Sealegs Swedish Surplus Thread [56k :(]

Discussion in 'Reviews' started by Sealegs, May 31, 2011.

  1. Sealegs

    Sealegs Scout

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    I've noticed allot of gear from my neck of the woods floating around out there and thought I'd put down a thread with some hard-use, and I do mean hard, perspective on it and a bit of a history lesson, warnings, caveats and anecdotes about the different things you can get your hands on from the Swedish Surplus market.

    I must say though, not all export is popular here! I have friends who think export of military surplus should be forbidden so we could keep it all to ourselves. :D

    Anyway, first our is the Kokkärl m/40 & m/44, commonly known as "The Swedish mess-kit."

    Stand by for transmission.
     
  2. pedro

    pedro Scout

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    Eagerly awaiting....
     
  3. Bush Otter

    Bush Otter Supporter Supporter

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    Tick tock tick tock , this should be very interesting can't wait for the Swedish meatball surplus meatball surplus ration.lol
     
  4. Sealegs

    Sealegs Scout

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    Kokkärl m/40 & m/44

    [​IMG]
    A quick way to tell the m/40 and the m/44 apart is that the aluminium has two "ridges" on the inside of the large pot. Whereas the m/40 only has one, due to the larger flex of the stainless creating a better seal.

    I have yet to see a copy of these, but the military issue is stamped with the three crowns of the king's army. Some, however are not crown marked and were civil defense issue.

    Use:
    The one man stove is issued to every Swedish soldier in one iteration or another. The version that is commonly known abroad is correspondingly the most common version of old. Independantly operating units like rangers, use the “Ranger stove” which is more suited for long term individual cooking in the wild. Though, IMHO, not as good when it comes to being used with wood for fuel. YMMV.

    Used mainly to cook your own meals and in the rare instances rear echelon sends you warm food, as a mess kit.

    History:
    The Swedish army has issued individual cook gear to soldiers cine the 1700’s. In 1848, a year with many new designs, a canteen made out of copper intended to be able to cook in as well as drink water from, was issued and it looked remarkably like the mess kit we know today.

    The iterations after that one, in aluminium, pewter, stainless and then again aluminium, are all refinements towards the final design so to speak. The m/44, the aluminium version issued from 1944 and after was the final version. During the 1930's stainless steel hit the market and the stainless model was issued in 1940 (m/40), for cost reasons aluminium was re-adopted later on.

    [​IMG]

    Terminology:
    The one man stove is a group name for the mess kit, the wind screen, the burner, the towel, the opener, the fuel bottle, 4dl Kåsa m/51, the utensils and dishwashing sponges.

    [​IMG]

    Parts:
    The mess kit is made up of two “buckets” that fit with each other both. The lid portion has two rings in the handle, when raised they can be used with a stick to fashion it into a serviceable frying pan. Comfortable to hold over a fire or leave on a grill top or hobo stove.

    The large pot has a hook on the bail. The hook allows you to hang the pot from the belt while picking berries or edibles, picking it out of a fire easier and hanging it from a hook a bit better.

    The other parts of the kit are pretty self explanatory. if you have any questions, shoot.

    [​IMG]

    Tips & tricks:
    I have cooked my fair share of meals in this bit of kit and these are some commonly used tips.

    The bucket doesn’t have the nick name “Snuskburken” (The filthy can) for nothing. The tight fit of the lid and the pot makes for a really dank environment if you don’t do your dishes.
    1. Don’t store the burner or the fuel bottle in the kit itself. Use a bag to carry it all instead. Quickly made form the leg of a pair of old pants. In the winter you’ll want to keep the burner and fuel bottle in the inner vest pockets of your jacket anyway.
    2. Do the dishes properly, be your own controll and really check it for cleanliness. A good soldier has a clean mess-kit and avoids the “Yalla”.
    3. Freshness. Pack toothpaste and add a little dab of it in a corner of the tin before closing it up. It’ll smell of minty freshness when you open it later on.
    4. When you are eating, heat water with the remaining fuel in the burner. This will give you hot dishwashing water. For übercleanly goodness.

    Take advantage of the m/51 Kåsa, it has the rounded off handle, and pack it in there. The squared off civilian copy of the m/51 does not fit.

    Dump the utensils and stove the spoon, or a spoon of your choice in your right vest pocket. Having a spoon handy means you can take advantage when food is offered and use it for other stuff as well. Sporks? Overrated. :D

    [​IMG]
    Make a pot scraper from an old discarded car ice scraper. Will work wonders for geting burnt crap out of your kit.

