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Discussion Starter #1
I'm on a strict budget for prepping, and one of the things I'm wondering about, is the bug out bag.

I know a LOT of things can be had from the dollar stores, but is it worth it? Would you use the item in everyday life? What got me to thinking about this was a port o potty on a job site. I would do my business, and the TP was CHEAP. I could wipe and wipe, and still it seemed like I had a$$ rash at the end of the day. So I started wondering. If I wouldn't use this toilet paper in everyday life, would I pack it in my bug out bag?

Goes for anything. Deoderant, toothpaste, tools. If I buy the good deoderant because it works, why would I buy discount deoderant that doesn't work to put in my bug out bag?

I guess, what I'm asking, is is it "worth" it, or a good idea to pack "the good stuff"

Ideally, I guess you would only have what you need to get to your BOL, but what if you can't get there, or you DON"T have a BOL, and had to be on the move constantly?
 

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I generally don't go cheap on anything that I could potentially have to bet my life or well being on. Proper prior planning would increase your odds of making it in one piece.
 

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I generally don't go cheap on anything that I could potentially have to bet my life or well being on. Proper prior planning would increase your odds of making it in one piece.
I couldn't agree more. You may be able to get several things relatively cheap, but your best bet is going to be getting things on sale. Couponing, and looking for the cheapest deals for good products will go a long way.
 

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I buy cheap on the stuff that is a preference not a need. I stock piled tooth paste and soap based on the name brand at the dollar store that gave me the most. Not my preferred brands but they work. Hair brushes, tooth brushes, nail clippers, shampoo (all in one) dish soap ect.
 

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My philosophy on what goes into the BOB is something like this: You put your second best stuff in there. The stuff that you can live without on a daily basis, but could depend on in an emergency. As you buy, make, or acquire better stuff, you replace the stuff in your BOB with the stuff you previously had as your best. Example: I recently changed out my carry ammo in .45. The stuff I was previously carrying went into my BOB's magazines. I also recently picked up a new MultiCam jacket, and put my older jacket in my BOB.
 

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theres a preppers trade/swap meet goin on in covina i know youre so cal, check out meet up.com and you go and trade and barter.
 

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I put the best quality stuff I can afford in my gear bags. If I have to use them, I do not want stuff that fails me. And I usually buy two of everything, and keep two bags at the ready.

I also like Alpha-17s approach as an alternative.
 

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I hit the dollar tree about twice a month. They have a ton of small stuff that is useful - candy, diapers, wipes, candles, matches, lighters, etc etc.

All these things make great additions to your bag. Great to barter with as well.
 

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you can also try the Gander Mtn stores and other sportsman type stores as well for the backpacker supply's,They always have decent prices and lots of useful items to for emergencies..
 

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I can't exactly afford top shelf items, but I don't go with the cheapest, either. Sales are best, but if it's something you'd have a hard time doing without, get something of good value.
 

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I find a lot of stuff on eBay. Also a local army surplus store has some good deals one some things. And I go every weekend to yard sales looking for prepping gear. Found a stove today at a dollar sore.
 

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I dictate to the best I can afford approach myself. Cutting corners always has a price even if you don't see it till later when something doesn't do all of what you need it to and you wish you bought what your conscience told you to wait for instead of going the cheaper/easier route. There are some things out there you can save money on, but others of specific importance you should not. Like your bugout bag, main knife, compass, water filter, boots, firearms, and lots of other things.
 

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If you are careful and look for sales at sites such as LA Police Gear, you can get some really good deals on quality merchandise at very good prices. Someone posted information on here several weeks ago about a closeout sale they were having on some Marine Corps boots that were originally over $200 that were on sale for around $30. And they were made in the USA! Several people on the forum, including myself, bought a pair and are very happy with them. I just posted a link about a sale they are having on Polartec Fleece jackets, originally costing about $130 on sale for about $30-35. I just got 2, one for me and one for my wife for $30 each on a Presidents Day sale, but they are still on sale for $35 now. You can find quality items if you search and are patient. In the long run, quality pays for itself. "Cheap" does not last and will fail you when you need it most, IMHO. Inexpensive and "cheap" are not the same, BTW. Look for bargains, and buy the best "quality" merchandise you can. It will pay for itself in the long run.
 
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