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  #1  
Old 16-02-04, 12:42
James Gosling James Gosling is offline
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Default GM Otter light recce car

Does anyone know which Canadian units in NW Europe 1944-45 used the Otter Lrc other than the Engineer field coys?
I have been told some were used as FOO vehicles by the artillery with the turrets removed but have no confirming proof. Any info would be great.
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  #2  
Old 04-08-04, 20:49
James Gosling James Gosling is offline
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Default GM Otter light recce car

Hi everyone out there, I need some help with the restoration of my Otter.Firstly I need a parts list or a copy of one if any of you can help? Secondly I need any info or pictures of the turret ,scale drawings would be ideal as i am having to build it from scratch. lastly any info on its uses in North West Europe in 44-45. Basically i need all the help i can get ,James.
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  #3  
Old 06-08-04, 18:04
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Hanno Spoelstra Hanno Spoelstra is offline
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Default Re: GM Otter light recce car

Quote:
Originally posted by James Gosling
Basically i need all the help i can get
James, welcome to this forum. I see you joined last February, but somehow I missed you first post. I have now merged both your messages into one in an effort to attract some more attention.

Quote:
Originally posted by James Gosling
Does anyone know which Canadian units in NW Europe 1944-45 used the Otter Lrc other than the Engineer field coys?
It is well known they were used in Italy where they did not perform as expected. As far as I know, if they were used in NW Europe, it was in secondary roles only. The thread On a Normandy beach... features a photo of an Otter towing a standard US Army 1-ton trailer, would that be one of the Otters in use with a Engineer field coy?
Quote:
I have been told some were used as FOO vehicles by the artillery with the turrets removed but have no confirming proof. Any info would be great.
I've seen a picture of a turretless Otter in Holland somewhere, I'll make an effort to look it up.
Come to think of it, MLU Forum member Dirk Leegwater has a turretless Otter too! Have you been in contact with him? Seems you two are after the same thing.

Please keep us posted on your progress!

Regards,
Hanno
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Last edited by Hanno Spoelstra; 24-03-09 at 23:57. Reason: removed link & added picture
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  #4  
Old 06-08-04, 18:08
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Hanno Spoelstra Hanno Spoelstra is offline
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Courtesy of Ed Storey, here's a picture of a line-up of five Otters, pictured in British Columbia, Canada, in about 1948.
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gm_otters_bc_1948.jpg  
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  #5  
Old 06-08-04, 20:46
James Gosling James Gosling is offline
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Hanno , thanks a lot for the welcome and for the pictures 2 of which I have not seen before! I spoke to Dirk at Beltring last month and he was also looking for info on the turret, so if I find anything new i will of course post it . James.
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  #6  
Old 06-08-04, 21:47
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Hanno Spoelstra Hanno Spoelstra is offline
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James, glad to be of some help. Good to hear you've made contact with Dirk, the two of you will work something out.

As for a turret, here's one! Best of all, there's also a hull lurking in the brambles under it....

Regards,
Hanno
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otter_cmvapril2004.jpg  
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  #7  
Old 06-08-04, 23:06
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Hanno Spoelstra Hanno Spoelstra is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by James Gosling
I have been told some were used as FOO vehicles by the artillery with the turrets removed but have no confirming proof. Any info would be great.
There - I knew I'd seen a picture of a turretless Otter in Holland somewhere. It is printed on p. 181 in Gelderland bevrijd by Christ Peters (Van Geyt Productions, 1994, ISBN 90-5327-111-2) and is captioned "The Hastings & Prince Edwards Regiment in the woods near Apeldoorn".

Plus close-up.

Hope this helps,
Hanno
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otter_turretless1.jpg   otter_turretless2.jpg  
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  #8  
Old 07-08-04, 04:47
Bruce Parker Bruce Parker is offline
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Default Otter Turret

Should all else fail, I can measure up an Otter turret here in Canada that would give you what you need to re-make one. Of course, if you or Hanno are by Dirks, a Fox measurement or two would be most helpfull...
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  #9  
Old 07-08-04, 23:12
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Default Re: turret

Quote:
Originally posted by Hanno Spoelstra in Post-war conversions: C15TA to Tippers?
Another example is Mike Ebeling's Otter which had its rear body cut off and a crane grafted on.
Come to think of it, why not ask Mike about how he got a turret for his Otter? I can't remember if his Otter is the one with a turret that came all the way from Canada, or he made one up.

H.

