Item:
ONSV6162

Original U.S. Korean War Era P-1B Flight Helmet with Named VF 103 Carry Bag - Dated 1953

Regular price $495.00

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Item Description

Original Item: Only One Available. This is a very nice Korean War Issue P-1B Outer Flight Helmet, made by The Selby Shoe Co. in JUL 1953, as indicated on the paper label on the inside left of the helmet. The P-1A adopted in 1949 was basically an advanced version of the P-1, with introduction of a fixed chin-strap, addition of a nape-strap, attachment of the HS-38 headset with Nylon cord.

Further modification involved upgrading of the oxygen mask leather attachment tabs. Rubber framed goggles of the B-8 type were normally used with the The P-1A, which in some cases has been later retrofitted with P-3 style visor. The P-1A was utilized with A-13A and A-14 oxygen mask.

The P-1B flight helmet was identical in all respect to the P-1A. it was only created through a change in designation nomenclature. Both helmets were designed to be worn over a thin "inner helmet" which contained the communications equipment.

This example is in good used condition, with a very nice OD green paint job over the original white. It still has the manufacturers labels on both the rigging and the side of the helmet, though the paper side label is somewhat degraded. The chin strap is unfortunately torn away, but the rest of the rigging is intact, though worn. According to the liner this helmet is a size LARGE. The top of the helmet has a large U.S. AIR FORCE logo on the crown.

Interestingly, the bag that this helmet came to us in is not an Air Force bag, but in fact a bag named to a U.S. Navy Officer. There is a leather panel on the side with the USN aviator insignia embossed in gold, and below this is D B HALL / (L) CDR USN. It would seem that Hall received a promotion from Lt. Commander too full commander at some point, so the "L" is blacked out.

The ends of the zipper also have leather panels, which are marked VF 103 / SLUGGERS. This was an squadron first activated in 1952, during the Korean War. While they did not take part in the conflict, this helmet is definitely from that period.

A very nice Korean War Era helmet, ready to research and display!

More on the VF-103 Sluggers
VF-103 (the "Sluggers") were activated on 1 May 1952 and equipped with the FG-1D Corsair. The original VF-103 squadron insignia was a cloverleaf, and the aircraft tailfins had a horizontal yellow arrow outlined in black. Later a stylized aircraft darting through the leaf was added, along with a baseball bat. The baseball bat stemmed from an early skipper who often carried one with him.

The squadron was assigned to Carrier Air Group 10 (CVG-10) and made a short cruise aboard USS Lake Champlain in late 1952. Thereafter, VF-103 transitioned to the F9F-6 Cougar and adopted the nickname "Flying Cougars". CVG-10 went aboard USS Randolph for her shakedown cruise following her reactivation to the Caribbean between August and November 1953. The air group was then reassigned to USS Coral Sea and VF-103 was equipped with the F9F-8B. The carrier was deployed to the Mediterranean Sea between August 1956 and February 1957. This was the last time that VF-103 operated from a straight-deck carrier.

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