The Luftwaffe kapok fill life vest had excellent floatation properties and could keep a pilot or crew member afloat up to 24 hours. The vest was almost exclusively used by bomber and transport crews because it was too bulky for use in single-seat fighters or dive-bombers. The high-collar helped to keep the wearer's head above water. One unfortunate design aspect of the vest was that the back was more bouyant than the front and had the tendency to roll the wearer face forward in the water.
Transferred from the United States Air Force, Park Ridge Facility
Country of Origin: Germany
3-D Test: 50.8 x 7.6 x 69.9cm (20 x 3 x 27 1/2 in.)
Luftwaffe life west; 3 panels of 3cm to 4 cm nautural color cotton tubes filled with kapok; panels attached by 2 front and 2 side toggles; high neck; 2 cotton web leg straps.