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Belgien paratroopers - 1960

Article about: Gentlemen, I am in need of your assistance! Due to a sudden increase in funds this month, I have dared to begin a new part of the collection. Usually I collect "complete" sets of e

  1. #1

    Default The Belgians in congo 1960-1965

    Gentlemen, I am in need of your assistance!

    Due to a sudden increase in funds this month, I have dared to begin a new part of the collection.

    Usually I collect "complete" sets of equipment, with matching uniforms. And now the times has come to move on to the next one, having recently completed a uniform of the "Danish Royal Guard - ca. 1939".

    I have been reading a lot about the Crisis in Congo in the 1960s, and have particularly taken interest in the Belgian troops.
    But I am a bit in the dark about uniforms and equipment. I know they used a great deal of British patt. 37 webbing, with the US M1943 shovel, instead of the "useless" pickaxe and I know that they used MkIII basic pouches. But how was it put together, and what other parts did it consist of?

    I've read that the paratroopers (1. and 3. battalion) used a camouflage uniform of some sort. Would that be the M/1956?

    I have in vain tried to source some photos, where I am able to see their uniforms and equipment in a decent quality.
    But all the photos I have found so far, are very grainy and basically useless.

    Hopefully someone is able to help me!

    I will of-course update this thread, as the "set" takes form.
    Last edited by 37Webbing; 12-19-2014 at 08:49 PM.
    Πόλεμος πάντων μεν πατήρ εστί, πάντων δε βασιλεύς.

  2. #2


    Got a little closer to the goal today.
    Managed to source these pictures:

    What I am "looking for" is the No. 5 guy in the first picture -

    05. Anciennes tenues.jpg

    Belgians 2.jpg


    Belgium Red - Black Dragon 1964.jpg


    I suspect the braces were the same as the British, for the patt. 37 webbing.
    The water bottle looks US made, but the carrier is not something I have seen before.
    The belt looks exactly as the British patt. 37 webbing.

    NB: Already found a source for entrenching tool carrier, basic pouches, bayonet frog + gas mask and bag.

    More belgian - 1960 02.jpg

    More belgian - 1960.jpg
    Πόλεμος πάντων μεν πατήρ εστί, πάντων δε βασιλεύς.

  3. #3


    The first pic is great to see, with the no 4 guy in jigsaw camo and no 5 in the British denison derived moon and balls or brush stroke camo.
    Attached Images Attached Images


    Whatever its just an opinion.

  4. #4


    Nice to see a pair of trousers with all the strings still there
    They seem to be missing on most I have been looking at.
    Πόλεμος πάντων μεν πατήρ εστί, πάντων δε βασιλεύς.

  5. #5


    The project is well under way, thanks to helpful souls on this great forum

    The first few bits and pieces should arrive in a day or so. But I have encountered yet another problem.
    If you look at this photo, you notice a helmet hanging from the belt. The questions is however, which one is it?
    Is it a British type para-helmet, or a US style M1 helmet? Or something different altogether?

    And where does one find a toggle-rope?

    05. Anciennes tenues - Kopi.JPG
    Πόλεμος πάντων μεν πατήρ εστί, πάντων δε βασιλεύς.

  6. #6


    As promised, a small update on the project:

    I received quite a bit of Belgian webbing the past couple of days:

    Two types of basic pouches - three in total
    Water bottle and cup (US pattern, but Belgian made in 1960)
    Water bottle carrier
    Belt, FAL bayonet carrier and pistol holster.
    Belgian BAR belt, from the 1950s.
    Entrenching tool carrier.

    The quality of the webbing and fittings is astounding. Very heavy weave.















    Πόλεμος πάντων μεν πατήρ εστί, πάντων δε βασιλεύς.

  7. #7


    A toggle rope here, item number 57187

    Britton at War

    The seller Steve is a member here, specialises on WWII berets among other things.

    It is all looking good.

    Hard to see the helmet, but it might be a Turtle MKIV?


    Whatever its just an opinion.

  8. #8


    you have picked up some real nice items and good luck with your display ,Jerry is right the helmet could well be a turtle they also used there own copied version of the british rac mk11

  9. #9


    Thank you gents

    The helmet could very well be either a "turtle" or a RAC MKII.
    It got me thinking. Does anyone know, if the Belgians used the British paratrooper helmet, post war?
    The men in the first picture are "airborne" after all.

    Thank you, for all the help

    It is coming together very nicely. Had some luck with the webbing.
    I have had a lot of use for my rusty French, in gathering all the bits and pieces.
    Πόλεμος πάντων μεν πατήρ εστί, πάντων δε βασιλεύς.

  10. #10


    I 'll see what I can do!
    Spend my youth in Congo and been a paratrooper my self, 20 years after 1960.....
    I collect Belgian Congo items, but not that familliar with post '60 ties stuff.
    Couldn't resist getting the sloudge hat as on your third pic.
    It was on my wanted list for a long time....
    Here to see with other pick up's.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Always looking for Belgian Congo stuff!

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