PDA

View Full Version : RN Signal Flags, Pendants, Pennants


dennis a feary
03-09-2009, 06:29
Bit obvious I know, but as an `observation' flags being flown by L55 in posting 97 are L 5 5 - as in the pics posted here.
Hope they come out in some sort of order and seeable !
Curses an extra 5 did not come out - but you see what I mean !!

Sadsac

Dreadnought
03-09-2009, 08:12
Hi Dennis,

Not being an expert on flags/pennants (well not yet anyway ..!!), perhaps you could explain this a little bit more. Looking again at the photograph (post 99), I see the sequence as below. So why isn't flag 5 repeated? The Royal Handbook of Signalling (1913) shows the bottom flag (assuming I have the right one) as meaning "Interrogative Pendant". What does this mean? Was it used to signal a repeat of the flag above or something? Did they only have one each of the signal flags?

Cheers

Clive

dennis a feary
03-09-2009, 17:28
Dreadnought, great pics of the flags. How do you get them so clear ?? Could you post more such ?? You can see that my attempt by comparason is abysmal !! You were corredt re position of flags - It would go 5 (numeral) then to repeat 1st Substitute (as you have posted) as in ;
The 1st Substitute repeats the upper flag or Pendant of a series the 2nd Sub repeats the 2nd flag or Pendant.

Regards & thanks for your input

Sadsac

Dreadnought
03-09-2009, 19:33
Dreadnought, great pics of the flags. How do you get them so clear ?? Could you post more such ?? You can see that my attempt by comparason is abysmal !! You were corredt re position of flags - It would go 5 (numeral) then to repeat 1st Substitute (as you have posted) as in ;
The 1st Substitute repeats the upper flag or Pendant of a series the 2nd Sub repeats the 2nd flag or Pendant.

Regards & thanks for your input

Sadsac
Hi Dennis,

Thanks for explaining that. I created those from scratch, and am happy to more for you if you give me a bit of time ... I will do a few at a time.

Because of the white in so many of them, I put them on a grey background, You can have any background colour you wish, or, I can stroke the edges with a very thin black line and put them on a white background if you prefer. Alternatively, I can provide them in .png format with a transparent background. Take your pick.

Clive

dennis a feary
04-09-2009, 06:57
Dreaded-Clive, thanks for the offer re the flags. Not too sure (I'm a bit thick) what you entierly mean as to the backgrounds and transparency.
If possible, and you have time could you please post one of each that you have described ?? Be so grateful. I would like GOOD copies of flags to be able to use with PC.
For the moment, for FLAGS I refer to the Old Naval Signalling flags NOT the International that we use now. I would like all letters and numerals.
Oh Dear, that comes to 36 !!! A few at a time would be fine.

Sadsac

dennis a feary
04-09-2009, 07:30
CLIVE - re the flags you / I have posted. For flag 5 I have 4 white 4 red `stripes - - you have 3 white 3 red, which is the BEARING PENDANT not the numeral 5 !!! Can you confirm please ????
I will put difference on this. See what I mean !

Sadsac

Dreadnought
04-09-2009, 08:01
Hi Dennis ... well that is strange? According to the Handbook, numeral 5 is how I have shown it. If you go back to the photo I posted of L55, this seems to confirm. What do you think?

Clive

Dreadnought
04-09-2009, 10:32
Dennis,

Think I know the answer after having carried out a bit of digging. The pennant numeral '5' I showed, and the one flying from Submarine L55 in the photograph, are from the Royal Signals Handbook 1913, which now makes sense.

RN signal flags changed in 1939/1940. and pennant '5' then changed to have the 4 red stripes as you originally showed. Pennant '9' also changed (colours). The rest of the numeric pennants remained the same. There were other changes in the alphabetic flags as well; Flags 'D' and 'S' changed, and flags 'P' and 'Q' were swopped. The 1940 flags also saw more pennants introduced. The 1913 pennat '5' became pennant 'B6' which I guess is the bearing pennant you referred to.

Think it best that I do you a set of the 1913 pennants first, and then we can move on to the 1940 changes and additions. This may take a bit of time, but It will be a worthwhile exercise methinks.

Clive

Dreadnought
04-09-2009, 13:44
Dennis,

Here is the first batch ... numeric flags 1913 ... the easy one first ..!!

I have taken the executive decsion to do them this way; i.e. no background so that you can use them on top of any coloured background of your choice, and I have stroked them black (3 pixels) so that on a white background, the edges of white parts of a flag will be evident. Hope that makes sense ..!!

Clive

Dreadnought
04-09-2009, 13:53
Dennis,

Batch 2 .... alphabetic flags 1913, A to I.

Clive

Dreadnought
04-09-2009, 15:27
Dennis,

Alphabetic flags J-R. Now on the triangular flags, you will get some white space in the top and bottom right hand triangular segments as a .jpeg file. If this causes you a problem at any time. let me know and I will e-mail you them as a .png files so that those segments will be transparent. This will only be necessary if you want to use them on a background other than white.

Clive

dennis a feary
04-09-2009, 16:13
Dreadnought CLIVE - you are now promoted to Yeo of Signals !!!

Marvellous Bl**dy Marvellous !!!!!
Look forward to others & numerals when time permits.

Many thanks Sadsac

dennis a feary
04-09-2009, 16:22
Clive (my Yeo of Sigs) - if you look very closely at the flags you will see that second one down is `whipping' in the wind and has 4 red/ white stripes. Same as 3rd flag which is similarly `whipping'. therefore 2nd flag on shows 3 red / white stripes.
Does this help / do you agree ??
It may help if we could find a pic of another boat flying the numeral 5 - say H25 / E25 / H15 etc.

Sadsac

Dreadnought
04-09-2009, 16:34
Hi Dennis,

No, I'm pretty sure that what I said in post 114 is correct, that the numeral Pennant changed to the four stripes in 1939/40 ... you will see later when I get to the 1940 flags/pennants.

Meanwhile, here are rest of alphabet flags 1913. Moving onto the numeral pennants now ... the 1913 versions ... so numeral '5' will only have 3 stripes I'm afraid ... !! he he

Clive

dennis a feary
04-09-2009, 17:10
Clive - i will put to you my thinking on this.
For your S you have the Division flag (close to) for 1913 - for 1940 in the Interanional flags it is 2nd substitute.
The colours should be for S green/white diagonal stripes
If you look at your 5 it is the Bearing Pendant and for 1940 it is called an Answering Pendant - that is the one with 3 red/white stripes.
I am now quoting Naval Signal Card 1937 and also Brown's Signalling !!
In actual fact the cover of the book has `your' 5 flag on it.
I will try later to post a copy on Forum.
You have not yet posted Flag D.
But ALL are great works !!!

Sadsac

Dreadnought
04-09-2009, 19:31
Clive - i will put to you my thinking on this.
For your S you have the Division flag (close to) for 1913 - for 1940 in the Interanional flags it is 2nd substitute.
The colours should be for S green/white diagonal stripes
If you look at your 5 it is the Bearing Pendant and for 1940 it is called an Answering Pendant - that is the one with 3 red/white stripes.
I am now quoting Naval Signal Card 1937 and also Brown's Signalling !!
In actual fact the cover of the book has `your' 5 flag on it.
I will try later to post a copy on Forum.
You have not yet posted Flag D.
But ALL are great works !!!

Sadsac
Hi Dennis

The plot thickens, and I am not quite yet ready to exceed ...! Look at these ... extracts from the 1913 signals, and the 1940 versions ... I say 1940 , could have been 1937. To me it confirms my view on this. I agree, that letter 'S' has the green and white diagonal flashes in 1937/40, but not in 1913. You can clearly see the 1913 numeric '5' pennant as I have mentioned, and also, the 1937/40 '5' (PT5) with the 4 red/white stripes. Also in the 1937/40 pennants ... look at B6 ... which is the same as the 1913 '5' pennant.

Isn't this great ...!

I have posted Flag D (1913) ... see post 34. However, the 1937/40 flag D changes to the orange/red tricolor, and yes I haven't done that one yet.

Maybe your gracious promotion of me to Yeo of Signals is premature, but I am going to need some convincing that I have got this wrong.

Clive

harry.gibbon
04-09-2009, 21:52
re post #123 ... gents no need to concede when there is a 40yr man active on the Comms thread... so why don't you encourage Fairlead to become involved in the debate;) also some ex s/m guys operating on the forum might be able to run up some answers... just a thought.

Little h

spruso
05-09-2009, 04:16
Hi Dennis

The plot thickens, and I am not quite yet ready to exceed ...! Look at these ... extracts from the 1913 signals, and the 1940 versions ... I say 1940 , could have been 1937. To me it confirms my view on this. I agree, that letter 'S' has the green and white diagonal flashes in 1937/40, but not in 1913. You can clearly see the 1913 numeric '5' pennant as I have mentioned, and also, the 1937/40 '5' (PT5) with the 4 red/white stripes. Also in the 1937/40 pennants ... look at B6 ... which is the same as the 1913 '5' pennant.

Isn't this great ...!

I have posted Flag D (1913) ... see post 34. However, the 1937/40 flag D changes to the orange/red tricolor, and yes I haven't done that one yet.

Maybe your gracious promotion of me to Yeo of Signals is premature, but I am going to need some convincing that I have got this wrong.

Clive

Hi Clive,

Have been following the flag discussion with interest.
I did some amateur research a few years ago on RN Dress Lines. (See http://www.perthone.com/1df06.htm ). Was wondering if you had any info on exactly when the 3 Red Stripe flag changed to 4.

I have some signal book diagrams for dressing ship for 1899,1908,1913, and 1949 onward. Have never been able to find any diagrams between 1913 and 1949. All my research for 1913 to 1948 was from photos. I believe they were contained in the Signal Books of those times but I can't locate any copies.

Cheers
Bruce

dennis a feary
05-09-2009, 06:00
Clive - `not yet ready to exceed' no, why should you.
BUT now collating `your / my' flag books I believe we are looking at different books. Your 1913 and my 1937 differ in some ways. But that means we are both correct / wrong.
I post here my Signal Card Book (BR232) issued to Fleet 1937.
Futher comments welcomed.
Can you please post D & S Flags as depicted in MY 1937 book.

BRUCE - good pics of the `Dressed Overall' ships. Only thing to Clive / Me is that they are a little late for our `time scale'. Here are the 1937 Flags as above Take these `as Gospel' - never mind what Clive says (just a little barb at him)

Sadsac

Dreadnought
05-09-2009, 07:15
Dennis ..and Bruce,

Welcome to this debate Bruce. I have been through all of your website and compared your 1937 signals (I accept 1937 as the date rather than 1940) with Dennis's cards, and with mine and they are all the same ... so no disputes between us there. My 1913 signals are directly from the Handbook of the time and I don't think this is in dispute Dennis. Borne out by those also shown on the Flags of the World website. I think the question now is, when did the changes occur, especially the numeral '5' pennant from 3 red/white stripes to 4, the change to alpha flags 'D' and 'S', and the swopping of 'Q' and 'R', and the use of the 1913 numeric '5' pennant as the 'bearing' pennant. Indeed, was there more than one change between 1913 and 1937?

The photograph of submarine L55 must have been taken between September 1918 (launch) and June 1919 (loss), and therefore logically would be flying the 1913 numeric '5' .... i.e. 3 vertical red/white stripes Dennis ..!!

I am now going to produce the 1913 pennants, before going on to the 1937 signals. As a special treat Dennis , you get these 1937 alpha flags 'D' and 'S' attached in advance ..!!

I'll be back (as once was said by Arnie)

Great website Bruce.

Clive

spruso
05-09-2009, 07:15
Hi Dennis,
Thanks for the B232 copies. Mine were from a Canadian Book. Is there a list of the order of flags to use on the dressing lines in that book? I think the "B" publications were the one that held these lists.

Has Clive been naughty, or is he re-ammunitioning?

Cheers
Bruce

spruso
05-09-2009, 07:49
Dennis ..and Bruce,

Welcome to this debate Bruce. I have been through all of your website and compared your 1937 signals (I accept 1937 as the date rather than 1940) with Dennis's cards, and with mine and they are all the same ... so no disputes between us there. My 1913 signals are directly from the Handbook of the time and I don't think this is in dispute Dennis. Borne out by those also shown on the Flags of the World website. I think the question now is, when did the changes occur, especially the numeral '5' pennant from 3 red/white stripes to 4, the change to alpha flags 'D' and 'S', and the swopping of 'Q' and 'R', and the use of the 1913 numeric '5' pennant as the 'bearing' pennant. Indeed, was there more than one change between 1913 and 1937?

The photograph of submarine L55 must have been taken between September 1918 (launch) and June 1919 (loss), and therefore logically would be flying the 1913 numeric '5' .... i.e. 3 vertical red/white stripes Dennis ..!!

I am now going to produce the 1913 pennants, before going on to the 1937 signals. As a special treat Dennis , you get these 1937 alpha flags 'D' and 'S' attached in advance ..!!

I'll be back (as once was said by Arnie)

Great website Bruce.

Clive

Hi Clive,
You must have got your last post in seconds before mine!

Thanks for the comment on my website. Still a lot of gaps to fill! That helps me to know the dates for L55 as I have been unable to get any clue as to whether the pre war patterns were still in use during WW1. ( I would be very surprised if they were changed in the middle of a war but then again nothing surprises me with bureaucracy. )

The trick now is to try to find out when the post war changes were made.The RAN Historical Branch informed me that the National Archives in the UK hold all the old books and files relating to Signal Flags etc. for the 1919-1948 period though I must confess I was unable to trace them thru their website.

I will be interested to see what you all come up with next.

Cheers
Bruce

dennis a feary
05-09-2009, 08:41
Clive / Bruce, I have now looked through my photo's and find, after Clives listing of HIS flags as 1913. That is correct. Confirmed by photo of HMS ELFIN 1935 showing a red/white x 3 vertical stripes for N5. I thought that it was 4 stripes from my 1937 book. I have photo's of other ships / subs flying flags in 1937 - so the flag change must have been circa 1935 / 1937.
So Clive, you are correct up to 1935 at least - `I make a leg to you' for that.
Just to be pedantic - NOT Pennant for these BUT PENDANT !!

