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Mystery car in the Western Desert


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#1 rmcguirk

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 10:47 AM

Attached File  Morton10_640x480 low res.jpg   38.71KB   2 downloads
Grateful for any help identifying the make of this long and heavy-looking "Light" Car. Could it be a Mercedes? I know the 1st Australian Armoured Car Section brought an armour-plated Mercedes to Egypt from Melbourne and that the section was attached for a while to the Light Car Patrols.

Russell

#2 centurion

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 12:04 PM

Attached File  Morton10_640x480 low res.jpg   38.71KB   2 downloads
Grateful for any help identifying the make of this long and heavy-looking "Light" Car. Could it be a Mercedes? I know the 1st Australian Armoured Car Section brought an armour-plated Mercedes to Egypt from Melbourne and that the section was attached for a while to the Light Car Patrols.

Russell


Looks like one of the Rolls Royce tenders. These were used by Lawrence in Jordan and the Hedjaz, by Leachman in Mesopotamia and also in Egypt.

#3 centurion

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 12:12 PM

Rolls Royce Tender in Egypt parked by the Canal (or possibly on the canal)

Attached File  rollsroyce_truck.jpeg   35.02KB   1 downloads

Used by Lawrence

Attached File  rolls_lawrence_ww1.jpeg   43.06KB   0 downloads

#4 rmcguirk

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 12:41 PM

Looks like one of the Rolls Royce tenders. These were used by Lawrence in Jordan and the Hedjaz, by Leachman in Mesopotamia and also in Egypt.


Thank you, Centurion. Twenty minutes googling supports your view -- long stretch between forward and back wheels; relatively small cargo box behind; high, rounded mudguard... You must be right.
Was confused by the LC designation, but your photo of the RR tender at the Canal clears that up.
Regards,
Russell

#5 centurion

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 12:52 PM

Thank you, Centurion. Twenty minutes googling supports your view -- long stretch between forward and back wheels; relatively small cargo box behind; high, rounded mudguard... You must be right.
Was confused by the LC designation, but your photo of the RR tender at the Canal clears that up.
Regards,
Russell


LC does not stand for Light Car but was simply part of the registration number L and LC used for vehicles in the Mediterranean area - which included Greece - (M for the Western front just to confuse)

#6 rmcguirk

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 01:18 PM

Thank you again. That removes another source of confusion!

#7 Lancashire Fusilier

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 01:21 PM

Russell,
Here is another photograph of the Rolls-Royce Tender.
This showing Colonel Joyce at Aqaba ( Lawrence of Arabia's superior ).
Again, this Tender has the " LC " vehicle marking.

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#8 rmcguirk

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 02:07 PM

Russell,
Here is another photograph of the Rolls-Royce Tender.
This showing Colonel Joyce at Aqaba ( Lawrence of Arabia's superior ).
Again, this Tender has the " LC " vehicle marking.


Further evidence that the mystery car is a Rolls tender -- many thanks.
Russell

#9 centurion

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 02:37 PM

Further evidence that the mystery car is a Rolls tender -- many thanks.
Russell

And an example of the longer body variant.




BTW what was the original evidence that the tender in the first photo was in the Western Desert?




#10 rmcguirk

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 03:29 PM

BTW what was the original evidence that the tender in the first photo was in the Western Desert?


The photo is from a set received from the grandson of an RASC mechanic with 2LCP. That patrol was in the W Desert for over 2 years, in the Baharia area; then around Kharga to the south. Just before the Armistice (mid-Oct 1918) they left for Syria, but the only photo in the set from that country is a formal group photo of the patrol, ie not taken by the mechanic or with his camera. So if the location is Syria, it's the only picture he took there. Not 100% sure, certainly, but evidence seems very strong that the location is W Desert.

#11 TRAJAN

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 05:34 PM

[quote name='centurion' timestamp='1326119848' post='1692337']...BTW what was the original evidence that the tender in the first photo was in the Western Desert?/quote]

'Shorts. khaki, long, desert, for the wearing of'...?...:whistle:

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#12 centurion

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 05:42 PM

'Shorts. khaki, long, desert, for the wearing of'...?...:whistle:

Trajan


Ah a military genius at work - so shorts were never worn in the Arabian desert, the Sinai, Palestine, Syria, Mesopotamia etc  WOW I never knew that.

#13 TRAJAN

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 05:54 PM

Ah a military genius at work - so shorts were never worn in the Arabian desert, the Sinai, Palestine, Syria, Mesopotamia etc WOW I never knew that.


