The basic look of the typical Grendier and what he might be wearing.  The basic ‘Look’ of a grenadier is exactly like a rifleman accept for a change in weapon and associated equipment for the weapon.  This Air Cavalry grenadier below wears the 3rd pattern jungle jacket and trousers.  He has been in the field for sometime since much of the color in his uniform has been bleached out by the sun.  These jungle uniforms fade very quickly under any amount of sunlight and you get a whole range of shades of green.  Which incidently, makes it easy for use collectors.  Under his uniform he wears an olive drab t-shirt and neckerchief around his neck.  He sports the standard issue M1 helmet with mitchell pattern helmet cover and elastic helmet band.

He wears the M1956 webbing system with suspenders, pistol belt and compass pouch, probably carrying a first aid dressing, and he hangs a flashlight off the left suspender.  If you look carefully you will notice that it isn’t Vietnam issue, it has the plastic guards on either side of the switch!  He has two varieties of ammo pouches as the far right one is the earlier sort with metal front plate and grometed retention strap. There is no problem with mixing these pouches, troopers would scrounge up what they could, new or old styles, it did not matter as long as it did the job they needed.  The second is the later variation without these two features.  He carries his 40mm ammunition in 1 bandoleer and 3 universal ammo pouches, which means he is carrying only 15 rounds.  Notice he has a quick access round in his helmet band.

This grenadier (below) wears the M1956 webbing with buttpack, canteen and universal ammo pouch just visible.  Grenadier’s are one of those roles that are permitted to carry a sidearm.  This grenadier carries a Colt 1911 in pistol holster and his ammunition in the .45 case is just visible in front of the holster.  Notice his bulging trouser leg pockets, he packs as much as he can carry.

Our last grenadier pictured below (kind of old for PFC, maybe he got busted back?) wears the standard M1956 webbing with buttpack, canteen and pouches.  He has M26 grenades attached to the side.  He carries his M79 ammunition in the grenade vest.  He is also carrying weapons oil (see the dispenser spout on the bottle) on his helmet, held in place with the elastic band.  I am not sure about the clear bottle, I always saw green bottles when I was in.  Anybody have a comment on this?

4 responses to “Grenadier

  1. steve

    Hello, I would like to say that i think the passion and dedication that you all exhibit towards our veterans is outstanding. I too strive to be as accurate as possible in my “looks” that i create and because of this i have a quick question. My research indicates that the grenade vest in the above (last) photo was made as part of the individual integrated fighting system which was released in 1988 and was therefore too late to be used in Vietnam. Am I correct in this understanding? I am simply trying to get an accurate time line concerning this vest.

    • graeme kent

      Hey Steve, you probably already know the answer by now (it’s only been 10+ years), but for future readers, there was a 2 button version of the grenade vest used in Vietnam, and a 3 button version issued post war. I’m referring to the buttons that close at the front of the vest.

      I believe there may be a difference in some of the grenade pouch sizes as more 40mm grenades were introduced but I’m not certain.


  2. bjorn

    hello,question, do’ s a private first class wear a c.i.b. on the jungle jacket? is it possible to earn a c.i.b. as a private first class? grtngs , thanks

  3. Jeff

    Steve, I was issued the grenade vest in the early 1986. I don’t know when it was introduced but, we Marines got most of our gear well after it was issued the the Army. Hope this helps.

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