WWII Uniforms.....

Discussion in 'WW2 General' started by Lucky13, Aug 24, 2009.

  1. Lucky13

    Lucky13 Forum Mascot

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    Which had the better uniforms of the fightning nations of WWII. Looking for adaptbility, comfort, strength, etc. etc., from boots to helmets.....
     
  2. B-17engineer

    B-17engineer Active Member

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    #2 B-17engineer, Aug 24, 2009
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2009
    Just IMHO I think the Russians had pretty adaptable uniforms. During the battle of Stalingrad their uniforms retained more body heat than the Germans.

    For head gear I would say a German helmet because it protected parts of the neck from shrapnel.

    I will get back to you on this, I have to go somewhere, it was on very short notice!


    Edit

    Overall though, I think Germany had the best uniform, because it was inherited by many countries. The US today has adopted the German helmet. It later fashioned the style of the US army too. Also, the US started out with brown boots and then changed them to black, and guess what Country used black boots, Germany.


    But overall here's what I think.

    Helmet: Germany
    Adaptability: Russia
    Boot: Germany or US
    Comfort: US or Britain depending where, if it was North Africa Britain but Airborne US
    Strength: Not sure what you mean, but I'm going to say Germany.
     

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  3. renrich

    renrich Active Member

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    I would say overall the US because they had the industrial might to come up with new items quickly when a need was found for them. I never did understand how the German boots could be very comfortable on a long march. They could not have fit very well.
     
  4. B-17engineer

    B-17engineer Active Member

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    I didn't know that :oops: what was bad about them?
     
  5. fastmongrel

    fastmongrel Well-Known Member

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    Cant remember where I read it but it was a comment by an american veteran and he said there cotton uniforms were great till they got wet and then he said they were horrible heavy and cold. His favourite items of kit were a liberated german pair of socks and a british sheepskin jerkin he bought for some cigarettes. No mention if the german gave up his socks voluntarily:D
     
  6. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    I think it depends on what uniform and field pieces we are talking about. As a collector of WW2 uniforms I have a pretty good assortment that I can go through and compare.

    Helmets:
    The German helmets were the best helmets of WW2. Plain and simple They gave the best protection. Look at today's helmets and you can see the influence in them.

    Uniforms:
    The US uniforms were superb. They are simple and easy to wear and for a combat uniform quite comfortable when compared to the other countries. As for the comment about when they became wet, I can completely understand that and believe it to be true as well, however that was comparable with almost all of them from each country.

    The German uniforms at the beginning of the war in my opinion were too heavy. They were very strong and durable but to heavy. Later toward the end the war they became better for "field" operations in my opinion and were comparable to the US uniforms.

    For winter uniforms the Russians had it made (I personally believe the Brits and the US were really lacking in this department). The Germans also had really good winter equipment, but the lack thereof was a problem.

    Field Gear:
    I believe the US had the superb field gear, followed very shortly behind the German field gear. The reason I believe the US had the better gear, is because it was easier to carry than most of the stuff the other countries had. It was more comfortable and could be adapted to situations easier. The Germans also had good field gear, but some of it was too cumbersome, such as the gas mask containers which were large metal cylinders. Could not be very comfortable and would especially hurt if you fell on them.
     
  7. Lucky13

    Lucky13 Forum Mascot

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    Looking for the field gear buddy, helmet, boots, backpacks all the belt and buckles etc.. Thinking about how you sometimes complained about how stupid things were designed with your own field gear, to only work yourself around the problem to make it work better...
     
  8. B-17engineer

    B-17engineer Active Member

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    Oh for gear I like the German way in which it was on there belt for easy access. As Adler pointed out though, it would hurt to fall on it.
     
  9. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    All countries had their field equipment on some kind of web belt.
     
  10. Colin1

    Colin1 Active Member

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    Actually speaking from experience
    it doesn't really hurt at all. The belt kit you are most likely to fall on are your magazine pouches and magazines are usually long enough and broad enough to distribute their pressure across a large area of your lower abdomen. Bear in mind the lower abdomen, in a typically fit soldier, is protected by the abdomenal muscle groups and the hips. You also have the structure of the pouch itself along with the supporting belt behind it to muffle some of the load.
    You can go down fast (hard) on some pretty unforgiving surfaces without even small injury. Worst places for injury are usually elbows and knees - areas where there is no sign of belt kit.
     
  11. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    Agreed, I never was hurt from falling on my gear (but then again most of the time I was wearing a flight vest which is not belts or anything).

    As for hurting when you fall, I was talking about the German "cans" that held the gas masks during WW2. I think they would be a pain in the ass, they are bulky.
     
  12. B-17engineer

    B-17engineer Active Member

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    Your running and then trip and fall on this. Ouch.
     

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  13. DerAdlerIstGelandet

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    Exactly, I own several of them and I have always thought they would just get in the way.
     
  14. renrich

    renrich Active Member

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    I believe the standard German infantry boot was a pull on type boot kind of like the motorcycle boot but with a low heel. Maybe like a "roper" cowboy boot but with high tops. If there are no laces to tighten when the boot stretches, the foot will begin to slop around in the boot and cause blisters plus in deep mud the boot can be stuck in the mud and suddenly you are marching barefoot. I have had that happen with a pull on boot. They don't provide good support on rough terrain either. The infantry footwear is probably the most important part of the uniform sice the infantry in WW2 did a lot of marching. Chris might correct me on this since he is familiar with the gear.
     
  15. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    I am not too familiar with the footwear. I do have a pair of Wehrmacht winter boots and while they are warm, they are very heavy and cumberson. I can also see happening what you describe above.

    I am not a fan of that type of boot either.
     
  16. Juha

    Juha Well-Known Member

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    Agree with Colin, at least with the Finnish Army combat belt M/60. And during one’s basic training one hit the dirt countless times. But we carried our gas masks in a canvas bag.

    On uniforms, not knowing much but I recall reading long time ago that the British uniforms were good and well suited in battlefield, being not too tight type. German uniforms were early in the war a bit too tight and “smart” a bit too much thought had been given to the parade appearance but Germans moved during the war towards British style and IMHO especially Waffen-SS uniforms were very practical. Based only what I remember from photos USMC uniforms seemed also to have been practical. So IMHO British, Waffen-SS and USMC had the best uniforms, also Finnish Army uniform was practical here, in northern forest areas.

    And on helmets, German helmet was the best.

    German boot with its metal "nail" reinforced sole was not suitable in northern winter use.
    Juha
     
  17. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    Exactly, as I said the early German uniforms were very uncomfortable and not very practical for field use. Later they were much better and became very good and practical uniforms that were more designed for combat and field use.

    Here are some pics of a Model 1944 Feldbluse that I own. As you can see it is better suited as a field uniform.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    (I hope these are the right pics, I can not view them at work because they are on photobucket and the army blocks them because of that reason. If they are not the correct ones, I will correct then when I am home from work).
     
  18. fastmongrel

    fastmongrel Well-Known Member

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    The nailed boots were awful in winter or even in summer on hard slippery surfaces. When I was in the army we still wore nailed ammunition boots for ceremonial and guard duty. I well remember the time with my boots shining like black glass and my kit bulled to perfection I marched out of the guard house to present arms and went flying ending up on my back side with a big thump. The Colonel was very polite and did his best not to laugh the Sarnt Major on the other hand was not a happy man.
     
  19. Juha

    Juha Well-Known Member

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    Hello Adler
    Thanks for the photos!

    Juha
     
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