velcro patches

Enlisted Ranks: Army

There’s nothing I hate more than a story that didn’t even try to get its ranks right. Why is a major giving orders to a colonel? Why is a first sergeant working with a bunch of fuzzies? Why the hell did you just call the sergeant major ‘sir’? 

Military ranks are different across the branches, but if your story features the U.S. Army, here’s a breakdown of enlisted ranks and rank etiquette. (other branches coming soon!)

Ranks in the army follow a numerical pattern, so if you’re ever not quite sure what the name of the rank higher is, you can reference them by nomenclature.
E-series: E stands for enlisted. This refers to soldiers from private to sergeant major. 
O-series: O stands for officer. This refers to soldiers from second lieutenant to general. O-series post coming soon!
W-series: W stands for warrant officer. This refers to soldiers from warrant officer 1 to chief warrant officer 5. W-series post coming soon!

In ACUs, (army combat uniform) the rank is worn in the center of the chest via a velcro patch. In class-A uniforms, the rank is worn on the shoulder.

Each pay grade earns slightly more per month than the one before it. Officers make significantly more money per month than enlisted. Time in service also affects pay, meaning a sergeant who’s been in six years will make more than a staff sergeant who’s been in three years.

E-1: Private
Most people who enlist come in at E-1 unless they were in JROTC, have a college degree, or performed some other feat with their recruiters prior to enlisting i.e. volunteer work, good P.T. scores, etc. This is the lowest pay grade and has no rank. Soldiers who are E-1s do not wear a rank. 
also known as: PV1, fuzzy (because they wear no velcro rank, there’s a patch of bare fuzz in the middle of their uniform. You can buy a patch to cover it.)
Title: Private, PV1

E-2: Private
Yes, there are two ranks by the name of private. You reach E-2 automatically after six months of enlistment. If you enroll in the Delayed Entry Program or have an acceptable P.T. card with your recruiter, you can enlist as an E-2 instead of an E-1. At E-2, you more or less have no more power than an E-1. 
also known as : PV2
Title: Private, PV2

E-3: Private First Class
The final “private” class. You reach E-3 automatically after 12 months of enlistment, assuming you’ve been an E-2 for at least four months. If you were in JROTC for four years, you enter automatically at this rank. This rank still doesn’t have much power, but may be put in charge of other privates and may assist their team leader with tasks, and on occasion may be a team leader themselves.
also known as : PFC
Title: Private, PFC.

E-4: Specialist/Corporal
The last “junior enlisted” class. You reach specialist automatically after 24 months of enlistment, assuming you’ve been a PFC for at least six months. If you enlist with a completed four year college degree, you can start out as an E-4 instead of an E-1. Specialists tend to be team leaders and may be in charge of other specialists and privates. When no NCOs are present, the senior specialist is in charge. 

Corporal, while technically the same pay grade as specialist, is actually an essentially higher rank. It’s a special rank only bestowed on those who are in leadership positions and are awaiting the appropriate time in service/time in grade to be promoted to sergeant. Corporals are considered NCOs while specialists are considered junior enlisted.  Strictly speaking corporals and specialists are the same rank, but in most situations, corporals out rank specialists.
also known as: shamshields, (specialist only) SPC, CPL
Title: Specialist, Corporal


Man, all of that text is boring. Let’s break it up a bit with some rank etiquette, shall we?

• Lower enlisted (E-1 thru E-4) tend to call each other by their surname regardless of rank. Even an E-1 will probably be calling a specialist just by their name. The exception is Corporals, who are considered NCOs and are referred to by rank.

• E-5 and above are referred to as “NCOs,” or non-commissioned officers. 

• NCOs with similar ranks might call each other by their surnames and will call lower enlisted by their surnames. When discussing another NCO with a lower enlisted, they will use that NCO’s proper rank. So a sergeant speaking to a PFC will say “Sergeant Smith needs you,” not “Smith needs you.” Freshly promoted sergeants who still hang out with lower enlisted might not mind their friends calling them their surnames in private, but formally and professionally they’re expected to address their senior properly. 

