© 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

SALES May - June 2018

(click on pictures to enlarge)

Superb pair of Army Air Corps type B-3 flying goggles by Luxor Meyerowitz.

 

Absolutely superb pair of 1920s Luxor Meyerowitz flying goggles, the type issued to the US Army Air Corps in the 1920s and early 1930s as the model B-3. This pair is in excellent condition, retaining nice pliable cushions, both of which have the patent date of May 8, 1926 moulded into the rubber. Cylindrical (rather than bulbous) lenses tinted grey/green and a great embroidered label on the strap. Frames are Marked Luxor, Made in USA. Nicest pair I have seen in a long time.

 

SOLD

RCAF flying helmet receivers and wiring loom.

For the early Canadian version of the Type B flying helmet, metal receivers with cord and plug labeled "Receivers headgear MC Mk I" in unissued condition, ready to install.

 

SOLD

AAF aerial delivery container lamp.

 

Attached to the containers dropped by parachute to allied infantry and resistance fighters, these signal lamps enables the containers to be seen in the air and on the ground, they also indicated what sort of stores were contained inside.

(Amber, as in this case, indicated odinance and munitions). Not a common item, well marked and in perfect condition. 

 

SOLD

Set of two rare original RAF Auxiliary Air Force recruiting posters.

 

Two recruiting posters for the Auxiliary Air Force. The AAF was known, before the war and during he Battle of Britain, as “the best flying club in the world” because it was essentially for the wealthy and titled to learn to fly exotic aircraft such as the Spitfire etc. as “weekend warriors.” The AAF  went on to distinguish itself greatly during the war and eventually, in 1947 was granted the “Royal Warrant” (renamed the Royal Auxiliary Air Force”. These two posters are especially interesting as the designs date to late World War II (late Mk Spitfires are illustrated) and the artwork refers to the “Auxiliary Air Force” with a label added (stuck on) at the bottom which says “Now the Royal Auxiliary Air Force." One of the posters was later used to make a home-made poster on the back giving contact information  encouraging AAF aircrew to “stay on in the regular Air Force" when the war is over. Both are used. One has some creases and slight tears that have been carefully repaired using rice paper tape on the back. None of this shows from the front at all. The edge of that poster has a couple of chips with loss to the edge at one side, but the art is complete and unaffacted. The colours are bright and clear and they will look great framed. Auxiliary Air Force items such as this almost never turn up! Sizes are 14” x 19” and 15” x 20"

 

SOLD

RARE RAF Caterpillar club grouping to a Typhoon fighter pilot, together with medals, photographs and well documented research.

 

Caterpillar Club pins and membership cards are extremely rare and highly sought after - those to fighter pilots especially so, being much more scarce. This complete grouping includes the gold pin with "ruby" eyes, named to the recipient, Noel Boreland, a South African who flew with his identical twin brother Doug for 266 (Rhodesia) Squadron, RAF, flying Typhoons based at Warmwell, Devon. In those days, the Typhoon still had a bad reputation for engine reliability and , on June 21st, 1943, Noel's aircraft suffered engine failure resulting in him bailing out over the sea - hence he joined the Caterpllar Club! He spent just 15 minutes in the water before being picked up by a Supermarine Walrus, then finding out he had landed (and thus, the Walrus also landed) in a minefield! Both brothers were involved in many aerial combats, as well as ground attack and tank busting, and full biographical and combat history is included with the  grouping. Noel was shot down by flak and killed on April 23rd, 1945, just before te end of the war. His brother survived. Also included with the pin and card are his medals, mounted for display, including the Aircrew Europe Star - and all are engraved with his name. A large, 9" x 12" by 1" thick custom made leather-bound book with more than 100 pages of history, research, copies of the squadron's Operational Record Book entries and other documents, plus original and copy photographs is also included, together with an original 266 squadron enameled pin badge. Note: the caterpillar, as well as the squadron pin, has had a safety chain attached by the owner to prevent loss. A very rare, interesting and complete grouping. 

 

SOLD

Extremely rare internally wired RAF Type E flying helmet with official modification to use USAAF ANB-H-1 receivers.

