flight deck crew vest pattern [Archive] - OSW: One Sixth Warrior Forum

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03-25-2006, 19:43
Someone asked me to post my vest pattern so here it is. i found 4 differnt types of vests used by navy flight crews, this is the most common one it seems. The diagram shows layout of pockets & details.

i make the vest fully lined; it seems the easiest way to close the collar and arm holes. i sew two backs together around the arm holes and down the sides and around the collar , but not the shoulders or bottom hem. i sew 2 right fronts the same way & 2 left fronts the same way. Then i turn these pieces inside out and iron flat, & hem the bottom. Then i sew the two fronts to the back at the shoulders, and have a basic vest ready to add pockets & c. After the final details are in place, i sew the sides closed. i know i don't write good directions, but maybe you can make sense of these.

And of course the vest pattern doesn't have to be flight crew, you can adapt it to western cowboy vests, suit vests, flak vests etc.

03-25-2006, 19:48
i didnt figure out all the colors, if someone knows feel free to post. i got the details as close as i could so far, like i think that is a dye button for spotting someone in the water. and here is the 1:6 crew wearing the vests.

03-25-2006, 19:54
Awesome thanks for that rainbowave, I can finally get some deck crew for my pilots. What thickness material do you use? Much like the canvas from the real deal or more like cotton. What reflective tape is that also? I've attempted to use reflective silver tape before but it looked crap, nothing like what you have. You say the helmets are made from table tennis balls is that correct?
Are the balls just cut up into the crash helmet pieces? Looks like you're using the pilot helmet cloth head thingo for the base for the helmets is that correct?
Sorry to steal ya ideas but man you've really cracked the market open for this fine collector. I've been busting to get some of these.
Would you be willing to whip one up if someone payed you??


03-25-2006, 20:12
i use cotton, not thick at all. I use white or gray satin for the reflectors.

yeah the helmet plates are cut from tennis balls, and i just hot glued them to the cloth cap. ill scan the cap pattern next.

03-25-2006, 20:35
For those of you who may attempt one of these I thought this may be handy.



03-25-2006, 20:43
very nice, there's all the colors for you! thanks!

heres the cap pattern.

once again i sew in a roundabout way in order that the edges are finished.
i sew a pair of sides togerther for the right, and another pair for the left, turn both inside out and iron them. Then i sew the two sides to the center, leaving plenty of extra center hanging over at the ends to fold up for the hem, which i top stitch.

i make the hearing protectors out of sculpey, with wire details. the plates are cut from ping pong balls and painted. Then these are all hot glued to the cap.

03-25-2006, 21:08
Sorry to divert a bit here, but does anyone know if purple was part of the WWII color code?

I know the following info is solid for WWII era flight deck crew.
-Yellow for the Landing Signals Officer
-Blue for aircraft handlers
-Green for catapult and arrestigng gear
-Red for ordnance/crash and salvage

I've also seen color film of deck crewmen in both brown and white shirts/caps, and I assume they also match their current color/job description as the first four do.

That only leaves the Grapes. I've never seen any color pictures or film of purple uniformed flight deck crewmen. And if there's one thing planes need it's refueling. Was this job carried out by a different color? It seems getting information about WWII flight deck crew colors is impossible online. Anyone know the answer? Any help would be greatly appreciated. I return you back to your regularly scheduled programming...

03-26-2006, 01:48
if I printed these out would it be the correct sizing for a uniform? Sorry I cant help with the WW2 colour but from what I have quickly reasearched I can't find anything on grapes for WW2.

03-26-2006, 02:29
Thanks for sharing this with everyone RA.

03-26-2006, 12:39
<<<<if I printed these out would it be the correct sizing for a uniform?

When i scanned the patterns, to make the file smaller i reduced it 50%. So if you print at 200% that should bring it back to the original size. The diagram with pockets is not to scale, it is just a scheme of pocket placement.

i use approx 1/4 inch seams in all my 1:6 sewing. That's why i dont bother to draw the seam lines on patterns.


