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Defence Forces Rank Markings

 

Air Corps Other Ranks

Air Corps Enlisted Personnel - Cuff Ranks

Introduced in 1994 these rank markings which I designed are worn on the cuff of the Service Dress Tunic and Greatcoat.

Air Corps Enlisted Personnel - Sliders 1994 Series

These were my design and the first series of sliders in 1994. They were actually worn despite the dismal quality.

These sliders were made like all badges on large sheets. 

The problem was that the Defence Forces badge machine operator tried to get as many badges on a sheet as possible.

The result was that there was no distance between badges to allow for shaping and size. 

In trying to save on material the end result was a lot of waste on the sheets and a poor rank, In 2001 the contract went to a civilian company.

 

Air Corps Enlisted Personnel - Sliders 2001 Series

 

Air Corps Enlisted Personnel - Subdued Sliders

Subdued sliders were introduced in September 2003.

All enlisted ranks received sliders with the exception of 2 Star Airman.

It was felt that the transition period between qualification as a 2 Star airman and  3 Star airman was to short to justify production of a rank insignia.

If needs arise the insignia will be produced

 

Subdued Slider - Variations

These two rank sliders were made for me, from the original tape prior to departing on overseas service in 1996 and 2000.

Following the introduction of the slider for the French style uniform the policy was that Air Corps and Navy personnel wore the equivalent army rank slider.

I borrowed the computer tape went to a badge company with a cut of Combat Uniform material and the result is I got my subdued ranks.

Air Corps Enlisted Personnel - Helmet Ranks

This series of rank insignia are for wear on the RABINTEX RBH303IE Helmet which was introduced during 2007.

The rank is quite small 25mm x 38mm and is fixed by velcro to the front of the helmet cover.

Air Corps Officers

Air Corps Officers - 1994 Series

 

Air Corps Officers - Sliders 1994 Series

These insignia were introduced in 1994 and at first they were poorly made and without the wing.

It was my recommendation that the wing be added to made the rank more military looking.

Air Corps Officers - 1994 Series

 

Air Corps Officers - 2001 Series

 

Variations in Officers Rank Tape

It is worth noting that the officer rank tape can be found in a number of shades and design. I have shown three examples here of the same rank.

 

Air Corps Officers - Subdued Sliders - 2003

In September 2003 sliders were introduced for wear on the DPM uniform and flight suit.  For some reason they did not follow the wraparound style of the blue slider.

 

Air Corps Officers - Subdued Sliders - 2008

In mid 2008 a new slider was introduced for officers with wrap around.

ISAF Slider

Air Corps Officers - Helmet Ranks - 2007

This series of rank insignia are for wear on the RABINTEX RBH303IE Helmet which was introduced during 2007.

The rank is quite small 25mm x 38mm and is fixed by velcro to the front of the helmet cover.

 

General Officer Commanding

Insignia worn by the GOC, Air Corps. The large gorget with two silver leaves was an error that dates back to 1994.

The then GOC used the two leaf sample. They were worn until 2009 when I recommended the 3 leaf pattern to the GOC. (Army gorgets have three leaves).

The GOC Air Corps is the only one in the Corps with epaulets on his tunic.

With the introduction of the blue uniform in 1994 the then GOC introduced the oval shown below to help identify him as a General.

Army Enlisted Ranks

Rank Markings - Enlisted Personnel, 1924

These ranks markings were authorised by Order No.4 26 September 1924 Defence Forces Temporary Provisions 1923/24.

Prior to these in 1923/1924 the strips were a Green colour.  As can be seen they were very basic and it was just a red strip sewn onto a backing cloth.

I can remember been told by my father, who joined the defence forces in 1932 and wore these ranks,

that in some cases the strip was sewn directly onto the tunic with no backing, but a good NCO would never do a thing like that. This series was worn until 1949.

 

Rank Markings - Enlisted Personnel, 1949

As can be seen from these ranks it was a major departure from the previous design (1924).

The introduction of ranks insignia for the three grades of Private and two grades of Corporal was established.

These insignia were worn  until 1963 when they changed to come in line with international armies.

 

Rank Markings - Enlisted Personnel, 1963

This series of ranks was introduced in 1963 to bring the ranks in line with international armies.

In 2001 the new metal BSM/BQMS rank were introduced

 

BQMS  &  BSM Rank Insignia - 2001

 

Rank Markings - Enlisted Personnel, Corporal 1963

I have displayed this series of rank insignia as "miscellaneous" in the hope that it will avoid confusion of placing them within set years.

The rank insignia that was worn by Corporals are most interesting because they cover a very short period in the early 1960's.

As to why there is a "Corporal, narrow 1 Stripe"  I am not sure and records do not clarify it.

