Frugal Prepping: 12 Survival Tools You Need in Your Bug Out Bag

by | Jan 9, 2017 | Headline News | 105 comments

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    This guide was originally published by Jeremiah Johnson at Tess Pennington’s


    Readers, I’m not so much into gadgets and gizmos as many people, but one of the things that I have done is to amass what I call a “micro” toolbox.  When you’re in a bind, you may have only what is on your belt or in your pockets to rely on.  But what about things you may need in a pinch that may require tools…except you can’t drag around a giant toolbox with you?  This may just foot the bill for you and give you some food for thought.

    Although I live an “Uncle Cave-man” type of lifestyle, the fact that I am writing this article to you on a computer and use the internet should prove to you that I still need a certain number of things to carry out tasks besides a bow saw and a stone axe.  Let’s go down a list of some things you can “miniaturize” and take with you in a small tool kit for your needs in a possible 72-hour emergency.  Many of these are low cost and can be picked up in the Dollar Tree/Dollar store.  Remember: You’re not going to stick-build trusses or frame a house – just make a small tool kit you’ll be able to use in a pinch that won’t cost you an arm and a leg.

    Learn how to build the ultimate bug out bag

    12 Essential Tools You Need For Your Bug Out Bag

    1. Hammer: no, not the 30-oz Estwing, but a small hammer, just enough to tack in some nails and build a small lean-to or shelter [Pack some nails in a variety of sizes in a small container…don’t forget them]
    2. Screwdriver: once again, your dollar stores have the ones that have “bits” for different screwdriver heads, such as standard or Philips.
    3. Drywall saw: yes, the small one with a triangular-thin blade and big teeth…excellent for small branches, and can be used for game you shoot, as well
    4. Exacto/razor knife: the one with break-off, disposable blades
    5. Allen wrench: you never need one until you need one…and when you do, nothing in the world will work except the Allen wrench…also at the Dollar Tree
    6. Star-nose bits for the screwdriver: once again, you’ll never need them until you do…and your life will be horrible if you don’t have one and the need arises…make sure they fit in your multipurpose screwdriver (#2); you can get them at the hardware store for a couple dollars
    7. Pen Torch with Butane: I recommend Benz-o-matic’s ST-200. It is about 6” long, and it can hot-blow, solder, and be used as a torch with a flame more than 2,000 degrees F!  It runs about $23, and the butane (use Benz-o-matic to keep it from gunking up) about $4-5 per can.  If you need to “unfreeze” something in a heartbeat, such as a lock or a moving part, or if you must solder something together to repair it…there’s your racehorse.
    8. Tape measure: get a good one, a 12 foot one for your minimum size, and use the ones by Stanley, not the generic junk…in this case the adage “cheap you buy, cheap you get” applies. Use Stanley’s “Fat Max” brand that is wider with more visible numbers, unlike the others where even an eagle or an owl couldn’t see the numbers and markings.
    9. A small pry bar: the type that is either rounded or hexagonal. You can pick up one of these at the Dollar Tree, but if you’re going to put a lot of force on it, you may want one of the more expensive ones at Home Depot or Lowe’s.  You never know when you need to lever something in a small space.
    10. Eating utensils and accessories: yes, a fork, knife, and spoon, and a small hand-held can opener. [Note: if you’re out in the wintertime, and a can of food has frozen, you can poke a couple of hole in it with the can opener and thaw it out on a fire]
    11. Small power tools: Cordless Dremel with bits, a cordless screwdriver (that can double as a drill if it’s a good one) and bits…these are your “primaries” with your “Uncle Cave-man” manual tools to back them up if needed. The Dremel, especially, has drills, sanders, and cutting wheels that can really help in a bind.
    12. A set of micro/precision screwdrivers: once again, the Dollar Tree is your best bet.

    There are many reasons to pack yourself up a small tool kit such as this one.

    Firstly, you do not know when or where you are going to run into a situation that you need these tools in a hurry.  Many of you may say that you already have a big Sears craftsman toolbox in the back of your truck or the trunk of your car.  That’s fine, and guess what?  So do I.  But in addition to this full-sized toolbox, I have the smaller one, for the “What if’s” that always arise.

    What if you have an accident and you need to get away from the vehicle to seek shelter?  What if you’re compromised, in some way, and must abandon your vehicle completely?  Wouldn’t it be nice to have that small tool kit that can be made to attach to your happy bug-out backpack?  You can potentially grunt it out and lug the full-sized toolbox with you, but if that’s not an option, your backup will be this compact bag or box of tools…micro-tools, if you will…to help you out as you are in motion.

    With these tools at your disposal, you can solder, fix, fabricate, and build what you need in a pinch.  Survival is more than living with an entire arsenal of weapons and a warehouse full of tools and supplies. It is also about living “on the cusp” and being able to be “Johnny-on-the-spot,” to either make or fix what you need when the situation calls for it.  Such is adaptability, and along with good coffee, it is the factor that has enabled us to survive as a species.  Invest in that small tool kit and tailor make it for your needs, both immediate and the ones you forecast for the future.  JJ out!

    Jeremiah Johnson is the Nom de plume of a retired Green Beret of the United States Army Special Forces (Airborne). Mr. Johnson was a Special Forces Medic, EMT and ACLS-certified, with comprehensive training in wilderness survival, rescue, and patient-extraction. Mr. Johnson is an ardent advocate for preparedness, self-sufficiency, and long-term disaster sustainability for families. He and his wife survived Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath. Cross-trained as a Special Forces Engineer, he is an expert in supply, logistics, transport, and long-term storage of perishable materials, having incorporated many of these techniques plus some unique innovations in his own homestead.

