© 2019  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

Flying Jackets and Clothing

(click on pictures to enlarge)

Unissued / unworn yellow leather USN B-3A flying gloves.

Identical to wartime issue, these popular gloves continued in use with both the USAF and USN into the 1950s. This pair dates from the Korean War era, having a MIL spec serial number. Soft yellow leather gloves are still tacked together as issued, with USN ink stamp to back of both hands and nomenclature ink stamped inside both gloves. Excellent example.

 

$75 / £58/ €68   email to secure this item

AAF A-9 Gunner's Mittens.

Good matched pair, small size with great labels. Leather is soft and pliable,  very good with no damage or wear. Sheepskin lining has wear and a few bald patches with some drying out but they still display well.

 

ON HOLD

AAF Type A-11A Flying Gloves.

One of the most difficult of the USAAF flying gloves to find, the A-11A was extremely popular with fighter pilots. Unlined dark brown leather with an elastic gusset at the wrist - they provided minimum protection but did not interfere with the "feel" of the controls. This pair is in excellent condition, both with clear white ink stamped markings inside.

$125 / £100 / €115  email to secure this item

Scarce  RAF Battle of Britain 1939 pattern flying boots.

Among the most difficult and most sought after of RAF flying boots, because they were only issued for slightly over a year. Intended a a more economical replacement for the all leather 1936 pattern (and made from the exact same pattern, but using waterproofed canvas for the uppers) they were found to hold moisture and freeze at altitude, and were quickly superseded by the all suede 1940 pattern. Since their era encompassed July-October 1940, they became synonymous with Battle of Britain fighter pilots. This pair has seen use. Though complete and very displayable, the interiors shows signs of moulting (one is worse than the other as seen in the pictures). There was a patch over a worn area on the ankle of the left boot, long since removed. Heels have been replaced and one sole (again long ago) and one puller has pulled off (now missing). However they are a matching pair, the same size (UK9, fitting 6). They have the slightly less common leather straps and buckles instead of the canvas webbing straps. Leather is very good, straps and buckles are complete and intact, both are AID marked and one retains its incised A-crown-M label. A decent entry level pair of these quite rare boots, priced according to condition.

$520 / £400 / €465  email to secure this item

RAF 1941 pattern  gauntlets.

 

A good pair of RAF 1941 pattern flying gauntlets. As is often the case, not a perfect match - but very close in appearance. One is marked size 9 and the other size 10 - though in fact there is no discernable difference and without doubt they were issued and worn as a pair. They show use but the leather is very good and soft, if somewhat grubby. There is a very neat period repair to the index fingertip on the right hand, but you have to look hard to find it. I would say these belonged to a gunner, because the right hand shows slightly more wear than the left, and is a little dirtier, especially around the trigger finger. Both zips work perfectly. Overall a vey good, used example, both nicely marked.

$250 / £200 / €225  

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WWII US Army issue general purpose OD wool and leather gloves size 8.

 

Heavy wool gloves with leather palms. General purpose issue for drivers, mechanics, etc. and undoubtedly also worn by aircrews especially gunners and those in exposed or prone positions. Exellent condition with good woven spec. labels in  both gloves indicating contract no. and size. No damage, light use.

$60 / £48 / €54   email to secure this item

RAF Sea Boot Socks.

 

Quite rare to find these days. Heavy, cream coloured wool socks worn over the uniform socks inside the flying boots for extra warmth. Show use and a couple of small holes (though none in the foot area) and retain partial ink stamped markings: the broad arrow is visible on both, and part of the maker's name and date is visible on one (looks like it might be 1941) and what also looks like size 11. Markings look the same but I would say one sock is perhaps a little shorter than the other, but they came as a pair (came with a pair of 36 pattern boots previously sold).

$155 / £125 / €138   

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Very good used pair of WW2 AAF B-3A flying gloves.

 

Nice pair of B-3A flying gloves in a good size 9. Well marked with faint AAF logo to outside and nice clear white ink stamping inside both gloves. Leather is soft and pliable with light wear and no damage. A very decent pair. Getting harder to find all the time these days. 

