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On WW2 White Army webbing -


jgawne
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What's intersting there is that only some of them have the white cross strap. Not everyone. Which to me probably indicates that it was not easy to get ahold of.

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What's intersting there is that only some of them have the white cross strap. Not everyone. Which to me probably indicates that it was not easy to get ahold of.

On page 142 of "The US Army Photo Album" (A book you're probably more than a little familiar with) there's a photo of an MP at a gangplank wearing what your caption mentions is a "British made belt and shoulder strap". It looks like it might be leather to me and not unlike the belts worn in the 440th TC photo. It also bears a resemblance to the russet cross belt and pistol holster hanger normally seen with JQMD 1946 dates. Maybe these cross belts were a late/post war thing. Great photos.

Tom Bowers

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That photo shows the ETO MP Belt- only made in that pattern in the UK.

 

If you look at the shot of the Nuremburg Trials guards in teh same book, at least on the original, you can see the white belts are painted (from lookig at how it covers grommet holes and snaps and such).

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craig_pickrall

What's intersting there is that only some of them have the white cross strap. Not everyone. Which to me probably indicates that it was not easy to get ahold of.

 

Another possibility is the MP's with the white shoulder straps are under arms and the ones without the straps are not armed. It may have to do with assigned duties more so than shortages.

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Quite True.

But the way they are randomly sorted in the photo makes me feel it wasn't. I probably should go through and see if there is any correlation by rank, but honstly I'm too tired.

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I probably should go through and see if there is any correlation by rank, but honstly I'm too tired.

 

That is an interesting idea.

 

I agree that the there doesn't appear to be a a connection between a pistol carrying MP and one without, a good idea, but it looks pretty random.

 

RC

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As a test I have a piece of WW2 legging material (from a trashed one) sitting in some bleach right now. Before I tried to bleach an M1910 pack (long story) and it did not work). So this is actual legging material.

 

 

I have found in a document that as of February 1944, "white material [meaning belts, leggings, etc] is not avaiable by requisistion for traffic control work at present, however, it is reported that units overseas and some units in this country have painted helmets white and obtained web belts, leggings and gloves for the traffic MP through other channels." The question is... what are those "other channels?"

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I have found in a document that as of February 1944, "white material [meaning belts, leggings, etc] is not avaiable by requisistion for traffic control work at present, however, it is reported that units overseas and some units in this country have painted helmets white and obtained web belts, leggings and gloves for the traffic MP through other channels." The question is... what are those "other channels?"

 

 

The only "other channel" I can think of is for individuals (or perhaps a small fund set aside in units) buying equipment made for civiliian/police/ceremonial or naval use.

 

Unless they had someone custom make it, which doesn't sound too likely to me.

 

RC

 

Let us know how the bleach experiment works, I just saw a standard mid WWII pistol belt that had somehow been turned white. I am certain it was not and never had been painted or blancoed.

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Normally I would use a weak bleach solution for a long time, but as I had tried that before I tried a more stronger solution about 50% bleach/water. With a few days the canvas fabric is dissolving- just falling appart. It's pretty amazing. And yet it still has a tannish color to it though.

 

Now in textile theory, had it been bleached years ago, it would have weakened the fibers causing them to deteriorate much faster than normal.

 

So the very canvas duck disintegrates before the color is gone in this test. I will run another with a very weak solution, but I think this rules out the bleaching idea.

 

What I want to see now is some pre-war 39/40/41 era army/navy military and band outfitters cataloges. I bet we will find white belts and leggings in them.

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I wondered, and now we know.

 

I am curious what happened to the normal OD#3 belts we see that are white or near white, but have no evidence of paint or blancoing. With bleach out of the question, what could have been used or done?

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Was Blanco available in white? or was it colorless. I've seen some British web gear Blancoed from Khaki to Bluish so I wonder if they had white? It would have been available in Britain in the 40s and maybe at the PX also. Maybe a British collector can comment?

Tom Bowers

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BTW- if anyone has any wartime editions of the "MP Bulletin" let me know. There are a number I do not have and have not seen, so if I can at least confirm there is nothing in an issue of interest I can not worry about finding one.

