Already posted this on ARRSE but due to the location of the find, German North Sea coast, it is probable that this is Navy kit, anyone recognise it? I've been asked to try and identify so if anyone has any idea can you point me in the right direction, PM if necessary, cheers F66.
Ah.... I didn't think I'd ever see one of these again after so many years. I'd have to confirm it by consulting the correct volume of the AEODP (Allied Explosive Ordnance Disposal Publication) but I reckon this is a shock absorber (or 'explosive shock' as it was later termed) from a DUKW amphibious vehicle used in several Allied beach landings during the Second World War.
The production of these particular components had been sub-contracted to a small factory in Budleigh Salterton with disastrous consequences, and not for the first time. You may recall the infamous riots at Dawlish in the summer of 1937 when up and down the beach, hundreds of angry fathers found themselves unable to erect deckchairs made by the same company to shouts from their wives of "Silly old fool. Can't even put up a deck chair!" This led to increasingly heated exchanges with responses such as "Put it up yourself then, you stupid cow!" which had much to do with the record divorce rates of the same year. As it transpired, workers from the factory in Budleigh Salterton had inavadvertently tacked the striped canvas material to the wrong side of a complete year's production of deckchairs, thus making them impossible to erect properly.
Anyway, I digress. There was a mass recall of all DUKWs manufactured between 1 April 1943 and 1 June 1944 to have their suspensions rectified but, quite understandably, much of the paperwork went missing in the fog of war. There are still people who can testify to the resulting bumpy (some would say 'explosive') ride they experienced while driving across the beaches of Normandy on D-day.
Of course, I could be wrong and the item is simply a US Navy pyrotechnic washed up on the shore. Either way, extreme care should be exercised and the Coast Guard should be informed immediately.