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  Apollo crew walkout (to launch) imagery (Page 2)

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Author Topic:   Apollo crew walkout (to launch) imagery
LM-12
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posted 08-12-2015 10:23 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for LM-12     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The Gemini crew "walkouts" from the Manned Spacecraft Operations Building were a bit different. They exited the north end of the building, and the crews were not suited.

Here is some British Pathe footage of the Gemini 10 crew leaving the MSOB and heading to the suiting-up trailer at Pad 16 on launch day.

LM-12
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posted 08-24-2015 01:06 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for LM-12     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
KSC-68P-332 is another Apollo 7 crew walkout photo taken before the ramp was installed. Image is dated June 24, 1968. They got the crew names mixed up in the caption.

golddog
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posted 08-24-2015 10:23 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for golddog     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Interestingly (well to me anyway) with that last photo of Apollo 7, none of the crew appear to be wearing the yellow protective rubber outer shoes to protect the soles of the space suit boots. I guess that's because it was an egress test and those suits were training suits.

LM-12
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posted 08-24-2015 10:57 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for LM-12     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Compare with this 68-H-926 launch day walkout photo of Schirra.

golddog
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posted 08-25-2015 02:27 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for golddog     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Interesting. Still no outer shoes worn. Must have been a later Apollo thing.

heng44
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posted 08-25-2015 04:35 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for heng44   Click Here to Email heng44     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by LM-12:
They got the crew names mixed up in the caption.
That is not the only thing they have mixed up. The date is wrong [sigh]. The emergency egress test was on September 9. In June the Apollo spacecraft was still in the altitude chamber.

heng44
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posted 08-25-2015 04:39 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for heng44   Click Here to Email heng44     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by golddog:
Still no outer shoes worn. Must have been a later Apollo thing.
The yellow boot protectors first show up in photos of the Apollo 8 crew walkout for their emergency egress training on October 23, 1968. They even have extra protection over their yellow plastic ones.

golddog
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posted 08-25-2015 05:39 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for golddog     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thanks. Fascinating the little details that still turn up every now and then! Lovell almost looks about to lose an outer shoe outer shoe!

LM-12
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posted 08-25-2015 08:17 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for LM-12     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by golddog:
Still no outer shoes worn. Must have been a later Apollo thing.

The Gemini crews wore similar yellow overshoes.

LM-12
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posted 08-26-2015 02:26 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for LM-12     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
73-HC-416 is a CDDT walkout photo of the Skylab 2 (Conrad) crew a few weeks before the actual launch.

Things were different for the Skylab 3 and Skylab 4 crews. Unlike previous missions, the Skylab 3 and Skylab 4 crews did not participate in a "dry" CDDT before launch. From the Skylab 4 press kit:

As in the previous Skylab launch, SL-4 launch operations differ from earlier ones in that the Countdown Demonstration Test (CDDT) and the final countdown have been incorporated into a single launch countdown.

The early portion of the countdown will include launch vehicle cryogenic fueling and final countdown activities without astronaut participation.

Following the simulated T-0, the count will go into an operational hold until T-42 hours, 30 minutes, prior to launch. The final recycled count will then proceed to launch. There will be no "dry" test with crew participation in the early portion of the count as was done on earlier missions.

Did the ASTP crew skip the "dry" test also?

heng44
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posted 08-26-2015 03:23 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for heng44   Click Here to Email heng44     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by LM-12:
Did the ASTP crew skip the "dry" test also?
No, the crew had a countdown test on July 3.

Paul78zephyr
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posted 09-15-2015 10:17 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Paul78zephyr     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
ASTP walkout. Why did these A7LB suits have 'suspenders'? I see that the Skylab suits had them too.

Captain Apollo
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posted 09-15-2015 11:35 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Captain Apollo   Click Here to Email Captain Apollo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Are those A7LBs? The crotch panel makes me think of A7Ls. I thought that was a distinctive difference?

Paul78zephyr
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posted 09-15-2015 11:50 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Paul78zephyr     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Skylab 3 (or '4') walkout. More suspenders.

