Camo Netting Support Systems

Valence

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Previously I only knew of two types of poles:

Ribbed Aluminum
Fiberglass

However, recently I've encountered a third type of pole that I can only describe them as "smooth" aluminum poles. Does anyone know the history? I guess I shouldn't be surprised at more or alternate variations.

None of the smooth aluminum poles had the reinforcing collar at the bottom that all of the ribbed, and most of the fiberglass poles had.

Smooth Aluminum poles:
2017-02-24 16.09.31.jpg 2017-02-24 15.46.47.jpg 2017-02-24 15.47.43.jpg

Ribbed aluminum poles:
2017-02-24 16.09.03.jpg 2017-02-24 15.47.34.jpg 2017-02-24 16.09.03 - details.jpg

New-in-plastic ribbed aluminum poles (dated 11/96):
In the 3rd picture below, the tag reads:
CAGE OKB51
POLE, CAMOUFLAGE
1 EA. P/N 13227E0132-1
DAAK01-96-C-0041
C 11/96
2017-02-24 16.09.24.jpg 2017-02-24 15.47.23.jpg 2017-02-24 15.47.15.jpg

Fiberglass poles: (I saw these with and without the reinforced collar at the bottom)
2017-02-24 15.48.04.jpg 2017-02-24 15.48.46.jpg 2017-02-24 15.48.32.jpg
 
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Guyfang

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In 1972, the first time I erected Camo systems, we had smooth aluminum poles, (with cloth nets!). Then we went to fiberglass. In the 80's sometime, we went back to Aluminum smooth poles. I retired in 1993, and never saw a ribbed pole, until I started working as a contractor, in 2014.
 

Valence

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I have encountered yet another revision to the fiberglass (or plastic as the TM's refer to them) poles. They're much the same, except ~1.81" outside diameter (vs the above, older style?, fiberglass O.D of ~1.79") and the major difference of some form of hard or rubberized composite to further reinforce the bottom when joining together with another pole.

2017-03-10 16.33.14.jpg 2017-03-10 16.33.27.jpg

Also, I would appreciate any information regarding the two different types of 3-bladed (or "palm tree" or "propeller") battens. Functionally, there isn't any difference. I can only assume the two-piece style is an older design that isn't as durable in the long run, can easily give painful fiberglass splinters to bare hands, AND the nets much more easily get caught on. This may account for why, in my sample sets, they are less common.

  • Two-piece batten, where the circle end is riveted to the main blade
2017-03-10 16.35.35.jpg 2017-03-10 16.35.51.jpg 2017-03-10 16.37.05.jpg


  • One-piece batten
2017-03-10 16.36.23.jpg 2017-03-10 16.36.36.jpg 2017-03-10 16.36.50.jpg
 
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silverstate55

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We started with the fiberglass poles and then replaced them with the smooth aluminum poles. Our fiberglass poles had a collar. Our aluminum poles did not. I have never seen the "ribbed" aluminum poles. This was (the best I can remember) either late '80s or early '90s.
Same exact memory of these, USMC 1984-92. Rustystud might even remember these!

We'd carry our rolled-up camo net on the back of our tanks (M60A1); when stopped to laager up, we'd roll them off the back, spread the net out, stake a few edges/corners, and we'd use comm wire as 2 long leads at the front of the net...use poles & helicopters to prop up the net, longer poles/helicopters at the front where the 2 comm wires were tied to, and use longer poles to open the front as a sort of "garage" to allow tank to drive under the set-up camo net. WAAAAAY faster than trying to roll camo net over entire tank and then set it up...it would snag on EVERYTHING! An experienced crew of 2 or 3 could set up the netting & have the tank "parked" underneath it in about 20 minutes (the TC would always be away at a meeting; rare to have all 4 crew members with tank when static).

Once the tank was parked underneath the netting, both front poles would be lowered & placed on the ground to "close" the "garage door" and the tank would be entirely covered, without catching on anything on tank itself in case it needed to rapidly exit the "garage."
 
