The Canadian Provost Corps
1946 - 1968

Canadian Web Equipment 1964 Pattern

And Associated Items


In the early 1960s a totally new design of load carrying equipment was developed in conjunction with the new combat uniform. The new equipment was designated Web Equipment, 1964 Pattern (WE'64). WE'64 employed plastic buckles and fittings with hook and loop (Velcro) fasteners and was designed to be simple to adjust and easy to decontaminate. The belt and braces were made of a heavy rot resistant OD Green cotton web material. Individual pouches were coated with a green plastic waterproofing, this tended to flake or peel off after some use. WE'64 was not widely issued to the Regular Force until 1966 - 67 and was not issued to the Reserves until the late 1970s.
WE'64 was superior to the 1951 pattern in ease of assembly and adjustment, but in most other respects was a failure and disliked by soldiers. Equipment tended to slide out of position on the belt, and over time the hook and loop fasteners lost their ability to remain secured especially when wet.

The most obvious fault was the absence of magazine pouches, but this was a design failure. The concept of the combined Combat uniform and WE'64 was based on the premise that the infantry soldier would ride into battle in an Armoured Personnel Carrier and dismount to engage the enemy. Combat would require only weapons, ammunition, water and light rations. Additional clothing and personal gear required for living in the field would be carried in the APC. This concept also assumed that the soldier would not be required to march long distances on foot or carry heavy loads. Magazines for the FN C1 rifle were intended to be carried in specially designed pockets on the Combat uniform. Magazines for the FN C2 light machinegun were carried in a 4 pocket "chest pack". There was no provision made for carrying magazines for the C1 submachinegun, they were to be simply stuffed into any available uniform pocket.

In the field, it was common to see belts and tabs held together with green guntape or metal keepers from the 1951 Pattern waistbelt. The "Y Strap" braces were thin and unpadded and dug into the shoulders. Some reserve soldiers modified their web by replacing the Y Strap with American M1956 or M1967 load bearing suspenders.


The WE'64 set employed by Canadian MPs in the field normally consisted of a 2 1/4" (5.7 cm) wide waistbelt with green plastic buckle, supported by a "Y Strap" brace. The position of the equipment items on the belt in the field could vary according to individual preference or Unit Orders, however the bayonet was always worn over the left hip. In hot climates, two canteens were sometimes worn. In the early 1970s it was common practice to attach a First Field Dressing to the Y strap and occasionally a second dressing was taped to the waistbelt or worn under the helmet cover. Pistols were not normally carried in the field by MPs, the C1 submachinegun was the standard weapon. No magazine carriers were produced for the WE'64, rifle magazines were carried in purpose designed pockets in the Combat uniform. SMG magazines were carried either in the Combat pockets or in 1951 Pattern pouches attached to the web belt.


The basic WE'64 set as worn by the webmaster circa 1974. Note the Shell Dressing attached to the brace with black electrical tape. The mess tin carrier holds two 30 round SMG C1 magazines and a pair of socks. The grenade pouch contains the cleaning kit for the SMG C1 and two 10 round magazines.

Waist Belt And Buckle

The WE'64 waistbelt.

Detail of the WE'64 waistbelt buckle

"Y Strap" Brace

Detail of the WE'64 yoke or Y Strap. Note the thin material and absence of any shoulder padding.

Canteen And Carrier

Canteen and Carrier. The 1960 green plastic canteen introduced with the WE '51 Equipment was issued with WE '64.

Plastic canteen.

A new version of aluminum canteen cup was issued, replacing the WE '51 canteen cup, but both patterns appear to have been used concurrently.

Mess Tins And Carrier

Messtin Carrier

Aluminum or steel mess tins of Second World War pattern were initially issued with WE'64 but were withdrawn in the late 1970s. The Mess Tin Carrier was retained and proved a convenient carrier for the OG 107 combat rain suit.

Grenade Pouch


The grenade pouch was similar in design to the mess tin carrier, but considerably smaller in size. Capacity was supposed to be two M26 or M67 (C13) fragmentation grenades but the fit could be so tight that soldiers said that you could only fit one and one-half HCC1 smoke grenades into it. Four V40 "Mini Frag" grenades fit in the pouch quite nicely. Soldiers often used the pouch to carry the cleaning kit for the SMG. A velcro loop on the bottom of the grenade pouch was intended to carry the grenade launcher adapter for the FN C1 rifle.

Bayonet Frog and Bayonet

The Bayonet Frog was similar to the WE '51 pattern and the two were interchangable. The C1 bayonet was used on the Canadian made FN C1 and C2 rifles and on the C1 Submachinegun.

Pistol Holster

Similar in design to the WE '51 Browning Hi Power Holster, the WE '64 holster had a sleeve added next to the spare magazine pouch for the oil bottle.

Gas Mask And Carrier

The first pattern gas mask carrier had pockets for chemical agent detector paper, instructions and anti-dimming compound. It was a poor design as it could only be worn on the waistbelt. Later versions had sling attachments allowing it to be carried at all times.
Method of attaching the carrier to the waistbelt.

The C3 Series gas mask issued with the 1964 Pattern web had a side mounted filter cannister.

Binocular Case And Binoculars

Initially, the we51 Binocular case and binoculars were employed with the 1964 Pattern web set, but in 1974 a new pattern of binocular and case was adopted. 7500 ELCAN 7 x 50 binoculars were produced between 1974 and 1977. These excellent binoculars remained in service until 2001. The case was equipped with a shoulder strap and slung over the shoulder or around the neck. The case could also be attached to the waistbelt.

front view

back view

interior view.
Made by the J. E. Lortie Company in 1980.

ELCAN 7 x 50 Single Reticle Binoculars.

Compass Carrier and Compass

The WE '64 Compass Carrier was a new design accomodating (among other similar patterns) the Silva Type 15 (Ranger) Compass.

Entrenching Tool Carrier


A seldom seen piece of WE'64, the entrenching tool carrier. The entrenching tool from the 1951 Pattern Web was intended to be carried, but most soldiers never saw an entrenching tool after basic training. Full sized shovels and picks were normally used for digging.

FN C2 Magazine Chest Pack Carrier

Four 30 round magazines for the FN C2 light machinegun were carried in a 4 pocket "Chest Pack", which was commonly known by soldiers as the "C2 Mag Bra". The first pattern of the carrier had blackened metal buckles and fittings. Subsequent examples had the usual WE64 type plastic fittings

The C2 "Chest Pack" as normally worn. The soldier would obviously have some problem extracting the magazines when firing in the prone position.

Thermos Carrier and Thermos


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