I have read that all the ASTP suits were CMP type A7LBs.

LM-12
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posted 09-15-2015 02:29 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for LM-12     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The A Field Guide to American Spacecraft website has "A7LB" suit numbers for Skylab and "A7L" suit numbers for ASTP:
  • A7L-801 for Stafford
  • A7L-806 for Brand
  • A7L-803 for Slayton

Captain Apollo
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posted 09-15-2015 02:40 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Captain Apollo   Click Here to Email Captain Apollo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Another look at the "suspenders" - they seem to be part of a bib?

Paul78zephyr
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posted 09-15-2015 03:10 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Paul78zephyr     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by LM-12:
"A7L" suit numbers for ASTP
This document says they are A7LBs (pg 53). The document must be in error as they are A7Ls as you have stated.

PeterO
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posted 09-15-2015 03:52 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for PeterO   Click Here to Email PeterO     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The straps are holding up the flotation device belt that was worn during launch and reentry. The pouch under his arm, and in his hand, are the "water wings" devices that would inflate to help the astronaut float. Apparently the belts slipped in the past, so the suspenders were added.

LM-12
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posted 09-15-2015 04:20 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for LM-12     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The suspenders can be seen in this ASTP water egress training photo.

Paul78zephyr
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posted 09-15-2015 06:09 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Paul78zephyr     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
PeterO and LM-12, great info/pics. Thanks.

DG27
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posted 09-18-2015 04:05 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for DG27     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The ASTP suits were indeed A7LB suits.

The A7LB suits for the Lunar, Skylab, and ASTP programs were all slightly different for each program.

Also, remember there were two versions of the A7LB suit. The CDR and LMP had one version (A7LB EVA) and the CMP had another version (A7LB IVA).

The A7LB suit everyone is most familiar with, is the A7LB EVA version and was the type used by the CDR and LMP for Apollo 15 to 17 lunar activities. The A7LB EVA suit features the relocated entry zipper along with the repositioned gas connectors. The entry zipper was relocated to allow adding a waist joint for sitting in the rover.

Since the Apollo 15 to 17 CMP did not sit in the rover his suit resembled the A7L suit (ie without the waist joint). For the Apollo 15 thru 17 missions the A7LB suit for the CMP was very similar to the A7L (CDR and LMP) design, except for the deletion of the water connector for the LCG. However, unlike the A7L CMP suit the A7LB CMP suit featured the dual set of gas connectors (which allowed stand up free space EVA).

Since the ASTP mission was an IVA only mission for docking with the Soviets, there was no need for the water connector, no need for the extra set of suit gas hose connectors (since not using a PLSS or OPS), and no need for an EVA type TMG, on any of the suits. So the ASTP A7LB suits were the same design for all the crew (CDR, CMP, DMP), and featured only one set of gas connectors, and a single layer thermal cover for fire protection. The gloves were A7LB IVA gloves.

The suit serial numbers were rolled to an 800 series to reflect the unique A7LB suit configuration for the ASTP missions.

Hope this helps.

mach3valkyrie
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posted 09-18-2015 01:10 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for mach3valkyrie   Click Here to Email mach3valkyrie     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Very informative. Good detective work.

Paul78zephyr
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posted 10-02-2015 09:18 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Paul78zephyr     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by DG27:
So the ASTP A7LB suits were the same design for all the crew (CDR, CMP, DMP),
What is the DMP designation?

Tom
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posted 10-02-2015 09:52 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Tom   Click Here to Email Tom     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
DMP is Docking Module Pilot.

LM-12
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posted 10-07-2015 11:18 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for LM-12     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The Apollo 1 astronauts wore a similar type of suspender as seen in S67-19770.

