Emergency Gear

TacPack Giveaway

TacPack is Giving Away Three AR-15 Rifles!

TacPack is a monthly Tactical/EDC subscription box company. Our Live Fire Gear products have been featured in numerous TacPack boxes. Their subscription box plan costs $49.95/month and features a ton of awesome tactical and EDC products. TacPack is giving YOU the opportunity to win one of three AR-15 Rifles from Sons of Liberty Gun Works ($1,050 Value Each). You could also win a plate carrier with plates and soft armor from Trenton Tactical. All you have to do is signup through this link with your name and email address.

Live Fire Gear has some VERY big announcements coming up. We are growing rapidly and our products are being sold in more stores every day. We appreciate every single customer who has helped us get to this point. A few months back we introduced a new color for our 550 FireCord – Thin Blue Line. To show our appreciation to Law Enforcement Officers throughout this wonderful country of ours, we are donating 10% of all Thin Blue Line sales to Concerns of Police Officers (C.O.P.S.) C.O.P.S. provides resources to help families and co-workers of fallen Police Officers rebuild their shattered lives. Thank you for your continued support.

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Paracord Knots: The ULTIMATE Resource On Flawless Paracord Creations

Have you gotten started in paracord weaving projects and need more paracord knots to make your creations a bit more elegant, or maybe you’re just bored? Well either way we have compiled the most popular paracord creations to help you make some outstanding pieces!

Paracord weaving is something that continues to grow in popularity. Ever since Bear Grylls burst onto the scene with his paracord bracelet, people have made paracord designs the same way they used to make duct tape wallets and purses.

And we’ve put this article together for you so that you don’t have to scour the web for the most epic paracord knots to add to your bracelets, necklaces, or dog collars (I’m sure someone’s done it).

Why Paracord And Not Duct Tape

Well first of all it would be a lot more difficult to make outstanding multicolored 3D shapes with flat pieces of tape. Paracord lends itself to making different shapes much easier and with the added bonus of being a useful accessory.

Unlike duct tape, you can use these paracord creations in life threatening conditions. Like if you’re unfortunate enough to get stranded in the wild without many resources, having this handy cordage can make a huge difference.

Whether it’s using the cord to put a shelter together or make a trap to get some food you’ll not be sorry you decided to use paracord to make some nifty projects instead of sticky tape!

And if you’ve been an active reader of our site for any amount of time you know that we’re all about giving our readers as many ways to be prepared for anything as possible. And with awesome paracord projects like belts, bracelets, and necklaces, adding these extra knots to them is simple and will give you a little more cordage to work with if you need it.

It’s always better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it, right?

Benefits Of Paracord Weaving

Saves Money

First of all this stuff is incredibly cheap, and can be used to make house hold items for a fraction of what they would cost in stores. If you buy a leather belt from a retail shop all you have is a piece of “leather” and a buckle. Whereas if you made this belt yourself you’re looking at a total cost of around $2 for all the materials. But the choice is up to you.

Keeps Your Mind Sharp

With all of the amazing knots out there for different paracord masterpieces it’s hard to imagine learning them all, but the process of learning and practicing new skills will help improve problem solving and keep your mind sharp. If you’re someone who’s later on in life and looking for a new hobby that will help to keep them mentally engaged, then this is the skill to practice!

Improved Motor Skills

We’re not talking about fixing up a Bronco motor skills, but the skills required to handle small objects with precision and accuracy. Weaving paracord and making specialty knots is a practice that will improve this area of your life, and you’ll see immediate returns within a few weeks.

What You’ll Need To Handle These Knots

You can use a paracord jig if you want to, we’ve done articles that include how to make one yourself in a short afternoon, or you can purchase a ready made one here. We’re not going to be making bracelets with this jig like in the other article, however, you’ll want something to hold the cord steady as you work with it.

Paracord

And while it does work to just drive a nail into the wall or floor to hold the cord, I doubt that it would be very visually appealing to have random nails stuck in the walls and floors. Or maybe that’s just me…

Tips To Make Weaving Easier

Our buddies over at Survival Mastery have a post that addresses the topic of what not to do when you’re starting on your paracord journey. But since you’re not starting on this journey, this is merely a refresher course, you can just breeze through these.

