Bangalore torpedo in Saving Private Ryan

About 6 months after acquiring a set of original Bangalore torpedo connectors and the rare nose piece, I started looking for ways to make a complete set. Getting the proper metal pipes, paints and stencils took some time. But this weekend, I finally set about my restoration project. I am quite pleased with the result, if I do say so myself.

Here’s the step-by-step report if you fancy making your own Bangalore torpedoes.

Let’s start with the shopping list:

  • 150cm long x 52mm wide iron tubing (you can use PVC pipes if you can find them in that size). I used tubing recovered from heating ducts from a greenhouse.
  • Stencils: I ordered mine from Noosta Direct. Paul there has been very helpful. If you want to make a crate for the bangalores, he has stencils for that too.
  • OD#1 matte spray paint. I got mine at Gustaaf Desmet in Gent/St Amandsberg (Belgium). I should have gotten 2 cans, because 1 is just a bit short for 2 pipes… I got a can of primer too, but I have not used it for this project because the original connectors I have do not have a primer either.
  • Yellow matte spray paint. Most stores only sell glossy yellow, but I ended up buying it where I should have looked first: the local Gamma hardware store.
  • The usual painting tools: mouth mask (highly recommended), latex gloves, waterproof sandpaper. Picture below shows 400-grain too, but I only used 180-grain.




Bangalore torpedo project — 12 Comments

  1. Hello there from Charleston SC, USA.
    I have built a full box of bangalore torpedoes, and searched far and wide for correct 2 1/8″ pipe. I finally found it at a Lowe’s Home Improvement Center – it is electrical conduit pipe made by a company called EMT, that comes in 12 ft. lengths. It is normally found in the home electrical wiring aisle. Not sure if you can find this in the EU, but just wanted to let you and others know where I found it. Cheers!.

    • Hi, and thanks for the tip! I used iron pipes from the heating circuit of an old greenhouse. With greenhouses being torn down all around, they are easy to come by. I do think they are made of a heavier gauge than original bangalores, judging from the sheet metal that my connectors are made of. But you can’t see that when everything is assembled.

  2. Hi, Ienjoyed your article on making bangalore torpedoes. Doyouhave any info or advise for making rig-3 grenades?

  3. Hi
    I read with interest your item over the Bangalore Torpedo”s. I have been Lucky enough to purchase 2 Original WWII connectors and 1 nose cap for an almost give away price. I hope to buy the stencils from the company you mentioned and make a 10 foot 2 section Torpedo for my collection. You mention the tubes from an old greenhouse 52mm, i measured my connectors with an internal diameter of 54mm…(tight) the Original measurements are given as 5 feet length and 2 1/8th inch diameter =54mm don”t know how tight the Original fitting was so 52mm is probably correct…..My question is do you have 2 tubes left over from your project which i could buy from you?? I live in the Netherlands so the shipping would have to be calculated…Please let me know if you are interested. I have also made a quite decent copy of Primacord which i have wound onto a wooden spindle with a carry handle, a method that the combat engineers used for D.Day. I don”t know how old
    your article is and maybe you have already found a solution but if you want to know how i made my Primacord then you are welcome to mail me back!!.

    Regards Steve

    • Hi Steve, the fit of the 52mm pipes is a bit loose on the connectors and the nose cap. So maybe 54mm will be OK. I just measured the inside dimension of my connectors, and it’s 55mm. So 54 should fit…
      Yes, I would be interested to see pictures of your primacord. I’ll send you an e-mail.

  4. Just started accumulating the parts for my own project. I just wanted to ask, what you are using for the terminal ends on the tube sections for the fuse attachments?


    • I used a connector on both ends of one pipe, and a connector and head piece for the other one. Let me know if you need detail pics of the original terminal ends. I should have them somewhere. It will be difficult to reproduce because the pipe is tapered on one end.

  5. Hey, your torpedo is so awesome. How much is the average original nose cap? I haven’t been able to find the market price for this item for years.

    • Hello Jack, I really wouldn’t know. I haven’t seen another one for sale after I bought mine, and I sold my whole set a few years ago. I would imagine at least €150. Regards, Wouter

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