Saturday, 14 June 2014

Vietnam Cammo Ring.


            A few years ago I read about an interesting strategy of the Viet Cong and NVA to avoid discovery by enemy aircraft.  Foot soldiers would wear frameworks on their backs upon which local vegetation was arranged. When an enemy aircraft was spotted or heard the soldiers would drop to the ground and remain still. At a distance they would resemble a scattering of bushes.
            I think in the original description these frameworks were described as using chickenwire, although I now suspect I may be mistaken. I rather imagined them as looking like men carrying coracles.

            I have not been able to find any photos of a Vietnamese camouflage frame using a chicken wire. I did, however, come across this design, which is more compact and probably lighter and more practical. To quote this website that offers them for re-enactors:
            “The outer ring measures about 12" in diameter and the inner about 6". A sturdy bamboo cross bar stabilizes the frame. The secret of the rig is that each of the rings is actually a set of two rings bound together. Twigs and foliage are pulled through the spaces in between and can be affixed at any angle (the design allows 360 degrees to work with) This negates the need for tying or otherwise securing the foliage as the double ring system tightly secures the camouflage. The camo-ring attaches to web gear by means of cloth ties on either side”

           The ring can either be tied to webbing or to a backpack. The video below shows a version made with wire and duct tape. I guess you could use some chicken wire on it too!