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A Study of Interwar British Empire-Made .303 Cloth Bandoliers

Article about: Presented below are three examples of the 'BANDOLIER, COTTON, 50 ROUNDS, MARK II' made in the interwar years in India, Canada and Australia. GOVERNMENT OF INDIA This Indian bandolier is very

  1. #1
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    Default A Study of Interwar British Empire-Made .303 Cloth Bandoliers

    Presented below are three examples of the 'BANDOLIER, COTTON, 50 ROUNDS, MARK II' made in the interwar years in India, Canada and Australia.

    GOVERNMENT OF INDIA
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Name:	01 Indian 1921 .303  Bandolier Mk. II.jpg 
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ID:	942046
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Name:	02 Indian 1921 .303  Bandolier Mk. II.jpg 
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ID:	942047

    This Indian bandolier is very similar to the British pattern, but it is made of twilled Indian-made khaki drill material.

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Name:	03 Indian Bandolier Closure Hooks.jpg 
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ID:	942049

    The pockets are closed with closure hooks made of copper wire.

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Name:	04 Indian Bandolier Maker's Mark.jpg 
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ID:	942052

    This bandolier was made by the INDIAN GOVERNMENT AMMUNITION FACTORY KIRKEE, near Poona (as denoted by the KF) in August 1921. The Indian broad arrow is flanked by the letters "I" and "A", which most likely stand for Indian Army or Indian Ammunition.

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Name:	05 Indian Bandolier Reload Stamp 1921.jpg 
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ID:	942054
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Name:	06 Indian Bandolier Reload Stamp 1925.jpg 
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ID:	942055
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Name:	07 Indian Bandolier Reload Stamp 1927.jpg 
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ID:	942056
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Name:	08 Indian Bandolier Reload Stamp 1934.jpg 
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ID:	942057

    This bandolier features multiple cancelled reload stamps dating from 1921, 1925, 1927 and 1934. Interestingly, Indian cancellation stamps consist of 3 diagonal black lines.

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Name:	09 Indian Bandolier Reload Stamp 1939.jpg 
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ID:	942059

    A close-up of an Indian load stamp

    A) Number of rounds
    B) General purpose ‘Ball’ rounds (rather than tracer, armour-piercing, incendiary, dummy, etc.)
    C) .303 Inch Calibre
    D) Mark VII Cartridge
    E) Indian Government Ammunition Factory Kirkee, near Poona
    F) Load date – May 30, 1939
    G) Government of India Acceptance Stamp
    H) Symbol for “cartridge, small arm, ball” (a rectangle with a line through it)

    DOMINION OF CANADA
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Name:	10 Canadian 1937 .303 Bandolier Mk. II.jpg 
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ID:	942060
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Name:	11 Canadian 1937 .303  Bandolier Mk. II.jpg 
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ID:	942061

    This Canadian bandolier has the characteristic folded pockets, rather than hook closures, and is constructed of a twilled jean material.

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Name:	12 Canadian Bandolier Pocker Closure.jpg 
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ID:	942065

    A close-up of the folded pockets

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Name:	13 Canadian Bandolier Maker's Mark.jpg 
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ID:	942066

    This bandolier was made by YAMASKA GARMENTS, LIMITED of Saint-Hyacinthe, Quebec in January of 1937.

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Name:	14 Canadian Bandolier Acceptance Stamp.jpg 
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ID:	942067

    You can just make out an extremely faded Canadian Broad Arrow acceptance mark on this bandolier.

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Name:	15 Canadian Bandolier Reload Stamp 1941.jpg 
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ID:	942068

    This bandolier features one cancelled reload stamp, dating from 1941. Just visible on this stamp is "I.G. CANADA", which stands for the Inspector Governor of Canada. Note the style of Canada's cancellation stamp, a squared-off black 'X'.

    COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA
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Name:	16 Australian 1927 .303  Bandolier Mk. II.jpg 
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ID:	942069
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Name:	17 Australian 1927 .303  Bandolier Mk. II.jpg 
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ID:	942070

    This Australian bandolier is also very close to the original British pattern and is made of a thin canvas.

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Name:	18 Australian Bandolier Closure Hooks.jpg 
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ID:	942071

    The closure hooks on this bandolier are characteristically Australian, being made of pressed sheet copper hooks.

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Name:	19 Australian Bandolier Maker's Mark.jpg 
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ID:	942073

    This bandolier was made by the COMMONWEALTH GOVERNMENT CLOTHING FACTORY of South Melbourne. Note the Australian Acceptance stamp in the form of a Broad Arrow surmounting the number '20'.

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Name:	20 Australian Bandolier Reload Stamp 1927.jpg 
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ID:	942075
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Name:	21 Australian Bandolier Reload Stamp 1941.jpg 
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ID:	942078

    This bandolier features a couple of cancelled reload stamps dating from 1927 & 1941. These were reloaded at MF and MG, which were Small Arms Ammunition Factories No 1 & No 2 of Footscray, Melbourne. Note also the characteristic cross cancellation stamps in purple ink.

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Name:	22 Australian Bandolier Reload Stamp 1944.jpg 
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ID:	942080

    A close-up of an Australian load stamp

    A) Number of rounds
    B) General purpose ‘Ball’ rounds (rather than tracer, armour-piercing, incendiary, dummy, etc.)
    C) .303 Inch Calibre
    D) Mark VII Cartridge
    E) Load date – May 22, 1944
    F) Small Arms Ammunition Factory Number 6 – Welshpool, Australia
    G) Symbol for “cartridge, small arm, ball” (a rectangle with a line through it)

  2. #2

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    Ahh! another fantastic study Karkee I'll have to take a closer look at my Aust ones
    Thanks Mate
    Regards
    René

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