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BSA "Litepack" DIY Camping Gear

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HERE is a PDF reprint of 1960s Boys Life articles, from the days when people actually made stuff. "Hickory" tarp tent, Explorer tent, reflector oven, backpack, cook kit from thrift store pans, (heavy and bulky) sleeping bags ["Get your Dad or his hunting friends to save down for you on their next hunting trip"], more projects.
 
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Took me back to the nineteen fifty’s, many thanks.
We lived forty miles from the nearest Boy Scout Troop. My mother thought I might be missing out on things, she bought me a subscription to Boy’s Life until I left home. Dad helped make some the cook kit stuff. My mother wasn’t too interested in helping make a tent with her Singer Sewing Machine, so I made do with a tarp.
Years latter in college I met a an Eagle Scout in a Significant American Nature Writers English class, that met every Tuesday evening, sometimes on campus, sometimes at the Professors home. Great class, changed my life, but that is another story.
Mark the Eagle Scout talked me into going winter camping with him. He had the Official Boy Scout Explorer Tent just like the one in the instructions above. Mark and I have remained friends for the past fifty years. We paddled many miles and slept in that tent hundreds of nights in that tent. Have to put a modern tarp over it and a innie & outie tarp under and in it if we want to stay dry these days.
Thanks for the flood of great memories with this post.
BB………
 
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Thanks for the link, I wasn't a boy scout and never made anything, but I did save up and buy an old military pack from a local well-stocked Army Navy store back in the 50's. I loved the smell of that store and my old pack, great memories.
I took the pack to Canada in the summers I went there, my friend up there and I would borrow a tarp off his dad's hay bailer, some kitchen supplies from his mom, some home made bread, a .22, some fishing gear, then borrow a canoe and paddle down the lake for my first canoe trips.
A little thread drift but that link brought back some great memories...Thanks
 
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That's nice history read and for the record, folks still make stuff. I have made all of the major gear I canoe camp with tarp/hammock/quilts/canoe/paddles it does change the experience quite a bit.
 
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Thanks for your post. It really took me back to my early scouting days with Troop 13 in Kenosha WI during the late 1950’s - early 1960’s.
 

Glenn MacGrady

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I had a subscription to Boys Life for many years as a boy and it influenced me a lot. I was also in the Cub and Boy Scouts, and made it to the Star level before I quit. I was in Troop 2 in Staten Island, NY. We were under the impression at the time that that meant it was the second troop organized in the USA, but that might not be historically true.
 
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Thanks for the post, it doe’s bring back some memories. My Scout days were in Florida and southern Indiana and like Glenn; i made it to “Star”, lacking only the Citizenship in the Nation merit badge to become an Eagle.
Being a tinkerer id agree with the statement, “make some of your own gear”. For some this is an early introduction to working with your hands, something that has served me well over the years.
 
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Thanks for posting this. I was a Boy Scout but the troop wasn’t very good and I didn’t have a very good time. That said I love these old reprints. Even though I really like the reflector oven I made last summer I’m going to make the one illustrated because it when folded is the same footprint as my firebox. Some of the dimensions don’t seem to work out as I read the plans so I’m going have to wing it a bit. As I get further along I’ll probably add to my old oven thread.
Jim
 
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I was able to copy and paste. I think I'll need to fire up the laptop to appreciate this. Thank you very much!
 
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