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Old 16-11-16, 01:07 AM
zorgon's Avatar
zorgon zorgon is offline
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Canada
Posts: 118
Default 1918 RAF cap badge?

I’d like to ask the Forums thoughts on this cap badge. I can’t find a lot of similar examples either on the Forum or elsewhere. I picked this up last week on eBay. According to the seller, it came in the same lot as a very nice WWI RAF pilot’s wing which went for a respectable sum – I was outbid on that.

I gather that, during the very brief period of latter WWI RAF 1918 and into 1919, this style was worn but most had metal crowns and also a characteristic metal plate on the back. If one is lucky, the original manufactures label will still be attached; I believe I’ve seen Gaunt labels. Or perhaps this is of Canadian origin?

This item has an egg shaped backing of very thick black wool - about 1/8”. The eagle caught my eye as it has a perfectly straight tail similar to a Lamond eagle I discussed in this thread:

But outside of the flat tail, the two are dissimilar in several respects. I just had to take the badge apart to look at the back, hoping for a Makers Mark but as one can see in the images below, it is a crude cast with the copper wire attachments typically found on cap badges. Fortunately, the copper was flexible enough that the wires didn’t break. The eagle measures just over 2” but extends beyond the wreath so it is a small wreath, not a large eagle that makes it look a little odd. The overall size of the badge is about 2 5/8” (somewhat asymmetric) in height, 2” wide and quite heavily padded.

Can anyone comment on the age or components of the badge, who may have manufactured it (a tailor perhaps?), whether it is a “common” style for the period, etc. Any thoughts would be appreciated as would images of similar examples, especially if they have provenance.

Thanks in advance,
Wayne Logus
Attached Images
File Type: jpg 1-1918 RAF cap.jpg (72.4 KB, 65 views)
File Type: jpg 2-back.jpg (63.4 KB, 50 views)
File Type: jpg 3-eagle.jpg (83.4 KB, 39 views)
File Type: jpg 4-1918 RAF cap eagle back.jpg (115.4 KB, 39 views)
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Old 17-11-16, 05:39 AM
Alex Rice Alex Rice is offline
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 2,701

Hi Wayne
I think you are right that it is an early version. The central jewel in the crown was changed in the Royal Navy from red to blue in 1921 and it seems reasonable that the RAF did a similar thing. I have later RAF cap badges still with the red jewel but with the later shape of badge so they obviously weren't strict about it. The whole shape of your badge looks like an early version though. Nice one!
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Old 17-11-16, 08:48 PM
RCAF_Mike RCAF_Mike is offline
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 351

It's early, but I wouldn't say 1918 early...... I'd be more inlcined to say late 20s to early 30s
Collecting RCAF Wings Uniforms Badges and Insignia
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Old 26-11-16, 04:11 PM
SAS1 SAS1 is offline
Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 1,385

I'd agree with Mike, mid-1920s to early 30s...
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