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by Dave Mills
Fri Nov 03, 2017 10:47 am
Forum: Fast Patrol Boats
Topic: The British 'Dark' class
Replies: 31
Views: 34749

Re: The British 'Dark' class

Thanks for getting in touch Geoff. I'll email back. I knew your dad when I was an apprentice. I believe there were a few Dark class models made for customers to get a feel for what they were getting. I'm pleased your son now has it in restored condition. I gave a talk in Moelfre last Saturday on the...
by Dave Mills
Fri Nov 28, 2014 9:48 pm
Forum: Fast Patrol Boats
Topic: MTB 539 (1602)
Replies: 12
Views: 14391

Re: MTB 539 (1602)

A diver explored MTB P1602 this summer and found she was in a little rougher condition than I had hoped for. The engine room deck area showed many small raged holes that appear to possibly due to electrolytic corrosion. I suspect this occurred due to the large amount of 'yellow metals' (brass, coppe...
by Dave Mills
Mon Feb 24, 2014 8:47 pm
Forum: Motor Launches
Topic: Coastal Forces, the lost experiences of WW1
Replies: 1
Views: 3860

Coastal Forces, the lost experiences of WW1

I found this website on WW1 ML's and titled, "The Movies". The Ships and Men of the Royal Navy Motor Launch Patrol 1914 - 1919.

http://www.motorlaunchpatrol.net/history/

Dave Mills
by Dave Mills
Mon Oct 14, 2013 6:31 pm
Forum: Fast Patrol Boats
Topic: MTB 539 (1602)
Replies: 12
Views: 14391

MTB P1602 (New Photo)

I found another photo of P1602 dated 1951 from France and bought it. It shows the pennant number on the bridge like the photo I bought of her in Liege harbour. I therefore assume the two photos were taken during the same visit abroad.
by Dave Mills
Sat Aug 24, 2013 8:12 pm
Forum: Fast Patrol Boats
Topic: The British 'Dark' class
Replies: 31
Views: 34749

Re: The British 'Dark' class

Thanks Ted for posting this image. I have just returned home after celebrating a friend's diamond wedding anniversary in Beaumaris, just one mile from where this photo was taken in the mid 1950's. I spoke to one of the guests who worked on the Dark Class when he was an apprentice as I was trying to ...
by Dave Mills
Thu Jul 25, 2013 12:39 pm
Forum: Fast Patrol Boats
Topic: MTB 539 (1602)
Replies: 12
Views: 14391

Re: MTB 539 (1602)

SEARCH FOR MTB 539 On the 13th July 2013 I was invited to join a dive team to go in search of MTB539 (P1602). We set off from the east coast of Anglesey initially for the team to dive a fishing boat wreck. If there was time they were to head out about 12 miles into the Irish Sea to search for the M...
by Dave Mills
Sat Jun 02, 2012 9:01 am
Forum: Fast Patrol Boats
Topic: Dark Class FPB Demonstration Model P21
Replies: 0
Views: 3682

Dark Class FPB Demonstration Model P21

During a local vintage steam rally I was shown this photo of a Saunders-Roe Dark Class FPB model that was seen in Crete. It shows a basic model that I believe was made to demontrate the various armament options that could be readily interchanged. The photo was titled: "In the Maritime Museum in Chan...
by Dave Mills
Mon Apr 09, 2012 7:23 pm
Forum: Fast Patrol Boats
Topic: MTB 539 (1602)
Replies: 12
Views: 14391

Re: MTB 539 (1602)

FILM CLIPS OF P1602 IN ACTION While reading through CFA Green's memoirs aboard P1602 he refered to a film made in 1951 that shows a 'brief' glimps of P1602 in action. She appears for only 2 or 3 second at a time, but does show her charging through the sea and even shows up small impact damage near ...
by Dave Mills
Wed Mar 07, 2012 10:18 am
Forum: Coastal Forces Models
Topic: "Models by Design"
Replies: 0
Views: 3339

"Models by Design"

While at the new model engineering exhibion at Manchester I saw a lovely model of a Russian G5 MTB. It was a fascinating craft loosely based on the old British CMB but with a very heavily cambered deck. On enquiry it was based on a hull mouding from "Models by Design". Their website is http://www.mo...
by Dave Mills
Mon Jan 09, 2012 9:57 pm
Forum: Newsreel Footage
Topic: Surrender of E-Boats
Replies: 2
Views: 4245

