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PostPosted: Wed Jun 21, 2017 12:38 pm 
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Joined: Thu May 26, 2016 8:08 am
Posts: 7
Real Name: Craig Vanrooy
I usually stick to British. A chance last minute bid resulted in me being the proud owner of an A-11, ANB-H-1 Receivers, Polaroid goggles and a A-14 oxygen mask with mike all original.

So, I've decided to look into portraying US aircrew (maybe gunner). My home town was the site of the largest airfield in Europe (USAAF 590 Burtonwood) and as such there were upto 18,000 US servicemen at any one time.

So, this leaves me with everything else!!

I'm stuck on the clothing.......

For jackets there was the B10, B15, A2, B3... what was the difference between them all and who used what?

Likewise the same for the trousers! there was A9-A11 ANJ4 and the leather ones.

For boots, it will be impossible (and impracticable) to wear A6's I've read that aircrew did use the russet-brown service shoe, would this be acceptable or is there any other recommendations?

I have my hands on a original flack vest so I plan on making a replica which should be easy looking at the design, the same with the parachute harness too. That would only leave a mae west and they shouldn't be too tricky to get hold of.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2017 0:07 am 
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Joined: Sat May 19, 2012 14:49 pm
Posts: 1157
Location: Aberystwyth, Ceredigion
Real Name: Adrian Hollis
Group: AFRA, portray- RA AA gunner, 9th AF pilot
Hi Craig,

Will be more than happy to help!

It depends on what year you are going for as to what clothing you will need really. Also, I take it you want to go for bomber crew? My friend Karl does that. I portray a C-47 pilot. Even that affects the kit which you require. B-17's, B-24's etc flew much higher, so the crews obviously needed more protective (and now expensive) kit....

If you are on Facebook, look up 'Heartland Express' living history group. Karl and I run it and we can help you out with all the right bits! You could potentially even tag along to some events with us if you fancy it! We have a large USAAF display, and do both aspects of bomber crew and Transport crews...

Adrian

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Portraying my great uncles....

Lance Bombardier Bryce R. Hollis 89 Bty, 35th LAA RA. Captured by Japanese on Java 8/3/42

1st Lt Delmore (Del) Meier, 314th TS, 31s TG, 9th USAAF. Flying C-47's from RAF Grove


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2017 0:15 am 
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Joined: Sat May 19, 2012 14:49 pm
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Location: Aberystwyth, Ceredigion
Real Name: Adrian Hollis
Group: AFRA, portray- RA AA gunner, 9th AF pilot
Anyway, jackets...

A2 is THE jacket that everyone loves, it's iconic.... but you have to be spot on to get the correct one... many post war variations out there..

Bomber crews would normally wear a B-3 at altitude. This was then supposed to be replaced with the B-10, and then the B-15. The 10 and 15 are very similar, except for a few pockets etc.

Same with the trousers.... leather first, then eventually replaced by the others, although the leather kit was used up until the end...

For boots, A6's are the norm for bomber crewmen. However, a lot of US guys would try and get hold of RAF kit. So wearing RAF flying boots isn't wrong...

Mae Wests aren't difficult to get a hold of as you said. Plenty of repels out there too.

Hope this helps a little. Like I said, work out what year you would like to go for, and it narrows down the kit required. USAAF flying kit is one of the most expensive in the hobby, but it certainly looks good when you have it all together.

Look us up on Facebook if you can!

_________________
Portraying my great uncles....

Lance Bombardier Bryce R. Hollis 89 Bty, 35th LAA RA. Captured by Japanese on Java 8/3/42

1st Lt Delmore (Del) Meier, 314th TS, 31s TG, 9th USAAF. Flying C-47's from RAF Grove


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2017 6:19 am 
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Joined: Thu May 26, 2016 8:08 am
Posts: 7
Real Name: Craig Vanrooy
Appreciate the reply! I suppose I need to pick a year then! I'll take a look at the facebook group. meanwhile I'm down at Duxford on Sunday so I'm going to see if I can find out more info then.

Wow, surprised to hear they also wore RAF boots! that will make things a lot easier!


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 23, 2017 7:57 am 
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Joined: Tue May 08, 2012 18:08 pm
Posts: 795
Real Name: Luke Harris
Craig - kit swapping or mixing was very common place especially for US forces (supplies being brought of to England via ship) - I noticed this just the other day when watching Memphis Belle (for about the 100th time!) and most of the officers and an NCO are wearing 40 pattern flight boots.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 23, 2017 10:56 am 
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Joined: Thu May 26, 2016 8:08 am
Posts: 7
Real Name: Craig Vanrooy
Cheers, I've done a fair bit of research that suggests the same!

This is what has just arrived!

Image

I'm going to go with a B3 jacket and the B1 trousers. I'm aware the helmet is not correct for high altitude so i'll be on the lookout for a B-6 but these appear to be like the proverbial rocking horse ****. As mentioned, I think i'll go with RAF boots as they appear to be a good compromise.


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