© 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 December 2018

(click on pictures to enlarge)

Ultra-rare AAF M-4 Anti-flak helmet.

 

The rarest and most sought after of all anti-flak helmets is the M-4, also known as the Grow helmet, after it's designer, Colonel Malcolm Grow of the US 8th Air Force. Made from overlapping plates of manganese steel, the first examples were covered in leather - later this was changed to heavy cotton with a reinforced edging of webbing. However, the need for protective covering over the ears necessitated the development of first the M-4A-1 and later the M-4A-2, curtailing the production run on these cloth covered M-4 helmets. Less than 2,500 were produced, in 1943, and in 30 years of collecting this is the first I have ever com across. This is an incredibly rare helmet. It shows some use and is slightly grubby, but has no damage except for minor rubbing to the fabric. Leather straps are complete and in good condition. There is evidence it once had a small label, now long gone. Photos show it over an A-11 helmet (not included). This is the rarest of the rare when it comes to AAF anti-flak helmets.

SOLD

Lovely early 1st Pattern, unwired RAF Type C flying helmet with many outstanding features.

 

Perhaps the most desirable variant of the first pattern Type C helmets, this variant has the chin strap and buckle riveted rather than sewn, and is labeled by being stamped in green ink to the left hand side: "A-crown-M" and the stores reference number 22C/451, indicating a nice size 3 (large) helmet. Condition is excellent; constructed from superior leather which is nice and pliable, though it would possibly benefit from a little dressing. The chamois is clean and the rubber ear cups are excellent. The helmet has the distinctive "widow's peak" brow-line, unusual for the early unwired helmets. Clean AID stamp inside. One "donut" has been neatly and professionally reinforced with chamois but based on overall soiling I would guess this was done during the war. An outstanding example of the "Rolls Royce" of Type C helmets and a variant that is seldom seen.

SOLD

Excellent AAF AN-H-15 summer flying helmet together with superb English tailored AAF "Ike" jacket, both named to 8th Air Force pilot.

 

Superb example of the AN-H-15 summer flying helmet fitted with ANB-H-1 receivers, named to Lt. Buckmaster, together with his superb Ike jacket, cut down and professionally tailored from a service dress tunic and with his pilot wings, medal ribbons, patches and all correct collar devices. Tucked into the pocket was a leather name tag from an A-2 flying jacket also with his name incised. Lovely items in excellent condition and well worth researching.

SOLD

WWII RAF hose / breathing tube for the Type G or H oxygen mask.

 

In excellent condition, with no damage or cracking, just dusty from storage. Standard corrugated black rubber breathing tube fitted with the plastic screw-in connector at the "mask" end and a brass, Mk IV bayonet connector with "alligator" clothing clip at the other end. both ends correctly whipped with linen twine.

SOLD

EXTREMELY RARE WWI Royal Naval Air Service officer's peaked cap with detachable white cover.

 

Excellent example of a RNAS officer's cap. Typical period construction cap in high quality navy blue wool with circular patterned quilted lining and gold leaf tailor's crest, leather sweatband, green lined peak and detachable white silk (or brushed cotton) cover for summer wear. Superb, distinctive padded RNAS cap badge on mohair band and patent leather chin strap. Very high quality tailored cap showing use but no wear or damage and extremely rare. No name or ID that I can find. Extremely difficult to find, especially in such fine, displayable condition.

 

SOLD

Excellent AAF AN-H-15 summer flying helmet together with superb English tailored AAF "Ike" jacket, both named to 8th Air Force pilot.

 

Superb example of the AN-H-15 summer flying helmet fitted with ANB-H-1 receivers, named to Lt. Buckmaster, together with his superb Ike jacket, cut down and professionally tailored from a service dress tunic and with his pilot wings, medal ribbons, patches and all correct collar devices. Tucked into the pocket was a leather name tag from an A-2 flying jacket also with his name incised. Lovely items in excellent condition and well worth researching.

SOLD

Pre-WWII RAF full size, full dress pilot wing in bullion wire.

Lovely example of a pre-war dress pilot wing in gold and silver bullion wire with padded crown on a blue background with black linen backing fabric. Usually worn on the full dress uniform but occasionally seen on the service dress uniform of higher ranking officers. Appears unused. Lovely wing.

