Bit different this one. Shell Casing and Aircraft ID?

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Scarabrae
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Bit different this one. Shell Casing and Aircraft ID?

Post by Scarabrae »

Recently on our private permission in Somerset, we have found five 20mm shell casings all dated the same 1943 and all with the same manufacturers stamp. Here's the best one below. My question is does anyone have any idea, who made them and what fired them? I have heard everything from Spitfires, Hurricanes, B17'S, to AA on the ground. A bit of basic reasearch hasn't made things any clearer. Locally there was no AA stationed at the site they were found on, and the casings were all found in line over three fields, so obviously fired from an aircraft as it went over, but does anyone know what type aircraft?

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Re: Bit different this one. Shell Casing and Aircraft ID?

Post by ricasso »

I think the 'SMC' refers to Stoner Manufacturing Corp, Aurora, IL, so American in origin.

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Re: Bit different this one. Shell Casing and Aircraft ID?

Post by Scarabrae »

ricasso wrote:
Mon Jan 06, 2020 1:19 pm
I think the 'SMC' refers to Stoner Manufacturing Corp, Aurora, IL, so American in origin.
Thanks Ricasso. What i'm not sure about is what fired them? Did the US manufacture 20mm shells for the British, or would it have been an American plane? If it was an American plane, it seems oddly out of place firing live rounds over Somerset. The local air defence squadron at the time was made up of Hurricanes.

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Re: Bit different this one. Shell Casing and Aircraft ID?

Post by Resurgam »

Any 0.30 in the same location?
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Re: Bit different this one. Shell Casing and Aircraft ID?

Post by Scarabrae »

Resurgam wrote:
Mon Jan 06, 2020 2:11 pm
Any 0.30 in the same location?
No not that we have come across.

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Re: Bit different this one. Shell Casing and Aircraft ID?

Post by Bardolph »

The Mark IV Spitfire, in production from August 1939 to October 1941, and the Mark IX, in production from October 1941 to April 1944 were armed with four .303 Browning machine guns and two 20 mm Hispano cannons.

The Hawker Typhoon, one of the most successful ground attack fighter of WW2 was armed from May 1941 with four 20 mm Hispano cannons.

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Re: Bit different this one. Shell Casing and Aircraft ID?

Post by Ten pence! »

Could also be an Oerlikon round, the US made extensive use of them for low level anti aircraft use.

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Re: Bit different this one. Shell Casing and Aircraft ID?

Post by MilitaryMetalMagnut »

That’s 100% a 20x110mm Hispano. As stated, SMC is Stoner Manufacturing Co, Aurora, Illinois. The M21A1 states which version of cartridge it is, rather than the type. There were cartridges made differently, depending on what machining tools were available to the factory at that particular time. I believe (might be wrong!), that a M21A1 cartridge should have a primer diameter of 7.8mm and is a Berdan type (two flash holes inside, at the bottom).

More than likely from an American aircraft. ::g

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Re: Bit different this one. Shell Casing and Aircraft ID?

Post by haggz »

this site was useful to me, hope it helps
http://www.cartridgecollectors.org/headstampcodes

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Re: Bit different this one. Shell Casing and Aircraft ID?

Post by Scarabrae »

Thanks everyone for all the great info. I have found out since posting that the area these were found in had no recorded air military action during 1943 (the date on the casings). Jump forward to 1944 and we have a lot of action above and around the site with De Havilland Mosquitos. The 'Mozzies' had four Hispano's mounted in the nose. Could they be the aircraft that fired them, i wonder?

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Re: Bit different this one. Shell Casing and Aircraft ID?

Post by Wansdyke44 »

Quite probably from the P38 Lightning as I've searched several crash sites in the area in the past. Given the location he may have intercepted an enemy bomber.

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Re: Bit different this one. Shell Casing and Aircraft ID?

Post by MilitaryMetalMagnut »

This link to the British Ordnance Collectors Network which shows the different 20mm types and the internal drawings of the rounds, which might be useful. ::g

http://www.bocn.co.uk/vbforum/threads/4 ... m-Oerlikon

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Re: Bit different this one. Shell Casing and Aircraft ID?

Post by RRPG »

As MMM and others have pointed out, this is an American made cartridge. It is highly likely that it was from an American aircraft, the most likely being the P38 Lightning. Not many US aircraft had 20mm Hispanos in the ETO, hence the theory.
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