Surgeon: Too bad we can't rely on the opinion of the customer service rep. Looks like we can only rely on ourselves.
If your chest is 36" then a size 36 ought to give enough room for a sweater. If you want a closer fit, then go one size down. As Clarinet Player said in a post a few pages back, it might not fit in other areas. If you have large shoulders or long arms, you might have some problem with fit when going down a size.
It gets cold there in W. Virginia, especially in the mountains, so I would think you would want it large enough for a sweater. But then, that is up to you.
Please post the p2p on the size 38 you got so we will have a frame of reference for the Mil. Spec. in that size. To find the proper way to measure the p2p, see the sizing section in my article which is linked in my signature line.
Bik2101: Thanks for the p2p on the Authentic, your chest size and the comments about the fit. I take it that with the size 34, there is not much room for a sweater?
yeah, not a heavy sweater. i generally don't like to layer much or wear heavy sweaters. in the 34, i can comfortably have on an oxford with one of those thin merino wool sweaters over it.