NEIL ARMSTRONG APOLLO-ERA TRAINING GLOVE, Issued to Neil Armstrong with his Beta cloth tag
Lot 74
NEIL ARMSTRONG APOLLO-ERA TRAINING GLOVE, Issued to Neil Armstrong with his Beta cloth tag
US$ 8,000 - 12,000
£5,900 - 8,900

The Air and Space Sale

27 Sep 2017, 13:00 EDT

New York

Lot Details
NEIL ARMSTRONG APOLLO-ERA TRAINING GLOVE, Issued to Neil Armstrong with his Beta cloth tag NEIL ARMSTRONG APOLLO-ERA TRAINING GLOVE, Issued to Neil Armstrong with his Beta cloth tag
NEIL ARMSTRONG APOLLO-ERA TRAINING GLOVE, Issued to Neil Armstrong with his Beta cloth tag
A7L Intra-Vehicular Glove, International Latex Corporation, late 1960s, rubber/neoprene-compound bladder with articulated fingers with an additional support layer that can be tightened by black nylon strap with light blue velcro closure, cuff in white Beta cloth and with revolving blue anodized aluminum disconnect ring. Printed on Beta cloth: "Part NO. A7L-103000-(315?) 19 / SIZE N. ARMSTRONG / SERIAL NO. 133 / CODE 74897 / ILC INDUSTRIES, INC." and written in pen around cuff: "CLASS III / NOT FOR FLIGHT" and "133" in red pen. With Beta cloth tag sewn along length of cuff reading: "ARMSTRONG."

The International Latex Corporation won NASA's 1965 Apollo Block II competition with their AX5-L for a spacesuit that would be advanced enough to comply with the needs of the Apollo program. Their suit incorporated a BFG rubber pressure sealing zipper for the best gas retention, "father of the space suit" George P. Durney's walking brief and thigh restraint system, and had an improved glove with steel cable and multi-directional wrist joint (NASA).

The A7L (A for Apollo; 7 for seventh in the series; and L for ILC Industries) was a version of that suit. The suits were sized to each specific astronaut and the gloves were based upon plaster hand casts collected (see lot 25 in our July 20, 2016 Space History auction). The IV Glove was formed from a single-wall restraint and bladder structure fitted the crewman's hand, over which an outer gauntlet and palm restraint provided structural support (NASA). Both this restraint and the section of beta cloth at the wrist increased flexibility and dexterity for astronauts operating controls during flight. Beta cloth was an innovative fire-resistant fabric used by NASA after the tragic Apollo 1 disaster. Neil Armstrong would have worn this glove while participating in Apollo mission training simulations, which replicated the IV glove he would have worn during flight.
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