And if some of them happen to help you then you’re welcome 😉

Don’t Buy Paracord In Small Batches

The goal of this hobby is to keep the budget as minimal as possible, and the one way to destroy that is to only buy the amount of paracord you need. If you know that this is a hobby you’re going to really dive into then go ahead and get a decent amount of paracord.

Improper Fusion Of Paracord

Nothing will spoil your awesome paracord design like a weird looking bulge from shady paracord fusion. When you fuse two cords together it’s a fantastic opportunity to add an extra pop of color, so don’t mess it up with shoty paracord fusing.

Take the time to improve your basic skills so that you’ll be able to move through these knots and  projects with the greatest ease!

Paracord

Melting The Ends, Less Is More

You know that cheap yellow nylon rope you can buy at Walmart right, and how the melted ends of this rope look like a thick flat club? Well that’s not at all what your paracord needs to look like after you’ve cut it and melted it!

You’ll quickly learn that less is more when it comes to melting the ends of the paracord.

And you do need to melt the ends to make sure that it doesn’t come unraveled after you’ve cut it, because it most certainly will.

Most Amazing Paracord Knots

This extensive list of knots and braids are a compilation of amazing resources from around the web like fusion knots, paracord guild, and survival life. It’s a bit difficult to go back and forth between sites to find the one knot you’re looking for, so we’ve taken that step out and put them on this page just for you!

Please enjoy!

Ashley’s Flower Knot

Cliford W. Ashley, author and illustrator of the Ashley Book Of Knots (ABOK), created many original knots alongside the multitude of historical knots he presented. One of those original knots is shown on page 391 and referenced as #2445 in the Ashley Book Of Knots.

A magnificent design, ABOK #2445 is effectively a simple modification of the flower knot. Still many refrain from tying it, on account of Ashley’s illustration shows all except how to hold and tie the knot in hand. As a nod to Ashley and the knot he created, this video shows how to tie the knot while in hand.

Ashoka Chakra Knot

The Ashoka Chakra Knot is a fusion knot based upon the “Wheel of Law” edict depicted on the pillars of King Ashoka (an ancient emperor from India).

The Basket Weave Knot

The basket weave knot is deceivingly similar to the prosperity knot, with two major exceptions, it’s easier to tie and adjust. Our hope is that you’ll find the knot an elegant addition to a necklace, bracelet, or any other item where a decorative flat knot might be appropriate.

Celtic Heart Knot

The Big Celtic Heart Knot is a video instruction in response to calls for a larger Celtic Heart Knot. Just as attractive as the original design (only bigger), the knot makes an excellent centerpiece to a necklace given to someone you love. Video production by J.D. Lenzen of Tying It All Together.

Bloody Knuckle Knot

The Bloody Knuckle Knot is what happens when you fuse a row of half hitches with the Blood Knot. The hitches make knuckles and the Blood Knot (or Barrel Knot) pulls the tie together, resulting in an unusual but attractive design.

The blood knot was so named on account of the fact that it was historically tied in to the cat of nine tails floggers.

The Bumblebee Knot

The Bumblebee Knot (ABOK) is listed on page 373 of The Ashley Book of Knots. But, regretfully, only a line drawing is provided for instruction, with no over-under instructions included. The following video provides over- under instructions, with the knot tied in hand. Video production by JD of Tying It All Together.

Celtic Tree Of Life Knot

The Celtic tree of life symbolizes strength, longevity, and wisdom. It further marks the connection between earth, the spirit and the universe. Often portrayed in illustration, it’s rarely if ever shown represented in rope…until now.

Although the Celts are known as people who predominantly populated the British Isles. Their customs, beliefs, and religions were shared by people throughout the 1st millennium BC Europe.

Chinese Clover Leaf Knot

Effectively a miniature version of the Pan Chang Knot, it’s cloverleaf pattern is as much a symbol of good luck in China, as it is in the west.

Cloud Knot

The Cloud Knot branches off the Double Coin Knot in an innovative and seldom realized way. In short, the knot is created via a weaving technique that can be applied to a variety of knots, making them appear more elaborate and decorative.

