ADS - EOY

Posts Tagged ‘UCP’

Army Combat Pants Are Go?

Wednesday, June 29th, 2011

Natick has released a Request for Information from industry seeking for production of a Flame Resistant Improved Army Combat Uniform Trouser (Army Combat Pant). We wrote about the “FR ACU Trouser Product Improvement Program” in 2009 but not much information has been released since then. Ultimately, Crye Precision was given the contract to produce the test articles which were evaluated in Afghanistan last year by elements of the 101st.


This is a photo of a prototype.

This RFI signals the beginning of what may well be the introduction of an entirely new piece of combat apparel for issue. While many will argue that this is just an improvement of the current FR ACU trousers, that would only be true so long as the old style is no longer produced. The current FR ACU is an almost stitch for stitch copy of the current ACU worn in garrison as well as permissive field environments. Additionally, the Army issues the Army Combat Shirt which has been optimized for wear with body armor. The new so-called Army Combat Pants are optimized for combat use. This new combat oriented combination would make the FR ACU redundant as it has not been optimized for combat use. Will the Army retain the FR ACU? Most likely. There are plenty of reasons to issue an FR fatigue type of uniform.

Another interesting issue introduced in this RFI is that the ACP will be produced in both OCP as well as UCP. That’s right, despite the adoption of MultiCam as OCP for troops deployed to Afghanistan and a comprehensive camouflage development effort in the form of the Army Camouflage Improvement Effort, a full replacement for the ill-performing UCP can’t come soon enough. Until the Army can decide on a path ahead for signature management it will be forced to continue to invest in a camouflage pattern that does not work in but the most improbable circumstances.

Afghanistan Camo Testing Announced

Tuesday, September 15th, 2009

*UPDATED* Natick has been busy developing several new variants of UCP which retain the base pattern but replace individual colors. Word has it that some of them are down right ugly. It has recently been revealed by Brig. Gen. Peter Fuller, PEO-Soldier that the new “UCP-Delta” which integrates Coyote Brown into the pattern along with Multicam will be evaluated in Afghanistan beginning in October. In response to the Congressional directive to field a new camo pattern for operations in Afghanistan two Battalions worth of uniforms will be tested.

Below are two photos of UCP-Delta. One with an IOTV and one without.

UCP Delta with IOTV UCP Delta
Photos courtesy of PEO-Soldier

According to sources at Natick, 30% of the pattern of the UCP-Pattern is Coyote Brown. One advantage exhibited in the photos is that UCP Delta offers the perception that current UCP field equipment will not need to be replaced.

EOTAC Operator Pant – in UCP!

Tuesday, September 1st, 2009

It seems that EOTAC has been listening to their customer base and has finally released their Operator Pants (Style 201) in the Army’s Universal Camouflage Pattern.

EOTAC Lightweight Operator Pants in UCP

Manufactured from a fade resistant 7 ounce all-cotton ripstop, end users affectionately call this pant the “pajama pant” due to its comfort. I can attest to this claim, they are very comfortable and have a soft hand. Additionally, EOTAC applies DuPont Teflon® fabric protector to repel both water and oil based spills.

All critical seams are double-needle stitched and bar-tacked at stress points. The Action Waist has side elastic panels for freedom of movement. The 1 inch wide reinforced belt loops are strategically placed and accommodate belts up to 1 3/4 inches wide and the gusseted crotch allows for a greater range of mobility while reducing the stress around the crotch area of the pant.

There are multiple pockets to cover a wide range of uses. Two secured back pockets accommodate a wallet or ID while two larger easy access rear pockets accommodate larger gear. Like the ACU pant, there are two slant top bellows cargo pockets. They feature hook & loop closure flaps and elastic drawstring with cord lock for additional security. Inside the cargo pockets are elastic webbing loops that secure up to two 30-round magazines per pocket. The reinforced knees feature external openings with hook & loop closures for inserting foam knee pads (included). Two lower leg bellows pockets each feature a hook & loop closure flap and two chem stick holders.

“This was a natural progression for us. Our Operator Pant is based very closely on the US Army’s ACU pant. Because of that similarity in look, soldiers had asked us to offer it in the UCP. That was an easy decision to make. If it helps our soldiers, then it was worth doing,” said Fernando Coelho , president of EOTAC.

