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Thread: Bug Out Vest

  1. #1
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    Bug Out Vest

    The other thread about how many mags one shoul carry if SHTF got me thinking about carrying fewer mags on my FLC vest and what else I could carry instead for a SHTF(sorry to keep using this term, I'm getting sick of it too) on a vest. This resulted in me think about building something along the lines of what one might call a bug out vest(best name I could come up with). My idea is something that carries most of you survival necesities, but would always be with you, versus a pack that can't be worn while driving or may have to be jettisoned for whatever reason. That way you have enough stuff to keep you going for at least a day or two. So far all I can come up with would be a setup with the following.
    1. The vest itself
    2. A way to carry 3-4 m16 mags
    3. A good flashlight
    4. A knife and or multitool
    5. At least 2 quarts of water(proabably more?)
    6. A couple MREs
    7. A FAK
    8. Other little odds&ends one might need, like a lighter, spare batteries, etc.

    Does this sound like a good idea? I was thinking about picking up a few more of those vests so that I could have one for different situations and rifles, but I'm tyring to decide if this is a good idea so I can line up other gear I'll need for this.

    I hope this post made sense, I'm probably to tired to be posting complete thougths.

  2. #2
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    The more I read these threads the more I think the people that hate firearms have a reason to hate guns.

    Seriously, has anyone used more than a mag in self defense since the civil war?

    If you are going to plan anything please make it water/food, and essential things. Im not saying drop your guns but you can spend your ideas and money on other things that will help more than having "500 mags full next to my bed".

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by perna View Post
    The more I read these threads the more I think the people that hate firearms have a reason to hate guns.

    Seriously, has anyone used more than a mag in self defense since the civil war?

    If you are going to plan anything please make it water/food, and essential things. Im not saying drop your guns but you can spend your ideas and money on other things that will help more than having "500 mags full next to my bed".
    105 shots in 2 minutes.

    http://www.afn.org/~guns/ayoob.html

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    1. The vest itself
    Okay, no problem here. I suppose this could easily be a coat/jacket, depending on the climate.
    2. A way to carry 3-4 m16 mags
    3 or 4 loaded rifle mags, all the time, anytime you're wearing the vest/coat? I'd probably prefer 2 pistol mags and leave the rifle mags in the car or BOB.
    3. A good flashlight
    I can agree with this, plus a spare set or two of CR123 cells
    4. A knife and or multitool
    Again, no question here.
    5. At least 2 quarts of water(proabably more?)
    That is at least 4 pounds of water... which is also rather bulky when bottled. Honestly, I might keep a single .5 liter bottle in my jacket pocket, but I can't imagine going around all the time with a half gallon of water strapped to my person.
    6. A coupl MREs
    Wow. MREs are REALLY bulky - you expect these to fit in a vest? I would think that a few powerbar/granola bar/cereal bars would be a more likely option. If you really want to maximize calories/volume you can get some of the mainstay rations.
    7. A FAK
    Nothing wrong here; I always carry a minimal FAK.
    8. Other little odds&ends one might need, like a lighter, spare batteries, etc.
    Sure, I don't see anything wrong with this either - spare change, lighter, sharpie marker, etc. are all things that people keep in their pockets that would prove very useful in certain situations.


    Looking at your list, I figure you expect to carry upwards of 15 pounds of extra gear about your body every day... because after all, isn't the point of EDC gear or a get home/bug out bag to have the stuff with you when you need it? Or am I totally missing the point here? The general concept is fine, but I think you might be better served to think along the lines of an ultralight hiker vs. an infantryman.