Cross Knot

The two knots you’re about to see are the Cross Knot and the Ladder Wrap. For most, these two knots couldn’t be more different. Still, in truth they’re more similar than they may at first appear. The only difference in the two knots is the number of vertical wraps that traverse the horizontal bight.

Diamond Ring Knot

The Diamond Ring Knot is the fusion of an Overhand Knot and a tying technique called circling. Surveyed separately these two (knot) components might not inspire much interest. But together they inspire so much more, as the following video hopefully shows.

Double Celtic Medallion Knot

The Double Celtic Knot Medallion can be made as a gift for a loved one or for a dear friend. Now on this day, Valentine’s Day (here in the U.S.), tying it together share how to make that gift…with you. Best to you all, and keep tying!

Paracord Knots: The ULTIMATE Resource On Flawless Paracord Creations was written by SurviveTheWild.net and can be viewed here:

http://www.survivethewild.net/paracord-knots-ultimate-resource-flawless-paracord-creations/

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C.U.M.A. Protector in Knives Illustrated Magazine

C.U.M.A. Protector Knife Featured in Knives Illustrated

We are proud to announce our C.U.M.A. Protector Knife designed by Waysun Johnny Tsai, in conjunction with DayOne Gear, has been featured in the November 2016 issue of Knives Illustrated. This centerfold article discusses how the C.U.M.A. Protector knife is a “Self-Defense Powerhouse.”  Tops Knives manufactured this knife with a 1095 high carbon steel blade that has been black powder coated and heat treated to 56-58 Rockwell. The C.U.M.A. Protector features a glass breaker, seat belt cutter and a functional edge to assist with weapon retention. This knife was specifically made with Police and Fire personnel in mind, but its self-defense capabilities appeals to anyone looking to protect themselves.

To celebrate this achievement we are offering 35% off the C.U.M.A. Protector Knife by using promo code KNIVESILST.  Make sure you support Knives Illustrated and pick up your November 2016 copy!

C.U.M.A. Protector in Knives Illustrated Magazine
C.U.M.A. Protector in Knives Illustrated Magazine
C.U.M.A. Protector in Knives Illustrated Magazine
C.U.M.A. Protector in Knives Illustrated Magazine
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Putting Together Your EDC Bag

Putting Together Your EDC Bag

Hopefully by now you have gone out and bought yourself an EDC bag.  If not, you should backtrack to my previous post, “What is an EDC bag and why should I have one” before continuing on.  At this point it is time to start getting all of your gear together and organizing it.  Yes this sounds like it can be a daunting task especially when trying to figure out which items you really need and which ones should be grouped together.  This article isn’t about keeping a few items that can fit into your pocket such as a knife, a few band aids and a cell phone – it’s about having all of the “essentials” on hand so that you are fully prepared for any situation that might arise.  If you really think a pocket sized kit is all you will need then I hope the only thing that happens is you fall off your bike because you were looking back at a hot chick and scraped your knee.

When you look at the list of items below I know you will probably think to yourself, “how am I supposed to put all this in my EDC bag ?”.  The amount of stuff you can carry will depend on the bag that you purchased, however, the main idea here is to still keep everything as compact as possible.  Many of these items are small and hardly take any room.  There may be some things that you will find you may not need while other items may be available in smaller sizes or formats that can do the same job just as effectively.

To help simplify things we will start by breaking everything down into categories.  Remember that we’re only trying to stock the bare necessities here, not create a complete survival bag.  The items I’ve listed below are just general suggestions.  You will need to determine exactly what you think will be needed to accommodate your bag.

Clothing and Apparel:Hiking Boots

You should keep a complete spare change of clothing in your bag as keeping yourself dry is very important.  Modify the type of items listed here to suit your location and and environment.

  • Pair of underwear and socks (add long-johns if you live in a colder climate)
  • Pair of jeans or pants made of high strength material
  • Pair of gloves and hat or bandana
  • T-shirt and sweater
  • Rain poncho
  • Dust mask
  • Add anything else that you would need for your location and climate but remember to keep everything as compact as possible.


