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OD7 Web Gear In Normandy-Discussion


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  • 8 years later...
Dogface solder 42
On 4/14/2007 at 10:19 PM, alibi said:

Holy doily, you guys can really get wrapped around the drive sprocket over this material color business. I may be able to provide some useful information to the great debate, but I can only address this matter by relating what occurred with canteen covers.

 

The only canteen covers that could be described as olive green were manufactured in 1942-43 and was a material lot that was apparently acquired by Jeffersonville Quartermaster Depot that was intended for some specific use or was manufactured in the wrong color. JQMD and two or three contractors used this material apparently to use it up. In 1941-44 the specifications for the materials used in manufacturing canteen covers and other web equipment was olive drab.

 

The shade of materials used in the manufacture of the M-1910 canteen cover was changed to olive green in Specification JQD 1D 27May44. This specification also specified the additional web material used to reinforce the belt hook billet. The actual change of shade of the various materials was written in the specifications for the materials, which I do not have. The specifications were usually written after the change was approved by the Quartermaster Corps Technical Committee and production had started.

 

In 1944 the first of the all OG canteen covers were produced and production continued into 1946. There were also canteen covers manufactured IAW Specification JQD 1D that were assembled in 1944 and 1945 with a combination of OD and OG materials. To add some additional confusion to the story JQMD manufactured all OD canteen covers to this specification in 1945, apparently again using up materials on hand.

 

It is quite possible that the use of these materials depended on what materials were on hand with the contractor when a contract was negotiated and what materials were provided by JQMD. Presumably a contractor new to manufacturing web equipment was provided with the newer (OG) materials while contractors with materials on hand from previous contracts used those materials until exhausted and then started using the newer materials provided.

 

The Army QMC was no where near as discriminating in the shade of materials used as those of you that want some sense of precisely what the practice was in the theaters. You may recall that the Army was acquiring a great deal of web equipment from Britain on reverse lend lease in order to save space in cargo holds for other materials. It is likely that most of the newer equipment arriving in theater from CONUS was issued to soldiers prior to boarding transports at POEs.

 

In this same way virtually all new uniforms and equipment arrived in England already issued to individuals. If as has been reported here some units were able to acquire equipment items in the newer shades of materials there must have been some shipping of items in bulk to the QMC distribution depots in England. Either that or the new arrivals were being mugged for their equipment. The Army generally issued the older stock items "until exhausted" however in some cases items were relegated to CONUS primarily for use in training centers.

 

It is apparent from the items of equipment brought back into the U.S. from European warehouses in the past 20 years that the Army sorted out the older specification items, like OD M-1910 canteen covers. The Army proveded these substitute standard items to liberated allied countries to reestablish their armed forces. The Army obviously kept the newer (current standard) equipment, if for no other reason uniformity in appearance.

 

Now for those of you struggling to maintain a standard among re-enactors a set "regulations" is needed if you're going to maintain any kind of uniformity in representing the chosen unit in place and time. Having been there and done that (re-enacting long before it was called re-enacting) I have seen some mighty strange and odd equipment that was intended to represent someone's idea of how it ought to look or be. The only example I care to provide is a whole group of "re-enactors" that were trying to represent one of the American Civil War U.S. sharpshooter units in the most hideous appearing green material used for their uniforms. I vaguely recall the "uniform" material was a polyester blend material, in a shade of green that I do vividly recall.

 

A good friend of mine became interested in WWII airborne and assembled a complete uniform and equipment. For the web equipment he elected to use all "transition" items with a mix of OD and OG materials. Now I suppose some of you will howl "Oh noooo!" I have to say that the web equipment with the contrasting shades had a camouflage quality without purposefully camouflaging the equipment. In any event he went to a local club and made five parachute descents to "qualify" for jump status. As far as I'm concerned he can wear whatever shade of appropriate equipment he desires, although I don't think he ever wore the outfit.

 I understand  That the  conversation  is about web gear for the Normandie invasion but how popular was OD 7 canteen covers, belts etc. for operation dragoon Augest 1944. 

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Not to relevant, but good information on cloth machine gun belts color change.  They were white until very late 1944. Feb 1945 is recorded as when some reached the ETO and they were OD 7 in color. 

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