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WW2 M43 Heer HBT Tunic

Article about: I was thinking about placing a bid on this WW2 German M43 HBT Tunic and would like some thoughts as to it's authenticity. It is a Greenish Blue cotton Denim Tunic. I know it's hard to tell b

  1. #11

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    Quote by Obal7 View Post
    I have been trying to research and compare this Drillich Tunic and its Shoulder Straps, Breast Eagle and Litzen with other threads and using JPhilips' "Feldbluse" book as a reference.
    Please correct me if I am wrong. It appears that this M43 HBT Greenish Blue cotton Tunic may have been put together, possible by it's owner, with parts from different years. It looks like the 2 different late war Shoulder Straps are possibly Armoured Infantry or Panzer Grenadiere due to the (extremely worn) grass green trim. The shoulder straps seem to be the stylish dark Greenish blue as worn on a pre-war tunic. The Grey Litzen and Breast Eagle style look similar and may be from 1940-41, but the Litzen is mounted on Dark Greenish Blue background ala Pre-war. There is no visible sizing stamps or RB numbers, but the tunic is extremely worn and now gone. I tend to think that this M43 Drillich was issued but privately altered by this Unteroffizier. And probably used as a light weight summer tunic. It seems that altering Tunics were a common practice.
    Any thoughts, information and opinions are welcomed.

    Hello David,
    I received your PMs concerning the Drillichrock...
    Without a contest, it is a last pattern Drillichrock, the so-called M43 HBT tunic. I do believe this Drillichrock to be original although i'm not a big fan of the weave on the reverse. Such a weave has been seen on originals but it is also seen on numerous fakes.
    Shoulderstraps are mismatched privately purchased examples. Concerning the piping, from the photos provided it looks more like GJ than Panzergrenadier...
    There's a chance that the Hoheitsabzeichen is factory sewn....but for sure, Litzen and collar tresse were replaced (when?, by whom?)...
    The partial collar tresse has been seen on period photos, but more surely in the Osttruppen than in the rest of the army. This practice is more imperial than TR...
    An interesting piece...
    Concerning the book, i'll be able to sign and send it out probably next week...
    Thanks
    PREUSSENS GLORIA

    In Memoriam :
    Laurent Huart (1964-2008)

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  3. #12
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    Hi JPhilip!
    It's good to see that you are doing well. Thanks for your input. Do you think it was a common practice to mix match, and add older eagle, and the dark backing behind the litzen to a late model Drillichrock ? Also if it could be GJ, did they place the Edelweiss onto their sleeve or omit it? I know you were not that big a fan of the "Weave" on the reverse of the Tunic? I assume you meant the sateen material pattern on the inside?
    I also found some photos of "Osttruppen" with the same partial collar tress.
    Also... when you get a chance.. no rush... but I am looking forward to getting your book...
    As always... Thanks, Dave.

  4. #13

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    Quote by Obal7 View Post
    Hi JPhilip!
    It's good to see that you are doing well. Thanks for your input. Do you think it was a common practice to mix match, and add older eagle, and the dark backing behind the litzen to a late model Drillichrock ? Also if it could be GJ, did they place the Edelweiss onto their sleeve or omit it? I know you were not that big a fan of the "Weave" on the reverse of the Tunic? I assume you meant the sateen material pattern on the inside?
    I also found some photos of "Osttruppen" with the same partial collar tress.
    Also... when you get a chance.. no rush... but I am looking forward to getting your book...
    As always... Thanks, Dave.
    Hello David,
    Yes it was a common practice to enhance the tunic with older insignia, such as dark green ones. Mainly to look like a veteran...or to use the tunic as a leave/walking out garment.
    I think that the eagle has a chance to be the one issued with the Drillichrock.
    It is another story for the Litzen and partial collar tresse. Even with close photos of the rear of the collar, it's sometimes though to say if insignia are period sewn or not...especially when the Litzen are sewn on a backing...
    Concerning the Edelweiss of the GJ troops, the vast majority of these troops wore one, but some photos show GJ without the edelweiss. Concening the shoulderstraps, are you 100% sure that they were on this tunic at the end of the war...they might be a postwar replacement...so this Drillichrock might not be from GJ troops...

