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  • Custom Additions to the Scout uniform?

    Since National really doesn't have very high uniform standards, I want to see if anyone has "improved" or incorporated things like "shoulder cords" (like the military wears in dress uniforms), different hats (Berets, Garrison caps, Boonie hats, etc.), and anything else that looks good and/or serves a purpose. I am wanting to start some new award systems to strike some interest with the scouts of my troop, like the "Knot Ninja" program that many others are starting (just do a quick google search to learn more).

    So, If you guys have any ideas and/or pictures of uniform ideas, post them up!

    Thanks in advance.
    Last edited by ParacordMan1220; 09-15-2013, 03:26 PM.

  • #2
    Um no. Just no. There is enough "customization" going on, and frankly most of it looks ridiculous. Sounds like you're in the business and looking for marketing ideas.

    Comment


    • ParacordMan1220
      ParacordMan1220 commented
      Editing a comment
      No, not in business. I am just wanting to see what other troops have done to improve the scout uniform. For example, the BSA Ball Cap: Looks stupid and doesn't really serve a practical purpose. It is part of the uniform however, and some scouts wear it, some scouts don't, which cancels out uniformity. To get more scouts to wear hats, pick a new one and make it part of the uniform.

    • Basementdweller
      Basementdweller commented
      Editing a comment
      I don't care if my guys wear a hat or not......

      I am just happy if their uniform has our unit number on it and their current rank....

  • #3
    Not sure where you would get the idea there is no standard. That is pretty much what the Uniform and Insignia Guide is all about I think. It is on line, so you do not have to have a hard copy.

    Comment


    • ParacordMan1220
      ParacordMan1220 commented
      Editing a comment
      ScoutNut, have you even read the Rules and Regs? I recommend that you do, and also take a look at the pukes who run the national level of this organization. I believe in teaching scouts life skills that will be valuable in the real world. Not to mention there is little to no enforcement of the uniform standards (To be honest there isn't much to enforce ). I see scouts with long feathery hair down to their shoulder and wearing rainbow epaulets.

      Now, I'd appreciate it if you would get this back on topic and stop derailing the OP, or don't post at all.

    • sasha
      sasha commented
      Editing a comment
      I don't understand how you would like to enforce uniform standards? Kick out scouts and scouters who do not meet your standards? You understand that what you are proposing is a matter of taste and local culture and that not everyone agrees with your view of 'sharp'? I personally think that the uniform standard should be more relaxed and practical as befits an organization that focuses on outdoor pursuits.

    • Adam S
      Adam S commented
      Editing a comment
      Paracordman1220 said "Not to mention there is little to no enforcement of the uniform standards (To be honest there isn't much to enforce )."
      I would agree there is poor enforcement, blame the Scoutmasters/Cubmasters. But there certainly IS quite a bit to enforce. Scoutnut mentioned it but did not link it. http://www.scouting.org/scoutsource/...gniaGuide.aspx

      Then Paracordman1220 said "I see scouts with long feathery hair down to their shoulder and wearing rainbow epaulets."
      The hair if well groomed is acceptable, we are making confident and capable young men, not clones. I think you meant to say they were wearing rainbow shoulder loops, on their epaulets. Regardless, I knew what you mean and you are correct. Have a problem take it up with their Unit Leader, do so in a Scout-like manner.


      Paracordman1220 went on to say "Now, I'd appreciate it if you would get this back on topic and stop derailing the OP, or don't post at all."
      Friendly... Courteous... Kind...

  • #4
    I just looked at a Knot Ninja site and frankly found it ridiculous for older boys, right up there with still awarding beads for everything.

    Comment


    • ScoutNut
      ScoutNut commented
      Editing a comment
      If a Scout is wearing a rank patch, you SHOULD EXPECT that he has completed all of the requirements to actually EARN that rank.

      If the Scouts in your unit are not earning their ranks, then yes, that is very sad. However creating more awards (that very possibly will also not be properly earned) is not the solution.

