Apart from rolling blackouts, corrupt officials, potholes and the e-Toll revolt, we have no problem in Jo'burg! But well spotted Nelson, I have not seen this discussed anywhere else before and it is significant.I'm glad that William Marshall sent me a copy of "Review of Armoured Car Production", a Technical Services bulletin of around mid-1941, which clarifies the point:
"...In the production of the Mark II, however, the designation Mk. II covered two slightly different types, known as the M.F.F. and the M.E. The armament of the Mk. II M.F.F Cars, consist of two .303 Vickers M.Gs. one in the hull and one in the turret, both on ball mountings, the conical turret being manually swung round by means of handles...
...The chief modifications that distinguish the Mk. II M.E. Cars from the M.F.F. Cars are:
A rectangular opening is cut in the conical turret, and a nose-piece welded or riveted on; this nose-piece accommodating mountings for a Bren M.G. and Boys A/T rifle. A suitable mounting is attached to the nose-piece to carry a Bren M.G. for anti-aircraft use. A Bren mounting is also substituted for the ball mounting and Vickers M.G. on the near side of the hull, and a further opening with Bren Gun mounting is provided on the off-side of the hull..."
Note: There were also small internal differences to the "wireless sets", batteries, water and fuel tanks, ammunition racks and accessories carried, whether according to British (M.E.) or UDF (M.F.F.) specs. These differences, however small, hindered series production and with the redesigned Mark III, ALL differences were eliminated between the M.F.F. and M.E. Cars. The turret was standardised to accept either a Vickers/Boys combination for M.F.F. use, or Bren/Boys combination for M.E. use. Both Mk. III variants carried Bren Guns on AA mountings.
"Throughout the Mk. III Car is a universal Car, any modifications required to convert M.F.F to M.E. type being simply a matter of bolting on additions or vice versa. We consider that this principle is most important from a production point of view, as a lot of our difficulties in production in the past have been due to the fact that it has been by no means a simple matter to convert Mk. II M.F.F. type to M.E. type."
The cars sent to Java were Mark IIIs, and only termed as M.F.F. types to differentiate the types of mountings, brackets, cradles and clipes(?)(clips, maybe?) required, to ship along with the cars. Incidentally, what the heck is an "armour plate jacket, unaltered" of which only one was sent per car? Body protection for the gunner maybe?
More on Malaya later.
|This message has been edited by Visje1981 on Mar 4, 2015 11:17 AM|