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FirstSpear Friday Focus – Non-Destructive Marking Technology

This week, Ronnie Fowlkes is back to tell us about the FirstSpear Non-Destructive Marking™ technology. It’s some pretty cool construction stuff that the hard core gear nerds like me will be into.

Ever pick up a FirstSpear product and notice these little white dots on the fabric? I didn’t pay them any mind because I knew what they were there for, but I failed to realize how many don’t know that they are registration markings that help the sewers assemble the item.


Over the years, a variety of methods have been used. Generally, these were chalk or grease pencil markings and later companies starting using drill or punch holes where multiple layers of fabric are stacked up and cut in a single operation. At the same time, a small diameter drill or punch is used to put holes in the fabric that help guide the folks running the sewing machines. While this method is quick, it does introduce a new hole into the fabric, ultimately compromising its integrity.

FirstSpear has taken a different approach than even the hand markings used for so long. Their Non-Destructive Marking™ technology instead relies on a water-soluble marking pen system specifically designed for FirstSpear. It allows them to place sewing guides right on the fabric for their sewing specialists to use on the manufacturing floor without permanently altering or damaging the material. Their “white dot” process takes more time but helps sustain overall material integrity. Additionally, those white dots are easily removed with a toothbrush and some water.

So now you know. Those “errant white marks” on your FirstSpear kit aren’t so errant after all. They are a deliberate production technique that is easily removed with water or through some use during a trip to the field.


7 Responses to “FirstSpear Friday Focus – Non-Destructive Marking Technology”

  1. Nick M says:

    I have a TT green book cover that I found holes under the velcro when I decided to sew my rank/name on. Learned why they are there today.

  2. Dev says:

    You know a company makes good shit when they pay attention to the tiniest of details.

    Not to mention being made in the USA with US materials.

  3. CTF says:

    Keep up the fantastic work, FS.

  4. Chris K. says:

    First Spear makes great kit, no doubt.

  5. GW says:

    Ronnie has a nice haircut. These techniques are great, on our Eastman cutters we use an air brush to reach the same results. good Job First Spear, Just the TIP.

  6. Luke says:

    I’d noticed those dots on my Hill People stuff.

    I think its the cost of things like the dot drawing machine that people don’t take into account when they gripe about the cost of buying american.

    stray threads and sloppy stitching (to a point) don’t bother me much, but I have to say First Spear is some of the most precisely sewn gear I own.

    • mike says:

      And this right here is the crux of it.

      Out of the hundreds of pieces I’ve seen come through from First Spear the only thing I’ve ever had to send back was an Admin pouch that had a single strip of velcro missing a stitch line. It was corrected immediately.