Last edited by Hanno Spoelstra; 06-05-15 at 16:05. Reason: fixed links
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  #10  
Old 10-08-04, 10:41
James Gosling James Gosling is offline
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Hanno thanks again for the help,
Sadly the Otter in the picture, covered in brambles is not for sale.I spoke with the owner in June and he is adamant that he won't sell it or a second one he has hiding nearby. Both have been completely gutted inside, with every major component removed. The other one has had the turret removed and the roof of the hull is split open like a banana. they do however have some interesting fittings on the outside still remaining, which I hope to go back and photograph (when I was there the owner would not let me photograph anything).My search therefore goes on and on!
The turretless Otter in the photo in Holland appears to be the same one as in the picture I've attached. It is being used as an artillery FOO vehicle from the insignia on the uniforms.
I have a message here for Bruce as well, thanks for the offer of the measurements,if its not too much trouble they would be greatfully received.
Regards James.
Having trouble sending the picture as its too large so hopefully it will follow shortly.
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  #11  
Old 10-08-04, 11:07
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Quote:
Originally posted by James Gosling
Sadly the Otter in the picture, covered in brambles is not for sale.I spoke with the owner in June and he is adamant that he won't sell it or a second one he has hiding nearby.
From CMV magazine I got the impression it was located in France - but is it?

Quote:
Having trouble sending the picture as its too large so hopefully it will follow shortly.
E-mail it to me and I'll resize and post it for you.

H.
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  #12  
Old 10-08-04, 11:24
James Gosling James Gosling is offline
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Yes the Otters are located in France, however the access to them is limited by a large dog and the fact that the owner does not want to publicise their whereabouts.So any photos I may be able to get will only be from a distance outside the fence. James
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  #13  
Old 10-08-04, 14:11
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Quote:
Originally posted by James Gosling
The turretless Otter in the photo in Holland appears to be the same one as in the picture I've attached. It is being used as an artillery FOO vehicle from the insignia on the uniforms.
Here's your picture, James. Seems indeed to be the same Otter as in the pics above. Where did you find it?

H.
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otter light recce car 010.jpg  
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  #14  
Old 10-08-04, 16:28
James Gosling James Gosling is offline
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I found it in packet of half a dozen old wartime photos. It didn't have a caption so I wasn't sure if it was Italy or NW Europe, but now I know.

My Otter carries its original census number CM4647062 however the Data plates are missing. Is there any way of tracing its identity back or who used it? I have seen photos taken in England showing Otters with numbers higher and lower however there are no hints as to the units in the photos.
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  #15  
Old 12-08-04, 20:35
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David_Hayward (RIP) David_Hayward (RIP) is offline
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Default F 210158

..appears to be a British Census Number. My information, which may be wrong, has it that the British Census Numbers ran around F 210280..to Demand S/M 2424.
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  #16  
Old 13-08-04, 03:55
Alex Blair (RIP) Alex Blair (RIP) is offline
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Default Re: GM Otter light recce car

Quote:
Originally posted by James Gosling
Firstly I need a parts list or a copy of one if any of you can help?
Hi James
The parts and maintenance manuals are listed on my web site..

#16: 168 pages
CRAC-02
GM CANADA, ILLUST. PARTS LIST, CAR, LIGHT RECONNAISSANCE, CANADIAN,
Mark 1 (Otter 1), Mod. RAC Chassis 8447 (Jan.'43)
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

#17: 320 pages.
NEW RAC-C1, LIGHT RECON CANADIAN CMP
GM Mark I, II (R.A.C.) Operation, Maintenance and Repair.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

#18: 300 pages
NEW RAC-C2 CAR LIGHT RECON CANADIAN CMP
GM Mark I, (Otter I) Operation, Maintenance and Repair, (Jan.'43).
Contact me off line if you require copies..
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  #17  
Old 13-08-04, 21:04
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David_Hayward (RIP) David_Hayward (RIP) is offline
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Default Otter types?

Alex, does that mean that there were indeed two marks of Otter as I suspected?
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  #18  
Old 26-08-04, 19:57
Neil Ashley Neil Ashley is offline
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Default Re: Otter Light Recce Car

Firstly can I introduce myself as a new member owning a C15TA and a Canadian Mk1 Mortar Carrier.

Returning to the subject in question, this thread does seem to have ended abruptly without an answer. A Mk11 Otter is described in the manual as being "exactly the same design except the gunner's turret is replaced with a flat top".

Were any actually made and what was the method of covering the turret ring? I assume the vehicles featured in this thread are converted Mk1's.

Finally I understand that Otters were also used as Command Vehicles in the 17th Duke of York's and other Canadian Recce Regiments in NW Europe. They were favoured because they were bigger internaly than the issued Humber Light Recce Car's.
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  #19  
Old 26-08-04, 21:31
Alex Blair (RIP) Alex Blair (RIP) is offline
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Default Re: Re: Otter Light Recce Car

Quote:
Originally posted by Neil Ashley
Returning to the subject in question, this thread does seem to have ended abruptly without an answer. A Mk11 Otter is described in the manual as being "exactly the same design except the gunner's turret is replaced with a flat top".
Thanks Neil..I missed Davids question and just saw it now..
Yes David..MKl..Mkll..NO turret..flat top as Neil described
Neil..where are you located..
Alex
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  #20  
Old 26-08-04, 23:20
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Hanno Spoelstra Hanno Spoelstra is offline
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Default Re: Re: Otter Light Recce Car

Quote:
Originally posted by Neil Ashley
Firstly can I introduce myself as a new member owning a C15TA and a Canadian Mk1 Mortar Carrier.
Welcome, Neil!

