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Post Info TOPIC: New Book out on Mechanicalizing the Australian Military Forces


Lieutenant

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New Book out on Mechanicalizing the Australian Military Forces
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Hello All,

I have received Rod Dux's new book called "The Benzine Lancers", Mechanicalizing the Australian Military Forces 1901 to 1919.

What a tome! This covers the evolution of mechanical transport in Australian Forces and covers a broad range of topics with a profusion of photos and documents from the Archives and private sources. As the Australian system closely followed that of Britain there will be much here to interest those outside the Australian sphere.

There are over 450photos and drawings, along with 16 annexes dealing with markings, TOE and what was in service at various times during the Great War and before.The photos may seen a little small for some but they are sharp and clear and show what they are there for. Captions are detailed and indentify the vehicle/persons.

The book is a hard cover A4 with 338 pp, costing $AUD73 plus postage.

You can contact Rod at rdmilmix123@bigpond.comJust remove the 123 (hope that fools the spammers?)

Richard Simmie



-- Edited by R Simmie on Sunday 1st of July 2012 03:38:46 AM

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Brigadier

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Very interesting. Is there any information about armoured cars used by Australians during WWI? As far as I know (from David Fletcher's "War Cars") there were only 2 (Mercedes and British Daimler) and later some Rolls-Royces were used.

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Lieutenant

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Hello Albert,

there are 2 pages dealing with the 1st Australian Armoured car battery and their two armoured cars , Minerva Tender and "New Hudson" MC and side platform but not a great amount of detail unfortunately considering the scope of the topic.

Richard



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R Simmie


Brigadier

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R Simmie wrote:

Hello Albert,

there are 2 pages dealing with the 1st Australian Armoured car battery and their two armoured cars , Minerva Tender and "New Hudson" MC and side platform but not a great amount of detail unfortunately considering the scope of the topic.

Richard


Thank you very much, Richard. Pity that there are only 2 pages on this interesting, but not very well known subject.



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Lieutenant

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attached is updated flyer for the book,

regards,

Richard Simmie



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BSM


Sergeant

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Gents, unfortunately the War diary written by the OC Captain James does not go into any detail about the armoured vehicles. A photocopy of said diary may be purchased from the Australian War Memorial. In any case the vehicles were found to be unsuitable for the conditions. They were soon withdrawn and the Unit re-issued with second hand T model fords from the British. I have a copy of an unpublished photo of the Unit and its four fords in Egypt soon after the handover. The Unit then became the Number 1 Light Car Patrol and finished the war as such. There has been no official documentary evidence to date that I am aware of confirming that any Australian Unit was issued with Rolls Royce Armd. cars. If somebody has something such as a Unit Establishment etc. I am sure we would all be keen to see it!

There are a small number of images from the period containing English cars with AIF personnel either in the car or near it that have been incorrectly captioned by archivists many years ago. A friend actually spoke at length with the family of Captain James and is quite knowledgeable on the subject. One of the Armoured cars was apparently returned to Melbourne with the body finishing up in a landfill years later.

Regards....Rod



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Brigadier

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Hello Rod,

So it looks like David Fletcher wrote some wrong information in his book "War Cars", because he wrote that both armoured cars were shipped back to Australia and the crews transferred to Rolls-Royces. Plus you wrote that 1st Australian Armoured Car Section changed into No1 Light Car Patrol and from David Fletcher's words it seemed that those were two different units.

Please look what I found: http://alh-research.tripod.com/Light_Horse/index.blog/1899815/1st-australian-armoured-car-section-aif-contents/

Looks like it is quite detailed, concentrates on the unit and it was written by Captain James. Did you know about existence of this text?

Best Regards,
Albert

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BSM


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Albert thanks for the input. I have not read the book you mention therefore I am not in a position to comment on specifics however I can well understand how an observer can be misled. If you log on to the Aust. War Memorial site and do a search in 'Collections' (WW1), Rolls Royce and Armoured Car you will come up with a number of anomalies. For instance image A01489 has the caption "Soldiers standing next to four Rolls Royce armoured cars of the Australian Section, each was armed with a Vickers-Maxim machine gun." They are not Australian vehicles. There is one Australian posing in front of the vehicles. They are from a British Unit.

