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M1961 USMC Individual Equipment Belt


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The USMC M1961 belt went through a nomenclature change sometime in the production period but can't put this on an exact time line. Best I can read this early nomenclature is it reads BELT CARTRIDGE FOR M14 RIFLE M1961. The example I own has an early DSA contract prefix so has to be 1965 or earlier. As is typical with these the markings are marred by the grommeted holes and snaps.

 

Later nomenclature was BELT INDIVIDUAL EQUIPMENT M1961. Latest date I've seen of these is 1968. The Marine Corps started fielding the M16 rifle around this time but it was used in Viet Nam only until later.

Greg Robinson "marine-kabar"

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http://www.usmilitariaforum.com/forums/index.php?/topic/106069-rip-greg-robinson/

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I thought you guys might like to see a pic of the M1961 belt in action. This one shows a rather glum young Marine at Da Nang on 8/3/65. He is wearing what appears to be a horizontal weave M1961 belt to carry his M1916 holster and .45 pistol. No M14 mag pouches are evident. (Photo credit to Rodinal).

 

 

M1961_Belt_USMC_Da_Nang_RVN_8_3_65.jpg

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I dug out my early nomenclature M1961 belt this morning and remembered it was inkstamped "L" for LARGE. I don't see this mentioned anywhere else in this excellent thread so wanted to add that they did come in size LARGE but they're a lot harder to find. I don't think the Marines purchased a lot of LARGE sized web gear. They probably felt it was cheaper to just make the Marine lose weight :D

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Greg Robinson "marine-kabar"

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http://www.usmilitariaforum.com/forums/index.php?/topic/106069-rip-greg-robinson/

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  • 4 months later...

Look here for more info on dates and the weave patterns:

 

http://www.usmilitariaforum.com/forums/ind...?showtopic=2545

 

The horizontal weave is the older style but the vertical weave was available by at least 1962 if not sooner so my guess is both weave patterns were used at the same time. The USMC belt is a 1961 model so it is a better than even chance both weaves were used early.

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Look here for more info on dates and the weave patterns:

 

http://www.usmilitariaforum.com/forums/ind...?showtopic=2545

 

The horizontal weave is the older style but the vertical weave was available by at least 1962 if not sooner so my guess is both weave patterns were used at the same time. The USMC belt is a 1961 model so it is a better than even chance both weaves were used early.

 

Thanks. I've got a vertical and a horizontal weave 1961 model now and each of them is missing the female buckle.


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Interesting that it is the female buckle as that is the one sewn down on these belts. It may have been that they were damaged in order to dispose of them as surplus.

Oops - it is the make that is missing. The latest belt I acquired came from the estate of a retired Marine and the belt had two 1953 USMC canteen covers attached to it and there was another - non-1961 belt - also with a 52 cover. So I don't think this was surplus, just stuff he brought home from the job.


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  • 10 months later...
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Hi Craig,

 

Just got an M1961 horizontal weave pistol belt in the mail today, but have a problem: the one end of the buckle is stuck between the second and first snaps, and I cannot get the buckle over the snap to give me the extra adjustment I need. Would hate to have to cut it off and then try to find a replacement. The seller has a three-day return policy on it, but would hate to return it - since it's in very good shape (still has a good deal of black paint on the buckles/snaps/eyots), no rips/frays/tears. When it's convenient, please email any suggestions you have to remedy the buckle problem to my email addy below.

 

Have a great weekend!

 

Steve Cenney

srcenney@hotmail.com

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Look here for more info on dates and the weave patterns:

 

http://www.usmilitariaforum.com/forums/ind...?showtopic=2545

 

The horizontal weave is the older style but the vertical weave was available by at least 1962 if not sooner so my guess is both weave patterns were used at the same time. The USMC belt is a 1961 model so it is a better than even chance both weaves were used early.

 

Hi Craig,

 

Can you recommend a good method to clean a canvas pistol belt? I came across an M1961 that appears intact, but both the canvas and the fixtures need cleaned.

 

Please reply via my email addy below, when it's convenient. Thank you in advance.

 

Steve Cenney

srcenney@hotmail.com

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Hi Craig,

 

Just got an M1961 horizontal weave pistol belt in the mail today, but have a problem: the one end of the buckle is stuck between the second and first snaps, and I cannot get the buckle over the snap to give me the extra adjustment I need. Would hate to have to cut it off and then try to find a replacement. The seller has a three-day return policy on it, but would hate to return it - since it's in very good shape (still has a good deal of black paint on the buckles/snaps/eyots), no rips/frays/tears. When it's convenient, please email any suggestions you have to remedy the buckle problem to my email addy below.

