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Fragmentation, Flak Vests, Body Armor


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#1 craig_pickrall

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Posted 19 December 2006 - 12:41 PM

I took these pics several years ago. If there is any interest I have several other pieces of body armor that I have never photographed but I can do them on a time available basis.

This group is all early Marine Corps items.

First up is the Upper Torso items VEST TYPE FRAGMENTATION PROTECTIVE BODY ARMOR.

Vest 1 is what I believe to be an experimental USMC vest. It is made of HBT cloth so that leads me to believe that it was never intended for a combat enviroment but rather short term testing.

Flak_1_Front_view.JPG
Flak_2_Back.JPG
Flak_4_Outside.JPG
Vest_1A_Front.jpg
Vest_1B_Front_Details.jpg
Vest_1C_Side.jpg

#2 craig_pickrall

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Posted 19 December 2006 - 12:42 PM

Vest_1D_Rear.jpg
Vest_1E_Inside.jpg
Vest_1F_Inside_Detail___Ballistic_Plate_Pocket.jpg
Vest_1G_Inside_Detail___Size_Label___Data.jpg

#3 craig_pickrall

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Posted 19 December 2006 - 12:45 PM

Vest 2 is an M1952 that was made in May, 1953

Vest_2A_Front___M52_Mfg_1953.jpg
Vest_2B_Side.jpg
Vest_2C_Rear.jpg
Vest_2D_Front_Details.jpg
Vest_2E_Front_Details_Zipper_Top.jpg
Vest_2F_Front_Details_Zipper_Bottom.jpg

#4 craig_pickrall

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Posted 19 December 2006 - 12:46 PM

Vest_2G_Inside.jpg
Vest_2H_Label.jpg
Vest_2I_Label___Date.jpg

#5 craig_pickrall

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Posted 19 December 2006 - 12:48 PM

Vest 3 is an M1955 that was made in May, 1968

Vest_3A_Front_M1955_Mfg_1968.jpg
Vest_3B_Side.jpg
Vest_3C_Rear.jpg
Vest_3D_Front_Details_Zipper_Top.jpg
Vest_3E_Front_Details_Zipper_Bottom.jpg

#6 craig_pickrall

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Posted 19 December 2006 - 12:49 PM

Vest_3F_Front_Details.jpg
Vest_3G_Inside.jpg
Vest_3H_Inside_Label_Date_1968.jpg

#7 Greg Robinson

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Posted 19 December 2006 - 12:52 PM

The M1952 was the earliest of the USMC issue flak vests and it did see service in Korea. I first saw one of them in the basement of a friend of mine when I was twelve years ago. It belonged to his dad who was a Marine Colonel at the time and he'd worn it in Korea. It had damage on it from where a Chinese soldier fired a pistol at him....and it had saved his life

#8 craig_pickrall

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Posted 19 December 2006 - 12:52 PM

Next up is the Lower Torso items LOWER TORSO FRAGMENTATION PROTECTIVE BODY ARMOR.

These were commonly refered to as diapers.

Diaper 1 is an M1953 that is undated

Diaper_1A_Front.jpg
Diaper_1B_Side_Zipper.jpg
Diaper_1C_Rear.jpg
Diaper_1D_Side_Elastic.jpg
Diaper_1E_Inside.jpg
Diaper_1F_Inside_Label_M53_Not_dated.jpg

#9 craig_pickrall

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Posted 19 December 2006 - 12:55 PM

Diaper 2 is a M1953 that is undated and also it has been upgraded to a M1957

Diaper_2A_Front.jpg
Diaper_2B_Rear.jpg
Diaper_2C_Inside.jpg
Diaper_2D_Inside_Label_M53_Not_Dated.jpg

#10 craig_pickrall

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Posted 19 December 2006 - 12:57 PM

Diaper 3 has no model number. It looks quite a bit like the M53 and M57 but it is dated 1967.