    This article first appeared at Tess Pennington’s Ready

    The Prepper's Blueprint

    Tess Pennington is the author of The Prepper’s Blueprint, a comprehensive guide that uses real-life scenarios to help you prepare for any disaster. Because a crisis rarely stops with a triggering event the aftermath can spiral, having the capacity to cripple our normal ways of life. The well-rounded, multi-layered approach outlined in the Blueprint helps you make sense of a wide array of preparedness concepts through easily digestible action items and supply lists.

    Tess is also the author of the highly rated Prepper’s Cookbook, which helps you to create a plan for stocking, organizing and maintaining a proper emergency food supply and includes over 300 recipes for nutritious, delicious, life-saving meals. 

    Visit her web site at for an extensive compilation of free information on preparedness, homesteading, and healthy living.



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      1. Tape measure??? Maybe someone can tell me why you would need a tape measure in a bug out situation. Please don’t tell me of the one-in-a-billion situation that you may find yourself in because in that case my string/board/pipe will just be cut as is and i will carry something else that i would use every day like an axe!

        • 12 of 12 isn’t bad. Now add a mini-blast furnace to smelt the gold you produce into small bars. 🙂

        • I was thinking something more useful like a good hatchet. That’s what I Use for cutting and hammering

          • Yea, there’s a few things I would recommend before some of this stuff, especially for a 72 hour emergency. There must be a dollar tree close to the trailer park. For all the “survival expertise” this guy claims to have, I don’t ever remember reading anything from him that relates his supposed skills. He’s a fraud.

            Stay quiet Be smart

            • Lesbians don’t use a hammer and nails to build things. They’ve perfected the tongue-and-groove method.

              • Moe, I like watching them work

              • Those in the Military got plenty Liberal Ego Participation Trophys too. They were called Chest Medals and stripes on their sleeves. lol Some still carry their Authority Labels with them later on in life. And try to seem as some expert cause they participated in some survival rescue classes. Oh in the Military. lol I see he dropped the First Aid Band Aid Applier label from his resume above. LMFAO!!!

                I remember some guy on the Fire Dept who would sign his personal checks out in public as Lieutenant Frank. LT Frank. lol Maybe why this schmuck uses a fake name.

          • You forgot one… A PLACE TO HIDE YOUR WEAK SORRY ASS!!!

            Hahahahahahaha… preppers…..

        • The funny thing to me was the only quality tool he suggest is the tape measure. Everything else is from the Dollar Tree. “Cheap you buy, cheap you get”. I have a lot of good tools and some china tools but when my families and my life depends on it, and I can only carry a few tools, it will not be from the Dollar Tree. You can get a good set of 100 bits that would take care of most of his list and it would not weigh very much. My pack has a hatchet that doubles as a hammer. 2 crescent brand crescent wrenches, 2 pair vise grip brand vise grips, craftsman brand regular and #2 Philips screwdriver. I always have a multi tool and razor knife on my hip. That is the extent of my tools unless you want to mention my camp 10 & 18, your knives and weapons. Just about everything in a BOB could be considered a tool.

          Peoples abilities and circumstances will determine the tools that are packed in a BOB.

        • I`m thinking the same thing,
          I would put a cooking pot or drink bottle before a tape measure.

        • You don’t need a tape measure in your BOB. The author has this article info, confused as to what a carpenter has in his tool box or a refugee want to be handy man. Every time I call this Author fraud hypocrite out I get put on hold. I don’t even think this site host reads these articles for content from this person, and just lets them post all the crap they like for shits and giggles. Something else going on here for sure. Has nothing to do with survival or prepping. Again another BS article from you know who.

      2. Very good list. I have one of them at BOL#2 and At my Bug-In location. #1 BOL is at my brothers, and if I know him he has at least three or four pairs of these items.


        • JJ,
          I think you may be on to something here. I may not keep all of these items but there are tools worth considering. I have no experience with the dollar stores. However, I think the Harbor Freight may carry these items and some of them would be covered under their lifetime warranty. Thanks for the ideas!

          • “Harbor Freight”

            I avoid this store as if it had the plague itself.
            Handtools such as screwdrives/prybars/wrenchs …etc are made of the softest, cheapest material possible.

            Same goes for any Dollar Store – there is nothing durbale about cheap tools – the following typical slogan “you get what you pay for” applies here.

            No need to buy “high end / top dollar tools, but nobody should be reaching for the lowest quality possible … just because the price tag says “cheap”… does not necessarily applies to being durable or even remotely useful!

            • FTW, agree. Most of my tools are from Home Depot or Lowe’s. Not the best but not the worst either.

          • Muddy, I’m not sure about the dollar stores but I recommend avoiding Harbor Freight entirely. I’ve bought a few items from them only to have them break on me the first time I tried using them. Home Depot and Lowe’s are a bit pricey but I’ve never had trouble with any of their items. Harbor Freight has nothing but junk.

            • i have made my living with snap-on and craftsman tools for 35 years now as a mechanic. i find a LOT of the hand tools at harbor freight are actually very good, and at a fraction of the price. you just need to really look closely when making the decision to buy or not. “made in china” has always been a warning-label, but the quality is MUCH better than it used to be. so i’m not as much of a china basher as i used to be. but i DO tell the cashier as they take my money “you KNOW they’re gonna make a TANK with that money, right?” there are still MANY things i won’t buy there. speakin of pry bars, they got a 6 footer there, i will call it a digging bar, that would come in VERY handy for prying open a crashed car’s door, or using a fulcrum you could lift the corner of a car, or…..BTW, i use almost exclusively those “security bits” and other bit sets for 1/4″ screwdrivers, and they work very well, they aren’t made of swiss cheese like the china junk of 30 years ago. ratchets are good, sockets, wrenches…there’s just a lot of good stuff there for those that aren’t using the stuff ALL THE TIME….if you DO use stuff for making a living, buy snap-on if you can afford it….just remember this….”when you buy something cheap, you’re happy when you buy it, but unhappy every time you USE it….when you buy something EXPENSIVE, you’re unhappy when you BUY it, but HAPPY every time you USE it.” OH YES, many hand tools have a lifetime warranty…..or until the war starts.

