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Old June 20 2014, 11:05 PM   #1
JJohnson
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Location: Jacksonville, FL
All the Uniform Variants in the fleet at once

I'm working through creating a set of uniforms for myself and my girlfriend, and the question popped into my head: does Starfleet, at any given time, ever have roughly the same kinds of variants of uniforms that the Navy has?

Just taking the US Navy:

PT (Physical Training) - shorts, T shirt, tennis shoes
Working - camo two-piece, work boots, cover
Coveralls - navy blue one-piece jumpsuit, cover

Service - khaki/white - regular uniform

Service Dress (white/blue) - whenever we'd wear coat/tie

Ceremonial - (white/blue) - change of command, official visits, occasions of state and solemnities

Dinner Dress - (formal, dinner dress blue/white jacket, dinner dress) - white tie events; black tie events; black tie also (don't see a difference on Navy.mil)

For Star Trek, we had:

TOS / ST 09

-working - red/blue/gold shirts/pants
-PT - coveralls
-coveralls for background folks
-formal - silk with gold band; 09 had gray uniforms
-anything else?

TNG/DS9/VOY

-working - coveralls
-coveralls - yellow jumpsuits
-service - regular season 3 uniforms
-formal - long and not-so-long formal uniforms; Admirals change year to year; Nemesis white uniforms
-there were skants and Troi's uniforms, and Doctors/Engineers had jackets.

I'm guessing there was a trend towards simplification in the service to one formal, one service uniform, and then some PT stuff for off-duty that looked like 80's couch material.

I'm just wondering if anyone's gone through and come up, on their own with a uniform per category that the Navy uses to make it feel more like an actual officer/enlisted corps.
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Old June 20 2014, 11:46 PM   #2
Nerys Myk
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Re: All the Uniform Variants in the fleet at once

This site is a good source for uniforms

TOS

TNG
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Old June 21 2014, 04:47 AM   #3
Mr. Laser Beam
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Re: All the Uniform Variants in the fleet at once

ENT had the traditional service uniform (what most of the NX-01's crew wore), a service dress uniform (Admiral Forrest), and ceremonial (the uniform that Archer wore in TATV). For example: it could conceivably be the case that Forrest could, at any time, have worn a uniform like the rest of the crew did, or that those crew could have worn a uni like Forrest did. But I admit there's no evidence of that.

TOS also had this system, but beginning in TNG, Admirals seemed to adopt a unique uniform that they, and only they, wore.
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Old June 21 2014, 05:01 AM   #4
Ro_Laren
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Re: All the Uniform Variants in the fleet at once

Nerys Myk wrote: View Post
This site is a good source for uniforms

TOS

TNG
Cool site!
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Old June 21 2014, 03:51 PM   #5
Use of Time
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Re: All the Uniform Variants in the fleet at once

Nerys Myk wrote: View Post
This site is a good source for uniforms

TOS

TNG
Good link. That is about as comprehensive a list I've seen on the subject.
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Old June 22 2014, 02:09 AM   #6
J.T.B.
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Re: All the Uniform Variants in the fleet at once

JJohnson wrote: View Post
I'm working through creating a set of uniforms for myself and my girlfriend, and the question popped into my head: does Starfleet, at any given time, ever have roughly the same kinds of variants of uniforms that the Navy has?
The US Navy (and Marines to a lesser extent) is kind of overkill in that area because for a long time they liked to adopt new uniforms but not get rid of any. They are getting it a little more under control now (even with the camouflage working uniform debacle), eliminating the tropical white, winter blue, wash khakis, aviation greens and utilities. But still there are a lot, even though full dress, service dress and dinner dress (not jacket) are the same uniforms with different accessories.

Really, three levels seems like enough: dress, ordinary duty and working/field. In Star Trek there doesn't seem to be a distinction between daytime and evening formal, so you don't need mess dress.
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Old June 22 2014, 05:07 PM   #7
LordMudd
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Re: All the Uniform Variants in the fleet at once

In TOS there were the 3 service colors. Lower ranking personnel, primarily engineering and people doing extensive manual labor planetside, wore coveralls.

The TMP uniforms have been suggested to be either science duty or interim. ST 2009 adapted a wider variety of both of these.

ST3 on established the red jacket as primary military with some coverall people seen in the background. Marines/security had their own uniform with 'armor' and station security had the blue uniform.

TNG/DS9 went back to the tri-color with variant adaptations for gender, race, or other physical requirements. In the first season we saw the Parisis Squares uniform (check spelling). Admirals probably had more leeway in choosing their duty uniform. On Voyager we saw Tuvok and the 4 Maquis in PT uniforms.

All in all I would suspect that in an organization like Starfleet, the process of setting a uniform is ongoing due to the ever changing requirements of new races joining the Federation, so the options would probably be greater than that of the Navy and Marines combined.

Makes me real glad I went Army.

