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Use of Ground Troops Variable Body Armor in Vietnam


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#1 Cap Camouflage Pattern I

Cap Camouflage Pattern I
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Posted 02 January 2019 - 05:11 PM

Trying to collect info on it, if anybody has any info on VBA in Vietnam please share.

 

It was Field tested by the 1st Cav Div between 15 January 1967 to 30 May 1967. Each soldier in the test  who responded to the survey wore it a median of 25 times, with nobody wearing it more than 50 times. It was considered to heavy and too hot. (ACL-24/67I)

 

The 4th Infantry Division was scheduled to get Variable Body Armor on 30 November 1969, with the primary use being convoy duty due to its weight. I don't know if they ever did. (Senior Officer Debriefing Report MG Donn R. Pepke, C(G, 4th infantry Division, Period 30 Nov 68 to 14 Nov 69)

 

I have read a rumor that on 18 May the troops at Hamburger Hill were issued "extra heavy" flak vests. I assume this is Variable Body Armor and the troops are 3rd Brigade 101st Airborne. However, I don't know the source of this, or if it indeed was Variable Body Armor.

 

I have read that ~28,000 were sent to RVN but were not all worn, and shipments were canceled February 1970, but that has no source.

 

The only pictures I have seen of VBA in use are of the ROK

911b5480e8b08d96c3bcf1d2794dee091.jpg

This soldier is par of the Capital "Tiger" Mechanized Division.

a5796d2870c3f4cfd8755eb83604b819.jpg

I am unsure what unit this soldier is from, but if I had to guess I suspect also Tiger Division.

 

I will reply with more pictures, I cannot fit anymore here due to file size limits.



#2 Cap Camouflage Pattern I

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Posted 02 January 2019 - 05:14 PM

854e35c3d5bb9b480ef01abf8cbe0a51.jpg

this photo often accompanies the battle of Tra Binh, but that was fought by ROKMC and they don't look like Marines to me. So I think someone just grabbed a stock photo of ROK in Vietnam and everybody just copied.

9f5a3c213f25b904f24e973365e7a2b2.jpg

vba.jpg



#3 Cap Camouflage Pattern I

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Posted 02 January 2019 - 05:14 PM

Dfa-hqNUEAA5KcH.jpg



#4 Cap Camouflage Pattern I

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Posted 03 January 2019 - 01:56 PM

Seems to have been used by some Helicopter Pilots and Door Gunners/Crew Chiefs instead of the Aircrewman Body Armor

 

 8adbd842d0805233aec36fbf012226fb.jpg

672cfed4aa14b03432f18bf4b2db1923.jpg

 

also on 14 Feb. 1969 HQ USARV said "a new variable type body armor is undergoing evaluation by selected USARV units." (1/40 Arty Operational Report 31 Oct. 1968)



#5 Cap Camouflage Pattern I

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Posted 11 January 2019 - 07:37 PM

resize vba.jpg

Marine? 1971, Dewey Canyon II Lam song 719


Edited by Cap Camouflage Pattern I, 11 January 2019 - 07:39 PM.


#6 Cap Camouflage Pattern I

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Posted 21 January 2019 - 05:05 PM

resize.jpg

11th ACR I think



#7 doyler

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Posted 21 January 2019 - 05:07 PM

Nice photos.

 

I have one of the vests that looks unwor.



#8 doyler

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Posted 21 January 2019 - 05:21 PM

Vnamvest.jpg

 

Vnamvest1.jpg



#9 Cap Camouflage Pattern I

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Posted 21 January 2019 - 05:25 PM

resize2.jpg

not sure of the unit, also notice the man in the bed with the M1955, either a soldier with m1955 or a marine who is tagging along, I think soldier.




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