Want to buy or sell something? Check the classifieds

Canadian Forces flying jackets (post-war)

Doctor Damage

My Mail is Forwarded Here
Messages
3,770
Location
Ontario
Canadian Forces flying jackets offer an interesting diversion from the more popular USAF flying jackets which dominate discussion in this forum. Canadian Forces flying jackets come in two weights (summer and winter) and basic designs have changed little since first introduced sometime in the 1960s or early 1970s, although there was an early winter flying jacket design in the 1950s. Even with the introduction of gore-tex versions in the late 1990s, designs changed little. Of course, these jackets aren’t really collectible in the sense of having a functioning market with regular trading and buying/selling, due in part to the small numbers available (the RCAF has always been small) and their unsuitability to the civilian market (they look like functional military wear and aren’t something one could comfortably wear as a civilian in day-to-day life, like MA-1 or A-2 jackets).

Age:
Basically there are two periods: pre and post introduction of gore-tex. Most jackets have tags which list the year and often the month. In the absence of a tag, or when a tag is not shown (as with some e-Bay listings), the easiest way to estimate age is by colour:

(1) 1950s - grey (not sure how often these were issued, since I've only seen one)

(2) 1960s through 1980s – dark green jackets

(3) mid to late 1980s to late 1990s – blue

(4) late 1990s onward (gore-tex period) – light green

Because designs barely changed over these periods (only in the last 5 to 10 years have any significant changes been adopted), identifying the exact year of a jacket offers no particular insight and simply confirms what one can guesstimate from the colour.

Materials:
Outer shells have always been a cotton/poly blend, tough and no frills (the blends varied over the years). Liners on summer jackets are nylon. Older winter-weight jackets had a heave wool insulation and nylon lining, while the new ones have a gore-tex liner and some sort of insulated lining (probably a poly-fill). The collars on older winter-weight jackets were mouton fur; the new ones melton wool.

Sizing:
Canadian Forces clothing uses a four-digit size system, the first two digits being the soldier’s height in inches, the second two digits being chest size in inches (for example 7040 = 70” height, 40” chest). My limited experience suggests these numbers are sometimes accurate, sometimes not, and the winter flying jacket I bought a few months back doesn’t measure up (neither does a vehicle crew jacket I bought recently). Of course, some jackets may have been mis-tagged. In any case, you should always check measurements, if available, and keep in mind the pre-gore-tex winter-weight jackets are thick and bulky.

Now... time for some photos!
 
Last edited:

Doctor Damage

My Mail is Forwarded Here
Messages
3,770
Location
Ontario
SUMMER FLYING JACKETS

Here’s the original summer jacket in dark green.



Here’s the summer jacket in air force blue.



Here’s the summer jacket again in blue, but with a fold-away hood that zippers into the knit collar.



Here’s a recent summer jacket, now a middle green colour.



I will post more photos of summer jackets, with photos of tags etc, and then switch to winter jackets.
 

Doctor Damage

My Mail is Forwarded Here
Messages
3,770
Location
Ontario
SUMMER FLYING JACKETS

Another summer weight jacket – this one’s seen better days. Note the foldaway hood. This one is dated April 1994.

 

Dumpster Diver

Practically Family
Messages
941
Location
Ontario
I Used to have one of those summer Jackets in black and sewed fur Trim around the collar and I looked BADASS like a Russian Street bike Racer. I miss it still! It was one of the best looking Jackets on me. I bought one of those Canadian Issue 60s Jet age nylon type heavy winter ones for my Ex once that was kinda like an N2-B, Damn awesome Jacket! I got it for less than $20 at auction and it was JUST her size. petite.
 

bn1966

Call Me a Cab
Messages
2,993
Location
UK
Summer jacket in Blue for me, but they are all very interesting & it would appear overlooked.

Thanks for the posting Doc.
 

Peacoat

Bartender
Bartender
Messages
5,901
Location
South of Nashville
Good job, Doctor. Thanks for posting all of the pics. I would think the heavy Canadian jacket would be a good choice for Winter wear. Your sizing system is two dimensional, rather than one as in the US sizing system. Although we do, in some uniforms, have tall and short sizes.
 

Dumpster Diver

Practically Family
Messages
941
Location
Ontario
If I find one in your size in blue Bn1966 I will let you know, sometimes they have a tendancy to show up in the Value Village thrift next town over for peanuts, There is CFB Trenton here and they sometimes open the vaults and liquidate old stock.

Also on closer inspection, that is the same 50s Nylong flight Jacket I once got for the Ex...It was spectacular!!! The Collar Zips out with a wool hood with fur trim on it!!!
 
Last edited:

Doctor Damage

My Mail is Forwarded Here
Messages
3,770
Location
Ontario
WINTER FLYING JACKETS

I noted before there have been four types of winter flying jackets, the 1950s model posted above, then two versions with the huge fur collar, and finally a fourth modern design. Below are photos of the two middle models with fur collars; as far as I can tell the only real difference is the colour, which started dark dark green and switched to middle blue when the Canadian Forces returned to individual branch colours. These ones are the really heavy ones and the fur collar is too damn big, actually. There's a small rain hood which folds out from under the hood. Talon zippers. These were intended to be worn on top of matching overalls, so they tend to be super short in the body.

Here's the earlier dark green version. I've got one of these and it's an amazing garment, even if it's a bit ridiculous for daily wear since these are far more utilitarian in terms of design than USAF flight jackets.

 
Last edited:

bn1966

Call Me a Cab
Messages
2,993
Location
UK
If I find one in your size in blue Bn1966 I will let you know, sometimes they have a tendancy to show up in the Value Village thrift next town over for peanuts, There is CFB Trenton here and they sometimes open the vaults and liquidate old stock.

Also on closer inspection, that is the same 50s Nylong flight Jacket I once got for the Ex...It was spectacular!!! The Collar Zips out with a wool hood with fur trim on it!!!

Thanks DD :)
 

Doctor Damage

My Mail is Forwarded Here
Messages
3,770
Location
Ontario
Here's the current issue winter flying jacket. It's got a fleece lined shawl collar, lots of velcro, etc. I think these might be made of nomex... the new summer ones are for sure. There's a zipper around the neck to attach a wool lined hood.

 

Forum statistics

Threads
102,987
Messages
2,923,136
Members
49,896
Latest member
Cofan
Top