    • ParacordMan1220
      ParacordMan1220 commented
      Editing a comment
      Yes, that is correct, they HAVE completed all of the requirements to earn the rank at one time or another. However I have learned that very few scouts actually remember and practice those skills after they earn the rank.
      Please, don't post responses that are not completely thought out. I found your comments to be very ignorant, and I believe your troop is very lucky to have a member with as much intelligence as yourself..

    • sasha
      sasha commented
      Editing a comment
      The best way to ensure that scouts know the skills they used to earn their rank is to provide frequent opportunity to use those skills. Set up real challenges to use those knots and they will stick through scouting and beyond. A game is fun for a while but isn't a substitute for real-life application.

      Does your troop/patrol have stringent behavior standards as well as uniform standards? Because what I see here is someone who is focused on appearances and not on character. Chiding your elders for not staying on topic on a message board that has no 'on topic standards' is disrespectful. Going off-topic is the primary mission of message boards the world over, we are all just polishing up our message board skills.

  • #5
    There's no need. As pointed out, there are "standards" for everything regarding the uniform. If your unit isn't enforcing them, adding more to the heap isn't going to change that.
    Rank badges denote everything a scout knows; if you can't tell which knots a boy knows based on his rank, then you don't need a new more complicated system, you need to memorize the existing one. If the boys' ranks aren't indicative of their knowledge, then you need to stop rubber-stamp advancing them, not create a new system of bling.
    As for hats, troop PLCs (not you) can pick their own hats and their own neckerchiefs. Troop PLCs can also decide which parts of the uniform to wear or not. That's all the customization you need.

    Comment


    • ParacordMan1220
      ParacordMan1220 commented
      Editing a comment
      Good for you... but you have practiced those skills A LOT, right?
      It is hard to practice all of these skills with only one, 2 hour meeting a week and a camp out about every 5-9 weeks, but we do our best.

      I guess since I am in the new age of scouting, they don't have skill awards anymore (unless I know them by a different name).
      Can you please explain to me what a skill award is and how it is earned?

    • perdidochas
      perdidochas commented
      Editing a comment
      Paracord,

      It doesn't take a lot of practice to know the knots. The best thing to insure knowledge of knots is to require teaching of knots.

      I think the knot ninja program is unnecessary. As a Cub leader, I hated dealing with beads (as did 75% of the boys). Why would we want to continue that?

      Finally, skill awards were a concept done in the late 1970s/early 1980s. Physically, they resembled Cub Scout Belt Loops.They were earned kind of like the sign-offs for the T-2-1 Skills.

    • King Ding Dong
      King Ding Dong commented
      Editing a comment
      Why would he want to continue that ? I think BD said it best..Cub Scout Troop.

  • #6
    Lets try to get this thread back on track

    Comment


    • Callooh! Callay!
      Callooh! Callay! commented
      Editing a comment
      An admonition to follow standards...
      in a thread about deviating from them?

    • ParacordMan1220
      ParacordMan1220 commented
      Editing a comment
      I didn't say anything about "following" the "National standards" did I? I just wanted to see if any troops have set their own.

  • #7
    If they once knew, whatever, a bowline, and were signed off, but have since forgotten and now can't, so you want an extra identification system--paracord, beads, whatever--your line of reasoning doesn't stand: What keeps the same boy who earned First Class and forgot the bowline from earning your "ranger bead" for bowline, and then forgetting the bowline the same as any other First Class scout?

    There. is. no. reason. whatsoever. to. implement. a. parallel. recognition. system.

    If you have trouble with skill retention in your troop, you need to create opportunities for them to utilize the skills thereby keeping them fresh in the mind, not a parallel program. In point of fact, if the point is to use boys to teach other boys, the simple act of teaching will remedy the situation on its own.

    Comment


    • ParacordMan1220
      ParacordMan1220 commented
      Editing a comment
      I guess you didn't read the whole knot ninja thing.

      If they have got a certain knot rank, anyone can challenge them to tie the knots they are supposed to know. My interpretation of this is to test the scouts once a month to tie the knots up to their level, and if they fail to do so, they lose their knot rank(until they earn it again the following week.)
      I think it is a better way to keep up with their knot tying ability, not the best but better than before. You may not like it, but everyone has their opinion.

