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AMERICA - MILITARY BRANCH & RANK INSIGNIA

RCAF rank changes

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RCAF rank changes

Unread postby dcfowler » Mon Dec 02, 2013 5:19 pm

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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby SFMRAS » Mon Dec 02, 2013 7:38 pm

April Fool's Day?
Some are going to consider it mighty appropriate.
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby dcfowler » Sun Jun 22, 2014 5:28 am

A few details trickling in about the RCAF changes:

1) "Private" rank titles will change to "Aviator," rather than "Aircraftsman."
2) Trained Private/Aviator will change from one chevron to a propeller.
3) Officer braid and enlisted chevrons will change from gold to pearl gray.
4) There is a proposal for officers to have both sleeve and shoulder rank on service dress uniforms.
5) Implementation date is TBD.

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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby SFMRAS » Sun Jun 22, 2014 2:21 pm

1. 'Aviator' seems a strange choice, unless all ORs are pilots.
2. It would be interesting if the other ranks adopted the props for senior ranks: two props for corporals, two + maple leaf for master corporals, etc. Alternatively, angle the propeller blades to form a 'V' shape.
3. Depending on the shade, pearl gray could look good on a blue uniform.
4. Personally, I think that would be good for the navy as well (if it isn't already done) and would have been ideal for the army prior to change-over to the British system, again, assuming it wasn't already done.
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby trbaldwin » Sun Jun 22, 2014 4:12 pm

SF

In a sence the Canadian Army NCO ranks retained a variation on UK style

The only difference is they removed the Rank of Lance Corporal and Staff Sergeant and have 3 Warrant Officer Ranks where as we in Australia have only 2 same with the UK and NZ

At "unification" it was the RCN and RCAF that lost their Service Specific Insignia more the RCN then RCAF
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby SFMRAS » Sun Jun 22, 2014 4:58 pm

trbaldwin wrote:SF

In a sence the Canadian Army NCO ranks retained a variation on UK style

The only difference is they removed the Rank of Lance Corporal and Staff Sergeant and have 3 Warrant Officer Ranks where as we in Australia have only 2 same with the UK and NZ

At "unification" it was the RCN and RCAF that lost their Service Specific Insignia more the RCN then RCAF

Probably should have specified officer insignia. smilies-08
Ever since I saw a rank proposal for a 'Canadian Republic' Army, swapping a major's crown for a maple leaf, I can't help but think 'staff sergeant' when I see a Canadian sergeant's insignia. Personally, I find the omitting of the staff sergeant rank weird. Keeping the three chevrons under a crown would have 'fit' better for the navy PO1C. I guess it could pose some issue in identification between the sergeant ranks. It would also create a clear delineation between POs and CPOs in insignia.
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby dcfowler » Sun Jun 22, 2014 6:24 pm

My understanding is that "Aviator" was chosen as a gender-neutral title. I would note that in the French Air Force, the private rank title is "Aviateur."
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby jrichardn2 » Thu Jun 26, 2014 5:42 pm

But the commissioned officers won't go back to their pre-1968 rank titles? Although it was obsolete by WWII (wings even then were commanded by Group Captains), Wing Commander is about the coolest rank title ever.
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby Torg003 » Thu Jun 26, 2014 7:14 pm

I don't see the point of changing the colour of the ranks to pearl grey. Keep the gold, it looks fine on the AF blue uniforms. All they need to do is replace the one chevron rank with the single prop in gold. Much cheaper and would look fine.

I wonder why there hasn't been a move to change the RCN ranks for the NCMs, those IMO need to be changed. Army style ranks on navy uniforms looks terrible.
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby marcpasquin » Thu Jun 26, 2014 7:30 pm

Torg003 wrote:I don't see the point of changing the colour of the ranks to pearl grey. Keep the gold, it looks fine on the AF blue uniforms. All they need to do is replace the one chevron rank with the single prop in gold. Much cheaper and would look fine.

I wonder why there hasn't been a move to change the RCN ranks for the NCMs, those IMO need to be changed. Army style ranks on navy uniforms looks terrible.


wait a little while and all insignias will more then likely change to current british style ones with only a few differences to avoid the appearance of promoting/demoting people for no reason (such as why they used the crossed sword and baton for the brigadier general instead of the crown and 3 pips).
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby marcpasquin » Thu Jun 26, 2014 7:41 pm

Torg003 wrote:I don't see the point of changing the colour of the ranks to pearl grey. Keep the gold, it looks fine on the AF blue uniforms. All they need to do is replace the one chevron rank with the single prop in gold. Much cheaper and would look fine.


