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Odd Air Force Rank Patch

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Hi All,

 

I found this in the junk box. I know it's Air Force, but it's unlike any I've seen.

 

Anybody got any ideas as to when this type of rank insignia was used?

 

Thanks

 

Dennis


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We have a thread on these at http://www.usmilitariaforum.com/forums/ind...showtopic=15966

 

Apparently the USAF approved the straight, horizontal chevrons in the early 50's for the lowest three ranks, but they did not issue them because they wanted to exhaust the supply of angled chevrons. Well, that delayed things long enough that eventually the brass decided to keeps things as they were and not issue the horizontal chevrons.



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I have a complete set of these. The Forum Support is right.

 

In 1952 a new chevron for the ranks of Airman 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Classes, was approved by the Air Force. This change was designed to make it easier to differentiate between the lower enlisted ranks and the higher NCO ranks. The stripes were to change from the “angled” design, to a "horizontal".

Do to the existing supply of regular chevrons, the change was to be delayed until 1956 to use up the remaining stock. The new design was resubmitted to the Air Force Chief of Staff, but it was decided that no change would be made in the insignia after all, even though some of the new design had already been manufactured. As far as I know, none were ever issued, and presumably all were meant to be destroyed. However, some of these prototype patches have survived.

""Studies made in 1950 and 1951 proposed to change the enlisted grade structure. At that time, it was planned to develop new insignia for the three classes of Airmen (First, Second, and Third). Preliminary sketches of proposed insignia have the stripes at a horizontal level, reserving the angled stripes for the toop three ranks to differentiate Non-Commissioned Officers (NCOs).""

 

""DECEMBER - 1952 - The proposed-new-chevrons for the three lower ---- airman grades are approved by General Vandenberg. However, the procurement action is deferred until existing stocks of the current chevrons are depleted. This is not expected to occur until June 1955.""

""12 March 1956 - In 1952 General Vandenberg approved a new chevron for Airman, First, Second and Third Classes. The purpose of this change was to increase the prestige of the Staff, Technical and Master Sergeant chevrons. The stripes were to change from the angled design to horizontal. However, due to the supply of chevrons on hand, action was delayed until supply had been deleted, which happened in early 1956. The decision to change the design was resubmitted to General Twining on 12 March 1956. The Chief replied in a short informal memo stating "No change to be made in insignia." ""

 

I was told that, in rare cases, some of these were worn in testing.

Hope this helped -- Rick (Old B-1)


Always looking for Rare/Hard to find B-1, B-1A, and B-1B related patches.

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I have a complete set of these. The Forum Support is right.

 

In 1952 a new chevron for the ranks of Airman 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Classes, was approved by the Air Force. This change was designed to make it easier to differentiate between the lower enlisted ranks and the higher NCO ranks. The stripes were to change from the “angled” design, to a "horizontal".

Do to the existing supply of regular chevrons, the change was to be delayed until 1956 to use up the remaining stock. The new design was resubmitted to the Air Force Chief of Staff, but it was decided that no change would be made in the insignia after all, even though some of the new design had already been manufactured. As far as I know, none were ever issued, and presumably all were meant to be destroyed. However, some of these prototype patches have survived.

""Studies made in 1950 and 1951 proposed to change the enlisted grade structure. At that time, it was planned to develop new insignia for the three classes of Airmen (First, Second, and Third). Preliminary sketches of proposed insignia have the stripes at a horizontal level, reserving the angled stripes for the toop three ranks to differentiate Non-Commissioned Officers (NCOs).""

 

""DECEMBER - 1952 - The proposed-new-chevrons for the three lower ---- airman grades are approved by General Vandenberg. However, the procurement action is deferred until existing stocks of the current chevrons are depleted. This is not expected to occur until June 1955.""

""12 March 1956 - In 1952 General Vandenberg approved a new chevron for Airman, First, Second and Third Classes. The purpose of this change was to increase the prestige of the Staff, Technical and Master Sergeant chevrons. The stripes were to change from the angled design to horizontal. However, due to the supply of chevrons on hand, action was delayed until supply had been deleted, which happened in early 1956. The decision to change the design was resubmitted to General Twining on 12 March 1956. The Chief replied in a short informal memo stating "No change to be made in insignia." ""

 

I was told that, in rare cases, some of these were worn in testing.

Hope this helped -- Rick (Old B-1)

Rick,

How are you buddy? So these we never sewn on?

Andrew

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Hey Andrew,

I believe only a few of these were ever worn; but in testing only.

General Vandenberg pushed for over 5 years to get these made and on the sleeves of his newly named "Airmen".

Oh yeh, I bet some of these stripes were worn.

Rick (Old B-1)


Always looking for Rare/Hard to find B-1, B-1A, and B-1B related patches.

