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  Mercury - Gemini - Apollo
  Apollo 13: Commander Lovell's spacesuit markings

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Author Topic:   Apollo 13: Commander Lovell's spacesuit markings
WAWalsh
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Posts: 804
From: Cortlandt Manor, NY
Registered: May 2000

posted 03-24-2003 11:06 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for WAWalsh   Click Here to Email WAWalsh     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
During the wishful thinking sequence in "Apollo 13" when Jim Lovell is shown envisioning his first steps on the moon, his spacesuit in the movie raised two questions:

First, was Jim Lovell's suit going to be the first one with the red commander's strip? (I suspect this is a yes.)

Second, the movie shows the center crown of the helmet with Navy anchors, did Capt. Lovell actually make this addition to his helmet for the mission?

John K. Rochester
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From: Rochester, NY, USA
Registered: Mar 2002

posted 03-24-2003 11:26 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for John K. Rochester   Click Here to Email John K. Rochester     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Yes, as did Pete Conrad wanting to make giant "Propeller Beanies" for he and Al Bean to wear on the lunar surface. The astronauts could "doll up" the helmets I guess.

Robert Pearlman
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From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 03-24-2003 11:38 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
In answer to your questions:

Lovell's actual suit, prior to flight, shows clearly the red stripes.

As for the Navy anchors, that's an affirmative, too. Lovell says as much in his narration of the Special Edition DVD. And here's a photo.

Jurg Bolli
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From: Albuquerque, NM
Registered: Nov 2000

posted 03-24-2003 12:33 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jurg Bolli   Click Here to Email Jurg Bolli     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
If memory serves me right, Lovell's helmet is at the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, with the Navy sticker on it.

There seems to be a photo of Conrad wearing a funny hat in the command module, with a propeller on it: eternal joker, I wish I had met him.

Dirk
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From: Belgium
Registered: Jul 2003

posted 08-30-2013 04:42 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Dirk   Click Here to Email Dirk     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
In the movie "Apollo 13," James Lovell (Hanks) is wearing a WSS with red commander bands on the arm as the astronaut left the dressing room.

I can find no photo of Lovell with this kind of suit. All pictures are without the red band. Did his spacesuit had red bands?

Editor's note: Threads merged.

cycleroadie
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From: Apalachin, NY USA
Registered: May 2011

posted 08-30-2013 04:42 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for cycleroadie   Click Here to Email cycleroadie     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
According to NASA, yes it did.

p51
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From: Olympia, WA, USA
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posted 08-30-2013 05:38 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for p51   Click Here to Email p51     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I'd always wondered about that anchor, too.
quote:
Originally posted by Jurg Bolli:
There seems to be a photo of Conrad wearing a funny hat in the command module, with a propeller on it: eternal joker, I wish I had met him.
That hat is at the Museum of Flight in Seattle, I've heard plenty of people snicker when they see it, with a photo of him wearing it right next to it. Some have commented, "There's no way an astronaut would wear that," apparently not realizing most of these former military pilots are just the kind to do stuff like that.

Tom
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From: New York
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posted 08-30-2013 08:45 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Tom   Click Here to Email Tom     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Dirk:
I can find no photo of Lovell with this kind of suit. All pictures are without the red band.
This photo (courtesy of spacefacts.de) clearly shows the red stripes on Lovell's suit.

LM-12
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From: Ontario, Canada
Registered: Oct 2010

posted 08-30-2013 11:29 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for LM-12     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Photo S70-34848 is another.

LM-12
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From: Ontario, Canada
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posted 05-06-2015 09:23 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for LM-12     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Although they are not seen in this Apollo 13 image, Jim Lovell had red stripes on his training suit when the original crew photo was taken near Pad A.

Here is a black and white photo that shows the stripes.

heng44
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From: Netherlands
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posted 05-09-2015 05:14 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for heng44   Click Here to Email heng44     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I believe the Navy anchor on Lovell's LEVA is shown in in-flight television footage of the LM inspection.

heng44
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From: Netherlands
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posted 05-09-2015 09:40 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for heng44   Click Here to Email heng44     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Here is a screenshot from the Apollo 13 TV transmission shortly before the explosion. Haise shows Lovell's helmet during a tour of the LM.

LM-12
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From: Ontario, Canada
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posted 05-13-2015 07:22 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for LM-12     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by LM-12:
Here is a black and white photo that shows the stripes.
Does a colour version of this photo exist?

schnappsicle
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Posts: 263
From: Houston, TX, USA
Registered: Jan 2012

posted 05-15-2015 07:35 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for schnappsicle   Click Here to Email schnappsicle     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Playing devil's advocate here, but why would NASA allow Lovell to put the Navy anchor on his helmet? From what I can recall, Eisenhower established NASA to be a non-military branch of the services. He wanted to avoid using space for military purposes. Yes, I know all the astronauts back then were military test pilots. But when they came to NASA, there were no ranks or branches. Everyone was technically equal.

I'm only asking because I think a Navy anchor would only serve to reinforce (magnify) the military's role in NASA, something the U.S. wanted to avoid at all costs.

Before you shoot me, I think it's awesome that Lovell did it. I just can't understand how he got away with it.

onesmallstep
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From: Staten Island, New York USA
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posted 05-15-2015 10:34 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for onesmallstep   Click Here to Email onesmallstep     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Yes, astronauts may have been (and still are) technically 'equal' as to dress (civilian) and being addressed by their first name in many cases, but the similarities end there. Military officers of any branch are technically 'seconded' to NASA, and as such receive their base pay according to their rank, plus (for the pilots) flight pay.

And they do wear their pilot/naval flight officer/etc. wings on their flight coveralls. Conrad and Gordon wore theirs on their space suits on Gemini 11.

LM-12
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From: Ontario, Canada
Registered: Oct 2010

posted 05-15-2015 12:42 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for LM-12     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Looks like Fred Haise can be seen behind Jim Lovell in this March 25 photo that also shows the stripes.

User997
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posted 05-15-2015 11:08 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for User997     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I saw Lovell's Apollo 13 EVA helmet in person at the Chicago's Adler Planetarium back in 2008 and it very clearly had the Navy logo on it. Displayed along with it was the Apollo 8 capsule and various other memorabilia from his two Apollo spaceflights.

schnappsicle
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Posts: 263
From: Houston, TX, USA
Registered: Jan 2012

posted 05-18-2015 06:55 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for schnappsicle   Click Here to Email schnappsicle     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I know why the other helmets weren't reused, but why wasn't this helmet used later by Shepard, Young or Cernan?

Was there any consideration given to reuse perfectly good parts of Lovell or Haise's suits by later crews?

Rick Mulheirn
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From: England
Registered: Feb 2001

posted 05-18-2015 08:46 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Rick Mulheirn   Click Here to Email Rick Mulheirn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
On later missions (Apollo 15 onwards) NASA used the amended A7LB suits for lunar EVA. The lunar regolith was not kind to hard surfaces/moving parts on the suits so reusing suits parts would not have been advisable. Though I am sure the LEVA would have been transferable.

Ken Mattingly wore John Young's LEVA for his deep space EVA.

By the time Lovell flew I'd imagine the suits for 14 were already made and complete.

All times are CT (US)

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