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GaryVC
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« on: March 13, 2019, 09:22:12 PM »

Several of our members have not been able to buy ABUs at Nellis AFB recently. I am not sure how long this has been going on, but I think it is at least 6 months. Anyone else have a similar problem buying on base? The applicable AFIs say uniforms are supposed to be sold to CAP members. They have been able to buy blues.
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Eclipse
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« Reply #1 on: March 13, 2019, 10:09:34 PM »

Most bases are discontinuing the sale of ABUs.

CAP is entitled by AFI to base access, but CC has final say.
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PHall
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« Reply #2 on: March 13, 2019, 10:11:03 PM »

Nobody out here in Southern California has had any problems getting ABU's at March, Edwards or Los Angeles AFBs.
Has anybody actually talked to the clothing sales manager or is this all third hand?
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jeders
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« Reply #3 on: March 13, 2019, 10:11:55 PM »

Several of our members have not been able to buy ABUs at Nellis AFB recently. I am not sure how long this has been going on, but I think it is at least 6 months. Anyone else have a similar problem buying on base?

Considering that ABUs are being phased out and many if not most airman are already in OCPs, I'm not surprised.
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PHall
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« Reply #4 on: March 13, 2019, 10:18:03 PM »

Most bases are discontinuing the sale of ABUs.

CAP is entitled by AFI to base access, but CC has final say.

Actually, no and no. 

Bases are not discontinuing sales of ABU's but they're starting to run out of some sizes and AAFES only has what's left in their warehouses.
The AAFES contractors have or are in the process of converting over to make OCP's.

Yes, by reg CAP is entitled to access to the Exchange to buy uniform items, but getting on base is up to the Base Commander.
So if the Base Commander says no unescorted access to the base then ask nicely what it would take to be able to get to the Exchange.
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abdsp51
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« Reply #5 on: March 13, 2019, 10:42:13 PM »

I've always told CAP members near me or who may be coming near that if they need help getting on base to let me know. 

In fact I actually got CAP included into the base plan at Davis-Monthan... 
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Stonewall
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« Reply #6 on: March 14, 2019, 01:34:50 AM »

I went to MCSS at Wright-Patt today to buy my son cadet a new ABU cap. They had 2 left, size 7. They’re “not selling OCPs” but they have OCP caps, OCP Gore-Tex, OCP fleece, coyote boots, coyote t-shirts, and all the OCP accouterments, but no OCPs.  They have about 1/4 of the ABU stuff they had a month ago.

Basically, you can’t buy a complete set of ABUs nor can you buy a complete set of OCPs.

But, after 32 years in CAP I finally have my CAP mess dress. I’ll be wearing my military medals for now, but I got my CAP mess dress nonetheless.
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PHall
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« Reply #7 on: March 14, 2019, 06:37:31 PM »

Stonewall, it might be different at Wright-Patt but March ARB and Los Angeles AFB can both start selling OCP's to Air Force personnel starting 1 April.
The staggered "sell to Air Force" dates is to supposedly keep shortages from happening, especially on Army posts.
The Exchange there at Wright-Patt should be able to tell you what their sell to AF date is.
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Stonewall
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« Reply #8 on: March 18, 2019, 02:08:01 PM »

Was just at the MCSS on base to inquire about ABU hard again. She said “we can only sell what we have on the shelf and that’s it, no new ABU stuff coming.”
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NIN
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« Reply #9 on: March 18, 2019, 02:10:26 PM »

Was just at the MCSS on base to inquire about ABU hard again. She said “we can only sell what we have on the shelf and that’s it, no new ABU stuff coming.”

So, MCSS will no longer be a legit source for our uniforms once again?

*sigh*

Cotton non-colorfast offshore outfits for us, its seems.
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shuman14
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« Reply #10 on: March 18, 2019, 03:00:35 PM »

My recommendation is, do whatever it takes to get USAF approval for CAP to transition to OCP as soon as possible.

Continue to allow the wear of BDU and ABU for those who have them, but get ahead of the OCP issue while you can. Blue Tapes, Rank and Badges and black boots worked for ABU, they will work equally for OCP.
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Joseph J. Clune
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Eclipse
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« Reply #11 on: March 18, 2019, 03:20:44 PM »

Was just at the MCSS on base to inquire about ABU hard again. She said “we can only sell what we have on the shelf and that’s it, no new ABU stuff coming.”

So, MCSS will no longer be a legit source for our uniforms once again?

*sigh*

Cotton non-colorfast offshore outfits for us, its seems.

Well that was to be expected, really.  Same thing happened with ABUs / NWUs.

MCSS sold out existing stocks and that was that.
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Dwight Dutton
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« Reply #12 on: March 18, 2019, 05:17:13 PM »

Was just at the MCSS on base to inquire about ABU hard again. She said “we can only sell what we have on the shelf and that’s it, no new ABU stuff coming.”

So, MCSS will no longer be a legit source for our uniforms once again?

I would not be surprised to see one final dump of ABU to CAP near the end of the transition process.
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mykef2
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« Reply #13 on: March 28, 2019, 09:05:47 PM »

Check the off post Military Surplus Stores and flea markets.  A lot of the airmen are offloading their ABUs outside the gates as they change over to OCPs.

CAP should also think about allowing the use of the Green and Coyote boots, as real military, black leather boots are becoming as scarce as hen's teeth now that none of the services are using them.

The newer styles are also a lot better designed for the feet and the field, also.
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Eclipse
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« Reply #14 on: March 28, 2019, 09:45:34 PM »

as real military, black leather boots are becoming as scarce as hen's teeth now that none of the services are using them.

Both the Navy and Coast Guard wear black combat-style boots, and the ones for CAP member wear
are hardly "scarce".
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SarDragon
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« Reply #15 on: March 29, 2019, 02:44:59 AM »

Black boots are still plentiful. But they are no longer as inexpensive as they might have been in the past.


Uniformity can also be more of an issue, but the RealMilitary™ doesn't seem to care as much these days. I see a significant variation in black boots being worn by AD military folks. They are all black, but made by different manufacturers. They are more receptive to difference in fit and feet today.
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Dave Bowles
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PHall
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« Reply #16 on: March 29, 2019, 05:04:39 AM »

Black boots are still plentiful. But they are no longer as inexpensive as they might have been in the past.


Uniformity can also be more of an issue, but the RealMilitary™ doesn't seem to care as much these days. I see a significant variation in black boots being worn by AD military folks. They are all black, but made by different manufacturers. They are more receptive to difference in fit and feet today.

Same deal with the green and brown boots too.  They all meet the specification, but they're all slightly different.
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Stonewall
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« Reply #17 on: March 29, 2019, 08:36:05 AM »

I have had the toughest time trying to get black boots that are worth a [darn], for me and my son. Even my favorite expensive boots that I wore in Army/Air Force/CAP aren’t available and I’m willing to pay for them. For two decades I wore Wellco brand black jungle boots. Those finally wore out about 5 years ago so I started wearing my OD green jungle boots. But then, we went to ABUs with ONLY black boots. I bought a pair of knockoff black jungles and they were terrible. Couldn’t wear them for a meeting without hating them. Then I bought a surplus pair of standard issue black leather boots, the same kind I was issued in basic training 28 years ago. They suck, too.

Finally, I dropped $130 and bought the last pair of size 12 Oakley Assault Boots from LA Police Gear and I’m happy.  At least for any temps above 20°.

