Allied dummy equipment

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zubdakabuz
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Allied dummy equipment

Post by zubdakabuz » 04 Jul 2006 12:03

During WWII many countries used dummies and decoys in order to decept enemy. The Allied strategy behind D-Day comprised several decepting operation, like Fortitude; these operations relied operatively on fake armour, artillery and ships.

The production of dummies was carried either on the field, by special camouflage units, or at industry-level, by several rubber entreprises (like, for example, Goodyear in the USA).

Here follow two pics I found elsewere in the net (sorry but I am unable to credit them).

They represent inflatable dummies of Sherman tanks, howitzers and half-tracks (supposedly) manufactured for D-Day.

Does anybody know time and location of the two pictures? I suspect they were taken at Alice Mills Rubber Co. (Woonsocket, Rhode Island) but I'm unsure...

Any other pic on these subjects?

Regars

Zub
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Hans S
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Re: Allied dummy equipment

Post by Hans S » 04 Jul 2006 12:17


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Michael Emrys
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Post by Michael Emrys » 05 Jul 2006 02:33

The book To Fool a Glass Eye devotes some space to this.
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/156098 ... e&n=283155
It is an excellent and fascinating book, with lots of photos. Well worth the price.

Michael

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Michael Emrys
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Post by Michael Emrys » 05 Jul 2006 02:37

One amusing footnote. The inflatable dummies required a good-sized staff to maintain them. They tended to leak and sag with time and required reinflation. It rather spoils the effect if the gun barrel on a tank or artillery piece is bent.

:lol:

Michael

Hans S
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Post by Hans S » 05 Jul 2006 09:44

Michael Emrys wrote:The book To Fool a Glass Eye devotes some space to this.
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/156098 ... e&n=283155
It is an excellent and fascinating book, with lots of photos. Well worth the price.

Michael
Thanks for that, I just orderd one for less than 12 $ including shipping to Europe!

Cheers

Hans

Hans S
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Post by Hans S » 05 Jul 2006 09:46

Michael Emrys wrote:One amusing footnote. The inflatable dummies required a good-sized staff to maintain them. They tended to leak and sag with time and required reinflation. It rather spoils the effect if the gun barrel on a tank or artillery piece is bent.

:lol:

Michael
Thats why they invented Viagra :lol:

Suprisingly they seem to not use another material in the barrels.

Cheers

Hans

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Michael Emrys
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Post by Michael Emrys » 05 Jul 2006 11:47

Hans S wrote:Suprisingly they seem to not use another material in the barrels.
My guess is that: (A) They didn't think of it in time; and (B) to have manufactured the entire barrel from another material would have added greatly to the weight of it, which would have meant that they would also have to add some kind of supporting structure as well, which in turn would have complicated production, taken longer to get them into the field, and added to the cost. That said, it seems like they could have added stiffeners to the existing items without going to too much trouble. But what do I know?

Michael

Hans S
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Post by Hans S » 05 Jul 2006 15:07

http://www.maskelynemagic.com/

Look in Mobile Dummy Tanks 1942 and you'll find the Rolls Royces of dummy tanks.

Image

Cheers

Hans

zubdakabuz
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Post by zubdakabuz » 05 Jul 2006 15:56

Many many thanks for all replies. Now my turn for some.

The first dummies were already produced during WWI. In certain cases they were mounted on bikes, to provide'em some mobility. In September of 1918 ten fake Mark IVs of 4th Australian Division helped taking Le Verguier (the sighting of a tank was often a frightening experience for WWI infantry).

Rubber dummies were peculiar of the last period of WWII, since rubber itself was a strategic material; at the very beginning (BEF in France, DAK and Allied in N.Africa, for example) dummies were made of canvas, wood or whatever else at hand (and logs WERE used as gun barrels, no need for Viagra then :D ).

Russians and Germans used canvas & wood througout the wole war - they had no rubber to waste for this. The soviets also mixed tank wrecks and wooden structures.
At one point USA and GB shifted to rubber, more handy and versatile. Rubber dummies were also used to mount the biggest deception plan of WWII, the creation of FUSAG to fool German intelligence prior to D-Day.

Japanese used canvas, wood, wickerwork and chaff. As you will see in the pic attached, on Iwo Jima they even used rocks! Many US Marine tank crews reported to have destroyed it (see holes where the rock was shelled). Again, a little log was used as gun...

Up to date, I have no idea if Italians ever used dummies in WWII (probably they didn't).

Rubber dummies are still in use today; they have weird equipment in them to fool IR and radar devices. During NATO bombings on Serbia, Serbs placed a pole trough the windscreen of some car wrecks (very cheap dummies indeed), and they did attract bombs!

I've planned to do some kind of web-article on this subject one dy or another, and I have a little image bank on the subject, but I'm always looking for new ones.

I've already surfed the Maskelynemagic site several months ago, and I think this is a good example on how some (greed) book editors/writers decept readers only for marketing (earning) purposes...

Again, thanks to you all.

Zub
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Hans S
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Post by Hans S » 05 Jul 2006 16:15

Thanks to you zubdakabuz!

Especially the WW1 ones I did not have any idea about. Two more links - these ones are modern ones.
http://www.specialinflatable.com/pages/military.htm
http://www.rcblimp.com/military/military_decoys.htm

Cheers

Hans

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