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Early ZB and THW items

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    #61
    The suspenders for these pants. They are separate from the pants and button on both front and back. There is a section of elastic in the centre of the suspenders.
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      #62
      The label from the pants.
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        #63
        The next type issued is simplified in a number of areas. The tunic is made of lighter material and the design look like the BW moleskin tunics. The meterial seems to be much the same as that used in the BW tunics.
        It still has the double layer of shoulder protection but this no longer buttons over pockets. It is now sewn in one place close to the arm. The breast pockets are lower on the jacket and have flaps covering the opening. The hip pockets have been omitted. There are not buttons under the collar for a hood. The second buttoned "storm flap" has been omitted.
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        Last edited by Gordon Craig; 03-17-2010, 10:59 PM.

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          #64
          The trouaser have also been simplified. The suspenders are now sewn to the pants at the rear. The fasten to the bib front of the pants with metal devices similar to those found on farmers overalls in North America.
          There is a large patch pocket on the leg to take the place of the hip pockets removed from the jacket.
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            #65
            A closer look at the suspenders and the fastening mechanism.
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              #66
              The label in these pants.
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                #67
                The thirs type jacket has really been simplified. Hip pockets are back but none of the pockets have flaps covering the openings. The material is of a much lighter material than the second type jacket. I am assuming this jacket came with a similarly simplified pair of pants but the jacket came with the 1963 type pants so I do not know what this third type of pants looks like.
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                  #68
                  The label in this jacket.
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                    #69
                    Great pictures! So the 2nd gray type's cloth feels more like moleskin than the smooth (but thick) cloth of the 1st gray type?

                    I think the 3rd gray type is an Arbeitsdienstanzug. I say this because three open topped jacket pockets is a common trait for work uniforms in many nations. Which makes sense since the work uniforms were designed to be cheaper than the field uniforms.

                    Another bit of evidence that the production date is identical to the 2nd gray type. Having the two serving alongside each other in the field is less likely than a field and a work uniform.

                    Thanks for posting the pics! I'm now very curious to see what is used currently by the surviving disaster relief agencies.

                    Steve

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                      #70
                      I had posted this jacket before, but thought that it might belong in this thread. It's a '62 dated ZB jacket that had its ZB arm patch removed and replaced with a Malteser Hilfsdienst patch.




                      I don't know enough about MHD to tell whether this conversion is period-performed or contemporary. Indeed, I wonder what was the working relationship, if any, between ZB (a government agency) and MHD (an NGO), given the overlap in their mandated missions in the event of a disaster. Surely there must have been some form of coordination between the two? Was the relationship so close that MHD volunteers were actually allowed to wear ZB uniforms? Or is this a case of MHD recycling obsolescent ZB clothing, after ZB switched over to the newer grey uniforms?

                      These jackets are very tight-fitting in the shoulder/armpit area (for an average American build), exacerbated to some degree by the buttoned-down yoke arrangement (undoing the button next to the armpit offers some relief, especially if the wearer wishes to perform any kind of physically demanding activity using his arms). For this reason, I think that over-engineered though they may be, and rather smart-looking, in an old-fashioned sort of way, these are nevertheless neither practical nor particularly comfortable clothes to work in. So Steve may be onto something with his "Arbeitsdienstanzug" theory...

                      Gene T

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                        #71
                        Nice one! Looks like the shoulder "cape" and elbow material is different. Is that true? Thinner and perhaps treated to be water repellant? My 1959 example has the same material for everything. Same with my 1963 gray example.

                        The purpose of a work uniform (or coveralls) is to have something that can be used out of sight of the public for duties that are likely to cause the uniform to be damaged or otherwise blighted. It is also usually made to be far cheaper to replace since it's likely to have a short lifespan. The ZB/THW uniforms we've been discussing here so far would last a lot longer if they were in the closet while out painting rocks and working in the motor pool.

                        Not all work uniforms are created equal, of course. The early Bundeswehr work uniform was smart looking and fairly complex. Definitely a LOT cheaper to make than the camouflage uniform, but not a throw away uniform like some I've seen.

                        I don't know when work uniforms fell out of favor with militaries, but they are quite rare these days. I myself actually sent several hundred US Woodland BDUs to a Belgian friend's Para/Commando unit for use as work uniforms because their issued uniforms were super expensive and they had to pay to replace them. A BDU set for $12 (including shipping to Belgium) was much cheaper than the nearly $100 a soldier would have to cough up for damaging his issue kit! Last one I can think of was fielded by the Czech Republic.

                        Oh, and the open three pocket design is also something I've seen in use with Polish fire brigades and Ukrainian subway private security.

                        Steve

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                          #72
                          Was the relationship so close that MHD volunteers were actually allowed to wear ZB uniforms?
                          Yes. Even before the LSHD was disbanded the different civilian medical help organisation (Malteser, Johanniter, DRK, ASB) served for the Zivilschutz, and they provided a lot of trained men for the LSHD. So they were equipped with LSHD-uniforms. Same for the fire service. A lot of fire fighting volunteers (Freiwillige Feuerwehr) served in the LS-Feuerlöschbereitschaften. So you could see Malteser uniforms wihtin the LSHD and LSHD-uniforms within Malteser units (for example). After 1968, when the LSHD was disbanded, the single Fachdienste (special branches, like medical, recovery etc) were handed over to the different organisations. Same with the uniforms, tools etc.

                          In my hometown a complete Bergebereitschaft (recovery unit) were handed over to the THW, with all men, vehicles and uniforms. First they did was to repaint the vehicles in blue.

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                            #73
                            Steve,

                            I agree that the last jacket that I posted is probably a work suit and more than likely for summer use as the other two suits would be good to wear in winter but much too heavy for summer wear.
                            As for the cloth in the second jacket, yes it is a lighter weight material than the first type of grey uniforms used and very close to moleskin in feel.
                            hoover has already answered the question about how closely the THW/ZB/ZS worked with NGO. I Have some pictures of them currently working together and as soon as I find them I'll post them!

                            Regards,

                            Gordon

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                              #74
                              I have found some of my fotos. Here goes for a posted labeled "COOPERATION". It shows feuerwehr, DRK and THW working together.
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                                #75
                                Another foto showing current THW work dress, with the black beret, and the blue blazer in wear.
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