              • Craftsman were once well made tools that would last “Harry Homeowner” many years even if abused. But anymore?…not so much. Like so many things we do build they cheapened it all they can. Beside Sears ain’t gonna be around much longer and that Craftsman lifetime warranty ain’t gonna be worth a pinch of owl shit.

                • Anon,at moment the good folks at Ace Hardware carry Craftsman and honor the warranty,when sears finally goes down not sure then

              • Snap on are monstrously expensive.

                If you do it for a living, buy Snap-On quality for the tools of your trade. If I was a plumber, I wouldn’t buy Snap-On for occasional weekend car repairs.

                I worked school and college summers in a gas station with a great repair rep. I bought a set of craftsman tools that I’ve used for decades. I still do all my own car repairs, with that original tool set. I also have quite a few Harbor Freight tools. HF sells several grades of tools, buy what matches your expected use. I’ve bought a cheapo occasionally, and used it so much I wore it out, the replacement was higher quality.

                We all abuse tools occasionally, if I’m going to do a no-no with a tool, I use the cheapest version in the box. I’ve also modified tools for a single use specialty fix, HF tools are great for this.

                A week ago I took a $15 HF 18″ adjustable wrench, cut the handle off at about 6″ and cut a square hole in the hilt so I can use a 1/2″ drive impact wrench on it to break the nut free. The goal is to get the 1 7/16 nut off my washing machine hub so I can change the $9 bearing. I could have bought the repairman’s wrench they sell with the bearing, it’s $55.

            • There is a large tool cabinet at Harbor Freight, the big red setup, it’s a quality system that costs a third of the price of the Lowe’s or Sears brands, and is equal or better in quality.

              Other than that, there’s not a lot in their store I want to spend money on. The auto jack stands are a good buy. They used to sell some socket sets that were quite good, mine are over 30 years old and going strong.

              I’ve bought most of my tools at yard and estate sales, so I don’t need retail tools, as a general rule.

              I won’t buy anything with a cord on it from Harbor Freight, though.

              • “I won’t buy anything with a cord on it from Harbor Freight, though.”
                damn good advice, smokey!

                • BCoD,
                  Hate to let the cat out of the bag, but the Chicom tool maker that makes HF also private labels certain power tools for big name US brands. That big rental diamond saw for tile and pavers that the big box stores sell or rent is almost identical to HF similar saw for a reason. I bought HF biggest wet diamond saw for $199.00 and built my front walk and entry, a backyard patio, and did ove 400 sq ft of tile work around the house and it’s still running strong. I have their 12″ compound miter saw, it’s amazing. The oldest one was a decades old $39 drill press that I bolted to a box and abused into mixing all the thin-set for my tile work. Used it as ad rill press the rest of the time. I passed that one on to my son and bought a bigger really heavy duty one for myself.

                  One tip on HF, buy the power tools with the red housing, it’s their heavy duty version. They are near twice the price of the HF cheapo, but will match most name brand homeowner quality power tools for a lot less money.

                  I have three HF angle grinders, they are that cheap, I keep one with a grinder head one with a cut off blade and one with a wire brush. Much easier than changing attachments.

              • funny, smokey. i helped my mentor that hired me as a mechanic 35 years ago to trim his giant mulberry tree last week…(if it wasn’t for him giving me a chance at a good living, i would be rewinding videos in a video store right now). i rode up and he started talking about his new electric chain saw…guess where he got it? the FUNNY thing was, i told him what YOU said, and i said it might have been better to pay a little more for a GOOD one somewhere else….and he says “i was looking at the one at sears that was 79$, when i saw a coupon someone left at sears for this one at harbor freight…for 47$ on sale…go figger.

            • Brave,bought a 3/4 drive ratchet set from em that use maybe once a year,works fine/inexpensive and as their Pittsburgh tool line guaranteed for life.

              My 1/2 ” torque wrench from them for 19 bucks had 10 years,comes with in 2 pounds of breaking recently when checked it against mechanic friends multi hundred dollar snap on he recently had “recalibrated”,that said,use occasionally and not for a living.

              • used my craftsman torque wrench for about 25 years, and finally broke it ten years or so ago.

          • Menards is cheap and can fins all of these items, if there is one

          • Avoid Harbor Freight–or Dollar Tree–for screwdriver or torx bits–they’re too brittle and break very easily. Stick with name brands, and avoid Dollar Tree except for soap/shampoo/antidiarrheal meds/toothpaste/toothbrushes. Don’t buy their bandaids or other bandaging materials.

            • i disagree on the bits from harbor freight…i make my LIVING with tools, and i been using my set for 6 or 7 years….and i haven’t thrown ANY away….try them AGAIN.

        • Its called a friggin Gerber Multi-Tool. Did they not teach you that in sear classes? If I was going to make a list of 12 Tools for a Bugout Bag, it would be:
          1. A Water Filter,
          2. Pot to cook in and Eating utensils,
          3. Gerber Multi-tool
          4. A good Hunting and cleaning Skinning knife,
          5. Gun and ammo
          6. Fishing hooks and line,
          7. 550 Paracord,
          8. Tarp of tent
          9. Sleeping Bag
          10. Compass
          11. Clothing and boots
          12. A few lighters, fire strike, and a BOB to pack it all in.

          You don’t need a hammer or Nails. LMFAO!!! You can use a big knife like a K-Bar and another small log to pound and split the wood to make a fire.

          • I would put that list above the one mentioned.