Food and Water:Water

Having clean drinkable water should be your top priority with food following right behind.  If possible, get yourself a water bottle that has a filter built into it so in the case that you need to collect water from a nearby river or stream it will filter out most of the harmful bacteria.  Remember though, it’s always your safest bet to boil the water before you drink it regardless of where you found it.

  • Water bottle, canteen or survival straw with built in water filter (always keep it pre-filled with fresh clean water)
  • Water purification tablets
  • A few MRE’s (ready to eat meals)
  • A few packages of oatmeal, granola bars or high energy protein bars
  • Mixed dried fruit and nuts
  • Hard candies
  • P-38 can opener (in case you come across some cans of food along the way)


First Aid & Medical:First Aid Kit

A first aid kit is another critical component to your EDC bag.  While a pocket sized kit could do the trick you should keep in mind that it’s always better to put together your own kit rather than buying one that’s pre-made because not one kit that you purchase will be tailored to your exact medical needs.  If you choose to build your own kit you should know that many of these items can be found at the dollar store for a fraction of the cost.  Below are some standard items that you should include in your kit if you decide to put it together yourself.  Remove or add items to suit your needs.

  • Band aids – different sizes
  • Butterfly band aids
  • Gauze pads
  • Arm wrap (in case of a sprain or fracture)
  • Medical tape
  • Rubbing alcohol (to sterilize)
  • Peroxide (to disinfect the wound)
  • Polysporin (to help heal wounds and infections)
  • Puffers, Epee Pen, etc..
  • Suture kit
  • Any prescription and non-prescription medication you may require
  • Quick Clot or cayenne pepper (cayenne pepper will thicken the blood and help slow or stop the bleeding)
  • Tweezers
  • First aid manual


Navigation, Signaling and Lighting:Compass and Map

Regardless of where you live you should add a map of your local area into your pack in case you need to take a different unfamiliar route in order to get home or to a safer place.

  • A quality map compass
  • Map of local area and state/province
  • Whistle
  • Signal mirror
  • Glow sticks
  • LED flashlight or headlamp and extra batteries (store batteries separately)
  • Cell phone (preferably a smartphone)


Fire and Heat:Fire and Heat

Aside from having clean drinkable water at the top of your list, keeping yourself warm and dry is also extremely important and being able to make a fire is extremely important.  Hypothermia can set in faster than you think so keep this in consideration when adding any of these items to your bag.  You will want to be able to make a fire in any type of weather so I personally would go with a magnesium fire starter.

  • Waterproof strike anywhere matches, Windproof lighter, Magnesium fire starter or flint and steel
  • Hand and foot warmers (if you live in a colder area)
  • Emergency candles
  • Space blanket (can also be used to create a shelter)

 

Shelter:Shelter

You may come across a time or place where you will need to have the cover of shelter perhaps to ride out the night or to protect yourself from the elements.  Carrying an actual tent or other shelter with you wouldn’t make sense as they would be too bulky and wouldn’t fit in your EDC bag anyway.  Instead, you will probably have to improvise and make one out of available materials.  Here are a few items that can help you to make one:

  • Small tarp (can be used as a wall or roof for your shelter)
  • Large black garbage bags
  • Rain poncho
  • Paracord (to tie and hold together your shelter)


Protection:Fixed Blade Buck Knife

People do crazy things when under pressure and stress, especially during the after affects of a severe natural disaster or when society has broken down.  Besides yourself, everyone else will be in full survival mode and being able to protect yourself will be crucial.  Here are a few items that you should consider putting in your EDC bag:

  • Pepper or bear spray
  • Pocket knife (preferably a quality knife with a fixed blade)
  • Hand gun with spare bullets
  • Taser gun


Tools and other misc items:Gerber Suspension

Aside from some of the items above, here are a few more which you will want to have on hand and will find to be very useful in many scenarios.