    When i wrote that i was not a big fan of the weave on the reverse, it meant that i dont like when the reverse has the same kind of chevron weave than the outside of the tunic....The 100% original "HBT" material shows chevrons on the outside only and the weave on the reverse is "unchevroned" (if i'm allowed to invent new words....).
    8/10 years ago, i would have said that this tunic was an aged repro, but since i've seen undoutbfully original Drillichrocke with this kind of weave on the inside, so i slightly corrected my judgement on this particular material. And the fact that there are other points of comparison between original and repro also helps...the weave does not make all the story...
    Hope it helps...
    Thanks
    PREUSSENS GLORIA

    In Memoriam :
    Laurent Huart (1964-2008)

  5. #14
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    Default "44" Ghost..

    Hi JPhilip!
    Thank you for this interesting conversation!
    I understand about the Chevron/weave, clearly stated.. ha and I'm sure many new words are formed "Unchevroned" being the best way to describe it!
    Anyway, the Litzen, breast eagle and the shoulder straps are very well clearly stated and understood, especially where you spoke of this in your "Feldbluse" book...it always comes in handy. But yes, it's hard to say if the shoulder straps were original with the Tunic of post war replacements.
    NOW! Which I believe is kind of astonishing... (I don't know if you originally picked it out with your keen eye for detail)... but going back and looking at the Chevron weave in my photos... I noticed...very clearly, the number 44 on the inside of the Drillichrock, just above the field dressing pouch. There may also be more printing "sizing stamps" there, that are indecipherable. When I received this tunic, I search every inch of the inside , in the areas where a sizing stamp and year would be. I used magnifying glasses, different light, and even a black light to hopefully detect a trace of the stamp. I wrote it off as possibly there were no stamps, RB number or it was simply washed/worn away.
    What I'm getting at, is that the stamp could not be found with the naked eye... but with my trusty iPhone camera and flash and the right angle... the "44" clearly came up. Right where I would think the stamp/year would be.. but I didn't see it until now.
    Also... in your opinion, do you think this Drillichrock could have been worn as a summer light weight field tunic?..and where could it of possibly been worn.. Normandy, So. France?

    Click image for larger version. 

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  6. #15

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    Hello David,
    This kind of garment has been worn as a combat tunic from Brittany to the Ural...from Kurland to Greece....everywhere the german Heer has been fighting, this Drillichrock has been worn...There are photos that show Drillichrocke worn over the wool Feldbluse on the Eastern front in autumn, there are photos that show it worn solo on any front between April and September...no problem for Normandy...hundreds of Drillichrocke now in collection in Normandy comes from the Normandy front.
    A friend of mine owns a "brand new" Drillichrock that has been so much enhanced with prewar insignia and ribbons that the only possible use for this garment was walking out tunic for sure...
    Thanks
    PREUSSENS GLORIA

    In Memoriam :
    Laurent Huart (1964-2008)

  7. #16
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    JPhilip!
    Thanks! Did you originally see the "44"? and can you decipher any other parts of the stamp?
    Dave

  8. #17

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    No David, i didn't see any markings on the photos provided, sorry...
    My last pattern Drillichrock is also quite worn while being in good condition and i have never found any markings stamped on it...
    Markings are not important, that's the item that counts...better an original item without markings than a fake with nice markings...
    Thanks
    PREUSSENS GLORIA

    In Memoriam :
    Laurent Huart (1964-2008)

  9. #18
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    Click image for larger version. 

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    OOps

  10. #19

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    OK.....i got it....try to find a letter(s) just stamped before the 44...like M, E, MH, WB etc....
    Thanks



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    PREUSSENS GLORIA

    In Memoriam :
    Laurent Huart (1964-2008)

  11. #20
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    Default "44"

    Hi JPhilip,
    I agree with you about the tags, they are not that important.. but for grins..here's the 44 highlighted..
    Ha... I just got your response that you now see it!! I will look for the letters too..
    Thanks again for all of your help.
    Dave

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