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Why everyone needs to build a PSK...

Discussion in 'General EDC Discussion' started by Mark123, Dec 11, 2010.

  1. Mark123

    Mark123 Empty Pockets

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    Hello all,

    Have been away for the last 6 months playing in the sandbox...

    Something that hit we in a zen moment out there is that everyone needs to build a pocket size personal survival kit; and I mean build one from scratch-not buy a ready made off the shelf. Will you every use it in your lifetime...probably not; but i think that's the point.

    It's about the mindset it creates in the process-the person who takes the time to determine if it's more important to sqeeze more cotton balls or birthday candles into an Altoids tin vs. a mini striker is also the same person who won't go off roading in Death Valley with nothing but a GPS in the summertime without telling anyone.

    Just my 2 cents.
     
  2. GRIFFINHAWKS

    GRIFFINHAWKS Banned

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    I've got mine built and it keeps getting bigger ..
    It's really is important for those who know how to use it and if you don't [?] You should learn .

    Thank you and welcome home .

    BE WELL .. GH
     
  3. dimeotane

    dimeotane Loaded Pockets

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    the PSK maker is more likely to know how to use it

    I find myself trying out my PSK items in my spare time to see how well they work.
    I agree the person who builds a PSK is more likely to think first before heading out to the wilderness unprepared. Also, the person who builds a survival kit is more likely to have practiced with the items and know how to use them if the need ever arises in a real survival situation.

    For example, the other day I was reading reviews of the cheap mylar foil survival blankets. Reviewers said that they tear far too easy when they tried to wrap themselves in one for warmth. I thought it was cool how some people actually attempted using them to get warmer as a test run.
     
  4. Trunkmonkey

    Trunkmonkey Loaded Pockets

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    Amen to that brother! I have one in every vehicle (including my Harley) and BOB's for me and the wifey... of course, I am Active Duty Air Force so the mindset is here as well. Great post!
     
  5. JonSidneyB
    • Administrator

    JonSidneyB Uber Prepared
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    Why does everyone need one. What about those that have those things with them anyway.

    Also what about those that have too much to carry for their everyday lives.
     
  6. Trunkmonkey

    Trunkmonkey Loaded Pockets

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    I think the point is that everyone should have "something" on them at all times... just a reminder of the importance of being prepared. Thats what I got out of it anyway...
     
  7. ScottAW

    ScottAW Loaded Pockets

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    So true.

    Sad part of this story...we're the ones already on it.

    It's everyone else depending on us :(
     
  8. grayman

    grayman Loaded Pockets

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    So what in your opinion is the upside to making your own PSK as opposed to purchasing one of Doug Ritter's Pocket Survival Kit? I would think purchasing something from an authority on the subject would help ensure you've got everything you need. Of course learning to use it would still be up to the individual, but then you'd know what you need if you have to replenish it's contents.
     
  9. Cervantes

    Cervantes Loaded Pockets

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    I got all into EDC and carrying my PSK everwhere, but then the J.O.B decided to enforce the no bag policy. How much could one abscond with from a computer repair center before getting caught? Anyhow, making your own PSK emulating one that can be purchased ready made teaches improvisation and hones ingenuity, IMHO.
     
  10. Trunkmonkey

    Trunkmonkey Loaded Pockets

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    No offense to anyone but if you want to spend the money on a Doug Ritter kit, go ahead! He is an expert, i give him due credit... but Doug doesnt know what "I" want in my kit. Know what i mean? Take the time to build your own, get to know your gear... put some thought into it and dont depend on someone else for your survival.
     
  11. mbs4298

    mbs4298 Loaded Pockets

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    What kind of situations do you base your kits off of? Is it a catastrophe of some sort or being stuck in the woods on a hike situation?

    Sent from my DROIDX using Tapatalk
     
  12. Trunkmonkey

    Trunkmonkey Loaded Pockets

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    I set up several (4) small PSK's for just personal use... all have the same contents (including survival and medical) kept in the vechicles and/or on person as they are pocket size... I use either the small Pelican 1010 cases or the small Otter Boxes... I also have 2 BOB's (again identical) for me and the wife. The BOB's include just about everything for at least 72 hours (i.e. food, water, shelter, radios, weapons, ammo, etc...) Depending on the season depends on the extra clothing within. These are packed in Pygmy Falcon II bags... very slim and comfortable for long wear. If a "catastrophe" happens, no matter what you carry, you will always be on the lookout for more supplies, so keep that in mind as well. I dont want to be lugging around a 50 lb. ruck sack thinking I can live out it forever. Everyone is different though, so to each his or her own yah know?
     
  13. grayman

    grayman Loaded Pockets

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    So this is my EDC. This rides in my bag with me daily. Not overly elaborate by any means. I use the multitool on occasion, usually at work. Same with the flashlight. I've got note taking material because I always need to write something down and paracord for lashing things together. The compass is for use in the event I get lost or turned around (it happens.) Headphones are self explanatory and the microfiber cloth is for cleaning my glasses. I also keep a small FAK close at hand, a lighter, and matches for when the lighter doesn't work. Oh, a small utility knife.

