Space News
space history and artifacts articles

Messages
space history discussion forums

Sightings
worldwide astronaut appearances

Resources
selected space history documents

Websites
related space history websites

  collectSPACE: Messages
  Patches & Pins
  STS-103 / Discovery mission patch

Post New Topic  Post A Reply
profile | register | preferences | faq | search

next newest topic | next oldest topic
Author Topic:   STS-103 / Discovery mission patch
Gonzo
Member

Posts: 374
From: Lansing, MI, USA
Registered: Mar 2012

posted 05-17-2012 07:41 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Gonzo   Click Here to Email Gonzo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I was at Goddard Space Flight Center's visitor center today and bought a bunch of patches. When I asked the guy for the STS-103 patch, knowing I was a collector, he pointed out to me he had two versions. He also told me that because it's a NASA store, all of their patches are from AB Emblem (which I know isn't entirely true).

The two versions he had were the official one and another with some differences. Here's what I can see as the differences.

  1. The vertical and horizontal crosshairs are green, not silver.

  2. The rising sun and the first layer of the atmosphere are silver, not gold.

  3. Hubble is silver and light grey, not dark grey and gold. Also the solar panels are (L) gold and (R) yellow, not both gold.

  4. The inner layer of atmosphere (gold) only goes to Hubble's body, not all the way across the patch.

  5. Discovery is also a lighter silver.
Does anyone know anything about this variation? I bought both (and I think I have a third at home when I get there tomorrow) because I found the variation interesting. Especially considering it came from a NASA visitor center.

Gonzo
Member

Posts: 374
From: Lansing, MI, USA
Registered: Mar 2012

posted 05-18-2012 02:29 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Gonzo   Click Here to Email Gonzo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
OK, so the one I have at home is the official one. And I thought an image may help.

The one on the left is the official version. The one on the right is the variation. Also, while I didn't scan it, the one on the right also has a white back, the official one has a black back.

So, has anyone seen this variation or know anything about it? My next step will be to contact AB and see if they know anything as since I got it at the VC, it should be one of theirs.

Kevin T. Randall
Member

Posts: 458
From: High Wycombe, Bucks UK
Registered: Dec 2008

posted 05-19-2012 02:51 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Kevin T. Randall   Click Here to Email Kevin T. Randall     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
No, I've not got or seen this variant of the STS-103 mission patch before.

There is an STS-103 patch currently listed on eBay, (with an AB Emblem version), which is about half way between the two patches shown above.

I doubt if AB Emblem had anything to do with the right hand variant patch, it is more than likely produced by another manufacturer.

Spaceguy5
Member

Posts: 400
From: Pampa, TX, US
Registered: May 2011

posted 05-19-2012 03:15 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Spaceguy5   Click Here to Email Spaceguy5     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
As far as I can tell, the stitches look pretty much identical though (which if correct, means they would have been stitched from the same digitized design). Maybe AB accidentally used the wrong thread colors or something?

hoorenz
Member

Posts: 733
From: The Netherlands
Registered: Jan 2003

posted 05-19-2012 04:25 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for hoorenz   Click Here to Email hoorenz     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The embroidery program simply "tells" which of the needles to use (the ones that are making our Soyuz patches, use 11 needles). It is up to humans to feed the needles with the right colors. So, yes: probably, the wrong colors were in the wrong positions. When transitioning from manufacturing one patch design to the other, the spools have to be rearranged. This is when things can go wrong.

Also, I have seen quick protoypes of patches that were done in the midst of other production runs. To keep the impact on the running order as low as possible, the colors were not changed out - the prototypes simply have to show if the stitches are all in the right places and the exact colors do not matter in these cases.

Gonzo
Member

Posts: 374
From: Lansing, MI, USA
Registered: Mar 2012

posted 05-19-2012 08:40 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Gonzo   Click Here to Email Gonzo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
So what do I do with this patch? I mean, I plan to keep it, for the interest if nothing else. But, the point of the question was, do I keep it as a variation, a mistake (which I know alot of collectors would destroy), or a prototype? Or some other reason? What's the consensus?

I do believe it's an AB patch for two reasons. First, I got it at a NASA VC, where all (if not most at least) are supposed to be AB patches. Second, we've established that the stitch paterns are the same. So it does appear to be an AB patch.

And the bigger question is, is it worth anything?

