Its not always easy to keep clean when out on exercise for the military or even wild bush craft/ general camping and sometimes all you need is a quick freshen up. There`s no need to carry huge stacks of shampoo and body lotion around with you that requires lots of water to rinse off when you can use Waterless products. Waterless product are exactly as the names says eliminating the need for a water supply to clean and bath. The Waterless brand has a range aptly named for this very situation and its called – “Pits & Bits“. The Pits & Bits range comprises of a Rinse Free Body Wash, Rinse Free Shampoo and then a Waterless Disposable Toothbrush with built in toothpaste sealed hygenically in an aireline friendly pack. The Body Wash and Shampoo work like regular products but without the need for water to rinse. They come in a handy pocket size clear 65ml resealable bottle, are Alcohol free and PH balanced being kind to your skin leaving no residue but with just the hint of apple fragrance for freshness in the shampoo. There is 1 other product in this range of Pits & Bits that is quite incredible although you do need the smallest amount of water to use it – the expandable wipes which are about the size of a 50 pence piece swell up to large cloths when liquid is applied. These are great as an addition to the other products in use when bathing and all together these products are designed with compactness and ease of use in mind.
For several years now webbing systems have been increasingly changing over to Modular systems (molle webbing). This new style and type of set up has strips of webbing attached to the plain assault vest looking like a ladder effect allowing a pouch with the modular fitting on the back to be positioned anywhere. Pouches can be repositioned at a moments notice without too much hassle, giving the wearer the freedom of a personal set up. The military Osprey system is now being produced in MTP to fit the latest British Army pattern. There are various Osprey pouches to fit such as:- mag & grenade, water bottle & utility, LMG 100 rounds & UGL 8 rounds, and first aid medic pouches.
Modular based products such as the assault vest are being produced by plenty of companies which are all compatible with one another making it easier when sourcing pouches be it in camo or plain colours like the Viper Assault Vest Platform and the varying pouches they have to accessorise the vest. There are also drop leg platforms and chest harnesses to choose from. Some brands such as Viper & Kombat produce many shapes and sizes of daysacks & bergens also heavily featuring modular webbing for additional storage with molle pouches hanging off all parts of the pack, again easily interchangeable from your webbing/battle belt to your bergen and back again reducing the need for excessive pieces of kit for a specific purpose.
Molle systems look like they are here to stay for quite some time as it would be hard to beat this design for ease of use and versatility, even down to replacement parts, you just get a new pouch when one wears out.
The world of waterproofing can be quite difficult at times especially when you`re trying to protect items from even the smallest amount of water. Individual items of clothing, documents and even electronic hardwear can be sealed away with peace of mind that water will not get into them with the use of a dry sack. A dry sack is a very simple idea with either a clear or opaque (sometimes combined) waterproof fabric made into a bag with heat sealed seams. Along the opening edge you would usually find a reinforced strip of webbing and a quick release buckle sewn on the end which is then designed to be rolled down several times, cliped together with the buckle, this then forming an air tight seal allowing nothing in or out. Dry sacks are available in almost any size from as little as 1 or 2ltr capacity to 120Ltr and up. More modern versions designed for mobile smart phones even have touch screen capable material enabling use without taking the phone out of the secure water tight case. Any person taking part in an expedition, walk, military exercise or general field use would most certainly have a requirement for a dry sack of some description be it for individual items or to completely line out a rucksack to take everything. There are many companys producing all kinds of dry sacks with the Snugpak Dri-Sacks being one of the leading brands which is offered in the smaller sizes of 4, 8, 13, 20 & 35Ltr proving popular with the army as they are made in military colours olive green, black and Coyote tan.
Baileys The Army Store in all it`s glorious 46 year history has never been short of the weird, wonderful & colourful element of life that is know as Fancy Dress. Today in the store this wonderful idea of make believe, dressing up and having loads of fun can be found when customers come to us for help with their army outfits and ideas for their party or weekend as the trend tends to be more often than not with a birthday, skittles tour, rugby tour, stag or hen party & even reunions from days of old it`s just a good excuse for a great time. Online shopping for outfits and ideas is also really popular and so simple too without having to wander endless shops. In reality this is just an addition to the real reason for having army gear as we supply soldiers, cadets & T.A alike who need these items for official use.
Have you every been out on a walk, field trip or expedition and you need to make notes for reference purposes, it`s easily done on your note pad but not so easy when it`s raining or perhaps your notepad gets wet soaking the pages and ruining the information you`ve painstakingly collected and written. A simply solution of waterproof paper which sheds water making it possible to write anywhere in any weather is the key solution. One of the leading brands on the market for this type of product is the USA made Rite in the Rain which has gained substantial recognition and reputation over the years (almost a century). The product is environmentally friendly and made from recycled & renewable sources using just a water based coating on the paper itself, even the ink they use is Soy based. When writing on their paper you can use either pen or pencil and your notes will survive rugged conditions even when drenched with rain or actually whilst writing in a downpour hence the name Rite in the Rain. Their product range extends from the basic notpads available in various sizes to official field & expedition journals, memo books and even fishing journals, with optional covers and ring binders set ups too. Rite in the Rain also make all weather pens which can work more efficiently than an ordinary pen even when in temperature conditions from -30F to 250F or used upside down it will keep on working. The military are particularly fond of this product & brand as is has a fantastic reputation to work and last without dissapointment.
