“Pocket” survival kit 20 year review.

Discussion in 'General Bushcraft Discussion' started by Mikewood, Jan 13, 2018 at 11:05 PM.

  1. Mikewood

    Mikewood Guide

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    About 20 years ago I made up a “survival” pouch to help me should I get lost while elk hunting in Idaho. This was a supplemental kit made by a young man with not much real world survival experience. It has been “lost” in the bottom of an old pack for a long time and though periodically updates must most of it is original. I just dug it out this evening. There is not much to see but I thought I would share.
    The Pouch itself is an old Alice design about 7”x7”. Pealing abd not really waterproof anymore but Still serviceable.
    Storm matches. Still strike and light well.
    Lansky diamond hone. Still works.
    Space blanket. Still good
    Contractor grade heavy duty trash bag still good. I planned to use this as a backup survival shelter.
    King brand butane lighter has some rust but still has fuel and lights.
    Iodine bottle. Still sealed and full. This replaced my milspec iodine tablet bottle that the tabs turned to dust after opening. It’s maybe 10 years old.
    Trioxane pouch sealed but the bar has turned to powder.
    Ziplock full of bandaids. Ziplock yellowed and bandaids have no adhesion anymore.
    Ziplock with ace bandage and mole skin. Ziplock in poor condition. Ace bandage still elastic and functional. dr. Sholes molskin still soft but not sticky anymore.
    Neosporin. Leaked
    Lip balm. Leaked.
    Milspec magnesium fire starter. Won’t spark but will scrape easily.
    CRKT stiff kiss. Still sharp and ready.
    Blast match. Still sparks like a boss.
    Candle. Still solid and lights. (This was a backup tinder and or fuel source).

    My kits have improved since 1997 but I still think a young man could have done well with these supplies, some food and two good canteens. It’s funny what we choose and why.

    Looking forward to your comments.

    Well here are some pics. Thanks for looking.

    2C07D66C-4860-461F-A05A-2F291737207D.jpeg

    1292B11F-0E4F-4750-8E64-1FB05DB5ADEE.jpeg
     
  2. central joe

    central joe Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    Looks like a well thought out kit young fellar, not too different to what I have today. joe
     
  3. gohammergo

    gohammergo Still running against the wind..... Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    It's nice to see stuff like that. I wish I had my stuff from long ago but all of it was lost in a house fire.

    Pretty sure all I carried was a small coghlans first aid kit, a Sterno stove, a wool blanket, and some Ohio blue tip matches in a marble's match safe. :)

    The stuff I see in your kit is still relatively modern to me. :)
     
  4. NevadaBlue

    NevadaBlue Graybeard Supporter

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    I like it. I have some old gear in storage, hope to have it available some time this year. It will be fun to examine it all and use some of it.
     
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  5. Zunga

    Zunga Guide

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    Wondering if the magnesium won't spark because it picked up grease from the leaking materials. Or if it simply deteriorates?
     
  6. Stone

    Stone Guide

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    The magnesium isn't supposed to spark...it's supposed to just shave off and be used for tinder as it burns very hot. The ferro rod is the part that sparks and ignites the magnesium shavings.

    Looks like a well thought out kit. Might add some cordage, even though you have some on the knife that you didn't count.
     
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  7. Zunga

    Zunga Guide

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    Ok take your word for It. But why did his post specifically say. "Milspec magniusium "fire starter" will not spark! But shaves" if it's Ferro rod and mag combo still same question. Why no spark?
     
  8. Mikewood

    Mikewood Guide

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    It is a magnesium block about 3”x1”x1/4” that has a small ferro rod insert. The magnesium scraps ok not well. i am having trouble getting the ferro rod side to throw sparks. I don’t know if that is due to oil or age. I have heard these things don’t work well after they are used. I think that might be the case here. That’s ok. I have 3 other forms of fire making in the kit.
     
  9. Zunga

    Zunga Guide

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    Thanks! I was curious. I had a pocket knife with a Ferro rod in the handle. It wasn't a great one but did throw spark. I made a peanut butter sandwich. Got some on the steel. Never made a spark again! From a long term storage perspective. Its wise to know if a 20 year old fire steel will work. If they do fail over time. Then keeping a chunk of flint sounds reasonable in lue.
    Cheers
    Jim
     
  10. gohammergo

    gohammergo Still running against the wind..... Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    I could be wrong about this, but could the rod just have some kind of oxidation on it that needs to be scraped off? I had a couple of rods that I carried in a vest pocket and after not using them for a year or so they wouldn't spark until I scraped them a few times.
     