Gonzo
Member

Posts: 374
From: Lansing, MI, USA
Registered: Mar 2012

posted 05-19-2012 08:57 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Gonzo   Click Here to Email Gonzo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Also, I looked at the 103 variation on eBay. The one I looked at was the two-patch set. And I agree, those are variations that aren't official either, yet aren't as different as the one have. So it looks like mine is a real oddball!

What I find more interesting is that the VC had more of these like mine. The guy there asked me, as a collector, if I might know why they were different. All I told him was there are variations sometimes, even from AB. But I've just never seen or heard of variations that are so different from the official. And that's what intrigues me. It's so different and it appears to be intentional.

Skyforce1
Member

Posts: 78
From: Galloway Township, NJ USA
Registered: Aug 2009

posted 05-20-2012 06:15 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Skyforce1   Click Here to Email Skyforce1     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I'll send out an email to AB tomorrow morning and see if I can get some clarification on the STS-103 patch.

J Blackburn
Member

Posts: 113
From: Riner, Virginia USA
Registered: Sep 2011

posted 05-21-2012 11:42 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for J Blackburn   Click Here to Email J Blackburn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I just purchased an STS-103 like the one on the right with the silver threaded Sun, shuttle, etc. from a seller on eBay that I have bought from before. I have been researching it but have turned up empty handed on manufacturer information. I got the patch for a very small price so it will at least be something different in my collection. I have wondered if Eagle Crest may have produced it at one time?

Gonzo
Member

Posts: 374
From: Lansing, MI, USA
Registered: Mar 2012

posted 05-22-2012 09:37 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Gonzo   Click Here to Email Gonzo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
In the mean time, I just got an email from the Goddard VC. They have 18 of these "silver sun" 103 variants in stock...

J Blackburn
Member

Posts: 113
From: Riner, Virginia USA
Registered: Sep 2011

posted 05-22-2012 11:15 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for J Blackburn   Click Here to Email J Blackburn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
What is the price?

Gonzo
Member

Posts: 374
From: Lansing, MI, USA
Registered: Mar 2012

posted 05-22-2012 01:12 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Gonzo   Click Here to Email Gonzo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
They charge $5.95 each plus shipping.

J Blackburn
Member

Posts: 113
From: Riner, Virginia USA
Registered: Sep 2011

posted 05-24-2012 03:27 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for J Blackburn   Click Here to Email J Blackburn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I received my STS-103 Patch (unidentified) today in the mail. When comparing it side by side with my official AB Emblem patch I observed that the the stitching is identical and the common colors on each patch are the same. The only difference is the silver thread color for the shuttle, HST, Sun, and Atmospheric band.The AB patch has a yellow band on the left of the HST I guess representing the Sun's glare were the unidentified is a deeper color silver/gray due to the silver Sun. The only other difference is the right solar panel color. The left solar panel is the same color on both patches. I did observe that the navy main body thread seems to be stitched a little tighter than the AB patch

The back of the unidentified patch is black with a plastic coating wgere as the AB Emblem is white with the plastic coating.

Spaceguy5
Member

Posts: 400
From: Pampa, TX, US
Registered: May 2011

posted 05-24-2012 04:03 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Spaceguy5   Click Here to Email Spaceguy5     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The appearance of the backing can change depending on which machine is being used, and which thread colors (particularly the bobbin thread) are being used. I have several AB patches that are identical on the front, but different (sometimes very different) on the back.

dogcrew5369
Member

Posts: 547
From: Statesville, NC
Registered: Mar 2009

posted 05-24-2012 08:53 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for dogcrew5369   Click Here to Email dogcrew5369     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I hope it is not a Randy Hunt reproduction. His reproductions, or at least the ones I have, all have the black backing. Who knows where these turn up. Lord knows I've been stung by the dreaded reproduction. Hope it's not.

Gonzo
Member

Posts: 374
From: Lansing, MI, USA
Registered: Mar 2012

posted 05-25-2012 05:47 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Gonzo   Click Here to Email Gonzo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
We (I'm working with a friend) have pretty much established that it's an AB patch. We're not positive at this point, we could be wrong, but there's too many pointers indicating it is from AB. (See earlier posts.)

At this point, we have given AB a high-res version of the image I posted above. They have also requested one of these patches from the Goddard VC for their evaluation. We are waiting on their reply now.

Also, from the posts above, we can only account for about 25-30 of these patches. IF AB says it's one of theirs, we MAY get a better count on how many were made. That may tell us the rarity of this variant, whatever it may be.

I will be sure to post what their evaluation indicates.

