© 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 July 2019

(click on pictures to enlarge)

Luftwaffe Einmannschlauchboot Model A-2 (one man rubber raft) in excellent condition.

 

Scarce Luftwaffe Einmannschlauchboot Type A-2 ready to be packed into the Packhülle for display. This raft is in excellent condition, the rubberized material is perfectly pliable, including the folding keel (which is often dried out and damaged).  Good markings with instructions for how to get in and the proper means of signalling overflying aircraft. Well marked compartments inside for various accessories (not included). Does not have the CO2 bottle, but the oral/pump inflation tube is present and retains its plastic plug - often missing. Retains lanyard for attaching to pilot during flight. Slightly grubby on the folds from storage, but appears unused.

SOLD

AAF / US Army officer's summer overseas cap.

 

Lightweight unlined cotton overseas cap with black/gold piping and pinback Lieutenant's bar to front. Named inside to "Knox." Nice clean condition.

 

SOLD

WWI pattern British army officer's Sam Browne belt and shoulder strap.

 

Brown leather waist belt and single cross shoulder strap as worn by officers of the British army. This would make the perfect accessory for the above RFC maternity tunic and, though it has been displayed with the tunic previously (and fits it perfectly) it did come from the same estate. Leather shows use and wear but is solid and would undoubtedly benefit from an application of Hide Food or similar. I can find no markings or date but this conforms to the WWI pattern.

SOLD

Iconic Great War Royal Flying Corps officer's "maternity" tunic, named, dated and with beautiful pilot wing, all in very good condition.

 

A very good example of this iconic uniform tunic, tailor made from fine wool cloth and lined with satin. All buttons and press stud fasteners are present and the jacket is in very good condition, showing some light use and minor staining, though this is mostly confined to the interior flap, consistent with the tunic being worn open, perhaps while standing down and relaxing. The inside of the flap has staining and a couple of pulls to the wool. The exterior is excellent, with no damage, retaining its brass hooks for the Sam Browne belt and shoulder strap. The tailor's label indicates manufacture by Joseph J. Follet, Civil and Military Tailor, Yong St. Toronto, and is dated September 1918, just two months before the end of the war. Many pilots were trained and gained their wings in Canada and it is not uncommon to find these tunics made in Toronto. It is named to W. Almy, a 2nd Lieutenant who completed his pilot training in 1918. These maternity tunics rarely turn up these days, and this is an excellent example which displays very well for being 100 years old. Bronze 2nd lt. pips on shoulder straps. No damage to wool exterior; light wear on the inside. A really lovely example.

SOLD

RARE AAF Type F-1 Electrically Heated flying suit, known as a "blue bunny" suit.

MORE PHOTOS ADDED!

 

These have never been a common item but these days they are very difficult to source, and yet most crew members of the B-17s and B-24s operating from east England was issued one! They were not always popular - largely because the electricity could short out and leave nasty burns of frostbite, but they often did their job, and no AAF collection is complete without one. This example is in overall very good condition, with a few  moth nips and worn spots, and light staining. The knit collar, cuffs and anklets are not shredded as is so often the case. All wires and plugs are attached and its original label of maintenance and service indicates it was repaired in June 1945, so evidently saw use up to that time.

SOLD

RCAF Suits Aircrew Blouse with history to Air Force Cross winner.

 

RCAF Battledress type blouse named to Donald Hadley Armstrong, AFC, RCAF. More research is necessary on his early career. He trained at No. 1 initial Training School (Toronto) and No. 1 Service Training School at Camp Borden.  I have been unable to find out whether he served overseas (but I would think so, hence the "Canada" shoulder titles). He was awarded the Air Force Cross on January 1st, 1944, for his services as an instructor and examiner at No. 2 Service Flying Training School at Uplands, part of the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan. He would have trained many of the RAF, RAAF and RCAF pilots who went on to become heroes. Blouse shows typical wear from the rigours of flying; a few snags and a couple of small holes, though none of it serious and none looks like insect damage. It's all due to honest wear. Inside of collar is worn, original label is present but washed out, but stencilled name and Canadian acceptance marks are very clear. All original buttons present. A beautiful example of its type with some interesting history and more research possible. 