• Lower enlisted ranks are often called “joes,” especially when an NCO is addressing another NCO about their squad or platoon. “Have your joes had chow yet?” = “Have the soldiers directly under your command eaten yet?” 

• It’s considered inappropriate for lower enlisted to hang out with NCOs and it’s discouraged, especially in the work place. 

Are you all rested up? Great! Let’s get back to the ranks. 

E-5: Sergeant

Finally: the NCO ranks! Unlike the previous ranks, you cannot automatically rank up to sergeant. You must attend special courses and be seen by a promotion board where you’ll be expected to recite the NCO creed and have knowledge appropriate for an non-commissioned officer. From this rank on, lower-ranked soldiers will refer to you as “sergeant” and you will likely be a squad leader or in another leadership position. 

• Lower enlisted do NOT refer to sergeants by their surname unless it is paired with their rank. “Sergeant Smith,” not just “Smith,” or your private will be doing a lot of push-ups. 

• No one calls them “Sarge.” Like… just don’t do it friends. 

• Some pronounce sergeant in such a way it sounds as though the g is dropped entirely. Ser-eant, or phonetically, “saarnt.” 

also known as: SGT

Title: Sergeant

E-6: Staff Sergeant

Sergeant Plus. You probably will have similar responsibilities to an E-5, meaning probably a squad leader unless you need to fill in for a platoon sergeant. Don’t misunderstand; in lower enlisted ranks, private and private first class aren’t that much of a difference. E-5 and E-6 are a definite difference though. It is acceptable to call an E-6 either “sergeant” or “sergeant (name)” instead of staff sergeant. 

also known as: SSG

Title: Sergeant

E-7: Sergeant First Class

At this point the ranks become known as “senior NCO.” E-7 and above cannot be demoted by normal means. It actually requires a court martial or congressional approval to demote an E-7. Like, it’s surprisingly hard to demote people after this point. I once knew an E-7 who got busted with a DUI and STILL didn’t lose his rank.

Anyway, it’s still appropriate to call an E-7 “sergeant” or “sergeant (name)” instead of sergeant first class. SFCs may be platoon sergeants or in some circumstances may hold a first sergeant position. While positioned as a first sergeant, they should be referred to as “first sergeant.” Unless you work at battalion level or higher, this is probably the highest NCO rank you’ll interact with regularly, and in some cases interacting with an E-7 can be as big a deal as interacting with an E-8. 

also known as: SFC

Title: Sergeant

E-8: First Sergeant/Master Sergeant

Another dual-rank. First sergeants are the NCO in charge of a company and are usually the highest ranking NCO soldiers will interact with regularly. They run the company alongside the company commander. All NCOs answer to them and most beginning of the day and end of the day formations will be initiated and ended with them. It is only appropriate to refer to a first sergeant as “first sergeant” or “first sergeant (name).” Do not just call them “sergeant.”

Master sergeants are E-8s who are not in a first sergeant position. Typically these people wind up working in offices in battalion or brigade. It’s only appropriate to refer to a master sergeant as “master sergeant” or “master sergeant (name).”

also known as: 1SG, FSG, (first sergeant only) MSG (master sergeant only)

Titles: First Sergeant, Master Sergeant.

E-9: Sergeant Major or Command Sergeant Major

We finally reach the end of the list: Sergeant Major, the highest ranking NCO. Sergeant Majors will be found at battalion level and higher. Command Sergeant Majors are those that hold a leadership position in a battalion, brigade, etc, like first sergeant vs master sergeant. It is appropriate to refer to E-9s as “sergeant major” or “sergeant major (name).” Typically, a command sergeant major will be referred to AS command sergeant major.

