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Archive for the ‘SERE’ Category

Ceramic Escape Knife from Gearward

Thursday, August 28th, 2014


Seen here with other items, the Ceramic Escape Knife from Gearward makes a great emergency backup knife. The uses are limited but by your imagination.


As you can see, it can be also stored in a wide variety of locations on your clothing, footwear and kit for retrieval and use in the most dire of circumstances. Being ceramic, it’s also not going to set off magnetometers.


A simple storage compartment can easily be created with the aid of the CEK.


-Ceramic blade stays sharp 10x longer than steel
-Will not rust
-1.75″ x 0.4″ closed; 1.25″ cutting edge
-Weighs 2.5 grams – as much as a penny
-Made in Canada

EJ Snyder Featured In American Survival Guide

Monday, August 25th, 2014

Who remembers American Survival Guide from the 1980s? It enjoyed a long run thanks to the survivalist movement that had sprung up. When the economy improved in the 90s, it was gone but it has found a new lease on life due to the rise of the prepper community.


You may have heard of EJ Snyder from his two appearances on the Discovery Channel show “Naked and Afraid” as well as other TV appearances. Some of you may know him from his 25 years of military service as he retired as a Sergeant Major from the US Army.


In the latest issue of American Survival Guide, EJ shares his top 10 tips for staying alive. He isn’t all Hollywood. EJ is an instructor at the US Army’s SERE school at Ft Bragg. While it might be old hat for some, it’s worth a read.

VSSL Outdoor Utility Tools

Monday, August 18th, 2014


With the adoption of LEDs, the traditional battery-and-bulb flashlight became largely obsolete, as LEDs are capable of producing light with reduced power requirements. VSSL Outdoor Utility Tools were created to utilize the form factor of these traditional flashlights by using a small form LED light and converting the extra handle space into storage for outdoor and survival gear.

Made from MilSpec 6061 seamless extruded aluminum, the VSSL is a waterproof 8″ x 2″ tube which comes standard with a dual mode LED flashlight and an oil filled compass. VSSLs are currently being offered in three configurations: Supplies, First Aid, and Shelter, which feature pre-packaged components. The Supplies configuration, for example, includes the following items, stored in tins specifically designed to fit in the VSSL:

• 4 hour pure Canadian beeswax candle

• Razor blade

• 6 Aquatabs® water purification tablets

• Wire saw (high tensile, 60lb working strength with handle straps)

• Aluminum beadless emergency whistle

• Waterproof matches

• Tinder Quik® fire starters

• Fishing Gear

• Signalling Mirror

• Kevlar® rope (150lb breaking strength)

• Reflective trail markers

• P38 military GI Type can opener

• First aid supplies

Made and assembled in Canada, using components from Ireland, India, USA, China, Mexico and Canada. Currently available for pre-order, with an expected ship date sometime in Fall 2014. If you’re interested in picking up one for yourself, they currently have promo code PREORDER20, which will save you 20% off your order.

OR Summer Market – Zubin Axe

Thursday, August 14th, 2014

The Zubin Axe caught my eye as I walked through the maze of booths in the three outdoor pavilions. It consists of a hiking staff and a series of optional heads that change the function of the device.


Heads include Axe, Saw, Slingshot, Spear and Fishing Spear.

OR Summer Market – Self Reliance Outfitters

Friday, August 8th, 2014

Self Reliance Outfitters is the retail arm of Pathfinder School LLC. Dave Canterbury is the principle of Pathfinder School. You may recognize his name from the show “Dual Survival”.


Dave has written a new book called “Bushcraft 101″ which ships the second week in September. I asked Dave about the book and he said he wanted to focus on bushcraft and the outdoor living skills that keep you alive. His is a no nonsense approach that focuses less on gadgets and more on skills. The book covers the 10 Cs with special emphasis on the 5 Cs of Cutting Tool, Combustion Device, Container, Cover and Cordage. If you’re not familiar with these items and how they relate to survival this is a great book for you.


Dave Canterbury can also be seen on the new Hunt Channel show “Pathfinder Outdoor Journal” which is a historical look at how outdoorsman have lived and what they carried over the centuries. You can see past episodes at

Base Camp X – Fire Piston

Tuesday, August 5th, 2014


The Base Camp X “Prometheus” Fire Piston is an old world technology that uses air friction to ignite tinder, creating an ember for fire building. The Fire Piston is made from hand turned hickory, with the pressure relief valve, lanyard loop, and internal shaft made from brass. Each Fire Piston comes with a supply of char cloth tinder and a hand cut leather lanyard. If you’re curious about how the Fire Piston functions, the below video shows it in action.

Motopeds – Survival Bike

Monday, August 4th, 2014

Motoped is a company formed from a successful Kickstarter venture for a motorized bike kit that utilizes an XR50/pitbike engine and standard mountain bike components. They’ve recently unveiled a prototype of their next product, the ‘Survival Bike’.

Survival Bike

Although the specs haven’t been released yet, the base model Survival Bike shown above has changes over the standard model including a subdued color scheme with Olive Drab overtones, additional fuel canisters, and a carry rack.