SOLD

SCARCE HS-18 headset for with R-14 receivers for the early wartime AAF flying helmets.

 

Very scarce headset fits the A-8, A-9, B-5 and B-6 flying helmets used by the Army Air Corps and AAF prior to 1943. Good used set with correct short braided cord and black PL-54 plug.

SOLD

RAF Type E* oxygen mask with hose and US style connector, used by 8th AF fighter pilot.

 

Scarce original RAF Type E* oxygen mask, fitted with its rare original narrow breathing tube which has been modified by fitting a US style connector. This mask is from the estate of  Captain Harold E. Gallagher of 56th Fighter Squadron, 62nd Fighter Group who wore it with his Type C helmet. US pilots and crews based in England often wore RAF issued equipment because their own wore out or became lost or damaged, and replacements were not readily available. Many liked the RAF kit and continued to wear it for the rest of the war, often modifying it (as with this) for integrating with US equipment. This mask is in overall very good condition, supple and pliable, with no cracking or damage. The funnel leans slighty to the right from lying on its side for 75 years and  the tube has some minor surface cracks in the folds/corrugations but remains strong and flexible. Thankfully it has been stored well and remains in great condition. Good harness with elasticity and fitted with a Type 48 microphone.

SOLD

Unusual variant of the extremely rare, early wartime Luftwaffe LKpW100 flying helmet.

 

Lovely example of one of the rarest of all Luftwaffe flying helmets used during the Battle of France and Battle of Britain; the LKpW100 leather helmet, with metal telephone housings and throat microphones on a separate strap from the long cord and plug. Helmet shows light use but no excessive wear or damage, excellent leather, clean interior and all wiring and electrics are good. The fastening of the throat microphone strap is unusual and might indicate a trial method which was later employed on the LKpN101 netzkopfhaube - a friction buckle holds a length of cotton tape in place, fastened to the other strap by means of a snap / stud fastener. The interior manufacturer's label has been removed, and this may be for security (company names and addresses were ordered to be removed from flying clothing so as not to legitimize their cities as military targets). However, another possible theory is that the nomenclature was removed because of the factory modification to the throat mic strap created a new type or model number. I have noticed a repeat pattern of labels being removed from helmets with unique or unusual design variations. Either way, an extremely rare variant of a classic early war helmet in very good condition.

SOLD

RAF escape kit matches in a sealed container.

 

Issued with the Beadon suit and as part of escape aids kits, survival gear etc. A small book of matches sealed in a celluloid/plastic container to keep them waterproof. Unopened and in perfect condition.

SOLD

Royal Flying Corps Cowl type Flying helmet in incredible condition.

 

How does the old saying of about London buses? You wait and wait and then two turn up at the same time? These RFC Cowl Type Flying Helmets are extremely rare and hardly ever come up for sale. Two weeks ago I listed (and sold) a superb example of one of these early types - and immediately after packing and shipping it, another one arrived! The leather on this helmet must be seen (and felt) to be believed. It is as supple and soft as the day it was made, over 100 years ago! Nice chamois lining around the neck/shoulder area and full fur lining over the head, all in incredible condition; no loss of fur, no moulting and very clean. This is a pre-1917 model, without the earflaps and with the rear fastening strap for the drawstring around the facial opening. Note the leather looks to have a slight bloom in the pictures. I believe this is from a very old cleaning and would probably brush out. There is no residual oil or coating. the leather is in fantastic shape. A very rare helmet in any condition, this one would be very difficult to upgrade.

SOLD

RARE RAF Type C flying helmet, earliest model of the unwired type issued late 1941.

