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  1. #1
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    Survival Bag Shopping List

    I'm hoping to get some input/direction on a couple of items that I plan to put in a "ditch bag." What I'm asking for here isn't a complete list of items that will go in the bag, but instead I'm asking for specific suggestions for some items I haven't finalized.

    Planned usage: I'm planning on flying across the southern US in a private plane in a couple of months and there will be several long stretches where Personnel Recovery will take some time. These items would go into a small bag that I can pull out and move around with in order to seek shelter until recovery.

    Items in question (this list may grow):

    1) Fixed blade knife. I'm looking for something relatively inexpensive, lightweight, that will hold it's edge, and can live in a scabbard. I've poked around on Blade HQ at fixed blades, and they have some recommendations, but there's tons of options. The intent isn't to live off the land for weeks. I'm thinking blade size more than 6" is probably overkill.

    2) 550 cord. Anyone have a decent source that isn't crap? Something where the sheath of the line doesn't start slipping down the individual cords when you cut it.

    3) "Fire rock." Admittedly, I haven't researched this one yet, so I'm being lazy and asking here. Just looking for something to strike off of with a blade (or rock). I'm not interested in the one-handed kinetic starters. The few times I've used those, they always seemed easily worn out.

    4) Flashlight. I can't come up with a reason to not just grab another G2X Pro and some batteries. I have several of these and they're pretty bullet proof and lightweight. Rechargeable isn't desired.

    Thoughts?

  2. #2
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    Bic lighter. Small, cheap, reliable. Survival paracord has a 1001 uses. Esee 4 with a kydex sheath and belt clip, perfect size for a survival situation. A couple of MRE's. Small box of individual Emergencees. Has alot of vitamin C and B vitamins to get you through a tough situation.

    https://www.bladehq.com/item--ESEE-R...lery-RC4--4378

    https://www.titansurvival.com/collections/survivorcord

    https://www.titansurvival.com/produc...gency-fire-kit

    https://www.emergenc.com
    Last edited by Stone; 22 July 2020 at 13:33.
    The best way to survive a violent encounter is to be the one inflicting the most violence.

  3. #3
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    I would also have a stainless steel canteen or something similar to be able to gather water...

    Water, food and shelter, its all we really need. But your training and mindset are your best asset....

    Since your flying i would also consider a first aid kit since your landing will probably end up with injurys... Having your landing gear hit a tree stump at 80mph could get ugly but I am sure you realize that...
    Last edited by Stone; 22 July 2020 at 13:27.
    The best way to survive a violent encounter is to be the one inflicting the most violence.

  4. #4
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    I've got an ESEE 5 and like it but haven't really used it any to vouch for it. Honestly I chose it after reviews by GarandThumb. That said, I'll say the KA-Bar Becker BK2 is worth consideration. A bit cheaper than ESEE and I've heard some guys that know more about knives than I do recommend them over the ESEE.

  5. #5
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    I've got a couple of Gerber LMF fixed blades. They've been durable for me, leave in a semi-rigid sheath and inexpensive.

    G2X's are solid and also inexpensive, I think that's a great choice.

    I've got some calorie bars in my pack. Not super tasty, but if you need calories, they don't take up a lot of space.

  6. #6
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    Doubling down on the carbon steel ESEE recommendations. Can't strike a spark with the coated blades though. I have -3, -4 and Candirus, and prefer the 3" most of the time - it's thinner, lighter and more agile than the 4". Both good options though. Replaced all the micarta with aftermarket G10 - and it looks like that's an OEM install now.

    Semi-disposable G2X and an extra set of batteries seem bulletproof. If you want (lots) more output, I've had really good experiences with an Eagletac T25C2 (does have kinda high parasitic drain).

    Lifestraw or water purification tablets? I toss one in just in case, with the Emergency-C packets already mentioned.

    If there's room after all the other stuff, I would consider an ultralight poncho/tarp. Can't recommend one, since the one I have is from a now-defunct company,

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stone View Post
    Bic lighter. Small, cheap, reliable. Survival paracord has a 1001 uses. Esee 4 with a kydex sheath and belt clip, perfect size for a survival situation. A couple of MRE's. Small box of individual Emergencees. Has alot of vitamin C and B vitamins to get you through a tough situation.
    The problem with a Bic lighter (or other mechanical starters) is that it doesn't work when it's wet, and often won't work when you get particulate in the striker. That Survival paracord looks great, but now you're telling me that 550 cord isn't really 550 cord and now it's 620 cord? Stop the madness! That's a great link, though, thanks. I'll keep that one on the shopping list. Also thanks for the Esee link. That's different than what I was looking at, but a good option.


    Quote Originally Posted by RiverRat View Post
    Doubling down on the carbon steel ESEE recommendations. Can't strike a spark with the coated blades though. I have -3, -4 and Candirus, and prefer the 3" most of the time - it's thinner, lighter and more agile than the 4". Both good options though. Replaced all the micarta with aftermarket G10 - and it looks like that's an OEM install now.
    Can you expand on the not striking a spark...or more precisely, what are the basics of what a blade can and can't have to strike a spark? I'm not a knife guy, so I don't know all the coatings. My only real experience with having to start a fire that way for real (vs a training environment/classroom) was SERE, and I just used my old-school Leatherman Supertool blade to shave off sparks from a block onto tinder.

    If there's room after all the other stuff, I would consider an ultralight poncho/tarp. Can't recommend one, since the one I have is from a now-defunct company,
    While the original intent wasn't to create a complete list, some additional thoughts... I plan to throw a space blanket in there. Depending on what the weather is doing, I may just pack my LT Alpha hardshell, as well. Water will probably just be a couple of bottles of water (for me and the dog en route). I also have a bladder my dad gave me that he would travel with that holds several liters of water. Between the plane having a 406 and being under positive control (or at least talking with someone) for most of the trip, recovery should be fairly quick (~12 hours). An InReach would be nice, but I can't justify the expense right now unless I start making more and longer trips like this one.

  8. #8
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    The Bic lighter is for redundancy. In a bad situation, like its after dark, you have a hand injury, and the bugs are eating you alive. Would you rather have to scrape off magnesium chunks, work on finding extra small tinder and then try to spark it with one hand? Its kind of a PIA to get a fire going with that method in decent conditions. Or would you rather just pull out the Bic lighter and have a fire going rather quick? I would still definitely have a magnesium fire stick with me, but for back up, not for a first go around. Bic lighters dry out fast after getting wet. Put it in your front pocket before you leave and forget about it... Having a fire going quickly helps with confidence and is a great way to keep the bugs at bay in the middle of nowhere. Trust me, the bugs at night will eat you alive and drive you insane.
    The best way to survive a violent encounter is to be the one inflicting the most violence.

  9. #9
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    I'd recommend a Becker BK-7 over ESEE as it's Cro-Van steel has more rust resistance than the 1095 high-carbon steel ESEE uses. The 7" blade makes batoning a little bit easier and the .188" thickness makes it go through wood easier than the ESEE 5's 1/4" blade thickness. Weight is a push since we're talking crowbar blades, it isn't a primary concern. https://www.kabar.com/products/BK7

    For sharpening, you can't beat a DMT DiaFold stone. Plenty of choices of coarse to fine and compact. https://www.dmtonlinestore.com/Diafo...ve-P31C10.aspx

    For water purification and collection, I recommend the Lifestraw flex https://www.lifestraw.com/collection...th-gravity-bag
    There's no "Team" in F**K YOU!

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stone View Post
    The Bic lighter is for redundancy. .
    Gotcha. That does make sense.

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