Question about moleskine jacket

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    belgium_one
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    Question about moleskine jacket

    Post by belgium_one on Thu Apr 21, 2016 11:02 am

    hello Very Happy

    I have a question about the BW moleskine jacket : what's the function of the "straps" and the buttons underneath the pockets ?



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    Re: Question about moleskine jacket

    Post by CollectinSteve on Fri Apr 22, 2016 2:02 am

    The buttons are there for the flashlight's lower strap. The upper strap is buttoned to the pocket button.

    I've never quite figured out what the reinforcements are for and, for some reason, I've never thought to ask! The were present on the Filzlaus uniforms (1st and 2nd Models) and the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Model Moleskin jackets. Interesting, the 1st Model had the reinforcements going from the pocket buttons all the way down, but that was removed for the later models.

    The 3rd Model production ended around 1985, which means this feature lasted for about 27 years. You would think that the purpose would be obvious! However, I have yet to hear what the Canadian trouser buttons on the belt loops are for even though that lasted about 10+ years.

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    Re: Question about moleskine jacket

    Post by austromunga on Mon Jun 06, 2016 7:10 pm

    Hey guys... Sorry to bump an older thread....but I was lead to belive the matching trousers have a strange buttoned tape band which can be threaded through the "straps" and thus prevent riding up of the jacket!!??? But must admit to never testing this out.....with either my flitzlouse or moleskin sets!!!
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    Re: Question about moleskine jacket

    Post by CollectinSteve on Tue Jun 07, 2016 2:30 am

    Ah, so that's what those straps are for Very Happy Learn something new every day Wink

    I thought the trouser straps were there for trouser suspenders. I checked and 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Model Moleskin (1963-1986) all have this arrangement even though there are significant differences between the various models. Only the 4th (and final) Model Moleskin lacks this feature on both jacket and trousers.

    I don't have any idea how they would work in practice. The ergonomics of butting them would suck and I don't see the buttons lasting very long. I don't think I've ever seen a picture of a BW soldier with the jacket tucked in. To me this seems to be an example of the design never being used as intended. Other examples:

    1. Chest pocket D rings on Splittertarn. Originally intended for a backpack (like the Swiss), but one was never developed.

    2. Buttons on Canadian trouser belt loops. I have never heard an explanation for these buttons, even from career soldiers, yet they existed for about 20 years at least.

    3. Swiss TAZ82 and TAZ90 uniforms both have the ability for the shirt to tuck in and snap onto D rings on the trousers. I don't think I've seen anybody in the field do this, but maybe so. The system certainly is more feasible than the Moleskin design.

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    Re: Question about moleskine jacket

    Post by Bolty717 on Tue Jun 07, 2016 2:41 am

    CollectinSteve wrote:
    2.  Buttons on Canadian trouser belt loops.  I have never heard an explanation for these buttons, even from career soldiers, yet they existed for about 20 years at least.
    Steve

    We had button trouser loops on our NZ DPMs in the 80s and early 90s. Only use I ever saw for them was allowing Officers to wear a Sam Brown during drill rehearsal in DPMs. Easy to put on and off with the buttons. Other than that the button in you lower back was put there to cause extreme pain when doing curl ups during boot PT!
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    Re: Question about moleskine jacket

    Post by Wolverine on Tue Jun 07, 2016 8:54 am

    The buttons on the CF trouser loops seem to be carry overs for trouser suspenders. If you have a pair of the first version of the Canadian combat trousers (about 1963), notice that the buttons (regular four-hole buttons) are not on the belt loops themselves, but sewn directly to the outside waistband at locations that are convenient for suspenders, which were issued for a long time in the CF (mostly for cold weather stuff I think). When the heavy green woolen shirt was worn (identical to the GI type), it might be tucked into the trousers with suspenders over top. Eventually the Canadian-style buttons (smaller version) were moved directly onto the belt loops. Later, when the belt loops were made wider, the Canadian-style buttons were superimposed over top, on a narrower loop. It was probably more common, however, to use the suspenders with the wind pants, which had no provision for wearing a belt.
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    Re: Question about moleskine jacket

    Post by CollectinSteve on Tue Jun 07, 2016 12:35 pm

    Bolty717 wrote:We had button trouser loops on our NZ DPMs in the 80s and early 90s. Only use I ever saw for them was allowing Officers to wear a Sam Brown during drill rehearsal in DPMs. Easy to put on and off with the buttons. Other than that the button in you lower back was put there to cause extreme pain when doing curl ups during boot PT!

    Heh... yeah, those were the old British style button down belt loops.  The Brits continued on with them for a lot longer.  The Canadians, however, had permanent loops with buttons sewn onto the center of each loop.  Same PT pain, but without the obvious benefit for officers looking snappy!

    Wolverine wrote:The buttons on the CF trouser loops seem to be carry overs for trouser suspenders. If you have a pair of the first version of the Canadian combat trousers (about 1963), notice that the buttons (regular four-hole buttons) are not on the belt loops themselves, but sewn directly to the outside waistband at locations that are convenient for suspenders, which were issued for a long time in the CF (mostly for cold weather stuff I think). When the heavy green woolen shirt was worn (identical to the GI type), it might be tucked into the trousers with suspenders over top. Eventually the Canadian-style buttons (smaller version) were moved directly onto the belt loops. Later, when the belt loops were made wider, the Canadian-style buttons were superimposed over top, on a narrower loop. It was probably more common, however, to use the suspenders with the wind pants, which had no provision for wearing a belt.

