Under the Red Star – Army Caps

Caps of the Soviet Army

Due to the large number of caps in this category, I have subdivided the Army cap section into the five uniform periods described on my Uniform Periods page to the left. All caps on this page were worn during this period. However, certain uniform elements (including caps) often extended into succeeding uniform regulations. In most cases, I have placed the caps according to which uniform period they were introduced. A thumbnail image accompanies each cap description. Clicking on that thumbnail will bring up a larger, higher resolution image.

1946-1954: Immediate postwar (modified M1943 uniforms)

Infantry Officer Service/Parade


Unchanged in design since 1935, this post-war infantry officer’s cap has a dark green napped wool crown, magenta/crimson crown and piping, black oilcloth chinstrap and a black painted fiberboard square-shape visor. The star is the one piece, brass and enamel version and the buttons are finely stamped brass. The angle of the visor is quite distinct – with this form sometimes referred to as a “german” style. Many caps of this period had the visor coming out at a virtual right angle to the band. The combination of the square visor and the red star dates this cap prior to 1955. Scarce

Tank/Artillery Enlisted Service


With the exception of the visor shape and metal from which the red star was made, this style of enlisted cap remained virtually unchanged from the end of WWII through 1969. Army non-commissioned officers (and on rare occasions lower enlisted) wore it as part of their parade or service/everyday uniform. The band is black cloth (not velvet) with red piping (had this been an officer’s cap, the band would have been velvet). The chinstrap is made of black oilcloth/rubber impregnated fabric. A large, one-piece brass and enamel star is attached to the band. What most clearly differentiates this cap from later issues is the fact the visor is squared off – or “duckbill” shaped. This shape was commonly found on caps during the war, but fell out of favor in the mid fifties (replaced by a rounded visor). Scarce

Tank/Artillery Officer Service


Part of the new service uniform introduced for Army Armor officers in 1949 and worn until 1958, this 1953 dated cap has a dark green crown (as opposed to the brownish khaki more often seen). The band is black velvet, the traditional color and fabric for armor officers, while piping is red. The chinstrap is made of black oilcloth (impregnated fabric). The national cockade is the new officers’ oval version standardized in 1955, replacing the simple red star used previously by Army officers. The visor is round-edged, rather than the square one used commonly before this date, and is made of black lacquered cardboard/ fiberboard. Scarce

Special Troops Enlisted Parade


Enlisted personnel on parade wore this style cap after square visors fell out of favor and before new caps were introduced in 1970. It could also have been worn for service duties, but this was seldom done (pilotka was worn instead). Produced in 1964, it is teller-shaped and has a later version one piece star emblem pinned to the band. The band is black while piping is dark blue; indicating the owner belonged to the engineers or one of the other Special Troops branches. It has a black oilcloth chinstrap, rounded-edge fiberboard visor and standard Army buttons. Rare