These first two ranks by virtue of the one stripe should fall in to the 1949-1963 period set of ranks, but the stripe is narrow and not wide as with the period.

The two stripe Corporal is easy to place because it was introduced with the ranks in 1963, retaining the stars as a follow on from the previous system.

It was quickly replaced by the actual rank of Corporal.

 

Miscellaneous

 

Rank Markings - Enlisted Personnel - Velcro Ranks

These sliders were introduced for wear on the front of the French style uniform in the mid 90's.

Initially they were flat with a velcro backing and then became available in slide on form. 

If you look closely you can see that the Cpl and Coy Sgt have been sewn onto a backing which was made into a slider.

With the introduction of the DPM uniform the rank had to be used with a velcro backing on the shirt but as a slide on the smock.

Subsequently the shirt was altered to allowed the slider to be used.

1995

2014

Rank Markings - Enlisted Personnel - Slider Ranks

ISAF Sliders

Velcro and Slider Variations

 

Rank Markings - Enlisted Ranks - Helmet Ranks

This series of rank insignia are for wear on the RABINTEX RBH303IE Helmet which was introduced during 2007. 

The rank is quite small 25mm x 38mm and is fixed by velcro to the front of the helmet cover.

Army Officers

Rank Markings - Officers - 1924

Temporary Provisions 1923/24).

The bar and diamond bear a Celtic design, Staff officers wore a coloured underlay system until 1927 when the enameled collar badge was introduced.

ARMY HQ CORPS COMMAND BRIGADE INFANTRY
Scarlet Yellow Blue Bottle Green Violet

The colour underlay was to show one sixteenth of an inch all round.

The metal diamond is one and a quarter inches and the bar is one and three quarter inches by half an inch.

The coloured underlay were a metal strip covered in cloth with two holes for the lugs of the rank marking.

 

Rank Markings - Officers - 1942

Introduced in 1942 when GRO 23 & 28 ordered officers insignia to be cloth in place of metal.

The bars and diamonds were green melton cloth with the edges in brown silk thread.

 

Rank Markings - Officers - 1944

Introduced in 1944. Raised design and bronze colour.

ARMY HQ DIVISION HQ COMMAND HQ BRIGADE HQ MILITARY COLLEGE
Scarlet Yellow Blue Bottle Green Orange

The colour was to show one sixteenth of an inch all round.

The metal diamond is three quarters of an inch square and the bar is one and a half by three eights of an inch.

The coloured underlay for this series were made of plastic.

In some cases officers had to use their initiative like the Captain's rank as shown below which I received from a retired officer who once wore this rank

 

Rank Markings - Officers - 1971

Introduced in September 1971. The rank of Brigadier General was only introduced in the mid 1970's.

The rank of Commandant is between captain and Lt Col in the Irish Army

In many militaries a Commandant is an appointment and the equivalent rank is a Major.

 

Rank Markings - Officers - Dress Uniform 1928

These epaulettes were detachable and dress occasions replaced the norman epaulette on the Service Tunic.

The trousers had a yellow stripe on each leg seam. Gold insignia on the yellow epaulette was worn by General ranks

 

Rank Markings - Officers - Dress Uniform 1935

Epaulettes for the dress uniform worn between the 1935 to 1955.

GOLD and SILVER Epaulettes were worn and matched the uniform facings of Mounted and Dismounted Corps respectfully.

 

Rank Markings - Officers - Dress Uniform 1955

 

Rank Markings - Officers - Dress Uniform 1971

 

Generals

 

Rank Markings - Officers - Velcro Ranks

Introduced for wear on the front of the French style uniform worn on overseas service in 1995.

Initially they were flat with a velcro backing and then became available in slide on form.

When the DPM uniform was first introduced the shirt had a place for a velcro rank while the smock had a device to hold a slider.

This meant having to adapt the velcro type rank into a slider, subsequently the shirt was altered to accomodate the slider type

1995

 

2014

 

Rank Markings - Officers - Slider Ranks

Pre DPMs

 

DPM Rank Insignia

 

General Officer 2010

These bullion wire sliders replace the subdued version on DPM's.

 

Rank Markings - Officers - ISAF

The following set of rank markings were issued for servise with ISAF.

 

Rank Markings - Officers - Sinai Ranks

The following set of rank markings were introduced for wear on overseas service.

It is the common believe that they were worn by 25th and 26th Infantry Groups in the Sinai 1973 to 1974.

These four ranks are the only ones in the set.

 

Rank Markings - Officers - FCA RANKS

The maroon epaulette indicated FCA personnel. Only these four officer ranks existed at the maroon epaulette stage.

 

Rank Markings - Officers - Helmet Rank Insignia

This series of rank insignia are for wear on the RABINTEX RBH303IE Helmet which was introduced during 2007.

