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 Author  Topic: 81 mm Mortar stowage
JEno

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of JEno  Posted on: Dec 3, 2019 - 6:56am
It is reported, in various works, that South Pacific boats often carried 81 mm mortars, primarily to fire illumination rounds.
My question regards where they were stowed. I am venturing a guess that they were stowed below decks until called for by a specific mission, but this is my speculation. I have not seen any photographs that show them mounted on deck, but this is a distinct possibility.
My current project is PT 490, circa 1944.
Can anyone lend me some insight? IE, educated me?
Thank You
Jonathan


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Travis B

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Travis B   Send Email To Travis B Posted on: Dec 3, 2019 - 8:42am
On my Uncles PT Boat, PT 380 they had a M2 60MM Mortar to fire Illumination rounds not a 80MM. I don't think PT Boats would use the M1 Mortar simply because of the weight. The M1 81MM mortar weighs 136 pounds compared to the M2 60MM Mortar which weighed 13 pounds due to it's smooth bore tube. The M2 Mortar would fire the M83 illumination round.


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JEno

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of JEno  Posted on: Dec 3, 2019 - 9:38am
You are absolutely correct. My mistake. It shows what trying to walk and chew gum at the same time will lead to. I have found a photo of a mortar seemingly fixed to the deck, but being as light weight as you have stated, I would rather think that they were mounted only as needed. All comments AND corrections are gladly welcomed.
Jonathan


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Travis B

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Travis B   Send Email To Travis B Posted on: Dec 3, 2019 - 10:20am
There is such a weapon call a MK2 MOD 0 and MOD 1, it was a 81MM Mortar mounted under a M2 .50 caliber machine gun. The Navy did use this on later PT Boats.


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JEno

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of JEno  Posted on: Dec 3, 2019 - 11:17am
Yes Travis
You too are correct., but I am looking for this one as shown on PT 334 here

http://www.navsource.org/archives/12/120533409.jpg


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Travis B

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Travis B   Send Email To Travis B Posted on: Dec 3, 2019 - 1:02pm
That is definitely a M2 60MM mortar sir.


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JEno

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of JEno  Posted on: Dec 3, 2019 - 1:59pm
Travis,
Thank you.


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Jeff D

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Jeff D   Send Email To Jeff D Posted on: Dec 6, 2019 - 8:29am
Here's an interesting 1945 document (probably either from Andy or Frank) showing a February test of an 81mm on PT 558. It also mentions the boats used in "They Were Expendable" as well as a cancelled test of "Kenyon and MIT speed logs". Anyone have any idea of what those were?:

jKuJw.jpg



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JEno

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of JEno  Posted on: Dec 6, 2019 - 10:11am
Jeff,
Great find. Thank you, BUT... you don't know the kind of hornet's nest you have poked! I live 8 miles from Rockland, Maine. NOW I have to go digging and see if I can find info on the 452, 436 and 486 boats. There must be pictures somewhere.
I know that there was an Army air sea rescue base in Manset/Southwest Harbor, Maine, which is, as the crow flies about 30 miles Downeast.. It operated originally from Bar Harbor, during the early part of the war, then moved in 44'. Are they related? I don't know.



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JEno

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of JEno  Posted on: Dec 6, 2019 - 11:17am
As an added bonus this document also clearly indicates the boats used in the making of "They Were Expendable". Wikipedia has an article that, unfortunately, seems to indicate that 6 ELCO's were used, but that was not the case, as is confirmed by the opening scene showing the first two boats docking to be ELCOs while the following four were Huckins, as confirmed by this page of the War Diary.


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