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Hey Andrew,

I believe only a few of these were ever worn; but in testing only.

General Vandenberg pushed for over 5 years to get these made and on the sleeves of his newly named "Airmen".

Oh yeh, I bet some of these stripes were worn.

Rick (Old B-1)

Over the years, I've seen a LOT of these old straight chevrons. I have never seen one that didn't look brand new (ie. was never worn). This doesn't mean they were not worn... I just have never seen any. Do any of you guys have any of these that appear to have been cut off a uniform? think.gif


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"Online purchase turns into historical find (Posted 6/17/2005)

by Airman 1st Class Dilia DeGrego
305th Air Mobility Wing Public Affairs office

6/17/2005 - MCGUIRE AIR FORCE BASE, N.J. (AFPN) -- The online purchase of one person here will soon be displayed in an Air Force historical museum.

Jeffery Hughes, a 305th Mission Support Squadron human resource assistant, recently donated a rare set of 1955 Airman test stripes to the Air Mobility Command Museum at Dover Air Force Base, Del.

Mr. Hughes found the complete set while looking through an online auction site’s eBay military memorabilia section. He said he was not looking for anything in particular when he came across the odd looking stripes being sold from an estate sale.

Mr. Hughes bought the stripes for less than $20 and kept them until recently when he spoke with Gary Boyd, 305th Air Mobility Wing historian here.

"I wasn't sure how interesting or important they would be to anyone other than me," Mr. Hughes said. "I did know they were of some historic value, but I had never seen them, nor had anyone from the retiree activities office, so I asked Gary Boyd if he had ever seen them before."

Although Mr. Boyd said he had not heard of them, he was very interested in the stripes.

"These stripes may be the most collectible thing in all Air Force enlisted history," the historian said. "This complete set of horizontal Airmen's stripes were supposed to all been destroyed in 1956."

The historian said he had never seen a complete set before Mr. Hughes came across his. Mr. Hughes asked him to evaluate the strange stripes he had purchased.

"I had read about the horizontal stripe idea, but had no idea it had advanced as far as it did,” he said. "After evaluating Mr. Hughes' items, I discovered that he must have had a rare set of unissued E-2, E-3 and E-4 stripes. I asked experts, and they were unfamiliar with them. I concluded they were the circa 1952 to 1956 test stripes, and later discovered that some of these have made their way to flea markets in the Midwest."

The issue of these horizontal stripes revolved around the time the Air Force was trying to create its own unique traditions and uniforms after its break from the Army in 1947, Mr. Boyd said.

"We began issuing our own blue uniforms as stocks of the Army Air Forces clothing was depleted, and began to use our own chevrons," he said. "As part of the yearly uniform appraisal, a suggestion to differentiate the chevrons of Airmen from (noncommissioned officers) was tendered."

Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Hoyt S. Vandenberg approved the idea in 1952 with the provision that the upturned Airmen's chevron's be issued and sold until they had been exhausted, the historian said.

In 1952, General Vandenberg approved a new chevron for airmen first, second and third classes. The purpose of this change was to increase the prestige of the staff, technical and master sergeant chevrons. The stripes were to change from the angled design to horizontal. However, because of the supply of chevrons on hand, action was delayed until supply had been depleted, which happened in March 1956.

The decision to issue horizontal stripes was resubmitted to Gen. Nathan F. Twining, who had become the new Air Force chief of staff. The general replied in a short informal memo stating "No change to be made in insignia."

"The issue would have died altogether, as all the existing stock and remaining orders were destroyed or discarded," Mr. Boyd said. "Some folks in clothing issue squirreled away a few sets of these, and they occasionally make their way onto the collector's market."

After discovering their historical value, Mr. Hughes said he thought it would be best to share his finding with others and donated them to the museum.

"The stripes show one of the different transitions our Air Force has gone through since inception," he said. "I’m pleasantly surprised something that I just thought a curiosity will be shared with all who visit the AMC Museum."

Aside from this rare set of stripes, Mr. Hughes has also bought an airman second class stripe for $3 from a seller in Ohio and a few other historical items currently displayed by the historians office in the 305th AMW headquarters building
".

EDIT: Picture is lost

Informations from ;

http://www.af.mil/news/story.asp?storyID=123010810


"As you know, you go to war with the Army you have. They're not the Army you might want or wish to have at a later time. You can have all the armor in the world on a tank and it can (still) be blown up..." - Donald Rumsfeld (Camp Buehring, KU - Dec. 8, 2004)

See my current collection of desert SSI HERE
See my current collection of Badges (ranks, qualification badges, Branch of Service - from WW2 to present) HERE
See my files in PDF on scribd.com HERE
See my collection of jackets HERE

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