Which did the US Army choose?

Now that the US Army has announced that they have narrowed down their pool of camouflage schemes for potential replacement of the ACU pattern, we know that Hyperstealth’s entry is among the finalists.  I dropped by ADS (who is partnered with Hyperstealth) today at the SHOT show to talk to Guy Cramer about his entry.  He showed me what he called Version B, which is 99% the same as Version A, which is one of the four patterns currently being looked at by the Army.  In other words, most of us probably wouldn’t be able to tell the difference.  Take a look:

Will the Army’s new camo look like this?

Also, don’t forget to check out my article about some new kit I spotted for HALO jumpers at the SHOT show.  Please hit the like button to share this with your friends.

Kit Up! contributor Jack Murphy is a former Ranger, Special Forces Soldier and is the author of the military thriller Reflexive Fire.

{ 242 comments… read them below or add one }

Brian January 20, 2012 at 8:24 am

So these patterns are different enough from MARPAT to justify the development expense… how, exactly? It looks a lot like these patterns and is ready to field right now.

Things were a lot easier a decade ago when the "we all have to look different" mentality hadn't kicked in yet.

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Jeff the Baptist January 20, 2012 at 11:25 am

MARPAT contains the Marines globe and anchor embedded in the pattern. Marines aren't particularly happy about Navy guys wearing it. The Army isn't going to use MARPAT, but could use something similar.

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Lance January 20, 2012 at 12:07 pm

the Marines set it up really for Navy personnel to wear MARPAT like uniforms only when working with Marines. Most Seebees and other navy personnel now still use M-81 woodland or 3 color desert.

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steuben January 20, 2012 at 8:25 am

Looks MARPATy. What's the deal with this changing camo patterns all the time? I seriously don't get it. Multicam is good enough, as in, there's only so much a camo pattern can do for you.

How does a digi-pattern perform against, say, german-bundeswehr-style "flecktarn" with its splotches and all? And how does one measure that?

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Jeff the Baptist January 20, 2012 at 11:30 am

Multicam might be good enough, but if the Army can develop it's own pattern that performs similarly then they can potentially save a lot of money. No only would they not have to pay Crye for multicam, but their potential supply base opens up which would further reduce costs.

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CavGuy02 January 20, 2012 at 8:45 am

Isn't the Army going to invest in 3 seperate patterns for uniforms?

Glad I'm getting out soon. I've already got tons of BDU, DCU, ACU, Multi Cam, gear/pouches/et al that my storage shed looks like an Army-Navy store!

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SeanN January 20, 2012 at 9:00 am

i think all of you are underestimating how much the army is willing to shell out to avoid admitting that it did something stupid.

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majrod January 20, 2012 at 10:28 am

Nice scoop kitup.

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majrod January 20, 2012 at 11:10 am

SeanN – I think the Army is doing quite a good job at publicly showing it didn't get the job done.

The branch that started all this mess by copyrighting its pattern for the first time in history and denying its use to other branches, the Army twice, has escaped any responsibility for this fiasco or the process that has given us EIGHT different patterns among four branches. Wonder how much that cost?

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Luke January 20, 2012 at 9:01 am

Imagine that – when I joined we had two types of uniform – BDU and DCU (BDU for home, DCU for deployments to middle east) – couple years later someone had a brilliant idea to switch to one, the almighty ACU – same uniform for home and deployment. Fast forward and Army re invents the wheel – ACU for home and MultiCam for deployments in Afghanistan. Now they are going to combine ACU pattern with MutliCam colors – Jeez – Five different uniforms within 10 years, not to mention the velcro.
I am with you CavGuy02 – I have tough boxes on top of tough boxes of used uniforms, nylon gear and other stuff in all types of uniform patterns. I am glad that someplace, someone is getting rich – or lobbying to get rich on new type of uniform.

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Luke January 20, 2012 at 9:06 am

Besides, when I was in Afghanistan my understanding was that MultiCam was for combat troops who actually left the wire and could blend in with the environment better when in the field, rest of the folks would remain wearing ACU – when I went back again almost all soldiers I saw in BAF were wearing MultiCam – regardless of job. Millions of dollars spent on uniform and gear to go with it for people who never leave 100 meter square between their hooch and their desk.

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Jack Murphy January 20, 2012 at 9:13 am

Uniformity is important…mmmmokay!

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jagersmith January 20, 2012 at 9:19 am

Yeah, REMFs and Fobbits gotta look good, too! I remember in the good old woodland days when my sergeant cam walking up in ACU for the first time, and I thought "What's that? Camo for a light sprinkling of snow on sagebrush?"

Gotta justify Natick's budget, though…

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Jack Murphy January 20, 2012 at 9:34 am

When I was in Iraq back in the day, REMFs and Fobbits wore brown t-shirts and cargo shorts as their uniform since they would never leave the FOB short of being overrun by an odd battalion of pith helmeted NVA soldiers.

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delacroix21 January 20, 2012 at 9:20 am

SO many things to say but whats the point. This whole ordeal has been a big mess with millions spent, I just dont knwo what to say anymore.

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Daniel January 20, 2012 at 9:22 am

"Will the Army's new camo look like this?"
I hope not.

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Camo Fanatic January 20, 2012 at 9:23 am

This looks pathetic for a entry by ADS/hyperstleath.
I was looking for a more complex/better pattern from them….
I hope this new army camo project isn't another failure. =/

My hope lies with the Brookwood Companies.
Hopefully they created a good pattern.

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Jack Murphy January 20, 2012 at 9:32 am

I actually asked Guy about this since the new pattern shown here has those big splotches of color as opposed to past Hyperstealth patterns (like Desert Dune which I wore in Iraq) or PenCott's Badlands (which I reviewed for Kit Up!) and he told me that the reason is simply that those large patterns perform better. Apparently, the Army's independent testing confirms that statement since the pattern they picked for the top four is almost identical to the one shown above. I guess time will tell!

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Matt G. January 20, 2012 at 12:20 pm

I've been told that camps with an even distribution of small color dots end up blending together when viewed from afar so the person sticks out because you have this environment with uneven splotches of color all around and then this one spot that looks completely even and it's obvious. so patterns with larger, uneven splotches of color work better. Ive never carried a gun professionally but I like multicam. But that's mostly because it blends perfectly with oklahoma's odd environment. We get cold winters and hot humid summers so you end up with lush greenery mixed with yellow dead grass and arid sandy dirt. So multicam works perfectly.

Its pretty obvious that the whole "one camo for all" thing is stupid. We should settle on one damn pattern that works and have it in several color schemes to match possible AO's. The majority would be arid pattern, Since it seems everyone who hates us lives in the desert, but with some stocks of a more green jungley pattern and a small stock for snowy operations.

But I turn wrenches for a living, so take that for what its worth.

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Camo Fanatic January 20, 2012 at 12:25 pm

The big ******** do perform better when at long ranges.
The reason why is because it prevents the pattern from "blobbing" up.
UCP ,MARPAT ,and many other generic digital patterns suffer at long ranges because it doesn't have a good distinct macro pattern and thus blobs up.
The trade-off is that the big ******** don't do quite well in short distances…
With really no pixal noise and no other alternative technique for short ranges (from what i see).
I don't think it will be as effective at shorter distances.

I just think they could have done better.

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Camo Fanatic January 20, 2012 at 12:30 pm

The ******** is supposed to be splotches.
I misspelled it. =/

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crackedlenses January 20, 2012 at 9:44 am

Ugh, at least MARPAT/CADPAT/UCP looked decent, this stuff looks like a cheap rip-off; I understand trying to keep UCP for garrison, but fielding this crap?…..

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Mick January 20, 2012 at 10:34 am

Still holding out hope for multicam (or their equivalent entry) or something similar to win… and looking forward to the unveiling of the other patterns as well.

Also, surprised that A-tacs didn't get into the final mix.

Murphy, you do good reporting… I hope you're doing some digging and will eventually (post SHOT madness) put out your analysis with some pics of the entries, and thoughts why some made the cut and some didn't…

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Jack Murphy January 20, 2012 at 10:56 am

I will stay on it but I don't have that much more on this topic at the moment. Guy Cramer shared what he could when I talked to him but I have not gotten any intel from the other three venders.

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Luke January 20, 2012 at 10:44 am

Watch, class A's are next….

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Caleb January 20, 2012 at 10:46 am

Jack,

Any word if the Army is going to a standard color for ocie stuff? Like say the usmc coyote brown for equipment and pouches.

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Jack Murphy January 20, 2012 at 10:55 am

No, I haven't heard anything about that but it would make sense. SF and Rangers went that route.

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majrod January 20, 2012 at 10:54 am

Nice scoop kitup

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straps January 20, 2012 at 11:08 am

Oooh MARPAT with a drop shadow. Good to see that first-year graphic designers get to participate in this process. Weak.

Reeeeally looking forward to a spy photo of the Crye entry. Everyone's aware that Crye's entry is *NOT* Multicam, right?

The path from Crye's scorpion to Multicam to their closely-held ACIP entry, combined with Crye's continued r_evolution of military kit, makes them my last hope for retiring in a uniform half as effective as the one I was issued when I first enlisted.

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xcalbr January 20, 2012 at 11:13 am

This is ridiculous…how about they make all branches of the military wear multicam and be done with it? these camo schemes are a waste of money and time.

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Riceball January 20, 2012 at 11:28 am

A bit of a nitpick but the camouflage pattern currently being used by the Army is called UCP (Universal Camouflage Pattern), ACU refers to the uniform itself and can be in any camo pattern.

Back to the subject at hand. I like this new pattern, at least based on what I can tell from, what appears to be, cell phone pics. I like the dark shading next to each of the pixel blocks giving them more depth and dimension although I don't know enough about camouflage science to know whether or not this really helps or not.

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T-9 January 20, 2012 at 11:52 am

Why all the services don't just adopt the same camo is beyond me. It either works or it doesn't.

It was that way at one point with the greenie BDUs in the 80's/90's…

But I don't get the current thought process here. Rocks are rocks, trees are trees, and there's a good camo pattern or there ain't. The rocks and trees don't care if you're Army, AF, or Marine…and in a day where the acquisitions offices are under so much pressure to streamline and save $$ you'd think they'd all just get on one contract. I blame the CJCS and the individual staffs for f'ing this up year after year after year.

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T-9 January 20, 2012 at 12:00 pm

I'm going to piggyback on this and make the point that when they do this they cost all the people wearing the uniform $$. That clothing allowance (for enlisted guys) only comes once a year. And depending on what you're doing, alterations, velcro, patches… yer freaking killin' these guys in the wallet.

As if they don't have enough to worry about.

I've never said what I did in the AF on this site, but I had a job once that required that my uniform couldn't be faded (dress or BDU) and everything had to be tailored to fit. Back in my day, 1 new set of BDUs cost me about $200 just to wear it to work. That was before all the pay raises when I was an E-5 taking home $2k a month. And that doesn't include all the other bells and whistles I had to purchase from clothing sales: ribbons (holy crap), boots, socks, hats, undies… I think you get the idea, don't know if it's the same today.

