"Lifebuoy" WWII British flamethrower


If you are looking for close-up detailed images of the WII British "lifebuoy" flamethrower, I found some at this link:-

British 1943 Ackpack Flame Thrower

On image dpp_0017.jpg on that page note the steel spring clip at the bottom front end of the left shoulder strap :: that seems to explain, for that type, a problem that has vexed me: where does a flamethrowerman put its gun part when he is not firing it and he needs his hands free to do something else?


Full Access Member
Never really wanted to walk around in live fire with a can of gas on my back.What was the pouch on the front of the unit for?

Sgt. Rock

Full Access Member
I think I'd be wearing asbestos gloves if I had to use that thing. But wearing some 64 pound Zippo lighter on you back while in combat could be hazardous to your health. Going have to watch A Bridge Too Far to spot it for myself...still an interesting find.


Full Access Member
I understand that the life span of a flamethrowerman in the Pacific, especially on Iwo Jima, was measured in minutes, because the Japanese hated the things so much. Wearing the Ronson Backpack meant you were about to die.


New member
Lifebuoy flamethrower item=281396902850 July 27/2014 for those interested I can supply more detailed pictures.


Full Access Member
The Russians would execute any German POW caught as a flamethrower man by burning him alive.

Given what happend I always thought it overly generous the germans did not do the same with any down RAF personnell.

Members online

No members online now.