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Thread: Accurate Reproduction WWII 98K Sling

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    Senior Member tsmgguy's Avatar
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    Default Accurate Reproduction WWII 98K Sling

    We've all seen reproduction WWII 98K rifle slings, but the one being currently offered by atthefront.com is in a class by itself. I ordered one, and when it arrived I was impressed by its fidelity to an unissued late war original in my collection.

    Here's a side-by-side photo of an original and the repro from At The Front's website:

    https://www.atthefront.com/g_images/...sling_comp.jpg

    The stitching on the underside of the frosh is a little uneven in the photo. On the item sent to me, it's even and perfect. With a little use and wear, this sling will be indistinguishable from an original.
    Wanted: K98 Dou-42 bolt 5235b, and Port. bayonet G19383

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    Señor Member biatch gummipuppe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tsmgguy View Post

    We've all seen reproduction WWII 98K rifle slings, but the one being currently offered by atthefront.com is in a class by itself. I ordered one, and when it arrived I was impressed by its fidelity to an unissued late war original in my collection.
    With a few exceptions, ATF sells very accurate, well-made repro stuff. My reenacting unit recommends them as a supplier for just about everything.

    BTW, ATF's reproduction leather items don't stink like rotting fish either. This is a real problem with leather gear sold by some of ATF's competitors. I've bought slings, straps, and holsters that I've had to keep outside because the smell would gag a maggot.

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    No War Eagles For You! mrfarb's Avatar
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    When I reenacted I got a lot of gear from ATF (and even before when it was An Der Front). Best bet is to buy his new stuff when it comes out, usually when it's gone it's gone, and the first run of "new stuff" is the best, in my opinion. I have an Oak Zeltbahn that is made from 2 different color panels side to side, it's pretty sweet.
    Order the new K98k book at www.thirdpartypress.com
    Don't forget to visit www.latewar.com for info on late war 98k's.

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    Señor Member biatch gummipuppe's Avatar
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    ATF also sells some decent stuff from WWII. My unit will not allow repro gas mask canisters... even the ones sold by ATF. However, ATF also sells real WWII canisters and gas sheet bags.

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    Senior Member KKW22cal's Avatar
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    I have never been involved with reenacting. Why would they not allow certain reproduction items?

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    Señor Member biatch gummipuppe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KKW22cal View Post
    I have never been involved with reenacting. Why would they not allow certain reproduction items?
    A friend of mine who is a reenactor said, "Reenactors are some of the most anal people on the planet." This is because most reenacting units want to be as authentic as possible, even down to the smallest details. To achieve maximum accuracy, unit members constantly evaluate all the reproduction gear, uniforms, and personal items commercially available.

    Some repro stuff is obviously incorrectly made (e.g. wrong color, shape is wrong, camo pattern is incorrect, details are missing, functionality is wrong, etc.). It would stand out and look bad even to some individuals who aren't reenactors. Lots of it is made in China and they did a cursory job of copying it, often based on photographs and even other poorly made reproductions. It's common for dealers to represent it as "the most accurate reproductions ever made." So, you can get screwed if you don't know any better.

    Some repro stuff is subtly incorrectly made, so it is only obvious to experienced reenactors. In the case of the gas mask cannisters, the flutes on the sides are not deep enough. Yes. This stuff is important to some units. You can argue that it doesn't really make much difference, but that's the way it is if you want to join a unit.

    Some of it looks acceptable, but it's so cheaply made, it will fall apart after one or two events. It's made more for show than it is to be actually used in simulated combat conditions. Repro stuff tends to be really expensive, so it would suck to unknowingly buy something like this. For example, there's a real problem with low boots at this time. Bad repros look great and can cost well over $100, but they disintegrate after a few events.

    Also, prices vary all over the place. Even is something is well made and accurate in appearance, it may be far more expensive than an equivalent piece sold by someone else. Why pay hundreds of dollars more for a piece of gear when you can get it much cheaper somewhere else?

    So, reenactor units typically put together a list of "approved" reproduction uniform items and gear. In some instances, there are no acceptable repro items available, so, reenactors have to buy the genuine WWII article or acceptable postwar items. Some German stuff continued to be made and used after WWII into the 1950s and '60s, so sometimes you can find it in military surplus stores.

    If you are interested in reenacting, don't buy any repro uniforms and gear until you select a unit and talk to the members about what is acceptable and what isn't.
    Last edited by gummipuppe; 07-30-2014 at 08:26 AM.

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    Senior Member KKW22cal's Avatar
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    That makes sense. I am sure there are events around me I am going to make it a point to attend one.

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    Señor Member biatch gummipuppe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KKW22cal View Post
    That makes sense. I am sure there are events around me I am going to make it a point to attend one.
    It's really cool and it gives you an accelerated historical learning experience. Search online for units near you. Once you establish contact, ask a lot of questions and select one that you feel comfortable with.

    One word of warning: This hobby ain't cheap. By the time you completely outfit yourself, you're going to drop at least a couple grand on gear and uniform items. Most units will require you to buy some basic uniform items and gear before you can attend an event. The better units have loaner gear, so you don't have to buy everything at the beginning.

    So assuming you already have a K98k, you will probably have to drop about $500 on the absolute basics (tunic, shirt, suspenders, trousers, boots, helmet, belt, etc.). If you are not sure about whether reenacting is right for you and you want to spend all that money, it would probably be a good idea to visit with the unit at a public event.

    Watch this guy:

    Last edited by gummipuppe; 07-30-2014 at 08:44 AM.

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    Senior Member KKW22cal's Avatar
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    Thanks for the video. Maybe I will find an event where I can just watch.

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    Señor Member biatch gummipuppe's Avatar
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    To get a little taste before going to an event, there are all sorts of WWII reenactment videos on YouTube like this one:


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