Survival Bike Black Ops

Pictured above is the ‘Black Ops’ model, which features the following tools and accessories:

- Barnett Recruit Compound Crossbow

- Rotopax RX-1G Gas Packs – 1 Gallon

- United Cutlery M48 Tactical Survival Shovel

- United Cutlery M48 Hawk Tomahawk

- United Cutlery M48 Hawk Harpoon

- Gerber Fixed Blade Saw

- Blackburn X6 Light System

- Black Diamond Carabiners / Climbing rope

- Cree Mini LED Flashlight

- BioLogic Bike Mount for iPhone4/gps

- Tool Logic Tactical Multifunction Knife / light

- Tool Logic Credit Card Companion multi-tool

- CRKT Guppie multi-tool

- Tactical-Warrior Neck Knife

Be sure to frequent the Motopeds Facebook page for continuing information on the Survival Bike, including final specs and pricing, as it becomes available.

88 Tactical Offers Civilian SERE Training

Sunday, August 3rd, 2014

First off, I have to address their name. 88 Tactical isn’t some nefarious code for something that would turn my stomach. Started in 2009, it’s made up of guys with a history of public service in the military and law enforcement. They are based in Nebraska and you may have seen them on one of the “survival shelter” shows on cable.

Second, I’ll address what they do. Aside from the usual firearms and tactical training, the guys at 88 Tactical are working to make a name for themselves in the bushcraft and survival arenas. There is definitely a demand for Survival training in the civilian market. But, I’ll address a concern some of you will share with me. 88 Tactical offers what they refer to as SERE training (Survive, Endure, Respond, Excel) but some of their courses, which I won’t cover here, are offered to select LE and civilians only, so this isn’t all open enrollment training. You’ve got to have the credentials to get more in depth training.

Of their offerings, Intro to Survival Skills is a good starting point. It’s a one day course with some basic classroom followed by “dirt time” where you’ll get hands on experience in these areas:

Survival mindset
What to do in a wilderness emergency
Choosing the proper equipment
Personal Survival Kits (PSK)
First Aid Kit (FAK)
Choosing proper cutting tools
Man made fire starters
Safety considerations
Shelter construction
Building fires
Signaling rescuers
Procuring water

SERE Level 1 builds on those basic skills in a two-day course featuring an overnight in a shelter built using techniques taught in the course. Topics include:

Water procurement
Personal protection
Tool care
Land nav and making movement
Weather dependent skills

88 Tactical’s SERE 1, “Rural Ops” from 88 Tactical Group on Vimeo.

SERE Level 2 is an intermediate course that once again takes place in the field over a two-and-a-half period. You have to have completed their Level 1 course and the instruction goes into more depth in these subjects:

Personal Survival Kits (PSK)
First Aid Kit (FAK)
Choosing the proper cutting tools
Safety considerations
Sourcing food and water
Camp selection
Knife and saw use
Knots and hitches

This video, gives you an idea of what this course is about.

88 Tactical’s SERE 2, “Escape from Metropolis” from 88 Tactical Group on Vimeo.

X-Caliber System Update – Now Available Through Chiappa Firearms

Tuesday, July 29th, 2014

Chiappa is now offering the X-Caliber Multi-caliber bore insert system coupled with a modernized M6 break action survival rifle.

Even though we first mentioned the X-caliber system in late 2012, we still get emails inquiring about it. Originally offered by Tim Ralston’s GearUp Center, as a stand alone kit, this model from Chiappas is kind of interesting.


It’s an over/under design featuring a rifled .22 LR and smooth bore 12 ga barrels. This gives you a total of 12 different calibers with the the 8 X-caliber steel adapter inserts. That’s the 2 calibers in the M6 along with 8 pistol calibers (.380 , 9 mm, .357Mag/.38SP, .40 S & W, .44 Mag, .45 ACP , .410/.45colt ) and 2 shotgun calibers (.410 and 20 ga).


The M6 was designed originally as a survival rifle for downed USAF aircrews. As I’ve stated, it’s an Over/Under design and it can be bent in half for storage or transportation. Interestingly, it’s cocked via opening the break action and uses double triggers with one for each barrel. The “lever”, or extended trigger guard is used to release the action.


Two things they’ve done to “modernize” the type is to add 3 Mil Std 1913 rails at the receiver and incorporated a molded polypropylene stock. I’m not sold on that component but everything else looks ok. It features an 18.5″ barrel with an overall length of 34.6″ with the stock in place. Stored length is 18.5″.

Shoot, A Fella’ Could Have A Pretty Good Weekend In Vegas With All That Stuff

Tuesday, July 29th, 2014

This never gets old. Is it wrong for me to miss the Cold War?

“Survival kit contents check. In them you’ll find:
- One forty-five caliber automatic
- Two boxes of ammunition
- Four days’ concentrated emergency rations
- One drug issue containing antibiotics, morphine, vitamin pills, pep pills, sleeping pills, tranquilizer pills
- One miniature combination Russian phrase book and Bible
- One hundred dollars in rubles
- One hundred dollars in gold
- Nine packs of chewing gum
- One issue of prophylactics
- Three lipsticks
- Three pair of nylon stockings.

Shoot, a fella’ could have a pretty good weekend in Vegas with all that stuff.”