Former Paratrooper, and Service-Disabled Vietnam Vet, Slangvel took his nickname / eBay trader name from the nickname given by South African paras to their distinctive local version of the traditional British Airborne Forces smock. “Slangvel” is Afrikaans for snake skin and was given to the smock due of its use of leather (later changed to canvas) as reinforcing material on the smocks pockets, shoulders and elbows.
An authentic original “Slangvel” smock will set you back a fair chunk of change – if you can find one for sale – but luckily (Mr.) Slangvel has started making modern reproductions of these iconic garments. The new ones are also being offered in a limited choice of solid colors and modern camouflage patterns, use 500D Cordura nylon for the reinforced areas, and will be available for sale soon on Slangvel’s eBay page.
One of the real highlights of the repro “Slangvel” smocks is that they will be available in the PenCott family of camouflage patterns. In fact, Mr. Slangvel was inspired right from the beginning of the project to use the PenCott-Badlands pattern as it would be such a great camouflage pattern for the type of arid terrain found in southern Africa.
And so without further adieu we present the first picture to be made available of a repro “Slangvel” smock from (Mr.) Slangvel….
And here is a close-up shot of the pocket detail, showing the use of “Badlands” pattern 500D Cordura as reinforcing material.
(Mr.) Slangvel also told us that he’s going to be making reproductions of the distinctive South African Airborne Forces helmet cover, and possibly the “Slangvel” trousers that matched the smocks as well.
Slangvel is also famous for his Recce-style boonie hats, M43-style field caps and repro African para caps – all of which are available in all three PenCott patterns as well.
Keep an eye on his eBay page for products and availability.