• Thanks for stopping by. Logging in to a registered account will remove all generic ads. Please reach out with any questions or concerns.

Old Naval Guard's Random Questions - Canadain Army since WW2

pbi

Army.ca Veteran
Reaction score
0
Points
0
I think you're right, but IIRC the 37 was a lighter colour and the fittings were brass: I believe the web belts we wore when  I was in Army Cadets were from the 37 pattern system.

We would have blessed the CTS crew if even their worst effort had appeared way back then. Except maybe the combat bra.

Amen. Our kit in the 70's was just a mish mash of crap. The only really good stuff I can recall were the combats themselves (but not the stupid coat), and the combat scarf (which IMHO deserves a place in the War Museum as "One of The Best Pieces of Kit Ever"

Cheers
 

Edward Campbell

Army.ca Myth
Subscriber
Donor
Mentor
Reaction score
1,054
Points
1,160
pbi said:
I think you're right, but IIRC the 37 was a lighter colour and the fittings were brass: I believe the web belts we wore when  I was in Army Cadets were from the 37 pattern system.

Amen. Our kit in the 70's was just a mish mash of crap. The only really good stuff I can recall were the combats themselves (but not the stupid coat), and the combat scarf (which IMHO deserves a place in the War Museum as "One of The Best Pieces of Kit Ever"

Cheers


37 pattern webbing was, actually, pretty functional for an infantry soldier - given the weapons and kit we had in those days, including e.g. the CPRC 26 radio set, the case for which was specially designed to replace one of the basic pouches.

cprc26.jpg

CPRC 26

The 51 pattern kit many 37 pattern components, including the very useful small and large packs. The eyelets were retarded and as Old Sweat notes, the whole thing gave sergeants major too much scope for quiffs - paint it shiny, paint it dull, don't paint it at all and so on in various combinations of  canvas and metal bits.

The 64 pattern (I think it was 64, anyway the flimsy stuff we got circa 1965) lacked, for an infantry soldier, many 'essentials' - like a small pack and the rucksacks (not bad ideas, in themselves) did not fit the M113 APC.

Other candidates for "One of The Best Pieces of Kit Ever" (and I agree that the cotton scarf is on that list):

1. High neck sweater;
856-0016.jpg

                                    But ours were real wool and, literally, shed water 

2. Enamel mug; and
images


3. Ration bag.
BR5085.jpg
- except ours were olive drab.

Like about 90% of trained soldiers I refused to return any of those three when, circa 1965, some idiot someone in authority demanded them back. Eventually, in 1997, a kindly storeman-clerk wrote them off, along with pages of other stuff I had lost over the years.
 

Bass ackwards

Full Member
Subscriber
Donor
Reaction score
0
Points
0
I'd have a tough time saying that the '64 pattern was really an improvement. At the time however, all of us newly graduated killers were quite horny to get issued the "modern" stuff -which we were told, alas, there was none to be had. Which in turn started a pell-mell rush to the surplus stores in Toronto where there was plenty available. For a price.

In the field, webbing was a mishmash of '64 pattern belts/canteens/mess tin carriers (grenade pouches were never issued for some reason), along with American buttpacks, various European magazine pouches, 51 pattern mag pouches and anything else neat and exotic that could be found at the nearest army surplus store.
Oh yeah, and knives. Lots of knives. Big ones. Plus the obligatory boot knife cuz we were bad. ::)

I've still got my scarf too. And still use it on hunting trips. It, at least, is useful. Ditto for the dark green sweater. 
 

pbi

Army.ca Veteran
Reaction score
0
Points
0
ER: Good list. I would add (I know...it seems weird...) the old heavy flannel shirt. I always thought those things were excellent, amd they were frequently worn as outer garments (much to the dismay of Sgts Maj).

Just a minute...I'm having a sensory flashback....freezing cold morning air....black coffee in a metal canteen cup..the smell of diesel fumes...engines cranking up one by one....combat scarf wrapped around the neck....

Where did it all go?

Cheers
 

Blackadder1916

Army.ca Veteran
Reaction score
1,068
Points
1,160
Old Sweat said:
. . . The eyelets were the answer to a sergeant major's prayer. Now there was more to shine and paint, along with the various keepers, buckles, etc on the belt, pouches, carriers and packs. Believe me, I know. . . .

But hopefully not because . . .
http://mpmuseum.org/post51equipment.html
. . . WE'51 is still issued to prisoners in the Military Prison in Edmonton as it is difficult and time consuming to clean and maintain.
 

Old Sweat

Army.ca Fixture
Donor
Reaction score
77
Points
480
The Sweater, High Neck (the one in Edward's post) was a national treasure. In the late fall/early winter in Petawawa in the pre-combat clothing and no winter kit days, we used to wear it backwards under coveralls in the field to keep our necks and upper chests relatively warm.
 

