Post by Dracul on Aug 2, 2016 15:43:59 GMT -5
With an growing interest for Eastern Front scenarios in the North East, and a lot of ideas for loaner kits, I decided to make a designated thread just for the gathering and discussion of ideas regarding building Soviet Russian uniforms, gear, and weapons for loaner purposes.
As Insterburger mentioned, one of the big problems is that very few will want to drop a lot of money on Russian uniforms, only to find that no one follows his or her leads and nothing Soviet or Eastern Front comes of it. The solution is that one creates a line of loaner kits, just as we have loaner kits for any other reason. What's better about Soviet uniforms in general, when compared to US, British, and German, is their simplicity of their uniforms and general lack of actual issued gear.
Weapons are one thing, but since the heavily documented use of US weapons from the Lend-Lease Act and the field procurement of German weapons, we could have a strong base if we allow the use of US and captured German arms. While still encouraging the use of Mosin Nagants, PPSH, and TT-33, and any other actual Russian weapon. WWII Airsoft in general started out with a bunch of Thompsons and look where we are today. So, I think if we start showing more interest in Russian guns, maybe we will eventually get good, reliable rifles on the market. Until then, we had some members from Michigan make amazing guns for nearly nothing. If you could do that, more power to you.
Russian field gear is definitely the easiest to procure cheaply and "close enoughs" are fairly common.
Leather belts: Russian belts were simple. Just thick brown leather with a roller buckle. As long as the buckle isn't shiny or straight black, it should be good.
Canteens: Post-war canteens are nearly the same, and cheap.
Ammo pouches: Not sure how the stance will be for those post-war Mosin pouches will be, but PPSH pouches and TT-33 holsters are cheap as well. I'd say any sort of leather 2-cell pouches would work for this. Original grenade pouches are inexpensive, too.
Mess kits: If you want to go this deep with loaner kits, I'd say it would be fine to get a cheap E. German or similar mess kit and paint it a more proper color.
Uniforms, like German uniforms for loaner kits, is where things will get tricky.
Footwear: Like the Germans, the iconic foot wear would be the jack boot, but in reality, low boots with leg and ankle wraps were extremely common. Since our standard of "less than accurate boots hidden under leggings" is still upheld, we think the same standard should apply to the Soviets.
Tunic: The standard gymnastyerkas are simple garments that have a striking resemblance to the German under/service shirt. In cut, not color. This should easily be sewn from scratch by someone with a bit of sewing and pattern skills. Pattern could be a modified German service shirt pattern from Harriet's (at the bottom). Only two major modifications it will need: Is to just hem the bottom drastically, but, if you have the skill to sew one of these from scratch, you can easily do a hem job; and to apply the correct amount of buttons and in the proper areas, but again, simple stuff (example, the German shirts have one cuff button, Russian tunics have two cuff buttons).
Breeches: I haven't found a precise pattern for this, but I know patterns for breeches exist at your normal fabric stores and online. Just look through the costume and historical sections. Pattern will probably need modifications on its own. But I do suggest sewing the 44 style, with belt loops, so you loanees could wear their belt, and it would be hidden under the tunic.
Peaked caps/Piss Covers: Pilotkas were the standard issued soft head wear for the Red Army, and what would have been worn into combat if wasn't issued a helmet. Which happened a lot in the Red Army, and was a higher occurrence, when compared to Germans and US. These things, even originals, should be cheap, too, or easy to sew from scratch (after taking a repro one apart).
Despite how much I'd like to get sewing on these, I'm far away from being able to say that I could devote the time for this. I'm getting closer to finishing, but I still got a decent amount of work to do on my German and US kits. Hopefully this information inspires others.
Anything else? Ideas? Discussion? Tips from long time Russian reenactors?