Sadsac

Dreadnought
05-09-2009, 08:45
Clive / Bruce, I have now looked through my photo's and find, after Clives listing of HIS flags as 1913. That is correct. Confirmed by photo of HMS ELFIN 1935 showing a red/white x 3 vertical stripes for N5. I thought that it was 4 stripes from my 1937 book. I have photo's of other ships / subs flying flags in 1937 - so the flag change must have been circa 1935 / 1937.
So Clive, you are correct up to 1935 at least - `I make a leg to you' for that.
Just to be pedantic - NOT Pennant for these BUT PENDANT !!

Sadsac
Dennis, I stand corrected .... we will make a leg each then .........

Clive

Dreadnought
05-09-2009, 10:38
This topic started of in the RN Submarines 1900-1925 Thread at post 101, and then from post 111 and onwards. Conscious of the fact we were getting a bit off topic, I thought it a good idea to start a new thread as it is an interesting topic and more to post.

So, continuing Dennis ... here are numeric pendants 1913.

Clive

Dreadnought
05-09-2009, 12:16
Hi Dennis,

Here are special pendants 1913.

Clive

Dreadnought
05-09-2009, 12:37
Dennis,

Special Flags 1913. Going to start 0n 1937 flags/pendants now

Clive

Dreadnought
05-09-2009, 14:01
Dennis,

Special pendants 1937.

The 1913 numeral '5' pendant becomes the 1937 'Bearing Pendant'. New 1937 numeral '5' pendant.
The 1913 numeral '9' pendant becomes the 1937 'Deployment Pendant' New 1937 numeral '9' pendant.
The 1913 'Guard Pendant' becomes the 1937 'Disposition Pendant'
The 1913 'Oblique Pendant' becomes the 1937 'Formation Pendant'
The 1913 'Equal Speed Pendant' becomes the 1937 'Order Pendant'
The 1913 alphabet flag 'D' becomes the 1937 'Screen Flag'. New 1937 alphabet 'D' flag
The 1913 alphabet flag 'S' seems to disappear. New 1937 alphabet 'S' flag

Clive

Dreadnought
05-09-2009, 14:55
Dennis,

I'm still going ... Special Flags 1937, 1st batch.

Clive

Dreadnought
05-09-2009, 15:29
Dennis,

Think this is the last lot ... let me know if I have missed any?

The 1913 'Red Burgee' becomes the 1937 'Battleship Flag'
The 1913 'Blue Burgee' becomes the 1937 'Stationing Flag'

Happy to create any other stuff you need doing at any time.

Clive

dennis a feary
05-09-2009, 15:44
OK Clive - much agree - I thought that BADGES was getting a little FULL.
A good switch.
Yeo of Sigs you certainly are.
When my head gets away from spinning from all the entries you have made I will be pleased to try to find a `mistake' !!
Sadsac

alanbenn
05-09-2009, 15:56
Posts merged from submarines thread.


Regards
Alan

dennis a feary
05-09-2009, 16:28
Well done Alan, it was just what I thought should be done - and would have if I had been competant enough !!
My last post - for Badge read RN Subs.

Clive to `prove' you are correct in the 1913 v 1937 flag puzzle - here are two pics of H49 one flying the 1937 numeral 9 (1st one) and one flying the 1913 flag. Not sure when No2 was taken, but I know for a fact that the No1 photo was taken in 1936/7. Would like to see other flags being flown for confirmation. Still to resolve the actual date of change over - bit pedantic I know, but `worth a sniff' methinks.
Hope you can see from the photo's the difference.
Anyway at least all is now hunky-dory. Was in great fear and trebling that you and I would be having to `throw down the gauntlet' !! I was going to suggest `Filthy language at 20 paces' - how would that have been for you ??

But then Kacey / Astral could have had us cut from the Forum and Castigated - and that would have been the `unkindess Cut of all' !!!!!!!
Sadsac

Dick
06-09-2009, 08:16
Facinating stuff gentlemen.

Here are some illustrations from my father's 1943 Seaman's pocket book in case they help resolve any questions....

Is there a full record somewhere, a codebook perhaps, of the special meanings attached to particular hoists? It would be good to be able to read more of the signals you see flying in WW2 photographs.

(Re the last sentence in #23, I believe that that is also the explanation for the true spelling (but not pronounciation) of the letter/number combination painted on the hull of RN warships.)

Fairlead
06-09-2009, 13:52
Just popped over from the Communicators thread at the request of Clive - I can't see what all the fuss has been about (but then bunting(s) always caused communicators problems) L55 in the phot is flying the hoist - L pt 5 pt Int (also pt 1st substitute) = L55. Though quite why is a mystery as the numbers painted on the tower are clearer to see than the flag hoist! But rules are rules and if you had to hoist your callsign or Pt numbers on entering a port then thats what you did.

Going on to explain my comment about bunting causing problems - how many of you have experienced a 'cock up' with Colours and Sunset/Evening Colours?
Too many, I bet

Fairlead

Dreadnought
06-09-2009, 13:55
Hi Dennis,

Now we can go off plot again and fill this thread up with submarines ...!!

Following on from your H49 signals (well spotted). how about these from my collection. L53 showing the 1913 numeral '5', and L69 showing the 1937 numeral '9'.

L53 was launched 12th August 1919, and L69 launched on 6th December 1923.

So that means the change must have been somewhere in betwee those dates ... doesn't it?

Clive

Dreadnought
06-09-2009, 14:03
Just popped over from the Communicators thread at the request of Clive - I can't see what all the fuss has been about (but then bunting(s) always caused communicators problems) L55 in the phot is flying the hoist - L pt 5 pt Int (also pt 1st substitute) = L55. Though quite why is a mystery as the numbers painted on the tower are clearer to see than the flag hoist! But rules are rules and if you had to hoist your callsign or Pt numbers on entering a port then thats what you did.

Going on to explain my comment about bunting causing problems - how many of you have experienced a 'cock up' with Colours and Sunset/Evening Colours?
Too many, I bet

Fairlead
Thanks for that Fairlead ... think we got to that stage. The debate has been over the numeral '5' pendant and the difference between the 1913 signal cards and the 1937 cards, and trying to work out when the changeover came into force. Think we might have narrowed it down to somewhere between 1919 and 1923 by studying submarine hoists. See posts 33 and 36. Thanks for popping over ... welcome any time.

Clive

Dreadnought
06-09-2009, 14:29
Facinating stuff gentlemen.

Here are some illustrations from my father's 1943 Seaman's pocket book in case they help resolve any questions....

Is there a full record somewhere, a codebook perhaps, of the special meanings attached to particular hoists? It would be good to be able to read more of the signals you see flying in WW2 photographs.

(Re the last sentence in #23, I believe that that is also the explanation for the true spelling (but not pronounciation) of the letter/number combination painted on the hull of RN warships.)
Hi Dick,

Thanks for that. It is interesting to see how the hoists were actually arranged, and the use of the substitute pendants.

There does seem to be some confusion sometimes between the words 'Pendant' and 'Pennant'.

As I understand it, the term pendant - pronounced pennant – is simply a tapering flag, just like a pennant (except strictly a pennant ends in a swallow tail). Sometimes, the very tip of the point is chopped off square to give a Corpen pennant.

Proper 'pennants' were, and are, used; the 'Commissioning Pennant' and the 'Paying off Pennant'

The RN signal system contained not only alphabetical and special flags, but also “numeral flags” , "pennants" and “numbered pendants”, as we have been discussing in this thread. There are 67 in a complete set.

Early in 1914, just before the start of WW1, British destroyers were ordered to paint their pendant numbers on their hulls, as prior to this, these signal pendants were hard to see through the smoke and spray. The word ‘pendant’ followed the numbers down to the ship’s side."

I believe there were six different sizes of flags/pendants depending on the class of the ship.

We will, I am sure move on to WW2 flags/pendants in due course ..!!

Clive

qprdave
06-09-2009, 15:55
Excuse me for interferring!!!

Wouldn't this thread be better dealt with if it was transferred into the comms thread. Then it won't get separated and everything Comms would be alltogether for anyone researching the communications Branch.

astraltrader
06-09-2009, 16:00
I see what you are saying Dave - but this is purely for Flags, pendants and pennants. It sems to be working ok.:)

qprdave
06-09-2009, 16:04
OK Terry. Thanks

As I said. Sorry for interferring

Dreadnought
06-09-2009, 16:04
Excuse me for interferring!!!

Wouldn't this thread be better dealt with if it was transferred into the comms thread. Then it won't get separated and everything Comms would be alltogether for anyone researching the communications Branch.
Hi Dave,

I too, take the point, but not sure the sparkers want the bunting tossers clogging up their airwaves. I think it stands quite well on it's own at the moment.

Clive

qprdave
06-09-2009, 16:10
Thanks for your reply Clive

As I have said before in another post

"Gently remove boot from mouth and walk slowly backwards, smiling"

harry.gibbon
06-09-2009, 19:00
Folks,
Re a thread move... although this thread seems to be standing alone quite well at the momentl... I am a little surprised that any Bunting would think of himself as outside the Communications Branch (as was).

In the Comms thread we have successfully included flag wagging as new posts or via links. Also, the fact that material relating to the G,T,W,U and S branches/sub branches have already been included and receive universal debate seems to indicate that we, as we always did, relish the differences as well as the similarities that the Comms bods experienced/endured...

After all we were all victualled in the same mess on board ie the Comms Mess!:)


Clive - I think we would all appreciate it if you were to complete your profile please mate.
Little h

Dreadnought
06-09-2009, 19:49
Folks,
Re a thread move... although this thread seems to be standing alone quite well at the momentl... I am a little surprised that any Bunting would think of himself as outside the Communications Branch (as was).

In the Comms thread we have successfully included flag wagging as new posts or via links. Also, the fact that material relating to the G,T,W,U and S branches/sub branches have already been included and receive universal debate seems to indicate that we, as we always did, relish the differences as well as the similarities that the Comms bods experienced/endured...

After all we were all victualled in the same mess on board ie the Comms Mess!:)


Clive - I think we would all appreciate it if you were to complete your profile please mate.
Little h
Little h,

I am just happy to contribute to best of my knowledge and ability. I will leave it to the powers to be to decide where those contributions are best placed.

Clive

dennis a feary
07-09-2009, 05:59
CLIVE, note that the input of flags on masts by DICK has `my' flags of 1937 vintage depicted.
As to your pics of `L' boats flying flags - they may have been launched on those dates, but is that the date / time that the pics were taken ???
What about pics of other ships / boats / battlewagons with flags flying - surely `someone' on the Forum has ships with flags flying in a disinctive manner whereby they can be seen entirely.
And Clive many thanks for contiuing to post flags - what about the International Flags ?? When time permits of course.
Terry / GPRDave, suppose Thread is in the correct place - main thing is is that it is being used. Clive has given me a great insight into Flag flying - not having been much in the Buntingtosser area of research. Once got meself in a little trouble with the term `Buntingtosser' - but thats another story !!

Sadsac

Dreadnought
07-09-2009, 07:25
Dennis,

Yes ... but, just suppose that both photos were taken on launch (not likely, but bear with me), then, the 1913 flags must have been in use in August 1919. Similarly, the 1937 flags must have been in use in December 1923. Therefore, my summation that the changeover took place between the two dates stands.

I was hoping you weren't going to bring up the International Flags because I have found a document - Brown’s Signalling, 18th Edition, February 1916, and in it is published ‘The International Code of Signals – For the Use of all Nations’ then subtitled ‘Hints to Candidates for Certificates of Competency at Board of Trade Examinations’

The document begins …….. ‘THE EXAMINATION as to the New International Code of Signals will tend to elicit whether the Candidate possesses ………

I attach the signals out of the Brown's Signalling document along with the 1913 Handbook of Signalling version ... doesn't seem to be any different. I will have to research the what, when and how on these, and will produce any that I haven't already done.

Clive

Dreadnought
07-09-2009, 11:04
No doubt many of you recognise this one .... the Gin Pendant.

Its origins are uncertain but appears that it has been used since the 1940's and maybe earlier.

Originally it was a small green pendant (approx 18 inches by 9 inches) defaced with a white wine glass. It is more commonly today, the 'Starboard Pennant' defaced with a wine or cocktail glass.

Anybody got any photographs or recollections of the Gin Pendant/Pennant? When was the earliest example?

I have made these up based on the written descriptions.


Clive

dennis a feary
07-09-2009, 16:21
Clive, thanks for all of your - will think all over. Yes, I believe I did bring up `International Flags' a bit too early - should have waited until we finally got 1913/1937 sorted out - if we ever do !! Somewhere there must be a definitive date of `change over' entered - unless I suppose it just `took over' !
One thing does strike me re the letter D in the 1913 posting - one wonders why whoever made up that signalling system would put in the National Flag as a letter ??

Sadsac

Fairlead
07-09-2009, 17:20
I have searched through 'Signal' by Capt Barry Kent and no mention of changing flags or dates other than the 1940 and 1990 flag lockers.
I guess you will have to try the Museum Library at HMS COLLINGWOOD - I know at MERCURY there was a good library of old signal books and small objects related to V/S which was started by Lt Cdr Jack Dempsey, but what happened to it I have no idea.

Fairlead

astraltrader
07-09-2009, 18:42
I too thought it strange that the letter D should be based on the Union Flag.

Dreadnought
07-09-2009, 19:58
Yes ... it is very odd that the signal flag letter 'D' was based on the Union Flag, and I can't yet get to the bottom of it.

The white bordered Union Jack was originally established as the 'Pilot Jack' in 1864 and as such, could only be generally flown in harbour. It also served as the rank flag of the Admiral of the Fleet. There seems to be historical controvesy about its legallity if flown at sea. How and why it ended up as signal flag letter 'D' is so far a mystery to me. In fact the 'D' Flag seems to be a scrunched up union flag to fit into the proportions of the square flag. Did 'D' mean 'get me a pilot'? In the 1937 signal cards, it became the 'Screen Flag'? In any event, it ceased being the Pilot Flag in 1970. I am as confused as anybody and will try and get to the bottom of it.

