Lost Battalions: stiill cutting edge or obsolete?

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landser32
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Lost Battalions: stiill cutting edge or obsolete?

Post by landser32 » 24 Sep 2012 05:51

Just thought I would throw out there in a time of texled uniforms, and cheap chicom imports if anyone still wears tunics or uniforms made by the Ed Walton years of Lost Battalions?

I used to be able to spot them a mile away, and although I still do wear them myself despite the infamous "plain vs. twill" debate of the last decade, I'm encountering them less and less. I know they are under new ownership, but as yet have met anyone that has purchased anything from them.

chris1547
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Re: Lost Battalions: stiill cutting edge or obsolete?

Post by chris1547 » 24 Sep 2012 16:28

Obsolete.

First, I think after Ed's erroneous opinions and explanations on "proper feldbluse length" were dispelled that hurt them somewhat, Ray leaving hurt the customer service end of things for sure and the current owner seems to be a good guy but let's face it, he bought a business with a tarnished name due to the closing days of Ed's ownership and everyone wants cheap chi-com crap and that's killed the market for the high end stuff.

It blows my mind you talk with the current crop of new reenactors they look at you like your from Mars when you mention Lost Battalions, Janke or New Columbia. All they know is Sturm, Antz, etc.

jesse_
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Re: Lost Battalions: stiill cutting edge or obsolete?

Post by jesse_ » 25 Sep 2012 04:38

Well, does it have to be one or the other?

I buy LB because of the high quality of the sewing. Three hundred bucks for a jacket I dont want crooked seams. I wear FJ trousers and Stürmgeschutz trousers (modified to straiten the cuffs) when I go out. Also the SS Panzer and Stürmgeschutz jackets (sans the dirty birds). My dry-cleaner (a seamstress)is always impressed when I take one in. The only marginal item I have from a sewing perspective is my M44. The seams that run along the waist look like they were done in a real hurry. Since I wear it hiking it really doesn't bother me.

For all that is said about tunic lengths I haven't noticed anything strange in any of my wools. My Luftwaffe tropical is just fine. However, the tropical Heer Tunics are shorter than I would like (I am not a member of the DAK umpa-loompa division :P). Actually, as I am not a tall person it's not too noticeable, but the belt-hooks would be in my ribs. The one I put in the washer and dryer however is another story(obviously not in the photo). My HBTs are much better, but I got two of them (I have another not in the pic-both light blue-green) from old "window faded" stock on clearance, and due to the length of the cuff believe that they are shorts to begin with. With my HBTs it's not noticeable at all that they are a tiny bit shorter than the wools.

Does anyone have any other comparison pics between LB and other manufacturers? My LB wools seem the same length as my ATF TEXLED.

Hopefully Dennis can take a look at the pattern of the Heer Trops.
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SchutzeHagemann
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Re: Lost Battalions: stiill cutting edge or obsolete?

Post by SchutzeHagemann » 26 Sep 2012 23:54

Unfortunately Ed at LB spread the myth that all tunics were cut short from looking at a few examples. I'm guessing he was looking at tailored uniforms for NCO's because every unissued Heer tunic I have seen has the skirt being a few inches farther down than the end of the sleeves. Also, the belt hooks are God awfully high and incorrect. I also have heard the material is wrong as well.

With first On the March and now At The Front's texled line, reenactors are aware of the true form of the WWII feldbluse. Since ATF pooped out on us we are back to LB, Sturm, Gavin, and other makers of tunics that will never be as good as the texled line was. Fortunately Virginia at OTM is back in business so we are not completely out of vendors who will make a 100% accurate reproduction.

The thing I have noticed is that reenactors (even the ones who buy the best stuff) can be some of the biggest farbs I have seen due to their lack of knowledge of original items. All they know is reproduction gear and they compare one repro with another to see which is more authentic. It is up to the few who have a basic knowledge of original items to make sure other reenactors do not have a false sense of what is right or wrong when it comes to gear. This is something that truly needs to be looked into.

Sam

jesse_
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Re: Lost Battalions: stiill cutting edge or obsolete?

Post by jesse_ » 27 Sep 2012 04:06

My issue is that I just don't see any difference between my woolen reproductions from LB and the TEXLED I bought from ATF. The woolen tunics in the picture show the sleeves shorter than the bottoms of the skirts. That doesn't jive with the myth that is on LB's website, but whats on the website doesn't make my sleeves longer than my skirt. I have no idea what that is about, I'm only making comment about the actual items. I will say that I remember my SS37 had longer sleeves when first purchased. I had them shortened when the cuffs were added. None of the others have had any adjustments.
SchutzeHagemann wrote:All they know is reproduction gear and they compare one repro with another to see which is more authentic.
True, I and many others don't know what the average tunic length is for authentic articles. I only make comment about the differences between repros (like LB tunics are too short in comparison to others, most notably, the TEXLEDS). All I say is that if the TEXLEDs are touted as the bestest tunics, and the LBs have the same lengths, whats the issue with the length of the LBs, despite what's on their website? I cannot explain the Heer Trops however. Have to ask LB the length of their current crop. Are they now comparable or still oompa-loompa length?
SchutzeHagemann wrote:It is up to the few who have a basic knowledge of original items to make sure other reenactors do not have a false sense of what is right or wrong when it comes to gear. This is something that truly needs to be looked into.
I think that it would be helpful if some of the “few who have a basic knowledge” who have original tunics would measure some of them tunics for the rest of us :P .