In the U.S., the plural form of sergeant major is “sergeants major.” Outside the U.S., “sergeant majors” can be correct. 

also known as: SGM, CSM

Title: Sergeant Major

Now, for the most important announcement:

Soldiers NEVER, and I mean NEVER, refer to an NCO as “sir” or “ma’am.” Forget what the movies tell you; if your first sergeant is chewing you out, you do not say “ma’am, yes ma’am!” You’ll earn yourself some push-ups and some cleaning duty and probably a counseling. Do you see how under every rank I’ve provided a “title” section? That’s how your soldiers address that rank. Period. The only people who get called “sir” and “ma’am” are civilians and officers. Cannot tell you how many movies I’ve rolled my eyes into my skull because some snot-nosed private is calling their squad leader “sir.” Please cease this immediately. Thank you.

That’s all for scriptsoldier’s rank breakdown of enlisted ranks! Stay tuned for our breakdown of officers, warrant officers, and how your rank affects your standing in your unit!


DIY collegiate style. Three Joshua Tree gigs so may as well make a themed jacket (I made one for the Vertigo tour with big targets on it and enjoyed wearing it). Ironing letters on straight is impossible so I’m embracing the obvious homemade quality.

The Air Jordan 1 “BHM” will come with interchangeable velcro patches allowing you to create your own look. Will you cop tomorrow? Tap the link in our bio for detailed images and release information. #KicksOnFire

The Fault in My Code: Ch. 11

You can read Chapter 11 on Ao3 Here

Chapter 11: One Eye Green, One Black

           There were seven on the SWAT team, and only one of them had mismatched eyes –one green and one black. Much like the military, the psychiatric evaluations were intense enough that Will was convinced of the man’s bearing and mental fortitude without having to actually speak with him. It wasn’t until midnight, when the other squad members went to their appropriate placements throughout the hotel and the buildings surrounding that he even bothered to speak to Will, let alone make a conversation of it.

           “Coffee?” he asked Will.


           Another silence. This one was broken by the occasional sound of cups scuffing the particle board of the end table, the clearing of throats as Will perused Francis Dolarhyde’s patient file.

           “I’ve heard a lot about you,” the man said at last, the beginning of real words. Will immediately missed the silence.

           “I’ll bet.”

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submitted by Trent

I carry either a mix of these items, or all of them (Excluding multiple multi-tools) depending on the day. Takes a solid pair of work pants! These tools are all solid, relatively inexpensive and they last. I recommend them all to anyone!

Yu-Gi-Oh Diadhank Cosplay Prop ~Walkthrough~ with lots of pictures

Hi guys! As requested, I’ve made a walkthrough of how I made my Diadhank (aka, Season 5/Ancient Egyptian Duel Disk) prop for my Thief King Bakura cosplay. Feel free to reblog, share, and consult!

(Photo cred L->R: Anime USA Official Photog, @neofi-cosplay, @justlikeswitchblades with minor brightening by me)

I made this prop a few months ago, so I only have the progress photos I remembered to take, but hopefully I can fill in the gaps with explanation.

As always, I hope this tutorial helps give you a good idea of where to start, and that you make it your own project rather than copying mine move for move. You can learn a lot that way, and taking liberties is what makes your project unique. Anyway, let’s get started~

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You know what time of year it is - it’s time for a new season of HvZ awesomeness.

This has to be one of my favorites of all time - easily ranking in the top 5 of NERF loadouts I’ve ever seen. This setup is an excellent example of aesthetic form following practical function in a combat load-out.

Gear Overview:
- Apex Thunderblast Back Scabbard
- Apex Rocket Holders
- Apex Drop Leg Strongarm holster
- Apex Strongarm Spare Cylinder holders
- Apex Drum Pouch
- Apex Combat Belt
- Narrowbase NMAG’s
- Narrowbase Double NMAG’s
- Tactical Molle vest (Full body)
- Tactical Molle Drop leg pad (Large)
- Tactical Molle Drop leg pad (Small)
- Tactical Knee pads
- Tactical SWAT gloves
- Velcro “BIOHAZARD” patch
- Nerf bandoleer
- Gas mask with built in fan
- Combat helmet with cover
- Tactical goggles with cover
- Neck cloth/Shemagh
- 2 Arm bands

Remember to watch those corners and check your six - and stay human out there.


