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German Uniforms and Equipment

Field Bottle M31 (Feldflasche Modell 1931)


The Fieldbottle M31 comes in many variations.
The standard Fieldbottle had a 0.8 litre aluminium bottle, with a black painted aluminium drinking cup (Trinkbecher).
The felt cover was intended for insulation (when made wet, it cooled the contents of the bottle).

On the picture below a few variations can be seen





Below the front and the back side of the standard Field Bottle.

As per regulations the belt loop of the cup should be in front, however it is also seen that 
the handles of the cup are in front.







Below some pictures of the cup which demonstrate the way the handles are folded.











On the picture below the rest of the parts are shown.

From left to right:

- Felt Cover
- Aluminium Canteen
- Straps with buckle, carbine hook and lid





The feltcover can be opened by 4 push buttons

Below a few details of the felt cover are shown, including the PRYM buttons.




Left, 2 of the push buttons, the upper one opened.

Below, a close up of the PRYM button.







Left , the felt cover turned inside out.

Clearly visible are the felt reinforcement parts for the 
leather tabs and for the stud at the bottom.

Also visible some sort of makers stamp (448)


Below left: a close up of the stud used to secure the straps.

Below right: the straps attatched to the stud






Below some detail pictures of the straps and bakelite lid








A change in the colour of the cups



On early field bottles it is normal to find black painted cups. An order dated April 23, 1941 (HM No. 435, 1941) changed the color of mess tins (Kochgeschirre)
and field bottle cups (Trinkbecher) to olive green.





435. Color of the painting of Mess Tins and Drinking Cup

Mess Tins and Drinking cups made out of leight weight metal
are to be painted in a olive green color.

To ensure that appropriate colors are used for this purpose,
the troops have to report their need of paint for renewal of the
painting coat at the prescribed requirement route.


The supply to the Army clothing offices of the needed paint is
arranged by the Army Procurement Agency.

Sealed color samples are deliverd to the Army clothing offices,
the Army procurement Agency and to the AHA/Bkl


Below, the color change can be seen on 2 drinking cups made by HRE (Heinrich Ritter, Esslingen)


Detail of the black HRE cup (dated 1940)

(Flash is used to enhance the inscription)



Detail of the olive green HRE cup (dated 1941)

(Flash is used to enhance the inscription)



Although this order was issued in 1941,  black cups with later dates can be found,
like this example from 1943


And the maker mark G&CL which stands for Gehardi & Co, Lüdenscheid
with the date 43





Finaly, on the pictures below is shown how the fieldbottle is attached to the breadbag.









The late war variants, and tropical / webbing versions will be dealt with in another section.



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