The whole point of the excercise was justified as the Canadian Armed Forced going back to their roots so pearl grey make sense in that context. To be quite honest, I'm surprise they haven't yet talked about giving back to the army brownish uniforms

Torg003 wrote:I wonder why there hasn't been a move to change the RCN ranks for the NCMs, those IMO need to be changed. Army style ranks on navy uniforms looks terrible.


wait a little while and all insignias will more then likely change to current british style ones with only a few differences to avoid the appearance of promoting/demoting people for no reason (such as why they used the crossed sword and baton for the brigadier general instead of the crown and 3 pips).

Incidently, "army style ranks" is relative. While it's true that commonwealth navies' petty officers overwhelmingly wear anchors as rank insignias, many other navies, including the US, France and Italy use chevrons for them. It probably only looks odd because you're thinking of it in term of the ROYAL Canadian Navy.
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby venqax » Thu Jun 26, 2014 10:57 pm

... to avoid the appearance of promoting/demoting people for no reason (such as why they used the crossed sword and baton for the brigadier general instead of the crown and 3 pips).


One reason to do that would be to represent the fact that in the Canadian Army (like the US Army) the rank is brigadier general, and it is a general officer rank; whereas the British Army brigadier is a field-grade rank. Perhaps that is what you are saying. The British Army in the past did have a rank of brigadier general and its insignia was the crossed sword and baton.
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby marcpasquin » Thu Jun 26, 2014 11:24 pm

venqax wrote:
... to avoid the appearance of promoting/demoting people for no reason (such as why they used the crossed sword and baton for the brigadier general instead of the crown and 3 pips).


One reason to do that would be to represent the fact that in the Canadian Army (like the US Army) the rank is brigadier general, and it is a general officer rank; whereas the British Army brigadier is a field-grade rank. Perhaps that is what you are saying. The British Army in the past did have a rank of brigadier general and its insignia was the crossed sword and baton.


yup, my point exactly.
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby Medic_in_Uniform » Fri Jun 27, 2014 2:34 am

I guess it was only a matter of time before the RCAF was "updated" -- or "retconned," take your pick... (!).

I don't particularly see why they feel the need to change the current insignia but if they aren't going to stay with gold (too much like the Navy...?) and they aren't going to revert to the RAF-pattern black lace with pale blue centre-stipe then a silver or pearl grey would seem to be one possible reasonable alternative.

Pearl grey for service dress, silver for mess dress...?

I'll be interested to see what they do with the rank titles.
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby Torg003 » Fri Jun 27, 2014 7:06 pm

marcpasquin wrote:Incidently, "army style ranks" is relative. While it's true that commonwealth navies' petty officers overwhelmingly wear anchors as rank insignias, many other navies, including the US, France and Italy use chevrons for them. It probably only looks odd because you're thinking of it in term of the ROYAL Canadian Navy.


I wasn't talking about the use of chevrons, I should've been a bit clearer, I meant army style chevrons. The RCN used to have straight arm chevrons (not the curved ones) as LS/GC stripes worn under the anchor insignia. If the CAF were to implement a retro looking rank system for the RCN NCMs, they'd have to include chevrons with any anchors just so there would be some correlation to the army and air force NCM ranks. They would probably look similar to the navy cadet ranks (though with some changes to more accurately portray the traditional navy ranks - such as, LS having the single anchor above 2 chevrons and MS having the same but with a crown above the anchor, the insignia used by MS in the RCN before the complete change over to the CF greens and unified insignia in the early to mid 70s)
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby nelsy58 » Fri Jul 04, 2014 1:06 am

All quite interesting discussion. The history at least part of it goes like this:

- British Army and hence Canadian Army had Brigadier Generals until early 1920s with the current emblem that the Candian Armed Forces(CAF)/Canadian Army are resuming. The BGen rank rank was done away as there was too many generals in the British Army post-WW1 so overnight....voila! At least that is one reliable story.

- The CAF assumed its rank structure for Feb 1968. Officers had the stripes on the lower sleeves as the RCN and RCAF did. NCOs followed the CA/RCAF style with the exception that Staff Sgt/Flt Sgt gave way to the new Warrant Officer rank. Not sure why but there was a WO3 rank in the Brit Army/Cdn Army in the first part of WW2 that was done away with and I guess we assumed it in 1968 vice the Staff/Flt Sgt thing. Pay was an issue in 1968 though and this nomenclature might have helped.

