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THE BLUE COMBAT BOX (under aviation wings in WWII)


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#1 BEAST

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Posted 26 September 2007 - 06:03 PM

Beside the usual tests (burn, UV, fading), how can you tell if the blue combat box on a uniform is original? If you have one on your uniforms, please post it for comparison. Thanks!

HUSE_RIBBONS_AND_WINGS.jpg



#2 Brig

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Posted 26 September 2007 - 06:25 PM

my guess is you're gonna see a lot of them all sewn on differently and cut differently, made of different materials, so comparrison won't be much help. this one looks a little lopsided and hand-stitched. I imagine most will be similar

#3 Paul C.

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Posted 27 September 2007 - 04:40 AM

That one looks like all the others I have owned, it's really hard to tell. The ones I don't like have the factory embroidered yellow or gold border. I'll see if I can dig up some pictures.

#4 Tonomachi

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Posted 27 September 2007 - 08:42 PM

Here are a couple of photos of things I've kept as reference from items sold on eBay in the past. I have no idea why the red rectangle instead of blue or if this stuff is authentic.

Attached Images

  • Glider2.jpg
  • Glider3.jpg
  • Glider4.jpg
  • Glider.jpg


#5 Brig

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Posted 28 September 2007 - 04:23 AM

can anyone fill the board in on the signifigance of the combat box, and of the red vs blue?

#6 CNY Militaria

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Posted 28 September 2007 - 04:31 AM

The combat box signified that the individual was an active AAF member in theater. I believe the story is that some GI's would get a pair of wings to wear in town to impress the ladies, even though they weren't actually in the AAF. The blue box was supposed to show that theperson was REALLY in the AAF. I don't know if thats true or not, but thats what I have heard.

#7 BEAST

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Posted 28 September 2007 - 04:43 AM

This is from the "HISTORY OF COMBAT SERVICE INSIGNIA" found at:
afehri.maxwell.af.mil/Documents/pdf/HISTORY%20OF%20COMBAT%20SERVICE%20INSIGNIAS.pdf

"During WWII Combat Crews were allowed to wear a blue cloth patch sewn on the uniform on
which aeronautical badges were worn. This was authorized to prevent non-aircrew members
from pinning on wings when off base to "impress the girls." USAAF Flight Badges were worn
by Members of the Eighth Air Force During WWII, research compiled by Harry D. Gobrecht,
303rd Bomb Group (H) Association Historian. This information was from a single internet
source and could not be verified by any military documents.
COMBAT CREWMEMBER QUALIFICATION BADGE
The Combat Crewmember Badge was established by the Air Force on 1 September 1964 and
worn by those personnel serving in positions in which they are accruing creditable service
towards the Combat Readiness Medal as outlined in Air Force regulation 900-48. This was a
qualification badge and not a medal; therefore it was not a permanent award. The Air Force
eliminated the Combat Crewmember Qualification Badge from wear in August of 1993,
addressing uniform accouterments to eliminate duplication, achieve standardization, and promote
an uncluttered appearance."


#8 Lee Ragan

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Posted 28 September 2007 - 06:51 AM

The combat box signified that the individual was an active AAF member in theater. I believe the story is that some GI's would get a pair of wings to wear in town to impress the ladies, even though they weren't actually in the AAF. The blue box was supposed to show that theperson was REALLY in the AAF. I don't know if thats true or not, but thats what I have heard.

It wasn't to indicate they were really in the AAF, but if they were authorized wings. There seems to have been a problem with 8th Air Force ground troops pinning on wings while on a pass in the UK. The wings were supposed to impress the ladies more than being an ordinary "ground pounder", of some sort. From everything I've read on this subject, it was only done in the UK and at that, wasn't done 100% of the time.

#9 GIKyle

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Posted 28 September 2007 - 03:59 PM

The majority of what I've read and seen is that it was to denote combat crew- not to separate themselves from guys just pinning their wings on, but to separate them from guys who were qualified, but had not flown in combat.

