Original U.S. Vietnam War MACV-SOG Special Forces Tiger Stripe Camouflage Fatigue Uniform

Item Description

Original Items: Only One Set Available. It is easy to understand how this pattern got its name from its bold black stripes, which mimic those of a tiger. The combination of green, brown and black stripes provided near perfect camouflage for a jungle environment with its light and shade. It was made using a screen-printing process, which is why it can sometimes appear smudged. The pattern was adapted from the black and green "Lizard pattern", used by the French during their war in Indochina.

This camouflage was much in demand during the Vietnam war and was worn by elite units such as US Special Forces, US Navy Seals and USMC advisors amongst others. Even war correspondents and photographers, including the famous British photographer Tim Page, sported Tigerstripes.

There are more than 25 patterns of Tigerstripe but the most sought after by collectors, is the gold Advisor Sparse pattern (ADS). Another is the John Wayne Dense pattern (JWD). The JWD pattern is so named because it was used in John Wayne's movie, 'The Green Berets'. The uniforms in the film were made from material that was bought in Vietnam and shipped back to the States for manufacture.

This set of cotton fatigue shirt and pants is offered in very good condition and is complete with all buttons. It measures:
Collar to Shoulder: 9"9
Shoulder to Sleeve: 22"
Shoulder to Shoulder: 15"
Chest width: 20"
Waist width: 21"
Hip width: 21"
Front length: 31"

The pants has a popped belt loops and is missing some buttons. Pants measure:
Waist: 28"
Inseam: 27"

Tigerstripe is the name of a group of camouflage patterns developed for close-range use in dense jungle during jungle warfare by the South Vietnamese Armed Forces and adopted in late 1962 to early 1963 by US Special Forces during the Vietnam War. During and following the Vietnam war the pattern was adopted by several other Asian countries. It derives its name from its resemblance to a tiger's stripes and were simply called "tigers." It features narrow stripes that look like brush-strokes of green and brown, and broader brush-strokes of black printed over a lighter shade of olive or khaki. The brush-strokes interlock rather than overlap, as in French Lizard pattern (TAP47) from which it apparently derives.

It is unclear who developed the first tigerstripe pattern, consisting of sixty-four (64) stripes. The French used a similar pattern (Lizard) in their war in Vietnam.[citation needed] After the French left Vietnam, the Republic of Vietnam Marine Corps continued using the pattern, a variant of which was later adopted by Vietnamese Rangers (Biệt Động Quân) and Special Forces (Lực Lượng Đặc Biệt). When the United States began sending advisors to South Vietnam, USMAAG advisors attached to the ARVN were authorized to wear their Vietnamese unit's combat uniform with US insignia. Soon, many American special operations forces in the Vietnamese theater of operations wore the pattern, despite not always being attached to ARVN units: it became the visible trademark of Marine Corps Recon, Green Berets, LRRPs, SEALs, and other elite forces. MAC-V SOG also adopted the tiger stripe as one of their main camos.

Tigerstripe was never an official US-issue item. Personnel permitted to wear it at first had their camo fatigues custom-made by local tailors, ARVN uniforms being too small for most Americans; for this reason there were many variations of the basic tigerstripe pattern.[citation needed] In 1963, Marine Corps Advisors and from 1964, 5th Special Forces Group contracted with Vietnamese and other Southeast Asian producers to make fatigues and other items such as boonie hats using tigerstripe fabric. Being manufactured by different producers in places like Thailand, Korea and in Japan via Okinawa, there were a wide variety of patterns and color shade variations. They were made in both Asian and US sizes.

During the latter stages of the war, tigerstripe was gradually replaced in American reconnaissance units by the-then-new ERDL pattern, a predecessor of the woodland BDU pattern. The Special Forces-advised Civilian Irregular Defense Group (CIDG) used tigerstripes from 1963 until disbanded in 1971. Special Forces personnel wore tigerstripes when conducting operations with the CIDG.

Besides American and ARVN forces, Australian and New Zealand military personnel used tigerstripe uniforms while on advisory duty with the ARVN units. Personnel from the Australian Special Air Service Regiment and the New Zealand Special Air Service were the principal wearers of tigerstripe uniforms (and ERDL uniforms) in theater, while regular Australian and New Zealand troops wore the standard-issue olive drab green uniforms.

Outside of Vietnam, Thailand and Philippines have been the most prolific manufacturers of tiger stripe designs since the Vietnam War. The pattern became popular throughout the Middle East and South America as well.

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