    So where does the PSK come in? I've put this together based on my needs. It's stored in a small Unikit and MaxPed Cocoon. Other than I wish it was even more compact, I can't imagine what else I might need. However, I'm going to put Mark123's idea to the test. I'm going to see what I can put together in the "Altoids tin." I'm also going to try and do it without buying anything.


    [​IMG]
     
  14. Trunkmonkey

    Trunkmonkey Loaded Pockets

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    Thats great! If you cant imagine needing anything more, then this is what you need. Looks like you have some great stuff! I will break down one of my PSK's and post pics on what i have in them... My EDC is in a Max P lunada and i just slip in one of the PSK's and roll. I have 3 different setups... PSK, EDC, and a BOB. The PSK and EDC are usually together, though sometimes not... and my BOB is in the closet just in case. If i travel out of town, they all go with me. I will get some pics of "everything" up soon I hope.
     
  15. grayman

    grayman Loaded Pockets

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    OK, so I put together a small PSK. I didn't have an Altoids tin, but I had some small stainless containers that are very similar I picked up from CountyComm once upon a time. My goal was to do this without spending any money, but that didn't happen. I spent very little though. These are the things I thought I might need. Comments or suggestions?

    I bought:
    1. Swiss Army Classic SD -- I was at the hardware store and it was on the clearance rack for $10.
    2. BandAids - Assorted sizes with antibiotic ointment already on them. I was at the drugstore and I was out.
    3. Pill fob - It has an o-ring seal and is rated for Nitro pills. Anything I might ingest has to be in something and not rattling around. It was $4.

    Contents of container:
    1. SAK Classic SD
    2. 25mm button compass
    3. Maratac AAA flashlight
    4. 5 strike anywhere matches wrapped with a long black twisty tie
    5. 3 safety-pins
    6. 2 sewing needles of varying sizes stuck in a small piece of cork
    7. 3 ft. Spectre 90lb test weight thread
    8. 6 ft. Kevlar sewing thread wrapped with another long twisty tie
    9. 4 BandAids of assorted sizes pre-treated with antibiotic ointment
    10. 2 Imodium AD Chewables
    11. Pill fob with Tylenol
    12. 1 thick/dense cotton ball

    [​IMG]
     
  16. Tradecraft

    Tradecraft Banned

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    Bottom line is that ready made kits are garbage for the most part and I would include Ritter's Pocket Survival Kit. Just because an "expert" attaches their name to a product does not mean that the product is going to be high quality. I have yet to find a pre-packaged kit that would meet my expectations. Companies are out to make a profit. If they include only high quality gear then the price point will be too high and the product will not sell. Companies are about marketing, advertising, selling and profit. The priority is not having high quality equipment that will save your @ss when needed.

    Making your own kit means that the gear is individualized to your needs and meets the quality expections that you have for your situation. That is the upside!
     
  17. grayman

    grayman Loaded Pockets

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    That pretty much answers my question. The biggest difference I noted from what I typically see in these kits is that I've added a light source that can be used sparingly. I've also changed it up to add some antiseptic wipes, alcohol wipes, and some pain meds like Ibuprofen and Tylenol. I've removed the pill fob, added two each of the wipes and one each of the pain meds.

    It's hard to decide what might be needed. I've been re-evaluating my EDC and I'm not happy with some of my setup so I'm going to change it. Some things I want more accessible, others available when needed. I also want to minimize the space used in my bag by my EDC. Once I've made some significant changes I'll post them.
     
  18. Rev. Chuck

    Rev. Chuck Loaded Pockets

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    Great little setup!
     
  19. Valerian

    Valerian Tea-powered admin

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    One extra bonus you get from building it yourself (vs. buying a ready-made one) is that, later on, there's a small but non-zero chance that you'll remember what's in it.
     
  20. FixIt

    FixIt Empty Pockets

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    Do whatever suits your target. The Doug Ritter kit is good value for money. If it's good for you depends on your needs.

    Nope. Thinking through the "what-if" scenarios and "how do I deal with that" is the process you need to help ensure you've got everything you need.

    There is no substitute for thinking. Best part - thinking is free. (However, you may reach the conclusion that you need to get more gear. Which can be hideously expensive. Think again, and you'll find cheaper substitutes... ) Your life. Your responsibility. You make the decisions. If you decide to go with Doug Ritter's kit, then fine. So did I (but I have tweaked the contents quite a bit).


    Doug Ritter's site equipped.org does offer excellent advice on what you should consider for wilderness survival. A bit outdated on some technical gadgets such as LED lights, but the really good advice is timeless and priceless. As with any advice, the best bits aren't really original or new, but they are well formulated.


    And remember - PSK's aren't magical talismans. Two of the most vital items for survival can't be packed into the typical always-in-a-pocket sized containers: Water and shelter. Yeah, right, I know some survival gurus say you can wittle a shelter with that puny little razor blade he packed into that altoid tin he sells you (which you're supposed to use for melting snow for drinking). Good luck doing that.

    An even better introduction to the way you should THINK before heading outdoors is Cody Lundin: 98.6 degrees.


    It's not really about the contents of your kit and if you or some well respected authority made it. It is all about personal responsibility and thinking through the "what-do-I-do" scenarios, stripped down to the bare minimum you need if you can't get home for whatever reason.