          • Zeus, yea I had to laugh when I saw the hammer and nails too. Your list is good, especially the water filter. the first thing I thought when I read this frauds list is he has no water filter. As far as the bag, I carry whatever fits and it’s not limited to 12 items. Also a bottle of hand sanitizer, at least 62% alcohol, it’s a great fire starter.

          • You’re confusing a tool bag with a but out bag

      3. I have no use for this list. Power tools in my micro big out bag? Nah a good leatherman. Drywall saw? to cut limbs, and game, crap, A dam good hunting knife and a machette(SP) or ; axe/hammer. Keep a can opener and flashlight on my key chain. Forget frozen cans keep hard candies and survival bars. Lots better ideas out there.

        • “P”
          Overall it isn’t a bad list. I do agree that #11 will be useless after a while but there will be ways to charge batteries to run them, but I think charging batteries for other things like lights will be more important.


          • Small examples. a pry bar, saw,hammer, and screwdriver? A fencing Axe/hammer can do all that and more. (Great for killing Zombies) In the cold and wet a tuna fish can filled up with cardboard and wax, or a couple railroad flares is what I want. Tape measure? So I can measure exactly the amount of rope I meed to hang myself? A roll of duct tape or 100 ft of paracord (If you want a measure mark it with a marker) are no larger and far more useable.
            Heck, with the axe and the rope you cane build yourself a a target range to improve your shooting in your spare time. Wet canned goods in the winter in your BOB? Get real, first thaw and no food just mess. I could continue but Why?

          • This list is not for a Bug out Bag, it is for the usual hand tools you keep in a shed at your homestead off the grid. I’m surprised the Author did not put a wheel barrel in his Frugal BOB. That’s why he needed 10 people to carry his stuff as a support team in the Army. Not even close to being practical. I would not take advice from any person in the military, who lost every war since WW2. They are LOOSERS BiiiiG Time as Trump would call them..

            You want Great survival advice, go talk with those who are FF Paramedics, Avid Hikers, campers, and those who live off the grid, like many trappers, and those who live in remote areas or those like Native Indians who have lived off the land for centuries. These wanna be survivalist authors who never accomplished anything in their lives but kill people and pasted medals to their puffed out chests, who now live off their Fake Authority Labels like Master Food preparer. Go talk to a chef at a restaurant, or granny who has done canning since her granny taught her, or just go ask waitress for better advice. Are you listening Mac What I said in my comments a few back which you refused to post. Bad advice is worse than No advice. I called him out for being a hypocrite fraud, You gave him a Liberal Trophy for showing up again and a platform for spreading misinformation. Hello!!! Anybody listening?

        • Paranoid, I also keep a good hunting knife, machete, axe, and LED flashlight all the time. I carry a Gerber multitool on my belt every day and even have a Swiss army knife on me every day. I keep some survival bars and bottled water also. Never get dehydrated.

        • A drywall knife would be difficult to use for sawing small brances – though it being serated … the gaps between teeth are too deep, which would make difficult work for the person using it. – better off using a keyring rope saw.

          …. but … if you needed to plunge this tool into the body of someone – I’m sure it will ruin that persons day pretty quickly ツ

          • Get a folding saw, forget the drywall saw. They cost about $15 and up, and will last forever.

            Go online and get yourself a catalog from some forestry and similar companies, such as Forestry Suppliers or Ben Meadows, then check out the stuff. Lots of good prep items, such as for fighting fires, woods work, landscaping, etc., etc.

      4. Terrible waste of space. Unless you plan on tinkering and not surviving…or maybe bug out to the North Pole and help the elves build stuff.

      5. I have everything but #7 in my truck at all times. I’ll look into #7. I agree about 311 becoming useless in post-SHTF after the grid is gone, but in the meantime I’ll still be using them. I’ve got plenty of hand tools for backup. On #10, I keep a hobo tool [knife, fork, spoon combo], an old army mess kit, and a Sterno stove with a few extra fuel canisters handy. A few pots and pans are also necessary. On #9, I keep several different size pry bars with me all the time. Just never know what you’ll encounter. If you don’t prep, you’re inept.

      6. I can’t say enough good about a sharp handsaw.
        The folding saws will do in a pinch but a good handsaw (8tpi) or less is priceless.;( no need for finishing saws)
        Winter is a good time to practice your sharpening/ set skills. The right file and practice make perfect.
        Some really fantastic handsaws can be procured at yard sales/ auctions if you no what to look for.

        Also a big two man crosscut saw is perfect for teaching the importance of teamwork… if you have a couple guys on your crew that are pissy…. It’s better than boxing gloves.

        Everybody has their own style of sharpening resetting and don’t expect to be a pro the first time.

        ht tps://

        • On that crosscut saw, two women willing to work together can also do the job, but it takes about two minutes longer. A forestry student and I won a cross cutting contest against another pair of women, at a forestry festival. We cut a 12 inch log in less than 5 minutes. I don’t remember the exact timing. I was 42 at the time, she was 22. That was fun!

      7. Luckily, I bought the leatherman Surge, with the bit extention and assorted bits, everything you need. And it works very very well. I spent good money too, 138 bucks got everything. I Have had it for a year and is still going strong. But that pen torch is a good idea, along with the multitool you definitely need to get the chainsaw thats just the blade with handles, they’re badass. And a wood chisel. Cut down decent sized trees and notch them like Lincoln logs, and viola you have a small cabin.

