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WWII NAF QAS harness question


Stephen210

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I  have had this harness for years.  What value would this be around?  it is interesting that it has a small seat cushion attached.

Thank you for your help.

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phantomfixer

You don't see this harness everyday...Not a Navy guy, ......I am going to follow this thread to see where it goes... 

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It's pretty neat for a USN collector but maybe not as "hot" as AAF stuff right now.

Might want to post this in the "What's it Worth" forum.


Dave

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Hi Stephen. 

 

Can you post closer pics of seat cushion attached to the harness?

 

DMAR for sure this QAS is more hot than AAF :D

 

I guess a deal would be for 450-500 USD. 750 would be enough. 1000 a little but over priced in my opinion.

 

Cheers,

Jerry

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pararaftanr2

Certainly an interesting piece. I'm thinking the seat cushion is probably a "rigger made" addition to your QAS harness, which was made by the Naval Aircraft Factory, as seen by the ink stamp on the webbing. Some more detailed photos of the cushion would help determine that, if true. Later in the war, it was not uncommon to see the standard parachute seat cushion attached to the harness, as the actual parachute pack and raft pack would be in the pilot's seat of the aircraft before the pilot arrived, but it was intended to be tacked to the top of the raft pack. The issue cushion was thicker and had a forward slot for the harness leg straps of a standard seat parachute. VF-11 and VF-49 pilots seen below with standard cushions, followed by the recommended configuration:

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Last photo, what an impressive pile of 'stuff'...  could be 12" tall, or a bit more?  Would be interesting to have a look at airplane's actual seat, sort of a deep bucket with just the safety belts laying on the sides?

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Oh, I just meant price-wise but was thinking of QAC. AAF QAC is pricey. This QAS  is pretty cool for sure!  Was there a reason some had the straps with the “ticking” and some not?  Also, I understand the seat chute attachment but can’t quite see how the belt with the rip cord mounts to the harness. 

After reading Pacific Air, who can’t love this stuff?!

Dave

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pararaftanr2

Dave,

The Navy style parachute harness was made of single ply linen webbing with no "ticking". The AN (Army Navy) type webbing was cotton and two-ply. It had the "ticking". Both types of webbing were used in the production of parachutes for the Navy after the joint AN-standards were adopted in late 1942.

 

Here is the answer to your other question. Note, the first photo shows the Navy style harness and the second photo the AN style harness with the different chest strap configuration and the "ticking":

 

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pararaftanr2
23 minutes ago, BlueBookGuy said:

Last photo, what an impressive pile of 'stuff'...  could be 12" tall, or a bit more?  Would be interesting to have a look at airplane's actual seat, sort of a deep bucket with just the safety belts laying on the sides?

Franco,

Yes, just an empty metal bucket without padding. They were mounted on rails and could be adjusted up and down for height.

Corsair and Wildcat seats shown below in modern-day restorations:

Corsair seat.jpg

Wildcat seat.jpg

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Thanx Paul,

quite interesting. Well I was figuring out a different shape of seat   -   say, somehow a 'container' with taller side walls to better keep all that stuff. Evidently once the pilot sat on top of all the items and stood firmly strapped in by lap and torso belts, even such a shallow 'chair' was more than adequate for the purpose.

 

btw, in the last vintage photo the side belts from 'chute + raft do stay under the two groin ones of harness. Was that the prescribed way of wearing the QAS?

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Thanks so much. Makes perfect sense now. Great info. Always interesting how the pilot is just suspended there. 

Dave

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pararaftanr2
1 hour ago, BlueBookGuy said:

btw, in the last vintage photo the side belts from 'chute + raft do stay under the two groin ones of harness. Was that the prescribed way of wearing the QAS?

Only on the wearer's right side does it go under the leg strap. On his left side, where the strap carries the rip-cord, it goes over the leg strap, to prevent any possible interference.

 

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pararaftanr2
21 minutes ago, dmar836 said:

Is the “lobe” visible on the OPs photo?  I think the left buckle is just turned 90 degrees?

