Ratings Uniform Question

Discussion in 'History' started by Gino, Jun 27, 2006.

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  1. I noticed when looking at the RN website that there is now a rig for ratings with a short sleeve white collared shirt instead of the traditional white front worn with jumpers. I'm wondering when this came into being? When the RCN wore traditional seaman's uniforms, the white front was usually referred to as a "gunshirt" and the rig with bell bottoms and gunshirts minus jumpers was known as 2A. Since our previous dress regs were derived from the RN, was that the designation in the RN also? I'm also wondering if the RN ever wore gunshirts with a vertical crease down the centre? Just curious.
  2. Hi Gino,

    From my time (62-79) and as I recall:

    Nos 1s - Full Blue, blue collar, gold badges with or without medals
    Nos 2s - Full Blue, blue collar with red badges (also the Duty uniform without blue collar)
    Nos 8s - Blue shirt & Trousers Action Working Dress
    Nos 6s - Full Whites with or without medals white or Black shoes
    Nos 6As - White Front and white bells
    Nos 10 - Blue shirt, blue shorts, black long socks (stockings) Black shoes
    Nos 10A - Blue shirt blue shorts sandals (or no shirt if relaxed)

    And, yes, we had a centre crease on the white fronts.

    The blue collar had three creases (blue side out and not the mottled/striped under side) - there was coloquillism for this, but it is a bit on the rather risque (if you think of the female attributes you'll be close enough!!)

    I presume the new shirt is for standardisation these days - you wouldn't need as much cash grant when you are promoted from Junior to Senior Rate. Strangley enough, I was in Pembroke in the 70s when they ran an initiative for the 'new' german style uniform (as Mountbatten remarked when he inspected the parade)for JRs (4 button double breasted), whereby they could save money in the same way - as it was they opted for a total crappy looking thing which I fortunately did not have to wear !!
  3. Oops Sorry :oops:

    Nos 10 - WHITE front White shorts Blue long socks (stockings) Black shoes
    Nos 10A - Blue Shirt, shorts, Blue stockings, black shoes
    Nos 10R - Blue shirt, shorts and sandals etc
  4. Was the White front crease inwards or outwards?
  5. andym,
    ref uniform designations (upto date :D )
    1a-blue suit with medals
    1-blue suit
    4(8)- blue shirt/trousers (wooly pully in winter) + beret
    3(5)- white open neck short sleeve shirt black trousers + cap
    cs95 - u-cant see me suit :D

    there is a load of other stuff such as tropical rig and all the officer combinations not forgetting the female alternatives 8O. And to top all this there is all the failed experimentation of things like blue combat trousers and fleece tops instead of Nos 4's, which matlots being matlots don't get returned when they change thier minds back 8) . Oh and white fronts have the crease outwards on the front of the front and inwards on the back of the front.......I hope that last bit made sense :wink:

  6. Remember the old saying - "Two tits and a !@#t" ie: two creases outwards and the middle one inwards. :)

    The RAN has, sadly, done away with bells and white front. All junior rates wear straight pants and collared shirt, except on ceremonial occasions when the traditional blue jacket is worn with straight leg pants. :(
  7. White front crease faced 'outwards'

    The middle crease on the blue collar faced inwards.
  8. Creased outward, the white front was pressed inside out to prevent any finger / ironing marks when readying for divisions.

    I forgot to add that the 'german' style, and the eventual choice of new blue uniform (chosen I understand by trainees and jennies) was flared trousers (fore and aft creased) replacing bells.
  9. So if you were just wearing no. 1s and took off the jumper what rig would you be in?
  10. I'm not sure these days! 3Bs seem to have surplanted it (and stoped the drift of JRs being in No 4s all the times - looks smarter at least!).

    Of note, when ashore wearing No 1s negative jumper was not a permitted rig outside (of a building, in the UK at least). Had to represent a JR at table being trooped for walking acorss the establishment like that - came as quite a shock to all of us, and required all the male JRs having to take jumpers in with them to work, even in the height of summer. Wrens were OK as they were still in the 'old' rig and could wear blouses in the summer.
  11. Thanks very much for the answers on this one. As far as I can gather the RCN pressed their white fronts flat, although our sea cadets have been using the vertical crease (front side only) since at least the mid 70s and continue to do so. Somewhere along the line, the RCN switched the creases on their collars to the opposite of the RN, ie with a hill in the middle and a valley on either side. When I was a sea cadet we tended to go way overboard and starched our collars till they were like cardboard. The RCN numbering system was more or less as follows:

