A Mess Tin Primer, Part 1

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Pat Holscher
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In training I had many a cold meal from a mess kit. In combat we were fed on paper plates! We did make a lot of good canteen-cup coffee, though.
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Jim Bewley
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Looking through that site, I vaguely remember the oval, two have mess kit, but honestly can't remember actually having one. The knife, fork and spoon, that hooked together, one on top of the other, I did have, but the spoon was large and did not fit well into the C-Ration can. The knife and fork were usually missing. :D
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Pat Holscher
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It might be because its' just faded from memory, but I can't recall having used these at all at Ft. Sill in basic or AIT. I'm pretty sure we didn't.

We did draw these with our equipment when I was in the National Guard but I don't think I can recall every actually using them, except perhaps one single time.

My Guard unit had one of these that was stamped "1917" when I was in, this in the 80s, for awhile. One AT it went out and never came back, so somebody must have decided it had served too long and needed a discharge.

It occurs to me that the difficult thing with these would be cleaning them in the field. If you need one, you need it. There's no substitute. But keeping them clean would be a must or everyone would be sick in short order.
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Funny thing on these now is that I have two of them at the house, both made during World War Two. Every boy in the United States must have owned one of these at some time.

I wonder if any were made after World War Two?
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This is how it was done when I was in, GI cans full of boiling soapy and boiling rinse water, gasoline-fueled immersion heaters and toilet brushes:

http://www.njarmyguard.com/_attachments ... sskits.jpg

http://www.wwiiarchives.net/servlet/act ... 0835F857CF

http://www.merhaba-usmilitary.com/LANEJ ... y-1963.jpg
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rayarthart
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When I was in the service between 1973 to 1987. We were issued a Mess Kit. It looked like what the blog calls a meat tin. We were issued along with it a knife, fork and spoon. I remember the three dippings to clean them in the field. Noisy as hell in the field. Most of us lived off of the C-ration and them used paper plates in the field for hot rations. Paper Plates and plastic eating utensils, how the Army has changed.
Brian P.
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My Army experience falls in with everyone else. I was issued a mess kit, but may have only used it a few times. I used one as a Boy Scout more often. I know that they were manufactured at least up to the 1980's, as I've seen some with '70's and '80's dates.

I note that the blog article does not mention the British Cavalry mess tin. I find that tin remarkable in its design and the way that is packed.
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