- Lance Corporal and Leading Aircraftman along with Able Seaman gave way to the new rank of Private (Trained) which had one cheveron with a maple leaf above. Corporal was two stripes with a maple leaf superimposed on the top stripe breaking it into two (vice over top as we see in Master Corporal today). These two ranks vanish in early seventies to the style we have now. Private (Basic) was a single cheveron in 1968 and Private (Recruit) had nothing. Now both of these ranks have nothing.

- Master Corporal (Master Seaman in navy) was introduced shortly after 1968 as there were too many corporals as promotion to corporal was rather automatic after 4-years of service for the purposes of pay(still is today). However becoming a MCpl is not a promotion, rather an appointment as stated in the regs although today it is treated like a promotion. In today's CAF a Cpl is like a LCpl, LAC. In the army up to platoon command the rank structure for combat leaders generally jumped up one level as well. (i.e. sections were lead by Sgts vice Cpls and platoons by Warrant Officers vice Sgts which is kinda of what para regts had in WW2).

- The navy switched officer ranks only by adding the Executive curl in most cases (although Flag Officers resumed pre-1968 sleeve desigs (not shoulder bd though) and Sub-Lieut followed the Belgian example as it looks better. There was and as far as I know, no intent to change any of the NCM ranks probably at their insistence (long story) and the PO1 to CPO1 ranks changed in 1967 I believe to the current style anyhow (lots of photos of senior NCMs wearing new ranks in RCN uniforms)

- Army is resuming its old ranks which in Canada is not an issue of sorts for except in Quebec (who sort of follow the CAF model), as all police, EMS, commissionaries, etc. kept the old pre-1968 style. Only a controversy for those who hate change, are anglophobes, or are cheap (...it does cost something to change afterall). Although Brit in-style the use of the WW1 BGen emblem helps and the new pips though similiar don't have the exact replica of the Garter Star at least as I have seen (the RCMP however do)

- The talk I have heard lately had only name changes for RCAF officers to pre-1968 nomenclature and the idea of Wing Commander for just wings, etc, died out in WW2 (Bomber Groups were lead by Air Cmdres, Wings by Gp Capts, and Sqds by Wing Commanders as were other large aircraft units (not fighters where a sqd was about 12-14 a/c and pilots (actually generally a few more pilots than planes). Rank designs were going to remain the same. However the new RCAF Mess Kit has ranks similar to pre-1968 for Air Officers so they might change but nothing annouced even for critical days of RCAF history. One reason for this might be that the RCAF was about to change its rank nomenclature to the current CAF officer one before 1968 and unification probably due to the fact that of the three services, the RCAF had the least contact with Brit forces due NORAD and their location/influence in USA/DEU zones vice British ones like the Cdn Army....and the navy, well change did always com slowly a big issue for some RCN flags in the 1950/60s whichever way you look at the issue. Anyhow no official annoucement as yet and I checked resources quite recently. However the new leather flt jacket is to have metal rank insigna which current doesn't exist in Canada for any CAF officer (although the RCN did have for kaiki officer/CPO shirts up to 1968)

As for NCMs, as I stated before, I doubt anything will change with them especially with the new NCM Professional Development Programme to be launched. Final point, the air force regularly uses airman and airwomen so I don't believe the term Aviator will occur. That term is usually used by naval air pers espcially in the USN...their not pilots, they are avaitors.

My 0.25 cents worth
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby nelsy58 » Fri Jul 04, 2014 1:10 am

One final point on NCM ranks, the navy in the late 190s and early 1990s tried to revert NCM ranks (Leading Seaman to PO2) back to previous insignia whilst still wearing the green CF uniform. It was under a programme called MORPS and it never did take off for many reasons. Essentially it was replacing the maple leaf with one or two fouled anchors.
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby marcpasquin » Fri Jul 04, 2014 3:54 am

nelsy58 wrote:- Army is resuming its old ranks which in Canada is not an issue of sorts for except in Quebec (who sort of follow the CAF model), as all police, EMS, commissionaries, etc. kept the old pre-1968 style. Only a controversy for those who hate change, are anglophobes, or are cheap...


