Equipment  and Tools

(click on pictures to enlarge)

AAF Navigator's Flight log sheet (unused).

AAF Form 21-A1, dated September 15, 1942. For AAF navigators to fill in every detail of their flight; course bearings, fuel consumption, as well as comments and notes about the flight etc. Folded - opens up to 26" x 20" with every bit of space taken up. Just shows how much work was expected of navigators! A superb display item for any AAF bombing scene. Unused, in mint condition. 2 SOLD - 1 available.

$25 / £22 / €24 

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RAF Navigation plotting chart (Air) for Touluse, 1942.

Drawn up in 1941 with additions and corrections November 1942, this paper air chart would be used by RAF navigators plotting bomb routes to Toulouse in the South of France. Very good condition with some creasing and soiling around the edges from storage. Charts depicting targets in Europe are far more scarce than the common;y seen training charts of Great Britain.

$55 / £42 / €50  

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RAF OPs Room plotting tile indicating aircraft strength of 12.


One of a small selection of extremely rare and highly sought after original Ops Room accessories offered this week. This is a small metal tile indicating strength of aircraft and would have been placed on a small wooden block and then pushed across the Ops Room table chart by WAAFs using croupier sticks. This tile indicates 12 aircraft. It has a small integral stand / tab to the rear for mounting on the block. Retains 98% original white painted finish and black lettering.

$125 / £95 / €1158 

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RAF navigation plotting chart of Great Britain, 1943 series, second edition dated 1944.


Quite a scarce item. Large single sided navigator's plotting chart, 42" x 32" printed in red ink for nighttime/low-light visibility. Produced for the War Office by Ordinance Survey. It shows only major cities and towns, elevations and lighthouses that can be used for navigation, but no military installations, ports, aerodromes etc. because being carried in the aircraft, it could fall into enemy hands. Also has corrections for magnetic north etc. Essentially an aeronautical chart as used by navigators in heavy bombers. This one is large scale of Great Britain and Eastern Ireland. Very good condition with some minor wear/soiling at the edges.

$55 / $45 / €50  email to secure this item

WWI era miniature German-French Dictionary.

I found this some time ago in the pocket of a WWI uniform I was handling at the time. It was quite possibly a soldier's best friend at one time: a German-French Dictionary, but in miniature, so it could easily be  carried, and if necessary concealed. Measuring less than 2" x 1.5"  x  .5" thick (5cm x 3.5cm x 7mm thick) with an incredible 590 pages! It has tiny print but could be very useful to anyone trying to evade capture or escape, or accidentally wondering across the lines (as many did in the Great War). Cover is red waterproofed linen. Printed in Leipzig by Schmidt and Gunther. A remarable find.

$35 / £25 / €30   email to secure this item

US 48 star, 12" x 18" double-sided printed cotton flag.

Not sure if this was issued as part of the survival kits in WWII (and Korea) for identification purposes, or for sewing to the back of a jacket for ID. No sleeve for a pole or tie tapes, otherwise I would think perhaps vehicle use. Unissued, excellent condition, folded and starched. 

1 sold / 2 available. Price each:

$20 / £15 / €18   email to secure this item

Hand painted Korean War era South Korea flag "Taegukgi."

Beautifully painted or hand silk-screened, double sided heavy cotton flag, approx. 24" x 16" with tie tapes for attaching to a pole. Perhaps a vehicle flag used in the Korean war? Lovely condition and obviously vintage.

$35 / £27 / €32   email to secure this item

AAF Type E-6B Dead Reckoning Flight Computer / Plotter with leatherette case.

The standard issue Dead Reckoning Flight Computer and Plotter of the Army Air Corps throughout WWII. Nice example, well marked with AAF nomenclature and 1942 contract/order date. Complete with its original leatherette case.

$45 / £35 / €40   email to secure this item

US Army Ordnance Dept Waltham wristwatch model OF476620.


Though not specific to aviation personnel, this watch is similar in many ways to the AAF issue watches and was occasionally issued as substitute standard. Quite a rare watch, it has 17 jewels and a waterproof case. Watch is currently not running but I have had it examined by a local watchmaker who says it could be made to work easily. It has a couple of small screws missing which hold the interior workings in place (a previous owner used a drop of glue instead and this has now separated). The springs, balance staff etc. appear to be all good. It needs thoroughly cleaning and the crews replacing - but the seller wants me to sell "as is." Crystal is slightly loose, dial has "burn" marks from the luminous paint. Hands are original. Original OD green cotton strap. Quite a scarce watch.