It would be cool to know changes in the colors for WWII and Vietnam. i'm just guessing, purple wasn't used until jet fuel was introduced.

03-28-2006, 19:58
This is the kind of stuff that makes a must-archive. Hubba-hubba stuff, RA.

03-30-2006, 23:05
Just to amplify the nomenclature of what flight deck crews wear, the protective cap is called a "flight-deck cranial helmet" or HGU-24/P or HGU-25/P.

Cranials are common for aviation safety organizational wear at Navy, Marine and Coast Guard flightlines ashore, and aboard all carriers, warships and cutters that have aircraft deployed. Over the years, Army and Air Force aviation units have adopted the use of cranials on their flightlines and maintenance bays. The cranial helmet is designed to protect the wearer from blunt trauma shock from blown objects (FOD) or other flightline/flight deck hazards.

On Navy, Marine and Coast Guard flightlines ashore and afloat, cranials are required wear when powering-up, "hot-servicing" (minor repairs while the engines are running) or moving any aircraft; and while driving aircraft tugs, support vehicles or operating any aviation support ("yellow") gear. They are also required wear for those involved in flight operations (fuelers, ordnance handlers, postal clerks, crash/rescue, safety inspectors, crew chiefs, etc.), and must be worn by passengers aboard USN, USMC and USCG transport aircraft (CH-46 Sea Knight, UH-1N Sea Huey, MV-22 Osprey, C-2B Greyhound, CH-53 Sea Stallion, HC-130 Hercules).

The cranial ensemble consists of a canvas helmet shell, cloth interior liner, foam spacers, and velcro chinstrap; along with front and back reinforced fiberglass impact panels in five different colors (green, red, blue, white and yellow).

Also part of the protective headgear suite are a pair of gray/green or clear (depending on day or night flight operations) impact and fuel-resistant goggles, and a set of headset-style aural protectors -- also known as "Mickey Mouse ears." In the case of the HGU-24/P, a radio communications headset replaces the mouse ears.

The flight deck vest is officially called the Mark I Flight Deck Flotation Vest, but more commonly known as a "float coat."

This item is authorized for all ships but is primarily worn by sailors working on an aircraft carrier's flight deck because its minimal bulk enables sailors to operate unencumbered. It comes in seven colors, each representing a sailor's specific job, and five sizes. Three Navy-approved civilian companies produce the float coat under contract.

The vest design is a modified USCG-approved commercial sportsman's utility life preserver containing an inflatable bladder placed inside a flame-retardant treated cotton/nylon vest cover. The washable cover has reflector strips for safety, and a heavy-duty plastic zipper and two buckles to secure the vest.

One size bladder fits all vests and is interchangeable between any of the three companies approved to supply the vest. The vest inflates automatically upon water immersion through an inflator with a carbon dioxide cylinder positioned on the lower front and will self-right the wearer even if he is unconscious. The bladder also can be orally inflated through a tube located on the upper front. Both inflator and oral tube are covered by a flap to protect them from damage.

The upper vest pocket contains a tethered whistle and strobe light that flashes automatically upon immersion in water. The light is visible while secured in the pocket or can be removed and stuck on a Velcro shoulder patch to improve the wearerís chances of detection.

Another pocket below the light holds a sea marker dye pack used to mark the location of the sailor and a Man Overboard Indicator (MOBI). The MOBI antenna is inserted along an inner loop around the vestís edge leading to the top of the collar. This provides the best signal and protects the antenna from damage.

The commercial MOBI technology is able to tell the ship the serial number of the transmitter to determine who is overboard, even if more than one person is in the water, and indicate the direction of the signal up to 1 nautical mile. Without the technology it is possible to lose track of a sailor in the open seas, and in some cases not even know they had been blown over the side by a jet blast.

04-02-2006, 00:15
Posted from Naval Safety Center briefing:

04-23-2006, 17:25
wow jay why, excellent research. That's just what we needed!