Royal Netherlands Indian army (KNLI) uniforms

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Royal Netherlands Indian army (KNLI) uniforms

Post  pedroalfonso on Mon 18 Oct 2010, 12:08 am

Im very interested in the uniforms and badges of the Royal Netherlans Indian Army, or KNLI in dutch, mainly during ww2. Also about the natives serving in that army.

Many thanks

Pedro

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Dutch East Indies uniforms

Post  wfrad on Mon 18 Oct 2010, 8:18 am

Pedro,
What do you require, for example have you the rank insignia for the Netherlands forces of WWII, if not that can be easily provided.

A number of books have illustrations of the colonial uniforms, although they tend to be limited to one or two examples like in Andrew Mollo's Armed Forces to WWII he has devoted a whole page to the Netherlands East Indies Army, with two illustrations and one photograph.
While in Mollo's Naval, Marine and Airforce book there's quite a good but brief description of the Dutch East Indies Air force. I suppose space was limited in both books and there had to be cuts somewhere.

In Rosignoli's book on Badges and Insignia the Netherlands have being quite well covered.

Have a look at this site http://www.ww2incolor.com/forum/archive/index.php/t-2936.html for some photographs of the Dutch uniforms.

Here are a couple if examples, not the best but will give you an idea of what's available.
http://www.rendez-vous-batavia.nl/photogallery/bandung/insulindepark.pdf
http://img211.imageshack.us/img211/7157/time26jan42048wg.jpg
http://img217.imageshack.us/img217/5463/kniltraining34wy.jpg
http://img217.imageshack.us/img217/5388/kniltraining27tr.jpg
Regards
WF

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Re: Royal Netherlands Indian army (KNLI) uniforms

Post  ChrisF202 on Tue 19 Oct 2010, 1:04 am

wfrad wrote:Pedro,
What do you require, for example have you the rank insignia for the Netherlands forces of WWII, if not that can be easily provided.
From what I understand, the KNIL forces used the same ranks but with different rank insignia then the regular Royal Netherlands Army.

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KNIA

Post  wfrad on Tue 19 Oct 2010, 4:32 am

Hi Chris,
You are correct,
Basically there were some similarities such as the officers stars, although they were on a collar patch as were the nco ranks.
Two good examples would be sergeant and corporal chevron, while on the cuff for home service they were on the collar for the colonial uniform which you could say were similar, but the sergeant first class and sergeant major instructor you couldn't really call similar, the colonial ranks were only collar chevrons without the loop of the first sergeant and crown of the sergeant major instructor.
Also RNIA warrant officers had the silver stud while the under lieutenant had two silver stud and ensign one silver and one gold, ranks that I believe didn't exist in the European army.
For field ranks the RNIA collar patches were silver or gold with stars following the European pattern but no vertical bar to show field rank as in Europe. Not quite that straight forward but the basic idea.
Regards
WF

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Re: Royal Netherlands Indian army (KNLI) uniforms

Post  buistR on Tue 19 Oct 2010, 5:36 am

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Hi Pedro - you ask about the native soldiers of the Dutch East Indian Army. Attached (1st and 2nd pictures above) are sample illustrations of an indigenous bugler and infantryman of the KNIL repectively for 1938 and 1941. Although locally recruited troops made up the greater part of the KNIL, they were uniformed in the same light weight grey-green uniforms as the Dutch regulars raised in Holland for colonial service. This appears to have been KNIL practice even during the era of dark blue uniforms worn prior to 1910-16 (3rd picture). In short there was no parallel to the French, Spanish or British practice of dressing "their" African or Indian troops in exotic colourful uniforms that were very different from those of metropolitan units.

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Netherlands Indian Army

Post  wfrad on Wed 20 Oct 2010, 4:25 am

Here's a basic chart of the collar patch ranks for both types of the grey uniform worn taken from Guido Rosignoli's Army Badges and Insignia of World War 2, Book2. Needless to say they don't quite compare to the originals.
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Wf
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Re: Royal Netherlands Indian army (KNLI) uniforms

Post  Sean on Wed 20 Oct 2010, 5:11 am

Still pretty good, thanks

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Royal Netherlands Indian army (KNLI) uniforms

Post  pedroalfonso on Sun 24 Oct 2010, 7:32 pm

Ive read that there were four different dress codes:

- White service dress, only for officers and NCOs, with rank badges on collar patches and servive branch on special shoulder straps.
- Black ceremonial dress, only for officers, with rank badges on collar and service branch on special shoulder straps.
- Field grey-green service dress, for all ranks, with rank badges on collar patches and service branch insignia directly on uniform shoulder straps?
- Field grey-green campaing dress, for all ranks, with rank badges on collar patches and no service insignia on shoulder straps?

Please if anybody has info about that, confirm or correct what I have mentioned.

Tnanks

Pedro


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Uniforms RNIA

Post  wfrad on Mon 25 Oct 2010, 7:09 am

Pedro
A black ceremonial dress uniform was used by all European ranks, a white uniform was worn by officers and NCO's for garrison duties and two grey uniforms were worn also.
I believe that the service dress/garrison uniform was made of grey serge and cotton for the field-grey uniform.
Just in passing the air force used similar collar patch ranks to the army that were change to a triangular design in 1942.
Regards
WF

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