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Mrdahut

Skill VS Gear

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I have been doing A lot of wondering lately. Which has greater value skill or gear.

I know that you need both but when all factors come together what do the rest of you feel is the greater asset.

IMHO I think skill the greater and wider the range of skills you have the less gear you need and the more gear you can improvise on the move. About the only time I see gear over skill is an ELI and to be honest if its a dead planet why bother.

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Gear should, ultimately, serve as a supplement for skill but not as a replacement for it as much as possible. However, that's not to say gear should be shunned either. A person who can forage for everything will last a lot longer than most...but he won't be particularly comfortable while he's doing it ;)

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that's not to say gear should be shunned either. A person who can forage for everything will last a lot longer than most...but he won't be particularly comfortable while he's doing it ;)

 

My plan is to stay put. If we have to move fast or far without a vechicle we are in trouble. So I favor more gear or more accurately more supplies.

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Have to lean more toward skills you can all the top of the line gear but if you don't have the skill to use it what good is it. seen some one try start a fire with a lighter and gas and couldn't keep it going please don't get me wrong love gear it makes your life easier

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I agree with urban that I too feel quite naked without my pocket knife but skill, in my opinion always trumps gear. Gear can be found, made, improvised but if you don't have any skills or knowledge than the best gear in the world will not do you any good.

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I'm a skill based guy I guess. Knowing how to make or find what you need is a good safety net. Fabricating a functional knife isn't as difficult as one might think, and once you have that making everything else kind of falls into place.

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Skill.

Give the right tool to the right person and it works because of skill. Give a hammer to a monkey and you got a bunch of broken stuff. Give the same hammer to a carpenter and good things happen.

But Gear and gadgets can be a crutch for the skill impaired.

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Skill.

Give the right tool to the right person and it works because of skill. Give a hammer to a monkey and you got a bunch of broken stuff. Give the same hammer to a carpenter and good things happen.

But Gear and gadgets can be a crutch for the skill impaired.

 

That explains who built my house. Surely wasn't a carpenter. Sheet rock made in China...Chinese monkey.

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Skill.

Give the right tool to the right person and it works because of skill. Give a hammer to a monkey and you got a bunch of broken stuff. Give the same hammer to a carpenter and good things happen.

But Gear and gadgets can be a crutch for the skill impaired.

Well said Awake

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Skill.

Give the right tool to the right person and it works because of skill. Give a hammer to a monkey and you got a bunch of broken stuff. Give the same hammer to a carpenter and good things happen.

But Gear and gadgets can be a crutch for the skill impaired.

 

Another thumbs-up for awake's reasoning.

 

The way I figure it, some of the gear that should be useful and would be considered a normal part of prepping could actually be harmful or even fatal if you don't have the skill/knowledge to make appropriate use of it. Sort of like being armed to the teeth but not bothering to get in any practice - you won't need MZB hordes to take you out when you're just as likely to shoot yourself in the leg and bleed out because you also aren't familiar with your first aid kit. Or (perhaps more likely), you'll set up your cook stove in your BOL and poison yourself with carbon monoxide, accidentally set fire to something, get botulism from improperly preserved food...

 

A good reminder that prepping isn't just about stockpiling supplies, it's about knowing WHY you are gathering those supplies, HOW you are going to use them, and then getting PRACTICE until you can go through the motions by rote, without getting confused, needing to consult directions, etc. Hone your skills so that they will be second nature when you're slightly panicked and running on adrenalin and dread.

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I agree with most of what is said here. If i may refine the Question a bit more. Because of mobility and stealth do you guys feel it is more appropriate to rely almost exclusively on bush craft and primitive skills and pack as little gear as possible IE Les Stroud or go for a much more gear intensive pack.

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I agree with most of what is said here. If i may refine the Question a bit more. Because of mobility and stealth do you guys feel it is more appropriate to rely almost exclusively on bush craft and primitive skills and pack as little gear as possible IE Les Stroud or go for a much more gear intensive pack.

 

I think situation dictates the response to that question for me. If I were living in the arctic again I'd choose to pack more gear. The same would be the case if I were mounted, in a vehicle, you have to be able to maintain your wheels and tools take space. On foot for most of the lower 48 states I'm inclined to pack light and tap into my skill and knowledge reserves because that stuff gets heavy :)

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Skill..You can make what you need.Scrounge for it..

Its not easy,but putting Time into the skill is better than haveing 70 pounds of gear and not knowing how to use it.

Example ..fire starter..strike with metal get a spark..Ok you got a spark,do you have the petrolem jelly on a cotton ball,epi hand antiseoic (alchol) and dry kindling for the spark to catch?how about the next level of wood small sticks,larger dry sticks,rocks or a wind shield??

 

Ok so Im in the mood.sorry

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OC you hit the nail on the head with the firearm comment. I have seen too many people with firearms that they dont understand how to operate a safety on/off but they believe they defend a city with their bright new AR or AK. Just an accident waiting to happen. With any gear you need to train. and with any skill you have to practice.

