Reversible camouflage has been done in the past but not utilizing waterproof breathable membranes like GORE-TEX. WL Gore has developed a proof of concept that takes the current APECS garments to the next level. Retaining the 3-layer membrane construction, Gore replaced the tricot liner material with another DWR coated face fabric. Additionally, the actual membrane is a new version designed specifically to provide symmetrical performance no matter which way the clothing is worn. What’s more, by combining a couple of garment design tricks to ensure pockets are accessible no matter which pattern side is showing along with printed lightweight seam tape, they have been able to cut the weight of the garment itself.
Additionally, by combining two different garments into one, one set becomes redundant and can be cut from the clothing bag. Not only does this make the gear more versatile, but it will save money on several levels. Not only are there fewer garments to purchase overall but there are other intangible savings such as lower contracting requirements, warehousing, and transportation costs across the supply chain as well as once issued.
New garments for use featuring not only MARPAT Woodland and Desert patterns, but also the Navy’s recently adopted NWU Type II and III would help save dollars as we move into a more resource constrained environment.