H29 Mk3 Ammunition Box

Today we are looking at a small ammunition box that has clearly seen better days:

This box is missing its lid and its rope carrying handles, together with the metal securing bands and has suffered from woodworm over the years. All being well, these are reasonably easy problems to fix and this box should prove a fun restoration project. The box’s date and designation is revealed in the stampings on the bottom:

This box was made in 1945 and is a H29. This box was used to carry two tins of belted Vickers ammunition. Each belt had 500 rounds so the two tins meant that the wooden outer box had 1000 rounds of .303 inside. Depending on the type of ammunition this meant that the box weighed between 44 3/4lb and 48 1/2lb when full. There would originally have been a small divider down the centre of the box to split the two metal ammunition cans apart, the groove that held the divider in place can be seen on the interior:

Two cut outs are provided on each end for the knots of the rope handle to fit in. There is a small hole in the side of the cut out for the rope handle to be fed through:

The box is very simple in construction as befits a disposable piece of packaging- there are no dovetails, it is simply nailed together from softwood and ply. Although badly damaged, it is worth remembering that this box is 75 years old and most other examples will have long been burnt or rotted away. Hopefully a new lid should be fairly easy to construct and in the meantime it makes a useful storage box that is far more interesting then a plastic storage crate!

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