Clive

dennis a feary
08-09-2009, 05:11
Terry, Clive, yes D flag very much of a mystery.
Having taken my info from 1937 Signal Card & Clive, your info from 1913 S. Card I wonder if there are S.Cards for (say) 1920 / 1923 / 1932 - surely they must have been issued if not yearly at least every say 5 years ???
Will have to have a `look around' and see what cometh up !!
Have you seen other years Signal Cards than `ours' ??

Sadsac

dennis a feary
09-09-2009, 05:53
DREAD-0, see here a photo of ELFIN taken in 1935. You will see that she is flying T 2 5 - and that 5 is a 3 stripe red/white - so that flag was still in use circa 1935 !!! So it could not have finished in 1923ish as you have supposed - unless of course that ELFIN had some `old' flags and flew that No.5. Not a very good pic, but at the moment cannot find an actual photo, and I am off to ELFIN in Holland. This will, I believe certainly intrigue them as it must be that ELFIN flew 4 different flags 1913 / 1937 / International !!
4 different flags - yes - in 1941 she was renamed NETTLE and flew the Pendant No. T 9 4 - in International.
What do you make of that ??
Trust that `someone' can revolve the photo - cannot find how to do it !!
Sadsac

dennis a feary
09-09-2009, 05:58
Seems it did not come out - trying this one !!

dennis a feary
09-09-2009, 06:01
Oh Dear !! Did all the usual practice !
Must be that the pic was large - or that it is `vertical' ?????
What am I not doing correctly ??

astraltrader
09-09-2009, 13:22
Dennis - I assume it is JPEG rather than bitmap??

dennis a feary
09-09-2009, 15:56
Terry, Yes, JPEG.

Dreadnought
09-09-2009, 18:28
These for you Bruce ... don't know whether this is the right thread? Some dressed ships from my postcadrd collection.

You can make out some of the dress lines in the Fleet Review photo if you enlarge.

The Exeter card is postmarked August 16th 1907.

The Barham ones are quite clear when enlarged.

Clive

astraltrader
09-09-2009, 18:32
The first postcard has been posted in the forum before, in the Fleet Photo`s thread

http://www.worldnavalships.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1511&highlight=FLEET

but I have not seen the Barham card before.

spruso
09-09-2009, 20:40
Thanks Clive,

I have seen the Barham one but not the other two. I'm a bit wary of paintings and drawings as sometimes artistic licence gets in the way of fact. Nice pics though.

As well as changes to some of the flags by 1937 there are also some removals and additions to the flags used on the dressing lines. If I can pin down the "whens" it might help with the dates of the flag changes.

I think Dennis is on the right track - there must be some old Signal Cards or Books floating about somewhere.

A question on the 1937 Card. What was the Black Pennant and the Black Flag used for?

Cheers
Bruce

Fairlead
09-09-2009, 22:03
Black Pennant was used to indicate the ship in contact and attacking a submarine.

Fairlead

Ex-Pat Andy
11-09-2009, 12:35
I guess you will have to try the Museum Library at HMS COLLINGWOOD - I know at MERCURY there was a good library of old signal books and small objects related to V/S which was started by Lt Cdr Jack Dempsey, but what happened to it I have no idea.

Fairlead

Certainly 3 years ago, there was a small informal Comms museum containing equipment and signal books within C School (Mercury Block) at HMS Collingwood that was maintained by an ex CY. I'm afraid I don't have contact details at the moment, but could try and find some ex RNR colleagues who still maintain links with the Collingwood comms college-of-knowledge.

spruso
11-09-2009, 21:22
Certainly 3 years ago, there was a small informal Comms museum containing equipment and signal books within C School (Mercury Block) at HMS Collingwood that was maintained by an ex CY. I'm afraid I don't have contact details at the moment, but could try and find some ex RNR colleagues who still maintain links with the Collingwood comms college-of-knowledge.

I'm pretty sure I contacted HMS Collingwood Museum a few years ago. They very nice but were unable to help me at the time. Hope you can have more success now as the old Signal Books would be very helpful.
Cheers
Bruce

Dreadnought
12-09-2009, 10:48
Thanks Clive,

I have seen the Barham one but not the other two. I'm a bit wary of paintings and drawings as sometimes artistic licence gets in the way of fact. Nice pics though.

As well as changes to some of the flags by 1937 there are also some removals and additions to the flags used on the dressing lines. If I can pin down the "whens" it might help with the dates of the flag changes.

I think Dennis is on the right track - there must be some old Signal Cards or Books floating about somewhere.

A question on the 1937 Card. What was the Black Pennant and the Black Flag used for?

Cheers
Bruce
Hi Bruce,

Fairlead is absolutely correct about the black pendant being used at that time, to denote a ship engaging a submarine, hoisted whilst depth charging normally.

The black flag denoted 'shipwreck', but exactly when one was suppose to hoist is a bit of a mystery ..... while sinking ..?? It has since been removed from the International Signal Flags.

Both the black pendant and black flag firat appear in the 1937 Signal Handbook.

Prior to that, the only thing I have uncovered is this 'Tactical Order' from the Commodore-in-Chief High Sea Fleet on 21st November 1915 ..

Signals When Attacking Enemy Submarines With Depth Charges

A destroyer, on sighting a submarine, periscope or torpedo track, will make the prescribed signals with sirens, stars and flags; and if she intends to drop a depth charge she will hoist flag 'W' from the fore and mainmast.

Signification: 'Am about to drop a depth charge.'

The destroyer drops a charge in the position where it is presumed that the submarine will be at the moment of explosion; she then blows a long blast on the siren, and dips flag 'W'.

Signification: 'Depth charge has been dropped, but has not yet exploded.'

As soon as the explosion takes place the flag 'W' is hauled down.

At night time, or in any other circumstances when flag 'W' might not be recognised with certainty, a destroyer which is about to attack a submarine with depth charges makes the following signal repeatedly with steam whistle or siren: . -- . -- ('W'), and subsequently blows a long blast on the siren in the position where the depth charge has been dropped.

The 'W' flag was palin yellow, so who knows why they changed to black. Both the black flag and black pendant have something to do with things being submerged (submarines and wrecks), which is quite interesting as historically, black flags have been associated with anarchic (underground?) activities and groups going back to 1880 with the French anarchist paper 'Le [I]Drapeau Noir' (The black Flag). Then in 1884 an anarchist group in Chicago used the black flag as their emblem, calling it 'the fearful symbol of hunger, misery and death'. Perhaps that is why is was eventually withdrawn altogether from the RN Signals ...? not a great advert for the Royal Navy ...!!

Clive

siggy63
12-09-2009, 15:47
Hello Folks
The Collingwood reference room still going at the new "C" school but it would seem that when Mercury shut down and all the boxes of books, photos etc.. moved, a lot went er missing! never seen again. In fact a few years ago I was on the scrouge for items to be used onboard HMS Cavalier and had managed to get 3 mail sacks of bunting including a fresh supply of Ensigns and Union flags and the center piece of my scrouging a replacement 10" signal lamp, all items delivered to Chris Rickard at Collingrad and picked up by me. After all those years at Mercury they are down to just one large room of stuff.

Anyway, Chris has moved on now and I believe Mick Gentry is in charge of it now (or his brother)..

Yours Aye
Danny

spruso
15-09-2009, 20:44
Hi Bruce,

Fairlead is absolutely correct about the black pendant being used at that time, to denote a ship engaging a submarine, hoisted whilst depth charging normally.

The black flag denoted 'shipwreck', but exactly when one was suppose to hoist is a bit of a mystery ..... while sinking ..?? It has since been removed from the International Signal Flags.

Both the black pendant and black flag firat appear in the 1937 Signal Handbook.

Prior to that, the only thing I have uncovered is this 'Tactical Order' from the Commodore-in-Chief High Sea Fleet on 21st November 1915 ..

Signals When Attacking Enemy Submarines With Depth Charges

A destroyer, on sighting a submarine, periscope or torpedo track, will make the prescribed signals with sirens, stars and flags; and if she intends to drop a depth charge she will hoist flag 'W' from the fore and mainmast.

Signification: 'Am about to drop a depth charge.'

The destroyer drops a charge in the position where it is presumed that the submarine will be at the moment of explosion; she then blows a long blast on the siren, and dips flag 'W'.

Signification: 'Depth charge has been dropped, but has not yet exploded.'

As soon as the explosion takes place the flag 'W' is hauled down.

At night time, or in any other circumstances when flag 'W' might not be recognised with certainty, a destroyer which is about to attack a submarine with depth charges makes the following signal repeatedly with steam whistle or siren: . -- . -- ('W'), and subsequently blows a long blast on the siren in the position where the depth charge has been dropped.

The 'W' flag was palin yellow, so who knows why they changed to black. Both the black flag and black pendant have something to do with things being submerged (submarines and wrecks), which is quite interesting as historically, black flags have been associated with anarchic (underground?) activities and groups going back to 1880 with the French anarchist paper 'Le [I]Drapeau Noir' (The black Flag). Then in 1884 an anarchist group in Chicago used the black flag as their emblem, calling it 'the fearful symbol of hunger, misery and death'. Perhaps that is why is was eventually withdrawn altogether from the RN Signals ...? not a great advert for the Royal Navy ...!!

Clive
A bit more on the Black Flag and Pennant:
In the book "Make another Signal" by Jack Brown, the Black Pennant is shown as "By convoy escort - am investigating contact" Possibly this was replaced with the Black Flag when the contact was confirmed and a decision made to attack?

Cheers
Bruce

rimbo
16-09-2009, 19:51
Hi Dennis,

Thanks for explaining that. I created those from scratch, and am happy to more for you if you give me a bit of time ... I will do a few at a time.

Because of the white in so many of them, I put them on a grey background, You can have any background colour you wish, or, I can stroke the edges with a very thin black line and put them on a white background if you prefer. Alternatively, I can provide them in .png format with a transparent background. Take your pick.

Clive

Hi Clive,
You may be my life saver,i've been asked for flag formation of "Splice the mainbrace" could you tell me where to look. I don't have any signal books.
Does each letter have a flag or what.?
cheers mate

dennis a feary
17-09-2009, 06:12
Hello Ron, getting my Oar in first on your request to Clive ; letters & numbers do indeed have individual flags - somewhere on this Forum I believe I have seen a pic of the flags in the Signal Book of 1937.
As to `Splice the Mainbrace' as a signal I am not too sure.
Think I have seen it `somewhere' !!
Will look it up - as know doubt will Clive.

Sadsac

Jan Steer
17-09-2009, 08:36
The hoist is/was "Alpha Delta Two Eight".


best wishes
Jan

Derek Dicker
17-09-2009, 09:20
BZ Jan, signal found Allied Naval Signal Book. ACP175 or laterly ATP1a Vol ii

Derek (Bunts)

rimbo
17-09-2009, 11:22
Thanks Very Much both Derek and Jan

If i walk into my local now and say AD28 will everyone get a free tot?

Thanks again chaps

Derek Dicker
17-09-2009, 12:03
Hi Ron, tks for comments, here's the signal.


Derek (Bunts

siggy63
17-09-2009, 15:31
if anyone wants anymore signals encrypted/decrypted then let us know, I got my copy of ATP 1B Vol.II sitting beside my computer desk LOL

rimbo
17-09-2009, 16:11
Thanks Siggy could you try this please, taken by me on Vets Day Chatham of "HMS Cavalier"
thanks

Derek Dicker
18-09-2009, 09:21
Hi Ron,

Port inner yardarm Delta pnt 7 pnt 3. (ships visual callsign)

Stbd inner yardarm (ships international radio callsign)


Derek (Bunts)

rimbo
18-09-2009, 09:46
thanks very much Derek confirms my thoughts .

qprdave
18-09-2009, 14:30
For what reason would you have two White Ensigns flying from the yardarms. The ship doesn't appear to be dressed overall.

Doc
18-09-2009, 14:52
One thing that has intrigued me. What meaning does the flag with five crosses thereon have in relation to death. I have seen it used in place of a Union flag for sea burials of non-British merchant sailors and also in the attached image for the service to mark the loss of HMS Poseidon.

Any thoughts? Thanks.

I

dennis a feary
19-09-2009, 09:17
Doc, good question.
All I can offer is that the five crosses on a flag is that of NEGATIVE in Naval Signalling of 1913 to 1919/35 ?? (In `dispute' / seeking confirmation DAF/ Clive).
Seems a bit harsh, but NEGATIVE - No longer here - or just the Christian Cross !!

Sadsac

qprdave
19-09-2009, 14:49
Who said that Buntings didn't do much during the war.........

Taken from The Daily Telegraph in 1939 re Convoys

Admittedly, convoys had trouble enough of their own without the submarines. The chief handicap was the inadequate staff of signalmen. A trained naval signalman is one of the wonders of creation. At all times and in every kind of weather he must be all-seeing and able to impart exactly what another ship is trying to convey, whether by flag, flashing or semaphore. He is the one indispensable in a fleet at sea, which without him is deaf, dumb and short-sighted.

Dreadnought
19-09-2009, 15:31
Hi Clive,
You may be my life saver,i've been asked for flag formation of "Splice the mainbrace" could you tell me where to look. I don't have any signal books.
Does each letter have a flag or what.?
cheers mate
Hi Ron,

My apolgies for not reply to your post. However, It looks like Derek and Jan have amply answered your query. Except that if you want to use the modern International signal flags, then the Alpha Delta 28 hoist would use the flags/pennants below.

The origins of the saying, like nost of these things are a little bit skewed by time, but it is generally accepted that it goes bag to the days of sail and sea battles where one of the favourite targets during battle was the rigging, since destroying the opponent's ability to manoeuver or escape would give an obvious advantage. Therefore, one of first the things attended to after a battle was the repair of any broken gear, and the repair of the sheets (lines - not 'ropes' - that adjust the angle at which a sail is set in relation to the wind) and braces (lines passing through blocks and holding up sails).

