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What's your general EDC approach/theory/principles?

Discussion in 'General EDC Discussion' started by HoopleHead, Dec 20, 2007.

  1. peacefuljeffrey

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    Heh, yeah.

    Like Mitch Hedberg said,
    "My belt holds my pants up, but my belt loops hold my belt up.
    I'm confused; who's the real hero here??" :idiot2:
     
  2. maxray

    maxray Loaded Pockets

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    This is a great thread!

    I am an EDC newbie, well, sort of...I have always carried around a pocket knife, multitool, tools in the car, flashlight, etc...without thinking about it much. My "day job" is to be responsible for business continuity and disaster recovery for a financial institution, so I spend a lot of time thinking about readiness in a very "big picture" way compared to my EDC, i.e. buildings, technology systems, and thousands of humans vs. multitools and prybars. :) That said, doing this job has opened my eyes to the wider need for better planned personal preparedness as well, and I see part of my job as spreading the word of preparedness for my work colleagues, and we have started to do this, with informal emails and newsletters (i.e. winter preparedness, are you ready? kind of stuff.) This helps our business, while at the same time adding value to the individuals too, I think. Finding this site has been a boon to better structuring my own preparedness as well as introducing concepts that I intend to share with a much wider audience.

    Some of this has trickled into my own EDC (back to the subject at hand!) - typically the continuity and recovery stuff we design needs to be very scalable, and modular...so alot of those principles has shaped my personal EDC by default. For example, I am very impressed with standards like MOLLE/PALS for interchangeability and modularity of carrying stuff - very scalable...and this has become a cornerstone of my EDC. Like the modular MOLLE/PALS, connectors fascinate me as well (just found Berkeley Point!) as again they support my modular/interconnected approach. Interconnections/modularity, as an aside, have always interested me and for the geeks out there, things like the TCP/IP stack, the OSI reference model, Object Oriented, Model-View-Controller, XML and other standard integration technologies just blow me away with how they can support the smallest discrete functions, to being the building blocks for massive interconnections of technology services. I sometimes draw comparisons between them and the small packs that connect to a PALS web, and then scale upwards with larger pouches/devices that can be connected to larger and larger core storage systems (packs and bags of varying sizes.) All with a logical tool approach that fits the individual pouches, obviously, underpinning the whole thing.

    At a high level, I plan on a few key functional "packs" all MOLLE/PALS connectible that all represent a specific mission. Seems like a lot of people take this approach as well. Again, I am a newbie, so right now I am just amassing some gear, playing with stuff to see if it works for me or not. But I am currently developing a daily carry pouch/system approach, an FAK pouch/system approach, a mini PSK pouch/system approach, an automobile and hand tools pouch/system approach, which all roll up to a larger BOB/PSK that they can be attached to/tossed into for the more larger survival need.

    This is where I have started - I am sure it will change a few dozen times before I am "done" ... are we ever done?? ;)
     
  3. mivok

    mivok Loaded Pockets

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    I have to second the love of interchangeable pouches and PALS, although right now I find myself liking it more because I can play with things and change them around, and also that if I ever make any changes to my main EDC bag, I just need to make sure I buy one with PALS attachments (and the same color) and my investment in all of the addon pouches isn't wasted.
     
  4. Leadfoot

    Leadfoot Loaded Pockets

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    Or you could just put the stuff in your pocket and have a donut. If you edc enough stuff to need a molle adaptable system to carry it, you must have a clear and present danger.

    I tend to go with higher end items, except for things that tend to get used for prying.

    There are two things that I don't mind over lapping on, in edc equipment. Flashlights, knives.

    Some edc items are very much job specific. I carry a Leatherman and a Swisschamp. The Swisschamp for the fine quality little tools, the leatherman for its large pliers. Now if I could find a set of folding pliers at 3.5 inches folded, I'd pitch the Leatherman in a heartbeat. The little 4in ViceGrip comes close, but not quite.

    Band Aids, never carried one yet. If a band aid is enough to do the job, I just bleed. It's a long way from your heart, it'll stop.

    The hardest thing for me to decide on carrying something or not, is if I need it, or want it.

    O yeah, just so that we are clear on this. You can never carry enough. The French dude that carries 1800 items is trying real hard tho.


    Leadfoot
     
  5. ballistic

    ballistic Loaded Pockets

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    Great thread. I share a similar "concentric circles" EDC approach. I like a modular, "mix and match" choice of EDC gear with little overlap, and let the situation dictate what I'm going to carry or leave behind. No sense in carrying a jumbo capsule or Witz case with fishing hooks/line, fire starting, signaling, and basic navigation gear if I'm going around the corner to pick up a six pack of Guinness. KISS, be light and nimble, not bogged down by a bunch of gear you're carrying around for those "what-if" scenarios. It's easy to get caught up in the trend to be prepared for any scenario, but it can easily get out of hand. Save that stuff for your BOB and 72 hour bags...

    I firmly believe in and practice "unobtrusive" EDC and like to keep it low profile. No sense in drawing attention and making yourself and your gear a target or subject to more scrutiny. Blend in with the crowd, dress and carry bags, etc appropriately. Tactical gear looks cool, but it stands out. ScottEVest apparel and Dockers Mobile pants help keep stuff out of sight and easily accessible and let you blend in.

