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sgtrock
04-02-2013, 16:54
Hello All. I am interested in hearing the opinions and thoughts of any who have used this ruck. As far as my current research goes, I believe this to have been the first actual rucksack adopted by the US Army circa 1942/43. It had a painted stamped sheet metal and tube frame. The canvas pack was attached via leather and grommet fasteners and had a drawstring closure. Three outside tunnel pockets and various attachment points allowed for the carry of skis, poles and snow shoes. A zippered pocket inside of the top flap was also present.

In particular, the type of information that I am seeking is:
a) Reference material(print,video,etc.) about this rucksack;
b) Actual experience with it's use in the field;
c) Types of loads carried to include the actual load out;
d) Thoughts and opinions on potential improvements and modifications;
e) Thoughts and opinions on suitability in varied environs (alpine, jungle, etc.).

What I am wondering is if this type of ruck might have applicability in modern day SOF or GW applications. Again, I would appreciate any information or constructive ideas or comments. Thank You very much. Great web site!

DocIllinois
04-02-2013, 17:51
For clarification, is this what the ruck looks like?

Utah Bob
04-02-2013, 19:02
I humped one of those over half of Bavaria and most of New England and made many jumps with one. They will hold a lot of equipment. The design is ancient and if anyone told me Id have to pack one again, I'd go medieval on his ass.

JJ_BPK
04-02-2013, 20:31
I humped one of those over half of Bavaria and most of New England and made many jumps with one. They will hold a lot of equipment. The design is ancient and if anyone told me Id have to pack one again, I'd go medieval on his ass.

Agreed, they have no organizational ability. Everything is in the "bag". What ever you want,, it's on the bottom, so dump it all out and start over.. :mad:

They were not comfy either. If your hips did match the frame, you started out sore and the suck only got better.. :mad:

Snaquebite
04-02-2013, 20:33
I've still got one of those somewhere. Terrible ruck.

longrange1947
04-02-2013, 20:37
Agree with Utah, that was one of the most miserable rucks to hump, all the heavy stuff migrated to the bottom and then the frame rubbed you raw. Add skies and you were in for a world of hurt.

Application, give to the Taliban and watch them wither. anyone that gives this disaster of a ruck to our troops now days would be summarily executed.

longrange1947
04-02-2013, 20:38
I've got one of those somewhere. Terrible ruck.

George, you were always a bit different. :D

Richard
04-02-2013, 21:11
It was a ruck for its time - which has long passed. My back still hurts remembering what it was like wearing one of those.

Richard :munchin

Snaquebite
04-02-2013, 21:16
George, you were always a bit different. :D

I can see it now....

E-Bay
RARE!!! HARD TO FIND. WWII Mountain Rucksack... Same rucksack used by the Elite Rangers and other mountain units.
Buy it now- $450.00

SF18C
04-02-2013, 21:23
SGTRock gets 100 PS.com points*

On only his second post he has gotten a bunch of old guys agreeing on about how hard it was in the "olden days!" :p

They rarely all agree on something this quick!

Standing by for my floggin':munchin











* oh PS.com points are worthless, can not be used as cash and have no intrinsic value!

MR2
04-02-2013, 21:36
Standing by for my floggin':munchin

Whippersnapper!

uplink5
04-02-2013, 22:12
I had one when I was a kid and though I never carried a lot of weight with it, it wasn't comfortable. Especially for my small size at the time. Some years latter (1979) I received my first Alice mountain Ruck, and loved it. That is until I put that PRC-77, bayonett bag, Batteries, KY-38 w/KYK-38 Crypto gun, and C-ration. After that of course massive quantities of other light weight stuff. Loved it....

Now, excuse me while I get another muscle relaxer...:/

longrange1947
04-02-2013, 22:43
I've still got one of those somewhere. Terrible ruck.

Love the edit George! :munchin :D

sgtrock
04-03-2013, 00:05
Doc Illinois, yes. Thank you for the pictures. That is the item in question.

SF 18C, Thank You for the kind words.

To all who responded, Thank you for your input.