SOLD

 

Silver bullion wire RAF pilot wing.

For a long time I was not at all sure about the authenticity of this pattern of wing. I have seen a few over the years. It seems to be generally accepted by the collecting community as being of the late inter-war period for full dress. A very nice example, very well made with a good patina to the silver wire and a nice wool background with black paper backing.

SOLD

 

Excellent, large size example of the Battle of Britain Type B flying helmet by one of the more unusual manufacturers.

 

Lovely Type B helmet, size 3 (generous large size) with a 1939-40 dated label, made by Reliance, which is one of the least commonly seen helmets. Well made from high quality leather and a rich yellow chamois lining. Named to P. Neale. Leather is soft and supple and lining is very clean. Chin strap and back strap have been trimmed to size (common practice among fighter pilots who didn't want loose ends flapping in their faces) and one Bennett buckle is missing its leather covering; stitching on one ear-cup is loose for 1-inch -  but these are minor detractions from what is a beautiful helmet. Retains Bakelite telephone holders, both leather zip pullers and a great set of Air Ministry marked sponge pads. Superb satin "diamond" shaped label dated 1939-40 (an interesting characteristics of Reliance helmets showing the spread of 2 years). A true Battle of Britain piece in great condition and a big size!

SOLD

Beautiful example of the iconic RAF Battle of Britain Type B flying helmet.

 

Getting harder to source all the time, especially in such wonderful, used-but-not-abused condition. This Type B is a superb 1939 dated example of the Battle of Britain pilot's headgear; totally original and unmessed with, the leather is in quite excellent condition, soft and supple with no damage bar 2 or 3 tiny surface nicks, retaining its leather zip pullers and covering to both Bennett buckles as well as the metal tip to the chin strap. The chamois lining is grubby but complete and undamaged, and bears the beautiful diamond shaped label of Wareings, Northampton, with its manufacture date of 1939, as well as a crisp, clear AID stamp. It is a size 2 (medium) but generous in its proportions and fits perfectly on a display head. Characteristic of Battle of Britain period helmets, it's telephone receiver holders (inside the ear cups) are different; one is rubber and one is bakelite. 

Wareings made a particularly nice helmet, with extra thick padding to the crown, between the leather outer and chamois lining. A lovely helmet.

SOLD

Scarce Battle of Britain RAF Mk II (Lightweight) Flying Goggles.

 

Technically they were listed as "Goggles, Lightweight" but more commonly known as Mk II - these goggles were obsolete by 1940 but reintroduced during the Battle of Britain for fighter pilots who didn't like the curved celluloid lenses of the Mk III and IIIa. Later they were used in the Middle East. Silk mask, blacked brass frames, light blue tinted lenses and chamois-lined leather strap with steel springs. Good condition overall, although the thin, fragile leather covering the springs has separated. The springs are still strong and perfectly connected - but the leather has separated exposing the metal in places. They display well. Extremely scarce Battle of Britain goggles.

SOLD

 

RAF / RCAF Mk IV goggles accessory / guide plates kit.

 

Exactly as found - accessory kit for Mk IV goggles (issued first with the Mk IVA but later extended for issue with both the Mk IV and IVB as well); guide plates, upper and lower, for affixing to the Type B and Type C helmets, together with the leather and chamois brow pad for providing extra protection for the forehead against the brass frame of the goggles. All in unissued and unused condition with light verdigris/oxidation to the snaps on one plate but otherwise perfect condition. Contained in a cotton pouch with attached label to RCAF stores. Whether this is as issued, or the owner stored them this way, we'll never know - but an interesting find and a scarce accessory.

SOLD

 

RARE RAF Type C telephone receivers (10A/7063) for Type B flying helmet.

Extremely difficult to source these days - the Type C telephone receivers were used with the early wiring looms for RAF communications and are associated with the Type B flying helmet (though they were also used in early C Types still using the older electronics). Though not a perfectly matched pair, this is not unusual; the are in excellent, used condition and complete with all inner "guts".

 

SOLD

Excellent pair of RAF Battle of Britain 1933 pattern flying gauntlets.

