Personalized B-1 cap

Discussion in 'Related Gear' started by Cocker, Jun 6, 2016.

  1. Cocker

    Cocker Member

    Messages:
    46
    Hello folks,

    I've been looking around for a B-1 cap recently, and went with WW2Impressions'. Also been searching for pictures of personalized ones, could only find 2. Does any of you have examples of WW2 "custom" B-1?
     
  2. dmar836

    dmar836 Active Member

    Messages:
    2,625
    Location:
    Kansas, USA
    Last one I saw was at the EAA museum at Oshkosh. It may have been theater made - can't remember. I took some pics through a case but glare and low light made them all but useless. Appears most custom ones I've seen were CBI. I think I've seen a couple pics with the Chinese star emblem?
    Dave
     
  3. dmar836

    dmar836 Active Member

    Messages:
    2,625
    Location:
    Kansas, USA
    Here's a pic or two of the CBI cap. The stripe is a shadow. Appears to be the correct material - even the bill - so likely from a flight suit. The O2 snaps were a common mod. I have a repro with snaps on it.

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  4. Cocker

    Cocker Member

    Messages:
    46
    Thank you, Dave. Looking great! I'll think about the oxygen tab mods.

    Found out another CBI B-1 in the pictures I took last year at Robbins AFB Museum:

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    They had some great looking gear on display.
     
  5. dmar836

    dmar836 Active Member

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    2,625
    Location:
    Kansas, USA
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    I have added Line 24 snaps to a few of my caps. The orange one went to another member. The "field-made" type cap is still here. I have no extra O2 hooks but I would gladly add some snaps in the proper spacing to your cap, gratis, if you would like, with or without reinforcement tape. You could add a hook if you later want to or find one. Would give me a chance to see another repro. I'm proud to say I found one in the pile that shocked me as an original but then saw it labeled as one I made (I don't allow repros in the war room and visa versa). It's the little things in life!
    Dave
    Kansas City
     
  6. Cocker

    Cocker Member

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    46
    Dave, I just realized youre the guy behind the USAAF flight cap blog ;-)

    If I understand correctly, all of these modified caps for the O2 masks have buttons on the left side, and the hook on the right, or do some of them have snaps on both sides?

    Anyway, would surely love to have you mod my cap in this way, but I'll have to see how much shipping cost from Belgium to the US this would be. Have to say, shipping from WW2Imp to Belgium will be almost free, as I had it delivered to our company office in JFK, and it will be sent to me on one of our cargo flight this week-end!

    By the way, are you doing custom caps on request?
     
  7. dmar836

    dmar836 Active Member

    Messages:
    2,625
    Location:
    Kansas, USA
    Thanks, Cocker. I haven't been doing any as of late. Restoring an airplane or two takes most of my time. Let me know on the snaps. I'll send it wherever and by whatever means you decide. I'm sure the tools and snaps are available closer to home as well but I'd be glad to help.
    The snaps I have seen are most always the male snaps. The O2 straps, hooks, etc. were fitted with the female side of the snap. Adjusting a mask to fit each flight would have been a major pain so having the straps set ready to snap on and wear was a logical move. IMO, allowing the mask to remain and hang to one side would have been uncomfortable and likely would have pulled your cap off(tried it). As you've seen, it was done to flight helmets as well, some to spec. and some to those that didn't have factory snaps(A-8s, A-9s, some fleece). Without headgear/snaps another option would have been using a "juliet strap" which would have been inconvenient with any billed cap. Back then, depending on the C.O., one always had on some type of cap!
    Dave
     
  8. Cocker

    Cocker Member

    Messages:
    46
    Great explanation here, thanks Dave!

    I'll tell you what, I may go to Atlanta for one week in the very next future, for the work. Decision will be taken tomorrow or the day after. Might be a tad easier to get the hands on your snaps, so to speak.

    BTW, what warbirds are you working on?
     
