This relates to my interest in survival items. It turns out that a lot of pioneering took place in relation to One-Man Pneumatic Life Rafts (Ref 1). When I went looking for some of the items shown in the book I found them. Rather than put them on various web pages I'm making a new web page so they can be together.
Note that pilot's sat on a "pack" that contained the life raft and survival kit. They both changed over time but the size of the pack remained constant. 15" across front, 14" deep and 2" thick. That limits the size of what can be stored.
The Rigid Seat Survival Kit (RSSK) is the name associated with a one manlife raft used in relation to an aircraft.
Dye Marker Mk 124 Mod 0 2
Survival Radio or Beacon
Canned Water 10oz
Opener, Can, Hand
Nylon Cord, Type I, 50-Foot
The USAAF C-2 Life Raft may be the overall name for this. Note there is also a C-1 Life Vest.
The M6 Survival rifle (.410 & 22 Hornet) is 15" when folded.
The MX-138 is a larger RADAR corner reflector probably used on larger life rafts or life boats. The MX-137 is a smaller version that will fit a W.W.II pilot's seat pack.
Prior to the MX-137 one man life rafts used the CPT-2 Radar Beacon. It could be picked up by the SCR-521, SCR-729, AN/APN-12, Navy ASE, or British MK-11 Search Radar units.
The AN/CRC-7 VHF Search and Rescue Transmitter-Receiver was the next development. 140.58 MHz Tx and Rx. Tech Order AN 16-30 CRC-7-2.Photos
Front of box marked:
One Man Life Raft Reflector MX-137/A
The Vendo Co. Kansas City
Contract No. N288-27932
Date Insp ??/?? By ?
When Reordering Use Navy Stock No. R83-R-AN-MX-137/A
Or Army Stock No. 2Z7562-137
Back of box marked:
Do not discard this box after opening, retain
for use as water resisting container.
------------------ Pull this cord to open.
Pull handle on end cap to remove reflector.
DIRECTIONS Further instructions inside --- Read before detaching
reflector from end cap.
I expected this to be about 15" long but it's more like 28.5" collapsed and 66" extended. This is a 2 section mast.
There was a 6 section mast: telescopic aluminium mast (AAF FC-A-685 Mast For Type C-2 Life Raft) that would fit in the butt pack.
A.A.F. FC-A-685 Mast for Type C-2 Life Raft
To Open: Be sure to extend mast fully until each section locks.
To Close: Press springs in top section of mast and push down.
Mfg by Film Crafts Engineering Co, N.Y.C.
2427841 Telescopic mast, Dichter Morris, Film Crafts Engineering Co, Sept 23, 1947, 403/109.3; 248/188.5; 403/329; 403/106; 403/300 - 4 sections shown, but there's no limit to how many sections.
This is 14-3/4" long so is under the 15" limit for a seat pack.
This started with the P-38 Can opener (Wiki) but now also includes the bigger brother the P-51.
Fig 2 Very Important to sterilize prior to use!
Fig 9 Pkg. marked: J.W. Speaker Corp.
Milwaukee 12, Wis
1951 Pat. No. R.E. 22,934
Opener: US SPEAKER
2375274 Can opener, Bloomfield Samuel, 1945-05-08, -
2391732 Can opener, Michael A Mirando, 1945-12-25, -
2412946 Can opener, Bloomfield Samuel, 1946-12-24, -
2413528 Pocket type can opener, John W Speaker, 1946-12-31, , 30/429; 7/152 -
RE22934 Pocket type can opener, John W Speaker,1947-11-11, 30/429; 7/152 -
1054477 Hinge for brushes - locks closed and locks open
1921911 Can opener, Darque Etienne Marcel, 1933-08-08, 30/429; 76/101.1 - has spring to keep closed
Can Bottle Opener
Not life raft related, but is a can & bottle opener.1996550 Container opener, Dewitt F Sampson, John M Hothersall, American Can Co, 1935-04-02, 30/450; D8/41; D8/18 -
It may be the first hand held two-way radio. (kpjung.de).Surplus Radio Conversion Manual volume III includes conversion from 140.58 MHz to the 2 meter ham band.
It was introduced a year after the Gibson Girl.
The 17.573 MHz crystal is doubled to 35.146 MHz which in turn is doubled to 70.292 Mhz and yet again to 140.58 MHz. So the crystal should be transmit frequency/8.
Runs on 1.5 & 90 VDC supplied by the BA-1247.
It is 15-1/4" tall which is just over the 15" limit.
With any light at sea it's desirable to illuminate as much of the sky as possible. A light coming from a lamp worn on a person will have half of it's light blocked. By floating this light some distance from the life raft and the man on board more of the sky is illuminated.
When not is use, turn off. Life of battery approx. 24 hrs., with Mazda 131 (1.3V., 0.10 Amp).
Check battery periodically.
To use as flashlight, interchange Mazda #131 with Mazda #112 (1.1V., .22A., TL-3 bulb.
Life of battery is reduced with #112 Lamp.
Fig 3 Maintenance - Lens unscrews from body.
Remove base cap to replace battery.
Be sure lens and battery cap are screwed tight.
