Kynoch experimental midair refuelling line throwing blanks

I found these two interesting blanks for sale at a militaria fair in the Uk earlier this year. The seller had no idea what they were. He had a small plastic box with about 10 of each and said "they are

You may have portions of two correct stories blended together.
In the U.S. there were line throwing cartridges for use to send lines between two SHIPS, not aircraft, and I suspect that your #2 is a UK counterpart for that use.
The U.S. also has “Antenna erecting blanks” apparently used to eject/erect/deploy/open some sort of antenna from an aircraft. (Pilots seem to prefer not to have long wires dragging along behind them whiel taking off and maneuvering?) These were made using about 2/3 of a .30-06 case. I suspect that your #1 is some sort of UK counterpart for that.
Thus we can get line throwing, and aircraft mixed together, just as the cartridges got mixed together for you to find.
I applaud your initiative and enthusiasm with this hobby. You are becoming quite an expert acroass a broad area. If Tony Williams needs an assistant, he would do well to hire you!

You are right !
This young guy (16 years old !) is incredible.

A good way to help him would be to send him some of our duplicates.
We all have among our duplicates some we don’t care (either in so many samples we will never trade them all, or because they are not in our field).


A couple of points here:

First, Falcon is absolutely correct in that these blanks were used in an experimental Greener manufactured line throwing gun for early attempts at air to air refuelling. I know he is correct because I found the trial reports in the British National Archives and told him about them.

I wrote a short piece about the trials in the ECRA Journal a couple of years ago.

Secondly, the cases used are cut down 8mm Mannlichers, but neither type of blank ever entered service as the idea had some obvious disadvantages!


@John: The equivalent UK round to your .45-70 Line-Throwing blank is the .303 “H Mark 2” blank. It is a fully blackened .303 case sealed at the neck with a card wad shellaced over. My example is headstamped “RG 54 HMK2”. These were also used for launching rifle grenades.

@Tony: I assumed round 2 was “approved for service” even though the concept seems obviously disadvantaged as it had a service style headstamp. Do you have a photo of the gun?

Does anyone know what exactly those .30-06 Antenna Erector blanks were used for and on what aircraft? I have seen a photo of one, I know the one John means. Apparently you have to watch for fakes as they are easily made.

You are right !
This young guy (16 years old !) is incredible.

I had accumulated a few fired cartridges (nothing exciting: 7.62x51, 5.56x45. 9mm, .38 Spl, .22LR, 12 Gauge etc.) since age 7. I found the IAA headstamp guide in 2003 and identified the makers of all the rounds I had. I then decided they were interesting and I wanted more. I had also been interested in guns for a long time, which I couldn’t collect for obvious reasons, so naturally the next best thing was collecting the cartridges they fired.

This soon led to the local flea markets, internet, ebay etc. I started on the old forum last August, and once I had one question answered I realised there were many more that I needed answering as i learned more. I also never really got on with many people in high school, so I always had time on my hands, which I ended up using by reading up on the net on guns, cartridges, aircraft etc.

Falcon, I have watched you evolve as a collector since you came on the Forum, and have been impressed. You have moved from some pretty basic questions to some very sophisticated ones posts, sharing a lot of info with the rest of us. You have also shown us that there are lots of good items sitting out there at flea markets and one only had to look, and be smart about what one is seeing.

Thanks for your contributions to the Forum and I hope I continue to see lots of your postings.

Well Done!!!