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In the 1960s-70s on USN carriers baseball caps with

felt letters and numbers that spelled out the squadron

were popular. Examples would include VF-101, VA-75,

VS-33, etc. Does anyone know of a source for these

today?

 

Thanks,

Owen

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I don't believe they use the adhesive backed letters any more.

These days it's more of a direct embroidery process on the cap.

My hope is to recreate a '60s flavor - the way it was.....

 

I don't think contacting the squadron for 40 year old material

would be productive. Can anyone else offer suggestions???

 

Thanks,

Owen

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Since most of these caps were usually dark blue with simple letters on them (most often in yellow gold), why not make your own? Do a google search for iron on letters and you will vintage style letters available. The hardest thing may be finding the old style hats but again try google.

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In the 1960's the Air Force also had organizational baseball caps. I still have one of mine. While stationed at K.I. Sawyer AFB, Michigan, we would get new caps every year or so. A little old lady in a nearby town had a basement literally full of caps and felt letters. Each squadron had different colored caps with contrasting lettering. We also usually had our home state and first name embroidered across the back and sides of the cap. Some maintenance units wore a vinyl type cap of the same design, but it was made of that type material so they could be wiped off when they got greasy or dirty working on airplanes or equipment.

I would like to collect these from any service, but they seem to be hard to locate on the collector market.

Good luck in finding these. If you do, please post on the forum. thumbsup.gif

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I don't think contacting the squadron for 40 year old material

would be productive. Can anyone else offer suggestions???

Thanks,

Owen

 

Well Owen, I know a couple of my USN ball caps with embroidered letters date from the mid- to late 1960s. Nonetheless, contacting the squadron or ship's gedunk seems like a more logical place to start than simply tossing things to the wind. The best way to find these sorts of things is by networking. You make it sound like you want someone to say "Walmart had a whole rack of 'em last week." Forty-year-old material generally just isn't laying all over the place in large quantities.

 

However you may feel, (pay attention), contacting the squadron/ship is a logical first step. The PIO can likely to put you in contact with the unit historian who knows of a source for the cap you seek, or perhaps an old timer from the squadron/ship who has what you seek and will give you one, or knows of a source made for a reunion, etc... Think again before blowing off a suggestion as "unproductive."

 

Otherwise, do like Admin suggested and make your own repro of the cap you seek.

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Dear Bill,

Thank you for your gracious welcome to the forum for the new guy. I feel properly

chastised and am now paying attention. Perhaps you, in your infinite knowledge and

wisdom, could provide me with the email address for the PAO of VFP-62 and VA-75,

both of which have been disestablished for years.

 

I will take your suggestion and email the PAO of some of the current squadrons.

I will post any replies I receive here your your edification and everyone else's

entertainment.

 

Regards,

 

Owen

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Hi Owen

 

About USN 1960s ball caps for carrier based units, you should beware that the colors usually followed MIL-I-18464 depending on the squadron mission

 

Fighter squadrons VF : Insignia Red and Orange Yellow

Attack Squadrons VA : Light blue, International orange and light green

Reco Squadron RVAH VFP : black

Early warning squadron VAW : insignia blue

ECM squadron VAQ : Marron

ASW squadron VS : green

Helo squadron HC HS : Magenta

 

and by april 1970 (OPNAVINST 3710.7E) based on the squadron Modex

 

1st squadron 1xx : insignia Red

2nd squadron 2xx : Orange Yellow

3rd squadron 3xx : light blue

4th squadron 4xx : international orange

5th squadron 5xx : light green

6th squadron 6xx : Black

7th squadron 7xx : insignia blue

8th and 9th squadron 8xx, 9xx : marron

 

Regards

croc

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Hi Croc,

Thanks for the note. I appreciate you taking the time to write.

I was not aware of the color coding. The vets from VFP-62 told

me their caps were maroon and the guys from VA-75 said navy

blue. Around 1970 aa aviator gave me one from VF-101 that was

navy blue. Till now I thought it was an individual thing. Always

more to learn.....

 

Blue skies,

Owen

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Save the drama, Owen. You weren't exactly clear on who/what unit you're looking for, so you carry the blame for the vague answer you got. if you want a more specific answer to your question, you'll need to be more specific in your question. What you want is something you're probably going to have to acquire from a veteran.

 

 

Nonetheless, the logical place to begin your search would likely be by contacting the Navy. Have you even considered contacting contacting NAS Ocenana as a logical starting place for VA75? No doubt domeone in their airwing knows someone who served with VA75 during the Vietnam War (or am I pre-supposing too much?) who might know someone who knows someone else who can help you in your quest.

The same holds true for VFP62. Contact NAS Cecil Field. Granted, you might actually have to use the US Mail to reach some of the older vets who may have/know where can find what you seek.

 

Case in point, VPB53...the "Black Cats." They were disbanded after WWII. But getting ahold of veterans is an easy deal. The US Navy has put me in touch with some of the veterans' organizations, who in turn have put me in touch with plenty of veterans. I've had the same luck with the USAF in getting ahold of former/Vietnam War era members of the 23rd TASS. My collection now holds theater-made patches, stone cold mint blood chits, flight logs, photographs, etc...

 

Before you go copping an attitude with someone who's willing to point in a viable direction, stoip and think. Perhaps the "new guy to the forum" (your words) would be better served by listening more and criticizing less. You asked for help, were given some, and copped an attitude when you weren't told "fire off an email to LtJG Smith at tons-o'-vintagegear.com...he's got warehouses full of old ball caps."

 

BTW, www.google.com is also a good friend to know too.

http://www.ussindependencecv-62.org/gwf/va75.html

http://virtualaviation.tripod.com/index.html

http://www.vfp62.com/

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Gentlemen lets all be friends, have you tried looking at vintage baseball cap sites? You can prolly find the cap your looking for (well the material kind) buy it and then put the felt letters on yourself.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Try these folks:

 

M & G Sales Co Inc

Address: 2609 Granby St # 17, Norfolk, VA 23517

Phone: (757) 622-9065

 

(sorry - no website)

 

They have a huge stock of original USN (and some USAF and USMC) baseball caps, most tend toward 80's-90's vintage (i.e. nylon, mesh back) but last time I was there they had a couple 60's vintage (small) sized wool caps - it might be worth your while to check...

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I'd suggest eBay as a good place to start. It might take a while to find specific squadrons, but plenty of estates have been opened of vets from the 60s and 70s and their ballcaps have come out of the woodwork.

 

As for me, I used to own a good number that I bought at thrift stores when I was a kid. I think I chucked them all when I got my own that I wore "for real" though.

 

Dave

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  • 2 weeks later...

I was just in a craft store with my wife this weekend (she has discovered "scrapbooking").

 

On the one aisle I found a bag of precut felt letters that were about 2 inches high. These would make a pretty good imitation of the felt letters used on vintage hats. I am sorry to say that I did not get the name of the manufacturer.

 

Now if you can find some felt or wool baseball caps, you can be in business!

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  • 1 month later...

You could always try www.ballcap.com

 

They will make anything you want, but I don't know if their materials are "new" enough for the 1960s. I had them make a 1933 University of Florida baseball team cap and a 1954 UF cap. Both were extremely well done.

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