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Flt Sgt Copping's P-40 From The Egyptian Desert

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  • TonyT
    Rank 5 Registered User
    • Oct 2006
    • 9021

    I assumed the chute had been removed to rig a rudimentary sun shade, it would also show up from the air, far better than a camoflagued aircraft wreck. also parts of the chute if that's what it was by the body could have been used to cover the head as a signal or as a blanket for the cold nights, either way it brings us all back to investigating the remains first and the area they were found.s
    Last edited by TonyT; 13th November 2012, 12:26.

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    • Mark12
      MEANS MOTIVE OPPORTUNITY
      • Jan 2000
      • 10863

      Substantial distortion at the top of the aluminium seat noted.

      Mark
      "...the story had been forensically examined and was deeply impressive. I knew that the whole story was a load of myth and baloney"

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      • Guest's Avatar
        Guest

        Interesting to see those images. If I had seen them before (I am not sure???) then I had never noticed the cut harness, although you cannot see the fixings and harness straps at the seat end.

        I agree that the item in your first picture, Mark, looks very much like the 'D' ring.

        As Mark12 notes, the seat distortion would surely mean that whoever was sitting in it when it took a welt like that would, must likely, have had significant back and possibly pelvic injuries.

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        • shepsair
          Rank 5 Registered User
          • Oct 2009
          • 284

          P40

          Also noticed the damage.

          See the harness was fitted to the tubular frame and not actually the seat which would make sense.

          http://www.google.co.uk/imgres?q=P40...3&tx=133&ty=55

          All the pictures were from JP initial set he posted way back when.

          I had also assumed the parachute was used by Dennis copping for shade and warmth at night.

          regards

          MS
          Last edited by shepsair; 13th November 2012, 12:55.

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          • Guest's Avatar
            Guest

            Just realised that the other end (where it has been cut) of the Sutton harness is sticking out of the sand in the seat. You can clearly see the metal strengthening plate.

            The most significant thing would have been to see if the cross-pieces were still attached and, importantly, if they were still locked to the leg (or lower body) straps. However, it seems as if (possibly) one of the visitors has taken the bits of harness out of the cockpit at some point. I would also suggest that the fact that this much of the main harness strap is hanging over the seat top (the bit before it goes into the "Y" joint where it branches into the two shoulder straps) is perhaps significant, too. Ordinarily, the metal strengthening plate and the bit of dangling strap would have been further back behind the seat. The fact that it has pulled right forward might point to something having pulled it right forward 'to the stops' and over the seat back. That, in itself, might have caused the seat to buckle and I would have thought would do the wearer not a lot of good. The more I look at that seat damage, the more I am convinced that is what happened.

            Very frustrating only to have bits of the picture and the puzzle.

            Its a grim subject, but I rather think the staining on the parachute might well be significant, too. I wont elaborate, and sure I don't need to.
            Last edited by Tangmere1940; 13th November 2012, 13:15.

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            • TonyT
              Rank 5 Registered User
              • Oct 2006
              • 9021

              I would have thought the seat damage would not be the vertical impact but the pilot moving FW and his harness crumpling the seat back during deceleration, the pan seems straight as far as you can see.

              But none of this gets round who fired the charges if not the pilot....

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              • Guest's Avatar
                Guest

                Tony T

                Yes....exactly my point re the seat damage.

                What 'charges' are we talking about, though?

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                • ...starfire
                  this space for rent
                  • Jun 2004
                  • 462

                  Originally posted by shepsair View Post
                  Additionally, I have heard from a couple of sources that the verey pistol was found in the cockpit during the recovery. Now if that was the case, I tend to believe he was seriously injured in the crash landing as it was extremely hard with a flash fire around the engine - hot oil/fuel after removing the sump.
                  This bit sounds to me as if the verey pistol found had (by accident?) been fired while inside the cockpit, although I cannot remember having read anything about a fire on board. Misunderstanding?
                  Cheers
                  ...chris

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                  • Guest's Avatar
                    Guest

                    Not sure where the suggestion of the fired Verey pistol comes from?

                    I don't think that is what Shepsair said.

