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Old 07-17-2019, 02:40 PM   #1
Dizzylizzy
 
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Post BE2c Wooden Prop - Details of History

Hi all,
Bob has already helped me with the tech details but wondering if anyone else can help.
As a family we have a propeller that came with the fixtures and fitting of Grandfathers house. Prop details are:
90hp RAF 1A The Royal Aircraft Factory aero-engine of 90hp, mark one with first update
D2770
P3090
G792 N33 Propellers were ordered in batches of 100. This prop is number 33 in the batch 792. This batch dates from mid-1918.
T7448 This is the propeller drawing number where the letter T indicates a design of the Royal Aircraft Factory

The Address from which it originated was St Breock. Vicarage Road, Woodford Bridge, Essex. I know the seller of the House was the estate of Mr William Alfred Wilson (he died 27/2/1938 age 72). At least two of his sons lost their lives in WW1(Eric Crawcour-Wilson and Geoffrey Crawcour-Wilson)
We have interest from an RAF Museum to display it for us (it needs to be moved from its current, private location) but I would love to be able to complete its history pre-1938. Anyone?
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Old 07-17-2019, 03:04 PM   #2
Dbahnson
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Tracing a given propeller back to an earlier use on a specific aircraft is almost always futile. What sparse record may have existed would go with the plane rather than the propeller itself, and it would be a highly unusual circumstance to find those records and coincidentally match it to a specific serial number.

Similarly, stories that are handed down with the propeller over time are notoriously unreliable, usually not on purpose but highly inaccurate in most cases nonetheless.

At the time some of these props were acquired it was usually due to damage or obsolescence as new engines were developed, and some of them were simply discarded or used as firewood. In the U.S. WW1 surplus propellers were advertised in flying magazines and sold in the 1920s for $2 or $3, depending on whether there was metal sheathing or not.
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Old 07-17-2019, 04:42 PM   #3
Dizzylizzy
 
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Post Be2c

Ah well perhaps we'll never know. However, You mention WW1 propellers being sold for a few dollars in the US. Would this have applied to a British made propeller? Would I be right in thinking the BE2c wouldn't have made it to US Shores?

Also, Is there anything on a prop that would identify the plane 'number' it came from initially?

How do I find out more about this prop and what should I 'google'?

Last edited by Dizzylizzy; 07-19-2019 at 08:42 AM. Reason: spelling error
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Old 11-22-2019, 08:46 AM   #4
jasong
 
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Hi Dizzy Lizzy,

Just came across your post. Sorry, I can't help with details of your prop before 1938, but wanted share that I have a shortened BE2c four blader with your exact same stampings (down to batch number 792) except that mine is N61 in the batch. Just thought I'd share that. Nice to see such closely-related props still kicking on more than a century later.

Cheers,

Jason
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Old 11-22-2019, 09:03 AM   #5
Dizzylizzy
 
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Default Be2c - De havilland wooden prop

Hi Jason,

The prop has been donated to the de Havilland Aircraft Museum in Hertfordshire, Uk. It will take pride of place in the display Hangar that is being constructed to celebrate G de Havilland life and work. (https://www.dehavillandmuseum.co.uk/...angar-project/ )

The museum curator was so thrilled to receive it and the two gentlemen who collected it were almost apoplectic with excitement! We are hoping to visit as a family when the new hangar opens in February next year.

Sadly I made no further progress in discovering how it ended up in our grandparents house. How did you come by yours as I notice you are in Australia? one of the sons of the previous house owners served in an NZ regiment during the first world war - a possible link?

Thanks for posting. Liz
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Old 11-22-2019, 09:33 AM   #6
jasong
 
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Hi Liz,

I didn't know about this museum so will add it to my next visit to the UK in July next year.

I acquired my prop recently from an interior decorator in Perth, Western Australia. He bought this cut-down prop, and another just like it at an antiques auction in the UK about 6 years ago, and after getting them shipped to Australia, had a cross-bar made to join them and sat a thick pane of glass across the top to make a table.

Not sure yet if I will reassemble as a table or display the two props on their own, though the table would look amazing (but equally risks subjecting the props to extra wear and tear).

Glad your prop went to a good home. I can access a list of RFC/RAF plane numbers from the First World War, but as these were never stamped on the props, unless it was hand written on at the time it was removed from the plane (if it was ever mounted to start with), then unfortunately the research trail goes cold.

If you come across other props or aviation relics, I'd be grateful for a heads-up.

Cheers from Oz,

Jason
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Old 11-22-2019, 10:26 AM   #7
Dizzylizzy
 
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Default UK Visit

Hi Jason,

Well if you come to Coventry you'll find a warm welcome. We're on Airbnb
Cheers
Liz
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