  • 50 feet of 550lb paracord
  • Pen and pad of paper
  • Adjustable wrench (to turn off gas valves, tons of other uses)
  • Multi-tool
  • Cable ties
  • Small mini screw driver with bits (to fix eye glasses or other small items)
  • Small hose (you might have to siphon gas) – has many other uses
  • Roll of quarters (for pay phones) and at least $100 – $200 in small bills (you never know when you’ll need to make an emergency purchase or have to buy your way out of trouble

Lastly, you will need to make sure that all of your supplies stay dry.  I previously wrote an article on different ways to “waterproof your backpack” and it’s contents.  Although I used backpacks as an example you can still use the same ideas for your EDC bag.  Click here to read it.

Best of luck with building your EDC bag and let us know what you put in yours in the comments below!

This article was written by INCH Survival and can be viewed here:

http://inchsurvival.com/blog/putting-together-your-edc-bag/

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Creating an At-Work Emergency Bag

Creating an At-Work Emergency Bag

Like many other preppers all over the world I find myself in daily situations where I feel less than fully prepared. While you can never be ready for everything, and yes this includes when you are hunkered down in your bunker with the Fort Knox of dried foods and more guns and ammo than the Israeli army, there are some things that we can do to help minimize this. One of the biggest holes in my preparedness plan is work. Like almost everyone else I spend the majority of my time at work, specifically a school. While the school does have standard emergency provisions such as emergency blankets, medical supplies and enough salvageable materials and resources to at the very least, coupled with my EDC (everyday carry), put me in a very good position to head home to re-evaluate the situation. However, it could be better. As preppers we also have a moral responsibility to aid others when we can. Having an emergency bag, or preferably several, at work could make the difference for not only you but for the unprepared as well.

So what would this emergency bag or kit contain? In this article we will look at several points of consideration and areas that will need to be explored for you to make your own at work emergency bag. This is by no means a how to guide or my own personal opinion, more an aid in helping you, the reader, evaluate and create your own kit specifically tailored to your situation and the legal requirements and regulations in your area.

Some Big Questions

The first thing to ask yourself is what is the purpose of your kit? Is its purpose to get you to a specific place? To manage the immediate situation? Or to equip you and your co-workers with the means of effecting self rescue. If you are looking to get to a specific place you will be needing something lightweight and comfortable to wear even if you have sustained injury. If you are staying put you will be more concerned with medical supplies and provisions. Also, you will require materials and ways to secure your surrounding area. I.e clearing debris and checking for immediate threats like water, gas and electrical lines. If self rescue is your goal then a means of reaching help quickly and safely will be your main points of concern.

Mini bolt cutters can be carried easily and cut though locks or metal in an emergency.

Mini bolt cutters can be carried easily and cut through locks or metal in an emergency.

The next big question is how many people will be in your group and how many kits will you have? While safety in numbers and the additional manpower can be a big advantage, will everyone share your point of view or plan for survival? Will you have a set hierarchy or chain of command in place if an emergency does require it? An emergency situation is only made worse with the chaos of panic. Looking into or addressing these situations now will directly affect your gear and plan of action.

Let’s say you will go it alone or with a very small group. This will mean you will need gear that is lightweight with more weight and space being taken up by necessities such as water or medical supplies. On the other hand, if you go with a larger group you will be able to transport more gear and will have more options for what you can do in your situation. For example, you could carry a range of tools that could help you bypass obstacles easier, such as a crowbar or bolt cutters. You may also have more chance of people having access to a functioning vehicle or medical/emergency training.

Finally, and in many ways the most important question and without an answer to this, even your best laid plans will never leave the drawing board. How will you fund and start this endeavor? Can you get permission from your boss to store gear at your place of work? Will your co-workers be on board or just go with it when the time comes leaving you with stressed out, unprepared, possibly dangerous people to have to handle? Training or including others in your preps is a necessity if you plan includes others. See How to Make a Prepper by Benjamin Burns for more information on this.

If you have a single kit you will limit options for space and weight, if you have several the storage space and price may go up, one for everyone it certainly will. So before reading further these questions need to be answered.

Gear, Gear and More Gear for your Emergency Bag

Paratus 3 Day Operator’s Pack has a lot of features for less than $100.

Paratus 3 Day Operator’s Pack has a lot of features for less than $100.