For my son, I got him Surplus huge boots that killed his feet. Then I found a new pair of black military issue boots on eBay for $60. They’ll last a year because we bought them a size too big. Screw the Walmart wrk boots or knockoffs. I need something that’s going to not kill my feet and look decent in uniform.  Easier for me since my feet stopped growing 25 year ago, but for my son, that’s going to be a tough task.
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sprmedic
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« Reply #18 on: March 29, 2019, 10:41:51 AM »

Another "on base" source of used uniforms would be the "Thrift Store" and "Airman's Attic".  You may have to make contact with the managers of those organizations before sending everyone over (usually run by private organizations like the spouses club).

Many people donate (or consign) to those locations.  If they have a way to offload something noone in the military needs, I'm sure they'd be happy to move the products to make room for something else.
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Dwight Dutton
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« Reply #19 on: March 29, 2019, 05:05:30 PM »

Another "on base" source of used uniforms would be the "Thrift Store" and "Airman's Attic".  You may have to make contact with the managers of those organizations before sending everyone over (usually run by private organizations like the spouses club).Many people donate (or consign) to those locations.  If they have a way to offload something noone in the military needs, I'm sure they'd be happy to move the products to make room for something else.

In this case sending people to Airmans Attic is a good option.  Nobody in the USAF is going to be interested in buying even cheap ABU's at this point.
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SarDragon
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« Reply #20 on: March 29, 2019, 08:58:27 PM »

Re: Airman's Attic - be careful. There are reports on here of that venue on some bases being closed to CAP because of abuses. Do a search for "Airman's Attic" and look at the various posts, particularly the one from sardak on July 18, 2017, 12:34:32.
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Dave Bowles
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benjamin.petterborg
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« Reply #21 on: March 29, 2019, 10:24:46 PM »

My recommendation is, do whatever it takes to get USAF approval for CAP to transition to OCP as soon as possible.

Continue to allow the wear of BDU and ABU for those who have them, but get ahead of the OCP issue while you can. Blue Tapes, Rank and Badges and black boots worked for ABU, they will work equally for OCP.

Exactly. We are a part of the "total force" and are a USAF auxiliary, for what reason do we need outdated uniforms? As far as BDUs go, discontinue those if/when we get OCPs, we have enough patterns. For boots, I think we should move to sage or coyote boots, which don't look stupid and don't need polishing. AFJROTC has them, why shouldn't we?

Here are some ideas for OCPs, if/when we get them:
-Rank insignia   -   Use the velcro rank thing on the chest for ranks, dark blue background, white insignia.
-Name tapes   -   Same as ABUs.
-Boots  -   Coyote Brown.
-Patches   -   Velcro backing to go on all of the velcro on the sleeves.
-Fleece   -   Sage or Coyote. Give it 2-4 years before we care if they match.
-Backpacks   -   Olive Drab, Coyote Brown, or Black (or maybe just compliant with whatever AFI applies to that)
-Goretex   -   ABU or OCP, same stuff I said about the sage fleece.

That's just my opinion and I am completely open to criticism, if you have any. Lemme know if you want me to draw something up on what it would look like, let me know.
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PHall
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« Reply #22 on: March 30, 2019, 12:34:06 AM »

My recommendation is, do whatever it takes to get USAF approval for CAP to transition to OCP as soon as possible.

Continue to allow the wear of BDU and ABU for those who have them, but get ahead of the OCP issue while you can. Blue Tapes, Rank and Badges and black boots worked for ABU, they will work equally for OCP.

Exactly. We are a part of the "total force" and are a USAF auxiliary, for what reason do we need outdated uniforms? As far as BDUs go, discontinue those if/when we get OCPs, we have enough patterns. For boots, I think we should move to sage or coyote boots, which don't look stupid and don't need polishing. AFJROTC has them, why shouldn't we?

Because AFJROTC uniforms are shipped to the units and are issued to the cadets.
CAP members have to buy their uniforms. Finding sage or coyote boots off base is a pretty tall order.
There's about 20 or so states that do not have an Air Force Base. And most Guard or Reserve Bases don't have a uniform store.
So where would you find those boots in some place like Maine or Oregon?
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SarDragon
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« Reply #23 on: March 30, 2019, 12:37:14 AM »

PM sent. Let's avoid a dog pile.
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Dave Bowles
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shuman14
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« Reply #24 on: March 31, 2019, 09:47:41 PM »

So where would you find those boots in some place like Maine or Oregon?

As we say in the Military... G.T.S. ... Google That S***.

https://www.google.com/search?source=hp&ei=5DShXO_DBMzesAWJmIrwAg&q=coyote+brown+boots&oq=coyote+brown&gs_l=psy-ab.1.1.0l10.2374.7098..10189...0.0..0.304.1202.11j1j0j1......0....1..gws-wiz.....0..35i39j0i131j0i3.e0Gwela6PjI
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Joseph J. Clune
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PHall
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« Reply #25 on: April 01, 2019, 12:37:51 AM »

So where would you find those boots in some place like Maine or Oregon?

As we say in the Military... G.T.S. ... Google That S***.

https://www.google.com/search?source=hp&ei=5DShXO_DBMzesAWJmIrwAg&q=coyote+brown+boots&oq=coyote+brown&gs_l=psy-ab.1.1.0l10.2374.7098..10189...0.0..0.304.1202.11j1j0j1......0....1..gws-wiz.....0..35i39j0i131j0i3.e0Gwela6PjI

I was in Clothing Sales at March ARB today. The price of the Sage and Coyote Boots ranged from $154 - $204.
Yeah, that will go over well with parents. We'll stick with the Black boots, they're much cheaper.
When you have to buy all of your uniforms, price matters.
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shuman14
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« Reply #26 on: April 01, 2019, 03:03:29 AM »

When you have to buy all of your uniforms, price matters.

As a Commissioned Officer I have to buy all my Uniforms too, so I feel your pain. When I was Enlisted, just before I got Commissioned, I DX'ed all my worn uniforms and got four brand new sets of BDUs and two new sets of black boots and I had nearly two footlockers filled with usable old BDU and four pairs of used boots.

Then we switched to ACUs and I gave all my BDUs to CAP to distribute to Cadets.

Now we're switching to OCPs, at least I can continue to use Tan boots and t-shirts with them and old BDU Brown t-shirts have faded to a "Coyote Brown" and work quite well with OCPs.

For CAP, Black Boots will most likely never go away but it would make sense to get CAP-USAF to approve Black, Coyote Brown and Tan  Boots for CAP wear with OCPs.

Blue/White Name Tapes, Blue/White CAP Tapes, Blue/White/Yellow Rank Patches, Blue/White Badges and Blue T-shirts will clearly mark CAP different from USAF on OCPs.

CAP needs to get on top of this now. Get OCPs approved ASAP and ditch BDUs and ABUs as fast as you can. Pretty sure you can get Blue "OCP Style" tops and Bottoms so the Corporate Blue BDU could be updated too.

