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Nutria Bush Hat

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This kind of boonie hat was used by the SADF since the 1960's as an alternative for the heavy and hot Staaldaks (steel helmet) for the hot weather of "The Bush" (AO during the South African Border Wars). Although the SADF had trialed some traditional and "Keko" hat models, the bush hat remained a favourite and was used extensively both in barracks, training, and operational use. The advent of the p.87 Kevlar helmets (much lighter and cooler than the predecessors) saw a reduced use of these types of hats for the remainder of the SADF's life, although it remained the mainstay for barracks use and for non combat troops, this tradition still lives in the SANDF.

The hat is made of "nutria" polycotton blend. It's light and rough, so it easily absorves dust, so it aids in building natural camouflage capabilities. Later models (like the one pictured) also include side snap buttons in order to fold one or both side wings. No chinstrap was provided, but there are pre-mounted grommets to allow for user installation of one.
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