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Old June 25 2014, 03:11 PM   #8
JJohnson
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Location: Jacksonville, FL
Re: All the Uniform Variants in the fleet at once

J.T.B. wrote: View Post
JJohnson wrote: View Post
I'm working through creating a set of uniforms for myself and my girlfriend, and the question popped into my head: does Starfleet, at any given time, ever have roughly the same kinds of variants of uniforms that the Navy has?
The US Navy (and Marines to a lesser extent) is kind of overkill in that area because for a long time they liked to adopt new uniforms but not get rid of any. They are getting it a little more under control now (even with the camouflage working uniform debacle), eliminating the tropical white, winter blue, wash khakis, aviation greens and utilities. But still there are a lot, even though full dress, service dress and dinner dress (not jacket) are the same uniforms with different accessories.

Really, three levels seems like enough: dress, ordinary duty and working/field. In Star Trek there doesn't seem to be a distinction between daytime and evening formal, so you don't need mess dress.
It took a bit to find that the white/blue variation is due to summer/winter, and I can't really find a good reason for the formal, dinner dress, and dinner dress jacket when one uniform would do fine.

What are the real differences in those three sets of uniforms?
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Old June 25 2014, 03:35 PM   #9
JJohnson
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Location: Jacksonville, FL
Re: All the Uniform Variants in the fleet at once

If I were to create my own uniform system, covering each of the uniform types the US military has, which ones would you say should be present?

At a minimum, I can see:
PT - shorts/t-shirt or sweats
Working - two piece coveralls with undershirt, belt, duty boots (no camo, department color though); same situations as in US Navy
Coveralls - one piece, same situations as US Navy (This and working uniform could be combined. I don't see much difference in function and usage for these two uniforms)
Service - main uniform we see day to day on-ship; hot weather short sleeve variants and skirts
Service Dress - same situations as US navy, perhaps also the dinner dress uniforms. Displays medals, ribbons here, which may or may not be on Service uniform; variants of this could serve as dinner dress and as band uniforms.
Ceremonial - change of command, etc; has gloves, cover, ribbons, medals. Perhaps a white color variant of the Service Dress.

And to take it a bit further, let's say we were to make a slightly more Navy-like Starfleet, at least uniform-wise. What would we see day-to-day on a starship? Would we see bridge crew in working uniforms or service uniforms? Would engineers stay mostly in coveralls, with perhaps the chief also in coveralls, or staying in the service uniform? Would the entire crew, or just senior staff switch to service dress to receive ambassadors? How could the Navy's 'uniform of the day' be put into effect for a ship underway to either observe a stellar phenomena or to map out a new M-class planet?

Last edited by JJohnson; June 25 2014 at 03:50 PM.
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Old June 25 2014, 06:18 PM   #10
J.T.B.
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Re: All the Uniform Variants in the fleet at once

JJohnson wrote: View Post
It took a bit to find that the white/blue variation is due to summer/winter, and I can't really find a good reason for the formal, dinner dress, and dinner dress jacket when one uniform would do fine.

What are the real differences in those three sets of uniforms?
For the US Navy, "dinner dress jacket" uniforms are optional for everyone below lieutenant commander. If they don't want to buy it, they wear "dinner dress" for "black tie" occasions instead, which is service dress with mini medals. "Formal dress" is the equivalent to white tie and tails, which is very rarely worn in the modern world. I heard once that the only reason the Navy keeps it on the books is that there is a white tie ceremonial dinner put on by the Royal Navy in London every year, to which some USN officers are invited. Don't know if that's true on not. Also, there used to be a uniform they called "Gulf rig" (forget the real name) for really hot areas which was the open collar short sleeve white shirt with mini medals, black pants and gold cummerbund around the waist. Kind of weird, but it's now deleted.

Service dress whites (ribbons only) are supposed to be equivalent to business suit attire, but they are really only used for formal occasions, while service blues are worn for everyday duty in the winter in some more formal offices and headquarters, especially in DC. The Navy was trying to come up with an in-between warm weather uniform a few years ago by bringing back service dress khaki, but it was decided it wasn't worth the money and lightweight-fabric blues would be OK in warm weather. The other services dropped their dress whites and khaki/tan coat-and-tie uniforms a long time ago.

JJohnson wrote: View Post
If I were to create my own uniform system, covering each of the uniform types the US military has, which ones would you say should be present?
What TOS had seems like enough: standard duty uniform, dress uniform, working uniform (coveralls). The reasons the USN has differences between "service" and "service dress" and "working" and "coverall" are more historical than practical. The US Army and Air Force are moving toward one working/field uniform (with possible camo variants) and one service uniform which can be accessorized to be a dress uniform or worn without the coat for less formal duty.
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Old June 27 2014, 01:12 AM   #11
LordMudd
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Re: All the Uniform Variants in the fleet at once

There was also the radiation suit in the earlier movies, which seemed to be applied as a uniform for those engineering people working in high rad potential areas. Scotty seemed to float back and forth as needed.

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