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Time Periods => WWI (The Great War) => The Central Powers => Topic started by: Rockman on November 16, 2007, 10:20:16 AM

Title: Pre-War Ger. uniforms
Post by: Rockman on November 16, 2007, 10:20:16 AM
Hi guys! I'm soliciting your help here.  I'm looking for patterns for Imperial German uniforming that are pre 1916. I didn't know where to look, and I thought that you guys that do WW1 might have some ideas on where to go.  I don't have a specific uniform in mind.  I just wanted to see what might be available for home fabrication.  ( My Mrs. is very handy at sewing my other period clothes )....  Anything from the 1890's- to as late as 1912 are target area. --Anyone?  Thanx!
Title: Re: Pre-War Ger. uniforms
Post by: Oskar_2ndChev on November 16, 2007, 10:49:23 AM
Kind of a broad topic...the basic thing is that the big transition in uniforms and equipment occurred in 1910 when the Germans went over to the grey for field uniforms. Before that, uniforms were a lot more colorful. For infantry, and this is a BROAD generalization, tunics were a dark blue with matching pants (white pants were worn in the summer months). There are a number of references out there with more specifics (I'm at work so I don't have access to my library) and there are quite a few variations (it gets worse with cavalry).

If you're looking at pre-1910 uniforms, you're going to have to look at an original in order to draft the necessary patterns- there's nothing commercially available, as far as I know.

Probably one of the best original sources to go to is Moritz Ruhl- he publised a number of "aftermarket" uniform guides (I have a reprint of the one covering all the new grey uniforms so it wouldn't be much help if you're looking for earlier stuff). The one thing you'll find out about German uniforms is that the Germans were not big on putting uniforms regulations in a central place and using pictures. Lucky for us, there was a thriving private purchase market for both enlisted and officers and this helps out a bit.
Title: Re: Pre-War Ger. uniforms
Post by: Rockman on November 17, 2007, 11:50:54 AM
Thanks for the info.  Anything helps, and the Moritz Ruhl suggestion sounds like a good place to start.  --Does it seem a little out of character for the German army to not have regulations & pictures in a central place?  Or am I keeping a stereotypical view of Prussian efficiency?  Anyways, thanks again!  Anyone else, feel free to chime in.....
Title: Re: Pre-War Ger. uniforms
Post by: Sturmkatze on November 17, 2007, 12:04:16 PM
you're trying to apply American notions to Germans... it's like apples and oranges... 0| look at it this way, these things are inordinately complicated to make -- way more than Silly War or Rev stuff. At least a 1910 is... it's a lot easier (and prob cheaper too, if you consider time spent) to just buy it from Schipperfabrik (http://www.schipperfabrik.com). Not only is it hard to fiond good buttons, the proper wool is sometimes hard to find also.
My 2. cents...
Title: Re: Pre-War Ger. uniforms
Post by: Rockman on November 17, 2007, 02:32:05 PM
Yeah, I was wondering how much of a trick it would be to find the right fabric.  I figured that finding the buttons might be a real challenge in itself.
Title: Re: Pre-War Ger. uniforms
Post by: Oskar_2ndChev on November 18, 2007, 11:06:45 AM
When I was doing Bavarian cavalry (2nd Chevauleger), we had to have the buttons custom made from originals. Also, because the cavalry belt buckle (if you can call it that) is also unique and completely different from what was infantry issue so that too had to be custom fabricated. At first we made our ulankas from converted Swedish greatcoats (and it looked it) and had to apply the new buttons. I never managed to get a proper ulanka made and when I finally found a source that didn't require my first born or for me to take out a second on the house, the unit had pretty much vaporized.

I did have a pre-1910 uniform made but that too was a real pain and it was difficult to source the right fabric- the only thing that helped was that I could go down to the garment district here in Downtown LA (and it helps that my wife is a wardrobe designer- refuses to touch military, says we're worse than women).  ;D

I guess the botton line here is what sort of impression do you want to do and is the effort and expense going to justify it. Only you know for sure!  ;D
Title: Re: Pre-War Ger. uniforms
Post by: Rockman on November 19, 2007, 01:31:28 AM
At this point the only thing I'm sure of, I really would like to do a Prussian impression.  ( My ancestors would be spinning like lathes, if I did anything else! )  So I guess that narrows it down just a tad..... small tad....
Title: Re: Pre-War Ger. uniforms
Post by: Oskar_2ndChev on November 19, 2007, 12:39:20 PM
Things will be easier if you stick to a normal infantry line regiment- no weird distinctive insignia or uniform details to deal with.

As for the German's seeming lack of centralized reference sources for uniforms (i.e. uniform regs), I'm not sure if it's my lack of knowing much German or if its really true (Marsh probably knows more on this score) but it seems as if the Germans just "knew" the regulations by osmosis or what.  ;D Most of the useful information I've come by is from the various privately printed manuals that were in abundance in Kaiserzeit Germany. One good one is the "Gut Komerad" (they made an edition for infantry and one for cavalry)- there's enough pictures and I've been able to figure out a lot of details from it.

