Troop Tent Check Out

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Troop Tent Check Out

Postby rkpeck » Wed Feb 08, 2012 10:43 am

I'd like to get opinions / best practices / secrets for the use of troop tents.
Our troop has purchased tents for use by the Scouts in the troop. When they attend a campout, they will remove a tent from our storage facility at our Chartered Org., sleep in the tent, take it home after the campout to dry it out, and then return it at the next meeting to be inspected by our Quartermaster Assistant before it is returned to storage.
Sometimes the tents don't make it back. I'm sure they're inadvertently stored at home or forgotten in the garage or .... (whatever the excuse). We've not put a lot of teeth in the process. We've considered assigning tents to patrols, making it the patrol / patrol leader's responsibility to get them back. Right now we don't even have a formal "sign-out" procedure. In the past, the clipboard's got wet, the paper's fallen off, ...(whatever the Scout's excuse...)
Over a five year period, we've had about ten tents "disappear" in a troop of fifty Scouts. None have been discarded because of damage, that I'm aware.
I'd appreciate your opinions.

Roger
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Re: Troop Tent Check Out

Postby John F. » Wed Feb 08, 2012 11:43 am

You could have the SM put a note in the newsletter, saying something about the missing tent and ask the scouts to look around their house to see if one of the tents got misplace.
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Re: Troop Tent Check Out

Postby ThunderingWind » Wed Feb 08, 2012 1:06 pm

Slightly formalize the check out proceedure by keeping the clipboard at the CO Storage facility.

Add a simple Sharpie Pen ID number to the Tent bag to help track tents.

If Scout A signs for the tent #7, Scout A must bring it back.

If Patrol XYZ signs for a tent, Patrol XYZ must bring it back.

The note above about saying something in the Troop newsletter is good. It may jog someone's memory
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Re: Troop Tent Check Out

Postby fritz1255 » Mon Feb 04, 2013 12:58 pm

That's a shame that tents don't make it back. I agree with the suggestion that you have a formal sign-out procedure. The worst thing that happened in our Troop was that one of the Scouts apparently failed to dry the tent out, and when it was opened up a month or so later, it was mildewed. From then on, this Scout and his "partner in crime" were permanantly assigned to this tent, and had the "priviledge" of using it at every campout from then on. These were not 11 year olds; they were about 15 or 16 at the time, and knew better. Whichever one of them was the first to make Eagle (I don't remember which) was formally presented with the tent as his parting "gift" at his Eagle ceremony.
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Re: Troop Tent Check Out

Postby Fred Johnson » Mon Feb 04, 2013 5:14 pm

Yeah ... We've run into the same issue at times. We've lost several tents. One a year ... at least. I've had a few thoughts.

- Patrol equipment ... Eliminate tent check in / check out. Write the patrol name on the tent and write each part of the tent. Same with cook boxes, etc. If "patrol" is the fundamental unit in the troop, commit to it and make them own it. They don't take care of the equipment, that is their patrol's responsibility and issue.

- Patrol sized tent ... One thought I've had is that we should "think about" adopting the UK style of patrol tents. A big tent that sleeps 8+. So a patrol shares a tent. Just a thought.

- Scout owned equipment ... Let the scouts bring their own tents and decide who is sharing with who. I know some units that require this.

- Single location return ... I know one unit that arrives back at the same place and then HANGS all their tents to dry in one garage. The next meeting is spent rolling up tents and putting them away.

- Formal sign-in / sign-out procedures and forms and checklists. ... I hate forms though and scouting is not about bureaucracy.

Otherwise ... I really don't know a check-in / check-out process that works that well. Sometimes it's the cost of doing business.
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Re: Troop Tent Check Out

Postby ismellbacon » Tue Feb 05, 2013 10:33 am

ThunderingWind wrote:Slightly formalize the check out proceedure by keeping the clipboard at the CO Storage facility.

Add a simple Sharpie Pen ID number to the Tent bag to help track tents.

If Scout A signs for the tent #7, Scout A must bring it back.

If Patrol XYZ signs for a tent, Patrol XYZ must bring it back.

The note above about saying something in the Troop newsletter is good. It may jog someone's memory


Ditto! :D

Except our unit does not let them take troop equipment home. Typically the meeting after the campout is dedicated to cleaning troop gear as needed.

This can be done with the other troop gear as well.

We haven't had a problem with disappearing gear, but we used to have the "who broke the tent zipper?!" constantly.
Yours in scouting,

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Re: Troop Tent Check Out

Postby lambeausam » Tue Feb 05, 2013 12:46 pm

We have a tent book (composition notebook) that the QM uses to sign out tents. They are checked off after the tent has been returned and inspected. Our tents, vestibules, stake bags, etc. are numbered, so all parts of tent #42 are labeled #42. The boys pick their own tentmates each trip and one scout from each tent is assigned take-home duties.
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Re: Troop Tent Check Out

Postby fritz1255 » Wed Feb 06, 2013 4:27 pm

My recollection from when I was a Scout back in about 1970 was that the Troop tents were hand-me-downs from another Troop, and pretty marginal even back then - smelly, leaky old tents with no floors. Any Scout who's parents could afford it bought their own tent. Nowadays, tents are much cheaper in real terms - you can get a reasonable tent for less than $100, sometimes way less. Scouts supply their own sleeping bags - why not tents?
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Re: Troop Tent Check Out

Postby jr56 » Thu Feb 07, 2013 12:49 pm

I have had all the same problems.
We finally added the additional step of having an adult leader checking on the quartermaster to make sure the equipment was returned in good condition after the campout.
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Re: Troop Tent Check Out

Postby smtroop168 » Thu Feb 07, 2013 12:56 pm

jr56 wrote:I have had all the same problems.
We finally added the additional step of having an adult leader checking on the quartermaster to make sure the equipment was returned in good condition after the campout.


Did the QM get credit for his POR then? :wink:
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