Blackadder1916

Army.ca Veteran
Reaction score
1,068
Points
1,160
Old Sweat said:
The Bobcat was very cramped. I recall seeing the film and noting that it did not have a ramp, but rather a door at the rear. The cupolas, one of which mounted a machine gun, of course, meant that all the arcs could not be covered while moving. (I also think it had a front engine and rear drive, so there was a drive shaft tunnel that ran the length of the interior.)

The army also attempted to develop a 105mm SP version. When I was a Tech Asst (Arty Tech in today talk) our troop CP was deployed on the Mattawa Plain one day to produce gun data for it as part of the test program. This was short lived as the tracks broke after a few rounds. tracks.

This CAJ article by Sean Maloney provides good background of the Bobcat story. http://www.army.forces.gc.ca/caj/documents/vol_02/iss_4/CAJ_vol2.4_19_e.pdf
Three unarmoured prototypes were authorized: two APCs and a self propelled gun variant. The contract was awarded to Leyland Motors of Longueuil, Quebec (later Canadian Car, and still later Hawker Siddeley of Canada, who brought their expertise with aluminium production to bear).  After acceptance by the Army in 1958, the prototypes were put through a number of tests. These tests only served to fuel Army enthusiasm, and the number of vehicles required jumped accordingly to 1567. Six armoured prototypes were then ordered; with the vehicle now being designated “Bobcat.”

The APC version had a retractable (roll-back) armoured roof allowing the occupants to fight from the vehicle.  Attached is a photo of the SP gun variant (perhaps taken on that day on Mattawa Plain?) and a speculative drawing (from the quoted article) of an interesting concept that was considered.
 

Fishbone Jones

Army.ca Myth
Subscriber
Donor
Reaction score
805
Points
1,060
Old Naval Guard said:
Hi I was wondering when the following pieces of equipment was withdrawn fro the Canadian Army. Some I know, however there seems to have been some continued use by the militia ie Helmets Mk2,3s were used in the Militia while the Cdn Army changed to the American M-1 in 1960. Did the bren gun see service  in the Militia during the 60s and when was it withdrawn from reg force use. The 25-pounder field gun did it see longer service in the Militia and if so when was it replaced in the reg force army. Webbing, how long did Pattern 37 stay in use by reg or Militia until replaced by pattern51,52 webbing Thanks in advance Old naval Guard

I was wearing the 51 pattern web, the Tommy style helmet and using a Bren gun in 1968 in the Militia. We also used the 1919 .30 Browning MG, 3.5 rocket launcher and the Sten. C-42 & PRC 510 radio sets for comms.
 

Old Naval Guard

Jr. Member
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Thanks for responding, intresting  in answer to  pbi question. I am just intrested in the pre-unification army. I served many years as Militia infantry. Kinda like to see how things were in the "Good Old Days". I myself wore pattern 64 was glad to get pattern 82. Loved the scarf .  i am assuming  3.5 rocket launcher was before the m-72 and Karl Gustva., Thanks again.  Old naval guard.
 

Old Naval Guard

Jr. Member
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Hi another question about our military in the 1960s. Before the arrival of CF-5 Freedom fighter, who provided tactical air support to Army units.?. The CF-101 Voodoos was a air defence fighter with NORAD. The Air Divisions Starfighters were a nuclear strike role. I read an article that stated HMCS Bonaventure Banshee fighter did sometimes provide air support to units in Canada. Did the T-33 also do their part?(Air support).  Cheers Old Naval GUARD
 

Fishbone Jones

Army.ca Myth
Subscriber
Donor
Reaction score
805
Points
1,060
Old Naval Guard said:
Thanks for responding, intresting  in answer to  pbi question. I am just intrested in the pre-unification army. I served many years as Militia infantry. Kinda like to see how things were in the "Good Old Days". I myself wore pattern 64 was glad to get pattern 82. Loved the scarf . i am assuming  3.5 rocket launcher was before the m-72 and Karl Gustva., Thanks again.  Old naval guard.

Yes

http://www.inetres.com/gp/military/infantry/antiarmor/M20.html

 

time expired

Full Member
Reaction score
0
Points
0
IN Canada there was no tactical air support.The only evidence I saw in my summer 2  month vacation

trips to Wainwright that the RCAF existed was when T33 s played enemy air on a couple of exercises.

4 Brigades tacair was provided RAF Canberras and Hunter FAG 9s,Luftwaffe G91s and F104s,Belgian

F84s and Dutch F104s, nary a RCAF aircraft to be seen. The reason of course is that 4CIBG was in the

2 ATAF area and the RCAF was down south in 4 ATAF.

                                                                  Regards
 

pbi

Army.ca Veteran
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Firing the 3.5 was always interesting. By the time I got into the Militia, much of the ammunition had been in storage for years, and misfires and duds were common. As well, the rocket propellant did not always burn evenly, sometimes resulting in the rocket motor spitting out small chunks of propellant: a face shield was eventually issued to protect the firer from this stuff. Another result of the uneven burning was that, towards the end of the weapon's service life, trajectories could get a bit wobbly.

