GUENEAU 316

 

 

The Gueneau (Geno) 316 was in service on almost all types of jets

of the Swiss AF inventory and on "slow movers" like Pilatus P-3, PC-6/ 7/ 9. 

 

The 316 was deemed unsuitable for helicopter operations already at the early stage of its evaluation. This was mainly due to its weight and the longer mission durations for helicopters compared to those for fixed wing aircraft. 

 

Peculiar features of the "Swiss 316", compared to the standard French issue:

 

  • Chin strap fitted; 

  • Nape strap configuration;

  • Clear/ dark visor automatic lowering  mechanism removed;

  • Modified communication cables;

  • Boom mike bracket; 

  • Upward pointing headset straps like the ones fitted to the Gueneau 317.

 

The introduction of the 316 was not without flaws. The helmet was considered too heavy.

 

Additionally, the metal grommets/ eyelets fitted to the helmet had a tendency to scratch the aircraft canopies.

 

To overcome this problem, a modified version of the helmet, the Gueneau 316 "modifiziert" was implemented.

 

 

 

Right - an early trial to overcome the problems of the Gueneau 316, by appling a leather padding to the top of the shell.

Reportedly this solution was rejected due to the fact the padding blocking the shell's vent holes thus creating problems in case of an ejection.  

Note: the above degraded image is taken from the book “In Cockpit für die Schweiz” by Dölf Preisig and Ronald Sonderegger, for educational purposes only in accordance with the Berne Convention, Art. 10.