Australia Cap Badges

As will be seen in the following images, there is a great deal of discussion about the right facing eagle (as the badge is viewed) on RAAF cap badges. There is ample evidence that although the great tradition of the eagle used in single badges is for the eagle to face to the right, the RAAF somewhat ignored that as a matter of expediency and apparently used whatever eagles were available, including left facing shoulder/arm eagles. This is debated hotly in Australian circles, but time after time, old cap badges keep showing up with both right and left facing eagles being used.

Click on the images to see a larger version and the back of the wing/badge, if available


1. Early Royal Australian Air Force officer's Southern Cross cap badge, 1920's, left facing eagle

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    August 31st 2004
    Hampson Collection / Windrum Collection
    sewn




    This extraordinary badge has been accused of being a reproduction of the beautiful "Southern Cross" Officer's cap badge of the 1920's, based on its visual condition. It has also been questioned because of the left facing eagle. As can be seen elsewhere, left facing eagles appear often, if irregularly, on Australian caps. This badge is in remarkable condition and has been kept sealed inside a display for many years within two famous and respected collections. despite its glistening appearance, the eagle is not a recent "staybright" piece. I believe that it could be an excellent and near perfect, unused example of this very rare badge. In any case, it illustrates beautifully the form of the rare Southern Cross cap badge. Compare this example to the obviously old and used example at #2.

2. Early Royal Australian Air Force officer's Southern Cross cap badge, 1920's, right facing eagle

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    August 31st 2004
    Simon Floyd
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    This old and used example of the Southern Cross officer's cap badge bears the correct right facing eagle, and shows clears signs of its age and use. Compare this badge to that at #1. In any condition, this badge is extremely rare.

3. Royal Australian Air Force officer's cap badge, 1930's, right facing eagle

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    September 1st 2004
    Windrum Collection
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    This is a typical example of a standard RAAF cap badge from the pre-war period, utilising a rather plump and correct, straight winged right facing bird with a fully fanned tail. It is mounted on a thick plinth for sewing to the cap band.

4. Royal Australian Air Force officer's cap badge, WW2, economy grade left facing eagle

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    September 1st 2004
    Windrum Collection
    sewn




    This is an example of an economy grade RAAF cap badge from the WW2 period, utilising a much more slender and left facing bird with a small tail. Note the irregularity of the eagle's wing leading edges. The crown and the laurels are made of stamped brass, resembling bullion.

5. Royal Australian Air Force officer's cap badge, WW2 economy grade, right facing eagle

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    September 1st 2004
    Windrum Collection
    sewn




    This is an example of an economy grade RAAF officer's cap badge from the WW2 period, utilising a straight winged and correct right facing bird with a small fully fanned tail. It is mounted on a thick plinth for sewing to the cap band. The crown and the laurels are made of stamped brass, resembling bullion.

6. Royal Australian Air Force officer's cap badge, revised right facing eagle

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    September 1st 2004

    sewn




    This is an example of a standard issue RAAF officer's cap badge after the revision of the style of eagle used during Queen Elizabeth's reign.

7. Royal Australian Air Force officer's cap badge, revised right facing eagle, manufacturing variant

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    September 1st 2004
    Windrum Collection
    sewn




    This is an example of a standard issue RAAF officer's cap badge after the revision of the style of eagle used during Queen Elizabeth's reign. This is a manufacturing variant of #6, with a larger, flatter bottomed crown

8. Royal Australian Air Force officer's field sidecap badge, to 1990

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    September 1st 2004

    sewn




    This is an example of a sidecap RAAF officer's badge worn on the field cap up until 1990 when the background colour changed to a much lighter blue/grey

8A. Royal Australian Air Force officer's field sidecap badge, 2002

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    September 1st 2004

    sewn




    This is an example of a sidecap RAAF officer's cap badge worn on the field cap after the return to bark blue uniforms in 2002.

9. Royal Australian Air Force Air Rank officer's cap badge, late 1950's

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    September 1st 2004
    Windrum Collection
    sewn




    This is an example of a standard issue RAAF Air Rank officer's cap badge used in the late 1950's before the revision of the eagle style.

10. Royal Australian Air Force Air Rank officer's cap badge, revised eagle

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    September 1st 2004
    Anon
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    This is an example of a standard issue RAAF Air Rank officer's cap badge after the revision of the style of eagle used during Queen Elizabeth's reign.

11. Royal Australian Air Force Air Rank officer's field sidecap badge, 2002

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    September 1st 2004
    John Macdonald
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    This is an example of a standard issue RAAF Air Rank officer's cap badge after the change back to dark blue uniforms in 2002

12. Royal Australian Air Force enlisted man's cap / sidecap badge, King's Crown

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    September 1st 2004
    Windrum Collection
    twin lugs




    typical enlisted cap badge used on caps and sidecaps before and during WW2, bronze

12A. Royal Australian Air Force enlisted man's cap / sidecap badge, King's Crown, variant

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    September 1st 2004
    Windrum Collection
    twin lugs




    This badge is quite unusual in several respects. It is heavily domed. The wreath does not join the crown at the top. The badge is not fully perforated, only at the centre of the A's. It is believed to be an early badge and is bronze

13. Royal Australian Air Force enlisted man's cap / sidecap badge, King's Crown

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    September 1st 2004
    Windrum Collection
    twin lugs




    This is an example of a standard issue RAAF enlisted man's cap /sidecap badge after from before, during and after WW2

14. Royal Australian Air Force enlisted man's cap / sidecap badge, darkened copper version

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    September 1st 2004
    Windrum Collection
    twin lugs




    This is an example of a darkened copper version of the enlisted man's cap / sidecap badge from before, during and after WW2

15. Royal Australian Air Force enlisted man's cap/sidecap badge , Queen's Crown 1954

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    September 1st 2004
    Windrum Colelction
    twin lugs




    This is an example of a standard issue RAAF enlisted man's cap badge after 1954, brass

16. Royal Australian Air Force enlisted man's cap/sidecap badge , 2002

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    September 1st 2004
    Anon
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    This is an example of a standard issue RAAF enlisted man's field cap / working dress cap badge in 2002

1. Australian Army Aviation Corps cap badge metal

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    September 2nd 2004
    Anon
    twin lugs




    This is an example of a standard issue Army Aviation Corps cap badge, about 1980

18. Australian Army Aviation Corps, Bullion, about 1980

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    September 1st 2004
    Anon
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    This is the Army Aviation Corps cap badge in billion, about 1980