    I also believe in quality gear and investing in stuff that is reliable and will last, but fits in your budget. These days, the cost/quality ratio of flashlights, tools, knives, firearms, etc. is getting better all the time. A $400 custom folding knife is not necessarily 4-5X better than an $80-$100 CRKT folder, and it would much less painful to lose in the field.

    Just a few thoughts...
     
  6. giggles

    giggles Banned

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    I have been getting out of hand lately, contemplating carrying a second light that is easier to use handheld, in addition to my weaponlight... ;D

    The way I do it is, no unnecessary stuff. Just pistol, 2 kinds of mags with 2 kinds of bullets in them, suppressor, dagger, "use knife", radio, weaponlight, wristwatch with all the functions in the world..., cellphone, EES tin (content not listed), flint lighter (ordinary type lighter), sunglasses, credit card+money holder... notepad, pen, keys, photon II, aluminum foil... ...gum... ...monocular (microscope and peephole-reverser dual function), gloves, balaklava (gets cold sometimes ;D ), tiny self-assembled field cleaning kit for pistol... yep, that's about all.
     
  7. HoopleHead

    HoopleHead Banned

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    so what are peoples "concentric circles" or "layers" of gear? im still trying to work mine all out, but its kinda like:

    core EDC
    situation based EDC
    EDC bag w/ modular PSK
    BOB
    work / car
    additional home supplies
     
  8. carrot

    carrot Loaded Pockets

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    My EDC approach is minimalist- I try to carry as few things as I can that will allow me to tackle the largest variety of situations expected. I am mostly interested in having the "best" or highest quality things when it comes to my personal gear. I would say my normal EDC lacks in redundancy because I try to choose the most reliable gear I can afford. I am comfortable with supplementing, rotating, or modifying my EDC depending on my environment and expectations of needs. When I do carry a bag, which is very infrequent, I'll usually throw a larger version of my EDC into it to tackle bigger tasks (ie, a larger more powerful flashlight and a fixed blade).

    My EDC pictures are viewable here: http://edcforums.com/index.php?topic=13950
     
  9. HoopleHead

    HoopleHead Banned

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    yep. you read my mind. then explained it more concisely. :thinking:
     
  10. carrot

    carrot Loaded Pockets

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    Of course a $40 Spyderco will do the job as well as a $300 Sebenza... but we all have things we like to spend money on, and if we enjoy what we spent, then it is worth it to us. In terms of usefulness, there comes a point where extra money won't make a product any more useful, but it may make it more polished and generally more pleasant or nicer to use. I just figure, you only live once, so why not live a little?
     
  11. 0dBm

    0dBm Loaded Pockets

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    • William Henry T10 Lancet, Spyderco Lava or Al Mar SLB, CRK Small Sebbie, Al Mar SERE 2000
    • Leatherman Squirt P4, Leatherman Juice, Leatherman Charge, Leatherman Surge
    • Colt Mustang Pocket Elite, S&W Model 640 or Kahr MK40, SigArms P229
    • Photon Freedom, Peak Baltic AAA, Novatac 120T (1-CR123A), Aleph A-2 (18650), Surefire 6Z or M2, Surefire L6
    • Base layer, moisture-wicking short or Long sleeve undershirt; fleece middle layer, hard or soft-shell outer layer
    • Cotton V-neck T-shirt; button-down, long sleeve shirt; 3-button, single-breasted wool gabardine jacket, cashmere overcoat or moisture-resistant London Fog overcoat
    • Small, zippered leather pouch; 1000-denier nylon cordura pouch; 1600-denier nylon Brenthaven soft-sided computer briefcase for 17" laptop

      Escalating size as you move to the right of the page. Strip away the "layers" as needed or desired for a suitable combination.
     
  12. mr.trooper

    mr.trooper Empty Pockets

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    I generaly keep my gear divided into lines.

    Line 1 = absolute necessities : Folding Knife, Lighter, Wallet, Cell Phone, Surefire. The things you need most frequently, the things you absolute couldn't live without if you were droped in the middle of the wilderness with no warning.

    Line 2 = common usefull tools: a Nalgeen Bottle, a multi-tool, a small'ish fixed blade, larger flashlight, spare batteries, personal first aid kit, ect. The things that you would need to get by for an extended period of time.

    Line 3 = accessories: A whistle, some 550 cord, duct tape, a note pad, a knife sharpener, ect. The things that would make life easier, but arn't actualy needed.

    I try to do without any "Line 3" gear if at all possible. Part of my minimalist philosophy.

    I keep my "Line 1" gear on my person, in my pockets every time i leave home. If something were to happen and i needed to cut and run, lost, or needed to ditch my pack i would still have the necessities. I have a carry permit, so I sometimes have a handgun, but am not always in a location that permits carry, So for me a Gun is kind of in limbo.