    [​IMG]
    The utensils that come with it are beastly, full sized dinner ware. On the flip they work really well when compared to utter crap like the weaker cousin, NATO issued utensils shown on the left in the picture.


    [​IMG]
    Given that these types of shelter are recommended in emergency situations, the one man stove must also function and be serviceable with open flame cooking.

    Firepit:
    Dig a pit with your field shovel, hang the mess-kits of the group on a pole above the fire, make it adaptable in height and move them about some while cooking to spread the heat.

    Or for bushcrafters, jut treat it like a billy can.

    [​IMG]
    The modern replacement. Soldatkök -09 (I think) is basically off the shelf products from Katadyne Group, with an added chain style bail for open flame cooking.

    Edited for anecdotes:
    Soldiers being inherently lazy and avoiding hardship more than necessary often use plastic bags as inserts for the mess kit. Eating out of it, spoon only, and being careful not to poke a hole in the plastic you can in theory get off scott free from doing the dishes that meal. A great prospect when it might entail doing said dishes bare handed by scrubbing snow in the metal pots.

    This was so popular a molded plastic "discardable" insert was actually produced and sold in some stores close to regiments.

    Like the thermos, the mess-kit is totally reliant on the user keeping it polished like a door knob. After a three day leave period we came back to regiment and found a mysterious stink on our barracks. Hunting about for a bit it was narrowed down to a specific locker, and to a specific one man stove.

    He had nearly finished his pea soup when his unit was ambushed by rangers in some exercise we had. No dishes were done since he became a simulated casualty and shipped off through the med chain. His gear shipped back to regiment and stoved.

    I tell you this now, you do not want to try and get that stink out of your mess kit. Doing the dishes: 5minutes tops. Boiling your entire messkit and using a slew of chemicals to get the hell-stink out of it: 45-60minutes.

    I will try to add to these posts as time and picture taking allowes. Questions, other pictures and tips/tricks are most welcome.

    Next up will most likely be a ruck or the liner-come-coat.
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2011
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  5. DancesWithaTrout

    DancesWithaTrout Guest

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    Intently watches :)
     
  6. Spork

    Spork Supporter Supporter

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    Very nice Sealegs :dblthumb:

    I assume the burner used with the Soldatkök-09 is a smaller civilian type Trangia? Do you have an image of how the bail chain is arranged and do you know the volumes of the pots?
     
  7. Yudda

    Yudda Tracker

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    Thank you for the info. Bar none... my favorite gear is Swedish surplus.
     
  8. Bush Otter

    Bush Otter Supporter Supporter

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    Goodies, I like.
     
  9. Sealegs

    Sealegs Scout

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    I'll post the stuff that's included and a link to the full manual, that has a picture of the chain bail, as an edit to this post. Dimensions are esbit 1liter and 750ml pots.

    Edit:
    http://www.katadynmilitary.com/usen...itary-optimus-soldier-stove/soldier-stove-09/
    Description on their webpage, English manual in "Downloads" as well as the Swedish directly linked below.

    The new installment is made by Katadyn Group which owns amongst other brands Primus.

    http://katadynch.vs31.snowflakehost...om/Downloads/Manual_Soldier_Stove_Swedish.pdf
    This is the manual in Swedish, complete itinerary as well as pictures of each individual item and packaging instructions and specs.
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2011
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  10. Nerual the Mad

    Nerual the Mad Guide

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    Thanks for doing this. I enjoy the Swedish surplus but we get lots of misinformation here about it. I'm looking forward to the next installment..
     
  11. Sgt. Mac

    Sgt. Mac Elder Staff Member Administrator Supporter Bushclass I Bushclass II Bushclass Instructor

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    Great info Brother, and very much appreciated
     
  12. jimmyt

    jimmyt Supporter Supporter

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    Great write up, thanks.
     
  13. GreyOne

    GreyOne Elder Lifetime Supporter

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    Thanks, good first hand information is hard to come by ! :)
     
  14. brionic

    brionic Blissful simpleton Supporter

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    Fantastic, I've been awaiting this kind of info for years.

    Thank you!
     
  15. Easy_rider75

    Easy_rider75 Bushwhacker

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    So enjoy reading bits of history like this enjoyed this very much thanks
     
  16. Sealegs

    Sealegs Scout

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    Värmejacka 90

    Thanks everyone, I'm just in a surplussy mood since I was at one of the many dank stores filled with old war glory a few days ago. [Yes Mac I didn't forget you, I'm just counting pennies and trying to get one of the recommended shipping boxes from the post office and off it flies.]