I had high profile jobs (lots of shiny bars and stars around). Maybe it's not that bad for the guys in the shizzle gettin shot at, but still: how many uniforms do you wear out on a combat tour? 20?

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straps January 20, 2012 at 2:19 pm

Last time I heard about tailoring of utility uniforms it was (a) prohibited by regulation in two Branches that I was aware of, and consequently (b) "directed" informally in voluntary assignments sought by people who would rather have a certain assignment than a valid IG complaint. Oh, and poofters.

Every time I went downrange I came home to a full stock of new uniforms. Our loggies had a clue, so the LTs (and other officers who deigned to leave the wire with their troops) tended to "find" uniforms frequently enough to meet their higher standard.

The earliest that UCP gear will "wear out"is 2014. Given that the ACIP hasn't met too many of its late milestones (and the looming defense cuts), the move from UCP will surprise N O B O D Y. ****, I have on my bulletin board a policy letter clearing enlisted personnel to wear the black fleece and WC/DCU ECWCS if that's all their units issue. Not gonna tell you where I work 'cuz I don't want the signatory to get burned for trying to do the right thing, but I'm sure other well-intentioned leaders will move to respect and protect the finances of the individuals (and units) under their leadership.

The odd AD junior officer (who will be coming into a very, VERY different Army by the time UCP goes away) or augmentee Reservist may get chewed up in the transition from UCP. Soldiers who take their work seriously enough to invest in their own equipment WILL also feel the burn. Hopefully, the utility of the chosen camo will be worth it…

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Lance January 20, 2012 at 12:08 pm

Yuck looks horrible just do the right thing and force the Marines to shut up and adopt MARPAT and keep old woodland and Multicam for the transitional pattern!.

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straps January 20, 2012 at 2:21 pm

You lost me..

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mpower6428 January 20, 2012 at 2:04 pm

blocky digital patterns are SOOOO last decade. spotty is the new black. oh and btw ITS WINTER, where are the rich browns or (god forbid) orange accents…?

i am putting the US army on the list of people who will not dress me, along with my mother.

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Gage January 20, 2012 at 2:08 pm

Why's everyone dissing the design? It's a **** of a lot better and ACU. ACU would have had potential if the colors weren't light green. If the Army made 2 versions (dark green and tan) then they could have saved a lot of time and money. Anyways, I like it the design. Reminds me of CADPAT.

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Jack Murphy January 20, 2012 at 2:31 pm

I think that people are rightly frustrated and upset with the US Army's epic fail when it comes to camouflage patterns. ACU's are massive case of fraud, waste, and abuse right in all our faces and as far as I know, no one has been held accountable.

Also, this topic is so subjective that we can all look at pictures on the internet of various camo schemes and argue our points until the sun explodes in a few hundred billion years, all without advancing any legit scientific evidence. I made mention of this when I reviewed PenCott's Badlands pattern. Although I liked it, you need serious scientific testing to determine the effectiveness of a pattern. Throwing around terms like, "stupid" or "looks like s**t" on the net doesn't really mean anything.

I'm not in love with this pattern from Hyperstealth, I don't own stock in the company. I'm as frustrated as everyone else. My only point is, let's subject it to some hardcore objective testing along with the other patterns. May the best pattern win. No sense in getting bent out of shape because a commercial vender is offering a pattern that you or I don't necessarily care for.

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Jack Murphy January 20, 2012 at 2:34 pm

One additional point: I could care less how dumb it looks if it effectively keeps soldiers concealed longer than competing patterns. I'm willing to bet that some bright young star at the Pentagon picked ACU's because he/she thought it "looked good" and so decided to forgo the 50 or so other patterns that our preformed it.

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Riceball January 20, 2012 at 2:44 pm

Another thing to consider is the quality of the photography, no offense to Jack, but the photography is pretty crappy and I don't think that they're very indicative of what the patterns really look like in person.

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Jack Murphy January 20, 2012 at 2:48 pm

That's a fair point. I had some trouble with the camera, when I used the flash it washed out the colors.

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straps January 20, 2012 at 2:50 pm

Probably not that young (though it is funny how officers young for their rank who get assigned there age in dog years)…

..and definitely not that bright.

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Gage January 21, 2012 at 6:48 am

Very valid points. I meant to say "It looks a h*ll of a lot better THAN ACU" though. You're definetly right about the testing. Also, I still don't see why people don't like the design. The large splotches will blend in with the other colors at effective distance.

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straps January 20, 2012 at 2:37 pm

I believe the branch that copyrighted its pattern was the USMC. Go ahead and try to buy "genuine" MARPAT fabric on the open market.

Analysis has revealed that the Army (PEO-Soldier, I believe) took MARPAT, removed the EGA, applied the "Urban Track" color scheme from the tests designed to find a pattern superior to WC and 3CDC, doubled up its minor color with a second hit of Sage Foliage, and submitted that. Some kind of star chamber selection committee hacked off (curiously, documentation was "misplaced") and UCP was foisted upon us.

Far as service branding, that's here to stay. When the Navy cuts a few more uniforms out of its clothing bag there can be a discussion of the fiscal impact of branch-specific utility uniforms ;).

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straps January 20, 2012 at 2:43 pm

UCP color on the Multicam scheme? Where'd that come from?

And tough to do, given that Multicam has a 6 colors and UCP has 3.

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straps January 20, 2012 at 2:46 pm

Uh, Class A's have been replaced by watered down dress blue disaster known as the ASU.

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Jack Murphy January 20, 2012 at 2:49 pm

That's a positive bullet on some General's OER right there…

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Luke January 20, 2012 at 3:16 pm

LMAO

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USAF WX January 20, 2012 at 2:50 pm

This looks like it could be more effective than ACU's, but really? The Army already has MultiCam. What the crap. We have other expenses to consider for the DOD, like say, replacements for the F15, F16, and F18(C&D models). Or how about replacing the M16/M4? We have 40yr old tech that needs replacing, We have B-52's that my Dad flew in the 1960's still operational. And the Army is spending more money on camo, when the pattern they're fielding in Afghanistan is already purchased and better than what they had. I'm concerned, We spend the DOD's budget on UAV's, Stealth fighters, and camo we don't need. I understand that marines are different than soldiers, and sailors are different than airmen, and everybody is different than everyone else. Give us the same utilities and put different tapes on them, and be done with it. With the joint nature of war these days, everyone having different camo is dumb, naturally I'm gonna shoot the guy who looks different, regardless of whether he's important or not. The bad guys use intel too, and they know who wears what. Make it so no one stands out and everything is fine. Let your dress uniform show that your service is unique.

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USAF WX January 20, 2012 at 3:09 pm

I'm guessing you were honor guard or something. I had a SSgt who was honor guard and he had the same complaint. One thing I'm glad for about the ABU's is that I don't need to iron them, or get them pressed and starched. I put them on in the morning after picking them up off my floor, or off my bedpost where I put them the night before. My BDU's didn't cost me that much to wear, but a press job would last about a week, and then I'd have to do it again, and the amount of time I spent ironing them because I was too cheap to get them pressed was too much. I wish I could just have pin on rank though, sewing my stripes on new uniforms is a pain in the a**.

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Heeellnooo January 20, 2012 at 3:22 pm

Oh god, it looks as nasty as UCP.

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Jack Murphy January 20, 2012 at 3:25 pm

My comments above might offer some perspective…

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Matt January 20, 2012 at 3:37 pm

It doesn't really matter, the Army will end up doing something stupid, and you'll end up with soldiers wearing cheap knock-off multicam BDU's (probobly from Hyperstealth) under a basically UCP plate carrier. It's really sad that ATAC-S was eliminated but inevitable, kinda how the IC comp. will lead to nothing more than an M4 with ambi controlls. I think MARPAT is one of the best camos out there but even I will admit that multicam is a solid camo- the Army should just stick with it.

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johhny January 20, 2012 at 3:39 pm

Is it on the table that whichever pattern is adopted that corresponding nylon gear such as pouches, packs, etc also be printed in that pattern? Or will the uniforms themselves only be in the winning pattern, and all nylon stuff worn over them be in some solid color scheme such as khaki/coyote/dark earth? I think that is beyond the scope of this article but maybe an eye opener for future content/something to share!

I am actually curious as to how they specifically test the effectiveness of each pattern at varying distances and in various times of day and environments.

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Jack Murphy January 20, 2012 at 3:53 pm

Johnny, I'm interested in this as well. The kit that Rangers wear is all a dark green color ("Ranger" green) and the kit that SF is issued is all in a khaki color. I'd think it would make sense for the Army as a whole to go in that direction but this is the same Army that used to make soldiers wear camelbaks under their BDU jackets for uniformity's sake. We'll see.

Thus far the testing was explained to me like this: there were something like a hundred patterns and they tested them by simply having soldiers look at pictures of each pattern against some kind of natural background. They rated each pattern on a scale of 1-100 and that was how the top four patterns currently under consideration were chosen. That test set sounds seriously lacking to me but it wasn't my idea!

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majrod January 20, 2012 at 4:19 pm

Jack – You might want to check up on the rangers. They aren't wearing ranger green anymore.

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Jack Murphy January 20, 2012 at 5:06 pm

I've seen the pictures of them multicamed out. Are they still getting issued that RSLICS kit bag at CIF or is it all multicam kit now?

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majrod January 20, 2012 at 8:56 pm

Multicam. Shoot me an e-mail if you want more details. Brandon has it.

Matt January 20, 2012 at 10:02 pm

From what i've heard; when the Army chooses a pattern they will have the company that makes it reproduce it in different color-ways using the same template. So the Army will have woodland, desert, and transitional BDU's. BDU's would be issued based on operational envirernment and all other kit would be in the transitional pattern; kinda like the USMC's Marpat/Cyote tan.

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Lance January 20, 2012 at 3:40 pm

I mean for woodland and desert scheme use MARPAT or original woodland desert. Keep OEF multicam for the in-between camo.

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Orly? January 20, 2012 at 4:11 pm

I believe it was just the competition to get a better camoflauge.

The USMC simply came up with MARPAT.

The Army's search for a better camo DID lead to the development of Multicam in the FIRST competition (which, imho is superior to MARPAT).

No one held up a gun to whoever says the final say, and forced them to choose UCP. They HAD the option of Multicam, but chose the pattern with battleship grey.
Now after properly fielding OCP, they want to go back instead of going with what works.

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majrod January 20, 2012 at 8:54 pm

orly – The USMC specifically stated that MARPAT could not be used both in the original effort that resulted in UCP and the current effort.

In the first competition MARPAT was actually selected as the GI's favorite in a poll reported in Army Times in '02. The response wa it's copyrighted. Last year the Corps objected to the use of MARPAT even as a comparison pattern in the study and the CSM stated again the pattern is proprietary.

