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Netherlands

Royal Netherlands Air Force (Konninklijke Luchtmacht)

1919 to 1920s


Wings and fuselage

A plain orange disc was used as national insignia from the beginnings of Dutch military aviation until around 1919-1920. The marking derived from the Royal 'House of Orange' traditional colours. The disc was displayed in the six standard positions. There was no fin flash insignia during this period.

Example: Airco DH.9/9A
Example: Nieuport 17/21/23/24/25/27

1920s to 1939


Wings and fuselage

Rudder

During the 1920s and 1930s, Dutch aircraft carried the original version of the now familiar sectored disc with an orange disc in the centre. This was displayed in all six standard positions. The rudder carried the national colours in horizontal stripes, as on the flag.

Example: Fokker D.XXI

1939 to 1940 (till 1942 in Holland Ost-India)


Wings and fuselage

Rudder

Following an incident in late September 1939, in which a MLD aircraft on Neutrality patrol was shot down by a German fighter, the national insignia was changed to an orange triangle with thick black outline. The rudder marking became orange with a similar black outline. This change was intended to avoid any confusion with the blue-white-red tricolour roundels carried by British and French aircraft.

Example: Fokker G.I Faucher

1942 to 1949 (Holland Ost-India)


Wings and fuselage

The national flag was used as a national insignia in the Netherlands' East Indies from February 1942 until Indonesian independence in 1949. The orange triangle could allegedly be confused with the Japanese 'red meatball' national insignia. The flag was applied in the six standard positions. There was no fin flash.

Example: Brewster B-239/339/F2A Buffalo
Example: Curtiss P-40 Warhawk/Kittyhawk/Tomahawk

1942 to 1960


Wings and fuselage

Tailfin

The end of WWII brought the return to the 3-sectored disc marking. This was displayed in all six standard positions on fixed wing aircraft - on the fuselage sides only on helicopters. A Dutch flag fin flash was carried at tail.

1960 to Present


Wings and fuselage

A Dutch flag fin flash was discontinued around 1960, when a switch was made to USAF-style 4 position roundels (i.e. above the port wing and below the starboard wing, and on each side of the fuselage).

Example: General Dynamics F-16 Fighting Falcon

by Stephen Sender


Last update: 05/08/2013
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