    For the next installment, this is something you may not have any interest in, exposure to or are likely to see at sportsmansguide, though if you do, get one.

    [​IMG]
    Värmejacka 90

    If you've ever met a Swedish soldier and have exposed him or her to a poncho liner, you are bound to have gotten quite the reaction. I know I was blown away when I saw one the first time. I actually bought one really cheap a few days ago. What we have as a replacement is a result of several different factors IMHO.

    History:
    First, harking back to the days of wool blankets and great coats, when sleeping bags were made out of wool and filled with hay (those are still around the surplus shops) we took note of the Red Army, which didn't issue blankets, so the soldiers carried their winter coats even in the summer, for a substitute. Fast forward a few years and the first wind coat with detacheable liner was issued and after a few iterations.. Perfection.

    [​IMG]

    The Värmejacka 90, paired with Värmebyxa 90, are for lack of a better description a woobie jacket. It is commonly called Komarocken, or "the coma coat" because you instantly lapse into a field coma when donning it. The pants are made out of the same material and are zippered for easy dress and undress. The zippers also have the secondary function of allowing the pants to be zipped up like the bottom of a sleeping bag. It has two large pockets and a hood with or without insulation. Without is the most common and frankly the most practical as we will see later.


    Use:
    It was fairly common to not be deployed a sleeping bag over here, that expensive kit was the reserve of rangers and recon troops, the rest had to make do with larger tents with stoves, sleeping in vehicles or, in their coma coats and pants. Sticking the legs into the ruck and crawling up under the tarp commonly called Ensamma Vargen [ The Lone Wolf]. This is actually not a bad way to sleep, I have dont it myself in awful conditions and you usually share a tree with your No1 or 2.

    [​IMG]

    The jacket is always packed at the top of the ruck, so you can use it on breaks during movement. It is also worn when on watch or guard duty, you the put your webbing over the coat. There are plenty of stories of people sleeping while standing as they wear these coats/parkas. I have done so once myself while waiting for a briefing, unfortunately for me it was a Major that nudged me in the ribs... :25:

    [​IMG]

    The chest strap is a seldom used, except by older officers, function allowing it to be worn as a cape of sorts. Awesome for wounded or guards in semi-cold conditions and officers who just walk between command tents. The older I've become the more I use it myself when eating and such.

    [​IMG]

    The pockets are large and roomy, fits the fur hat and manly mittens quite readily.

    Now for the greatest benefit of this bit of kit. It's made to stow. The materisl inside it and the quilted nature of it is extremely resistant to long term compression. Hence the preferred and dictated method of squaring it away. You lay it out flat with the arms folded straight down. Fold the sides in so you have a strip about as wide as the hood, which you then roll up as tight as you can. Then you pull the hood over the roll and tie off the hood draw cords.

    [​IMG]
    And presto, a big ball of warmth ready to stow under the lid of your ruck, next to the rain gear.

    I will add as I remember stuff no doubt. Next up is probably the LK series rucksacks, of which the LK35 still has a strong following of martyrs and masochists over here. :50:
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2011
  17. cz-bohunk

    cz-bohunk Guide

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    Keep it comeing, also was there a pouch that the surplus stove was carried in or did it just have that green belt that went around it like in the picture?
     
  18. Dano

    Dano Banned Member Banned

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    I really appreciate your efforts on this, it's great info!!
     
  19. pedro

    pedro Scout

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    Great info! Keep it up!
     
  20. Sealegs

    Sealegs Scout

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    The loop in the handle was for strapping it to the outside of a backpack via a leather strap, back in the day (way back). Up until it was put out of use every ruck had a special pocket in it high and close to the back, just large enough to fit a larger bottle of water, the stove and some other stuff, or a radio.

    [​IMG]
    Pictured here in the platoon medics personal ruck, the LK-35 SJ (or however thats supposed to be spelled out). I stuffed an old officers wool blanket in there to flesh it out a bit, but you get the idea. High and close to the back.
     
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  21. brionic

    brionic Blissful simpleton Supporter

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    Outstanding. Looks like a well thought-out garment. I've got to find one!
     
  22. Black Forest

    Black Forest Scout

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    Great thread my friend, I'm a huge fan of Swedish Surplus myself!
     