The impression that I get is that there are short comings in all kinds of backpacks. The two most common that I have heard are;
a) Frame does not fit well under a heavy load and,
b) Lack of internal organizational capability.

From a purely hypothetical perspective, possible solutions might be;
a) Better shoulder straps and waist belt and,
b) more internal pockets and revised external pockets and attachment points.

Again, speaking hypothetically, if one was going to look to the logistical needs of a resistance movement in an unnamed North American Constitutional Republic, it would seem that a good, simple to manufacture rucksack would be a key item. As I understand it, the guerrilla fighter would primarily be moving on foot and living out of his(her) ruck for extended periods.

Since any such movement would have limited means, both financial and logistical, I am as a matter of personal curiosity, looking at such issues. Obviously, if the need were to actually arise, then you go with what you got. Again, I am exploring the theoretical possibilities. Given the need to balance cost with availability and capability, I am thinking the the medium ALICE pack is probably the best available compromise.

Again, Thank You to all and may I invite any further thoughts on my conclusion.

Richard
04-03-2013, 09:10
If you're talking "prepper" kind of stuff, we used to make wooden packboard frames and use them when I was in Boy Scouts in the 60's.

Here's an example of such a frame:

http://patentpending.blogs.com/patent_pending_blog/2005/01/the_trapper_nel.html

The ones we made, however, weren't the "Alaskan" style with the canvas back padding - we drilled an evenly spaced row of holes about 1" apart the length of the wooden frames closest to the side that rested against your back and then laced 1/4" or 3/8" cotton rope through the holes to create a webbing for padding the back.

Using double/triple rope with taped padding at the shoulders made decent shoulder straps.

Like a pack horse frame, you could then strap almost anything to it - it wasn't the most comfortable and a far cry from modern rucks, but it worked fine and was not difficult to build or repair from easily found materials.

The pic is one using canvas vice rope - it's a military surplus packboard which the Army used to use.

And so it goes...

Richard :munchin

gwbarnes
04-03-2013, 09:44
Richard, that is exactly what I carried as a Scout. Long ago and forgotten until now.

Trapper John
04-03-2013, 10:09
SGTRock gets 100 PS.com points*

On only his second post he has gotten a bunch of old guys agreeing on about how hard it was in the "olden days!" :p

They rarely all agree on something this quick!

Standing by for my floggin':munchin

* oh PS.com points are worthless, can not be used as cash and have no intrinsic value!

No floggin just agreein. This was absolutely the most miserable ruck to hump. Everything you needed on the bottom? Yup! Load shifitng? Yup! And why the C-rat peaches or Ham & MFers always ended up digging into my kidneys, I still don't understand :confused: I think I still have bruises :D

Suggestion: Burn it and get a Kelty

Dusty
04-03-2013, 10:18
The only ruck I actually enjoy humping is an ALICE large w/trailer.

Richard
04-03-2013, 10:35
The only ruck I actually enjoy humping is an ALICE large w/trailer.

HQ & SVC CO stylin'... :D

Richard :munchin

Beef
04-03-2013, 10:58
I never carried one, but I recall the tank crews were issued these in the mid-70's to stow their gear on the turret racks on the M-60s. They didn't actually carry them. They were clearly the inspiration for the early "jungle rucks" of the Viet Nam era, which I did carry. It seems most of the improvements integrated in the jungle rucks were in the shoulder straps. The frame looked about the same and the hip suspension was nylon. Not near as comfortable as even the early Alice models. I know that the Mountain rucks were developed for the First Special Service Force and 10th Mountain Division in very early WW II. As stated above, they were state of the art for 1942.

longrange1947
04-03-2013, 11:17
If you're talking "prepper" kind of stuff, we used to make wooden packboard frames and use them when I was in Boy Scouts in the 60's.

Here's an example of such a frame:

http://patentpending.blogs.com/patent_pending_blog/2005/01/the_trapper_nel.html

The ones we made, however, weren't the "Alaskan" style with the canvas back padding - we drilled an evenly spaced row of holes about 1" apart the length of the wooden frames closest to the side that rested against your back and then laced 1/4" or 3/8" cotton rope through the holes to create a webbing for padding the back.

