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ThreeA Junky
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3,602 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Got a question about Vietnam Figures with reference to their gear?
Post your Q&A here!



I've been trying to research what gear different soldiers like gunners, tunnel rats, standard soldier, flamer etc wore for a kitbash and it seems they wore what they liked!

Was there any set standard for uniform or was it a "whatever you feel comfortable in" to a certain degree?

Also did people used to carry more than one main weapon?
 

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Hobby Military Advisor
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1,079 Posts
Re: Vietnam Reference question to kit

Ah yes, the ages old question of how the US Soldiers looked like in Vietnam.

I can recommend some read regarding that topic from Osprey Punblishing:

http://www.ospreypublishing.com/

Armies of the Vietnam War Book 1 and 2, has lots of pics and of course the color plates, showing weapons equitment and gear from the beginning of the war till the end.

Vietnam Airborne is another good read, showing the diffrent gear of the Airborne Forces in Vietnam. Then there is US Marine Rifleman in vietnam, and of course the new book, The US Marine Corps in the Vietnam War and US Army Infantryman in Vietnam 1965-73.

I can recommend those books highly, Osprey always does nice stuff.

But anyhow, lets try to explain some things regarding the outfit in NAM:

As the first units landed back in 1965, the US Soldiers wore mostly standart gear, also the OG 107 Unrility Uniform with Cap or Helmet and the M65 LBH, over the time, the look of the soldier changed dramatically. The heat, the rough terrian and the experience in the field started to show that Soldiers started to wear thier gear and uniform after personal tastes then regulation.

A normal Grunt would wear the Jungle Utility Uniforms, Jungle Boots, Steel Helmet, his M16 or M16A1 (RTOs, medics and Team leaders would often carry the XM-177E1 or E2 instead of the M16), his M1965 LBH or the M1967 Modernized Loead Bearing Equitment, up to 4 ammo pouches and ammo bandoleers, lots of water bottels, M1961 or M1967 Butt Pack or a Torpical Backpack, depending on the mission, a machet, first aid gear, several grenades etc.

Well, I better post some pictures I have.



Us Army Soldiers on the March, you can get a good view of the backpacks and what is strapped to it in this photo.



Soldier slung with M60 ammo. That was common way to carry it. From the looks of it, he is the assisant that will bring the actual M60 gunner the ammo in a fire fight.



Drawing of a US Marine during the Tet Offensive in Hue City. He carries the M60 and has his tropical rucksack packed with gear.



Another drawing, this time a Aribrone/Air Cavlary soldier.



Typical Grunt later in the war, wearing the Modernized M1967 LBE



Air Cavlary Soldiers, another drawing.

I hope this gives you a nice view of the equitment, weapons and gear worn by US Soldiers in NAM.

You mentioned Tunnel Rats, Tunnel Rats would actually wear as little as possible, only armed with a handgun and a flashlight, they would go into the tunnels.

If there are any questions, feel free to ask and I can always post more pictures if you want.
 

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ThreeA Junky
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3,602 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Re: Vietnam Reference question to kit

WoW, thanks!
I think it best if I just show my WIP's then people can crucify me lol!

I think the films kinda throw you off from what was really worn/carried.
 

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Hobby Military Advisor
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1,079 Posts
Re: Vietnam Reference question to kit

Yes, post what you are working on, that would be nice. As for the movies: well, there are lots of movies that where pretty accurate in what the wore back in Nam, other are not. Depends on how nitpicking you are.

Full Metla Jacket is a really nice movie and the only error they made, is that the US Marines wear M69 Flak Jackets of the US Army instead of the M1955 Marine Flak jacket.

Some movies even truned that around and let US Army soldiers wore M1955 Armor vests (Platoon for example) and its also a well known fact that US Army Soldiers didnt wore Flak Jackets that often, while the Marines wore them most of the time.

Oh and while we are at it, I found these at YouTube:




XD
 

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Hobby Military Advisor
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1,079 Posts
Re: Vietnam Reference question to kit

Well, can we sticky this thread or something or at least keep it alive? I think people would like to have a refernce post like that for thier Vietnam Kitbashes, dont you think?

I would always love to post more images or vids here.
 

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ThreeA Junky
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3,602 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Re: Vietnam Reference question to kit

Well, can we sticky this thread or something or at least keep it alive? I think people would like to have a refernce post like that for thier Vietnam Kitbashes, dont you think?

I would always love to post more images or vids here.
Great idea, have changed the title and what not.
 

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I'll Never Buy A Fem Fig!
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972 Posts
Re: Vietnam Reference Q&A (Please Sticky)

Look at pictures. There are far too many variations per unit, per year, per tactical zone to make a definitive list.