I think you forgot: "... or find this pointless, or who think this is strictly for politicaly point scoring, or who think this is disregarding the peacekeeping history of the Canadian Armed Forces...."
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby Luke2 » Fri Jul 04, 2014 6:30 pm

WO3 in the British army were platoon commanders (promoted sergeants) 1938-1940. When the war came, the same position could be filled with national servicemen from the proper officer classes, so the WO3 rank was abolished. Its holders were promoted to Lieutenants.
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby dcfowler » Fri Sep 19, 2014 9:00 am

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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby dcfowler » Sat Sep 20, 2014 5:58 am

Confirmed; Announcement Sunday:

http://ottawacitizen.com/news/national/ ... -on-sunday

Scuttlebutt was that the change was to be some minor changes to the current uniform; the change in color of insignia from gold to grey, and the private rank changing to aviator....however, there now seems to be a belief that the changes may be more extensive than that.
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby nelsy58 » Sat Sep 20, 2014 2:00 pm

Well I hope for their sake and indirectly the government as an election is approaching within the year, the new uniform is simply new rank names and ancillary. Anything else will fly like a lead ballon as the costs will be questioned and with the level of govt funding to the CF and other issues, anytHing else will be akin to Nero fiddling whilst Rome burnt. Already grumbling about the army changing the general ranks and using the red tabs (the rest of officer rank change seems ok but no zone is wearing them yet although I think the generals started yesterday).
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby dcfowler » Sun Sep 21, 2014 5:47 pm

NEWS RELEASE - 21 Sept 2014
Minister Nicholson announces new uniform for the Royal Canadian Air Force
The Honourable Rob Nicholson, PC, QC, MP for Niagara Falls and Minister of National Defence and Lieutenant-General Yvan Blondin, Commander of the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF), unveiled the new RCAF uniform today at the Battle of Britain ceremony in Ottawa.
Main aspects of the new uniform, are drawn from pre-unification rank insignia while the design also maintains the modern elements and terminology familiar to serving members and militaries around the world. The insignia for most ranks will be recognizable as the symbols that air force personnel have worn for nearly half a century.
In recognition of the 90th anniversary of the founding of the RCAF, rank insignia and national shoulder titles for both officers and non-commissioned members will return to a distinctive pearl-grey stitching, the original colour worn by RCAF non-commissioned members until 1968. Dress tunic buttons will not change in design but their colour will switch from gold to silver. General officers headdress piping (embroidery) will also change from gold-coloured to pearl-grey.
Quick Facts
• As part of the Government’s ongoing restoration of the Canadian Armed Forces’ distinctive service cultures, the RCAF has been granted a new uniform, enhancing the identity of Canada’s youngest military branch.
• The RCAF will maintain its current rank terminology for officers, while non-commissioned members will see one rank change that will be immediately applied to qualifying members of the rank.
• The one change will see is the new RCAF rank title of “Aviator” replace the use of “Private,” “Airman” and “Airwoman”.It will apply to newly enlisted non-commissioned members of the RCAF.
• The “Aviator” rank insignia will be represented by a single stitched propeller on the uniforms of RCAF personnel.
• The propeller insignia will be awarded to RCAF personnel upon graduation from occupational specialty training with 30-months of qualifying service.
• Starting April 1, 2015, RCAF personnel will begin to exhibit their new colours as their uniforms are tailored to incorporate the new accoutrements.
• All RCAF members will be dressed in their new colours by the anniversary of the Battle of Britain in September, 2015.
Quotes
“Our Government is committed to strengthening the bonds between present day Canadian Armed Forces service members and their predecessors. I salute all members of the air force for restoring elements of their proud service traditions.”
The Honourable Rob Nicholson, P.C., Q.C., M.P. for Niagara Falls and Minister of National Defence.
“This new uniform, with the restoration of the traditional colour insignia, coincides with the 90th anniversary of the RCAF. It is noteworthy that these colours were worn by courageous Canadian airmen and women at pivotal moments in our nation’s history and we are proud to re-establish this link to our history and heritage.” Lieutenant-General Yvan Blondin, Commander, Royal Canadian Air Force. ”
- 30 -
Contacts
Johanna Quinney
Press Secretary to the Minister of National Defence
Office of the Minister of the Department of National Defence
(613) 996-3100
Lieutenant-Colonel David Devenney
Royal Canadian Air Force Public Affairs
(613) 994-3422
Media Relations
Department of National Defence
Phone: (613) 996-2353
Toll-Free: 1 866 377-0811
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby dcfowler » Sun Sep 21, 2014 5:56 pm

New Uniform for the Royal Canadian Air Force
The Royal Canadian Air Force’s (RCAF) new uniform respects the contributions and sacrifices of airmen and airwomen who served – and continue to serve – with pride and professionalism.

Main aspects of the new uniform are drawn from pre-unification rank insignia maintaining the modern elements and terminology familiar to serving members. The insignia for most ranks will be recognizable as the symbols that air force personnel have worn for nearly half a century.

Rank names, with the exception of “Private,” will remain the same.

The RCAF’s shoulder titles and uniform buttons will also be updated to harmonize with the new rank insignia.