Hard to say. Early QASs were converted from standard seat parachutes in the field, so did not have a "lobe" on the chest buckle. Later on, a technical order was distributed with instructions on how to add a "lobe" and for factory made harnesses, a new cast buckle with a "lobe" was used.

 

This is an example of an early QAS harness of the "AN" type, without a "lobe" on the chest buckle. Note all three snap-hooks are attached to the single "V" ring of the harness' short right chest strap. Since the QAS pack and raft stayed in the aircraft, it is tough to find vintage photos of someone wearing the complete rig outside the cockpit.

QAS.jpg

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Life Para had mentioned, tough to find images worn outside the aircraft much less in the seat.

Here is simulation of the system, in essence, in the seat. You get the idea of the concept, lap belt and shoulder straps secured as if flying. You can kind of see how much of a B it would be to have to make a quick exit in an emergency and why, in so many cases, guys get dragged under water and struggle to exit.  

 

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pararaftanr2
1 hour ago, dustin said:

You can kind of see how much of a B it would be to have to make a quick exit in an emergency and why, in so many cases, guys get dragged under water and struggle to exit.  

Great photos Dustin!

For the reason you stated, pilots were instructed to leave the harness unattached to the parachute / raft pack until after they took off from the carrier, then reach behind themselves and secure the two big snap hooks at the end of the risers to the pack. On the other side of the coin though, despite it's bulk and weight, the parachute, tightly folded in its pack, along with the raft pack, was quite buoyant, so it's not all that uncommon to see film, or still photos, where a plane ditches after an unsuccessful takeoff and the pilot pops up or scrambles from the cockpit with his QAS pack still attached. Ultimately, it was left up to the individual to decide.

 

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Great photos indeed, and interesting adding up by Paul.

That pilots took off from carriers with their harness still unclipped from the packs, indeed I didn't know   -   we go on in learning constantly something new.  The same about those photos, it's virtually the very first instance I can finally have a clear and exhaustive look at what the airman looked like once fully strapped in.

Two things I found out be different from what I imagined, are:

*  the attaching points for seat lap belts   -    belts show up actually restraining against thighs' upper side, I thought they were more of embracing the lower abdomen somehow from behind;

 

*  shoulder straps do end in the classic triangular rings so often seen in photos of harness / parachutes. I was well aware of straps in ejection seats, at least the older models calling for a personal parachute to be worn by airmen  -   in wich cases, shoulder straps themselves also do make the two 'loops' for letting pass the locking device through.

In other words, strap's terminal length is properly folded up, sewn and doubled   -   shaped into an integral loop from the same fabric.

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pararaftanr2
1 hour ago, BlueBookGuy said:

shoulder straps do end in the classic triangular rings so often seen in photos of harness / parachutes.

Franco,

Interestingly, what you are seeing in Dustin's photos, using "triangular rings", is an example of a field expedient "rigger-made" set of shoulder straps, using parachute hardware. The actual production AN shoulder straps used purpose-built hardware to integrate with the quick-release latch on the lap belt, as well as hardware to allow them to be tightened as needed. This is shown in the second photo below for comparison.

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belts.jpg

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Thanx  very interesting!!  Yes in better looking at the b/w photos, it's true, belts are exactly those from a 'chute harness and the same adjusting hardware.

In the other proper set, straps themselves look being wider if I'm not wrong.

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Thanx Paul,  oddly the photo somehow was deceptive to me   -    those shoulder straps indeed looked being wider.

Must say, lap belt changed the very least in its basic concept, even compared to older-fashion ejection seats up to mid-1960s.  A major leap was the automatic device to break open (only in emergency, upon ejection) the locking system and allow lap belts to release   -   thus freeing the airman, who was then abruptly pushed forward by the so-called ''butt kicker'' a mere 0.4 second after belts' opening.

Interesting discussion.  Thanx!!

 

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