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    Greek Army webbing

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    Post by Wolverine Fri Jan 18, 2019 12:02 pm

    Ostravak wrote:to Wolverine:
    Look at the link below, it is a Czech Armyshop. The lower part of M45 pack is a modified original but the upper part is a Greek made item. (The seller admits this fact in the text). The material and colour are different from the  US original but they are not different from parts of the Greek webbing M1971.
    I have the upper part (Greek made, without misleading "US") at home. Shoulder straps are connected by clasps on original additional straps to the bottom of the pack. Therefore is possible to carry as a backpack without the US suspender M1945. (Look at the second link, again CZ armyshop)

    http://www.army-store.cz/eshop/3111/us-batoh-m45-cargo-komplet.html
    https://www.army-surplus.cz/taska--batoh--us-field-pack-cargo-1945-original/

    Yes, I see what you mean now - the upper packs are certainly not US-made, but instead are Greek copies.

    So I wonder if the Greeks also copied the cargo pack?

    In any case, the modified cargo packs must have been intended to use with the M1971, perhaps to use up old stocks.

    I would like to find one of the Greek upper packs, but the prices at those shops are too expensive. Where I live it is still possible to buy an original US upper pack for about $20.
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    Post by Ostravak Fri Feb 15, 2019 9:18 am

    To Wolverine:
    I have never seen Greek copied Cargo packs M45. The US old supplies were not used up (in my opinion) and therefore they had no reason to copy them.
    You are right, the Greek items are generally overpriced and they don´t have quality of US originals..
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    Post by Wolverine Fri Feb 15, 2019 10:27 am

    I think that the Greek items are generally being passed off as US items for the reenacting market.
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    Post by milly66 Thu Sep 26, 2019 12:31 pm

    Hi guys, I did find what I think to be 5 Thompson/SMG pouches in mint condition at my local Leger Dump/Surplus store here in the Netherlands last week. I was unaware of what they were at first. No markings at all but the M1956 style made me look hard for their description and I eventually found out what they are. I did not ask the price, but I would assume they would be around the 8 Euro mark. Are these worth buying? Is anyone looking for these that I can help out by buying them for them? If so, let me know. Will always help out where I can.
    Regards, Kevin
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    Post by Wolverine Thu Sep 26, 2019 2:26 pm

    I would say that 8 Euro is about average retail for these, but they are fairly widely available now.
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    Post by Wolverine Sun Nov 08, 2020 10:48 pm

    Here are some Greek-made suspenders, inspired by the US M1936 type. These are made with various pieces cut from British and Canadian WE 37 braces. It is interesting that the front ends have only one link on each side instead of two, which kind of defeats the purpose of adding the lower D-rings on the Greek-made M1936 field bag.
    Greek Army webbing - Page 2 M1936_10Greek Army webbing - Page 2 M1936_11
    Greek Army webbing - Page 2 M1936_12Greek Army webbing - Page 2 Field_10

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    Post by Wolverine Sun Nov 08, 2020 10:51 pm

    Here is a Greek-issued M1928 haversack, dyed olive drab, with locally-made meat can pouch. A fair bit of dyed WWII GI gear seems to show up in Greece. I wonder if the Greeks dyed large lots of packs, pouches, and so forth, to change the colour from OD #3 to OD #7. The meat can pouch is not a one-off. I have seen the same style for sale here and there. They even sewed the little pockets inside to hold the utensils.
    Greek Army webbing - Page 2 M1928_10Greek Army webbing - Page 2 M1928_11
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    Post by Wolverine Sun Nov 08, 2020 10:55 pm

    And finally a Greek-made 10-pocket cartridge belt. The snaps on this one correspond with those used on Greek-made WE 37 pouches, and also the BAR belt that I have earlier posted elsewhere on the forum: https://iacmc.forumotion.com/t12948-unknown-magazine-belt
    Greek Army webbing - Page 2 P1000015
    Greek Army webbing - Page 2 P1000014
    This belt came with a standard set of US GI M1936 suspenders, late war type.
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    Post by gus Wed Dec 02, 2020 8:34 am

    Wolverine wrote:Does anyone else out there collect Greek Army field gear? Here are some views of what I believe to be Greek M1971 webbing - basically, it is a cross between US M1956 and M1967 webbing, including the same design for the sleeping bag carrier (shown here without a sleeping bag). One piece I haven't found yet is an e-tool carrier. The field jacket is Greek.

