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Old 2nd Nov 2009, 13:26   #1 (permalink)
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: UK
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WW2 USAAF Jargon Decode, please?

Just been reading a fascinating USAAF diary of a B17 nav based in E Anglia in 1943.

He frequently refers to "finding our splasher" or reaching "splasher #7" which is evidently a navigation waypoint. What were "splashers" used for? An initial coastal assembly point/coasting in point or something like that? His ship was equipped with "G" (sic)- evidently "Gee".

When one of his squadron had to land in fog with his rudder cables shot away he "landed on A.F.C.E". What does that mean?

I'll try to find the provenance of this piece - there are 20 pages or more, and if appropriate will post it here - it is a gripping read.
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Old 2nd Nov 2009, 14:38   #2 (permalink)

Yes, Him
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Splasher was the code, I think, for some type of omni-directional beacon, not sure if it was the light thing that flashed the airfield codes or something more sophisticated such as Eureka.
Ask on the WWII pilots thread in the Mil Forum?
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Old 2nd Nov 2009, 14:47   #3 (permalink)

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“AFCE” referred to the Automatic Flight Control Equipment”, i.e., “autopilot” of the plane.
I think this may be from the papers you're reading! Just a bit further down.
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Old 2nd Nov 2009, 14:53   #4 (permalink)
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More Memories from Splasher Six

From the description in this article, it looks like they were NDBs.
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Old 2nd Nov 2009, 18:32   #5 (permalink)
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Sir Watson-Watt eh what? GEE
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Old 2nd Nov 2009, 21:18   #6 (permalink)
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Splashers were MF radio beacons, NDBs as has been suggested, and were sited in strategic, mostly coastal positions. They provided a vital service to both RAF and USAAF for accurate heading and position fixing for formations leaving the English coast. They also helped home inbound individual aircraft. To give a few examples, Splasher 4 was at Louth, Spl 5 at Cromer, Spl 6 on Eye airfield in Suffolk, Spl 9 on Beachy Head. Splasher 7 was on Canvey Island.
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