Onto the matter of the gear. Like all good BOBs (bug out bags) a good emergency bag relies on the same principles. With that in mind let’s look at the first aspect: the bag itself.

You have a wide variety of options to consider here. You could go with durable military bags with ample padding, strapping and webbing for gear or a more discreet civilian bag that doesn’t draw attention. Others prefer high visibility bags with attached lights and whistles for easy access similar to the design of airplane life jackets or flame retardant bags that while not all too well designed will ensure your gear remains safe from fire and is partially waterproof. Each has their pros and cons and should be chosen when and only when the rest of your kit has been assembled. One of the golden rules of BOBs: buy the bag to fit the kit not the kit that will fit in the bag.

Next, clothing and protective gear. Most everyday office buildings, schools or company work spaces are built of similar materials, concrete, re-bar, steel (possibly corrugated) and plywood. These materials while dependent on size can be moved if blocking an escape route. However, doing so without adequate hand and eye protection would be a mistake. Strong work gloves,goggles and masks can be extremely useful. Be sure to take in mind the amount of protection verses dexterity you will need. If working with wires and fine tools is what you expect bulky industrial work gloves may not be the best choice. In regards to goggles and masks the standard N95 mask and standard full eye and nose goggles should suffice for keeping dust or smoke at bay.

Onto the case of footwear. While work boots are preferable don’t underestimate a comfortable pair of dress shoes. Try yours out on a long distance walk in the city or on a short jog. It may sound strange but it could save you time, money and space on gear you may not need. While helmets may be unnecessary they are a fair consideration depending on your place of work, but be sure to make sure you can wear it with your goggles and mask with good visibility.

fireman-100722_640

The next main concern in any kit is signalling and communications. For this aspect of your kit you should be looking at mid/long-range ham radios, solar/kinetic emergency radios, flares and glow sticks. The reason for this is that you can keep in contact with whoever is in the area, keep track of emergency broadcasts and signal for rescue. Replying on cell phones and land line communication is a gamble in a survival situation and should not be relied upon. If you are going to rely on ham radio then you first have to learn how to use it and all the relevant emergency frequencies. A good source of information for that is Grid Down Communications by Pat Henry.

Now let’s move onto medical matters. If any of your party are injured leaving them untreated can only make matters worse. Having a basic knowledge of first aid can prove invaluable and as the saying goes: Knowledge doesn’t weigh anything.

A small axe can make survival in many situations much easier.

A small axe can make survival in many situations much easier.

However basic supplies don’t hurt. Having a standard trauma kit in your pack can provide you with. A kit I would recommend is the Bighorn Sportsman Medical Kit, or at least one which contains similar provisions. That said, the best medical kit is always one you put together and tailor yourself.

The last but by no means the least important is food and water. While having a store at work for several days a head would be great it unfortunately isn’t possible most of the time. Having cooking gear and fuel, while they double as a heat source are, for most, quite unnecessary. Dried long life foods such as Datrex bars which are well suited to a small lightweight kit. While they are by no means gourmet but they will get the job done of sustaining you until rescue or self rescue occurs. Water, like food, does not need to be stored in great volume. A one liter bottle of water per person should be sufficient for 1 – 2 days. While glass containers will allow you to store water for longer periods of time and should be considered for at home stores, plastic is the best choice here due to its weight, durability and flexibility. Cooking equipment and food that requires such should be avoided to save weight and space. That said if it is within your capability to do so a hot meal can go a long way in regards to boosting moral.

Locked and Loaded

The last aspect of a kit to talk about is weapons and tools. While carrying a small axe, firearm or full tang knife is something that most, if not all, survivalists consider essential it may not be safe nor permitted in the work place. While it is tempting to simply conceal these items from people in your personal belongings it is also worth talking to your boss or manager about these things with the aim of having all your gear approved. Depending on where you work you may be faced with different rules, restrictions and regulations for what you can carry. Always make sure that you have the right permits and documentation. Who knows you may even make a Prepper out of them.

 

Creating an At-Work Emergency Bag was written by Mike Turner with Prepper Journal and can be viewed here:

http://www.theprepperjournal.com/2016/01/06/creating-an-at-work-emergency-bag/

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