J Blackburn
Member

Posts: 113
From: Riner, Virginia USA
Registered: Sep 2011

posted 05-25-2012 06:07 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for J Blackburn   Click Here to Email J Blackburn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I agree. The stitch pattern is identical. Being that these were purchased through Goddard's Visitor Center it is highly unlikely that it is a Randy Hunt creation. Does anyone have a Randy Hunt STS-103 patch that they can put on this forum for us to see? Front and back views would be nice.

Gonzo
Member

Posts: 374
From: Lansing, MI, USA
Registered: Mar 2012

posted 05-30-2012 02:48 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Gonzo   Click Here to Email Gonzo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I just received an email from Sam at the Goddard gift shop. Due to the "buzz" generated by this thread, they have sold out of these patches. I find it VERY unlikely that they will ever have any more. They do have the official ones, but the 18 of these silver sun versions that they had are all gone.

If you got one, we're still waiting on word from AB about what they are and why they were produced. As soon as I hear anything, I'll be sure to post it here.

fredtrav
Member

Posts: 913
From: Birmingham AL USA
Registered: Aug 2010

posted 05-30-2012 03:24 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for fredtrav   Click Here to Email fredtrav     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I was lucky enough to get the last one they had. Ordered one of each, looking forward to getting them and finding out what you learn about them.

Gonzo
Member

Posts: 374
From: Lansing, MI, USA
Registered: Mar 2012

posted 05-30-2012 03:30 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Gonzo   Click Here to Email Gonzo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Went back and reread this entire thread to make sue nothing has been missed. The only question I have at this point is about the one Jim (jblackburn) posted he bought on eBay. Could we have an image of that patch posted so we can compare it please?

Kevin T. Randall
Member

Posts: 458
From: High Wycombe, Bucks UK
Registered: Dec 2008

posted 05-30-2012 04:44 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Kevin T. Randall   Click Here to Email Kevin T. Randall     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Yes, what was the eBay lot number? The seller must of only had the one patch to list, as they have not re-listed anymore.

J Blackburn
Member

Posts: 113
From: Riner, Virginia USA
Registered: Sep 2011

posted 05-30-2012 10:12 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for J Blackburn   Click Here to Email J Blackburn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I will try to get a picture posted of mine as soon as I can. Yes I believe that it was the only one that the seller had. I have not observed anymore placed up for auction.

Gonzo, What type and color backing does your variant have?

J Blackburn
Member

Posts: 113
From: Riner, Virginia USA
Registered: Sep 2011

posted 05-30-2012 10:32 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for J Blackburn   Click Here to Email J Blackburn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Just found a new listing for this patch on eBay.

Seller: cdbx21
Store: MOUNT ANTIQUE
Price: $5.99

Kevin T. Randall
Member

Posts: 458
From: High Wycombe, Bucks UK
Registered: Dec 2008

posted 05-30-2012 11:10 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Kevin T. Randall   Click Here to Email Kevin T. Randall     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The original lot number was 380417756952. Sold to Jim.
The re-listed lot number is 380443706967. SOLD.

Yes, both the sellers images of these patches are identical to the right hand patch shown at the top of this thread.
This seller had three of these colour error patches, two sold and now just one left.

Harald Kraenzel
Member

Posts: 283
From: Dinslaken,Germany
Registered: Nov 2005

posted 05-31-2012 02:58 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Harald Kraenzel   Click Here to Email Harald Kraenzel     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Please have a look at the STS-103 patch which I bought on eBay: 270973102704.

To me it looks like that it's slightly different compared to the right variation shown at the top of this topic regarding the small area left on the HST.

Gonzo
Member

Posts: 374
From: Lansing, MI, USA
Registered: Mar 2012

posted 05-31-2012 05:40 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Gonzo   Click Here to Email Gonzo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
To answer questions, the back of my variant patches (I have two of these now) appears to be black twill with a plastic coating, which I am assuming to be the iron-on coating. And I only say that because it's different than the plastic coating on the back of the official patch. I'll try to get a pic of the backing put up later today/tomorrow.

Jim - your listing (hard to find without the lot number) appears to be one of the two lots Kevin posted.

Kevin - Those two lot numbers are a re-listing. He didn't sell it the first time, closed it on May 21, and then re-listed and sold it on May 30. And it is identical to the patch(es) we're talking about here.

Harald - Looking at the lot number you listed, unless you can tell me exactly what to look at, when I did a side-by-side comparison of that lot number to a high-res image of my patch, it looks to be identical as well.