RCAF Organizational Structure
There will be no changes to RCAF organizational structures or the names of subordinate headquarters and organizations.

Non-Commissioned Members
The rank names and insignia for non-commissioned members will remain the same, with the exception of “Private.” The Canadian maple leaf, which air force personnel have worn with pride for 46 years, will continue to be displayed on the rank insignia of Master Corporals, Sergeants, and general officers, and Chief Warrant Officers’ insignia will continue to display the Canadian coat of arms.

The rank insignia will now be pearl-grey, similar to the historic colour of non-commissioned members’ rank insignia.

Only one rank name will change: “Private” will become “Aviator.” This new, gender-neutral rank, which is almost identical in both official languages, reflects the historical French rank of aviateur (aviator) which in English was aircraftman or aircraftwoman. The rank insignia for “Aviator” will be a pearl-grey propeller worn on the uniform sleeve, which is a return to the historical insignia for this rank.

Officers and General Officers
All officers will retain current rank names, similar to the ranks used in the Royal Flying Corps during the First World War.

Officers rank insignia colour will be pearl-grey – the same historic colour as the non-commissioned members’ rank insignia. In the past, the officers wore blue rank insignia and the non-commissioned members wore pearl-grey; the change reflects the RCAF’s emphasis on one team – one mission.

In the pre-unification era, RCAF general officers only wore rank insignia on their tunic sleeves, not on their shoulders. The new design will retain the insignia currently embroidered on tunic shoulder straps/shoulder slip-ons and display the Canadian maple leaf.

The design of the general officers’ sleeve insignia, located near the cuff of the tunic, will be modified to echo the design of the historical sleeve insignia for general officers and will be edged in black, similar to the historical sleeve insignia.

The gold piping (embroidery) on the general officers’ wedge cap will be replaced with pearl-grey piping.

National Badges
The new insignia will also include colour harmonization of national badges to be worn at the top of the tunic sleeve. These curved badges will comprise the RCAF’s eagle and the word “CANADA” for non-commissioned members and the word “CANADA” for officers and Chief Warrant Officers. The style will be similar to the modern national badges, but will be created in the new pearl-grey colour. The word CANADA which appears on dress shirt slip-ons and on certain garments such as topcoats will also be embroidered in pearl-grey.

Buttons
To match the new pearl-grey rank insignia, the RCAF will also receive new silver-coloured buttons. The design will be unchanged from the current button design and include the Crown, RCAF eagle and the word “CANADA.”

Royal Canadian Air Force Badge
The badge of the RCAF, which recalls the pre-unification RCAF badge showing an eagle with its wings outstretched, was created following the restoration of the historical name “Royal Canadian Air Force” in 2012. This will remain unchanged as the official badge of the RCAF.

The motto will remain “Sic Itur Ad Astra” – Such is the pathway to the stars – which has been the air force’s motto since 1975. This is the motto adopted by the very first Canadian Air Force, which was first established in 1920.

Conclusion
The melding of elements of both historical and modern rank insignia and terminology strengthens the RCAF’s links to its history and heritage while honouring all those who have served throughout the Royal Canadian Air Force’s history.

-30-

Date Modified: 2014-09-21
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby Torg003 » Sun Sep 21, 2014 6:05 pm

My reaction.......meh.
So not a return to tradition, just trying to make it look kind of traditional (but actually doing something new).
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby Medic_in_Uniform » Mon Sep 22, 2014 2:27 am

I need to see the images of what they have in mind but this all sounds like a bit of an odd mash-up of all sorts of bits and pieces.

For comparison, the RAF use a very pale blue on a dark blue background for Other Ranks sleeve insignia -- it's so light that it looks more like silver-grey or even white from a distance. The RAF Officer sleeve (and shoulder) insignia are of black lace that has a narrow central stripe of pale blue, not dissimilar to the OR insignia. Metal work, however, is of a yellow colour buttons are brass or gilt and cap badges are gilt / gold-coloured embroidery / gold bullion, as appropriate. Similarly, senior officer caps have gold oak leaves on the peak and other embellishments, where worn, are also gold. Mess dress insignia are gold as are those for full dress (although now worn only as ceremonial dress but the various established RAF bands).

The RCAF change to "pearl grey" sort of echoes this but they have gone for much narrower black edging to what are mainly grey lace stripes. I'm not sure that the change to silver buttons (or grey piping for senior officer hats) was really necessary, given that things like the cap badges still have gold bullion and don't appear to have been changed to silver to match. The National shoulder titles are not so different to the WW2 era RAF-look and, again, would not have necessitated the change to silver buttons. It's an odd mix and looks a little like someone was trying to ape the USAF but didn't quite go the whole way! The overall shade of blue for the RCAF DEU still looks a little odd to me -- it seems like it needs to be a bit less turquoise and a bit more slate-blue.