  9. dmar836

    dmar836 Active Member

    Messages:
    2,625
    Location:
    Kansas, USA
    LOL. No warbirds here(unfortunately....though there are some around if I wanted to donate time). Restoring a Wittman Vee racer and building a Midget Mustang - both small racing homebuilts. We have a couple of certified planes that keep me busy as well.
    Dave
     
  10. dujardin

    dujardin Active Member

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    5,169
    Location:
    Belgium
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  11. Cocker

    Cocker Member

    Messages:
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    Dujardin, that's some amazing mod. Do you have a detailed pic of what's written inside the cap?

    Dave, the Wittman looks like an great little plane. Must certainly be helluva fun to fly! BTW, got the word that the trip to Atlanta is a no-go, so we'll stay in touch regarding the press studs.
     
    dmar836 likes this.
  12. dujardin

    dujardin Active Member

    Messages:
    5,169
    Location:
    Belgium
    hellooooo

    alas not, those the only (4) photos i have
    i may send you the photo by mail if you give me your adress by pm - maybe you can zoom in
     
  13. dmar836

    dmar836 Active Member

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    2,625
    Location:
    Kansas, USA
    Those show up now and then. Thought of making one with old NOS lenses. Most likely hunting/sporting related rather than military. Still a keeper IMO.
    Dave
     
  14. TankBuster

    TankBuster Active Member

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    2,866
    Location:
    Midwest
    Nice caps guys! Here's a cool flight cap I have that's part of a group to a B-25 guy.

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  15. TankBuster

    TankBuster Active Member

    Messages:
    2,866
    Location:
    Midwest
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    Grant likes this.
  16. Cocker

    Cocker Member

    Messages:
    46
    Nice one, Jeff!

    Just received my repro from WW2Impressions. Cannot comment on the accuracy, as I've never had a real one in my hands, but the quality is here. From what I gather, most of the B-1 caps had a hard brim and leather sweatband. This one has a cloth sweatband, and a flexible brim. That's good enough for me as I was looking more for a daily wearer, I prefer to wrap the visor rather than have a full straight one. Only minor drawback, for me, is that the rear of the cap is riding a bit too high.

    Here are a couple pictures atop my Aero A-2:

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  17. ausreenactor

    ausreenactor Active Member

    Messages:
    3,473
    Location:
    Mildura, heart of the Mallee.
    Get a haircut Sir!! Great hat...great thread...
     
  18. dmar836

    dmar836 Active Member

    Messages:
    2,625
    Location:
    Kansas, USA
    Awesome, Jeff. I'll save those pics for reference if that's okay.
    Cocker, many see that rear "peak" of the B-1 as an issue but it is accurate, I assure you. I have seen repros that tone that down but every fresh original has it. I try not to compare them to other, better fitting caps. These were also worn differently than we wear caps today. Also, there are some head shapes that just don't work with them look-wise. I was disappointed when one of our esteemed members tried one on. Just didn't look right to me and I suspect he sees it as made incorrectly. Also not the most comfortable(especially with the original stiff brim). I gifted one of my best replicas to a local friend who seldom wears caps - didn't look too comfortable on him either. He's never worn it that I I've seen. I wear a B-1 almost daily but I may look stupid. Never thought much about that part of it. They get more comfortable after lots of wear.
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  19. TankBuster

    TankBuster Active Member

    Messages:
    2,866
    Location:
    Midwest
    No problem Dave! Glad you all enjoyed seeing it. As mentioned, great thread with some great info/photos of these caps.
     
  20. Cocker

    Cocker Member

    Messages:
    46
    Great post again, Dave!

    Well, yeah, as you said, this is not the style of caps we're used to wear, and they're fitting nowhere near the danged trucker caps we see everywhere. This being said, I do love how the cap's fitting. I've been wearing it on and off since I received it, and it's a great match with a pair of cargo trousers and the A-2 jacket. The soft brim makes it easy to wear, and it's pretty lightweight. All in all, a great daily wearer, just what I wanted!
     

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