Re: Surrender of E-Boats

Surprising to hear that these beautiful craft had no Heads ? (toilets). I found yet more old drawings in my mother's loft a couple of days ago. This time there were just a few German Schnelboot drawings of S38. Sadly only the front 2/3 length of plans and elevations were found. When I read that the...
by Dave Mills
Tue Jan 03, 2012 7:10 pm
Forum: Books & Magazines
Topic: British Warships & Auxilliaries 1952
Replies: 0
Views: 2821

British Warships & Auxilliaries 1952

Maritime Books have just published their Diamond Jubilee Commemorative Edition of British Warships & Auxilliaries 1952 by Steve Bush. To quote their website: To celebrate Her Majesty the Queen's Diamond Jubilee in 2012 we have produced a 1952 edition of our hugely successful annual publication Briti...
by Dave Mills
Fri Dec 23, 2011 9:43 pm
Forum: Fast Patrol Boats
Topic: The British 'Dark' class
Replies: 31
Views: 34749

Burma Dark Class Hull construction

The five Burmese Navy Dark Class (T201-T205) were constructed of riveted aluminium alloy sheet on Aluminium hull frames. These two photos show the round-head rivets clearly visible above the chine. Below the chine the hulls were flush riveted with countersunk rivets to reduce drag and the heads bein...
by Dave Mills
Tue Dec 20, 2011 7:24 pm
Forum: Coastal Forces Models
Topic: Dark Class Model
Replies: 1
Views: 4326

Re: Dark Class Model

Ian Roberts constructed this lovely 1/24 scale ‘Nautical Marine Models’ kit of Dark Biter. Note that she is in the final all black hull colour after the half black, half grey experiment to disguise the dirty exhaust from the Deltic Diesel engines. Ian says he simply followed the information supplied...
by Dave Mills
Sun Dec 11, 2011 9:48 pm
Forum: Fast Patrol Boats
Topic: MTB 539 (1602)
Replies: 12
Views: 14391

Re: MTB 539 (1602)

Since writing about the 92 year old lady welder on 539, I have just made contact with a fitter who worked with her on the construction of the aluminium hull from its start. He lent me a photo of her launching after my recent talk to the Gwynedd Engineering Society in Bangor. It was the same photo as...
by Dave Mills
Sat Nov 26, 2011 3:37 pm
Forum: Fast Patrol Boats
Topic: The British 'Dark' class
Replies: 31
Views: 34749

Engineless Dark for Japan?

While going through my 1000's of photos I found these very badly damaged negatives of the ellusive Japanese Dark. I compared the waterline with other Darks and they all seem very similar. Either the Japanese one had its engines installed, or was simply balasted to depth. There is no dirt around the ...
by Dave Mills
Tue Nov 15, 2011 5:53 pm
Forum: Motor Gunboats
Topic: MGB 334
Replies: 6
Views: 8989

Re: MGB 334

I found this similar plaque, but for HMS Hollyhock. Looks like I will have to do some restoration work!
by Dave Mills
Sat Nov 12, 2011 6:12 pm
Forum: Motor Gunboats
Topic: MGB 334
Replies: 6
Views: 8989

Re: MGB 334

While at my friends miniature railway at the Joys of Life Country Park near Bangor, North Wales, he asked if I had seen the plaque on his Dutch Barn. I had known of a plaque on the gable end for many years but never looked at it carefully as it was before my interest in the RN Coastal Forces. He als...
by Dave Mills
Fri Nov 11, 2011 1:43 pm
Forum: Books & Magazines
Topic: Warship World Publication
Replies: 0
Views: 3083

Warship World Publication

Maritime Books of Liskeard, Cornwall publish Warship World and Warship World Pictorial Review magazines. I was very fortunate to be contacted by the editor Steve Bush when he found my website featuring MTB P1602 (539) and invited me submit material for publication. This has now been published in War...
by Dave Mills
Fri Nov 11, 2011 1:19 pm
Forum: Fast Patrol Boats
Topic: MTB 539 (1602)
Replies: 12
Views: 14391

Re: MTB 539 (1602)

I have recently spoken to a 92 year old local lady who told me she was the first aluminium welder at Saunders-Roe in Anglesey and that she welded up the exhaust silencers and handrail stanchions for MTB 539 (most of it being of riveted construction). She is very keen to know if there are any of her ...
by Dave Mills
Sun Oct 23, 2011 8:24 pm
Forum: Coastal Forces Models
Topic: MTB P1602 Model Found
Replies: 4
Views: 5397

Re: MTB P1602 Model Found

See a new photo of P1602 from Steve Green in the Fast Patrol Boat section under MTB 539 (P1602)
by Dave Mills
Sun Oct 23, 2011 8:22 pm
Forum: Fast Patrol Boats
Topic: MTB 539 (1602)
Replies: 12
Views: 14391

Re: MTB 539 (1602)

