Cleaning up after WWII

What happens to the detritus left of the fields of battle after a war is rarely touched on in print or on film.  Whether the remains are human or mechanical, something has to be done with them.  wwiiafterwwii has put together an excellent look at how the mechanical remains were disposed of or reused.

Since starting wwiiafterwwii, I receive from time to time suggestions for topics. These are wide-ranging but two in particular seem very popular: WWII weapons in the Vietnam War, which has been touched on several times; and a general question of how the world “cleaned up” WWII battlefields after the war. For the latter, I was surprised at how very little is written about it so perhaps this will be of interest.

One of the reasons WWII battlefields did not remain littered with vehicles for long was that, with the lone exception of the USA, all of the major warring powers made some official level of combat usage of captured enemy arms during WWII. The most formal was Germany’s Beutewaffe (literally, ‘booty’ or ‘loot’ weapon) effort, which encompassed everything from handguns to fighter aircraft with an official code in the Waffenamt system; for example FK-288(r) (the Soviet ZiS-3 anti-tank gun), SIGew-251(a) (the American M1 Garand rifle), and Sd.Kfz 735(i) (the Italian Fiat M13/40 tank). Captured gear was assembled at points called Sammelstelle and then shipped back from the front lines for disposition.

Read the rest of this great article here: Cleaning up after WWII

Looking for your own private air force?

I’m in for $20, maybe $30 if there’s some overtime on the next check…

Provided you have the cash to spare, you can get one heck of a deal on a whole squadron of preowned jet trainers, as-is, where-is.

“Awesome deal. Package of 20 upgraded Fougas with 830,000 parts. Owner wants them sold this week. Only $200K for everything!” reads the post at Raptor Aviation of Port St. Lucie, Florida.

Read the rest here: Looking for your own private air force?

I NEED one of these!

Racing goggles and helmet not included…

escacar-1945-gyroscopic-rocket-car-paleo-future

Escacar Unicycle Gyroscopic Rocket Car

Carl H. Renner painted this “Escacar” for General Motors in 1945. The Escacar is described as a “Unicycle Gyroscopic Rocket Car.”

Like the painting of a commuter helicopter we looked at a few months ago, this image can be found in the Petersen Automotive Museum book, Driving Through Futures Past.

 

via: http://paleo-future.blogspot.com/2007/07/gyroscopic-rocket-car-1945.html

P-63 Kingcobra: post-WWII service

A successor to the P-39 Airacobra, the Bell P-63 Kingcobra never saw combat in American colors but was heavily exported via Lend-Lease during WWII, and was used on three continents after the conflict.

The prototype P-63 first flew on 7 December 1942, the one-year anniversary of the Pearl Harbor attack. The single-seat P-63 was 33′ long with a 38′ wingspan. It was powered by an Allison V-1710 liquid-cooled engine with a two-stage turbocharger. The ceiling was 43,000′ and the average combat radius was 450 NM.

Other than being larger and more sleek than the P-39, the P-63 shared it’s general shape. Improvements were the restoration of the turbocharger which had been deleted from the Airacobra, new laminar flow wings, a new tail for better stability, and a high-performance A64 11’7″ 4-bladed steel propeller. Except for the rudder, all of the P-39’s fabric surfaces were replaced by metal on the P-63.

Read the rest here: P-63 Kingcobra: post-WWII service