    That's the best theory I've heard, but it still doesn't make much sense Smile  The only way for buttons on the loops to function properly is if there is also a belt in the loops.  Otherwise the suspenders are tugging on something that's only weakly attached to the waistband.  And if you have a belt already in the loops, then what need is there for suspenders?

    Clearly, I think, it can be said that the buttons on the beltloops were a hold over from some prior function that was discontinued long ago.  And for roughly 40 years great expense was incurred to do absolutely nothing.  How this feature made it onto CADPAT uniforms is puzzling as it should have been a chance to dispense with unnecessary/outdated concepts.  But it took another... what, another 10 years to drop them from CADPAT?  That's nuts.

    Anyway, this is indeed similar to the Moleskin question posed up top. The Germans spent the money to support a feature through three uniform designs over a nearly 25 year period that was apparently never used. I don't get it.

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    Re: Question about moleskine jacket

    Post by Wolverine on Tue Jun 07, 2016 1:26 pm

    It is pretty nearly a certainty - more than a theory. I have just tried a pair of 2005-vintage y-suspenders (they never changed much since the 1960s) on trousers with the 4-hole buttons and the Canadian-style buttons. They work perfectly well in every instance. In fact, the Canadian-style buttons are superior to conventional suspender buttons because they are less likely to come loose. You simply slide the button up to the top of the belt loop, and attach the suspender tabs - no problem. I doubt it is coincidental that the belt loops/buttons are situated in exactly the correct place for the suspenders, and that the number of buttons (6) match the number of suspender tabs (3 x 2 = 6). Given the longevity of the suspenders, that holdover really wasn't that ancient. And it was a practical/functional feature for those who preferred suspenders over a belt.

    The suspenders work fine on the loop buttons with or without belt.

    With all that said, I can't explain the moleskin design.
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    Re: Question about moleskine jacket

    Post by Bolty717 on Tue Jun 07, 2016 5:43 pm

    Wolverine can you post some pictures of the suspenders on the trousers?
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    Re: Question about moleskine jacket

    Post by Wolverine on Tue Jun 07, 2016 8:13 pm

    I will take some pictures.
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    Re: Question about moleskine jacket

    Post by CollectinSteve on Tue Jun 07, 2016 10:38 pm

    Wolverine wrote:It is pretty nearly a certainty - more than a theory.

    Awesome! That means I get to scratch one mystery off my list of mysteries Smile However, it still remains a mystery why career soldiers, when asked about the buttons, didn't have a clue what they were for. Apparently not many soldiers availed themselves of suspenders vs. belt, otherwise the answer would have come along pretty easily. Probably why they were finally dropped from new production.

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    Re: Question about moleskine jacket

    Post by Wolverine on Tue Jun 07, 2016 11:35 pm

    Sure, it was not typical to wear suspenders, but they were manufactured and issued for many years. Most of the examples I have are more or less used, so they did see some wear. But again, it was probably more common with winter kit.
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    Re: Question about moleskine jacket

    Post by Wolverine on Fri Jun 10, 2016 10:37 pm

    As requested, here are some pictures of braces with Canadian combat trousers.

    First, a pair of GS Quarpel trousers, dated 1967, before the small Canadian-style buttons were used.

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    Re: Question about moleskine jacket

    Post by Wolverine on Fri Jun 10, 2016 10:39 pm

    Next, a pair of lightweight trousers, dated 1985, with the small Canadian style-buttons. The trouser buttons have simply been incorporated into a reduced number of belt loops:


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    Re: Question about moleskine jacket

    Post by Wolverine on Fri Jun 10, 2016 10:44 pm

    And finally, a pair of Mk III trousers, dated 1987, with reinforced belt-loops:


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    Re: Question about moleskine jacket

    Post by Bolty717 on Fri Jun 10, 2016 10:53 pm

    That makes perfect sense now.
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    Re: Question about moleskine jacket

    Post by Wolverine on Fri Jun 10, 2016 10:57 pm

    I realize now that I need to sort through all of my trousers to take careful note of the many small changes in design that occurred from the early 1960s until the late 1990s.
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    Re: Question about moleskine jacket

    Post by CollectinSteve on Sat Jun 11, 2016 11:51 am

    Thanks for the great pictures! All is clear now.

    Wolverine wrote:I realize now that I need to sort through all of my trousers to take careful note of the many small changes in design that occurred from the early 1960s until the late 1990s.

    That will teach you to start poking around Smile Back on topic, that's how I wound up documenting all the differences in the German Moleskin uniforms. I had a pile of "extras" and was sorting through them to purge on eBay. Then I noticed differences, and that resulted in me having to buy MORE pieces to fill in the gaps.

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    Re: Question about moleskine jacket

    Post by Wolverine on Sat Jun 11, 2016 12:51 pm

    Well I think in both cases (moleskin and CF combat dress) the details have been long neglected/overlooked because these are solid coloured uniforms rather than camouflage. I wish I had paid more attention to moleskin back in the 1990s when it was plentiful in Canada. And the same is true for the CF combat dress. It went through several modifications over nearly 40 years, and some of the versions, especially for the trousers and the really early LW jackets, are quite scarce now.
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    Re: Question about moleskine jacket

    Post by CollectinSteve on Mon Jun 13, 2016 11:58 am

    Yup, I agree. I still remember bins of DDR Strichtarn in the early 1990s and never thought twice about finding all the variations. In one day I could have probably had all variants for $5 each piece, now I have to hunt for them. And some fetch 10 times that now.

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