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Owl62

Headgear

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I would like to hear about what headgear your Scouting unit uses.

 

We have not adopted any specific headgear yet. It is left to the option of the individual as long as the headgear is official Scouting headgear, Scouting related (Scout camp/activity hats, expedition hat, etc., or a plain with no logos.

 

We are considering a troop hat but there is no consensous yet. We will probably end up with a custom baseball type troop cap.

 

Thanks.

 

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Little history, I started with the garrison cap, thought it was cool cause older boys wore them and Leigon and Lions wore simmiler ones, so I thought it was more adult than the ball caps of Cubs and Webelos. Then the beret showed up and I was given one, at first I thought it was cool but that didn't last long, really it didn't offer any advantages over the garrison cap and a few drawbacks.

My troop uses the red and green BSA cap though most go bare headed. I bought the Stetson hat last month, seems nice enough but also looks easy to mess up. Wish I could find an old style green ballcap both winter and summer versions, I did find several garrison caps that fit me, seems my head grew some from when I was a boy.

 

Good luck with you hunt finding something they will wear and look good in.

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My troop has no official headgear.

 

I do have one patrol that has chosen to have it's own headgear. It is a combination of both official and non-scouting items to make it unique.

 

The option is pricy ($50.00), but not as pricy as the BSA campaign hat.

 

We started out with the basic expedition wool felt hat. To that we added the shiny brass Boy Scout First Class 1" medallion for the members of the patrol. This is not the normal pewter circle medallion that normally is ordered for the hat. The PL is also the SPL of the troop and instead of the First Class 1" medallion, he has the old enamel SPL pin from the 1940's. The APL is also the ASPL and his hat has the ASPL enamel pin from the 1940's. Those are the official scout parts of the hat. From that start we add hat cords similar to those used by Civil War reenactors. A red hat cord (Artillery) for the SPL/PL and yellow hat cord (Cavalry) for the ASPL/APL. The other members of the patrol have the green/tan cord (Hospital Steward). The last piece are the brass numerals used by Civil War reenactors, the troop number just below the 1" medallion. They are unique among the boys of the council and even if another scout has the expedition hat, the "extras" make them unique enough to identfy them from a distance.

 

The only other thing unique about the hat is how they are acquired. The boy must pay for the hat on his own. He is not allowed to borrow or abtain money from their parents, they have to earn it on their own.

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For years our troop had custom ballcaps. Tan with our troop logo. We'd give them to the Webelos as they crossed over, and boy did they wear them proudly! For a year, max. After then, we noticed that most fellows would not wear a hat at all (to meetings and similar events) or would wear their own broad brimmed hat (on campouts). Most of the scoutmasters wear broad brims (a necessity in a Texas summer!). We discussed this and suggested that the PLC talk about it. Last year they voted to discontinue the traditional troop ball caps. We now have no official troop headgear.

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If the boys are preferring the broad brimmed hats, why not go with the BSA brimmed hats like the Expedition ($30+), Stetson ($50+) Rover ($40+) or Campaign ($80+) styles? They can be kinda pricy, but the Campaign style can be gotten in knock-off for less than $30 if you hunt around. Put the BSA band on it and you're good to go. As long as the headgear is similar, it is uniform. If BSA will accept a baseball style with Troop design on it, they surely can't complain about a Campaign hat knock off at $30 for the boys. Put the 1" First Class medallion on it and you're all set to go with a hat that fits in with what your boys are willing to wear. As far as wear an tear on these hats, I've got an Expedition style hat that has been rained on, snowed on, Philmont branded, sun-faded, crammed in a pack, hat that I wear all the time. It looks nice and vintage, but there's no holes rips or tears, and is just as functional as the day I first bought it 9 years ago. Sentimentality has kept me from taking anyone up on the offer to purchase it. If a boy purchases one at age 11 and wears it until he's 18, that's seven years or about $5/year investment in good quality headwear. Put this up against the $12+ baseball style hat the boys are only wearing for a year. These hats are also condusive to feathers, pins, bands, etc. to make them unique between patrols within the troop.

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"As long as the headgear is similar, it is uniform. If BSA will accept a baseball style with Troop design on it, they surely can't complain about a Campaign hat knock off ..."

 

The fact that you don't get a lawyer letter from BSA does not mean custom designs or knock-offs can be part of an official BSA uniform. The only two headgears for the BSA field uniform are the campaign hat or the visored cap, one or the other selected by the troop.

 

http://www.scouting.org/forms/34283.pdf

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I noticed when looking at the inspection form it gives you two options, visored or campaign. It does not even give you the option of not wearing a hat!!

The Insignia Guide talks about the campaign hat and the expedition hat, no mention of a visored cap.

As all three are official uniform pieces I would think they are acceptable. With all of that said I usually wear the black BSA ball cap, waterproof and breathable.

 

Alan

 

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The Insignia Guide is more about insignia than uniform. The visored cap isn't mentioned because there is no insignia for the visored cap. The visored cap or campaign hat is optional; see page 12 of the Boy Scout Handbook where the uniform is described.

 

Like the expedition hat, there is lots of non-uniform clothing available: knit cap, nylon jacket, wool shirt-jac, gloves, t-shirts, etc. Some have insignia options, which are discussed in the Insignia Guide.

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National would be well served to get rid of the ball cap and substitute a "boonie" hat that has some actual utility.

 

At the very least National should look at the fatigue cap formerly used by the US Army for year-round wear... at least it has ear flaps for chilly winter days.

 

Baseball caps leave the ears exposed to sunburn.

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I agree with john-in-KC,

A boonie hat is perfect, You can roll it, fold it, water-proof it (with camp dry) and it still looks good. I'd go with the old green ones too.

 

I like my expedition hat also. But, i also wear a boonie.

 

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I love the idea of a BSA boonie hat! Currently I wear the grey BSA/OA hat, item no. D70600. It fits well, looks good, and covers my ever-increasing forehead!

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Sorry FScouter,

That thing is not a boonie hat, despite what the catalog says.

Go to any Army surplus store and you'll see a better selection, in olive drab, about $10, a little silicone spray later, and you got a perfect hat. (IMHO)

 

By the way, I never really liked the current ball cap either. Too much red in the front.(This message has been edited by Gonzo1)

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I own one of the Army hats ("hat, sun, woodland, camouflage pattern, type III"). I also have the BSA boonie hat. They are nearly identical right down to the stitching, differences being different vents, heavier material in the army version, and color. The BSA hat doesn't have that webbing stitched around the base that looks like its designed to carry spare ammo.

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