And with Velcro, if you move from one Wing to another, so much easier to switch the Wing Patch on or off.
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Joseph J. Clune
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PHall
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« Reply #27 on: April 01, 2019, 05:17:28 AM »

You do know that at most bases an Airman on Active Duty can't buy OCP's right now.
They were supposed to start selling them at March ARB on 1 April. The date is now TBD. Even AAFES has no idea.
There's not enough in the system to outfit everyone in the Army and the Air Force right now.
The contractors who were making ABU's are in the process of converting over to make OCP's.
It may be late this year before the supply situation is resolved.
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shuman14
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« Reply #28 on: April 01, 2019, 09:37:29 PM »

You do know that at most bases an Airman on Active Duty can't buy OCP's right now.
They were supposed to start selling them at March ARB on 1 April. The date is now TBD. Even AAFES has no idea.
There's not enough in the system to outfit everyone in the Army and the Air Force right now.
The contractors who were making ABU's are in the process of converting over to make OCP's.
It may be late this year before the supply situation is resolved.

So CAP has some wiggle room to coordinate with CAP-USAF and come up with a plan for CAP's transition to OCP during this supply lag.

Have the plan in place with a TBD dates to authorize wear of OCPs and wear-out date for ABUs.
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Joseph J. Clune
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INARNG: 1992 - 1993, 1998 - 2000       USCGAux: 2004 - Present
Eclipse
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« Reply #29 on: April 01, 2019, 11:06:22 PM »

So CAP has some wiggle room to coordinate with CAP-USAF and come up with a plan for CAP's transition to OCP during this supply lag.

Have the plan in place with a TBD dates to authorize wear of OCPs and wear-out date for ABUs.

What "plan" do they need?  CAP goes to VG and asks them to start selling pink-hued / ultra-vivid OCPs from
whatever PAC-RIM supplier they are getting the pink-hued / ultra vivid CAP-ABU from and moves on.

AAFES and MCSS, while a portended possible source is not actually in CAP's supply chain for uniforms
(and has really never been much of a player for the majority of members anyway).

CAP could do it tomorrow and it would have zero effect on the USAF, the Army, or anyone else.

There's no shortage of OCPs in the retail space, any more then there's a shortage of BDU, ABU, or CFU.
The "shortage" is simply a situation where a very small number of members who used to be able to
have easier access to some pieces because they were / are in the service and could shop on base or AAFES
will have to get things like the rest of the membership.

Not an option for the vast majority of members, which as PHALL points out have no proximity to an MCSS
and who lost mail order access to AAFES years ago.

As long as Walmart can sell serviceable boots for $30 and the internet exists, CAP doesn't need to be making
more changes to the multiform, unless it's to eliminate the affectation of camo and reduce the number of options
to things members can actually easily procure.
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Stonewall
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« Reply #30 on: April 02, 2019, 12:38:38 AM »

You do know that at most bases an Airman on Active Duty can't buy OCP's right now.
They were supposed to start selling them at March ARB on 1 April. The date is now TBD. Even AAFES has no idea.
There's not enough in the system to outfit everyone in the Army and the Air Force right now.
The contractors who were making ABU's are in the process of converting over to make OCP's.
It may be late this year before the supply situation is resolved.

I was at Ft. Belvoir, VA three days ago and there's a big sign outside the MCSS that says, and I'm paraphrasing here, "OCPs will not be sold to the Air Force."

Many Airmen are ordering OCPs through places like US Patriot Tactical or Kel-Lac and those are made by Proper and TruSpec, which, I believe are authorized, but have some subtle differences.
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Fubar
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« Reply #31 on: April 02, 2019, 06:38:57 PM »

Many Airmen are ordering OCPs through places like US Patriot Tactical or Kel-Lac and those are made by Proper and TruSpec, which, I believe are authorized, but have some subtle differences.

Interestingly, those sites differentiate between army and air force OCP uniforms. Are they different? I thought one of the selling points in moving to the army's uniform was keeping it simple and using just one uniform for both branches.
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Eclipse
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« Reply #32 on: April 02, 2019, 06:54:31 PM »

There are (or were) several variants approved for wear depending on when they were issued.
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NIN
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« Reply #33 on: April 02, 2019, 07:52:24 PM »

There are (or were) several variants approved for wear depending on when they were issued.

Yeah, there were the OEF Multicams, and then OCP Multicams, or some such crazy terminology differences.
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NovemberWhiskey
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« Reply #34 on: April 02, 2019, 08:03:14 PM »

This is easy.

The uniform is the ACU; which either stands for Army Combat Uniform or Airman Combat Uniform, depending on context. As the Army Combat Uniform, it has been issued in the Universal Camouflage Pattern (UCP), the Operation Enduring Freedom Camouflage Pattern (which is actually MultiCam, but also known as OEF) and the Operational Camouflage Pattern (which is not MultiCam but Scorpion W2, and usually known as OCP). As the Airman Combat Uniform, it has only ever been issued in OCP.

Actually maybe it isn't so easy :)
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NIN
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« Reply #35 on: April 02, 2019, 09:12:35 PM »

Actually maybe it isn't so easy :)

I have a scorecard and I can't even....
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shuman14
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« Reply #36 on: April 03, 2019, 08:48:57 PM »

OCP is now the issued pattern.

The other Patterns are no longer being issued, but, as far as the Army is concerned, still authorized for wear. A "wear-out" date has not been announced.

Mix-n-match of patterns is not authorized.

You can wear the ACU tan t-shirts, belts and boots with OCPs but you can not wear coyote t-shirts, belts and boots with the ACUs. I think the "wear-out" date for the ACUs themselves is 01OCT2019 but there is talk of that being delayed. Not all USAR and NG Enlisted personnel have received their four sets of OCPs yet and the Army is not sure if it can meet the 01OCT2019 date to equip them all.

For CAP purposes, ACU in OCP Pattern should be the only thing discussed for getting CAP-USAF authorization for wear. Again, after the USAF roll out is complete.
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Joseph J. Clune
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Eclipse
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« Reply #37 on: April 03, 2019, 09:26:22 PM »

For CAP purposes, ACU in OCP Pattern should be the only thing discussed for getting CAP-USAF authorization for wear. Again, after the USAF roll out is complete.

Since when does CAP-USAF authorize CAP uniforms?
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Dwight Dutton
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« Reply #38 on: April 03, 2019, 11:28:40 PM »

For CAP purposes, ACU in OCP Pattern should be the only thing discussed for getting CAP-USAF authorization for wear. Again, after the USAF roll out is complete.
Since when does CAP-USAF authorize CAP uniforms?

I think if we want OCP's that's who we ask.  If not the actual approving authority they are at least who national would ask first.  But we have to debate it on captalk for a couple of years before they even consider doing anything.

I now have four sets of large regular ABU's I'm not even going to sew the insignia on.

Now the OCP drama starts where the ABU ended.  I want my $200 for passing GO.
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Eclipse
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« Reply #39 on: April 03, 2019, 11:47:00 PM »

I now have four sets of large regular ABU's I'm not even going to sew the insignia on.

Those ABUs would be fully worn in, if not out before OCPs are even considered let alone approved,
especially with the typical CAP-extended sundown.

There's no reason you can't use them.

OCPs are likely a 2025-2030 conversation at best.
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Gunsotsu
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« Reply #40 on: April 03, 2019, 11:50:06 PM »

OCPs are likely a 2025-2030 conversation at best.

And by then the ever ADHD Ma Blue will have moved on to the next shiny new thing and CAP will once again be asking these same questions.

Lather.
Rinse.
Repeat.
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Eclipse
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« Reply #41 on: April 03, 2019, 11:58:28 PM »

Weird, right?
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Stonewall
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« Reply #42 on: April 26, 2019, 10:06:13 PM »

Was just at the Wright-Patt MCSS on base to inquire about ABU hat again. She said “we can only sell what we have on the shelf and that’s it, no new ABU stuff coming.”

