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 RMP Operational Route signs.

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recce83
Capt
Capt
recce83

Number of posts : 214
Age : 80
Localisation : Peachland British Columbia, Canada
Cap Badge : Black Watch of Canada
Places Served : 4 CIBG Soest and Werl 1957-1965, Camp Borden, Camp Gagetown
Registration date : 2009-06-04

RMP Operational Route signs. Empty
PostSubject: RMP Operational Route signs.   RMP Operational Route signs. Icon_minitime11/6/2009, 20:23

Maybe one of our Redcap friends can answer my inquiries about the operational route signs we used to see on main roads throughout BAOR in the 1950s. Haven't had any luck elsewhere. They were black signs with white lettering. Some of the routes I recall were: Jack, Joker, Snap, Juno, Ace, and so on. There was a BFG map that showed the routes as well. By 1960 they had disappeared for some reason. They sure helped keep newbies from getting too hopelessly lost.

Anyone remember them, have photos or an old map?
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Stephen Lock
Maj Gen
Maj Gen
Stephen Lock

Number of posts : 937
Age : 65
Localisation : Calgary
Cap Badge : Pads Brat
Places Served : Father -- Canadian Army. Served Hemer, Soest, and Wetter
Registration date : 2007-12-28

RMP Operational Route signs. Empty
PostSubject: Re: RMP Operational Route signs.   RMP Operational Route signs. Icon_minitime12/6/2009, 02:09

recce83 wrote:
Maybe one of our Redcap friends can answer my inquiries about the operational route signs we used to see on main roads throughout BAOR in the 1950s. Haven't had any luck elsewhere. They were black signs with white lettering. Some of the routes I recall were: Jack, Joker, Snap, Juno, Ace, and so on. There was a BFG map that showed the routes as well. By 1960 they had disappeared for some reason. They sure helped keep newbies from getting too hopelessly lost.

Anyone remember them, have photos or an old map?

I'd forgotten about these! As mentioned in previous posts, my parents and and I were in Germany 1959-62 and 1969-72. For sure, I recall operational route signs from our first tour and I am almost certain they were still in existence during our second, but don't hold me to that.

No doubt, they came in very handy for SOXMIS Razz
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donald
WOI
WOI


Number of posts : 156
Age : 90
Cap Badge : 1st The Royal Dragoons - The Blues and Royals (RHG/D)
Places Served : UK,BOAR,Egypt
Registration date : 2008-04-04

RMP Operational Route signs. Empty
PostSubject: Re: RMP Operational Route signs.   RMP Operational Route signs. Icon_minitime12/6/2009, 15:22

As I recall they were only put out for large exercises.The most frequent seen ones were those put out by Units and sub-units,some of these were very interesting.I remember we used to re-paint them for every scheme,and they seemed to be a collectors item and we always went back to camp with some missing.The RMP ones I remember when we had the NATO turnout in the early 60s?.The most usful bit of kit in making these was the rods for the trip flares we used to use!
-----
Don
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RMP Operational Route signs. Empty
PostSubject: Re: RMP Operational Route signs.   RMP Operational Route signs. Icon_minitime12/6/2009, 18:47

I seem to remember them being called TAC signs. They were made of waterproofed fibre board painted matt black with white arrows and route designations..... FOX.... BAT etc. They were hung on green metal stakes. We used them to mark out MSRs etc.

I seem to remember that the outward routes had an arrow and the return routes had a bar at the base of the arrow. They were certainly still using them in the 90s and probably still are.

Route signing was probably one of the most boring tasks I have ever done. Flying up and down the routes in a landrover and trailer or Bombardier motorbike ensuring that the signage was intact.

At night, the TAC signage had to be "thickened up" in order to account for poorer visibility... no gonk then!