 

A near perfectly matched pair - as close as you can find for this period (left and right gloves were manufactured in different facilities because, as the most expensive item of flying clothing at the time, pilfering was considered a risk). Quartermasters attempted to issue pairs that matched as closely as possible, but many pilots ended up with odd gauntlets! This pair is a very good match indeed. Gloves show some light to moderate use but no abuse, damage or excess wear. Original and matching zips work perfectly, colour match is excellent, size is correct (faint marking of 9 on one puller) and even the interiors are close. Both are manufacture-dated 1939 with A-crown-M markings and one is additionally marked 1940, perhaps suggesting the year of issue. A lovely pair of Battle of Britain flying gloves.

 

SOLD

Excellent early RAF Type C flying helmet, unwired and superb Air Ministry stamp.

 

Lovely example of the first pattern, unwired Type C flying helmet, in a size 2 (medium). The leather is in excellent condition, soft and supple, with a very clean chamois lining, soft and pliable rubber ear cups, Bennett buckle with its leather covering intact and one of the best deeply embossed Air Ministry stamps I have seen, clearly showing the A-crown-M and the stores ref. number 22C/450 underneath. 3 snap fasteners on each side for attaching the E, E* or G mask and fore-and-aft goggle retaining straps. Lovely velvet lined brow and chin cover, with a nice "widow's peak" shape to the brow. Chin strap lacks its metal tip but that is the only flaw I can find. A lovely example that displays well.

SOLD

RAF Mk VIIIA Anti-glare Spectacles with velvet lined case.

 

Often referred to as "sunglasses" which technically they would be today, but in the 1940s they were issued as Spectacles Anti-glare to aircrews only. A minor modification over the Mk VIII Spectacles, with improved side arms and comfort cables. This set is in excellent condition, with tight frames, and lenses that are undamaged and unscratched. Very comfortable  and great to wear. These were made in 3 sizes: small, medium and large - this is the large size. Complete with velvet-lined hard case, well-marked with broad arrow and nomenclature. 

SOLD

RAF Type 19 microphone assembly. REPRODUCTION for display with the Type D oxygen mask.

One a very small batch of finely executed and completely accurate copies of an original Type 18/19 microphone as used by RAF fighter pilots during the Battle of Britain. An original is considered one of those "Holy Grail" items and can cost many thousands of pounds / dollars. This is an exact replica of an original, with all working parts, weighing the same as an original and difficult to tell apart from an original. Production to this level of detail proved difficult and expensive and so was limited to a handful - and they are marked with a code to identify them as replica. The wiring loom and plug are genuine wartime manufacture. I do not usually offer reproductions, nor do I encourage their production, but since genuine examples are ultra-rare and very expensive, I offer this as a chance for the collector of more modest means, or re-enactor, to complete a very authentic looking display.

SOLD

WWII RAAF Australian made First Aid Shell Dressing.

 

Unissued / unused large First Aid Shell Dressing, marked Commonwealth of Australia and made by Johnson and Johnso of Sydney. Type carried by all RAAF aircrew and in all aircraft First Aid Kits. Dated June 1942. Excellent condition.

SOLD

Excellent , large size RCAF flying helmet with zipped ear compartments (Referred to as Canadian Type B).

 

Lovely example of a Canadian made and issued flying helmet with zipped up ear compartments for telephone receivers, DOT brand zips, clean chamois lining and leather in excellent condition. Similar pattern to the RAF Type B, but with less panels and friction buckles instead of Bennett's buckles, and made from a chestnut brown, high grade leather. Ear pieces are fitted with correct sponge rubber cushions. Helmet is double named and has had the zip ear compartments relocated, as was correct in the case of re-issue. However, for a two-owner helmet, it is in outstanding condition, showing very little evidence of wear or use. Helmet is also a larger size - at least a 3 and possibly 4 (largest). These Canadian made helmets are getting harder to find and this is one of the nicest I have seen in a long time.

SOLD

RAF Mk VIII Flying Goggles, wartime production.

 

Good used pair of Mk VIII flying goggles with a good clear A-crown-M mark embossed into the leather at the bridge, indicating wartime production. Though used, this pair of goggles displays well, the leather is very good, the frames are undamaged with light rubbing of the paint exposing the brass, and the strap is grubby but retains partial elasticity.  The clear lenses have some slight delamination, but no discolouration. A good pair with a nice wartime pedigree.

SOLD

WWII RAF breathing tube / hose for Type G or H oxygen mask.