    Greek Army webbing - Page 2 257inw9
    Greek Army webbing - Page 2 2vulb0k

    The small field pack can also be worn up top, on the rear of the suspenders:
    Greek Army webbing - Page 2 2prry2p

    And here is a detail of the under-arm strap that connects the sleeping bag carrier to the lower front suspender hook:
    Greek Army webbing - Page 2 2uzwc41

    I have more of this stuff that I'll post if anyone is interested in exploring or discussing further.
    thats the M83 set with some M67 elements...the original M71 was a pure US M56 copy
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    Post by gus Fri Dec 04, 2020 1:12 pm

    Wolverine wrote:Here are some Greek-made suspenders, inspired by the US M1936 type. These are made with various pieces cut from British and Canadian WE 37 braces. It is interesting that the front ends have only one link on each side instead of two, which kind of defeats the purpose of adding the lower D-rings on the Greek-made M1936 field bag.
    Greek Army webbing - Page 2 M1936_10Greek Army webbing - Page 2 M1936_11
    Greek Army webbing - Page 2 M1936_12Greek Army webbing - Page 2 Field_10

    the H suspenders are not greek...Israeli 50-60s conversions for certain...
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    Post by Wolverine Sat Dec 05, 2020 1:15 am

    gus wrote: the H suspenders are not greek...Israeli 50-60s conversions for certain...

    Yes, that seems plausible, but I had not seen Israeli suspenders before with the M1936 D-rings incorporated. Otherwise they certainly do resemble Israeli conversions. Thanks.
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    Post by Wolverine Sat Dec 05, 2020 1:17 am

    gus wrote:thats the M83 set with some M67 elements...the original M71 was a pure US M56 copy

    Thank you, this is also new information for me. Are there any Greek manuals or other documents that show/name the different patterns or versions?
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    Post by gus Sat Dec 05, 2020 11:06 am

    Wolverine wrote:
    gus wrote: the H suspenders are not greek...Israeli 50-60s conversions for certain...

    Yes, that seems plausible, but I had not seen Israeli suspenders before with the M1936 D-rings incorporated. Otherwise they certainly do resemble Israeli conversions. Thanks.

    if you need any greek identification you can ask me...ex greek army soldier & collector since 1979!!!
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    Post by gus Sat Dec 05, 2020 11:18 am

    Wolverine wrote:
    gus wrote:thats the M83 set with some M67 elements...the original M71 was a pure US M56 copy

    Thank you, this is also new information for me. Are there any Greek manuals or other documents that show/name the different patterns or versions?

    i have seen and had a greek 1977 manual concerning the original M71 but i gave it to a friend around 1992 and he never return it back to me! Apart of that there is very little to nothing official documentation of greek staff and all what i know is out of my long personal observation...the M83 is not an official designation is just my designation...i 1st time show it in the summer of 1985 with troops carrying M1 gARANDS...till that day i was totaly unaware of this new pattern...!!!I noticed it wasnt the classic old M71 we all knew back in the day but something slightly different so given the time from the start of production till the distribution to the units takes about two or three years minimum that the modernised greek M71 must put in production about 1982-83 i believe...
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    Post by Wolverine Sat Dec 05, 2020 12:47 pm

    gus wrote:
    Wolverine wrote:
    gus wrote:thats the M83 set with some M67 elements...the original M71 was a pure US M56 copy

    Thank you, this is also new information for me. Are there any Greek manuals or other documents that show/name the different patterns or versions?

    i have seen and had a greek 1977 manual concerning the original M71 but i gave it to a friend around 1992 and he never return it back to me! Apart of that there is very little to nothing official documentation of greek staff and all what i know is out of my long personal observation...the M83 is not an official designation is just my designation...i 1st time show it in the summer of 1985 with troops carrying M1 gARANDS...till that day i was totaly unaware of this new pattern...!!!I noticed it wasnt the classic old M71 we all knew back in the day but something slightly different so given the time from the start of production till the distribution to the units takes about two or three years minimum that the modernised greek M71 must put in production about 1982-83 i believe...