The main brace was the principal fore-and-aft support of the ship's masts. The main brace, being one of the heaviest pieces of running rigging in the ship (being up to 20-inches in diameter) was probably seldom spliced if damaged, but more often than not it was renewed in total instead. But as the main brace had to be led through blocks, a long splice (as opposed to a short splice or a knot) had to be made in it when repair was necessary, and the ship had to remain on the one tack until the job was completed. Thus the work had to be done at great speed and in whatever conditions prevailed at the time since the ship could not be steered effectively with a broken main brace. The ship's best Able Seamen normally were chosen to do the work under the supervision of the Boatswain because splicing this line would have been among the most difficult jobs aboard ship, and one upon which the ship's safety depended. This operation was one of such rarity and difficulty as to warrant the issue of adouble tot of rum to the Ship's Company. It later became customary to 'Splice the Main Brace' before battle ... always after victory, and to reward a ship's crew, or sometimes the entire fleet with the order to 'Splice the Main Brace' The ritual was always preceded by hoisting the flag signal to "Splice the Main Brace'

For Sailors today, the term is used to congratulate the company of a ship. In common usage, the phrase refers to an invitation to have a drink after a hard day ….. or not so hard day ..!!

So far as 'Bravo Zulu' is concerned, and as rightly pointed out by Derek, it comes from the Allied Naval Signal Book (ACP 175 series), an international naval signal code adopted after the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) was created in 1949.

There are some myths attached to this signal. The one most frequently documented around the internet has Admiral Halsey sending it to ships of Task Force 38 during World War II. He could not have done this, since the signal did not exist at that time.

Until 1949, each Navy had used its own signal codes and operational manuals. World War II experience had shown that it was difficult, or even impossible, for ships of different navies to operate together unless they could readily communicate, and ACP 175 was designed to remedy this.

Bravo Zero has also passed into the spoken and written vocabulary. It can be combined with the "negative" signal, spoken or written NEGAT, to say 'NEGAT Bravo Zulu,' or 'not well done.' The Airforce adopted some of the naval terms in phonetic speech, with pilots using letters BZ (Bravo Zulu). There are also some slang phonetics such as 'Sierra Hotel' (for **** Hot - excellent flying), and 'Tango Uniform' (Tits Up) landing means you've crashed and died.

Clive

Dreadnought
19-09-2009, 15:35
Thought I better send you this as well .....

Clive

dennis a feary
20-09-2009, 06:50
Great Stuff Clive - NOW, what about `Engage the Enemy More Closely' ??
Flags used in NELSON's time of course.
That signal as you must know was flown by VICTORY until it was shot away by the BERCENTURA (spelling??) - was it ??

Sadsac

Dreadnought
21-09-2009, 00:07
Great Stuff Clive - NOW, what about `Engage the Enemy More Closely' ??
Flags used in NELSON's time of course.
That signal as you must know was flown by VICTORY until it was shot away by the BERCENTURA (spelling??) - was it ??

Sadsac

Hi Dennis ... you are determined to keep me busy ...!! But I love it ..!!

Nelson signalled the fleet "engage the enemy more closely" at 12.15 pm, just before the first shots were fired in the Battle of Trafalgar on October 21st 1805. By then the ‘England Expects ….’ Signal had been flown and taken down.

The signal flown by Victory was No. 16 (in Sir Hope Popham's extended code as revised January 1804 and used at Trafalgar). This was flag No, 1 (a blue cross on a white field), over No.6 (divided horizontally blue-white-red). This would originally have been preceded by the 'Telegraph' or 'Preparatory flag above the message (divided diagonally from the bottom left red over white). The Telegraph Flag was then hauled down leaving the signal flying throughout the battle until it was shot away. The signal book reputedly used at Trafalgar is in the collection of the National Maritime Museum (NMM, SIG/B/76).

As to whether Villeneuve’s flagship Bucentaure shot the signal off Dennis, I cannot find any reference. The signal was flown from the mizzen mast (not the main mast as shown in Turner’s famous painting).

The French were renowned for aiming their cannon high in order to inflict damage to sails and rigging, thus rendering manoeuvrability and the ability to escape difficult. As Victory approached the French line, she had suffered severe damage aloft, and she hadn’t fired a shot yet. After breaking through the line, Victory came under heavy barrage from the French Redoubtable and Neptune, with the French using grenades and musket shot at close quarters. Some reports say that the mizzen mast fell at 13.00 hrs, well that was 15 minutes before Nelson was killed and after the line had been broken as far as I can ascertain; Bucentaure then not in any condition to fight

The signal on the mizzen mast could have been lost at any time during this – if in fact it was still there at this point. Maybe one of our more learned experts on this Forum may have more exact details.

Incidentally, at the Battle of Jutland, Beatty, sensing the destruction of the German Fleet was within his grasp, desired his ships to close with the enemy and finish them off. He ordered his Flag Lieutenant to raise Nelson's signal hoist 16, Engage the enemy more closely.But the Royal Navy had retired that hoist from its signal book by then, so he chose ‘Keep nearer to the enemy’ as the closest equivalent. However, by the time it reached the last ship in line the signal had been obscured by smoke and spray. Intervening captains each interpreted the signal according to their immediate situation. Concerted action was impossible and the High Seas Fleet made good its escape by charging right through the mass of the English fleet.


Here is the signal. Got a bit carried away in Photoshop making it a bit Trafalgarish ... Well it's not far away now is it? Mr President ... permission to go to bed now sir ..!!

dennis a feary
21-09-2009, 06:54
CLIVE, I dreadednot that you would come up with `the goods' - and you have. Like the `preamble' on the Great Battle - my thought that it may have been BUCENTURA was only thinking at the time - believe it was more probably the REDOUTABLE. Have seen `somewhere' that it was flown until `shot-away' !! TRAFALGAR / REDOUTABLE as is spoken - pronounced different as `usual'. Cannot explain on this medium, must wait until we meet - see `MEETING Thread.
Well, now you have had your snooze, back to what you were put on this earth for - doing my bidding !!!
What about the FULL signal `England Expects etc' in a format that can be SEEN. What I envisage doing is copying the Engage etc & (when you get it done) the England etc signal on (say) A4 / A3 paper - have it encapsulated and take to RNA `Trafalgar Day Dinner'.
Good / Bad Idea ???
Sadsac

Dreadnought
21-09-2009, 07:32
Good morning Dennis ....

Happy to do the full signal for you ... Do you want the full hoists all on one sheet, and do you want the words/letters shown. Plain Background or 'Trafalgarised'? You can have it as something along the lines of the pic below if you want. Do you want your RNA details on it?

Of course during the actual battle, the hoists were run up separately, each one being take down before the next was raised ... they were never seen all in one go. Each hoist had to be acknowledeged by the fleet befor the next was raised.

Up until 1908, it was believed that Nelson (well Victory's flag locker) used the original 1799 Popham flags. The Admiralty then conceded that he did in fact use the amended 1804 signals. The early picture, attached, shows the incorrect 1799 signals.

Just let me know exactly how you want the sheets for your Trafalgar Dinner - send me a pm if it is easier.

I have a complete set of linen 'England expects ...' flags which will hoisted at our local Sea Cadet Trafalgar Dinner again this year. A couple of years ago, myself and the Unit Chairnan built a three quarter scale (approx) mock up of Victory's poop/quarterdeck and erected it at the 2007 Sea Cadet Trafalgar Dinner. It measures some 25 feet wide, 15 feet deep and 15 feet high. It is complete with full ship's wheel and two 24 pound cannon/running gear. We worked from original drawings and even went to Portsmouth and took detailed photographs. Took nearly three months to build. It was constructed, mainly in ply and timber and finished in 'Victory colours', and as semi-flatpack so that it is re-useable. Presently resides in a container at the Stratford Amouries ..!! Don't know whether it will be coming out again this year ... takes almost a day to put up and I don't think this year's venue is big enough. I will try and dig out some pics.

Doc
21-09-2009, 08:39
Doc, good question.
All I can offer is that the five crosses on a flag is that of NEGATIVE in Naval Signalling of 1913 to 1919/35 ?? (In `dispute' / seeking confirmation DAF/ Clive).
Seems a bit harsh, but NEGATIVE - No longer here - or just the Christian Cross !!

Sadsac

Thanks Dennis for your suggestion. It is certainly plausible. It seems to be one of those things that now you have noticed it, you keep seeing it all over the place. Do you know what colour the cross was? They seem to be black but in a black and white photograph you just can't be sure.

Ian

dennis a feary
22-09-2009, 06:47
Hello Doc, the Crosses were BLACK with WHITE background.
By the time POSEIDON went down in 1931 the 1913 flags were still being used.
Must look at other photo's of burials to see if that flag is flown / draped at Funerals.
Wonder if anyone has such photo's to hand ??

Sadsac

dennis a feary
22-09-2009, 06:56
Clive, Thanks. Not quite as you have presented the one shown - looks a little busy - I was / am thinking of showing it with explanation of what they mean. Say 1st line `Nelson Expects' then 2nd line `every man', 3rd line `to do his' 4th line `duty' - and on.
Somewhere I have a `plan' of the flags flown produced by the Navy News some 8 years ago.
My RNA details - do you mean (say) March Branch RNA ??
Again do not wish it to be to `cluttered' !!

On `Engage' etc, can you give me a `breakdown' of the message - such as - 1st (top) one `Engage' - 2nd one `enemy more closely' ??
Would make me seem as if I know what I am talking about !!

dennis a feary
24-09-2009, 06:16
CLIVE, after a search for flaggy boats have found this one of HMS/m PANDORA `dressed overall' - for what occasion I know not. Could be just `airing of bunting' or some special event (Kings Birthday). Date is circa 1936/7. Number of flags come to 36, so all numbers and letter flags are being flown. `Our problem' with the flags (1913 - 1936 ?) !! - this one of flag No. 5 - number 5 being flown on port outer arm show 4 red/white vertical stripes as in `my' 1937 Signal Book. What about Kings Coronation of 1937 as the date of flags photo ??

Sadsac

archiedal
24-09-2009, 21:26
This photo of Petard was taken in 1946

Can you tell me what the pennants are that flying on the Petard in your photograph


MODERATOR NOTE: Photoraph of HMS Petard copied from original thread, moved herefor peneant discussion.

tomsam
24-09-2009, 22:32
Hi Archiedal. It is difficult to decipher being a black and white picture but there are three components 1) She is flying a "Paying Off" Pennant ( The long ribbon from the main mast) 2) From the right yard she looks to be signalling her "Pennant Number "56" with a flag superior above "G".
The left arm is more difficult and I will take a guess as she is flying an "International" "M" Flag on top but the second is beyond me . Someone may do a better job.
Regards Les

dennis a feary
25-09-2009, 06:27
JBBeer Bosun, Q - are you sure it was 1946 that the pic was taken ??
Why I post the query is that the flags being flown - G56 & I Neg are flags of 1936 vintage & not the International flags flown in 1946. It may be of course that PETARD had only the old flags that were issued.
G56 - Pendant No's of ship - I flag is AHEAD & below flag is NEGATIVE(No) - so she is `saying' I am not going ahead.
Well thats my explanation - expect CLIVE to come puffing in with his explanation - wonder if it will be same as mine ??
LES - As I have said NOT International `M' but 1913/1936 I (eye) Yellow X on blue background & not white on blue as in International.
The long Pendant may be paying off one - looks ever so long & skinny, but that may be the angle (due to wind) that she is laying to.

Sadsac

tomsam
25-09-2009, 08:56
well done Sadsac. I can just see the crosses now on the neg flag but not being a bunting tosser only a lowly TAS UW I didn't think I did a bad Job. Being on the upper deck in most actions and manouvres you can see how buzzes start flying. Yeh from people like me who read the flags wrong LOL.:o
Regards Les

tomsam
25-09-2009, 09:23
Just going back to the ribbon masthead pennant. Since Sadsacks comments I have given it some more thought and have become a little confused ( Nothing new ) I am still sure it's a paying off pennant and not a commisioning pennant but the size is a bit confusing. Traditionally paying off pennants are the lenght of the ship plus one foot for each years service. This looks a little short,about right for commisioning pennant lenght but they usually had the cross of St George at the hoist end. :confused:
Maybe someone can decipher this little mystery as it would help if there was a date to the photo.
Regards Les

Derek Dicker
25-09-2009, 09:49
Hi all, maybe this will clarify the position of flags on Petard.

Yes it is a paying off PNT, maybe we cant see its full length. The St Georges cross on the Pnt is there but remainder of the white is not visible.
The hoist of the Stbd yard is the ships pennent numbers.
The hoist of the port yard is something of quandry, its flag mike with the union flag under. Many questions have been asked about this signal but nobody seems to be able to tie it down, the only information that I have been able to gleen is that it is something to do with communicating with a shore signal station. Hope this helps.

By the way during the late fiftys I was on the Ulysses working around the channel island, during a trip from one island to another with the Govenor General of the Island we hit a submerged rock doing a bit of lick in the Swinge channel. Had to limp back to Guz for repairs, damage was too severe we had to take PETARD out of reserve fleet for remainder of commission. Not very confortable I might add, all hammocks (nothing wrong with hammocks) seat lockers etc.


Derek (Bunts)

siggy63
25-09-2009, 09:49
Here are some scans out of one of the many signal books I have in my collection

Danny

tomsam
25-09-2009, 11:33
I have again been looking at this in more detail and there are a few points that don't make sense. Firstly if as sadsac suggests " I am not going ahead" there is clearly a wake astern of her. Not discounting it but this suggests that this is not the signal.I have doctored the picture a bit and could this flag be a Rear Admirals flag?
Curiouser and Curiouser
Les

RNfanDan
25-09-2009, 12:02
I may be out of line here, but one thing that struck me about the ship, is the "reversed" arrangement of her search radar and HF/DF aerials. I have studied RN destroyers of most previous classes from the V&Ws onward, but do not recall ever seeing this arrangement. Typically, the mainmast holds the HF/DF while the 291 array is atop the foremast.

Very interesting...