 

In excellent condition, with no cracks or distortion to the rubber, correct plastic screw-in for attaching to mask and brass connector with crocodile clip and excellent A-crown-M engraving.  Hose secured at both ends with linen twine. These are getting very difficult to source.

SOLD

WWIII / late 1940s RAF Other Ranks' sidecap.

 

In beautiful good condition, this RAF sidecap is interesting in that the cap itself is made from officer's quality barathea, yet it features an Other Ranks cap badge - and doesn't appear to have ever been fitted with an officer's badge. Late WWII or immediate postwar production judging by the style. Only right use.

 

SOLD

WWII RAF Dinghy First Aid Outfit for the multi-place dinghy.

 

Large sized Dinghy First Aird Outfit for the multi-place dinghy, as carried on RAF bombers ad reconnaissance aircraft including Lancaster, Halifax, Wellington, Stirling, etc. - everything except single-seat fighters and some two-seaters where each man carried a K-dinghy. Heavy tan canvas, empty of contents but in very good condition with clear printed label and red cross emblem and retaining cotton tie-tapes. 

SOLD

Superb 1937 dated RAF Station bell, synonymous with the Battle of Britain as a "Scramble" Bell.

 

One of those iconic RAF items from the Battle of Britain, made famous by the Pathé newsreels which showed RAF fighter pilots galvanized into action by the sound of the bell. This example is outstanding; a full size bell (12.5" diameter by 12.5" high and weighing 22kg) with the large Air Ministry crown and dearly ate of 1937, making it both rare and desirable. The condition is also exceptional. Though the top has evidently been repainted and the bell has been cleaned, it is in outstanding condition and retains its clapper (though this may be a replacement). A rare and much in demand icon from the glory days of the RAF and the Battle of Britain. Note: will ship from PA, USA. Shipping will be by courier at buyer's cost and is likely to be expensive,  but I will work with you to find the best options. 

SOLD

WWII US Army folding Ski Goggles by American Optical / Polaroid 

 

Not flying goggles - but remarkably similar in design to the M-1943 Emergency Goggles issued with the C-1 vest - these are clearly labeled as Ski Goggles and have both the American Optical (AO) and Polaroid logo imprinted on the green tinted acetate lens. Leather trim and soft leather cushion for the forehead and adjustable elastic strap. Unissued condition with minor surfac scratches to lens.

 

SOLD

Mint in box unused Benrus USAF pilot's wristwatch Type GG-W-113

Never worn and still in its box, this last generation of analogue "wind-up" watches is in fantastic condition. Dated December 1974, so just after the Vietnam war period, the watch is well marked on the back of the case, winds and runs smoothly . Black nylon strap, 24 hour black dial with luminous hands. An incredible find.

SOLD

Scarce Royal Auxiliary Air Force lapel badge.

The second of two rare pre-war / early wartime badges on offer. This is the later version, after the Auxiliaries received their Royal warrant.  The Royal Auxiliary Air Force was a very small, very elite branch of the RAF, often known as "The best flying club in the world" and counted among its members many titled gentlemen and millionaires who learned to fly on weekends, at their own expense, and played a vital part in the Battle of Britain, many becoming famous fighter pilots. Pin back, 1" (25mm) high. 

SOLD

RARE matched pair of WWII German SA Flying Corps collar tabs.

Aluminium winged propellors on a blue wool background with twisted aluminum piping around the edge - a near perfect matched pair in excellent condition.

SOLD

Original WWII NAZI party member's armband.

Not usually my forté but this came with a job lot of insignia and it is, without doubt, original. Cotton printed armband retains its rich colour, though it is soiled and grubby, with minor separation to the seam at the back. It is what it is and is sold only as representative of the historical period.

SOLD

 

WWII RAF full size, full dress signaller half-wing brevet in bullion wire.

Superb and quite rare full dress brevet for a Signaller  in gold and silver bullion wire on a blue background with oilcloth backing. Worn on the full dress uniform. Appears unused. Lovely wing.

SOLD

 

WWII era RAF full size, full dress Navigator half-wing brevet in bullion wire.

Superb and quite rare full dress brevet for a Navigator in gold and silver bullion wire on a blue background with black linen backing. Worn on the full dress uniform. Appears unused. Lovely wing.

SOLD

 

Luftwaffe model K-33 flying helmet in very good condition.