Using double/triple rope with taped padding at the shoulders made decent shoulder straps.

Like a pack horse frame, you could then strap almost anything to it - it wasn't the most comfortable and a far cry from modern rucks, but it worked fine and was not difficult to build or repair from easily found materials.

The pic is one using canvas vice rope - it's a military surplus packboard which the Army used to use.

And so it goes...

Richard :munchin

Richard, this is the one I humped with "non-standard" items while at 10th. :D

DocIllinois
04-03-2013, 11:39
Richard, this is the one I humped with "non-standard" items while at 10th. :D

Holy crap. I will never complain about the large MOLLE ruck again! :eek::eek:

SF18C
04-03-2013, 12:24
Richard, this is the one I humped with "non-standard" items while at 10th. :D

:eek:That looks like some kind of torture device!!!:(

longrange1947
04-03-2013, 12:38
:eek:That looks like some kind of torture device!!!:(

Actually, for humping really heavy awkward crap, it was much better than the mountain ruck. You would not believe the heavy jnk that sucker would hold and close to your back as well.

Now put a half full jerry can of water on a new skier's back with that and it will break him of "hip projection" in a heart beat. Definitly smoothes out the skiers turns. Yes, I was a cruel ski instructor. :lifter :D

jntobin
04-03-2013, 18:33
It was a bear to hump, and it would hold all the army cold weather gear, but who wanted to carry all that high drap, low speed crap. Oddly enough I picked up two of them in new shape, and two RVN Jungle Rucks in new shape at an auction a couple of months ago.

tobin

JJ_BPK
04-03-2013, 18:44
:eek:That looks like some kind of torture device!!!:(

Sus-up,, That's a black-op Gizzmo..

If I remember correctly it holds 4 cases of BUD??? :D

Utah Bob
04-03-2013, 20:12
It was a bear to hump, and it would hold all the army cold weather gear, but who wanted to carry all that high drap, low speed crap. Oddly enough I picked up two of them in new shape, and two RVN Jungle Rucks in new shape at an auction a couple of months ago.

tobin

Wanna sell a jungle ruck?

Trapper John
04-03-2013, 20:16
Oddly enough I picked up two of them in new shape, and two RVN Jungle Rucks in new shape at an auction a couple of months ago.

tobin

Two of 'em and a useless jungle ruck too? Hoarder??:D

longrange1947
04-03-2013, 20:54
Sus-up,, That's a black-op Gizzmo..

If I remember correctly it holds 4 cases of BUD??? :D

No, that was a CEWI (cannot remember if that is correct, Richard?) I jumped in with beer and ice while at 10th in '69. :munchin :D

jntobin
04-04-2013, 00:30
I will not be selling any of the rucks, but will be donating one to Chapter 34 for a silent auction to raise funds for the 2014 convention. The last ruck I carried in uniform was a Large Alice, mounted on a Jungle Ruck frame, you had to cut out about an inch at the top of the frame, the sleeve it for reinforcement. It rode very well.

tobin
"Croich Honorah"

Richard
04-04-2013, 08:15
No, that was a CEWI (cannot remember if that is correct, Richard?) I jumped in with beer and ice while at 10th in '69. :munchin :D

CWIE - Container, Weapon, Individual Equipment; pronounced Cee-Wee. They worked as advertised but a bear to jump when loaded.

CEWI is Communications Electronics Warfare Intelligence or Combat Electronic and Warfare Intelligence - also pronounced Cee-Wee but an entirely different animal.

Richard :munchin

jntobin
04-04-2013, 08:58
CEWI is one of the many things in life that I wish I had not met, I had to jump on e in jumpmaster school, when I hit the red ball, as it deployed it dang near removed my knee caps.

Beef
04-04-2013, 09:04
No, that was a CEWI (cannot remember if that is correct, Richard?) I jumped in with beer and ice while at 10th in '69. :munchin :D

CEWI bag.... The only one I jumped was in Jumpmaster School. All it had in it was an empty wooden105 crate. I pulled the red ball at the top at treetop level and only one side released. Apparently the convulsions of my unsucessful attempt caused me to oscillate. A good thing for once, though. It made for a feet/butt/back landing and it just banged my kneecaps. Beer and ice would have probably sucked. Plus, walking off the DZ soaked in beer would have cost a lot of style points from an already lack-luster landing!