    So did the key changes that you noticed in 1985 concern the field pack ("butt pack") and suspenders?
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    Post by gus Sat Dec 05, 2020 5:09 pm

    Wolverine wrote:
    gus wrote:
    Wolverine wrote:
    gus wrote:thats the M83 set with some M67 elements...the original M71 was a pure US M56 copy

    Thank you, this is also new information for me. Are there any Greek manuals or other documents that show/name the different patterns or versions?

    i have seen and had a greek 1977 manual concerning the original M71 but i gave it to a friend around 1992 and he never return it back to me! Apart of that there is very little to nothing official documentation of greek staff and all what i know is out of my long personal observation...the M83 is not an official designation is just my designation...i 1st time show it in the summer of 1985 with troops carrying M1 gARANDS...till that day i was totaly unaware of this new pattern...!!!I noticed it wasnt the classic old M71 we all knew back in the day but something slightly different so given the time from the start of production till the distribution to the units takes about two or three years minimum that the modernised greek M71 must put in production about 1982-83 i believe...

    So did the key changes that you noticed in 1985 concern the field pack ("butt pack") and suspenders?

    OK ill give you a timeline...the old M71 was army factories made in good quality...they also reworked old obsolete original US ARMY M44 & M45 systems to be compatible with the M71 system...After all with the advance of the M83 we'v had just a slight drop down in quality...For the trained eye it wasnt the same good & durable as the good old M71...some sloppy stitching here & there & the pouches supporting straps were easily prone to torn off under stress etc...that was unheard with the old M71...the explaination is easy...by the 80s probably they were start giving contracts to unexperianced & unfamiliar with the military gear commercial companies so they couldn keep up with the higher army standards...Now back on the system...the belt the 1st aid pocket the canteen cover and e-tool cover were still the same old M71 patterns without any redesigning...whats new now is new suspenders buckles adjustments system inspired by the US Nam nylon M67 suspenders & also the use of M67/ALICE style belt hooks...so its more or less a webbing version of the Nylon M67 suspenders but yet not exactly...the butt pack now had M67 hardware also...the M56 style universal small arms ammo cases became slighly larger & roomy 'dont really know why...' and now had M67 supporting strap adjustment buckle instead of the old M56 friction glasp...in adition the sleeping bag carrier now produced with US M67 style hardware...the range of pouches style of the old M71 system now reduced to only 2 basic models the universal small arms ammo case & the triple left & right sets for the fire support weapons...the old wide range of special pouches for every obsolete weapons like the tompson the tommygun...the Garand..the Greasegun now abandoned as these guns slowly phased out of service...towards the very end of the M83 production hev had new collapsible M67/ALICE etool cover in webbing as the old WWII style wooden hande shovel phased out...in adition the special forces paratroopers marines and commandos abandoned their special 8 pouches systems and M45 combat and cargo packs and adopted the same all army M83 by the mid to late 80s...later on in the late 90s early 2000s hev had a new nylon version of this M71/m83 gear witch was much more desirable bc its very light weight though still suffers of the shortcomings of the very old design but its ok...the nylon version its ok and will help the soldier alot better than before...by the early 2000s till today the army was experimenting with tons of new modern nylon gears flak vests chicken plates IILBVs and all different modern gears...
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    Post by Wolverine Sat Dec 05, 2020 6:32 pm

    Thank you Gus, that is very helpful.
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    Post by Wolverine Sun Dec 20, 2020 3:05 am

    Greek-made small pack, based on 37 pattern, dated 1955; note this will not work with standard type 37 pattern pack straps, as the the lower ends mate up with D-rings instead of buckles. It also has what I believe is a storage flap for the steel helmet.
    Greek Army webbing - Page 2 Greek_14
    Greek Army webbing - Page 2 Greek_17
    Greek Army webbing - Page 2 Greek_13
    Greek Army webbing - Page 2 Greek_16
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    Post by Wolverine Sun Dec 20, 2020 3:07 am

    I believe this 37 pattern large pack was modified in Greece - the D-ring attachments for the pack straps are very similar to those on the small pack up above.
    Greek Army webbing - Page 2 P1000016
    Greek Army webbing - Page 2 P1000018
    Greek Army webbing - Page 2 P1000017
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    Post by michelwijnand Tue Dec 22, 2020 7:20 pm

    I got some nice info from an ebayseller through a facebook conversation with him, which will identify some parts mentioned on the first page.

    The parts in question are the modified US M45 lower pack, the modified US M45 suspenders, he jungle first aid kit pouch, and the double magpouches from post 7.
    Apparently these are part of an M66 webbing that was used by para's and at least some units of marines, possibly marines commando's or similar.
    The double magpouches exist in 2 versions by the way, ones with beltloop, and ones with the US style hooks, the beltloop type hanging on the belt and the hooks
    type hanging at the bottom of those and tied with the string to the leg to prevent bouncing.