$85 / £65 / €75  

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Early 1939-40 "Battle of Britain" period Irvin flying jackets.

 

The iconic Irvin flying jacket - synonymous with RAF Battle of Britain fighter pilots (though worn extensively by bomber crews as well). This is an early model, made from multiple sheep pelts to give it as few panels as possible, 2-panel back with just one vertical seam. This jacket has most definitely seen some combat! Fleece is well worn at the collar, cuffs and waist. Main zip fastener has been professionally replaced with a correct brass Lightning zip, almost invisibly, and works perfectly. Sleeve zips are original, but one lacks its slide completely (has been sewn shut) and the other has its slide but no puller. Belt has been cut short (not uncommon because no one wanted loose belts flapping in their cockpit). There is a patch repair to one shoulder, though this blends well and has been done professionally, and one or two other other small "running repairs" most probably carried out during the life of the jacket. On the plus side, it's an early model, quite rare these days; it still has its chain hanger at the neck, and the leather / fleece is otherwise very good, supple and quite strong. It's also a big size (measures 24" armpit to armpit externally). A fair to good entry-level Irvin, rare early model, priced according to its condition.

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

WWI RFC privately-purchased fur-backed heavy gauntlet mittens.

 

A good example of the type of handwear worn early in the war by airmen subject to extreme cold at altitude. These mittens have long, heavy gauntlets covered with thick, dense and fairly coarse fur, with leather palms and linen linings. The gauntlets are not only long, but also wide enough to fit over the heavy leather coats worn by aviators. Though the fur has a few worn spots and some splits to the skin, it is not shedding, and is still remarkably strong. These gauntlets display very well with the classic long chestnut brown leather flying coat. There are no markings that I can see, but in the early days of war, airmen, who were mostly officers, were expected to provide their own flying clothing and equipment, and bought from leading department stores and clothiers.

£220 / $275 / €240  email to secure this item

AAF / USAF M-1947 leather gloves and wool liners

 

Outstanding pair of these interesting utilitarian gloves which were issued in many capacities during the war and continued in use long after WWII. These were eividently redesignated M-1947 in the year the Army Air Forces became the USAF and the colour of the leather changed from brown to black, otherwise identical to the the type issued to aircrews, ground crews and in the C-1 sustenance vest for jungle use during the war. This pair is in unissued condition with no wear or damage and would be impossible to upgrade.

 

£42 / $55  / €47  email to secure this item

RARE pre-WWII prototype or pre-production AAF Type B-1 flight pants.

 

Superb and very rare B-1 flight pants - much less common than the A-3 (worn with the B-3 jacket) yet standard issue at the beginning of WWII. These pants are labeled by embossing directly into the leather on the back at the waist:

Type B-1 PT. NO. 37K5509 MFG. SAAD. Medium.

Nice crisp emboss. SAAD stands for San Antonio Air Depot where a lot of prototype flight clothing was produced. The part number code of 37K might indicate 1937 as year of manufacture. Though they do carry the type designation of B-1, they do not have the Air Corps property stamp or nomenclature suggesting these were a pre-production example which were very likeky tested at one of the AAF bases in San Antonio. These pants are in excellent condition, the shearling is soft and pliable, all Talon zips work fine. There is a small hole, 10mm across, in the crotch area towards the back, which is the only place that shows any wear at all. No rot, no drying, no tears. Built in braces / suspenders and a chain hanger at the waist 

 

£118 / $150  / €135  email to secure this item

Korean War USAF Type A-1 / E-1 series flight suit shirt and trousers made of 100% wool.

 

4-pocket A-1B flight suit "shirt, mens, coat style" in sage wool, size medium and matching E-1B "trousers, flying, inner" size 34 waist with knit cuffs. Jacket has some moth trails (visible in photographs) but no holes except at the edge of the left shirt cuff. Trousers seem to be pretty much moth free, so overall the suit is very good and quite displayable condition. Like a lot of flying clothing from this era, these suits were produced in OD, blue and sage, this being the later version in sage green dating to circa 1953. Generally worn under heavier outer flying clothing such as the B-15 jacket. A nice set.

 

£65  / $85  / €72  email to secure this item