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Archive for the ‘Camo’ Category

Patagonia – Capilene Woodland T-Shirt

Tuesday, June 17th, 2014

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Patagonia’s Capilene series consists of synthetic baselayers. Made from moisture-wicking polyester that is composed of at least 35% recycled material, Capilene is designed to be quick to wick and quick to dry, has bluesign approval, and uses Polygiene technology for odor control in the garment.

The above shirt is a Capilene 1 baselayer. Featuring Patagonia’s woodland pattern called ‘Camoscape: Alpha Green’, it provides 50+ UPF sun protection and a cool, drying airflow. When paired with another layer, it wicks moisture and adds warmth.

www.patagonia.com

Grey Ghost Gear – Whole Lotta Kryptek

Wednesday, June 4th, 2014

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Owing to the increased popularity of Kryptek, Grey Ghost Gear is now, in their own words, “carrying damn near an entire loadout of gear in Kryptek patterns.” Popular items such as the Minimalist Plate Carrier can be ordered in Highlander and Mandrake, and Stealth Operator Pack in Highlander, Typhon, Mandrake, and Yeti. Other items, such as ammo pouches, accessory pouches, and even sunglasses can be purchased in Kyrptek patterns.

Grey Ghost Kryptek

www.greyghostgear.com

Awesome Deal on Smith Elite Lockwoods in Kryptek from Tactical Distributors

Friday, May 30th, 2014

Kryptek Lockwood

Every time I wear my Kryptek Highlander Lockwood eyepro by Smith Elite, people ask me where I got them. Considering they were a limited run item I’d say that this daily deal from Tactical Distributors is one to jump on. They feature a mil-spec Brown polarized lens and good looks.

www.tacticaldistributors.com/lockwood-kryptek-highlander-polarized

Murdock Webbing Unveils Kryptek Line

Friday, May 30th, 2014

Murdock Webbing is now officially licensed to offer jacquard woven webbing in the popular Kryptek family of camouflage patterns and they look great.

Murdock Webbing 1

Murdock uses specialized jacquard looms that weaves the camouflage pattern directly into the webbing. This not only provides a durable, double-sided product in the webbing, but also meets or surpasses all performance requirements for A-A-55301 Berry Compliant mil-spec webbing.

Murdock Kryptek

Murdock Webbing’s jacquard webbing can be ordered in standard widths of .75″, 1″, 1.5″, and 2″, with custom widths and weights available upon request. Highlander and Mandrake webbing are currently available, with Typhon and Yeti colorways in development, and to be released soon.

www.murdockwebbing.com/camo

MIT Researchers Develop Improved Algorithm For Print On Demand Camouflage

Thursday, May 29th, 2014

Credit - Courtesy The ResearchersPhoto Credit – Courtesy The Researchers

Researchers at MIT have developed a new algorithm that analyzes photos of a scene taken from multiple perspectives and produces a camouflage covering for an object placed within that environment.

Objects hidden by the best performing algorithm took more than 3 seconds to find, which is significantly longer than the casual glance the camouflage is intended to fool.

Although camouflage systems like this aren’t new, this latest effort from the MIT research team is seemingly the most advanced variant to date. Technology like this could easily be adapted to cover up sensor placements, machine gun placements, or other pre-established structures and equipment in the field. However, I don’t see an application for its use with clothing, individual equipment or vehicles as it’s too specific.

Hat tip: newsoffice.mit.edu/2014/algorithms-produce-patterns-that-could-hide-public-eyesores-

US Army Pits “Analog vs Digital” in Upcoming Camouflage Bookend Tests

Wednesday, May 28th, 2014

Nearly as soon as I had found out that the Army was planning to transition from the dreaded UCP camouflage to Scorpion, I found out about the upcoming “Book End” pattern tests scheduled for August – October of this year. When you see what they’ll be testing, you aren’t going to believe it.

US Army Camo Bookend Tests

Naturally, the baseline transitional pattern will be Scorpion (w2) and the Army will consider uniforms and limited OCIE items (such as helmet covers, etc) in MARPAT desert and woodland. ALso under consideration are the legacy 3-color Desert and Woodland (M81 to Camo collectors), both of which were previously displaced by the adoption of the Universal Camouflage Pattern beginning in 2004.

Initially, I didn’t get the pattern choices until someone put it into perspective for me. I kept saying to myself that someone in the Army sure wanted to adopt MARPAT but then I noticed that they aren’t looking at AOR 1&2. While AOR 1 and MARPAT desert are very similar patterns, AOR 2 was specifically tuned to use in jungle environments. The developers even turned the pattern 90 degrees to give it a more vertical orientation. MARPAT woodland on the other hand is a much more generic woodland pattern.