Do not be scared if you see one with yellow braid trim, it denotes lead crew and is a little more scarce.

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#10 Paul C.

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Posted 28 September 2007 - 04:59 PM

Here is something along these lines:

DSC03902c.jpg

These are part of a P-51 pilot group I have recently obtained ( sorry for the reflection , I got lazy and didn't take it out of the frame). Both are Brit made, padded and really cool ! :D



Here's another one from a b14 I wish I hadn'd sold

DSC00003.jpg

Also the reason I don't like the lead crew rectangles is that, I believe it is National Historic Sales, is making these up by the bail. I have never seen one on a uniform I personally have known to be good. Not saying there aren't ones on good uniforms, I've just never seen one

Paul

Edited by Paul C., 28 September 2007 - 05:06 PM.


#11 USMCRECON

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Posted 29 September 2007 - 04:53 AM

my guess is you're gonna see a lot of them all sewn on differently and cut differently, made of different materials, so comparrison won't be much help. this one looks a little lopsided and hand-stitched. I imagine most will be similar


I think I posted a picture of this once before under a 9th Air Force thread but here are two pictures of an AAF fighter pilot's uniform with the blue wool felt rectangle behind the wings. It doesn't look all that "professionally" made and appears to have been cut from a piece of blue wool felt with a pair of scissors and stitched onto the tunic.

I'd also read all the info above regarding wear of the blue combat crew patch behind the wings as stated above. While the stated reasons seem plausible, I have no personal definitive info on the origin or wear of these. Anyway, below are two pictures of the blue rectalngle behind the wings of a named pilot's uniform.

FtrPilot1.JPG FtrPilot2.JPG



#12 TBMflyer

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Posted 29 September 2007 - 05:08 AM

Here is one of the Yellow bordered Lead Crew patches, got it from a 100th BG tail Gunner, Mark.
MVC_037F.JPG MVC_038F.JPG

#13 Paul C.

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Posted 29 September 2007 - 05:18 AM

Mark,

THAT one looks good!! It is quite a bit different from the ones seen most often on eBay. The black back is the difference!


Paul

#14 FW12

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Posted 29 September 2007 - 12:12 PM

Here are a couple of the blue combat backgrounds that I've come across:

Attached Images

  • wing__2.jpg
  • wing.jpg


#15 FW12

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Posted 29 September 2007 - 12:15 PM

more

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#16 Ricardo

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Posted 29 September 2007 - 01:49 PM

Hi,

Examples in my collection:

http://img178.imageshack.us/img178/7288/nco8aaf17vnba7.jpg

One WW2 image:

http://img529.imageshack.us/img529/3980/air20corps2012alo2.jpg

Another one...

http://img513.imageshack.us/img513/3796/aircrewblue1gy2.jpg


Best regards,

Ricardo.

#17 Ricardo

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Posted 29 September 2007 - 01:50 PM

..

http://img241.imageshack.us/img241/9276/8affblues2cj7.jpg

http://img68.imageshack.us/img68/6826/8affblues1rw4.jpg

#18 TBMflyer

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Posted 30 September 2007 - 12:13 PM

Here are a couple more blue 'combat' boxes. First one is on an 8th AF Bombardier blouse, one of the first tunics I ever owned, Mark.MVC_041F.JPG

#19 TBMflyer

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Posted 30 September 2007 - 12:14 PM

This is from a Navigator who was in the 390th B.G. -MarkMVC_043F.JPG

#20 TBMflyer

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Posted 30 September 2007 - 12:16 PM

This last one is from a grouping of a Sgt. James Bond (no kidding). It is odd in that the wing is in gold bullion, Mark.MVC_042F.JPG

#21 Mark

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Posted 06 October 2007 - 10:19 AM

more info from "More Silver Wings..."

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  • COMBAT_PATCH_INFO.jpg



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