Gaiters or Putties?

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Ox&Bucks
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Gaiters or Putties?

Postby Ox&Bucks » Sun Nov 09, 2014 11:03 pm

Hi All,

I am having a little bit of confusion over the use of putties or gaiters by the British Infantry in WW2.

Were both the Leather style gaiter and Wool style puttie in wide use? I ask as most uniform guides have the leather gaiters shown or listed but then I find the wool putties turing up on the odd site and shop. Thanks in advance for any responses. Cheers.
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Re: Gaiters or Putties?

Postby McVickers » Mon Nov 10, 2014 2:15 am

Neither were in common usage by British Infantry during WW2:

Leather 'gaiters' (anklets) were made for Home Front use, ATS and possibly Home Guard, and so were never standard issue to British Infantry.

Webbing material anklets were what were used by British Infantry in moderate climates.

Wool putties were sometimes seen used in hot climates in place of hose tops, commonly with webbing material anklets worn over the top, and so were sometimes used in certain theatres of operation.
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Re: Gaiters or Putties?

Postby MartinR » Mon Nov 10, 2014 7:19 am

As above, webbing anklets were what most troops wore.

Unless you have very fat ankles or a smaller size of anklet, you'll need to wear short puttees under anklets with hose tops or they flap around. Wool BD trousers are much thicker.

Cheers
Martin
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Re: Gaiters or Putties?

Postby Russe11 » Mon Nov 10, 2014 7:31 pm

Puttees are rarely seen in photo's of WW2 British troops except in the desert and occasionally Burma. Anklets are the way to go. Anklets are useable for just about every British impression, Puttees would be more limited and why would you choose to have the extra hassle of learning to tie them correctly? :D
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The buckles should be on the outside of your legs with the straps facing backwards. So the top one in the pic is the left one and the dip in the middle would be on the inside of your leg facing downwards. They come in different sizes 3 and 4 are most common and it depends how big your legs are.
I find it useful to wear long thick socks and tie your boot laces, then turn the socks down over the knot. This serves 2 purposes, it prevents the loose lace sticking out below the anklet and getting snagged on anything and at the same time, the extra thickness of sock holds the anklet in place better so it doesn't ride up your leg.
Last edited by Russe11 on Wed Nov 12, 2014 6:09 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Gaiters or Putties?

Postby Universal Gunner » Mon Nov 10, 2014 9:08 pm

Russe11 wrote:Puttees are rarely seen in photo's of WW2 British troops.


I would disagree; I would say they are the norm when seeing photos of troops in KD shorts and hose (tops or other). And I would have thought they are far more effective at keeping sand out of the boots, although if the suggestion is to wear them under anklets with hose then problem solved.

However as we rarely play in KD I would say that anklets are definitely the norm when wearing grown up long trousers and would certainly place them above puttees in any wishlist.

Cheers
Charlie
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I have a small skewer hidden in the collar of my jumping jacket, and a razorblade in my gaiter, as well as my knife.
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Re: Gaiters or Putties?

Postby Russe11 » Tue Nov 11, 2014 7:51 am

Anklets are also deen with khaki drill in the desert. The point is that if you have to choose one option, then anklets are the best bet as they are appropriate for every British impression, whereas puttees are only suitable for a very small proportion.
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Re: Gaiters or Putties?

Postby Universal Gunner » Tue Nov 11, 2014 1:12 pm

Russe11 wrote:Anklets are also deen with khaki drill in the desert. The point is that if you have to choose one option, then anklets are the best bet as they are appropriate for every British impression, whereas puttees are only suitable for a very small proportion.


That's fine, we agree.

My point is your/our opinion doesn't really need to be justified with what I would consider to be the factually incorrect sweeping generalisation "Puttees are rarely seen in photo's of WW2 British troops".

Cheers
Charlie
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I have a small skewer hidden in the collar of my jumping jacket, and a razorblade in my gaiter, as well as my knife.
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Re: Gaiters or Putties?

Postby McVickers » Tue Nov 11, 2014 1:23 pm

Wow, it's amazing how all the information provided in the first reply post can be reiterated in subsequent posts :wink:
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Re: Gaiters or Putties?

Postby Special Department. » Tue Nov 11, 2014 3:12 pm

Comrades, Have both as part of your scale of Issue, Webbing Gaiters for BD and Puttees when you are in KD, Webbing Gaiters only really control the ends of your trousers they do not keep sand out of your boots.
Saying that, Ammo boots and Puttees will have trouble keeping sand out but at least they will try, Gaiters were worn with shorts, I have only done so if I have no Puttees.

Tying Short Puttees is easy, you try long British (WWI or for Donkey Wallopers), Italiano or Japanese ones, those have to be right, and worn correctly.


You learn stuff like this by trial and error.
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Re: Gaiters or Putties?

Postby Ox&Bucks » Wed Nov 12, 2014 11:48 am

Thanks guys for all the replies. Very helpful indeed. I can now experiment at the longest day as I am reliably informed there is plenty of sand on the dunes of Normandy(South Wales)...... :P

I will let you know how I get on!
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