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jmenand

Old patches mix n match

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Hello everyone, first time poster here! I have a question about patches. Is there any uniform rule or etiquette about using older versions of patches which were retired before I became a registered scout? For example, my local council has gone through a number of different shoulder patch designs. I would like to use a quite old design because it has a bit of a classic appeal. Similarly, I had my OA ordeal in the mid 1990s, but I found a lodge flap for my lodge from the 70's which is neat (and only cost $2 at a yard sale) which I'd like to use on my new uniform (my current one was damaged recently). Is it frowned upon to use something other than the lodge flap that was given to me when I went through my ordeal? How about shoulder patches? Currently in my unit apx. half of the membership has the current shoulder patch, and the other half has the older one which was used for many years through the late 90's. So it is not "uniform" even currently. However, no one is using the patch I would like to use, which is from the 70s or maybe the 80s (I'm not even sure, I've never seen anyone else wearing it)

 

I understand that I should not wear patches which are incompatable with the new tan uniforms, but both of these patches look great on the tan. They are the same shape and contain the same information as the newer patches, the design is just different.

 

I just think the look of a semi-retro patched uniform would be an interesting conversation topic for some of the region's history. But I don't want to step on any toes, official or otherwise. Thanks for your help in advance!

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Hello jmenand and welcome to the forums!

 

Your question is interesting and understandable. We've talked here before about mixing uniform parts from different eras. While all earlier BSA uniforms are still official and may be worn by any registered member, the wearing of parts from different eras is frowned upon. In other words, you shouldn't wear a 1960s shirt with 2006 trousers. I don't know if the "Uniform Police" would issue a ticket, but it is BSA fashion gauche. ;)

 

Now, patches are another story. I believe that all previously issued emblems are still valid for uniform wear. For example, a 1950s Eagle medal may still be worn with the 2006 uniform. In like manner, I still wear my 1969 jamboree patch. Similarly, any past council shoulder patches (CSPS) may be legitimately worn (as long as the council hasn't merged or renamed itself), including the earlier red and whites. In fact, while the CSP was authorized for uniform use on April 17, 1970, the old city and state red and white strips were never actually de-authorized - they were simply not manufactured anymore. I know several old-timers who proudly still wear their old community strips, and I have heard of whole units that stick to tradition and have NEVER adopted CSPs (I believe they have their own community red and whites, long out of stock, privately manufactured.)

 

I believe the same is true for OA flaps (although I am not positive; some lodges get sorta weird about their emblems and flaps...). However, many old OA flaps are worth their weight in gold dust and that's probably the reason one doesn't see them worn too often on uniforms.

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Welcome jmenand, I would not tell you not to wear an older CSP (the council shoulder patch), but if the patch you want is the older red-white strips(RWS), I would put the rws only on an older khaki-green uniform.

 

I am also a fan of the retro look and have designed a commemoritive CSP for our old council that has yet to be made but hopefully will.

 

As for the OA flap, I would refer you to your lodge leadership to answer that one.

 

The only folks who will get their undies in a bundle over what you proposed are the dreaded UP's (uniform police).

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Kraut, what a coincidence! I also designed a historical-commemorative CSP for my old council and pitched it to the current SE as a fund raiser. I had the numbers all worked out and it would have made thousands, but the idea went nowhere. Guess I don't know the right people in that council anymore... :(

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When I became a DL in the 80's, I proudly paid my lodge dues and sewed on the flap (pre FDL) that I was issued at my Ordeal in 1968. I wore it until a collector explained to me what it was worth! Now I wear the current flap, worth about 5 bucks retail.

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Many councils issue commemorative council shoulder patches. Not even the most ardent supporter of proper uniforming would object to anyone wearing an old CSP.

 

This question doesnt seem to have much to do with anyones underwear. The purpose of that poke seems only to intentionally perpetrate bad feelings among Scouters. A Scout is courteous?

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As to lodge flaps.

 

Some lodges have rules that they want their members to be wearing their current flap. This is sometimes done to 'catch' people who don't bother to pay their dues (usually youth who join and never stay, but continue to wear the flap they got).

 

Some members will wear older flaps that were flaps they received as youth, or flaps they think are nicer looking then the current ones. I've rarely seen people were flaps from previous to when they joined. Be aware that old flaps can be worth a LOT. The flap I got as a youth is worth too much for me to wear.

