How to Hack Your Eagle Award




Here's how to hack your Eagle award. Some people might want to do this to show support for a change in policies within the Boy Scouts of America.

Step 1: Cut Fabric

Cut your ribbon. I ordered some 35mm grosgrain ribbon. Measuring ribbon in the US is usually English measure, so I ordered 35mm ribbon from an ebay supplier in the UK. I measured about 80mm in length of the rainbow ribbon.

Step 2: Fold and Stitch

Gently fold, without crimping, the rainbow ribbon in half. Stitch it by hand or with a machine. I used red thread, as that's the standard thread used in the original medal.

Step 3: Flip

Flip the ribbon inside out.

Step 4: Place Onto the Motto

On this medal, the top bar of the medal had a cut in it, which I was surprised to find. I bent it slightly so that I could slide the ribbon back into the medal. Red on the right, as presented to the public. I gently folded at the stitch side, so it was more likely to lay flat.

Step 5: And Make It Nice

Bend the metal that's now in the ribbon back into a straight position. Make it meet up like it did before. Be careful not to bend it too far. It's soft metal.

Step 6: Stitch to Hold the Ribbon

The ribbon needs to be stitched together on the sides to avoid the ribbon from sliding around. If you don't stitch it, it'll fall and slide and make a mess. I continued to use red thread. I machine stitched on a zero length stitch, but in the next one, I'll hand stitch it. Then prep the ring and the medal for re installation.

Step 7: Insert the Ring

Insert the ring back into the bottom of the ribbon. Push the middle of the ribbon (yellow and green) out toward the front to make it lay right. Make sure that the red or purple don't get folded under and get a crimp in them.

Step 8: Final Assembly

Attach the Eagle back onto the ring. Bend the ring back together to close it off. It wasn't soldered at all, just bent into place to begin with.

That's it. You're done. You can stitch it by hand if you want. In fact, the side stitches are better done by hand to assure that it's a good stitch. Well, maybe you're better with a machine. The red thread does look a little weird on the purple background, but it looks just as odd on the BLUE background of the original medal. Again, hand stitching would have made this look a little nicer. I am not patient enough for hand stitching in most cases.



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    295 Discussions


    3 years ago

    Oh shoot. We won.

    Sorry narrow folks.


    4 years ago on Introduction

    wow so much negativity. My ex-stepbrother was a scout and this made me chuckle. i like it ^^ well done.


    5 years ago on Introduction

    I support your 'ible. There are so many negative comments i thought I'd share my opinion. :)


    5 years ago on Introduction

    As an Eagle Scout, this is not what the badge is to symbolize, personal beliefs aside (I support the rights of all people). But you have removed what is a symbolic reminder of the three obligations of an Eagle Scout:

    Always let the white of the badge remind you to live with honor

    Let the blue of this badge remind you to remain loyal.

    Let the red of the badge remind you of courage

    Those are not the colors of sexual oppression, they are the colors of Honor, Loyalty, and Courage. Some people have been blinded by the rainbow flag. This is no longer the medal of an Eagle Scout, it is a political statement. May you look upon your medal and be reminded of how you discarded your symbols of Honor, Loyalty and Courage that so few bare upon their character for one that is nothing more than an 'in your face BSA' statement that is now meaningless due to policy changes.

    Once an Eagle always an Eagle is true, I don't consider what you've done a disgrace or anything like that but I do consider it a disregard for the obligation you have pledged as an Eagle Scout. As long as your character represents that of the promise you made as an Eagle is what matters most to me. Live your life soaring above the land and be something people look up to. That was charged to me upon my award, I charge you to do the same.

    That being said in my opinion these colors have no reason to be born upon an Eagle medal.


    5 years ago on Introduction

    The Eagle award is a symbol of achievement, not necessarily of policy. However, I side with those who say if one were to change the stripes on Old Glory to rainbow stripes, is it our flag anymore? Is it an act of desecration to the flag? While I support the LBGT community, I still cannot agree with this 'ible. Besides the political statement that bobkrispen is trying to make, he is in violation of the regulations of the organization. If he wants to show support for a change in policies, he should do it within the confines of the organization. Otherwise, it becomes an act of defiance rather than a statement, and he has to accept the consequences (I am thinking back to the 60s protestors). He could design his own award, but it still is subject to approval by BSA.

    My source is

    1 reply

    Reply 5 years ago on Introduction

    You can't agree with the 'ible? No, you disagree with the reason behind the 'ible. You may disagree with the statement made by this 'ible. This is a hack of a political nature.

