© 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-August 2018

(click on pictures to enlarge)

RAF aircrew escape box complete with all contents dated 2/44

 

RARE RAF aircrew issue celluloid escape box containing survival and escape items, complete with all contents and the inner box still sealed  as issued. Contents are visible through celluloid has yellowed with age and warped somewhat (as most do) but the packing slip with the date of 2/44 is still clearly visible. Most of the warping is on the outer sleeve, which slides off easily. I have not disturbed the inner box which is still sealed with tape, but everything appears to be in decent condition for its age. These are becoming extremely rare, especially with all contents. Visible are several envelopes with pills including halazone, folded rubber water bottle, compass on string, malted milk sweets etc. packed solid.

 

SOLD

RAF aircrew escape box complete with all contents dated 6/43

 

RARE RAF aircrew issue celluloid escape box containing survival and escape items, complete with all contents. The inner box has some damage although the outer sleeve is intact, though warped. Contents are visible and appear complete, including a packing slip with the date of 6/43 clearly visible. One end of the inner box is slightly damaged but this doesn't seem to have affected the contents; malted milk tablets and a small compass are visible and all contents seem to be present and undisturbed. Contents in these boxes varied and this being an earlier issue probably has different contents to the other escape box listed above.

 

SOLD

WWII RAF Haze Screen for observers for spotting enemy aircraft, shipping etc. in original packaging.

 

Technically not "goggles" but an aircrew "flying clothing" issue item nonetheless. These hand-held screens were developed by Kodak in England for use by RAF observers in reconnaissance aircraft (primarily Coastal Command) to search for signs of enemy aircraft and shipping in hazy conditions. This is an early example with a wood frame divided into 3 laminated lenses: rose, grey and yellow. Later examples were made from bakelite. (See last images for Air Ministry marked example with RAF stores ref. number 22C/872). Having never seen one in over 30 years, this is the third I have come across in the past few months and the first with original packaging. A very scarce item!

 

SOLD

Superb pair of 1939 dated RAF Irvin / thermal flying suit trousers with just two panels front and back to each leg.​

Very rare early pair of the RAF Irvin thermal flying suit trousers made from honey colored fleece / shearling with medium brown exterior coating and leather reinforced seams, built-in braces, full length DOT zip fasteners and Newey marked press studs to fly, pockets and side entry slits. Zips are the very early DOT stye  with brass pullers that have a vertical engraved "stripe" pattern and also retain their long leather pull tabs. Zips and snaps all work perfectly. Air Ministry marked label inside waist indicates 1939 manufacture and size 32. Hardly any sign of wear, no damage. Braces retain elasticity. Owner's mark inside pocket appears to be a letter M  followed by a 7 or 9 or some stylized character (see photos). Slight verdigris deposits on brass snaps which would clean easily. Excellent condition and very difficult to upgrade. Very hard to find dated this early with so few panels, utilizing complete sheep pelts and especially in such excellent condition.

 

SOLD

Detachable collar for the 1940 pattern Sidcot suit.

Dark brown wool / sheepskin collar for the 1940  pattern Sidcot suit, excellent markings including a nice crisp A-crown-M and stores ref. number 22C/356. It is also signed by the owner who would perhaps have been American, since is has signed as a Tech. Sgt. and includes his service number, so could be traced and researched. Size 4, though these fit one size up or down usually. Excellent condition (does not have the colour variation which appears in the pictures!). No moth or damage. 

 

SOLD

RAF officer's sidecap.

 

Blue barathea sidecap worn by all RAF officers in World War Two but favoured by fighter pilots in the early days. Very good condition with one small moth nip to top (could easily be covered or filled but does not detract). Nice early gilt badge. No markings or ID and grubby inside from Brylcreme or similar hair dressing. Nicely made, well tailored example with blue velvet sweatband. Sweatband has a few loose stitches but overall a very nice cap in a medium size and displays well.

 

SOLD

Post WWII USAF Command Pilot wings.

 

Nice example of the USAF Command pilot wings with the star and wreath above the shield. Identical to WWII production and may be sterling or plated but not marked as such.Maker marked L-22 to reverse of shield, to which someone has scratched initials AS and 1944 (barely visible and easily polished out if desired, but perhaps signifies the owner first qualified as a pilot in 1944).

SOLD

 

Lovely early WWII RAF officer's peaked  / visor cap by Moss Bros.