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Wire Fox

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I read this discussion a while ago and thought it was neat, but it's a lot more interesting now that I just picked up a woodland ULCANS net system (brand new, killer deal... less than the cost of one rhombus from Old Grouch). Thanks for all the discussion over the different pole styles, pictures of the different load distributors, and everything. Makes it pretty easy for me to pick that I need to be shopping for ribbed aluminum posts with circular spreaders. Also, I should look for an extra diamond section to properly cover up my HMMWV, though I think I probably won't ever being using this for actual camouflage as much as it would be just for a really cool display.
 

Valence

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I read this discussion a while ago and thought it was neat, but it's a lot more interesting now that I just picked up a woodland ULCANS net system (brand new, killer deal... less than the cost of one rhombus from Old Grouch). Thanks for all the discussion over the different pole styles, pictures of the different load distributors, and everything. Makes it pretty easy for me to pick that I need to be shopping for ribbed aluminum posts with circular spreaders. Also, I should look for an extra diamond section to properly cover up my HMMWV, though I think I probably won't ever being using this for actual camouflage as much as it would be just for a really cool display.
I'm glad it helped! I enjoyed learning about and seeing the different pole types. I only have one thing to add about the two types of "propeller" style spreaders (two-piece vs one-piece) and that is unless you absolutely must have the older style for display accuracy, you do not want those two-piece spreaders with the rivets! They have more edges and square corners that get caught up on the LWCS net and just add needless hassle, plus, you can actually get fiberglass splinters from handling them! I did, and it's less pleasant than wood splinters! At least they use the same threaded plastic nut between the two types.

You are correct on needing the circular spreaders for your ULCANS net, and it is my belief that those ULCANS nets are REALLY hard to find, so congratulations (doubly so for a killer deal)! I've never seen one for sale locally or even handled one in person. Where as I've both purchased and sold several of the LWCS locally.
 

Wire Fox

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I'm glad it helped! I enjoyed learning about and seeing the different pole types. I only have one thing to add about the two types of "propeller" style spreaders (two-piece vs one-piece) and that is unless you absolutely must have the older style for display accuracy, you do not want those two-piece spreaders with the rivets! They have more edges and square corners that get caught up on the LWCS net and just add needless hassle, plus, you can actually get fiberglass splinters from handling them! I did, and it's less pleasant than wood splinters! At least they use the same threaded plastic nut between the two types.

You are correct on needing the circular spreaders for your ULCANS net, and it is my belief that those ULCANS nets are REALLY hard to find, so congratulations! I've never seen one for sale locally or even handled one in person. Where as I've both purchased and sold several of the LWCS locally.
Mine was just a dumb, lucky find. I saw ads on the side of Facebook for the Facebook Marketplace and was bored, so clicked it to check it out. "HMMWV" was a worthless search, and "military" turned up mostly uniforms...but there it was: brand new ULCANS for $100. Both the hex and rhombus are there with no snags or stains, the repair kit is there with no material opened or removed, and the manual is there, but there was some moisture that creeped in, so the cover is moldy. Guy had just picked it up to use as a hunting blind, but never used it or even went hunting that year, so knew he needed to sell it or the wrath of the wife would come down for having a useless, bulky thing. His loss, my gain!

Sent from my SM-G530T using Tapatalk
 

Valence

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I have recently came across two more LWCS camo nets (and a Type III NOS transport system, aka "burrito" bag), but I was intrigued that the bags were a bit different, in different ways -- I assume age and manufacturer.

The first feels like the oldest style of vinyl, and reminds me of plucked chicken skin. Its lettering was a bit different, especially the use of "SYNTHETIC". If I had to guess, this is a "Type I" bag as it doesn't specify any "TYPE" (I am assuming there really were 4 different types, but I've only ever seen bags for "Type III" and "Type IV", and I also don't know the difference between the types). It reads, as best I can make out:

1080-00-??03-12?6
CAMOUFLAGE SCREENING SYSTEM
MODULAR LIGHTWEIGHT
SYNTHETIC - WOODLAND
RADAR SCATTERING
074087??? 52070
DAA009-6?-C-501?
2021-01-02 00.15.28.jpg

------
The second was what I expected, and have seen before, "TYPE IV", it reads:

SYSTEM NSN 1080-01-266-1827
CAMOUFLAGE SCREENING
SYSTEM - WOODLAND
RADAR SCATTERING
TYPE IV

CASE NSN 1080-01-266-1798
CASE MFR 14925
CASE CONTRACT NO. <blank or worn away>
CASE US/LOT NO. <blank or worn away>