The use of the shoulder insignia for General Officers service dress jackets also seems redundant now that their sleeve lace distinguishes individual grades. I did wonder if they might use the Crown/sword & baton/maple-leaf insignia the way the RCN does and wear it on shoulder boards / shoulder slides in place of the lace stripes, but without wearing shoulder straps on the service dress itself. To wear both seems unnecessary. Interestingly, the RAF uses the same black distinction lace for all non-ceremonial shoulder and sleeve marks for all officer ranks; there are no specific additional insignia for senior officers in day-to-day wear.

A few questions for those who might know: does the RCAF still use formal peaked dress caps with DEU at all or is it just the side caps these days? I notice there was no comment on changing peak decoration to silver but then I don't recall seeing peaked caps worn in the recent past. Are they keeping the gold insignia for mess dress, like the RAF...?
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby jrichardn2 » Mon Sep 22, 2014 9:07 pm

'Tis a mash-up. Note that General Blondin both has the 1968 general officer rank insignia on his shoulder straps, plus the Air Marshal rings on his cuffs.
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby Luke2 » Mon Sep 22, 2014 9:15 pm

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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby dcfowler » Tue Sep 23, 2014 3:46 am

I'm kind of surprised that they haven't brought back the 5-star ranks for honorary purposes with the Royals.
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby Medic_in_Uniform » Tue Sep 23, 2014 7:02 am

I doubt you'll ever see that outside the UK. To be honest, I'm still moderately surprised that the UK policy decision *not* to use the 5-star equivalent ranks was reversed, even if it was for the unique occasion of the Queen's diamond jubilee and for non-active service / ceremonial appointments.

On another point, I'll answer my own question regarding the RCAF mess dress:
http://rcaf.museum/files/new_rcaf_mess_dress%20(2).pdf

Given that the updates to the RCAF mess dress, including the new grade-specific general officer cuff insignia, were only introduced last year, I think it's a fairly good bet that this will be unlikely to change. It broadly matches the British RAF mess dress, with some variations in the styling details. Interesting that the the pic of Lt Gen Blondin seems to show a colour more like RAF grey-blue and less like the usual blue of RCAF DEU. Note that the mess jacket doesn't have the general officer shoulder rank. Maybe they'll eventually get around to removing it from the DEU service dress too...

I'd be inclined to agree with those who think the rank titles are unlikely to revert to the traditional RAF / historic RCAF nomenclature. The argument that the RCAF has far more interaction with the USAF than other Commonwealth air forces is a strong one and it makes sense to use common rank titles -- and lots of other air forces use standard army rank titles too!
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby ijnfleetadmiral » Tue Sep 23, 2014 8:55 pm

No offense meant here, but the RCAF mess dress uniform looks sorta like a USN winter blues uniform with the dark jacket and the gold stripes. And I thought Canada used RAF ranks for their Air Force (Air Commodore, Air Vice Marshal, Air Chief Marshal, & Air Marshal)...or am I wrong?
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby jrichardn2 » Tue Sep 23, 2014 9:09 pm

Couple of quick replies:

- Canada has never granted five-star ranks to anyone. The ranks were definitely not authorized in the mid-'60s; don't know about earlier. Note that Australia and South Africa (i.e., two other dominions) have both had non-royal Field-Marshals.

- The air element of the Canadian Air Forces (now back to its old name of the Royal Canadian Air Force) has used military rank titles for air officers since 1968 - the wonderful old titles (Air Commodore etc.) were abolished, and reading between the lines in the press release on the new/old insignia you can see that the old rank titles were explicitly rejected because the current air officers want their rank to be immediately recognized by non-Canadian (I guess, U.S.) counterparts.
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby Medic_in_Uniform » Tue Sep 23, 2014 11:47 pm

Yes, that was pretty much the way I read it too.
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby dcfowler » Wed Sep 24, 2014 5:47 am

"- Canada has never granted five-star ranks to anyone. The ranks were definitely not authorized in the mid-'60s; don't know about earlier."