So, MCSS will no longer be a legit source for our uniforms once again?

*sigh*

Cotton non-colorfast offshore outfits for us, its seems.

Was at Wright-Patt's MCSS yesterday where they have a big sign that says "Starting 15 May we will be selling OCPs."

ABUs are barely on the shelf.  They got an order in of size Extra-YUGE ABU hats and don't even have sage green boots available; its all coyote boots from here on out.

Buh-bye ABUs.
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shuman14
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« Reply #43 on: April 29, 2019, 09:01:22 PM »

Quote
Buh-bye ABUs.

 :clap:
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Stonewall
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« Reply #44 on: May 20, 2019, 01:05:51 PM »

So, not only are ABUs scarce at the MCSS on base, I just went to AAFES online and they only offered three size options for ABU pants. I was hoping to buy the next size up for my son to grow in to, but alas, his sizes were not available. Gotta be mega round or mega long.

Apparently, I did buy the LAST size 7 1/8 ABU hat available at AAFES.
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MSG Mac
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« Reply #45 on: May 25, 2019, 01:01:29 AM »

The question of Online access to AFEES was asked and answered at the 2019 Winter Conference:


 Can we have the option to purchase ABUs from AAFES as a secondary source in addition to Vanguard as defined in CAPR 39-1? Since we're to transition to ABUs by 2021 our ability to acquire these uniforms is somewhat limited for units not conveniently located near an AAFES clothing sales facility.  CAPR 39-1, Chapter 1, para 1.3, subparagraph 1.3.2.1 and 1.3.2.2 addresses our ability as CAP members to purchase ABUs from the online AAFES catalog sales. Unfortunately, this has not been possible for the online ordering system does not recognize “CAP only” members as a viable customer for ordering uniforms. This needs to be addressed by National Headquarters to resolve this access with AAFES. Even calling the 800 number did not result in our ability to access their system and was told we're not eligible to purchase through this online system.
 
Answer:  AAFES changed their order processing system some time ago and can no longer accommodate the previous system for validating CAP membership and accepting fax or phone orders.  AAFES is a commercial vendor that serves millions of customers and unfortunately, customizing their system to accommodate our very fluid membership is a cost prohibitive option.  We’ve had a number of discussions with them, but so far have not been able to come up with a solution.  Their last proposal involved identifying one member in each unit who would make all purchases for the unit with his/her personal credit card.  The authorized purchaser for the unit would only be able to be updated annually.  While this option was not feasible, we will continue to look for other accommodations.  Unfortunately there is no quick solution to this issue.
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Michael P. McEleney
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SAREXinNY
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« Reply #46 on: May 25, 2019, 07:48:07 PM »

The question of Online access to AFEES was asked and answered at the 2019 Winter Conference:


 Can we have the option to purchase ABUs from AAFES as a secondary source in addition to Vanguard as defined in CAPR 39-1? Since we're to transition to ABUs by 2021 our ability to acquire these uniforms is somewhat limited for units not conveniently located near an AAFES clothing sales facility.  CAPR 39-1, Chapter 1, para 1.3, subparagraph 1.3.2.1 and 1.3.2.2 addresses our ability as CAP members to purchase ABUs from the online AAFES catalog sales. Unfortunately, this has not been possible for the online ordering system does not recognize “CAP only” members as a viable customer for ordering uniforms. This needs to be addressed by National Headquarters to resolve this access with AAFES. Even calling the 800 number did not result in our ability to access their system and was told we're not eligible to purchase through this online system.
 
Answer:  AAFES changed their order processing system some time ago and can no longer accommodate the previous system for validating CAP membership and accepting fax or phone orders.  AAFES is a commercial vendor that serves millions of customers and unfortunately, customizing their system to accommodate our very fluid membership is a cost prohibitive option.  We’ve had a number of discussions with them, but so far have not been able to come up with a solution.  Their last proposal involved identifying one member in each unit who would make all purchases for the unit with his/her personal credit card.  The authorized purchaser for the unit would only be able to be updated annually.  While this option was not feasible, we will continue to look for other accommodations.  Unfortunately there is no quick solution to this issue.

Thank you. I was wondering what the issue was with AAFES. It's instances like this where I wish the AF would stand up and start raising a stink. I have senior members in my unit who are unable to get a dress uniform jacket due to this mess.
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abdsp51
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« Reply #47 on: May 25, 2019, 08:15:44 PM »

The question of Online access to AFEES was asked and answered at the 2019 Winter Conference:


 Can we have the option to purchase ABUs from AAFES as a secondary source in addition to Vanguard as defined in CAPR 39-1? Since we're to transition to ABUs by 2021 our ability to acquire these uniforms is somewhat limited for units not conveniently located near an AAFES clothing sales facility.  CAPR 39-1, Chapter 1, para 1.3, subparagraph 1.3.2.1 and 1.3.2.2 addresses our ability as CAP members to purchase ABUs from the online AAFES catalog sales. Unfortunately, this has not been possible for the online ordering system does not recognize “CAP only” members as a viable customer for ordering uniforms. This needs to be addressed by National Headquarters to resolve this access with AAFES. Even calling the 800 number did not result in our ability to access their system and was told we're not eligible to purchase through this online system.
 
Answer:  AAFES changed their order processing system some time ago and can no longer accommodate the previous system for validating CAP membership and accepting fax or phone orders.  AAFES is a commercial vendor that serves millions of customers and unfortunately, customizing their system to accommodate our very fluid membership is a cost prohibitive option.  We’ve had a number of discussions with them, but so far have not been able to come up with a solution.  Their last proposal involved identifying one member in each unit who would make all purchases for the unit with his/her personal credit card.  The authorized purchaser for the unit would only be able to be updated annually.  While this option was not feasible, we will continue to look for other accommodations.  Unfortunately there is no quick solution to this issue.

Thank you. I was wondering what the issue was with AAFES. It's instances like this where I wish the AF would stand up and start raising a stink. I have senior members in my unit who are unable to get a dress uniform jacket due to this mess.

AAFES doesn't belong to the AF.  It's a seperate entity and when it comes to AAFES there are bigger issues to deal with.  If you're having issues getting uniform items from AAFES I'm sure there are plenty of dual hat members around the country who'd be willing to help. 
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Eclipse
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« Reply #48 on: May 25, 2019, 08:18:37 PM »

I have senior members in my unit who are unable to get a dress uniform jacket due to this mess.

http://www.uniforms-4u.com/p-us-air-force-officer-service-dress-uniform-9957.aspx

This isn't "news", the issue has been discussed here for years, ever since AAFES changed their call center provider
and decided they didn't need to accommodate CAP.
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SAREXinNY
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« Reply #49 on: May 25, 2019, 11:52:07 PM »

I have senior members in my unit who are unable to get a dress uniform jacket due to this mess.

http://www.uniforms-4u.com/p-us-air-force-officer-service-dress-uniform-9957.aspx

This isn't "news", the issue has been discussed here for years, ever since AAFES changed their call center provider
and decided they didn't need to accommodate CAP.

It's news to me. I work two jobs, try to raise a 2 and 3 year old, and run a [darn] squadron. I've been asking my chain of command why my people can't order from AAFES and have never received much of an answer. I don't check this website often. So, I was saying thank you for sharing...even if it isn't 'news' to everyone else.

