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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Old but recently updated article. I went to a military surplus place in town recently and was shocked at all the not really surplus stuff in there, some made to look like it.

In the good ole days one could find all sorts of good stuff.

 

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Yep one could. Problem was the "real" surplus stores of my youth (no matter how neat the stuff was, or how reasonable the price) were still MOSTLY out of my budget. Typical remuneration for mowing a lawn (and plenty of competition for the job...) was maybe a buck. A Lee-Enfield was $10-15, a Mauser $20-30, might see ma Krag for $25 or so, etc.. 03s were running $30 and more, and Garands weren't appearing on the surplus market that mi recall, not were ,carbines.

Remember paying $7.50 for a jungle hammock.
 

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Army Navy Reproduction Surplus and Outdoor Store would be much more correct. Real surplus from WW2 is 75 years old, WW1 surplus is 100 years old, Span Am War is 120 years old, all of which is extremely collectible if in good unissued condition, read expensive, and no longer just outdated US military gear. Growing up my buds and I would hit Sonny’s Surplus and find belts, knapsacks, helmets or just the liners to play war with. Nowadays with all the military reenactors and cas there are a bunch of reproduction equipment manufacturers. What Price Glory is just one retailer that builds fairly nice repros. I have a mix of original and repro for my impressions.
 

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Knew a few back in the mid 60's. WWI British Enfields, Mausers,plus a few Springfields. Ammo was about $10 a hundred. Helmets, clothing,bayonets stuck in barrels. Canteens with the covers along with their drinking cups. And on top of it all the oder of cosmoline. Haven't been a true Army surplus store in years.Lotta chinese made crap in them now.
Had a bunch in NYC back in the late 60's Hudsons was one but even then they were changing. Kaufmans on 42nd st in NYC. Frank
 

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Yet another example of social history that has vanished into the dust in our rear view mirrors.

While I have no doubt that somewhere out there in America there are still a few that actually sell genuine "surplus" items, the majority are full of poorly made, ratty Chinese/Indian made "repros".

Got a bunch of US GI web gear in the bins that are marked with black magic marker, how about $.95 for a carbine magazine pouch?
Sacrilege by today's standards, SOP, back then.
Got an M6 bayonet that my dad paid 2 bucks for, with scabbards, was his "boat" knife, beat to hell and back.
He figured that if it went over the side, no great loss.
Simpler times? Maybe but I doubt those who lived it see it that way.
 

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When I was a wee lad,there was a place down the road called Surplus World, I believe. It was housed in old concrete grain silos next to the canal and was filled with all kinds of stuff but I was to young to know what it all was other than it was cool. As a young teenager, I remember a group of us finding a hole in the fence of their yard and in we went. Piles of what I think were machine gun tripods or maybe mortar bipods and we got chased out before any of us "found" any souvenirs. I remember my dad telling me the owner got in a lot of trouble for running guns to Cuba.
 

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I remember them well, we had a Eagle Army-Navy Store in the mall about a mile from my house in Hialeah, Florida.
Back in the late 50's and 60's, they were a Boy Scout's dream come true.
Camping stuff really cheap; tents, backpacks, canteens, mess kits, camp stoves, knifes, hatchets, boots and so much more.
As I grew older, in the mid 60's I did buy Spanish 7mm Mauser rifles for $15, 7mm ammo was $2 per 100; those we the days, before the 1968 Gun Control Act.
Even during the 70's, surplus field gear was cheap, and plentiful.
But by the 80's and 90's, the stuff was not exactly cheap any longer.
Today, as stated above, they are no longer surplus stores; as they are selling newly made imported stuff, at not bargain prices.
 

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I remember in the mid 50's my dad would take my brother and me to the army/navy store, greasy rifles stuck muzzle down in barrels and of course canteens and other gear 5 year old kids needed to go on hikes...
 

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I remember the pickle barrels full of rifles too. That store owner told me in the early 21st century, that there was still a decent surplus supply, but that the Jews have been buying up entire warehouse lots for decades. He'd been at it for so long, the surplus guys would let him early to pluck out his meager purchase. Then they'd clear out the place for the Israeli's cargo containers. PAX.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I remember in the mid 50's my dad would take my brother and me to the army/navy store, greasy rifles stuck muzzle down in barrels and of course canteens and other gear 5 year old kids needed to go on hikes...
I still have a few assorted packs, canteens and belts I used for backpacking and desert survival I bought in the 70's. Pretty much Vietnam war era stuff. That stuff never wears out!
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Oh Cool! Look down at recommended reading. Went to Idaho and Stopped at Army Surplus Store posted by Black Blade in 2017.

There's actual army vehicles in there. Not that they were for sale, who knows!


I like reading old posts. A great plus for the new board!
 
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