Jump to content

New 12th Edition Handbook

Recommended Posts

So what do all y'all think about the new 12th Edition Boy Scout Handbook?


I like the reorganization of contents by topic.


Good mix of text and illustrations.


Much better index.


I hope the spiral binding holds up.


Over $16.00!! Well, pulp paperbacks are pushing $10.00.


New chapter on "Leadership," which the Table of Contents puts under "Scoutcraft." Obvious origins in Wood Badge 21/NYLT.


WOW! FINALY teaches dishwahing according to generally-accepted health and safety standards. Took what? Twenty-four years.


Assumes all pocket knives are stainless steel, which is mostly correct these days. Mostly. (Wait until they use the dish-wahing suggestion on the old Scout knife dad gave him.)


"Safe Knife Use" refers to folding knives only, although BSA still sells fixed-blade knives and most kids will use them in Scouting and elsewhere.


Fusing leaves out advice to taper soft end with tool to prevent lumps that can jam. In fact, illustrations show lumps as if that was desired end.


Tripod lashing directions partially correct ("spread legs . . into position"). Illustration and first step in text still wrong (You would have to pull legs together to make a tripod as illustrated, requiring very sloppy lashing.). That illustration has been used 75% of the time since 1948.


But why advice on tying a necktie? (Echoes of 1972?)


What do YOU see?

Link to post
Share on other sites

Actually I believe GBB is mentioned, and better yet I thought I saw some of his passages lifted from previous editions in toto.


Also I believe some of BP's artwork is in the book, but not much.


From the glancing I've done of it, it seems better than the previous two editions. And it appears to be 110% better than the 1970s ed. I like the use of artwork and photos. I liek the fact that it's topic oriented instead of advancement oriented. the Again I'm old fashioned. don't care how long ti takes to get First Class, as long as you are having fun and learning something.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Just picked up a copy today, flipped through and was somewhat impressed, like the artwork, also liked the little addendum booklet that comes with. My son who is a Star liked it, he is teaching camp cooking this weekend and read the cooking section, his comments were this is a good getting started guide, but not so much for the older scouts, but overall he liked it. Had to tell him he has to finish in the book he started, according to the council. but he will get one anyway just to have. Doesn't matter what I think, only matters what the boys think about it.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, I don't have the most "recent" printing of the 11th Ed to compare to. I have the third printing. I see several changes and/or rewording in rank requirements between the two. I know some of these were added in the past couple of years.


Some examples:

Scout Spirit is now better defined for all ranks.

EDGE appears in Tenderfoot AND Life requirements.

Swimming Requirements for Second Class and First Class can NO LONGER BE WAIVED by the troop committee.

Leave No Trace is required for Second Class

You no longer need to light a fire for Second Class. I assume this is a nod to the many parts of the Country where it's difficult to obtain permission to have an open fire due to dry weather conditions.

Attempt at recruitment (the one invited doesn't need to join) and Internet Safety are part of First Class.



I've only glanced briefly at it with the expectations it would be more of the same of the previous two editions--more watering down. It appears that's not the case and it does seem better organized. Within the requirements, they've brought back the page numbers the scout can look-up in the book to complete the requirement.


Book references a companion website: http://www.bsahandbook.org


As of this post, that website isn't up and running. You get redirected to the useless (IMO) BSA National site.


Oh, and BAMSAM, you might want to look more carefully at the new book as your council is incorrect about your son being able to finish using the old requirements. See page 443: "The rank requirements in this book are official as of January 1, 2010. If a scout has started work toward a rank before that date using requirements that were current before January 1, 2010, he may complete that rank only using the old requirements. Any progress towards a rank that is begun after January 1, 2010, must use the requirements as they are presented in this Handbook or in the Boy Scout Requirements book."(This message has been edited by moxieman)

Link to post
Share on other sites

"Haven't seen it but heard there are minimal reference to merit badges & EDGE heavy."


Page 53 ("Teaching Edge") plus 57 words on p. 59. The Teaching Edge sounds like a new label for fairly classic active learning - making it clear that the Scout learns by application to the end that he can do it himself, independently.


And I just noticed that the water purification section (p. 267) is off base. The new Sawyer filter aside, filtering MAY "make water safe for drinking" IF no dangerous vuruses are present. (And the illustration of a filter isn't a filter.) The illustrated sodium hypochlorite and iodine MAY "make water safe for drinking" IF there are no giardia or cryptosporidium present. It misses using the chemicals to followup on a filter.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Haven't seen it yet, but a reorganization by skill rather than T-2-1 is much-needed!


It doesn't belong under Scoutcraft, but tying a tie is a very useful skill... one might even say a survival skill on job interviews in this economy!


I was at one point the only man in sight backstage at my daughter's dance recital earlier this year, and got shanghaied into performing that task for a young man in the show. Only thing is, I had to tie the darn thing on myself, pull it off (intact) and put it on him, because I couldn't tie it on him directly. My hands could only remember how to tie it around my own neck.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Just got a copy of the new handbook and have done a quick glance through. Vast improvement over the last couple of editions, especially the last one.

While there are still lots of pictures, they are mostly useful pictures, whereas in the last edition they were there to take up space, that was there because of good info being taken out.

Glad to see more how to info being back in it.

The 11th Edition was glitzy with no real use. Now it looks like a handbook that could really be used by a Scout.



Guess I'm one of the old ones. When I was in Cub Scouts, many moons ago, one of the requirements was to show how to tie a tie. Maybe it should be added back.


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Create New...