Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Lack of Soviet Personal equipment...how accurate?

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Lack of Soviet Personal equipment...how accurate?

    Soviet ground combat personnel in WWII pictures are almost never seen with a rucksack, occassionally have only a bedroll, and sometimes carry nothing but their rifle and great coat. Yes, I know some of these are propoganda shots, some are genuine shots of the desperate times ("you will have a rifle soon. Pick up one when the man in front of you falls.") Aside from those situations, what sort of load did a Soviet soldier in an infantry unit carry?
    "Gentlemen, you can't fight in here! This is the War Room!"

  • #2
    Ok here is the official RKKA infantry kit, from 1936 onward:
    (I did a fast translation of http://www.rkka.ru/uniform/terms/ranez_36.htm)

    1. Belt with shoulder straps.
    2. Ammo pouches
    3. Extra ammo pouch
    4. Hand grenade holder/pouch
    5. Bayonet sheath
    6. Canteen with belt strap and cover
    7. Strap and cover for entrenching tool (or axe)
    8. Backpack with straps for greatcoat and food pot
    9. Backpack accessories:
    - sack for rations
    - sack for rifle cleaning tools
    - sack for mechanical tools
    - sack for hygene instruments (which incl. soapbox, toothbrush case, tooth-cleaning powder tin)
    10. food pot with cover
    11. mug
    12. spoon
    13. tent-raincoat with 4 pegs and rope


    Also, gasmask with gasmask bag.
    http://www.rkka.ru/uniform/items/bn.jpg
    Last edited by Emil_G; 24 Jan 08, 10:25.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by F4UCorsair View Post
      Soviet ground combat personnel in WWII pictures are almost never seen with a rucksack, occassionally have only a bedroll, and sometimes carry nothing but their rifle and great coat. Yes, I know some of these are propoganda shots, some are genuine shots of the desperate times ("you will have a rifle soon. Pick up one when the man in front of you falls.") Aside from those situations, what sort of load did a Soviet soldier in an infantry unit carry?

      Ahem..let's not get history lessons from Enemy at the Gates(the film that is, the book was fine for its time). Emil has provided an excellent list there, but let me also state that a lot of photographs are taken when the troops were in combat, at which time they probably dropped their packs just like most soldiers would. Also their rucksack, if you could even call it that, was noticeably smaller than most of the time.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Cmde.Slavyanski View Post
        Ahem..let's not get history lessons from Enemy at the Gates(the film that is, the book was fine for its time). .
        Yes, of course, you are right. That was kind of added for emphasis of the extreme...real or mythical. (Ironically, Enemy at the Gates is amongst the first adult level books I recall reading. There just wasn't much in the local public library about the Eastern Front at that time.)
        Now, how was this equipment supplemented in cold weather? I recall reading (don't recall source so can't vouch for authenticity) that food was frequently scrounged. It does not seem possible to meet the needs (food, cold weather gear) of such a large army by local means. Perhaps one fo the great triumphs of the war was a logisitics system of which we hear almost nothing?
        "Gentlemen, you can't fight in here! This is the War Room!"

        Comment


        • #5
          During the disastrous early period, a good logistical system was the main thing NOT there and it was what was causing people not to have enough rifles, food, what ever.

          All this equipment remained the same in cold weather. However, there was a different backpack system introduced in 1939:
          http://www.rkka.ru/uniform/terms/ranez_39.htm
          (as opposed to the 1936 one I posted, both continued to be used).

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Cmde.Slavyanski View Post
            Ahem..let's not get history lessons from Enemy at the Gates(the film that is, the book was fine for its time).
            Actually I read that the movie was actually based on a book called Rattenkrieg, not Enemy At the Gates


            Here's a link to the book, sound smuch more like the movie War of the Rats
            And it's over the mountain and over the Main,
            Through Gibralter, to France and Spain.
            Pit a feather tae your bonnet, and a kilt aboon your knee,
            Enlist my bonnie laddie and come awa with me.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Tankboy View Post
              Actually I read that the movie was actually based on a book called Rattenkrieg, not Enemy At the Gates


              Here's a link to the book, sound smuch more like the movie War of the Rats
              Yeah, someone pointed that out and I noticed it too, which means that the author of that book needs to be kicked in the balls just like the director Annaud, because he is using the names of real people and twisting their lives in unimaginable ways.