  23. Radix lecti

    Radix lecti Tracker

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    Excellent stuff Sealegs,a great thread you have here. Thanks.

    Darren
     
  24. DCP

    DCP Guide Bushclass I

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    Sealegs,

    Do you know the difference between the color? I saw the M/40 in green and black. Would one branch of the military use a certain color over the other(not that it matters but cool to know, if you know).
     
  25. matt.s

    matt.s Guide

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    How about the M39 rucksack/pack? The internal pocket just fits my M44 kokkarl but it's on the 'wrong' side (furthest from the back).
     
  26. 45jack

    45jack Supporter Supporter

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    Outstanding thread!
    Thanks
     
  27. cloudraker

    cloudraker Guide

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    So, what kinda rations did you cook in the cookset? I'm familiar with the North American Military rations, just curious what the 3 Crowns saw fit to feed it's soldiers?
     
  28. Mithril Forge

    Mithril Forge Tracker

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    Great information Sealegs. Thanks for the thread.
     
  29. MK-9

    MK-9 Guide Bushclass I

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    Interesting stuff. Thanks.
     
  30. Edz

    Edz Scout

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    Great stuff!!
    Love my Swedish mess kits and glad a got a few back when you could find em!
    Very much look forward to more on this thread. Hoping there is some of this valuable insight into the Swedish rucksack!! Thanks!

    edz
     
  31. Crossed Arrows

    Crossed Arrows Guest

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    Excellent thread! Many, many thanks for all this work and information. I've appreciated Swedish surplus gear for quite a few years and wondered about how the individual soldiers would use it.

    Please tell us about how long you stay in the military. I've heard that, similar to Switzerland, you serve on active duty then in the reserves for many years. I've also heard that your reserves are issued full kit with weapon that you keep at home.

    One more thing - I've been a big fan of the Swedish Mauser and have always been impressed by the condition of all I have inspected. They seem to be in the very best condition of any Mauser from any other country.
     
  32. OnTheLambWildman

    OnTheLambWildman Scout

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    Great thread and love the info. I got two new mess kits about four years ago for less than ten bucks each. I should've bought more.
     
  33. Okbushcraft

    Okbushcraft Guide

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    Smiling at screen with an odd smirk on face, eyes glazed...


    Really like the thread. I have the stainless version and about 10 OD green plastic kuksas. I love Swedish surplus!!!
     
  34. Sealegs

    Sealegs Scout

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    The colors are down to our basic camouflage pattern. Normally you repaint the mess kit when needed of before final inspection. There are some tips and tricks that apply to painting them as per regulation, might get back to that if there is any interest? Usually a unit all have the same color.

    To paint strip an m/40 or m/44, dump it in a bucket with warm water and soap for a while. Proceed to scrub it down. Root brush for the aluminium if you want it smooth but steel brushes are OK for the m/40.


    The m/39 was in the transition from outside of pack carry to the inside. From what my gramps told med they used to pack it close to the back and had other stuff in the front pocket. The two leather straps on the side are for the _really_ old field shovel. Mine is in the garden tools somewhere and I have currently been unable to locate it but I do have a bead on the m/39 ruck and will include it in my mega-ruck-post.


    The rations are divided into rear echelon, combat and ranger sizes. The ranger rations being the most nutritious. Back in the day the rangers had freeze dried food, which they cooked in their "ranger stoves", basically a glorified light weight Trangia sallad bowl, and the combat ration was two cans of food, one "golden puck" of liver paté (very popular here), biscuits, coffee, some soups and energy drinks and a small candybar as well as a chocolate bar. They came in a brown paper box labeled according to menu.

    Now we have a Norwegian made freeze dried system. Basically a 24hr ration is a roll consisting of breakfast, lunch, dinner and possibles. All in powder or freee dried form. They are VERY tasty. Just add varm or cold water, stirr, seal and let sit for a few minutes. You can even pop them into a pocket if you have a baggie around them and can't stop for long.

    http://www.drytech.no/
    This is the company that manufactures them and while pricey their civvy stuff is just as good. Click field meal to view the options. I should add that I don't know if they switched to something else in the last years, if so the obvious suspect is Katadyne Groups field ration, which IMHO seems inferior, but cost may be an issue.

    We only recently made the transition to a standing army, something allot of us cannot quite understand or get behind. Norway, Finland and Denmark are making no such transitions but we are cheapskates it seem.

