ayedeeyew

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About ayedeeyew

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  • Birthday 03/07/85

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  1. The late Victorian/early Edwardian pattern plates can be found if you keep your eyes peeled - having been looking for one for some time now I am aware of about 4 or 5 that have been offered for sale over the last year or so. For some reason they tend to turn up at the smaller auction houses where I didn't learn about them until their online catalogue listings turn up on Google searches several weeks (if not months) after the fact... A noticeable exception was one listed on Ebay at the end of April. The seller was in the US, and for some reason Ebay had told him the plate was a prohibited item to own in the UK - this is of course complete nonsense, since they have been obsolete since before the Great War! As a result the seller wouldn't ship directly to the UK and wouldn't be convinced otherwise, but after a lengthy conversation the seller agreed to let me bid on the grounds I would have it shipped to a friend-of-a-friend in the US, who would then forward it to me. End day came, and with a much lighter wallet I became the proud owner of the plate to 131 C : http://postimg.org/image/k1fezhc9n/
  2. Time for another update - finally finished my 1897 jacket. This was a based on an original probably interwar RA dress blue jacket that I had professionally converted to more closely resemble the correct pattern: http://postimg.org/image/70it33tgb/ http://postimg.org/image/araywqnyz/ http://postimg.org/image/41idmrhln/ http://postimg.org/image/474yyrzdn/ So now I have all the basics to get my WW1 Police kit in use. Only took about 6 years in the end... took advantage of the nice weekend to get some shots in wear done. In tunic: http://postimg.org/image/l9nj5tqsb/ And with frockcoat added for night use: http://postimg.org/image/6em4cpnff/
  3. Did you ever find a replica or casting of a QVC helmet plate ? I am also searching for even an impression of the crown to make generic victorian plates in resin for a play over here in the US...cheers...Tom

    2016-05-25-08-47-49-1542760745-1.jpg

    1. ayedeeyew

      ayedeeyew

      Hi Tom,

      The one I currently use with my late Victorian Met kit is a cast copy by a chap in the UK called Neil Storey. He is the maker of one that Dave Wilkinson was singularly unimpressed by on a recent thread on the subject of these plates. Neils are pretty good for most purposes, but all are cast with the number H171.

      I actually acquired an original from the US only the other day. I'm thinking of looking into how difficult it would be to get a 3D scan done of it and then have (blank) plates done in 3D printer. Unfortunately that will probably take some time, and I'm in no rush to start.

      Worth pointing out that the type of crown used on this plate is generally known as the "Guelphic" crown. The standard QVC being the one with the edges bulging out further over the base (as, confusingly, used on the tunic buttons of the same period).

      Hope his has been of help.

      Andrew.

