USAAF C-2 Life Raft & Accessories
Raft, Pneumatic Type C-2. By the Anderson Rubber Company. Dated June 1945. The 8th AAF began using the classic one-man RAF Type K dinghy when the supply of AAF rafts was limited. When the new AAF C-2 was introduced in 1944 it was almost an exact copy of the Type K. It had a rubberized fabric spray hood and apron that fastened with press stud poppers, a water 'box' on the underside to aid stability and was stencilled with user instructions around the bouyancy chamber.
The overall appearance of this example is very good. It is clean and largely very supple with lots of the original packing chalk still present. Some areas are less supple and the spray shield is crumpled and a bit 'crinkly' but none of it appears to be degrading or damaged. Whilst untested it would seem reasonable to suggest that it might still hold air. The life raft comes complete with some of the rare parts including the telescopic aluminium mast (AAF FC-A-685 Mast For Type C-2 Life Raft) and red cotton sail printed with sailing instructions. The mast is in excellent condition and fully AAF marked whilst the sail is rather grubby and does have a few small holes. In addition there is the blue painted wooden 'thwart' used to hold/stabilize the mast. The two parts of this have a reflective surface treatment on one side to aid visibility and the chance of rescue at night. The thwart also doubled as hand paddles with each section having an elastic hand strap. This would appear to be unused with virtually all of the original finish remaining. Unfortunately there is some minor age related splitting in the wood but this does not detract. There is also an excellent collapsible water baling cup.
Overall this is a very good example of a very rare and sought after survival aid. Stock code S18031.