the fact all private flying was suspended once war was declared it is safe to assume many of this pattern served with the RAF and this text book example would make a fine addition to an RAF or general collection. The dark brown leather is very soft and supple and is close to mint condition. It features an adjustable wide chinstrap for added comfort and press stud leather earflaps for use with Gosport tubes which were fitted when we purchased and were offered as a standard fitting back in the 1930's. These remain in very good original condition with no fraying to the tube covers. The brow carries a leather adjustment strap to customise the helmet's fit whilst to the rear is a buckle fastening goggle retaining strap. Inside is equally crisp with signs of just very light use. The remains of the paper size label is still in place confirming the size is possibly 7 1/2 but part of the label is missing ; having tried it on it probably equates to an RAF size 3 helmet. The top specification manufacturers label has already been mentioned but an added bonus is the original owner has inked in his name one Robin Sykes. Sadly we have no history on him and whilst two 'Sykes' were members of 'The Few' in the Battle of Britain neither was called Robin. Interestingly however a picture of Sub Lieutenant John Humphrey Sykes in the excellent 'Men of the Battle of Britain' appears to show him wearing a similar helmet, thus reconfirming many of this pattern saw RAF use in WW11.

In summary a very fine example that fully meets the oft quoted collectors maxim of ' always buy the best example you can afford' and this one is realistically priced with the added benefit of being fitted with Gosport tubes so the helmet is offered in service condition. All that is lacking is the DH Tiger Moth to plug it into!

3711 RAF Trench Art 20 MM Shell Case Trench Art Lighter - Click for the bigger picture SoldRAF Trench Art 20 MM Shell Case Trench Art Lighter - Another fine example from the small collection we have just purchased. This one is free standing and whilst inert appears never to have been fired. The head stamp is clearly visible and is embossed 'BBC 1941 20 MM' Online research throws up some confusion over the manufacturer. Some chat rooms indicate this was made by the British manufacturer 'Barking Brassware Company', who apparently only made ammunition for the 20mm Hispano, so seems to fit the bill. Others state it was made by the 'Bridgeport Brass Company of Bridgeport, Connecticut, USA', who also manufactured 20mm Hispano-Suiza cartridges. Seeing the items clear RAF origins we are inclined to think this is from the British Company but stand to be corrected by any 'armchair experts' out there! The Hispano-Suiza 20 MM HS-404 equipped virtually every British fighter aircraft during WW2 including later Mks of the Spitfire, Hurricane, Typhoon, Tempest, Mosquito, Whirlwind, Beaufighter, P38 Lightning and many more. After some early teething troubles it proved to be an extremely effective weapon in both he air to air and ground strafing roles.

This example is in first class condition with the front having a Kings Crown attached and a large RAF eagle below and despite its origins now being lost it is safe to assume this would have originated from an RAF station in WW11. The cannon shell itself retains its copper band and interestingly the beautifully engineered brass head unscrews to reveal a hollow interior which would originally have held high explosives. The shell case has been sectioned and the top part is removable which then reveals a lighter mechanism fitted inside of near identical construction to the other example we have also just listed (Item OC319).We have not attempted to get this working and we can no longer guarantee its original purpose although it does look complete. Despite being inert to avoid postage issues at customs we are restricting the sale of this item to UK customers only. Measures 7.25" tall (18.5cm)