    A pack comes in handy for me to store my "Line 2" gear. Nothing fancy, just a run of the mill, medium Wenger back pack. nothing eye-cathing, nothing enormous. I usaly just keep a watter bottle a small FAK, and a larger Swiss knife, and an MP# player in addition to my normal text books and note books (even then, I usualy leave the text books at home, and cary one multi-subject notebook instead of several smaller ones. again with the minimalism.) :)
     
  13. WillCAD

    WillCAD Loaded Pockets

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    My philosophy is simple - if I use it a lot, I EDC it. If I don't use it a lot, I don't EDC it.

    I have tried carrying lots of different stuff over the years and found that I wasn't using much, or at all, then abandoned it. Anything that is classified as "just in case" doesn't go in my pockets, it goes either into my truck, into my desk drawer at work, or into a small bag that I carry inside my laptop bag. And most of that stuff is not disaster-preparedness stuff, it's just common preparedness stuff - non-trauma FAK, backup supplies of meds I EDC, hand sanitizer and pocket pack of kleenex, a couple of spare fauxton lights, scissors (paramedic style, small), an Xacto with a couple of blades, a spare pocket knife, some zip ties, and a nail care kit (clippers, file, tweezers), and a pencil and notepad.
     
  14. LLCoolBeans

    LLCoolBeans Empty Pockets

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    I put the stuff I think I'll need for the day, plus anything I wouldn't want to be left without in an unexpected situation, into a bag. If it's to heavy, I remove things. Then I grab the bag on the way out the door.

    It's only as complex as you make it.
     
  15. thatdamnhewitt

    thatdamnhewitt Loaded Pockets

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    Great thread! Many different approaches, yet sound!

    Huzzah! :knuppel2:
     
  16. thatdamnhewitt

    thatdamnhewitt Loaded Pockets

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    As working LEO, we recently had a mock exercise in which we had to engage armed suspects surrounding our tactical equip vault and vehicles! Imagine a high profile court case gone wrong. Needless to say, massive rethink as far as what we may have to have with us , prior to reaching our "goody cage"

    Also, we didn't all show up at the same time. They "staggered" our arrival to simulate differences in travel times of first response. Fuster Cluck !

    It all worked out, but it wasn't greasy... :idiot2:
     
  17. Russ

    Russ Empty Pockets

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    I keep a minimum EDC in my pockets or on my belt, the bulk goes in my backpack which goes with me everywhere that's appropriate. It's at my feet now, it doubles as a gym bag and as a flight bag. If I fly commercial a few pieces need to be removed, but most of the gear goes with me on an airliner. Since I fly more often as a crewmember with no security check, the whole EDC backpack goes with me including the knives and multi-tool.

    As a general approach, I take gear I use daily or would really miss if I needed it, such as a first aid kit. It's a mix of urban and wilderness because you just never know what cards you'll be dealt next.
     
  18. jimspriggs500

    jimspriggs500 Empty Pockets

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    O0

    I quite agree. My philosophy has been to keep myself as unobtrusive as possible. The British Foreign Office and US State Department are always advising travellers to blend-in with the locals. This also applies in your native country. I was born in England and lived there until 6 months ago. Now I live in France.

    I have a fairly set approach to the type and style of clothing I wear. I generally wear cargo pants, a long sleeve shirt with pockets and a sports type jacket. All have numerous pockets which distribute the weight of my EDC. For the larger pockets I use Diplomat Pocket Organizers from County Comm. Each organizer has a different purpose and is always kept in the same pocket. For instance, my small FAK is always in my left thigh pocket; my multi-tool is always on my right hip; my Inova microlight is always on my front left belt loop, etc.

    Even when I do travel abroad I try to keep things to a minimum. Suitcases, grips, duffels, camera bags, valet/jewel cases I believe should be avoided. I carry a small to medium backpack that does not look expensive or new. (It happens to be a green denim backpack I picked up cheap at Gap 10 years ago, and is still going strong).
     
  19. Crocodilo

    Crocodilo Loaded Pockets

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    It's a fine line between everyday carry and everyday use. The stuff that you actually use everyday are an obvious necessity (wallet, keys, cell phone, glasses, cigaretes and lighter, pen, notebook). Then there are items that you may or may not use, like knives and flashlights. And finally, we get to the "what if" scenario, things that you may need, and one must weight the probability of need against the severity of not having it handy. Multitools, guns, FAKs and PSKs, cameras and GPSs, any of these will get carried or not acording to the circumstances. Last layer is the comfort zone: books, MP3 players, drinks and food. And of course, you preparedness level varies a great deal with the distance from your familiar surroundings, house, car, etc.

    Quality items will definetely increase reliability, not performance. And reliability allows you to cut back on redundancy.

    (...)

    I was getting somewhere, but got lost instead. Must be carrying too much on my mind. :shrug:
     
  20. ronnin6

    ronnin6 Loaded Pockets

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    i don't know if I missed it somewere, but I have not seen any one mention mcgyver style first aid items. I allways carry ductape, super glue, and cloth firstaid tape (the only time I carry bandaids is when I'm with my girls. pepole tend to look at you strange when you whip out a bandaid with a princes on it :idiot2:) and here is some food for thought, what is a feminine pad designed for, cane anyone say impromptu trauma bandage :stretcher: