SALES April 2020

(click on pictures to enlarge)

Very early production RAF Type G oxygen mask.

Very good used example of an early production Type G oxygen mask, in dark green rubber with the heavily stippled moulding over the top section of the mask body and "flat" square attachment loop on the webbing strap for securing to the helmet. Mask shows use and is overall slightly grubby, but the rubber is good, with minor surface spider cracks in the high stress areas but no splits, no hardening or sticky areas. Nose wire is intact and in place; nice A-crown-M marked microphone has wear to the edge and one worn spot on cord. Harness is slightly stretched out. Interior suede lining is lightly soiled. Never produced in abundance, these early production masks are quite difficult to find. A good, solid example.

SOLD

Scarce USN Commander flying goggles with tin case by Strauss & Buegeleissen.

Prior to WWII and the need for contacting for larger quantities of equipment, the US Navy purchased much of its flying clothing "off the shelf" from various suppliers, provided the item met with required specifications. The most well known brand was Willson with the "Pilot" goggles. The Resistol company produced a similar design, known commercially as the "Commander" which was also licensed by various department stores who supplied Navy personnel. One of these licensees was the well known department store Strauss & Buegeleissen.  Offered is a lovely pair of original Strauss & Buegeleissen Commander goggles, complete with original storage tin. These were used by US Navy aviators in the 1930s and into WWII. Very good condition; the rubber facemask is soft and pliable despite being folded under in the storage tim for 80 years. Clean frames and large, clear, bulbous lenses. Not sure if strap is original - but it is definitely period.

SOLD

RCAF Mk III Flying Goggles dated 1942.

Very good pair of RCAF Mk III Flying Goggles. Identical to the British made counterpart, except for the markings, the goggles featured clear celluloid acetate lenses, blackened brass frames with large leather pads and spring fabric and leather strap. This set is in very god used condition, with both stoppers present, excellent straps with all springs working and nicely marked leather back strap. Lenses are good with only minor scratches. Definitely a better than average pair.

SOLD

EXTREMELY RARE RAF Mk VA Spectacles, complete with correct strap and flip up screen.

One of the rarest of the RAF goggles/spectacles of the wartime years and especially the Battle of Britain period. These were worn by fighter pilots (see last photo showing a Battle of Britain Hurricane pilot wearing them) as well as crews of reconnaissance aircraft as an aid to spotting enemy aircraft and ships and were first announced in June 1940. Condition is excellent, with slight warping and layer separation to acetate side shields and minor delamination to lenses. Sponge rubber pad is still soft. The difference between "spectacles" and "goggles" in the terminology of the day is that "spectacles" were considered an aid to vision, while "goggles" were intended solely for eye protection. Mk VAs were designed to provide better visibility and were therefore listed as "spectacles." Short side arms were fitted with snaps to attach directly to the Type B helmet, but a strap was also provided which hooked on the side shield frame. Obviously quite fragile, very few have survived, so these spectacles are very rarely found and invariably the strap is missing. 

SOLD

RARE "Golden Arrow" goggles by Indian Motorcycles.

 

Absolutely superb pair of cased goggles  branded with the legendary Indian Motorcycle company logo and labeled for motorcyclist and aviator use. These goggles are the exact same style as the type later adopted by the US Navy as the Mk IV flying goggles. These fit standard B-7 / AN6530 lenses. Goggles have a thin brown rubber face pad with chamois backing; pad is still soft and pliable. Frames have tube vents typical of early B-7 goggles, heavily plated with engraved stylized wings design and grey elastic strap. Strap has one area where it is stretched out, but remains fully elastic. Special velvet lined, fitted leatherette box. Incredibly the Indian brand logo decal remains in place of the rubber pad above the hinge. Just fantastic condition. Though primarily a commercially purchased item, these were highly prized and could well have been purchased by, or given as a gift to, a military flyer. Just superb!

SOLD

Reproduction polarizing sun screen (flip shield) for RAF Mk VII Goggles.

Original flip screens for RAF MK VII goggles are becoming increasingly difficult to source – perhaps understandably – they were fragile to begin with and were not actually issued with the goggles (they had to be requested specially). Prices of complete goggles are extremely high and "loose" or "spare" screen virtually impossible to obtain. This is a custom made reproduction, one of a small batch made several years ago. the spring clip looks the part and the perspex is is excellent, if a little thicker than on originals. It certainly does the job for display or re-enacting, and is considerably more affordable.

SOLD

Reproduction RAF 1932 pattern life saving waistcoat.

 

A really excellent reproduction, made to the highest possible standards, perfect to "fill a gap" or for re-enacting. Colour, construction and markings are virtually indistinguishable from an original, but it does NOT have the rubberized lining inside the float chamber.  Accurate label and markings, including an AID stamp and a brass DOT brand zip fastener with AM marked puller. Does not have a stole or kapok pads but I can highly recommend one of Neil Seaton's excellent reproduction stoles. I had an identical reproduction vest to this a few months ago which contained a Seaton stole and kapoks and sold very quickly! I have been told these were made, in very limited quantities, for use in the movie Pearl Harbor. Without doubt the best reproduction I have ever seen.

SOLD

RCAF wiring loom and receivers for the Type B flying helmet.

Telephone receivers and wiring loom for RCAF Type B flying helmet. Comprises a braided Y-cord with jack and the standard metal receivers.  A scarce communications accessory.

SOLD

Enemy Coast Ahead - autobiography of 617 Dam Busters leader Guy Gibson - first edition, second impression (1946) and uncensored.

 

Enemy Coast Ahead was published in February 1946, just after the war ended. Sadly, Wing Commander Guy Gibson did not live to see it published, but it became an instant best seller and remains popular today as one of the outstanding stories of WWII. This copy d a second impression of the first edition, printed May 1946 - and in excellent condition. Good binding, no damage. lacks original dust jacket and has a tiny bookshop sticker on the inside of the front cover. No writing, no tears or stains. A very good copy. First edition/first printing copies now cost 3 times the asking price of this second impression. Notable also for the fact that modern copies are, sadly, censored due to the name of Gibson's dog, which was also historically the coded message sent by Gibson to indicate a successful mission.

SOLD

Important and highly significant Royal Flying Corps log book and photo grouping to Reginald Collis, who went on to become head of flying training in the RCAF in WW2. 

 

A very significant log book, being the only one of these early "ledger” types I have ever seen and I have no idea how long they were issued. There is also a very extensive grouping of documentation and photos. The first entry in the log book is dated January 1913 (it may well be the oldest surviving RFC pilot log book). It contains lots of WWI combat in the most comprehensive detail and neat handwriting. There are far too many completed pages to photograph all - but these sample pages give you a feel for his attention to detail.  The last entry is September 1916 when Collis was injured in a crash on top of a gasometer! There are 3 photos, tucked inside the log book, of the wreckage - including one of him still sitting/lying  in it. Collis stayed in the RAF, moved to Canada and became head of flying training in Canada in WW2, rising to the rank of Air Vice Marshal. He was also an inventor of some renown and some of his patents are included with the grouping. Several of his patents were registered in Canada and in the US. Also included is a leatherbound 1st edition of “Aviation in Canada” which is a rare book in its own right. Collis has annotated it rather sarcastically. email for complete details.

 

SOLD

Working replica HS-38 headset for AAF flying helmets with ANB-H-1 receivers, braided cord and plug.

 

Remarkable replica headset for all USAAF flying helmets. Looks identical to ANB-H-1 receivers with braided cord and red PL-354 plug - but the receivers are cast from originals and fitted with small, modern earphones (similar to what you get with your phone) and actually work! Braided wiring looks the part too - will fit an A-9, B-6, A-11, AN-H-15 etc. and can be used - or just look great for considerably less than what originals cost these days. Boxed and ready to install.

SOLD

WWII US Navy life vest light.

 

These early, all metal body life vest lights don't turn up as often the later, plastic version. This example is in very good condition with minor paint loss and yellowing to the clear plastic dome. Pin is still affixed to the side and bulb is still present. Nice clear USN to base and BMG maker mark. 

Getting harder to find.

SOLD

USAF CRU-60 oxygen mask hose connector for the ejector seat oxygen supply.

 

A difficult to find accessory for the USAF jet helmet collector.

 

SOLD

Very good RAF Type B Flying Helmet, correctly and officially relabelled by Air Ministry.

A lovely example of a Type B flying helmet in very good, gently used condition, the leather and chamois very clean and untouched. An early production model, which once had a diamond shaped label sewn inside the crown that was carefully removed per Air Ministry directive late in 1940, has been replaced with an official A-crown-M ink stamp. (Directive was to remove all labels indicating company name for fear it would legitimize city of origin as a military target). Heavily padded crown and high quality leather suggests one of the premium manufacturers, perhaps Waddingtons or Wareings. Retains leather covering on Bennett's buckles, metal tip on chin strap and rubber receiver holders. NOS sponge pads are included. Helmet is named inside to Chapman with serial number, so could be researched. Marked as size 2 (Medium) but as with many of these early helmets, it's a generous size.

SOLD

Scarce RCAF wiring loom for late war flying helmets.

Unissued and unused condition wiring loom for the later war RCAF Type C and E pattern flying helmets. Comprises a braided cord with jacks for the microphone lead and culminating in a RAF style bell-shaped plug. The large plug is identical to the RAF type but made of solid, hard rubber. This was secures to the flying helmet with press studs/snaps. A very scarce communications accessory.

SOLD

RAF Type B Flying Helmet, 1939 dated and modified to accept a Type E or G mask, with connection to 246 squadron?

 

Lovely, well-used example of a Type B flying helmet by Wareings of Northampton, dated 1939 and period field modified to use a Type E or G oxygen mask by adding 2 male press stud/snap fasteners on each side. The helmet is further period enhanced by having the number 246 stencilled on the front in chrome yellow aircraft paint. 246 most likely refers to 246 squadron which operated Sunderlands, Liberators and Halifax bombers at different times. This is one of those wonderful character helmets, which is actually in very good overall condition; the leather is great, although both chin and rear strap are slightly stretched from being tightened, and the Bennett buckle on the chin strap has lost its leather covering. The interior shows wear, with some of the chamois torn on the inner left hand side of the brow area, but this is in accordance with honest wear and in no way detracts from the character of the helmet. Size 2 (medium), it sits perfectly on a display head. 

 

SOLD

RAF issue boot/shoe cleaning brush, 1944 dated.

It is so often the little accessories that complete a perfect display. This is something almost never seen: a RAF issue shoe/boot cleaning brush. Still perfectly serviceable, the brush is maker marked with a broad arrow and additionally stamped with the Air Ministry A-crown-M  and RAF stores ref. number as well as the airman's serial number and date of 1944.

6" x 2.125" (15cm x 5.5cm) and natural bristle. Excellent condition.

SOLD

RARE knife for the 1943 Pattern "escape" Flying Boots.

 

Probably the rarest of all WWII "fighting" knives and yet the most simple of design and production. An original knife as issued with the 1943 Pattern Flying Boots, intended for one-time use only - it slipped into a smalll pocket inside the right boot and was used to cut the fleece lined tops from the boots and leave a air of innocent looking walking shoes for the airman to wear while evading capture. All but impossible to find these days. In good condition with light surface oxidation.

SOLD

RARE large signed photograph of Barnes Wallis, inventor of the "Bouncing Bomb."

Fantastic Dambusters centrepiece! Barnes Wallis was the  designer of the Vickers Wellington, among other aircraft. He also created the "bouncing bomb" used in Operation "Chastise" - the highly acclaimed raid against the German Ruhr dams by 617 squadron. A shy and somewhat reclusive gentleman, especially in his later years, Barnes Wallis did not sign a lot of autographs, and this one, dated 1975, is a fabulous example. Signed with ball-point pen in blue ink, the photo is an official b/w professional portrait showing the great inventor in his study, with photos of the dams raid in the background. The photo is a huge 15" x 11.5" (38cm x 29cm) and has some minor creases at the edges but no damage and would frame beautifully for display in a Dambusters collection.

SOLD

Very early production AAF Type B-4 Life Preserver in outstanding condition.

Superb example of a very early production B-4 Life Preserver by Seamless Rubber Company, dated October 1942. Has the early tight weave silky covering to the neoprene rubber and all nickel plated hardware; no neck strap added. Overall condition is fantastic; clean, no stiffening or edge cracks. The only area of concern are the oral inflation tubes which are misshapen but soft and pliable. These could be replaced or perhaps straightened out by inserting a pencil inside? Earliest production date I have ever seen and very difficult to upgrade. This type was used by AAF pilots and aircrews and also by US Paratroopers - there are also photographs of RAF crews wearing them in preference to the 1941 pattern Mae West.

SOLD

AAF Type H-1 Emergency Oxygen Bailout system complete.

 

Scarce oxygen accessory in excellent overall condition. The H-1 system was necessary for high altitude bailout to prevent loss of consciousness from lack of oxygen. Manually operated, the user had to remove their oxygen mask, grip the pipe stem between their teeth, turn on the flow of oxygen and make sure the tank was secure. Tank is dated 12/42 and complete with gauge, rubber tubing, pipe stem and canvas case with leg straps. Tubing is flexible with no damage, cracks or hardening. An excellent example in great condition overall, with some wear to the green paint on the tank.

SOLD

AAF Type A-14 oxygen mask in very good condition, dated 11/44.

A-14 oxygen mask is excellent condition, showing almost no signs of wear, just slight soiling from storage which would undoubtedly clean up with a little soap and water. The rubber is fully pliable and strong, including the thin straps that support the harness which are perfect. Size Large and never modified in any way, either with the internal baffles or by adding a microphone.  Good crisp markings. A great example.

SOLD

RCAF Flying Helmet telephone receivers 10A/3698.

Identical to The RAF Type 16 and Type 32 and intended to fit in all RAF, as well as RCAF, flying helmets, these receivers are dated 1943. Excellent condition, and like all electronic accessories, getting very difficult to find these days..

SOLD

USAF CRU-60 oxygen mask hose connector for the ejector seat oxygen supply.

 

A difficult to find accessory for the USAF jet helmet collector.

 

SOLD

Extremely rare RAF Type D oxygen mask fitted with Type E microphone assembly and wiring.

Rare, original RAF Type D oxygen mask, synonymous with Battle of Britain and France fighter pilots. Constructed of fine quality green barathea wool, lined with chamois and fitted with the earliest microphone, the Type C, which combined with its wiring loom was listed as "Microphone Assembly Type E." Mask is in above average condition, with slight wear/damage to the area above the nose. This is common and most are much worse. There is an area of separation under the chin and very minor pulls at the sides, but these do not detract. A minimal attempt has been made to repair the damage by a previous owner which perhaps improves the appearance. The microphone is the earliest version of the type C, made from brass, with a clean chamois covering, properly wired with an external loom fitted with a bell plug. Inside the mic. is scratched "116", which might refer to 116 squadron, who flew Lysanders and Hurricanes. No receivers are fitted, but I have a correct set for sale separately. The face defenders are the leather type sometimes associated with SAAF issue but these are correct period.  Please note, Type B helmet is shown for display only and is available for sale separately. Genuine original Type D masks are highly sought after and rarely offered for sale these days.

SOLD

RAF / MI9 aircrew escape/evasion map, 43 series sheet C/D.

"As new" mint example of the 1943 series of Escape Map which featured a double-sided and much easier to use 1:100,000,000 scale printed in eight colours. Side C depicts Holland, Belgium, Northeast France and Central Germany. Side D shows Southeast France, Southwest Germany and Switzerland and the Belgium Germany border. These 43 series maps were printed on rayon due to the shortage of silk and this map measures approximately 740mm x 720mm. Excellent condition, crisp folded in the correct manner for inclusion in the escape pouch. It would be very difficult to upgrade.

SOLD

AAF T-44C microphone, complete with wiring loom, boxed with instruction sheet.