Kevin T. Randall
Member

Posts: 458
From: High Wycombe, Bucks UK
Registered: Dec 2008

posted 05-31-2012 09:57 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Kevin T. Randall   Click Here to Email Kevin T. Randall     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
There is no mid blue thread for the sea on the Earth on Harald's STS-103 colour error patch. It's the same dark blue as the space or background colour. It can be the most obvious things that you can miss sometimes.

Gonzo
Member

Posts: 374
From: Lansing, MI, USA
Registered: Mar 2012

posted 05-31-2012 11:42 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Gonzo   Click Here to Email Gonzo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Kevin - I beg to differ. If you look at it closely, the blue of the water is different than the blue of space or background. Harald's patch does seem darker overall, but I attributed that to lighting, not different colors of thread. Other than that, I see no other differences. Maybe I'm wrong, but considering all things, they look the same to me.

Kevin T. Randall
Member

Posts: 458
From: High Wycombe, Bucks UK
Registered: Dec 2008

posted 05-31-2012 12:07 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Kevin T. Randall   Click Here to Email Kevin T. Randall     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Yes the lighting could well be different as the other colours are slightly darker too, but the blue of the sea is way much darker, nearly as dark as the background space. Yes the thread patterns are the same in both patches for the sea, so the sea colour thread is not missing.

Though I am looking at two images of these patches on a computer screen, I don't have the real thing as yet.

I think we will have to wait to see what Harald has to say when he next posts here.

Gonzo
Member

Posts: 374
From: Lansing, MI, USA
Registered: Mar 2012

posted 05-31-2012 12:39 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Gonzo   Click Here to Email Gonzo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Agreed. We'll wait for Harald to post again.

Looking at the image I posted above doesn't do it justice. Comparing it to the patch, in my hand, the dark blue background is very dark blue, almost black. The blue of the sea is not nearly as bright of a blue as the image leads you to believe. It is also a much darker blue. Definitely a lighter blue than the background, almost black blue, but a dark blue nonetheless.

Harald? Are you listening?

J Blackburn
Member

Posts: 113
From: Riner, Virginia USA
Registered: Sep 2011

posted 05-31-2012 03:52 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for J Blackburn   Click Here to Email J Blackburn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Sorry about not being able to post the lot number last night, my computer was having issues and some things such as lot numbers were hidden on the screen.

My lot number was 3804177566952, as Kevin posted. I was going to purchase the other patch last night but since I have one I thought I would give others on this post a chance to have one.

I hope that someone on this post got it.

Harald Kraenzel
Member

Posts: 283
From: Dinslaken,Germany
Registered: Nov 2005

posted 05-31-2012 05:29 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Harald Kraenzel   Click Here to Email Harald Kraenzel     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I am sorry for answering a little bit late but I was not at home for a while.

The blue color on earth is lighter than the "universe" blue which really is nearly black looking. The colors do not look really good compared to my original. They look much like the right patch on top of this post.

It maybe that the difference I think to see is a lightning problem as the picture or scan not always is catching all details correctly but from looking at the other ebay items which do show more detail I think that there might be a difference. I am speaking of the yellow area on the left edge of the HST in the official AB patch above.

This area on the right patch shown on top of this post is kind of darker gray compared to the rest of the HST. On my patch the difference of the dark and light gray of the HST is not that great compared to the other patch on eBay. Further on the darker area feels more thick than the rest of the HST, a fact which I cannot see on the other eBay patch. The darker gray area on the other eBay patch looks as flat as the right lighter gray area of the HST.

But as said it also might be the result of the scans.

Gonzo
Member

Posts: 374
From: Lansing, MI, USA
Registered: Mar 2012

posted 06-12-2012 09:32 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Gonzo   Click Here to Email Gonzo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Update on the status of these patches –

First, I need to thank those involved in the resolution of this issue - the vendor I'm working with and their contact within AB. I don’t want to point them out here, but I do want to publicly thank them for their efforts and assistance with this research!

We finally received a response from AB. These are indeed their patches. Their email explained that there were “a multitude of spec failures” associated with the 103 emblem. First the color sequence wasn’t set up right initially on the machine, then there were events that caused the machine to ignore color changes, and in one instance, even ignore the pattern completely. This was then all corrected. Unfortunately (fortunately for us as collectors?), these incorrect/error/variant patches were from that first cycle that “the digitizer revised as soon as it was caught” and should have been destroyed by AB and never released.

As for a quantity, it’s hard to say. They didn’t specifically address that issue. However, there is one vendor I know that sold at least 25. Add to that the minimum of 20 that I found at the Goddard gift shop, and we’re talking at least 50 or so. How many more than that is unknown. I suspect there were more. But no one knows, or will know, for sure.