You need to go back and check the facts.

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xcalbr January 21, 2012 at 3:30 pm

MARPAT never competed against multicam…

I believe that multicam is superior, and should have been forced upon all branches to wear, though that is a entirely different argument.

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Marmatt January 20, 2012 at 4:49 pm

Caleb,

From the little bit that I have been reading, I believe that there will be three distinct patterns (woodland, desert/arid, transitional) and possibly a fourth pattern for OCIE (Organizational Clothing and Individual Equipment). There was also talk of updating the testing requirement to have the PPE for the next round be OCP, due to its current use and prevalence.

I would surmise that the four patterns in the photo above are, from left to right: OCIE, Desert, Transitional, and Woodland.

-Matt

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NyMike January 20, 2012 at 5:35 pm

It's not a done deal – it's just one of those in the running.

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Jake January 20, 2012 at 5:44 pm

It will never end they have been doing this for many of decades.Yes they pick one now and swear this is it then down the road they change again.Want an investment that makes you money? get into the camo business for the military.

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jm January 21, 2012 at 12:06 am

Too bad Pencott didn't make the cut.

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Elijah January 21, 2012 at 12:19 am

Kilroy was here. Here am I.

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Jon January 21, 2012 at 1:50 am

UCP looks decent? Why keep a uniform just for garrison? It's a waste of the government not to mention joe's money. Since joe is the one who has to spend most of it. Since our "clothing" allowance really covers what we need to buy yearly.

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Mr.E January 21, 2012 at 5:29 am

What's the official reason for the USMC being so protective of MARPAT? I understand that having it licenced is probably a bit of a money-spinner for them, but what's the reasoning behind so adamantly denying it to the other services?

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Gage January 21, 2012 at 6:51 am

Scroll up towards the first comments.

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majrod January 21, 2012 at 10:06 am

http://www.armytimes.com/news/2011/06/army-marine
http://www.armytimes.com/news/2010/12/marine-marp
http://www.armytimes.com/community/opinion/milita
http://www.leatherneck.com/forums/showthread.php?…

This whole uniform fiasco is a HUGE controversy waiting for a 60 minutes expose. ALL the branches wasted money and the Corps contribution is copyrighting a uniform and refusing to share it (minus their emblem) with other branches.

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JBAR January 21, 2012 at 11:05 am

I am Navy but live on a Marine Corps base. I see Marpat (desert & woodland) and all of the NWU variants every day. All of the uniforms, including the ACUs use the same digital pattern, but different colors. Yes, there are the USMC and Navy emblems embedded into the pattern, and AOR I is vertical, but they are all still the same. The digital pattern has been and is still in use by the DOD with more than one branch. If the DOD wanted to consolidate uniforms, they could. Too bad money and politics are the defining factors. Personally, I like A-TACS. It just blends in better overall at different ranges. The colors are earth tones. The pattern fades in and is not blocky. I cannot imagine why they got dropped from the current program. The lawsuit is obviously frivilous. The Pencott pattern seems good with the colors and the kind of dazzle areas. For current simplicity and smart use of resources, the Marines have it right. The coyote brown for gear and weapons is smart. The Marpat has a good blend of dark earth and green. It works very well. The simplest and fiscally responsable thing would be to adobt the Marine setup and maybe see if an arid scheme in the same pattern would be beneficial. Yes, the DOD can get around the copyright issue. The smartest thing to do for the warfighter is to do what the Army is doing now and opening up the competition to more submissions and to use scientific AND warfighter input all without political influence. Either way, the all branches need to be in the same uniform for financial and identification reasons. Another issue is does camo really matter that much for all of these macro and micro patterns? Bigger patterns are better at distance. Smaller patterns blend in to one solid color at distance. Should we just stick to olive drab and kacki? All of the uniforms get dirty and negate the smaller oatterns and colors most of the time anyway. In that split second, or at distance, how can someone pause to know who is who anymore? The end will tell and my guess is that it will be like always and will end up like any DOD program and be about adopting an inferior or incomplete product so that it can be continually "improved" to milk the money. I hope it works out though for the safety of all of our guys. Another issue is global copying or adoption. Allies are not always going to be allies. Why give them the same exact or too similar uniforms? Just my observations, thoughts, and questions all blobbed into one.

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JBAR January 21, 2012 at 11:15 am

Does anyone have the references for how and why ACUs, or UCP, whatever it is called was selected? I know it is a controversy. I just want to know how exactly it was chosen.

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Jack Murphy January 21, 2012 at 1:42 pm

Somebody knows, but nobody is talking.

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orly? January 21, 2012 at 2:45 pm

Apparently Multicam/OCP wasn't in the 2004 trials from what I'm getting here.

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majrod January 21, 2012 at 3:16 pm

JBAR – Jbar – I’m getting inspired to write a piece. I served in the Infantry Battlelab for almost four years during this ’02-’05 timeframe. I was not personally involved but met many of the officers and NCOs that were. The truth is it was not as documented as it should have been.
From discussions with those individuals a battery of tests were conducted. They ranged from nonscientific “like” polls to comparisons of the camo patterns in different environments and measuring how long it took test soldiers to ID the pattern. There were also NVG evals. I’ll mention some other considerations in a second post.
One thing that infuriates me are those (especially soldiers) who insinuate those involved were negligent, self serving or unqualified. All those involved that I met were combat vets when the army wasn’t chock full of them. They were all ranger qualified if not out of reg’t itself. The overwhelming majority were infantry. I could only pray that those that throw about uniformed opinions about those soldiers that did the best job they could be judged in the same manner by others who are as unqualified and ignorant of the process as to how they performed their duty. There’s an old rule in the Infantry that you don’t second guess the man on the ground.

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majrod January 21, 2012 at 3:18 pm

Other considerations that impacted the ultimately doomed decision to adopt UCP was the Army’s desire to save soldiers money by one pattern for everything. Right or wrong the intent was good but like many acquisition efforts sometimes good intentions just don’t jive with reality. There is no such thing as a universal pattern.

Another consideration that went into the colors of UCP was the volumes of data that predicted our next fight would be in an urban environment. Some of the classified stuff pointed towards central aisia and there was also the obvious threats in the middle east. I speculate those two factors heavily influenced the tan and grays in the ultimate selection.

It would also be inaccurate to ignore the human component to the selection and the personal involvement of the big wigs. The CSA wanted a minimalist approach emphasizing “warrior” which is why we lost things like qual badges and branch insignia. IMHO that was just as silly as the beret. One doesn’t instill a warrior ethos (or uniqueness for the Marines) by changing uniforms. Training and culture are much more important (and infinitely harder to do).

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Jack Murphy January 21, 2012 at 3:26 pm

It sounds like a series of poorly thought out decisions were made, infantry or not, they should have known better. Even based on threat assessments coming from Central Asia, it doesn't make much sense. Central Asia (Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Afghanistan, and even Western China) simply isn't very urban. Interesting that those reports pointed to the region. I've suspected that we are stirring up trouble with this "East Turkestan" fabrication…

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jake January 21, 2012 at 1:13 pm

JBAR, it's all about who gives the best kickbacks in cash money sad to say.

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mpower6428 January 21, 2012 at 2:14 pm

some Army general somewhere got an outstanding retirement deal. too bad he didnt have just a little more self respect.

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Jack Murphy January 21, 2012 at 2:38 pm

You should hear some of the stories about how the Barret .50 cal made it into our inventory…

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Jeff the Baptist January 21, 2012 at 2:22 pm

I've never met a Marine who would begrudge corpsmen wearing the uniform, especially in combat. On the other hand the only time I've seen Navy personnel wearing MARPAT was at a briefing stateside. The Marine colonel sitting next to me wearing Service Cs was giving him a very hairy eyeball.

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T-9 January 21, 2012 at 2:31 pm

I was military training instructor for 6 years. Yes every uniform I had was tailored. Call me a poofter to my face.

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xcalbr January 21, 2012 at 2:37 pm

the problem is the idea that the army can "save" money by developing their own pattern…

There is no point in reinventing the wheel. Enough money has already been spent on camouflage uniforms. If the branches of the military wore a common uniform, then things will be a lot better logistically.

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majrod January 21, 2012 at 3:37 pm

Final aggravating factors to this saga is the Marine position which drove every service to invent their own patterns (and I’ve said enough on that) and that soldiers love to complain and are spoiled to a degree. Is UCP perfect? Heck no. Does it matter when you are coming out of the back of a 30 ton Bradley or in a close quarters urban fight where nothing but wearing concrete is going to make you look like a building? Heck no. Likewise in the mountains of Afghanistan where UCP DOES blend in but stands out like a neon sign among any green areas. Personally, I came from a time when camouflage was something you did not something you bought and I served in an Infantry BN that wore woodland BDUs as it fought the Tawalkana. Spray paint does wonders.

Yep, UCP/ACU sucked. Soldiers complained to high heaven when the first BDUs came out. They were tougher than jeans and twice as hot. They had “Elvis” collars and were expensive. A SET of jungles was $8 in ’87 and Gen I BDUs were $60. And when Gen II came out a year later they fell apart as quickly as the ACUs did when they first hit the scene. So the latest round of complaints has a sense of déjà vu to me.

The key difference was then you fixed the problem and drove on, there were bigger issues. Today some company invents the tactical sewing kit in its Kevlar carrier, charges you $40 and everyone goes “oooo, ahhhhh, tacticool”.

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majrod January 21, 2012 at 3:50 pm

Oh, for those that took offense at my “spoiled” comment. FTR I believe those that have worn the uniform the last ten years served in the same tradition as Audie Murphy and the greatest generation.

Admiration aside there’s no offense calling a spade a spade. Our troops or branches shouldn’t get a pass when they do dumb or silly things.

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Jack Murphy January 22, 2012 at 9:43 am

I'll drop you a line Maj. Rod. In terms of Central Asia, I was thinking more of China than the GWOT. We are obviously headed for a showdown in the Pacific Rim and I think we are stirring up trouble on China's western border as well.

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Lance January 21, 2012 at 3:43 pm

True but like I said navy personnel working with marines or sometimes on a Marine base wear MARPAT uniforms. Regular Seebees and other navy ground units also wear M81 woodland.

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majrod January 21, 2012 at 4:00 pm

Jack – Look at the reasons those areas might be important. Think OUTSIDE of terror and Afghanistan, UCP/ACUs were not decided upon with an Iraq or Afghan 10 year war in mind. Send me an e-mail and I can discuss a little better vs. putting things out on the web that probably be.

If one wants to learn why bad decisions were made it is better seerved putting oneself in the position of what was known BEFORE the decision was made. Hindsight is always 20/20.

If the Rangers knew who was at Cisterna they would have never gone there.