Sometimes the motor would not ignite: this required a rather frightening misfire drill. After a short count, No. 2 grasped the rear of the rear of the rocket assembly, retracted it from the weapon slightly, gave it a partial turn, then shoved it back in. At this point No.1 would try a re-fire. (I think there was an electrical shorter clip in there somewhere too, but I can't recall how that was handled in the drill).

Once the rocket fired, it would not always detonate if it struck a hard target (and not detonate at all if it missed). This could result in a number of duds accumulating on the firing range. Once a certain number of duds was reached, we usually stopped firing and blew them. Given the unpredictable sensitivity of the fuze, this could cause rectal tension.

Finally, I remember that the folding optical sight was terrible. It had an extremely complicated reticule pattern, and if you looked into the eyepiece at the wrong angle, the reticule markings disappeared.

I'm sure other folks on this board who had the experience of handling the 3.5 can correct my memories above.

I was quite happy to see it replaced by the 84mm Carl Gustaf system.

Cheers
 

Old Sweat

Army.ca Fixture
Donor
Reaction score
77
Points
480
PBI

I think you have pretty well summed up the 3.5in RL. There was a gizmo (excuse the technical term) that was supposed to hold the round in position. It was operated by a lever on the top rear of the tube that was flipped manually after the round had been inserted. In the misfire drill, if the round did not fire the second time, the lever was tripped to allow the rocket to be removed. It was pulled partway out and then the clip and band were put over the fuze retainer in the rocket body behind the warhead.

It was not until many years later, when we studied ammunition/fuzing/safety devices on the IG course that I realized just how frigging dangerous this was. There always was the possibility that the retainer, which was spring loaded, could pop out, thus arming the fuze. It was roughly akin to the safety system in a fin stabilized mortar bomb, with acceleration and then creep allowing the retainer to move out of the ignition path.
 

pbi

Army.ca Veteran
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Old Sweat said:
It was not until many years later, when we studied ammunition/fuzing/safety devices on the IG course that I realized just how frigging dangerous this was.

Yes, it was a beast. Thinking back, by the time we got rid of it the 3.5 was probably more dangerous to us than to the Warsaw Pact we were trained to aim it at. IIRC it had a piezo-electric fuze system, which could render duds extremely sensitive and dangerous.

Cheers
 

Fishbone Jones

Army.ca Myth
Subscriber
Donor
Reaction score
805
Points
1,060
pbi said:
Yes, it was a beast. Thinking back, by the time we got rid of it the 3.5 was probably more dangerous to us than to the Warsaw Pact we were trained to aim it at. IIRC it had a piezo-electric fuze system, which could render duds extremely sensitive and dangerous.

Cheers
E.R. Campbell said:
It's a bit like reliving a bad dream, isn't it?

You're both looking with hindsight.

Back then, when we had our hands on it and they said 'Don't worry about the face mask, this is 'newer' stuff, as a fifteen year old (yeah I lied about my age), it gave you a woody ;)

C'mon, admit it. ;D
 

Rifleman62

Army.ca Veteran
Subscriber
Donor
Reaction score
70
Points
530
Firing the 3.5 was always interesting. By the time I got into the Militia, much of the ammunition had been in storage for years, and misfires and duds were common. As well, the rocket propellant did not always burn evenly, sometimes resulting in the rocket motor spitting out small chunks of propellant: a face shield was eventually issued to protect the firer from this stuff.

Group one, Infantry, Shilo, Summer 1964, YSTP: That's exactly what happened. One in three. No face mask, goggles later, but not that summer.

Finally, I remember that the folding optical sight was terrible. It had an extremely complicated reticule pattern, and if you looked into the eyepiece at the wrong angle, the reticule markings disappeared.

We were taught the the best shot in the Pl was the 3.5 inch guy (to ensure a hit!!).

There was a gizmo (excuse the technical term) that was supposed to hold the round in position. It was operated by a lever on the top rear of the tube that was flipped manually after the round had been inserted

The Contact Lever and the Contact Latches.

The misfires where gently carried X feet away, to the left of the pit, and placed on the ground. After a day and a course of 30 (?) there was several large piles.

We fired Blue warhead rockets first, then HEAT. I have a picture of the explosion from all the misfires that Sgt Stenkia QOR and Sgt Liscom PPCLI, blew in place.

On incident saw the rocket loaded past the contact latches, causing the launcher to dip off balance towards the ground. In those days you got shit for doing the impossible.

I was fifteen and two months for my irregular enrolment, Oct 1962.
 

pbi

Army.ca Veteran
Reaction score
0
Points
0
You're both looking with hindsight.

Hey....come on...at my age that's the only sight that sees clearly anymore!!

Cheers
 
Top