Nice photograph, by the way, thanks for posting it!

tjstoneman
25-09-2009, 13:35
Agree - good photo - thank you. If the photo was indeed taken in 1946 (I've seen it captioned "May 1946"), then it's highly likely to be a paying-off pennant; PETARD returned from the Far East top pay off into reserve in the spring of that year.
RNFanDan - quite a few RN destroyers had HF/DF forward and AW.RDF (291 0r 292) aft - eg SOLEBAY (http://www.worldnavalships.com/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=44404&d=1240817289) and VIRAGO (http://www.worldnavalships.com/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=51220&d=1247696775). A quick check through one reference shows SCOURGE, URANIA, WRANGLER, WIZARD, ZEST, BROADSWORD and DARING (1952, not 1932!) all configured the same way.
Tim

siggy63
25-09-2009, 13:52
If anyone wants them I do have some animated flags, I believe that the folders holds all the alphabet and both numerial flags and pennants. They should be on my back-up external drive.

Examples as below:

Danny

tonclass
25-09-2009, 15:33
Thought this might help. A LARGE version of the signal flags...

tomsam
25-09-2009, 17:41
Thanks Rik, just couldn't get the right contrast. It is not an Admirals flag , it is indeed a Union Jack.Oh well.
Les

dennis a feary
25-09-2009, 18:07
CLIVE - bags you poke your nose into PETARD Thread - I believe your input is needed there. Great discussion on FLAGS.
I decline to say `get your a**e over there' - awful saying & I am in enough trouble with Terry as it is.

Sadsac

tomsam
25-09-2009, 18:12
I have got it I think. The included link explains it under the reference and picture of HMS Comus' masthead. It is in fact Flag "Mike and the signal jack wich has a white border and is requesting a Pilot. The signal jack flag was adopted by the Navy in 1826 and went through to 1948.
Les http://www.fotw.net/flags/gb-jkpl2.html

dennis a feary
25-09-2009, 18:18
DANNY - great pics of Flag books, especially the 1943 posting. You say you have more of such books - I only have 1937, and CLIVE I believe has 1913, but we wish to get the `inbetween ones' - this to try to ascertain the exact date / year that the signals/flags changed. Could you place what you have say every five years so we can try to find date ???
Also like I have asked Clive, bags you have a squint at PETARD on that Thread - much chewing over of FLAGS.

Sadsac

archiedal
25-09-2009, 19:17
Hi Archiedal. It is difficult to decipher being a black and white picture but there are three components 1) She is flying a "Paying Off" Pennant ( The long ribbon from the main mast) 2) From the right yard she looks to be signalling her "Pennant Number "56" with a flag superior above "G".
The left arm is more difficult and I will take a guess as she is flying an "International" "M" Flag on top but the second is beyond me . Someone may do a better job.
Regards Les

Hi Les, thanks for the reply regarding the flags, it is blatantly obvious I am not Navy, in fact never served in any of the forces, ( deferred trade ). I seem to have started a nice wee discussion, thanks to all.

Dreadnought
25-09-2009, 21:08
Right chaps, this is how I read these flags, looking at the photograph and referring to BR827 1943;

Port (left) hoist is showing 'Ahead', over 'Screen'

Starboard (right) hoist is showing ship pennant number G56 as Tomsam described.

The white bordered union flag became 'numeral 6' in the 1913 signal cards, and the 'Screen' flag in 1937.

It was indeed originally the 'Pilot' flag but seems to have gone out of general use by 1901, because national pilot flags were discouraged for use internationally. In reality its use continued continued as an 'unofficial'' request for a pilot right up until 1970.

And Dennis .... 'Ahead' flag is white diagonal cross on blue background. The 'negative' signal was a flag and not a pendant ... sorry about that ..!!

tomsam
25-09-2009, 22:33
Hi Clive, you must excuse me but i'm like a dog with a bone. As I say I am not a bunting tosser but If I follow you you correctly you are not discounting the pilot theory. The thing I find puzzling with "Ahead Screen" Is the ship is in an estuary/river or going along the port entrance. why would that signal be used in this instance. Gawd elp us if we were all on this ship .We would ave run her on the rocks ages ago,LOL

dennis a feary
26-09-2009, 08:04
LES, HARRY, RIK, CLIVE, DEREK - now T'is my turn to to offer explanation.
Lets say that we have cleared up the position re starboard hoist - G56 is letter G & numerals 5 & 6 from 1937 - yes it is - at least according to BR232 1937 !!
Having agreed to that (say) then to the port hoist - staying with 1937 Signal Card - the top flag is the AHEAD flag white X on blue background NOT `M' as in International - second flag is a SCREEN flag - Union flag with white surround.
This is consistent with ALL the flags / pendants being from 1937 book.
IF, IF you want to put International `M' in as top one then it means `My vessel is stopped & making no way thro the water'. So `M' flag should be discounted and we must go for ALL flags / pendants being of 1937 Signal Card BR232.

Les, great stuff re the reworking/enhancing of the flags - made them to be seen exactly.

Clive, thanks for getting `your body' over here - even tho as you see I do not quite agree with all of your comments.
Will we ever agree on something ???!!!

Sadsac

Dreadnought
26-09-2009, 08:40
Hi Tomsam

No ... not discounting the 'pilot theory'. Like you, I am not a bunting tosser ... all acquired knowledge, so often likely to be wrong ..!!

We have a mix of problems:

It appears we agree that the starboard hoist indicates G56. That then says to me that the BR827 flag set is in use. In which case, it would be sensible to conclude that the same flag set is being use on the port hoist, therefore 'Ahead' over 'Screen'. But I agree ... seems an odd thing to hoist in port ... unless the ship is going out?

So if we adopt the 'pilot theory' we are left with the upper flag. Is it 'Ahead' or is it 'M'. I think that has ben answered, and I agree ... the ship is definitely not stopped. And in any case, why would a spurious International Flag be hoisted? So 'Ahead' over 'Pilot' ... would that have been a logical hoist? This is where we need a 'Buntingtosser' of the era really.

Reading the various articles etc. about the controversial use of the white bordered union flag, which have been protracted over the decades, it seems that the argument centered mostly upon the fact that the Admiralty didn't want merchant ships using the 'Union Jack" to the fore (which is where they would have flown it), and the argument over its legallity was in full flight in 1946 when the Petard photograph was taken. Also, I believe, that some UK docks/ports required the use of this particular pilot (white bordered Union Flag) at the time. So far as the Navy were concerned, it seems to have been the difference between flags 'required' and flags 'permitted', and that the use of this flag as a pilot was not forbidden.

So basically .... we're stuffed on this one ...!! No doubt we share in the frustratiion of not being able to reach a definitive conclusion.

tomsam
26-09-2009, 08:41
Sadsac, thanks for the thanks . My idea but Rik made them clearer.
I have included part of the reference i stated earlier as I don't know if you all picked up on it. It shows the mast of HMS Comus in 1946 same year as Petard this being so why can't anyone accept that the signals flags and meanings will be the same:confused:

The Signal/Pilot Jack was a signal flag, not a jack. The basic shape was more nearly square than oblong. Marryat suggested that signal flags used by merchant ships should be 6 feet x 8 feet. As a signal for a pilot, British merchant ships were thus using a Union Jack with a ratio of 3:4. The Signal Jack with a white border that was required in 1824, would probably have been constructed by adding a white border to an existing Signal Jack resulting in a flag with a ratio of 4:5, but no doubt as new suits of signal flags replaced old flags White-Bordered Signal Jacks would have been made in ratios of 3:4. The White-Bordered Signal Jack was adopted as a signal flag by the Royal Navy in 1826 and continued in use until 1948 when the white border appears to have been about 1/7th of the breadth of the flag, as seen on this image showing International Mike over Signal Jack on HMS Comus, August 1946. Courtesy of " Flags Of The World " website
Regards Les

Dreadnought
26-09-2009, 08:45
Dennis,

Our posts must have crossed. The only thing I disagree with you on is your adamant conviction of the BR232 flag set being used, as I believe it is BR827 (1943). And, you must, like I have, conceed that the 'pilot theory' can not be dismissed.

Otherwise we agree .... yahooo ...!!

Dreadnought
26-09-2009, 09:19
Les,

I have looked at the Comus photo, and agree the same hoist is being flown. I also agree with the dimensional issue. Don't necessarily agree with the International 'M' .... unless Petard is in fact stopped.

I have downloaded and blown up the photograph as far as I can, and looking very closely, I could now conclude she is stationery. I have blown up the bow and stern sections (could only double because of the low resolution). If you look at the bow, one could conclude that the so called 'bow wave' is in fact not there. Also, you can see what looks like a bilge water discharge, or similar, just above the water line, and that is pouring out quite straight .. not affected by any forward movement. At the stern, the small amount of disturbed water could well be just the result of a small amount of engine 'astern' to counteract a strong head wind ... this being the reason for the pennant and flag streaming quite hard aft. Also, again, if you look closely, there are some crew on the bow, looking to me that the ship has stopped.

Just more food for thought ........

dennis a feary
26-09-2009, 16:57
Clive, Yahoooo - your Stuffed, not me !!!
I do not dismiss your theory re flags being flown by PETARD - but until I see a book of the BR827 (1943) I will stick to mine. Is BR232 so much different to BR287 ?? An input by DannySiggy in Signalling Thread has posted a book of Signalling but does not say which, but he does say he has more Signal Books. Wonder if he could post BR827 - then we could further the `debate'.
Where was the COMUS in the photo ??
Granted it IS 1942 - but that does still not answer the Flag questions.
Will look further re going ahead/astern/stopped.

Getting stuffed tomorrow - chicken day !!

Sadsac

Dreadnought
26-09-2009, 21:24
Dennis,

BR827 ... and no, not too different from the 1937 cards. You need also though to reference the International Sgnals. But none of this conflicts with the 'M' flag over the pilot flag .... IF ... IF ... Petard is stopped ... so look at my blow ups and see what you think ...

Danny did post these on our Signals thread .......

Anyway ... not feeling quite as stuffed now due to my study of the Petard photo. No chicken for me tomorrow ..

dennis a feary
27-09-2009, 07:44
OK Clive - thanks for posting BR827 - I did actually see it in the posting by Danny, but did not engage brain !
So, as far as I see any differences/similarities in BR232 & BR827 is ;
Num 6 - same
Num 5 - 4 red/white dtripes - so it has reverted to `your' 1913 book - and
looking at pic it does seem to show FOUR R&W stripes
Lett G - same
Lett I - same yellow X blue back
Sign - white X blue back - not in BR232
Sign - Union Screen flag - not in BR232
So to `sum up' PETARD seems to be flying flags etc from BR827 1943 !!
AGREE !!!
As to `underway/stopped' from the pic blow-up you have posted it does seem she is stopped re the discharge of water being `straight'. The wake at stern can be `windage/tide' - wind from port/forward !!
Cleared up ?? Rather sad if it is - have much enjoyed being `Contrair' (spelling) !!

Sadsac

Dreadnought
27-09-2009, 12:43
Don't worry Dennis, I am sure we will encounter further conundrums.

Guess what ... on the Argonaut thread, post #8, Monty's photograph (which I also have). Have blown up a bit of it.

Argonaut paid off in 1946 (in the full photo the pennant can be seen flying) so that dates the shot. 1943 flags being used again. Pennant number 61 and, yep, you guessed it ....!!

tomsam
27-09-2009, 13:13
It would help a none bunting tosser if someone told me what " Sceen" means. If it was something to do with convoys then it doesn't seem pertinent in harbour.
cheers
Les

Dreadnought
27-09-2009, 13:45
Keith,

Regarding the sizes of signal flags. According to notes from Whispers From the Fleet, by Captain Christopher Cradock RN (J. Griffin and Company, 1908), there were six different sizes depending on the class of vessel. I attach these sizes in a separate document.

I don't know whether this has changed, and I don't know what vessel classes relate to the various sizes I am afraid, particularly Leander Class as you enquired about. Maybe we will both get some more information from learned members of the forum.

Derek Dicker
27-09-2009, 14:55
Hi Keith. If i remember correctly size 4 was the standard issue for destroyers/frigates 1950-1970.


Derek (Bunt)

dennis a feary
27-09-2009, 15:31
OK Clive, great pic of ARGONAUT & that seems to confirm the 1943 BR827 book being the flags flown. Was a little puzzled as to why she was flying only 61 - then engaged brain - she did not have a letter prior to Number.

Thinking of the query by LES, re the meaning of SCREEN we can now start further mutterings re the reason for flying AHEAD & SCREEN - what possible (logical) message could they have been trying to convey ??
But as that is to do more with flags/pendants more than PETARD sepcifically are we `chewing' in the right Thread.
TERRY will be `at us' if we infringe some `law' or other.

Sadsac

Jan Steer
27-09-2009, 16:34
Derek, Dreadnought.
The posts for Keith need to be on the Communications thread.

best wishes
Jan

spruso
27-09-2009, 19:48
Hi Keith. If i remember correctly size 4 was the standard issue for destroyers/frigates 1950-1970.


Derek (Bunt)

From Seamans Handbook 1949:

Flags Sizes ( As ammended in 1949 )

Cruisers and above: Size 3
Other ships: Size 4


Flag Lines:

Flags should be spaced 2ft 6in apart. To prevent gaps at the end the distance may be varied

Cheers
Bruce

faakeith
27-09-2009, 19:58
From Seamans Handbook 1949:

Flags Sizes ( As ammended in 1949 )

Cruisers and above: Size 3
Other ships: Size 4


Flag Lines:

Flags should be spaced 2ft 6in apart. To prevent gaps at the end the distance may be varied

Cheers
Bruce

Many thanks for the info, I have now ordered the correct scale version of the code flags and will also fly them from the correct yardarm.
It would appear now that 20mm is the correct scale for 1/72 and 15mm is for 1/96.
There are 3 ropes on both the port and stbd yardarms, I'm going to fly the ships radio call sign from the stbd inner on my 1/96 Leander and fly the visual call sign from the port inner on my 1/72 Leander. What would be flown from the other ropes?? Things like flying stations, live firing etc....

