1. Are you a current member with account or password issues?

    Please visit following page for more information

    Dismiss Notice

Mobility vs firepower - How much does it come to play in your kit?

Discussion in 'Where, When, & How Do We Carry All This Stuff?' started by roof_top_eagle, Apr 28, 2009.

  1. roof_top_eagle

    roof_top_eagle Empty Pockets

    Mar 17, 2008
    Likes Received:
    Some of you may be aware of the mobility vs firepower equation when it comes to your EDC system and even your BOB.

    For those of you who aren't aware of the mobility vs firepower equation it's basically the weight or bulk of an item vs it's usability and overall power. The mobility vs firepower is easiest to explain when talking about firearms. If you carry a gun everyday, say a full size glock but it's to big and bulky so you don't have it on your person all the time it's firepower doesn't outweigh it's mobility. If you don't have it on you when you need it it's useless to you. So maybe a Sub-Compact Glock is better if you are more likely to have it on you in say an ankle holster instead of on your belt or some more comfortable way of carrying the gun so you have it on you 95% of the time or better compared to the 45%-50% of the time you carry the full size gun.

    Nutnfancy explains it best in his series of videos called http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z50PFup95F8"]Mobility vs Firepower by Nutnfancy, Part 1[/URL]-3. if you have time watch it he does a better job of explaining it than I do.

    So what I'm asking here is how much does the mobility vs firepower equation come into your set ups? Does weight concern you when you plan your EDC or BOB system? or do you prefer maximum firepower and really don't corcern yourself with the weight of your pack?

    I know people on both sides of the argument. Some people don't mind the 8oz leatherman, 7oz folding knife and full size glock and two spare mags. They lean toward the firepower side of the argument Other's (like myself) prefer to carry a Spyderco Delica 4 (2.4oz) and a Leatherman S2 Juice(4.4oz), these people lean toward the mobility side of the equation.

    Another side of the equation is that sometimes a little extra weight is worth it. I do think the Leatherman Wave is more capable than the S2 Juice. That being said the S2 Juice (once I order it) will be a big load off my back (almost 4oz to be exact) and it is still plenty capable of delivering what I need it too.

    You could look at some people who carried Leatherman Squirt multitools. The little thing weights just 2oz but is restricted in how it can be used. So in some cases no matter how much you like the LM Squirt the Juice may be better for you, or that being said the Wave or Charge may be better depending on your needs.

    Well I'm rambling, what is your take on weight and the Mobility vs Firepower equation?
  2. jehan60188

    jehan60188 Loaded Pockets

    Apr 21, 2009
    Likes Received:
    I EDC pocket knife, digital watch (with built in compass), flashlight.
    I can complete my BOB by rounding it off with the rest of the stuff on the ten essentials list

    map of the city
    bucket hat (don't need sunscreen, never been burned- one of the few advantages to not being white :D but i have a shaved head, and i figure a :censored: situation is the wrong time to familiarize myself with the feeling)
    headband that can hold my light
    gauze pads (more versatile than bandages), 2 x 4 oz of rubbing alcohol (cleaning & cooling agent)
    vaseline- (combine with gauze to make tinder)
    cordage, duct tape wrapped around a lot of stuff. zip ties
    water bladder
    energy bars (2x400 calories)

    i also keep a leatherman wave in there, one spare clip (10 shot) and a box of bullets (50) for my CCW (Glock 26), a few plastic bags, a zip-lock bag with antibacterial wipes (replacement for showering), and bug repellent
    spare batteries in a cigar tube
    small trowel (digging small holes for concealed fires, and for hiding my... business)
    need to add a steripen, or maybe just some bleach to disinfect water
    should probably add some clothes in it, too (wicking, quick dry, etc)
    foot wear is currently sneakers, but will probably opt for my Vibram Fivefeet once they come in (definitely choosing mobility over firepower here!)

    my philosophy i guess is somewhere in the middle, more towards 'fire power' than 'mobility'
    it's small, but I don't compromise. I'm opting for the urban forager philosophy more than anything- take what I can when I can until I'm somewhere safe.

    i've also got a shotgun in my apartment, in true things get bad situation, i wouldn't worry about concealing my armament (of course the G26 is concealed).
  3. _STL_15_

    _STL_15_ Loaded Pockets

    Feb 11, 2009
    Likes Received:
    Weight does not play a role in my decisions about edc. I choose what I carry but the usefulness to me not the weight.