And yes, I have sent my officers to that website, but they average $50 more per jacket than AAFES.  It's frustrating, unnecessary, and easily fixable if the right people put their foot down.

$179.95 https://www.shopmyexchange.com/air-force-officer-service-dress-coat/1847029
$229.99 http://www.uniforms-4u.com/p-us-air-force-officer-service-dress-uniform-9957.aspx
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Fubar
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« Reply #50 on: May 26, 2019, 10:58:19 AM »

It's frustrating, unnecessary, and easily fixable if the right people put their foot down.

Totally agree it's frustrating, but easily fixable? I'm not big into the who's-who of CAP, but for the life of me I can't think of anyone in CAP with the necessary leverage over AAFES to "put their foot down" and fix the issue with how AAFES qualifies people to make online purchases from them.

Heck, even if CAP was a part of the Air Force the bureaucracy to fix this issue would be immense. Being a civilian organization, I place our odds between "never" and "hell freezes over" that AAFES will become interested in resolving this issue.

To me, AAFES refusing to serve CAP is just another bullet point in the argument CAP needs to move to a low-cost, readily available uniform all members can wear.
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SAREXinNY
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« Reply #51 on: May 26, 2019, 03:25:28 PM »

It's frustrating, unnecessary, and easily fixable if the right people put their foot down.

Totally agree it's frustrating, but easily fixable? I'm not big into the who's-who of CAP, but for the life of me I can't think of anyone in CAP with the necessary leverage over AAFES to "put their foot down" and fix the issue with how AAFES qualifies people to make online purchases from them.

Heck, even if CAP was a part of the Air Force the bureaucracy to fix this issue would be immense. Being a civilian organization, I place our odds between "never" and "hell freezes over" that AAFES will become interested in resolving this issue.

To me, AAFES refusing to serve CAP is just another bullet point in the argument CAP needs to move to a low-cost, readily available uniform all members can wear.

True, all of it, but I wasn't implying that the person that needs to put their foot down be a CAP member. If the right AF personnel were to start making some inquiries, it would be fixed.

AAFES is directed by a board of directors, and is overseen by the secretaries of the Army and Air Force through the Chiefs of Staff.
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abdsp51
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« Reply #52 on: May 26, 2019, 04:26:04 PM »

It's frustrating, unnecessary, and easily fixable if the right people put their foot down.

Totally agree it's frustrating, but easily fixable? I'm not big into the who's-who of CAP, but for the life of me I can't think of anyone in CAP with the necessary leverage over AAFES to "put their foot down" and fix the issue with how AAFES qualifies people to make online purchases from them.

Heck, even if CAP was a part of the Air Force the bureaucracy to fix this issue would be immense. Being a civilian organization, I place our odds between "never" and "hell freezes over" that AAFES will become interested in resolving this issue.

To me, AAFES refusing to serve CAP is just another bullet point in the argument CAP needs to move to a low-cost, readily available uniform all members can wear.

True, all of it, but I wasn't implying that the person that needs to put their foot down be a CAP member. If the right AF personnel were to start making some inquiries, it would be fixed.

AAFES is directed by a board of directors, and is overseen by the secretaries of the Army and Air Force through the Chiefs of Staff.

AAFES is headed by a 2 star not the service secretaries.  Between the services and AAFES there are bigger issues at play.  If you really think the AF can squeeze compliance out of AAFES you are horribly mistaken.
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NIN
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« Reply #53 on: May 26, 2019, 08:50:10 PM »

One thing you have to remember with Vanguard vs AAFES:

AAFES deals, in part, in DLATS (Defense Logistics Agency Troop Support)-procured or sourced issue items that are not available to Vanguard.

For example: When you buy the "issue-quality" male short-sleeve blue shirt from AAFES for $14.87, you're getting the same shirt that winds up the clothing bag of every male Airman to pass thru Lackland (same material, contract specifications, quality control, etc). 

That same "issue-quality" shirt from DLATS is not available for commercial purchase by Vanguard.

Instead, Vanguard sources what AAFES considers the "premium-quality" male short-sleeve blue shirt from the likes of Flying Cross. The one that costs $41.95 at the Exchange and $49.40 thru Vanguard. (likely because Vanguard doesn't buy with gov't contract rates or volume guarantees). Good thing they don't buy the Brooks Brother's shirts ($59.00 thru AAFES).

Its just the nature of the beast: Vanguard has no access to the DLATS contracted items and will never be able to come close to the AAFES pricing unless you want to start buying blues pants that have a "Dockers" label on them and don't meet the mil-spec.
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Spam
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« Reply #54 on: May 27, 2019, 01:59:08 AM »

Another thing to remember is that HQ CAP has no real reason to accept AAFES offers such as described above. You have to understand that Civil Air Patrol Inc has zero interest in under cutting the Vanguard sales numbers. NHQ gets a huge kick back in the six-figure range every year from Vanguard which they nominally apply to region activities. E.g. new pole barns in Pennsylvania Wing and subsidies for summmer cadet activities... That sort of thing.


While useful and laudable in terms of keeping a live source of unique bric a brac insignia while providing a sweet funding back line the line member never sees where their extra 50 bucks for a jacket goes for instance. How much exactly is profit. How much goes back to NHQ. What amounts by dollar that go to which activity (and how much if any "sticks" along the pipeline as a pass through cost). Reputable charities which i would hope CAP is one of do publish these numbers. When my office gets a USAF MIPR for example we expect to lose 3 percent as a contract pass through... Depends on the vehicle used.


Point being: theres no motivation for CAP to approve even that last fairly reasonable offer for a designee in each unit to place AAFES orders. So I dont see NHQ ever doing anything but slow rolling any such proposals.


Covince me otherwise someone... Please...


Vr
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Eclipse
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« Reply #55 on: May 27, 2019, 03:05:52 AM »

^ agree on this, with the caveat that for the most part the issue is items VG doesn't sell such as service coats (why VG
can't order them from AAFES escapes me).

The other two non-trivial pieces of this.

What we've been told is that this isn't AAFES, per se, but the phone vendor / call center taking AAFES orders.
They decided it was too much hassle to deal with CAP manual orders.

The other thing is that the reality is the number of members who were even aware of AAFES, let alone used it,
was likely so small as to be statically zero. 

Even in the salad days of "Rosie", few there knew what CAP even was. I only knew of a handful of people
who ever went through the trouble of the multi-step process of getting registered and then placing an order,
and frankly even when it worked it was more trouble then it was really worth.

The inability to call an MCSS and order through that channel was a much bigger loss then AAFES.  I ordered
custom made shirts and my service coat from the Scott MCSS.  The ladies down there were great!

Most NHQ personnel and leadership at higher levels have access to various MCSS locations.  There's not going to
be any change to current state until they close the store at Maxwell.
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Ned
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« Reply #56 on: May 27, 2019, 03:14:39 AM »

It is perhaps not all that surprising that a for profit business makes a profit on the items they sell.

Kinda like every other government contractor and business in the US. 

And the last time I checked, VG returns a licensing fee of 6%, and only on CAP-specific items.  Which is pretty much the standard in the industry.  Just like the businesses licensed to produce Scout uniforms, and similar organizations.

