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Old 20-04-2017, 04:43 PM   #1
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Guide to SPF Enlistment Updated 2017

MANGKOK GUIDE TO SPF Enlistment 2017

Before enlisting into SPF, I had lots of questions and I thought I'd write this for all the people who are going to enlist in SPF for NS, now and in the future.

Things to bring/wear on enlistment:

- Wear a decent shirt & jeans for oath taking
- enough underwear for 10 days
- Singlets (3 white to wear under your no. 3 as well as book out attire)*
- Qualification certificates
- Pen & paper (writing materials, recommend bringing a small notepad)
- SHAVER, DEODORANT* & other toiletries
- A basket for your toiletries (very important)
- Magiclean Wiper Dry Sheet (And if you have room to spare, the stick as well)*#
- Kiwi & lint-free cloth*
- 8 hangers at least (if you like being neat, if not 6 will do)
- Plastic bags for storing your used clothes (there will be a lot)
- A torch light*
- Home clothes to sleep in, one or two sets (not a must, but personally I found it more comfortable)
- Febreeze (Any scent will do, I personally found the double strength one smelling the best)*
- Washing powder, stain remover & scrub^

* indicates this is not mentioned in the enlistment letter.
^ I recommend bringing washing powder, stain remover and a scrub to hand wash your clothes.
# Do not cheap out and buy the $2 ones from Daiso, they do not work as well and will really impact your room's cleanliness

You will be issued all your items on the first day of enlistment. There isn't a need to bring a lot of change of clothes.

General Information
Do not try to bring in cigarettes, lighters, power banks or chargers. You will be confined if caught. (HTA is a non smoking camp, and no, there are no yellow boxes) This is not just a threat, it is true. When caught, the whole intake will suffer, not just your squad or yourself.

Confinement is for 10 days irregardless of whether you are in a BP, less fit or fit squad. There is no such thing as waiting for the fit squad before confinement.

Acronyms used in the following post:
FI = Field instructor (They are your equivalent sergeant in army, although they might not be sergeant rank)

CM = Course Manager (They are regular that will be teaching you law and helping you with admin matters.)

Coy Com = Company Commander (NSF inspector rank, they are your "discipline master" in HTA, their job is to tekan you.)

There are partitions in the shower room. You will not be seeing any wild birds.

Every bunk holds 10 men. Do not bring an over-sized bag on enlistment day because you do not want to try stuffing two large bags into your cupboard. The FIs will expect you to do that.

Choose your bed carefully. Generally all beds are fine, but the beds at the far ends are a little hotter and the middle beds are cold AF. For some squads you will not be able to choose your own bed. So I recommend bringing a pair of long pants to sleep in if you get cold easily. The blankets at HTA are good, but they are small and don't really keep you very warm.

The FIs in HTA are mostly not unreasonable people. If you keng they will know. At the same time, if you are genuinely ill/injured, they will most certainly understand. My personal suggestion to you is to not keng as much as possible, as being on light duty requires you to be in book out attire all the time and is hot and uncomfortable.

Hair matters
Shave everyday or you will definitely die a horrible death.

I suggest you cut your hair a day or two before enlistment. Make sure you cut it extremely short, what I did was I cut it a day before enlistment and asked for no 1 army style. You may or may not do as I do, it's your choice. If you let the barber cut your hair, you will have to pay $2, your hair will stick to your skin and you will feel EXTREMELY uncomfortable before you get to take a bath/wash your hair in the evening.

Washing your clothes
There are washing machines in the coy, however, you will not be allowed to use them till after confinement. So learn to hand-wash, it is easier and cheaper than using coins to wash your clothes. I never used the washing machine during my stay at HTA, because hand washing was a lot faster, is free, and sometimes the washing machines in the coy are being used by the FIs, or Coy Comms.

DO NOT WALK OUT OF YOUR COY WITHOUT PERMISSION. If a roll call is done and you are absent, you can be charged for AWOL. This is NOT a light charge.

You will be punished as a squad. Do not think you can get away with being selfish. You will be punished even if you have done nothing wrong. It is your responsibility to make sure your squad mates do nothing against the rules.

There is a certain way to iron your uniform. Make sure there are ZERO creases on your shirt or trousers. The lines must be VERY visible. For your trousers make sure the line ends all the way up to the waist of your pants , on both the front and rear. Generally during confinement you will not be wearing your no.3, and your FI will not expect your uniform to be in top condition just yet, however, if you are really unclear on how to iron your uniform, ask and it shall be given unto you. Seriously though, your FI will teach you how to iron your uniform if you just ask.

Choose your squad IC very, very carefully. If you get an incapable squad IC, be prepared to hear the following very often:


For the uninitiated, "to the left/right on your palms down" means push up position 45 degrees in the specified direction.

There will be three main IC positions to fill, the Squad IC, Squad 2IC and the Communications IC. The comms IC will be the liaison between the squad and your CM & FI, basically letting them know where the squad is, and what the squad is doing. All IC positions will get a charger, but do not make this the main reason to become an IC. If you were from an uniformed group in your secondary school, please volunteer to become the IC, it will make your stay at HTA a lot smoother.

There is also a Classroom IC, which is an unofficial IC, the IC that takes the key to the classrooms when law lessons start. This IC position, however, will not be eligible to bring in a charger.

These four IC positions will be allowed to carry their phones with them as they are the main contact between the squad and their FIs/CMs.

CAMERA PHONES ARE NOT ALLOWED IN HTA. At least for trainees, just buy a cheap $50 Nokia phone and you should be fine. In my opinion, buying a non camera smartphone is a complete waste of money as the battery will not last long and you are not allowed a PowerBank.

Bring an alarm clock, you will need it. For those without one, go to a clock shop and ask for the NS alarm clock, it's super cheap and really loud and useful.

A watch will be useful, but after a while you will find it a hassle as during PT sessions you will have to take it off. But for those who want one, you will need to get it in either black, grey or dark blue. Otherwise, you won't be able to wear it.

Other useful information
Mangkok is a Home Team thing, so don't bother asking your army friends what it means. Mangkok means bowl in Malay, and does not pertain to your bowl haircut, it's due to the nature that your bowl (aka head) is empty, in short, calling you an empty head, or not having a brain.

Lastly, try to keep an open mind, do not think that one person is dumb because he is from ITE, or someone is cocky because he is from JC, some of my best friends and smartest people I know are from ITE, and currently studying very hard.

Coming from a mangkok myself, I hope this guide helps all the future mangkoks enlisting in SPF. If any of you feel like adding to it, go ahead and do so. I should say this is all the information I wish I knew when I enlisted but didn't. All this will make your 10 day confinement and subsequent first few weeks a much more enjoyable time.

Original post from SgForums 10 years ago here:
Thanks to fellow forum member sacar101 for the acronyms!

If you have any further questions, feel free to PM me or post in the thread, and I will be happy to answer any of the more private questions..... Cheers!

Last edited by Parmesean; 22-10-2017 at 11:32 AM..
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