    1 - best blue uniform with gold badges and medals
    2 - second best blue uniform with red badges and ribbons
    2A - minus jumper
    3 - second best blue uniform minus lanyard and ribbons
    4 - second best blue uniform minus lanyard, ribbons and collar
    5 - blue denim work dress
    11 - white uniform
    11A - minus jumper
    25 - tropical work dress with shorts

    Another question I have is with respect to the wearing of boatswain's calls and chains. Would there have been any circumstances where brow staff would have been on duty minus jumpers? If so, how did they wear the chain? Also, do parade GIs in the RN still wear a gunner's chain and "thunder whistle"?
  12. Used to be a QM in my past life-- 1960's

    Never wore half whites on the gangway but did a few with No 10s--white front and white shorts. It was usually during maintenance periods ie The CO ashore etc. That was big ship routine [carrier]
    Call and chain was worn around your neck and call stuffed into your waist band.

    Never wore No 6s with black shoes --cos they got the bottoms of your white trousers filthy!!
  13. janner

    janner War Hero Book Reviewer

    Everyone has missed the Diesel Boat steaming rigs

    Cold climate. - Anything that wasn't uniform, usually from the Grade A rag bag, covered in black masking tape to hold the tears together

    Hot climate. - Chinky draw string Knicks with steaming boots (following a POTEL dropping a battery hatch on his bare feet.) prior to that bare feet or flip flops.
  14. Gino,

    We Shotley boys used to have to crease our collars that way also, but that was for display of ink stamped names for kit musters etc. I gave that up when I joined the fleet at the tender age of 16 and a few months and became a real sailor :wink: :) !!
  15. Did both Bosuns Mate and QM in half blues, ie white front , bells and cap, Bosuns call was looped thru trouser loop and then stuffed in pocket bit like a Prison Officer and his keys. In hot climes wore white shorts and white front and cap. never hung call chain around my neck cos drunks could grab it and strangle you so a silly place to put it. All circ 1963/4.

    Trot sentry on boats, No 8ts. and foulweather jacket Mk1. blue plastic thing with hood. Bosuns call some place but only used it on official occassions. i.e. we had been warned we would have to pipe some VIP or similar.

    Still have my call issued at Ganges to them that qualified.


    PS have just looked at Photo of me in white shorts etc at GAN 1963 as Bos'Mate call hangs from belt loop into pocket.
  16. What about flight deck jerseys? At Prestwick it was OK to wear them on the line but at Yeovil I got bollocked for wearing it on the line during the summer & that was by a ATC softie
  17. Much obliged for that info. Our sea cadets still wear them that way sometimes, although there are those who claim that it isn't proper. I was looking for some good old precedent from the Andrew. I still have my call from when I was a sea cadet boatswain in '78. A cherished heirloom.
  18. Thats ATC/HC for ya...... dabbers who lost their way and couldnt make killick in their source branch (sorry Taff, but you can't tie knots either dude) :eek: I always heard VL got funny the closer you were to FONAs office.

    Seriously though, in small ships the flights wore em with 8's trousers, beret ashore, even when store ship etc, after being dhobeyed theyre as soft as a baby tiffs bumfluff, and as the stores bashers wrote em off once or twice a trip, being permanent items they would give us back the used ones (after they were ahem...destroyed), minus a couple, as they were the most sought after uniform gizzit on the ship. Great under your OVs, and technically as they are "rig" the MEs and WEs would be nice to WAFUs for literally minutes at a time in the hope of scoring one. They like to wear em in shore estabs to PT to show how they were totally "in" with the flight and used to do door gunning and rapid roping assault and everything.... :lol:

    Anyway, I s'pose being a chockhead you stood out a bit in yeller. But not as bad as the firefighters who LOVED going to scran in the rangerover wearing their green fearnought tied round their waist with the green string "Thunderbirds" tops on, showing nips and all. Then to the Naafi to impress the warthogs.
  19. I just had a look at that Norgy top thing, and HOLY CRAP that guy dressed as a CPO (knowing "standeasy productions" he's prolly a real CPO) is an absolute scranbag. He looks like Peter Griffin (see Family Guy) in naval rig. No wonder they binned it. We used to be allowed to wear Norgys with combats in the field with Royal or Pongos (do Junglies still do this Daz?) so the locals didnt know who to shoot at first, but with no epaulettes you had to wear a rank on your DPM/lightweights belt loop, easily covered by the norge top. This way we could sneak our JRs into the SR mess on crab/pongo bases so we could all scran together, it saved time and the food was better, except for Gib (crab/208 flt) where we all went to the JR (airmans) mess, and bar, but then you could wander in there with flip flops and banyan rig and no-one seemed to mind.

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