      8. I would rather have a sharp hatchet, flint and steel, a steel trap, good knife, fish hooks and line, a rain slicker. Keep what a 1800,s fur trapper would have carried . You don’t need nails to build a shelter. You tie it together with strips of elm bark. Anything you can cut with a drywall saw the hatchet will cut faster. Keep sharpening tools. and a few candles. First aid supplies. Go to the veterinary isle at the feed store get some blood stop powder and stretchy wrap bandages. You could dress a gunshot wound with just those two items. the 1800,s guys used flintlock rifles. and made their own flints. They took their lead and made a box out of it. the box was filled with enough powder to fire the amount of bulletts the lead would make. They sealed the lead lid on the box with a hot iron. That kept the powder dry. And they could cashe it and not have to carry a lot of lead & powder. You will need to periodically boil the steel trap. and you need to have wax on top of the boiling water so it will coat the trap when you remove it. the wax seals the rusty metal smell and lubricates and keeps the trap from rusting farther. I think many of those reinactor guys will do ok when SHTF . don’t forget sharpening tools and a spare knife, cashe some salt because that’s a necessity.

        • “Keep what a 1800,s fur trapper would have carried”

          Agree. We could learn a lot about Cowboys, whom lived SHFT as daily life, living out of saddlebag.

          However, fur trappers would bring a pack mule for the extra gear. Cowboys, whom rarely ventured out alone, kept the bedroll, food and cookware on the chuck wagon. Keeping the slicker and rifle on the horse. The only luxury was a good book, which they traded with others on the trail.

          Unless you have a horse and know how to ride and care for them, your not gonna carry much. Carry just what you need to build simple shelters, procure drinking water, and catch, process and cook food.

        • Yeah but can you do this with a hatchet? ?lol

          ht tps://

      9. I would rather have a sharp hatchet, flint and steel, a steel trap, good knife, fish hooks and line, a rain slicker. Keep what a 1800,s fur trapper would have carried . You don’t need nails to build a shelter. You tie it together with strips of elm bark. Anything you can cut with a drywall saw the hatchet will cut faster. Keep sharpening tools. and a few candles. First aid supplies. Go to the veterinary isle at the feed store get some blood stop powder and stretchy wrap bandages. You could dress a gunshot wound with just those two items. the 1800,s guys used flintlock rifles. and made their own flints. They took their lead and made a box out of it. the box was filled with enough powder to fire the amount of bulletts the lead would make. They sealed the lead lid on the box with a hot iron. That kept the powder dry. And they could cashe it and not have to carry a lot of lead & powder. You will need to periodically boil the steel trap. and you need to have wax on top of the boiling water so it will coat the trap when you remove it. the wax seals the rusty metal smell and lubricates and keeps the trap from rusting farther. I think many of those reinactor guys will do ok when SHTF . don’t forget sharpening tools and a spare knife, cashe some salt because that’s a necessity.

        • I’ve got I nice camp axe(Plumb) and an Eastwing hatchet and I’d leave them both home and take only my bushcraft knives for “on the road” I use a ‘KNIVSMED/SIRUMENG AS’knife(9 inch blade) to baton anything I need around my temporary camp. Ditch the hatchets and the axes! Too much weight. You’re better off going as light as you can. Keep fire starter/material a couple of bic lighters, compass, whistle and small tactical flash light. And some kind of sleep system. And of course something to get you/provide clean water. You don’t need hammer and nails, that’s what your paracord/bank line is for. And if I may add (this is just me), I’ve got a hickory walking stick and I wouldn’t take off without it.

          • i like a walking stick, you can keep an animal away with it if needed, especially the two legged kind.

        • Sharpening trick.

          Open the window of a car to a comfy height, use the ground edge to sharpen your knife. The steeper the angle the finer they ground the glass so the finer it will hone the blade.

          The ground glass edge is a bit fine for a really dull knife, but it’s perfect for bringing a good blade to shaving sharp.

          It’s a great way to pass a few minutes while the wife is in the store.

      10. Social Justice Warrior Must-Have Bug-Out Items:

        !) Butt plug: Don’t go for the cheap ones: get a custom-designed one from a San Francisco hipster.
        2) A solar-powered vibrator: The Daisy PowerMAX does the trick and doesn’t squander on the solar panels.
        3) Tom of Finland Coloring Book: Because you need something to do when you bug out.
        4) Obama’s Tales from My Father. A little useless nighttime reading to help you sleep.
        5) Mao’s Little Red Book: You will need something to wipe your butt.
        6) Seal Team Six MegaViscous Gentleman’s Happy Cream.
        7) Bright Pink Kanken ruck sack from Sweden.
        8) Yoga pants
        9) Yoga mat
        10) Anti-rape underwear because you will be a sitting duck in the shtf.

        • LOL Frank –

          should add the DVD – ZERO DARK THIRTY – “the osama bin laden event that never happened”

          • So true! That thing was faker than a bible thumper on the TV.

            The only good thing was the opportunity to look at Jess Chastein in all her hotness for an hour and half.

          • Sound track was awesome though ! 🙂

        • Frank Thoughts, ROTFLMAO! Damn good one!

        • Don’t forget the Participation Trophy Music Box with Magic Glow Nite Lite.

      11. Great article.

      12. WD-40, vise grips, and some duct tape. Any man worth his salt can do half the household chores with just those three things.

        -Walt Kowalski

      13. i have a triple XL field jacket with liner. they got giant pockets, so hold my flashlight, 550 cord, folding gerber knife, gerber multi-tool, firestarter, napkins or toilet paper and electrical tape(my first-aid kit), tourniquet, fleece hat, gloves, scarf, OBD2 diagnostic scanner, and i never go ANYwhere without it….and it can “hide ” things under it, and when you go to the theatre, disneyland, mall….who’s going to search you?….there’s even room for personal protection items.

        • also, don’t forget cel phone car charger and most important phone numbers in your WALLET….lose that phone, and you are going to have a very bad day.

          • BCOD –

            This article specifies “bug out bag” – in a SHTF scenario, I would highly advise not packing a cell phone into their belongings.