 

Lovely example of the very first pattern Type C helmet, with external earcups, fore and aft goggle straps in opposite directions, two male snaps for the Type E mask. Leather is in excellent condition, clean and soft. Crips A-crown-M stamp and 22C number (though the actual number is faint, but I'm pretty sure it's a size 3). Chamois lining also very clean with owner's name written in red ink "Billet." Rubber earcups are perfectly pliable with some surface stress cracks (similar to what you'd find on a Type E mask and made from the same early "shiny" rubber). Tried to show this is the pictures (looks worse than it is). More scarce than a Type B helmet, because very few were produced prior to modifications: goggle straps were reversed so all snapped downwards; rear buckle was reversed to prevent it snagging on harnesses and headrests; third snap added for E* mask; inner earpads secured with additional stitching, etc). I obtained this helmet as is, without receivers or wiring, but earcups looks as though they may have contained USAAF ANB-H-1 receivers due to shaping. I have put both ANB-H-1 and RAF Type 16 receivers and either fit perfectly. No apologies for price. This is an extremely rare helmet in exceptional condition.

SOLD

Excellent early pair of RAF Mk VII flying goggles with extremely rare polarising sun screen attached.

 

Haven't seen a set of Mk VII goggles with the screen attached in a long time. This is a very nice, used pair in very good, clean condition. These are probably my personal favourite goggles, with the ultramarine blue painted brass frames. They feature the early leather strap with spring attachments and Newey fastener. The screen is original and shows very little distortion, minimal surface scratching. Frames are, as these always seem to be, slightly dinged (just the right hand side) but still tight with 90+% original paint. The frames are not distorted as these often are. Clear lenses have only minor signs of delamination and no discolouration. Pads show very light use. the leather is superb. Very hard to find the screen, because these goggles were not issued with the screen - it was available as a separate item.

SOLD

Collection of autographed Blue Angels team items.

 

Comprises 1972 dated 11" x 8.5" 40-page brochure about the USN acrobatic display team, signed by the every team member on the front cover, with diagrams of all their manoeuvres plus details of the aircraft, history etc. Also a 10" x 8" booklet (undated but I think older than the above booklet) featuring biographies of the pilots, again signed by all, including flight leader Commander Harley H. Hall, who became the last USN casualty of the Vietnam war shortly afterwards.  All in very good condition. The Blue Angels is the oldest aerobatic display team in the world and items like this are highly collectible.

SOLD

Altimeter from a P-38 Lightning fighter.

 

Removed from his own P-38 by AAF fighter pilot Major P. Collins and later given to a well known collector where it has remained for many years. This standard altimeter is in great condition- it may even be in working order. Air Corps Order No. 12478 made by Kollsman Instrument Company Inc. Elmhurst, New York. Optimistically it goes up to 90,000 ft.

(See Escape Evasion Items page for E-17 Medical Kit from Major Collins) 

SOLD

Scarce WWII USN / USMC flying helmet radio receivers Type TH-37 (pair)

 

One of the most difficult accessories to find are the telephone receivers for flying helmets, and the USN / USMC TH-37s rank among the most scarce. Offered is a pair of Telephonics Corporation TH-37 receivers in used but excellent condition, moulded in black bakelite ready to drop into a NAF 1092 or M-450 helmet. These were used with both the standard Y-cord and the rubberized harness and remained in service for most of the war. I have a few sets available but get them now because when they are gone, I have no idea when or if there will be any more!

SOLD

Very good early set of RAF Mk VII flying goggles with leather strap.

 

My personal favorite when it comes to goggles. Brass frames painted ultramarine blue, with leather pads and nose protector, and a nice early leather strap with Newey fastener and retention springs where strap clips to goggle frames. Show light use. Clear lenses show hardly any signs of delamination, pads are soft, leather is excellent. Frames show the usual dings and bends in the brass but fit of brow bar and securing nuts is nice and tight. No screen (they were not issued with the goggles but available separately). Nuts are painted white as was often the case. Various ideas have been put forward for why this is, but I have yet to establish any confirmation through APs or AMOs. They do look good though! Overall an excellent used set.

SOLD

Beautiful RCAF Flying Gloves Type E, dated 1943.

 

First pair of these I have personally ever come across and they are absolutely fantastic gloves, rivaling the RAF 1933 and 1941 pattern in both quality and design. Black leather, unlined, with a long, contoured gauntlet to fit over the cuffs of a flying suit, and long zips that run straight from the wrist to between the thumb and index finger. Lightning marked zips run smoothly. Both gloves retain their original labels to Acme Glove Works Ltd. with a date of 1943 and marked as Size M, Type E. Great condition showing very light use. 