  4. 2717 will be the whistle serial number. Nothing to do with the collar number or warrant number of the policeman it was issued to I'm afraid... Have a look over this site, plenty of helpful information on these whistles: http://www.whistleshop.co.uk/history.html
  5. Another update - my 1906 to 1930's plate is finally complete! The last number was fitted to the plate, and the plate then fitted to the helmet I had prepared earlier. Just like the other original fittings it's now held firmly in place by short sections of matchsticks: http://postimg.org/image/unhhqq3ez/ http://postimg.org/image/46w1mopxt/ http://postimg.org/image/kejxhpjvx/ And alongside my earlier pattern helmet: http://postimg.org/image/y5ha7eb03/
  6. Another few months on, and a few more updates... My Great War era kit is nearly done, but there are a couple of minor hurdles to overcome. First my 1897 pattern jacket is approaching completion. The only thing I am lacking now is a decent matched pair of pocket sized buttons to finish it. What I have is: http://postimg.org/image/7c88prnm9/ If anyone has a pair or an example that matches one of the two on the right I have already got that they would be happy to part with please let me know. The group of six tunic buttons are reproductions available through the Ragged Victorians: http://www.raggedvictorians.co.uk/page25.htm I am aware of a set of originals on Ebay, but although the Buy-It-Now price is very reasonable the P+P listed from the US to the UK is completely extortionate, and the seller hasn't responded to any messages asking about this: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/231841503735?_trksid=p2055119.m1438.l2649&ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT My helmet plate has advance another original no.1 and a later letter H which will work with a little modification until such time as I can find an original. I am still lacking a no.7, and have four x 0's, two x 6/9's and one x 8 to swap or trade for one. Ideally looking for the 12-13mm high type with lugs pierced for being held in place with a pin rather than the folding prongs if possible but anything suitable will be given consideration. Plate: http://postimg.org/image/b6j72s09j/
  7. Next I removed the medal ribbon bar - no easy task, having been sewn on by a machine very thoroughly through the whole thickness of the frockcoat! This done, I repeated the ironing through a damp cloth, which eliminated most of the traces of its presence that had been left. So begin the "easy" part - changing over the buttons. The buttons and tabs for epaulettes were removed permanently, the shoulders getting the iron and damp cloth treatment again to remove marks. Each remaining Hampshire Regiment button was then removed one at a time, all old stitching being removed, and the horn buttons stitched on. I started with the four on the lower back, then the six functioning buttons on the front, leaving it looking like this at the half-way point: http://postimg.org/image/qynj9imtl/ A lot more hours later, and voila: http://postimg.org/image/x9cj3pscf/full/ http://postimg.org/image/yfe38z37r/full/ Buttons now fully changed over to horn, and collar numbers added as well. I also tweaked the collar closing a little to get a better fit, a previous wearer having loosened the top quite considerably at some point. I should point out I have no evidence such Police frockcoats ever had cuff-buttons, but as this was now pierced for them and I had horn buttons in the right size I decided to make use of them. In due course I hope to get some pictures of me wearing it with the rest of the appropriate kit.
  8. The Duty Armlet loops seemed a good place to start. An appeal for some scraps of similar material on Ebay got no reply. So I asked Hainsworths for some of their samples of similar materials - and one proved an excellent match. Some cutting and sewing on the machine later, and I had my two loops, plus some spare material - one to keep for reference purposes, the other for using in patching the tear: http://postimg.org/image/6v5cdflk3/full/ The loops were then tacked onto the left cuff so they held the Armlet the regulation 3-inches above the cuff. On the left cuff, I cut a small piece of the remaining sample material, and used needle and thread to lightly hold it in place (so it would not be free to fall down between the outer and inner material) as I carefully inserted it behind the tear so as to reinforce the damaged area and also potentially help hide any colour difference (the exposed lining being bright white). I then heavily overstitched the tear (making sure several of the stitches caught the lower material to permanently hold it in place) until I was satisfied with the result. The original tacking stitches were then removed. The left sleeve also had various remains of stitching from now absent military badges. This was carefully removed. Both cuffs were then ironed through a damp cloth - leaving them looking as follows. Quite a change for the better already! http://postimg.org/image/43a7anosr/full/
  9. And to begin the updates... As I mentioned on another thread recently, for several years I have been looking into replicating the style of frockcoat worn by the Metropolitan Police as worn on certain occasions at the tale end of the 19th/beginning of the 20th century. I found this something of a challenge, as by the mid-20th century standard issue Police greatcoats had so far evolved in style, material and various other ways as to be useless to me, even with the possibility of modifying something. So I needed something in a similar style as seen below: Typical very late 19th century illustration: http://postimg.org/image/vrp409yy7/ London Police c.1903: http://postimg.org/image/f738ynppv/ Typical slightly later version (late 1900's/early 1910's): http://postimg.org/image/ijqmxi3bb/ As can be seen, even in this short period of time the frockcoats were subject to minor change, with the buttons down the front gradually flaring out further towards the top with the passage of time. One thing that quickly caught my eye on Ebay was the use by the army of very similarly patterned frockcoats until at least relatively