May I ask if your C15TA is featured on this list of C15TA survivors? If not, would you mind to have a picture of yours included?

Thanks,
Hanno
Made in Canada - Canadian Military Pattern vehicles
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  #21  
Old 27-08-04, 04:42
Bruce Parker Bruce Parker is offline
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Default Mk. I vs. Mk II

Yes, but was a Mk.II 'flat top' Otter ever produced? This is similar to the rumour that a 'Mk.II' Fox was produced with an American 37mm gun replacing the 50 and 30 cal. Browning machine guns mounted in a Mk.I. I've always put this down to confusion with the Dutch postwar Fox/Humber 'HumFox' conversions.

Still, a Fox, turretless 6 pdr. tower existed.
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  #22  
Old 11-01-05, 01:20
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Hanno Spoelstra Hanno Spoelstra is offline
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Default Re: Otter Light Recce Car

Quote:
Originally posted by James Gosling
I have been told some were used as FOO vehicles by the artillery with the turrets removed but have no confirming proof. Any info would be great.
This one does not have a turret, does it? (source)
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  #23  
Old 11-01-05, 08:49
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Stefan Leegwater Stefan Leegwater is offline
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Hi Hanno,

That will save us a lot of trouble finding one, right?

Cheers,

Stefan
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  #24  
Old 11-01-05, 12:25
James Gosling James Gosling is offline
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Hi Hanno and Stefan and Happy New Year.

As an alternative to the basic turretless Otter I received a photo from David Fletcher at Bovington of an Otter in Italy.The Markings are for the 4th Princess Louise's Dragoon Guards. It has had the turret removed and an armoured screen fitted on the roof.Behind the armour has been mounted a .50 Browning with the gunner standing in the roof hatch.

I am not sure if I can post this photo due to copyright, so will contact David and see.

James
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  #25  
Old 11-01-05, 18:11
James Gosling James Gosling is offline
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Here's the picture of the turretless Otter. As my Otter is missing the turret as well these alterations would make for an interesting restoration.
James
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  #26  
Old 11-01-05, 18:22
James Gosling James Gosling is offline
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This Photo was courtesy of the archives at the Tank Musum Bovington where they have a good selection of Otter photos.
James
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  #27  
Old 11-01-05, 22:14
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Hanno Spoelstra Hanno Spoelstra is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by Stefan Leegwater
That will save us a lot of trouble finding one, right?
My idea - restore and kit it out as an artillery FOO vehicle!

Quote:
Originally posted by James Gosling
As my Otter is missing the turret as well these alterations would make for an interesting restoration.
Interesting to see there was more than one turretless variant - it would indeed make a great restoration.

Quote:
an Otter in Italy.The Markings are for the 4th Princess Louise's Dragoon Guards. It has had the turret removed and an armoured screen fitted on the roof.Behind the armour has been mounted a .50 Browning with the gunner standing in the roof hatch.
Thanks to James, the large version of the scan goes attached.

H.
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otter light recce car 013.jpg  
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  #28  
Old 18-01-05, 15:30
James Gosling James Gosling is offline
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Hi Hanno,
Looking closely at your picture, I noticed that this Otter does not have a step fitted to help you climb aboard. This is the same as on mine, there are no bolt holes or weld marks on either side of the body. The other similarity shown is the lack of the brackets for the sand channels.There is also no sign that a spare wheel was ever fitted, that part of the body is also unmarked.

Isn't it surprising how different these old machines are.

It would seem that the FOO Otter's were quite basic in their finish when compared to the ones used by the engineers in NW Europe.
They may have come straight from unused reserves which could be the reason why.
James
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  #29  
Old 19-01-05, 14:17
Neil Ashley Neil Ashley is offline
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James

The differences may be due to at what stage in the contracts the vehicles were built.

For example, most sources will tell you that spare tyres were only fitted to British AFV's after the supply of rubber became a problem, and the use of run flat tyes was discontinued.

Do you know if your vehicle is an early or late example.
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  #30  
Old 20-01-05, 20:01
James Gosling James Gosling is offline
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Neil

From looking at other photos I would reckon on it being an earlier model. It has the same stripped appearance as the early models used in Italy. The vehicles used by the engineers in France are definately better finished.

Another diference is the casting of the turret ring. Mine is smoothly cast whereas others i've seen are rough cast. The early model doesn't have an armour ring around the base of the turret whereas the later models seem to.

James
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