The volunteer leadership deliberately employs multiple avenues to put the required uniforms and insignia into the hands of the membership as efficiently and inexpensively as possible.  Members can buy uniforms from Walmart (aviator shirts and grey trousers), MCSS (most - but not all - members live within a couple hours drive), VG, and other commercial sources.  I know many cadets who get uniforms from non-traditional sources like DRMO (via authorized screening at the wing level), eBay,  donations from the unit, and even the Airman’s Attic (when authorized).

I don’t buy my uniforms from VG because I can get them cheaper elsewhere.  But I understand that not everyone has that choice.

We are always (always!) eager to hear ideas on how to provide less expensive uniforms and insignias.

And Bob, please remember that no one who works at NHQ wears a uniform, so the presence of multiple MCSSs at Maxwell does not seem to be much of a factor in this.

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Eclipse
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« Reply #57 on: May 27, 2019, 04:40:57 AM »

And Bob, please remember that no one who works at NHQ wears a uniform, so the presence of multiple MCSSs at Maxwell does not seem to be much of a factor in this.

No one said they did, I am speaking of the volunteer leadership.

However, you bring up a great point.

Namely, the volunteers have ready access to MCSS stores, and the paid ee's don't wear uniforms,
so at what point is there any pressure on the people who could actually bring some influence on the issue
vs. the rank and file who, in your own example, have to drive "hours" to buy some uniform parts.

And FWIW, I think that is a benevolent / optimistic statement at best.  From my personal experience,
by far the vast majority of members do not have access to a USAF base, and never, during their
entire CAP career ever set foot on a military installation of any kind.

For the majority of members, MCSS might as well be AAFES as it is a non-factor.  They are stuck with
VG and whatever they can find at surplus or online.

"Good luck with that" is hardly the proper way for a military auxiliary to source uniforms for it's members,
doubly so when you consider those members are paying for them.

The AFIs and CAP regs call out AAFES as a source, it clearly isn't.  One or the other should be changed to reflect that.

At a minimum, if VG is going to be the sole and official uniform supplier for CAP, it should be contractually obligated
to provide the entire uniform.  AAFES may not be able (or care to) deal with rank and file members, but if
the official uniform source for the Air Force can't find a way to work with the official uniform source for the Air Force Auxiliary,
something is very wrong.
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chuckmilam
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« Reply #58 on: May 27, 2019, 12:25:38 PM »

I wonder if those Brooks Brothers shirts are worth the price.
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NIN
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« Reply #59 on: May 27, 2019, 06:01:52 PM »

I wonder if those Brooks Brothers shirts are worth the price.
Only if you find it in Goodwill
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DocJekyll
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« Reply #60 on: May 27, 2019, 06:02:05 PM »

I'd imagine ABU's, Sage boots, and other USAF specific uniform items will rapidly begin to become extremely hard to find.

ABU wasn't really a popular commercial design (only USAF and CAP have ever used it officially as far as I am aware), and only USAF used the sage boots. I'd wager that color will be completely gone in 5 years.

What commercial supplier of uniforms [Propper, Rothco, etc] would want to make small production runs of a pattern for only about 30-40k people across the whole nation? That's gonna really raise the price if the do.


I've got a full cost/benefit analysis, timeline proposal and some other items I've developed for a uniform change to OCP's, and even gotten some outside feedback, but I've sat on it until the problems I've been predicting begin to come true. There are some great up-sides to it too. This won't happen until everything is done for the AF though. Otherwise I bet the proposal.... well...it'd go into the nearest trashcan. I did have some pretty positive conversations at my wings conference though not too long ago. I think those with level heads do see it as a future problem. The consensus however is that when a change is made, we shouldn't be waiting 3 years between revisions to the manual. The edits can be done in a couple weeks and out to the masses. ICL's only get you so far. [Example: the dark blue tapes on the corporate BDU's were only in the letter and not any kind of manual update. This caused a lot of confusion for people who didn't see the letter or read deep enough. Take that as you may]
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xyzzy
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« Reply #61 on: May 27, 2019, 06:26:05 PM »

...The consensus however is that when a change is made, we shouldn't be waiting 3 years between revisions to the manual. The edits can be done in a couple weeks and out to the masses.

A basic problem with the manual is USAF-style winter clothing. It's a fundamental problem because the payment for heavy winter clothing is different between USAF and CAP. In USAF, many airmen (outside of the Air Guard) pay for their own uniforms, with clothing allowances for enlisted, and without for officers. But heavy winter clothing is issued, not purchased. Thus, heavy winter clothing is barely mentioned in the USAF uniform regulation; in essence, it says to wear what is issued to you.

In CAP it's all purchased by members, so heavy winter clothing guidance is absent. Also, since it isn't sold to airmen, it isn't available at the Exchange. So it's even harder to get than other uniform components.
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Gunsotsu
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« Reply #62 on: May 28, 2019, 05:09:14 AM »

Winter/cold weather items are addressed in CAPR 60-1 with the shockingly simple notion that protection from the elements trump adherence to CAPM 39-1. So it's a moot point.

Meanwhile, Vanguard has been slowly raising their prices on ABUs. Think mom and dad aren't going to notice the next time they buy their cadet a new set of "no one else wears these uniforms?"
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GroundHawg
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« Reply #63 on: May 28, 2019, 11:55:34 AM »

I wonder if those Brooks Brothers shirts are worth the price.

Yes and no. They are great quality, but stupid expensive.

When I found out that I had gotten the AGR slot I had been hoping for I was super excited... until I realized I would now have to wear Blues once a week instead of once a year.

I went to get a couple of nice shirts, one long, one short sleeve. Well of course all they had was the Brooks Brothers. I went ahead and got them anyway and never regretted it. They are soooo much more breathable than issued blues shirts! And they take to pressing much better than any other shirt I have had. I looked good, felt good, and was often complimented on my uniform.

I just don't see the need in CAP as we wear Blues maybe 10 times a year
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THRAWN
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« Reply #64 on: May 28, 2019, 11:59:55 AM »

Dozens of pages wishing, hoping, and begging for ABUs.

Four pages, so far, of posts wailing and gnashing teeth and pulling hair over the difficulty of finding ABUs.

None of this would have happened if they just put all members in BBDUs. Simple fix. Easily obtainable. And it would be a uniform, for a change.
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THRAWN
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« Reply #65 on: May 28, 2019, 12:00:54 PM »

I wonder if those Brooks Brothers shirts are worth the price.

Yes and no. They are great quality, but stupid expensive.

When I found out that I had gotten the AGR slot I had been hoping for I was super excited... until I realized I would now have to wear Blues once a week instead of once a year.

I went to get a couple of nice shirts, one long, one short sleeve. Well of course all they had was the Brooks Brothers. I went ahead and got them anyway and never regretted it. They are soooo much more breathable than issued blues shirts! And they take to pressing much better than any other shirt I have had. I looked good, felt good, and was often complimented on my uniform.

I just don't see the need in CAP as we wear Blues maybe 10 times a year

Even though it's the basic, minimum required uniform?
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Strup
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TheSkyHornet
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« Reply #66 on: May 28, 2019, 02:15:20 PM »

I wonder if those Brooks Brothers shirts are worth the price.

Yes and no. They are great quality, but stupid expensive.

When I found out that I had gotten the AGR slot I had been hoping for I was super excited... until I realized I would now have to wear Blues once a week instead of once a year.

