Foreword to PLA Infantry Equipment and Gear

The People’s Liberation Army is always changing. Beginning with its guerilla roots, most of its initial equipment were either captures or haphazardly put together gear. During the Cold War, the PLA received a good deal of assistance and technical knowledge from the Soviet Union, This was before an inevitable split in the communist camp. With improved relations with the West, came an improved economic situation, resulting in the rapidly modernizing PLA we see today. This can be seen reflected in its infantry equipment. The PLA has long traded in “Mao caps” and canvas shoes for special-forces berets and sleeve patches.

PLA CAMOUFLAGE

Universal Pattern:

(Official name: 07 Universal Camouflage, "07 通用迷彩")

This is the standard pattern for the PLA Ground Force, and is being distributed to most regular units.

Desert Pattern:

(Official name: 07 Arid Camouflage, "07 荒漠迷彩")

Originally designed for desert terrain, it is actually issued as winter camouflage in northeastern China.

Ocean Pattern:

(Official name: 07 Oceanic Camouflage, "07 海洋迷彩")

It is issued to the PLA Marine Corps and used by the Navy. It is issued to all naval forces since 2013.

Urban Pattern:

(Official name: 07 Urban Camouflage, "07 城市迷彩")

Also known as "Air Force Digital Camo", it is issued to the PLA Air Force.

Woodland Pattern:

(Official name: 07 Woodland Camouflage, "07 林地迷彩")

It is designated for use in dense bush terrain or jungle, and is mainly issued to the PLA Second Artillery Corps.

Hunter Pattern:

Official name: 07 Special Forces Camouflage, "07 特战迷彩"

A special woodland variation is available for Special Forces personnel.

PLA Helmets

Type 80 (GK80) Helmet:   The Type-80 is a Chinese steel combat helmet first developed during the late 60s, in response for the need of indigenous equipment after the Sino-Soviet split. The helmet was initially designated as the “Type-69” and was issued in small numbers within the PLA. It was also provided as a part of the military aid program to Albania during this period.  An improved “Type-80” version was redesigned and adopted as the standard combat helmet of the PLA during the 1980s. This move was a part of the modernization program in the aftermath of the 1979 Sino-Vietnamese War. While the Type-80 helmet is being replaced by the 02/03 series, it still remains in use with training, reserve, and local security units.

Type 80 (GK80) Helmet:

The Type-80 is a Chinese steel combat helmet first developed during the late 60s, in response for the need of indigenous equipment after the Sino-Soviet split. The helmet was initially designated as the “Type-69” and was issued in small numbers within the PLA. It was also provided as a part of the military aid program to Albania during this period.

An improved “Type-80” version was redesigned and adopted as the standard combat helmet of the PLA during the 1980s. This move was a part of the modernization program in the aftermath of the 1979 Sino-Vietnamese War. While the Type-80 helmet is being replaced by the 02/03 series, it still remains in use with training, reserve, and local security units.

Type 02/03 Series Helmet:   As China modernized and westernized, so did it’s military. According to the Chinese military development records of compound helmets, the Type-02/03 helmets took design elements from the American PASGTs and German M826s. This is a massive improvement over the Type-80 helmets which were used for decades during the climax of the Cold War.  The Type 02/03 helmet at first glance seems very similar to the American PASGT in terms of overall shape and design. And indeed in many ways it is just a Chinese copy. However, there are several differences. Of special note is its leather liner.

Type 02/03 Series Helmet:

As China modernized and westernized, so did it’s military. According to the Chinese military development records of compound helmets, the Type-02/03 helmets took design elements from the American PASGTs and German M826s. This is a massive improvement over the Type-80 helmets which were used for decades during the climax of the Cold War.

The Type 02/03 helmet at first glance seems very similar to the American PASGT in terms of overall shape and design. And indeed in many ways it is just a Chinese copy. However, there are several differences. Of special note is its leather liner.

PLA Combat Gear

Type 06 LBV

Type 06 body armor

Custom UN Body Armor

PLA Personal Kit

Type 07 Uniform

Type 07 SPECOPS BDU

Type 07 winter parka

01B winter rucksack

Type 06 backpack

Type 06A backpack

Type 07 pistol belt

Type 07 waist belt

Type 17 waist belt

Type 05 Mess Kit

95 rifle sling

95 rifle tactical sling

Type 15 parade gloves

Type 07 boots

FMJ05 gas mask

PLA Infantry Reference Gallery

Citation:
-The Chinese People's Liberation Army since 1949
-HoiKie
-B.Gao