 

In over 30 years of collecting, this is only the second example of a RAF helmet fitted with this type of conversion I have ever come across - complete with its RAF Stores Ref. marked end-caps for the rubber ear cups and linen instruction tag! The helmet is a standard 1944-45 issue internally wired Type E in a large size 3, in very good used condition, no holes, tears or wear, just a little grimy from use and storage. Well marked with broad arrow and Stores Ref. number on the outside. The wiring loom is almost identical to a standard RAF type but has special coloured wires and connection adaptors to enable it to be fitted with ANB-H-1 receivers for use with US built low impedance aircraft radios (such as P-51, P-47, B-24, B-25, B-26 etc). US made aircraft used by the RAF and Fleet Air Arm were fitted with low-impedance radios but had sockets for British type plugs. The receivers are properly installed in the helmet and enclosed by fitting noise-reducing bakelite end-caps (stores ref. 10A/15902) which can be popped out for access during repairs / replacement. The cord still has its official OHMS cloth tag attached with instructions for use! An extremely rare variation.

SOLD

Scarce Great War Royal Flying Corps cowl type flying helmet.

 

Now harder than ever to find, these cowl type helmets were issued to all RFC pilots and aircrews, though they are said to have been favoured by gunners who had to stand up in their turrets and were exposed to cold air - however photgraphs show they were also worn extensively by pilots of both figher (scout ) aircarft and bombers. In overall great display condition, the leather is very good, although it could probably use some dressing. The chamois lining is also good and the War Dept issue stamp can be seen, though faintly, inside. The fur area has moulted, as is common, and the skin shows some minor insect damage, but this doesn't show when displayed. The helmet retains it's earflaps and original chin strap and nuckle. The padded cylinders were clearly removed at the time (as was common practice - they were found to be useless at deflecting sound and actually caused more noise from vibrating). The keather is evenly faded around their stitch holes showing this was definitely a period modification. A very scarce helmet in good to very good condiiton.

 

SOLD

Excellent early WWII French L'Armée de L'Air Type 11 flying helmet by Gueneau.

 

Lovely example of this stylish flying helmet used by French Air Force pilots before and during the Battle of Britain (those who were lucky enough to evade capture after France was occupied). Hard shell covered with leather, heavily padded sides and back with provision for telephone receivers and also the hooks mounted for attaching the scarce early French oxygen mask. The leather is in very good condition, all fittings are present and in good condition, with surface oxidation to chinstrap rings. Helmet retains its paper label with faint writing and what looks like Mars or Mai 1940 date of manufacture. Large size. Great helmet.

 

SOLD

1930s - WWII Cicogna Italian flying goggles with tin.

 

Classic Italian flying goggles of the early WWII period, similar in design to the Luxor Meyerovitz with eliptical lenses, plated frames and rubber cushions. Very good condition. The rubber is, as usual, quite stiff, but not damaged or misshapen. Strap has lost elasticity. Frames show very light oxidation from age and lenses are clear. Tin case is decorated with the cicogna (stork" emblem and still has part of its original "tax" stamp attached to the lid. A scarce find, perfect for the early war display.

 

SOLD

Outfit, anti-dimming Mk VI as issued with RAF Mk VIII flying goggles.

 

A hard-to-find accessory that is invariably missing from the boxed Mk VIII goggles. The small yellow metal tin contains a cloth, impregnated with compound which when moistened would both clean goggle lenses and reduce fogging. Contains cloth inside, intact but with rust staining. Dated 2/43.

SOLD

Scarce AAF Type A-10 standard oxygen mask unmodified with original straps.

 

Very scarce these days, especially in such good condition. The A-10 standard oxygen mask replaced the A-9 through it different only in having an extra strap from the bridge of the nose to the top of the helmet. Most A-10 standard masks were later modified by cutting them down and replacing the straps - this is an unmolested early model, dated 10-42 and still has its elongated cheeks and long straps. It lacks only the short "garter" type strap at the nose but still has its rubber extension and small moulded  "button." The rubber is in superb condition, nice and pliable with no signs of aging or perishing, including the hose. Good grey green colour. One side of the nosewire has pulled out from it's lug but this could be restored easily or left as is. A rare find.

 

SOLD

Signalling mirror / heliograph carried in the RAF 1941 pattern life vest "Mae West".

 

Small cotton / linen pouch which fits conveniently into the small pocket on the front of the 1941 pattern "Mae West". Though technically these were for use with the dinghy, many pilots carried these in the Mae West pocket. Comprises a small square "mirror" of polished steel with instructions printed to the rear and a small hole in the centre. Attached by a short length of string is a sighting device to line up with the hole and direct sunlight towards a passing ship or aircraft. This example is in unissued condition, with very slight oxidation on the sighting tool. 

 

SOLD

High visibility yellow skull cap for the RAF 1941 pattern life vest "Mae West".