Which then raises the question, should we, as collectors, destroy these “error” patches? For me the answer is simple. If you listen to AB, they will tell you that they should be destroyed as they are “errors” and shouldn’t have even been released. But I’ve said before, for me, I will keep mine (I have 2) if for no other reason they show what CAN go wrong with the manufacture of patches. Plus it makes for a good conversation piece. Who knows, maybe someday they may be worth something!

In the end, in this particular instance, for us as collectors, if you are looking at a 103 patch, make sure it is what you think it is before you put your cash down to buy it. If you are looking for an “official” patch, make sure that it is correct – no errors/omissions and all the colors are correct. If you are looking for one of these “variant” patches, now you at least know the story behind them and what to look for.

Hope this helps everyone.

Spaceguy5
Member

Posts: 400
From: Pampa, TX, US
Registered: May 2011

posted 06-12-2012 10:07 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Spaceguy5   Click Here to Email Spaceguy5     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Oh boy, incorrect colors are the worst kind of mistake. Just a few minutes ago I had a batch of 5 patches ruined by mixing up colors, though at least my machine requires manual color changing (so I didn't waste as much materials as I could have) and can only do a handful at a time.

I would guess that there's 50 of the 103 patches out there because if you order patches from AB, they'll tell you that their minimum order size is 50 so I guess their machine does 50 at a time.

Gonzo
Member

Posts: 374
From: Lansing, MI, USA
Registered: Mar 2012

posted 06-12-2012 10:13 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Gonzo   Click Here to Email Gonzo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Spaceguy5:
I would guess that there's 50 of the 103 patches out there because if you order patches from AB, they'll tell you that their minimum order size is 50 so I guess their machine does 50 at a time.

So 50 in total makes sense because there could have been 26 from one vendor (the one I talked to) out of the 50 he ordered and 19 from the Goddard gift shop out of their 50. I guess what I'm saying is that we only know of about 50 in TOTAL, regardless of point of sale because not all of any individual order had to be ALL error patches.

In fact, the guy at the Goddard gift shop mentioned to me that "some" of the patches they got in were this weird color scheme. Point being not ALL of them were wrong. So the "error" patches were distributed to at least two vendors.

Spaceguy5
Member

Posts: 400
From: Pampa, TX, US
Registered: May 2011

posted 06-12-2012 01:35 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Spaceguy5   Click Here to Email Spaceguy5     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
It's strange that they would be split up like that, considering that these patches had to have been from the same production run (unless AB accidentally did a couple runs with errors). It's sort of fishy how they would have gotten out at all. Especially since the border is added via a serger (which has to be done manually, meaning whoever operated it must have surely noticed the problem).

fredtrav
Member

Posts: 913
From: Birmingham AL USA
Registered: Aug 2010

posted 06-12-2012 02:35 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for fredtrav   Click Here to Email fredtrav     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thanks for the update. I purchased one from Goddard (along with the correct/official one) and also have one purchased from an eBay seller, I think the same one you were talking with/about.

As far as the serger operator catching the mistake, I can see how that would slip by. I do not know AB procedures, but if this was the first batch to be made and he was not familiar with the color scheme, he probably would not have noticed it at all. If it was the 50th run and he had been sewing the border on hundreds then I could see your point.

J Blackburn
Member

Posts: 113
From: Riner, Virginia USA
Registered: Sep 2011

posted 06-12-2012 03:25 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for J Blackburn   Click Here to Email J Blackburn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I do not know what AB's minimum order was at the time of STS-103, but now there is no minimum quantity only a minimum price. So with that said, 50 may or may not be correct. Either way I think those that have the 103 error patches have something special. There is more to collecting other than what is correct or official. Having something unique adds to the collection like noted in the above posts (A conversation piece).

J Blackburn
Member

Posts: 113
From: Riner, Virginia USA
Registered: Sep 2011

posted 06-12-2012 03:29 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for J Blackburn   Click Here to Email J Blackburn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Does anyone know what the minimum quantity was at the time of STS-103? Was it 50?

All times are CT (US)

next newest topic | next oldest topic

Administrative Options: Close Topic | Archive/Move | Delete Topic
Post New Topic  Post A Reply
Hop to:

Contact Us | The Source for Space History & Artifacts

Copyright 1999-2012 collectSPACE.com All rights reserved.


Ultimate Bulletin Board 5.47a





advertisement