Badge of a Red Army Air Force Pilot-Instructor, 1945-1949.
Brass, enamels; measures 58.1 mm in width, 24.6 mm in
height; the width of the enameled portion is 37.1 mm. Three-
piece construction: the propeller and wings are separate
parts attached to the enameled triangular base by wires.
In very fine condition. The enamel appears perfect to the
unaided eye, but careful examination under ultraviolet
("black") light reveals that there is a small repair to the
sky blue enamel immediately under the propeller; the repair
was done so professionally that it is practically
unnoticeable under normal light. The enamel has only tiny
contact marks elsewhere and looks very impressive overall.
Traces of the original silver finish are clearly visible on
the vertical edges of the propeller, while the silver
plating on the reverse of the central portion of the badge
is nearly pristine. The wire attachment is sound and
completely tight, without any minimal movement of the
superimposed parts (Note that the wings are slightly at an
angle in relation to the sky blue base - a common
manufacturing flaw which is not too noticeable.) The screw
post is over 10 mm in length, has not been shortened. The
mint marked screw plate is of the period and fits the screw
perfectly, although it may not be original to this
There is some debate among collectors about the exact time
when this badge was introduced: according to some sources
such as "Avers 8", it was issued in 1943-45. We believe that
it was instituted and manufactured immediately after the end
of the Patriotic War and awarded for just a few years up
until 1949. Judging by the inscription referring to the Red
Army, it was designed and produced before mid-1946 (when the
official designation changed to the Soviet Army). It is
therefore not inconceivable that this badge could be worn at
the end of WW2 by a pilot participating in the Soviet
"blitz" campaign against Japan.
These very scarce Soviet Air Force wings are not to miss out
/See "Avers 8", p. 463, fig. 2177; Borisov, "Badges of
the Soviet Armed Forces", p. 141, fig. 366/.