The Australian Armoured Car Unit had a few name changes. Their first colour patch was listed as the 1st Australian Armoured Car Battery. There is only one Unit!! This is a good example as to why Census Numbers or vehicle registration numbers are important. The book lists the numbers for the first 4 vehicles, the replacement Fords when they became the Light Car Patrol and the new vehicles they were issued with in Palestine, none of which were Rolls Royce Armoured Cars!!! This basically date times the chronology of the Unit.

Regarding the web site you posted ... I have had a copy of said document for a number of years. Much is up to interpretation. The Desert Mounted Corps had Rolls Royce Armd. Car Batterys, Light Armoured Motor Batterys (Model 'T' Fords with Vickers MMGs and Light Car Patrols (Model 'T' Fords with Lewis Guns generally) supporting their operations in the E.E.F. Apart from the 1st Light Car Patrol (Australian), all of these units were British supporting predominately Australian and New Zealand Mounted Units etc. in the context of this discussion. Additionally if you care to check the Order of Battle regarding Australian Units in the conflict you will not find an Australian Armoured Car Unit other than the one discussed above. Yes Australian Units were supported by British Armoured Units but they were not manned by Australians to the best of my knowledge. Welcome further discussion if anybody can offer up information supported by official references.

Unfortunately incorrect "caption content" is not uncommon. During my research period I offered a number of substantiated WW1, M.T., caption changes to the AWM staff which I am pleased to say they adopted ... all thin skin and not armoured I would add! Anyway I trust this clarifys the situation regarding the Light Car Patrol etc.

Regards....Rod



-- Edited by BSM on Thursday 5th of July 2012 04:04:16 AM

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Sergeant

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Late footnote - much if not most of the WW1 image captioning at the AWM was actually done by well meaning archivists in England in 1919 according to Museum staff and where anomalies are brought to their attention with supporting information they are quick to update the relevant item which I can attest to.



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Sergeant

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RE: New Book - MT in Australian Military Forces & the Light Car Patrol
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Albert further to my last ... I have since chatted with my LCP/Captain James contact. He recalls that the Mercedes engine chassis were recovered from the Armd. Car on arrival back in Australia with the steel body ending up in a land fill or rubbish dump as we used to call them. He does not know the fate of the Daimler. As you now have access to a copy of the War Diary you will see that there was in fact only one unit and there is no mention of a Unit issued with RR Armd. Cars.

On a lighter note I have been corresponding with a chap here in Australia who has a very interesting project underway. He is building a replica LCP vehicle on an original Model T Ford engine chassis combination. He has given me permission to include a few images with this post for those of you interested in such things. Modelling on a grand scale would be a good title for this venture. Regards Rod



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Sergeant

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RE: New Book out on AIF MT and the Light Car Patrol
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Albert thanks for the acknowledgement and for all at large .... as and when I get updates on the replica ford LCP project I will post it here... Regards... Rod



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Captain

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RE: New Book out on Mechanicalizing the Australian Military Forces
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Dear friends,

please tell me what color was the car Ford Model T 1917 LCP (Light Car Patrol) 1916-19 – War and Exploration in Egypt and Libya? This is confirmed by historical documents?

Osprey publishes the correct pictures (color pink) or not?

 

 



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BSM


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Valeriy67
I have not seen an official reference to the colour "pink" being used on WW1 Ford Box cars etc. and would be interested to hear of same if it actually exists. Contacting the author/s through Osprey to ask what is the 'source' of the information regarding the pink colour would be a suggestion for you.
The following extract is taken from a period journal known as "The Australian Motorist" which published the content of a letter from a serving AIF soldier in Cairo. He was describing Ford and other makes of ambulances that the AIF were using at the time.

Extract - "The cars from Australia are all painted white, while those from the old country are shades of grey relieved here and there with white patches on particular parts."

White painted ambulances (cars) were shipped direct from Australia and we purchased grey coloured examples direct from English sources via the Red Cross. These were arranged by the Australian Surgeon General at the time. Based on this information I would say that the Fords of No. 1. Light Car Patrol were grey and the British LCP and LAMB Fords were probably a similar colour! A search of the Australian War Memorial ambulance images supports this observation.

Updating one of my earlier posts above regarding the replication of an LCP Ford.....unfortunately and sadly the gentleman in question passed away before completing the project last year. His wife and family allowed a few of his friends to complete the project and I am told that the vehicle was displayed in a number of Centenary events in 1915 per his wishes.
Regards


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Captain

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Hello Rod,

thank you very much for your information.

Best regards,

Valeriy.



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