Fig 1 Operation - Turn cap at base to left until battery housing is free.
Extend grip battery housing and turn to left until threads are tight,
Attach end of cord to life raft.
Light will now float.
To turn off and to stow reverse above procedure to retract battery housing.
Lamp assembly. Flashlight, Floating Identification.
Specification No. 32410.
Order No. 43-757541-AF
Property Army Air Forces, U.S. Army
Dayton Acme Co. - Cincinnati, Ohio -
Patent Appl'd for (see 2366929 below)
Fig 5 No. 112, No. 131 & "2-Cell" LED, all E10 base
The "2-Cell" LED turns on at 0.48V so does work with one cell, just not as bright as with 2-cells. This is a Joule Thief circuit.
So far I have not found a nomenclature for this item.
Paddle marked: "In case of night rescue one surface of blade has been reflectorized. Hold treated side of blade toward search-light to show your location."
The clear wrap packaging is marked: "Film-0-Rap 5500, MIL-B-22191C Type No. 11 Lot No. 1"
2472782 Wave modifying reflector, Walter J Albersheim, Bel Labs, App: 1945-09-07, Pub: 1949-06-14, 342/6-
3449747 Impact-actuated object locator, Raymond S Daughenbaugh, Charles A Hennessey, Francis M Holmes, Samuel E Lager, 1969-06-10, 342/8; 343/915 - buoy with hemispherical float containing a RADAR corner reflector.
Patent Citations (8)
Cited By (5)
3095851 Water marking device, Samuel E Lager, 1963-07-02, 116/211 -
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
Floating Lights2355013 Marine safety light, Barnett B Rochestle, 1944-08-01 441/17; 362/158; 200/232; 429/98 - F cell at bottom of long tube
2559918 Marker buoy for air or surface craft, Grieb Benjamin Curtis, App: 1947-02-10, Pub: 1951-07-10 441/10; 116/211; 116/202; 441/17 - released from compartment on plane in water
2296287 Electric water light, Glen W Leyde, App: 1941-01-16, Pub: 1942-09-22 441/16; 362/158; 362/203 - three cells at bottom of long tube, air at top.
2366929 Floating signal light, Melvin P Pfeil, (not assigned to Dayton Acme Co), App: 1942-10-31, Pub: 1945-01-09,
441/16; 340/321; 429/96; 362/158; 439/32 -
2381520 Electric torch which floats lamp uppermost in water, Saunders Charles Wallace , General Electric Co, 441/16; 362/186; 362/158; 362/206
In the Bombardiers Information File (BIF) Aircraft Ref 48 there is a page for "Vest Type Emergency Kit" with a bill of materials.
hat (yellow on one side, OD on the other)
pair Polaroid sun goggles
Signal mirror, with lanyard 1
fishing-sewing kit, in plastic container
collapsible spit and gaff
plastic water canteen (3-pint capacity)
Boy Scout knife
large knife (with 5-inch saw and blade)
package toilet tissue
yds bandage (with sulfa powder)
waterproof match-box with compass
fire starting tabs
waterproof cover for .45 cal. pistol (Wiki: 45ACP U.S. Military) manual single shot procedure
.45 cal. shot cartridges
First Air Kit
Survival manual (see Ref 4 below)
vest-kit rations in tin containers
five-minute signal flares
collapsible container for boiling water
pair woolen insert gloves
pair leather outer gloves
Vest, Emergency Sustenance, Type C-1
This may or may not belong on this web page since I don't know off hand if it was part of the survival kit, or maybe part of a survival vest.
also see Semi Auto Weapons\Bayonets.
Air Force Pilot Survival Knife - Ontario 10-76Major Hykr: A Short History of the Air Force Survival Knife - "After the completion of testing and bidding competition between Marble, Camillus Cutlery, and the Ontario Knife Company (OKC), Camillus was awarded the contract to supply the new Jet Pilot Survival Knife (JPSK) to the Department of Defense instead of Marble."
What is the white dot on the handle? let me know.
Also see knife sharpening.
CRT-3 Gibson Girl emergency beacon transmitter used on life boats.
Ref 1. One-Man Pneumatic Life Raft Survival Kits of World War II, R.S. McCarter & D. Taggart, 2006 -
Ref 2. Naval Ships' Technical Manual, Chapter 583, Boats and Small Craft - as of 1998 the Navy only had 4 and 26 person life rafts.
Ref 3. US Army in W.W.II, The Signal Corps: The Emergency (To December 1941), 1956, Lib of Cong Cat No. 56-60002
SRU-21/P Survival Vest
TM 55-8465-215-10, Operator's Manual
TM 55-1680-317-CL-4 Checklist for SRU-21/P Aircrew Survival Vest p/n: 11-1-1783, NSN: 8460-00-177-4819
TM 55-1680-351-10 Operator's Manual for SRU-21/P Army Vest, Survival, (Supercedes TM 55-8465-215-10), NSN: 8465-00-177-4819 Large, NSN: 8465-01-174-2355 Small, 11 April 1987
Ref 4. Survival on Land and Sea,1944 (pdf), 196 pgs -
PRC68, Alphanumeric Index of Web pages, Contact, Products for Sale
Page Created 2019 August 28