 

Moss Brothers of Covent Garden was one of the most popular suppliers of uniforms for the RAF in the late 1930s and throughout the war and this is a lovely example of a Moss Bros. peaked service dress cap dating from the pre-early war period. Blue barathea with a full oilcloth lining and classic early Moss Bros. label, and the characteristic green underside to the peak. Lovely heavily domed bullion cap badge, patent leather chin strap. One very small area of wear/rubbing to the top of the peak which barely shows (consistent with taking it off) but otherwise very little wear evident. Medium size - would guess about 7. Excellent Battle of Britain period cap.

 

SOLD

RAF officer's sidecap.

 

Blue barathea sidecap worn by all RAF officers in World War Two but favoured by fighter pilots in the early days. Very good condition with one small moth nip to top (could easily be covered or filled but does not detract). Nice early gilt badge. No markings or ID and grubby inside from Brylcreme or similar hair dressing. Nicely made, well tailored example with blue velvet sweatband. Sweatband has a few loose stitches but overall a very nice cap in a medium size and displays well.

 

SOLD

Early, near complete Luftwaffe aircrew aircraft first aid kit.

Luftwaffe aircraft First Aid Kit contained in a heavy / stiff leather case but with belt loops so obviously intended to be worn or carried by a crew member. Externally it measures 8.5” x 8.5” x 3”. Probably intended for use in a long range transport or flying boat crew and contains comprehensive surgical supplies. Inside are metal trays for use as bowls  containing equipment and materials. Most of the items that are dated are marked 1937, so it is early and has a lovely droop tail eagle ink stamp on the outside. As far as I can tell, it has all of its contents, with the possible exception of one aluminium vial / tube (there is one empty spring clip / holder). The contents of the glass jars have evaporated, but the ampoules still contain their liquid. I have not opened any of the alloy tubes. Includes dressings, bandages, tweezers, scissors in case, glass spreaders (in a cardboard tube), instruction sheet and additional printed sheet 9as well as printed list of contents on inner lid). Also included is a full “pad” of wound tags with string ties and a pencil. A remarkable find. One edge of the outer case has separated, but this doesn’t affect its functionality and could probably be repaired quite easily.

SOLD

Original P-38 Lightning Pilot Training Manual.

 

Dated February 12, 1944 and published by AAF HQ, this 94 page soft cover book,  10.5 x 8 inches, and illustrated throughout, guides student pilots through every aspect of handling the "fork-tailed devil" aircraft. Named in pencil on the cover to R.H. Olmsted of 50 squadron. Light wear to cover and some of the spine is missing, but still holds together. Excellent book - never seen one before.

SOLD

Fleet Air Arm aircrew badge for non-officer ranks blue uniform.

 

Alternatively known as the TAG (Telegraphist Air Gunner) badge and rarely awarded to ordinary seamen or those below officer rank, this is a scarce badge. Wartime or perhaps just postwar, red silk on dark blue wool. Never sewn on. 

SOLD

Superb WWII RNZAF pilot wing.

 

Canadian made, lightly padded silk embroidered on dark blue melton with oilcloth backing. An excellent example.

SOLD

 

AAF electrically heated gloves for the Type F-2 flight suit.

Not a perfect pair, but they came together and are the same size, and were probably issued as a pair. Leather is very good and very close match on both gloves, with one very small hole to the left index finger. Lining shows some nothing to the wool knit, but both labels are intact and marked as size 9. Both are maker marked General Electric; left is labeled as being for the Type F-2 suit and the right hand glove is labeled as being for the Type F-2 or F-3 suit (perhaps a later production run - but most probably issued as a pair anyway). Overall a decent displayable pair of gloves.

 

SOLD

RARE RAF Type E microphone assembly for the Type D oxygen mask in excellent condition.

Very rare Type E microphone assembly comprising Type C microphone, wired with correct cord and jack plug for attaching to the Type D oxygen mask and type B helmet. This is a nice early microphone, made from brass (later versions of this microphone were made from lightweight aluminum). This type was used from the late 1930s throughout the early war years including the Battle of France and the Battle of Britain, but both fighter pilots and bomber crews. Condition is extremely good. The chamois covering shows light soiling and some minor wear at the edges of the microphone as seen in the pictures. Cord is clean with a couple of very small frayed areas and a good plug. It retains a paper tag at the end, close to the junction with the plug. Switch works well. Note: these microphones were also used hand-held, without a mask in some cases.