Just don't go off of the movies, please. You'll be surprised, looking at photos, that throughout most of the war the guys looked pretty squared away.
 

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Tactical Operator
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94 Posts
Re: Vietnam Reference Q&A (Please Sticky)

2 words... Robot Chicken!
Those Stop animation videos we're AWESOME!!! you see that Troop Transport? 1/6th? Never seen that anywhere, who made those videos?

You gotta remember, If you are a collector and just sticking figures in a case on a shelf, it doesn't matter what they are wearing. If you are taking photos of them for OSW or whatever, then put whatever you want on them. In most wars, you are issued gear, however do to weather and location of the fight, you modify your gear.

Remember in WW2 when we landed on the beachhead.
US Was issued the M1928 Haversack (Complicated backpack) most soldiers ditched this when they got on shore.

For Vietnam WAR, US Soldiers had an M1968 Rucksack, which was very cumbersome for most soldiers, they ditched that + the frame. You wear what is comfortable and modify the rest.

You don't see very often, collectors displaying the "Ball Cap" worn on their NAM figures. But it was mostly worn, when they weren't wearing their Steel pots.

Also depending on what year you are concentrating on, or whether you are doing, Marines, Army, ARVN, the Australians, The French, and the other countries that were there at the same time, clothing, gear and accessories will change.

IF you are making a Dio, are you making one where soldiers are at R&R? I always wanted to make a DIO, where 4 or more soldiers are at a bar in the city... The Soldiers, if they didn't have time to change would be in:
Hat optional (Could be Daisymae or ball cap.)
Shirt: Hawaiian
Pants: Standard GI Issued for the year they we're there.
Shoes: Either Sneakers or Standard boots.
Accessories: Smokes, Cards, beer cans, shot glasses, 5 dolla too bou coup hooker... (Err, scratch that...)

But you get my drift... here are some pictures:

[See the ball cap under the helmet?]


[Look how young this Marine Pvt, 1965 is.]


[look at the patches worn, also look at the sleeves rolled up, different on each person.]


[Look at how the gear uniforms and gear are worn out and hanging low on these soldiers.]


[Check out his choice of Gear! Plus, look at his gas mask displayed on his Right hip. His pants are not tucked in as usual, they hang low.]


[Check out this Army Capt. Check out the weapon he carries, M1Carbine. Also, notice that the soldiers aren't wearing the traditional Mitchel helmet covers as you see in every picture, their helmets are uncovered. notice the watch hanging out of his pocket and the buttons of the pockets on the outside, rather then in.]


[Here's a Museum view of Uniform and Gear worn during the NAM conflict.]


[In 1967, you also had the Gurkhas]


[This 'Kiwi' (New Zealand) soldier was one of those who served in the ANZAC Battalions in South Viet Nam.]


[Here's a nice weathering guide picture for you. The Mysterious piece of gear on his left shoulder is actually the canvas barrel protector, this was issued to soldiers, if you didn't have it, you put a prophylactic (condom) on the end of the barrel of your rifle, to protect it from the elements.]


[I will end with this image...]

(Bien Hoa, Vietnam. Personnel destined to return to the U.S., wait at the Bien Hoa Air Terminal for a National Airlines flight home. 02/15/1968)
 

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Registered
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121 Posts
Re: Vietnam Reference Q&A (Please Sticky)

This captain is an ARVN advisor, early in the war. Beside having a M1 carabine he also wear 1'st pattern jungle fatiques with color insignia. Thats why the soldiers in the back dont wear mitchell pattern helmetcover.
 

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wave man TDY staff
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41,776 Posts
Re: Vietnam Reference Q&A (Please Sticky)

Moved to 1:1 ref area, with one week redir, and stickied. Good stuff.
 

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Hobby Military Advisor
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Re: Vietnam Reference Q&A (Please Sticky)

Ah, thank you. Then here some drawings and photos for refernce:



A classical drawing of Soldiers in Vietnam around 1965/66. The gear shown here is reminicent for the early days. You can see that all 3 wear early Jungle Untilites, and early Jungle Boots. Interesting is that the 1Cav Major carries a M1 Carbine while the Special Forces Lt. carries the early version of the M16.



ARVN Rangers during the Tet Offensive, wearing lots of US Army supplied gear with indigues Camo Uniforms.



A Medic in Vietnam, best bet a Navy Corpsman. Note the backpack.



The Classic LLRP.



82nd Airbrone Soldiers somewhere in Vietnam



Rear-view of a unkown Soldier in NAM, wearing the M1952 Body armor. In the Background you can see a soldier with the M69 Body armor. Note the M72 LAW slung at the back of this soldier.



Soldier with M79 Grenadelauncher.
 
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