I went to get a couple of nice shirts, one long, one short sleeve. Well of course all they had was the Brooks Brothers. I went ahead and got them anyway and never regretted it. They are soooo much more breathable than issued blues shirts! And they take to pressing much better than any other shirt I have had. I looked good, felt good, and was often complimented on my uniform.

I just don't see the need in CAP as we wear Blues maybe 10 times a year

Even though it's the basic, minimum required uniform?

Just because a reg/manual says it's the minimum required doesn't mean it's the most feasible or common.

You could run the entirety of the CAP Cadet Program (minimum program elements and contact hours)—minus PT—in the Class B Service Uniform, if you wanted to. The "senior side," not so much.

But would it be exciting and retain cadet members? Probably not. A cadet unit that spends more time in Blues rather than utilities isn't very active, physically. Hands-on and outdoor experience is probably minimal.

That still doesn't mean we don't need a good supply of Blues uniform items; absolutely. But ABUs seem to be more of a commodity.
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Gunsotsu
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« Reply #67 on: May 28, 2019, 02:21:27 PM »

Dozens of pages wishing, hoping, and begging for ABUs.

Four pages, so far, of posts wailing and gnashing teeth and pulling hair over the difficulty of finding ABUs.

None of this would have happened if they just put all members in BBDUs. Simple fix. Easily obtainable. And it would be a uniform, for a change.

This, with the caveat that I've already proposed. Eliminate USAF style uniforms for ALL seniors and have cadets adopt the current USAF field uniform within 365 days of their adoption by Ma Blue. Allow a 3 year sunset on previous USAF field uniforms.
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Fubar
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« Reply #68 on: May 28, 2019, 02:45:06 PM »

I wonder if those Brooks Brothers shirts are worth the price.

Yes and no. They are great quality, but stupid expensive.

When I found out that I had gotten the AGR slot I had been hoping for I was super excited... until I realized I would now have to wear Blues once a week instead of once a year.

I went to get a couple of nice shirts, one long, one short sleeve. Well of course all they had was the Brooks Brothers. I went ahead and got them anyway and never regretted it. They are soooo much more breathable than issued blues shirts! And they take to pressing much better than any other shirt I have had. I looked good, felt good, and was often complimented on my uniform.

I just don't see the need in CAP as we wear Blues maybe 10 times a year

Even though it's the basic, minimum required uniform?

I think he was saying they are not worth the expense given how little they are worn in CAP. For example, I got the absolute cheapest white shirt I could find so that when online meanies decide to harass me about having the required uniform, I can say yep, it's still in the bag it was shipping in on a shelf in my closet. There was no point spending serious money on quality when I have no need to actually wear it.
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GroundHawg
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« Reply #69 on: May 28, 2019, 03:16:05 PM »

I wonder if those Brooks Brothers shirts are worth the price.

Yes and no. They are great quality, but stupid expensive.

When I found out that I had gotten the AGR slot I had been hoping for I was super excited... until I realized I would now have to wear Blues once a week instead of once a year.

I went to get a couple of nice shirts, one long, one short sleeve. Well of course all they had was the Brooks Brothers. I went ahead and got them anyway and never regretted it. They are soooo much more breathable than issued blues shirts! And they take to pressing much better than any other shirt I have had. I looked good, felt good, and was often complimented on my uniform.

I just don't see the need in CAP as we wear Blues maybe 10 times a year

Even though it's the basic, minimum required uniform?

I think he was saying they are not worth the expense given how little they are worn in CAP. For example, I got the absolute cheapest white shirt I could find so that when online meanies decide to harass me about having the required uniform, I can say yep, it's still in the bag it was shipping in on a shelf in my closet. There was no point spending serious money on quality when I have no need to actually wear it.

Exactly. I dont see the need to spend $65 on a blues shirt from Brooks Brothers when a $15 DLATS one will work just fine for average CAP wear
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Ned
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« Reply #70 on: May 28, 2019, 05:24:44 PM »

Looking good in any situation can be its own reward.

And is often considered priceless.

 ;)


(If you look in the back of my closet, you will find a lot of expensive CAP uniforms that I can no longer wear.  Though some days I still wear my Guayabera shirt to parties.)
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xyzzy
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« Reply #71 on: May 28, 2019, 08:41:42 PM »

Winter/cold weather items are addressed in CAPR 60-1 with the shockingly simple notion that protection from the elements trump adherence to CAPM 39-1. So it's a moot point....

"Cadet Program Management" does not apply to what uniform senior members wear.
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SarDragon
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« Reply #72 on: May 28, 2019, 10:15:06 PM »

Looking good in any situation can be its own reward.

And is often considered priceless.

 ;)


(If you look in the back of my closet, you will find a lot of expensive CAP uniforms that I can no longer wear.  Though some days I still wear my Guayabera shirt to parties.)

 :clap: ;D
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Dave Bowles
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« Reply #73 on: May 28, 2019, 10:38:11 PM »

Winter/cold weather items are addressed in CAPR 60-1 with the shockingly simple notion that protection from the elements trump adherence to CAPM 39-1. So it's a moot point.

Meanwhile, Vanguard has been slowly raising their prices on ABUs. Think mom and dad aren't going to notice the next time they buy their cadet a new set of "no one else wears these uniforms?"


Hi Gunsotsu.


I'd like to disabuse you and our fellow readers of any notion that the statement in 60-1 (a cadet programs manual, which as such has scope over cadet activities) somehow deletes the clear prohibition in 39-1 against compromising USAF style uniforms. What the 60-1 statement does enable is to urge/empower project officers for CADET EVENTS to relax the uniform of the day standards to allow for those cadets who don't own (for example) a full set of winter blues, and allow the UOD to include other uniform combos (worn properly and completely, without mixing USAF and civilian items IAW 39-1). Further, activities may allow the wear of appropriate (I.e. warm) civilian clothing (alone, not mixed) while enroute (see 1.2.4.2 pasted below). Such measures support a wide range of winter cadet activities such as cadet competitions and conferences in compliance with the new 60-1 guidance.

It is completely improper to push the unsupported notion that a 60-1 cadet pub somehow invalidates clear 60-1 prohibitions on mixing USAF style and civilian clothing for all members. Read from the position that both publications are authorized (and they are) we must look for either a logically consistent way to interpret them (as I've tried to describe), or to ask NHQ/CC to sign/approve a revised version of one or the other. Absent the latter, the former is indicated.

Therefore... if someone shows at, say, a winter SAREX wearing civilian clothing mixed with ABUs, we will counsel them with respect and have them remove it, or send them home if they don't have the required uniform/gear per national policy from M39-1 and per the SQTR task for their position requiring a full and complete uniform/gear. Noted, 39-1 does present (Table 1-1) alternatives to ABUs (CFUs). If that's unacceptable, the problem rests with NHQ, not with us, but repeated violations will lead to progressive discipline up to the point of separation.

It is a "shockingly simple notion", I would offer, that the soldierly ("gunsotsu") virtues include adhering to regulations, rather than attempting to game them.


