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Thread: WWII uniform questions - DAK and British

  1. #1
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    WWII uniform questions - DAK and British

    Hey guys,

    I have been trying to figure out a couple of uniforms for some bashes I am working on. The first is a German DAK uniform, long pants and long boots version. The outer jackets that officers would have worn appear in multiple colors. I have seen an officer figure wearing what appears to be an almost white jacket, another figure wearing a golden yellow jacket, and a third reference source shows the jacket to be almost olive green. Any idea what is the most common color? Are any of these colors incorrect?

    The second uniform I am trying to bash is a British officers uniform. I have looked up a few different reference sources, but I can't find good color pictures of the uniforms. The figures John Coleman and Bernard Montgomery are sources for the parts I want to use, but I can't tell if the outer jacket and the shirt/tie should be the same color dark brown, or if the shirt and tie can be a lighter shade of tan. As I look at pictures of British military, it appears some of the shirts could be lighter in color, but I am looking at black and white pictures.

    Thanks in advance to anyone who can provide me with more military education. I don't know what I would do without you guys.

  2. #2
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    Re: WWII uniform questions - DAK and British

    reguarding the color of the DAK uniforms they do range from light to dark. The sun has a severe bleaching effect on the uniforms. Another thing to concider is useing Italian summer tunics(tan) for DAK officers. Hans von Luck mentions in his book upon arriveing in Afrika fellow officers that had been there for some time said they would set him up with some Italian unforms as they were cooler than the german DAK ones. There was a white tunic but it was a summer officers dress tunic not a DAK tunic. But some tunics do appear to look white from being bleached out by the sun.

  3. #3
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    Re: WWII uniform questions - DAK and British

    Quote Originally Posted by pzrwest View Post
    reguarding the color of the DAK uniforms they do range from light to dark. The sun has a severe bleaching effect on the uniforms. Another thing to concider is useing Italian summer tunics(tan) for DAK officers. Hans von Luck mentions in his book upon arriveing in Afrika fellow officers that had been there for some time said they would set him up with some Italian unforms as they were cooler than the german DAK ones. There was a white tunic but it was a summer officers dress tunic not a DAK tunic. But some tunics do appear to look white from being bleached out by the sun.
    Thanks for that. The white tunic I saw was on a Cyber Hobby officer figure, so it was probably the dress tunic you mention, but the figure was wearing DAK gear otherwise. The golden yellow tunic is from a Dragon figure, wearing short pants but I assume could also be used for a long pants version. There are plenty of green tunics out there from multiple sources, but I was surprised to see one in actual print reference online being used by DAK troops.

  4. #4
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    Re: WWII uniform questions - DAK and British

    For the British officers, there is no definitive answer as they purchased their own uniform and all depended on their particular tailor.
    Service Dress shirts were often pale green, more rarely tan. Ties could be of the same shade or slightly darker, or match the jacket.

  5. #5
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    Re: WWII uniform questions - DAK and British

    For the British officers, there is no definitive answer as they purchased their own uniform and all depended on their particular tailor.
    Although British Officers did buy their own uniforms their Tailors were expected to work to specific patterns, these patterns appeared in a pattern book called 'Uniforms for the Services' and published by 'Tailor and Cutter'. That said Army groups figthing in North Africa, the Far East, Italy and the Middle East had huge logistical difficulties in obtaining supplies. It's not unusual to find Brits in German/Italian clothing items and vice versa. Because of this, and especially in North Africa, you do find this strange sartorial excesses amongst some of the officer class as they 'went native'. Something best illustrated by the war-time cartoon's 'Two Types' which I'm sure you can find on google. It's interesting to note that before Monty took over in North Africa he dressed as would a regular British Army officer. However, Monty was well known for leading from the front and indeed he was one of the very first senior officers to make the switch to the new Battle Dress whilst others clung to the 'superiority' of the old service dress jacket. As soon as Monty gets to North Africa his normal Sartorial elegance disappears and he begins to dress down to conform with how his junior officers dress. it's from this moment on that we begin to see the scruffier Monty off the baggy cordurouys, the open-necked shirt and the grey pullover etc.