Anyone with any sense would take a TomTom with them today.
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Teabag
Maj Gen
Maj Gen
Teabag

Number of posts : 960
Age : 68
Localisation : Merseyside
Cap Badge : Royal Signals
Places Served : Wildenrath Detmold
Registration date : 2008-10-30

RMP Operational Route signs. Empty
PostSubject: Re: RMP Operational Route signs.   RMP Operational Route signs. Icon_minitime12/6/2009, 19:42

Stephen Lock wrote:
recce83 wrote:
Maybe one of our Redcap friends can answer my inquiries about the operational route signs we used to see on main roads throughout BAOR in the 1950s. Haven't had any luck elsewhere. They were black signs with white lettering. Some of the routes I recall were: Jack, Joker, Snap, Juno, Ace, and so on. There was a BFG map that showed the routes as well. By 1960 they had disappeared for some reason. They sure helped keep newbies from getting too hopelessly lost.

Anyone remember them, have photos or an old map?

I'd forgotten about these! As mentioned in previous posts, my parents and and I were in Germany 1959-62 and 1969-72. For sure, I recall operational route signs from our first tour and I am almost certain they were still in existence during our second, but don't hold me to that.

No doubt, they came in very handy for SOXMIS Razz

Ah, SOXMIS. Always wondered what I would do if I came across one. Bit daunting to be honest but thankfully it never happened. Anyone?
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recce83
Capt
Capt
recce83

Number of posts : 214
Age : 80
Localisation : Peachland British Columbia, Canada
Cap Badge : Black Watch of Canada
Places Served : 4 CIBG Soest and Werl 1957-1965, Camp Borden, Camp Gagetown
Registration date : 2009-06-04

RMP Operational Route signs. Empty
PostSubject: Re: RMP Operational Route signs.   RMP Operational Route signs. Icon_minitime12/6/2009, 20:33

That's right on all counts, but there was a difference. I'm not talking about the temporary 'up route' and 'down route' signs that went up for exercises, nor the usual tac signs that were posted as you came into cities and towns. (Remember how the median on the autobahn at Bielefeld and Herford resembled christmas trees with the colourful display of division, corps and unit signs?)

These were definitely permanently placed signs bigger than the above-mentioned ones and were clearly marked "RMP Sign". They probably measured about 3 feet wide by maybe 1 1/2 ft. high. Wish I had a photo to show. They were in place for sure from 1957 to 1960, maybe longer. But they were gone by 1963.

I also remember maps of the then British Zone that had these op routes clearly printed on the corresponding roads and highways hanging up in a RASC office, so they were not temporary. Is there not a hoarder of memoribelia out there who has something to show?
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BobG
Lt Col
Lt Col


Number of posts : 330
Age : 80
Localisation : Northumberland
Cap Badge : REME
Places Served : Rotenburg, Verden, Liebenau, Hohne, Hamm, Duisburg, Minden, Hannover, Fallingbostal, Kuwait, UK, HK, USA/Can.
Registration date : 2008-02-27

RMP Operational Route signs. Empty
PostSubject: Re: RMP Operational Route signs.   RMP Operational Route signs. Icon_minitime13/6/2009, 15:06

I remember the signs, I believe they were marking evacuation routes for families, etc. as it was planned to use road transport to move the families out. The military trains were earmarked mainly as hospital trains and of course there was no provision to move families by air. Would be interested if anyone can confirm this.
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donald
WOI
WOI


Number of posts : 156
Age : 90
Cap Badge : 1st The Royal Dragoons - The Blues and Royals (RHG/D)
Places Served : UK,BOAR,Egypt
Registration date : 2008-04-04

RMP Operational Route signs. Empty
PostSubject: Re: RMP Operational Route signs.   RMP Operational Route signs. Icon_minitime13/6/2009, 15:17

SOXMIS Vehicles,
When the Royals were an Armoured Car Regt we were forever reporting the sighting of SOXMIS vehicles.They were clearly visible as such,and we used various ploys to lead 'em up the garden path,but in my contacts with them they always appeared friendly and keen to be gone soonest!
------
Don
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recce83
Capt
Capt
recce83

Number of posts : 214
Age : 80
Localisation : Peachland British Columbia, Canada
Cap Badge : Black Watch of Canada
Places Served : 4 CIBG Soest and Werl 1957-1965, Camp Borden, Camp Gagetown
Registration date : 2009-06-04

RMP Operational Route signs. Empty
PostSubject: Re: RMP Operational Route signs.   RMP Operational Route signs. Icon_minitime13/6/2009, 19:57

This is an interesting subject in itself, Don, so why don't I start a thread on the topic? The trouble with these forums is we tend to go off on tangents and the original subject loses its meaning. SOXMIS should stir up a lot of stories.