    Leatherman Wave
    Byrd Cara Cara
    Crkt RollLock
    Key's with peanut light, cigar punch, photon
    Cell Phone
    Ipod Touch
    LaCross Tweezers
    Fenix P3D
    Spec Ops The Wallet
    Pad of Paper
    Zebra Z701
    Parker 1M

    I am perfectly content with my edc at the moment.
  4. jehan60188

    jehan60188 Loaded Pockets

    Apr 21, 2009
    Likes Received:
    BOB is pretty much the opposite of EDC- it's a pack you hope you don't have to use!
    still, your post reminded me that I've got a pen + notecards in my BOB. In a high stress situation, you may not be able to remember things, so it's nice to write a memo to yourself!
  5. sbillard

    sbillard Loaded Pockets

    Dec 5, 2008
    Likes Received:
    For me the limit is when the stuff you carry for the unexpected starts to affect negatively your ordinary life : As a commuter I won't fill my bag to the point that it requires too much effort or start to become unusable. My EDC, if it take a little supplemental weight doesn't affect my mobility nor does it bring me pains or fatigue. It doesn't cover all thing that may happen (which are infinite), but cover many of the situations that may probably happen given my way of life.
  6. roof_top_eagle

    roof_top_eagle Empty Pockets

    Mar 17, 2008
    Likes Received:
    That's closer to how I go, I don't own a car, I take the bus :brickwall:. So my EDC is based on functionality and mobility more than "looks" for example my Waist Pack (I don't like the term "fanny pack" makes it sound to gay for how useful it is) it doesn't look great, but then I live in a tourist town so I don't stick out as much in season. I tend to look for lightweight compact items that have the most firepower available for the size. My Streamlight Stylus Pro is a great example! I might go for the Microstream for an even smaller light, I mean it's only down 4 lumens on the stylus pro!

    My EDC bag is pretty big right now, not that it's stuffed full of stuff it's just a big bag so I'm looking for something smaller that will suit my purpose. I might have to wait for back to school season for a good deal on the right bag.

    Personally if it's to heavy I tend to not have it on me so I go for mobility as much as possible.

    On payday I'm ordering a Leatherman S2 Juice for the mobility of it. I'm not giving up to much, I basically only need to buy a eye glasses repair kit and a nail file from shoppers drugmart and I'm back to perfection for my needs. I'm just getting sick of the 8oz in the LM wave, it's to much!
  7. tony413

    tony413 Empty Pockets

    May 9, 2009
    Likes Received:
    for EDC i use the KISS principle.

    1. M&P40 compact
    2. Kabar TDI
    3. Sabre tear gas + pepper spray
    4. whistle
    5. wallet
    6. cellphone.

    i carry only those 6 items when im not using the man purse or if i have to goto the store quickly for any reason.
  8. bigfoot

    bigfoot Loaded Pockets

    Apr 4, 2006
    Likes Received:
    Spending more time on foot lately, so "mobility" has become more important than "firepower". Trimmed my EDC down and have been refining it with a Pack Rat. When traveling by vehicle weight isn't an issue, but I still like to have something I can carry (straps are a must) if I need to leave the car or truck behind due to a breakdown, accident, etc. Even so, the Pack Rat, a 1L Nalgene, and a light jacket eat up quite a bit of weight and space in the backpack. Still a work in progress for the ideal setup...
  9. codewarrior

    codewarrior Loaded Pockets

    Apr 2, 2009
    Likes Received:
    I guess I have levels of EDC.

    For me, level one is what I carry in my pockets, so definitely mobility.
    Level two is what's in my back pack, so that leans towards firepower. I might forget to grab my pack for short trips, but I have yet to forget my pants...
  10. Striker801

    Striker801 Empty Pockets

    Jun 16, 2009
    Likes Received:
    I have different levels of EDC. During work, I can not carry my firearm because of the nature an locations of my work; however, I still carry:

    Benchmade knife
    Surefire Backup Light
    Cell Phone

    When not at work, I carry Springfield XD, extra mag, Surefire 6P Defender, Knife, cell phone, wallet

    I find the above to not impede my mobility and I have the firepower when I need it. If I could I would carry my XD all the time.

    The challenge can be what type of clothes you are wearing, size and type of firearm, and locations you will be going in and out of, i.e. airport, high security buildings etc. I believe if you can legally carry a firearm and you have the proper training and mind-set; you should carry as often as you can.
  11. chaosmagnet
    • GITD Manix 2XL Owner
    • In Omnia Paratus

    chaosmagnet Loaded Pockets

    Apr 13, 2008
    Likes Received:
    I layer my EDC. I carry light on my person, with nothing on my belt and my pockets not terribly bulging with gear. At work, my laptop bag is never far away, and I've got several things in there that I don't use every day. In my car, my BOB is heavy. As long as I'm driving, no problem. If I have to hoof it with my BOB a long way, the plan is to dump whatever I don't need to lighten it before moving out.

    In other words, I try to get the best of both worlds.
  12. Brangdon

    Brangdon Loaded Pockets

    Apr 9, 2006
    Likes Received:
    I'm very sensitive about weight. Any increase in weight has to justify itself with a massive increase in fire-power.

    Also, I believe that most of the time even a small tool provides a big increase over nothing. For example, the tiny knife on my Vic Rambler is fine for opening packages, cutting plastic bottles to make fish traps, etc. A tiny Photon Freedom is enough to illuminate the dark, and the darker it is the more dark-adapted your eyes become so a little light is all you need.

    Admittedly when you need a lot of fire-power you may really need it. A Vic Rambler is no good for battoning firewood. A Photon Freedom is not adequate for search and rescue missions. It's a judgement call on whether it's worth carrying all the extra weight of a 4" fixed blade or a Surefire for the relatively rare occasions when you need that extra.

    As it happens, I don't think a Leatherman Juice is much of an improvement over a Squirt. If you need decent pliers, neither will do. If you just need to bend some paper-clips, or a pair of tongs, then either are adequate.
  13. NeonLights

    NeonLights Loaded Pockets

    Feb 24, 2008
    Likes Received:
    Size and weight both play a large factor in my EDC gear, too big or too heavy and the items often don't get carried. At a minimum I typically have my little EDC Penguin Mints tin with me whenever possible, which includes:

    -AG Russell ti Pen Knife 3.0
    -Leatherman Juice S2
    -CC Micro Widgy pry bar
    -SS Inka pen
    -Fenix L0D light with SL Microstream clicky switch
    -Bic mini lighter
    -3 layers of duct tape in the lid
    -small blank notecards in the bottom

    The whole package weighs around 9.5 oz and slips nicely into a front pocket and if I only grab one thing when leaving the house, this tin is it. For the rare occasions when this is too big or heavy, I have a much smaller tin that is 1/2 to 1/3 the size of the standard Altoids style tin that holds smaller versions of a knife, multi-tool, light, pen, and lighter. For the occasions when I don't mind the extra bulk or weight, I have a 2nd tin full of goodies that I'll toss in another pocket, this one contains:

    -LM Micra
    -SL NanoLight
    -Lexar 4GB thumb drive
    -Mini Sharpie
    -Tweezerman fingernail clippers
    -P38 can opener
    -Bic Mini lighter
    -10 Advil caplets in a "spy capsule"
    -Pico Pen
    -"Uncle Bill's" Tweezer

    There is some redundancy with this 2nd kit, but I like redundancy whenever possible and convenient of the cost in weight and bulk isn't too high. I usually have a medium (2.5-3" blade) folding knife on my person as well, and if I'm going out after dark or when I know I'm going to need light, I'll grab a 2-cell Surefire incan light and toss it in a pocket as well, but my little EDC pocket tin by itself will handle about 95% of anything I'll face on a daily basis, and is light and small enough for me to carry nearly everywhere.

    I do have an "emergency kit" with a couple of changes of clothes, FAK, toiletries, etc, basically a travel kit in the trunk of one of our cars, and a "Jack Sack" I carry with me on rare occasions, but after carrying various bags to all kinds of places for a couple of years, I typically stick with what I can stuff in my pockets (I love cargo pants and shorts) for EDC type gear, and then carry along whatever else I know there is a good chance I'll need, like water and granola bars and a camera when hiking, etc.
  14. Drjones

    Drjones Loaded Pockets

    Jun 27, 2009
    Likes Received:
    1) If something is big/heavy enough that it gets left at home a lot, you either have to replace it with something lighter/smaller that WILL be with you all the time OR discipline yourself to put up with the discomfort of carrying the larger/heavier item.

