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Gas Sheet Bag
Gas Sheet Bag

: $24.99

Product Description

Unissued, original bags. Not only were these unissued....they were unfinished. We had to install the snaps. The bags are in excellent, serviceable condition.

Many of them are marked "Rate 44". No idea if "Rate" is the company that made them or...? These bags were used to hold the gas sheet which was simply a piece of impregnated fabric or thin rubber designed to be thrown over the soldier to protect him from chemical attack. Sort of like a body condom. (Some types of gas are absorbed through the skin, not simply inhaled.) Original gas sheets themselves are very rare and relatively expensive today. Most are fossilized and nearly impossible to unfold. Although early in the War the bag was worn on the chest (via the gas mask can strap), the soldiers soon began wearing them on the canister. One or two equipment straps were used to hold them on. ("Tornister" or Mess Tin straps will work for this purpose. There is no "correct" one.)

Although Gas Sheet Bags are one of the less "sexy" pieces of field gear, for those who actually like to go to the field these are very handy. How so? It acts as a pad to silence the clanking of the canister hitting against the bayonet handle and/ or mess tin. In lieu of a real gas sheet, I use a dishrag to fill the bag and keep the canister quiet. Due to the mass confusion this highly complex task has caused...we have a pretty picture to help illustrate the concept.