              I think that author and Annaud need to do some research at THIS SITE.

              Heh heh heh...(don't click on the link, it is made of EPIC FAIL)

              Comment


              • #8
                No need to carry a backpack when under fire. When everybody goes prone and you're the only one with a backpack you will be the one who gets shot by sinper fire. When a soldier was engaged in combat most of those items (backpack and all) would be left behind in a safe place. Also, absolutely no backpacks were recommended in house-to-house fighting. Chuikov's at Stalingrad actually issued orders pertaining to no backpacks when entering homes. The soldiers were told to carry only a weapon and as many grenades as they could stuff in their pockets. A soldier in street combat is more than anything an athlete and has to be dressed appropriately.

                When you see Russian soldiers on the march in a column formation most often you'll see they've got their kit like everybody else.
                Last edited by MonsterZero; 26 Jan 08, 01:12.

                "Artillery adds dignity to what would otherwise be a ugly brawl."
                --Frederick II, King of Prussia

                Comment


                • #9
                  What I'm not seeing, and maybe Emil has a decent picture of this, is the ammo pouches. As Monster Z says, you dump the ruck when in contact (I was airborne, so the ruck had to be with you. No vehicles to bring up spare ammo, food, water). We overloaded our load bearing equipment (LBE) with essentials (ammo, ammo, ammo, water, and a knife) so that that survival was possible when the ruck got cut away. Today the rage seems to be assault vests. (Not sure I like them. With an LBE you can leave the belt buckle unhooked and get that much closer to mother Earth.) It is probably right there in front of me in the pictures, but I don't see ammunition pouches. There seems to be a pouch with an over-the-shoulder strap in a considerable number of pictures. Maybe?
                  "Gentlemen, you can't fight in here! This is the War Room!"

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Haha are you serious dude? Sorry, OK, here are the two most common rifle ammo pouches of the Red Army:

                    The old "tsarist" type:



                    The later, more common type:




                    And here are the SMG ammo pouches:

                    For round PPSH clip:


                    Banana-clip PPSH:



                    And as a bonus, here is an example of a drum for the DP LMG:
                    http://www.rkka.ru/uniform/files/arm20.htm

                    Finally here is period picture you can clearly see the ammo pouches on all the men standing, the one in the far right having the "tsarist" ones, while the others the other type. The guy in the far left also has a grenade pouch by his right hand.
                    Last edited by Emil_G; 27 Feb 08, 02:14.

                    Comment


                    • #11


                      Can you tell what branch of service this guy is in? I can't make out the insignia.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Excellent pictures. Always wondered how the round PPsH magazine was handled. The other ammo pouches look as would have expected. Again, there are a lot of pictures out there where the troops seem to lack even this bare bones equipment. Probably just looking at too many propoganda pictures where some film crew felt the pouches were "clumsy looking".
                        Last edited by F4UCorsair; 26 Jan 08, 17:36. Reason: Small addition
                        "Gentlemen, you can't fight in here! This is the War Room!"

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by F4UCorsair View Post
                          Excellent pictures. Always wondered how the round PPsH magazine was handled. The other ammo pouches look as would have expected. Again, there are a lot of pictures out there where the troops seem to lack even this bare bones equipment. Probably just looking at too many propoganda pictures where some film crew felt the pouches were "clumsy looking".
                          There was a round pouch on the belt. I assume spares could be carried in the rucksack, emptied of other contents during combat.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Cmde.Slavyanski View Post


                            Can you tell what branch of service this guy is in? I can't make out the insignia.
                            He is in the VVS! Blue tabs are for air! And I think you can make out the little "wings" in the pin on his tabs.

                            Corsair: These pouches can be worn on the back as well, I have some pictures in books where you can see soldiers wearing them on the back. Also, if a unit is attacking, I think it is possible that the only ammo a guy would need is what's already in his weapon, esp. an SMG. Clips could also be stored in pockets of greatcoats.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Emil_G View Post
                              Also, if a unit is attacking, I think it is possible that the only ammo a guy would need is what's already in his weapon, esp. an SMG. Clips could also be stored in pockets of greatcoats.
                              Thanks for anticipating my question. I was thinking about the option of putting clips in the greatcoat.
                              "Gentlemen, you can't fight in here! This is the War Room!"

                              Comment

                              Latest Topics

                              Collapse

                              Working...
                              X