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    Is this a real german rain pattern camo?

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    Post by Base one on Sun Apr 07, 2013 11:16 pm

    Is this a real german rain pattern camo? SAM_1897_zpsff031b05
    Is this a real german rain pattern camo? SAM_1898_zpsfcd29cf0
    Is this a real german rain pattern camo? SAM_1899_zpsffab9e3a
    Is this a real german rain pattern camo? SAM_1900_zps73f93012
    Is this a real german rain pattern camo? SAM_1901_zps4b93777b
    Is this a real german rain pattern camo? SAM_1902_zpsa4251edc
    Is this a real german rain pattern camo? SAM_1903_zps06259afa
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    Post by Base one on Mon Apr 08, 2013 12:29 am

    Any thoughts? Very Happy
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    Post by CollectinSteve on Mon Apr 08, 2013 1:34 am

    Looks like standard paratrooper trousers with a date of 1973 (L is code for 1973). Size is 52 X-Long.

    Steve
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    Post by Base one on Mon Apr 08, 2013 2:55 am

    CollectinSteve wrote:Looks like standard paratrooper trousers with a date of 1973 (L is code for 1973). Size is 52 X-Long.

    Steve
    Thanks Sir scored this for $4 In a local thrift shop..
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    Post by spukmeyer on Fri Sep 20, 2013 5:38 pm

    Good buy mate.Shocked Shocked 
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    Post by ripcord on Fri Sep 20, 2013 8:09 pm

    Hey Tonton,

    Go back and give that shopkeeper a few more dollars $$$$$pirat 

    You definitely stole that pair of trousers....and the conditions seem fantastic for its age.

    Good score....
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    Post by squirrely on Sun Sep 22, 2013 7:01 pm

    Great score! I always wonder where the random items at thrift stores come from...
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    Post by ehrentitle on Sat Oct 12, 2013 10:39 am

    CollectinSteve wrote:Looks like standard paratrooper trousers with a date of 1973 (L is code for 1973).  Size is 52 X-Long.

    Steve
    The code appears to be Y, which would be 1988. But still a desirable larger set of NVA fallschirmjäger pants.
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    Post by CollectinSteve on Sat Oct 12, 2013 11:57 pm

    Ooops. Yeah, that's right. I keyed off the wrong part of the stamp and got confused by some quality issues with the stamp itself. Looks to be I / Y.

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    Post by ehrentitle on Sun Oct 13, 2013 12:03 am

    No problem, but it does make a major difference in the value of the pants. Early 70s NVA Para pants in this size are very hard to find, but 80s pants are more obtainable.
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    Post by CollectinSteve on Sun Oct 13, 2013 11:56 pm

    Yup, definitely does. And the earliest pattern, from 1960s, fetches very good money. A few months ago I lost an bid on a 1967 example, in decent but used condition, for $70. Compared to how much other Strichtarn items sell for, that's quite a bit more.

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    Post by ehrentitle on Mon Oct 14, 2013 12:09 am

    I have more than a dozen NVA Para Rainpattern uniforms from the 1980s, but sadly none from the 70s.  And just one from the 1960s, a 1965 rain pattern Para jacket which I believe was the first year they were produced.
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    Post by CollectinSteve on Mon Oct 14, 2013 12:08 pm

    Yup, as far as I know 1965 was the first year for Strichtarn.  1964 was a year of transition from the old Blumentarn style uniform (oversuit with hood) to the same basic type used until the DDR collapsed.  As far as I know the 1964 and early 1965 experimental design was only made in Blumentarn, whereas the successful design was made in both Blumentarn and Strichtarn. There were major and minor changes throughout the 1965-1990 time period, but none as dramatic as those of 1964.  For the time period of 1965-1971 basic infantry uniforms and equipment were made in both Blumentarn and Strichtarn.  Pretty much all other specialized uniforms (armored crew, winter, airborne, etc.) were only made in Strichtarn.