All I can add are some repro’s to use as a comparison, it would be great if others can fill in original tunic measurements:
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SchutzeHagemann
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Re: Lost Battalions: stiill cutting edge or obsolete?

Post by SchutzeHagemann » 27 Sep 2012 05:50

In regards to your added excel document, I believe that the At The Front tunics with chinese wool were just their standard models and not texled. Texled supposedly has wool from Germany and is different than the chinese wool. (I own a texled M42 and I owned a M43 cap made with the standard wool).

Also, the LB stuff I have seen in my reenactment group have all been slightly off. They all had extremely high belt hook holes which looked a little off and touched their shoulder blades. One guys uniform had his sleeves going way past the end of his skirt.

I will admit though that there are some original uniforms that had the sleeve coming below the skirt because that was the length of the guys arm. But they were not all like that. All in all, German tunics are a very hard nut to crack.

Sam

jesse_
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Re: Lost Battalions: stiill cutting edge or obsolete?

Post by jesse_ » 27 Sep 2012 07:54

SchutzeHagemann wrote: All in all, German tunics are a very hard nut to crack.
Here here brother!

The Chinese olive wool was the first run of the Made In America with Virginia tunics he made. I believe they went for $395 initially. The price was lower than the later tunics because he made a small run of them instead of custom pieces. Remember he had that picture of his original darker olive colored Keilhosen compared to the new wool? He got the Italian wool in next, then received his sample of "made in das Vaterland" wool and decided to go that route. He made the comment that the wool ran him another $100. The first run "Chinese wool" tunics were sold off on special for $220 (there were two left when I purchased, a 40" and 42"). Perhaps the name "TEXLED" came after these tunics were made, but they are made from the joint effort of OTM and ATF.

Would you mind measuring your TEXLED tunic from the base of the neck seam to the bottom of the skirt on the front and rear? The rear is obviously easy, to do the front the shoulder seams should lay flat (my HBTs gave me a little grief). Also it would be helpful for comparison if we knew your chest size.

I will try to compare belt hook placement tomorrow (been a long day).

Besides belthooks and weave, what other problems are can we find with the garments?

I know there are still some people who are peeved @ LB. I got similar bad treatment when it was still under Ed's ownership (I sent in items for tailoring and he charged me for the items I sent him!!!).

Maybe some of that hostility is still attached to the product. That would be a shame as the new owner is putting forth effort to put out a quality product.

It seems that there was some inconsistency in some of the previous product. My Oompa-loompa Heer Trops show that. So maybe I should contact LB and just ask him to measure what he has in stock.

chris1547
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Re: Lost Battalions: stiill cutting edge or obsolete?

Post by chris1547 » 27 Sep 2012 15:45

Jesse,

I think we are wrecking Landser's original question but here is straight skinnny on the LB feldbluse length debate versus OTM or ATF "texled" feldbluse.

Ed used one original unissued feldbluse for his patterns when he started out. The feldbluse he used was made for someone who was between 5'5" and 5'6The feldbluse in question was offered by Ed to another well known maker of reproduction uniforms here in the USA. Said maker compared the size stamps on Ed's feldbluse to an original war time German tailors book and low and behold it was made for a 5'5" to 5'6 man. That is why friends LB feldbluse fit some people like gloves and other like me who are over 6 foot like crap. This is truth not gossip as I can already see Ed's fans burning me at the stake.

The Wehrmacht's sizing system was relatively simple in concept, yet in practice if was likely a supply officer's nightmare. Like most uniforms, tunics were sized by chest measurement and length, the latter being indicated by the back waist (Kurze Taille) measurement. If all chest and length combinations are considered, there are over 125 possible sizes. So using one feldbluse made for a man between 5'5"-5'6" for a pattern to cover differnt chest sizies,back waist lengths, total back, sleeve length and neck was a major flaw on Ed's part and this is not even taking into consideration feldbluse that were shortned in the skirt by the wearer which was very common practice.

I own two "texled" ATF feldbluse and one OTM feldbluse in M36, M40 and M41. I am 6'7" tall with a 42 inch chest. The back waist length (base of the collar to bottom of skirt) is 29 inches. I have an LB SS pattern M37 and LB Offiziers feldbluse made of wool and on both the back waist is 24 inches so obviously there is 5 inch difference right off the bat and that is not taking sleeve length, belt hook placement into consideration.

Based on your excel doc. post you can now see why all of your measurements are in very close range to one another as they should be and I am assuming based on the measurements you posted you are under 5'7" so thats why your LB stuff fits you like it shoud.

SchutzeHagemann
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Re: Lost Battalions: stiill cutting edge or obsolete?