    It used to be that all males had to undergo a screening after they had turned 18, the usual, strength, endurance, aptitude, Morse code, psychological evaluation and then a placement. As time wore on it became less and less hard to get out of it. You could check the box wherein you voluntarily signed your ass over to one of the harder units like the rangers or base security, but that required you to first pass the limits for those units in regards to the tests, then further testing and then finally actually make it through training.

    A normal grunt had 7.5months of basic training. Consisting of shared base training, "Every Swedish soldier is a soldier first and whatever else he may be comes second." But the quality was really varied from regiment to regiment and unit to unit. Then you did task specific training and the last part was just exercises and drills.

    Basic could range from 7.5 - 15 months. After that you rotated back to civilian life unless you stayed on as a voluntary NCO. You could also apply for officers school or for a turn out of country. To qualify for the foreign soil missions you had to have passed basic with top grades, voluntarily apply and pass the roughly two months of repetition and unit training. Then you did 6+ months on foreign soil.

    You were usually "combat placed" within the large machinery for quite a while after your basic training. Meaning that if the call to arms came, you reported to your units rondevouz point, collected your gear from long term storage, we are talking APC's, personal equipment, ammunition, food and so forth. The idea we had for defending our country was basically making any invading force bleed for every inch they took, and keep them bleeding for as long as they stayed. The whole of the air force and the border positioned forces were tasked with delaying and disrupting enemy movements for as long as it took the national guard, civil defense and regular army to mobilize. A bleak picture, but as they say "You pay for the rights as a citizen with the duties of the same." so, but yeah, I wasn't thrilled about the prospect of being bombed to tiny bits by the Russians in case of an invasion. :p

    The national guard was/is issued a full kit of gear they keep at home. It used to be that they kept their H&K G3 at home, but since allot of criminals tended to b&e and swipe them they have them in regional storage now so you just pop down to your local national guard (Hemvärnet) to get it. (Basically)

    The Mauser m/96 is the old infantry carbine and we had loads. They were kept in storage and some were used for rifle training with youths in the gun sports initiative supported by the army. However, our gun laws being, pardon my language, retarded, it's almost impossible to sell them to civilians in the amounts we are talking about when it was time to get rid of them, so they sold off a great big piece of glorious military history to foreign bidders. You don't even want to know how many were destroyed....

    I will collect a few of the external frame rucks for a side by side picture later in the day. m/39, LK35, LK35Sj, LK70 and maybe throw in the semi recent airborne ranger 110liter ruck as well. Cheers!
     
  35. Sealegs

    Sealegs Scout

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    I took out six old packs and took a few token pictures today but until I have time to write it up I thought I'd add two excellent bits of kit to the mix. The squad medics haversack and the new 1ltr canteen.

    Now, the canteen feels a bit like teasing since you can't even get one here in Sweden, neither in a shop or from the actual factory that makes them. Still, if they ever get out there, premium item.

    [​IMG]
    This is the haversack and the canteen side by side. I'm going to switch out the Nalgene oasis that is currently inside the haversack from a bit of use.

    [​IMG]
    You can hint at a bit of kit in there. Notice the side flaps that keeps crap out of your bag and also allows you to lay the bag down like this and use it as a bit of a tray. Glorious cold war quality with canvas and metal all the way.

    [​IMG]
    This is what I had in it this time, not stuffed to the brim either, but I like a bit of wriggle room in my bags.

    [​IMG]
    This is how the pockets are set up, either of the back pockets fits a canteen nicely, even with a stove stand and the cup. We don't have cups for our larger canteens though, sadly.

    [​IMG]
    You can attach the bag to the webbing belt or just have it on the shoulder strap. Switching the thin strap for a beefier one is advised, I have yet to do it with this one.

    [​IMG]
    The main difference with the 1ltr canteen (Fältflaska 90) is the size of the mouth, which allows for a fork quite easily. Though not strictly useful since it's not made from metal. But I've heard rumors....

    [​IMG]
    Level indicator goodness and NBC cork adds to comfort and pleasure. A friend of mine made a coupling for his camelback hose that fit onto the cork of the canteen, carried it upside down. Awesomeness.

    [​IMG]
    All packed up. While I thought about removing the medic patch since it's not in use as a medical kit, I felt nostalgic about the one I lugged around and kept it on. I'm not much for ruining old gear.

    Next up, the rucks of yesteryore. Might be later on in the day since it's allot to write about.
     
