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Author Topic: Equipment AAR: Modular Command Post Tent System (MCPS)  (Read 2780 times)
aswayze
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« on: April 16, 2010, 07:36:51 am »



Item:  Modular Command Post Tent (used as NATO TOC)

The plan: 

We planned to use the MCP attached to Stagg’s Deuce as the company command post for EW3.  Doing this meant that all of the commo portions of the command post would be tucked up out of the way in Stagg’s truck bed leaving all of the MCP tent available for command posting.  This offered several advantages even beyond the obvious additional space.  Having Stagg’s deuce attached meant that the TOC could just use the VRC-12 radio and antenna on the truck rather than actually having to deploy a separate antenna or fiddle around with loose radios.  We picked up a long cable for Stagg’s remote speaker contraption that would allow us to simply attach the speaker to the wall of the deuce, hang the handset off of it and poof, you are all set.  No batteries, no GRA-39, no problem.  Very simple, very easy, very low profile.    We had already field trialed the attachment system at a fieldcraft weekend and were happy with the result. 

The Performance:

We were unable to move Stagg’s deuce onto the field.  We did manage to mud sled the much lighter M101 trailer into place and used it for a commo trailer with decent results.   Lucky for us, we had both the larger boot walls for the shelter carrier Humvees as well as one smaller boot wall that was intended for M1009 CUCV trucks.  The 1009 boot wall ended up being a fairly good fit for the M101 trailer.

Pretty much all the commo stuff ended up fitting in the M101 although we did end up loosing some space since the larger boot wall has a decent sized foyer that we had previously used for stowage with good results.   With the stowage space lost and quite a bit of furniture crammed into the TOC, the place ended up being a bit cramped.   We could still brief everyone in there but only because we had a pretty small group to work with.  I think size wise, the tent is acceptable but we do need to be more careful about how much furniture and crap we stuff in there. 

The tent was packed into 3 fabric bags and 1 frame bag.  One of the fabric bags was supposed to contain the roof but instead contained the extra tan door wall and rain gutter.   As a result, there was a delay setting the tent up. 

The tent performed well in the conditions keeping it’s contents dry and holding up well in spite of the very dainty looking frame.  We did have it guyed out pretty well, I think that helped a lot. 

Tent floor helped a great deal although it was consistently muddy in there I suspect mostly due to the traffic patterns and the overall inefficient climate control (heater never dried the place out much compared to the SHL in the Medium)  I did deck brush it once with pretty good results, I think it would have stayed clean and mud free had it been equipped with a better heater. 

The liners got filthy in use but cleaned up to near perfect condition in the washing machine.  I would kill for a liner made out of this material for the GP Medium.  This stuff is GREAT!

I had glued on a strip of 2 inch Velcro to the ceiling that we used to attach the single 36 LED panel for tent lighting.  It seemed to work pretty well.     

Issues/fixes:

  The stove eats up a huge amount of space.  Much of this is related to the required sand box..  If I was a guessing man, I’d say 20% of the interior space is lost to the stove when using the bigger M1945 stove.  Shifting over to a Hunter SHS stuck on top of a cinder block would probably gain us quite a bit of room (not to mention climate control)

The boot walls are VERY bulky when packed.  This is why the tent fabrics ended up in 3 instead of 2 bags.  Since 3 of our 4 walls are boot walls that gets things crowded pretty quick.  I took the shears from the tent repair kit and trimmed one of the big Shelter Carrier walls down into a plain wall with a large Velcro opening.  This really cut down on the overall system weight and got all of the fabric sections into their 2 transit bags.  The spare MCP stuff is now all sequestered away so we should not encounter problems with missing pieces.   We still have one of each style of boot wall so we can still adapt to whatever we need to attach to but we do not need to fiddle with as much spare material hanging all over the place.  The cropped wall should also help a great deal with daytime lighting since the large opening can be opened leaving just the tent liner as a BB catcher and allowing natural light inside. 

Tent door is weird….  We really need to set that wall up and figure out how that is supposed to work.  It was not only tangly and complex, it was also quite prone to leaking light.  I am sure there is a way to get that ironed out, ours is just a little wonky and weird. 

We need a LOT less furniture in there.  I am thinking a decent sized table. One field desk, (Perhaps in the deuce bed) and the map attached to the wall might be the way to fly.  That would open things up a great deal and make the space more useful.  Houli’s field desk (although well suited to use as a bunker buster bomb) was way too big for that tent. 


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