Cheers

Rod
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Stephen Lock
Maj Gen
Maj Gen
Stephen Lock

Number of posts : 937
Age : 65
Localisation : Calgary
Cap Badge : Pads Brat
Places Served : Father -- Canadian Army. Served Hemer, Soest, and Wetter
Registration date : 2007-12-28

RMP Operational Route signs. Empty
PostSubject: Re: RMP Operational Route signs.   RMP Operational Route signs. Icon_minitime14/6/2009, 19:31

recce83 wrote:
This is an interesting subject in itself, Don, so why don't I start a thread on the topic? The trouble with these forums is we tend to go off on tangents and the original subject loses its meaning. SOXMIS should stir up a lot of stories.

Cheers

Rod

Hmmmm...I could have sworn someplace on this site I had posted, several months ago, some stuff about reporting SOXMIS, but can't find it.

I think, instead, I posted it to a Canadian Army Brat site (Lahr Revisited), with hardly any response.

Somewhere I have a small framed postcard given to my father after he reported seeing SOXMIS in the 60's. The postcard was an official acknowledgement of Dad's "contribtution" to the NATO effort or some such thing.
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Ian-redcap70
SSgt/CSgt
SSgt/CSgt
Ian-redcap70

Number of posts : 65
Age : 87
Localisation : Brisbane, OZ
Cap Badge : RMP
Places Served : Bielefeld, Colchester
Registration date : 2007-08-16

RMP Operational Route signs. Empty
PostSubject: Re: RMP Operational Route signs.   RMP Operational Route signs. Icon_minitime19/6/2009, 05:26

Although I did not participate in Route Signing I do remember the guys being busy preparing for Execises in BAOR 1953/4 like 'Grand Repulse';'Battle Royal';'New Alliance' & 'JavelinXIII' etc., This signage was essential to stop units straying from their intended routes (some still managed to do so and come a cropper-like a Centurion in Wiedenbruck that missed a turn and tried to cross a bridge half its width-REME had to crane it off as it was precariously leaning at 45 degrees over the water! It was signed to go through the shallow river-not over the bridge!
The TAC signs were on vehicles were to denote which unit they were allotted to. In BAOR RMP No.was 83, in Korea 79.
I'll post a photo of route signage (BAOR) and also a page of TAC No's. used by units in Korea during the above period, when I learn how to! Ian.
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Stephen Lock
Maj Gen
Maj Gen
Stephen Lock

Number of posts : 937
Age : 65
Localisation : Calgary
Cap Badge : Pads Brat
Places Served : Father -- Canadian Army. Served Hemer, Soest, and Wetter
Registration date : 2007-12-28

RMP Operational Route signs. Empty
PostSubject: Re: RMP Operational Route signs.   RMP Operational Route signs. Icon_minitime21/6/2009, 21:17

I can sort of understand someone getting a bit confused re routes, especially if it's the middle of the night, but really...what sort of absolute nimrod would try and drive a Centurion tank across a bridge, or any thing, that was was clearly half the width of the tank? Happened often enough, though, I know.

Local farmers must've made a fortune out of the compensation the Army forked over for tanks, APCs, etc., tearing up their land because some idiot decided to cut across somewhere instead of sticking to the assigned route...even at that, there was often a fair amount of damage rendered to roads, crops, soil, outbuildings, etc.
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ciphers
Maj Gen
Maj Gen
ciphers

Number of posts : 973
Age : 85
Localisation : Abbotsford, British Columbia, Canada V2S 7C5
Cap Badge : Royal Signals
Places Served : Catterick (1951) - BAOR (1952 -1954)-(Herford - Bunde - Munster) - Japan (Kure) - Korea (Pusan - Seoul) - Cyprus (Nicosia) - Suez Op (1st Guards Brigade) - UK (63 Sigs Regt TA, Southampton)
Registration date : 2008-06-30

