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dkurtenbach

Product Pruning

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For the love of all things holy. Get rid of badge magic.  I have seen multiple uniforms get tossed from the troop closet due to the badge magic all over the shirt.  They had been stuffed in there with the patches removed and over time they stuck to themselves and was impossible to work with.  Its not that hard to sew something on.  And its not expensive.  You can get a sewing kit at the Dollar Tree....

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56 minutes ago, Jackdaws said:

For the love of all things holy. Get rid of badge magic.

Preach!

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On 7/8/2020 at 10:00 PM, mashmaster said:

So for Sea Scouts we already have this handled.

  • Our uniforms are either Dickie or 5.11 brand navy blue shirts
  • Patches are added for the names and Sea Scouts, BSA
  • Our manuals are PDF's so people print them on demand
  • Neckerchief is optional
  • Pants are navy blue pants, Dickies or 5.11 or similar

And, I might say, our uniforms look the sharpest of them all 🙂

The fact that these use existing decent quality shirts/pants is such a neat “innovation”. 

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Cubs

-one hat, one neckerchief, one belt, and one slide from lion to Webelos. Only need to replace if it no longer fits. 
-I have heard they are already getting rid of the tiger socks (did you know there was such a thing?) and tiger/bear/Webelos belt buckle replacements 

Scouts

-Totin chip and firemn’ chit and cyber chip patches
-those dumb mini sashes. Oh, wait, those are already not official. 
-make good hiking socks that are official. I have tried the Therlos. Not good. 

Venturing 

-green uniforms, special pants, special socks. Use either standard BSA uniform or Dickies like Sea Scouts or the option to have your own crew’s. 

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Posted (edited)

Along with making things cheaper and easier I would also look to increase functionality and value. There are some sharp looking t shirt like performance wear options that would be more appealing and weather/activity friendly for kids. Something between a class A and a class B that is truly functional. Anyone who has coached a sports team knows the kids never complain about wearing uniforms or team gear. That's largely because it's comfortable and weather friendly for activity. On the other hand, lots of complaints about the cub and scout uniforms  -- it's hot, it's itchy, it gets caught on everything, I gotta wear bike shorts under the pants.... yadda yadda.  Let's come up with something that kids don't complain about and that is cheaper and of higher value for parents. Scouts is not a paramilitary organization. I know this is near and dear to some, but I'm convinced we'd do better with recruitment if we didn't force kids to wear something a lot of them don't like. 

For cubs, lose all the rank related expenses. Come up with one inexpensive thing that changes in order to identify each rank, whether that's a hat or a scarf, and forget about the socks, the belt, the slide, etc. Get rid of nonessential patches. Why are we paying for JTE patches? For cubs, rather than patches I'd go back to belt loops. You don't have to sew them on and the kids love them. Or do epaulet loops for each rank as someone else suggested.

All program materials should just be pdf downloads.  

For scouts, consider digital credentials vs. actual cloth merit badges. 

Make scout membership more portable. If you pay national dues, you should be able to participate anywhere nationally. Develop an online tool that allows local units to access whatever information they need to feel comfortable allowing a visiting or seasonal scout to participate in local adventures. Scout membership should be a scout passport to the out of doors. 

Edited by yknot
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48 minutes ago, yknot said:

Along with making things cheaper and easier I would also look to increase functionality and value. There are some sharp looking t shirt like performance wear options that would be more appealing and weather/activity friendly for kids. Something between a class A and a class B that is truly functional. Anyone who has coached a sports team knows the kids never complain about wearing uniforms or team gear. That's largely because it's comfortable and weather friendly for activity. On the other hand, lots of complaints about the cub and scout uniforms  -- it's hot, it's itchy, it gets caught on everything, I gotta wear bike shorts under the pants.... yadda yadda.  Let's come up with something that kids don't complain about and that is cheaper and of higher value for parents. Scouts is not a paramilitary organization. I know this is near and dear to some, but I'm convinced we'd do better with recruitment if we didn't force kids to wear something a lot of them don't like. 

My first down arrow, ever. But that first paragraph is so off sided that only a down arrow can cover my opinion without having to write chapters of a different opinion. I have as many years of coaching as I do in scouting and very little of that post reflects my experience.

