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  Shuttle mission pins: Contractor and flight crew

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Author Topic:   Shuttle mission pins: Contractor and flight crew
CMikeW
New Member

Posts: 9
From: United States
Registered: Apr 2013

posted 06-29-2014 08:31 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for CMikeW     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I recently purchase a couple of hands full of space shuttle mission emblem/patch pins. Some have no marking on the reverse, some say Rockwell International, some have NASA, some Rockwell/NASA and some have Boeing on them. Are any of the markings scarce or are they all about as common?

I haven't found any mission with different back markings so far, but I'm still going through the batch. Thanks in advance for your help.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 29956
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 06-29-2014 09:23 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The pins marked with contractor names were primarily only available to those who worked for that contractor, whereas the NASA (or blank) pins were both available to the agency and sold to the public.

Joel Katzowitz
Member

Posts: 407
From: Marietta GA USA
Registered: Dec 1999

posted 06-30-2014 07:33 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Joel Katzowitz   Click Here to Email Joel Katzowitz     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Along a similar line, I have a number of shuttle pins with a "launch team" tab on them. I purchased the pins individually from a former NASA employee/volunteer whenever I attended a launch.

I always assumed they were not available to the general public but I don't really know. Doesn't anyone know the story, value, number produced etc.? Thanks!

Hart Sastrowardoyo
Member

Posts: 2486
From: Toms River, NJ
Registered: Aug 2000

posted 06-30-2014 10:12 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Hart Sastrowardoyo   Click Here to Email Hart Sastrowardoyo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Saw these, thought they would be a neat collectible, but alas don't have the room for them.

Years ago, I gave up a 41F (Bobko/Discovery) launch team pin - no apron for such, but the back was marked "launch team." Wonder if there were others made for canceled missions - certainly there must be for 51E (Bobko/Challenger), maybe also for 61E?

Ken Havekotte
Member

Posts: 2002
From: Merritt Island, Florida, Brevard
Registered: Mar 2001

posted 07-01-2014 10:22 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Ken Havekotte   Click Here to Email Ken Havekotte     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Joel Katzowitz:
Doesn't anyone know the story, value, number produced etc.? Thanks!
Never before during the space shuttle program has any of the special space shuttle flight crew pins been made available publicly while outside of the astronauts themselves.

Starting with shuttle mission 38 in 1990, Tom Foley of Cape Kennedy Medals/Mint (CKM), a long-time space souvenir company owner, produced a very limited number of shuttle mission "Flight Crew" pins. Actually, some pins go back to STS-31 and 35, however, they were only produced in extreme limited numbers on an "experiment basis" so-to-speak.

In the earlier years of the 1990s, Foley produced anywhere between 100-150 of the special emblem pins exclusively for the shuttle astronaut crew, their families, and very close friends.

The quantities continued all throughout the rest of the shuttle program era (sometimes 200 in number for a single flight) until the final shuttle mission (STS-135) in 2011.

Altogether, during 21 years, there were 101 shuttle flights in which the flight crew emblem pins were made for the flight crews.

While in quarantine at NASA's Kennedy Space Center crew quarters before their launch into space, arrangements were made for the astronaut crew to have an opportunity to acquire the special flight crew pins for their upcoming shuttle flight. Within a week or so before their scheduled launch into orbit, the special designed pins were delivered to crew quarters for distribution to each flight crew member, and in some cases, ordered pins were picked up in Cocoa Beach by a representative of the astronaut flight crew support office.

A first-time offer containing 81 different shuttle flight crew pins, starting with STS-38 and ending with the final shuttle flight in 2011, is currently up for auction by RR (online auctions) until July 16.

Besides manufacturing the limited shuttle flight crew pins, Foley's CKM was mainly a commercial space souvenir company that produced patches, medallions, commemorative glasses, T-shirts, and other space-related souvenirs and memorabilia from 1968 until 2013.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 29956
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 07-01-2014 10:30 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
In addition to the more limited "Flight Crew" pins, Foley also produced "Launch Team" and "Flight Team" pins that were offered for public sale, the latter through retail distribution toward the end of the program.

Early in the space shuttle program, "Launch Team" pins were bronze, half-inch tie tacks that more closely matched the style of the Apollo-era launch team pins.

Foley's later "Launch Team" and "Flight Team" pins generally amended a full color mission patch pin with the inscribed tab.

CMikeW
New Member

Posts: 9
From: United States
Registered: Apr 2013

posted 07-01-2014 11:54 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for CMikeW     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thanks for the info regarding contractor stamping on the shuttle pins.

CMikeW
New Member

Posts: 9
From: United States
Registered: Apr 2013

posted 07-10-2014 07:06 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for CMikeW     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Spent a while going thru these pins. Probably about a thousand pins in all. Early pins had nothing on the back, later they have "NASA OFFICIAL." Then they have NASA and Rockwell International, both on the same pin. Then just Rockwell International and later on USA.

Pins without stamping on the back are from both Taiwan, these have a grid pattern cast in and China, these have a "pebbly" pattern cast in. The Taiwan and China pins were in original packaging showing country of origin.

The pins were from an estate of a person who worked at JSC.

All times are CT (US)

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