New: Wynnchester Patrol Pack

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We are very pleased to have recently launched our new canvas and leather rucksack, the Wynnchester Patrol Pack. The design is based on the very rare vintage military classic the Norwegian Army Patrol Pack.

After many years of restoring and repairing these amazing old packs in our workshops, it was a natural choice to begin our long-planned line of new-made canvas and leather packs. Through this initiative, we are aiming to bring back to life in updated forms the very best and rarest vintage military backpacks, many of which are now next to impossible to source.

The knowledge and experience of handling and repairing these packs over the years enabled us to recreate a new-made canvas rucksack which whilst updated for modern use remains true to the original classic in functionality, design, and materials.

A perfect daypack size, whether out in nature or in the urban environment, the new pack features military-grade waterproof canvas, folding 3-panel back system, side attachment straps, leather base, brass buckles and rivets, and thick full-grain leather.

The project has taken over a year to get to this stage but we are extremely pleased with the end result – we feel it really does justice to the original classic and after the first packs have gone out to advance order customers we’ve already had some great feedback:

“This is an absolutely great little pack. I love it . Thanks again.

“The colours of the pack are straight from the woods. I’m really liking it so far.

“I am really impressed! You’ve made a great job of reproducing the pack and I love the attention to detail and craftsmanship. I spent many years in the Royal Marines and the Norge pack was used by so many people. After 30 years, I finally have the day sack I wanted.”

“This is the mother of all daypacks”

Some photos below, and full details and more reviews available on wynnchester.com.

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History of Military Rucksacks – article in Ernest Journal

We were very pleased to have been asked to contribute an article about vintage military rucksacks, their history and evolution for the fantastic Ernest Journal which is now out in print – well worth a look at the iPad or Print edition as it’s full of interesting things, a real gem of a publication – some further details here. The article featured some fantastic images of three of our reconditioned packs, taken specially for the feature, at the workshops at Wynnchester HQ – the Vintage Swiss Army Mountain Pack, The Norwegian Army Telemark Bergen, and our waxed-cotton haversack.

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Ernest Journal - cover print edition

Our Adventurer canvas bedroll also featuredin the camping gear section:

Vintage camping gear - canvas bedroll

For more interesting features or to subscribe to the journal in print or iPad edition visit the website at www.ernestjournal.co.uk/

WWII Vintage Swiss Mountain Rucksack

vintage swiss army mountain rucksackNot for sale… this is a WWII Swiss Army vintage pack in canvas & leather from our own collection of refurbished gear – no plans to add it to the line up yet as they are very rare and expensive to acquire and also to refurbish, and are just on the limits of their durability at nearly 80 years old, so they do tend to have some cracked leather or other issues. But an amazing pack, we call it ‘The Grandfather‘ of Swiss army packs… perhaps this is one that deserves to have a rest rather than be put back into the field – break out the pipe and slippers and rest by the fireside (as it does here), with a few stories to tell from up in the Alps during WWII and after no doubt…

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WWII ‘Grandfather pack’ with grandson, a 1994 Swiss Army Pack

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The old pack resting by the fireside, with a swiss wool blanket and a good book (“Tropical Africa” by Henry Drummond, 1890)

Reconditioning the Swiss Mountain Pack

Some ‘before and after’ photos of our “Recon” reconditioning process!

The Swiss Army Mountain Infantry Pack is an awesome rucksack – leather base and straps with a tough rubberised olive drab nylon canvas material. It’s a beautiful design and the quality of construction and materials like the anodised metal fittings and thick leather is second to none. Whilst we are often able to source some new, unissued stock the main stock of these 30+ year old rucksacks is often in a woeful state, dried out, squashed leather, a lot of mould and generally looking beyond repair. But with a multi-stage process of scrubbing, cleaning, removing and killing mould and applying various treatments and finally a wax finish to the leather and separately to the canvas we’ve been able to bring these beautiful rucksacks fully back to life, and it’s amazing how them come back – here’s some photos:

Before…

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And After…!

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