$300 / £245  / €275  email to secure this item

RAF issue chess / backgammon board. 


Often seen in photos of the ready room/standby areas during the Battle of Britain and later as crews tried to occupy themselves prior to scrambling or missions (see last photo). It’s a chess/draughts board on one side and a backgammon board to the reverse, made from plywood and then covered in linen printed with the playing surfaces. It is Air Ministry marked as well as maker marked and dated 1941. Boards just like these were also “doctored” before being shipped to prisoners in official parcels and could conceal maps and other clandestine items underneath the linen or sandwiched in layers of the plywood. A neat and very scarce home-base item item in its own right.


£130 / $175 / €150  email to secure this item

AAF Pilot's Navigation Kit to pilot of 489 BG, 846 BS, 8th AF - complete.


The most complete example of one of these kits I have ever come across, named to Lt. W.S. Buckmaster, 489 BG, 846 BS. The leather case is in excellent condition, with just little wear at the edges and fully functioning zip fastener and contains the owner's photo ID card plus some printed name tapes; 11 wartime aeronautical charts of the US, mostly east coast plus Pheonix, Detroit, Milwaukee, etc.  Additional 5 charts of Asia and the Pacific, Indian Ocean, Philipines, etc plus military street maps of Tokyo and Manila. Owner was in Europe with 489BG and then later in the Pacific.  Includes several blank navigation plotting sheets and landing fields/bases en route. Also includes his "housewife" sewing kit and E6-B computer. A full case in great condition which would be well worth further research.

$475 / £365 / €425  email to secure this item

US Army web belt with dressing pouch and dressing, canteen and mess kit. Belonged to AAF pilot of the 489 BG, 846 BS.


Came with the Pilot's Navigation Kit listed above.  Comprises khaki web belt with pouch for field dressing dated 1943, filed dressing present and unopened. Also includes 1918 dated canteen pouch with 1943 dated canteen and lid, plus mess tin with handle. Mess tin is Korean War dated (1953). Named to Lt. W.S. Buckmaster who served with the AAF in WWII. It is not unusual to find mixed dates on equipment, since the exact same model was still in use until the 1960s. It is likely Buckmaster stayed in or rejoined during the Korean War and was issued this kit at that time. A nice set all in good condition.

$75 / £62 / €78  email to secure this item

RAF ensign or "duster" dated 1941, probably from an ASR launch.


Please don't confuse this fabulous flag with the horrible aged fakes currently appearing a well-known online auction! This is a 100% original RAF ensign or "duster" as they were known, made from wool and sewn together from separate pieces, NOT printed onto cotton or linen as these modern copies are. Each different colour is a separate piece of woven wool cloth. The flag measures 48" x 24" and so is quite likely from an Air Sea Rescue launch (it was found in Falmouth, Cornwall, which also supports that idea). Nice broad arrow mark and a clear date code of 1941. Still has its halyard and hooks attached. Some light staining but no damage or wear. A beautiful and genuine wartime RAF ensign.

$485 / £380 / €425  email to secure this item

RAF Airman's Kit Bag showing multiple owners and dated 1940.

Exactly what an airman, including fighter pilots, carried all their kit in when they were posted from base to base. Large, heavy white canvas kit bag with grommets for securing with a rope at the top (rope not present). The circular flap tucked inside to keep everything dry and stop it falling out. Beautifully marked with Air Ministry stamp and crown plus dated 1940. Has several names hand inked and then crossed out, sadly suggesting something happened to previous owners and bag was reissued, since these traveled with an airman wherever he went. A couple of worn areas on one edge but otherwise still very strong. A great piece of history and a wonderful item for displaying with uniforms, flying kit etc. especially relating to the Battle of France and Battle of Britain. 

$80 / £62 / €72  email to secure this item

Scarce and interesting near complete set of 24 WWII Royal Navy Admiralty charts of the Mediterranean plus 4 additional charts including Spain, Portugal and North Africa.

The first time I have ever seen these. From the estate of a Fleet Air Arm Observer who flew in Swordfish, Albacore and Avenger aircraft from various carriers. This is a near complete set of charts (numbered sheets 1 to 26 with only sheets 18 and 24 missing). Each sheet is printed on very heavy paper, single sided, approx. 17" x 17" (43cm x 43cm). In additon, there are 4 additional sheets: Spain and Portugal, N. Africa (2) and a different scale Mediterranean (Italy). 28 total sheets. All are dated from 1939-42 with some annotations. Very good condition overall, one or two are grubby from storage but no damage. Excellent for a table top or wall display. If no one buys as a set I will consider selling separately.