 

This was one of the first survival aids to be issued after the introduction of the 1941 pattern life vest. A simple cotton cap with two tapes to tie around the chin. It served two purposes: 1. to protect the wearer from the sun and 2. to provide a high visibility aid for rescuers. In effect, it was not visible from altitude, nor from rescue boats over the swells of the sea and its issue was discontinued when the floating torch was issued. As a result many remained in stores and until a few years ago were common items; these days, like everything else, they are getting harder to find - especially in perfect, unissued condition as this one is. Good crisp A-crown-M stamp.

 

SOLD

Toggle rope for the RAF 1941 pattern  life vest "Mae West".

 

Thin but strong hemp rope with a wooden "toggle" handle which was securely attached to the life vest and then used to secure the vest to the dinghy and to other crew members. Later vests had a metal screw system for added security but these ropes remained part of the Mae West throughout the war. This example has never been issued or used and is still coiled and loosely bound with string.

SOLD

RAF tube (pealess) whistle. Type used by aircrews prior to "snail" ditching whistle.

 

Air  Ministry / RAF marked police whistle, based on the First World War "pealess" type and complete with its original chain and hanger. This type was used by pilots and aircrews early in the war, attached to the life vest, prior to the introduction of the "snail" style ditching whistle and later plastic  whistle. Lovely Air Ministry and maker markings. Retains most of its nickel plated finish and in excellent condition.

 

SOLD

Superb and ultra rare Distinguished Unit Citation streamer for Ploesti plus photos and bombing chart.

 

Blue streamer, just over 36-inches long x 275 inches wide, chain-stitch embroidered with one word "Ploesti" for the attack on the oil refineries in Romania in1943 and 1944, this streamer would have been attached to the Bomb Group or Squadron colors for permanent display and use at ceremonial events. It is royal blue, the same colour as the ribbon worn on uniforms of members of the Group or Squadron given the prestigious and meritorious award of a Distinguished Unit Citation (also known as a Presidential Unit Citation). Comes together with two original photographs of B-24s bombers flying over the oil refineries at Ploesti, illustrating how low they had to fly, and also a double-sided bombing chart of the Skoa Arms factory in Czechoslovakia, another major target of 15th Air Force bombers. Unfortunately no ID with this to show which unit it belonged to - but perhaps it is possible to identify the aircraft in the photographs. A tremendous find, far more rare than a squadron or group patch and highly desirable, especially with further esearch.

SOLD

 

Rare WWII US Navy flight jacket patch for Torpedo bombing squadron VT-2.

 

Superb embroidered patch depicts a cartoon characterized fused / grenade style bomb riding on the back of a torpedo, on a blanket wool background. Has been sewn on a jacket and worn but remains in excellent condition. VT-2 and VTB-2 was stationed on USS Hornet and USS Lexington. An extremely rare patch and 100% original. 

SOLD

 

RCAF flying helmet receivers and wiring loom.

For the early Canadian version of the Type B flying helmet, metal receivers with cord and plug labeled "Receivers headgear MC Mk I" in unissued condition, ready to install.

 

SOLD

Excellent used WWII RAF Type G oxygen mask.

 

If you like your flying gear with real history as opposed to unused and out of the box, then you won't find a better example than this of a Type G oxygen mask in used but clean, very good condition. Issued and worn but with no excessive wear, no splits or damage to the rubber of any kind that I can see, just light use and a name inked inside. Nose wire is secure with no damage to the moulded lugs; suede lining has light evidence of use; strap still has elasticity and some minor staining fro storage. Overall and outstanding example of a mask that was "there." Has that nice "green"colour associated with the early production runs. God Type 48 microphone with short lead and plug, black rubber retaining ring is excellent. These are getting harder and harder to source.

 

SOLD

Two-piece floating torch for the RAF 1941 pattern live vest "Mae West".

 

Getting very difficult to find these days, this is the classic floating torch in two sections: the metal battery housing and wooden float with white lamp attached. The wiring is intact though the rubber coating has, as is usual, hardened and is brittle and breaking away. Other than that the two pieces are in excellent condition with no dings or dents and only minor paint loss to the metal housing which includes a nice clear A-crown-M Air Ministry mark. The base of the lamp also has the date 44 on its lead weighted base. 

SOLD

Good RAF Type B flying helmet  in a very rare Extra Large size 4.

