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Is it safe to wash a p41 uniform?


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Why do you want to wash the uniform?

 

I have been told to hand wash uniforms/field gear with cold water with woolite if you really have to. I usually don't wash them because it can do more harm than good. If its dirt/mud let it dry and brush it off with a soft brush.

I collect pre-1948 US Navy rates, and WWII US Navy enlisted uniforms and equipment.


Wanted: items related to VPB-103, USN jumpers with USMC SSI and USMC uniforms with navy insignia.



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I would never wash an item from my collection, unless washing it is the only way to save it (like with a very agressive and destructive mold).
Specialized drycleaning only if you must (they might ask you to sign a waiver in case they destroy the piece).
You might want to consider tackling the 'problem zones' locally instead of washing the whole item. I did that with some Blucher boots that had mold inside.

Always looking for mint condition WW2 US combat gear, equipment, helmets and uniforms -

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Of all my uniforms I've owned over the years I've only had to wash one set, Navy whites that were yellowed out.

 

I washed them by hand with oxiclean to bring back the white, then washed them a second time in a washing machine with Blueing white treatment. Finally I took them to the dry cleaners.

 

They came out beautiful and will most likely never need to be washed again for many years.

 

Sometimes a piece of clothing comes along that does need to be washed.

 

otherwise 99% I just take them to the Dry cleaners, if they need to be cleaned.

 

Good luck!

 

LF

I collect items from The Battle of Iwo Jima (1945).

Top Iwo Jima Items I'm Looking For:

1) IDed 5th MarDiv Corpsman Jumper or Forest Green Coat.

2) IDed Coast Guard Navy Jumper

3) IDed CB's Sea Bee's Navy Jumper

4) IDed 147th Infantry Regiment Army Service Coat

5) IDed 32nd ID Army Service Coat (Occupation Kyushu with 5th MarDiv).

I am always looking for named and dated WWII USMC Forest Green wool alpha jackets/coats from the 5th Marine Division or other units who participated in the battle.

My Blog "Marines In Forest Green" http://marinesinfore...n.blogspot.com/

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if they are just stinky I put them in my "collecting closet" which is filled with incense sticks.

It makes all my uniforms and patches smell nice. :)

 

-Brian

GOT SEABEE ITEMS? PM ME!

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If the oder is the only issue you can bag them with a dryer sheet as well.Some people put the sheets between padges in books that are old to absorb the smell.I had a old sun helmet that was musty smelling from being in a basement.Didnt appear to have active surface mold or mildew on it.I placed it in a plastic trash bag with a dryer sheet for a couple of weeks and sealed the bag by just folding it closed..I would check it every few days as the smell would lessen over time.

 

If there isnt spot on it hanging it out on a clothes line in the sun and air can do wonders as well.

 

As stated if you launder it do it by hand and air dry on a rack or outside.

In Memoriam:
Lieutenant J.Kostelec 1-3 First Special Service Force MIA/PD 4 March 1944 Italy
I HAVE SEEN THE ENEMY AND IT IS DAYLIGHT
Forget about the tips..We'll get hell to pay (AC/DC)
"If you cant get out and run with the big dogs then sit on the porch and bark at the cars going by.."

Have you Hugged a Clown Today?

You Cant Get A Sun Tan On The Moon..





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I once had a brand new Navy Pea coat dry cleaned because it had a surplus smell and it came back with a damaged liner

 

the satin lining was frayed like it got damaged by the dry cleaning machine

 

it's safer to let it air out than wash it, old uniforms may also have a little aging or dry rot that could get ruined if you wash it

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FEBREEZE: I get a lot of stinky stuff (my newspaper ad even says, "I'll even buy the stinky stuff your spouse thinks is trash"). I spray the heck out of it with Febreeze and then hang it in the sun for a couple of days. That can work miracles.


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Wash it by hand and hang it to dry.If you dont want to hand wash it take it to a laundry mat and wash in cold water on a gentle or delicate cycle.I just laundered a WW2 shirt that was musty and out of a milewed duffle bag.Hung it to dry and no damage was done.

 

If you have to re-wash a second time do so.Im sure there are soaps and detergents to help with the mold.

 

Dry cleaning is a chemical process and when taken to a cleaner its out of your control.

 

Dont over think this.Its a pretty simple procedure.

In Memoriam:
Lieutenant J.Kostelec 1-3 First Special Service Force MIA/PD 4 March 1944 Italy
I HAVE SEEN THE ENEMY AND IT IS DAYLIGHT
Forget about the tips..We'll get hell to pay (AC/DC)
"If you cant get out and run with the big dogs then sit on the porch and bark at the cars going by.."

Have you Hugged a Clown Today?

You Cant Get A Sun Tan On The Moon..





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Dont over think this.Its a pretty simple procedure.

 

 

Absolutely. The major things you want to avoid are machine washing and machine drying. With a washing machine the drum and agitator can leave scuff marks and damage the fabric. As for a dryer, vintage clothing should never be exposed to harsh heat.

 

If you have to wash something old, hand washing very delicately is the only way to go. No matter what you will risk damage by doing anything, but unless it is rotted you should be ok with your P-41s.

***WANTED*** Uniforms to Pearl Harbor Survivors.

Wanted: USN uniforms to Pearl Harbor survivors & WWII sunk ship survivors. http://www.usmilitariaforum.com/forums/index.php?/topic/264131-wanted-uniforms-to-pearl-harbor-and-sunk-ships-survivors/

 

WANTED - seriously interested in named Chief/Senior/Master TORPEDOMAN USN uniforms from the 1950s-1960s-1970s, and named USN jumpers or CPO coats from WWII. http://www.usmilitariaforum.com/forums/index.php?/topic/321179-wanted-torpedoman-uniforms-named-1920s-1970s/

 

"All Torpedoes running Hot, Straight and Normal."

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Febreeze will mostly just cover up the smell, plus leave a residue. For items that originally are meant to be washed in water (cotton P41s for instance) handwashing with a small amount of white vinegar will often work very well. It also deodorizes the item, and leaves no residue. Hang dry on a drying rack or good hanger that won't distort the shoulders. The key is to make sure it dries fairly quickly. If indoors, use a fan, or better yet, hang it where the outdoor breeze or sun is on it for a short time. The UV of the sunlight will also disinfect and deodorize it, in addition to drying. As has been said, use the sunlight sparingly to avoid fading.

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Vladimir..

are you a white vinegar salesman??!!! :P:lol:

 

I agree about Febreeze though, I would not use it on historical objects.

 

I'd be more prone to brushing with a proper brush and blowing it with compressed air.

I feel this would remove any mold/mildew.

 

-Brian

GOT SEABEE ITEMS? PM ME!

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