Soldiers shop best deals on post
January 25, 2013
FORT SILL, Okla. -- From the latest PT jacket to boonie hats to boots to Army Service Uniforms, the Fort Sill reclamation sale carries uniform items in like-new condition, with a good selection and at significant savings to Soldiers.
About once a month, the reclamation sale is held on a Saturday in Building 2102 Currie Road, between Randolph and Harper roads. The next sale is Feb. 2, 2013 from 8 a.m. to noon.
Clothing items came from recruits who did not complete initial entry training (IET) and returned their full uniform bags. Clothing is classified as Code B, meaning it is slightly used and has no tears, rips, etc. All clothing is laundered before it goes on sale. The only clothing not sold are personal items, like undergarments and socks.
"This is a great oppourtunity for Soldiers to get their required clothing at a greatly reduced price. In some cases you can't even tell the difference from a brand new uniform and a sale item," said Trevor Whitworth, Central Initial Issue Point facility manager. "It really stretches their clothing allowance."
All clothing is sold as is, and there are no returns or refunds. Items must be paid for with cash and taken when purchased. A military ID is required for purchase. Soldiers can only purchase up to the number of an item they would be authorized in their clothing bag.
Retirees can make purchases, but only on a select few items, such as duffle bags and belts, Whitworth said. Foreign military personnel are not authorized to shop at the sale.
About 175 people have shopped each of the past couple reclamation sales, spending between $7,000 and $10,000, Whitworth said. Money generated from sales is returned to the Department of Treasury.
Items that are not sold are held over to the next sale. Those that just won't sell, such as really odd sizes, are turned over to the Defense Reutilization and Marketing Office for disposition.
The most popular items are Army Combat Uniforms (ACU), Whitworth said.
"You can get ACUs here for $10 a top, and $10 a bottom," he said.
Other popular items include PT uniforms, caps, gloves and duffle bags. Seasonal items tend to linger until that season, Whitworth said. He noted the facility had a run on winter boots during its December sale.
Standing in the checkout line Dec. 8, Spc. Natasha McTyre, 168th Brigade Support Battalion, had her hands full of PT gear. It was the third time she had shopped at the reclamation sale.
"The prices here are a lot cheaper than what you would normally pay," she said. "You have to get up pretty early to get in line, but the prices are worth it."
A line does form outside the building, however, customers get inside pretty quick, and the checkout line moves rapidly. It's when new items, like when ACUs first came out, that customers begin to line up at 3 a.m., Whitworth said.
Not every installation has a reclamation sale, he said. Other posts that have such sales include forts Leonard Wood, Jackson and Benning, because they, too, have central initial issue point facilities.
It's about eight weeks after the summer surge that the reclamation sale gets most of its clothing.
"Percentagewise you get more (clothing) back, because you're trying to push more (recruits) through," Whitworth said.
Because females attend IET here, the sale is able to provide a decent selection of women's uniform items, too.
One of the benefits of the sale is it also allows the Clothing Turn-in Point facility to provide Fort Sill drill and platoon sergeants with uniforms. They are authorized to annually swap out four sets of ACUs and a PT uniform for free, said Luis Navas, supply and services chief.
2nd Lt. Jerry Hedrick, 1st Battalion, 17th Field Artillery, said he attends the reclamation sale about every two to three months, looking for high wear-out items, such as ACUs and PT gear.
"I've never had an issue with finding my size in any item," said Hedrick, who stands 5-feet 8-inches.
Although Soldiers get a clothing allowance annually, the reclamation sale is a great way for Soldiers to replace items throughout the year because of the prices, Hedrick said.
"I always tell my Soldiers about the sale," he said.