    Of course, if you are simply keeping the vest stashed somewhere and this is just for easy carry, then I see no reason why you can't load up all you want - presuming you are willing and able to carry it.
    Last edited by Chooie; 08-17-09 at 05:49.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chooie View Post
    1. The vest itself
    Okay, no problem here. I suppose this could easily be a coat/jacket, depending on the climate.
    2. A way to carry 3-4 m16 mags
    3 or 4 loaded rifle mags, all the time, anytime you're wearing the vest/coat? I'd probably prefer 2 pistol mags and leave the rifle mags in the car or BOB.
    3. A good flashlight
    I can agree with this, plus a spare set or two of CR123 cells
    4. A knife and or multitool
    Again, no question here.
    5. At least 2 quarts of water(proabably more?)
    That is at least 4 pounds of water... which is also rather bulky when bottled. Honestly, I might keep a single .5 liter bottle in my jacket pocket, but I can't imagine going around all the time with a half gallon of water strapped to my person.
    6. A coupl MREs
    Wow. MREs are REALLY bulky - you expect these to fit in a vest? I would think that a few powerbar/granola bar/cereal bars would be a more likely option. If you really want to maximize calories/volume you can get some of the mainstay rations.
    7. A FAK
    Nothing wrong here; I always carry a minimal FAK.
    8. Other little odds&ends one might need, like a lighter, spare batteries, etc.
    Sure, I don't see anything wrong with this either - spare change, lighter, sharpie marker, etc. are all things that people keep in their pockets that would prove very useful in certain situations.


    Looking at your list, I figure you expect to carry upwards of 15 pounds of extra gear about your body every day... because after all, isn't the point of EDC gear or a get home/bug out bag to have the stuff with you when you need it? Or am I totally missing the point here? The general concept is fine, but I think you might be better served to think along the lines of an ultralight hiker vs. an infantryman.

    Of course, if you are simply keeping the vest stashed somewhere and this is just for easy carry, then I see no reason why you can't load up all you want - presuming you are willing and able to carry it.
    I don't think I explained this one fully. My idea wasn't to wear it every day, but instead keep it with a BOB as a supplement that could be kept on your person in the event that you need to leave. I was already having some troubles justifying the concept myself and I figured I would throw the idea out there to see what others thought.

    I probably am to optimistic about my plans for carrying that much food and water. I'll consider cutting back on the food, but considering my location I'm having troubles cutting back on water very much.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by SoDak View Post
    I don't think I explained this one fully. My idea wasn't to wear it every day, but instead keep it with a BOB as a supplement that could be kept on your person in the event that you need to leave. I was already having some troubles justifying the concept myself and I figured I would throw the idea out there to see what others thought.

    I probably am to optimistic about my plans for carrying that much food and water. I'll consider cutting back on the food, but considering my location I'm having troubles cutting back on water very much.
    Aah, gotya - it is supplemental to your existing BOB. If that is the case, then I think you are on track. How do you plan on carrying the water? I suspect that standard 20 oz or 16.9 oz bottles would fit fine in a double mag pouch, but you might want to look into a camelbak or other hydration system. You would be able to carry a larger volume of drinking water with less bulk.

  7. #7
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    OP-I have a Maxpedition Versipack set up in a similar manner...

    + full size handgun/mags
    - MRE and water

    A bigger version(i have the Fatboy) may allow an MRE or two and some water?


    Quote Originally Posted by perna View Post
    spend your ideas and money on other things that will help more than having "500 mags full next to my bed".


    I thought the OP wrote "3-4 mags" for a possible disaster scenario?


    The more I read these threads the more I think the people that hate firearms have a reason to hate guns.

  8. #8
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    http://m4carbine.net/showthread.php?t=29482

    "The new kit will consist of what I personally feel, for my individual needs, the absolute bare minimum for trying to stay 6' atop soil. This is a test. This is only a test. That being stated, I'm curious to see if I can squeeze shelter/cooking/firemaking/water-procurement into an extremely small, lightweight package, instead of turtle-backing. It will definitely allow for extended ranges, faster speeds, and infinitely more mobility.

    The system I'm rigging together may prove interesting, and theoretically, I think it's jam-up, but, I'm going to have to field test it to verify. Should be fun.

    For this outing, I'm nixing everything but the utmost minimal of what I see as essentials. "


    Kit, Interdiction, Black Bear, MARK 2, MOD 1


    It's an older picture, and every piece of mobile "survival stuff" I've got is either stuffed into my CFP-90, or scattered about the house.

    I recently moved, and my gear is so disheveled it's disgraceful.

    I'll try and sling up some pics of the kit I'm working with now in the near future. The vest is a ratass old Blackhawk Omega.

