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The Boy Scout Handbook Paperback – 1998
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0839531052 is the number on the copyright page. Softcover book with color illustrations.
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Top Customer Reviews
This book is well laid out. However, it is a letdown. As other reviewers pointed out, this is the first "Green" handbook and as such It skimps on useful information in order to save the planet, like:
how to make rope p.379
how to tie more than 4 knots p.382
how to stay safe in hazardous weather p.281
various pioneering projects p 393
how to light a fire((using Any method) I was going to give the book 3 stars until I noticed this) p.413
For these topics, the book tells you to look it up on the handbook website. How is that supposed to help a scout who is out of reach of a cell tower, which is very often the case? To me, this is just downright irresponsible. It tells you how to set up the fuel(wood) for a fire, but I'm shocked about the lack of instruction on how to light a fire using any method. and I didn't notice a section on how to stay warm during a sudden rain/snowstorm. Making rope, tying knots and pioneering may not be life or death, but they are things that are supposed to be core skills that any scout should be able to look up at any moment.
I bought the spiral copy. The pages are thick and sturdy, but I can see how they might tear if you aren't careful.
I bought this book on Amazon. It was cheaper at the boyscout website, but I wanted it quickly and have a prime account. If you are worried about profits going to the BSA, you need to realize that the copy you buy on here was originally bought from the BSA, probably at their normal price, so the BSA still gets their piece of the pie.
Bottom line: It's a fun informative read, but the BSA has chosen to cut a lot of, arguably the most important, information from the book in order to cut back on length and be certified green.
The benefit of having both books is that the paperback one can be safely maintained as a permanent ledger, while the spiral-bound version can be used for everyday tasks. Being that scouts have to present their books for boards, having a well maintained book sets a good first impression. This dual book approach teaches the scouts about professionalism and about those little things that sometime matter.
As to the content of the 11th edition, I think it is execellent. The new version is more visually appealing and readable than the one I used as a scout.