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PostSubject: Re: RMP Operational Route signs.   RMP Operational Route signs. Icon_minitime22/6/2009, 00:09

Well picture it about two in the morning, no moon, driving on convoy lights only, that is first vehicle using side lights only and the rest of the group following the convoy light, that is unit id on a painted white white patch on the differential box lit by a 12volt bulb .. then picture the vehicle in front of you stopping and remaining stopped .. then picture ME an absolute nimrod opening the cab door and jumping out to see what the hold up was ... then picture me dropping like a stone into a freezing bloody Kraut ditch full of evil smelling stagnant water .. that is, the jerk in front of us had stopped on a bridge about as wide as the three tonner he was driving.

Len (Ciphers)
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burgess720
WOI
WOI


Number of posts : 140
Registration date : 2008-07-09

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PostSubject: Re: RMP Operational Route signs.   RMP Operational Route signs. Icon_minitime22/6/2009, 05:34

Hi Len and all,

Great fun, a lot of great stories here.

Driver training from Aldershot in the early 1950's, saw some very long convoys [in daylight] of drivers in training; and a few damaged when someone stalled or stopped suddenly.

In Germany I remember a night convoy, only a few feet from the Bedford in front, one of our clerks was trying to sleep on a table, over a bump and the table started to slide over the tailboard, he woke up when the leg support stopped the table from sliding off the back of the truck. Clean underwear required after that!!

Cheers
Tony
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wrinkles
SSgt/CSgt
SSgt/CSgt
wrinkles

Number of posts : 62
Age : 75
Localisation : Birmingham, UK
Cap Badge : Mercian Brigade, 1st Bn Worc Rgt
Places Served : Uk, Honduras,Tripoli, BAOR, UK, Tobruk, Gibraltar, short stints in Canada, USA, Barbados & Dominica
Registration date : 2007-05-15

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PostSubject: Re: RMP Operational Route signs.   RMP Operational Route signs. Icon_minitime22/6/2009, 11:37

Night driving on convoy lights I always found to be very hairy. One could become hypnotised by the tiny glow from the light on the vehicle in front to the extent you would see nothing else. I recall on several occasions stopping and slowly realising that the night was not quite as black as pitch and in fact if I took my eyes off the light within a few seconds I could see the vehicle in front quite clearly. It took a while to train oneself to look away frequently in order to break the spell.

As for the compo paid to German farmers. I recall on one ex we were in a very rickety barn in a farmyard. The farmer and his wife were very good, supplying coffee, and hot meals etc., he also had two very attractive teenage daughters who were very interested in the inner workings of the vehicles. After two days we moved on, with an assortment of fresh farm goodies, beer and brandy. The fact that on the way out the Humber one ton armoured hit the corner of the old barn and brought the whole thing down, much to the delight of the farmer, may or may not have had some connection with the amount of "Hospitality" but of course I couldn't say for certain.
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Stephen Lock
Maj Gen
Maj Gen
Stephen Lock

Number of posts : 937
Age : 65
Localisation : Calgary
Cap Badge : Pads Brat
Places Served : Father -- Canadian Army. Served Hemer, Soest, and Wetter
Registration date : 2007-12-28

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PostSubject: Re: RMP Operational Route signs.   RMP Operational Route signs. Icon_minitime23/6/2009, 20:15

ciphers wrote:
Well picture it about two in the morning, no moon, driving on convoy lights only, that is first vehicle using side lights only and the rest of the group following the convoy light, that is unit id on a painted white white patch on the differential box lit by a 12volt bulb .. then picture the vehicle in front of you stopping and remaining stopped .. then picture ME an absolute nimrod opening the cab door and jumping out to see what the hold up was ... then picture me dropping like a stone into a freezing bloody Kraut ditch full of evil smelling stagnant water .. that is, the jerk in front of us had stopped on a bridge about as wide as the three tonner he was driving.

Len (Ciphers)

ROTFLMAO....yes, you make an excellent point, Len....I wasn't thinking about those little convoy lights and their mesmerizing effect. Totally understandable.
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PostSubject: Re: RMP Operational Route signs.   RMP Operational Route signs. Icon_minitime

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