These Norwegian mess kits are not very common and are rarely seen for sale these days. I was lucky enough to see this one for sale on eBay. This is the old style mess kit that was used in the 1950's through the 1970's. These kits are nearly identical to their Swiss Army cousins, and are often confused for the more common Swiss kits. The Norwegian kits are always painted a shade of green and the Swiss kits are black, The Norwegian kits are also a bit shorter in the body, and have a "square shaped" mount for the hinged cup handle.
This mess kit was manufactured by the Ilovan company in Norway, in 1958. If you can read Norwegian (or can use Google Translator), here is a great historical website that tells all about the history of the Ilovan Company:
Ilovan was a smaller Norwegian company that was founded in 1922 and closed up in 2007. They primarily made high quality aluminum cookware for the civilian market and also filled military orders for aluminum equipment, like this mess kit. This kit was manufactured at their factory that was located in Moss, Norway. The factory operated from 1922 to 1968 before it was moved to a different location in 1971.
This mess kit will make a great companion to my M40 Norwegian Re-Issue German Helmet that I documented in an earlier blog entry:
I am currently displaying this kit with a vintage 1953 mess kit strap from the Czech Army. It's not exactly correct, but it will have to do until I can locate an original Norwegian mess kit strap!
Before we get started with the photo-show, here's an interesting photo that I picked up over at the official Norwegian Army digital "museum" page.......... It is a grouping of mess gear that was issued to the Norwegian soldiers in the 1970's: stove, rations, mess kit, etc. Interesting:
Now let's take a closer look at this mess kit and let the photos do the talking: