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Guy Cramer’s Investigation of the US Army Camouflage Improvement Effort – Part 6

U.S. Army Phase IV Baseline Patterns, will the Army have to settle with these?
by Guy Cramer, President/CEO of HyperStealth Biotechnology Corp.

Guy Cramer continues his investigation into the US Army’s Camouflage Improvement Effort in Part 6 of his series. He brings up some very compelling points. Now that the Army has indefinitely delayed the announcement of their camo findings, they rush headlong into impending legislation requiring them to adopt a common pattern and uniform with the other services. The time to assume leadership in clothing US servicemembers for combat is now.

This isn’t a performance issue like the Individual Carbine. They’ve done the research. They have the solution. All the Army has to do, is act. Otherwise, everyone may be stuck with second best; the baseline patterns that the Army’s effort was meant to replace.

Read Cramer’s report here.


32 Responses to “Guy Cramer’s Investigation of the US Army Camouflage Improvement Effort – Part 6”

  1. Mike says:

    Hypothetical question: What if the US Army is intentionally withholding the information from the CIE until the legislation is passed? That way, they will have the legislative backing to essentially force adoption onto the other services, and the timing would prevent the other services from testing and submitting their own patterns. I have no information to back this up, and merely submitting it in the hopes of someone better informed than myself can tell me if this has any merit or if I am way off the mark.

    • SSD says:

      They aren’t

      • BradKAF308 says:

        But they could present it as a neutral pattern, at this point no particular service uses it. Politicly and I don’t mean amoung the Generals, of all the things the US Army could spend money on, this is the last thing any politician would argue against. It’s about soldier safety. Just need to push. Maybe a letter writing campaign to your S&C, get your family in it, local petitions etc. Good luck, stay safe.

      • JBAR says:

        Could the legislation possibly have a negative effect and cause the Army CIE results to be scrapped, delayed, or have a back seat because the other services want their “fair” shot because it would now be a more or less cross service standard?

    • USMColddawg says:

      Since there is no announcent; there is no adoption. I now foresee UCP around for the next seven years.

  2. cimg says:

    aquanet? How did they get that idea?

  3. Frank says:

    Seems like he’s taking the Wiggy’s approach.

  4. bulldog76 says:

    great research and great marketing all in ….

  5. Chance says:

    I’ve been following Mr. Cramer’s blog posts and I must say he puts forth a STRONG case. I was originally in the Multicam camp, but Mr. Cramer has put forth quite the product. Knowing Hyperstealth’s history with Sitka, I have to say these patterns are probably everything Mr. Cramer says they are or better. If Hyperstealth doesn’t win, hopefully they would still sell a line based on those patterns for us hunters.

    • Guy Cramer says:

      Chance, that will be up to ADS Inc. to decide, and they are waiting for an announcement from the Army before they consider other markets for US4CES.

    • Chuck says:

      Great thing about the Sitka patterns is they are based on how animals see. That being said a few of us tried Sitka’s Waterfowl pattern in some areas of Afghanistan and it was VERY effective.

  6. Mike says:

    The delay is killing the American textile industry. Most manufacturers have downsized dramatically. DLA is minimizing new orders while they await the announcement of a new camouflage pattern.

    • Guy Cramer says:

      Mike, I have heard the same thing, no one wanted to print UCP as they all anticipated a replacement pattern(s) so they let their stocks run down and after June 14th came and went without an announcement, new orders for UCP started to come in, the Army has to replace uniforms and equipment that is wearing out but no one knows when or if UCP will be replaced, and the textile industry don’t want to be caught with dead UCP inventory once a replacement is announced, so the textile industry is in a pickle on just that issue.

  7. Christopher says:

    Guy –

    I’ve read all six parts, and you make a compelling case!

    One request – can you (or your webmaster) please put some white space on either side of the text at the Hyperstealth site (so it reads more easily, like the text here at SSD or HS’s homepage).

    Best of luck,

  8. orly? says:

    Breaking news!

    Congrats! Its a boy!

    Oh wait.

  9. ST Doc says:

    As always, great article Mr. Cramer. That said, I do have a bone to pick. Sony Nightshot is a highly inaccurate testing tool. I’ve tried mine on my issued uniform. It totally over illuminates the object. You can easily tell when looking at IR reflective patches.