    • Adam S
      Adam S commented
      Editing a comment
      I did read the entire "Knot Ninja program" and it is an interesting concept, but as someone mentioned in this thread. It is the youth leadership of your Troops job to impart these skills on the boy. You have indicated that your unit *IS* boy led, and that you in fact are a youth member. Maybe you need to review how your Troops teaching skills as opposed to adding things to the uniform just to reinforce a single, basic skill...

      Does your troop not go camping enough for these boys to apply these knots on a regular basis?

  • #8
    My goodness.

    take a look at the pukes who run the national level of this organization
    Please, don't post responses that are not completely thought out. I found your comments to be very ignorant, and I believe your troop is very lucky to have a member with as much intelligence as yourself.
    I hope that you are not "blind" and understand what I am talking about
    Your Troop seems to be lax on teaching the Scout Oath and Law also. Perhaps you should have them implement a new award where they stop you once a month, and have you prove you know what they are, what they mean, and that you actually do try to live by them. Unfortunately, from your comments here, you seem to be sorely lacking in the Courteous part, along with a few others.

    Young man, being on an internet board, and feeling that you are "immune" to consequences, does NOT excuse the above behavior.

    Especially on a Scout forum, from someone claiming to be an under 18, Boy Scout, and a leader in his Troop.

    BTW - I HAVE read both - the Charter and Bylaws of the Boy Scouts of America (pub 57-191), and the Rules and Regulations of the Boy Scouts of America (pub 57-492).

    Comment


    • ParacordMan1220
      ParacordMan1220 commented
      Editing a comment
      Take a look at ScoutNut's comments:
      "Since it seems that you mean that you do not take Scouting, or at least BSA uniform standards, seriously at all, I have to wonder why you are a member of the organization. "

      I found this to be rude. I don't really see how this comment ties in with anything, except for the uniform standards part (I personally think the rules and reg, etc. are a joke).

      "If a Scout is wearing a rank patch, you SHOULD EXPECT that he has completed all of the requirements to actually EARN that rank.

      If the Scouts in your unit are not earning their ranks, then yes, that is very sad. However creating more awards (that very possibly will also not be properly earned) is not the solution."

      Assuming that my scouts don't actually earn their ranks.

      Basementdweller:

      "how sad for your scouts.

      You do understand that it supposed to be boy led"

      Insulting my leadership skills


      Is that enough proof? I also had to repeat most of this stuff over and over again, trying to get them to understand how I've seen (by my experiences) other troops act, treat scouting and the uniform.

    • Basementdweller
      Basementdweller commented
      Editing a comment
      PLEEAAAASE

      If you actually read what I wrote......

      "how sad for your scouts.

      You do understand that it supposed to be boy led"

      How exactly is that is an insult if your a boy????

      It is meant to smack the adults in the face who won't get out of the boys way......


      .It was written with the assumption that you were an adult.....

    • ParacordMan1220
      ParacordMan1220 commented
      Editing a comment
      Sorry base, I misunderstood your comment.
      You are forgiven, lol

  • #9
    At summer camp, I asked this young scout why he had a cord around his arm, through the epaulets. He said that meant he didn't know his 6 knots yet, and he couldn't take it off until he knew his 6 knots. I kind of think that's not a good thing (verging on, if not outright hazing), but it would encourage the quick learning of knots.

    Comment


    • jblake47
      jblake47 commented
      Editing a comment
      The appropriate rank badge on his shirt should be sufficient to let the world know whether or not he knows his knots (and other stuff for that matter). One doesn't need anything else, as mentioned, it borders on hazing.

  • #10
    Originally posted by ParacordMan1220 View Post
    Since National really doesn't have very high uniform standards, I want to see if anyone has "improved" or incorporated things like "shoulder cords" (like the military wears in dress uniforms), different hats (Berets, Garrison caps, Boonie hats, etc.), and anything else that looks good and/or serves a purpose. I am wanting to start some new award systems to strike some interest with the scouts of my troop, like the "Knot Ninja" program that many others are starting (just do a quick google search to learn more).

