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The new uniform.

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Hey Goldwinger, back off on that Vatican City rant. Not everything that comes from Vatican City is infallible, we can discuss that somewhere else.


And BobWhite, I understand what you are saying about the new uniform, its not even out yet and there are cries of derision... But when you say


"As I said even if 9 out of 10 people who where this uniform like it that will still leaves thousands whining about it."


I dont beleive that is productive at all. One can make a comment without neccesarily be "whining" about it. Such rhetoric only leads to defensive comments where the substance of the issue is lost in the style of the presentation of the argument.

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Good point about the internet being available today as a feedback mechanism.


Has me wondering...


Was a survey done on scouting.org? Scouting magazine? Was there any postings at council offices? I have not seen any.


Has any forum member participated in this evaluation or even know someone who did? I asked around council and have not found anyone. I would think with the summer camps starting, that it would be an opportune time for staff to showcase the new functional, outdoor uniform, but I had heard nothing along those lines.


Will the evaluation results and a FAQ be published on scouting.org or elsewhere?


How large was the survey group? How diverse by age, size, gender? Were they all scouts and scouters?


How large was the field evaluation group? How long did the evaluation go on (interested in the weather and geography) as well as age, size, activity,..? How well did they do around a sparky campfire? Did the more stout scout need suspenders to keep pants from, well migrating south?


Why wasn't the neckerchief made functional to fit with a new functional uniform? I had hoped that shortcoming would be fixed in time for the 100th.


What attempts were made to find a US manufacturer? Is there a US manufacturer licensed to make special order uniforms.


I think these are fair and valid questions/concerns. Other forum members have also expressed fair and valid questions/concerns.




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The point Ed is that huge committees as suggested by some posters are not always a good thing. More important than numbers are the abilities of those involved.


As for GW's comment on everything that comes from the Vatican as being infallible. I do not know GW's religious training. but there is nothing in the teachings or belief of the Catholic Church that says everythng from the Vatican is infallible.


Perhaps his Jesuit friend will be able to straighten him out on that. Ask him about ex cathedra.




I am sorry that you do not care for the term whining. But when adults complain about the performance of a uniform they have never worn, or even seen worn first hand, then they are either precognitive or whining.


It is the complaining behavior without a shread of evidence that is counterproductive to the topic, and not the identification of the behavior itself.


Since you do not fault them for their opinion I will trust that you will not fault me for mine.(This message has been edited by BoB White)

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A few days back, I asked about the following:


"I am very curious about the rational for:


- Changing the color of the switchback pants - Why?

- Changing the design of the action shirt to include shoulder straps and the left sleeve pocket - Why?

- Changing the accent color from red to green - Why?

- Changing the belt on the new switcback pants - Why?


- Finally, In the past, why was the neckerchief made optional and reduced to a size that really makes it useless?


When the US military changes it's uniform, the changes are field tested and communicated to the personnel. I am really disappointed that in this day and age of the internet and web forums like scouter.com thta BSA National staff does not feel that this type of communication is important in this day and age.


The folks on the forum seem to be long time Scouters that may have some keen insights that will help me understand this question."


I do not think that I was being critical of the process. I was asking for some information to help um understand the rational for these decisions.


Can anyone provide some information and insights to these questions?


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As for the changes to the current uniform those questions would habv to be asked of the folks who served on the committee. As for the change in the neckerchief being optional, that happened decades ago. How you would discover the exact reason for that I would have no idea.


I will offer this however, it seems most scouts and adults given the choice no longer choose neckerchiefs. They serve little functional purpose and those they did serve have largely been replaced by modern products that do the job better. As an example when neckerchiefs where first used a primary purpose was as a bandage. Given the choice between a dirty neckerchief and today's prepackaged sterile compress, which you choose? Would you use a neckerchief to bandage a sprained ankle or an ACE Bandgage?


Another use was a a signal flag. To signal who nowdays? If you needed help are you going to move to high ground and send semaphore or make a cellphone call?


Neckerchiefs have lost their original function simply due to the passage of time and technology. Just as compasses in the near future will be replaced by GPS units and the Yellow Pages by the Internet.