    • Guy Cramer says:

      I have an older Sony Nightshot and a newer one, yes the IR Light will light up the center of the image but I am attempting to show how Gen 1 and Gen 2 looks and many of those models require extra IR illumination.

      • ST Doc says:

        I totally agree with you on that, my real gripe is the distance. The IR illuminators are only good for short range. At the point where we would get lit up like that it’s not longer my camo’s problem, it’s my carbine’s.

        All that said, I would like to say bravo on making such a killer pattern family. I’ve always been a big fan.

  10. MK-EOD says:

    It has been an interesting read. I do wonder, though: the actual issue OCP uniforms are not made of your typical NYCO blend. They are (at least, the ones I was issued in 2011 were) manufactured by Propper, and were constructed of Tencate Defender-M flame-retardant fabric.

    This difference was immediately noticeable when you unboxed your new OCPs. Out of the package, they looked more brown than commercial Multicam, more faded. This actually worked well, since Afghanistan is more brown than green.

    They tended to bleach out in the sun and with washings much faster than an NYCO uniform. After a while, a used set of OCPs looked like new set of Multicams turned inside-out, or faded almost to a brown/tan color with a greenish twinge.

    Theoretically, this would diminish their camouflage capabilities, since the pattern is fading out. In reality, this greenish-brown faded blob, covered with a spattering of Afghan moon dust, actually provided very good optical camouflage.

    …not that optical camouflage amounts to much when you come marching into a village in broad daylight, with a gaggle of ANA, ANP, and interpreters with you, followed by a troupe of Afghan boys begging for candy.

    • Doug says:

      I totally agree with you the FRACU’s as we call them are horrible. They fade faster and didn’t even look good when you first got them. This is what they should test our patterns on because this is what is issued in a combat zone not NYCO.

  11. Marcos says:

    i thought that the issue with camo under IR was that some colors would ‘glow’ when viewed with NVGs and that this was more of a result of the pigments used. this is why fabrics have IR treatments to prevent this (iirc, this IR treatment is why milspec Canadian CADPAT uniforms cannot be sold to the public but neutered ones without the treatment can be) . this IR treatment is also why US uniforms say not to use detergents with optical brighteners or starch. i believe that a reason that NYCO is preferred over cotton is because of the performance of the IR treatment

    • mcs says:

      It’s not a “glow” as much as it is the uniform being much brighter than its surroundings if the inks/dyes are not made for the NIR. (it doesn’t emit light or fluoresce though, just reflect like in the visual range)
      Just like in the visual spectrum, un-dyed cotton and nylon appears bright in the NIR unless treated with dyes that work in those wavelengths.

      Light amplification devices have a tendency to “bloom” around the highlights of an image, so perhaps the term derived from this.

  12. JBAR says:

    AOR II is too light. It also fades out quickly to a very bright hue, way worse than the old woodlands. Was it really tested primarily on woodland/jungle performance? It is a transitional uniform in my opinion.

    I do not understand how the other finalists can/could be this far into the competition without adequate NIR performance. Weren’t the UCPs selected based primarily on their NIR performance and the visual colors a secondary thought? That was a decade ago. So far, US4CES has been the only final competitor to really back up their product. I do not know how ADS/Hyperstealth could be more thoroughly stated. The history also backs it up. The lack of insight only adds to thinking that the others are substandard and at the whelm of polital pressure.

    • Guy Cramer says:

      I thought AOR2 would end up as the Transitional pattern for their baselines and the Army Woodland Digital (never been shown publicly) would end up as their Woodland/Jungle baseline. Now when you look at the new darker Multicam beside AOR2 you can see that this Multicam would fit in quite well as a Woodland/Jungle candadite pattern and is darker than AOR2.

    • mcs says:

      UCP was selected from the closet of a trashed Vegas hotel suite with a tiger in the bathroom.
      Any other explanation you may hear is pure speculation, as no Army leadership has owned up to the specifics of their colossal hype-induced failure. It’s hypothesized that it was Frankensteined from the top rated colors studied at the time blindly applied to a CADPAT template. Unfortunately it wasn’t tested until after it was issued.
      Also its NIR properties range from dubious to poor.

  13. Chuck says:

    All the couch commandos just ran out to get Aquanet.

  14. USMColddawg says:

    But supposedly the awful new PTs have been announced. The colors are ludicrous.