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I have a Youtube channel where I do a lot of solar, DIY, woodworking, and prepper videos. Yesterday I shot a video of my basic, super cheap bug out bag for my subscribers. I'm not as hardcore as most of you and I don't really believe strongly in a SHTF scenario where you might have to bug out of your home forever but this is more of a 72 hour kit that gives me the basics for surviving short term away from home if I had to evacuate for a tornado or train crash (major BNSF yard a couple miles from me).

Anyways, be gentle on the critiques! I am welcome to ideas and suggestions, though.

 

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A very good, simple, easy bug out bag.
You cover the essentials (shelter/water/food), and don't overdue it.
As you stated, it could use a bit more expansion in the food department, but that's not truly a necessity for just a 72 hour bag. A comfort, sure, but not a necessity.

I say well done!
 

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I'll be gentle, but I don't sugarcoat so I hope you were looking for honest opinions!

Overall; I like it, you've done a good job of putting together a strong assortment of essentials that should help you through a lot of tough conditions. As Kauboy points out, you did this without the kitchen sink which is where almost everyone goes wrong with their kits early on (and some still do later on... also I'm not saying this is the first kit you've ever built, just mentioning it for reference).

With that said;

1) Right off the line, I noticed your tarp is still in its package. So is your rain poncho and emergency blanket. This tells me you haven't used any of those things, and during an emergency is not when you want to be doing that. What if the tarp or poncho is torn? Can either survive more than a light rainfall? My number one rule of any kit, bug out, bug in, get home, inch... if it's in there, it should be something you trust and have used many times before. Also, you'll cut down on weight by dumping the packaging (ounces make a difference, ask any backpacker).

2) Nylon rope and bungee's. I've tested a decent number of rope materials in the backcountry, and nylon rope is scary bad. It can't handle friction, don't even think of getting it within feet of your fire, and it's slippery as all get out. I would highly recommend swapping that out with 50' of paracord or if you're anti-paracord just because of how much paracord there is, get mason line. Both are lighter, can handle much more weight, are brilliant for knots and can be twisted to double or triple their load rating.

3) This and 4 relate to your food; nothing negative really, but I would recommend throwing a candy bar in there. They last nearly forever, they're awesome for moral, and they give you the energy you need to make a huge difference in distance covered or setting up shelter. Energy bars are good too, but a Snickers or Mars bar has made the difference for more than one backpacker.

4) The can opener. It's ginormous man. You could almost build a farm with that thing. Grab yourself a p38. Handy trick if you don't have a can opener (or a knife, because really that's all a can opener is); rub the can upside down on concrete for about 30 seconds to a minute. The top will pop right off.

5) Which brings up another point; you have no knife! If you invest in one thing, invest in a good quality bushcraft style knife. Nothing tactical, nothing tanto, forget serrated. Get a solid, sturdy knife. It will save your life some day.

6) Matches, this is a matter of preference, but one bic lighter will ignite more fires than that entire bag of matches. We've got five in each of our kits. :)

7) Last but not least, I'd recommend putting together your fire starters ahead of time (the cotton balls and vaseline). Not only does it cut down on space and weight, but if you've ever been dead tired and had to start a fire in the rain, you don't want to be messing with multiple steps. During high stress and low energy people turn into cavemen. Prepare as such.
 

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I am just starting up my BOB for my failies and I find this really helpful however I would change a few things though dannydefense pretty much covered a huge deal of adjustments.

I would reiterate on the cottonballs. Prepare them ahead like he stated but you can also use old pill cases to store them. Way less room than the Plano box.

Of course water is a big must I would suggest investing in a Life Straw to eliminate some bottles.

I know its a 72 hour scenario but I would invest in more cordage vs. bungees over time they become weak

I live in Texas too and I added sunscreen to my bag

I would change the flashlights to the LED type simply because you can get more battery life as well as light



thanks for the video helped me get some good ideas for a quick BOB hoped my suggestions helped
 
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With regard to food and protein...

Most Americans (that pay attention to what they consume) are shooting for a healthy diet around 1800 to 2200 calories a day. So lets call it 2000.
I know from some recent hikes, that if I only go a short distance like 2 to 3 miles, my calorie burn is negligible - like 250 calories. But as soon as I hike something closer to 6 miles (over rugged terrain with elevation changes), all of the sudden I'm burning 1000 calories.

If I'm use to 2000 calories and post SHTF I'm only getting 1600, then a 1000 calorie hike will be a significant resource drain. That is going to require some energy dense food. A can of tuna and some peanuts will be GREAT but I know I'll need more food than that to make 72 hours. Confession time - I do have the traditional American SHTF food store that goes around my belly, so there is that, but how long will that last?
 

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Of course water is a big must I would suggest investing in a Life Straw to eliminate some bottles.
Up until recently I've handled water by either boiling, naturally filtering it or using my best judgement (knock on wood, I've yet to get sick from directly drinking out of some sources). Nevertheless I gave one of those a go for the first time on a 3 day hike this past weekend.

While I'll continue to use my bushcrafting methods whenever possible, we have one for each of our kits now. It's light to the point of being non-existent, and it works fantastically.
 

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Up until recently I've handled water by either boiling, naturally filtering it or using my best judgement (knock on wood, I've yet to get sick from directly drinking out of some sources). Nevertheless I gave one of those a go for the first time on a 3 day hike this past weekend.

While I'll continue to use my bushcrafting methods whenever possible, we have one for each of our kits now. It's light to the point of being non-existent, and it works fantastically.
Yea I'm still starting up my bushcrafting skills and tools so a natural filter I'm still trying to learn and just recently bought a SS drinking cup to boil the water
 

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I think you did a good job of presenting. As I have never done a YouTube video I commend you. Having said that I agree with a couple of the points already made about the contents of the bag. You need a knife and if you go for a Swiss Army type you can lose the can opener. The can openers on Swiss Army knives work, but they take a bit of practice so try it in your kitchen at home first. Lose the tarp, which is pretty bulky and the rope and go for a tube tent and some paracord. Tube tents are really cheap and give you at least as good shelter as the tarp. I would toss in a toothbrush, toothpaste, and a bar of soap for cleanliness, a bandana, and more food. :)

You had gloves, but I would add a watch cap, socks, and tell the viewers to put in a set of clothes appropriate to their climate.

I know your intent is to keep this bag cheap, so you may or may not want to go with my last item which is an AM/FM radio. My experience has been that disasters are confusing situations and if you can get a little news it is a good thing.
 
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