Where do the words Biff and No Duff come from?

#1
Does anyone know the origin of the word Biff as in Biff chit or 'he's a right Biff'?

And why 'No Duff' for a real casualty as opposed to a cas. sim. victim?

Just curious that's all. Should I get out more, d'ya think?
 
#2
Runner said:
Does anyone know the origin of the word Biff as in Biff chit or 'he's a right Biff'?

And why 'No Duff' for a real casualty as opposed to a cas. sim. victim?

Just curious that's all. Should I get out more, d'ya think?
"No Duff" (I think NODUF in siggy notation) was the proword to identify any real event which might otherwise be confused with exercise events, typically some emergency but not just for casualties.
 

Mr_Fingerz

LE
Book Reviewer
#3
No Duff from "not duff information"
 
#4
Proword NoWah.

Biff comes from the disease spina bifida. If you happen to suffer from this you are a complete biff.

Noduf (note the one F) is an old (ww2?) signals code for "No Direction finding equipment to be used on this message as it is not an exercise transmission"
.
 
#5
Runner said:
Does anyone know the origin of the word Biff as in Biff chit or 'he's a right Biff'?

And why 'No Duff' for a real casualty as opposed to a cas. sim. victim?

Just curious that's all. Should I get out more, d'ya think?
No Duff or NODUF is, as correctly stated, not duff information, i.e. true.

Biff comes from the congenital medical condition Spina Bifida. I can't be arrsed to list all the signs and symptoms here but google it and you will see why certain people are described as "right biffs".

And, yes, you do need to get out more...
 
#6
The proword 'NODUF' was taken from the shortened version of 'No Direction Finding', meaning that it was a real message and shouldn't be used to DF the exercise location by the 'enemy'.

Once the idea that if something was NODUF or 'Not Duff' it was real took hold, it would have been a short step to assuming that the opposite of good information was 'Duff' information.
 
#8
From an RN perspective a BIF was an international student at BRNC Dartmouth - stood rather obviously for "Britain's International Friends". It took on a rather derogatory meaning though as many were of Middle Eastern origin and some of them had little interest in being there. I think the term was subsequently changed to IS "International Student". Or that's what I recall anyway!!

"No Duff" (I think NODUF in siggy notation) was the proword to identify any real event which might otherwise be confused with exercise events, typically some emergency but not just for casualties.
The RN uses something called the "Safeguard Rule". Before a major exercise onboard a pipe will be made stating "The Safeguard Rule is now in force". All subsequent pipes are taken as "For Exercise". If a real emergency takes place, the pipeis preceded with the works "SAFEGUARD! SAFEGUARD! SAFEGUARD!". At the end of the exercise a pipe is made "The Safeguard Rule is no longer in force". It works very well.
 
#9
mnairb said:
While we are on VP, does anyone know why we say "Roger" meaning message understood or agreed?
Morse R .-. means - received.

R in early phonetic was Roger (now Romeo)

Got taken across when we became able to talk down the wire and not just send bleeps.

Has morphed a bit from the original.
 
#10
DarkBlueLoggie said:
The RN uses something called the "Safeguard Rule". Before a major exercise onboard a pipe will be made stating "The Safeguard Rule is now in force". All subsequent pipes are taken as "For Exercise". If a real emergency takes place, the pipeis preceded with the works "SAFEGUARD! SAFEGUARD! SAFEGUARD!". At the end of the exercise a pipe is made "The Safeguard Rule is no longer in force". It works very well.
That may work in and environment where everyone is on a ship and can hear the 'pipes'. On a radio network however sending a similar message would mean that callsigns joining the net late or 'out of comms' at the time would not be aware that the 'Safeguard Rules' are in or out.

Having a set proword which is used at the beginning and end of any non-exercise traffic works without any real problems..... just wish they would stick to one proword.... NODUF/'BULLDOG'/Real Message anyone?
 
#11
Plant-Pilot said:
DarkBlueLoggie said:
The RN uses something called the "Safeguard Rule". Before a major exercise onboard a pipe will be made stating "The Safeguard Rule is now in force". All subsequent pipes are taken as "For Exercise". If a real emergency takes place, the pipeis preceded with the works "SAFEGUARD! SAFEGUARD! SAFEGUARD!". At the end of the exercise a pipe is made "The Safeguard Rule is no longer in force". It works very well.
That may work in and environment where everyone is on a ship and can hear the 'pipes'. On a radio network however sending a similar message would mean that callsigns joining the net late or 'out of comms' at the time would not be aware that the 'Safeguard Rules' are in or out.

Having a set proword which is used at the beginning and end of any non-exercise traffic works without any real problems..... just wish they would stick to one proword.... NODUF/'BULLDOG'/Real Message anyone?
NOPLAY perhaps?

Is that one still in or was it binned?
 
#12
Plant-Pilot said:
DarkBlueLoggie said:
The RN uses something called the "Safeguard Rule". Before a major exercise onboard a pipe will be made stating "The Safeguard Rule is now in force". All subsequent pipes are taken as "For Exercise". If a real emergency takes place, the pipeis preceded with the works "SAFEGUARD! SAFEGUARD! SAFEGUARD!". At the end of the exercise a pipe is made "The Safeguard Rule is no longer in force". It works very well.
That may work in and environment where everyone is on a ship and can hear the 'pipes'. On a radio network however sending a similar message would mean that callsigns joining the net late or 'out of comms' at the time would not be aware that the 'Safeguard Rules' are in or out.
Very good point!

Plant-Pilot said:
Having a set proword which is used at the beginning and end of any non-exercise traffic works without any real problems..... just wish they would stick to one proword.... NODUF/'BULLDOG'/Real Message anyone?
Or one word across all 3 services, especially with combined and joint ops. With the RN having Safeguard (Also used socially in the same way that Noduf is), the Army whatever you decide upon and the RAF, I haven't a clue what they use, it could lead to confusion.
 
#13
Just to reinforce Steve and Plant Pilot:

High Frequency Direction Finding (HFDF) was known as Huff-Duff. During exercise, speech safety-critical messages were preceded by 'No-Duff'. Dunno what was used on CW tranmissions.

EG exercise briefing interrupted by WO2 at last minute: "The following is No Duff, the guards are carrying firearms but the exercise will still proceed".

R for Roger would nowadays be R for Romeo, but Romeo has taken on a new meaning in some circles. (not the bloke who was sh4gging the 14-year old in that play)
 
B

blindfire

Guest
#14
Used to love noduff messages - everyone listening to the net with glee to whatever disaster had befallen someone :D

Officers grimacing as they waited for the impending disaster to be told :D
 
#15
And another: WTF is durch? As in soft durch, etc?
 
#16
Just in case it hasn't been corrected already:

The proword "Roger" means message recieved satisfactorily and not that you agree or understand it. Take for example at coded message. You receive it and write it down. You believe that you have taken down the message correctly so you say roger over/out. You would then have to decode it before you understand it. Should you not receive it fully ie. it has been garbled or it was sent too fast for you to write down, then you go through "I read back" or "Say again".
2 years at AAC Harrogate in the early 90's means I have all this useless information stuck in my head. No good for pub quizes but great to answering sigs questions. Just hope the boss doesn't notice and makes me RSO!
 
#18
Flash.






















Fizzle.
 

Joshua Slocum

LE
Book Reviewer
#20
RAf night fighter pilots ( cats eyes Cunningham) used the term my instrument is bent, when the airborne radar failed
nowadays that had a wholly different meaning
 

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