The Rigger's Shop
By WWII Impressions, Inc.


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This page was last updated:

March 17, 2014

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These are items that were specifically used by airborne and special operation units in the conduct of their missions.  Some of the items shown are standard contract produced equipment and some items are made in the WWII US Army Airborne "Rigger-Made" styling.  In this line we brought back to life some of the items crafted by the parachute maintenance company riggers in the US Army and Marine Corps Airborne units during WWII.  During their time these items were made because the usual channels of military supply did not accommodate the ingeniousness and creativity of the ideas brought about by necessity during military operations.  Riggers in the theater of operations had access to sewing machines and materials to fabricate just about anything to fill the needs of fighting men during their airborne operations that the army did not foresee during the buildup to WWII. 

Most of the products listed below are made on a "limited production" basis.  This means that the quantities are limited and there is no certainty as to whether items that are sold out will be restocked.  Furthermore, we invite anyone with a good idea for a rigger made item to contact us and make a suggestion.

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Select the green text from the table to jump to the item listed

 

Container, Aerial delivery, A-5 Scabbard, Carbine, M1A1, Parachutist's, Rigger modified
Pouch, Clip, Rifle and Pouch, Clip, Sub-Machine Gun Pockets, Cargo, 82nd/101st Abn style
Container, Individual, Aerial delivery, Rifle, 1st pattern, (Griswold) Pockets, Cargo,  17th Abn style

 

Container, Individual, Aerial delivery, Rifle, 2nd pattern (Griswold)  
   

Select from the images above for a larger image.

Assembly, Parachute, Canopy, Camouflage, 28'

This is the standard model parachute canopy that was used for dropping troopers into combat.  This parachute has a nominal diameter of 28' and consists of 28 panels.  Our canopies were made with nylon parachute fabric in the NON-rip-stop construction and printed using our authentic camouflage pattern in authentic color shades for parachutes.  Main panel seams are sewn using 4 chain stitch construction.  All panel cross seams are sewn with OD nylon thread in the authentic double chain stitch construction.  The apex and lateral band are reinforced with nylon webbing added strength.  Suspension lines are custom made in OD colored cotton shell with nylon core.  The suspension lines reinforced with nylon "Y" tapes along the lateral band according to original canopies.  Suspension lines terminate with a cut end. 

Please note that these canopies are made for Static Display Purposes only.  These are not to be used for actual jumping purposes, but they look and feel every bit like the real thing.  Historically, these canopies were packed inside the back pack of the T-5 troop type parachute harness.

Price each $1,600.00 Each.

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Select from the images above for a larger image.

Parachute, Cargo, G-1

This is the standard model parachute canopy that was used extensively with WWII era Aerial Delivery containers of all types.  This parachute was a 24' diameter round canopy with tape style suspension lines in channel construction.  Historically the original canopies were initially made with 24 panels using a lightweight cotton sheeting fabric and then later on were made with rayon.  Our canopies were made with nylon parachute fabric in the NON-ripstop construction in various colors including light blue, red, yellow, or white.  Green canopies were made during WWII but we do not produce them.  All panel seams are sewn with white nylon thread in the authentic double chain stitch construction.  The apex and lateral band are reinforced with nylon webbing added strength.  Suspension lines are reinforced with "Y" tapes along the lateral band according to original canopies.  Suspension lines terminate with eye loops at the harness connection point.  Every canopy includes the "H" harness with snap hooks that connect the canopy to aerial delivery container.

Please note that these canopies are made for Static Display Purposes only.  These are not to be used for actual jumping purposes, but they look every bit like the real thing.  These canopies were packed inside the 42G4815 parachute deployment container such as we show listed below.

Price each $1,500.00 Each.

Canopy Color: Qty.

