Difference between US Airborne and GIs...

Discussion in 'Questions on Kits, Decals, Tools and Pilots' started by Maestro, Jan 21, 2009.

  1. Maestro

    Maestro Active Member

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    Greetings ladies and gentlemen.

    A few months ago, I bought Tamiya's 1/48 "WWII US Infantry At Rest" set. I bought it mainly for the Jeep, but since I could get figures with it for a few extra bucks, I thought it was a good deal.

    As you may know, I'm planning to make an airfield diorama in the future, so I thought about converting the GIs (as written on the instruction sheet) into Airborne troops.

    However, I noticed that some of the figures were wearing kinds of weird... ehrm... "soxes" over their boots. It is something I had never noticed on pictures of American paratroopers.

    Were they of standard issue within every branches of the US army or where they only issued to the "regular" army ? And were there any other difference(s) between GIs and Airborne troops ?
     

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  2. Colin1

    Colin1 Active Member

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    They are called gaiters.
    As far as I'm aware they were standard US Military issue. Brit soldiers of the period wore their own version too, although Brit gaiters didn't enclose the laced area, which would have been handy for muddier environments.
     
  3. timshatz

    timshatz Active Member

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    US called them leggings. They were supposed to make the shoes/socks/pants area waterproof. No idea if they worked. Went out of standard use in the middle of WW2 (around late 43 for starters) when the standard combat boot came into use. It had belted upper halfs. Leggings used in some units until the end of the war due to inability to get the combat boot to them or commanding officer preference.

    Airborne had special boots to deal with the shock of falling the equivelent of 12ft with an extra 100lbs on your back. Reinforced to take the stress.
     
  4. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    Timshatz is quite right. The US Airborne didn't use the gaiters, or leggings. The boots issued to US Paras were much prized, and were red. Actually, they were a reddish brown, and were calf length. Also, the trousers worn were slightly baggier, and had reinforcing 'patches' over the knees, and were Oilve in colour, not the brown/green of the GI trousers. The Jacket, whilst similar in appearance to the standard G.I. jacket, also had patches over the elbows, and was Olive in colour, not the light buff of the GI one. It also had breast and hip pockets. The helmet looked similar, but had less of a rim, and the chinstrap was a harness type, with a chin cup.
    I look at the web-sites for the 82nd and 101st Airborne will probably show the right patterns, otherwise virtually any book about airborne ops during WW2 will turn up some useful pics.
     
  5. fly boy

    fly boy Member

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    lets see the diffrence 1 air bourne jump out of a plane 2 no line of supplies but dead people and german stock piles 3 not to many heavy weapons just a recoilless rifle droped in m18 packs from time to time. other then that not much
     
  6. Maestro

    Maestro Active Member

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    :lol:

    Thanks, but I did figure that out on my own. I was talking about uniforms, mainly.
     
  7. Maestro

    Maestro Active Member

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    Okay... Thanks. So I think I'm gonna have to improvise a few details...
     
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