Non-issued equipment for ROTC cadets

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by sheriff3, Aug 12, 2013.

  1. sheriff3

    sheriff3 Member

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    Not trying to reinvent the wheel here. I recall seeing a post about items that might come in handy to a new ROTC cadet but that is not issued by the branch.
    DS leaves for for college next week and I want to get advice on any items he may want to purchase prior to leaving. Feel free to add to the list. Thanks in advance for your input.

    Items like...
    Multi tool
    head lamp
     
  2. USMCGrunt

    USMCGrunt Member

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    Sheriff3: There are probably as many opinions as posters on this subject. If you think about everything which is not issued to the student the list can be quite long. If you consider "military" or "field" items, the list is manageable.

    Here is a recent thread on the subject: http://www.serviceacademyforums.com/showthread.php?t=32867

    I am not a big believer in getting too much gear for two reasons: First: The Cadre, upperclassmen and personal experience will help develop the list after they get to school and get some time under their belt. Second: I would never want to stand out as having the latest "rambo" gear when I haven't "earned" the right yet. That is just me - probably wouldn't even concern my DS. To me it is like the people who go skiing for the first time and have every latest and greatest fashion and accessory.

    Anyway, there are lots of good items to consider from watches, knives, flashligts (red lens!) etc.

    Good luck
     
  3. -Bull-

    -Bull- Member

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    I'd wait and spend some time with ROTC before buying a bunch of stuff. Some people find some things useful and others don't. He'll know what he needs/wants after his first FTX.
     
  4. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    I wouldn't invest in anything over what is issued at this point. He'll have a chance to suss out what else he might need when he gets there. I expect it will be very very little, if anything. In any case, if something is needed you can take it down with you on Parent's Weekend! :smile:
    JMPO. YMMV.
     
  5. QA1517

    QA1517 Member

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    I would agree with the above posters. DS's school provides everything that is necessary for training. As time goes on he will find a few things that are handy (waterproof notebooks, DS loves these, etc). He also likes ziplock bags to keep items in.
     
  6. Moosestache

    Moosestache Member

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    My DS, senior in Airforce ROTC, said, running shoes and spandex if you wear it.
     
  7. dunninla

    dunninla Member

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    Before classes start? No, not anything really.

    However, after being in a few weeks, and BEFORE Fall semester FTX, your cadet should get a running shoe type boot. The issued boot will likely have a thick, stiff sole, be more uncomfortable, and lead to blisters sooner, than, for example, the Khyber Mountain Hybrid boot by Belleville.

    That's what I suggested to my DD after she got a lot of blisters at her first FTX. She has been very happy with the Khybers. I suggested those b/c they got great reviews and were on the USMA approved boot list that year, and last year, and I assume this year but I haven't checked. They are like tennis shoes disguised as Army boots. They cost about $120.
     
  8. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe Member

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    A very good pair of running shoes, and some moleskin patches.

    Other then that he'll get most everything he needs, after a while he'll think of some other things he might need.
     
  9. QA1517

    QA1517 Member

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    A good watch and alarm clock.
     
  10. dunninla

    dunninla Member

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    to clarify, I used the wrong term above.

    It is the USMA "Boot Letter", which defines the make and model boot acceptable for that year's Beast. I just checked and the Khyber is again in this year's boot letter, per the USMA section of this website.

    Apparently after BEAST, a cadet may wear any boot that meets Army Regulations, including Nike and Oakley.

    I second the Moleskin, and the suggestion of a black sports watch... Timex Ironman, Casio, etc. As an aside, I would pick one with a solar battery. Every couple of years when I have to take the time to go to the jewelry store to get a new watch battery (I have about four watches) and pay $10 for a new battery, I tell myself in th future to only get watches that have solar recharging batteries (or Rolex which somehow operates without a battery, and without winding the crown).

    Oh, yeah, and a black backpack for use on Lab days.

    It seems the Army really likes equipment to be black without color accents, and minimal or no brand markings.
     
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2013
  11. USMCGrunt

    USMCGrunt Member

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    While I am thinking about it, the midshipmen in my DS' unit were allowed to buy one particular type of Oakley sunglasses to wear with their uniforms. Pretty pricey at around $70 if I remember correctly.

    Once again, my advice would be to wait and see what is/ is not allowed and what the upper classmen/ Cadre recommend.

    Bad news on our end is that the first pair got crushed in some accident (can remember if they were sat on or had gear thrown on them) and his second pair were lost on the first day of Mountain Warfare training. Turning out to be an expensive bit of gear!
     
  12. Roxymom

    Roxymom Member

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    DS's Captain sent out a very detailed message about extra workout gear that new cadets might wish to purchase. He also got an ok on boots to buy on his own. Based on that he ordered extra summer PT wear and bought ample supply off over the ankle white socks. He also bought a "workout watch".
    Anything else he'll wait to see. Moleskin was one of the first things I put in his packing pile.
     
  13. QA1517

    QA1517 Member

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    DS wore the issued Belleville boots thru LTC this summer. They were issued a warm weather and cold weather pair thru his school. He took a lot of moleskin with him.

    He typically wore a thin pair of tight socks under his boot socks. Said he developed 1 hot spot on his heal during their 6 mile ruck and that was it. That was because his one pair of boots were still wet from the day of rain before so he had to wear his pair that weren't broke in quite as well. He never used any moleskin.

    He did buy a pair of NIKE boots to wear around campus when he went back to school. Good garrison boots but they won't last in the field. (school also gave him another pair of bellevilles when he got back).

    I think socks and the correct boot size are the key to no blisters.
     
  14. jaj98

    jaj98 c/o 2015

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    Former AROTC cadet here - you definitely don't want to be THAT cadet (the one with excessively expensive, or excessive gear in general). That being said, I did purchase a pair of boots that weren't standard issue because I have a weak ankle and the standard issue boots were kind of a hassle to run with. Prior to the first FTX you might want to purchase a headlamp WITH A RED LENS simply because the old elbow flashlights that cadets are issued are a real hassle to deal with when out on land nav. You also can never have too many pairs of socks - PT socks, boot socks, and when the time comes, dress socks. Moleskin is great, but Bandaid makes this friction stick that I bought before my first FTX and it was excellent - you might want to consider that.

    Best of luck to you and your cadet!
     
  15. dunninla

    dunninla Member

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    jaj98 -- regarding headlamp, it seems Princeton makes one with clear and red, and another with clear, red, blue, green. I read somewhere that green is becoming more of use in the sandbox. Which would you recommend for, as you say, LDAC?
     
  16. Aglahad

    Aglahad Member

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    Has to be red, no other choice is allowed. The maps are red lens readable too.
     
  17. jaj98

    jaj98 c/o 2015

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    What s/he said. Red lenses must be used when out on land nav/reading maps. Personally I do a lot of camping on my own time so I have a Petzl that has a snap-in red lens so I can use the clear LED setting when I'm out on my own. The choice is obviously up to you/based on personal preference. A built-in red lens would probably be more preferable to a cadet who might lose a small colored disk. :)
     

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