Tonight’s object is another in the list of weird and wonderful items picked up for next to nothing on the Huddersfield Second hand Market. As could be expected, the RAF held massive quantities of spares to help maintain their aircraft and equipment. These spares came packaged in stout cardboard boxes, clearly marked with both details of contents and the Air Ministry logo. This box measures 6”x3”x3”, with a fold up lid on the top:The box is held together with large metal staples and the cardboard has been waxed to help protect the contents:The lid is marked with a stores code and indicates the box originally held parts for an ‘Arrester Lightning’. Note the Air Ministry crown and AM logo at the bottom:The underside of the lid lists the exact spares contained within the box:A lightning arrestor is a device to prevent electrical circuits being overloaded and burning out when they are stuck by a bolt of lightning. I must confess this all goes over my head, but according to Wikipedia:
In telegraphy and telephony, a lightning arrestor is placed where wires enter a structure, preventing damage to electronic instruments within and ensuring the safety of individuals near them. Smaller versions of lightning arresters, also called surge protectors, are devices that are connected between each electrical conductor in power and communications systems and the Earth. These prevent the flow of the normal power or signal currents to ground, but provide a path over which high-voltage lightning current flows, bypassing the connected equipment. Their purpose is to limit the rise in voltage when a communications or power line is struck by lightning or is near to a lightning strike.
My thanks to Ernest Donders for supplying me with a photograph of the Type C lightning arrestor, manufactured by Pyrex:
Continuing our occasional series on the PLCE webbing set, tonight we are considering the PLCE bayonet frog. This frog is made of DPM double layered 1000 Denier rubberised cordura nylon, with a plastic stiffener to the main body of the frog:The top of the frog has a Nexus clip fastener that attaches to the scabbard of the SA80 bayonet when it is carried in the frog:The rear of the frog has two different positions to attach it to the rest of the PLCE webbing set:The fitting instructions noted ‘taller soldiers may find the Bayonet Frog more comfortable to wear if the upper fitting are used’. Under each flap is a pair of plastic T-Bar prongs that engage with the belt of the PLCE set, and the flap is then secured over with Velcro and press studs:A label on the bottom rear of the frog gives information about the item’s stores code, that it is infra-red resistant and that it was manufactured in 1992 by Remploy:Although the frog is designed to be attached to the belt, it was frequently adapted to sit in other locations to free up more space for pouches. Locations include attaching it to the side of a utility pouch or wearing it in the small of the back, the method of attachment is described by one soldier:
I have mine attached horizontally to the bottom of my yoke above the pouches. Use one set of press studded straps around each yoke strap, secured with tape if required. It sits nicely in the small of my back, out of the way of any snag hazards. The handle is easily accessible, even with a daysack or bergen on.
Early versions of the frog were made in plain olive green and since the introduction of MTP, versions have been produced commercially in this fabric as well.