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majrod January 21, 2012 at 4:03 pm

Same thing I heard from my contacts at PEO Soldier

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MarineNCO January 21, 2012 at 9:02 pm

As an active duty Marine, I can honestly say that I DON'T CARE if the army wants to use the MARPAT pattern. The amount of time, effort and money that is wasted across ALL branches on uniforms is amazing. When we were leaving Manas from Afghanistan, me and my buddies were all amazed seeing the 101st checking in with brand new Multicam everything and throwing away heaps of ACU's in the middle of the floor. What a waste. Don't get me even started on our uniforms. I swear my daughter's barbie dolls don't have the amount of outfits that the Marine Corps has made me purchase and maintain.
If sharing a cammo pattern helps save the tax payers some money and at the same time gets the hooahs out of those ridiculous ACU's, then so be it. Will there be Marines that whine and complain? Of course there will. But we are more than accustomed to not getting our way.

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William C. January 21, 2012 at 9:28 pm

So in what time-span will we we gone from the old BDUs/DCUs to ACU to Multicam to this new camo pattern being selected? Lets not forget the limited fielding of ACU-D.

I thought Multicam was going to be the Army's new official pattern.

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Sean January 22, 2012 at 1:48 am

Anyone complaining hoping the Army does not pick this pattern has not seen it in action. I heard the variant submitted is basically the same and in urban and desert environments it's the best they have seen. So this is basically what the article says but I am just backing it up and I am saying its probably the front runner for desert. I personally have used both Marpats and I personally like the woodland AOR2 for a desert environment like Afghanistan. Against the sand color mud walls in Afghanistan the woodland Marpat treacly looks good and takes on a lot sandier/light brownish color. I am wondering how the Navy's new aor2 will do because it is actually way off woodland Marpat. It's missing the brownish color and seems to only have green and black. I would love to see the marines let everyone have there Marpats, we are all on the same team and you can't beat it. Aor1 in urban is awesome also. The only thing I've seen better in a real city environment with paved roads and cement walkways is a new all dark grey uniform they debuted here a couple weeks ago . Save the money and put all USA military's in the 2 best patterns the Marines AOR1 and AOR2.

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mpower6428 January 22, 2012 at 5:49 am

ive heard some…. but none that impune the quality of the actual system. please dont tell me its "bad"…. or even less then optimal.

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Jack Murphy January 22, 2012 at 6:54 am

It has some issues.

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majrod January 22, 2012 at 8:42 am

Jack – one area (of many) I wholeheartedly agree with you is the silliness of one pattern for evrywhere. Anybody who's spent an appreciable time in the bush knows that is unrealistic. It's like one caliber or weapon for everthing.

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jake January 22, 2012 at 7:47 pm

Kit Up! gets the low down on the finalists for the new Army camo scam!

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Branko Mijatovich January 23, 2012 at 9:54 am

…this reminds me of "digital camo" – well the history of camo on armor and vehicles from the '70s – that was applied to some tracked vehicles back during the "Cold War".

The problem then was painting the squares on the side of your track, or spot painting – this all lead to the four five, then four, color camo we all came to love – except when painting/spot painting and there wasn't any brushes or paint tinner, just mogas and parts cleaning brushes… then came woodland camo.

You know it doesn't matter what "we" the guys and gals on the ground think, it's the ones at Nantucket (sp) that need to justifiy their jobs….

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Riceball January 23, 2012 at 10:19 am

I don't know, I don't really think that Multicam is superior ot MARPAT, at least not in their specific environments. Remember, Multicam was designed as a compromise pattern that works well in most areas but will almost certainly lose out to area/environment specific patterns like MARPAT which comes in woodland and desert. So as a multi-environment/universal pattern, yes, Multicam works better than either MARPAT patterns but for either woodland or desert I'd argue that the two MARPATs work far better in their respective environments.

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majrod January 23, 2012 at 10:32 am

I applaud your mature, professional and selflesss perspective, very common among the Marines I had the privlege of interacting or serving with.

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Sgt Devildog January 24, 2012 at 2:32 pm

Looks a whole lot like MARPAT to me. Just another way the Army is trying to be like the Marines. The only real differenc I see is that the Eagle Globe and Anchor is not present. The only sailors I dont mind wearing MARPAT are our Corpsmen.

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SFC Hill January 24, 2012 at 3:38 pm

Ok this is why the Government is so set on cutting military spending, there is absolutely no reason to change cammo schemes, the grey one used in Iraq and Afghanistan is just fine. It is a MAJOR waste of time and money to spend on a "DIFFERENT COLOR" really!! Stop wasting tax payer dollars!!

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SFC Zimmerman January 24, 2012 at 4:43 pm

I agree with SFC Hill it is atotal waste of funds especially since the force is soon to be reduced. The funds could be better used in providing the basics of military needs for supplies. The current issue is just fine and fits into any place the military would deploy the military without need for drastic changes. Just whos' pockets are the government puircgasing agency trying to line with gold?

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E-1 Zack US Army January 25, 2012 at 12:11 am

If they want to develop a new pattern they need to stay along the lines of the original MultiCam pattern, like the British did with their Multi Terrain Pattern, enough with the pixels already, the pictures Ive seen show me that MultiCam works stateside as well as Afghanistan, at least make it the standard garrison uniform and if we end up fighting in the snow they can develop one that suits that enivornment or any other terrain that MultiCam doesnt cover. One word for the Army, MULTICAM

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LightOwl January 25, 2012 at 9:18 am

Perhaps those at the top of the Mil Food-chain could spend another bazillion $$$$ figuring out a way to make chameleon camo….then all the problems would be solved……desert, woodland, mountain, on-and-on. Has anyone considered that the rag-heads have been fighting US for ten years and the Ruskies for ten years in the same 'camo' [none]…..and they haven't been beaten yet ???? How many more millions in uniforms and technology [not to mention 'lives'] must be spent before the 'machine' makes enough money……yes, it's all about the almighty dollar. When will we ever learn????

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gerbil January 25, 2012 at 5:14 pm

that's full of crap. afghanis never win wars because it's not a war. I guess if you call blowing up children and women and infidels is WINNING. You're an idiot liberal. only morons believe muslims win war. The soviets didn't lose any war, they just left cause they couldn't afford it and because idiots in our government were supplying the mujahadeen retards. Go back to the old world war 2 uniform. By the way if the soviets or the u.s. or anyone else wanted to invade and destroy afghanistan, they can. The problem is they don't have the balls. You just nuke or gas the 7th century life. Some of us aren't brainwashed by the political liars in the media.

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Gerbil Killer January 25, 2012 at 5:34 pm

Gerbil,
I hope you read this, because I really want you to know what an idiot you are. The Soviets lost the war in Afghanistan because of the very thing you are advocating. The Russians tried to dominate with military might. No Army can enter the Middle East and just destroy everything and kill everybody. The United States spends more time trying to build legitimacy for the war than it does fighting. This is because to win, we need the support of the people. If we kill everyone, we get no support, and the allies we do have will turn against us. If we want to help build a better future, we have to prove that our way is better. If we just kill and dominate, we will just breed more resistance, just as the Soviets did. Its idiots like you who give America a bad name and make what we are trying to do even harder. So please, support the military, and SHUT YOUR MOUTH.

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xcalbr January 25, 2012 at 9:32 am

rice, i cannot disagree with you there. multicam is more universal that marpat, though the compelling reason to adopt it is that all countries in our national security strategy are located in temperate/semi-arid regions where a transitional pattern is necessary. I can see marpat being effective in the deep jungle, where the terrain is mostly dark green.

I favor multicam because it has more brown and "earthy" colors in it. It goes back to a point I read about camouflage that most animals are brown and not green for a reason (except ones in the deep jungle).

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xcalbr January 25, 2012 at 9:35 am

I would have been content with MARPAT being adopted by all branches of service when it first came out. Waste of money.

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majrod January 25, 2012 at 9:44 am

It's so silly when Marines claim the Army is trying to be like them. Where Marines trying to be soldiers when they used Army uniforms or camoflage patterns over the last 60 years? Heck no.

You have to be pretty self centered to ignore 60 years of history and cite ONE incident as evidence someone's copying you.

Its one fight, one nation, enough of the "uniqueness".

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majrod January 25, 2012 at 2:21 pm

Meant "Were" Marines not where obviously. My bad

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Gordo January 25, 2012 at 3:32 pm

These patterns are too light in color. They'll standout in lush greens and may show up in moonlight. The reality is we need a common set of joint camo (woodland, desert) worn by all services so that the wearer's service can be identfied when operating together and to reduce friendly fire incidents owing to confusion between camo.

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Chrome January 25, 2012 at 3:32 pm

I agree with xcalbr , with one important fact ! Our goverment pays for these uniform changes and issues them to the service member . Why can't all the branches of service were the same camoflage uniform with its branch logo sygnifying the branch of service ! Therefore saving a lot of money !

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beefsmith January 25, 2012 at 4:32 pm

so that you can tell which branch it is without having to be within reading distance of said personnel

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xcalbr January 25, 2012 at 5:00 pm

at the cost of billions of dollars? holy **** that's sensible…

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captain HANK January 25, 2012 at 4:00 pm

Cant believe the military….those chosen to pick these uniforms must be
CROSS-sighted. Now they have uniforms looking more and more like
my kids PJs..ha (really) AIRBORNE

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LTC JRB January 25, 2012 at 4:05 pm

Yeah, I remember the TERMs wearing even Tigerstripe when they could get away with it. After all, you never knew when a REMF might need to blend in at the' cafeteria – there might be a potato and steak attack!

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EVO January 25, 2012 at 4:07 pm

Multicam nuff said

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LTC JRB January 25, 2012 at 4:10 pm

Now, imagine those of us who have been in since VietNam… How many uniform changes WE'VE seen. I need to retire before they put us in one-piece multicam with a draw-string around our neck.

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thomas thompson January 25, 2012 at 4:30 pm

I am retired but when I was on active duty we had only one uniform,bdu. If it was good enough then it should do for now. If you go to the px or bx now you see a dozen different uniforms. When I was in from the early 60's to the early 80's you weren't allowed off post in any form of fatigue uniform. Maybe if we worried less about uniform patterns we could concentrate more on pay and benefits. During the Vietnam era you never heard our dependents cry about having to go to the food bank or apply for food stamps,we took care of our dependents and lived off what we were paid,our wives worked if needed and that was the way of life in the military.

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William L Kendall January 25, 2012 at 4:31 pm

Kinda funny all of this talk so far. In over 20 years in the military, Army Special Forces and SOG projects I never found a uniform in combat that would stop a bullet. Color, material, etc. really doesn't make much different. It is all pretty and might blend with the area you might be deployed to or in but that little old lead round fired at you goes through all of those colors. When you return home under a draped American flag they don't say what uniform you were wearing. All of the talk about this is simply wasted time. The government will do what they want at the tax payers expens. Anyone disagree with this??