Keith

spruso
29-09-2009, 02:22
Dennis,

Special pendants 1937.

The 1913 numeral '5' pendant becomes the 1937 'Bearing Pendant'. New 1937 numeral '5' pendant.
The 1913 numeral '9' pendant becomes the 1937 'Deployment Pendant' New 1937 numeral '9' pendant.
The 1913 'Guard Pendant' becomes the 1937 'Disposition Pendant'
The 1913 'Oblique Pendant' becomes the 1937 'Formation Pendant'
The 1913 'Equal Speed Pendant' becomes the 1937 'Order Pendant'
The 1913 alphabet flag 'D' becomes the 1937 'Screen Flag'. New 1937 alphabet 'D' flag
The 1913 alphabet flag 'S' seems to disappear. New 1937 alphabet 'S' flag

Clive

Hi Clive,

Just to complicate matters.

Regarding the change of Flag D from the Union Flag design to the Yellow with a red horizontal centre stripe.

Just looked at the Movietone News clip of the Victory Naval Review at Southend in 1919. On HMS Furious aerial shot you can clearly see that the new D flag has replaced the old 1913 flag as the fourth flag from the stern. Also appears on a photo of HMS Renown in Auckland Harbour in 1920.

It seems that changes to individual flags and positions could have taken place at different times during the 1918 - 1937 period rather than all in 1935-6 when the No 5 Pennant seems to have been changed.

I wonder when the D flag was changed. Surely not during the war?

Cheers
Bruce

Dreadnought
29-09-2009, 10:43
Hi Bruce,

Do you mean Yellow with a red VERTICAL stripe ...??

Dreadnought
29-09-2009, 11:59
Dennis,

Following our conversation on the Pre-Dreadnought thread about the Admiral's flag on Terry's pic of Dreadnought, I found this one of King George V flying the Vice Admiral's flag as I mentioned. Also one of Hercules flying the same. St. Vincent is seen flying the Rear Admiral Flag.

I will let you decipher the other flags ...!!



Postcards from my personal collection

spruso
29-09-2009, 20:08
Hi Bruce,

Do you mean Yellow with a red VERTICAL stripe ...??

Yes, Sorry - I was looking at the hanging flag not an upright one. Not too good at geometry at school either!

Cheers
Bruce

spruso
30-09-2009, 04:13
Clive,

Here's the photo of RENOWN at Auckland 1920 with new flag D.

Cheers
Bruce

dennis a feary
30-09-2009, 06:49
OK Chaps, what about these two posted here.
1st is the flag signal of Nelson's `England Expects' as printed in NAVY NEWS of October 1999. What I would like is the flags on the seperate mast, as displayed, but able to be seen `simply' and for display on say A4 size paper so the it can be waved around on Trafalgar Day dinner/RNA meetings.
2nd is the signal `Engage the Enemy more Closely', again from NN of October 1999. But that is different to one that was posted by CLIVE in No. 85 post.
CLIVE who correct here, it may well be that I read the text in NN incorrectly.
Yours would be nice for `display' but is it correct & what of the NN one ??

Sadsac

dennis a feary
30-09-2009, 06:53
Forgot to add to above.
The entry in NAVY NEWS was written by Cdr Bruce Nicholls `The Flag Man'.
As I have said maybe I read the text wrong. Cannot show difference NN / CLIVE as I cannot add HIS signal (post 85) which is brilliant !!

Sadsac

archiedal
30-09-2009, 23:42
Les,

I have looked at the Comus photo, and agree the same hoist is being flown. I also agree with the dimensional issue. Don't necessarily agree with the International 'M' .... unless Petard is in fact stopped.

I have downloaded and blown up the photograph as far as I can, and looking very closely, I could now conclude she is stationery. I have blown up the bow and stern sections (could only double because of the low resolution). If you look at the bow, one could conclude that the so called 'bow wave' is in fact not there. Also, you can see what looks like a bilge water discharge, or similar, just above the water line, and that is pouring out quite straight .. not affected by any forward movement. At the stern, the small amount of disturbed water could well be just the result of a small amount of engine 'astern' to counteract a strong head wind ... this being the reason for the pennant and flag streaming quite hard aft. Also, again, if you look closely, there are some crew on the bow, looking to me that the ship has stopped.

Just more food for thought ........
Also on the stern of the ship there appears to be crewmen and officers in uniform, could they be waiting to go ashore?

Dreadnought
01-10-2009, 16:48
Dennis,

I explained this in post 86 .....

... "Up until 1908, it was believed that Nelson (well Victory's flag locker) used the original 1799 Popham flags. The Admiralty then conceded that he did in fact use the amended 1804 signals. The early picture, attached, shows the incorrect 1799 signals."

Your picture shows the signal using Popham's flags ........

Dreadnought
02-10-2009, 10:06
Clive,

Here's the photo of RENOWN at Auckland 1920 with new flag D.

Cheers
Bruce


Hi Bruce,

Apologies for not responding to this earlier ... it is another of those niggling ones.

Yes, it does look like the ‘D’ flag (1937) … unless it is ‘G’ (1913) in shadow …??

The trouble is, and the trouble we have had all through this thread, is that we don't know what happened between 1913 and 1937. or when the changeover was. I think there must have been intermediate Code Books and it continues to amaze me that nobody on this forum, being such a vast pool of experience and knowledge, has said "don't forget the 1918 Book chaps ..."

In my post 143, I show two submarines bearing signals that suggest to me that the changeover took place somewhere between 12th August 1919 and 6th December 1923. Dennis doesn’t accept this. Perhaps you would have a look and check out my logic and see if you conclude the same.

spruso
03-10-2009, 00:57
Hi Bruce,

Apologies for not responding to this earlier ... it is another of those niggling ones.

Yes, it does look like the ‘D’ flag (1937) … unless it is ‘G’ (1913) in shadow …??

The trouble is, and the trouble we have had all through this thread, is that we don't know what happened between 1913 and 1937. or when the changeover was. I think there must have been intermediate Code Books and it continues to amaze me that nobody on this forum, being such a vast pool of experience and knowledge, has said "don't forget the 1918 Book chaps ..."

In my post 143, I show two submarines bearing signals that suggest to me that the changeover took place somewhere between 12th August 1919 and 6th December 1923. Dennis doesn’t accept this. Perhaps you would have a look and check out my logic and see if you conclude the same.

Clive

Re the D flag in shadow. There doesn’t appear to be any shadow on the ship. Notice the tone of the yellow on the flag is the same tone as the yellow in flag F two flags below. Also note the tonal difference of the white circle on the pennant below flag D. I have included a stern shot of BARHAM’s flags (1921) to show the same.

Re the L59 and L63: - I’m afraid I must agree with Dennis on this one.

The Submariners Assoc Website shows L53 completed 6 Jan 1925 and L69 completed 18 Apr 1923. If these dates are correct then photos must be after those dates which rules out 1919. Unless you know the exact date of the photos you can’t make a decision on the flags. You can’t ‘just suppose” about the dates as it will not make the answer accurate.

You would think that there were amendments issued when alterations to the Signal Books occurred. I wonder where they went.
I’m sure between us all we’ll solve this mystery. Hopefully someone will have a Signal Book tucked away in their “ditty box”.

Cheers
Bruce

Dreadnought
03-10-2009, 08:34
Hi Bruce,

Right … firstly I concede that the launch date is not a meaningful date in this search, rather the completion/commissioning dates are a better time mark. Yes, 1919 ruled out. So back to the dates.

According to J.J Colleridge, L53 completed October 1924 Tyneside (Armstrong).
National Archive records start period Nov 8th - Nov 21st 1924 ADM 173/10459.
Commissioned Chatham !0th December 1924

So with your date from the Submariners Association, lets' say that commissioning completed in January 1925

According to J.J Colleridge, L69 completed March 1923 at Dalmuir (Beardmore) and went Rosyth for commissioning.
National Archives start period Apr 1st – Apr 30th 1923 ADM 173/10888
18th April – 8th May 1923 she underwent sea trials
Never fully commissioned


With this more detailed information, I agree the picture is now somewhat different. But surely we can say that the 1913 flags were still in use up until at least 1924/early 1925 when L53 first went to sea. This does however conflict with the 1937 'D' flag of yours .... ????????? .... arrrrrgh ...!! I agree about the shadows ... just clutching straws.

L69 was broken up in 1939, so the picture showing her flying the 1937 pennant does not now help.

spruso
04-10-2009, 23:44
Hi Bruce,

Right … firstly I concede that the launch date is not a meaningful date in this search, rather the completion/commissioning dates are a better time mark. Yes, 1919 ruled out. So back to the dates.

According to J.J Colleridge, L53 completed October 1924 Tyneside (Armstrong).
National Archive records start period Nov 8th - Nov 21st 1924 ADM 173/10459.
Commissioned Chatham !0th December 1924

So with your date from the Submariners Association, lets' say that commissioning completed in January 1925

According to J.J Colleridge, L69 completed March 1923 at Dalmuir (Beardmore) and went Rosyth for commissioning.
National Archives start period Apr 1st – Apr 30th 1923 ADM 173/10888
18th April – 8th May 1923 she underwent sea trials
Never fully commissioned


With this more detailed information, I agree the picture is now somewhat different. But surely we can say that the 1913 flags were still in use up until at least 1924/early 1925 when L53 first went to sea. This does however conflict with the 1937 'D' flag of yours .... ????????? .... arrrrrgh ...!! I agree about the shadows ... just clutching straws.

L69 was broken up in 1939, so the picture showing her flying the 1937 pennant does not now help.

Hi Clive

Just to throw another spanner in the works, I found these two photos of Nelson & Queen Elizabeth at the 1935 Review wearing the "Port Flag" that appears on the 1937 Card.

I think that the 7th flag from the left on Nelson may also be the new "9" flag.

I wonder why the 1937 Card seems to be so prolific but no other cards have surfaced since the 1913 one?

Cheers
Bruce

Dreadnought
05-10-2009, 11:17
Hi Bruce,

Thanks for the latest 'spanner' ...!

I am looking into this with fervour and will keep you updated.

dennis a feary
05-10-2009, 16:55
Hello TOMSAM - hope you do not mind, I have pinched your photo of L24 in L24 Thread. Great picture.
The flags being flown are of course L 2 4 !!
BUT has anyone any idea what that large `sausage shaped thing' is, leaning on the tower ??? Only thing I can think of is a cork float !!
Ideas welcomed !!
Also - Ensign being flown BELOW flags ???!!!

Sadsac

Dreadnought
05-10-2009, 17:15
Dennis,

Following our last conversation, here are the first five hoists of 'England Expects' .... hope this is the sort of thing you are looking for. They are A4, so you just need to print off, or, they will enlarge to A3 should you wish.

I am including the 'That' hoist. Some historians think that there were only eleven hoists and that word 'That' was ommitted ... who knows? I have also added the 'Telegraph' Flag onto the 'England' hoist.

Please just let me know if you want anything changed. I have tried to keep it as simple as possible whilst also adding a Trafalgar flavour.

derrycunihy
05-10-2009, 20:56
Hello all,

Can anyone identify these signals? It shows the MV Derrycunihy, subject of my post on ML204 undergoing its speed trials. I know that the right hand flag is 'I am undergoing speed trial' but cannot work out the other two. It's in glorious black and white, but anyone care to have a stab.

Apologies for the crude outlines drawn on the flags, but they are slightly clearer than on the original scan.

Yes it is a merchant vessel so apologies for posting here, but I want to make use of the expertise on the forum.

Regards

Paul Hannon

http://i275.photobucket.com/albums/jj300/tocemma/seatrials2mod.jpg

jbryce1437
05-10-2009, 22:08
Merged post to thread on same subject

Jim

dennis a feary
06-10-2009, 06:31
PAUL, Oer !! Muddy waters here !
`I know - Under going speed trial' - ???

IF the flags are International (1942) then we have ;
RH - if white/blue then H = Pilot Aboard -
if yellow/blue then K = Wish to Communicate
LH - A = Diver down 2nd Substitute
This does not seem logical !!

IF the flags are Naval Signalling (1913) then we have ;
RH - No known flag match
LH - S = ??? U = ???
Again - Logic ??

IF the flags are Naval Signalling (1937) then we have ;
RH - Battle Cruiser flag
LH - Division Flag U Flag = ???

For the year of 1944 then it is probably the International Flag, BUT a Merchant Vessel may well have had `Old' flags !!

Not very conclusive I am afraid - I now leave you to `he who Dreadsnought, Clive !

Sadsac

Dreadnought
06-10-2009, 07:08
Dennis ... post 120?

dennis a feary
06-10-2009, 07:59
CLIVE - re the Trafalgar Signal - Great, great stuff, will try to copy, and look forward to receiving the rest.
What I do envisage doing is having the WHOLE signal on A4 / A3 - is it possible to do that as well ??? It would make it easier to `wave about' !

See also the previous post re flag signal MV Derrycunihy - what do you make of it - my interpretation is not very good and no help at all to the question !!

Sadsac

Dreadnought
06-10-2009, 08:07
Hello all,

Can anyone identify these signals? It shows the MV Derrycunihy, subject of my post on ML204 undergoing its speed trials. I know that the right hand flag is 'I am undergoing speed trial' but cannot work out the other two. It's in glorious black and white, but anyone care to have a stab.

Apologies for the crude outlines drawn on the flags, but they are slightly clearer than on the original scan.

Yes it is a merchant vessel so apologies for posting here, but I want to make use of the expertise on the forum.

Regards

Paul Hannon

http://i275.photobucket.com/albums/jj300/tocemma/seatrials2mod.jpg
Hi Paul,

I think these are international signals. Which is fine, but leaves a question ..

The right hand hoist flag is ICS 'HOTEL' - 'Pilot on board' (which could make sense)
The lower flag (burgee) on the left hand hoist is ICS 'ALPHA' - 'Undergoing sea trials' (it does, as Dennis points out, also mean 'Diver below'. but only when the ship is staionery).
That leaves the upper flag (pendant), and causes me some puzzlement. The flag is ICS '2nd substitute' and I can't work out why you would want to repeat the fact that you are undergoing sea trials. There are a whole load of two flag combination signals having speciic meanings, but at the moment I can't find that one. Will keep looking.