Beef
04-04-2013, 09:06
CEWI is one of the many things in life that I wish I had not met, I had to jump on e in jumpmaster school, when I hit the red ball, as it deployed it dang near removed my knee caps.

Great minds think alike! Simultaneous posts of mutual bad experiences!

Richard
04-04-2013, 09:09
Those last few posts are a good example of how stuff gets started in the blogosphere and then becomes difficult to correct or stop. ;)

https://rdl.train.army.mil/catalog/view/100.ATSC/51D49CFF-0986-4429-8B2B-F813B4FA0821-1274306919752/3-21.220/gloss.htm

And so it goes...

Richard :munchin

Beef
04-04-2013, 10:02
Those last few posts are a good example of how stuff gets started in the blogosphere and then becomes difficult to correct or stop. ;)

https://rdl.train.army.mil/catalog/view/100.ATSC/51D49CFF-0986-4429-8B2B-F813B4FA0821-1274306919752/3-21.220/gloss.htm

And so it goes...

Richard :munchin

Ha, Richard! You career educators, like my Mama (retired English teacher) never give any of us a pass! You surely must realize that a lot of us are not only Special Forces, but Special Ed, too. Or at least getting a "crazy check." But, as a frequent flyer of your red pencil, I must say thanks for keeping us straight!

longrange1947
04-04-2013, 10:44
Those last few posts are a good example of how stuff gets started in the blogosphere and then becomes difficult to correct or stop. ;)

https://rdl.train.army.mil/catalog/view/100.ATSC/51D49CFF-0986-4429-8B2B-F813B4FA0821-1274306919752/3-21.220/gloss.htm

And so it goes...

Richard :munchin

Sorry Richard, I started it because I could not remember the acronym for the weapons container. :(

GUYS CWIE!!!! :D

Most are too young to remember that damn thing, always lift with your legs before releasing or a hang is a very real possibility. At least my Tm Daddy warned me of that before he had me jump it. MSG Draught (sp?), the Team Daddy and another had packed the damn thing and then told me I was jumping it, yep newbbie. Didn't weigh bad and we were met on the DZ by "civilian underground" and transported to ur base camp.

jntobin
04-04-2013, 10:47
Richard, I don't know if you are referring to my post, but should you be, I have never claimed to be anything except a poor dumb Irish kid, so in an informal atmosphere, I write as I speak, if it offends you, sorry, use the delete key, or ignore.

How telling a CWEI bag story could be exploited on the blogosphere is slightly beyond my ken, but who knows. possibly an expose` on an obsolete piece of equipment, testimony before Congress on the danger of the "red ball express", a public outcry for background checks on anyone who every used a CEWI. I know something else they can blame on Nixon.

Richard
04-04-2013, 11:04
FWIW - I wasn't "offended" at all and only making a point - had everyone merely read on and saw my answer (Post #31) to LRs question (Post #30) before posting, it would not have been mentioned. It happens to us all every now and then as we get involved in conversations and debates using the Internet vs sitting around in a team room or bar or kitchen or such.

I only mentioned it as an example of how things in the Internet get started and, once started, whether innocently (as here) or purposefully, are hard to correct as they are passed around.

Something we should all remember when it comes to the blogosphere: ;)

"If it's posted on the Internet, it must be true."
- Thomas Jefferson

And so it goes...

Richard :munchin

Utah Bob
04-04-2013, 14:00
A friend of mine, who was a research biologist and spent time way up the Orinococ and Amazon, said that one of the favorite foods in that region was Cheez Whiz.
Everythine they would stop on the river, the Brazilian army security guards with them would break out a few bottles of what they called Chee-Wee and chow down.

CheeWee
Take that Blogosphere.:p

And I'm offended by the thought that Richard might be offended.:D:munchin

Utah Bob
04-04-2013, 14:01
And now back toy your regular program...
Did I mention the Mountain Ruck sucks?;)

Richard
04-04-2013, 14:28
Back to the mountain rucks - all this opining reminded me of my TM SGT on ODA-714. He was an old 10th and 8th Grouper, and always carried a mountain ruck...which he preferred over the jungle ruck.