1) Packing lunches

Most of the meals are just-add-water, or come ready to eat in pouches. There are also packaged foods an ordinary person could buy from a store, like almonds or wrapped brownies. Hot and cold beverages come in bags with straws, similar to a Capri Sun. Food packets attach to the galley table with velcro patches so they don’t fly away.

2) Getting creative on Mars

NASA wants to load a vessel with food and send it to Mars before the astronauts set off. That means food scientists have to make meals that will stay good for five years.

3) The challenges

Some nutrients break down naturally over time; space radiation — cosmic rays and other forms of radiation that Earth’s atmosphere normally blocks — could be an added problem. Meals must take into account the special challenges to astronauts’ bodies in space, such as weightlessness, shrinking bones, and squashing eyeballs. 

4) Growing crops on the spaceship 

And even on the surface of another planet — could solve several of these problems at once. Astronauts wouldn’t need to lug as much food with them. They’d have fresh produce rich in vitamins. And they could mix up their menus with some of that texture they miss.

5) Keeping astronauts happy and healthy

NASA is studying how the senses of smell and taste change in microgravity and isolation, for example. In one study, researchers are supplying comfort foods and holiday treats to the space station, with astronauts filling out mood questionnaires before and after eating. The crew will also rate solo versus communal meals, as well as the experience of “cooking” the food themselves. 

“At the end of the day, we’re not worried about the muscle cells. We’re worried about the human.“

via Eater.

eziocauthon89  asked:

Random HC Thing: what fills up the glove boxes of each of the FAHC's personal cars?

Some of this may make its way into center consoles if they exist in the cars, but for the seven-man crew:

Geoff’s is mostly full of everyone else’s shit. Jack threw in a contact book with all the numbers of the crew members and their contacts (even though Geoff insisted he didn’t need it because his cell had all the information. Until his cell phone was lost in the ocean and he didn’t know anyone’s number). Ray keeps little snack packs there, and Jeremy makes sure that Geoff has at least a spare bowtie or something, just in case. 

Michael leaves the occasional grenade and sticky bomb, and Gavin throws just about anything in there if there’s room - his sunglasses, phone charger, candy, bullets, basically whatever is in his pockets that he doesn’t want. Ryan once left a cactus in the glove box as a present, which Geoff didn’t know about when he reached in for the flask he stowed at the bottom. It had been an unpleasant surprise, to say the least. A fake dismembered hand has also been found in there for some reason, but anyone who dared ask Geoff what that was about didn’t get much more than a chuckle.

Jack keeps things that people might need. A collection of charging cables for different phones and iPods and handheld game consoles. There’s also a couple headphones (different kinds of earbuds, because of varying preference within the crew), all of which are rolled up neatly so they don’t tangle. There’s a small first aid kit, a flashlight, and a flare (that is “only to be used for emergencies, not for setting people on fire”). There’s also a small but powerful pistol tucked away among everything else.

Jeremy doesn’t have a whole lot of useful items in his glove box. There’s a box of ammo and a gun, but then there’s a lot of receipts and trash that he threw in there to get off the floor. A few of Ray’s snacks found their way in there and a bottle of pain reliever. Though there’s always a toy monster truck (sometimes the exact truck changes) that’s sitting near the top of the mess. It occasionally finds its way onto a velcro patch on the dashboard.

Ray has a collection of CD’s and his iPod in his glove box, so he can subject everyone who rides with him to his music. There’s snack packs of crackers and cookies and candy. Of course, he also has a stockpile of games and a DS hidden away, though he has assured the crew (Jack and Geoff) that he doesn’t play them when he’s driving. Usually. Though they generally are good for when they have to sit around before a heist.

Michael’s glove box is an explosion waiting to happen. Grenades, sticky bombs, car bombs, ignition buttons, small pieces of det cord, fuses, duct tape. It’s just his extra storage space in case he needs an explosion quickly. There’s also a small felt bear knight that Gavin once put in the glove box, and Michael has griped and complained and threatened to throw it out cause it’s just taking up space, but it’s never moved.