  36. brionic

    brionic Blissful simpleton Supporter

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    Terrific, Sealegs, I appreciate your posting this info. Keep it coming!
    --
    Br.
     
  37. DCP

    DCP Guide Bushclass I

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    If you have a chance about repainting I would be interested. Thanks again for all the great details.

     
  38. Sealegs

    Sealegs Scout

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    Rucksacks, first post.

    I will go through some of the most common rucks you are likely to see if you are scouting for a Swedish surplus pack. There is always someone who hates or loves a particular model, they all have their ups and downs IMHO. Pick the right gear for the job or be prepared to press a squared peg through a round hole.

    The external frame packs with the standardized frame was made by several manufacturers and several different models were used up until the mid 80’s when certain ranger units began looking for alternatives and broke away from the pack. The LK35 was in use up until the -00’s when SS2k combat ruck replaced it.

    Use:
    The LK series are all based on the same frame. A solid steel frame that has more alternative uses than I can mention readily. You can strap a grenade rifle to it and carry the rifle as a rucksack, you can strap ammunition for the same, for grenade launchers, for machine guns, and so forth to it. For patrols you would detatch the bag from the frame and mount the radio unit, so the commo guy could move more freely. The series encompass personal rucksacks for the common soldier, the medic, scout and ranger. The normal model does not have any load bearing belt, but the belt could be shifted to one if you could find it.

    [​IMG]

    For the self sufficient soldier the rucksack is more than something to carry. It is your washing machine, sleeping system addition to keep your feet warm and dry and so much more. If you know how to improvise more uses than the obvious out of it, the extra weight can pay off in the bush. Sadly the military training of today offers little of this, time, money and poorly schooled officers often make for a quick detour around the fire pits and extended wilderness stay training.

    [​IMG]

    These packs all have different uses, from right to left the m/39 is an infantrymans bag, the LK-35 is the very same, the LK-35 SJ is the platoon medics personal pack, the LK-70 is a rangers backpack and the FJS is the airborne rangers rucksack.

    [​IMG]

    So before I go into details about the individual bags, which will be in a lengthy post to come later on, a few ins and outs of these bags as a collective.

    I still get the creeps when I watch someone lug around a ruck and there are straps hanging willy nilly all over the place, swinging to and fro like some willy nilly thing. It’s just not proper. Secure the straps, roll them tight when in storage, lead them back for easy opening and shortening while in the field. Elecrticians tape or just any black tape really, works wonders for keeping straps under control.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    You should take to keeping a garbage bag inside the ruck as a stuffsack, there are issue ones from other forces around the world, but I’ve always fancied the foresight that comes with packing a thicker ply bag under the one used for stuff sack, giving you all the multi use goodness of two garbage bags should disaster strike. Inside the garbage bag you can use the net bag used for washing clothes, it will keep over packing from having a go at breaking the garbage bag.

    Pack the ground mat on the bottom of the pack. I see people walking around with those bobbin ground mats up in the air and it freaks me out! IMHO what you remove lastly from your pack, when setting up camp is the ground mat. This is also what I want between the bottom of my ruck and the mud/rocks/etc when putting the bag down. Granted I’ve never been one for using fancy self inflating thingies or such. Feels too much like I’m going swimming. :D

    These frame packs have a nice little bent portion of the metal frame intended to protect the bottom of the pack, well, it’s not all that good against all kinds of crap to I still pack my foam pad down below where the sun don’t shine, and keep my rain gear and some tent parts or a tarp on the top. Personal preference, may be, but packing heavier more sensitive stuff below and the light weight non-bump sensitive stuff up above never made sense to me.

    There are old pack plans for these, mostly intended as suggestions though, at the least the LK35 is a 3 day assault pack, but often you had to make do with it for longer when rear echelon couldn’t get your support pack out to you.

    [​IMG]

    One advantage is that they all pretty much stoves down to this size. Again, I will add to this post as I have time, a bit of history perhaps.

    Stay tuned for the m/39 and it’s many quirks and glories.
     
  39. rogumpogum

    rogumpogum Guest

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  40. Sealegs

    Sealegs Scout

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    Ryggsäck m/39

    Ryggsäck m/39

    [​IMG]
    This picture was taken in 1937, two years prior to the m/39's coming of age. It is fairly easy to see that it's almost the same rucksack. Small changes. This picture is pretty much the answer to any questions regarding the quality of this rucksack. If it's good enough for the bad-ass in the picture, it's undoubtedly good enough for me.