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    Post by ehrentitle on Mon Oct 14, 2013 12:21 pm

    I also have three Blumentarn uniforms, two with hoods and one with a collar. I don't recall the dates off top of my head, two are NVA marked the third is MdI marked. Unfortunately the Paratrooper/Reconnaissance version in Blumentarn with the knit collar is very rare so I don't have an example of that version.

    It's also worth noting that because of East Germany's planned economy new uniform patterns were normally produced up to two before they were issued to soldiers. So although the new Rain Pattern/Strichtarn uniforms were adopted and produced in 1965 they were first fielded on 1 March 1967.
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    Post by CollectinSteve on Mon Oct 14, 2013 2:42 pm

    As far as I know there never was a factory made Blumentarn FJ uniform. The only examples I've seen were modified 1958-1964 types. Hoods were removed, knit collar added and knit cuffs. The only photos I've seen of DDR FJ with Blumentarn aren't very close, but what can be seen is not incompatible with this.

    It is usual for uniforms to be issued roughly 1 year after they were manufactured. It takes time to build up supplies sufficient enough to transition forces to a new uniform. This is as true today as it was in 1960s. Also, mass production for future years' needs is also practiced, though much more before "just in time" production methods came into being. Which means a uniform made in one year might sit around for several before actually being used.

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    Post by ehrentitle on Mon Oct 14, 2013 2:55 pm

    Steve, I would have to disagree with your assessment of the Blumentarn FJ uniform, A new "battle suit for reconnaissance" units (AKA the Blumentarn FJ uniform) was approved in 1961, tested from 1961 to 1962 and issued starting in 1962 to 63 period. It's very rare because it was only worn about 5-6 years.

    Here is a photo of it from my collection:

    Is this a real german rain pattern camo? 10274477015_732b67750d_o
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    Post by CollectinSteve on Mon Oct 14, 2013 4:51 pm

    Hard to tell from an image of that quality, unfortunately. But it is entirely possible that there was a limited amount of experimental uniforms made during that time period. Poor documentation and few surviving examples isn't uncommon even for Bundeswehr and other nations which didn't have the same sorts of information controls that the DDR had. It's even possible that the Strichtarn type was a result of the Blumentarn experimentation.

    Personally, I've never seen a knit collar type that wasn't a modification of a hooded jacket. Also never seen one of the soft para "helmets" either, so I don't know anything about them either.

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    Post by ehrentitle on Mon Oct 14, 2013 5:54 pm

    Steve, Sorry, again I have to disagree with your assessment of this uniform. It was not experimental nor was the knit collar applied later. Its approval and existence is documented in Uniformen Der Nationalen Volksarmee der DDR 1956-1986. Here is a photo from the book of this "Combat Uniform for Reconnaissance" being worn in a parade in 1964, the first time it was worn in public. I have other photos in my collection of it being worn. I suspect that modified Blumentarn uniforms with the knit collar were later efforts to copy this very rare NVA Paratrooper uniform.

    Is this a real german rain pattern camo? 10277867986_5e26800d94_o
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    Post by CollectinSteve on Mon Oct 14, 2013 6:58 pm

    Yup, that's definitely the most famous picture of the uniform I know of.  I also have that book, though my German is terrible so I might have missed something.  I'll give it a look sometime.

    Keep in mind there is often a very fine line between "experimental" and "limited" production.  It depends on what the military authorities intended for the uniform.  I do not know if a Blumentarn FJ uniform was produced experimentally or with the intention of long term use.  If there is 1st hand documented evidence a to which case it is, I'd love to see it.  As far as I know it's pretty much just speculation either way.

    Also, remember that "experimental" doesn't necessarily mean small quantity.  The US Navy did a deliberate test of 4 uniform candidates in the mid 2000s that involved tens of thousands of uniforms with hand numbered labels.  The super rare Bundeswehr FJ uniforms of the 1950s were all experimental as well, despite some thinking they were some sort of standard issue.  However, they were made in enough numbers that I've actually have some in my collection.