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Was Blanco available in white? or was it colorless. I've seen some British web gear Blancoed from Khaki to Bluish so I wonder if they had white? It would have been available in Britain in the 40s and maybe at the PX also. Maybe a British collector can comment?

Tom Bowers

 

Tom,

Overall website on Blanco:

http://www.blancoandbull.com

 

White Blanco:

http://www.blancoandbull.com/blanco-history/blanco-white/

 

http://www.blancoandbull.com/blanco-history/nugget-white-cleaner/

 

http://www.blancoandbull.com/blanco-history/wrens-puwite-cleaner/

 

http://www.blancoandbull.com/blanco-history/meltonian-white-cleaner/

 

http://www.blancoandbull.com/boot-cleaning/two-in-one-white-dressing/

 

I don't know how well white Blanco would go on OD#3 web equipment and how white it would actually make it.

 

 

 

-Josh

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I used to have a Khaki british P-37 belt that had been blanco'd RAF blue/gray on the front. There's also a color photo somewhere of a Sikh MP in Italy in the British Army and he's wearing a P-37 belt that has a very heavy coating that just might be white Blanco.

Tom Bowers

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Oddly enough I had just been having discussions about blanco with some British types. I have used the stuff and its not a lot of fun. One of the problems is that you'd have to keep redoing it. I think it is probablee that some white items in the UK were the result of white blanco. At the very least it would have been tried.

 

It is enough of a pain that as soon as the guy could get a hold of a white item they would toss the blanco'd one. Which, as it would be a massive pain to clean might well be trashed as unserviceable.

 

I just wish we could find an document saying 'use blanco' or at least a vet who remembered it.

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Johan Willaert

As an example and for reference, here are two pictures of the white Brit made belt for US MP use...

 

Although these belts existed in tan color, issued to the Brits and Canadians as trouser belts of the Pattern 37 equipment, these were actually made in white for US troops and thus marked... So not redyed or bleached...

post-92-0-17080300-1352136191_thumb.jpg

post-92-0-34538200-1352136198_thumb.jpg

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American Patrol Co.

I dont know if this is interesting or not but I have more than a dozen rolls of WWII era, White, NOS pistol belt webbing. It is all mil-spec. They must have made and issued white equipment. My fther who was an MP during Korea was issued a white pistol belt and an extra fancy brass buckled OD#7 pistol belt, white gloves and WWII dated leather gear they were ordered to dye black along with the visors of their service caps. He served in Okinwa.

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I dont know if this is interesting or not but I have more than a dozen rolls of WWII era, White, NOS pistol belt webbing. It is all mil-spec. They must have made and issued white equipment. My fther who was an MP during Korea was issued a white pistol belt and an extra fancy brass buckled OD#7 pistol belt, white gloves and WWII dated leather gear they were ordered to dye black along with the visors of their service caps. He served in Okinwa.

 

That is interesting,

 

I don't suppose the webbing rolls have any tags or labels on them?

 

RC

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I dont know if this is interesting or not but I have more than a dozen rolls of WWII era, White, NOS pistol belt webbing. It is all mil-spec. They must have made and issued white equipment. My fther who was an MP during Korea was issued a white pistol belt and an extra fancy brass buckled OD#7 pistol belt, white gloves and WWII dated leather gear they were ordered to dye black along with the visors of their service caps. He served in Okinwa.

Does it have the eyelets in it already? just wondering because there were other uses for that material as well.

Tom Bowers

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  • 1 month later...

I went through all the original WWII & Occupation MP photos I have and couldn't find anything other than white gloves, at first.

 

I found a few photos that appear to show the white lanyard being worn on on the right shoulder and running down to the holster, unfortunately no view shows the lanyard clearly attached to a pistol, however we do know that there is little on a holster to attach a lanyard to.

 

I would post it but the photo is too small to get a good scan.

there is a different backstrap for the M1911 that has a small loop where the lanyard was attached.

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there is a different backstrap for the M1911 that has a small loop where the lanyard was attached.

 

 

Yes, since we were looking for proof that the white lanyard was actually being used for a pistol, my comments were that the lanyard was running down to the holster and, presumably a pistol, and not a whistle.

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