Welcome to the ABA! Bell Talk Forums Large Bells Help Identifing a US Navy Bell Inquiry 9 7/8 diameter

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    • #24404

      I had a customer bring this bell to me & I am interested in buying it. But, before I do, I would like to verify that it is what it looks to be.

      First off, it was found hanging in an old warehouse and the previous tenet said it had been the way before him. He said the tenet before him had a big collection of old nautical stuff including lots of naval items and it must have been forgotten because it had been hanging up high. Then that tenet left it, because he didn’t put it there. The newest tenet was stripping the building and brought it to me because I deal in odd stuff.

      The bell:
      9-7/8 inches Diameter
      7 inches to the top of the bell
      9 inches to the top of the neck
      20.8 lbs
      “US” on one side
      “USS Ronquil” and “SS-396” on the other side
      Nut on top appears to be original.

      I have not found any makers makings.

      I have been looking everywhere online and I now know the history of the USS Ronquil, but cannot find any pictures of it’s Foredeck/Forecastle Bell.

      As far as I can tell, it appears to be an authentic WWII era bell and the engraving is really old. I guess it was hanging in that warehouse for 25-30 years. The last tenet did change the way it was hung because he wanted to hear it ring and it looked more secure with it’s hanger.

      Any help with identification or authentication would be greatly appreciated.

      • This topic was modified 4 years, 6 months ago by TBPawn.
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    • #24417
      Neil Goeppinger

      I assume you have been to the U.S. Navy’s website to learn about the ship. That is a terrific source of information. I did not serve in the navy, so I’m not an authority on their bells. We did have such a person in Dr. Harry Long, but unfortunately he was killed in a car accident a few years ago. Without his knowledge I cannot be sure, but I do not believe the rope and ball would have been the original clapper. I have two U.S. Navy bells, and neither has such a clapper. — Neil Goeppinger

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