Indig rucks sure weren't comfortable - but perhaps ruck preferences are more often a case of what you become accustomed to using and the reason(s) for using them than comfort. ;)

Richard :munchin

mark46th
04-04-2013, 14:31
I have an indig ruck that was issued to the troopies we trained. My son used it until he got older. It even has some of that fine Southeast Asian red dirt on it. I had some guy offer me $100 for it at a gun show...

longrange1947
04-04-2013, 14:35
.............................

Indig rucks sure weren't comfortable - but perhaps ruck preferences are more often a case of what you become accustomed to using and the reason(s) for using them than comfort. ;)

Richard :munchin

Richard, the old canvas or newer nylon Indig? The coated canvas one reminded me of a minature Mountain ruck. :munchin :D

Richard
04-04-2013, 14:44
Canvas. One thing about them, once you spilled 'nam pla' in them, you'd never get that smell out. :p

Richard :munchin

WCH
04-04-2013, 16:12
Back to the mountain rucks - all this opining reminded me of my TM SGT on ODA-714. He was an old 10th and 8th Grouper, and always carried a mountain ruck...which he preferred over the jungle ruck.

Indig rucks sure weren't comfortable - but perhaps ruck preferences are more often a case of what you become accustomed to using and the reason(s) for using them than comfort. ;)

Richard :munchin

Yep, many old timers carried the mountain ruck long after the Lightweight Tropical Rucksacks were issued. The jungle's aluminum frame was easily damaged (jumping) and it didn't hold as much. There was a mix of M-1942 and M-1952 mountain rucks in use.

longrange1947
04-04-2013, 16:15
Canvas. One thing about them, once you spilled 'nam pla' in them, you'd never get that smell out. :p

Richard :munchin

Hell, I never got the smell out without spilling anything, to my knowledge, in them. Had both the canvas and nylon semi internal frame one until recently when I let a young trooper talk me out of them.

I used the nylon one in Panama for short missions. :)

Beef
04-04-2013, 17:31
Like I said, I never humped a mtn. ruck, but I do have a couple. One with a frame, one without that's marked "Avery 1942." Funny how I got these. When we were forming our SFA chapter here the was ONE former First Special Service Force guy in the state. I thought it'd be great to get him in the chapter. I went to see him and he declined due to health and time constraints. He did, however, give me a PILE of stuff, the rucks, several reversal-able parkas in various patterns, a handful of Ulster mountain pocketknives in different patterns, several patches, including an Italian made one, jump wings, etc. It seems he finished the war as a supply guy....somethings never change. It's rainy here in the sunny South today. But if it clears up as predicted, I 'll post some pictures tomorrow, if there is any interest.

mark46th
04-04-2013, 17:39
Originally Posted by Richard
Canvas. One thing about them, once you spilled 'nam pla' in them, you'd never get that smell out.

Richard

That's true, but then the water buffalo thought you were a local and didn't stomp you into the ground...

Richard
04-04-2013, 20:42
That's true, but then the water buffalo thought you were a local and didn't stomp you into the ground...

And that's why I always carried the spicy, jerky'd pork from the village! Plus the red pepper spices changed the chemistry of our sweat and helped keep the insects at bay! :D

Richard :munchin

sgtrock
04-07-2013, 20:07
Many thanks to all who responded. This has exceeded my expectations by far. I am pleased to be able to hear the various opinions and experiences of those who commented. If I am understanding the gist of the comments thus far, the biggest problem with the sack is the lack of internal dividers or pockets. If you were going to design an "ideal" ruck sack bag, what features would be desired? One that comes to mind is to place a large radio pocket in the back side of the bag, as in the ALICE pack. Also, the exterior pockets and attachment points/straps; can their arrangement be improved?
As regards the frame and straps; it would seem that using a wider, padded set of shoulder straps and a real waist belt as opposed to the original parts would probably solve that part of the equation. The frame is another matter. Its compound curves require an extensive (expensive) effort to make. Thoughts and opinions on how to improve the fit and function?
Any and all opinions and thoughts on potential improvements would be appreciated. Again, Thank You all.

jntobin
04-07-2013, 20:29
The frame was the only good part of the Mtn ruck, instead of a straight bottom as on the Alice, it curved a bit, though it needed a mesh pad as on the jungle ruck, the radio pouch is spot on, and a pouch on the top cover. a 1000 denier bottom to stiffen the bottom and to give it stand up stability would be nice. and a antenna tie down on the of the top cover.

