All about army bowlers
Wars have caused and are inflicting tremendous misery and hardship on people. But along with this, as a result of them, a variety of things were created that facilitate everyday life. One of these things is precisely what a military bowler is; it's time to take a closer look at him.
History of creation
That marching army bowler that is familiar to modern military personnel did not appear immediately. For a long time - as far back as the 19th century - our country took care of the unification of this important subject of the field life of soldiers. Since 1862, personal bowlers with a wire arch and with a steel cover came into use. After 9 years, in 1871, began the use of pots with a lid of red copper. Then the cavalry units began to receive copper pots for 3 servings.
But since 1895, and in the cavalry, the soldier's bowler is transferred to a single type. In the manufacture of such items already in that distant era, standards were applied, secured by specially issued orders. However, one should not assume that such an important subject of military life appeared only in the second half of the 19th century. The problem of supplying troops on a campaign and in a combat zone became much more interested. The engraving of the 17th century Dutch artist Cornelis Dusart "Old Age" testifies to this.
On it, an army bowler hat is located almost in the center of the composition and displayed as detailed as possible. It is clearly seen that despite the much larger than it is accepted today dimensions, the design is quite recognizable.
Of course, later these products were repeatedly modernized and improved significantly. But it is worth mentioning about even earlier modifications. The oldest known bowlers were used in the armies of ancient Greek policies.
Then they were made of copper, and the cost of such dishes was very high. Of course, pots were also widely used in Rome. There was not a single legion wherever it was part of the camping equipment. Already in that era, they came up with the option of installing dishes on a tripod. The so-called barbarian tribes also used cauldrons, but rather in magical rites.
In the Middle Ages, military utensils did not differ much from those used in the ancient era. It was mainly applied collectively. In modern times, almost every army is developing its own type of pot. During World War II it spread widely standardized sample. It was used in many different countries.
Advantages and disadvantages
In any case, all samples of bowlers can be used not only for military purposes. They are widely used by tourists, hunters, huntsmen, fishermen and other people who leave for various reasons in an unpopulated area. Camping army pots are easy to carry and use. With their help, you can cook or heat:
- first meal;
- second courses
- herbal decoctions;
- simple boiling water.
To warm the dishes, you can use gas and alcohol burners, tagans, even bonfires. Since the products were originally designed for the army, their quality is certain. This is expressed:
- in a significant operational resource;
- minimal risk of burning food;
- uniform heat distribution;
- optimally selected volume;
- reasonable cost.
But there are also weak points. So, a metal pot is easily covered with soot. It is extremely difficult to wash, especially in the field. Metal handles become excessively heated, and therefore there is a great risk of burns. However, a more detailed description can only be given to specific samples.
Varieties, their shapes and sizes
Used in Russia, including the Airborne Forces, a military bowler is either convex-concave or spherical in design. By default, this product is equipped with a wire handle, which facilitates suspension and movement. When the bowler hat is on the waist belt, the concave side is turned toward itself.
The landing bowler of a combined sample with a flask was officially adopted in September 1959. Production was carried out at the factory "Red Vyborzhets". With minor inconvenience, the paratrooper's bowler hat, and the kit in general, has not lost its relevance. Until now, it has been used in a wide variety of military branches. The composition of the kit is as follows:
- 1 liter aluminum flask;
- a pot (also with a capacity of 1 liter) with a rectangular transport handle;
- 0.5 l bowl with a reclining locking handle;
- a cover made of tarpaulin weighing 0.08 kg.
The landing set is designed for 1 person. Compared to a typical combined-arms boiler, thickened aluminum is used here. Therefore, the designers managed to achieve maximum strength and long life of their product. A capacity of 1 liter is better suited for everyday use than 1.5 liters for combined arms. Bowl pods are more comfortable than lid pans, because they are deeper and, moreover, retain the same volume.
Of course, the pots adopted in other armies deserve attention. The French approach for a very long time consisted in the use of round bowlers. A similar sample was first used in 1852. For the manufacture of dishes, tin and sheet metal were then used. The round lid could be a kind of frying pan; A special chain was used to secure it.
But the French military often removed this chain to reduce noise when walking. Almost unchanged, the classic bowler hat was used in the First World War. Only in 1935 in France, rectangular aluminum utensils were commissioned. It differed from its German prototype precisely in form (in Germany they preferred an oval). The 1935 modification was equipped with an insert bowl.
In 1952, France adopted an updated version of the pot for supply. She retained a rectangular appearance, and it also contains 3 objects. But the construction of the set according to the "Russian doll" scheme and the geometry of the handle indicate the influence of the Anglo-American approach.
However, there were some modifications of bowlers in Scandinavia. The Swedish army bowler was used not only in the armed forces of Sweden itself, but also in the volunteer units that participated in the Winter War along with Finnish regular units.