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Good questions Wilton125, maybe you can appreciate the irony...Back in the 70's, the Natick Army Labs asked me to evaluate some new cold weather gear even though I have never been a member or employee of the military, just an outdoor guy. Now I have been a member of the BSA for a longer than that, but the BSA seems uninterested in my letters. Luckily, there are a number of outdoor websites and magazine, interested in feedback from novice and expert alike, so we can pass on what we've learned.


Neckerchiefs are part of our scout heritage and universally identify us as scouts, why even those WB21ers wear them, a special one I think? Neckerchiefs are multi-purpose like duct tape. Neckers are our bandanas, cravats, slings, signal flags, water filters, dust mask, handkerchief (when wearing short sleeves), troop identifier (color, design), hobo bag... Neckers fell out of favor here when they were downsized to the point of being useless, hell I need two for a single cravat around my leg. That fact was successfully used by my PLC in their argument to switch to baseball caps. Great decision too, no neckerchiefs means no slides to whittle so our scouts don't know how to whittle; no one earning Woodcarving mb either.



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Neckerchiefs are, for most Boy Scout aged persons, too small for slings, too costly for hankerciefs (I haven't seen anyone under 60 carry a hankerchief in many years now that tissues are common), Signal to who?


Who really thinks that if they went to a hilltop and sent semaphore that by some miracle of fate there would be someone else on another mountain top in the distance at that exact moment who just happened to be looking your direction, and just happenes to know semaphore? Even if there were he would probably just get on his cell phone like you should have done to begin with and call for help.


Baden-Powell I am sure never expected for the skills of scouting to stay anchored in the knowledge of the early 20th century and never change. He seems to have been a lot more progressive thinking than that.


I was a scout in the 60s and the only people I ever saw whittle neckerchief slides were senior citizen leaders, spats and tourniquets are part of our past too but we don't have a need for them anymore either. Scouting heritage is its values, the uniform changes about every twenty to thirty years.


If you really like neckerchielfs then wear them . That's what "optional" means. But lets be honest they are little more than decoration, only because there are better things available today to do the things they were used for 100 years ago.


When they switched to red shoulder tabs some people complained, when they switched to green tabs now some complained (some are the same ones who complained about the red). It is a no win situation for the designers.


You cannot create a uniform that will please everyone, it is just too large of a group. Besides, that is not the purpose of a uniform anyway.(This message has been edited by BoB White)

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All this talk about bringing back community strips will never happen.

Now with the council shoulder patches everyone in the council wears the same thing and I doubt it will change.

Take into account the National Scout Jamboree for instance.

Most councils even make custom strips just for that purpose.

If we went back to community strips just think about how much money they would use and about the scouts (not Scouters) who take such joy in trading JSPs or CSPs.

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Regarding neckerchiefs, they only look too small when worn under the shirt collar. With the collar turned under, the fit is more traditional, but turning the collar under is a bit of a hassle. In the UK, there are both Scout- and Leader-sized neckerchiefs. There are different sizes for OA sashes, so why not different sizes for neckers?



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The shirts of the 70's were WAY better, they remained tucked in and could accomodate a neckerchief easily.


Bob White,

I'm 46 abd always carry a handkerchief, I have for over 15 years.



I wish neckerchiefs were larger too.


Community strips would be nice, but probably won't happen UNLESS and only UNLESS a troop special orders them from their local embroiderer.


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Here are my comments...


If the FABRIC wears like iron, so kids are not destroying their uniforms faster than they can get to a store...


If the FIT supports due growth of a young man...


If the FINISH is of quality (double seams, strong fabric pockets, and such...


Then National has done its job and given our youth a uniform which will meet the test of a campout or hike.


If a pebble, though, can rip a shirt apart, then they've not done their job.


BTW, to those who say the Armed Forces do a good job of testing uniforms before they field them... y'all probably weren't around in 1981, when we transitioned from the OG-107 fatigue uniforms to Battle Dress. That first generation of BDUS? Zoot suits! You should have heard the NCOs in the 1st Infantry Division Artillery cuss! There were issues of fading too fast, of the 50-50 nylon/cotton blend being way too hot for Stateside summers, and on and on...


The thing the military did, though, that BSA hasn't done... was adapt, and quickly. 10 years later, we had two different weights of BDUS, not to mention BDUS for a European environment and a desert environment.


SFAIK, this new uniform of BSA is the first significant innovation in a quarter century.

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