97403 13228E5932
SYSTEM MFR 14925
SYSTEM CONTRACT NO. DAAK01-87-D-A060
SYSTEM US/LOT NO. 0369
2021-01-02 00.19.47.jpg

However, the manufacturer of this bag was an idiot and used plastic 2" D-rings, and of course 4 are broken, which makes securing the bag less than optimal.
2021-01-02 00.20.23.jpg 2021-01-02 00.20.44.jpg

-----
Finally, there is this NOS Type III vinyl transport system bag (that I transfered my woodland, radar scattering net to from a worn out bag). If I had to guess, it appears to have been incorrectly labeled (or repurposed?), and had the print blacked out and a new label applied above. The text reads:

1080-01-266-1824
CAMOUFLAGE SCREENING SYSTEM
WOODLAND RADAR SCATTERING
TYPE III
1080-01-260-1790
CASE 260-?79?

The blacked out section reads:
1080-00-103-1246
CAMOUFLAGE SCREENING
SYSTEM - WOODLAND
RADAR SCATTERING
97403
MFR 15814
DAAK01-85-D-B004
US
camouflage_screening_transport_case_01.jpg camouflage_screening_transport_case_02.jpg camouflage_screening_transport_case_04.jpg camouflage_screening_transport_case_06.jpg camouflage_screening_transport_case_08.jpg camouflage_screening_transport_case_12.jpg
 
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Valence

Well-known member
Steel Soldiers Supporter
2,003
126
63
Location
Davis County, UT
I have recently came across two more LWCS camo nets (and a Type III NOS transport system, aka "burrito" bag), but I was intrigued that the bags were a bit different, in different ways -- I assume age and manufacturer.

The first feels like the oldest style of vinyl, and reminds me of plucked chicken skin. Its lettering was a bit different, especially the use of "SYNTHETIC". If I had to guess, this is a "Type I" bag as it doesn't specify any "TYPE". It reads, as best I can make out:

1080-00-??03-12?6
CAMOUFLAGE SCREENING SYSTEM
MODULAR LIGHTWEIGHT
SYNTHETIC - WOODLAND
RADAR SCATTERING
074087??? 52070
DAA009-6?-C-501?
View attachment 822395

------
The second was what I expected, and have seen before, "TYPE IV", it reads:

SYSTEM NSN 1080-01-266-1827
CAMOUFLAGE SCREENING
SYSTEM - WOODLAND
RADAR SCATTERING
TYPE IV

CASE NSN 1080-01-266-1798
CASE MFR 14925
CASE CONTRACT NO. <blank or worn away>
CASE US/LOT NO. <blank or worn away>

97403 13228E5932
SYSTEM MFR 14925
SYSTEM CONTRACT NO. DAAK01-87-D-A060
SYSTEM US/LOT NO. 0369
View attachment 822397

However, the manufacturer of this bag was an idiot and used plastic 2" D-rings, and of course 4 are broken, which makes securing the bag less than optimal.
View attachment 822398 View attachment 822399

-----
Finally, there is this NOS Type III transport system bag. If I had to guess, it appears to have been incorrectly labeled (or repurposed?), and had the print blacked out and a new label applied above. The text reads:

1080-01-266-1824
CAMOUFLAGE SCREENING SYSTEM
WOODLAND RADAR SCATTERING
TYPE III
1080-01-260-1790
CASE 260-?79?

The blacked out section reads:
1080-00-103-1246
CAMOUFLAGE SCREENING
SYSTEM - WOODLAND
RADAR SCATTERING
97403
MFR 15814
DAAK01-85-D-B004
US
View attachment 822400

So the first, and likely oldest, bag in my post just above, has a large tear in the bottom, and the hook & loop is fairly worn, but it uses steel D-rings.
2021-01-02 00.18.20.jpg

The second bag above (Type IV) uses plastic rings and 4 of which are broken, but the vinyl seems to be in relatively good/great shape. Do you think there is anything egregious if I were to call the first bag "End of Life" and repurpose its steel D-rings to extend the life of the second, Type IV, bag (replace its plastic D-rings with the steel ones)? I wouldn't be cutting up something rare would I?

I would then have the NOS third bag, the Type III, take over duties of the first worn out bag...
 
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