 

K-33 flying helmet - the type manufactured without any form of communication fitted. Brown leather with a sheepskin / fleece lining. Size 57 with a great label to Striegel and Wagner. Used but very little wear and overall in excellent condition. Contrary to popular belief these helmets were not intended for 'crew positions where no communication was necessary" - communication between all crew members on bomber aircarft was crucial! These were actually more often worn by pilots of single seat aircraft flying "under the radar" and keeping radio silence, test pilots etc. Hence, later in the war, many were made in grey leather for the so-called elite jet pilots - though this is an early brown leather type. A good example.

 

SOLD

Italian Flying Goggles with independent flip-down sun screens.

 

Superb pair of flying goggles which, though unmarked, are typical in design and construction of Italian goggles of the mid-late war period. Made from lightweight alloy, highly polished, with clear celluloid lenses and a lightweight tan rubber cushion, the goggles have dark tinted screens which close 2/3 of the way over the  lenses but flip up independently of each other. Excellent conjoint, the elastic strap retains its elasticity and the cushion is supple. Fantastic condition, appear unissued and unworn. These look great displayed on a helmet!

SOLD

 

Combat used WWII RAF bombing /navigational chart map of Berne and Milan / Turin (Torino).   

 

This example is perhaps unique because it was used in combat. The RAF navigator (McKeown) has joined together two charts with tape for his aircraft's mission which would have avoided Swiss airspace (neutral) on its way to the hevaily industrial areas of Milan and Torino in Italy. The tape has long since separated leaving only a brown stain and the map is worn from use, with tears and soiling along the folds. the upper section was cheesecloth backed though the loer section isn't and the rest of the lower section is present, just folded under (obviously not needed at the time). A few pencil notes and named. A great piece of real RAF bomber command history.

 

SOLD

Extremely rare RAF bombing target chart of Lorient, France.

 

These small scale bombing charts of target cities are extremely rare! I have only seen a handful in all my years of collecting and these are the first I have been able to offer. Understandably, they were intended for 1 time use, printed on low quality paper and discarded after use. The design is similar to Luftwaffe target charts, they show only the outline of the city, major highways and railway lines, and are printed in subdued tones of grey and purple that would show up under dimmed cockpit lights. This example is Lorient, France. Dated 9-5-42, it measures 17.5" x 13.5" (440mm x 340mm). It is stained, most probably oil or hydraulic fluid. The paper is fragile and is torn in places, with some small areas of paper missing, but has been quite professionally mounted, museum style, to a piece of Foamcore board to preserve it. Excellent for framing or displaying with any Bomber Command collection and even in worn condition, its rarity cannot be overstated.

SOLD

Extremely rare RAF bombing target chart of Naples, Italy.

 

These small scale bombing charts of target cities are extremely rare! I have only seen a handful in all my years of collecting and these are the first I have been able to offer. Understandably, they were intended for 1 time use, printed on low quality paper and discarded after use. The design is similar to Luftwaffe target charts, they show only the outline of the city, major highways and railway lines, and are printed in subdued tones of grey and purple that would show up under dimmed cockpit lights. This example is naples, Italy. Dated 12-1-43, it measures 17.5" x 13.5" (440mm x 340mm). The paper is fragile and is torn in places, with some small areas of paper missing, most notably at the bottom. It has been quite professionally mounted, museum style, to a piece of Foamcore board to preserve it. Excellent for framing or displaying with any Bomber Command collection and even in worn condition, its rarity cannot be overstated.

SOLD

RAAF Flying Suit patch for Richmond Base.

 

Unused, unissued condition flying suit patch for Richmond Base, RAAF. RAAF Base Richmond is located 60 kms from the Sydney CBD between the towns of Windsor and Richmond, on the fringe of metropolitan Sydney.

SOLD

RAAF Flying Suit patch for Base Squadron Butterworth.

 

Unused, unissued condition flying suit patch for Base Squadron Butterworth, RAAF. Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) Base Butterworth was established in Province Wellesley, north Malaya, on the mainland opposite the island of Penang, in 1955. As part of Australia’s commitment to the Commonwealth’s Far East Strategic Reserve, two RAAF fighter squadrons and a bomber squadron were stationed at Butterworth throughout the 1950s and 1960s.

SOLD