Just an opinion here but i will go to my gear first. This will make things easier and faster. THen I will rely on redundant back ups until i am at survival skill level. Just trying to increase the odds my family can carry on.

 

As far as mobility and stealth are concerned, that should be considered up front. My EDC is the most mobile and stealth. My BOB is second. GOOD is third. BOV is last. Each piece is built up from the carry before it. It can be paired down as the situation demands. Push comes to shove i can survive with my EDC but i can do it easier In my BOV mode.

 

101 Matt. 70lbs of gear? hope you got strong legs and back my friend. and yes skills are a ton lighter than gear.

Edited by awake

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Awake..Oh sugar no..Im to old to carry that much weight..LMAO..Im a Stealth kind of person,move light and fast....Hide in plan site,watch listen Duck.

 

glad to hear. E & E is a great skill for us to use. Confrontation is the last thing i need. i just blend and let everyone under estimate me.

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hello all:

 

Awake your response was perfect.

 

I keep hearing these names like les stroud and bear grills and who ever and it gives me pause,

I posted on the hammock thread how I feel about disease and such I hope some will read it.

 

having been air lifted out I know that minimalist are not going to make it long

oh sure there are always a few exceptions I just hope people do not forget if something bad

or you get a virus or infection putting chewing tobacco on it is not always going to work.

 

And do not get me wrong, these shows are interesting and have some good points

just remember that they have a backup and we have hospitals if there is a problem in this

country if you do not have cash or trade your probably not going to get treatment.

 

Antibiotic so common now before 1940 were not sulfa was used and many were allergic

the fact that no one fears infection or considers disease much is a testament to how good

antibiotic are and have become BUT if your in the wilderness or if there is a monetary crash

who will be able to afford them when bugging out will you have them and the right one there

are 3 you need as they are best on certain problems.

 

as long as we have gadgets we can learn the skill if we are able, and now is the time to learn

and pass on any skills we can because once your in the bush it all changes and most of us know

how difficult things are when we have all we need imagine how limited when there's no money

to go to china mart or in the middle of nowhere.

 

I carry a block and tackle miniature but it can move all that 550 para cord can but without the skill

getting injured using any tool like cutting toward yourself or lifting from a weak limb skill is my choice

but if common sense is not part of that equation your in deep trouble.

 

this thread got me thinking, I need to find a slide rule now there is a tool if you got skills.......

Edited by juzcallmesnake

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Snake.

as usual you have a keen eye. biggest problem I see for those that prep is the fact they dont spend any time thinking about sanitation. From clothes washing to dish washing to food prep and using the bathroom in the woods, people will die from lack of proper sanitation. You want to see hell on earth? watch 4 guys get sick in the woods and have to hike them out 15 miles. And that was with experienced backpackers.

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Soap making and I mean real soap making. AN arduous and nasty task when truly done the old way. But it is a skill that should be learned by all. Sure you can dig latrines. You can rig baths and showers. You can do rubbish burns. But you and your clothes need to get clean. you need something to make your mess kits clean to wash your "homes with." Snake and Awake this is exactly what I was looking for about skill.

 

 

Btw I have been unable to find an actual recipe for how to culture penicillin with out having some serious lab space and yet they where able to in the begging any body a good reference.

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The good hygiene thing is a BIG deal, possibly worth its own separate thread (I humbly suggest the title, "Cleanliness is next to preparedness," but hey, I'll be happy with anything).

 

If you want great examples of people understanding strategic retreat, the need of supplies, and how to handle surviving as a group during dire circumstances, study Russian history. In particular, look at how they managed to repel both Napoleon and the Nazis, while NOT succumbing to many of the kinds of diseases and epidemics that normally lay waste to a population under siege. You know why? Even when there was no food left to forage or no firewood to be found, people were set to work cleaning, clearing debris, etc. Where there's no backlog of trash and waste, there's no place for bacteria or toxins to gain a toehold. During the WWII siege of Leningrad (now St. Petersburg), which lasted YEARS, they had a minor outbreak of cholera that was quickly contained and eliminated. That's almost unheard of elsewhere.

 

They were also brilliant in that the Russians knew that the enemies coming after them needed an opportunity to resupply, and so when they surrendered Moscow to Napoleon, they basically sacked their own city, evacuated 2/3 of the population, and took ALL of the food and gear with them. This set up Napoleon's troops for starvation, illness, and later, desertion. The Russian generals also would burn fields as they retreated, so Napoleon's horses starved, weakened, and died. It's a HORRIBLE blow to the Russian people, but it effectively won them the war.

 

Anyway, worth considering: Keep your BOL clean to manage your group's overall health. Be prepared (mentally and physically) both for retreat and defense, and remember that you can still deal a blow even if you can't hold your ground. And knowing your own BOL's strengths and weaknesses, both the structure/location AND climate, can give you a huge advantage over potential adversaries.

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