Talk:South African military ranks

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Jan Smuts[edit]

So far as I know, Jan Smuts was a field marshal in the British Army, not in the Union Defence Forces - hence my original note that the rank was never used. Dirk L

Actually, there seems to be controversy over whether Smuts held the rank in the British Army alone or within both the British and South African Armies. That's always the problem with ranks awarded in Imperial days. The British and Imperial Armed Forces continually swapped officers and effectively merged together. I have read that Smuts was acknowledged as an FM by the South African government as well. -- Necrothesp 13:02, 13 Jun 2005 (UTC)

It may be useful to include ranks used in the various corps, for example: bombardier (corporal equivalent in artillery corps); rifleman (private equivalent in infantry corps) and so on. Potion (talk) 18:39, 7 April 2009 (UTC)

New South African Warrant Officer Ranks[edit]

The level 1 - 4 appointments for Warrant Officers were replaced by new substantive ranks on 1st June 2008:

  • Master Chief Warrant Officer (formerly level 1)
  • Senior Chief Warrant Officer (formerly level 2)
  • Chief Warrant Officer (formerly level 3)
  • Master Warrant Officer (formerly level 4A)
  • Senior Warrant Officer (formerly level 4)

The WO1 and WO2 ranks remain as before.

See also 'South African Soldier, September 2008, page 17 -- (talk) 17:56, 10 April 2009 (UTC)


I have re-laid out this page - moving all the historical names to one section and bringing in NATO tables for ranks

still to do - NCO's and tidy up Warrant Officers

Any input or comments? Gbawden (talk) 15:34, 11 May 2012 (UTC)

Can the warrants, sergeants, etc also go in a "Nato table"? It would be ideal to be consistent. Roger (talk) 15:48, 11 May 2012 (UTC)

- Warrants done - Going to upload Sgts etc on monday sometime then add them to Nato tables. Nato tables aren't so long which is why I like them — Preceding unsigned comment added by Gbawden (talkcontribs) 06:55, 12 May 2012 (UTC)


Midshipman is missing from the Navy table under OF-D. Midshipman#South African Navy shows the SAN's insignia for this rank. It is sourced from the SAN's website which has this image showing all the ranks. Roger (talk) 16:22, 11 May 2012 (UTC)

-- Thanks missed that one. Will get onto it Gbawden (talk) 06:53, 12 May 2012 (UTC)

Sorry to be nagging, you are doing great work here, but you've used the shoulder eppalette for middies but all the others are the sleeve stripes - middies do have a sleeve tab.
Apologies for not jumping in and fixing it myself but I'm really not good at working with tables and graphics, I mess up more than I fix! Roger (talk) 07:40, 12 May 2012 (UTC)
The Army's OF(D) rank is missing from the table too. Roger (talk) 12:52, 14 May 2012 (UTC)

Nato equivalents[edit]

Help! Can someone guide me on the NATO equivalents for our numerous NCO ranks. For SAAF NCOs WO1 and WO2 are grouped together - is there a rationale or guide for this somewhere? Using this guide I can get them to fit but want to make sure its correct Gbawden (talk) 22:28, 10 July 2012 (UTC)

How about using a separate table for Warrant Officers? The United States rank tables do it because their many different sergeants fill the OR table.
NATO rank WO-5 WO-4 WO-3 WO-2 WO-1
United States United States
US-Army-CW5.svg US-Army-CW4.svg US-Army-CW3.svg US-Army-CW2.svg US-Army-WO1.svg
Chief warrant officer 5
Chief warrant officer 4
Chief warrant officer 3
Chief warrant officer 2
Warrant officer 1

See if this mght fit better. Roger (talk) 12:45, 11 July 2012 (UTC)

Images in templates[edit]

The image police have removed all the non free images from the templates as apparently Non Free images cannot be used in templates. So am busy reverting templates to tables.Gbawden (talk) 06:29, 23 August 2012 (UTC)