    Notice the mess kit, the older taller model and the entrenching tool/shovel. That's how they rolled back then, now let's hear the youth of today whining about uncomfortable gear!

    [​IMG]
    The m/39 is not a modern piece of equipment, not a yot of plastic on it. Canvas, leather and metal. Many a soldier has sworn that this beast was forged in the fires of hell, by some long damned general out to punish the poor privates of the north. They might just be right!

    It's a tight fit, this is a small assault style pack, from the days of the mass-army where the rear with the gear meant being about one click behind where bombs where dropped, so you generally didn't need more than you could fit in there. You were also supposed to scavenge for food if required, and build shelters and warming fires on a squad or at the most, platoon level.

    [​IMG]

    One thing to remember about this ruck if you are thinking about buying it. It's made for soldiers back in the day when plus sized ones were put on bread and water rations and forced to split wood way into the nights to loose those pounds. The lumbar support of the frame is curved to follow the maximum allowed waistline of a Swedish soldier anno 1939. Basically the guy in the top picture. If you gain weight, it'll hurt you. :16:

    Come to think of it, splitting wood for punishment was still going strong back when I did my basic...

    I have used this bit of kit in an ordered re-enactment that lasted three days, and I can tell you in the winter, with time specific kit, skies, cold and that bloody shovel on one side and the Mauser on the other, you gain a whole new perspective on grand-dads manliness.

    My own is marked as having belonged to Pfc. Fridén of the pioneers. I try to man up whenever I put it on so as not to belittle his suffering. :50: There are straps underneath it to fasten a tarp, blanket or foam pad. I generally just roll the blanket up in the tarp and call it a day. Works just fine.

    Edit:
    So, here are some historical pointers on the ruck.

    [​IMG]
    In case you wondered why the soldiers carried such a stout shovel, well this is the reason right here. Bomb shelter G.I. style. These were in fashion when I was in too, hence our giant, all steel, field shovel we had to tote around. And the pick axes, iron bars and axes on every damn vehicle.

    [​IMG]
    Here the pack is in use in some staged photo. Notice the axe on the belt loop on the guy holding the grenade.

    [​IMG]
    I have no idea if it shovs up in the picture, but the hooks on the shoulder straps (visible on both soldiers) are hooked into the ammunition bandoleer, making the ruck an kind of a combat LBS. The metal hooks on the lumbar support of the frame did the same and were also used for other stuff.

    I just remembered the awesome but also horrible foot cloth they used in the toe jam containers they called boots back then. On the other hand those boots had steel caps on the soles and make the modern ones look like girlie slippers.

    Go to sign off now but will add some amusing anecdotes about the frame of this backpack later on.
     
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2011
  41. briarbrow

    briarbrow Banned Member Banned

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    Your doing a great job sealegs. I give you a 5. rating. Fun reading
     
  42. Sgt. Mac

    Sgt. Mac Elder Staff Member Administrator Supporter Bushclass I Bushclass II Bushclass Instructor

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    Bro you and this thread Rock!!! Well done :35:
     
  43. Bill510c

    Bill510c Scout

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    Thoroughly enjoying this thread. Thank you for putting in the time and effort to share this with us.
     
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  44. alannguyen

    alannguyen Supporter Supporter

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    thanks for the info
     
  45. cloudraker

    cloudraker Guide

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    Thoroughly enjoying this thread. Thanks Sealegs for answering my questions.
     
  46. Sealegs

    Sealegs Scout

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    Thanks and bring on any questions.

    I'll try to paint a mess kit in the near future, time, weather and wife permitting of course.

    Tomorrow, the LK-35 and LK-35 SJ. "A tale of broken backs and silent (manly) tears."

    Pfc: "Sir! Request permission to go see the shrink, Sir!"
    Sgt: "What in the [expletive] is your problem private?!"
    Pfc: "Sir! I'm insane, Sir!"
    Sgt: "That's [expletive] marvelous! That's a perfect arctic ranger right there! Permission denied, fall in private!"
     
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  47. Loosearrow

    Loosearrow Scout

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    Thank you for all the information provided. It has answered many questions about the military gear. Very well done. Regards
     
  48. Okbushcraft

    Okbushcraft Guide

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    Dude, this is not even fair. I don't get the gear whore desire much but if it has 3 crowns and is green, I get twitchy!
    Well, not exactly, I do have me a pair of butt ugly brown square toed boots dated 1968, they are some durable boots.
     
