Original "Bereitschaftsbüchse 16" gas mask can with original carrying straps and gas mask. Original field grey factory paint. Cloth straps. Great condition. Comes with re-enactor visor hat, brown leather belt (130 cm) and goggles.
Rahmenmaske (known among collectors as Gas mask M1916)
DATE OF INTRODUCTION
Spring 1916 (A.O.K.6, St.O.Gas n.38348/3549 3.17, 24.3.1917)
Made of rubberised cloth to prevent gas absorption, the Rahmenmaske (framed gas mask) was a progression from the previous Linienmaske (line gas mask) but with major improvements. The first ones manufactured had the same thin rubberised cloth as Linienmasken, but shortly thereafter it was made thicker to be more resistant against gas penetration and accidental damage. The first masks manufactured used the same elastic bands to support it on the soldier's head, but in Autumn 1916 the mask was fitted with the new spring-cloth covered straps (called Spiralbänder), that had an adjunctive “Y” elastic strap on the front.
Rahmenmasken were fitted with 11-11 filter type and starting summer 1917, the new 11-C-11 series filters, both filters with three layers (Dreischichteneinsatz).
According to the War Ministry circular from January 1917 (KM, Chem.Abt.n.310/ 1.17, 12.1.1917), the manufacturers were Auergesellschaft, Berlin; Hanseatische Apparatebaugesellschaft, Kiel; Drägerwerk, Lübeck; K. (unknown); C. (unknown).
A great variety of carrying cans were used to store the Rahmenmasken. The first carrying cans were made by welding together the separate tins used for the Linienmasken, and only in March 1916, a War Ministry circular (KM n.5200/ 3.16) introduced the Bereitschaftbuechse (or single container ready for use), known among collectors as Bereitschaftbuechse 1916.
METHOD OF WEARING
Every soldier and officer at the front had to carry his gas mask with him. The carrying can was usually hung from the neck and put on the breast or on the side. When the gas alarm was given, he must quickly open the can, extract the gas mask and fit it to the wearer’s head. Filters could be easily changed by unscrewing the first and screwing on the new one. After use, the mask had to be cleaned, checked if damaged or not, and put completely dry inside the carrying can.
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