V-2 rocket ballistic cone

It was being sold at the show. The seller said it was pure titanium. I have zero knowledge in this field.

For a V-2 (correctly A4) is is way too small in diameter and the Germans used steel for the whole rocket (including the warhead section which this here would be then). Titanium is no option here as this material would have been used for other purposes (if they did at all as Titanium supply to Germany back in WW2 must have been more than limited, remember that even the US bought the Titanium for their SR-71 program in the USSR).


Alex, what do you think this item is?

AgHall show??? Looks pretty empty.

That’s before general public is allowed inside.
To Dan Dietz…I missed you there, Bob Fetch told me you were inside.
There was a moment of silence (today is Dec.7, Pearl Harbor) but people next to me wouldn’t shut up.

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Vlad, no idea, there is gazillions of possibilities!


Vlad, as far as I know (and I could be wrong) titanium was not used for any large scale purposes outside of the laboratory until the 1950s. The titanium parts I have seen in person are also a slightly different color than aluminum or steel, although it depends on how they are processed. Titanium looks a little more gray to me than aluminum or steel. My guess would be aluminum for the cone you showed, but it would have to be tested to know for sure.


Detailed drawings of the rocket can be downloaded from: v2rocket.com
The real nose cone has a base diameter of about 940 mm (3.1 feet) and is more than 2 meters (6.6 feet) hight.


Titanium is a very difficult metal to make into parts. It’s advantages are that it is very strong, very light, very durable and resistant to corrosion. It’s strength to density ratio is the highest of any metalicl element. However, it is very difficult to work with. It is used extensively in aircraft and jet engines but fabrication (machining and tube bending) often requires special equipment and special care. A particularly problem is hard alpha inclusions which are not detectable and can cause catastrophic failures of jet engines. The classic case was the 1989 crash of United Flight 232 when the tail mounted engine came apart and resulted in the death of 111 people. Early versions of the F100 engine powering the F-15 and F-16 fighters also had a problem with the catastrophic failure of the engine 1st stage fan/compressor disk. These type problems has limited the use in many applications.

Still, it is a great material for shafts on golf clubs!



To add to Lew’s insight, Titanium is also used in liquid fuel rocket motors, quite some EOD equipment (including some of the better mine probes), some knifes (often for EOD use) and last but not least in our favourite subject; ammunition and here in the SAA API types of recent years where a Titanium tip is mounted in front of TC cores to create an incendiary effect.
The SR-71 was made of Titanium too as there was no other material to withstand the high temperatures (and related material expansion) caused by the air friction due to the extreme high speed (Mach 3+).

For the civilian sector Titanium is used a lot for protheses like hip joints and special inlays and rails.

The cone above could well be from a rocket / missile or even aircraft (experimental?) but then a very fast type I would assume and more likely after 1945 and definately not German.

A very interesting material!



since when are you interested in golf ⛳️🏌🏿‍♂️???

I think I heard other stories


I have replied by PM since I did not want to hurt the feelings of the golfers on the Forum!

Not only Titanium bullets!!! In the collection I have a titanium case 9x19mm ball round headstamped “(+) FN 62” where (+) is the NATO symbol! Why FN decided to try this is a mystery to me.




Lew, Titanium case? Sounds odd but was it maybe for something with extremely high pressures or so?
Is a photo available maybe?

While on the subject of titanium, here are a few more interesting facts:

As Alex said, it is commonly used for medical implants. It is actually the most favorable metal to implant into the human body due to its low toxicity (so if you need an implant, choose titanium over stainless steel).

Titanium is difficult to weld due to high temperature oxidation. It must be welded in an argon or helium atmosphere (including the back of the weld, which often means flooding the parts with shielding gas to prevent weld oxidation and failure). Titanium is good up to about 650 C in air before oxidation becomes a problem. An unusual way of welding titanium is diffusion welding (diffusion bonding or DB), where the parts are put into intimate contact in a vacuum furnace and heated to about 1000 C. The parts will bond without melting after some time.

Titanium can also be superplastically formed (SPF). It is heated in an inert or vacuum furnace to about 900 C, then argon is usually used to blow mold the part slowly into a complex cavity. Superplasticity can produce very high elongations of 100% to over 1000% depending on the alloy (compared to typically less than 25% for cold forming). It can be combined with diffusion welding to produce honeycomb cross-sections, such as a lightweight and extremely stiff aircraft wing skin sandwich (the USAF B1 Lancer bomber wings were made this way). It is a slow process, so it is normally used for high cost aircraft parts. Below is a schematic diagram of such a section being diffusion bonded and superplastically formed (source: internet):


Larry, again thanks for your insight, very interesting! I was not aware that the B-1 wings were made of Titanium segments.
Though I once read the German/European MRCA Tornado (variable-sweep wing design) has a wing anchor block made of Titanium. This is the part where both wings are attached to and the adjustment mechanizm is incoprorated or attached to. A huge chunk of Titanium (and despite the material due to it’s sheer size a heavy lump of metal).

The most public use of Titanium is for the facade of the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, at half the weight of stainless steel the panels could be made thin enough to slightly flex in the wind and hence to reflect the light in an interesting way … from memory the titanium had to be bought from the USSR.

Whatever you think of the building itself, and I’ve had “discussions” with the architect’s office which colour my views, it’s an impressive thing and seems to have greatly boosted the local economy.


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Connecticut Shotgun makes their A-10 model over/under sidelock shotgun in titanium. Despite the $32K -$35K price they sell quite a few.

The barrel of the latest 84mm recoilless Carl Gustaf (model 4) rifle is also made of Titanium (sleeve inside a carbon fiber jacket). It is incredibly light now!

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When the Germans manufactured V1 and V2 rockets it was mostly done by slave labour using the most effective cheap sourced materials that the reich could supply to the rocket program. When i visited the IWM in London i had a look at their original V2 rocket and was very surprised that the rocket was made from form of plywood, when questioned thinking it should have been of a aluminium body, it was not.


Are you sure it was the V2 with plywood?

The only plywood I remember was used on fin sections of some AA missiles.