Since the woodland aspects of this testing are being driven by requirements out of the new Army Jungle School at Schoffield Barracks in Hawaii, jungle performance is going to have a lot of weight. With its more Green coloring, chances are very good that AOR 2 would outperform MARPAT woodland.

What I see going in here is something altogether different. After speaking with others, I see a test that pits “analog vs digital” and the Army is out to put us all out of “digital” misery.

If you look at MARPAT as the “digital” solution and 3-color and Woodland as the “analog” solution you can begin to see a method to the madness. Since Scorpion also looks analog in nature, adoption of the two other analog patterns creates a new “family of camouflage” that offers similar design elements if not outright geometry.

As I said before, a lot of credence is being placed on the needs of the Jungle School which has already scoured DLA stocks for the last of the woodland EHWBDUs in stock. They’ve been issuing them out to students for some time now and by all accounts are very happy with Woodland’s performance in jungle. As it should be, since Woodland is son of ERDL. It’s also important to note that Woodland isn’t completely dead. It’s still an issue pattern. There is an Army G1 message that still authorizes Woodland for jungle use due to UCP’s poor performance in that environment. Consequently, based on these two factors (creation of analog family and Jungle School use of Woodland), my money is on the “analog” solution.

My prediction? It’s back to the future with a Scorpion transitional pattern bookended by 3-color Desert and Woodland. Time will tell if I’m right. At any rate, I’m giddy (yes, I said “giddy”) that the Army is moving out swiftly to adopt more effective camouflage for their troops.

Blast From The Past – Camo Rumors From August 2009

Tuesday, May 27th, 2014

I ran across this gem the other day while looking for scorpion photos on SSD. This story goes back to when this latest round of Camo Wars began in 2009. Look what the prevailing thought was. Turns out, the Afghanistan was much larger than this, throwing in several additional patterns, Here we are, almost five years on and it looks to have turned out to be a Scorpion variant of all things.

In light of an impending directive from Congress to the Army to get their camo house in order, rumors continue to circulate about an upcoming test involving four camo patterns with the Army’s current Universal Camouflage pattern serving as a control.

The four patterns are MARPAT-Woodland, MARPAT-Desert, Multicam, and Desert All Over Brush (seen below). Originally, we had heard that the fourth pattern would be the 3-color Desert pattern issued to all services prior to adoption of their new distinctive uniforms. However, based on some recent, unverified information we believe it is actually the Desert All Over Brush which interestingly gave a very good showing during the Army camo trials of 2003-2004. According to a Natick report, a modified variant of the Desert version All Over Bush pattern performed best in all environments. You can also access a briefing presented on the subject at the 2004 International Soldier Systems Conference here.

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Based on a series of evaluations documented in the report and briefing slides Natick developed the variant of All Over Brush pattern.

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Having said all of that, the info on that particular pattern is old news. At some point in the Spring of 2004, the Army took a serious sidestep from all of its research and adopted UCP. if the rumors are true, looking at what is on the table, neither Marine patterns would really be considered serious candidates due to a variety of morale, and as we have discussed before, branding issues. You think the black beret issue was rough, imagine the outcry from two services if the Army adopted a Marine camo pattern. Consequently, while effective, we don’t consider the MARPAT variants as serious contenders. This leaves, depending on who is telling the story, either 3-color Desert which is still used by some US Navy forces (and a few others) or the prototype Desert All Over brush pattern in addition to Crye’s Multicam. While there are limited stocks of 3-color equipment still in the system, virtually none of it is in the configuration currently used by US forces. If it were adopted, the US Soldier would literally take a five year step back in capability until production of current issue equipment could be accomplished. Additionally, there is a political dimension to such a move. UCP was sold as a superior pattern to both Woodland and 3-Color Desert. Someone would naturally ask the question of why the Army discarded a pattern in favor of something less effective.

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This leaves Desert All Over Brush and Multicam. Multicam has been used operationally by select US forces to great success and even more importantly, is currently supported by the US industrial base. A wide variety of Berry Compliant products (and raw materials) are available as COTS items. Additionally, industry already offers versions of current issue equipment in Multicam. Furthermore, there are numerous lightweight and multi-purpose Soldier Systems items designed specifically for environments like Afghanistan. Multicam is a mature, widely available, low hanging fruit. On the other hand, adoption of Desert All Over Brush would require long lead times as fabric mills first perfect and then produce sufficient quantities of materials. Only then could uniforms and equipment for our Soldiers begin to be procured.