Sizes are available in 28″to 48″ waist and inseam lengths of 30″to 36″ (even sizes). In addition to UCP, the pants are also available in Khaki, Black, Navy, and OD Green. To order visit www.EOTAC.com.

Camo Rumors – Some Observations

Sunday, July 5th, 2009

Ever since Congress told the Army that the Universal Camouflage Pattern (UCP) used on the Army Combat Uniform (ACU) wasn’t cutting it in Afghanistan, rumors and just plain old bad info has been swirling about the internet so I thought I’d share a few thoughts on the subject.

Urban Legend 1 -Multicam Uber Alles. Despite internet hype and the military version of an urban legend, Multicam is not replacing UCP in 2011 or 2012. As best I can tell this rumor came about because the Future Force Warrior program was supposed to be fielded in, you guessed it, 2011. It so happens that all of the photos of guys suited up in the FFW garb were swathed in Multicam goodness. For some odd reason, folks couldn’t divorce the concept of FFW from Multicam. Hence the urban legend. Naturally, this new round of Congressionally driven controversy has only fanned the flames of this untruth. Think about it. The Army just spent a gazillion dollars changing everything to UCP. In fact, fielding isn’t even complete. So ask yourself this question. Why would the Army spend a “gazillion” dollars on a new camo pattern and turn right around a field a new one mid-stream? The answer? It wouldn’t. They want to buy FCS not new uniforms.

Urban Legend 2 – UCP is going away completely. It isn’t. The Congressional “suggestion” is only for forces in Afghanistan not the whole shebang.

Urban Legend 3 – The Marine Corps offered MARPAT to the Army and they turned it down. Total Fantasy. Here is a truth. These patterns are about branding. When you see MARPAT, you think “Marine”. When you see UCP you think “Soldier”. MARPAT was developed for the Marine Corps. General Jones, former Commandant of the Marine Corps wanted a uniform that would let his enemies know when Marines were in town. He got one.

Urban Legend 4 – The Army didn’t adopt Multicam because they would have to pay a license for Multicam / it was too expensive. Once again; False. The Army helped pay for the development of Multicam. There is no “license”. Also, the more Multicam printed, the cheaper it gets. The more you buy, the less you pay.

desert brush variant 3

I feel for the Army. What a big poop sandwich. “Hey Army, UCP stinks, issue something else. But use the money we already gave you for OTHER stuff.” You can’t just change out uniforms. You have to replace all of the Soldier’s other kit as well or the contrast will just highlight the guy. So the Army is going to have to compute this huge cost for one theater. That was the point of UCP in the first place. One camo…universal. No more issuing two different patterns to guys…economize.

I feel even worse for the poor action officer at PEO-Soldier who has to develop the decision brief on this one. For example:
COA 1 – Do nothing…Tell Congress “Nuts”, I mean after all, UCP does work in some parts of Afghanistan.
COA 2 – Do Nothing…Beg Congress for cash
COA 3 – Stall…conduct study (Attn PEO-Soldier, I am available for contract to conduct said study)
COA 4 – Issue Woodland or Three-Color Desert
COA 5 – Adopt all new pattern – See pic above

Option 5? That is the fantasy option. Or is it? There are select US forces rocking Multicam all over the place. Oddly enough, so are Snipers. Aside from that, the Army spent a great deal of time and effort developing and testing several patterns any of which could be dusted off including the one in the photo.

However, I am voting for some combo of one or more of the first three with COA 4 as the ultimate outcome. There is already precedence with the Army’s G1 permitting USASOC forces to wear Woodland camo. Plus, there are stock of the older patterns that can be drawn from to get this thing rolling.

Do we love Multicam at Soldier Systems Daily? You’re damned right we do. Will it be adopted for use in Afghanistan? Who knows at this point, but it sure will be interesting watching whatever ultimately happens.