This is not correct. See the Royal Canadian Navy publication, "The Crowsnest," v. 17 nos. 3/4, March/April 1965.

http://cold-war.muninn-project.org/crow ... t-1965.pdf

Relevant article is "About Ranks," on page 14. The rank chart clearly shows the Canadian ranks of Admiral of the Fleet, Field Marshal and Marshal of the RCAF. Now these may not have been in use in the 1960s, but they did exist.
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby jrichardn2 » Wed Sep 24, 2014 4:02 pm

Hm. Interesting. The "5-star" ranks aren't listed in the Schedule to the National Defence Act in 1968, which was the basis for my assertion. I do wonder how "official" that chart is. :-)
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby trbaldwin » Thu Sep 25, 2014 4:20 am

given that the chart in that publiction is from 1965 and Unification took place in 1968 would be the reason for the Change

Youd Have too look back at the Defence Act Prior to that to see if it exsisted


jrichardn2 wrote:Hm. Interesting. The "5-star" ranks aren't listed in the Schedule to the National Defence Act in 1968, which was the basis for my assertion. I do wonder how "official" that chart is. :-)
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby dcfowler » Thu Sep 25, 2014 5:24 am

Ottawa Journal, June 19, 1947:

"Two RCAF ranks, one new and both unfamiliar to Canadians, appear in the latest edition of the Canada Gazette. The new rank is "flight cadet", and the other, Marshal of the RCAF."

Amending post with link to the actual 1947 Canada Gazette page:

http://www.collectionscanada.gc.ca/data ... 5i74c72op4
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby Torg003 » Thu Sep 25, 2014 8:19 am

I've seen similar rank charts to the one posted when I was younger. I also remember reading (I can't remember where) that though the top ranks were official, they were never used.

Always thought they should've used Marshal style insignia for the Governor General (have nothing against the current CinC insignia). I guess they wanted to go away from something that may have looked too "British".
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby Medic_in_Uniform » Thu Sep 25, 2014 12:10 pm

Torg003 wrote:Always thought they should've used Marshal style insignia for the Governor General (have nothing against the current CinC insignia). I guess they wanted to go away from something that may have looked too "British".



No chance of that changing then... (!) smilies-24 smilies-23 smilies-15
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby trbaldwin » Thu Sep 25, 2014 2:52 pm

I should have the updated Insignia to Pavel in the comming days
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby Torg003 » Thu Sep 25, 2014 7:14 pm

Any timeline on fixing the mistakes on the RCN current ranks page?
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby dcfowler » Fri Sep 26, 2014 9:25 pm

Regarding the 5-star ranks in Canada, I checked several editions of Whitaker's Almanack from 1957 to 1966, and found no evidence that Elizabeth or Philip held any of these Canadian ranks in that period.

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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby dcfowler » Thu Oct 09, 2014 5:47 am

RCAF GUIDANCE ON NEW UNIFORM AND RANK TITLE

UNCLASS

1. AS PART OF THE GOVERNMENT OF CANADA S ONGOING RESTORATION OF THE DISTINCTIVE SERVICE CULTURES THAT MAKE UP THE CANADIAN ARMED FORCES, THE ROYAL CANADIAN AIR FORCE (RCAF) HAS BEEN GRANTED A NEW UNIFORM AND RANK TITLE ENHANCING THE IDENTITY OF CANADA S YOUNGEST MILITARY BRANCH

2. THE AIM OF THIS CANFORGEN IS TO PROVIDE GUIDANCE TO MILITARY AND CIVILIAN PERSONNEL OF THE RCAF ON THE ROLL OUT OF THE NEW UNIFORM AND RANK TITLE

A. ON 21 SEPTEMBER, THE MINISTER OF NATIONAL DEFENCE INTRODUCED A NEW RANK TITLE CALLED AVIATOR. THIS TERM REPLACES PRIVATE AND SHALL BE USED AS OF 1 APRIL 2015 IN THE DAILY DUTY LANGUAGE OF ALL RCAF PERSONNEL ADDRESSING THIS RANK

B. NO ADDITIONAL CHANGES WILL BE MADE TO THE CURRENT RANK STRUCTURE TITLES OF THE RCAF. RANK NAMES, WITH THE EXCEPTION OF PRIVATE, WILL REMAIN THE SAME

C. IN RECOGNITION OF THE 90TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE FOUNDING OF THE RCAF, RANK INSIGNIA BUTTONS AND NATIONAL SHOULDER TITLES FOR BOTH OFFICERS AND NON COMMISSIONED MEMBERS WILL RETURN TO A DISTINCTIVE PEARL GREY STITCHING, THE ORIGINAL COLOUR WORN BY RCAF NON COMMISSIONED MEMBERS UNTIL 1968

D. GENERAL OFFICERS HEADDRESS PIPING (EMBROIDERY) WILL CHANGE FROM GOLD COLOURED TO PEARL GREY. TUNIC AND WEDGE CAP BUTTONS, AS WELL AS BELT BUCKLES WILL CHANGE FROM GOLD TO SILVER