Then two modifications were applied - 1895 and 1940. The first type is distinguished by its large volume and height. It is also worth saying that in 1895 the dishes were made of tinned steel, and in the middle of the twentieth century they switched to stainless steel. The difference also concerns the shape of the "ears", the method of fixing the handle on the lid and other subtleties. In 1944, the Swedes modernized their development, adding to it:
- wind screen;
- alcohol tank;
- burner for alcohol.
The 1944 version is made of aluminum. This design was so successful that it is still used by the Swedish military.
But in the Romanian and Hungarian armies of that time, square pots were used, which were accepted for supply in Austria-Hungary in 1912. Some soldiers used Italian-made camping dishes.
The classic Finnish bowler was made in the likeness of a German product. Its size was sufficient to put a special spoon-fork. So that it can be fixed, the edges of the pot are covered with special recesses.
As for the German-made boilers, the 1931 model is recognized as their classic version. It differs from the model of the period of the First World War in a smaller volume (not 2.5, but 1.7 liters). Beginning in 1943, in order to save aluminum, they switched to the manufacture of steel structures with ears.
In addition to the bowlers, the following were used:
- portable heaters;
- folding spoon trays;
- cutlery sets of 3 or 4 items.
The Polish sample of 1931 (Menazka wz. 23/31) "participated" in only one military campaign - the unsuccessful counteraction of fascist aggression in 1939. In subsequent years, the Poles used the ammunition of the army in which they found themselves.
Post-war Polish forces initially used the surviving stocks of old army utensils. In the 1950s, the release of the 23/31 model resumed. However, the products of the new generation were no longer manufactured from galvanized steel, but from aluminum.
Another model appeared in 1970. From the pre-war version, it differed in the appearance of the "ears", which are designed to attach the handles. Also, the changes affected the stigma and the number of dimensional marks (they left only 1, whereas in the old design there were 2). The modification of the bowler adopted by the Bundeswehr contains:
- the actual capacity for food is 1.5 liters;
- nested bowl - 0.5 l;
- a cover with a folding handle - 0.5 l.
The product is designed for use on open fires and on stoves. It is made of aluminum. The dry weight is 0.48 kg. The olive coating looks very nice.
However, from talking about modifications of camping food utensils, which can be conducted endlessly, it is time to move on to an overview of the properties of individual materials.
Constructions stainless steel are cheaper than other options. Steel Modifications lungs, however, under the influence of a fire flame can burn out. This does not happen too often, especially if you use camping dishes only periodically. Rarely sent to nature people successfully use high-quality steel capacity 4-5 years. Cast iron they are used even less often: it is too heavy to be able to go on a long hike with such a product.
For those traveling by car, however, this fact is not too relevant. Aluminum cooking pot It is lightweight, does not rust and only occasionally passes liquid. But to pay for such a thing will have a lot of money. It is also worth remembering that the reviews mention the danger of burning food. Concerning titanium structures they are ideal in practical terms, and only a very high cost hinders their distribution.
How to choose?
Spherical camping dishes are needed for those people who value the most:
- convenience of cooking;
- ease of washing;
- the ability to put other objects inside.
But for hiking, this option is hardly suitable, since it is too heavy. The oval cauldron can easily be placed in a backpack or put in a tent. The problem is uneven heating of the water.
However, if tourists or hunters want to go light and are ready to compensate for the difficulty of cooking with great diligence, this is not so fundamental.
The next important point is the geometry of the handle of the bowler. It should be comfortable for the user's hand. Important: you have to check if the handle mount is strong enough. The optimal volume of the pot is 1 liter per 1 traveler.
The best set is a large three-liter boiler for cooking + a liter sample for boiling water. The specific manufacturer does not really matter.
It is worth considering that you can use any camping boiler only after a thorough study of its characteristics. Experienced people have long known that the vast majority of army structures are designed for eating, and not for cooking. But it is quite possible to fill the pot before the trip with fragile or sharp objects, without fear then of negative consequences. Some people even use this cookware to transport half-eaten breakfasts or dinners. You need to wear it:
- in a satchel;
- on a special valve "cracker";
- on the belt;
- on the backpack.
The pedestal and bowler are fixed to each other using a special handle. The guide rails are inserted into special grooves. The resulting block can already be heated at the stake or at another hearth. As a hotbed can be used and a stove-grate. With skillful use, the bowler will bring only pleasant emotions.
Perhaps the most important point in working with a pot is how to wash its surface from solid oil. The bottom and the lid are washed for this with hot water mixed with the dishwashing liquid. Washing must be repeated twice or thrice so that no harmful substances remain.. You can replace the detergent with laundry soap. Then the pot is boiled and rinsed several times in a row.
You can complete the preparation by washing with alcohol. Sometimes pots are grinded with sandpaper. It is necessary, so that the product does not jam and become clogged with sand.
Directly in nature, it is very good to wash dishes with sand with the addition of detergent. Instead of detergents, a simple wire is sometimes used.
An overview of the army bowler watch in the next video.