D-Type Flying Gauntlet

The D Type leather flying gauntlet was originally introduced by the RAF as part of their electrically heated flying equipment. The D type is not itself electrically heated, but was designed to be worn in combination with an electrically heated liner. In practice the RAF found its need for electrically heated clothing declined and so the D-Type gauntlet was used with a plain rayon or silk liner glove instead and was to see extensive service in the latter part of the war and well into peacetime.

The gauntlet itself is made of soft chestnut leather and is very simple in design with no zips or poppers to secure it:

The observant will notice that my examples are not actually a pair, instead being two left hand gloves! This is unfortunate, but they were so cheap that I was still happy to add them to the collection- if anyone has an odd right hand glove please let me know…

The fingers are cut comparatively generously when compared to their length, this being because they were expected to be worn over a liner:

The cuff is cut loosely so it can sit easily over the sleeves of the aircrew man’s jacket to help trap heat inside his clothing:

The inside of each glove is lined with wool for warmth, and one of the gloves has a label sewn into it:

This style of label indicates that this glove is of later production (earlier examples have the crown and AM mark for the Air Ministry instead). Originally there would have been an ink stamp in the top right hand corner of the label with the number 22C which was an RAF stores code, but this has long since worn off.

I have relatively little RAF flying kit as it is expensive, but these gloves were just £1 for the two so it was a very easy decision to add them to my little, but growing, collection of RAF flight gear.

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