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Item 4197 - Frank Borman A7L Training Glove Catalog 538 (Oct 2018)

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(we are no longer accepting bids on this item)
Estimate: $20,000.00 +
Sold Price: $22,682.10 (includes buyer's premium)


An unflown earlier variant of a left-handed A7L glove, likely the training or backup EVA glove made for Commander Frank Borman and his Apollo 8 mission. The glove features an ILC label sewn inside the gauntlet, reading: "Item CP2001 Glove Assy, EV, Left, A7L-203000-03, Model No. 2001A, Size F. Borman, Serial 017, Date 4/68, Contract No. NAS 9-6100, 74897." The glove is complete with its internal latex pressure glove and external Thermal Micrometeoroid Garment (TMG) cover designed to protect the glove during extravehicular activities. Although there was no EVA scheduled for Apollo 8, ILC was contracted to build and supply EVA support items such as this glove for the mission. In very good condition, with wear consistent with heavy use, including some tears to the gauntlet's seam and glove's palm; tears and fraying near the ILC tag; several smaller tears and wear to edges; and deterioration to the internal pressure glove.

This variant of the A7L glove was the last of this particular Thermal Micrometeoroid Garment (TMG) configuration. A new style was made for Apollo 9 and the following missions. The newer gloves had blue silicone fingertips and the gauntlet would be cut shorter in order to expose the pressure relief valve and the pressure gauge located on the lower arms. A superb, early example of an A7L glove made for the commander of the first manned mission to the moon.

As we approach the 50th anniversary of Apollo 8 in December 2018, this auction presents a truly extraordinary opportunity—to own an original, complete A7L glove built for the mission’s commander, Frank Borman. Apollo 8 was the first manned flight to the moon, and many at NASA believed it to be the most significant Apollo flight: to borrow from Tsiolkovsky, it was the first time we ever set foot outside the cradle of humanity. It was also dangerous, as the first manned flight of the Saturn V, which had nearly vibrated itself apart on Apollo 6. Borman, Lovell, and Anders completed their ambitious mission with aplomb, becoming national heroes via a famous Christmas Eve TV broadcast that, at the time, was the most-viewed television program in history.

Apollo 8 is one of the most difficult missions to find hardware or artifacts from, and A7L gloves are similarly scarce—those that are typically offered are incomplete or in a lesser state of preservation than this fantastic specimen. This auction represents a singular opportunity to obtain such a remarkable piece of space history.

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