recently, generally more senior officers but also by Bandmasters. Though not uncommon on Ebay, they were usually either far too heavily priced to be considered viable, or far too small to be of use. So the waiting game began... And finally my patience paid off - the following jacket appeared on Ebay at an extremely reasonable price, but with terrible pictures (the first two below are from the original auction), and the seller didn't respond to my questions. So I took a small gamble, and after some minor counter bids in exchange for £30.05 at the end I was the proud owner of: http://postimg.org/image/v2cfa5vi7/ http://postimg.org/image/6b21d2o1b/ And on me - an excellent fit: http://postimg.org/image/dn0hho0ij/full/ This became a Christmas present from my father. In general it was an excellent match for what I was looking to replicate, the change over to the horn buttons and adding the collar badges shown already being relatively simple. Repairing the damage to the right cuff and adding Duty Armlet loops to the left could be a more difficult matter. Only time would tell...
  10. The last few days have seen me busy with the needle and thread, so plenty of updates to come... As a little taster, after the last of the buttons arrived, they were sorted by maker and condition, and then given a light wash. This allowed me to select the best buttons for the coat, with a few in reserve as spares: http://postimg.org/image/6q225i2zp/full/
  11. Thanks for the compliments Mike, I'm glad to see I'm not just talking to myself and what I'm doing is of interest to others . I do continue to make the odd minor tweak when I can to improve things, the horrible modern replica duty-armlet in nylon I originally used on my jacket (and used to light up horribly under flash photography) is long gone for example, replaced for an original (the replicas just don't compare). Getting the 1897 jackets and greatcoat done will be relatively easy, it is the little things like trying to get the correct helmet plate numbers (or the letter H) that will be the real challenge! The broad strokes are simple, the devil is in the detail...
  12. A new year, and time to get some updates done again. The local Victorian Evening has been and gone once again, so the Victorian kit got an airing. The local Police were interested to see it as usual, and made the local paper again: http://www.northsomersettimes.co.uk/news/portishead_victorian_evening_success_1_4350355 "Special Chief Inspector Scott Eggins with Andrew Upton dressed as a victorian police officer and raising money for Children's Hospice South West." http://postimg.org/image/56ddp4fyb/#codes I continue to work on the WW1 appropriate kit. The helmet plate I mentioned back in post 34 went away to a jeweller friend to be fixed, and came back a good few weeks later looking as follows: http://postimg.org/image/y1br1hdbl/full/ As can be seen, the detached lug is now firmly refixed, and the missing lug entirely replaced. I have added a number 1 from another damaged helmet plate I bought several years ago, but I still need another 1, a 7 and an H to correctly replicate my collar number, so if anyone knows of any damaged plates available for sale with these, or would be possibly willing to swap for them (as I have some spare numbers I don't require, a 6 or 9 and several 0's) please let me know. The numbers are the typical 13-14mm variety, the letter would need to be the usual somewhat smaller 10mm or so variety. This will ultimately be going on this helmet when the plate itself is completed: http://postimg.org/image/hl1rx4b5r/full/ This is an original two-panel cork helmet. Strictly speaking for the WW1 period and Met use it should be six-panel, but some forces were using these at the time and it is hard to find original early ones in both decent condition and a modern wearable size. As found this helmet needed some minor work, so I removed all the metal fittings and repainted them black. The original vent grommets were all missing, as was one of the rose-headed split pins that hold the band in place, so I replaced these with originals off a very damaged earlier helmet I purchased for spares. The chinstrap was reaffixed in place, and before I fitted all the freshly painted metal fittings back in place the shell was given a light sponging with soapy water to freshen it up, followed by a light vacuuming. I wish I had taken some before-pictures, because it really came up a treat! I now possess not one but two suitable jackets that would work for the 1897 pattern jacket adopted by the Met, but both require some minor conversion work before they will be deemed suitable by me. Something for someone whose tailoring skills are slightly more experienced than my own... Last but not least, as mentioned in another thread recently I have been working on trying to sort myself something that would provide a suitable base as a period greatcoat. Santa was good this year in that respect, so I am trying to put together enough original horn buttons on the 1911-34 pattern mentioned above (KC with Metropolitan Police within a gartered buckle, not the post-1934 KC type with Metropolitan Police now within a plain border). What I have so far is illustrated below, still waiting on four from Kelly Militaria, and currently bidding on some groups with odd ones in on Ebay. The coat requires 16 of the larger (about 25mm diameter) type - I'd really like to get as decent a matched set as possible, so if anyone knows of any other sources of multiple examples of these please let me know: http://postimg.org/image/oar59jxcr/full/ More to come in due course...