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Jack Murphy January 25, 2012 at 4:42 pm

Mr. Kendall, you served in MACV-SOG? I've spent a lot of time studying this unit…

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Bill Waymire January 25, 2012 at 5:31 pm

Jack, I do believe your two comments dated 20 JAN 2012 at approx. 6:31 pm and 6:34 pm covers this whole camouflage issue. This post answers the questions posed in the "Camo Drama!" blog. In fact, my best buddy spent 24 years in the Army (1980 – 2004) and is an Airborne Ranger. His idea of cammies is the BDU with LPCs. (Man, I get blisters on top of blisters thinking back to the LPCs—before moleskin.) I just hope the Army makes a better decision – based upon qualified tests – than ACU/UCP this time. Of course, Mr. Kendall's remark covers it all; and, this 50-something retired Marine does NOT disagree….the Vietnam guys are my heroes.

P.S. I actually own a set of Rothco ACU BDU because my wife likes the pattern. The pattern is effective at Walgreen's while standing in the Pharmarcy area…..I have seen the effects on their security screen.

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LTC JRB January 25, 2012 at 4:50 pm

Kendall… I don't think I know or have even heard of you. That's unusual.

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Rattlerjake January 25, 2012 at 4:34 pm

Camouflage is secondary. Any camouflage is effective if the soldier uses proper movement and concealment technique. The military wastes more time and money on changing these camouflage patterns because it is about spending money not on improving battle uniforms. Most of the companies that produce the newest gear are retired officers fighting to get huge military contracts. It's really a scam.

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TT January 25, 2012 at 4:39 pm

The idea is to control the availability of the pattern so that people wanting to do harm to our country, our people and our troops to make it hard for them to replicate our uniforms through copyright protections. Multi-Cam is already on the public market and there are already cases of individuals wearing mock US uniforms with intentions of doing harm or smuggle contraband in Multi-Cam and ACU.

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LTC JRB January 25, 2012 at 4:46 pm

I'm afraid I have to agree with you SFC HILL. I just don't believe it warrants such an immense expenditure of both funds and manpower, to say noting about how much of a financial burden my soldiers are going to endure because of the squabble.

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aimal January 25, 2012 at 4:50 pm

The Army began using ACU's as a temporary uniform for Iraq and Afghanistan. Then they realized the the ACU's weren't logical for most Afghanistan situations and made the change to Multi-Cam for a temorary deployment uniform for Afghanistan. The search right now is for a more permanent uniform to take over for the BDU's from the pre-ACU era.

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Richard January 25, 2012 at 5:27 pm

At the beginning of the Afghan war I saw a picture with several locals wearing their normal clothes and several soldiers right next to them wearing ACUs. Except for their faces and beards, the locals were barely distinguishable from the landscape. The guys in the ACUs stood out better than a silhouette on a ridge at sundown. Nothing I have seen so far comes close to the locals daily camo. The point here is that I hope the designers of these uniforms are looking at the locals for inspiration. I doubt it.

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Milagros January 25, 2012 at 5:01 pm

Well said, Mr. Kendall. With the economy like it is, congress saving a dime so they can have another nickle on their paycheck, I don't understand why miilitary focus is on new material for an uniform. Are you going to increase the servicemember allowances to cover the new uniform. It is not worthy. Stop wasting our tax money and focus on something else far more important. As Mr. Kendall said, the uniform, no matter what pattern it is, will not stop a bullett.

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sldrgrl January 25, 2012 at 5:06 pm

so they say…

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Michael D.Heffner January 25, 2012 at 5:07 pm

Ok, lets get this right, The army still HASN'T got a clue. They left BDU'S & DCU for one standard, The ACU!!!!! It Blew up in their faces, Now u still wanna go with sum computer generated pattern….. Wake us SMA & Chief of the Army. Ask your soliders on the ground, They tell you what works. Multicam is big with those i knw who worn them in OEF. It blends better than the other Crap your leaving us with. Also quit spending taxpayers money matching our field gear /OCIE to our uniform…. Follow the Marine Corps in this case, Make it one color that blends in Foilage green perhaps!!!!!!

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sldrgrl January 25, 2012 at 5:12 pm

Can we pleaaaaaase go back to the BDU…it wasn't broken. I'm not sure why someone felt they had to fix it. You go to iraq you get issued an iraq design or go to Afghanistan you get issued an Afghanistan uniform….damn you go to Alaska get issued the Alaska scheme. Why the **** did we have to change our BDU. And then that ****** loud *** velcro. Apparently no one advised the great creators of our great uniforms about noise discipline.

Sldrgrl210

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TJ Smith January 25, 2012 at 5:16 pm

Glad to see that ADS is putting to good use the former Contract Officer that now works for them as a Vice President. The same one that signed the contract to ADS to provide the Army the GEN III cold weather equipment.

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spc. julio chacon January 25, 2012 at 5:18 pm

in my opinion we the army for been my case. there should be,
2 patterns: one for training field trainig, and this pattern well also
be used for campaigns,cobat. in international conflict . psychologically the individual
will be made to understand, physically and mentally , that the personality will change
tours the mission at hand.
the second pattern to be use in daily activities inside american bases, the soldiers soon will undestand, what is required from the use of each uniform. and for political and international relations, the use of the second pattern will show friendship ,with our friendly
nations . and the first pattern will bring insecurity to does countries who are hostile tourds , the us and the free world ! thank you!

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iCanSeeYou January 25, 2012 at 6:33 pm

First off the A in Army should be capitalized, you're in the Army you should know that! We are never going to find one uniform to for all environments, that's a fact as stated in many posts here, and no matter what we think or say here is going to change the minds of people that sit behind a desk and make the decisions, I would just hope that when they do make the decision that they are thinking of the soldier and not trying to hook the vendor up that's going to offer them a job later and it should be prohibited that they be able to accept a job with a vendor that they awarded a contract to for at least 5 years after they get out/retire. All the cross branch arguing about who's uniform is better and who stole who's pattern is childish, it's about being the best we can and having the best equipment/uniforms/weapons regardless of which service brought it into the inventory, we are all here to defend this great nation of ours.

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M Rowe January 25, 2012 at 6:27 pm

I agree that the Marine camo would have worked nicely. If services have to have some distinction this could be done by changing the color and not the pattern design. The military wastes soo much money redoing things that didn't need done in the first place. Wish they would watch developments in sports and hunting equipment. If they had done this Gortex parkas would have been on line much sooner.

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chris January 25, 2012 at 6:35 pm

A-TACS in my opinion would be the best camo for our nations military. You mite have seen it. But if you haven't yet look it up on google at atacs.com

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Special Forces Survi January 25, 2012 at 6:43 pm

When I arrived in Viet Nam, JAN 66, soldiers wore OD fatigues with WHITE cloth nametapes. US Army tapes were BRIGHT YELLOW on black. My collar rank and jump wings were white. The 1st Cav Div patch was an oversize yellow patch with a black diagonal stripe and horse head. Most soldiers used a green Magic Marker to subdue the yellow and white. We have made some camouflage progress since then.

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Gary January 25, 2012 at 7:03 pm

There is a need for a better camo uniform, however, no one camo will be suitable for all enviroments and all seasons of the year. First, the military needs to look at the possible future theater of operations. Clearly, the Middle East desert and a jungle enviroment should be considered when it comes to patterns.

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Erwin January 25, 2012 at 7:17 pm

My God man, why don't they just stick with the Multicam they're now issuing out for deployment to Afghanistan? It's perfect ._.

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Erwin January 25, 2012 at 7:21 pm

And while we're at it we need to make a move to 6.8 ammo

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10yearsafter January 25, 2012 at 7:24 pm

We've been talking for over 3 deployments and we the grunts etc, have decided to go with the reversible scheme, they can name it, one piece jumpsuit…Fire resistant, w/ nomex weave, or not, sew on capable, or not and flake off zippers! Back fit stretch straps w / Velcro grabs for a flattering fit. Plenty of pockets, tourniquet ready… No belts, less Velcro in the key places…You've seen them…The aviator flt suit, except with a few modifications, an eye towards long service life…Ever hear of aviators complain about that uniform? Except maybe in the can. Can our leadership live with formations in peace time all looking like pilots?? Is it cheaper, less pieces…
Sanity and length…

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Ryan January 25, 2012 at 7:27 pm

What's wrong with ATACS?

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Erik January 25, 2012 at 7:58 pm

I don't understand how the Army is choosing an all brownish camo pattern? Did they not learn anything from the STUUPID ACU pattern, god the waist of money…….GO TO the soldiers and see what they think is better, geez they gotta where it in the field! I think the Army waists more money on clothing than a weapon system for the future. Where are the greys, greens, browns, tans in digital? Face it the Army needs several patterns of camo for the world, one camo system is not going to do it. We need one for winter, desert and one regualr pattern for the states. C'mon commons sense!

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Jack Murphy January 25, 2012 at 8:06 pm

Hi Erik,

Please excuse my photography, I was using a decent Sony camera but the lighting in those show rooms made everything come out a little strange. I'll get it fixed for next year. The pattern was overall a brownish color but there are other colors, like green, that fade in and out. As part of the testing, the Army is in fact going to the soldiers and asking what they think is working which is how this pattern was selected. Now the process they are using is debatable… However, now that the Army has selected four patterns to move forward (one of them being 99% just like the one in the picture) they will print out the fabric and construct uniforms for soldiers to actually try out in the next phase of testing. Hope this clears up some of the confusion.

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Vic January 25, 2012 at 8:11 pm

I'm not sure, but those characters/writing on the end of each roll of fabric doesn't look like English. Are we using fabric manufactured and printed outside of the USA?

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MedRet January 25, 2012 at 9:05 pm

So lets change the pattern again? First I think that the ACU was a good idea how well it works well that is up for debate. The fact is that we can all say one works better than the other and all of us can think of at least a few instances that will support our view, but in the end it is not up to us. The Navy in their nice blue cammo. Personally if I was going to be on a ship in the water I would want to wear BRIGHT ORANGE WITH a personal identification beacon so that if I was every in the water I could be spotted from Space. A Marine that has a problem with Navy personel assigned to a Marine unit and they wear a uniform with and EGA needs to remember that he belongs to the Navy also and that guy is their to save his butt. (most of these would be the Coremen/Medics which the Marines do not have any that are not NAVY) For the Air Force well let them do their own thing with a uniform but they will soon change their uniforms to since they seem to follow whatever another branch does with uniforms. THe Army needs to pick one and then stay with it. Personally the ACU should probalby have a counter part for desert/moutain terrian. The idea that one type fits all is rediculous. Every branch has too many uniforms for there service members. Anyone holding onto outdated service uniforms needs to decomission them and be done with holding onto things that are worthless. I do not agree with selling them (unless it is to another service member) And I think that if it is a military uniform then it ought to be illegal for anyone that is not Authorized to wear that uniform to buy them or even have them.

