Although not produced by the Air Ministry or for the RAF at all, CC41 furniture was produced from during WW2 due to the rationing of many staple materials including wood and fabric. Many of the items were of a basic but solidly constructed style and most survive still today. Here is a CC41 stamped Captains chair I have had for a while. Stamped on the edge of the seat base at the rear is the characteristic CC41 two cheeses ‘pac man’ logo. It has a lovely grain to it, is very comfy and is still incredibly solid. Due to a possible move I am selling this chair sadly. Feel free to message me if you are interested.
Browsing the-saleroom I stumbled upon yet another RAF captains chair. After some enquiries the auctioneer confirmed the presence of some markings underneath and seeing the regular style of leg that conforms to Air Ministry production I popped a bid on and won. happy days! This one has a slightly rougher but more frequently seen impressed AM and crown along with a 1940 date and makers mark. It has some slight damage but is still dry sturdy and retains much of its original dark stain.
On my travels again with the fiance, I stumbled upon this type 1 RAF white dial clock, metal dial. In its original delapidated condition and sadly missing the rest of the clock 😦 this dial is however still full of character. The previous owner had had it since the 1960s when he acquired it from a clock dealer who had purchased a crate of old wall clocks from the RAF. The dealer was shipping them to America and stripping them of their military dial and replacing them with something more contemporary. Hence the dial being left on its own. A traversty it has to be said but at least something of the clock remains in this country.
The type 1 fusee wall clock for the RAF ran in production from 1918-1943 however very few were made for the RAF prior to 1935. There were various manufacturers during this period including GBE, Elliot,McKenzie,Potts,Davall and SM&Co.
The George VI RAF crest on this example would indicate that it was produced by SM&Co in 1940 . Elliot crests were slightly better proportioned that the more squat SM&Co mark.
The dial itself is very rusty and the paint is badly flaking. Two feet on the rear have also disappeared. The dials often corroded especially around the feet base as the feet were made of brass including copper and the dials were made of iron. As a result an electrolytic reaction takes place in any damp surroundings and rust develops. I myself think it all adds to its character and one day I will hopefully find a clock to re-unite it with.
In my quest to find any AM marked furniture I can I noticed that two types of captains chair seem to dominate proceedings. 1 in your typical captains chair style as shown in previous posts but also this one that has reworked rear legs and the same bulbous front legs as its close relative. It has different back spindles and also comes with a leatherette pad made out of Vynide. This one my eagle eye spotted on e bay after checking out the below picture of two pilots with their feet up. In the snap one can see both styles of chair. On my recent trip to the RAF museum at Hendon too, both chairs were displayed side by side. Anyway here is the example I found complete with AM and crown a stamp and just legible 1940 date and makers name.
A wee while ago I discovered this Captains Chair on e bay marked up with AM markings on the underside. After some research through the IWM photo archive and RAF museum at Hendon I deduced that this pattern of chair with its individual leg style was particular to the RAF. The Army and other Government departments had their own similar but different pattern and were marked with GRVI underneath rather than AM. Anyway. After getting the chair back and realising it was in poor condition and had been completely stripped of its original finish with the unwanted result that the stripping chemicals had also loosened the joints and dried the wood, I decided to have it restored. And so off it went to a chap in Carlisle to get stripped down and saved. Here is the end result. As it happened the chap doing the repairs was a former joiner/carpenter from the former RAF 14mu in carlisle where many items of furniture had been stored and repaired. Safe to say, this chap knew what to do and what colour to stain it to get it back to its wartime glory.
After a wee whiley of looking I finally stumbled upon a large RAF station bell, or ‘scramble’ bell as they are more affectionately known. Weighing an absolute tonne I have no idea how these things were ever supported safely. It is however an amazing item. Stamped with, and I say that in the loosest form as the engraving is very crisp and sharp, the AM and crown motif and 1938 date. On the crown shaped hanger are the letters ATW and the government issue crows foot arrow marking. If any one can enlighten me as to what ATW represents then feel free to give me a shout. The bell sadly is minus the clanger but in the recesses of the crown hanger can still be seen some of the red paint that this bell would have been coloured with at one time. The inside of the bell also has a liberal splash of white paint. A really lovely and collectible item. Something I have been looking for for quite some time. If I can’t mount it anywhere due to the colossal weight and not wanting to rip a wall down in my flat, it may come in handy as a random door stop! Like many nowadays sought after items of RAF wartime artefacts, these bells were largely removed from RAF stations in the 50s and 60s and casually discarded for scrap, much like many a bracket and wall clock. Criminal when you think about it today.
Here we have a lovely bracket clock dated to 1938 and produced by FW Elliot. Just like my other bracket clock made by Stockall Marple and Co, this has been produced to the same Air Ministry Pattern and would have lived out its working life in an officers mess on an RAF station. Full of character and in excellent condition, these clocks were thrown out in their hundreds after the war and following changing pattern requirements by the Air Ministry in RAF. How things have changed with these clocks quite well sought after.
Recently and quite by mistake I placed a bid on an AM hand bell I saw at auction via the-sale room.com. Completely forgetting about it much to my shock some weeks later it turned out I had won it. This bell has at some point been painted red, presumably used as a fire bell on a station. Stamped on the handle collar is a lovely AM and crown motif and also the contract number with 1940 date. The varnish has come away slightly on the handle but overall condition is excellent and boy what a noise it makes.
I am looking to sell this as I have one already. If anyone is interested please just mail me. I am looking for £100 for it.