Flight Suit for a Maggiore (Major) flying with the Aeronautica Co-Belligerante
(post-1943 air force of the south flying with the Allies)
This Italian Maggiore is shown wearing a combination of gear as he prepares to pilot his S.82 in support of the allies. He is wearing a two piece flight suit that is from late in the war and was based on a design of an earlier suit that was brown in color. The newer suit has synthetic fur as opposed to sheep's wool. It still features the many pockets necessary for pilot gear. Rank was worn on the left chest with the same sleeve device worn on the service dress.

The manufacturers tag from the tailor in Rome, A. Andreani. Note the mention of 3 ZAT, which stood for the third zone as defined by the allied occupiers. Caposarto means military tailors. The red roman IV is the size of the jacket.
A closer view of WWII period Italian flight boots. They are very similar to the German design with the solid leather bottoms and the sheep's skin uppers. These are of relatively solid construction and may have been made prior to 1943 when materials were available.
The rank of Maggiore was indicated by the one large stripe and one narrow stripe. The diamond braid was unique to the air force.

On the left is the typical Italian flight helmet worn from Ethiopia to the end of the war. In the early days, before there was a need to fly high altitude, Italian pilots typically flew with helmets that lacked built in radio gear or oxygen mask attachments. With high altitude bomb raids, more sophisticated German equipment was introduced along with similar equipment of Italian manufacture.
Above are a pair of Italian Ratti flight goggles. These are an earlier style with the split pane lenses. These were phased out and replaced with simpler single pane glass and plastic designs.
*Click on any picture to see full size.

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