 

SOLD

Superb early WWII RAF officer's peaked  / visor cap by Gieves, named.

 

Blue barathea cap issued to all RAF officers below Group Captain, in excellent condition and with the distinctive green lining to the peak indicating late 1930s / early WWII production. Lovely Gieves label with inked in name Fl. Lt. Chiverton. Quilted interior and leather sweatband, patent leather chin strap, superb heavy and well-padded bullion badge. Shows only the lightest of wear.  Very difficult to upgrade. Medium size - I would guess about 7 but I do not sell any original uniform items to wear or to fit.

 

SOLD

Korean / Cold War USAF Type MS22001 pressure demand oxygen mask.

 

Extremely rare these days - especially in such good condition. The MS22001 was the post-1950 designation for the mask originally developed in WWII as the A-13. It was very successful and remained in service until the 1990s in one form or another- including many years with the RAF as a better option to British pressure masks until the Type P and Q. Nowadays, unmolested examples retaining their rubber strap securing lugs are a rare find - I haven't seen one in several years. This mask is excellent, the rubber soft and pliable with no cracking or damage. 1954 date.

 

SOLD

RAF Post-war jet era Type H oxygen mask.

 

The Type H oxygen mask was so successful that its design remained in use for over 40 years after WWII. This example is dated 1967, so would have seen use in primary and basic training aircraft such as the Chipmunk, Jet Provost, Gnat etc. as well as larger aircraft such as the Hercules, Argosy, Belfast, Shackleton and others. In excellent condition, it differs from the wartime version only in that the microphone is slightly smaller. Rubber is pliable, interior is lightly soiled but would in all probability clean up.

 

SOLD

WWII AAF Type A-14 oxygen mask, size LARGE dated 9-44, in perfect condition, in original box with instructions and all accessories.

 

Original boxed A-14 oxygen mask in perfect, unissued and unused condition, complete with accessories and instruction sheet in envelope contained in box. The green rubber is fresh and pliable with no signs of wear or use. Good clear markings and a date of 9-44 on the mask (box is dated 7-44. Box label has size blacked out. Mask is marked as size LARGE - difficult to find and desirable size. This would be very difficult to upgrade - a rare find!

SOLD

WWII AAF oxygen mask head harness for A-10A, A-13 or A-14 mask.

 

Appears to be rigger made, though well done and evidently correct WWII period. White elastic (same as used for AN6530 goggle strap) double strap with cross strap and correct snap fasteners at each end for attaching the mask / hook (hook attached on one side). Elastic has yellowed with age and shows light staining but retains elasticity. This type of head-harness would be worn when oxygen was needed but no helmet used - perhaps with a headset / crusher combination; more comfortable for long range bomber or reconnaissance pilot. Scarce item.

SOLD

WWII RAF narrow hose / breathing tube for the early Type G oxygen mask.

 

In many ways these early tubes for  the Type G mask are more difficult to find than the tubes for the E and E* mask. This is a nice used example in excellent display condition. It has been painted on the end of the clip with aircraft yellow dope / paint - perhaps to show up in a dark cockpit? Rubber is very good; the usual minor surface cracks in between the corrugations. The twine binding has been covered with friction / electrical tape, a common practice.  There is the slightest misshaping to the tube near the plastic screw-in connector - probably from storage or or previous display - but it barely shows. This is one of the hardest accessories to find – and most in demand.

SOLD

WWII RAF Type E* oxygen mask complete with original thin oxygen tube in very good, unissued condition.

 

Good examples of the E* (E-star) mask are becoming more and more difficult to source, and those fitted with the correct, early, thin breathing tube are very scarce indeed. This is a lovely example, very clean, and appears to have never been issued or worn. Fitted with a bakelite transit cap, instead of the microphone which would have been installed on base, the rubber face piece is extremely pliable and shows only light aging at the edges, with a few minor surface stress cracks. There are no hard or sticky areas. The cone-shape funnel tends to hang to one side due no doubt to storage for 70+ years, but displays well once on a helmet. The tube is also in excellent condition, fully flexible. Harness is clean and retains elasticity. Nice crisp stores ref. markings. A really good mask.

SOLD

WWII RAF Type G oxygen mask with Type 48 microphone in excellent condition.