The rank is quite small 25mm x 38mm and is fixed by velcro to the front of the helmet cover.

 

Officer Miscellaneous Rank Insignia

Naval Service Other Ranks

Rank Markings - Enlisted Personnel - 1940 to 1973

 

Sliders

In this series of ranks there was no slider for the Ordinary and Able Seaman.

They were introduced much later.  The quality of the slider was always very good and to a set size.

I recently found that I had a number of sliders that I would regard as a variation set,  Two of these are displayed further below.

These two sliders are the variations mentioned above, they are a brighter gold in colour and the chevrons are bordered.

 

The following set were introduced in 2002 and are woven and not thread.

For the first time the WO slider has been introduced with the branch badge woven in.

 

 

Subdued Sliders

The Naval Service introduced subdued rank markings circa 1997.

They were the flat type for wear on the front of the jacket. 

Only the ranks shown below were made because they were the most likely ranks to be going on overseas service (hence the reason no Senior Chief Petty Officer or Warrant Officer badge).

Naval personnel with some battalions were issued with them while other battalions were not.

 

The under mentioned are the 2nd pattern of subdued ranks, they are a better quality and are a slider type.

These ranks were introduced circa 2000.

 

2003 Sliders

The under mentioned are the 3rd pattern of subdued ranks, again they are of a good quality but the colour is more of an olive drab.

These ranks were introduced in May 2003.

 

2014 Sliders

The under mentioned are the 4th pattern of subdued ranks.

These ranks were introduced in 2014 and include the newly designed Scpo and WO Insignia.

 

Reserves - Sliders

These rank markings were originally introduced for the Naval Service but with the introduction of the gold rank slider for the navy these blue ranks were then issued to the Naval Reserve (Slua Muiri).

In 2002 these were phased out and the Slua adopted the gold pattern.

For a short period of time a darker shade of blue rank slider existed in this series. These were actually worn by naval personnel only.

 

 

 

Service Dress

These rank markings have been worn since February 1973.

 

 

Rank Marking Variations - LE. Eithne

These three rank markings were produced for the crew of the LE. Eithne prior to a cruise to Spain.

They were the forerunners of the blue insignia.  I only have  three of the ranks but one also exists for the Senior Petty Officer.

 

Thread Variations - 1970's

These are three of a set which were produced for everyday wear on jumpers and brassards instead of the more elaborate gold wire ranks.

They were not successful so they did not last very long.

 

White Front Rank Variation

Only produced in Leading Seaman for wear on the white front.

 

Naval Service Helmet insignia

Naval Service Officers

Naval Service Officers Sleeve Rank Insignia

 

Rank Markings - Officers - Uniform

These ranks were introduced in the 1940s and continue to be worn today.

These ranks are the stiff board type rank worn with most forms of uniform dress.

since 2001 these ranks are only worn on the overcoat.

The board size is 140 x 60mm.

 

These following ranks are the slider type that were introduced in 2001.  They replaced the stiff board series for wear on most forms of dress.  Slider size is 100 x 56mm.  The Commodore retained a stiff improved board rather than a slider.

 

The Medical officer wears the following.  They are locally made by the tailor.

 

Rank Markings - Officers - Subdued Sliders

The Naval Service introduced subdued rank markings circa 1997. 

They were the flat type for wear on the front of the jacket. 

Only the ranks shown below were made for officers because they were the most likely ranks to be going on overseas service.

 

The following are the 2nd pattern of subdued ranks introduced in 2002.

They are a better quality and are a slider type.

 

The following are the 2nd pattern of subdued ranks.  They are a better quality and are a slider type.  These ranks were introduced in 2002.

 

Naval Service Cadet Variations

 

Officer Helmet Insignia

 

Naval Service Rank Insignia Variations

School of Music and Bands

Blue Uniform

In this blue series you can see that the uniform was worn through the rank changes.

Green Uniform

In this series you will see that there are three variations of the green uniform rank.

The one that was worn for a short period up to 2003 is the one with the white border.

The Pte 2 Star and CQMS were not produced with the white border.

There is only one CQMS on the establishment of the School of Music and he/she may or may not be a musician and therefore may not have a Band Parade Uniform.

It would appear from the Cpl, 2 Star 2 Stripe that the green uniform was introduced around 1965.

The border series of ranks would also match the material of the Army Pipe Band tunics.

 

2003 Uniform

Greatcoat Set

 

Summer Dress Set

 

Concert Uniform Set  (Awaiting Images)

 

Ceremonial Uniform Set

 

Band Rank Insignia 3

 

Band Silver Insignia

 

Band Gold Insignia

 

Officers Band Rank Insignia

Nurses

Nurses Rank Insignia