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Ask SSD “What’s The Latest For USN FR Clothing For Shipboard Wear?”

While development and fielding of an FR Coverall (Improved Flame Resistant Variant) to replace the Blue Coverall has been ongoing for several years, the Navy has been working more recently on a two-piece design. Undergoing trials have been Heritage and Modern variants.

The Heritage variants replicate traditional sea service uniforms, with a Khaki shirt and pant for Officers and Chiefs and a Blue version for lower enlisted and noncommissioned Sailors. Interestingly, the Blue version is similar in appearance to the old Dungarees, but one style harkens all the way back to the Dark Blue on Dark Blue of enlisted deck wear, worn up until WWII. Another option, replaces the Dark Blue shirt with a Light Blue, similar to the Chambray shirts worn until the advent of the current Navy Working Uniform.

On the other hand, there is a Modern variant utilizing the cut of the NWU Type III, which was recently adopted for wear as the service’s utility uniform while ashore, and replaces the AOR 2 pattern with Khaki for officers and Chiefs and Dark Blue for lower enlisted and NCOs.

Additionally, NAVAIR continues to approve FR materials for Deck Jerseys and the service is working on FR base and insulation layers as well as hardshell garments for inclement weather.

11 Responses to “Ask SSD “What’s The Latest For USN FR Clothing For Shipboard Wear?””

  1. tcba_joe says:

    So, the Navy is adopting another uniform?

    Looks like khaki and blue versions of the Army ACU with the chest and cargo pockets of the USCG ODUs.

    • SSD says:

      Yes, on possibly another uniform,
      No on ACUs. Like I said in the text, they are versions of the NWU Type 3, which is a much better uniform than the ACU.

  2. MattF says:

    So what will the wear conditions be contingent on for ‘Heritage’ vs. ‘Modern’ variants? Will see ‘Heritage’ Fridays whereas the rest of the week will be ‘Modern’ Shipboard uniform of the day?

  3. AbnMedOps says:

    I don’t have a seadog (salty, old, or otherwise) in this fight, but I’m glad that the Navy hasn’t entirely forgotten that they have a distinctive heritage, and are at least considering adapting it forward towards the future.

  4. orly? says:

    FR navy blue coveralls with sewn on rank collar devices.

    Simple, easy, somewhat cheap.

    It’s all we ever needed, and what many wanted before the aquaflauge fiasco.

    • AbnMedOps says:

      Yeah, but coveralls and flight suits suck when it’s sitting-time in the latrine/head. And with an ever-larger percentage of the force exclusively sitting, the inconvenience and inefficiency factors will not add to efficiency or morale.

      • orly? says:

        This is the thing, most of us on ship were wearing coveralls all the time.

        Unless you were YN/PN/LN working with paperwork, or maybe some Khaki doing some odd duty on ship you were wearing coveralls as you were supposed to be ready for General Quarters at any time.

        They polycotton issued coveralls of the early 2000’s weren’t too bad, but imagine the high poly content of the other uniforms.

  5. Jbar says:

    I foresee the modern khaki NWU cut uniforms being voted down. I think the targeted audience will find it too tactical and still like their classic khaki style. I also foresee the heritage B & C uniforms being voted down (by those who would wear them). That being said, I hope the decision does not have to be exclusively heritage or exclusively modern. Also, while the solid blue uniform looks great, there is one thing that the outgoing NWU “Blueberries” had going for them, the gave some leeway with the always common paint and grease stains. That value was stated as part of the benefit and decision to switch to it. This now brings us to the final issue. The Sailors will have this FR shipboard uniform for underway, and most likely the standard uniform of the day when assigned to sea duty. Will it be ok to wear like the shore duty type III uniform off base, etc? I know The NWU Type III camo does not traditionally fit in as a shipboard uniform, but if the NWU Type III will be issued as a fire retardant variant to those in combat zones, why not just kill the khaki and blue shipboard uniform variants? Sure, it will be different, but it will be much more cost effective and will greatly reduced the uniforms needed to be maintained by the Sailors. Even whe.on sea duty, there are still many time traditional camo is better, like guard duty (on and off ship), escorts, public relation events in foreign ports, etc. You have to admit that the NWU Type IIIs have a much greater effect representing a military member, especially seen by outside personnel. Having one or two less variants necessary in the fleet is not a benefit for the end user, logistically, nor fiscally. I am sure tradition will win. I foresee the blue uniforms getting ruined left and right onboard the ship from paint and grease. I guess that is just a fact of like. I hope the requirement for the coveralls goes away also. Again, one more extra uniform to have and maintain. Even coveralls issued for dirty work end up needing to be presentable , so they sailor end up needing to see on all if the name tapes and badges and having a insoection pair ready to wear at quarters and probably as the standard underway uniform again. Hopefully the thin classic coveralls stay, and only issued and used for paintings and dirty work as required and not a standard uniform underway. I hope the Navy finally gets this right, and reduces the burden on the Sailors.