SOLD

RAF silk flying glove liners dated 1940.

 

These are getting very difficult to source! A very good pair of white silk liners for the flying gauntlets. These were intended to be worn inside the 1933 pattern gauntlets for added warmth. Often pilots wore these alone for a better "feel" of the controls. These gloves have faint Air Ministry mark and date of 1940 stamped inside, together with size 9-1/2. Show use and slightly grubby, but no holes or damage which is quite rare to find. A very good pair.  

SOLD

RAF grey wool flying sweater "Comforts Committee."

 

The absolute next best thing to a "frock white" is this grey wool flying jumper or sweater, part of a museum collection recently obtained from Canada. Heavy grey wool sweater, most likely produced by the "Comforts Committee" - a group of volunteers, mostly women, who were provided  with recycled wool (dyed neutral grey) and regulation knitting patterns to knit supplementary flying clothing items for pilots and aircrews. This is a beautiful example in great condition, with slight wear and soiling and one or two very small snags. Photos of knitting patterns included in slideshow are NOT included with purchase. A rare item which displays wonderfully well with any uniform or flying suit.

SOLD

RAF 1936 pattern flying boots in a remarkable size 11 (12 US).

 

The iconic flying boots of the Battle of Britain, in an incredible size 11 UK (12 US and 45 EU). The largest pair I have ever seen and though used, these remain in very good condition. The leather is very good; the sheepskin lining is also very good, with no noticeable bald or worn spots inside. A couple of very small "running repairs" to the seams, which appear to be period and very much a "rigger" job (but barely show and you have to look for them). Excellent Air Ministry labels, dated 1939. Original soles and heels. Boots remain quite flexible. I am not an advocate of wearing period clothing (and no guarantees are offered with sale!), but I believe these could be worn if desired. Almost impossible to find in this size.

SOLD

WWII RAF officer's service dress trousers.

 

For years now, standard service dress uniform trousers have been among the more difficult accessories to find - that's because they were very good quality and coupled with shortages after the war, any wearable clothing was worn until it fell apart. Offered is a straightforward pair of correct RAF uniform trousers in very good condition. These have no label or markings of any kind - as is usual - but they are quite definitely period, having the early brown fly buttons. I have found one very tiny area of mothing, a series of 2 or 3 very small (pinhead) holes in a 1.5 inch track on one side of one leg. You have to be very close to see them (very difficult to photograph). Overall very good and very clean.

SOLD

Scarce RCAF Gutta Percha & Rubber Company oxygen mask, dated 1943.

 

Very hard to find Canadian made oxygen mask by the Gutta Percha & Rubber Co. This model mask was manufactured in many forms and modified as needs arose, depending on type of aircraft flown and its oxygen system. Canadians used both British and American aircraft types and the mask was easily modified accordingly. This example, which was sourced in New Zealand, has been modified for use in a US aircraft with a demand oxygen system; the hose is fitted with a US style connector and the inspiration valve has been reversed in the side of the mask. It has a full head strap for wearing with the early Canadian Type B helmet rather than the later RCAF helmets which included studs for affixing the mask. A lovely example in very good condition, supple and pliable with no stiffening or signs of cracks or perishing. Also fitted with a US style microphone.

SOLD

Scarce ORIGINAL Pilot's and Flight Engineer's Notes for the Halifax III and VII bomber.

October 1944 edition of the Pilot's and Flight Engineer's notes for the Handley Page Halifax Bomber, Mk III and Mk VII (Bristol Hercules radial engines). The invaluable and ubiquitous "Pilot's Notes" were published by the Air Ministry for every aircraft type and mark with details compiled by the factory and test pilots for all aspects of flight, from correct speed and handling characteristics to technical details. There have been many reprints and copies over the years but this is 1944 second edition incorporating all new information known at that time. Multiple fold out pages with diagrams and photographs of fuel systems, cockpit layout and flight engineer's station. Excellent condition, cover faded slightly. Hard to find!

 

SOLD

RARE RAF Battle of Britain Mk IV flying goggles. 

