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AIRBORNE FIRST AID HELMET PACKS?


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Originals contained rectangular shaped containers.....One for the dressing, one for the syrette....I cannot make out the appropriate flatness of the dressing box with clarity in either pouch....So based solely on the single photo of each, I'd be cautious about originality....Bodes

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  • 2 weeks later...

Here's a picture of the one I have. Unfortunately it's not in the best condition but it is an original. Look for the details...

 

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"The battle belonged that morning to the thin wet line of khaki that dragged itself ashore on the channel coast of France." - General Omar Bradley.

 

 

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No problem...

 

To further help in discerning authentic kits, here's a blatant fake on eBay, sold as original.

 

https://www.ebay.com/itm/113996992786

 

This is probably one that was made by The Rigger Depot, then aged by someone in the hopes of making a quick dollar. This is a mighty fine reproduction and may easily be mistaken for the real thing once it has been aged.

 

Buyer, beware.

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"The battle belonged that morning to the thin wet line of khaki that dragged itself ashore on the channel coast of France." - General Omar Bradley.

 

 

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I really appreciate all you who share your knowledge, experience and collections.

 

the eBay seller says his item came from the estate of some former military man, but have not further replied.

 

Have you all looked carefully at the other images of the stitching and details of edges?

 

z

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  • 2 weeks later...

Here are a few photos of my correct WW2 kit. Notice the "bleeding" of the heated rubber often seen on the bottom seam. You can also observe the weave of the material used for correct kits.

Are the originals waterproof? I always thought they were made of the same material like the map purse fabric but your original looks more like fabric. Thanks for the great info!

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These Parachute First Aid Kits were made of a Water Proof textile. The cloth had a latex (rubber) coating on the interior side. This latex would have made the cloth water proof. However, unlike other waterproof material such as poncho material these Kits were designed to be torn open for easy access of the contents. A rain proof poncho was designed to be rip resistant so the weave of the material was tighter and stronger. This is why the repro Kits made of old poncho material can be distinguished from original Parachute First Aid Kits.

I checked my Map Purse and the material also has a latex coating but the textile has a slightly tighter weave than that of the First Aid Kit. Here are two photos of each with the Parachute First Aid Kit on the left and the Map Purse on the right.

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Crude rubber and especially latex were critical war materials and were not used in the manuafcture of these kits nor ponchos and most all waterproofed goods. The rubberized type membrane you are seeing is often simply referred to as Plasticized. Technically, these parachute kits and most all other items you see with the rubber like membrane is a Vinyl Chloride-Acetate Copolymer, or Vinylite to keep it short. A synthetic waterproofing method. The parachute packets were constructed of a woven cotton print cloth, dyed with a waterfast olive drab. Then plasticized on one side.

Money Purses (Evasion & Escape) were treated the same way.

Resident inspectors would test for waterproofing by submerging the sealed kits in warm water for four hours, then open. All contents were required to be dry upon opening for inspection, then that lot would be passed.

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