Container, Aerial delivery, A-5

 

The A-5 Aerial Delivery Container one of several types the WWII era US Army Air Force employed to re-supply military ground units by parachute.  This was also a primary method of delivery of bulky and heavy items used by the airborne divisions and other special operations units during their missions.  Other containers included the A-4, A-6, A-7, A-8, A-9, and A-10 systems.  We made our A-5 Container out of heavy duty cotton duck canvas dyed UV resistant OD.  Harness webbing is durable white cotton with black ticks duplicated from original specs..  Hardware is military spec cadmium plated.  Felting is 1/2" brown on the end caps and 1/4" gray on the center roll.  Bumper pad is filled with grey felt as in originals.  The parachute container (para-pack) is duplicated from originals complete with static line and hook, and plywood base and does not include a parachute.

The center roll is approximately 56" x 15'.  The end caps are 16" diameter by 16" deep.

This is a special order item that is produced on a limited basis.  Interested parties may place order hereon in order to be included in a waiting list for periodic production runs.  Production run announcements will be posted hereon.  A-5 components may also be available from time to time.

Price each $1200.00 for the 5 piece set.

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Container, Aerial delivery, A-6
 

The A-6 Aerial Delivery Container one of several types the WWII era US Army Air Force employed to re-supply military ground units by parachute.  This was also a primary method of delivery of bulky and heavy items used by the airborne divisions and other special operations units during their missions.  Other containers included the A-4, A-5, A-7, A-8, A-9, and A-10 systems.  The A-6 Container consisted of three main components which were the harness, canvas bag, and cardboard box liner.  Harness webbing is durable white cotton with black ticks duplicated from original specs..  Hardware is military spec cadmium plated.  Canvas is UV resistant dyed in OD #7.  Box liner is standard commercial duty in the correct dimensions of 12"x12"x30".  The bumper pad and 42G4815 parachute deployment container pictured above are sold separately.

Price each $ for the 3 piece set.

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Container, Parachute, Cargo, G-1
 

This 42G4815 parachute deployment container packed the G-1 24' Cargo Parachute for use with aerial delivery containers such as the A-5 (above) and others.  This container was widely used in all theaters of operation during WWII.  This parachute container was simply tied in place to the loaded aerial delivery containers.  This pack includes durable cotton duck canvas dyed in UV resistant light OD#3 or dark OD#7 (Your choice), high strength OD nylon tie tape, a rigid plywood base, and custom duplicated white parachute harness webbing with military spec cad plated snap hook.  This is a must for anyone with an aerial delivery container without a parachute pack. This item does not include the cargo parachute or H-harness which attaches to the V-rings on the end caps.

Price each $250.00 Each.

OD shade: Qty.

Pouch, Clip, Rifle and Pouch, Clip, Sub-Machine Gun
(WWII Imp Made)


Also known as "Rigger’s Pouches", these are shown in the US Army Air-corp. catalog. We offer them here because the riggers eventually made their own versions identical to the Air-Corp versions.  They also made others with modifications.  We offer three sizes to choose from. They are made of light olive drab cotton duck canvas with black finished lift-the-dot fasteners. Accept no other unauthentic imitations. The real rifle clip pouches were large enough to hold two hand grenades, and at least 4 or more M1 carbine magazines.

Prices
Small (for carbine, M1, and Springfield clips) $15.00 ea.

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Medium (for 20rd .45 cal clips) $20.00 ea.

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Large (for 30rd .45 cal clips) $25.00 ea.

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Container, Individual, Aerial delivery, Rifle, 1st pattern, (Rigger Modified)

These are the cases also known as the "Modified 1st pattern Griswold bag". Details include authentic snap and grommet closure, cloth loops and snap, interior construction, snap hook and webbing hanger, and military nomenclature ink stamp. Our cases are made slightly longer to fully and comfortably fit the disassembled M1 rifle inside without stretching the canvas. It includes a release cord to close the case. We used custom woven white harness webbing that includes the black ticking with a milspec harness snap hook.  The canvas used is the durable and authentic cotton duck in the Od#3 shade.  In this rigger-made version we take our standard model container and modify it with the addition of three lift-the-dot tabs to close the container instead of using the lacing closure.  This modification was most commonly made by the airborne units fighting in the Southern France campaign.