    The kit is nothing more than stuff NOT being used for its designed/intended purpose. The buttpack is attached to the webbing on the back of the vest, only to raise the center of gravity. Since the vest bears the load, it's a lot more comfortable than a standard backpack-based system.

    It comes down to mobility or utility. I personally feel that overpacking will be more of a hindrance than a help. It really depends on your personal "worst-case scenario".

    The vest-based system allows more mobility than a backpack-based setup. The backpack-based setup allows you to carry a lot more equipment. It depends on what the intended purpose of getting out of Dodge is. If I had an EOD vest laying around, or a MOLLE vest, it would be a better system; however my current MOLLE vest is used for shooting. Truth be told, if things go to hell in a handbasket, I'll have to seriously debate whether I would even think about bringing a long gun. Less is sometimes more, and the avoidance of confrontation is the best course of action. Mobility affords one the opportunity to decrease the odds of getting caught with your ass out, if you're following me.

    If you were forced to bug out on foot, and your goal was to set up some sort of base-camp, and you were with a small group, then I would most likely advocate a backpack/larger system.

    If you're in it alone, and things are nastier than they've been since 800 A.D., I'm going to go with the vest system.

    My reasons are simple:

    If you're bugging out on foot, things are probably bad; REAL bad. By lugging 100lbs of kit, you're only going to:

    1) Expend more calories
    2) Lose more fluids
    3) Eventually run out of supplies

    I will in no way, shape, fashion, or form, profess to be an expert. This is all experimental/learning stuff for my own steps upward on Maslow's rungs. That being said, we've got to be pragmatic about the situation. If things are bad enough out there, that you're forced to scrape a living off of rocks, a Jetboil, 10 mags, and 24lbs of MREs are only postponing the inevitable:

    We either eat dirt literally or figuratively. In that, at some point we have to make do with wild-edibles, primitive fire-making, scavenging/foraging, hunting, etc. or we're quite totally hosed. Rather than kit our way into surviving, we're better served by getting out there, and making the best of a bad situation, when we've got cozy beds to go home to, and a pantry/fridge full of treats.

    I'm not attempting to come across as a hard ass, because I am most certainly not a hard ass, but facts is facts.

    In an "OMFG, THE Apocalypse is at Hand" situation, tools are about the only thing worth a damn at that point, since all else is merely a short postponement of one's dirtnap.

    Now, on the other hand, if your BOB is functioning as a Get-Home-Bag, or a get to your bugout retreat on foot bag, then we're entering totally different turf altogether.

    Since that topic will most likely be the more common situation, and one that I'm also incorporating into my contingency planning, its already being discussed in the broader areas of this sub-forum. The vest-option, is something I consider to be the lightest-weight, highest-mobility, most challenging path to take. Especially, if you're working with gear that isn't optimally configured for this sort of loadout.

    The biggest benefit, thus far, to me is a comfortable, even displacement of load, making longer distances easier to tackle, with less caloric burn.

    If I eventually go with this configuration as my go-to bug-out option, I would probably want to go with a MOLLE vest, so that large portions of the front aren't wasted as mine is now. That being said, it's mildly hypocritical to say that, since the more pockets there are, the more likely I am to fill them with stuff.

    A vicious cycle...

    Last edited by Outlander Systems; 08-17-09 at 22:25.
    Quote Originally Posted by markm View Post
    Our president is a Tier 1 JOKE!

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    I'm still trying to figure out the best type/method of fishing gear to take. Fishing, to me, is a viable way to acquire some grub. Snares, small and easy to transport. Rods are another animal. Maybe just some line, hooks, and lure.

  10. #10
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    I'm considering a 550-cord net, and a stick to mount it on.

    Net + Patience = Dinner

    In all seriousness, I've tried to figure out how to put together a compact rod for fishing, short of Stick + Line = Lunch

    A frog-gigging trident takes up almost no space, and, again, requires our good friend Mr. Stick to mount it to. It might even be possible to spear fish with it. That's well beyond my ken, but it would be interesting. Frogs are way easier to stab than a fish.
    Quote Originally Posted by markm View Post
    Our president is a Tier 1 JOKE!

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