Steve Green has written about P1602 in the Model Section of the forum. His late father CFA Green was ERA on 1602 during her short life from 1948 to early 1952 and wrote his memoirs a few years ago. Steve has kindly permitted us to share this wonderful photo from his father's collection. May thanks t...
by Dave Mills
Sat Oct 22, 2011 6:48 pm
Forum: Coastal Forces Models
Topic: MTB P1602 Model Found
Replies: 4
Views: 5397

Re: MTB P1602 Model Found

Steve, it's great to hear about your family connections and the stories your father remembered about this fragile boat. She was powered by three Packard 4M-2500 (W14) 1,500 hp V12 supercharged petrol engines like the American PT boats and the early 50's Royal Navy Gay Class (the last to use them). I...
by Dave Mills
Wed Sep 21, 2011 8:37 am
Forum: Fast Patrol Boats
Topic: VIDEO - Dark Class construction
Replies: 0
Views: 3169

VIDEO - Dark Class construction

This very short film clip shows the aluminium alloy frames being fitted before being clad in timber for the Royal Navy Coastal Forces Dark Class MTBs. The five Burmese Darks had riveted aluminium sheeting to prevent premature rotting and marine attack in the warm tropical seas. (Ignore any date stam...
by Dave Mills
Tue Sep 20, 2011 3:30 pm
Forum: Fast Patrol Boats
Topic: VIDEO - Launching of Burma 'Dark' T201
Replies: 0
Views: 3130

VIDEO - Launching of Burma 'Dark' T201

This short film clip shows the launching of Saunders-Roe built Dark Class T201 for Burma. This was the first of five all aluminium hulled FPBs for Burma. They were fitted with additional electic 'slow speed' drives for silent working along creeks and estuaries to track smugglers and pirates. This wa...
by Dave Mills
Sun Sep 18, 2011 11:41 pm
Forum: Fast Patrol Boats
Topic: The British 'Dark' class
Replies: 31
Views: 34749

Japanese ENGINELESS 'Dark' ?????

I recently heard a curious rumour about the Saunders-Roe built 'Dark' for Japan being shipped out without any engines. It was so bizarre that I dismissed it, but a few days ago another friend told me he worked on the boat at the factory and that the Japanese cancelled the Napier Deltics and the boat...
by Dave Mills
Fri Sep 16, 2011 11:56 pm
Forum: Fast Patrol Boats
Topic: MTB 539 (1602)
Replies: 12
Views: 14391

Model of MTB 539 (1602)

A model of P1602 had been found at the Holyhead Maritime Museum, Anglesey.
See the Model section on this forum for the photo.
by Dave Mills
Fri Sep 16, 2011 11:46 pm
Forum: Coastal Forces Models
Topic: MTB P1602 Model Found
Replies: 4
Views: 5397

MTB P1602 Model Found

I discovered the 1950 built model of the experimental aluminium hulled MTB P1602 built at Saunders-Roe Anglesey. Launched in 1948 and lost in a storm while on tow for repairs in 1952 she had a very short life. The label states the model was made by M Stone in 1950. I had heard rumours of a possible ...
by Dave Mills
Thu Aug 11, 2011 10:08 pm
Forum: Fast Patrol Boats
Topic: Hydrofoil R-103 - Bras D'Or
Replies: 4
Views: 9331

Re: Hydrofoil R-103 - Bras D'Or

There is an excellent book 'Fastest in the World' by John Boileau on the Saga of Canada's Revolutionary Hydrofoils. I have just borrowerd a copy from my library and find it totally absorbing. It covers the experimental work of Alexander Graham Bell and 'Casey' Baldwin who developed 'hydrodromes' and...
by Dave Mills
Wed Jul 20, 2011 10:27 am
Forum: Fast Patrol Boats
Topic: Hydrofoil R-103 - Bras D'Or
Replies: 4
Views: 9331

Re: Hydrofoil R-103 - Bras D'Or

Now for some photos of Bras D'Or in action. There were some initial stability problems as can be seen when she would take a dive into a wave or just take on a list. Steering was aslo found to be be poor and unresponsive. I can't say if all the problems were finally resolved before she was shipped to...
by Dave Mills
Wed Jul 20, 2011 10:08 am
Forum: Fast Patrol Boats
Topic: Hydrofoil R-103 - Bras D'Or
Replies: 4
Views: 9331

Re: Hydrofoil R-103 - Bras D'Or

While scanning the old Saunders-Roe negatives I copied over thirty of the old company magazines (now availble on CD from my website) and also come across a couple of illustrations of Bras D'Or. One is a drawing and the other a fine artist's impression. I've also included an interior photo of the ver...

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