  49. Nerual the Mad

    Nerual the Mad Guide

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    Your pack breakdown explains my suffering when I wear the Swiss rubberized..
     
  50. Sealegs

    Sealegs Scout

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    Ryggsäck LK-35
    This is a golden oldie with hordes of people hating it. The frame has some particulary nasty characteristics in combat and most of the modding done was to mitigate these. Adopted and followed by a horrific packing plan that stretched the limits of human engineering and G.I. weight (when jumping up and down inside the actual ruck to compress the contents) this is true cold war glory.

    [​IMG]
    This is the pack as seen from the front, minus the foam pad that should be folded and packed under the straps holding down the lid. Sleeping bag/rain gear on top of the lid.

    [​IMG]
    Stock image of contents according to packing plan. There are some transitional inconsistencies with the original one but all in all that’s what you had to stuff in there.

    Use:
    The LK-35 is a 3 day combat pack, intended to be used with an additional bag that was kept in the rear with the gear, access to that bag would be set up for any down time involving sleep in an actual tent. In my experience you were lucky to see that bag, ever. You kept rubber boots and allot of other semi necessary stuff in the rear ech back. Meaning if it rains, it rains. So take calculated risks if you’re time travelling to experience life as a Swedish foot soldier in the 80’s.

    The Christmas tree packing with stuff hanging on the outside was common enough when you had to add radios, AT4’s, ammo and whatnot.

    [​IMG]
    The packing plan quickly let you know the unrealistic expectations on this 35ltr ruck, never the less it is possible, the alternative being a few laps around the compound to drive home the importance of proper packing.

    [​IMG]
    The load bearing system leaves allot to be desired, that lot is present in the other model that will be presented after this one. Suffice it to say that the lack of belt allows it to slide up your back when you dive for cover, hitting you like a freight train in the back of the helmet and driving your face down into the snow/gravel/mud for great laughs and joy.

    It will also dig into your lower back if you pack it too heavy and are too long. Causing you blisters in the lumbar region and much sadness. Up to about 35lbs is OK with this pack, above that is very much not funny with an unmodified LBS.
    Allot of people do modifications to the LBS and just switch the straps and add a belt from some other ruck that they don’t use. If you can do it on the cheap I highly recommend it, otherwise there is the time honored tradition involving tape and foam mats, reinforcing the shoulder straps, adding a chest strap and taking a combat belt and adding foam cushioning to it and just attaching it however you can.

    Example of a novel way to get the weight down. (Wooden DIY frame)
    http://www.bushcraftuk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=63052&page=1

    Here you can find some pictures of how the grenade rifle was attached to the frame, scroll down a ways.
    http://forum.soldf.com/index.php?/topic/42769-hur-man-faester-grg-paa-mes/


    [​IMG]
    The medics version, the LK-35 SJ, is the same frame with a different sack and a load bearing belt. Because we can’t have medics with back problems now can we. :D The space under the sack is meant to house the trauma cover that they had to lug around.


    [​IMG]
    You can see the load bearing belt, quite comfortable when compared to not having one.

    [​IMG]
    This is still not everything a medic would have to lug around on his ruck in the winter. Add a foam pad and possibly a sleeping bag and a lone wolf tarp. Then we’re talking cheap brass not shellinf out for a larger ruck. 3 day assault pack, packed according to the manual. Carry on troops!

    [​IMG]
    All of the rucks of the Swedish army, apart from some fringe exceptions, have had this metal cord lock at least since the LK series. It’s indestructible and quite possibly, if swung on a cord, the deadliest item in the arsenal. It also weighs a bit more than say, tying a knot.

    [​IMG]
    The 35SJ was made in Israel by a company I have both forgotten the name of and can’t quite make out on the stamp. The combat harness (304K) was also made by a lowest bidder with manufacturing in Israel.

    [​IMG]
    The back is attached to the frame in four places, the belts and straps are attached separately, a huge win in my book. All the different little bars and spaces in the frame are for different carry options and ease of fastening alternative junk to it.

    [​IMG]
    The 35SJ sack is just as large but extends to the sides and back to free up the lower part of the frame.

    In case I didn’t mention it, the frame is made out of steel pipes and this makes the normal LK35 pack weigh in at more than you want it to. (Exact weight to come when I’ve busted out mah scale.)

    I will add some amusing anecdotes and some modification tips later on. I also added some pictures and stuff to the m/39 post. Sorry if this feels half finished so far, it is! :50:
     

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