Diaper_3A_Front.jpg
Diaper_3B_Rear.jpg
Diaper_3C_Inside.jpg
Diaper_3D_Inside_Label_1967_Dated.jpg

#11 Brig

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Posted 19 December 2006 - 01:17 PM

knowing what I know about today's body armor, which is a lot as I have to wear the shinola every day, I'd rather just drop the weight than wear those old vests back in the day. Gah!

that diaper's interesting. no thanks, though

'Attention. Body armor MAY save your life' Notice the key word there. Gah! again

great images

#12 QED4

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Posted 21 December 2006 - 09:46 AM

That first HBT vest looks like it might be a second generation of the Armored Utility Jacket developed at the end of WWII that used armor plates added to a M-1941 jacket. Its development ended with the war but that vest looks like it might be what they started with when they picked the development of body armor again, there are a lot of similarities.

#13 craig_pickrall

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Posted 21 December 2006 - 11:12 AM

That is interesting info. What is the source of this? I have had this vest since the early 80's and have asked many people about it with no luck. I have also checked every reference book that I can find that might have any info.

#14 QED4

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Posted 21 December 2006 - 02:54 PM

The book Grunt Gear by Alec S. Tulkoff shows several pictures of the jacket, inside and out and gives a brief description of its development. I am not sure how the author would feel about me scanning it and posting it here but it basically states that the armor plates were made of Doron which was developed by Dow Chemical in 1943 and testing of the jackets began in mid-1944. the Marines procured 2000 jackets for testing and the 2nd Regt 2nd Marine Div was to use them but by the time they actually got them they could only be used in the moping up stage of Okinawa. So there was no real combat test of them. More were ordered but because the war ended they were probably never made or issued.

#15 craig_pickrall

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Posted 21 December 2006 - 05:16 PM

Thanks for that info. I have the book but didn't recall the vest info. I will check it out.

#16 ADMIN

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Posted 22 December 2006 - 07:32 PM

Fascinating vest, sgt. bilko. I've never actually seen one like the first one you posted. Like you mentioned, it appears as a post war USMC P41 patterned hbt jacket (note square pockets which are found on post war USMC hbts). Very interesting.

Where did you pick it up?

#17 craig_pickrall

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Posted 22 December 2006 - 08:20 PM

I found it at a small surplus store at Ft Bragg about 25 years ago. There were 2 of them and about $20 each. I wish I had bought both of them.

#18 t_player

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Posted 08 January 2007 - 09:12 AM

(EDITOR'S NOTE: THIS POST WAS MERGED FROM ANOTHER THREAD AFTER IT WAS DISCOVERED THAT ANOTHER OF THESE UNUSUAL VESTS HAD BEEN PREVISOULY DISCUSSED).


MVC_007S.JPG

While going through some of my old uniforms this morning I ran across this piece. It is made from HBT with some khaki material used inside along the pockets. It has the 2 pockets on the front and 9 pockets inside of various measurements. The pockets look like they held plates of some sort and have button closures. No markings that I can find except a red S on the tag in the collar for the size. The collar has the black button snap like you find on a lot of military garmets. What period is this. I've heard korean war period flak vests and after were made from nylon.

Edited by Bob Hudson, 08 January 2007 - 09:57 AM.


#19 t_player

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Posted 08 January 2007 - 09:14 AM

pic2MVC_008S.JPG

#20 t_player

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Posted 08 January 2007 - 09:15 AM

MVC_009S.JPG pic3

#21 t_player

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Posted 08 January 2007 - 09:16 AM

MVC_010S.JPG pic4

#22 t_player

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Posted 08 January 2007 - 09:17 AM

MVC_011S.JPG pic5

Edited by t_player, 08 January 2007 - 09:18 AM.


#23 Bob Hudson

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Posted 08 January 2007 - 09:31 AM

There is one of these discussed in the thread at http://www.usmilitar...mode=linearplus

It seems to be an experimental USMC design, according to that thread.

#24 t_player

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Posted 08 January 2007 - 09:43 AM

Bob thanks for that link!

#25 t_player

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Posted 08 January 2007 - 10:32 AM

MVC_014S.JPG Here is what looks like another example of a early USMC flak vest. This model does have extra flak pockets on the front which look factory sewn to the jacket. The soldier did hand stitch 2 extra flak pockets on the front of the vest. One on the upper right hand side of the chest and one on top of the original pocket on the left hand side and replaced the original buckles with quick release buckles. Jacket still retains the inside flak pockets also. Jacket does look used with a couple repairs made.

Edited by t_player, 08 January 2007 - 11:34 AM.



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