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-   -   Help needed with indentification of a four blade propeller (http://woodenpropeller.com/forumvB/showthread.php?t=2644)

kernowman 06-17-2013 04:41 PM

Help needed with indentification of a four blade propeller

Hope somebody might be able to help.

I have a four blade wooden propeller that has many years ago been 'modified' to make a clock case. Unfortunately, it now has a badly fitted quartz clock. I am looking to replace the clock with a period movement, but I am stuck for information about the original propeller, particularly the date.

The details marked on it are -
200 HP
The above three marks are stamped individually in the wood between the blades.

On on face it has 736 marked twice, and a small square (about 1/2") with what looks like some figures in it, although this is barely legible.

It has eight holes on a 6.1/8" PCD, taking 7/16" bolts.

It is 4.1/4" thick - unfortunately, the centre hole has been 'hacked out' to take the quartz movement, so the original size is unknown.

Any help would be much appreciated - would love to know what it was originally fitted to, but would think there was only a slim chance of finding this out.



Dave 06-17-2013 05:03 PM

Are those stampings clearly legible, or could they be something else?

kernowman 06-17-2013 05:06 PM

The stampings are about 1/2" high, very deep and legible, and I would say definitely done when it was made

Dave 06-17-2013 05:16 PM

Do the square stampings look like these? Four bladed propellers were mostly manufactured in England, but the stampings don't follow the usual British configuration, which typically included a drawing number, the diameter and the pitch.

kernowman 06-17-2013 05:38 PM

I should have updated my profile - I am from the UK. The large square looks very much like the one on mine, but, as I said, anything in it is not legible

Bob Gardner 06-27-2013 04:23 AM

Please add some photographs to this thread showing the complete prop and a close up of the hub markings. And please measure the diameter of the prop from one tip to the other in mm.

With kind regards,


kernowman 06-27-2013 04:44 AM

Bob, one problem that I did not mention earlier is that the blades have been cut off at the hub, so all I have to go on are the markings on the hub, and the holes in the hub. Was hoping the 'WTLO' might have thrown a bit of light on the subject.
Will photograph hopefully tonight and post.
Best regards,

Dave 06-27-2013 05:21 AM

Noting that the thickness of the hub is 4 1/4 inches, I'm wondering what 200 HP engines utilized that sized hub. The OX5 was one engine that did, but it was not 200 HP.

Bob Gardner 06-27-2013 09:43 AM


So far then, it is British and probably dates from WW1. The square AID stamps are airworthiness stamps. The 200hp engine is likely to refer to the Beardmore, Halford and Pullinger engine, often stamped as 200hp BHP, which has confused thousands!

We might be able to decipher more from the photos. Close-ups in focus and of all the lettering please. After twenty-five years of study in this subject I have got squinting down to a fine art!

With kind regards,


kernowman 06-27-2013 12:54 PM


Bob, hopefully the photos might help. Let me know if you need any further information.

Dave, there is a possibility that the hub was originally thicker and the front? skimmed off when the clock was made, but I do not know enough about the shape of propeller hubs to to say if this has been done.

Best regards,

Bob Gardner 06-27-2013 02:10 PM


A phrase including a thousand words springs to mind.

Your photographs reveal all.

Firstly between 33% and 50% of the laminations are missing from your hub. In other words, it was twice as thick.

Your data translates as;
200hp The RAF 3A engine of 200hp designed by the Royal Aircraft Factory c1916, and hence the initials RAF
WT LO WT Lord, the maker
DRG 2 The drawing number AM2442

The prop was designed by Airco for their DH4 aircraft. The intended aero-engine had teething troubles and the RAF 3A engine was used in the first examples as a substitute. This combination required a different prop from normal and Airco (the Aircraft Manufacturing Company) designed one, the AM2442, where AM indicates Airco.

The manufacture of the prop was contracted out to WT Lord, usually referred to as Turner Lord. This was one of the pre-eminent firms of cabinet making and internal decorating in Great Britain. They produced work for Winston Churchill, the Duke of Westminster and the upper echelons of Edwardian Society. They were famous for designing and building the grand staircase in the First Class part of the Mauritania, which was carved in French Walnut by a team of Palestinian carvers, the only people at that time who could produce such work. In late 1916 or early 1917 they were conscripted by HMG to make aircraft props.

With kind regards,


Postscript; Dave, you might wish to move this thread to Early Propellers.

Bob Gardner 06-27-2013 02:19 PM


I thought I should add that;

Airco often dropped the AM from AM2442, as they have done with your prop.

They often described the aircraft for which the prop was intended above the name WT Lord. It might have been stamped faintly. It will probably be in the form DE H 4, of which the H4 part may be on the missing laminations.


kernowman 06-28-2013 01:44 PM


Sorry I have not got back earlier, but was called away last night.

I am speechless - I would have never believed so much information could come from just a few marks and photos of part of a propeller. I can definitely hear the voice of experience speaking.

So I have only got approximately half a hub - thought I was a bit short when all the blades had been cut off. At least I have still got some part of history.

I have got the bug now - about 25 years ago I bought a twin bladed wooden propeller off, if I remember correctly, what the seller thought was a foreign aircraft from the 1930's. I am sure it had a double-barrelled name and one of the names was something like 'Parma'. It went into storage in the attic and I have not seen it since (you should see my attic!!). When time permits it will now come out and get suitably restored - it has de-laminated in places.

Once again, thanks for all your help, and Dave, thank you also for all your help - the information I gave you originally was not the best in the world.

Best regards,


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