Post by SchutzeHagemann » 27 Sep 2012 20:03

jesse_ wrote:
Would you mind measuring your TEXLED tunic from the base of the neck seam to the bottom of the skirt on the front and rear? The rear is obviously easy, to do the front the shoulder seams should lay flat (my HBTs gave me a little grief). Also it would be helpful for comparison if we knew your chest size.

I will try to compare belt hook placement tomorrow (been a long day).

Besides belthooks and weave, what other problems are can we find with the garments?
Sure thing. I'm away at college so I dont have my tape measure with me so I'll need to go buy one tonight. I'll measure everything and send in the info sometime tonight or tomorrow.

Sam

cpittman
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Re: Lost Battalions: stiill cutting edge or obsolete?

Post by cpittman » 27 Sep 2012 21:43

SchutzeHagemann wrote:Unfortunately Ed at LB spread the myth that all tunics were cut short from looking at a few examples. I'm guessing he was looking at tailored uniforms for NCO's because every unissued Heer tunic I have seen has the skirt being a few inches farther down than the end of the sleeves. Also, the belt hooks are God awfully high and incorrect. I also have heard the material is wrong as well.

With first On the March and now At The Front's texled line, reenactors are aware of the true form of the WWII feldbluse. Since ATF pooped out on us we are back to LB, Sturm, Gavin, and other makers of tunics that will never be as good as the texled line was. Fortunately Virginia at OTM is back in business so we are not completely out of vendors who will make a 100% accurate reproduction.

The thing I have noticed is that reenactors (even the ones who buy the best stuff) can be some of the biggest farbs I have seen due to their lack of knowledge of original items. All they know is reproduction gear and they compare one repro with another to see which is more authentic. It is up to the few who have a basic knowledge of original items to make sure other reenactors do not have a false sense of what is right or wrong when it comes to gear. This is something that truly needs to be looked into.

Sam
LB made a great product, fantastic quality. The problem is that they only offered one length. This meant that their tunics would not fit tall people or people with long torsos. I could not wear an LB tunic in an off-the rack size because their standard size 42 tunic has sleeves that end several inches short of the start of my wrist. I am 5' 10". In any case the reality is that the quality of the Chinese tunics has increased and the price has decreased to the point where it may no longer make economic sense to mass produce garments in the $400 range. As an aside I have compared the LB product to many original uniforms and found the comparison to be very favorable. None of my original unaltered enlisted issue wool tunics have skirts that are longer in the back than the sleeves are. I have a few.
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SchutzeHagemann
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Re: Lost Battalions: stiill cutting edge or obsolete?

Post by SchutzeHagemann » 27 Sep 2012 22:45

Very impressive collection Chris. The originals you own, are they the same size as your LB tunic as well?

cpittman
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Re: Lost Battalions: stiill cutting edge or obsolete?

Post by cpittman » 27 Sep 2012 23:04

I have one that is. It was the same as the LB, it would button up wih it and everything lined up. I took pictures and posted a comparison here or on another forum back when the debates were raging on this subject. Anyway the simple fact is that original tunics came in multiple lengths and LB tunics do not, and these things are far from "one size fits all."

SchutzeHagemann
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Re: Lost Battalions: stiill cutting edge or obsolete?

Post by SchutzeHagemann » 28 Sep 2012 04:26

cpittman wrote:I have one that is. It was the same as the LB, it would button up wih it and everything lined up. I took pictures and posted a comparison here or on another forum back when the debates were raging on this subject. Anyway the simple fact is that original tunics came in multiple lengths and LB tunics do not, and these things are far from "one size fits all."
Agreed. I wish everyone could understand that.

SchutzeHagemann
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Re: Lost Battalions: stiill cutting edge or obsolete?

Post by SchutzeHagemann » 28 Sep 2012 22:27

SchutzeHagemann wrote:
jesse_ wrote:
Would you mind measuring your TEXLED tunic from the base of the neck seam to the bottom of the skirt on the front and rear? The rear is obviously easy, to do the front the shoulder seams should lay flat (my HBTs gave me a little grief). Also it would be helpful for comparison if we knew your chest size.

I will try to compare belt hook placement tomorrow (been a long day).

Besides belthooks and weave, what other problems are can we find with the garments?
Sure thing. I'm away at college so I dont have my tape measure with me so I'll need to go buy one tonight. I'll measure everything and send in the info sometime tonight or tomorrow.

Sam
My At The Front texled M42 tunics is marked like so:

The back is 70 cm/ 27.5 inches and the front is 74 cms/ 29.5ish inches. I am a 40 inch chest give or take. The garment is marked with a 100 cm in the middle for chest size and 73 cm for the rear length (I believe.) I am unfamiliar with what the top left (45 cm), top right (41 cm), and bottom left (62 cm) measurements are for.

Sam

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Re: Lost Battalions: stiill cutting edge or obsolete?

Post by m1steelpot » 01 Oct 2012 01:35

Top left is the distance from the nape of the neck/top of jacket to the waist. the 70cm is the full rear length. 41cm is the collar, 100cm is the chest, 62cm sleeve length
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