LM-12
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posted 03-11-2016 09:13 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for LM-12     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by heng44:
No, the crew had a countdown test on July 3.
The ASTP crew can be seen at the pad in CDDT photo KSC-75P-342 with this archive.org caption:
ASTP asstronauts (sic) Donald slayton (sic), Vance Brand and Thomas Stafford leave the transfer van at Complex 39's Pad B and enter the pad elevator during the Countdown Demonstration Test. The test, a step-by-step dress rehearsal for the July 15 launch, simulates the actual countdown but without the propellants in the Saturn IB launch vehicle's fuel tanks. The fueled portion of the test was conducted yesterday.
Does the NASA caption have the same mistakes?

carmelo
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posted 03-11-2016 10:28 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for carmelo   Click Here to Email carmelo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Why the A7LB suits for Skylab missions were not of same type worn by the command module pilot in Apollo 15-17 missions? There was not lunar rover on Skylab.

DG27
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posted 03-13-2016 12:43 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for DG27     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The addition of the waist joint to allow the astronauts to sit in the lunar rover made the A7LB EVA (CDR and LMP) suit a more mobile suit than the A7L (or A7LB CMP) suit. Thus for putting a crew on the Skylab space station I think you would want the most mobile suit available in case there were problems that came up during EVA. (This is my opinion since I do not have any documentation to support this.)

Also the shoulder joints in the A7LB were improved over the A7L design with the addition of pulleys at the entrance of the guide tubes for the shoulder restraint cables. This helped reduce the cable drag friction which improved the shoulder mobility. The A7LB was basically an "improved" suit over the A7L, which you would want for any EVA work.

schnappsicle
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posted 03-14-2016 07:27 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for schnappsicle   Click Here to Email schnappsicle     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I can't imagine the astronauts, or anyone else, entering a spacecraft while wearing dirty boots. If they aren't wearing protective boots, is there a chance the boots shown in the photo were cleaned in the white room prior to ingress? If so, how? They could also have been cleaned in the van during the drive out to the pad. Either way, it seems like a huge waste of time.

EDIT - After looking at the Apollo 7 suit-up photos, it appears all three are wearing some kind of protective covering over their boots. I can't tell if it's white or clear plastic, but the boots look too wrinkly to me to be anything other than some sort of covering.

LM-12
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posted 03-14-2016 11:09 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for LM-12     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
In photo 68-H-933, you can see that the soles of Walt Cunningham's boots are black. Maybe he is wearing boot protectors. I don't think the soles of the PGA boots were black.

DG27
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posted 03-17-2016 01:50 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for DG27     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Yes, those are boot protectors. The soles of the PGA boots are an off white color.

LM-12
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posted 11-24-2017 12:08 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for LM-12     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Here is some walkout footage of the Apollo 8 crew during training. The film begins with the crew leaving the transfer van at the MSOB, which you rarely see. The first walkout looks like the backup crew. The second walkout looks like the prime crew. Both crews are wearing the two boot protectors.

heng44
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posted 11-25-2017 08:37 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for heng44   Click Here to Email heng44     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Nice find. The footage is from October 23, 1968. First we see the prime crew returning to the MSOB after emergency egress training at the pad. Then we seen the backup crew leaving for the same emergency egress training.

Then a (presumably) pretty lady walking towards the door, which is odd because the MSOB exit lacks the ramp that was installed in September 1968 (see earlier in this thread).

And finally we see the prime crew leaving the MSOB for the emergency egress training at the pad, which should have been the first scene.

LM-12
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posted 11-25-2017 09:35 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for LM-12     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I like raw footage like this, which is often silent and out of sequence. The backup crew walkout was the Photo of the Week 626.

The lady might be walking into the north wing of the MSOB.

SkyMan1958
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posted 11-25-2017 05:06 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for SkyMan1958   Click Here to Email SkyMan1958     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
For all you folks wondering about "suspenders," here is a picture of Skylab 4 water wings.

LM-12
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posted 11-25-2017 08:52 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for LM-12     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by heng44:
The footage is from October 23, 1968.
Here is what the crew training summary has for the Apollo 8 crews on October 23:
  • Pad Egress Demo - All
  • CMS #3 - B/U
  • Reentry Proc. Review - Prime
  • Landmarks/Targets - All


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