Traditional canvas bags having been used right through from before the first world war which at that time were essential for load carrying, person items and general kit not forgetting the very improtant “Gas Mask Bag” usually big enough for the mask setup and a spare filter all in one compartmant and then slung over the shoulder using the strap. Today we have several versions of this type of bag which are small single strapped Haversacks not unlike a gasmask bag or larger Web Packs which can take a couple of A4 sized files and has two straps which can either be used combined as a single strap or used seperately and configured and used as a rucksack on both shoulders. A Larger version of the web pack, the Web Rucksack has additional side and front pockets for extra storage and has large rucksack straps on the back. Also used from bygone military days are the traditional Kit Bags which are canvas cylinders open at one end with a small side carrying handle. The shoulder strap forms part of the bags metal loop and pin closing mechanism at the top, although once closed it perfoms excellently and is load bearing. All the canvas & webbing bags are of a simple design but really work well and are every popular with school & college kids and people who want a decent day to day bag knowing it will last them too.
It`s July 2013 and although they have been trialing and using this for a number of years now the British Army have finally released the MTP clothing for public sale. Multi Terrain Pattern or MTP as it`s better know replaces the long standing DPM woodland camouflage and Desert patterns. MTP has been designed to suit all enviroments and theatres of the battle field, eliminating the need for seperate patterns for the woodland, urban and desert areas. The MTP pattern comprises colours from all the previous individual camouflages creating this unique format. Similar patterns such as Multicam from which MTP was derived have been around for a while and have been used by the US Army. Multicam as a pattern is very popular and has been used to produce all manner of military items from boot kits and notepad covers to rucksacks, bergens, aqua packs, bivvi bags, bashas and MTP rucksacks. Multicam and MTP compliment each other and fit together well when kit is put together from the two patterns giving the army and each individual soldier plenty of choice in replacing worn out kit and also in supplying any new personal pieces of kit they may require.
Military clothing ranges can be vast with numerous items for specific purposes and situations, however one particular item will always have a place and be used everyday – the T-Shirt. Army T-shirts are available in all sorts of colours & patterns with good size ranges. One of the most popular styles is the plain Olive Green T-shirt which is part of the basic kit for a Cadet & Soldier to be worn under their shirt, however with ever changing official military kit and the latest introduction of MTP a different plain colour or even a Multi camouflage T-Shirt or HMTC T-Shirt pattern may suit best. Apart from official colours and styles of the t-shirts worn by the military, there are many different camouflages such as DPM, Desert, Urban, Multicam, HMTC which are very popular for fashion and if we include the other side of the range which comprises of Printed Army T-Shirts with varying logos and text representing thing like S.W.A.T, F.B.I, M.A.S.H, MARINES, BOOT CAMP & the like there is plenty of choice and something for everyone, even the kids.
Every since early days of childhood, there`s sure to have been a little adventurer in all of us, wild dreams and thoughts of roughing it in the woods or the back garden with your mates for a night or two surviving on just what can be scavenged for food and built from nature by way of a shelter. Well the dream can be lived with some basic pieces of equipment. For a shelter with just some paracord, bungees, tent pegs and a British Army Basha sheet which can be erected in several form depending on the extent of the stay. A more permanent structure could be fashioned from surrounding woodland materials and enhanced with a basha for better rain proofing and even concealed with natural seasonal foliage or a piece of camouflage netting, which can be just the basic foliage or more advanced mesh backed netting for added strength, durability and versatility, available in varying sizes there’s no end to what you can use it for. Camouflage netting is lightweight and easily packed up small and is especially popular with ornithologists who need to be inconspicuous when bird watching in their hides. If though you are going to stay & sleep out in your newly built shelter outside you may also require British Army Bivi bag to keep your sleeping bag dry which is rather important in the rainy British weather.
Military Patches & insignia have specific uses to denote rank, units or regiment to which a soldier belongs making them instantly recognizable. Other important patches can be for medical use on the battle field for instance, a Blood Group, No Pen (for allergy to Penicillin), Medic symbol of a cross for a field medic and NKA (no know allergy) which can make a big difference to any treatment given. Regular patches such as the Union Jack Flag and other commonly used designs are now being produced with Velcro backing which allows easy transferal of emblems from one uniform to another especially as the modern MTP clothing which the British Army now uses incorporates velcro areas for their TRF`s and other patches. There are of course some fun moral patches and variations on the official designs that are of a military theme and are very popular with non military people who either collect flashes or just like the design to use on their bags or clothing, and why not it can brighten up a dull garment.