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  #126  
Old 26-06-2009, 16:56
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TrotOneLower TrotOneLower is offline
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Default Re: Royal Navy Uniform

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I'm sure I read somewhere that in the 1970's the yanks tried to do away with the sailor rig and put everyone in PO uniforms. Can anyone remember this. Kevin.

Yep, remember that. Spoke to a couple in a bar, and they did not like the idea. In fact, it proved so unpopular that they reintroduced their "Fore and Aft" rig with the Baby's Sun Hat.
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  #127  
Old 26-06-2009, 20:37
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Default Re: Royal Navy Uniform

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Yep, remember that. Spoke to a couple in a bar, and they did not like the idea. In fact, it proved so unpopular that they reintroduced their "Fore and Aft" rig with the Baby's Sun Hat.
Hello Trotonelower, I just looked it up, and it was in 1973. Apparently it was because they didn't think the sailors rig served any purpose in the modern navy. As you said it proved unpopular with the people who actually wore it. Did you see any of those new uniforms. Kevin.
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  #128  
Old 26-06-2009, 20:49
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Default Re: Royal Navy Uniform

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Originally Posted by oldsalt View Post
Although it was'nt during the war I got married in uniform (with the long white tapes) because everybody expected me to & because I was proud of my uniform. Just a small question , where do they stow all the civvy & uniform clothes ?
Hello Keith, Sorry if my post annoyed you. Most of what I write is what I've been told by service veterans. A lot of people I've met were from the poorer areas of Portsea and around the Romsey area. All of them were no doubt very proud of their uniforms, but at that time a lot of them, certainly the ones I've helped over the years hardly had anything decent to their names. Thanks for your reply. Kevin.
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  #129  
Old 26-06-2009, 22:07
Fairlead Fairlead is offline
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Default Re: Royal Navy Uniform

Here is one to get you all thinking and digging out information....
We RN were all (yes even Officer Cadets) at one time issued with a LANYARD (Knife for the use of?) A nice soft cotton three strand cord with a running Turk's Head to adjust the size of the neck loop and a fixed one at the business end. Washed with care, hung to dry supporting a bucket of water to make it thinner for our 'tiddly' uniform - Worn on divisions with nothing on the end or sometimes around the waist with a 'pussers dirk' safely tucked away in the trouser pocket.
WHY did the lanyard become an item of uniform?
My theory is that its use for a Bosun's Call (we can discuss chains here too), Knife, or decoration (or the office keys) is relatively modern and before that it was used to safely use and carry a tool especially when working aloft - Over to you

Fairlead
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  #130  
Old 26-06-2009, 22:24
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Default Re: Royal Navy Uniform

Hello Fairlead, Did they stop issuing lanyards during WW2. My grandad still wore his from his previous service. Kevin.
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  #131  
Old 26-06-2009, 22:37
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Default Re: Royal Navy Uniform

This might sound silly, but during liferaft training we were told the reason a sailor wears a lanyard and a knife is because if he fell overboard in the old days, he could cut off his bootlaces and get rid of his boots PDQ . Kevin.
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  #132  
Old 26-06-2009, 22:37
Fairlead Fairlead is offline
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Default Re: Royal Navy Uniform

Hi Kevin,
I have a 1943 copy of "A Seaman's Pocket Book" which shows 2 lanyards laid out in a kit muster and a note which says "The knot of the lanyard must be 3" above the tapes. The bight of the lanyard under the silk must not hang down too low."

Fairlead
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  #133  
Old 27-06-2009, 07:20
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Default Re: Royal Navy Uniform

Still issued now as part of noz 1s. Only today they just get one. We were issued with two, a practical thick one, and a tidier thinner version to go with tiddly suit. Or did I get that one from the Naval Jailer? Anyway, we were issued with two, but only "seaman" types were issued with the knife.

The origin of the lanyard was as a pull chord for firing the guns. What I was told anyway. In the same way that the silk was a standardised colour for sweat bands.
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  #134  
Old 29-06-2009, 10:51
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Default Re: Royal Navy Uniform

I have a quick question on medal ribbons. I'm confused because there seems to be many ways of wearing the ribbons. Do officers and enlisted have separate practices?

I'm trying to work out how a CPO in WW2 would wear his.
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File Type: jpg ribbons.jpg (312.8 KB, 18 views)

Last edited by Dreadnought : 09-09-2010 at 13:30. Reason: changed images to thumbnails
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  #135  
Old 29-06-2009, 18:39
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Default Re: Royal Navy Uniform

I'm not sure if this helps in anyway but I believe that campaign medals come before general service medals and that these come before long service medals.
Thats how they run in my family from before the first world war and up to and including my own.

best wishes
jan
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  #136  
Old 29-06-2009, 19:24
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Default Re: Royal Navy Uniform

Thanks Jan. I understand the order it's the grouping I'm confused with.