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MedRet January 25, 2012 at 9:14 pm

The BDU's were broke. I say this because somone somewhere decided that they needed to be pressed. Yes this made them look good in the states, but have you ever looked at a uniform that has ever been starched and pressed in IR boy does it light up like the Fourth of July. As for velcro I liked the fact that it was easy to change out patches when going to a new unit, but you are completly right NOISE DISCIPLINE. And they catch on everything. But on the other hand it does save on sewing cost. Everything is a trade off.

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MedRet January 25, 2012 at 9:18 pm

I have to agree that the uniform will not stop a bullet well unless we coat them all in Kevlar but that will only stop so much and would make the uniform heavy. The thing to remember is that if you are harder to see you are harder to hit. I do however think that we could spend or money on better communication systems, weapon systems, or heck a million other things that would make our service men and women more effective in a combat situation as opposed to the time old question of what to wear this deployment.

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KatieBug January 25, 2012 at 9:19 pm

Seriously, it is insane this is an issue, once again. Lets see, pay & benefits may be cut & they are spending money on this?! How many uniform changes have we had in the last 20 years, don't get me started. You know in the end it is all military personnel who end up paying for this. Pay for food, rent, clothes for kids…, not so fast; have to keep up with the ever changing uniform. Come on people we are not gecko's! Oh yes don't forget the useful beret.

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erspark January 25, 2012 at 9:34 pm

Besides if they both wore them, all the couples would be dressed the same at the Marine Corps Ball! : )

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old doc January 25, 2012 at 9:54 pm

I have just a few points for folks to consider.
1. Has "the powers that be" considered talking to seasoned bowhunters and turkey hunters? Get their opinions. To me they seem to be the masters of blending in with their surroundings.
2. Have the costs to Soldiers been considered? Sure, there may be hook-and-loop name tapes, US Army tapes and rank, but everyone knows that names will still have to be sewn on the rucksack, the medium ruck, the assault pack and whatever else the units deem necessary.
3. The boonie should be dropped from production. In three deployments to Afghanistan, I have yet to be allowed to wear it. The Army can save millions (possible exaggeration) by not making them anymore.
4. The BDU. The DCU. "Chocolate Chips". The ACU. MultiCam. And now one more? How many more changes do we have to endure before someone makes up there mind and sticks with it?

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Misty January 26, 2012 at 1:43 am

thats so true! Then you have to go out and buy multi pairs of the uniform let alone boots!

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Retired CSM January 25, 2012 at 9:57 pm

Folks get ready if we have a new sec. of Army or Defense we will need a new hat/baret or head gear also. Got to keep them in high places making the big bucks and every timr we change anything it is for a lot of money, but I remember when we could not afford enough body armour for our troops, but they got pretty new uniforms.

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R. Corrigan January 25, 2012 at 10:05 pm

I dunno. I got through 26 years with three iterations of uniforms…starched fatigues with unsubdued insignia, unstarched green fatigues with subdued insignia, and BDUs. They all kind of worked except, in retrospect, the starched fatigues with white nametags were pretty stupid. These days I follow Army affairs online. On sites like kitup.com and soldiersystems.com you can't go three days without an article on new, revised, or updated camouflage for somebody's uniform. Camouflage has gone from rubbing some dirt on your face to a freaking industry. For chrissake, keep the pattern you got now or pick a new one and then go do something useful. At the nitpick level of microanalysis you've gotten yourselves into, IT DOESN'T MAKE ANY DIFFERENCE.

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MSG ComMed January 25, 2012 at 10:10 pm

Do they have a gecko pattern. I think I would like that. All in all, camo should be designed to break up the human features, like arms, and legs, and ****** features. No manufacture can do that unless they have a ghillie suit. Hate to see how the brass will react to formations in that! Questioning the decisions made by superiors in a forum such as this will not get results. For the life of me, I cannot remember the place to contact for issues….anyone else? Embrace the suck and go with it. What choice do you have?

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MSG ComMed January 25, 2012 at 10:12 pm

should be ****** features. WTH?

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Misty January 26, 2012 at 1:38 am

These look so stupid! Ughhhh lol but I guess it isn't a fashion show and what ever keeps.my husband safe I guess I love the camos they have now but whatever.

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Tlocken January 26, 2012 at 1:55 am

Every one here has made a valid point unfortunately the Army seems **** bent on spending money for a new uniform when Multi-cam does work. Being a soldier my self I just want to see this done and over with. The military should be worrying about other things instead of this, such as fixing our procurement system that is so flawed it should be a crime. That being said I went over to the Ghostex website after checking out Hypersealth's web site and found that they have a pattern called Hotel 3 which by far the best camo I have seen. It is their take on Multi-Cam, there Delta 3 pattern doesn't look bad either. As for the Marines not wanting the Army to wear their uniform, look I get it they want to be different great, you can always tell a marine by their covers, isn't that enough last I checked we are all in the United States Uniformed Services we fight for the same team and the same team usually wears the same uniform so in my humble opinion we should all be wearing the same combat uniform. One team one fight right? Just saying

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Parasniper January 26, 2012 at 3:23 am

I'm amazed at the comments made about the ACU's and different type camouflauge patterns being discussed for approval. Hooah but, has anyone thought about patterns needed for JUNGLE WAREFARE?…..everything mentioned in your discussion thus far is based on CONVENTIONAL WARFARE! Guys wake up.

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Old Soldier January 26, 2012 at 3:31 am

beefsmith, that only matters in garrison, and that used to be a lot easier when the standard uniform in garrison was the service uniform, unless you were doing physical labor such as fixing vehicles – and the fatigue uniform was the attire for such "fatigue details". The combat uniform was only worn for tactical operations.

But it's a newer, kinder, more informal army now, what with everybody wearing the equivalent of blue jeans all the time and brigade change of commands where the general talks about Bob and Alan's performance and goals.

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Old Soldier January 26, 2012 at 3:33 am

That almost sums it up — just remember to include generals' and sergeant majors' egos as a fudge factor and you'll have the budget allowance for this pegged to the penny.

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TimC January 26, 2012 at 4:24 am

Are you kidding me? Another Army uniform? Are we so incompetent that we can't figure out the right uniform and stick with it for a few decades? We just fielded the ACU 8 years ago, and now we're going to drop untold millions of dollars on a new uniform. Has any of our leaders looked at the budget crisis we're in right now? This is another classic example of Fraud, Waste, and Abuse. By the way, how did the black beret thing work out? No wonder we can't figure out how to win wars, we can't even choose the right uniform!

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LowLight January 26, 2012 at 4:37 am

Enough is enough. We should be spending our money on the best type(s) of camo for EACH environment. When one deploys there and go through CIF, you get what you need…PERIOD. MULTICAM can only go so far… Can those in a snow environment wear woodland camo? Not so much. The era of DCUs for desert wear was not bad. BDUs for woodland use, etc. Our money is being wasted on companies just for the simple fact of creating and maintaining jobs. However, by using various types, the military machine can continue to maintain jobs. And all in the food chain can save FACE by everyone getting what they want out of it, BUT the TROOPS will the most, as they will have the camo for the environment they're going to. Even if the environment has multiple types, they can be issued each type…and they'll be good-to-go. Enough said…

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scott January 26, 2012 at 5:33 am

What a waste of money. With all the talk we hear about the Defense Budget and our National Dept why wont someone stop this.

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SFC Randy January 26, 2012 at 5:35 am

All these complaints about changes, now I will have to buy the undate module for my Modern Warfare III so it is realistic. Us old timer are used to new uniforms over time. I think it's so we don't have to buy new ones. Lighten up you old fashionestas, it wil be alright in the pretty new uniforms

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Ric January 26, 2012 at 5:49 am

The services did all wear the same field uniform until the Army got greedy. Marine Corps was buying it's uniforms from Army so Army could get an even better proce. Then the Chief of Staff of the Army, Gen Shinseki, decided to go into the haberdashery business and put a 40% markup on the uniforms they sold to the Marines. USMC realized they could have a much better uniform for less than what they had to pay Army so they developed MARPAT in two color schemes and still saved money over the old woodland. The Army's price went up when the size of their order went down.

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ron January 26, 2012 at 5:50 am

okay, here we go again, the Multicam pattern is most effective in all environments and it certainly beats the ACU pattern (generals, what were you thinking?). this new pattern is simply just a rehash of the marpart with larger pixels, the larger pixils will not let you blend into the environment as effectively as the smaller ones. Isn't that why we went from woodland anyway?…too large a color scheme/pattern? Now what is frightening is the idea that the US Army is going to develop a new pattern like the horendous ACU? come on and give us a break! There are many effective patterns out there that will suffice without the government scrrewing it up again..

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JoeM January 26, 2012 at 5:56 am

So hopefully, the Army will be smart enough to contract an American company in the U.S. to make these uniforms, and not contract it out to the Chinese, like the berets.

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Ric January 26, 2012 at 5:59 am

Those cute little French hats should be made in France. A few years ago someone at the NRA placed an order for NRA logo ball caps to give to new members. When the order arrived the American flag on the back strap was backwards and they had been made in China. Executive management was not amused.

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HALODOC January 26, 2012 at 6:41 am

Didn't we already learn that "digital" pattern camoflage wasn't all that effective. May fool a camera, but not the human eye.

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Dave January 26, 2012 at 7:23 am

This is completely ridiculous. In the 60's when McNamara became SECDEF he streamlined all equipment used by the DOD…same weapons, boots, duty uniforms etc….saved $$$! The Army could have used the Marine Corps' research and simply removed the Globe! Wow…millions of $ saved. It doesnt take a genius. The reason this is happening is two-fold: 1) ACU's completely suck 2)Lobbyist really control what we wear in the military! The status quo has to change!

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Jimmy January 26, 2012 at 8:12 am

What is wrong with the Army. Do they not understand we the tax payers are footing the bill for these changes? The economy is not doing that well if you have not noticed. Yes, we as a country should strive to give those defending us the best of the best, and I get that. But can we not accomplish our missions with what we have? I did 20 years and we improvised and did the best with what we had, **** we defeated the Soviet Union with what we had? And you know we did it by being ready, and down right impresive in our BDU's. Very few shots were fired, yes a few battles here and there. I look at soldiers now and I have nothing in common with them, **** they don't wear class A's any more, they don't wear glider caps (it would be totally politically incorrect to call them what they have been called for 50 years). I envy the Marines, they look the same as they did 60 years ago. They live up to their motto "always faithful". The Army motto should be "whatever is popular, new or whatever".

Nuff Said, I am done now.

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GBret January 26, 2012 at 8:14 am

All, DoD needs to set one camo pattern for all services and all services need to be in the process to ok what is selected. That would save money. The rest of the world does not need to know who is in what service and same goes for the services as they should have a handle on thier airman / soldiers / and saliors on who is who. If they want everone else to know they can determin the best way via a patch / head gear or whatever. There are a lot of joint environments that we all have worked for so one uniform works. Just my opinion.

