This article is about the civilian respirator. For the firefighter gas mask, see T. gázálarc/33M tűzoltóálarc
The 33M was issued to the Hungarian fire brigade and to the Légoltalmi Liga (the predecessor of Polgári védelem – Civil Defence) before and during the Second World War.
The mask is a rubber-coated tan-colored canvas facepiece and seals on the face via goat leather verge and the sewing is sealed with a thin rubber stripe on the outside. The shatterproof (it is composed of two glass layers and a thin sheet of cellulose between) glasses are crimped to copper assemblies which are pressed to the faceblank permanently. The harness uses a one-piece adjustable harness (unlike other Hungarian masks the harness can be adjusted on the head) hooked up to a small leather center-piece the straps are sewed to, an additional strap near the bottom would be wrapped around the user's head and hooked around to provide a tight seal, the carrying strap is sewed to this. The 40mm aluminium intake is on the front of the mask while the copper exhale valve housing is under the left eyepiece. Unlike the Cold War Hungarian masks, the size 1 is the biggest and size 3 is the smallest.
Main article: 33M filter
The filter comes in a cylindrical canister with a cap and sticker sealing the bottom. Very similar to the 34M filter but not the same.
Bag and kit
The bag is similar to the 34M bag, made of canvas with a leather bottom. The little pocket inside the bag is for the anti-fogging soap.
The kit contained:
- 33M facepiece
- 33M filter
- 33M bag
- antifog inserts
The mask for the first look is structurally very similar to the Auer and Degea 700 series masks but despite the fact that Mercur was originally an Auer license the harness connection and the filter intake is rather resemblances the Dräger Gasmaske 200. This and the eyepiece assemblies show how Mercur was an independent manufacturer even before the nationalisation of the company in 1934, so the mask was not licensed, in fact, it was the first completely Hungarian mask. After July 1, 1938, it is not allowed to sell this mask so probably the production stopped before this date.
Impact on gas mask design
Despite that the mask is rather unknown it has a great impact on the Hungarian gas mask designing however a lot of its parts came from the 28M (strap system and buckles). The design style, eyepiece assembly, strap system and used materials are very similar (with little differences) on the later 34M, 67M, 75M and Ipari teljes álarc. Some of these masks were even used in the 1990s.
- Horler Ferenc: A polgári lakosság önvédelme légitámadások ellen (book-1938)
- Légoltalmi ismeretek (book-1937)