Microphone for the A-8B, A-9, A-10 series and A-14 oxygen masks, for use when British radio equipment was installed i aircraft. Comprises the MC-1 microphone with a braided wiring loom ending in a RAF style jack plug and JK-26 connector for the receivers. The T-44 was manufactured by various companies, each using a different suffix; this one by Motiograph of Chicago being given the code -C. Unissued condition in original packaging with instruction sheet included. Very difficult to upgrade.

SOLD

AAF Polaroid Model 1065 flying goggles, complete kit in leatherette case.

 

Superb set of AAF Polaroid Model 1065 Flying Goggles, in their original leatherette case, complete with extra lenses and instruction manual. These would later be redesignated Type B-8 in accordance with AAF nomenclature, and issued in a simplified cardboard box, and these first production examples are less easy to find. Goggles are in excellent, almost unused condition, the rubber still pliable and the chamois backing clean and unsoiled. There are 6 extra lenses: 2 each green, amber and clear, all with protective paper covers. Case whows a little wear on flap (from being opened and closed) but goggles are in excellent shape.

SOLD

Pair of early Type C telephone receivers for the Type B flying helmet.

Extremely rare and difficult to find these days: Type C telephone receivers were used in the Type B and very early type C helmets. Stores ref. no. 10A/7063. Metal casings which unscrewed to attach wiring. Not a matching pair – but helmets frequently had odd receivers  – and the plastic screw-on back on one has some cracking,  but is intact and both have all their "guts" installed.

SOLD

RAF navigation plotting chart of Europe, 1942 small scale series, second edition dated 1944.

 

Quite a scarce item. Large single sided navigator's plotting chart, 38" x 28" 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 small scale chart of Great Britain and Northern Europe, including Northern France, Belgium, Netherlands, Denmark, Norway, Sweden and Germany. Very good condition showing no wear or damage.

SOLD

Personalized First Pattern/First Model Type C flying helmet - 377 fighter squadron?

A wonderful Type C with loads of character. It's the first pattern (unwired) and first model, with up-and-down fore-and-aft goggle retaining tabs and 2 snap fasteners each side (further supplemented by the later addition of a third snap which looks to me like it was intended for a US oxygen mask). It also has the Air Ministry embroidered label inside, indicating a size 2 (medium).  The helmet is named inside to a F/O Adams W.R. and painted on the front is "377" with more painted underneath and it also appears to have the name "Adams," all in period white paint. Some paint has flaked off and is difficult to read, but enough remains for ID purposes. Since the RAF had no 377 sq. I am tempted to think this may have belonged to someone who flew with the USAAF 377th Fighter Squadron, 9th Air Force (P-47 Thunderbolt). I cannot find a link to W.R. Adams but I haven't attempted any serious research - I leave that to the next owner. Helmet is in great condition, showing use and  wear but no damage. The ear cups are misshapen only from storage and remain fully pliable. There is surface scraping on top (perhaps from the canopy?) - note: this is NOT flaking from any kind of rot, just a graze. Leather is very good. Helmet is clean and bright inside. Retains its RAF issue mask hook to the right hand side (correctly secured with small nuts and bolts). Snaps have oxidized slightly but overall condition is very good. 

SOLD

Imperial German leather flying helmet

Typical pattern  leather flying helmet worn by Imperial German aviators in WWI. Dark brown goatskin leather helmet with short nape flap, roll-up ear flaps, long chin strap and loop at the crown for attaching a streamer or scarf. Blanket lined for warmth. A very nice, gently worn example.

SOLD

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.

SOLD

WWII Commercial whistle as issued to AAF and USN aviators.

 

Prior to the development and production of "official" whistles for survival / search and rescue purposes, US aviators of both the AAF and USN carried commercially produced sports whistles from various sources. This is an early plastic "Field Champion" whistle of exactly the type issued and carried attached to the Mae West or in early survival kits.

SOLD

Unissued RCAF Canadian made Type B flying helmet in a large size 3.

Excellent example of the Canadian made flying helmet based on the iconic RAF Type B. Lovely soft chestnut brown leather with soft chamois lining, leather chin strap and chrome plated metal buckles. Inside is marked with broad arrow inside a "C" and clear ink stamped National Hat Mfg Co. with a date of 1942 and size 3. In near pristine condition, impossible to upgrade.

SOLD

© 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