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Finished my hand made Small Box Respirator to show my classes


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For my college-level US history classes, I often bring in original items from various periods, and have several WWI era field gear items. I knew that the original gas masks are typically expensive, and the ones that are cheap are usually in BAD shape. So I set about to make my own. It can still give the general idea of an American-worn SBR without the cost, or the fear of damaging an original mask.

 

The mask part itself is stitched from heavy canvas, and I found some steampunk goggles for the lenses. The bag I made myself as well, although I still need to add the leather tab on the left side. The filter was the really tricky part. I didn't want to risk buying an original or similar one not knowing what all was in it or it possibly being unsafe for students to handle, but try as I might, that shaped metal can is hard to find. So, I sanded down a block of a 2x4, wrapped it in paracord, caulked the edges, and painted it with four coats of glossy yellow. I found a good downloadable template for the instructions and made sure to put grommets in it as well.

 

Obviously it wouldn't past muster in a reenactor's circle, but for a total investment of under $25, it'll definitely work for me!

 

post-190186-0-78536300-1535065484_thumb.jpg

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That's nice work. Are these college students or is it a college level course in high school? I'd like to know if the students, high school or college, take an interest in these items and history in general. Half the kids you see on television don't seem to have a clue when it comes to US or world history.

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Very nice craftsmanship. You've created a fantastic item that can be handled and manipulated and is a great representation of the era. I pass around a real one in a plastic tub, and every year someone begs to try it on...

 

Great work!

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Thanks everyone! I teach college students, and yes, they are typically VERY interested. I currently have WWII field gear plus ration stamps and the like, and dress up in a Vietnam impression, as well as American Revolution and Civil War outfits. I also build a trench periscope and a gas rattle to show them too. It feels good to be here...

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Gadzooks! You made that? You better be careful, or people will start placing orders...

 

Nice job.

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  • 9 months later...

Thanks everyone! I teach college students, and yes, they are typically VERY interested. I currently have WWII field gear plus ration stamps and the like, and dress up in a Vietnam impression, as well as American Revolution and Civil War outfits. I also build a trench periscope and a gas rattle to show them too. It feels good to be here...

I have had the same experience teaching university-level history courses in Canada. Students love to see artifacts hands-on.

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  • 7 months later...

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