UCP Operator Pants from EOTAC

Tuesday, May 5th, 2009

There are lots of new surprises in store from EOTAC including these Operator Pants in UCP. Looking for comfort, durability and features not found in your issue trousers? Then these are just the ticket. They feature all of the extras of the Operator Pant with the addition of the Army’s Universal Camouflage Pattern. From the cargo pant down they look outwardly like issue ACUs so you will be able to avoid the uniform nazis.

EOTAC Lightweight Operator Pant in UCP

Rumors abound of a possible FR variant. Available soon from EOTAC. While you are there be sure to join the forum for the latest news on EOTAC products.

Patagonia Guidewater Shirt in UCP

Monday, February 9th, 2009

Patagonia

Although designed for the commercial market, the Guidewater Shirt’s 30 SPF fabric comes from soft shell work done on ECWCS Gen III. Although, it is intended as a fishing shirt, it may be just the thing some of our readers are seeking. Inherently wind and water resistant, the 4-way stretch nylon with DWR (durable water repellent) breathes as well helping to avoid overheating. Tabs secure rolled sleeves and the shirt features one zippered and one velcro chest pocket.

Patagonia Men’s Guidewater Shirt in UCP

Available as a limited edition product Spring 2009 in UCP from Patagonia.

Photo from Patagonia.

Universal Camouflage Pattern Not So Universal?

Tuesday, October 14th, 2008

The Army G1 just released this message that finally validates Army SOF’s practice of wearing BDUs in tropical regions due to UCP’s poor performance in that environment.

SUBJECT: EXCEPTION TO POLICY FOR WEAR OF THE ENHANCED HOT WEATHER BATTLE DRESS UNIFORM (EHWBDU), AVIATION BATTLE DRESS UNIFORM (ABDU), AVIATION FLIGHT SUIT, AND ACCESSORY ITEMS

1. THIS MESSAGE SERVES AS AUTHORIZATION FOR WEAR OF THE EHWBDU, ABDU, AND ACCESSORY ITEMS AFTER THE MANDATORY WEAR OUT DATES FOR SOLDIERS ASSIGNED TO UNITED STATES ARMY SPECIAL OPERATIONS COMMAND (USASOC) CONDUCTING OPERATIONAL TRAINING AND CONTINGECY MISSIONS IN THE FOLLOWING OCONUS THEATERS:

A. PACIFIC COMMAND
B. SOUTH COMMAND
C. AFRICA COMMAND

2. THE FOLLOWING WOODLAND ORGANIZATIONAL CLOTHING AND INDIVIDUAL EQUIPMENT (OCIE) ITEMS WILL BE MAINTAINED AS ISSUE IN THE ARMY SUPPLY SYSTEM:

UNIFORM ITEMS
BOI
A. EHWBDUs (COAT AND TROUSERS) 4
B. ABDUs (COAT AND TROUSERS) 4
C. GEN I GORTEX (COAT AND TROUSERS) 1
D. BDU, SUN HAT 1
E. BROWN T-SHIRTS 4
F. PATROL CAP 1
G. AVIATION FLIGHT SUIT 2
H. ARMY COMBAT HELMET COVER 1
I. BLACK BOOTS (HOT WEATHER, SPEED LACE) 2

3. POC FOR UNIFORM POLICY IS XXX.

4. THIS MESSAGE HAS BEEN APPROVED BY THE DCS, G-1.

5. EXPIRATION DATE CANNOT BE DETERMINED.

Name That Jacket Contest Winners Announced

Wednesday, August 13th, 2008

Wild Things

Marie Meunier of Wild Things is proud to announce the winners of the Name That Jacket Contest.

The Basic version will be named the “Smoking Jacket” to pay tribute to its FR qualities, stylish looks, and comfort. The name was submitted by Tyr Symank.

The FR Jacket will now be called the “Max” in honor of the lovable scamp Max, from the book, “Where the Wild Things Are”. The name was submitted by Marshall Smith.

Both winners will each receive a Smoking Jacket. The winners will be contacted by Wild Things for delivery of their prizes.

For those of you who didn’t win the contest you can still be a winner by taking advantage of the outstanding service, high quality, and low prices offered by Wild Things. Don’t forget, the Smoking Jacket is available for less than $100 and comes in UCP, Foliage, Coyote, and Black. It will also be available soon in Multicam.

Contact Wild Things