    2) For the most part, I'd rather train & condition myself to get stronger to enable me to carry bigger & heavier stuff, as well as discipline myself to do it often enough that I get used to the size & weight.

    No sense in having a 75lb. BOB if your body can't handle walking with it.
  15. Fosszombie

    Fosszombie Empty Pockets

    Jun 25, 2009
    Likes Received:
    Note that something small and concealable might help you stay armed. The government illegally revokes the 2nd amendment rights in events even if there's no martial law declared. That's where my XD 3" 9mm comes in. Even with short barrel they really retain accuracy. Lately I've switched to my FiveseveN because it's easier to carry more ammo and it's accurate farther.

    Other than that it doesn't take much weight to carry a Ruger 10/22 rifle around with extra magazines and a thousand rounds so it would be an ideal bug-out weapon. It might not be the ideal combat weapon, but in the end a gun is a gun... Better to have a gun that you can carry a lot of ammo for. Many people get the folding stock or a wire-frame stock for their bug-out .22LR's

    My 10/22 can shoot dead on at 100 yards, at 50 yards or closer where my top cross-hair starts to get fat, that's the bull. Iron sights also work since the scope is raised on a see-through mount.

    Sure, if I had my choice, I'd be taking my .338 WinMag or my .243 with me since they can put anything down in one shot from hundreds of yards away. I just don't see much of a situation where I could get away with using them unless I was way out of the city. When I got on survival treks I take my .243. When I go on bear hunts I take my .338.


    As far as everything else there area few tools that are (as far as needs go) redundant. Having an axe and combat knife for example. Sure it's nice to have the Axe but if you have the knife you really don't NEED it. On the other hand it does make life easier and may reduce the chance of injury. I chose to carry my axe and Kabar. I figure as long as I have my compass and some spare bags I can take a compass reading, bury the hatchet, and come back for it later if I need it. I doubt I would have overburdened myself to the point that it would be the straw that broke the camel's back. It's better to be over-prepared and leave something behind than caught off guard.
  16. kennith

    kennith Empty Pockets

    Jun 25, 2009
    Likes Received:
    I too have different levels of carry.

    In the back of my Land Rover exists everything I need to survive pretty much anywhere survival is possible. I have:

    A small tent that can be fitted for different weather conditions.
    A rain fly for that tent.
    A foundation for that tent.
    Tent pegs
    500 feet of 550 cord
    A sleeping bag meant for very cold weather
    A very good water filter and purification tablets
    A tiny gas stove and several small canisters for it
    Two of those fire lighting strikers, with strikers on 550 cord loops for each
    5 Bic lighters
    5 butane lighters
    Tons of waterproofed matches
    Tinder material of many types in waterproof containers
    Fire starting nugget things, of several types
    An anodized aluminum pot to boil water and wide enough to cook in
    Two machetes
    A real hatchet, not that hardware store crapola
    5 different kinds of LED flashlights, including 2 headband lights
    A nice stuffable rainsuit
    Insulating clothing and other layers
    5 pairs of socks and undies
    A very comprehensive medical kit
    A multi tool
    2 pocket knives
    One large field knife
    Several methods of blade sharpening and oil for preservation and cleaning
    One firearm, plus 3 loaded magazines and a box of spare ammunition
    A cleaning kit for that firearm, plus extra oil and solvent
    1000 Qtips
    A roll of duct tape
    Maps pertaining to where I expect to be and the surrounding areas, as well as places I am likely to simply go off to spontaneously
    2 GPS units
    Lots of spare batteries, swapped out yearly, and I change the batteries in my devices yearly, using the partially spent ones around the home
    Several hats, of various types
    One large waxed cotton insulated duster
    Pens, pencils and rite in the rain notebooks
    Enough smokes to ween myself off of them if I have to
    Three gallons of water
    Water bottles, canteens, carriers, and a camelback
    A vest for carrying needed items if required
    A shoulder bag for similar purposes (an old military map case)
    A net suitable for fishing
    A compact fishing rod
    Several rolls of dental floss
    Several spools of fishing line
    Fishing gear of various types, plus that nasty smelly stuff that helps attract fish
    Enough food to keep me happy for a week plus the time it will take to source more
    Catfood, sardines, nuts, and other bait for wild animals
    Several tubes of toothpaste and several toothbrushes
    A very nice towel
    Several bars of odorless soap

    There is more, but I'd have to check my inventory in the car to see. All of it fits between a pack, the vest, and the shoulder bag, and they are all strapped together to be grabbed quickly. All the items subject to be rendered less effective by moisture ingress are placed inside two sealed ziplock bags. I can carry it all, as most of it is the good stuff, very light and compact.