 

Type G mask in excellent, well above average condition, showing only the lightest of use, and retaining its yellow rubber bands around al three webbing straps. Rubber is very clean and has not been exposed to light so remains its original grey colour. Nose wire and strap retaining wire still firm;y affixed with no damage to lugs. Very light surface cracks around valve, and suede lining shows only light use. Microphone clean with 95+% paint and straps still elastic. An excellent used mask. 

SOLD

RARE unused and undisturbed roll of foil strip "window" used by the RAF to confuse German radar.

One of those wonderful display items you never see any more. A small roll of tinfoil, still boxed and with its miniature parachute attached, as well as its long brown paper wrapping. Known as "window", the foil strips were  dropped by the thousand during RAF night time raids, to confuse German radar operators by making it appear as though thousands of aircraft were taking part. One aircraft could drop a few hundred rolls and night fighters would be scrambled to intercept, while the real raid was taking place somewhere else. The paper wrapping was designed to unravel, then the foil, which would be suspended beneath it's small parachute and would show up like  a slowly descending aircraft on a radar screen. Approx. 3.5" x 3.5" x 0.5"

 

SOLD

Nice matching pair of origin RAF Type 32 telephone receivers for the Type C, D or E flying helmet.

Becoming more and more difficult to source, original receivers for the RAF flying helmets are rarely offered. I have one available pair, and they are very nice, complete with all interior components. This is a good matched pair, even down to their green ink stamped acceptance marks.  Good moulded A-crown-M and stores  ref. number 10A/13466 which is further filled with white paint for quick ID. One receiver has a hairline crack in the surface of the bakelite, but this i barely perceptible and in no way compromises the integrity or appearance of the receiver. If you're looking to complete a helmet, grab these while you can. 

SOLD

RARE early wartime RAF aircrew belt with pouches for the Everhot chemically heated packs.

 

Primarily associated with bomber crews during the early days of the war, crew members who did not have access to electrical heating outlets were supplied with chemical heating packs to insert into the 1940 pattern gloves, boots and inside flying suits. Pouches to hold the packs were also sewn to their clothing to provide additional warmth. This waist belt, most probably rigger made, is a great example. Made of white canvas webbing, it has two Air Ministry marled pouches sewn to it, each would hold the heating pack which could then be discarded and replaced when it expired. Everett heat packs NOT included. A rare bomber crew accessory.

 

SOLD

RAF 1933 pattern "straight zip" flying gauntlets as issued during the Battle of Britain.

 

Excellent used pair of RAF flying gauntlets and as close to a matching pair as you can find! High quality chestnut brown leather with tan leather lining, both gloves well marked with A-crown-M and a date of 1941 - the last year this pattern was produced. Named inside to a Fawcett, though one of the gauntlets has another name "Adams" and serial number blacked out from a previous issue. Size 8 with excellent working (and matching) brass zip fasteners and pullers. A lovely example of these scarce flying gloves.

 

SOLD

Superb WWII AAF enlisted man's visor / peaked cap with "50 mission crusher" look.

 

Beautiful high quality doeskin felt enlisted man's dress cap with the stiffener removed and shaped for that "50 mission" crush look. Large size - 7-1/4 -and in near perfect condition. Features front and rear chin straps and oilcloth liner. Tough to find better!

SOLD

Battle of Britain period RAF Mk IVB flying goggles with rare early flip screen fitted.

 

Good set of RAF Mk IVB flying goggles as issued during the Battle of Britain. The Mk IV, IVA and IVB were all announced in AMO 613 on June 27, 1940 and were more or less produced and issued simultaneously; the IV being complicated to manufacture and the IVA proving too fragile, the IVB was produced in greater numbers. This pair is in good condition, with the usual misshaping / hardening of the sponge pads on the back. Brass frames have a few dings but retain about 90% original black paint. Good strong loops although the braided covering has frayed in one area on one loop. Good leather nose guard and strap with visible but faint A-crown-M and stores ref. information. Lenses are good, showing only minimal delamination. Rare early polarizing sun screen is fitted, with exposed spring. Of particular interest is the unusual tooling on the frames: the external rectangular housings for the pads are quite complicated in form, and similar in shape to those found on Mk IVA. My guess is these are a very early production run Mk IVB. Decent examples are getting harder to find, especially with the early screen.