            Cell Phone = Tracker/Beacon

            In Prepper terms – pull battery(if applicable) and discard or leave it far behind your presence.

            Saftey First in SHTF scenario – #1 Icognito ツ

          • BCOD: you are correct. Without a paper record of those phone numbers (and addresses) if there were an EMP or protracted power outage many people would be up shit creek.

            Thanks for the reminder! I will write down my contact list now and print out several copies to keep at home, in safe, in files, in purse 🙂

            • thank you, phil!

      14. I suggest that anyone desiring to use the bug out bag protocol do this: Tailor the bag to fit what YOU think you will/might need in a survival/recovery situation, based on the knowledge you have, and knowledge you seek, based on your own suspicions that you may not have all the bases covered. Be well read, and seek other methods, if you think you should. Stop worrying, just be curious, and relax. Nobody get out of here alive anyway. Be happy. After a while, it won’t matter if you were happy or anxious.

        • it also matters WHERE you’re going… get you home, or are you not going home ever again? that would require two very different bags…and how FAR from home? i have several bugout/gethome bags….each with very different things in them.

      15. I have them in my pocket but am into computers so have to service them and more. is the best torch. is the cheapest and can do a normal flame – you can get several but you get what you pay for (I’ve seen them for half).
        (and I have a box of every kind of bit)
        For the regular size, these are flat so store better – let there be light. I also have a Haverhills 10x magnifying glass and various 3.0+ diopter “reading glasses” for close work.
        You can get 100 single edge razor blades for cheap and keep a few in your wallet, as well as an X-ACTO (in cling tape) – Tape measure 1. – alternate with metric but no lock

      16. I don’t have a cell phone and I rarely have a bad day.

        • Tell you what Jeremiah you can keep your erector set tools if you like your erector set tools and I’ll just fill in the gap with a leatherman and the remaining space with food and a roll of crapping paper.

          • And a flask 🙂

        • Nothing wrong with a cell phone. One saved my life. I was sick and called 911 while having convulsions.

          You don’t need a fancy phone. Just a basic one with minutes. They are small and portable. Could be the one tool that saves your old butt!

          • i wouldn’t have a business to make money to pay for this shit without a cel phone….and i show MYSELF a pretty good time too.

        • Did you know that by law cell phones must be able to dial 911.
          Even when NO service activation. So any old newer cell phone and car charger can be kept in glove box to dial 911 in road side accident. Even if you don’t have cell service on that phone.

          But You should ALWAYS have an active phone ANYTIME you leave house.
          ***If a Police pulls you over IMMEDIATELY dial family or friend and let them know where you are, what agency pulled you over, name of officer if possible. Americans are being disappeared by law enforcement agencies. This is FACT. I’ve seen it.

          Here is how it works:
          -Police pull you over for minor supposed Infraction.
          -Police ask you to Step out of car.
          -Police arrest you on some made up excuse. ****No loved ones know where you are.
          -You are transported to Regional jail by Police.
          -You are not listed on their jail roster by your name. They list you as “John Doe”.
          -The jail does this so as you can not be found when family calls looking for you.
          Also because this is a Regional facility, you will not be listed in any Local jails. (Another Separate Incident: When I was teenager My brother wanted to fish in Mexico. Similar to how Mexico moves prisoners around. Mexico moved our group around 4 times in three days and separated us to different jails. I don’t fish, hunt, go to Mexico any more. Never again. But at least they didn’t kill us.)
          -In the USA Regional Facility Jail You are Never allowed a Phone call. Never allowed bail. Never allowed Lawyer.
          -The jail gets health, medical info, financial info from you. The jail will confiscate your finances. But that is just beginning.
          -The food in the USA jail is drugged with vet animal tranqualizers.
          -After you are knocked out, you are taken to back. There your human vital organs are removed for sale on the black market. Your remains are disposed of in the nearby animal control ovens used for disposal of animals.


          The jailers have a perfect midwest english accent. But they speak eastern european language amongst themselves. Check? Russian? I did not recognize.
          The jail also filters through many many illegal aliens. Columbians?. Are they building army within USA with these? Looked like it to me.

          That is all I know.

          But I do know that many military friends have gone missing. I know that many high profile Patriots have gone missing or supposedly committed suicide.

          I know at a gun show this guy had two 55 gallon barrels full of Quality small pocket knives and multi tools. Various makes, used, lightly used, was selling good knives cheap. I asked him where they came from. He said from a state auction.

          I ask you. Where are the People that had those knives, multi tools????
          I know. Watch Holocaust film and see how the Nazi collected personal goods from camp victims and then sold them.

          When pulled over by Police ALWAYS make contact with family. Do not leave your vehicle until you do. Do not hang up phone even when told to.
          You need a cell phone so you don’t go Missing, finances harvested, human organs harvested, Murdered, by Police-Jailers-Judges CRIMINAL enterprise.

          This is ALL FACT. Happening in America. But people do not want to accept reality. I was there. The US Jailers MURDERED innocent helpless Americans.

          • None of this should be considered as basic bug out needs…
            I have said before, this “gnome de plume” “jeremiah johns stoned” is a moron. and the absolute worst writer out there.
            The boy is on crack…

          • you sir, are full of shit…

      17. I don’t have a cell phone and I rarely have a bad day.

        • You made my day OG with that post.

      18. Speaking of vise grips, don’t forget the pocket pussy and the K-Y.

      19. No problem with such tools in a car or at a BoL. Tough for me to carry all this stuff in a BoB. If I were in a city I might carry bolt cutters to get through locks or fences. Some of these are duplicated with a LeatherMan. I prefer Bahco or other gardening pocket saws to a wallboard saw, but there are other ways to cut or chop firewood.