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Ric January 26, 2012 at 8:41 am

A certain amount of espirit de corps has a lot of value. BTW, who's idea was that "aquaflage" the Navy bought? If I fell off a ship I'd want blaze orange.

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Dude 27 January 26, 2012 at 9:58 am

I agree slightly with Gerbil. The Russians lost because we supported the Afghans, and out spent them. You don't have to know a country's culture and language to win a war (look at Alexander the Great, Caesar, Attila the Hun, the list goes on). You need support from your politicians (not happening, media (not happening at all), public. Everyone calls it a war, the military considers it a peacekeeping mission and the ROE reflects that. If you send Soldiers to war and potentially die for their country, the only goal should be victory. Not political blah.

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Wulf January 26, 2012 at 10:22 am

I had my doubts about MARPAT when it first came out until I saw it in the field and it did blend in better than the 3 or 6 color desert. In all due respect though, is camouflage as important now as it used to be? A lot of the fighting is in urban areas so do we need a third or fourth pattern? After you've been out in the environment a day or so you uniform starts blending in anyway (those who've served know what I mean). With all the modern optics and the like out there even backwards people like the Taliban can find us. It has its uses for small ops like snipers or small SF teams but beyond that it is practically a moot point now. The biggest improvement to me when the Marines came out with the new cammies wasn't so much the pattern as it was the material and design of the uniform itself.

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Kirk January 26, 2012 at 10:35 am

So…….this is the desert camo. Are we using Multicams for wooded areas or will there be another color?

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Kirk January 26, 2012 at 10:38 am

one other thing I forgot to ask…….if not the multicam, why not go back to the BDU? Thats what I use for my Gillie suit and also thats what me and my troops use on our OP's during training.

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Bob Hall January 26, 2012 at 11:41 am

Dude 27,

The genius of our involvement in the Soviet Afghan War is that we did not out spend the Soviets. The operation had a shoe string budget at first and never came close to immense financial effort of the USSR. It was a text book insurgency operation. Further, as anyone who has fought with or against the Afghans should be able to tell you, they're quite creative (if unorthodox) with their tactics and their determination can be impressive.

Secondly, (more relating to "gerbil's" comments) going to war is an expression of National Power in order to obtain a national interest. It is not in our national interest to kill everyone. I believe that the "wars" in Iraq and Afghanistan ended successfully months if not weeks after they began. It was our inability to communicate effectively with the people afterwards that has run us into trouble. Without a stated national interest, it makes it difficult to build an effective strategy.

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Eric January 26, 2012 at 12:45 pm

Another new pattern..at $ ???.. As a person that has hunted in various (extremly hot to cold) climates, and retired after 20yrs of service.. I have found that no color pattern blends in perferctly… show some high quality pics at 10 to 300 yds. normal shot range. In training my personnel, I trained them to find the blob of color that is out of place…

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Armyboy91b January 26, 2012 at 1:52 pm

Complain complain complain guess what none of its going to change any thing suck it up and drive on! No matter how much you all cry about stuff you can not control it won’t change a thing so either you just like griping or you are ignorant. P.S. don’t bother being a hater on the truth I won’t be back on to even acknowledge the ignorance of it.

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john January 26, 2012 at 2:07 pm

hi im a Marine id like to buy some Military camo if i got any military money in my military account

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davessg ret January 26, 2012 at 2:16 pm

they talk about uniform changes and cutting the budget at the same time come on they don't have a clue.

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Common sense January 26, 2012 at 3:49 pm

You just contradicted yourself in your response. You just said that winning isn't killing women and children yet you say "just nuke or gas the 7th century life." Who do you think lives there? Hello. This uniform pattern is a waist of money that could be spent a lot of better places. Oh and by the way guess what? when they finally come out with a new pattern we don't get issued it, we have to go buy it just like we did with the (ACU) Army Combat Uniform and the (ASU) Army Service Uniform

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iCanSeeYou January 26, 2012 at 3:50 pm

lol and that's coming from a 91B, have you even left the wire, ummm nope, well it's over their past the dining facility.

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majrod January 26, 2012 at 3:51 pm

Really? Then it should be easy to attach officers names to companies. I'm listening…

Criket… Criket… Criket…

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Hamilton January 26, 2012 at 4:07 pm

Sounds like a tall tale Ric. The Army might have asked sister services to recoup some development costs but I seriously doubt your version.

As I recall the Commandant of the Marine Corps wanted a uniform to make his Marines stand out, that discussion had nothing to due with costs.

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My Two Cents January 26, 2012 at 4:39 pm

Straps – It's not the UCP colors on multicam. Luke mentioned Multicam colors on ACU pattern. Which isn't tough to do. ACU is the cut of the uniform, UCP is the camo scheme, so you can/do have an ACU in Multicam.

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Casey Charles January 26, 2012 at 6:17 pm

Crabby CW4 (ret)
I spent almost thirty-nine years in the Army 1964-67, 1974- 2007 (active and reserve, Infantry and Intel), so you can imagine how many uniform changes I have seen. The best idea I have heard of lately is talking to hunters to see what actually works. The The big problem is the NIH (not invented here) factor. Fortunately I was retired before I had to buy any ACUs.

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Darius137 January 26, 2012 at 6:22 pm

MARPAT is not Marine Corps research. NATICK designed it for the Army and the Army thought grey was cooler looking. The Marines got another hand-me-down, only it was a really good one.

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Mike January 26, 2012 at 6:43 pm

Why force the USMC who has absolutely NO uniform issues to switch because every other branch jacks there choices up. It wasnt the Corps who started this….once again they made due with less and came out ahead

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Mike January 26, 2012 at 6:48 pm

easy fix, get rid of the unit patches….

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Mike January 26, 2012 at 7:51 pm

Woodie…is that you?
I totally concur, and if this is you, we'd had this discussion several times, over beers and even in the Stan.
Get this, the Navy has an even newer pattern now, looks like the ANA's pattern.

Crazy!
Mike

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xcalbr January 26, 2012 at 8:50 pm

"Wow…millions of $ saved"

hahaha, try billions :)

I believe that MARPAT was adopted in 2002, a full three years before UCP. The Marine Corps wanted the prestige and "elite" status of wearing their own unique uniform…thats it!

Rumsfield should have pulled a McNamara…

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jimv January 26, 2012 at 9:38 pm

Army couldn't use Marpat without paying the Marine Corps. The Marines have a patent on it. Even if a pattern looks almost the same then the Marines can demand payment…smart.

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TravisMarine/Army January 27, 2012 at 8:08 am

I've had a 10 year taste of the Marines and a 6 year taste of the Army and have to say that the Marine corps has it right with the camo. Why not have all services use the same camo and have the branch over the right breast pocket. The enemy wouldn't be able to distinguish the difference. Why not look like a force of Marines in combat. Once we come home and put on the dress uniforms we know who's who. Most civilians cant tell the difference between a Marine and Soldier anyway.

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10yearsafter January 27, 2012 at 7:36 pm

Frustrating…There are many things that big Army gets right that the other services adopt without a fuss, but for some reason, maybe ego / stubbornness who knows, seems to hover just above common sense on this issue.

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TravisMarine/Army January 27, 2012 at 8:09 am

Belay my last. Left breast pocket.

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JoeM January 27, 2012 at 8:53 am

yeah, just like the NRA knife I got one year, with a MADE in China stam on the blade

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Kilgore Jr. January 27, 2012 at 12:47 pm

You should kill a Chinese with that knife as revenge.

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JoeM January 27, 2012 at 9:09 am

Well The President and SecDef stated we were going to draw down the ground forces (i guess those drones will do our fighting), and concetrate on Asia. With that said, I agree with Parasniper's comment above. What about a jungle uniform? So my guess is that after millions are spent on a brand new uniform for the Army, another jungle design will be issued (when the next war we fight in Asia starts) for "in country use" only. Well, maybe they can save some money and just use the Airforce "Tiger Stripe" uniform. ****, the vietcong fought with PJ's. Let's save money and buy from them. Just go to Wally World and you'll find made in China or Virtnam for cheap!

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C A Wills January 27, 2012 at 12:09 pm

Somehow the word "Camo" just sounds silly…I used to use Camay soap when I was a kid, maybe that's, and Cameos are pretty pieces of jewelry..and movie star walk-ons..

BDU sounds more authoritative…Battle Dress Uniform…but if 'we' need to be less aggressive sounding, i.e. "politically correct"…perhaps FDU might work: Field Deception Uniform.. (*.*)

Life gets 'tee-jus' don' it?

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J.peralta January 27, 2012 at 1:16 pm

All these look like crap. What our boys are wearing in OEF is clearly the best why is the Army so stubborn on admitting it.

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jason January 28, 2012 at 8:29 am

agree with jimmy, MARINES hve a patent on it… even tho i was n the ARMY, n woodnt like seein nothing betta, MARINES r sharper lookn…!

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10yearsafter January 28, 2012 at 9:06 am

Jason & Jimmy, I would rather look like a some discarded trash then a sharp looking Marine, if it wood keep me or my friends from lying face down in a ditch in Ghazni…But that's just me. Just saying.

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CleoBarker January 28, 2012 at 11:23 pm

Being someone in active duty service, the Branch of the military you enlist in makes a huge difference, and also working in a joint command the different uniforms make it easy to know who youre talking to at first glance. You will NEVER get this type of thing any where else! By knowing which service they are from, you know what type of basic training they go through, what their mentality behind their actions or language can indicate, by their insignias you can tell their rank and even where they have been and even Service achievements they have.
That being said, I'm all for the Army to change their uniforms if they so wish, but its great as it is. They're the only service that really got it right as far as comfort, durability, ease to maintain and such. The Navy Working Uniform, while desperately needed (yay no more janitor uniforms… :P), is a heavy material, fades rather quickly even when washing with delicates, changing any insignia has to be a planned out event unless you're lucky enough to own a sewing machine, and the buttons fell off all the time until you yourself reenforced em. Air force Uniform is much the same, but a little more practical, less buttons, a little lighter material and pens pockets (hallelujah! I'm jealous…). I can't speak for the Marines Uniforms, but they appear to be similar in structure to the NWU except obviously a different color and pocket placements. The only thing the Air Force really should have worried about is perhaps the covers. I think the Berets look like a sad, flopped over, bagpipers hat. Even though I understand the reasoning behind having them and the tradition and all that… i hear its rather scratchy, and hard to maintain a good "shape" on it…

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Old Soldier January 29, 2012 at 2:52 am

Cleo,

If you are working in a joint command (i.e., a flag-level headquarters), what would be the rationale for wearing a combat uniform instead of a service uniform? After all, you are not getting ready to close with and personally engage the enemy (and I'll wager you're not even armed), so why not wear the uniform designed for that environment, which is easily distinguishable between the branches.