Top left is in rows or 3's, why isn't the top right one? The bottom right is in groups of 2's, why?
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  #137  
Old 30-06-2009, 09:31
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Default Re: Royal Navy Uniform

On the topic of uniforms and in particular their upkeep, there is one thing in old age and fading memory, that always comes back to me! those creases in your trousers! and the shenanigans of getting them there!
"Jan" made mention to the "five or seven razor sharp creases".
If I remember rightly, to obtain these the trousers were turned inside out first, I always used a thin book to maintain them in parallel.
What made me bring this up, was uniform inspections. You were required to to turn up the bottoms if it was suspected that "SOAP" had been used on the inside to sharpen up the crease, the tell tail white marks would be only too obvious. You were for the high jump if it were discovered.
Any support used in your Cap Tally bow (old penny) noted, was equally frowned upon. Whilst on the subject of caps a liberal coat of "Blanko" was the accepted method of keeping it white.
Incidentally, I never did find out what the significance of those trouser creases represented. Anyone shed light to this???
Bob William Green
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  #138  
Old 30-06-2009, 13:07
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Default Re: Royal Navy Uniform

Bob clearly you go back further than me as I don't remember blancoing my cap, they were white plastic in my time and needed a regular scrubbing with brush, water and "dhoby dust".
The trouser creases, if I remember correctly, were paybook size apart but as to why we had them I've no idea. I was told that 'seven' paid homage to the seven seas and 'five' to the oceans. A nice idea but I'm not sure that there is any truth in it.
There was nobody smarter than a matelot in rig but sadly, in my opinion, those days are long gone.

best wishes
Jan
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  #139  
Old 30-06-2009, 15:24
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Default Re: Royal Navy Uniform

Agree, nothing smarter than a matelot in the "old" rig.

As for the creases; this again came down to standardisation. Not too sure on the height qualifier, but I think it was under 5'6" (or maybe 5'4") and you had five creases. Over, and it was seven.

It apparently made them easier to stow before the days of ample storage. Some even said that tightly folded and tied with a lanyard, and they would float. Never tried it, but I don't they would have supported me!
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  #140  
Old 30-06-2009, 19:30
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Default Re: Royal Navy Uniform

Don`t know about making you float...But when we took our swimming test you had to wear a uniform..We were in tropical white full rig. Nothing under it..Then swim a couple of lengths and float around for a couple of minutes or so...I found the trousers slipping off and had a bit of difficulty pulling them up whilst floating around. Still passed though.
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  #141  
Old 30-06-2009, 21:46
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Default Re: Royal Navy Uniform

Re creases: in the days when we still slept in hammocks, trousers folded up and a jumper rolled up formed a pillow.

Arctic routine - hammock slung with No 3s at head end; pusser's blanket laid over and pressed down against kapok mattress. Insert body and fold blanket over giving two layers over body followed by spare hammock pulled up to nose. Snug - snoring optional.

Correctly lashed up, a hammock and matress could provide support for about 24 hours before it became waterlogged. Well that was the theory but I never had to find out.

Basic swimming test - jump in shallow end in duck suit, swim to deep end and bob about for two minutes that swim back to shallow end. I had four days to learn and the PTI decided that it would take too long to teach me properly. I did the course by swimming on my back to solve the problem of breathing correctly. He gave me a Fair Pass. Still can't swim properly; I just make sure that I don't fall into the water.

Ken
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  #142  
Old 01-07-2009, 21:12
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Default Re: Royal Navy Uniform

Re creases, never heard of 5 creases I was only 5`6" but always had 7 creases, joined up in 1954 and remember blancoing my cap I was so pleased when the plastic covered caps came in, much easier to look after,
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  #143  
Old 02-07-2009, 20:14
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Default Re: Royal Navy Uniform

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Re creases, never heard of 5 creases I was only 5`6" but always had 7 creases, joined up in 1954 and remember blancoing my cap I was so pleased when the plastic covered caps came in, much easier to look after,
5 or 7 creases was an option in the 1960's, but not sure of the criteria.
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  #144  
Old 02-07-2009, 20:53
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Default Re: Royal Navy Uniform

This is interesting, but only says that the number of creases depended on the size of the wearer....

http://histclo.com/Style/suit/sailor/mil/mil-rn.html
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  #145  
Old 02-07-2009, 21:40
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Default Re: Royal Navy Uniform

During ww2 I know the navy issued black sailor caps which came with white covers, but at a millitary show recently someone was selling white caps with black covers. Were these standard issue aswell. Kevin.
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  #146  
Old 07-07-2009, 17:37
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Default Re: Royal Navy Uniform

As a matter of interest can anyone tell me the history of the RN uniform and why it is the design that it is
I am referring to the uniform most of you lads wore....of course
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  #147  
Old 07-07-2009, 18:47
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Default Re: Royal Navy Uniform

Men dressed as seamen were issued with white & black caps, those in fore & aft rig were issued with black caps & white pique covers. We young stokers pestered our Stoker PO's for cap covers which had become unuseable, we turned in one part of the covers edge to make a peak, we then wore them as steaming caps. Senior rates & officers shirts were all collarless, the collars required starching, later paper & plastic collars were tried before collar attached shirts came into use.
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  #148  
Old 07-07-2009, 19:06
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Default Re: Royal Navy Uniform

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Originally Posted by oldsalt View Post
Men dressed as seamen were issued with white & black caps, those in fore & aft rig were issued with black caps & white pique covers. We young stokers pestered our Stoker PO's for cap covers which had become unuseable, we turned in one part of the covers edge to make a peak, we then wore them as steaming caps. Senior rates & officers shirts were all collarless, the collars required starching, later paper & plastic collars were tried before collar attached shirts came into use.

Thank you Keith but why Bell Bottoms, why fore and aft rig ,why a hat that gets blown off so easily it must have started some how
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  #149  
Old 08-07-2009, 00:50
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Default Re: Royal Navy Uniform

Mik43 obviously has missed the connection with Royal Purple indicating the majestic liniage of Stokers.And that from an Aussie Republican.
Cheers John O'C.
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  #150  
Old 08-07-2009, 01:50
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Default Re: Royal Navy Uniform

Ivor.there is a book which gives good detail of RN uniforms and rigs about WW2 period.It's from Osprey Publishing.title The Royal Navy 1939-45.
Cheers JohnO'C.
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