    So, If you guys have any ideas and/or pictures of uniform ideas, post them up!

    Thanks in advance.
    First you do realize that B-P explicitly stated several times scouting is not the Military, right?

    Second, all for seeing someone develop a new award. But if your going to call out an organizations uniform standard as not high enough and then intend to implement "shoulder cords" in contradiction to those very standards I think your a hypocrite. I also need to observe that this program is about Knot tying, a skill so basic to scouting that not being able to tie them means one does not advance in rank and you think people should be given uniform decorations for that?

    Third, If you like fancy uniforms, and the idea of the Knot Ninja program, take a look at the Sea Scout program. It is challenging, more structured than Boy Scouts and it has a variety of Uniforms.

    Comment


    • ParacordMan1220
      ParacordMan1220 commented
      Editing a comment
      Sorry, but that's just my personal take on it. I am not going to waste my time trying to be nice, when all that I get back is the opposite.

    • perdidochas
      perdidochas commented
      Editing a comment
      Paracord,

      I was holding my tongue about your rudeness, but can't continue. The Scout Law does not say a Scout is only Friendly, Courteous and Kind to those who deserve it. There are no qualifications. A Scout is Friendly, Courteous and Kind regardless of the situation. If anything, the less someone "deserves it" the more you should be Friendly, Courteous and Kind. I realize that this is online, and Courtesy, all too often, goes out the window online. However, it shouldn't. You have some growing up to do, and once you do it, I'm sure you'll look back at your younger self's statements and cringe. Knots are important, but IMHO, much less important than the 12 points of the Scout Law. Just like knots, the Scout Law atrophies, if not used.

    • ParacordMan1220
      ParacordMan1220 commented
      Editing a comment
      Sorry, but that's just my personal take on it. I don't think my views will change once I am older either.
      You don't like it? That's fine, can't be happy all the time right?

  • #11
    Have you ever seen the movie Office Space ? Aniston was a waitress who was chastised by her boss for not wearing enough "flair". You remind me of him. You could make up buttons with sayings like "I tied the knot" , "Twisted", "Grapevine Me", "I Bight", "Get Hitched"

    Comment


    • #12
      I think I'll pass on the button crap, But I like to see my scouts outperform all of the other troops.

      Comment


      • Brewmeister
        Brewmeister commented
        Editing a comment
        One might say that you'd be butthurt...

      • King Ding Dong
        King Ding Dong commented
        Editing a comment
        Like BD, this scout does not have a sense of humor. I suspect his troop sits around a campfire all constipated tying knots instead of having fun.

      • ParacordMan1220
        ParacordMan1220 commented
        Editing a comment
        Sorry, maybe I should have put a smiley face in there to show that I understand
        There is also time for fun and time for seriousness, and I think the troop fun level is way above the serious level (just thought I'd let you know.)

    • #13
      Well there's the answer, isn't it. Scouting is a competition to you...a game of one-upsmanship. How sad.

      Now, let's see, on the first page you wrote:

      I think it is a good way to tell who can teach knot tying by simply looking at their lanyard, instead of spending a lot of time asking questions.
      But now you say:

      I think I'll pass on the button crap,
      So a lanyard doodad is ok, but a button doodad is not ok? Now you are just contradicting yourself.

      The best way to see how a scout performs is to SEE how they perform and ask them some questions (which you are loathe to do). That process does not require another doodad on the uniform. But you've already been told that, so...it's sort of pointless to talk with you from here on out.

      Comment


      • ParacordMan1220
        ParacordMan1220 commented
        Editing a comment
        Well the button thing was obviously a joke, but that comment was probably one of the best in the thread (being on topic)

        Dedkad, I'm not mean, but I don't put up with BS. I think this attitude is perfect for making better scouts, maybe not by your standards though.