Dreadnought
06-10-2009, 08:12
I thought you wanted them separately ...? Will finish the rest - each hoist on separate A4 sheet, and will then do the complete signal on A4, and A3. Then you can pick 'n' mix or mix 'n' match to your hearts content ...!!

Have you any idea why, if I am correct, you would put 'second substitute' over the 'undergoing sea trials' signal in Paul' post?

patroclus
06-10-2009, 10:46
Is it possible that this ship was involved in a naval operation and the left hand hoist is a divisional letter?

Dreadnought
06-10-2009, 12:18
Patroclus,

I considered that as well ... there is a set of signals (International 1940) that the RN used where the top left hand signal is the DIV (division) pendant, and the lower flag (burgee) as letter Flag 'U'. Unfortunately that same set the would leave the right hand hoist using the 'BC' (Battle Crusier) signal as Dennis mentioned. So that would create another questionmark ..... In addition when the Navy used International signals they were supposed to hoist the CODE Pennant (pnt '9') which isn't showing. Although the MV Derrycunihy was under the control of the Admiralty at that time, I am not sure she would have used those particular signals.

derrycunihy
06-10-2009, 12:50
Hello all,

I should have been a bit more specific about the image. It is a builders photo and is captioned 'Derrycunihy undergoing speed trial' No doubt she was barreling along at 11 knots!!

I should also have looked at my notes before posting....and I would have got the 'pilot aboard' right!

Patroclus, unlikely to have been a Naval Op

I have the builders spec book for this vessel which was handed over in February 44. It says 'signal flags of latest pattern' of course that could mean an earlier issue, but has been pointed out, much more likely to be International 1942.

She was built specifically to carry military vehicles. As part of my research I visited Burntisland where she was built and spoke to several of the former shipyard workers including one man who had worked on her. He recalled that she was different to everything else built by the yard until that time. She had beefed up derricks and winches and was strengthened in several areas. This enhanced spec is noted in the builders book.

Many thanks to all of you for your help so far.

Paul

dennis a feary
06-10-2009, 13:27
Clive, thanks for your confirmation of my (somewhat lacking) interpretation of the signal. As you point out there seems to be a `misnomer' which ever signal we try. Cannot think why `Substitute' flown unless it is a Division flag, but even then - ???
Thanks for your efforts re the Trafalgar Signal - please have a look into MODELS Thread - have/will posted/post something I would like you to see - of which more later !!

Sadsac

Dreadnought
06-10-2009, 14:59
Hi Dennis,

Here are rest of 'England Expects' hoists. Have resent 'Man' because I forgot to shade one of the flags in the last posting, so disregard the first one. Will now create the sheets with the whole signal on.

patroclus
07-10-2009, 01:20
Patroclus,

I considered that as well ... there is a set of signals (International 1940) that the RN used where the top left hand signal is the DIV (division) pendant, and the lower flag (burgee) as letter Flag 'U'. Unfortunately that same set the would leave the right hand hoist using the 'BC' (Battle Crusier) signal as Dennis mentioned. So that would create another questionmark ..... In addition when the Navy used International signals they were supposed to hoist the CODE Pennant (pnt '9') which isn't showing. Although the MV Derrycunihy was under the control of the Admiralty at that time, I am not sure she would have used those particular signals.

Hello Clive:

As this use of the Division Flag is not part of the International Code it would not have been appropriate to use the Code Pendant (which would give it the nonsensical meaning of Second Substitute) and the right hand flag could retain its meaning for having a pilot on board.

However, in the light of Paul's further remarks, it would seem that another explanation must be looked for. If she is in the hands of the builders it may be a private company signal.

Dreadnought
07-10-2009, 16:10
Dennis,

The whole signal. Have produced it as A3. You can scale down to print as A4 using your printer software. Best though if you can print at A3.

Actually ... just printed it off A4 .... works ok

dennis a feary
08-10-2009, 08:05
CLIVE, Marvellous B*OO*Y Marvellous, thanks so much for your efforts.
I am now going to `my little man in the photo shop' for him to print off - I am much too stupid & my `machine' will not print A3.
Please go to Modelling Forum & then to Models of Ships - I have a special reason for my request pertaining to YOU !

Sadsac

spruso
03-11-2009, 23:17
Hi Bruce,

Thanks for the latest 'spanner' ...!

I am looking into this with fervour and will keep you updated.

Hello Clive,

More head scratching!

This is part of one of two photos I found in the State Library of Victoria. It is HMS RENOWN at Station Pier Melbourne in 1920 on the Royal Tour. (The date on the photo information is 1937 which is wrong. Found a few mistakes while searching this site)

In the 2nd photo, HMAS HUON is shown berthed just opposite RENOWN. She escorted HRH from Melbourne to Adelaide on this tour so I'm pretty certain it must be 1920.

Anyhow you will see the top flag of the Stern-Mainmast line appears to be the Starboard Flag. Perhaps the Port and Stbd flags were introduced just after WW1.

Cheers
Bruce

spruso
26-11-2009, 01:41
The number 7 pennant on this 1899 Flag Card also bears the name "HORARY". Does "HORARY" refer to some aspect of navigation or course change?
Cheers
BC

patroclus
26-11-2009, 02:55
I presume it relates to hours.

astraltrader
26-11-2009, 08:04
I dont know if this postcard will be of interest but I will post it anyway.

spruso
04-01-2010, 19:37
Just received these cards from the Signal Books of 1918 and 1930. (The "1918" & "1930" in dark print are my additions) No "Dress Ship" diagrams from these books yet but still trying.
Cheers
Bruce

steve roberts
04-01-2010, 20:03
Hi Terry. No decent reply appropriate! Not on the forum anyway. Regards Steve.:rolleyes:

dennis a feary
07-01-2010, 06:16
BRUCE, been ordered by CLIVE to attend this Thread, which I have neglected somewhat recently. Great pics form the 1918 / 1930 Cards. Clive and I have been trying to ascertain when the flags changed. We think it must have been 1933 / 1936 ish - do you have any knowledge as to whether there are any signal cards from those dates. Will be copying your cards for further info - Many Ta's for them.
I have a `dressed over-all' pic somewhere & will post when I find.

CLIVE - did you see the Modelling Thread of my posting of ship models - if you do please let me know what you think !!

Sadsac

spruso
07-01-2010, 18:26
BRUCE, been ordered by CLIVE to attend this Thread, which I have neglected somewhat recently. Great pics form the 1918 / 1930 Cards. Clive and I have been trying to ascertain when the flags changed. We think it must have been 1933 / 1936 ish - do you have any knowledge as to whether there are any signal cards from those dates. Will be copying your cards for further info - Many Ta's for them.
I have a `dressed over-all' pic somewhere & will post when I find.

CLIVE - did you see the Modelling Thread of my posting of ship models - if you do please let me know what you think !!

Sadsac

Hi Dennis,

I think you are right about the dates. By coincidence the new International Code of Signals (1931) for merchant ships came into use 1 Jan 1934. Eleven of the ICS flags and pennants turn up on the 1937 Navy Special Flags Card but with different meanings of course. So 1934-6 would make sense. 3 new flags appear on the card as well. Blue Flag, Red Flag, Optional Flag.

I don't know why the Navy decided to use some of the extra ICS. What would you use the cruiser, destroyer, etc flags for? Still doesn't explain why the No.5 Pennant changed from 3 to 4 red stripes after 1935 either.

The Nat.Archives at Kew has a copy of the 1934 Fleet Signal Book and I have contacted them to see if they have any flag diagrams. (Might be lucky, because I live in Oz, the NMM scanned their copies of the 1918 and 1930 cards for free. Very kind of them.) If not I might have to dig into the pocket.

A photo of one of the Renown, Repulse, Hood, or one of the carriers in 1934-5 dressed would probably give us enough flags to work out what happened. Unfortunately my photos of the 1935 Review do not show the ships dressed.

I have attached a copy of the 1937 Card on which I have marked the additions etc.

Cheers
Bruce

dennis a feary
12-01-2010, 15:49
BRUCE, if you go to the Thread Submarines 1925 - 1950 you will see there in 59 posting a photo of SHARK flying her pennant number N45. Pic posted by ANTOINE. The number five is three red / three white stripes-vertical. The photo is dated Jan 1935, so `it seems' that the three stripes were still being used then !! Of course, it may well be that there was no ACTUAL date for change as ships were not supplied all at once with the `new' flags.
Have a peep (thro the stick) and see what you think - CLIVE will also be interested methinks. Afraid I cannot `pinch' the pic over to this site to illustrate - bit thick you know !!!

Sadsac

spruso
12-01-2010, 18:26
BRUCE, if you go to the Thread Submarines 1925 - 1950 you will see there in 59 posting a photo of SHARK flying her pennant number N45. Pic posted by ANTOINE. The number five is three red / three white stripes-vertical. The photo is dated Jan 1935, so `it seems' that the three stripes were still being used then !! Of course, it may well be that there was no ACTUAL date for change as ships were not supplied all at once with the `new' flags.
Have a peep (thro the stick) and see what you think - CLIVE will also be interested methinks. Afraid I cannot `pinch' the pic over to this site to illustrate - bit thick you know !!!

Sadsac

Hi Dennis,

I did see that photo. I have one of NELSON at the 1935 Jubilee review wearing the same No. 5 Pennant. She is not wearing any of the new special flags but maybe her lines were not long enough to use them, I'll keep an eye open for more dressed ship photos between 1935-1937. Haven't heard back from the Nat. Archives re the 1934 Signal Book yet. Hopefully they will reply.
Cheers
Bruce

astraltrader
13-01-2010, 18:09
Hi Guys - Dennis has asked me to repost this picture of Elgin here as he considers it might be of interest pennant wise.

Apologies that it is not up to my usual preferred level of quality but pictures of her seem rather thin on the ground.

Kevin Denlay
06-03-2010, 04:34
Gents,

Can anyone tell me the meaning / message in the flags seen in this image. It is from an image depicting a ship circa early WWII

TIA

Dreadnought
06-03-2010, 07:35
Interesting one Kevin, and I am not sure it is a real signal. Uppermost signal flag looks like letter Flag 'V', and bottom signal flag looks like letter Flag 'T'.

The centre signal flag is intruiging. If the artist has the shape correct then there is no such flag. If he meant to draw it as a pennant ... i.e longer and a truncated end, then it could be signal Pennant '4'.

So to me, it doesn't quite make any sense. But of course Dennis or one of the real buffs will, I am sure, put me right...!!

alanbenn
24-03-2010, 10:40
If any of you guys have a few quid to spare you may be interested in this little gem of a piece being sold off on ebay....

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Royal-Navy-flag-signalmans-test-set-with-235-flags_W0QQitemZ180483192889QQcmdZViewItemQQptZUK_C ollectables_Militaria_LE?hash=item2a05a2f839


Regards
Alan

steve roberts
24-03-2010, 11:06
Hi Alan.Nice piece of kit,just a little over hopeful on the price though.I suppose some one will buy it...Regards Steve.

Dreadnought
24-03-2010, 12:00
I want ..... !!!!

Actually, I might think about making something along the same lines. What a fabulous thing. Be interesting to see waht it goes for? Have put it on my "Items being Watched" list.

dennis a feary
24-03-2010, 16:22
KEVIN, thought-prevoking that signal.
As CLIVE has said if the artist got shapes not quite correct then it is, V 4 T - but could also be V CHURCH T ??
No idea what that could signify !!
But to continue further, what if the signal is related to Aircraft Carrier, which had different / extra flags.
So that could give (if shapes are allowed for) V - 4 flight - Spotter.
SO, V (Vic) - 4th Flight - Spotting ??? Only an `observation' you see.
As a thought (with tongue in cheek) could it be V (Vee) 4 (For) T (Tea) !!

Sadsac

spruso
27-03-2010, 18:19
If any of you guys have a few quid to spare you may be interested in this little gem of a piece being sold off on ebay....

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Royal-Navy-flag-signalmans-test-set-with-235-flags_W0QQitemZ180483192889QQcmdZViewItemQQptZUK_C ollectables_Militaria_LE?hash=item2a05a2f839


Regards
Alan

Can anyone tell me what these represent in the Flag Set please?
Cheers
Bruce

Derek Dicker
27-03-2010, 20:15
Hi Bruce. I have a signal box myself but do not have these in mine. I would hazard a guess that 1 - 3 are shapes, such as fishing baskets for fishing boats. 4 - 6 are probably representing coloured lights green red and white. These would be used for rule of the road purposes.
Hope that makes sence.

Derek (bunts)

spruso
27-03-2010, 21:17
Thanks Derek,

Cheers
Bruce

dennis a feary
27-04-2010, 08:04
Hello BRUCE, All, at your suggestion have been to PRO & got out the Signal Books that you recommended. Here are some flags in black & white. Not too good in the copying. I then used my camera. Took some pics.
Time was short as I had a meeting with one of the staff to show them one of the PRO files that I have put to computer & they wish to have.
BUT, being awfully THICK, I have managed to get them into Kodak-Easy-Share on my Pc but cannot seem to be able to get them into `My Pictures' so as to be able to put them on to the Forum. Oh silly me !!
Anyone have another (simple) way to take them from camera to PC & then to Forum ???

Sadsac

Derek Dicker
27-04-2010, 09:26
Mng Sadsac, have you tried the save as option and then open up my pictures


Derek (Bunts)

dennis a feary
27-04-2010, 14:47
OK BUNTS, will give it a try - thanks. Will also now post the B & W that I should have done before ??

Sadsac

spruso
28-04-2010, 21:22
Hi Dennis,

Great work. Thanks for doing that. What year book are the B&W photos from?

Found another interesting shot on the Forum.
Post 624 -Special Warship Pictures - HMS Inflexible NY 1908. The third flag from the top of the Main-Stern line appears to be the Port Flag, Red with a white diagonal stripe.