Price each $185.00

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Container, Individual, Aerial delivery, Rifle, 2nd pattern, (Rigger Modified)

These are also known as the "Modified 2nd pattern Griswold" bag. We start with our second model case and add the canvas and felt extension to accommodate the fully assembled M1 rifle. This case was characteristic of the troops of the 17th ABN Division jumping into Germany in 1945. We also include authentic
zipper and snap closure, interior construction, snap hook and webbing hanger, and military nomenclature ink stamp. The canvas used is the authentic cotton duck in the Od#3 shade, unlike other replica cases made from mildew treated vehicle canvas and obtrusive shades of Od#3.These are a truly quality made replica
. These are a must for serious parachutist enthusiasts.

Estimated Price each $190.00



 

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Container, Aerial Delivery, Sub-Machine Gun
 

This is the padded case that was used by paratroopers to jump the disassembled M1928 Thompson Sub-machine gun.  We make these authentically with durable UV resistant OD #3 cotton duck, OD #3 cotton webbing, milspec metal hardware including parachute harness snap hook, 1/4" thick felt padding, and custom made cotton parachute harness webbing. 

Price $150.00 each

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Scabbard, Carbine, M1A1, Parachutist's, Rigger modified
 

This is the carrier used by parachutists to hold the folding stock carbine but has been modified with the addition of a spare ammunition pouch and harness webbing. 
Price $110.00 each Rigger modified version

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Harness, Jumper, SCR 536 (Handi-Talki)
 

This is a special Rigger-Made harness for jumping with the hand-held radio.  The harness was snap-hooked to the lower V-ring of the leg straps.  It includes a tie down to secure the radio to the jumper's leg and a milspec parachute harness snap hook.

Price $70.00 each

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Harness, Jumper, SCR 300 (Walki-Talki)
 

This is a special Rigger-Made harness for jumping with the backpack radio.  The harness includes a cross-shoulder sling with an adjustable slide.  When worn and jumped, the leg straps of the T-5 parachute harness was looped through the lower band of the radio harness to keep the radio secure to the body.

Price $80.00 each

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Bag, Demolition (Rigger-made)
 

For Airborne (Parachute) Engineers there was a clear need for a container that could carry a sizeable load of demolition equipment in a single bag during parachute operations.  The rigger made demo bag was made for this reason since the Army Quartermaster Corps did not provide such a container for parachute troop engineers.  This bag has many pockets in which to store many different configurations of demolition supplies.  It has a large parachute harness snap hook which hooks onto the harness when jumping.  Leg ties keep the bag close to the leg.  We offer three styles in two colors of canvas.   We use either water repellant OD#7 for the dark demo bag and Army standard OD #3 cotton duck.  The OD #3 bag is available with either buckle closures or Lift-The-Dot snaps.

Note: These bags were made authentically with a comparatively short hanging strap and parachute harness snap hook.  This bag was not designed with a long cross-neck carrying strap as with the Ammunition Carrying Bag.  The strap is just long enough to allow for hanging from the parachute harness or for looping over a shoulder.

Price each $100.00 each, your choice of styles.

Canvas shade: Qty.

Kit, Drop, Parachute, Medical (Early Rigger-Made style)
 
 

Airborne (Parachute) Medical sections during the early stages of parachute troop development were initially supplied medical bags and pouches that were Army standard issue.  Many medics were issued the basic Medic Kit Pouch or M1936 Canvas Field Bags.  However, during training the airborne divisions saw a need for a larger container that could carry a much more sizeable load of medical supplies.  From our research there appears to be two designs of "Parachute Drop Kits" that parachute riggers made for the medics until the Army adopted and general issued an official design in late 1944/1945.  This drop kit appears to be the most common rigger-made design used by medics in the 1942-1943 time periods, and perhaps jumped by medics into operation Husky of the Sicily invasion in 1943.  Our kits are made from our quality materials including mil-spec parachute hardware.