Admittedly, the Army long ago retired its most practical Class B service uniform (the old khakis, which today's soldiers would probably mistake for Dockers), but that used to be the daily wear for soldiers working desks. It was durable, comfortable, sharp-looking when pressed properly, and it was easy to distinguish officers and NCOs at a distance. I'd also wager that it would be less expensive to purchase than a comparable quantity of ACUs with their spiffy anti-detection dyes, endless zippers and velcro patches.

Also, boo-flipping-hoo if you don't own a sewing machine. The last time I was in theater, the PX still had sewing kits available for under $2 – quite a bargain compared to the $10 charged for a single replacement set of velcro strips (good for fixing one ACU uniform). Once upon a time, being able to sew your own patches on your uniform was a standard soldier skill, and your patches wouldn't require any repositioning after you washed your uniforms (another standard soldier skill).

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CleoBarker January 29, 2012 at 3:10 am

As far as rationale, I'm not sure, but it may be because we carry different weapons and fight a different kind of war (if you catch the hint). We only wear dress uniforms on Fridays. Each service designates their uniform of the day and more often than not it is working uniforms or above. I personally own my own sewing machine and do sew my own patches and such on. My point was to merely differentiate between how the uniforms work and the difference in the up-keeps and structure is all. I didnt mean to insist that people can't sew on their own patches, but i know its preferred that a sewing machine is used if for nothing else than some spared time. :P
And I'm going to have to go poking around for the Class B uniform you mentioned. I wonder why it was phased out….

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Old Soldier January 29, 2012 at 3:43 am

Cleo, I'd bet money that what you *think* is a dress uniform is actually a service uniform, at least as far as the Army goes.

What are commonly refered to as "dress greens" are actually service uniforms. The Army's dress uniforms start at the Dress Blue uniform. After khakis got phased out, Class A service uniform meant "worn with the jacket" and Class B was just the shirt.

Also, as an additional bit of trivia, "overseas cap" is the proper name for the "glider caps" refered to somewhere above.

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CleoBarker January 29, 2012 at 5:28 am

That was a good catch, because I have a habit of just calling it the dress uniforms instead of the NSU's. Sorry 'bout that. And thanks for the Trivia! You learn something new every day! :)

Old Soldier January 29, 2012 at 7:33 am

By the way, the old Navy dungarees didn't have problems with buttons falling off, especially on the infamous 13-button fly – *those* buttons were stitched to withstand the most urgent (or highly motivated) of yankings.

It's also worth remembering that your "work" uniform is the equivalent of the old Army fatigue uniform – the primary criteria were that it be durable, practical to wear and easy to clean for wear on fatigue details (or work parties). In other words, it looked like something a janitor would wear because that's the kind of work it was intended for. You surely wouldn't want to get painting all over you service uniforms, would you?

dan January 29, 2012 at 1:43 am

i like it. now here is the big question, velcro? does it still have any?

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Jon January 29, 2012 at 4:07 am

That doesn't look like it will work NEARLY as well as the current OCP does at least in Afghanistan. When a Soldier lies up next to a rock and/or some trees at least from what I've seen, from a distance he is nearly invisible. Keep the OCP and use it for garrison too. We've already spent the treasure on the research and have found something that works. We don't need to spend more on yet another uniform not to mention the equipment that will go along with it ie. body armor, "kit" materials like pouches of various types, etc.

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Luke January 29, 2012 at 6:20 pm

All military personnel in each branch should just be issued a pair of socks with the label "accessories optional." then wearing clothes is really left up to the user, and the camouflaging nature of skin isn't exactly subpar. freedom! yea!

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Joe January 30, 2012 at 10:28 am

Can't we just keep the multicam . . .

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Joe January 30, 2012 at 10:32 am

I don't understand why we can't just keep the multicam . . . I just got back from Afghanistan and it worked great wooded areas, desert and mountians . . . not only that it doesn't look horrible

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DaveD January 30, 2012 at 1:06 pm

Really? The Marine Corp doesn't get to patent anything. It is a Natick DOD design. DOD and the United States Government owns all patents.

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xcalbr January 30, 2012 at 6:35 pm

because unifying the US military is more important than dealing with individual uniforms. It is logistically practical to produce the same camo, equipment, and other items than different ones, not to mention less expensive.

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Kenspear January 30, 2012 at 11:27 pm

Hahahahah, purty funny. NRA protecting you american gun rights… And having Chinese stamps on our products. Good ole America

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Kenspear January 30, 2012 at 11:28 pm

I liked UPC, not as camo but the gray looked sharp.

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Old Soldier January 31, 2012 at 2:08 am

Perhaps it's worth noting that all this brouhaha seems more centered around folks' sense of what "looks right" as a uniform.

I may have missed it, but I have yet to see any comment acknowledge that the uniform is a relatively trivial component in the fieldcraft of concealment. Remember, the basiscs cost almost nothing to train: stillness versus movement, shadow versus light, quiet versus voices and noisy gear (by the way, have the idiots who approved velcro closures on ammo pouches been fired yet?), dull versus shiny (am I the only one to get logical whiplash trying to understand the need for IR-suppressing dyes being pushed by the same folks issuing IR-reflective flag patches?), et seq.

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Armour January 31, 2012 at 12:16 pm

MARPAT was based off the Canadian CADPAT that Defence Research and Development Canada came up with. We were wearing trial patterns in the early 90's with the first full official issue on the CF Helmet covers in 1996.

NATICK was the first to test digital pattern camo Dual-Tex but was dropped because they could not convince that the digital pattern was actual a more effective pattern then the previous woodland pattern

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Xander February 2, 2012 at 4:07 am

I'm Army so I don't know much about about other services, but my wife is Navy and she wears NWU's. I'm not sure of the technical name for it but it's the blue digital pattern. That's all I've seen around the Hampton-Norfolk area.

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Old Soldier February 3, 2012 at 4:10 am

>it does save on sewing cost

Not really. They add about $10 to the cost of each uniform (and who knows how much to each patch), versus less than $3 for a reusable sewing kit.

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chris February 10, 2012 at 8:32 am

thay should like wear the red tiger camo it looked cool in all the call of duty games

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Jackson Smith February 27, 2012 at 6:57 pm

Rip offs of CADPAT, These are HORRIBLE. LETS JUST GO BACK TO WOODLAND OR OD GREENS!!

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Stryker Perry March 6, 2012 at 12:39 pm

I think they all should use 3 camo patterns

A-Tacs (desert colored)
A-Tacs FG ( woodland pattern)
and
Multicam (for mixed terrains like afghanistan)

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Stryker Perry March 6, 2012 at 12:43 pm

and for the dress uniforms go back to the older style Army greens for the army
and the rest have kept their own still as far as ive seen

and get rid of the berets leave those for the french and british they are uncomfortable ugly and useless use patrol caps and boonie hats and get rid of ACU cant hide anywhere with them

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Bob March 11, 2012 at 1:27 pm

Darius(DumbAss)137 Do some research before you run your suck-hole,Armour is right, USMC worked with Canada to develop and got their Permission to use the Canadian pattern (CADPAT) and called it Marine Pattern(MARPAT). Besides the current Army pattern looks dirty not "cooler". The Army didn't Have anything to do with it.

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Dave14 April 23, 2012 at 8:25 am

The blue ASU A looks good and they are sharp (been around since 1937). Add a dark blue sew on waist belt with belt loop with open face buckle (simular to the pinks and greens that officers wore in WW2). Would sharpenthe blue up a bit. Bring back the Vietnam era Khakis as the ASU B. The ASU B isn't that bad, just not sold on the white shirt just yet. The Greens, they can fly in to the dust bin of history right along side of the olive drabe Ike Jackets, dress whites and the nast puke green 1976 Class B shirts.

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Bobby Bowman June 1, 2012 at 9:57 pm

I like the new pattern of camo,but I think that the other branches of the military should have the same patterns as well to show that we are a nation united.

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Echo5Charlie June 2, 2012 at 7:00 am

Looks almost exactly like my MARPAT uniform, the only differences I really see is slight color variations. The 2 on the left although they are different shades look to have the same pattern. In my opinion its just the Army trying to blow some pocket change with their huge budget.

Jeff the Baptist- I agree that the only other people that should wear MARPAT are our attatched Navy Corpsmen. They go through all the same training and deployments we do and by all rights have pretty much are Honorary Marines.

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Chris June 3, 2012 at 2:49 am

******! about time they get ride of the ugly UC's. im leaving oct for basic then RASP! Hopefully we gt the far left kind! Caant wait to see em when i get in

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Yojimbo June 19, 2012 at 3:21 am

Small patterns blob out at short distances, if when you blob out and are either too dark or too light you stand out from your back ground. The bigger the object the bigger the pattern and the greater the range before it blobs out. This is important in low tech conditions but with various types of of high tech gear such as thermal detection, IFF drones etc. meeting a modern army in combat is a whole new ball game. Concealment helps but cover stops bullets.

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Johnson July 20, 2012 at 2:07 pm

To everyone talking about it being a huge waste of time to switch over to uniforms.

UCP has been shown to be fairly substandard. Now, true, if there was going to be years of peace following this, it makes no sense to switch to a new pattern. The fact that the army is aggressively trying to determine a new pattern, and the fact that cost of implementation is an issue (because, if they buy it, they'll issue it over the course of 12 mos. rather than 2-3 years) should tell you what the army believes the chances of a sustained peace is.

Let the Marines talk ****. When you put the pattern against MARPAT or CADPAT the pattern clearly isn't similar. The only similarity is the fact that it's digital.

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Michelle August 18, 2012 at 8:05 am

Why can't they jus pick a uniform and stick with it, and who are the people who pick out uniforms? Are they civilians? As a soldier who wears a uniform everyday, I know that the person who thought of the multi-cam or acu is not someone who wears it day in and day out, and on deployments for a year cause my uniforms don't even last 2 months out here. And they never realized that it gets to be over 120 degrees over seas. I think that they should take a more durable material and take some of the good aspects of other branches and consolidate it so that we look clean, sharp, combat ready and have a unifrom that lasts longer than 2 months with the thought in mind to be able to roll up sleeves like other branches do. I like the way that the BDU's usedc to look! I like being able to say that I serve our country and that I fight for our freedoms, I jus wish that my uniform were to say it too. Rather than looking like I am wearing pajamas. But I guess that just my opinion.

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Michelle August 18, 2012 at 8:06 am

Who cares about the patterns and how they are similar think about the person wearing it!!!!!

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gabe October 19, 2012 at 10:43 pm

Marpat has been proven completely superior to everything except multicam, which it is simply much better than. only in the most specific of environments + Season + lightings do multicams come close. example, desert marpat is better than multicam in the desert, but fails in woodland setting, woodland marpat is better then multicam except in desert. and multicam is the best outside of marpat…Both UCP, ABU and most of the other camos are simply useless in comparison to either….

that said, i'd like the multicams to come out in 3 pattern, warm woodland, desert, and snowy woodland then it could compete against marpat.

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