E. NEW RANK AND INSIGNIA ITEMS WILL ENTER THE SUPPLY SYSTEM COMMENCING MARCH 2015. IT IS PLANNED THAT PEARL GREY EPAULETTES, ALONG WITH A NEW SILVER BELT AND SILVER WEDGE CAP BUTTONS FOR SUMMER WEAR, WILL BE MAILED TO EACH MEMBER BY LOGISTIC UNICORPS. AT THE SAME TIME, TUNIC INSIGNIA WILL BE DISTRIBUTED BY LOGISTIC UNICORPS TO SUPPLY DEPOTS AND TAILORING SHOPS. TAILORING OF TUNICS WILL COMMENCE IN APRIL 2015. MORE DETAILS ON THE DISTRIBUTION OF RANK AND INSIGNIA WILL FOLLOW

F. IT IS EXPECTED THAT ALL RCAF MEMBERS WILL BE DRESSED IN NEW PATTERN INSIGNIA COLOURS BY THE ANNIVERSARY OF THE BATTLE OF BRITAIN IN SEPTEMBER 2015

G. RANK AND INSIGNIA HAS BEEN DESIGNED TO MATCH THE PRESENT RANK THUS ENABLING THE CONTINUED USE OF EXISTING TUNICS. MEMBERS WILL NOT BE REQUIRED TO UTILIZE THEIR CLOTHING POINTS FOR INITIAL ISSUE OF THESE NEW ITEMS (IE BELT, GO WEDGE)
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby jrichardn2 » Thu Oct 09, 2014 5:24 pm

I note the use of "general officer" rather than "air officer".
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby Medic_in_Uniform » Fri Oct 10, 2014 4:06 pm

Yep, they've made it very clear that apart from replacing "private" with "aviator" all the other rank titles will remain unchanged. Senior commanders will therefore remain as "General Officers" with "...General" rank titles, there are no plans to change back to having "Air Officers" with "Air..." rank titles.
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby Torg003 » Fri Apr 10, 2015 6:14 pm

The new rank insignia is up on the CF website.
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby venqax » Tue May 05, 2015 11:11 pm

I am a bit confused by the posts to date regarding the new RCAF insignia. On the encyclopedia, the officers' stripes look like the RAF's for the most part. Are you saying that the interior stripe on the Canadian ranks is pearl gray, whereas on the British ones they are light blue? Both have thick black borders and maybe that is what is confusing me. When I heard/read the RCAF stripes were going to be pearl gray I expected them to be just that, like the old ones were yellow-gold. With the border they look like the British ones for all intents and purposes. Don't why they'd even bother with such a subtle color distinction.
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby Medic_in_Uniform » Tue May 05, 2015 11:54 pm

Have a quick look through the enlarged photos in the click-through gallery at the top of this page:

http://www.rcaf-arc.forces.gc.ca/en/article-template-standard.page?doc=rcaf-receives-new-rank-insignia/i0dslgrl

Also take a quick look at the RCAF FaceBook page:
https://m.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10152261863891237&id=61263506236&set=a.10150142814416237.282538.61263506236&refid=13

The new RCAF officer cuff rings are predominantly pearl-grey, although they do have a black outer edge but this *is* different to the UK RAF insignia, which are *black* lace but with a narrow central stripe of pale blue. I suspect it would be more obvious if you saw the two side-by-side.

Note also the pearl-grey piping on Lt Gen Blondin's garrison cap and the *pearl-grey* wreath below the (full colour)Arms of Canada insignia worn by the CWO on the left in the first picture.

Who they chose to add the black edges I don't know; from the initial press releases it sounded like the cuff stripes would be entirely pearl-grey, replacing the previous unification gold stripes. The black edges end up looking a bit like they were trying to to copy the RAF (or old RCAF) pattern, but then just didn't quite manage to get it right. In the end, though, it doesn't matter: it's a pattern that's uniquely theirs and I guess that's just as important.
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Re: RCAF rank changes

Unread postby trbaldwin » Wed May 06, 2015 5:33 am

YEs

Canada has re adopted simmiler to the rest of the Commonwelth Formation Air Forces, RAF, RAAF, RNZAF however they went 1 step further and went with Grey instead of Blue to also symbolise a link back to the Canadain Army Flying corps (beofre serate Air Force Services)

I would say that like Our insignia here in Australia

It would be a Parly Grey Strip of Material on op of the Black Material like we have but with Pale Blue
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