      20. A lot of that stuff is useless dead weight. Carry a good multi-tool (can opener, back up blade, and screw drivers all in one). Carry a small hatchet which doubles as a hammer. Carry a durable long knife like a Becker BK9. I also carry Glock Entrenching tool in winter. I can dig, smash, build, and cut through a lot of stuff with those tools. If I need to measure something 12 ft long, I can pace it off or use a piece of paracord as a measuring device (getting shelter parts close to same size). The only battery operated equipment I carry is a hands free night vision monocular (navigation at night), LED headlamps, and a walkie talkie with NOAA channels. I also have a small solar panel to keep those devices running.

      21. I have everything except the micro tool set and a small butane / propane torch. I will probably get both. You never know when something needs to be fixed. Dishwasher was making bad noises and it looks like I need a special star driver to disassemble the internal parts necessary to clean out any debris. What is the cost of a star driver versus a repairman? I looked up Utube videos on how to repair my dishwasher, how to clean the screen. Other Utubes on how to fix a slow drain and that saved me the cost of plumber coming to my house!

        I love tools. The worst time is when you need a special small tool and you don’t have it! The great thing about these types of tools is they are cheap and, for now, readily available.

      22. If I could have only one tool for survival it would be an eswing rigging axe. It’s a carpenters hammer and axe with a steel handle . You can skin and quarter game and chop down trees with it. Need file for sharpening? You can use it as a can opener if you know how. It’s steel handle lasts forever. With a piece of flint a fire started. And not a terrible shovel?

      23. If you’re a youngster or otherwise just starting to prep, you cannot go wrong just putting your limited funds into quality tools from yard and estate sales, while you work on your schooling or whatever.

        • Smokey as I was reading these comments I was wondering if anyone was going to mention these types of sales. This is a good place for anyone to build up their supplies, farm or home auctions, or yard or estate sales as you mentioned. Very often you can buy a whole box of tools that will sell for less than the price of one wrench at a hardware store, and many of these tools are old brand name tools that were made in the USA. And as mentioned by others, I always wear a Leatherman Super Tool on my belt and have for 30 years, It has a saw as well as both types of screwdrivers and a can opener and many other tools that may be needed, and it has seen a lot of hard use and it is still in good condition. You do get what you pay for. Trekker Out.

      24. OK,a good article geared towards prepping,but,NO SPEEDY STITCHER?!

        Seriously folks,trust me,get a speedy stitcher,and,as it is Warchild used and improved,how can you go wrong,just get one,12 bucks on the big e!

        • Uh what is the big E? I like sewing by the way.

          • Philo,big e is e bay.The stitcher will work well in the field for tent/pack repairs ect. and with handle makes stitching easy on tougher garments with thicker/waxed thread,would need a bucket sized thimble to match it!A lot of videos on utube,at least give it a gander.

            • WD: ahhhh okay! By the way, I am a big fan of EBay and Craigslist and yard sales! Sewing through thick material, by hand, can be very painful so having something that can do basic repairs is right up my alley, for sure! I love watching Utube vids to learn how to do something new as well. Anything that I want to learn how to do or how to fix or how to repair or how to use the first thing I do now is search for it on Utube.

        • it’s on my list now!

      25. Sigh,was so distraught about lack of speedy stitcher fucked up,meant approved/not improved,the tool works great the way it is!

        • WD you’ve been out whoreing around, ain’t you. You’ve been on another site. Trekker Out

          • MT,have always been a site slut!I hit besides here USCrow/Lew Rockwell/Zero Hedge/Mason-Dixon Tac/Starve The Monkeys?Western Rifle Shooters,hell a lot more also.I have too much time on me hands as work slow at the moment!Yep,I am a whore(and proud of it!).

      26. if i got all this sh*t in my truck, i will be just fine. apologies if you find something on there twice, i haven’t updated it since adding a bunch of stuff.

        oil and coolant
        phone and charger and phone numbers on paper with shipping tape on both sides to protect against sweating
        plates/ eating utensils…(mess kit)
        bivy cover/sleep syst………….. sleeping bag good for 0*…-30 degree
        military sleep systems can be had for around 75$
        fire starter
        mattress pad/cot/bed……..pillows
        cooking oil
        granola bars
        coats/cold weather bag w/hats scarfs gloves longjohns, shemagh
        550 cord
        dutch oven
        firstaid book
        extra glasses
        jumper cables and brillo pad(fire starter)
        sawyer mini filter
        magnifying glass
        tool bag
        digging bar
        tow strap and chain
        jogging stroller

      27. I can make a hammer out of a rock and a tree limb, with some twine or para-cord. In my universe, every problem can be solved with a bigger hammer. (Just kidding).

        One tool (that is not absolutely necessary, but very handy to have) is a “roofing hammer”. It looks like a hatchet, with a hammer head opposite the blade, and there is a notch for pulling nails. This tool can be used as a hatchet most of the time, but can double as a hammer when needed. Buy the best roofing hammer you can find– you will thank yourself later… I like the idea of carrying some nails, as long as you don’t get crazy with it as they are heavy. Nails have multiple uses– use your imagination…

        I think everyone already knows what to carry in their BOB/backpack/car– and these items will be personalized to match the owner’s needs.

      28. Sewing needles take up almost no space and are virtually weightless. A good foldable scissor in leather pouch is also small and lightweight. These can be used for medical as well as practical. Gauze and tape and Neosporin plus a thermometer and anti-fever herbs or drugs in a pouch is all I need when on the go. I do take para chord, dental floss, thread, and a navy seal knife. A small mirror and a comb in a light leather protector. Metal cup and flint to start fire plus spoon and fork that is foldable. A sleeping bag, backpack, tarp, poncho and clothing. If I had some type of protection, I would include it. Other than possibly an all metal hatchet on my belt, under the poncho, I travel light. Take some bug repellent, whether herbal or other. If cold, perhaps a flask of spirits and some pain meds. Perhaps some medicinal herbs for common diseases like malaria.