    You may notice that I have quite a few ways of lighting fires. As someone who has lit them without the aid of matches, I'll tell you that I want every way imaginable of fire lighting. That is the most important thing I can think of. The faster I can light a fire, the faster I get to build a shelter and start looking for food. Likewise, being clean and having clean teeth are under appreciated virtues in the wild. Being clean makes anything better.

    Having it all in the truck is useless if I can't grab it and hump it out of the wild, so it is all packed to make that easy and fast.

    This gear is in supplement to what I pack when I go on expedition or simply out for fun. This is only for the worst case scenario, I don't use it regularly. When I go out, I bring other things as well. Also, this list does not include any of the items I keep on hand to keep the truck running and not stuck. Nor does it include any of the convenience items I keep on hand for pleasure and comfort.

    All of it fits behind the front seats in the footwell. I have removed the rear seats permanently, so I am not short of space at all.
  17. kennith

    kennith Empty Pockets

    Jun 25, 2009
    Likes Received:
    On my person at all times, are things much lighter. I carry a multi tool, a firearm at times, my wallet, spare cash, and some odds and ends that I can fit in my wallet for survival.

    I am rarely anywhere without my vehicle. I don't ride with others unless I absolutely have to. When I do, I find I am always without something. :) Perhaps once or twice a year I ride with someone else. Everywhere else, I'm driving, and I'm driving my car.

    I have other vehicles, and in those I keep less stuff. Sometimes I have more cars than others. If I am leaving town, however, I take that Rover no matter what. If anything ever goes wrong with it, I repair it as quickly as possible to make it ready again. I keep a full range of tools in the back at all times, just in case. More than changing a tire, I can swap axles, replace a head gasket, change engine mounts, rebuild brakes, whatever, with the tools I keep in the back. The nature of my trip determines the spare parts I bring along.

    I've got 6 NATO fuel cans available for when I need them, and they can be mounted on the roof rack. Believe me, this isn't the half of it. It has taken me years to get all this together.

    Now, I'm not crazy, mind you. I do a lot of traveling outdoors. I need quite a bit of this stuff for my trips.
  18. Narcosynthesis

    Narcosynthesis Loaded Pockets

    Jul 21, 2009
    Likes Received:
    I always just try to find the balance of mobility versus firepower that suits me and what I want to do.

    For example, I always carry a SAK with me, namely a Vic Cadet knife. This one was chosen because I felt that a 58mm size knife was a bit too small, so I want something larger, yet the 84mm Cadet can accomplish everything I ask of it to the same standard as a 'standard' 91mm SAK, so that is the size of knife I carry - obviously some people will be completely happy with a 58mm classic, some will feel unprepared without a 4" locking blade...

    I will admit my kit as such is fairly compact and simple compared to many here, which is just what suits me and my situation, so everything is really sized to fit in my pockets as standard, with a bag only as an extra (mainly for carrying my camera and jacket) - SAK, Fenix L1T (fairly compact 1AA light), Fisher Space Pen (shorter than the standard size pen, so a better fit in a pocket), etc...
  19. ACHË

    ACHË Loaded Pockets

    May 22, 2009
    Likes Received:
    I'm still designing/building my "real kit", but....

    I'm designing two levels of E.D.C. systems with this very concept in mind.

    In the lightweight(mobile) setup, compromises regarding firepower are made due to probable redundancy.
    (By redundancy I mean likely access to my BOB on my vehicle.)

    ex: If I'm driving to the supermarket I feel comfortable carrying a smaller load on my person because I know what supplies I have on my car nearby.
    *Reduced carry of water
    *Small 9mm C.C.W.
    *Smaller FAK
    *Limited food/rations
    *Smaller backup flashlight

    In the heavyweight(firepower) setup, compromises regarding weight & bulk are made due to unlikely access to supplies & equipment.

    ex: If going on a road trip where I'm not driving, urban hiking or anything where there is less likelihood of quick access to my other gear & supplies.
    *Increase in carry of water.
    *Larger C.C.W. & Spare Mags
    *Food & Supplies to last longer.
    *More survival & orientation gear