All paratroopers jumped with an 8mm semi-automatic pistol, either the Type 94, 1934 #1, or Type 14, 1925 #2; a Meiji Type 30, 1897 bayonet with 15Y in blade #3; and at least two HE grenades, Type 97 1937 #4 or Type 99 1939 #5. The 21b 11 oz Type 99, 1939 magnetic anti-armour charge #6, used for attacking tanks and the steel doors and shutters of pillboxes, was issued in a pouch, with the fuse/detonator packed inside in a two-piece metal tube; the fuse was screwed into the 99 hako-bakurai, and the igniter struck against a solid object to initiate a 10-second delay. The IJN initially used the 6.5mm Meiji Type 38 (1905 carbine #7. Modified “take-down” tera rifles for paratroopers first appeared in 1942/43. A 1941 prototype of the Type 38 carbine with a hinged butt proved too fragile to be adopted. The first IJA attempt to develop a rifle that could be carried on the jump was the 7.7mm Type 100 1940 - the Type 99 short rifle modified with a detachable barrel; the locking mechanism was inadequate, and only small numbers were issued. An improved purpose-made version was adopted as the Type 2, 1942 #8, #9 & #10 in May 1943, and was widely issued to IJA and IJN parachute units from late 1943. Take-down rifles were carried on the jump either in a canvas chest bag, or separated in two leg bags lowered on a short rope after the parachute opened. The Type 1, 1941 paratrooper bandoleer #11, of canvas and leather, was worn around the lower torso; it had seven pockets each holding two five-round rifle charger clips, and two grenade pockets - grenades were carried upside down, so leather bottom extensions accommodated the fuses.

johnbr, Oct 15, 2011
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