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How do you keep pins from falling off?

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  • How do you keep pins from falling off?

    Cub Scout and Boy Scout pins on religious knots, year pins, gold/silver pins on national outdoor things, how do you keep them from falling off?

  • #2
    Depends on what kind of pin, and how perminent an attachement one desires.
    Safety pin type, usuually not a problem. Adjust the bend in the straight pin and the "lock" on the tip end.
    Clasp pin type, test periodically for tight attachement, clasp to pin.
    One can buy new clasps at your local hobby shop (sometimes!). If not available, you can try needle nose pliers and teeny bending adjustments of the clasp "handles". I have done this, until I discovered I could buy new ones! (now, where did I put that little plastic bag with the other 9 clasps in it?).
    And, lacking those possibilities, form a glob of "GOOP" on a piece of wax paper. Allow to dry thoroughly, peel it off the wax paper (plastic wrap is a perminent stick) and then you can push it onto the pin (it takes the place of the clasp).

    And then don't let the Cub Scout run around playing Steal the Bacon with his medals jangling and getting grabbed by his buddies.


    • #3
      When I worked for Supply, they loved me b/c I was one of handful who bought the pins for my knots, and I bought up all the "Sea Explorer Device" pins as all of my pins kept coming off frequently.

      Since I do not need to have the pins on my knots, I don't wear them.

      I also don't wear my service stars, although they stayed on a little longer when I did wear them compared to the knot pins.

      That said 2 tricks I've seen. 1) use the back of an eraser. That can only be used with the service stars, not the knot pins. 2) mount the knots on a military ribbon bar. The ones I've used had a hole in the center to put the military devices on the ribbons. It works for the knots too as you have room to put the knot device on them, but you need to use glue to mount the knots on the ribbon bar.


      • #4
        As a previous secretary of defense articulated the second law of thermodynamics, "Stuff Happens."
        Reality check. They're boys. They're little agents of entropy. Just have an ample supply of replacement pins.


        • #5
          The pin shaft is supposed to have a groove in it for the clutch back to grasp. On some of the cheaper pins the groove is a bit shallow to be effective. Check with google to find spare clutch backs.
          When I was a CM, we kept a tacklebox of the most common insignia, pins, patches, and the stock of custom unit number patches - to cut down on trips to the shop.


          • #6
            Also ... take them off your shirt when you wash it. They will last a whole lot longer!


            • #7
              There are rubber backings out there in the universe. I've seen them on some pins sold at Hard Rock Cafes. The hole is tighter and the material stretches so it holds better. Not sure where you can buy them though. I've never searched.


              • #8
                For pins like service stars, I've found that the longer you leave them on the longer they stay on. I never take them off. I don't know if the on-and-off weakens the springs or if mutiple washings sorta corrode the metal together. Either way....

                With service stars, after a time, the heat from the dryer and ironing will shrivel the colored plastic backers. They need to be replaced every now and again.

                If you want to permanently attach the pins, at one time I found a gizmo that was a very small barrel with a whole in the size of the pin and a tiny set screw in the side. You put the pin on then tightened the set screw. They NEVER came off. I found the first pack of them at a local army-navy store and ordered more on line. No way I can remember the name of the things, but maybe some of the military guys will know what they are.

                For actual medals, we suggest to the boys they are for formal occasions where they're hopefully not running too wild.


                • #9
                  Here ya go -


                  I think I need a pack.


                  • #10
                    And here are the rubber ones.



                    • #11
                      Well, shipping on that site is a little steep if all you want is a $1 item.

                      I did just see a 50-pack of the rubber clasps for $5 on ebay, free shipping. $0.10 each is a better deal.

                      Edit: I found even more listings on ebay, larger quantities at lower per unit prices, if you really want to help others :-)(This message has been edited by nolesrule)


                      • #12
                        From my days in the Navy, we would fold a small piece of paper in half 4 or 5 times, and then cut the paper so it's square, about 1/2 inch to a side. Put the paper on the end of the pin and then put the clutch on the pin. That also tended to keep the pin itself from spinning.

                        Another option is to use the pin backs from better quality tie tacks. Those usually are the locking pin backs.

                        For example:

                        But the rubber/plastic clutches are superb. Another source: