French Motorcycle Dispatch Rider

 French Cavalry Motorcyclist.

The French army, and in particular its motorised units, made widespread use of motorcycle troops for reconnaissance, scouting and communications.

This cavalry trooper wears the distinctive M35 helmet with grenade badge. The M38 canvas tunic was specifically manufactured for motorcycle troops and was made from a densely-woven and waterproof khaki canvas. The tunic was worn with similarly-manufactured M38 salopettes. The tunic featured a button-in liner and was intended to fit over the standard uniform.
Other specialist protection came in the form of leather over-jackets, sheepskin under-jackets, M35 leather and canvas gloves, M35 goggles, M38 woollen neck warmers and the regulation ch├ęche scarf. This was an extremely advanced uniform for its time. Its durability and flexibility meant that by the outbreak of war, other parts of the French Army had started to utilise the M38 tunic and in photographs it can be seen in use by Maginot Fortress troops, mountain troops, Corps Francs and other branches of motorised troops.





French Army instruction book for motorcyclists.
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