Note: These bags were made authentically with comparatively short shoulder straps.  Perhaps because of the smaller typical size of WWII era paratroopers the original shoulder straps were not made very long.  However, it appears in period photographs that this kit must have been hung from the pelvis or abdomen instead of the shoulders and the reserve chest pack D-rings looped through the straps of this kit in order to keep it secure while jumping.

Price each $150.00

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For an additional fee a white circle and medical red cross can be painted on the front of this drop kit as depicted on original examples.
Price for painting $25.00

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Webbing, Harness, 1-3/4" natural (off-white)
 
 

We offer by the yard the cotton webbing used on harnesses and accoutrements made by parachute riggers.  This is the authentic off-white webbing with the black dashes along the center as pictured above. 

Price per yard $6.00

 Yards

Kit, Drop, Medical, Parachute (Late Rigger-Made)
 

Airborne (Parachute) Medical sections during WWII were initially supplied medical bags and pouches that were standard issue for the entire Army.  Many medics went into combat using the basic Medic Kit Pouch or M1936 Canvas Field Bags.  However, early in WWII the 82nd ABN division saw a need for a larger container that could carry a much more sizeable load of medical supplies.  From our research there appears to be two designs of "Medic Drop Kits" that parachute riggers made for the medics until the Army adopted and general issued an official design in 1944/1945.  This drop kit appears to be the most common rigger-made design jumped by medics beginning from the Normandy invasion until the GI Parachutist Medical Pouch was widely issued to parachute medics by the Army late in WWII.  The manner in which it was worn was to snap the hook to the V-ring on the leg of the parachute harned and tie down the kit to a leg using the two tie tapes.

Price each $100.00

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For an additional fee a white circle and medical red cross can be painted on the front of this drop kit as depicted on original examples.
Price for painting $25.00


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506th PIR A2 Leather Flight Jacket
 
Here we start with a high quality A2 Jacket.  The original specs. called for horsehide.  Today we are able to supply military grade horsehide and it's tough as nails. You'll notice the natural creases, folds and surface graining; these are natural conditions and not flaws in the processing of the garment.  Details include top entry pockets with snap close flap, knit cuffs and waistbands, brass zipper under front storm flap, snap down collar with hook and eye closure, leather epaulets, underarm grommets for ventilation and an authentic russet brown cotton lining.   If you want your jacket true to size order your regular size.  If you want a roomier fit, order one size larger. 

Nicknamed the Curahees after the Apache word "stand alone" and made famous by the book "Band of Brothers" by Steven Ambrose and its television movie adaptation. Cockpit USA is pleased to offer the finest replica of the original 1941 russet brown American horsehide A-2 jacket with the insignia of 506 PIR.They fought in World War II in Normandy, Holland and held the line at the Battle of the Bulge in December 1944 and captured Hitler's mountain hideout in 1945. After World War II, the 506th became an Air Assault regiment and in Vietnam five troopers from the 506th were awarded the Medal of Honor. In 2004 and 2005 the 506th was deployed to Habbaniya, Iraq and was then redeployed by early 2008 in Operation Enduring Freedom to Afghanistan. The Pair O'Dice insignia which has been displayed on the original 506th A-2's remains a symbol today that cannot be stopped in the cause of freedom. We present it with honor. (Insignia sewn through lining as were originals) Proudly made in the U.S.A.

This leather jacket is made by Cockpit USA. 

 

Sizes and Prices:
(36-46) $475.00

(48-52) $500.00

Please note that this garment is not a stock item.

 Please select according to your size:
 

Qty. Size:


Qty. Size:

Note:  Please be advised that this garment is available only as a special order.  We place orders with the factory around the 15th of each month.  Customers should receive this garment approximately two weeks thereafter.  In the event a return is made for any reason on this garment, all tags, labels, packaging, and other items included MUST ALSO BE RETURNED in the same condition as received by the customer.  Failure to do so my negate any credit or exchange.

