Cadet Bergans

#1
Hi chaps

Has anyone heard anything about rules and regs with infantry bergans and cadets?

My understanding is that:

Cadets should not be carrying a lot of kit as they are only small. May be (basic list) a sleeping bag, bivvy bag, roll mat, poncho, change of clothes, waterproofs, cooking kit, rations and water. This kit is normally carried on D of E expeds all the time and not that heavy. Education is required between AIs and cadets to inform then about what to pack, thus travelling light.

However, the all arms issue "turtle backs" are shit and if cadets carry Inf style bergans on D of E, then they can carry them in cadets?

I’m not talking about the large long backs but the short backs which have more compartments for kit to be divided and organised.

I’m really hoping for a sensible answer but I fear I may not get it……
 
#2
I can't answer for now, but my CCF issued us '37' patt webbing, the Gucci kit then was '58' from Silvermans, Badges and equipment, or a shop by Capital Radio off the Euston Road, Lawrence Corner!! That's the badger.

For D of E we used '37' packs on an old 'H' frame.

I would guess that issue kit is acceptable, if it fits. Do you have to buy your own these days? Again long after I'd left there was a fashion for buying US kit after 'Full metal jacket' including helmets for God's sake!

Hope this might be useful. (We weren't so trammelled by H&S in those days either).
 
#3
I can't answer for now, but my CCF issued us '37' patt webbing, the Gucci kit then was '58' from Silvermans, Badges and equipment, or a shop by Capital Radio off the Euston Road, Lawrence Corner!! That's the badger.

For D of E we used '37' packs on an old 'H' frame.

I would guess that issue kit is acceptable, if it fits. Do you have to buy your own these days? Again long after I'd left there was a fashion for buying US kit after 'Full metal jacket' including helmets for God's sake!

Hope this might be useful. (We weren't so trammelled by H&S in those days either).
Thank you for your input. However, things have changed a lot these days! H&S through the roof!
 
#4
I’m not talking about the large long backs but the short backs which have more compartments for kit to be divided and organised.

A short Back is exactly the same design and configuration as a long back......

Anyway.

Common sense should prevail exactly like organising a DofE route, you make the task appropriate to the skill and fitness level of the participants.
 
#5
Like Chef I was issued 37 pattern.

Generally we carried very little. We operated in fighting order of ammo pouches, water bottle and small pack with mess tins and groundsheet cape. Basically what you see in the photos of WW2 except that we had a lot less ammo and no entrenching tool.

The instructors acted as CQMS and brought up what we needed overnight when we stopped. (Tents and sleeping bags if we were lucky, extra groundsheet capes and blankets if we were not. Either hot food or tinned food and cookers).

For the rare occasions where we needed to operate independently we had some man-pack carriers.

If you are training for combat, I think you should do something similar. D of E expeditions have their own rules, so no weapons but all the things you list. I would recommend civilian rucksacks for D of E as they have proper waist belts to help carry the load.
 
#6
A short Back is exactly the same design and configuration as a long back......

Anyway.

Common sense should prevail exactly like organising a DofE route, you make the task appropriate to the skill and fitness level of the participants.
Agreed, short backs are the same but smaller. However, they are better than "turtle backs".
 
#7
As above, Cadets can wear bergans, as a rule no more than 1/3 of the cadet's body weight (that used to be in DofE stuff, not sure if still is).

But why?

Cadets shouldn't be too far from their kit, and a day sack between two works well enough. If you have to do a long 'approach' then carry the bergans in a vehicle and cache them.
 
#8
My lad in the Cadets has a 45 Litre civvy day-sack in DPM, and a full-size short-back PLCE bergan purchased on ebay from a dealer in RM territory in the West Country: good nick, and a very decent price. I could look out the supplier's details if you want.

He was 13 when I bought the latter, and had learned in Scouts about how and what to pack (and what not to).

Now he's 14, and as tall as me (5ft 9ins) it's perfect, and will last and last.
 
#9
Goodness! Not often you get an ACF thread, with sensible answers!
 
#10
He may be as high you, Stonker, but it's in the joints and bones and stuff. They are still forming (certainly at 14) and thus although he may look like you, he is still very much a 'child'.

For DofE and expeds and that, its all about the training and preamble up to the standard theya re at.

I would argue that for that sort of thing a Inf bergan (or even an AA bergan) is not what is required, and the County/Contingent should endeavour to source some civvie bergans... if nothing else they wont be 100 litres in capacity and open to being filled with 40 litres of unrequired sh1t.
 
#11
...if nothing else they wont be 100 litres in capacity and open to being filled with 40 litres of unrequired sh1t.
Wise words. There's a tendency (and not just among cadets!) to expand one's definition of "must have" in accordance with the capacity of one's bergan (or suitcase, or handbag ...)