SOLD

RAF Mk I Dark Adaption Goggles.

 

Despite their simple and unsophisticated design, these are one of the most scarce items of aircrew equipment. Mk I Dark Adaption goggles were very short-lived. Adjusting to being able to see in the dark was problem for night fighter and bomber crews; it takes time for the eyes to adjust to night vision, but if crews wore dark, neutral lenses for 30 minutes prior to take off, their eyes would adjust to the dark, ready to fly. These were successful to a degree - but so dark it was difficult to see anything. Different lenses were tested and red lenses found to be just as effective, while allowing better vision, so red lenses were added along with metal vents on each side to prevent fogging. They were designated Mk Ia and given a new stores ref. number. Examples of the first type, with dark neutral lenses and no vents, are seldom encountered. This example shows some use and oxidation to the frames and clasp. Good leather and strap retains elasticity, though a bit frayed at the edges and the clip is missing a little piece  of metal but still works perfectly well. 

 

SOLD

RAF WWII issue Mk VIII flying goggles.

 

Used but very good pair of RAF Mk VIII flying goggles as used and issued in WWII. Though Mk VIII goggles remained i service for many years, the style changed gradually and wartime examples have a certain look: The curved, rolled edge on the frame, the shape of the cushions and the various markings that appeared. There is clear evidence of a debossed crown in the leather, behind the hinge of the goggles, part of the Air Ministry mark, indicating that this pair was most probably manufactured between 1943 and 1944. Use is evident, but condition is overall very good with no damage. Strap retains elasticity. Oxidation to bare metal parts, minor delimitation and slight chips to lenses. A good, used pair.

 

SOLD

RAF Mk VIII flying goggles.

 

Most likely postwar manufacture Mk VIII goggles in near perfect condition. The Mk VIIIs continued in use until the 1970s, though the style changed gradually. One of the earliest modifications was to eliminate the rolled edge to the metal frames, as seen on this pair. In all other respects they are identical to the known wartime issue. There are no visible embossed or debossed markings but a clear acceptance stamp to the back of the cushion. An excellent example.

 

SOLD

WWII Royal Navy Fleet Air Arm pilot brevet.

Nice, used FAA pilot wing in gold bullion wire with heavily padded crown, silver anchor and on a black wool background with oiled fabric backing. 3.25" across.

SOLD

 

WWII Luftwaffe Schwimmweste Model 10-30 B-2 dated April, 1941 in stunning condition.

 

From an old and well-established collection that belonged to a prominent collector of quality items (see also the Packhülle in Survival section). This early "backless" B-2 Schwimmweste is in absolutely superb condition. The rubberized fabric is as clean, soft and pliable as the day it came out of the Drägerwerk factory in Lubeck. The vest features early metal fittings to both the CO2 valve and the oral inflation tube connectors. CO2 cylinder is dated 9.40.  Included is an early model AK39 Armbandkompass attached to the oral inflation tube, showing no use and no loss of its liquid filling. By far the nicest example of this highly desirable life vest i have seen, and I would have to say impossible to upgrade.

SOLD

Extremely rare Luftwaffe fighter pilot's Packhülle for the single man life raft (Einmannschlauchnoot) in superb condition.

 

One of the rarest and most sought after accessories for the Luftwaffe fighter pilot; this Packhülle for the life raft is from an old and prominent collection (see 10-30 B-2 life vest from same collection). This case for the single man life raft is in perfect condition, untouched since it was made. No damage to to the thin cotton case, all snap fasteners intact, metal fittings in perfect working order. Well marked with ink stamps and a label as being for the A-1 boat but could also be used with the later A-2. The snaps were set so that when the pilot activated the CO2 cylinder (while wearing the pack) the boat would inflate and pop out of the pack into the water. Worn as a waistcoat with the straps over the shoulder, under the parachute but over the life vest. The rubber boats are, by comparison, fairly easy to locate. These cases are all but impossible to find. This example would be impossible to upgrade.

 

SOLD

WWII RAF wiring loom for the internally wired C, D and E type flying helmets

 

In unissued condition, this wiring loom is correct for mounting with the Type 16 or 32 receivers, the small mask plug and a bell-shaped connector to complete an internally wired Type C helmet (or the Type D and E). A couple of the tiny loop connectors have broken away on the mask plug wires but this does not affect appearance or functionality.

 

SOLD