 

I've also seen adults wear old style office patches and rarely youth wear old style rank patches. So long as they have the right to wear the patch (you've earned that rank, you hold that position today), so what?

 

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When my Eagle was presented in 1999, I sewed on the Eagle patch that was issued from 1975-1985. Not simply because it was better looking than the current issue (It's my favorite, personally), but also because it was a gift from my mentor that he used to motivate me to finish things off.

 

These days I have a shirt from 1960 with the city/state strips for Salem, WV and the proper insignia for an Assistant Cubmaster (my current job). By some stroke of luck I even managed to get a premade felt number for my unit (37). Kind of curious about what someone said about custom RWS/CSS patches, as I'm getting ready to go overseas and I'm pretty sure that Direct Service ones are probably worth quite a bit (quite a bit more than I can afford to pay, anyway, even if I were to find one for grabs)...Also not sure what I'd do about numbers, but I'll deal with that when the time comes.

 

Truth is, the old colored rank patches were issued long after they were officially discontinued just to sell down stock in a number of cases, so if you have a set of them and want to wear them I really don't see where the problem would be. Heck, I remember seeing a couple boys still wearing them when I went through, and I started 4-5 years after the changeover.

 

Regarding flaps, CSPs, etc., if there's a particuar one that has personal significance for you, go for it. I know many scouters in NCAC still wear the special strip they issued in 1998 commemorating the Iwo Jima memorial because they are Marines, themselves. Likewise, those who have OA flaps from the various presidential inaugurations tend to treat them as permanent uniform items, as well.

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Hi, Gang!

 

Well, I decided awhile back to completely ignore the UP and make a retro-uni from some modern parts. So, I took a Venturing uni shirt, removed the Venturing patch over the right pocket and began adding patches. Here is the list:

 

(1) Over the right pocket I sewed on a 50's Explorers patch.

(2) On the pocket I sewed a Philmont "Dollar" patch with 5 segments.

(3) On the pocket flap I sewed on a Wisumahi Lodge 478 S2 patch.

(4) On the button I hung a 1950's OA ribbon with a 1950's Vigil triangle pin.

(5) On the right sleeve I sewed on a CAW patch and a National Standard Explorer Unit patch

(6) Over the left pocket I sewed on an Eagle knot and an Explorer Silver Award knot.

(7) On the left sleeve I sewed on a RWS patches for San Bernardino and Calif; I also sewed on a Region 12 patch.

 

I left the American flag on the right sleeve and the epaulets on the shoulders (but those might go before the next wash).

 

I was an Explorer in the 50's and earned all the patches that requiered earning. In fact, they are all patches that I have had since my youth. Probably I have about $350 worth of patches on my uni. AND I love it! The OF's in my area are all thinking about doing the same!

 

Wisumahi

 

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"(2) On the pocket I sewed a Philmont "Dollar" patch with 5 segments."

 

"I was an Explorer in the 50's and earned all the patches that requiered earning. "

 

Did you earn those segments? There were requirements for them.

 

Personally, I would have gotten a 1950s Explorer shirt off eBay, rather then using a Venturing shirt. I have gotten several that way.

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Hi, emb021!

 

We wrote:

 

""(2) On the pocket I sewed a Philmont "Dollar" patch with 5 segments."

 

"I was an Explorer in the 50's and earned all the patches that requiered earning. "

 

Did you earn those segments? There were requirements for them.

 

Personally, I would have gotten a 1950s Explorer shirt off eBay, rather then using a Venturing shirt. I have gotten several that way. ""

 

Yes, I earned all all but two segments, Philmont Horseman and Frontiersman. At any rate I earned only have 5 and they are the ones on my shirt. I still have my old Philmont Program Hand Book with all the requirements and checklist that I used.

 

Philmont was one of the most memorable highlights of my youth Scouting experience. I memorized the Philmont Grace and, if called upon to say grace at a Scouting event, I still use it. It is elegant in its simplicity.

 

I have not tried to get a vintage uni shirt on eBay: that is a great idea. I still have one of my old uni shirts and much of my personal memoribilia. I was amazed at the prices on eBay for those items now. I was the last person in my lodge to get a felt Vigil sash: I see they now sell on eBay for ca. $1000! Had I known that in the 50's, I would have made a small investment in some spare sashes back then!

 

In Brotherhood,

 

Wisumahi

 

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