So getting a reasonably small and comfortable (but ally-looking!) bergan would be the way to go. Deffo no Berghaus Cyclops or the like!
 
#12
Berghaus munro is probably ideal for cadet use 35litres big enough for a cadet.
 
#13
Wise words. There's a tendency (and not just among cadets!) to expand one's definition of "must have" in accordance with the capacity of one's bergan (or suitcase, or handbag ...)

So getting a reasonably small and comfortable (but ally-looking!) bergan would be the way to go. Deffo no Berghaus Cyclops or the like!
But isn't that is why you would have kit lessons and kit checks?

Having seen many schools D of E rucksacks, they are similar size in litres as mil one. I say again, the short infantry is far better than the “turtle back”. Or what about the NI patrol pack?

Please believe me when I say, I am not interested in hacking cadets for miles upon miles. However, allowing them to carry their bergans into a harbour areas, where they would dump them for the entire exercise is not excessive.
 
#14
If I'd paid attention, I'd have added my tuppence on current D of E stuff; a friend's sprog went off for a practice expedition. As they know I have a rake of buckshee kit, they asked for a loan of stuff.

If it had been left to me, the ancient 120ltr para bergan would have been full to capacity; the sprog wouldn't be able to move, but would have had the kit to live on an irradiated desert island for two years. Not quite in keeping with a 36 hour bimble, with back up.

35ltrs a la Brighton Hippy is plenty. The sprog in question used a civi Eurohike 45ltr rucksack, it does fine for hols and such, and did fine for the weekend. Any bigger encourages more stuff, and as I've taught my son; 'Take what you like, you've got to carry it'.
 
#15
He may be as high you, Stonker, but it's in the joints and bones and stuff. They are still forming (certainly at 14) and thus although he may look like you, he is still very much a 'child'.

For DofE and expeds and that, its all about the training and preamble up to the standard theya re at.

I would argue that for that sort of thing a Inf bergan (or even an AA bergan) is not what is required, and the County/Contingent should endeavour to source some civvie bergans... if nothing else they wont be 100 litres in capacity and open to being filled with 40 litres of unrequired sh1t.
Hence the 45 ltr day sack for the shorter expeds. But, if you're gonna carry a tent (split between 2) and scoff for a camping weekend in the Chilterns/Cotswolds, or if you're off on a week's [hutted] camp with the Cadets, a bigger ruck is required. And the little'un can be lashed to the big 'un for the move there'n'back.
 
#16
Agreed, short backs are the same but smaller. However, they are better than "turtle backs".
Short backs are the same size as long backs but are shorter and wider. Long backs are tall and thin. If there is any size difference it will only be by a couple of litres. For most cadets a short back is advisable.

Anyway, we issue all of our cadets with bergens of some sort, either other arms or infantry. If a cadet over-packs it is not the bergen's fault. I would prefer to have a nice stock of some kind of 70-80 litre DPM/OG rucksacks but I have what I have.

Personally I don't think a PLCE bergen is the best choice for DofE use as they are supposed to be worn on top of webbing. A proper civie rucksack offers far better support when worn alone.
 
#17
Short backs are the same size as long backs but are shorter and wider. Long backs are tall and thin. If there is any size difference it will only be by a couple of litres. For most cadets a short back is advisable.

Anyway, we issue all of our cadets with bergens of some sort, either other arms or infantry. If a cadet over-packs it is not the bergen's fault. I would prefer to have a nice stock of some kind of 70-80 litre DPM/OG rucksacks but I have what I have.

Personally I don't think a PLCE bergen is the best choice for DofE use as they are supposed to be worn on top of webbing. A proper civie rucksack offers far better support when worn alone.
Agreed about the use of infantry bergans for D of E. I was just asking about my initial point which the rumour brigade have stated that cadets cannot wear infantry bergans (as it states in a letter but can never be found).

I have seen a 50litre NI pack on cadet direct. This may be a compromise?

Cheers chaps!
 
#18
This brings me on to my second point:

If cadets are meant to sleep outside on exercise. Why are they not given bivvy bags. By all means they can buy their own sleeping bags. What are the thoughts about this out there?
 
#19
Agreed about the use of infantry bergans for D of E. I was just asking about my initial point which the rumour brigade have stated that cadets cannot wear infantry bergans (as it states in a letter but can never be found).
I can confirm that this is B.S. There has been no policy come down from HQ Army regarding this. There is a new "cadet bergen" in the works (I believe it is a 45l daysack - or was it 60?) so I think someone might have gotten their wires crossed.

You can pack just as much in an other arms bergen anyway, it is just wider and deeper than the infantry bergen.
 
#20
This brings me on to my second point:

If cadets are meant to sleep outside on exercise. Why are they not given bivvy bags. By all means they can buy their own sleeping bags. What are the thoughts about this out there?
They get a doss bag, a roll mat and a poncho... what else do they need?

Really?
 
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