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DateOriginal Topic
2nd March 2003Tunics v Undress Frocks
By Carl Daeche
There seems to be confusion. I am researching the tunics worn during the Zulu War, in particular Rorkes Drift. Can someone tell me whether the other ranks undress frock had cuff facings? Did No1 Tunic have white piping down the front? Did officers undress tunic have any piping? Did any of the tunics have piping above and below the collar
2nd March 2003John Young

The facings on five-button serge frock were sewn on, as were the collar facing tabs. That way the item could be re-used or re-issued.

The seven-button full-dress tunic was indeed piped down the front.

You may well be confusing the officers' undress frock, with a 'tunic', this has also acquired the name "the scarlet patrol" or "the Indian Pattern patrol". That piece of kit was indeed piped down the front and around the skirt and rear vents of the frock.

The were local variations see Gonville Bromhead's photograph taken circa September, 1879, as an example.

The officers' full dress tunic was above & below the collar.

Any queries please e-mail me and I can reproduce images to go along with the above comments.
2nd March 2003John Young

Just seen I'd left out information on the officers' full-dress tunic. Which I'll expand on.

The tunic was piped white which ran around the top of the collar and then down the face of the tunic. The lower part of the collar was piped in a bullion braid.