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SebCachia

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Seb, My opinion on shorts is that they are still part of the official uniform in this country so they are fine. I like them and they're much cooler for the boys too. However, sometimes I wish I hadn't seen some adults in them (including women). Uuugh! I hope I didn't offend anyone. I suppose that, to use a hypothetical, if I saw FOG in a tight t-shirt and shorts (and to my knowledge I have never seen him), if he asked me what I thought I could probably honestly say that "I've seen worse". Sorry to use you FOG but you seem to have a sense of humor. :)

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Scout shorts are a great part of the Uniform today here in the US seb. Although just like the pants, I wish the shorts were more practicle and had pockets that could fit more than your extra change. In my area there is little uniformity with the shorts though. In the summer months some scouts will wear pants and some shorts. So the scouts usually look different. But I don't believe in telling scouts they must wear shorts. I for one usually always wear scout pants even in the summer.

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I say that for Troop Campouts (not summer camp, or camporees), military gear is acceptable. In my troop, we have one guy (an adult) who goes a little overboard (he brings 3 weeks worth of supplies on a 2 night campout) but otherwise, BDUs and used field gear are cheap, durable products for Scouts. My troop campsite was once used by the military for live fire exercises (near Fort Devens MA. used for training from WW2 - Vietnam). We have the remains of foxholes and defensive lines that are great for games like manhunt, and for practicing SAR. A used LC-2 ALICE pack runs about $40. That is quite a bit less than a decent pack (new or used) from Coleman or EMS. Other military gear (pistol belts, canteens, pouches etc) often run about $5 to $10 online. Also, I have yet to see a civilian product similar to US web gear (IE a pistol belt, suspenders, buttpack, canteen, and assorted pouches) If Coleman or Sears made such a product out of blue nylon instead of mil-spec OD nylon, would the BSA accept it? I bet they would.

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CS Kitchen Guy said, " If Coleman or Sears made such a product out of blue nylon instead of mil-spec OD nylon, would the BSA accept it?"

 

You can find brown pistol belts at just about any hardware store, they call them tool belts. :-)

 

I think that I'm on record as liking my old military gear. For a day pack, I use a pistol belt, suspenders, and a butt pack. The pack is big enough to hold socks, clean skivvies, lunch, and some odds and ends like paracord, matches. My jacket or poncho straps to the bottom of the pack and I'm good to go.

 

packsaddle said, " I suppose that, to use a hypothetical, if I saw FOG in a tight t-shirt and shorts (and to my knowledge I have never seen him):

 

Drew Carey once asked the audience, "Do you know why I don't wear a Speedo at the beach?" His reason is why I don't wear tight shorts or tight t-shirts anymore. Now, 25 years ago . . . that was a different story. Fortunately, fashion has changed to keep up with my changing physique.

 

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I am not fond of the Scout uniform. I think the poly blend shirt is too hot, especially in Texas summers. I have a 100% cotton shirt I like better. The shorts & pants are not comfortable at all. That said, I always wear my full uniform correctly as an example to the boys, as do the rest of our adults. Camo? I am proud of my USMC service, but I do not want Scouting to be a paramilitary organization. No military syle uniform, no drill except for what is needed to put on a decent flag ceremony. Now, I have had several of my older Scouts mention that the new Venture shorts are great; comfy and good enough to wear as backpacking gear. Maybe BSA is finally onto something....

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Aggie:

 

The New Venturing Uniform shorts are great! So are the pants. The only not so great part, is the price! Made in USA though, is worth paying for. But yes, I believe BSA is onto something. The Venturing Pants are durable, and practicle. Pockets galore!

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Aggie, right on about the shirts being too hot. They're to hot here in the northeast, and they must be deadly in Texas. What I meant about the military gear is that it is practical for certain uses, and fairly affordable, not that the BSA should be some sort of paramilitary organization. Sorry about that. Oh yes, not being in a Venture Crew, I have not had the opportunity to try out the "wonder shorts" (LoL)

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The Venturing shorts are a joke. The pair of shorts I have already have holes in them. My main gripes: They wear out, they are uncomfortable, they fade from dark grey to off-white in only a few washes, the buttons break off, that little Venturing V tag rips,They are made of cotton, take forever to dry, are action fit( yes so are the Boy scout stuff but I have the "old style")there are many others.

 

I use a pair of grey silver ridge shorts from Columbia when I am wearing my uniform in the field or at other non formal events. They work on so many levels, quick dry, wicking, ripstop, all nylon, pockets that can be used.

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MeanPC:

 

Welcome to the forums -- lots of great people on here, and they're not afraid to tell you what they think!

 

We've beat this horse to a pulp more times than I can count, but I think it may still be moving, so...

 

You're absolutely right, that camo isn't part of the Cub Scout uniform; it's not part of the Boy Scout uniform, or the Venturing uniform, either. And, when those critters grow up and do join the military, they're in for a rude awakening if they think they can mix/match their uniform items like many of our Scout units allow them to.

