Original WW2 RCAF Observer Pattern Parachute Harness
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About this item
An original Canadian made Observer Type parachute harness dating from the Second World War.
This pattern of parachute harness was used throughout the Second World War by the Royal Air Force as well as the Royal Canadian Air Force and even the United States Army Air Force. This example was made in Canada during WW2 and features the USAAF Group 2 'Yellow group' tabs to the shoulder straps which may suggest it was used by the Americans.
The harness is made from a white coloured webbing which does not feature the central fleck encountered on British made examples. It features mostly chromium plated metal hardware throughout including the large 'ski hooks' fitted to the front to which the parachute itself is attached. Extra dual anchorage rings have been fitted to the rear which allow a dinghy pack to be attached. These are made from British pattern webbing with the central fleck which would suggest these were added whilst in service in Great Britain. The Quick Release Box, or 'QRB', features the desirable round pattern push panel to the front as used on British and Canadian parachutes during the early war period and throughout the rest of the war. This is marked 'Turn to Unlock' and 'Press to release' as is usually encountered.
The back pad is an original Canadian made example and has the typical yellow hue often seen on Canadian made canvas from WW2. It fastens to the harness via a serious of tabs which have press studs and there is clear shadowing on the back pad from sun fading which suggests that the pad has been fitted to the harness for many years. This is illustrated in picture 9. A previous owner has also marked his initials to the pad which reads 'SPR'.
A very nice original example which is in good condition and has the desirable round pattern QRB.