The Sand Pebbles

Chosen answer: It's a pun on the name of the boat which features in the film: the fictional U. S. Navy ship USS San Pablo. The sailors on the San Pablo call themselves the sand pebbles.

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Factual error: The uniforms worn by the engineering force are from the wrong era. Prior to 1941 the left arm rates had the head of the eagle pointing to the wearer's rear. Steve McQueen and the rest of the Engineering force rate eagle head is pointing forward, which is from WW2.

More mistakes in The Sand Pebbles

Captain Collins: Do you know what this is? Desertion in the face of the enemy.
Jake Holman: I don't got no more enemies. Shove off, Captain.

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