Sailors test flight suit for all hands, new coveralls

Two new types of flame-resistant uniforms are being tested by fleet sailors — and one prototype significantly boosts the cool factor.It is a dark blue flight suit designed to be worn by deckplate sailors that officials hope fits better and lasts longer than the current flame-resistant variant of coveralls. The flight suit includes all of the pockets, torso zipper, and Velcro closures on the waist, wrists, and ankles that pilots and aircrews have come to know and love.”Yeah, I’m looking forward to seeing how that shapes up,” said Machinist Mate 1st Class (SW) Jonathan Griffith, one of the sailors participating in the wear test. “Because I don’t have a centralized office, I usually carry a lot of items in my pockets — tools, papers, books — as I walk around throughout the day. Pockets would be a huge help.”

Source: Sailors test flight suit for all hands, new coveralls


Everybody wants to look TOPGUN.

It’s rather amazing that the Navy has spent something like 5 years developing a Flame Resistant coverall. Which they had to do because they designed the super stupid “blueberry” camouflage patterned work uniform, which also just happened to turn out to be highly flammable!

**Quartermaster’s comments about dungarees and chambray shirts if 5… 4… 3…**

16 thoughts on “Sailors test flight suit for all hands, new coveralls”

  1. Don’t like the big steel zippers. Do these folks have any idea that flame is fire and fire is hot?

    1. The FFE’s have even bigger steel zippers. You need to close the garment somehow, and steel zippers are pretty much the only method that won’t melt.

    1. Flash fires, yes. The old cotton uniforms, however, would burn. I wonder how many lives could have been saved if nomex had been available and used in shipboard uniforms in 1944.

      I liked seafarers. The dungarees were denim, but the shirts were cotton polyester. I wondered how well they would stand up to any real fire. Later I learned – not very well.

  2. Flight suit designs are Nomex, and thus flame resistent. Check. The designs appear not to sport nonsensical camouflage for non-existent environments. Check. Nomex, as employed in actual flight suits anyway, are lightweight, and thus relatively cool, and reasonably durable. Check. Flight suit designs offer good range of motion. Check. I would expect durability testing to account for multiple washings in ship laundry conditions, and reasonable exposure to grease and oil, resistance to tearing in typical shipboard crew conditions, sailor affordable lifecycle costs, considering initial costs to sailors and a reasonable replacement frequency. Also, they, like actual flight suites, the suite should not constrict swimming for man-overboard. Craft practical and complete requirements and test to those requirements and this should work. It’s not a freaking fashion show, so do it right this time, ok, Millington, NAVSUP, or whomever?

    1. I hope they are more durable than army combat vehicle crewman nomex. Two weeks of gunnery and every stitch of Velcro falls out and the junk starts flapping.

    2. One point on the camouflage: It was never supposed to blend into an environment, it was supposed to cause dirt, grease, and paint spatter to blend into the garment.

  3. As a yardbird I’ve always thought a flight suit or coveralls in nomex was the correct answer at sea. I would just add re enforced webbing and a grab handle over the shoulders. This would allow for moving an injured sailor by dragging or moving someone up a escape trunk with a line instead of a basket.

    1. I like the idea of the extra webbing for lifting, but not as part of the uniform. Can it be put it in the escape trunks or next to EEBDs? Dragging seems to be of limited use at sea. Too much non-skid and deck grating, and too many knee-knockers.

      Add reflective strips on the shoulders for visibility in MOB situations.

      1. The Army CVCU (modeled on the flight suit) has the webbing he’s describing. It’s hidden under a velcro flap along the back, and is very unintrusive. Pop the velcro, grab the webbing yoke, and haul ’em out of the hatch.

    2. Hauling someone out of a armored vehicle after it’s been knocked out requires the crewman be wearing the webbing. You ain’t going to be able to get in the racks to get some device to mount on the casualty to get him out. I thought the reinforced coverall was a good idea for a Tanker’s uniform. Maybe for a pilot as well.

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