Gavin’s is a disaster. Literally anything he thinks might be useful, anything that was once useful, or whatever he doesn’t want in his pockets goes in there. He has extra sunglasses (because he breaks his often enough, a back-up is needed every few weeks), loose bullets, food crumbs, tangled cords and wires and electrical components, flashdrives, a golden flare gun without ammo. The most useful thing he keeps there is a burner phone for emergencies only.

Ryan has an odd assortment of items. He has a knife and a gun and a box of ammo. There’s small containers of extra face paint and the brushes for it. Duct tape, a lighter, and some small explosives. Though alongside all of that is a bag of dog treats for the strays he sometimes stops for (not that anyone knows about that, right Gavin?). He has a little cactus that will sometimes be pulled up to his dashboard, and is only kept inside the glove box because someone once snatched a previous plant from his car.

The one thing none of them keeps in their glove box are insurance and registration. Not because they don’t have them - if the cars weren’t obtained and insured legally, Jeremy and Gavin were able to put together convincing enough papers that no one would really suspect them to be forgeries. But really, it makes identity theft way too easy if someone was stupid enough to steal one of the crew’s cars. The identity theft wouldn’t last long when it was discovered, but better to avoid the situation entirely.


Kifaru E&E.

My Kif E&E recently passed its 4th year of service and its still going strong.

The only issue I’ve ever had with it has been a little degrading of the velcro patch panels which will be easy to replace and they get a lot of use testing out new versions of my personal markers .

Seen here with added Kifaru Skinny mini long pockets and a Kif organizer, pimped GITD Grimlocks, and Custom CB zip pulls from Andrew at valleydeepmountainhigh.

On the reverse side are aftermarket Max P shoulder pads that velcro over the original E&E straps with a Custom Kydex Molle holder for a cf Go tube  and a Recta strap compass.

On the sternum strap are a Brite strike APALS in one off my holders and a Cyflect Mk3 personal marker mounted onto a web dominator.


Help me get to Anime Boston and/or Anime NEXT!

So I told myself I would make a formal post for this, and I am.
My hours at work seem to be getting cut a bit, and I’m trying to afford two conventions I have not been to in a very long time: Anime Boston and Anime Next. My reasoning is because I moved down to Georgia and these cons just aren’t easy for me to get to anymore. Anime Boston, despite not even living in New England, was always my home convention because many of my friends attended this. Friends I had made back at my first con: Portcon Maine 2007. They’ve all watched me fumble through high school and college and stuck by me through some really, really terrible times. And now I’ve graduated and all I want to do is be able to go to AB and see them again. If it’s not clear: Anime Boston is taking major precedence over Anime Next. If I can only afford one, Anime Boston is it.

Now here’s the deal. Since my hours at work are getting cut a bit, and I’m not making anything new (I say that now, but who knows) for Anime Boston, I’m taking Shingeki no Kyojin coat and cape commissions. I make my own patches and I use my own pattern on these coats, and I’m willing to take six commissions on these.

Sadly, I have no pictures of my cape, but they’re incredibly simple for me to make.

I’ve included images of all three military patches (Training not included due to not having a loose one lying around). The Scouting Legion patch is actually sewn on to my old SnK coat, hence why the image is blurry and not the same color as the other coats. All of my patches are appliqued, rather than embroidered and ordering one comes with the option of sewn on patches, or velcro ones that are removable.

The ones with sewn on patches are $40, while the one with removable patches are $60 (They come with all 16 patches if you want them all!). My capes have similar pricing. $30 for a cape with a sewn on patch, $50 for one with removable patches. 

I do have combo pricing if you wanted a coat AND a cape, and that will run $65 for a coat and cape with sewn on patches, or $100 for a coat and cape with removable ones.

I do not make straps. I can barely make my own as it is.

If you have any questions about these coats or other commissions I am available for, please don’t hesitate to ask me!

All coats are made of canvas or duck cloth, but I am open for for using whichever fabric you’re comfortable with. Patches are felted, but I can use other fabric if you request it (there will be an additional charge since felt is cheaper to use and work with for me). All removable patches are attached with industrial strength Velcro.