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ARVN Strategic Technical Directorate/USSF Liaison Office and ARVN Airborne Division Patches

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I recently became a forum member to research insignia I have been gathering up over many years and would appreciate the opinion of the forum’s experienced members on the authenticity of these two badges. Both came from different sources.

I got the Strategic Technical Directorate patch in a trade from an American collector in the mid/late 70’s and at that time it had scrapbook residue on the rear which has recently come off with the course of time. The patch is stiff (almost cardboard like) but this could be a result of whatever adhesive was used to put it in the scrap book. My searches of the forum have only found silk woven and embroidered examples to compare it against – apologies if I have missed more relevant ones.

The Airborne Division patch I picked up at a fair in the UK circa 2000. I fairly certain it’s a fake, especially given that the camo material it is sown to has the pattern facing away from the rear of the patch as opposed to towards it which would have been the case if the patch and backing had been cut from a uniform. Also most printed VN insignia I have seen have shown the design “bleeding” through from the front and visible on the rear – but I have very little knowledge on this subject and would appreciate any input.

Thanking you in anticipation.





ARVN AB Div 1965+ Rear 2.JPG

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Take the top one and hold it near a lit light bulb.  If the printed portions partially block the light, chances are it is good.   The printed fakes are not as heavily  printed,  and most of the light will shine through.

Gil Burket
Omaha, NE
Specializing in Fakes and Reproductions
of the Vietnam War



"One is easily fooled by that which one loves."


Moliere: Tartuffe





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Thanks to both of you for your input.


Apologies - yes you are  correct about it not being a STD patch - don't know where I pulled that one from!


Thanks for the tip Gil - here's a photo with a small but powerful 3 x LED bulb torch behind the patch. I have positioned one of the bulbs behind the white chute canopy, as it appears to be the original cloth patch material and not to have been printed, and the other 2 bubs at the 10/11o'clock position behind the red print beside the canopy to give a comparison of how much light is coming through between printed and unprinted areas. The outer rim of the torch is just visible in the outer red print section outside the yellow circle, following it through from where it is visible in the canopy.


I don't think the printed colour is letting much light through and most of the light coming through is more from the weave of the cloth than the thinnest of the printing - but I'm biased as I want it to be the genuine article. What do you think or is the photo not conclusive enough?


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Again, many thanks - I was a bit worried about how much light was getting through the LD/SCU patch but that's great news. I'm particularly pleased about the Abn Div patch as it only cost me the equivalent of a few dollars. (Although for the life of me I can't understand why someone has sown the camo material onto the patch "back to front".)


It's great to have access to the knowledge of experienced collectors/dealers such as yourself and Gil.

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