    And you're going to trot out the guide to insignia? Come on, I can walk up and down a row of uniformed scouts/scouters (scouters especially!) at any single event at any level and see countless errors according to the insignia guide. My hack is obviously a statement - of course it violates the insignia guide. I don't think you'll find a single person who thinks that this doesn't violate the insignia guide.

    The pressure that has been exerted on BSA to change their policies has come from two locations. Inside the organization and outside the organization. We never would have gotten the recent change for youth if it had not been for pressure from both sides. Your statement of "show support for a change in policies, he should do it within the confines of the organization" represents one way to fight for equality. It is a way that you would prefer I engage in. It is NOT the only way in which I have engaged in attempting to effect change. Congrats, you have an opinion too. Ain't it great?

    This 'ible did exactly as I expected. And I'm happy that the BSA is slowly walking toward equality and inclusion. They're not where I'd like to be yet and I'll continue to work toward that both from within and from outside the organization.

    Thanks for your reply, glad I inspired you to comment. ;)


    6 years ago on Introduction

    As an American, you have the right to agree or disagree with the beliefs and policies of the BSA. However, that only extents as to whether of not you decide to join the organization.

    It does not give you the right to obtain their highest award and desicrate it publicly.

    I am sure that all the parents and leaders who spend their time and effort over the years to help you achieve this honor would not be pleased by this instructable.

    I sincerely hope that someone in your troop or council finds this instructable and takes back your medal.

    13 replies

    I agree with you completely. And anyone who disagrees, deal with it. I have earned this award. It cost me a significant investment of time and energy as well as sacrifice. This is desecration of an award and it would be no different than changing the US Flag to be a rainbow. The Red White and Blue of the ribbon which the Eagle medal hangs from is representative of the flag of our great nation. The rainbow is representative of a degredation in morality and a rebellion against the values which our nation was founded on.

    A scout is Trustworthy, Loyal, Helpful, Friendly, Courteous, Kind, Obedient, Cheerful, Thrifty, Brave, Clean, and Reverent.

    On my Honor, I will, do my best, to do my duty, to God and my country and to obey the scout law, to help other people at all times, to keep myself physically strong, mentally awake, and morally straight.

    These are the Law and Oath that every scout learns and follows. If you don't believe in God, you arent following the oath you are making and you need to leave the organization. If you stay, then you are not being Honest and Trustworthy. I'm not even gonna get started on being obedient, as those who push this agenda can't understand that.

    If you do believe in God yet are pushing this change in the BSA, then you are not being morally straight according to the morals taught by the Bible, which declares that sex between anyone but a man and his wife is adultery, and therefor sinful. While we are all sinners, the difference is being a wilful and unrepentant sinner versus being a repentent sinner who is trying to avoid sin.

    If you disagree with me, you are entitled to your own opinion, but I am using the dictionary definition of the words that the scout makes an oath to follow. If you want change, that is your choice, but to break the oath you make in forcing that change is to show dishonor to the very award and to your own honor.

    If you haven't earned the award, I'm not interested in your opinion either.

    I'm not trying to start a web-argument, but I don't think you can say that the boyscouts inherently must believe in God and follow the bible. Why do they include religious awards for Buddhists, who do not necessarily believe in a God or follow the bible? Confucianism also does not mention any gods, but boys whose families practice that belief system are not excluded.

    A scout must be encouraged to develop a conscience. If that conscience leads him not to want to follow a religion...seems contrary to the values of scouting to say he is bad for honestly professing what he believes to be true.

    I never really imagined "reverent" as practicing religion. Just didn't make sense. I was in a troop with Catholic, Buddhist, Muslim, Jewish, Scouts, as well as various other belief systems. Obviously I am not expecting my Buddhist friend to go to church on Sundays. I always thought "reverent" meant you always adhered to your own belief system (whatever that may be) and respected that of others.

    I agree with this instructible completely. And anyone who disagrees, deal with it.

    If you aren't interested in anyone's opinion who has not earned the award, then I'm not interested in your opinion.



    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    When I joined the Cub Scouts at age SEVEN it wasn't as an infiltrator of this fine, upstanding organization. I didn't even cackle maniacally when I did it. In fact, they came to ME because our school allowed them to come in and promote the group. I don't know if they still do that or not- probably not in most places. I wasn't plotting the downfall of the BSA when I became a Webelo or later a Boy Scout. In fact I was an exemplary Scout, earning badges and taking the organization's lessons to heart. Most people join as Cubs so you can hardly accuse them of joining the BSA with full knowledge or even understanding of their religious/political POV *or* of even of themselves as young adults. So it's rather silly to suggest that "if you don't agree with it, you shouldn't join." They're KIDS. It's only later that some of them discover that although their selves and personal values haven't really changed they are suddenly "unacceptable" to the BSA. The issue isn't being "let in" or of "sneaking INTO" the BSA with dishonorable intentions, it's of being KICKED OUT for things you cannot control. See the difference?