One theory I have is that German society was so thoroughly militarized that everyone pretty much knew what needed to be done that they didn't need as many detailed manuals to explain each process as say the US where basically we were starting from nothing and had to cover everything in detail. Just a theory... ;)
Title: Re: Pre-War Ger. uniforms
Post by: Rockman on November 19, 2007, 02:44:20 PM
Might there be somewhere I could get a reprint of the " Gut Kamerad "  and the Moritz Ruhl catalog?  I had a friend that had a leather bound collection of period German cigarette cards, that, if I remember right, had a pretty extensive depiction of army uniforms & unit representations included.  --Sure wish I had access to it now...... oo-P oo-P
Title: Re: Pre-War Ger. uniforms
Post by: Sturmkatze on November 20, 2007, 09:04:16 PM
Great War Militaria (http://www.greatwar.com) was reproing them...
Title: Re: Pre-War Ger. uniforms
Post by: Musktr.Willheit on November 23, 2007, 08:16:56 PM
Rockman

Go to the website

http://www.prussianglory.com/

He sells beautiful stuff and there is a listing for the Kaiser Alexander Garde Regiment of Michigan, which reenacts pre WWI Germans. Hope this helps.

Musktr.Willheit
IR 120
Title: Re: Pre-War Ger. uniforms
Post by: Rockman on November 23, 2007, 08:37:22 PM
Vielen danken! I have checked out the site! --Very much a mouthwatering site to visit.... like a Christmas wish catalog is for kids!  Know where I'll be getting a pickelhaube from...
Title: Re: Pre-War Ger. uniforms
Post by: QMSWalrus on November 26, 2007, 04:34:33 AM
Rockman,

You may find the works of Kn?tel, Kn?tel & Sieg useful, both the series of prints on the Prussian and German Armies and the book "Handbuch der Uniformkunde".
The book was republished in English in the 1980s, by A&AP (ISBN 0-85368-313-1), the prints have been reproduced a number of times (it seems) over the years, and are usually available singly.

Any use?

Tom
Title: Re: Pre-War Ger. uniforms
Post by: Rockman on November 26, 2007, 11:17:20 AM
EVERYTHING helps! I appreciate all the info & advice.  This is a project that will be ongoing for a while, so any info will be useful in putting together a good impression.  I hope to leave this thread open, so anyone that cares to , can chime in.  If I weren't already engaged in two other time frames, I could speed up my developement. --You other multi time period guys know what I mean!  --Maybe if I could win the lottery......
Title: Re: Pre-War Ger. uniforms - Prussia's Glory
Post by: Oskar_2ndChev on November 26, 2007, 03:58:52 PM
Has anyone ordered anything from Prussia's Glory? The stuff looks excellent but I'd like know a bit about them before putting out some cash.
Title: Re: Pre-War Ger. uniforms
Post by: Sturmkatze on November 26, 2007, 06:57:38 PM
I've not bought anything, but I intend to... nice guy and he has some killer stuff. I am planning on buying a big Reichskriegflagge for my sailboat from him for one thing. However, he has some neato stuff. Busby's and other things. Flags, Pickelhauben, Tschapka's Pickel front plates, belt buckles, etc.  ;D
Best, Marsh
(http://www.reenactor.net/units/ir23/images/rkflagge_small.gif)
Title: Re: Pre-War Ger. uniforms
Post by: Oskar_2ndChev on November 26, 2007, 09:18:03 PM
Makes me almost wish I was doing Bavarian again... ;)
Title: Re: Pre-War Ger. uniforms
Post by: Musktr.Willheit on November 27, 2007, 09:20:44 PM
http://www.kammerbulle.de.vu/

Here's another site for you to look at.

{here is the correct address: Der Kammerbulle (http://www.kammerbulle.de/) it won't open w/ the other one -- Marsh}
Title: Re: Pre-War Ger. uniforms
Post by: Sturmkatze on November 28, 2007, 12:56:36 PM
Alas Musketier, it won't open for me  >:(
Title: Re: Pre-War Ger. uniforms
Post by: Musktr.Willheit on February 08, 2008, 05:49:51 PM
Rockman,

The other day I was doing some googling and came up with this site. They sell fhe dark blue German tunic. I don't know anything about them . The tunic is in the WWI section. Also has some great looking headgear. Hope it helps. ;)

http://www.repro-online-shop.de/
Title: Re: Pre-War Ger. uniforms
Post by: Sturmkatze on February 22, 2008, 10:18:20 AM
Try this site: DSM 1918 (http://www.dsm1918.de/)
Title: Re: Pre-War Ger. uniforms
Post by: M.G.K.1418 on February 28, 2010, 05:53:17 AM
A lot of the items of "Prussian Glory" are made by german dealers!

In our german reenactor-forum we have a list of a lot of dealers (sorry - the most of them are in Germany! (^)).
There you can see, what is the newest stuff of the imperial german era: http://www.reenactorforum.waszmann.de/cgi-bin/yabb2/YaBB.pl?num=1257286038

If you can't read german, please use this link, it's translated in english by "Babelfish": http://de.babelfish.yahoo.com/translate_url?doit=done&tt=url&intl=1&fr=bf-home&trurl=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.reenactorforum.waszmann.de%2Fcgi-bin%2Fyabb2%2FYaBB.pl%3Fnum%3D1257286038&lp=de_en&btnTrUrl=%C3%9Cbersetzen

Gru?,
Marcus.