        I would not take all those tools like hammer, nails, screw drivers, etc., unless I was putting together a tool box to take in the car or for a short walking distance. If it was for the car, I might include an electric saw and portable generator, battery run tools, hand saw, nails, screws, etc., etc. A foldable bike and cart are nice if you have a vehicle with a place say on the roof or back. All depends on the situation. Got to be flexible.

        I like my umbrella with flashlight. It has multiple uses from deflecting the sun, rain and wind, to aiding in creating a temporary shelter. It is designed to withstand wind up to 30mph but will actually stand up to more. The flashlight can keep you from getting run over when walking near traffic. Also helps to be seen by bus driver in dark rainy weather. White is better to stay cool. Black absorbs heat from the sun. So colors of clothing vary accordingly from winter to summer.


        • Forgot to mention, water. Got that covered first and foremost. Canteen of water attached to belt or backpack. Life straw in bag/backpack. Also carry water filtration bucket in car or van for large jobs filtering pond water. Take water purification shock or other. Water is the ultimate survival necessity, dwarfed only by breathable air. I have laughed about those gas masks, but, when toxic fumes are present, including smoke, those masks could be an important consideration. Extreme whether is the next most important factor to take into account. Carrying snow chains in your trunk at all times; even if you live in warm whether locations, because you never know if you will be traveling to another area in your car, van, or RV.


      29. ever tried eating something from a can thats been heated directly on a heat source?
        all cans have a thick coating of plastic on the inside to stop the foodstuffs from attacking the steel.
        Now there’s a gourmet meal. Beans and polyethylene! mmmm!

      30. Bicycle is VERY Important Survival Tool.

        Range Increase –Bicycle multiplies your Range 7-10 times over walking. Just an educated guess.
        Gas Not Required–Bicycle does not need Gasoline.
        Reliable –Bicycle is easy to repair. EMP proof.
        Stealth –Bicycle is Quite.
        Egress –Bicycle can squeeze between jammed up traffic. Sidewalks open.
        Traffic will TRAP you in a city. Normal rush hour is jammed. Imagine MILLIONS trying to leave city during National Emergency.
        Evasion –Bicycle can be easily hidden. Bikes can go where a gas vehicle can not fit. Between buildings, between trees, ride around obstacles-debris.
        Hauling gear –I have ridden bike with over 125 LBS on bike with tires aired to max. Was not fun, but much easier than humping 125 LBS pack. Use racks to get weight down as low as possible.
        Useful Cart –Third world people and homeless often haul huge loads balanced on a bicycle and then push bike along while walking alongside. There are also bicycle trailers.

        Tips from Experience:
        o Get a quality bike. o Ride it weekly to remain conditioned. o Have spare tubes and tube repair kit. o Keep chain oiled up and clean. o Get racks to haul your gear.
        o Actually ride several times with your planned kit. o Experiment to see how far you can travel in given time frame. o Select three routes out of city to have alternate plans. o Start riding NOW. Before you need to. Keeps you conditioned. Easier on body than running. Cures many joint issues because muscle is built up while riding, that supports ankles knees, etc. Physically challenged older people can ride bike easier than jogging. o Be careful. Cars with cell phone talking drivers will KILL you.
        o Wear gloves always. Helmet good idea and required in some communist municipalities-states in USA. I have actually been stopped by cops several times while riding. Demanded I get helmet, threatened to ticket me. “Nanny state never sleeps.”

        Bicycle more important than junk listed in this article. Other posters item list more useful too. But who can carry all that stuff some people listed? Might be able to third world bike as cart style.

        note: gerber multi tool was suggested. No. Those are brittle and break. All my Gerbers have broken tools, file, screw drivers, etc. Other Brands are better in my experience.

        • agreed on the bikes for ALL the reasons listed. a jogging stroller can be had cheap, and you can carry over 100 pounds on it…..and don’t forget the slime. where i live you won’t ride 10 miles without a flat tire…i will disagree with you on the gerber, i have found them very durable, and they are only for “emergency repairs”…there are BETTER tools for each thing that it can do.

      31. Why is this stuff for “Bugging Out”? To where? People need to get this bugging out shit out of their heads. Why are people in such a hurry to leave their homes, just to become a refugee?

        A “Get Home” bag makes much more sense than a Bugout Bag.

        • SubSurv,
          In many survival situations evacuation is the only answer. Assuming you live in the path of a forest fire, hurricane, or impending war.

          I’m with you that bugging out is a last resort. Some of my most valuable preps are a thousand pounds of tools and raw material. I really don’t want to leave that stuff behind, but to take them would require a bug out moving van.

          The term “bug out bag” is synonymous with a get home bag.

          An interesting fact about people on the plane that was landed in the Hudson by Sully Sullenberger, everyone who tried to take their carry on bags with them lost their stuff. And everyone who walked away from their bags got them back.

      32. Add to BOB either a money belt or a inside the waistband wallet with a $100 in cash and photo quality copies of your current drivers license and health insurance card, I also keep a laminated card with the last four digits of every credit card and the associated emergency number to report it lost or stolen. If you must bug out, put on the belt or wallet, so those goodies mentioned above are hidden.

        When I travel I wear a hidden wallet and move at least one credit card to it as well. My neighbor had his pocket picked while traveling outside the US, and it nearly ruined his vacation.

        • i carry 3 one ounce gold coins in my truck when i go out of town. if shtf, i MAY be able to use those to get back home.

          • BCoD,
            Sounds like a sound investment to me. Very easy to hide. Plus it’s enough to buy airfare or a couple days meals and hotel.

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