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US Army Camouflage Improvement Effort – Thought For The Day

Consider this. The US Marine Corps completed their MARPAT program in 18 months. Phase IV of the US Army Camouflage Improvement Effort has been ongoing since June of 2010 with the initial Sources Sought Notice.

In fact, based on their initial timeline, they should have been moving into a contract almost one year ago.

30 Responses to “US Army Camouflage Improvement Effort – Thought For The Day”

  1. Doc Rob says:

    God between this and the “one” standard thing they are planning on doing with females in combat I quit, I seriously think its time for me to just ets.

    • Doc Rob says:

      And when I say one standard I don’t mean females doing the male standard I mean both males and females standards changing into one complete standard.

  2. CAVstrong says:

    I’d there any indication to when they will actually announce the winner? Or at this point is it merely standby to standby.

  3. Go figure says:

    Well, let’s review first what the Army has fielded that it is “proud” of.

    IOTV anyone? Sure it provided more coverage area, at the expense of mobility. Why the hell do you need ballistic material on top of your shoulders anyhow? Or down to the belt line? I am an average sized guy (71″, 168 lbs) and the Army says I should wear a size M, which happens to extend below my belt.

    Combat shirt? Great let’s brand that thing with Army Strong and it must be awesome. Forget that the elbow pads never actually fit under your elbows, or that the material on the yoke and body rips easily. Let’s ignore proven designs and come up with our own huh? Yes, I know Massif is also behind it.

    Carbine improvement project? (chirp…chirp)

    Issued boots? They haven’t been good since the leg boots went away, and even those were so-so. Only boots the Army ever gave me that I still have are ICW’s.

    Land Warrior?

    Stryker? The list goes on.

    I seriously don’t understand what is in these people’s heads. All they have to do is look down the hallway in the Pentagon and take a look at MARCORSYSCOM. Yes, they aren’t the best either but they have a proven track record of getting what Marines want in an appropriate timeline. We aren’t asking for you to buy us the latest and greatest, Army! All we want is stuff that is reliable, works as intended, and something that keeps us from having to go out and buy our own stuff.

    I spoke with a Major from PEO Soldier a number of years ago at a demonstration they held and I asked him what was going on with the Carbine Improvement Project. The repsonse was something along the lines of “What is it you guys want? Do you want new fire suppression for your Strykers? Do you want new magazines? Do you even know how a piston-operated M4 variant works?” He then walked away.

    We’re tired of it.

    • SSD says:

      The Marines are great at fielding something quickly. Getting it right? Not really. They just do a better job than the Army.

      • Go figure says:

        Hence the “not the best either”. At least they are trying to give their guys SOMETHING. I mean, we’re dealing with the government here.

        • majrod says:

          Off the top of my head. Items fielded before other branches or exclusively to Army units:

          SAW paratrooper stock & collapsing stock
          SAW upgrade
          MICH-ACH and suspension systems
          Surefire lights
          ESS eyepro
          NETT Warrior
          Plate carrier
          M855A1 ammo

          The Army is far from perfect but the grass in not necessarily greener.

          • Doc says:

            The marine corp issued plate carriers before the army, and the one they fielded was crap they could have just gone with once again a “proven” system and just issued mbavs but no they had a competition and ignored the results anyways. I’m in the army and they almost gets nothing right the only good crap they have done recently is the Stryker, the medium ruck (even though they shoulda just gone with mystery ranch like we tested), and multicam for Afghanistan.

          • Doc says:

            You know what I’ll continue to bite, M68 = garbage, camelbaks seriously the army doesn’t even issue those they issue hydration bladders THEY designed because once again, can’t buy commercial, XSAPI are heavy as shit, SF has better and lighter plates once again too good for the army. M320 heavy, cumbersome, oh and some rounds you could use with M203 you can’t use on M320 because its breach load, while the marines beat us in that area again with the MLCOR grenade launcher. ESS eye pro scratches in less than a week, you didn’t mention this but Wiley X gloves fall apart in a month. ESAPI plates don’t get scanned as regularly as they should so MAYBE they stop a round or two. I could go on for days about this. Don’t talk about something you have no idea about. The best gear I ever got was from an RFI of mostly SF/Ranger Gear and civilian gear so we could test it. All the stuff was awesome you know how much the army adopted after our reviews…….ZERO because the army always has to make its own shittier stuff and make the soldier suffer for it on their own whether it be physically or financially.

          • majrod says:

            Uh, you do know the M203 is also breach loading and RFI is an Army program?

            I have experience with M68s, SAPI plates and Army issued Camelbaks. Might be careful throwing around the “Don’t talk about something you have no idea about” it’s biting you in the butt right now.

            If the old saying is “happy soldiers complain” you must be ecstatic.

            • SSD says:

              The M68 is pretty freakin good, for what it’s designed for.

              The M320 accepts more rounds than the 203 did.

          • Go figure says:

            You’re right, I did miss some gems, just happened to be pissed off when I was writing that. Skilcraft Hydrobak? I watch Privates break damn near every single one issued to them every cycle I work. Almost everyone has to go out and buy their own Camelbak or Source. M68 is great, and the newest version is pretty sweet, especially with NVG compatible battery. ACOG is solid. M4 is debatable, but still pretty solid for what it is. SAW stocks are sketchy…probably better design out there. SAW upgrade? Are you referring to new, fixed gas cylinder and belt-holding pawl? MICH is awesome, pulled my old K-pot out the other week and put it on and wondered how the hell I ever did that. The armor thing could be done much better. Surefires are nifty but good luck getting anything built recently. ESS is hot trash. OCP not the Army’s development. XM25 is cancelled due to safety issues. Electronics detract from training folks how to fight without them, which we aren’t good at as a whole Army. Never got issued the KDH but I don’t know many guys that liked it, just missed out on my last deployment. M320 is a pain, can’t attach to M4 and jump it unless there are modified 1950s being made now, difficult for Soldier to hold loaded M4 with loaded 320 in a standing position, difficult to hold in prone, so it’s usually a standalone device. I have no experience with new ammo so I can’t comment there.

            End state: you make a solid point. We have disagreements. Oh well.

          • majrod says:

            XM25 cancelled? Not what I’ve read. Withdrawn because of one incident for further testing/eval. It’s still listed as an active program.

            OCP not an Army development? Neither is the M68, acog, Camelbak, ACH. All those are made by private companies.

            M320, your observations except for jumping are personal opinion. Plenty of troops like the weapon being separate as opposed to holding on to an M203 all the time.

            We can disagree but there is lot more good than bad but I understand troops love to b—-! πŸ™‚

    • Dan says:

      The durability of the combat shirt is no surprise when you look at the fabric content; it’s mostly cotton everywhere. Kind of disappointing for a “high- tech” stretch fabric. A flame thrower demonstration is all well and good, but as you said, the torso is a weak point that compromises the protection offered by the garment.

  4. Frank says:

    Third of Neveruary……

  5. FormerDirtDart says:

    How long did the Canadians work on the program before the Marines spent 18 months on MARPAT?

  6. jmcboots says:

    The Army cant get a good morning dump completed on time. There are people in D.C. that have been sittin’ on the shooter for years now.

  7. JBAR says:

    So everyone will keep buying crap that will be no good and wasting money like always. How is this affecting the small commercial industry as well?

    • Go figure says:

      You have to remember that small commerical industry doesn’t pay for 60 second political ad spots. So I don’t know that anyone in the position to do anything even cares. Maybe my tinfoil hat is just hurting my head though.

  8. USMColddawg says:

    I despise the Army Combat Shirt because of it being a mock neck and the body fit is aweful. I just wish they would have went with the zipper like the Marines have.