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                    • shepsair
                      Rank 5 Registered User
                      • Oct 2009
                      • 284

                      P40

                      You have to remember that nothing could be taken from the cockpit as it was only open 8" or so and the perspex was complete originally. No-one has managed to open the cockpit in the months between discovery and recovery though that does not necessarily mean it could not be opened in the past.

                      Whether bits of harness etc were pulled out after the perspex was broken, I don't know.

                      Shows how important undisturbed 'crime scene' photos are being everything gets disturbed!

                      Said nothing about the pistol being fired. It was just found! ?

                      The fuselage damage is still thought to be Flak damage from the recon on the morning of the 28th June 1942.

                      regards

                      MS

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                      • Peter
                        Moderator
                        • Jan 2000
                        • 12506

                        You can clearly see the empty Very pistol holder in the one picture.. Would the explosive charges for the IFF be fired with an impact switch in a crash?? That seat damage is disturbing I sincerely hope after all the triumphs and mistakes that have followed this discovery, that the family does get some closure and Dennis is found!
                        Cheers,Peter
                        "Merlins always drip oil, when they don't....worry!"

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                        • ...starfire
                          this space for rent
                          • Jun 2004
                          • 462

                          Originally posted by shepsair View Post
                          Said nothing about the pistol being fired. It was just found! ?
                          My mistake then. However, I still don't understand the bit about the "flash fire"...
                          Cheers
                          ...chris

                          Comment

                          • Peter
                            Moderator
                            • Jan 2000
                            • 12506

                            Chaps, have a look at these pictures ..I have never seen them before and show great details.. In gallerie4, the last picture shows part of the harness out in the sand. Is this a shoulder strap or lap belt..?? Andy??
                            http://www.egipska-sahara.pl/index.php?id=132
                            Cheers,Peter
                            "Merlins always drip oil, when they don't....worry!"

                            Comment

                            • JollyGreenSlugg
                              Rank 5 Registered User
                              • Jul 2006
                              • 206

                              The damage seems to indicate that there was a fire which melted various parts of the engine.

                              Cheers,
                              Matt

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                              • charliehunt
                                Nearly there!
                                • Oct 2012
                                • 11459

                                Although wholly unqualified to contribute I am fascinated by the forensic detail knowledgable members are contributing to this thread. I can only hope that there will be an outcome for the family at the end of it all.
                                Charlie

                                Keep smiling - it's never as bad as you think!!

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                                • shepsair
                                  Rank 5 Registered User
                                  • Oct 2009
                                  • 284

                                  P40

                                  Chris

                                  At the point of impact, the sump, was removed along with oil and fuel feeds and no doubt with metal/stone impact and sparking caused a flash fire within the engine area (flash fire = high temperature/short duration fire). As the P40 is thought to have been very low or about out of fire (we assume the engine was still turning due to the damage of the propeller). might have been windmilling - it was not feathered which I assume would be possible).

                                  I was under the impression the IFF was a small electrical charge - it would not have caused the sort of damage visible in the photos.

                                  regards

                                  MS

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                                  • knifeedgeturn
                                    Is c0ck-up.
                                    • Sep 2010
                                    • 534

                                    The last photo shows part of the lap strap, they are easily removable.
                                    " A man hears what he wants to hear, and disregards the rest"

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                                    • shepsair
                                      Rank 5 Registered User
                                      • Oct 2009
                                      • 284

                                      P40

                                      previous post should say out of 'fuel'. Not fire.

                                      MS

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                                      • TonyT
                                        Rank 5 Registered User
                                        • Oct 2006
                                        • 9021

                                        You can clearly see the empty Very pistol holder in the one picture.. Would the explosive charges for the IFF be fired with an impact switch in a crash??
                                        Interesting thought, with the amount of forced landings with ruptured fuel tanks etc the last thing I'd imagine you would want is an explosive going off, if its not a walk away from crash one would surmise there wouldn't be a lot left, if it was a walk away then you could fire it.. Though open to be proved wrong.

                                        From the previously posted link

                                        Last edited by TonyT; 13th November 2012, 18:07.

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                                        • TonyT
                                          Rank 5 Registered User
                                          • Oct 2006
                                          • 9021

                                          http://www.thehistoryblog.com/wp-con...-kittyhawk.jpg

                                          Thing is when you look at that a lot has been moved about.

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