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17th Airborne reference thread

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Post  Guest Mon Nov 17, 2014 9:05 pm

Gents, just a few photos for your info/interest etc regarding a couple of the differneces particular to this division

Firstly the modified M43 jump pants as used by the 513th PIR. I've often asked when the 17th had their M43 pants modified in the distinctive style only seen by the 17th Abn. I'd always assumed because I handnt heard anything different that it was done by the Div riggers prior to Varsity. After some digging it would seem to me that this is not the case and numerous troopers had them when in the Bulge.
To give you an idea of the doc specific modifications to the regulation M43 pants I've taken a few photos of mine and compared them against a pair more often seen in use by troopers from the 82nd/101st.

Firstly the pockets themselves are in terms of design, cut in the same fashion to that of the more commonly seen ones.
17th Airborne reference thread 84A9F2D4-D950-4A3D-BA2E-465EF48D2A5C_zpsupikvydh

The leg ties used are of 1" web tape. When looking at period photos the ties stand out quiet markedly against the green of the trousers.
17th Airborne reference thread 7046FCFB-9DD0-4594-B070-E6B4E7AC1BCD_zpsa4zkrmij

When compared against the 82nd/101st type the increase in size is noticeable. Sewn into position at the same point on the leg there is roughly and extra inch in depth.
17th Airborne reference thread 53993CFA-D0C8-44F0-B30E-94A48024B6E3_zpsmms4hsq9

The last noticable difference is the knee patches. Large in size, and I'd say bigger than those seen on M42 pants, they typically had a cross stitched over them and this can be seen on originals.

17th Airborne reference thread 9C4376B5-9190-4163-B7DD-D049765C6458_zpstrcb3m9o

Next up a few photos from the time of the 513th PIR in the Bulge.

The first shows divisional troops with a group of surrendered Germans. Of note is the NCO with the M1. He is wearing a 17th Abn SSI, something rarely seen by this division and I've only seen one other that I can think of where a trooper has one sewn on. The other area of interest is again his M43 pants, the larger pockets and leg ties can be seen.

17th Airborne reference thread AF58A6E9-5011-4E05-AEEC-DD6A51BB85DF_zpsj5j33v3c

17th Airborne reference thread 7027D109-4AE6-4477-88F1-EF6C45E3811B_zpszxtwlh8g

The next is of A Co,513th PIR as they were photographed on the move to reserve positions near Senonchamps. On the first two troopers closest to the camera and the trooper with the tree branch sticking out of his shoulder all have distinctively faded patches on their knees. Now given how the treated canvas turns grey with use/washes I beleive this clearly shows the modifications mentioned above in use in the Bulge.

17th Airborne reference thread 7C57AC88-151F-4CE9-AA23-FBDBB4EE3BC1_zpsvhtjv7rp

17th Airborne reference thread 36BAE791-57EC-4134-8AA4-0B3D363F828A_zpsybetdqaz

The final photo shows troopers of the 513th PIR moving up the line to Liheraine on the 21 January 1945. Note the amount wearing white sheets over the helmet.

17th Airborne reference thread 3CBF161A-DE0A-4ABB-B8DD-AB9CE3852E93_zpsvlpn50ow

Hope they are useful!

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Post  murph Mon Nov 17, 2014 9:11 pm

Thanks Jon.

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Post  samharris45 Mon Nov 17, 2014 9:44 pm

Very good mate, thanks.
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Post  Dantheman Mon Nov 17, 2014 9:52 pm

Nice one Jon!

Great reference material indeed.

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Post  Guest Mon Nov 17, 2014 10:04 pm

Glad it's of use. Now I've found those photos I'm definitely going to be wearing my 17th Abn style M43's on the March. Had them 4 years and never worn once!

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Post  Tom Sainter Sun Nov 23, 2014 10:20 pm

Nice referenced material there Jon, thanks.
Would I be right in thinking that the 513th where the only unit in the 17th AB though that had the knee patches?

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Tom
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Post  Dantheman Sun Nov 23, 2014 10:25 pm

Tom Sainter wrote:Nice referenced material there Jon, thanks.
Would I be right in thinking that the 513th where the only unit in the 17th AB though that had the knee patches?

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Good question Tom. That was my understanding too??? ....Jon???

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Post  Guest Mon Nov 24, 2014 1:07 am

Dantheman wrote:
Tom Sainter wrote:Nice referenced material there Jon, thanks.
Would I be right in thinking that the 513th where the only unit in the 17th AB though that had the knee patches?

Regards
Tom

Good question Tom. That was my understanding too??? ....Jon???

As far as i know yes

However......

I have seen pre Varsity photos of glider riders sat next to their Wacos waiting to leave with the bigger pockets and knee patches!!!!!

Ill try and dig it out but it goes to show that when you think you finally understand something theres a photo lurking out there to balls it all up!

Like the 82nd POW paratrooper in Normandy wearing buckle boots i found today....

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Post  Guest Mon Nov 24, 2014 12:58 pm

17th Airborne reference thread 2C09BFF8-D1E7-4859-B2F3-09777614FC74_zpscetyp5hi

Note the trooper on the ground with his headto the right of the photo. Clearly shows reinfored patches on the trousers.

Not sure which GIR but definitely not paratroopers.

Id say it is a safe bet that throughout the whole Div this modification was carried out by the riggers just not all troopers opted for it or maybe it applied only to those who had been in the division longer and it was a practise only done for a certain amount of time so replacements didnt have it carried out when they turned their M43's into their riggers.

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Post  Tom Sainter Tue Nov 25, 2014 3:21 pm

Cool stuff, nice pics. Thanks Jon that has answered a few questions I've had for a while.

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