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J Temple-West

Luftwaffe qualification Badges pre-war Vs wartime designs.

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Being a quiet weekend, I thought that I would put together a few comparisons of some Luftwaffe qualification badges from Germany’s pre-war era and its preparation for wartime production.


All early badges were produced in comparatively low numbers for members of the clandestine Luftwaffe, meaning that lighter manufacturing methods (die, finishing and construction) were used to produce a much finer badge… one that, in a lot of cases, would eventually prove not to be robust enough to survive the use that they would undergo during the years to come.


As Germany, in defiance of the Treaty of Versailles, started to build its military, so did the need for its manufacturing base to increase numbers produced, in all areas, and the producers of awards and badges, now aware of what was to come, went into mass production mode using methods that would last in the making the thousands of badges needed.

New designs drawn up for a heavier and more durable version of badge, plans for a more robust hinge, pin and catch system and better construction methods implemented…production began.



All pre-war (1936-1938) pieces are on the left, their war-time (1938-1945) counterparts are on the right.  I should say that all the wartime examples shown are from the early part of Germany’s wartime production.  


As a personal preference, pre-war produced examples are my favourite, although I have always found it interesting how the design changed from a more stylized eagle to one that portrayed its “War Face”.



C.E Juncker - fallschirmjäger abzeichen





F.W Assmann - fallschirmjäger abzeichen





C.E Juncker - flugzeugführerabzeichen





F.W Assmann - flugzeugführerabzeichen





W. Deumer - flugzeugführerabzeichen





F.W Assmann - beobachterabzeichen (1st pattern eagle, 3rd pattern wreath)





F.W Assmann - Fliegerschützenazeichen für Bordfunker








Interesting to note how close the different die makers were when producing an eagle from the official design.


A side by side comparison of the eagle produced by C.E Juncker (left) and F.W Assmann (right).












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Hey J,

Great thread, and thanks so much for posting and sharing these photos.  This is a superb comparison, especially for someone like me who doesn’t really have any badges yet.  But as a Air Force uniform collector, I will need them eventually for display.  
I love seeing the nuances of construction as the years and ensuing needs evolved.  And I’m a little biased, but LW badges are the most fluid and have the most style, IMO.
It’s nice to do these types of things on slower weekends.  Probably something that’s been mulling around in your head for a while!

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