Thong from Frankford Ordnance Depot

Now that you stopped laughing, tell me what “thong” is. I mean the one in this unopened box, Dan Dietz (the seller) was not sure.

Pull through brass cleaning thongs for cleaning your barrel, most likely?


Some kind of leather strap item?

You know, M1 GARAND OR 1903 SPRINGFIELD brass or steel cleaning thongs.


That strikes me as an awful big package for just one of the pull-through type rifle cleaning implements used in the early butt-trap kits. The only other “thong” of which I am aware though are the leather leg tie-downs that came on the standard U.S. Holsters for pistols and revolvers, and on the combat knife M3 Scabbard and those for the M4, M5, M5A1, M6, M7, M8 and M9 bayonet scabbards. I wish you could read the year on that package. The leather thongs were later changed to cloth - basically nothing but an olive drab boot lace. The package certainly seems large to hold just one of those, also.

I really have no idea what’s in one of these packages. One of the reasons why I had sealed boxes and packets, and normally open them no matter when and where they were made.

The “thong” as shown above is a weight with a string, and the drawing number for that type is C64175, later changed to 5564175, and that in turn was the basis for the stock number when the military switched to Federatl Stock Numbers (FSN) and National Stock Numbers (NSN).

It is not unheard of for supply types to get confused when labeling items and the “unit of issue” as each, dozen, hundred, pound, etc might not be exactly what the package contains. Even though marked as “one” is may be one dozen or 100, or maybe indeed it is only one.

(Give the folks a break. This was mind numbing tedium to repack warehouses full of stuff like this, often with unit costs of maybe pennies per item, and they may spend several days receiving, or repacking or relabeling a dozen pallets full of these thongs. Then move on to a pallet full of tiny springs, or toilet paper holders or something. Military supply is not glamorous work done by rocket scientists.)

Oh, the reason the military had these things was that they were carried in the “oiler and thong case” made of nickeled brass, or of plastic along with a bore brush so they could clean out the corrosive crud in the barrels after firing AMMUNITION.

At the risk of asking a stupid question, why don’t you just carefully open the box, protecting the label, to confirm what’s inside?

I’m surprised no one has commented on the packaging. When is the last time you saw anything from Frankford Ordnance Depot?

I’d pay a premium for that box.


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Frankford General Supply Ordnance Depot was part of Frankford Arsenal located in Brides, Philadelphia. During WWI there was only 12 people reportedly working there. I have seen items packaged and labeled the exact same way dated in the late 1950’s.

If you have a friendly dentist, maybe he could X-ray it for you.

Here is a link to an ebay sale for 1 tiny screw in a package as big as a mans hand. Same type of label. … _69wt_1399

According to a report dealing with the closing of military bases the Frankford Ordnance Depot of Philadelphia 37, Pa was inactivated or approved for inactivation on September 1, 1954 (reverted to Frankford Arsenal).

Here it is, a thong. I was seriously tempted to put a REAL thong in the last picture, but fearing solitary confinement, decided otherwise.

Finally! I was pretty much correct that it might be a thong used for a tie-down of equipment rather than a pull-through for cleaning. : ) It shouldn’t matter at all - I never mind being corrected, but considering my recent record of being wrong and outright screwing up on answers, I have to be happy about it. Sorry for the display of ego.

John, you get a cookie!


Joe Adashunas

Joe - Thanks. I hope it is a toll house cookie, with milk chocalate droplets in it, and no nuts. :-)

LOL, you earned it!

I decided to repost my pics, just in case the old pics can’t be restored.

Thong you Vlad for the re-post. Much appreciated & very cool.