R/s
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Ref:
CAPM 39-1 26 JUNE 2014

1.1.2.1. COMPLIANCE WITH THIS PUBLICATION IS MANDATORY. This publication
is the sole source for wear instructions and authorized items for various uniform combinations as
prescribed within. Variation from this publication is not authorized. Items not listed in this publication
are not authorized for wear with uniforms. Local commanders do not have the authority to waive
grooming and appearance standards. [Note: caps emphasis is in the original publication]

1.2.4.2. Members are normally required to wear a CAP uniform (either USAF- or
Corporate-style) when working with cadets, when flying in a CAP aircraft (Corporate or member owned
aircraft used in a CAP flight activity), or when conducting business under a CAP mission number (A, B,
or C). Region commanders, wing commanders, and activity directors may stipulate appropriate civilian
clothes while traveling to and from events by ground, or during events not involving flight where it is
appropriate to wear civilian clothes.


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« Reply #74 on: May 28, 2019, 10:39:58 PM »


PS, Gunsotsu, I completely agree on your latter point regarding costs to parents. I think its a shame, as well.

V/r
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Ned
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« Reply #75 on: May 28, 2019, 11:01:43 PM »

Interestingly, compliance with the 60-1 is also mandatory. 

Certainly no less "mandatory" than the 39-1.

And both appear to be validly issued regulations.

The current 39-1 is dated in 2014, and validly signed by Gen Carr, in his capacity as National Commander.

The current 60-1 is dated in 2018 and is signed by the current national commander, Gen Smith.

I can see how some members might think the regulations conflict in this area, at least in the narrow area concerning cadet operations in uniform during cold weather.


When regulations or other guidance appear to conflict, I would expect the adult leadership on site to make a common-sense call that is consistent with safety and accomplishing the mission.


Ned Lee

Col, CAP

National Cadet Programs Manager
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« Reply #76 on: May 28, 2019, 11:28:07 PM »


Ned, I can see how members would be confused, but that's squarely because Cadet Programs pushed the obfuscations into their latter publication in an effort which appears to undercut the already approved 39-1 revision.


And now, yet again, the "but safety" trope.


Repeating such statements borders on preemptive justification of a core values violation in terms of a making a spurious claim to a safety issue, when participation in our activities is completely voluntary, and we know that members who don't have the gear should not wear USAF style. Planning with forethought to violate 39-1 is that, no less.


If we are concerned with safety, by all means STAY HOME, wear civvies to/from per 39-1, or wear corporate. I would expect our adult leadership to follow the regs and enforce them (not to imply that they are negotiable with a wink and nod and a mention of "safety"). It is reprehensible to cry wolf with the safety flag, when the real problem is the sheer inability of National leadership to execute a rational uniform policy!



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Eclipse
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« Reply #77 on: May 29, 2019, 12:44:09 AM »

When regulations or other guidance appear to conflict, I would expect the adult leadership on site to make a common-sense call that is consistent with safety and accomplishing the mission.

So...

Expecting the adult leadership to fix the conflicts is off the table now?

We're just going to leave it all to the inconsistently trained volunteers who are getting increasingly tired
of C-S fights with non-stakeholders who raise "this or that" regulation at the last minute? (This is very common).

39-1 is SIX YEARS OLD and no one can find the copy of Acrobat to fix the typos, grammatical issues and
internal and external conflicts that were pointed out SIX YEARS AGO? (Not to mention properly authorize
a uniform that isn't currently legal (by regs), and is already sundowned by the USAF)

When a publication is updated, it's not "mandatory" that it be peer reviewed for conflicts, etc., before being published?

What happened to the rules ab out what ICLs are supposed to be used for, and the process by which regs are updated.

Aren't those "mandatory"?

This is a top-5 retention issue.  We solicit professionals to what they believe is a professionally governed national
organizaiton, and then they start finding this kind of stuff and just walk away, and CAP chalks it up to...no one
knows because no one ever asks those people or cares why they leave...
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Ned
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« Reply #78 on: May 29, 2019, 01:32:26 AM »


Ned, I can see how members would be confused, but that's squarely because Cadet Programs pushed the obfuscations into their latter publication in an effort which appears to undercut the already approved 39-1 revision.

Jeff,

I think the point is that no regulation “trumps” another.

The older 39-1 is not “more regulatory” than the newer 60-1 enacted by the current national commander.

In certain, limited circumstances, some members might perceive a conflict between the regs.

When and if that ever occurs, we depend on responsible senior leaders like yourself on site to make the common sense call.

That was my point - no more, no less.


Quote
And now, yet again, the "but safety" trope.

Interesting.  My dictionary defines “trope” as figurative or metaphorical word or expression.

If you truly believe that safety in a cold weather environment is either figurative or metaphorical, it may be hard for us to have a rational discussion in this area.  Sadly, members have suffered cold injuries on cadet activities in the past, and adequate clothing and shelter have to be part of every leader’s concerns and ORM.
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Ned
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« Reply #79 on: May 29, 2019, 01:44:08 AM »


This is a top-5 retention issue.  We solicit professionals to what they believe is a professionally governed national
organizaiton, and then they start finding this kind of stuff and just walk away, and CAP chalks it up to...no one
knows because no one ever asks those people or cares why they leave...

Sometimes it is hard to tell when you are being serious.

Can you share the source of your “Top-5 Retention Issues?”

It feels unlikely to me that “sometimes cadets wear civilian outerwear with ABUs when it is really cold outside is anywhere in the Top 1000 Retention Issues.
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Eclipse
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« Reply #80 on: May 29, 2019, 02:28:54 AM »

Experience.

You know I'm right, and that point isn't specifically about "cadet outerwear", but you knew that too.

It's about the hot mess the regs are, they way they are (and are not enforced), and all the
collateral damage that is caused by same.

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« Reply #81 on: May 29, 2019, 04:04:41 AM »

Ned,


Treating Safety as a "get out of jail" card to excuse the lack of due diligence at the NHQ level in terms of doing the necessary staff work to provide a road map to an affordable, effective uniform, reduces Safety to a punch line. A figurative, meaningless "because because" argument. Yes, I feel "trope" is a proper term for your intentional suggestion that commanders and activity officers knowingly ignore a key CAP regulation rather than adhere to regs and demand accountable performance from NHQ, because you're reducing Safety to a buzz word, an excuse, a meaningless figurative term. You are crying "Wolf". Following your loose approach I might as well ignore commanders term limits next because I think officer A is safer than B. I might as well say that six hours sleep is good enough for encampment cadets, or twelve flight hours straight for aircrew is ok, based on my safety assessment. Where does this stop?


In the end, you (and the NHQ CP staff) pushed an apparently conflicting regulatory paragraph through and are doubling down on continuing to support eye rolling/winking at the previously approved 39-1 you already knew was clear on this issue (while so, so broken on so many other issues).  That causes conflict in that you are eroding unity of command, you are eroding confidence in the integrity of the system, and you are opening the door by extension to second guessing and disregard of the entirety of our regulatory structure. You've shown contempt for the process and the product. Reprehensible.


But again, back to our main point: we'd hardly be here discussing the endorsement of cheats around the lack of USAF-style compliant outerwear (and the approaching debacle of the near total absence of ABUs) were there a sufficient focus at NHQ on planning out a sane, sensible uniform road map that was harmonized with our USAF customer, and was gamed out with our entry-level cadet and SM customers in mind.


PS, why would USAF ever approve the wear of OCPs by CAP, when they can read our own national leaders publicly stating that its ok to break uniform regs and wear it however we want? Boy, that's a winning strategy to make a case for trust in our integrity...

V/r
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CAP9907
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« Reply #82 on: May 29, 2019, 04:30:55 AM »

I think we are way off topic here... closed for cleaning.

~9907
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