  13. Oh dear, where to begin with the above... Given the OP was asking about tunics in the 1880's/90's, I was talking about tunics in the 1880's/90's. Not greatcoats in the 1970's. Since it apparently requires explaining, they are two quite different things. Your typical Police greatcoat of the post-WW2 period usually has buttons spaced 4 to 5 inches apart, therefore there is a reasonably large access point to get to the whistle, meaning it is indeed relatively easy for the whistle to come out of where it was stored. The same cannot be said for the tunic of the period under discussion. This would have been the 8-button tunic which the Metropolitan Police had adopted in 1864 (and most forces soon adopted) to replace the swallow-tail coat. Excepting the lowest two buttons being slightly wider (to facilitate the wearing of a belt) the button spacing on these is a bare 2-inches apart. After the adoption of whistles in 1883 (replacing rattles completely over 5 years in the Metropolitan Police) a small pocket between the third and fourth buttons was also provided to carry the whistle when not in use. This pocket whilst measuring only a couple of inches deep is accessed through an interior slit parallel to the buttons measuring about 2.5 inches wide. This doesn't seem particularly bad - until you realise this does not directly line up with the 2 inch gap of the buttons. With the tunic buttoned up in normal use this leaves you with a slit barely 1.5 inches wide through which to remove and replace the whistle. It is no easy task to remove it when you want it, and requires a degree of care - it certainly does not fall out of its own accord. "Anybody grabbing hold of the chain would have simply pulled the whistle out of the pocket" simply does not follow, and the risk of damage of a result is very real. I invariably find it safer easier to physically undo the fourth button if I wish to remove and replace the whistle when showing the kit. Also, "Essentially, the design of the coats had not materially changed (apart from an open neck at the collar) since Victorian times" is wrong on so many levels. I had myself been looking for a suitable coat to use with my late 19th/early 20th Police kit for over three years. Post-WW2 Police greatcoats are very common on Ebay in particular - and completely unsuited even for conversion due to the sheer number of differences. It was only recently I located something very suitable but still requiring some minor work, and that a piece of kit fossilised in Army dress use. To illustrate, here are a couple of pictures: Typical very late 19th century illustration: http://postimg.org/image/vrp409yy7/ London Police c.1903: http://postimg.org/image/f738ynppv/ Typical slightly later version (late 1900's/early 1910's): http://postimg.org/image/ijqmxi3bb/ Some typical WW2 or later Police greatcoats can be seen: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/SERGEANTS-ESSEX-POLICE-GREAT-COAT-WARTIME-/252132217453?hash=item3ab440526d:g:cgcAAOSwo0JWJNpf http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/GLOECESTERSHIRE-WW2-POLICE-TOP-GREAT-COAT-/121837920898?hash=item1c5e1b2282:g:nVcAAOSwHQ9Wasbu http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/LEICESTER-POLICE-GREAT-COAT-/121772689713?hash=item1c5a37c931:g:zkQAAOSwVL1WCVfy The main change to a typical Police greatcoat over the turn of the century largely seems to be the fashion for wearing it cut with front increasingly wider at the top (most obvious in the buttons spreading further apart on the front from the bottom up). Most of the features of a typical WW2-onwards coat begin appearing in dribs and drabs from the 1920's/30's onwards. To sum up: - typical late 19th/early 20th century Police greatcoat. Short standing collar. No epaulettes. Number worn on collar. Usually 12 button front. Front not designed to be worn open in any way. No hip pockets. Belt hooks. Better quality melton wool material. Very dark blue-black colour. Highly figured cut. Highly decorative styling to back. - typical late 20th century/post-WW2 Police greatcoat. Large fold-over collar. Epaulettes. Number worn on epaulettes. Usually 10 button front or less. Front designed primarily to be worn with open lapels. Hip pockets. Usually no belt hooks. Usually rough serge material. Increasing use of lighter blue colour. Barely figured cut. Very functional/plain styling to back. Different in just about every key respect! Only yesterday morning on a WW1 related forum I also post on, someone wrote the following: "I wondered why the more I read the more confusing were the arguments, and for me it was the fact that frequently points were being reinforced by personal experience that obviously is well outside the 1914/1919 time frame. Now I don't want to take anything away from those who have served their country at any time or in any capacity and all due respect to them for their service. However when I am trying to get an understanding of what was happening in the Great War based on Kings Regulations etc, I don't think that knowing what someone's personal experience in 1956 or any other time expands the matter further, unless of course the regulations remained unchanged from the GW and somehow I doubt that. May I respectfully suggest that we try and remain within the known structures for the Great War, it will make it a lot easier for beginners like myself". Change all references from the military to the Police, and Great War to the late 19th century, and the point is just as valid here.
  14. If you think about it logically, on routine Police work how many hand-holds do you want to afford to a potential assailant? One of the problems with the older-style 18 inch chains used on the whistle of the period was that (although looking great when polished up and lying flat down the front of a tunic) it presented something readily grabbed in the heat of the moment, risking damage to kit and injury to the officer. Just one reason to try and keep the uniform to the most practical minimum for ordinary use, and save the bling for best. As to Colour Sergeant Bourne (who I presume you meant , since that's his character in the still ), whilst Zulu is a great film, good history it is not necessarily. The uniforms in particular are inaccurate in many respects. One of my favourite bits of trivia is that Nigel Green was 40 when Zulu was made - he portrayed Bourne as a grizzled veteran, despite still being really only 24 at the time (having been promoted Colour Sergeant aged only 22, gaining the nickname "The Kid" as a result)! He relative youth meant he was the last survivor of the battle, not dying until 1945.
  15. Thus answering the OP's question as I said - NOT routine. There are always exceptions to the rule, but that does not make them routine.