The whole molle interlace thing is a pain in the butt, a two one ratio is all the should be needed, but had a bungh of two parallel straps for quick attachment.


just ideas


tobin

Stras
04-21-2013, 04:23
Many thanks to all who responded. This has exceeded my expectations by far. I am pleased to be able to hear the various opinions and experiences of those who commented. If I am understanding the gist of the comments thus far, the biggest problem with the sack is the lack of internal dividers or pockets. If you were going to design an "ideal" ruck sack bag, what features would be desired? One that comes to mind is to place a large radio pocket in the back side of the bag, as in the ALICE pack. Also, the exterior pockets and attachment points/straps; can their arrangement be improved?
As regards the frame and straps; it would seem that using a wider, padded set of shoulder straps and a real waist belt as opposed to the original parts would probably solve that part of the equation. The frame is another matter. Its compound curves require an extensive (expensive) effort to make. Thoughts and opinions on how to improve the fit and function?
Any and all opinions and thoughts on potential improvements would be appreciated. Again, Thank You all.

I love my modified ALICE pack. with 2 x Claymore pouches, 2 small pouches, and 2 medium pouches, and a zipper extension on the bottom for sleeping bag access.
If I need to carry more, I add the old LOWA ruck top to it and move out smartly.

People always cut off the waist band for the ALICE. Very applicable and needed when you are skiing.

x SF med
04-23-2013, 10:47
Agreed, they have no organizational ability. Everything is in the "bag". What ever you want,, it's on the bottom, so dump it all out and start over.. :mad:

They were not comfy either. If your hips did match the frame, you started out sore and the suck only got better.. :mad:



Large Alice without the extra outside pockets, pretty much the same organizational capability which approaches zero, agree with JJ, if you need it, it's at the bottom... at least the large alice had the belt.

Aoresteen
06-12-2013, 17:14
I had a mtn ruck and a NOS mint extra frame. I donated them to the WWII musem at Camp Blanding FL (they really needed them!).

I have nothing good to say about the mtn ruck except kudos to the poor guys who had to use them!

My ruck of choice is a highly modded ALICE large. Took it to Iraq on my deployments in place of the MOLLE ruck. First used an ALICE in 1972 (yeh, I'm old!).

I'm on my summer Reserve duty with SOCOM. My ALICE is in my van - I never leave home without it.

Willie at General Jackson's and Tactical Tailoring did all the mods to it.

MR2
06-12-2013, 19:52
My ALICE is in my van - I never leave home without it.

What! No pictures?

Aoresteen
06-12-2013, 23:00
What! No pictures?

I'll see what I can do.

Powder Monkey
09-19-2013, 23:28
While reading the posts, my back began to ache remembering my use of that item. I gave it away several years ago and my ALICE rig as well. I am too old to run anymore. I must stand and fight. Look for me under the pile of hot brass and don't bring back that old rucksack!

The Reaper
09-19-2013, 23:56
While reading the posts, my back began to ache remembering my use of that item. I gave it away several years ago and my ALICE rig as well. I am too old to run anymore. I must stand and fight. Look for me under the pile of hot brass and don't bring back that old rucksack!

Hey PM, welcome!

Don't forget to stop by the introductions page and tell us a little bit about yourself.

TR

craigepo
09-20-2013, 10:07
While reading the posts, my back began to ache remembering my use of that item. I gave it away several years ago and my ALICE rig as well. I am too old to run anymore. I must stand and fight. Look for me under the pile of hot brass and don't bring back that old rucksack!

That's good stuff.