AFV Map Case

The General Service Map Case number 1 Mk 1 is a large map case measuring 16 ½” by 13” when folded and was designed to be carried in a vehicle, with the option of being attached to a belt for small lengths of time. The case was made of a light tan canvas, although the example we are looking at today has received some waterproofing at some point in its life which has left it in a much darker shade of brown than when new:

The case is made predominantly of canvas, however to give it some rigidity, a blued steel ‘H’ framework is attached to the back which has right angle hooks at the end of each piece to allow it to be stowed on loops within an AFV. These were usually fitted to the underside of an AFV hatch so that when it was opened the map case was situated the right way up for the commander to use:

Note also the grab handle to allow it to be carried like a briefcase and the brass hook that allowed it to be carried on a belt when used dismounted from a vehicle. The case itself was introduced in 1940 and can be found in both webbing and canvas.

The map case flaps are secured with snaps and opening the first ones reveals the storage for map instruments:

We have four loops for chinagraph pencils and a rectangular loop for the standard service protractor in use at the time:

The other half of the flap can be opened part way and secured, or opened completely to give access to the celluloid that protects the maps:

Some examples have a piece of hardboard as a backing piece, but this example has a pair of celluloid sheets. Karkee Web has identified at least four variations of the AFV Map Case, which can be found here.

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