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Typical WW2 USAAF pilot's headset


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#1 MattS

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Posted 11 April 2018 - 06:50 AM

I've been reading threads as I am looking to purchase a headset to display over a crusher cap. It seems to me the typical WW2 setup is a HB-7 band with ANB-H-1 receivers and a PL-354 red plug. I've found several on eBay for $25-75 depending on condition, but there was one that ended last night at $127.50 for some reason. Not sure what made it more valuable (https://www.ebay.com...8?ul_noapp=true). Also, is there a nomenclature for this setup other than "pilot headset"? Thanks!

 

From the mentioned eBay auction:

 

headset.png


Edited by MattS, 11 April 2018 - 06:54 AM.


#2 Ronald

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Posted 11 April 2018 - 07:13 AM

Here is mine. The earlier larger sponge ear cups are rarer than the black smaller ear cups.

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  • pilot2.jpg
  • pilot1.jpg


#3 MattS

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Posted 11 April 2018 - 07:28 AM

That looks great! 



#4 phantomfixer

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Posted 11 April 2018 - 08:41 AM

IIRC the entire set up is the HS-33.
In this configuration...the larger brown foam cushions are more desireable...but often found in unserviceable condition...

#5 MattS

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Posted 11 April 2018 - 09:57 AM

Thanks! So HS (probably Head Set) 33 is the nomenclature, I have seen that before.



#6 phantomfixer

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Posted 12 April 2018 - 07:10 AM

should be a metal band clamped on the wire harness stamped HS-33..



#7 MattS

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Posted 12 April 2018 - 07:15 AM

should be a metal band clamped on the wire harness stamped HS-33..

 

Good to know, thanks. Looks like NOS HB-7 headbands are easy to find, I may build one with the ANB-H-1 receivers I have. 



#8 Ronald

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Posted 12 April 2018 - 08:58 AM

It took me a long time to find a complete set with non damage large ear pads.

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  • pilot.jpg


#9 Ronald

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Posted 12 April 2018 - 09:58 AM

I believe the Headband is an HB-7 and when coupled with the ear pieces are the HS-33.


IIRC the entire set up is the HS-33.
In this configuration...the larger brown foam cushions are more desireable...but often found in unserviceable condition...



#10 MattS

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Posted 12 April 2018 - 10:06 AM

Thanks for that! I am not looking for the earlier foam pads, just a 'correct' WW2 headset for a crusher cap. This started when I talked (a few years ago now) to a C-47 pilot who dropped paratroopers in Holland. He said he unplugged and walked to the rear after the guys had jumped to look back at the DZ. He was watching the action when a bullet came through the aircraft and cut the cord on his headset clean off. He decided it was time to stop sightseeing and get home after that. 



#11 Ronald

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Posted 12 April 2018 - 10:11 AM

The smaller black rubber pads would be appropriate then.

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  • i1567537-USAAF-HS-38-headset-radio-operators-WWII-vintage-Militaria-2.jpg
  • usaaf-hb-7-headset_10684_main_size3.jpg

Edited by Ronald, 12 April 2018 - 10:16 AM.


#12 MattS

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Posted 12 April 2018 - 10:40 AM

The smaller black rubber pads would be appropriate then.

 

Good deal, those are cheaper and easier to find! What about these?

https://www.ebay.com...872.m2749.l2649



#13 Ronald

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Posted 12 April 2018 - 10:47 AM

They appear to be ok but hard to say as it doesn't show anything to gauge the size. I have seen the larger type on late war head sets but they were marked NAF 48490-1

#14 MattS

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Posted 12 April 2018 - 11:33 AM

Thanks for all your help Ronald!
These are 1956 dated, are they the same kind as the WW2 ones?
https://rover.ebay.c...tm/263505402499

#15 Ronald

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Posted 12 April 2018 - 11:42 AM

No problem.
I believe they would work but if you want WW2 era , you would want the ones marked MX-41/AR.

#16 MattS

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Posted 12 April 2018 - 11:51 AM

I will look for those, thanks again!

#17 MattS

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Posted 13 April 2018 - 04:13 PM

I picked this one up cheap because it came with an extra pair of receivers, The leather is dried out, but the rest isn't too bad and they have the correct MX-41/AR ear cushions and red PL-354 plug. The crusher is a Bancroft Flighter ID'd to a pilot from Cincinnati.

 

headset setup.jpg



#18 Ronald

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Posted 13 April 2018 - 06:44 PM

Nice set up

#19 phantomfixer

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Posted 15 April 2018 - 04:34 PM

Second that  ...nice



#20 MattS

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Posted 15 April 2018 - 04:54 PM

Thanks guys! Now that I have one complete one, I think I need a second. Maybe a third.



#21 VenitHora

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Posted 16 April 2018 - 12:50 AM

​There was a red brown sponge rubber ear cup which  as well as the brown sponge rubber ear cup. The reddish brown cups I believe are pre-early war and brown ones early-mid war. The brown ones are tough to find and the reddish ones are rare.



#22 MattS

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Posted 16 April 2018 - 05:28 AM

I found this site that explains the differences. The HS-23 was the early headset using R-14 receivers with the black PL-54 plug and larger ear cushions, while the later HS-33 used the ANB-H-1 receivers with the red PL-354 plug and black MX-41/AR ear cushions.

 

http://aafradio.org/...s-headsets.html

 

Also found this explanation for the MX-41/AR designation, "MX-41/AR is a Joint Electronics Type Designation System (JETDS) MIL-STD-196F designator; Unit indicator MX for Miscellaneous (equipment not otherwise classified in the JETDS), 41 for the forty-first unit designated as miscellaneous in the JETDS and /AR for Aircraft Radio."

 

http://www.schaffrat...udiometric.html



#23 38Driver

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Posted 16 April 2018 - 03:00 PM

Does anyone make replacement cushions?

#24 phantomfixer

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Posted 16 April 2018 - 04:54 PM

There was a guy in the UK cranking them out, along with Type C rubber cups...and other flight helmet parts, not sure if he is still in business..



#25 MattS

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Posted 19 April 2018 - 04:28 PM

Here's my latest creation, HS-33 with ANB-H-1 receivers set in M-301 chamois lined earcups on a New Old Stock HB-7 with red PL-354 bail-out plug. The Bancroft Flighter is IDd to a B-17 navigator, 851st BS, 490th BG.

 

HS 33 No2.jpg




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