    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    All the people here telling folks not to join the boy scouts if they don't agree with their rules could just follow their own advice. Cya.

    But no, the damn hypocrites are just looking for an excuse to act up and pretend they have honor and are straight.

    Enjoy your stagetime and the little attention smart people grant you here on the great internet, you poor sod. I don't need to look at your profile to pity you for your poor, valueless life of lies.


    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    Um... no. Just no. Your username, "Radicalone," suggests you may not appreciate the diversity of our country, and the need to celebrate it... but you should open your mind. Also, you have no idea, and no right to presume to have an idea, what his parents and leaders think or do with him. You, sir, are precisely the kind of person who brings disgrace and dishonor to an organization which was founded on the principles of providing a conduit for personal growth and development of future leaders, regardless of race, creed, sex, and religious beliefs. Do your homework... the introduction of religious fundamental structure and "anti-gay" rulings wasn't in place until the late '70s when the Mormon Church started funneling cash into the organization, and essentially "purchased" the head honcho at a premium and began poisoning the organization with their religious beliefs.

    Seriously, you need to relax and learn to respect those around you.

    Nicely done Instructable! I love it, and I hope you keep it up!


    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    Do your homework.

    The introduction of religious fundamental structure dates to the very beginning of scouting. Baden Powell's original Oath in 1908 included the same promise to "do my duty to God" that the Oath has today. If scouting was "poisoned" by religion, it wasn't the Mormons, but the founder himself who did it. Boy Scouts have always been encouraged to believe in God and take an active role in the religious organization of their choosing.

    That has nothing to do with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints ("Mormons"), except that it may have been part of what prompted them to sign on as the BSA's first chartered organization in 1913.

    The rulings in the 1970's were due not to changing policies of the BSA, but instead stemmed from increased acceptance of homosexuality in society. BSA policies from the beginning until the 70's were in line with the views of the general public--open homosexuality was taboo, so no need to defend anything. It wasn't until the 1970's when open homosexuality had become more accepted that the BSA actually had to defend long-held beliefs. It certainly wasn't because Mormons had just joined the party.


    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    > I sincerely hope that someone in your troop or
    > council finds this instructable and takes back your medal.

    Once an Eagle, always an Eagle. And if I lost the medal, if I sold the medal if someone stole the metal, a group of militant eagle medal hunters wanted to hunt down my medal and take it away, I would still be an Eagle.

    I've said it several times in the past and a brilliant DESA recipient recently said this "It's not the medal, it's the mettle."

    I've heard from plenty of Eagles, plenty of parents, plenty of leaders that appreciate this hack. I've heard from plenty of gay eagles, atheist eagles and those that are neither, but still support this kind of method of protest.

    This is MY award that I've hacked. Because it's mine, it's not yours. Because it's not yours, I can't desecrate it. If I hacked yours, you might have a legitimate reason to call it desecration. But this is mine, and I'm entitled to do with it what I want.


    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    I am a Scoutmaster and encourage all the scouts in my charge to think for themselves. That is part of scouting and one of the goals of scouting. At some point in anyone's life that person must decide what he believes in and take action on those beliefs. If you have chosen to change your beliefs that is wonderful. However, changing your beliefs does not give you the right to be disrespectful to a symbol of the work you put forth to earn that symbol or the people who taught and helped you along the path to Eagle. Freedom of association is a core principle of the Constitution. The BSA may choose with whom to associate or not and by choosing is neither intolerant nor demeaning. Your action, however, is both.


    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    Years ago there used to be laws in the USA that supported discrimination against black people. One reason those laws no longer exist is that people protested in many different ways against these laws and the policies of government that supported them. Using your logic the people who protested against the widespread bigotry in the USA of years past were being disrespectful.

    Sometimes the greatest respect one can express is to counter the status quo and support human rights.


    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    He didn't "obtain" it. He earned it. As for desecration? It could be argued that this scout is upholding the principles of the rank, even if they may conflict with the parent organization's current policies.

    It's interesting that you know all the parents and leaders in the organization are homophobic bigots. Can I borrow your crystal ball?

    Being an Eagle Scout is most certainly not about obtaining the physical medal. I sincerely hope that someone in your community finds this comment and helps you understand that it's okay for people to have differing opinions.


    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    Sure its Ok to have differing opinions, but when those opinions are going o force a private individual/organization to give up his veteran-blood-bought American freedoms, then those holding those opinions MUST, to be American, realize their OPINIONS must come secondary to forcing a private organization to give up its personal rights.

    So do you want a dictatorial state? See the big picture please