Barry

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10 minutes ago, Eagledad said:

My first down arrow, ever. But that first paragraph is so off sided that only a down arrow can cover my opinion without having to write chapters of a different opinion. I have as many years of coaching as I do in scouting and very little of that post reflects my experience.

Barry

As I've said before, the best thing about this forum is that it shows just how varied experiences are across this great country and that we all need to keep an open mind and strive to be relevant to our target markets if we want to survive. What makes sense to you does not make sense to me. And whether it makes sense to either one of us is not  what ultimately matters  -- it's what makes sense and is appealing to the kids we are trying to reach.  

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My thoughts

1. Get rid of the green on tan numbers and trained patches. Everyone wears white on red numbers and red on tan trained strips.. better yet, mate the trained strips white on red. That way it could be worn on Scout, Sea Scout, and Venturing uniforms. 

2. Get rid of the white on navy and navy on white numbers that Sea Scouts wear. We can wear red too. Last time I ordered numbers and other Sea Scout stuff from national, the labeling still said Sea Explorer, and Sea Scouts split from Exploring about 15 years prior to that purchase.

3. Get rid of all the high dollar extras like jewelry, cufflinks, collector books, etc..

4.Get rid of the dated stuff, i.e. Scout Sunday 2020, 2020 collector's hat, etc.

5. Do not have our own brand of camping gear, instead stick with established gear.

6. instead of selling gimicky stuff, listen to what the customers need. Anyone remember the AOL belt buckle for leather belts?

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28 minutes ago, Eagledad said:

My first down arrow, ever. But that first paragraph is so off sided that only a down arrow can cover my opinion without having to write chapters of a different opinion. I have as many years of coaching as I do in scouting and very little of that post reflects my experience.

Barry

I don't think you are being honest. My unit does not have a team wear or spirit wear site associated with it but all the teams I have coached do, where the kids and parents buy oodles of local team gear. Hoodies, t shirts, warm up pants, shorts, sweatshirts. etc. It is not a hard sell, because the stuff is well made and is suitable for active wear, unlike the scout field uniform which seems designed to be an item of torture. I wear my (free) coach shirt made by underarmour in 90 degree weather and I'm pretty comfortable. I wear my (not free and quite expensive) BSA leader shirt and sweat to death. 

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, yknot said:

Scouts is not a paramilitary organization. I know this is near and dear to some, but I'm convinced we'd do better with recruitment if we didn't force kids to wear something a lot of them don't like. 

You had me agreeing with you about practicality and comfort, but you lost me on this comment.  The scout uniform is not at all paramilitary.  Paramilitary stuff is far more practical, comfortable, and affordable than BSA products.

Edited by David CO
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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, yknot said:

I know this is near and dear to some, but I'm convinced we'd do better with recruitment if we didn't force kids to wear something a lot of them don't like. 

I feel about uniforms much the same way as I feel about advancement.  It isn't required.  If you don't like it, don't do it.  But if you choose to do it, do it right.

Edited by David CO

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, David CO said:

You had me agreeing with you about practicality and comfort, but you lost me on this comment.  The scout uniform is not at all paramilitary.  Paramilitary stuff is far more practical, comfortable, and affordable than BSA products.

Agreed. But where else does the paramilitary mindset come from other than the LEO or "para" paramilitary outlook? Random SMs and ASMs or religiously affiliated COs don't come up with it. 

Edited by yknot

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34 minutes ago, yknot said:

Agreed. But where else does the paramilitary mindset come from other than the LEO or "para" paramilitary outlook? Random SMs and ASMs or religiously affiliated COs don't come up with it. 

I mean original boy scout uniforms were basically surplus/copies of US Army uniforms from the time period. Rugged, cheap, practical, looked good. Now the uniforms are overpriced, lack durability, are considered tacky at best. 

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35 minutes ago, Sentinel947 said:

I mean original boy scout uniforms were basically surplus/copies of US Army uniforms from the time period. Rugged, cheap, practical, looked good. Now the uniforms are overpriced, lack durability, are considered tacky at best. 

Whatever it is, if kids don't want to wear it, then we shouldn't be doing it if we are trying to increase membership. My baseball kids love to wear the hat, the jersey, the team T, the team towel, whatever. Not seeing the same kind of enthusiasm with the stiff and itchy button up scout shirt or pants. 

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