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M5 Assault Gas Mask & Carrier


Sabrejet

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I went to a show recently and was quite dismayed to see numbers of repro Assault Gasmasks for sale...nice, shiny black "rubberised" bags with fresh, bright yellow US Chemical Corps logos on them! (Sorry...this whole repro thing is a bit of a sore point with me at the moment!) I've no idea what they contained...not interested really..probably some kind of padding to simulate their contents?

 

Anyway..this is an example of the real McCoy! This is the gasmask issued to US assault troops on D-Day, which thankfully never had to be used. The bag is made of a waterproof, rubberised fabric and is sealed by rolling its collar over several times until it can be secured by its four snaps. The green web straps are adjustable and quite long so allow the bag to be carried in a variety of ways...sometimes chest-high, or, in the case of airborne troops, slung from the hip and secured to the thigh.

 

The mask itself dispensed with the usual corrugated tubing and instead its filter screwed directly onto the cheek-piece of the mask itself in the manner of most gasmasks issued today. Also supplied with the mask is a de-misting kit which fits into a loop sewn within the bag.

 

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Sabrejet

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Very nice, the bags used to be pretty common in the early 80's, one of the local surplus stores had lots of them for about $5.

I was able to get one of the masks a couple of years ago after looking for several years.

Thanks for posting it.

BKW

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Sabrejet, Very nice bag and mask. I too am disgusted with the problem of reproductions in the market place. I really feel bad for beginning collectors who are trying to build their collections these days and along the way zig zagging through the reproduction mine field.

 

To add to the thread a bit, here is a display of my M5, bag and some Chemical Corp accessories. There are three different bags in the second image, one with lift the dots, one with blackened snaps and one with nickeled snaps.

 

Bob

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Thanks Brandon and Rambob! Rambob...that's a nice selection you have on display there. I too have a similar range of accessories...I enjoy finding and collecting these "smalls" as much the bigger stuff! Re the whole repro thing...I attended a big collectors' fair recently and was "appalled" at the range of stuff which is now being reproduced. Apart from uniform items, patches and web-gear etc., there were even matchbooks, Hershey Bars, Carlisle dressings and Barbasol shaving soap!! In my humble opinion, this can be directly attributed to the post "Private Ryan" / "Band of Brothers" effect! And they call it "progress"?! :thumbdown:

 

Ian

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Brandon, Thanks. What you see is 30 years of aquiring basically odds and ends to make a unified display. Supply and demand is the culprit for rarity of items and contantly increasing prices. Even supplies of items that were cheap and in abundance for many many years are drying up now. This is of course due to a constant supply of original, WWII militaria and what seems to be an unending demand for it. I have always lived by the "snooze you lose" motto and buy stuff for my collection and also to save for a rainy day.

 

Bob

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Thanks Brandon and Rambob! Rambob...that's a nice selection you have on display there. I too have a similar range of accessories...I enjoy finding and collecting these "smalls" as much the bigger stuff! Re the whole repro thing...I attended a big collectors' fair recently and was "appalled" at the range of stuff which is now being reproduced. Apart from uniform items, patches and web-gear etc., there were even matchbooks, Hershey Bars, Carlisle dressings and Barbasol shaving soap!! In my humble opinion, this can be directly attributed to the post "Private Ryan" / "Band of Brothers" effect! And they call it "progress"?! :thumbdown:

 

Ian

 

I agree... After picking up a bare bones M3-10A1 mask NOS still sealed in the box since 1943, I found that I still had to pick up the eye shields and the waterproofing kit. The search for those was almost more rewarding than finding the mask itself! I've tried to impress that on my unit... It's the "little" things that make the impression! And, its the original little things that mean the most!

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  • 1 year later...
ArchangelDM

Hi Guys

i bought these 2 like 4 -5 years ago and ive seen the writing is a little different on the 2 but the webbing and the snaps seem the same, are they original and if so which is the earlier model

 

Thanks

Dean C :rolleyes:

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ArchangelDM
Hi Guys

i bought these 2 like 4 -5 years ago and ive seen the writing is a little different on the 2 but the webbing and the snaps seem the same, are they original and if so which is the earlier model

 

Thanks

Dean C :rolleyes:

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Neither is an "earlier model". They are both the same, but made by different companies. Check inside the rolled opening and you may be lucky to spot the Firestone stamp on one of them...

 

Cheers,

Glen.

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ArchangelDM
Neither is an "earlier model". They are both the same, but made by different companies. Check inside the rolled opening and you may be lucky to spot the Firestone stamp on one of them...

 

Cheers,

Glen.

 

 

So im guessing both Original Glen

Thanks Dean

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The repros made for and after SPR feel very thin/flimsy when handled. If you've ever handled an original you'll notice the difference immediately. They also have a new "synthetic" smell. My '44 dated set has that distinctive "old gear" smell...if only they could bottle it!

 

Sabrejet

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Never had a repro but Im thinking they wouldnt have stamped all the extra numbers on the straps and bag..would they???

 

I remember about 15 years ago picking them up for $1.98 each at a surplus store in central Iowa.Some had rust stains on the straps but were unused.

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  • 3 months later...

Any close up pics of the filters??

 

I picked up one this week end marked 47-4-4.The guy claimed it came out of a 44 dated crate some years ago.Til now I have a later date light grey filter on my mask.Can you tell me the correct marking or lot numbers for WW2 filters?? I think mine is a 1948 filter Im using as it came off an M9 set up.The one I got saturday is a 1947??

 

I have a buddy that has a few of the water proofing kits in the khaki pouch,new old stock.

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I decided to throw mine in the ring. I got mine from a board member here, has the demist kit, gas goggles, M5 ointment can with contents, waterproof .45 bag, personal cover, and some instruction sheets. You can see that my mask was cold set, which was the problem with these masks. My filter says CROWN, US, E3

 

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Nice gas masks! It's amazing how modern that M5 mask looks compared to an M40... not much has changed.

 

I've always felt reproductions are fine, as long as they have a glaringly obvious manufacturing difference or permanent marking which identifies it as a reproduction. Otherwise, these items could very well damage the market for the real stuff as time goes on.

 

On another point, just be glad this is all happening 60-70 years later for the WWII stuff... imagine being interested in the OIF/OEF items. The Airsoft crowd and other "tacticool" folks will make this era a minefield in 20-30 years (heck... it's a minefield NOW). They are painting stuff up for "impressions" of special ops servicemen, and they do a damn good job, often using photographic evidence to base their impression on. They'll even throw down the bucks to buy the same equipment special forces use. Since this is being done while the conflict is ongoing, it will be IMPOSSIBLE to determine legit military used stuff from Airsoft.

 

So, bringing this all back on topic, the new repro stuff is a bit of a bummer. But... it could be worse...

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Here is my mask.Found it in an antique shop back in the late 80s or early 90s.Didnt have a filter.I also didnt buy it when I first saw it.Went back a week later.Still has the price tag attached.The shop owner offered to give me 15% off...I accepted.The bag was from a surplus store.They always had these.The last ones were priced at $5.98,they had raised the price from $1.98

 

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