    As I said, I've never seen a factory produced example of a Blumentarn FJ uniform.  Just modified hooded types.  The DDR modified a lot of older hooded uniforms in other ways (removed hoods and put on ersatz collars, added provisions for shoulder rank, removed foliage loops, etc.), so I'd not be surprised to know the modified ones I've seen were official. Having said that, when I've bid on a couple I bid with the thought they were post-DDR modified examples.

    Another interesting DDR bit of history I learned recently... they overdyed Blumentarn uniforms black, replaced the gray buttons with black ones, and issued them to prisoners for work uniforms.  In fact, older Blumentarn jackets sometimes had their foliage Reuse of existing materials and uniforms makes sense and it's something I've seen Communist Czechoslovakia and Poland do in several instances.

    So if you have a link to some pics of an actual factory made FJ uniform that would be cool to see.  I'd also like to see a close up photo of it in actual use so I can compare details between it and the hooded types.  Because up to now I've not seen either.

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    Post by ehrentitle on Mon Oct 14, 2013 7:48 pm

    Steve, Here you go everything you ever wanted to know about the Blumentarn Paratrooper/Recon uniform Very Happy 

    http://www.flaechentarn.de/flaechentarnanzuege/Fallschirmjaeger/fallschirmjaeger.htm

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    Post by CollectinSteve on Tue Oct 15, 2013 12:04 am

    Awesome!! I've used that website many times to help me with my 1958-1964 variant identifications (I am only missing a early 1959 set and a 1962 jacket), but I haven't checked in for several years because I saved it as a local copy on my HD. The last time I visited I don't remember that stuff being pictured. Oh well, whatever the case... I've seen it now!

    Unfortunately it doesn't answer many of the questions, though it does answer the important one which is there is indeed a factory made uniform in Blumentarn. What it doesn't answer is if it was experimental or not, nor how long it was manufactured. There's a difference between years used and years made. For example, my BW Broad Splinter FJ set was made in 1957 in one batch but it was traded off the back of a FJ soldier in 1964 by a US Army Airborne solder, some 7 years after it was made and 5 years after the BW officially stopped using camouflage uniforms of any sort. Direct evidence, therefore, is sometimes misleading.

    The website says there are no ink stamps on this jacket. That is extremely unusual for DDR items. Sometimes it's difficult to read the stamp because of use, but this jacket looks to be in excellent condition. It should be there. Which makes me think this was an experimental uniform not a standard production type.

    Not that it matters because either way this thing is impossible to find Sad

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    Post by ehrentitle on Tue Oct 15, 2013 12:34 am

    Steve, I've enjoyed talking to you about this topic I have more background on this uniform, but unfortunately not the time to dig it up as it is getting late. It's been well documented in numerous of photos of this uniform being worn. But they have been posted on East German Paratrooper forums and I'm obligated not to re-post these photos elsewhere if I want to stay a member of these forums.
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    Post by CollectinSteve on Tue Oct 15, 2013 12:34 pm

    Thanks for passing along the info. Unfortunately our collecting world is rather segmented and specialized. One of the reasons I decided to trim down from 1800 world wide uniforms to more or less just Europe and a few other countries. I'm not the sort of collector who is just satisfied to have something, I also want to know about it. Makes my brain hurt Very Happy

    I am all too familiar with lack of time. Two quick questions, if you can spare a few more minutes:

    1. I assume there are specific trousers for the jacket. True? If so, do they resemble the 1967 Strichtarn type?

    2. Are there ink stamps in any of these pieces?

    Thanks!

    Steve
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    Post by Haydamaka on Sun Aug 19, 2018 6:32 pm

    ehrentitle wrote:

    Here is a photo of it from my collection:

    Is this a real german rain pattern camo? 10274477015_732b67750d_o

    Nice picture!
    Never seen such head covers (caps for sale), and you?
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    Post by ehrentitle on Sun Aug 19, 2018 6:38 pm

    Haydamaka wrote:
    ehrentitle wrote:

    Here is a photo of it from my collection:

    Is this a real german rain pattern camo? 10274477015_732b67750d_o

    Nice picture!
    Never seen such head covers (caps for sale), and you?

    I'm still looking for one after several decades. Kevin

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