Last week a reader of my article on the Beighton Doodlebug (German V1 rocket) contacted me and asked the following question -
"Could you please tell me which part this is? -I'm almost 100% sure that it is off the Beighton V1 as it was given to me about 25 years ago by my late father-in-law (Bill Layne of Aughton) who at the time was a Bevin boy at Brookhouse pit. They were sent to the site to either help carry out the clean up operation and somehow this must have got stuck in his pocket!! As best I can remember he said he thought that it was a part that twisted on impact and caused the detonation.I'm not sure this is correct as an engineer it seems to be overcomplicated for this. Can't help being in admiration for the left-hand spiral tapered milling on the cone-with no C.N.C's in those days it can't have been easy to produce!
Object height 24mm/dia.32mm"
My response was as follows
"Well first of all I am not an expert in flying bomb technology and so I am not much help in that respect, But as you may have gathered from my article readers have informed me that by
December 1944 the Germans were increasingly cannibalising parts from their rapidly diminishing U-Boat fleets, and I wonder if the part your father rescued, was from a German naval torpedo This may explain the complexity of the machining".
If anyone can assist me further on this item. please contact me and I will pass it on