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  11. DavidJAFO

    DavidJAFO Guide

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    "Remember, no matter where you go, there you are."
    hello,
    hmm.. this is interesting. I'm 'old school' I was both taught & teach Survival Escape & Evasion Bushcraft skills way back in the early 1980's onwards (35 year now) :8: I've still got a U.S issue magnesium block. I was given 2 of these way back 1984 on a exercise with the U.S Rangers. 1st I have used & the 2nd still as issued, bar a scrape along a short edge to test the ferro rod on receiving it. I've given it a clean-up, it looks as good as the day it was issued, print still legible on either side. @Mikewood the ferro rod could be removed & replaced if you can find a similar sized ferro rod my 2 cents worth. DITTO on the @Stone quote. :)
    Regards
    David
     
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  12. J. Pierce

    J. Pierce Supporter Supporter

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    When I was a kid I carried a match safe, a couple band-aids, and a space blanket that I assumed possessed some sort of magical warming powers.

    I also had a survival kit that someone gave me for Christmas. It was in a yellow tin with black print on it. I never carried it through because I was saving it for some grand and dangerous expedition that I was sure to go on at some future date. I've often wondered whatever happened to it. I don't even know what was in it, but I'm sure it could've saved me from anything..... Lol
     
  13. Young Blacksmith

    Young Blacksmith Tracker

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    I had a blast match in storage for about 5 years, when I pulled it out earlier this year the rod was soft, and just scraped off easily, never sparked. It took a dozen pushes and it was gone into powder. Good to hear yours stored much better!
     
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  14. A K Church

    A K Church Guide

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    Back in the early 80s, Brigade Quartermasters sold pre packaged contents for the Life Knife hollowhandle survival knives-good honest pre Rambo knife now mostly forgotten.

    I bought a lot of those little packets and stashed them in coats, glove boxes, pack pockets, etc. Your kit looks much more comprehensive and well thought out, and you came up with it on your own.
     
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2018 at 2:47 PM
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  15. J. Pierce

    J. Pierce Supporter Supporter

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    I was curious, so I started searching Google images.
    I think this was the magical life saving tin that I was saving for a special occasion.

    photo-63 copy 4.JPG
     
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  16. IA Woodsman

    IA Woodsman Overwatch Moderator Staff Member Super Moderator Vendor Lifetime Supporter Bushclass Instructor

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    Looks like a solid kit. Lots of multi-use items
     
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  17. gohammergo

    gohammergo Still running against the wind..... Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    I bet that would have served you well. :) Had you ever needed it. :)
     
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  18. Bobsdock

    Bobsdock Scout

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    Nice kit brother sounds like it faired very well over 20 years. Trioxana will still burn in powder form. I was not a where that a ferro rod could degrade I have several. Just cheeked all my ferro rods they all still spark. Something to defently keep in mind tho.
     
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  19. hunter63

    hunter63 Bushmaster

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    Nice kit....I can relate
    My long time kit has many of the same components...and had evolved from a 2 piece plastic cigarette box from the 1960's....

    Funny how the first kit evolved....

    Bending our a stream..lost my smokes...so cigarette box...with a cut of for matches.....
    As the cigarette pack got emptier more stuff got added in .....

    Next came a metal aspirin box with aspirin for morning after deer camp "flu"...Still carry one of those boxes.....meds have changed.

    Page out of Field and Stream with instruction of the correct way to clean a deer.

    Expanded key moved into the USGI pouch over the years....but still have that plastic waterproof box for fire stuff.


    Good to recheck a repack every year...as you found out contents deteriorate...and time flies...5 years go by and the stick of gum turns to a rock.......
    First aid supplies don't last long, not sure about water purification tablets.
     
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  20. fatcat55

    fatcat55 Scout

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    I still have one. I estimate mine to be around 45 years old. I think I mail ordered mine but really don't remember.

    I opened mine about 2-3 years ago. The bullion cubes had basically disintegrated but the sugar packet and tea bag appeared to be OK. The box of Ohio blue tip strike anywhere matches wrapped in cellophane are probably still good. I did not unroll the tube tent but it is probably fully intact. The whistle works! It also had a candle, wire and a signal mirror along with instructions.

    I was just looking at the kit this past week. I assume if I had needed it, the bullion would have been the only questionable ingredient and the rest would have worked.

    I think it is a fun piece of history and a reminder of my lifelong interest in the outdoors.
     
  21. TX-1948

    TX-1948 Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    Interesting kits and thoughts, thanks for sharing
    As I recall, my 1st super survival get me through anything kit consisted of a metal band-aid box with a couple of band-aids, a few strike anywhere matches, a pack of paper matches, a piece of a candle, fish hook, split sinker, fishing line, some tp, a snake bite kit, and my pocket knife. At some point, it went the way of a lot of my Jr. High stuff. It is probably just as well, it was better than nothing....but just barely.
     
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  22. will62

    will62 Scout

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    Thanks for sharing, nice kit.

    I have one with a similar load. I am not sure what the shelf life for iodine is but I would replace it every year along with the band aids.
     
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  23. Midwest.Bushlore

    Midwest.Bushlore Supporter Supporter

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    Nice kit! Looks like you already had a pretty good handle on the survival thing 20 years ago!
     

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