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Uniforms

The information provided here is intended to assist members in acquiring Auxiliary uniforms.  It is not intended to endorse any particular supplier or to supersede any of the information contained in official USCG Auxiliary publications such as the Uniforms chapter of the Auxiliary Manual.  The information should be particularly helpful to new members. 

 For complete uniform information:

Consult the Uniform Procurement Guide (a link is provided below)  
Check Chapter 10 of the Auxiliary Manual which can be reached from: Auxiliary Manuals and Instructions site

Why wear a uniform?

We are uniformed volunteer organization that supports the United States Coast Guard.  Proper appearance in uniform promotes a professional image of the member the Auxiliary AND the Coast Guard.  Auxiliarists should be proud of their membership and wear the uniform properly.

When do I need to wear a uniform?

Uniforms are recommended at all Auxiliary functions and required at some.  The event announcement should prescribe any required uniform; however, if not, inquire of the Flotilla Commander or any other member.

Members are not required to wear a uniform to monthly meetings, but it is strongly encouraged. The standard meeting uniform for Flotilla 61 is the “Tropical Blue” (sometimes referred to simply as “Trops”).  Patrol uniforms are defined by the patrol coxswain. 

What Uniforms should I buy?

If members only wish to buy one uniform, the tropical blue long is the most widely used in the Hampton Roads area among F61 members.  In addition to meetings, it is worn to attend many CG and Auxiliary training courses, conferences, and other activities, it can be worn on patrol (if consistent with other crew members and okay’d by the coxswain), it is worn to teach Auxiliary courses to the public, and it is worn to Public Affairs events like the Boat Shows.

If your desire is to be heavily involved in patrols and operations on the water, you may choose the ODU as the uniform to buy.  The ODU which can be worn with bloused legs and boots or if underway then with straight legs and deck shoes.  The Auxiliary ball cap is the only authorized ODU headgear and the Gore-Tex Foul Weather Parka II (FWPII) is the standard coat.  Several other jackets are currently authorized for the ODUs (AUXMAN page 10-77, PDF page 502), but their "wear-out" date is Dec 2012. [NOTE: ODUs are normally not allowed at the events listed in the Tropical Blue section above]

Proceeding in order of likely use following the Trops and ODUs are the Service Dress Blue (Bravo), Dinner Dress Blue and then the Dinner Dress Blue Jacket (for winter) and Dinner Dress White Jacket (for summer).  These dress uniforms are typically worn for banquets and evening Changes of Watch. 

The details for properly wearing each uniform are described further in the Auxiliary Manual. 

Where do I buy Uniforms?

There are a variety of sources for uniform components, and it is totally up to the member to decide which to use.  The closest area on the peninsula is with an exchange is Training Center Yorktown (TCY), so that is an easy source and allows for uniforms to be tried on.  The staff there is very helpful with fit, set up, and other uniform-related details.  Prices at the exchange tend to be competitive and there is no tax or shipping.  Another local option is military surplus stores – GI Joes.  Again, very price competitive and convenient, but they will not know anything about Auxiliary uniform components.  Less convenient, but still an excellent source if the TCY Exchange is out of stock is the USCG Uniform Distribution Center and the big CG Exchange in Chesapeake (see below). Finally, there are internet-based sources such as Lighthouse Uniforms that offer uniform components (see Procurement Guide). 

Note: Air Force officer uniform items (ties/shirts/pants) are the same as the Coast Guard, so they may be substituted are easier to find.

The cheapest available option is to check a Lucky Bag Locker at one of the local Coast Guard bases.  These are the equivalent of thrift stores for left behind uniform items.  These are seasonally stocked and not open year round, and may be hard to locate/contact or find fitting items.

Auxiliary specific devices (Name tags, medals, hats, insignias) can be ordered from the District 5 store: 
http://uscgaux-5sr.bizhosting.com/

The Uniform Distribution Center has all the uniform items you need and a quick turn-around for delivery, but not much specific stuff as found above(caps, insignia, etc.).  Order online or over the phone.  Here is the link:  
http://www.uscg.mil/hq/cg1/udc/default.asp

The Coast Guard Exchange in Chesapeake generally has a pretty good stock of uniform items and Aux stuff including Aux T-shirts, caps, insignia, etc.  Here's the address, Ctrl+Click for the map.

1589 Crossways Boulevard
Chesapeake, VA  23320
Phone (757) 965-3880
(757) 965-3880
Hours:  Mon - Sat 10 am - 9 pm / Sunday 11 am - 6 pm
map to this location>>>

For any non-Auxiliary sources, members should make sure the item fully complies with our uniform requirements.