- P.P.A. 'H' Patrol vehicles -

The P.P.A. desert jeep.

When Popski's Private Army was formed in 1942 the unit used the American WILLYS jeep for his actions. The first desert jeeps were very simular to the L.R.D.G. and S.A.S. jeeps and were armed with a Twin Vickers K on the dashboard of the jeep. After P.P.A. was betrayed and later attacked by Germans planes arround the Mareth Line the unit lost its 9 vehicles.
Later on in Tabessa, P.P.A. was equiped with brand new jeeps, equipment, weapons and clothes from the Americans. From the Tabessa area we see that the P.P.A. jeeps already have the PPA characteristic twin spare wheels and were constructed like we see the jeeps in italy.
The heavy M.G. was an American Browning .50 and .30, the same weapon used on tanks and American Fortress aircraft. Seen on the bonnet of the jeep is a Tommy gun and a British Lee Enfield .303 rifle -which were used as a sniper's rifle. Also seen is a foot pump, a starting handle, tent (or rather bivy) and poles for the bivy. several American 'Thirty-Thirty' Winchester carbines, at least three personal weapons, American Colt .45 automatic pistol which fired the same ammunition as the Tommy gun. The P.P.A. desert jeep was also equiped with special equipment for its stay in the desert like the condensator, sand mats, sun-compass, extra fuel jerrycans, etc...
If the jeep was going on an operation there would have been at least three more jerrycans of petrol on the bumper. Also there may have been some on the bonnet, plus three on a bracket at the rear of the jeep. Distributed around the jeep would have been perhaps several captured weapons. Also in a bracket at the rear of the jeep would be three smoke grenades set off electrically from the dashboard. Also there would have been a quantity of plastic explosive detonators, time pencils, etc, and various mines. All this equipment could have been located by the crew in seconds. The weight carried by the jeep caused the springs to bend downwards. The jeep travelled better in that condition. Much better performance.

Source:P.P.A. veterans.

 

First P.P.A. desert model.

Second P.P.A. desert model.

 

Jeep Equipment.
(These figures do not apply to the w/t Jeeps)

 

1 - Guns & Personnal Weapons.

- Twin Vickers K. with mounting & cradle - x1 (first desert model)
- .50 Cal MMG with gun mounting & cradle - x1 (second desert model)
- .50 Cal MMG Amn. box - x1 (second desert model)
- .30 Cal LMG with gun mounting & cradle - x1 (second desert model)
- .30 Cal LMG Amn. boxes if cradle allows (second desert model)
- Bren LMG (Per Patrol) - x2
- Bren LMG Mag. boxes (Per Patrol) - 4 (12 mags.)
- T.S.M.G. & 12 Mags. - x2
- Carabine & 2 clips - x1
- Pistols Signal (Per Patrol) - x2
- Can, Rifle oil - x1
- Flannelette
- Cleaning rod .50 Cal (Per Patrol) - x3 (second desert model)
- Cleaning rod .30 Cal (Per Patrol) - x3 (second desert model)
- Bren tool box
- .45 or Automatic, & 2 spare clips - x2


2 - Ammunition (basic scale).

- .50 Cal 250 rds (2AP 2 Inc 1 Trac) - x4 (second desert model)
- .30 Cal 2 - 1200 linked belt --do-- - x6 (second desert model)
- .303, 350 rds (30 x 12 mags in box if carrying Bren)
- .303, 30 mags (first model)
- .45 or .38 pistol 12 rds
- .45 T.S.M.G. 200 rds
- Colt Auto 200 rds
- 30 Carabine 50 rds
- .303 Rifle 50 rds
- Carts. Signal White Illuminating - x6
- Carts. Signal Green - x6
- Carts. Signal Red - x12
- Incendiary Bomb - x1
- Grenades 36m - x10
- Hawkins - x6
- Bombs Smoke - x2


3 - Vehicle Equipment.

- Jeep Cover - x1 (second desert model)
- Jeep Apron PPA Pat. - x1 (second desert model)
- Two man bivouac - x1
- Net Shrimp (camouflage) - x1
- Axe, pick, shovel - x1
- Matchet - x1
- Cooker No.2 Portable - x1
- Tow chain light - x1
- Jerrycans - x9
- Oil can (2 gall.) - x1
- Water can (2 gall.) - x4
- Extra spare wheel - x1
- Extra spare tube - x1
- Tyre repair outfit & pressure guage - x1
- Water bucket canvas - x1
- Tool kit complete - x1
- Extra tyre levers - x2
- Wire cutter - x1
- String Ball 25 yds
- A.F.V. medical kit - x1
- Tool kit (fitter) - x1
- M.T. spare parts (depends on lenght of op)
- Skid chains, sets - x2
- Searchlight (Per Patrol) - x1 (second desert model)


4 - Special Equipment.

- Binoculars - x1
- Sun compass - x1
- Sand mats - x2
- Condensor - x1
- Compass (primatic) - x1
- Watches (Per Patrol) - x3
- Sleeping Bags Icelandic - x2
- Torch electric - x1
- Sheets groung (gun cover) - x1
- Map boards - x1
- Protractors - x1


5 - Explosives.

- Depends on nature of operation.


6 - Rations.

- COMPO

 

Photo examples.

Desert jeep like first P.P.A. model.

Jerrycan bracket at the rear of jeep.

   

Twin Vickers like on the first P.P.A. desert model.

P.P.A. second desert model.

   

Sun compass on the dashboard of the jeep.

Condensor of the P.P.A. desert jeep.

   

 

Source: P.P.A. veterans / P.P.A. Preservation Society / Research and Archive Section of P.P.A..
Photos: P.P.A. Preservation Society / Research and Archive Section of P.P.A.. / Desert Raiders Association.

 

 
   

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