4899 RAF Trench Art Shell Case - Click for the bigger picture SoldRAF Trench Art Shell Case - Another example of the craft which we are listing today, this time fashioned from a shell case clearly stamped 'DURA 20MM M21' and dated 1942. Online research indicates this was manufactured by the Dura Division of Detroit Harvester Corp, Toledo, Ohio, USA. Unusually this one is displayed inverted and the pointed end is screwed onto a turned aluminium base, that also features a riveted brass plaque with the RAF motto 'Per Adua Ad Astra' which translated means 'Through adversity to the stars'. We are unsure if the shell is an original item but compared with the other example we have listed today it carries no stampings to confirm its origins and we therefore surmise feel this may be a turned from a block of metal, fashioned to represent the 20 mil shell that was originally fitted. The front of the shell case has a wartime Other Ranks RAF Kings Crown cap badge attached and either side extended RAF wings cut from scrap brass. Whilst an inert display piece, to avoid any possible issues with customs, we are restricting this one to UK customers only. Measures 8" (20.5 cm)
OC319 RAF Trench Art Shell Case Lighter - Click for the bigger picture SoldRAF Trench Art Shell Case Lighter - A rather fine period made example. The case is fixed to a hardwood and brass base so we are unable to establish date but this appears to have been crafted from a 20 mil cannon shell. The pointed end however gives us more clues and the head is embossed 'M.M.D' and below '152 and 8/41' which we assume dates it to 1941. Whilst munitions are not our speciality research online research indicates this projectile was made by the Auto-Lite Battery Corporation of California USA by their Metal Manufacturing Division (hence the MMD stamping).

The inert shell case has been sectioned and the top part is removeable with reveals a lighter mechanism fitted inside. We have not attempted to get this working and we can no longer guarantee its original purpose although it does look complete. The base of the shell case carries a period Kings Crown and an RAF eagle so we have assumed this piece originated from scrap recovered from an RAF station back in WW11. Sadly the provenance behind it is now lost although it would clearly have a story to tell and would sit happily in either an RAF or trench art collection. Despite being inert to avoid postage issues at customs we are restricting the sale of this item to UK customers only. Measures 9.25" tall (23.5cm)

4696 RAF 'B' Squadron Presentation Tankard 1940 with possible CUAS Connections - Click for the bigger picture SoldRAF 'B' Squadron Presentation Tankard 1940 with possible CUAS Connections - A fine wartime example that clearly has a story to tell! Sadly the provenance has been lost down the years but we have certain clues to go on. On the base rim is embossed 'Mathers & Son Cambridge'. We believe this to be a Cambridge retailer rather than the manufacturer as we have seen clocks with the same name but we could of course be wrong. The base is also stamped 482 followed by a flower shaped device and 1/2 PT indication a half pint capacity. To the front of the tankard is a set of hand engraved RAF Wings surmounted by a Kings Crown and below the wording 'From "B" Squadron March Eights 1940'. Our surmise on this piece is it was purchased by Cambridge University Air Squadron (CUAS) from a local retailer and they had it engraved. The 'March Eights 'that could be a reference to a Cambridge University Rowing Club event and perhaps it was presented as a winner's prize.

Cambridge University Air Squadron was formed in October 1925 and was the first in the country. The University Air Squadrons were an important source for aircrew for the RAF in the pre war years and special concessions were made to members of the University Air Squadrons in the way of seniority if they subsequently joined the RAF. From 1937 members in their third year who were sufficiently proficient could be commissioned in the newly-created RAFVR. Surprisingly all UAS's were disbanded in September 1939 but were reformed again in 1940. The value of these ‘publicly-funded flying clubs’ was demonstrated emphatically by the contribution made by former UAS members to the war effort and during the Battle of Britain when no less than 97 formed part of Churchill’s ‘Few’, with many still wearing their pre war 'badge of honour ' Prestige flying suits.

Suffice to say it is a nice period example with an ornate handle and glass bottom. It is very slightly distorted, as is often the case with tankards that have generally enjoyed a working life, in addition to being a presentation piece. It would no doubt polish up if so required but we prefer to leave it in 'as found' condition and we like to think it may have been used in the smoke filled bar of 'The Eagle', much frequented by RAF and USAAF aircrew in WW1. This unique pub became a favourite haunt for them and many of their signatures remain on the ceiling, a reminder of times gone by and bring back many emotive memories;it is a must do if you should are everin Cambridge and just as important as a visit to Kings College chapel to all those of a certain inclination! If any visitors to the site can add anything in regard to the pewter marks detailed or our surmise on the tankards early history please get in touch and we will add this to our description. Measures c.4" high (10 cm)

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Mr Oldnautibits a chantrybarn production