British post-war 5000 lb HC and 10000 lb HC bombs - any info?

Speedy

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Such bombs are mentioned in some books or articles about V-bombers and Canberra. E.g. in Aerofax "Vickers Valiant" as a alternative loads (beside of nukes) are 1 x 10000 lb HC or 2 x 5000 lb HC bombs. Maybe someone have some information about these bombs? Are they really existed, or only in project stage?
 

Hood

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I think such bombs were studied, probably as a back-up to nuclear weapons. Generally the 5,000lb and 10,000lb HC bombs seem to have formed the basis of the larger Blue Boar TV-guidance and Red Cheeks inertial-guidance guided-bomb research projects. The larger versions never even reached the aerodynamic trials stage, so the bombs themselves probably didn't exist at the time.
I doubt the Air Staff seriously considered such bombs to be useful without guidance to hit their intended targets.
 

yellowaster

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A 5,000lb HA/HS bomb (a larger version of the Mk.6 1,000lb bomb) was developed for the Canberra (and dropped in trials) but was cancelled on cost grounds circa 52. The 10,000lb bomb (for V-bombers) had finished development by 1955 but was canned (on cost grounds, and doubts regarding its employment) in mid-year.

(Edited after consulting files)
 

TsrJoe

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there are a few large unidentified casings at Dumfries aircraft museum, one in particular looks to be a slightly smaller 'Tallboy', il see if I can manage to upload some pics
 

CJGibson

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pics from Solway Air Museum at Dumfries.

I have photos of the manufacturer's plates (Scottish Aviation) but they are a bit worn and don't tell (well, don't tell me) much.

I seem to recall there was a pair of reasons the Tallboy wasn't intended for the V-bombers. The first was they needed new tail units for carriage in Vulcan and Victor and the second was that the explosive (Torpex) might deteriorate if stored for more than two years.

Chris
 

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Speedy

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Thx alot for info and pictures.

In the book "British bombers since 1914" by F.K.Mason, Tallboys are mentioned as a HP Victor bombload (one 22000 lb Grand Slam or two 12000 Tallboys).
 

CJGibson

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Of course they were. The files say different when it came to practicalities.

Chris
 

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JFC Fuller

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Is it just me or did the below sentence seem rather passive aggressive? As if the author might have been exasperated that he was having to seriously consider this?

"There seems little chance of us raising such a force of aircraft after our atomic stockpile has been expended"

Great thread by the way and thanks for the photos of the casings, they certainly look late or post-war.
 

Speedy

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According to deterioration of explosives, there was some accidents with Tarzon (American Tallboy-based guided bomb) in the Korean War. The bombs exploded even if were safe dropped from low altitude. Deterioration could be a reason. On other hand, US Tallboy had some version and I don't know which one was converted to Tarzon. Early models were build exactly as British, with cast warhead and filled with torpex in TNT mantle, then they switch to cheaper technique with warhead made from rolled plates in process similar to manufacturing high-pressure vessels, steam boilers etc., and tritonal explosive. Breaking the shell when hit the ground could also caused explosion.
 

CJGibson

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JFC - I read it as there being no aircraft left to carry them, since there appears to be some scepticism about the V-force returning to base. Weren't the crews issued with instructions to head elsewhere rather than back to Blighty?

Chris
 

CNH

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Probably not in 1955. Maybe in the late 60s/70s?
 

RLBH

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I'm not sure that the two sides aren't incompatible. For the Air Ministry to write about the requirement no longer being valid strongly implies that it was a requirement at some previous point.
 

CJGibson

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The file says that it could take 56 Tallboys to sink a cruiser, (based on Tirpitz experience I think) so not worth the effort. Also by 1955 Green Cheese was on the cards for use by Valiants against ships.


Chris
 

Speedy

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[quote author=JF] broken-backed warfare was UK strategic thinking up to 1955/56, it assumed a period of conventional war after initial nuclear war.
[/quote]

I agree that such scenario is very improbable. After exchanging nuclear strikes probably no one would be able to continue the war. But how about limited wars, without using the nukes? After ww2 British forces fight in some such conflicts, in Greece, Malayan Emergency, Korean war and Suez Crisis (the last was in 1956 so a year after attached documents). I think the heavy conventional bombs could be quite useful in such wars.
 

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CNH

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Ah, yes, the Kaiserfarht - running from the Stettiner Haff to Swinemunde. Nice stretch of waterway.

I've sailed over that bomb.
 
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JohnR

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Which airforces still have the capability to drop a weapon in the Tallboy and Grandslam class. I would image the US, Russian and Chinese AFs', as they are the only AFs' with "bombers" rather than strike aircraft?

What would the RAF use to undertake the targets the earthquake bombs undertook.
 

EwenS

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According to deterioration of explosives, there was some accidents with Tarzon (American Tallboy-based guided bomb) in the Korean War. The bombs exploded even if were safe dropped from low altitude. Deterioration could be a reason. On other hand, US Tallboy had some version and I don't know which one was converted to Tarzon. Early models were build exactly as British, with cast warhead and filled with torpex in TNT mantle, then they switch to cheaper technique with warhead made from rolled plates in process similar to manufacturing high-pressure vessels, steam boilers etc., and tritonal explosive. Breaking the shell when hit the ground could also caused explosion.

The differences in construction between the British and US bombs is noted here.

But I have a recollection that Tallboys/Grand Slam built in wartime in the US were constructed in 3 parts. Note the use of the future tense regarding the T10 and its 5 parts.

All the Tallboys and Grand Slams constructed in the US for the RAF were filled in Britain.
 

lastdingo

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Which airforces still have the capability to drop a weapon in the Tallboy and Grandslam class. I would image the US, Russian and Chinese AFs', as they are the only AFs' with "bombers" rather than strike aircraft?

What would the RAF use to undertake the targets the earthquake bombs undertook.
Such large bombs can be dropped by large cargoa ircraft from a ramp. It's actually easier than adapting a heavy bomber for it.
 

JohnR

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Which airforces still have the capability to drop a weapon in the Tallboy and Grandslam class. I would image the US, Russian and Chinese AFs', as they are the only AFs' with "bombers" rather than strike aircraft?

What would the RAF use to undertake the targets the earthquake bombs undertook.
I knew that MOABs were dropped from C130's didn't realise that Equake bombs could be dropped from them as well.
 

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