We are waiting with bated breath to see if these rumors are true and what’s more, if they are, what will come of them. Naturally, Soldier Systems Daily will keep you updated.

And we’ve been keeping you updated ever since.

Hey Anthony – ETADIK

Tuesday, May 27th, 2014

It’s Scorpion – go choke on a fat one.

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In the post where I suggested that readers go ask their CSM which Camo the Army had chosen, Anthony decided that I was an attention whore that was crying wolf. If you know Anthony give him a swift kick in his fourth point of contact for me.

US Army Selects Scorpion Camouflage Pattern – UPDATED

Friday, May 23rd, 2014

Originally developed by Crye Associates for the US Army’s Objective Force Warrior Program, the Scorpion camouflage pattern could be considered the precursor to the popular MultiCam pattern. Earlier this month, Army officials chose to proceed with a transition to the Scorpion pattern via a “soft launch”. Guess it’s not so soft anymore.

I will point out, that although industry is hard at work preparing fabric to begin the process, the US Army leadership has yet to make an official announcement. I have posted this story in order to offer additional information after another website felt they couldn’t wait for an official announcement and posted that the Army had selected Scorpion.

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Scorpion will replace the MultiCam pattern, currently fielded by the Army as the Operational Camouflage Pattern, making Scorpion the standard issue pattern of the Army, thereby completely replacing the unpopular Universal Camouflage Pattern, first adopted in 2004. The Army will continue to refer to the new Scorpion pattern as OCP. The patterns are very similar so the Army will continue to purchase MultiCam as OCP until the new supply chain for Scorpion is up and running.

This decision signifies the beginning of the end of a process that has taken four years and millions of Dollars in R&D to select a new camouflage pattern for the US Army. The Phase IV of the US Army Camouflage Improvement Effort that looked at four commercial families of patterns seems to have been abandoned in favor of a single pattern created is support of a S&T effort over 10 years ago. The Army still needs to look at so-called ‘bookend patterns’ for desert and woodland use.

UPDATED – Unfortunately, as the Army was still working on their strategic communication plan, the details most of you will seek are not yet available. For example, exact dates and timelines aren’t firm. I have heard that the Army is working with printers to get fabric rolling and plans to have gear on the shelf by next May with OCP in the clothing bag for new accessions by early FY2016. As it hasn’t been printed in any quantity in several years, industry is going to have to learn how to print it, despite lessons learned from printing MultiCam. Although very similar, Scorpion and MultiCam are different patterns. There’s going to be a learning curve here and we still don’t know if Army is going to restrict the pattern like MARPAT and AOR or make it open source like UCP. If it is restricted, you won’t see it for use in commercial gear. Additionally, although many Soldiers have been issued FR ACUs in OCP, there are currently no issue ACUs in OCP made of 50/50 NYCO which is the fabric for the Army garrison uniform. This makes authorization for wear problematic as the FR ACU is considered a combat uniform. Although, we may end up seeing some local commanders authorizing wear of issue FR ACUs in garrison and local training if the changeover timeline turns out to be too long. According to COL Robert Mortlock, PM SPIE at PEO Soldier, the full transition to the new pattern will take up to eight years considering the full wear out of OCIE. Naturally, clothing bag items will be much quicker.

As a sign that the Army is committed to this Course of Action, the recent deployment of elements of the 173rd Abn Bde to Estonia marks the first RFI issue in OCP for use outside of OEF. This is very significant.

I have heard from several Army sources that Scorpion is being referred to as “Scorpion MultiCam” by leadership. This is incorrect. They are two distinct, yet similar patterns. It is either Scorpion, or MultiCam, not both. In this case, the Army has chosen to proceed with Scorpion.

So far, USAF and SOCOM are sticking with MultiCam but at this point, Scorpion remains etherware. No fabric exists, aside from some random remnants found in storage, let alone finished goods. This may change once Scorpion is actually available.

Specifically, the new pattern is the W2 variant of Scorpion which is a ~2009 modification of the base pattern originally created for OFW. Around the same time, woodland and desert variants were also created but there is currently no indication that those will be considered for use as bookend patterns. Scorpion W2 will still receive a tweak or two to apply the latest IR technologies to the pattern.

I do have details on the upcoming bookend tests (woodland and desert) for Fall but I am going to keep those under wraps for now.

A Little Scorpion Camo History For You

Friday, May 23rd, 2014

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