 

I've heard and read all the arguments about it, and I firmly believe that to the camo apologists, it's not really about fit, durability, or comfort -- plenty of commercial products from REI, Columbia, and others do all those things for the same or less $$ than surplus or catalog military camo. What it's really about is wanting to wear/carry military stuff outdoors. Nothing wrong with that if that's what you like, but let's call it what it is rather than throw red herrings out there.

 

Last time I checked, we have eight methods, and the uniform is one of them. It's not a buffet where you can take the dessert and leave the vegetables, it's a blue plate special. Unfortunately, BSA doesn't give us a hammer like a little league sports coach has to underscore the uniform method. Do I send Scouts home if they're not wearing official socks? Of course not. But, I do make a huge fuss over those who make the effort to wear it properly, make sure wooden nickels are handed out at uniform inspections, preach to the PLC about how wearing the proper uniform reinforces their position and authority, and so on.

 

My son's a Life Scout, wears the complete uniform, right down to service stars. Doesn't complain about it, for several reasons. One, I do the same thing, every week. Two, it's what he's always done. Three, whether it's homework, his grass-cutting business, household chores, or anything else in his life, I try to make sure he knows and applies "what right looks like". The proper uniform at a Scout activity is what right looks like. It may not be what right FEELS like, but that's another matter.

 

Do I think the uniform's perfect? Would I change it if given a chance? No, and yes. But, it doesn't matter, because you wear the uniform you have, warts and all. Complaining it should be more comfortable is like complaining that salt should be less salty. It is what it is.

 

I had a brand new Scout last night, recruited "off the street" without CS experience by another lad in our Troop, tell me that he can't get a uniform because his mom doesn't have the money. We chatted for another couple minutes, then I eased into the "what other activities do you like?" question. Of course, he answered with the usual: soccer, basketball, martial arts, paintball. None of it free, and all requiring some distinctive clothing/equipment in order to "play", and mom more than willing to fork over the $$. Sigh.

 

KS

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KS said, "What it's really about is wanting to wear/carry military stuff outdoors."

 

I dunno 'bout that. If you go to nearly any construction site around here, you'd think that the place was populated by veterans. Nearly every bricklayer, carpenter or hod carrier wears BDU pants. Compared to Carhart work pants, BDU pants are cheap.

 

" None of it free, and all requiring some distinctive clothing/equipment in order to "play", and mom more than willing to fork over the $$. Sigh."

 

Come on. . . get with it. Haven't you learned that "sports are important" and "Scouts is just . . . Scouts."

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There have been hundreds of opinions dancing all around the issue of military clothes and equipment in Scouting. KoreaScouter summarized it best, "What it's really about is wanting to wear/carry military stuff outdoors." Kids think it is cool to dress up and play "Army". It's a respected occupation that kids want to emulate. I don't buy the adult arguments about quality, functionality, and cost. Even grown up kids like to play "Army". They just won't admit it.

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" I don't buy the adult arguments about quality, functionality, and cost. Even grown up kids like to play "Army". They just won't admit it."

 

Sorry to disappoint you but I have no desire to play Army or even "Marines at Paris Island." I use GI gear because it good, durable and inexpensive. I have a GI tri-fold shovel that cost less than $10 and is built like a tank. A similar shovel that's made in China cost $10 at the local camping store but is so cheap that the blade can be bent with a little effort. I have a large Alice pack that cost about $40 with frame and is more rugged than any commercial product. It weighs a couple pounds more than a high tech pack but I'm big enough to handle the weight.

 

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I also must disagree with the comment about people wanting to play Army.

 

For me at least, that has nothing to do with it. Instead, it has everything to do with wanting to have low cost, readily available, durable, multi-purpose equipment. The stuff works great in many outdoor applications. It can easily be used on while out hunting, fishing, or Scouting. Is military equipment optimal for Scouting? Not necessarily. Is it good equipment for Scouting? Often.

 

Obviously, I do not approve of using military uniforms in place of Scout uniforms (though there could be some exceptions for extreme circumstances, I suppose). The Scout uniform should be worn as completely and correctly as possible. I also think most camo looks terrible when mixed with Scout uniform pieces.

 

However, when not in uniform, if someone wants to wear the same pants they go hunting in that is fine by me. Even if in uniform, if they want to wear combat boots, or web gear to carry their stuff, or a field jacket to stay warm, that is fine with me.

 

Several years back it was the norm for me to carry my two military canteens, in their military covers, on a military pistol belt. Now I usually go with a couple of Nalgene bottles in a day-pack, but I miss having the water available while walking and such. I still use the same old field jacket I have worn for years (old style solid green US Army issue). I also sometimes wear a OD green jungle hat (OK, I admit, I have worn the hat with the uniform, but that was only because the sun is hot as heck some places and my campaign hat just doesn't breath well enough in high humidity), but other than that, I haven't used much surplus equipment for Scouting purposes. I may get a surplus set of LBEs and go back to the old canteens. Or maybe I will go the weirdest fashion statement of all and use Nalgene bottles on an LBE...(This message has been edited by Proud Eagle)

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Proud Eagle, that wouldnt be anything new. If you really wanted to go all out, mil-type gear makers have pouches made specifically made for the Nalgee bottles. I, though, prefer a Camelbak Thermobak 3L in olive drab.

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