Jump to content
  • advertisement_alt
  • advertisement_alt
  • advertisement_alt

Help with Air Force DCU


Recommended Posts

I just got a 1990 contract Air Force DCU that is concerning me now that I have it in hand. In the listing it looked pretty good and appeared to have theater made wings. After getting it and actually looking at it the name tape and BOS and wings look good. But the rank insignia and USCENTAF patch do not. They appear to be stitched on with clear plastic thread almost like very fine fishing line. And the rank has a long excess piece. The patch is attached with the same plastic thread and actually stitched all the way through the pocket to the inside of the coat. You can’t open the pocket. So did I strike out? Is this somebody trying to get a sale or could this actually be original?? Thanks 

F7534E7B-D720-41C4-AE1B-BB3DD4C83DB1.jpeg

6836B0A4-99AB-41CE-9770-E72D21B01F15.jpeg

5339F98C-302B-4B76-9DF0-E7A2AB1048B3.jpeg

97C80B2F-D7BA-4526-9F2B-9659844FABFF.jpeg

6834B725-BA66-4660-82E6-8BD10CF76657.jpeg

647D8330-F7E3-48C3-B3BB-4059644B1ECB.jpeg

AC14C3FA-CA82-4127-B690-E69D50B7460F.jpeg

Link to post
Share on other sites

The stitching on the rank looks "crooked".  Leads me to believe hand sewn but am open to other opinions.  A possibility is that the rank and patch were hand sewn with dental floss due to a promotion and unit assignment.  Simpler to sew through the pocket vice in the pocket to a basic "seamstress" or just did it accidentally. 

Semper Fi

Jeff

donation2015.gifdonation2016.gifdonation2017.gifdonation2019.gif

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
5 minutes ago, BagmanL6 said:

The stitching on the rank looks "crooked".  Leads me to believe hand sewn but am open to other opinions.  A possibility is that the rank and patch were hand sewn with dental floss due to a promotion and unit assignment.  Simpler to sew through the pocket vice in the pocket to a basic "seamstress" or just did it accidentally. 

Thanks for the reply. The stitching on the pocket patch looks pretty strait to me. I’m just not sure. Weird. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
Just now, BagmanL6 said:

You're welcome.  You've got it in hand so have a better perspective of the sewing quality.  

Eh I don’t know about that. I still know practically nothing about sewing. Just pretty sure it’s not normal to sew a pocket shut or use clear line to do it. Just want some opinions on wether or not this might be someone the original owner may have done or something some sketchy seller may have done. Could go either way to me but that’s why I’m hoping for some more experienced opinions 

Link to post
Share on other sites

My Mom used clear thread to sew all of my boy scout merit badges and patches on. Looked a lot better than trying to color match thread. I’ll have to look at my BDUs but sewing through the pocket on the breast patches was not uncommon. A lot of guys had them sewed down. I have a few other patches from seamstresses with clear thread so I would not discount it out of hand. 

 

Friar

Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, FriarChuck said:

My Mom used clear thread to sew all of my boy scout merit badges and patches on. Looked a lot better than trying to color match thread. I’ll have to look at my BDUs but sewing through the pocket on the breast patches was not uncommon. A lot of guys had them sewed down. I have a few other patches from seamstresses with clear thread so I would not discount it out of hand. 

 

Friar

Ah ok. Experience I was hoping for. First time I have seen it that’s why it threw me. Especially that long excess thread. Not sure why someone wouldn’t just clip it off if your gonna be wearing it. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

There’s traces of previously sewn tan thread under one of the rank insignia which would seem to me to indicate that an older insignia was removed before seeing this one on. Which would make sense if this was a change after a promotion I suppose. However there is also traces of green thread on top of the other rank insignia which makes it look to me at least like these insignia could have come off of another uniform which wouldn’t be consistent with that hypothesis and seem more likely that someone added them. But if there was a previous insignia then why bother adding these?  I hope it’s original. It’s a 50/50 1990 contract which I haven’t seen before either. Iv only seen 100% cotton 1990 contracts until now so I assume this was made after 1990 when the fabric change was made but under the same contract. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
Just now, AKC123 said:

There’s traces of previously sewn tan thread under one of the rank insignia which would seem to me to indicate that an older insignia was removed before seeing this one on. Which would make sense if this was a change after a promotion I suppose. However there is also traces of green thread on top of the other rank insignia which makes it look to me at least like these insignia could have come off of another uniform which wouldn’t be consistent with that hypothesis and seem more likely that someone added them. But if there was a previous insignia then why bother adding these?  I hope it’s original. It’s a 50/50 1990 contract which I haven’t seen before either. Iv only seen 100% cotton 1990 contracts until now so I assume this was made after 1990 when the fabric change was made but under the same contract. 

 

7D32DDD8-1C58-4923-84BA-1918357BEB22.jpeg

Link to post
Share on other sites

Or is the green thread I’m seeing on the top of the insignia the thread from when they where folded onto themselves during the initial sewing process that made the insignia? 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Sewing pockets shut with pocket patches is far more common than not.