    He also mentioned a US canteen with a wool cover with a US made clip at the back was used with said webbing, but also that some local patterns were used, that
    could mean also the rounder Greek made canteens with the wool cover, or also the canteens from post 15.

    The belt used with this looks like either an OD green US M36 belt, or a Greek made one that is a darker color than the M71 stuff.

    I've also seen FAL bayonets worn on this webbing in photos, though I can't make out what frog they're used with, if it's the type we know from use with the M71
    gear or some other version.
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    Post by Wolverine Tue Dec 22, 2020 8:04 pm

    michelwijnand wrote:I got some nice info from an ebayseller through a facebook conversation with him, which will identify some parts mentioned on the first page.

    The parts in question are the modified US M45 lower pack, the modified US M45 suspenders, he jungle first aid kit pouch, and the double magpouches from post 7.
    Apparently these are part of an M66 webbing that was used by para's and at least some units of marines, possibly marines commando's or similar.
    The double magpouches exist in 2 versions by the way, ones with beltloop, and ones with the US style hooks, the beltloop type hanging on the belt and the hooks
    type hanging at the bottom of those and tied with the string to the leg to prevent bouncing.

    He also mentioned a US canteen with a wool cover with a US made clip at the back was used with said webbing, but also that some local patterns were used, that
    could mean also the rounder Greek made canteens with the wool cover, or also the canteens from post 15.

    The belt used with this looks like either an OD green US M36 belt, or a Greek made one that is a darker color than the M71 stuff.

    I've also seen FAL bayonets worn on this webbing in photos, though I can't make out what frog they're used with, if it's the type we know from use with the M71
    gear or some other version.

    This is interesting information, but I wonder how does the modified M1945 lower (cargo) pack work in particular with the modified M1945 suspenders? It seems like the pack was designed to be used in place of an M1971 pack?
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    Post by Wolverine Tue Dec 22, 2020 8:17 pm

    Maybe like this:
    Greek Army webbing - Page 2 P1000112
    Greek Army webbing - Page 2 P1000113
    Or it could also be worn at the back of the belt, with the suspenders clipped onto the tabs at the top of the pack?
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    Post by michelwijnand Wed Dec 23, 2020 4:32 pm

    He didn't mention, he just called it a backpack but seeing as they also have the beltclips they could have been envisioned to be worn either way. Sadly none of my photos show them worn.
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    Post by Wolverine Wed Dec 23, 2020 5:00 pm

    I remember now that there is an illustration in Nigel Thomas's book 'NATO Armies Today' (1987), showing a Greek soldier from the Lochias Commando Regiment wearing the pouches as you described, with unmodified M1945 suspenders. But it is an artist's impression, so maybe the suspenders are not drawn quite accurately. Unfortunately, there is no pack visible.

    It seems to make sense that the pack should be attached at the shoulders, otherwise there would be no reason to add a set of D-rings to the shoulder part of the suspenders. I just don't get why they bothered to modify the front ends of the suspenders (ie, removing a strap on each side).

    Is it possible, from what he told you, that they used US-made belts, as well as Greek copies?
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    Post by michelwijnand Wed Dec 23, 2020 7:03 pm

    Ok, I got in contact again, and he misspoke about the pack, so I'll compile what I learned from him again.

    He meant to speak about the upper (combat) pack, either US or Greek made was used with the M66 gear, he says that was for para's, I'm not sure what the marines then would have as he doesn't mention it.

    Suspenders early on were unmodified, later modified also came.
    Apparently some modified M45 suspenders were also used in M71 sets, making the confusion even better! Maybe those are the ones with the extra rings at the back to attach the modified cargo packs, as the M45 combat packs should still have their own system.

    Belts were both US and Greek made.

    M45 cargo packs were actually meant for the M71 gear, coinciding with the US M56 buttpack style, no idea if there was a specific reason to use either, or they just used which they got issued.
    Apparently the cargo packs were never actually made in Greece, but the combat packs were.
    And he mentions they were indeed worn in both ways.

    The para's used the M66 gear from 1966 until about 1995.

    I've just sorted my Greek pics and have the ones with the M66 gear at the ready, so I'll post them in my next post in a bit

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