    At the end of the day people wore what they could get their hands on and, especially, amongst the British officer class, there appeared some highly individual rig-outs. I suggest you look at the Osprey book on the British Army in N.A / Middle East which should give you a good clue in to the normal style of dress and a few of the more common eccentricities also.

    Rgds

    Pete

  6. #6
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    Re: WWII uniform questions - DAK and British

    As pnzwest said the sun has a bleaching effect on cloth, and that can be evident in the uniforms of the opposing forces in the Desert War. However the color variations of the Wehrmacht tropical uniforms used in Africa that you described was not due solely to the effect of Sun bleaching. There were different patterns of temporate uniform issued to the DAK, learning from early issued items improvements were made to the uniforms in the next pattern. The colors of the German uniforms used in Africa varied from the almost white that you describe (a lighter shade of yellow bleached by the Sun & weather), through "Africa Korps Yellow" (the golden yellow you mentioned and what the common name is for the color in hobby paint), some browns, to the olive color of the tunic you mentioned. This site will give you a little idea of the variety and a sample of Osprey's illustrations: http://www.diggerhistory.info/pages-...rika_korps.htm.

    Between DML and Twisting Toys you have a huge source for all the uniforms used by the DAK. DML made "Elmo Freytag", DAK machine gunner a couple of years ago wearing the olive tunic. Go to their sites and make a note of what figures you want parts of and then search War-Toys, Justice Fighters, Toy Soldier Brigade, Monkey Depot or whoever you like to use for the parts you need.

    In the early days in Africa you'd see use of various parts of the standard gray/green uniform (or temporate uniform) worn in Europe. Italian uniforms were also issued to DAK troops, late in the conflict captured British uniforms and equipment was seen. The German forces in Africa were very quickly cut off from their supplies, Britain had virtually total control of the Mediterranean in the air and sea. In their desperate situation the DAK and other German forces in Africa had to make use of anything they could get their hands on.

    It would be smart of you to get a uniform reference book on DAK uniforms, Osprey has an extensive line of uniform references, they are inexpensive, well researched and informative and are illustrated with color drawings and many photos of uniforms and equipment. This online retail shop has an extensive line of Osprey books: http://www.squadron.com/. They have many other books, usually for a bit more money but if you want to splurge for the reference (if you plan to do a lot of DAK bashes) then a good book with reenactors dressed in genuine or sometimes replica clothing and equipment is an excellent reference source. It's a big site, the company is very reliable been around like 35 years or more (they told me that by my customer number they could tell I was one of their first customers), so you can trust them they aren't going anywhere.
    "To a New Yorker like you, a hero is some type of weird sandwich, not some nut who takes on three tigers."

  7. #7
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    Re: WWII uniform questions - DAK and British

    another good reference is WAF http://www.wehrmacht-awards.com/forums/index.php just do a search for DAK. You may have to join but that is simple to do there

  8. #8
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    Re: WWII uniform questions - DAK and British

    Collector49, do you mind if I ask a related question?

    Would the BBi German Mountain Troop "Rudi Kessling" DAK uniform also work for Italy in 43 or 44?

  9. #9
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    Re: WWII uniform questions - DAK and British

    Quote Originally Posted by ActionMan View Post
    Collector49, do you mind if I ask a related question?

    Would the BBi German Mountain Troop "Rudi Kessling" DAK uniform also work for Italy in 43 or 44?
    For any DAK figures in general, Kessling's uniform will and will not work. The tunic is beautifully made, as are the trousers...but kessling is a Gebirgsjäger, so you would need the trousers and boots from Johann Jürgens
    'Only two things are infinite -- the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not so sure about the Universe.' --Albert Einstein

  10. #10
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    Re: WWII uniform questions - DAK and British

    Sorry, I didn't explain very well - what I meant was would his GJ uniform still be good for a GJ in Italy in 43/44?

  11. #11
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    Re: WWII uniform questions - DAK and British

    Quote Originally Posted by ActionMan View Post
    Sorry, I didn't explain very well - what I meant was would his GJ uniform still be good for a GJ in Italy in 43/44?
    yes
    'Only two things are infinite -- the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not so sure about the Universe.' --Albert Einstein

  12. #12
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    Re: WWII uniform questions - DAK and British

    Thanks.

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WWII uniform questions - DAK and British
WWII uniform questions - DAK and British