$150 / £115 / €135  email to secure this item

RARE RAF / Fleet Air Arm glass mounted aircraft recognition slides of later wartime / early postwar aircraft 

The last of a large batch I bought of the many years ago. These are official Air Ministry / Admiralty Aircraft Recognition slides, 3" x 3" (75mm x 75mm) with the celluloid slide mounted between two sheets of glass. Many rare aircraft are featured - including the Saro A1 jet flying boat fighter, Sea Hornet, Sea Vampire, Sea Fury, Meteor, etc. (see pictures). All are in excellent condition; 2 have hairline cracks in one side of the glass but are securely held together by the taped edge. One has a series of spider cracks in one side but is again held securely by the tape. Will be well-padded for safe posting (they came to me from the UK).  16 slides in total.

$90 / £70 / €80  email to secure this item

RAF navigator's Douglas Combined Protractor and Parallel Rule 

Another invaluable tool for the navigator of the heavy bomber but also used by fighter pilots. This example is identical to the above, but shows a little more use; the clear acetate has yellowed slightly and it is a bit more rubbed / scratched. Slightly different Air Ministry A-crown-M mark and 6B/47 (no asterisk). 

$20 / £16 / €18  email to secure this item

Extremely rare and important flight chart / Ordnance Survey map dated 1912 and used by the Royal Aircraft Establishment Experimental Squadron in WWI.


1912 Ordnance Survey map of northern Hampshire, in southern England, showing Winchester and Alton. This neighborhood was the home of the very first military flying organization, The Royal Aircraft Factory (RAF), which was renamed Royal Aircraft Establishment in 1918 to avoid confusion with the newly named Royal Air Force (also RAF). The location of many well known early airfields can be seen and what is presumably a flight plan, following the railway lines to Andover, is marked in pencil.  Map is linen backed, in excellent condition, slightly grubby at the edges, and measures 31" x 21" (78 cm x 53 cm). There is clear ink stamp to the cover which reads: Royal Aircraft Establishment Experimental Squadron. 


Priced at £120 / $150  / €140  email for more details

4 x US Navy aircraft miniature spotter models for use with aircraft carrier spotter models.

Very rare miniature aircraft spotter models cast from aluminium and used on models of aircraft carriers for identifying the difference between friend and foe. Some corrosion and surface pitting but retain their shape well and their scarcity cannot be overstated. Average 1 inch wingspan. Includes Zeke (Zero), Val, Kate and Grumman F-4F all dated 1943.


£40 / $55 / €45  email to secure this item

Scarce USAAF aircraft ID model moulded in black heavy rubber. "British Marauder" and "US B-26"

These aircraft ID models make lovely collectibles in their own right! Approx. 1/76 / 00 scale moulded in black rubber. This one is labeled as a "British Marauder" and US B-26. It is not warped and misshapen as are many, but it does have some kind of coating which is peeling or blistering in a couple of spots. There is also a hairline separation of the bottom of the fuselage but this doesn't show and could easily be repaired with a dab of glue if necessary. Otherwise it's a beauty and these are quite scarce. Priced according to condition. 


$65 / £50 / €60  email to secure this item

Cased 1940s era Carl Zeiss 8 x 30 binoculars.

Carl Zeiss Deltrintem 8 x 30 binoculars with original fitted leather case. Though not military marked, these are WWII era binoculars and exactly the type that would be used by Luftwaffe and other branches of the military while observing enemy activity from the ground; perhaps by observers in aircraft - and almost certainly for hunting (as they were encouraged to do). The German firm of Zeiss offered the best optics available and these binoculars still function superbly. Show use, some paint chips etc. but glass and optics are still excellent. Fitted case is serial numbered inside S-2448. Case lacks strap and leather covering on springs of clasp is gone, otherwise excellent. Binoculars have their strap attached.


$100 / £78 / €90  email to secure this item

Cold War era German military "walkie-talkie" two way radio. 

My guess is this is from the 1960s or early 1970s. Very similar to the WWII pattern two-way radio but slightly streamlined. Complete and includes the full length antenna which is often missing or broken. No idea if it works (you'd need another one to fnd out!) but it is in great condition. 


$55 / £44 / €50  email to secure this item

© 2020  Vintage Flying Helmets

Superb original WWI WRAF photograph


Excellent and large fornat original photograph showing three women of the WRAF in WWI. an outstanding example of the uniforms they wore c.1918-19.  Approx. 4" x 6" with slight creasing / cracking at bottom corners.


£28 / $35  / €30  email for more details