      • Basementdweller
        Basementdweller commented
        Editing a comment
        ded then if he is patrol leader or SPL, he won't be re elected, pretty simple

      • ParacordMan1220
        ParacordMan1220 commented
        Editing a comment
        But somehow I got elected for two terms (1 year), and had to be taken out of election or else I would have been SPL for many more terms (no one else would get leadership experience).
        Last edited by ParacordMan1220; 09-17-2013, 06:26 PM.

    • #14
      OK, guys, it's time to stop beating the poor kid.

      Paracord, you obviously have a lot of enthusiasm. That's a great asset to any troop. That said, your idea of awards for being able to do things that are already covered by ranks sounds a bit redundant, and I think that's what people are complaining about. However, your trying to improve enthusiasm to do a good job is admirable. Is there another way to reward that? How about having a knot tying competition and giving out something for the top three? I had a knot tying competition and to even the field I had the older scouts do some of the knots blind folded. You really have to know the knots to do that. So, don't give an award for being average, make an award for going above and beyond.

      Personally, I don't like adding awards to a uniform that can already look like bling central, so I'd modify the neckerchief, or add something to it. Also, I'd suggest not worrying about the length of hair. I'm old enough to have seen that when I was your age and it never had a positive outcome. Besides, I had hair that was as wide as my shoulders. It sure pissed my dad off.

      Good luck.

      Comment


      • Basementdweller
        Basementdweller commented
        Editing a comment
        I bailed the second I found out he was a youth.....

        I see nothing wrong with a Patrol looking to enhance it's identity. Had a patrol that wore green bandanna's on their wrists when I first joined the troop......Little to gangsta for my taste.....

      • ParacordMan1220
        ParacordMan1220 commented
        Editing a comment
        What do you mean you bailed, Base?
        Anyway, thank you for posting a relevant comment MattR, i appreciate it more than you know.

    • #15
      I did a bit of "modifying" as Paracord is suggesting, but I did so within the limits of appropriate uniforming. The first thing I did was have a ranking by color a system of lanyards. Kind of a "reward" for outstanding work thingy. All I did was buy a bunch of lanyard cord of various colors and cut to about 6" lengths. Starting with the first color if I caught a boy doing something right he got the first color which would be larkhead knot through the button hole of the temporary patch pocket. Nothing says that pocket is sacred to anyone. If sewn correctly so the button hole can be used the OA patch even doesn't get in the way. One could "progress" by taking on more and more projects which were subject to SM approval of merit. It wasn't just doing the same thing over and over again, but challenging the skills of the scout in such things as leadership, organizational projects or whatever the SM deemed as appropriate. Of course the boys knew that by screwing up, the lanyard could be taken away and the boy would need to start earning it back. Not really appropriate, but we've all wanted to bust the boys in rank many times before. Well, being a temporary "patch" I would always emphasize the temporary part of it to the boys. They all knew what that meant. Of course even without switching out colors one could add value to the system along the way. The SPL would announce lights out, but all the boys with "blue" or above could stay an extra half hour at the campfire with the adults before heading to bed. No color changes, but a big perk nonetheless. This program can be modified to one's own situation without any national rules getting in the way, too.

      Again, a troop adopts a certain uniform, but it doesn't need to all be the same. My honor patrol all purchased the expedition hat with the 2" FC badge on it and wore a colored hat cord to indicate his POR. SPL yellow, ASPL blue, PL, red, and because of the uniqueness of the hat I could identify my honor scouts from a long distance away. They also wore a specialty necker different from the rest of the troop. They carried both. When they operated as a patrol, they wore their patrol necker and when the troop gathered as a whole, they switched to the troop necker.

      Eventually the rest of the troop adopted their own patrol neckers and it was kind of handy. As SM one could sit 300' away and see if all the boys were in their proper patrol area or not.

      While none of this truly conforms to the official uniform, there is nothing that actually is deemed inappropriate for a troop to have some independence with.

      It was always nice to see at Eagle COH's those little pieces of lanyard and different colored neckers displayed on their memory boards. It must have meant something important to them at one point.

      Stosh

      Comment


      • ParacordMan1220
        ParacordMan1220 commented
        Editing a comment
        Thanks for posting some good ideas! I' ll definitely take those into consideration!
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