Over the years, there seems to have been several systems used to designate recruit platoons at San Diego and Parris Island. However, the way it has been for the last 30 years or so is that the first numeral on the guidon signifies the recruit battalion, and the rest is pretty simple. The platoons are numbered numerically as they are formed after the start of the calendar year (e.g., 3d Recruit Training Battalion's first platoon would be 3001. In the early 1960s it would have been 301). When the year ends, they start over again. The depots have more or less always followed a similar system of numbering. Recruit Training Regiment has custody and responsibility for the guidons and maintains that it would go broke making and dry-cleaning individual flags for every new platoon.
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