Strangely enough it's not on the 1908 and 1913 Official Flag Cards and then appears on the 1918. Wonder where it came from?

Cheers
Bruce

dennis a feary
05-05-2010, 05:37
CLIVE, BRUCE, BUNTS, TERRY, ALL, here are some of the pics I took at PRO from file Signal Books given to me by Bruce. Had `little man' come round and `sort me out'.
Here are results ;

Sadsac

dennis a feary
05-05-2010, 05:41
WOW, it worked - find one excited little man leaping up & down in chair - He He !!!
So, here are the others taken. See what you can make of them.

Sadsac

spruso
05-05-2010, 06:03
Well done Dennis. A big thank you from the southern colony. I guess these are the 1934 Signal Book.

Re those "little people". I have one 7 years old who manipulates 3 remotes at once when watching Pay TV. He has everything sorted in less time than it takes me to hurl the remotes across the room! :rolleyes:

Keep up the good work and thanks,
Bruce

dennis a feary
09-05-2010, 07:04
BRUCE, thanks for comments. My `little man' was 30 odd, but most informative.
Yes, it was the 1934 Signal Bokk - which you had put me on to. Apart from those I have posted there are individual flags & their meanings etc.
Would you wish me to copy them next visit ??
Do you already have such from other Signal Books ??

Sadsac

sheldon
09-05-2010, 09:00
Hi all you Experts. I may have missed it but whats the difference between a "pennant" and a "pendant" and what is a "burgee".
Also can anyone tell me what the guidlines are regarding the "Paying Off Pendant" or "Pennant" is it one foot for every year of service?

spruso
09-05-2010, 23:49
DENNIS: That would be great if you could copy them. I don't have any of them. Was there a "Dress Ship" diagram in ther Signal Book? That would be of great value. It would look like the one attached below of HMS Vanguard(1952)

SHELDON: I don't think there is any difference between Pendant & Pennant. Seems they are both used. My RN Flag Cards refer to them as "Pendants" between 1899 and 1943. The 1950 Card calls them "Pennants" This was after the introduction of the Nato Signal Flag system so it may be an "Americanisation".

Burgees are commonly used by Yacht Clubs, however the 1908 RN Card does show a Red and a Blue "Swallowtailed" Burgee the same shape as the Yellow one in the attached diagram of Burgee shapes

Cheers
Bruce

spruso
10-05-2010, 01:38
PAYING OFF PENDANT.

Found this on the net which might help.


It has long been the custom of H.M. Ships returning home to pay off after a
commission abroad to wear a paying-off pendant. It is to be noted that this
is a custom only - it is not an officially - authorised action, nor is the
pendant itself provided from official sources. Being unofficial, no
instructions about it appear in any naval regulations. The pendant is
invariably white with a red St George's cross at the hoist; at the end of the
fly a balloon or (formerly) a bladder - sometimes gilded - is often attached
to keep the fly clear of the water.


The custom is said to have originated in the XIX century, when all cleaning
rags were stitched together and hoisted as a sign that they were finished
with. Later, when "proper" paying-off pendants were made on board, it became
the custom for every member of the ship's company to put in a few stitches.
Nowadays the pendants are invariably bought ashore at the expense of the
ship's welfare fund.


As the paying-off pendant is itself unofficial, there can be no authoritative
rules about its length; the following have been cited - (a) the length of the
ship if the commission has lasted the correct length of time with additions
or abatements from that length corresponding to the difference between the
actual length of the commission and the 'normal' length of a commission; (b)
the length of the ship plus one foot for every month completed on the
station; (c) one and a third times the length of the ship; (d) one and half
times the height of the foremast. It should be borne in mind that the
commission referred to is the length of time the ship's company has been
abroad, not the ship herself: when a ship recommissions abroad a fresh
commission is started; thus a commission of longer than 2¾ years is
exceptional.
:confused:

sheldon
10-05-2010, 19:38
Thanks Spruso for both sets of answers Its certainly cleared it up in my mind.
The "paying Off Pendant" seems a little confusing but I suppose if It's unofficial it doesn't really matter.

spruso
14-05-2010, 22:27
WOW, it worked - find one excited little man leaping up & down in chair - He He !!!
So, here are the others taken. See what you can make of them.

Sadsac

A question for the older Signalmen?

The 1934 Special Flag Sheet shows several flags with the designations, "Aeroplane", "Battleship", "Cruiser" etc. What was the purpose of these flags?

Obviously if you were sailing alongside HMS Nelson in the 1930s you wouldn't need her to be flying the "Battleship" flag to know she was a Battleship.

Were they possibly used to indicate to other allied ships, the composition of enemy ships sighted?:confused::confused::confused:

Cheers
Bruce

dennis a feary
21-06-2010, 07:23
Bruce, Et Al, have been to PRO & photo'd the Signal book as before - many to come. Trying to put some into this post - standby !!

Think I have done something wrong, but here goes !!

Sadsac

dennis a feary
21-06-2010, 07:25
OOOer ! It seems to have worked - but I am not too sure how I managed to do it !!

Will try to ascertain.

Sadsac

dennis a feary
21-06-2010, 07:32
WOW, YOIKS & Tally Ho !!!
Think I have cracked it - not so thick as I thought (maybe).

spruso
21-06-2010, 20:22
Well Done Dennis,

Mankind once again triumphs over technology!

Very interesting pages. I look forward to the rest. Wish I could be over in UK to check out the records too.

Cheers
Bruce

dennis a feary
22-06-2010, 07:11
OK Bruce, here's some more from 1934 Signal book - there are about 30 pages in all to do !! Did not see a `dressed-over-all' pic, but will look next visit. Apologise for the `bend' in the pages - had to have book in a `V' block & NA PLOD had his beady eye on me !! The `funny-looking snake' to the side is a lead (cloth covered) weight to keep pages level (did not work too well in my case) !!

Sadsac

dennis a feary
22-06-2010, 07:17
BRUCE / CLIVE, have just had a look at my last posting & enlarged them. After enlargement it is easy to see the writng etc.
Ocurrs to me that some `expert' in such matters (if he has time) could copy these & post them in a `condensed format' !! Must admit its not in my `expertise' !!

Sadsac

RNfanDan
22-06-2010, 19:28
I'd like some information about RN signal cones. I know what they are used for, but I am interested in their physical/mechanical aspects; for example, what are they made of? Are they rigid, or collapsible? How are they stored i.e., in their own lockers/bins, or would they be kept in the same locker as signal flags? Are they "bent-on" like signal flags? Are they flown from the same halyards as signal flags?

Many questions, with my apologies, but I've never found a good information source for these devices.

TIA,

Dan

dennis a feary
24-06-2010, 05:51
Bruce - re your PM. OK good of you to `give it a go' !!
Here are a few more of the Sig Book pages ;

Sadsac

dennis a feary
24-06-2010, 06:00
And yet more BRUCY ;

dennis a feary
24-06-2010, 06:43
Bruce, have had another look at those that I have posted and can see that I have missed some of the writing. I will take not of the parts that I have missed & copy out the missed writing at next visit to PRO. That will be 3 / 4 weeks - off to German Archives next week. Here are more ;

Sadsac

dennis a feary
27-06-2010, 04:50
Four more !!

dennis a feary
27-06-2010, 04:58
And yet another four - do I hear a `Golfer' crying - FOUR !!

OOOPS - pressed the wrong `button' so it uploaded only three !!

Sadsac

dennis a feary
09-07-2010, 05:45
OK Chaps, been away for a while.
Here are 4four more of the signal book ;
OH DEAR, another `booby' what should have been 113 I put in 103, but 113 is there !
Sadsac

dennis a feary
09-07-2010, 05:53
And yet another four - may get it right this time !!

Sadsac

I Did !!!

spruso
09-07-2010, 07:44
Thanks Dennis,

And I was wondering what I was going to do for the next 6 months!!:eek::eek::(
Cheers
Bruce

dennis a feary
09-07-2010, 16:18
OH BRUCE, got to get you `at it' - always willing to `flog a willing Horse' !!
Here are the last two - of flags shown. There are other info in the Signal Book - what do you suggest I look at / copy next ??

`Over, but not out' !!!

Sadsac

dennis a feary
09-07-2010, 16:22
Bruce, just had another look at pic 020 (double page), perhaps they are of interest - do you / others have them ?? I remember now, copying them as I was photoing, thought - `maybe of interest' !

Sadsac

spruso
17-09-2010, 20:53
Early this year Dennis Feary ( “Sadsac”), kindly photographed the Signal Flags section of the 1934 RN Fleet Signal Book (FSB) held at the National Archives . I offered to place them in “Word” files to make them more readable. I have finally finished the task ( Never volunteer? ).

The International Code of Signals for Merchant Ships was revised in 1931 and entered use on 1st January 1934. New square flags were introduced to replace the old pendant style flags.

At the same time, most of these new flags seem to have been introduced into the RN system as “Special Flags” and given their own naval meanings. Whether they were used between 1931 and 1934 I cannot say but it seems logical they would have been introduced at the same time as the new IC of S. ( They are not on the 1930 RN Signal Card.)

I have copied the text as it appears in the FSB. Words in bold text are shown that way in the original text. Note that these meanings are 1934 and some may have been changed up to and during WW2.

Some of the uses are worded in a strange way but I imagine that was the way they wrote things back then. I would think anyone with only a little education would have difficulty interpreting some of the meanings.

While doing this work I came to realise what an enormously dedicated and difficult job it must have been for a signalman. So much to remember and so important to get it right.


Hope they are of use and let me know if I have missed anything.

Cheers
Bruce

dennis a feary
18-09-2010, 08:25
Bruce, Great Stuff, Great Stuff indeed - well done !!
An `Observation'.
In some of the illustrations you have DISTING - is this short for Distinguishing ?? and is it your or the Signal books shortening ??

Sadsac

siggy63
18-09-2010, 10:03
Gents
most excellent scans - I will eventually get around to scanning my ATP Vol II and upload, always start with lots of vigour which then after 30 minutes scanning turns into BORDOM LOL

Anyway, the scans look good

Danny

Dreadnought
18-09-2010, 18:33
Good work Bruce. I am sure you don't mind me downloading the documents for my records. I shall do some comparisons with the other books to check differences. Many thanks.

spruso
18-09-2010, 19:48
Bruce, Great Stuff, Great Stuff indeed - well done !!
An `Observation'.
In some of the illustrations you have DISTING - is this short for Distinguishing ?? and is it your or the Signal books shortening ??

Sadsac

Yes DISTING = DISTINGUISHING - must have been tiredness setting in (or age!) :o:o

Cheers
Bruce:

Kevin Denlay
19-09-2010, 00:10
Thanks for posting the Signal Flags info Bruce!

spruso
19-09-2010, 01:15
Gents
most excellent scans - I will eventually get around to scanning my ATP Vol II and upload, always start with lots of vigour which then after 30 minutes scanning turns into BORDOM LOL

Anyway, the scans look good

Danny

I found Boredom a common problem too Danny, usually hurried along due to the consumption of a cold ale or two! Feel free to use my flags if you need.

Cheers
Bruce

rea00cy
11-12-2010, 01:31
I just want to thank you-all involved in this posting of the FSB. It is greatly appreciated.

Jorge

tonyboyle
30-07-2012, 12:13
Please can someone tell me what two signal flags were flown by WW2 minesweepers when they were sweeping for mines?
On the internet I have seen pages which say PB using the International Flags. However I have a b/w WW2 picture where the sweeper is flying either BB over B if it is the Royal Naval signals or BW if it is International/
Thanks for any help.

dennis a feary
25-08-2012, 07:08
Bruce ; in your Post of the Signal Flags No. 208 of 17 09 2010 you included RN FSB Flags 2.Doc. Those that you `ehanced' of my copies from PRO Signal Book 1934.
Have just had a look and when I down-loaded the first page was `super-imposed' by another. Do you know if this was from the start - or is it because the Post is `old' that that has happened ? Or is my PC at fault ??

Sadsac

Dick
05-06-2013, 18:27
The question was asked on another thread about the meaning of two particular flags often seen in photos of RN warships entering or leaving port between the two world wars. I have seen it described as "the right of way hoist".

Here is a page from the 1934 Fleet Signal Book and Article 600 from the Signalling Instructions 1934 it refers to.

I hope this goes some way to answering the question.

Sandy McAuslan
05-06-2013, 21:02
Hi Dick,
Thanks again for this information. I'm still pig sick jealous!
Cheers,
Sandy McAuslan

patroclus
05-06-2013, 22:06
Thanks, Dick. That seems to clear the matter up.

Am I correct in assuming that every ship present in the anchorages named was obliged to fly the Pilot Jack during daylight hours when any other ship was underway?

artworks
26-06-2015, 10:19
Hi everyone, as a new member I have a good question to forum brains trust on flags. Does anyone know of any link to find out the French code flags flown at Trafalgar, please? I've tried all angles on Dr. Google but to no avail. I am at present researching a painting commission of the Battle of Trafalgar for a client here in Australia and I'm hoping some of you clever chappies will come up with something. Fair winds! John

Egypt
26-06-2015, 16:58
Hi everyone, as a new member I have a good question to forum brains trust on flags. Does anyone know of any link to find out the French code flags flown at Trafalgar, please? I've tried all angles on Dr. Google but to no avail. I am at present researching a painting commission of the Battle of Trafalgar for a client here in Australia and I'm hoping some of you clever chappies will come up with something. Fair winds! John

You are probably going to have to access French sources if you want a first class answer, but I believe that the French naval signal book in use at the time was 'Signaux generaux de Jour, de Noit et de Brume a l'Ancre et a la Volle ou l'usage des armees navales de la Republique Francaise' (Burges de Missessy). However, there was also a code book written by Jose de Mazarredo y Salazar used earlier for joint Franco-Spanish naval operations - not sure which was in use at Trafalgar.
Michael

Phila
01-05-2017, 22:08
Thank-you to all the contributors to this thread. A fascinating insight to the complexities of flag communication. And even more a recognition into how much of what was regarded as routine knowledge has now become a serious research task!
Phil A (My first post).