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Subdued Navy Officers Cap Badge


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#1 reuscher

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Posted 22 March 2014 - 08:38 AM

Hello,

 

I got this 2-piece officer's subdued cap badge in a small grouping of navy items.  I never saw one before and was hoping to learn more about it.  It is marked "Sterling Balfour 1-B" on the back".  I found out on the forum that makes it around 1960-65 production, but that's all i've been able to find.  Since the Navy was not making the gray cap anymore, I'm wondering what kind of cap this badge was worn on?  Who wore it and when?  When did they start making this?  My guess is for Navy ground forces or river patrol in southeast Asia - but I don't know?  Any help would be appreciated.

 

150.jpg

 

150b.jpg

 

Thank you,

 

Chris R.



#2 busternfo

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Posted 22 March 2014 - 09:00 AM

Nice interesting badge.  I understand the full size subdued badge was worn on the combination cap, usually gray, and the pith helmet.  I don't know of other uses.  I understand they were made of black plastic for the gray uniform as well as bronze and black.  Is this badge black or dark bronze color?



#3 Kurt Barickman

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Posted 22 March 2014 - 09:19 AM

I know that this type of insignia during WWII was worn on USMC officer greens and tans for those attached to USMC units such medical doctors, chaplains, etc.

Kurt

#4 Tim B

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Posted 22 March 2014 - 10:02 AM

Chris,

 

Normally, the blackened or "subdued" devices are used on uniforms worn on shore when forces are concerned about an enemy seeing that insignia from a distant or being able to determine what rank someone was.  They continue to be used on camoflage and some utility uniforms today.

 

I'm guessing the officer cap emblem you show possibly could be for a pith helmet or other type of hard hat?  Seebee's, others working with Marine Corps or ground forces ashore.

 

Tim

 

I meant to add, another good point on whether the item was black or "bronzed", as I believe the WW2 Navy insignia for forces assigned to Marine untis was actually "bronzed" and not this black painted insignia that this one appears to be.


Edited by Tim B, 22 March 2014 - 10:06 AM.


#5 Tim B

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Posted 22 March 2014 - 10:08 AM

I can't quite make out the hallmark on the reverse left wing; anyone else?  I see "sterling" and what appears to be "LB" but the top line is unreadable.



#6 busternfo

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Posted 22 March 2014 - 10:58 AM

Here is a badge of rose gold color.  No marks of any kind on the back.  It looks great with the aviation green cover.  Anyone know if these subdued badges were widely used with the aviation greens?

 

 

 

USN officer subdued cap badge full size 30% original size.jpg

 

 



#7 busternfo

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Posted 22 March 2014 - 11:04 AM

Another bronze badge pre-WWII.  Marked "Imperial" on the back with the spread eagle hallmark.  Anyone know what USN personnel may have worn these?  Possibly in WWI?

 

 

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  • USN officers subdued cap badge full size 33% of original.jpg


#8 reuscher

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Posted 22 March 2014 - 11:21 AM

Thanks to everyone who posted.

 

The badge is definitely finished in black and not bronze.  

 

The markings on the back say:  Sterling Balfour 1-B,  and that's where I'm getting the 1960-65 production date from and guess that it was probably made for some type of southeast asia service.

 

Any other thoughts welcome.

 

 

 

busternfo,

Very neat pre WWII eagle.  Thanks for showing   that.

 

 

 

Thanks again,

 

Chris R,



#9 Tim B

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Posted 22 March 2014 - 11:30 AM

Sharp looking insignia!!

 

The Balfour 1-B mark is from the 1960's, so I would expect Vietnam era to slightly thereafter.

 

Tim



#10 cbuehler

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Posted 29 September 2014 - 07:09 PM

In ww2, blackened cap badges were specified for use with the slate gray uniform to match the buttons etc., but were very unpopular and usually replaced by the standard gilt and silver.

 

CB



#11 KurtA

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Posted 04 February 2017 - 04:06 PM

Found this at the flea market this morning.  It's the small overseas cap size.  Made of sterling with a bronzed (not black) finish. Very high quality.   I believe worn on a USMC style overseas cap by Navy doctors assigned to the Marines (WW2 era).  Perhaps on the USN grey overseas cap too?

 

 

 

USNbronzepin1.jpg USNbronzepin2.jpg

 

 

 

 




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