501st PIR A2 Leather Flight Jacket
 
Here we start with a high quality A2 Jacket.  The original specs. called for horsehide.  Today we are able to supply military grade horsehide and it's tough as nails. You'll notice the natural creases, folds and surface graining; these are natural conditions and not flaws in the processing of the garment.  Details include top entry pockets with snap close flap, knit cuffs and waistbands, brass zipper under front storm flap, snap down collar with hook and eye closure, leather epaulets, underarm grommets for ventilation and an authentic russet brown cotton lining.   If you want your jacket true to size order your regular size.  If you want a roomier fit, order one size larger. 

Activated in November 1942 by Col. Howard "Jump" Johnson. Their Motto was "Geronimo" the fabled Apache chief and synonomous with paratroopers everywhere. They made their first jump into Normandy in early morning of June 5-6, 1944, 25 miles behind German lines at a point known as Hell's Highway. They would fight off seven German Divisions single-handedly durning the Battle of the Bulge Col. Johnson was fatally wounded still wearing the Airborne A-2 jacket. The 501st fought in Vietnam  and produced two Medal of Honor winners. They were deployed in Afghanistan in 2003. The story never ends. The jacket and its emblem represent the heroism of the men who served and continue to serve our country. Proudly made in the U.S.A.

 

This leather jacket is made by Cockpit USA. 

 

Sizes and Prices:
(36-46) $475.00

(48-52) $500.00

Please note that this garment is not a stock item.

 

Qty. Size:


Qty. Size:

Note:  Please be advised that this garment is available only as a special order.  We place orders with the factory around the 15th of each month.  Customers should receive this garment approximately two weeks thereafter.  In the event a return is made for any reason on this garment, all tags, labels, packaging, and other items included MUST ALSO BE RETURNED in the same condition as received by the customer.  Failure to do so my negate any credit or exchange.

Pockets, Cargo, 82nd/101st Abn style


These are made from the same type of creosote treated canvas as were the genuine late war airborne trousers. The set includes dark green canvas pockets, and canvas leg ties. The snaps are finished dull black. The pattern is the same sized pattern as used on the Parachute jumper trousers. 

These pockets were historically worn on the Trousers, Field, Cotton, OD or M43 pants by troopers of the 82nd and 101st Airborne Divisions as of the late summer of 1944.  The Army did not originally manufacture these trousers with large cargo pockets on the legs.  When the Army Quartermaster Headquarters in the European Theater of Operations received their issued allotment of M43 trousers they saw right away the need to modify them with the same style of large cargo pockets that were included with the earlier Parachute Jumper Trousers.  Troopers needed the large cargo pockets to hold the much needed additional supplies that each trooper was issued.  Someone in the Army chain of command therefore ordered that the M43 trousers be modified with the addition of large canvas cargo pockets identical in the early jumpsuit styling.  Though this was not specifically a rigger-made modification to the uniforms, the modification of the trousers with large cargo pocket was unique to strictly these airborne units.

Price $30.00 set

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Pockets, Cargo,  17th Abn style


These are made from the same type of creosote treated canvas as were the genuine late war airborne trousers. The set includes dark green canvas pockets, knee patches, and canvas leg ties. The snaps are finished dull black. These pockets are slight wider at the bottom and deeper than the above 82nd/101st Abn style.

These pockets were historically worn on the Trousers, Field, Cotton, OD or M43 pants specifically by troopers of the 17th Airborne Division in the ETO of WWII.  This unit was in the same position as the 82nd and 101st airborne divisions that the need to add large cargo pockets to the new M43 uniform was evident.  For some reason however the style of the pockets worn by this unit was slightly different in dimension and included large canvas patches to reinforce the knee areas of the trousers.  Though this was not specifically a rigger-made modification to the uniforms, the modification of the trousers with large cargo pocket was unique to strictly these airborne units.

Price $36.00 set

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