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The skeleton assault jerkin

Article about: Thanks Ade, got some photos but cant get them to attache to reply.

  1. #1

    Default The skeleton assault jerkin

    Hi Guys, this was an item of equipment developed for the special forces, Commandos, etc, who needed a lightweight addition to the normal 1937 pattern webbing field gear. Designed to be worn so it could be easily released.

    It's compartments could hold two 30 round Bren gun mags in each pouch plus a spike bayonet on one side. The entrenching tool could also be carried. Like all my webbing, I like to have all the correct contents in the pouches etc.

    Early issues were not adjustable but came in three sizes. Later versions, like mine, were adjustable to ensure a better fit.

    Beware these items have been well copied for many years and made from original materials!

    Sometimes nick named "The Bren bra" by collectors.

    Cheers, Ade.
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture The skeleton assault jerkin   The skeleton assault jerkin  

    The skeleton assault jerkin   The skeleton assault jerkin  

    The skeleton assault jerkin  

  2. #2
    ?

    Default Re: The skeleton assault jerkin

    As Adie stated these have been copied for some years, here's a first pattern Vest, which I reproduce . These are marked HT&C 1942 or 1944 and also have a broad arrow with 015 inspectors stamp. These have been on the market for over five years, so please be aware even if told otherwise by a seller, these are not genuine.
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture The skeleton assault jerkin  

  3. #3

    Default Re: The skeleton assault jerkin

    Pictures of my Battle Jerkin (Assault Jacket). In British Army Uniforms and Insignia of WWII by Brian L. Davis on page248 he gives a comprehensive list of equipment carried in the Jacket
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture The skeleton assault jerkin   The skeleton assault jerkin  


  4. #4

    Default Re: The skeleton assault jerkin

    Rear of the Battle Jerkin.
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture The skeleton assault jerkin  

  5. #5
    ?

    Default Re: The skeleton assault jerkin

    As a foot note Ade, I just notice that on your later type One size Vest, the pockets face inwards and not outwards as with my ealry sized repro and also Blackpowders original Battle Jerkin. I wonder why they change the pitch of the pockets, as I would have thought this makes the mags harder to remove with one hand ?

  6. #6

    Default Re: The skeleton assault jerkin

    Hi Nige, welcome to the forum! ( Nige and I are old friends )

    I have never tried on a first pattern but it must have changed on the second pattern in light of experience I would have thought?

    Cheers, Ade.

  7. #7

    Default Re: The skeleton assault jerkin

    Quote by Blackpowder44 View Post
    Pictures of my Battle Jerkin (Assault Jacket). In British Army Uniforms and Insignia of WWII by Brian L. Davis on page248 he gives a comprehensive list of equipment carried in the Jacket
    Hi John, that is a great example.

    Again these have been copied for over 20 years. Be very very careful buying one of these.

    There is also a version in all tan canvas & webbing, mostly found stencilled "for training only".

    Cheers, Ade.

  8. #8
    ?

    Default Re: The skeleton assault jerkin

    Yes as my old mate (of more years than I dare let on) Mr Stevenson stated Battle Jerkins have been reproduced and faked for many years, some are sold as outright reproductions others as original. There were quite a few made up out of old British army tent canvas, the dead give away is how thin the fabric is, as the tent canvas is about 1/3 of the weight to that of the correct material. The total weight for the complete jerkin should be around about 2 1/2 to 2 3/4 Lbs empty, depending on the size.

    As to the Sand coloured models, these were tested in North Africa circa 1942 but were found to be unsuitable for the temperatures, but were produced at the same time as the first Brown versions, there were at least two production variations of the Battle jerkin in the Chocolate Brown shade depending on the manufacturer, differing in minor details such as the stitching on the pocket flaps, the colour of the thread, the type and size of the webbing used for the Machete strap, and also the colour and width of the binding tape used on the inside edges. There was also possibly some manufactured in Canada for use on D-day however I cant confirm this.

    Nige.

  9. #9
    Chris S
    ?

    Default Re: The skeleton assault jerkin

    Yo men, have just purchased a skeletal battle jerkin yesterday . Its identical to the one depicted in the first 5 photographs on this thread. On the label in good clear letters is A.C.6047 , a good WD arrow , what I presume is the makers stamp , W.&G. 1945. There is a smaller less distinct stamp with its own small WD arrow which I cant fully make out but looks to be , "something" , "2" "9". I paid £160 , is this an ok price ? Regards Chris S.

  10. #10

    Default Re: The skeleton assault jerkin

    Hi Chris, the price sounds very fair to me. I have seen them priced higher. Please post some pics if you can.

    Cheers, Ade.

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