Transforming IWM London

Ranken Dart (Sectioned)

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All Rights Reserved except for Fair Dealing exceptions otherwise permitted under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988, as amended and revised.

Catalogue number
  • MUN 3279
Materials
  • dart: metal
  • wood
Dimensions
  • general: Length 330 mm
  • general: Width 150 mm
Alternative Names
  • FULL NAME: Ranken Dart (Sectioned)
  • SIMPLE NAME: bomb : British
Object Type
bomb
Category
weapons and ammunition

Label

Developed for use against German Zeppelin airships by Engineer Lieutenant Commander Francis Ranken, initially as a Royal Naval Air Service (RNAS) weapon but was also adopted by the Royal Flying Corps (RFC) in 1916.

History note

Developed for use against German Zeppelin airships by Engineer Lieutenant Commander Francis Ranken, initially as a Royal Naval Air Service (RNAS) weapon but was also adopted by the Royal Flying Corps (RFC) in 1916.

Physical description

dart the Ranken dart consisted of a tinplate tube 23cm long, with a cast iron pointed nose at one end, and a plug and three spring loaded arms at the other. The arms were kept closed in storage by means of a cap, either tin or rubber, which acted as a buffer when the dart was in its dropping tube. When released, the arms opened up and locked in place to act as a grapnel, thus ensuring that the body entered the fabric. The Dart contained high explosive, black powder and phosphorus which were ignited when the head penetrated the airship's outer skin.

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