Crab Air

#2
The original dye colour for their uniforms, back when they formed, was the same colour as medication used by the Navy against crabs. The uniforms were originally destined for Russia I believe, but the revolution put paid to that, so the RAF got them on the cheap.
 
#3
What and nothing to do with them being side stepping, workshy, crustaceans with no backbone and few morals ;D
 
#5
Crab, crabfat - (RN) A member of the Royal Air Force. From the light blue color of the uniform, which is the same as that of the grease (known as ‘crabfat’) used on gun breeches, etc., in the RN. Accounts vary, but apparently the grease was called ‘crabfat’ because it resembled in color the ointment used to treat sailors for ‘crabs’ (pediculosis pubis, genital lice), and of which fat was a major constituent.

From [btinternet.com/~a.c.walton/navy/smn-faq/slang1.htm] link no longer exists
 
#6
Crab, crabfat - (RN) A member of the Royal Air Force. From the light blue color of the uniform, which is the same as that of the grease (known as ‘crabfat’) used on gun breeches, etc., in the RN. Accounts vary, but apparently the grease was called ‘crabfat’ because it resembled in color the ointment used to treat sailors for ‘crabs’ (pediculosis pubis, genital lice), and of which fat was a major constituent.

From [btinternet.com/~a.c.walton/navy/smn-faq/slang1.htm] link no longer exists
'Blue Unction' was another term for it.

And as another poster wrote, the blue was originally a consignment for the Cossacks.
 
#8
I'm a slow reader ploughing my way through all the Wisdom of Arrse.....
 
#10
The original dye colour for their uniforms, back when they formed, was the same colour as medication used by the Navy against crabs. The uniforms were originally destined for Russia I believe, but the revolution put paid to that, so the RAF got them on the cheap.
When trenchard was consolidating his RAF after ww1 funds were very tight
They approached a number of suppliers for worsted cloth for uniforms and the price wast a bit beyond budget.
However a diying company in Lancaster had a very large consignment of light grey cloth for uniforms ordered by the Russian imperial army but after 1917 a bit redundant ( but paid for) .
The enterprising md
 
#11
Continuing on ( finger trouble)
Offered to do a trial re dye with a blue which is why it's the rather strange shade, trenchard wanted sky blue but it was cheap.
 
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