 

A good Type B flying helmet in used condition but in a very hard to find and desirable size 4 (etra large - the biggest size they made). Very few were produced in the size 4 - the majority being size 2 and then 3, with 4 being the smallest production run. This helmet has its Frank Bryan, London and Worcester label and is dated 1941, the last year of manufacture. The leather is in very good condition, nice and supple with no damage or excessive wear, with the exception of the two very small quarter circle panels that cover each end of the chins strap.For some reason the leather here is cracked and partly worn away - though it remains pliable. I suspect it may have been subjected to heat? The rest of the leather, and the chaps lining, is very good indeed. Both Bennett buckles have lost their leather covering, there are no receiver holders fitted (it was common for pilots to remove them) and there is no metal tip on the chin strap - yet both leather zip pullers are present. Fitted with a pair of RCAF marked sponge rubber cups in each ear compartment. A good helmet despite its flaws and especially considering its size.

SOLD

Excellent pair of Army Air Corps type B-6 flying goggles with their aluminum case.

 

Lovely pair of scarce US Army Air Corps B-6 flying goggles. These are the real McCoy (NOT the commercial "Air Transport Goggles" which are often mistaken for B-6 but lack the tube vents). These goggles have the welded tube vents and chrome plated frames as well as the classic Art Deco "wings" motif to the bridge. Frames, lenses and rubber cushions are all in excellent condition - the rubber is soft and pliable, if slightly grubby. Strap has lost most of its elasticity but is a lovely rich tan colour. The case is undented. A lovely set of scarce goggles that will display perfectly. These were still in use until well into WWII.

SOLD

Unissued, still sealed RAF oxygen tube / hose for G, H type mask.

 

This is a MK 7B oxygen mask tube which is identical to the WWII issue except for the connector which has a bail-out port and a carabiner style clip rather than the crocodile clip.  Issued early 1960s so a perfect fit for the H mask listed above, but the plastic screw-in connector will also attach perfectly to a Type G mask. I have not unwrapped this because the plastic bag is still sealed, but from the feel of it through the wrapping it is in perfect condition.

SOLD

Superb 1930s Royal Navy officer's service dress (peaked) cap with white cover.

 

Beautifully tailored RN officers cap worn by all branches of the Royal navy, including the Fleet Air Arm, and would go well with the FAA uniform offered for sale (though it did not come with it). Dark blue wool cap with patent leather peak and chin strap, black mohair band, concentric circular quilted lining and excellent badge. Includes detachable white cotton top for summer wear. Pre-war quality tailoring. An outstanding example with light use but no serious wear or damage.

 

SOLD

RARE fur-lined variation of Luftwaffe winter flying helmet in superb condition, size extra large, complete with receivers and throat microphones with full length cord and plug.

 

Absolutely superb and complete Luftwaffe LKpW101 flying helmet in a very large size 61, complete with throat microphones, long cord and plug and in the much more unusual rabbit fur lined variation. Great label indicating hdd manufacture and a very large size 61 (equivalent of extra large). Other than very minor rubbing on the ear cups this helmet is in virtually unissued and unworn condition, extremely hard to find in such a large size and very difficult to upgrade. Clean leather, full thick rabbit fur lining, complete with built-in receivers with celluloid inserts, as well as long cord and "bee-hive" plug. 

SOLD

Luftwaffe survival kit goggles / sunglasses by Nitsche and Gunther.

 

Issued as part of the survival kit to be carried in the Channel trousers, but also actually worn as sunglasses, sometimes underneath flying goggles, these Nitsche and Gunther glasses feature tinted neophan glass lenses in aluminum frames with a grey leather face mask with small anti-fogging vents and a grey fabric and elastic strap. Some minor loss of paint to the metal frames, but otherwise these are in excellent condition, the leather is soft and the elastic still stretches like new. 

SOLD

AAF Type A-10 Revised (A-10R) oxygen mask complete with straps and hose.

 

Becoming very difficult to find, the A-10R was the penultimate variation of this much used oxygen mask. The first type, the A-10, was fitted with large side flaps and an extension to the bridge of the nose for use with a full "Juliet" harness or the B-6 helmet. Many were cut down in the factory to use with short side straps (like this) and reissued as the A-10 Modified (A-10M). This deisgn was finally produced from new moulds and issued as the A-10R (this mask is an example). The final version was the A-10A. This example of the A-10R has some issues with the edge of the rubber at the nose and upper left cheek, where it has hardened and split. The damage is minimal and appears to have been contained. It might be improved with careful use of rubber cement. It displays fine. There is also some surface crazing, but this does not affcet the pliability of the rubber and looks worse in the photographs than t is! The hose appears to be fine and the straps are clean. It retains its nose wire, often missing. Dated 4.43. Generally acceptable for display and priced according to its condition.

 

SOLD