 

Have a great weekend!

 

Steve Cenney

srcenney@hotmail.com

 

It sounds like the buckle may have been mashed in. Take a screw driver, small pry bar or something similar and try GENTLY prying the buckle open enough to clear the snap. Another possibility is the belt has swollen some or the snaps have started to come apart and that is making for the tight fit. You can try s asmall hammer and GENTLY tap the snap to compress it.

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Hi Craig,

 

Can you recommend a good method to clean a canvas pistol belt? I came across an M1961 that appears intact, but both the canvas and the fixtures need cleaned.

 

Please reply via my email addy below, when it's convenient. Thank you in advance.

 

Steve Cenney

srcenney@hotmail.com

 

Since these belts aren't all that rare I would use a soft nylon bristle brush and a mild detergent and give the belt a good scrubbing.

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Since these belts aren't all that rare I would use a soft nylon bristle brush and a mild detergent and give the belt a good scrubbing.

 

I actually use small stiff brass brushes to clean web belts: those belts can take - and sometimes require - a very hard scrubbing (I use brass so that if a brush bristle comes off and gets lodged in the belt hardware it won't rust). As for opening up the keepers a bit with a screwdriver - it seems that most belts I buy need to have that done to adjust the size. Once you get a belt set for a certain size, it's not something you want to re-adjust very often.


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I actually use small stiff brass brushes to clean web belts: those belts can take - and sometimes require - a very hard scrubbing (I use brass so that if a brush bristle comes off and gets lodged in the belt hardware it won't rust). As for opening up the keepers a bit with a screwdriver - it seems that most belts I buy need to have that done to adjust the size. Once you get a belt set for a certain size, it's not something you want to re-adjust very often.

 

Hi!

 

Thanks for replying to my posting. Actually, the keepers slide freely on this particular belt. It's the female end of the buckle that is stuck between the second and first snaps. This is gonna sound korny, but the buckle would slide down (from the second snap to the other ones), but won't go from the second to the first. When I try to slide it over the snap, it will start to go over the bottom of it but get hung up on top, and vice versa. I can use that extra adjustment, but am afraid I will tear the snap out if I do anything to it. The guy I bought it from has a three-day inspection on it, so I may return it and then try to find one that doesn't have this problem. Gotta think it over.

 

The second belt (the one that needs a good cleaning) is a vertical weave pattern - the first (and only) one I've seen like this. There's lots of verdigris on the snaps/eyots/keepers, and some streaking from sliding the keepers around. Can't tell from the pics if the buckles are damaged though. For what the guy is asking, it may be worth picking it up to experiment.

 

Thanks again.

 

Steve

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  • 9 months later...
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Hi!

 

'Hope this posting finds everyone healthy and happy! Has anyone ever encountered an M1961 USMC Rifleman's Belt that had slight splits/cracks in the magazine snaps? I found a horizontal weave M1961, and almost every snap had a slight crack/split in it. Looking at the pictures in this posting, I see an M1961 that looks like it has at least one snap with a split/crack in it. Please reply to my email addy below, when it is convenient. Thank you in advance.

 

Steve Cenney

srcenney@hotmail.com

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  • 5 weeks later...
Hi!

 

'Hope this posting finds everyone healthy and happy! Has anyone ever encountered an M1961 USMC Rifleman's Belt that had slight splits/cracks in the magazine snaps? I found a horizontal weave M1961, and almost every snap had a slight crack/split in it. Looking at the pictures in this posting, I see an M1961 that looks like it has at least one snap with a split/crack in it. Please reply to my email addy below, when it is convenient. Thank you in advance.

 

Steve Cenney

srcenney@hotmail.com

 

Steve - I just received a Horizontal Weave M1961 Belt today and noticed the same thing. The Snaps read "RAU Fastner Co. Prov., RI". On mine I counted 3 snaps with cracks.

Hope this helps you out.

"The test of success is not what you do when you are on top. Success is how high you bounce when you hit bottom." General George S. Patton

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  • 1 year later...

Hi there,

I have a question about snaps on the M1961 belts: I have a belt with the snaps without signature (in the pic on the right). The belt is dated 1967, I think bacause the print is hard to read. Are these snaps correct?

My friend offer me anothe belt with Rau fastenest, pic on the left. The only thing I can read on his belt is "L" for size.

Can anyone tell me more info about the snaps?

 

Thank you

Pavel

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1st Lt. Pavel "Padre" Poch

D Comp. 194 GIR 17 AB

Re-enacting group Czech republic

 

www.194thgir.com

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