Ah, all depends on definition of western desert! If talking Roman military then west of the Nile... If talking WWII, then west of Egypt... BUT, if talking WWI, then broadly speaking all of the above - except that these light cars were not (to the best of my admitedly limited knowledge) used in the campaign between the rivers. Now, I say 'broadly speaking' in the sense of much of the 'western' world (i.e., most of the EU) is east of the Greenwich meridian... :thumbsup:

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#14 centurion

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 05:57 PM

Ah, all depends on definition of western desert! If talking Roman military then west of the Nile... If talking WWII, then west of Egypt... BUT, if talking WWI, then broadly speaking all of the above - except that these light cars were not (to the best of my admitedly limited knowledge) used in the campaign between the rivers. Now, I say 'broadly speaking' in the sense of much of the 'western' world (i.e., most of the EU) is east of the Greenwich meridian... :thumbsup:

Trajan


Its not a light car - do keep up

#15 TRAJAN

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 06:30 PM

.. Its not a light car - do keep up...


Yes, well, after 10 years serving on various ships (things what float on water for those living far from the sea, as in the Marches), I find it very hard to call a thing with wheels a tender (which also float on water, in my book)... :rolleyes: AND. primus pilus, although you do point out that LC is 'simply part of the registration number', the thread did start (IIRC) with references to a light car! So, continuum in nomenclature preferred, erroneous though it might be -_- Bonum est?!:D

IMP CAES TRAIAN ,etc., etc..

Oh, PS - were RR ever used twixt the rivers?? You mention Leachman - a reference available?

#16 domsim

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Posted 10 January 2012 - 11:41 AM

Hi Russell

If you haven't seen it there is a good thread on RR armoured cars and tenders here:

RR cars

cheers
Dominic

#17 rmcguirk

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Posted 10 January 2012 - 12:28 PM

Hi Dominic,

There are some great pictures in that thread -- particularly liked the one of the armoured car with chains on the tyres! I wonder if they ever put chains on the Fords -- can't recall any pictures of that and yet the Fords were more likely to have to tackle the dunes and soft sand than the armoured cars. Perhaps doubling the tyres was all that was needed for such a light-weight car???

Thank you very much.

Russell

#18 munster

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Posted 10 January 2012 - 12:33 PM

Hi Dominic,

There are some great pictures in that thread -- particularly liked the one of the armoured car with chains on the tyres! I wonder if they ever put chains on the Fords -- can't recall any pictures of that and yet the Fords were more likely to have to tackle the dunes and soft sand than the armoured cars. Perhaps doubling the tyres was all that was needed for such a light-weight car???

Thank you very much.

Russell

The car in post 7 has planks strapped to running board to aid in getting unstuck.john

#19 rmcguirk

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Posted 10 January 2012 - 02:22 PM

The car in post 7 has planks strapped to running board to aid in getting unstuck.john


Yes, I noticed the planks on that Rolls tender. The Fords, according to the commander of 5LCP, were generally extricated from soft sand by getting everyone to push -- an obvious option for a car weighing as little as 540kg. Must have been miserable having to unload a full car, though. A few years after the first war Bagnold (Fords again in the same desert) used rolls of what he called 'rabbit wire'; and later something called 'rolled steel troughing' (for which the principal use was roofing dug-outs). Plain corrugated iron didn't seem to work.

#20 RobL

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Posted 11 March 2012 - 08:03 PM

In Centurion's second photo of the Rolls Royce Tender, it is no doubt 'Blast', a former armoured car, and drove by SC Rolls who was Lawrence's personal driver. His fascinating book 'Steel Chariots in the Desert' documents driving the Rolls Royce armoured car/tender in WW1, brilliant book

#21 rmcguirk

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Posted 12 March 2012 - 02:05 PM

In Centurion's second photo of the Rolls Royce Tender, it is no doubt 'Blast', a former armoured car, and drove by SC Rolls who was Lawrence's personal driver. His fascinating book 'Steel Chariots in the Desert' documents driving the Rolls Royce armoured car/tender in WW1, brilliant book


It's certainly a photo of TEL in a Rolls-Royce. Unclear, though, whether or not the driver in this case is S C Rolls. The picture is usually captioned as being TEL entering Damascus. Rolls writes at the end of his book: 'Lawrence had already been two days in Damascus, having entered it while we were still at Deraa, waiting for orders...' Perhaps the driver is S C Rolls and the place is Damascus, but it is not a picture of TEL entering the city for the first time after the Turkish withdrawal. (???)



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