Not to be confused with the Mk IVB which, though issued at the same time, continued in use for over a year and are generally easier to find. The Mk IV goggles were incredibly complicated to produce and quite fragile. Production was discontinued in favour of the Mk IVB so these really only saw use during the Battle of Britain. Brass frames painted black, with separate hinged frames for the 2-part goggle lenses. Large loops to fit around the telephone receiver housings with a leather strap and leather pad at the bridge. Overall condition is very good, barring the usual hardened pads. Clear lenses show minimal to zero delamination. A couple of small dings/ ripples to the frame which do not effect either their function or display capability. 98% of original paint remains. Well marked on rear strap to LOCL (Lever Optical Company, Ltd) who actually designed and patented the type, together with Air Ministry mark and stores ref. no. 22C/111. 

SOLD

RARE AAF Type HS-18 headset (R-14s) for early wartime flying helmets.

 

Nice original HS-18 headset, comprising the correct R-14 receivers, short braided wiring loom and black PL-54 plug for use with all early wartime USAAF flying helmets, including the A-8, A-9, B-5 and B-6. It was used until late 1943 when ANB-H-1 receivers were introduced and the HS-38 superseded the HS-18. An excellent used example. Perfect for the A-9 helmet offered on the Helmets and Headgear page. Extremely difficult to source these days.

SOLD

Extremely rare RAF Escape Aids Kit,  fourth type, complete with all contents as issued for jungle survival.

 

This is the fourth version of the Escape Aids Kit, the celluloid acetate case being contoured to fit comfortably in the leg pocket of the battledress trousers. Due to its shape, most have warped over time, cracked and broken. Examples in good condition are rare finds. Though slightly warped, the case and lid still fit together reasonably well. This is the ultra-rare jungle version of the kit and contains a full compliment of contents, including: fishing lure, rabbit snare, tin of water purifyng tablets, 2 rolls of energy tablets, one other tin of tablets (unmarked), 2 sealed packets of matches, compass, whetstone, spare lightbulb for torch, razor with handle and blades, heliograph, waterproof pouch, burning magnifier. All items in good to excellent condition.

SOLD

Battle of Britain era RAF Type B flying helmet.

 

A very good RAF Type B flying helmet, lacking a label (does not appear to have ever had one) but with every indication of being an early model, in very good condition, and I would guess a size 2 (medium) since it fits a standard male feature styrofoam head perfectly for display. Nice clear A-crown-M stamp on one ear cup. The leather is in excellent condition, soft and pliable with no damage, chamois lining is clean and without any issues. Helmet retains both leather zip pullers, metal tip on chin strap and early Bakelite telephone holders. Zips work perfectly and both Bennett's buckles have their leather covering. Split rear was sewn shut at one time (a common practice, once a good fit was attained) but later opened back up (perhaps for later re-issue). Overall a lovely example of this iconic RAF flying helmet. 

SOLD

Superb WWII Britsh "Home Front" ARP (Air Raid Precautions) civilian gas mask, in as-issued condition, with original cardboard box (used as a carrying case).

 

Extremely nice gas mask in unused condition, still with its original cardboard box (which was used as a carrying case by punching holes in each end and threading string through). Size large and pencilled on the top of the box is "Mr Patterson." Evidently and thankfully, Mr Patterson never had to use the mask! The rubber is excellent, the straps are perfect and still have the safety pins in (for adjusting the length to fit). Clear white ink stamp on front indicating date of July 1939 (2 months before war was declared!). These are getting difficult to find in such great conditon, but essential for a good representation of the British "Home Front" during the Battle of Britain.

 

SOLD

Korean War era Soviet Air Force Mig 15 / 17 flying goggles

 

Obvious heritage from the WWII German goggles, with the additon of bulged / convex lenses for better visibility, these Soviet flying goggles date from the Korean War era and were issued to early jjet pilots flying the Mig 15 and Mig 17. The same deisgn was later adopted by the Chinese, but these are characteristically Rusian, with steel frames. Elastic still has so give to it, though is faded and has been resewn - showing thse goggles definitely had use, but are in good conditon. Rubber is still nice and pliable. Steel parts show rust but no damage or serious corrosion.

 

SOLD