 

The only two ways to avoid sewing the pocket shut would be to hand sew it, which is time consuming. Or if machine sewing, remove the pocket from the uniform, sew the patch to it, and reattach the pocket. This is also time consuming. Of course if done by a seamstress this extra time becomes extra cost. It seems most airman opted for the loss of one or two pockets over the extra complexity. 

 

I will also say now is a safe time to collect BDUs and DCUs. It was better a few years ago, but still they are inexpensive and overlooked by many, not prime targets for a faker. The majority of current fakes are special operations modified DCUs, either maliciously or by airsofters, with only occasional humped-up regular infantry uniforms. I doubt many or any fakers are doing plain airforce uniforms.

A picture is worth a thousand words, so here's a thousand pictures!

"I read that in war bad things happen, Ain't that the ************* truth" -1st Lt Mike Scotti

 

 

 

 

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Cap Camouflage Pattern I said:

Sewing pockets shut with pocket patches is far more common than not.

 

The only two ways to avoid sewing the pocket shut would be to hand sew it, which is time consuming. Or if machine sewing, remove the pocket from the uniform, sew the patch to it, and reattach the pocket. This is also time consuming. Of course if done by a seamstress this extra time becomes extra cost. It seems most airman opted for the loss of one or two pockets over the extra complexity. 

 

I will also say now is a safe time to collect BDUs and DCUs. It was better a few years ago, but still they are inexpensive and overlooked by many, not prime targets for a faker. The majority of current fakes are special operations modified DCUs, either maliciously or by airsofters, with only occasional humped-up regular infantry uniforms. I doubt many or any fakers are doing plain airforce uniforms.

Makes sense. This is only my second AF DCU. The first one did not have the pocket sewn shut so this threw me. Constantly learning. Thanks for the replies I really appreciate it

Link to post
Share on other sites
22 hours ago, bravo_2_zero said:

1990/1 desert uniforms kinda hard to find now , it's also in fantastic condition. The majority I've seen 1990/1 have also been USAF stock too.  You'll also find the early stuff when worn/washed goes an amazing lime/mint green colour.

 

One of my favourite uniforms the early ones of these rather than anything later produced. 

I have four 90/91 DCUs. Two are patched and two are clean. I agree there’s something about them that is more appealing than the later ones just in terms of the uniform itself. But the late 90’s to early 2000’s DCU’s are going to be the classics for obvious reasons. It’s hard to choose haha

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

Finally pulled out my old BDUs. The patches on the pockets were sewn through. Pictures below. I think you have the genuine article. Though I do find the combination of a Lt Col with basic pilot wings odd. Most likely just never updated his badges.

 

Friar

CDA4616B-7939-4D2B-A75B-C32B770C049F.jpeg

B10EF23E-ED1E-4878-BE76-E1C745FCCBE9.jpeg

Link to post
Share on other sites

Sewing patches through the pockets is not uncommon.  The alterations shops wherever I have been charged extra to patch the pockets while leaving the pocket functional.  I think they had to open up the pocket seams to do it, hence the extra cost.  At Travis AFB, it currently costs $5 to sew a patch onto a pocket, $7 if you want the pocket to be functional

Looking for items related to the Ninth Coast Artillery District and 6th Coast Artillery Regment

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the reply’s. Valuable info and happy to learn. I didn’t think about the standard wings. Maybe he just didn’t fly long before moving on to some non flight position?

Link to post
Share on other sites

That’s certainly a possibility. I know the Air Force moved pilots around to various ground jobs when they felt they had too many a couple times in the nineties. Or he could have had a medical issue that precluded continuing flying. Neat piece. It’s cool to see items from my era (albeit the extreme early end of it) in people’s collections. 

 

Friar

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 5/22/2020 at 9:32 PM, FriarChuck said:

My Mom used clear thread to sew all of my boy scout merit badges and patches on. Looked a lot better than trying to color match thread. I’ll have to look at my BDUs but sewing through the pocket on the breast patches was not uncommon. A lot of guys had them sewed down. I have a few other patches from seamstresses with clear thread so I would not discount it out of hand. 

 

Friar

When you say you have other patches with clear thread do you mean on DCUs or BDUs? Or do you mean on personal items? 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Here’s an example of a patch I was issued back in 2011 with clear thread holding the Velcro. Think it was made by Mardon company in Tucson which closed a few years back but used to provide flight suit name tags for much of the Air Force. I can dig thru my patches to find more examples if you’d like. But certain companies or tailors definitely used clear thread at certain points. Hope this helps. Happy to answer any more questions. 

E47B8F86-E29F-4F62-B80B-6AF339B11CA1.jpeg

5496EA33-C2BC-43D4-BE13-2DC8CFB21A03.jpeg

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks man. That’s very helpful I appreciate it. I think I’m convinced haha probably don't need anymore unless others would be interested to see. Again thanks 

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, RedLegGI said:

Pretty sure the guy's name is Thad, but you're not going to find any information about him.  You'll find some about a female OSI agent, but not him.

I like it even more now. Damn sweet name 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.