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My Urban Survival Kit

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Tonight I assembled my own version of an 'urban' EDC kit. It had to be cheap, it had to be able to stay dry even if I wade through waist deep water, and it had to fit in the cargo pocket of my tac pants or in the front zip pocket of my jacket/vest. Most of all, it needed to be more oriented towards things I might encounter in a city environment, not a 'lost in the woods' one. I don't need a compass in a city of over a million people with street signs everywhere, and a whistle isn't much good either. Figuring out what might be useful took a LONG time and much debate at home and at work. I decided on Protection (from sun/bugs/illness/injury), tools (to repair my clothing/gear), and money (to buy food/drink/transport).


I tried an Altoids tin (free, but too small), then a Pelican 1010 Micro Case (waterproof, but too bulky) and finally settled on a travel sized first aid kit from Johnson & Johnson ($0.97 at Walmart). I dumped the contents into the bathroom 'medicine drawer' and kept the small white plastic case. I used a ziplock sandwich bag to make sure the case itself is watertight. I then tucked whole thing into another ziplock bag, along with some items that were too large for the case, but too useful to leave out.


Photos (explanation follows):



The original 97 cent item from Walmart





Final product, with a deck of cards for comparison (front, back and side views)


(continued below)

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The outer layer of items

Top row (L to R):

Hooded Rain Poncho, Energy Gel Pack, ten 3x5 ruled index cards, Fisher Space Pen, DenTek Oral brush/pick, Antiseptic Towelette, two small bungee cords.

Bottom row (L to R):

The outer ziplock bag and the case itself, inside the second ziplock bag.



The inner case removed from it's ziplock bag and opened.



The contents of the inner case spread out for inspection.



The case next to my EDC knife and cell phone, for a size comparison.


(continued below)

Edited by survivalcyclist

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The case itself has a Deep Woods Off moist towelette taped to the top face, and a sample sized packet of Coppertone SPF 35 between them (not visible in photo). I got the sample packet when we bought a bottle of suntan lotion for the beach.


Opening the case, I have a box cutter handle (and blade) taped to the inside lid with surgical tape. Also taped to the inside lid is a large safety pin and two medium safety pins.


The contents of the case are displayed in the picture:

Top row, (L to R)

Eyeglass Repair Kit (screwdriver, assorted screws, 2 pads, 2 o-rings, 2 small safety pins. The case itself is wrapped with a yard of surgical tape.)

Bottle of superglue (cap has been taped in place with a piece of surgical tape. This is the hard tube of Krazy Glue, not the squishy toothpaste tube kind.)

Berkley Micro Tool (a cheap multitool meant for fishermen - it has screwdriver tips, scissors, knife blade, pliers, nailfile and a saw blade)

Bic mini-lighter

Keychain LED flashlight (I removed the keychain)

packet of Triple Antibiotic Ointment

packet of Anti-itch Cream (Hydrocortisone)

3"x3" gauze pad

Inside bottom of case with a large piece of Molefoam, cut to fit.


Middle row (L to R)

Benadryl tablets (2) for allergy relief and allergic reactions

Zantac tablet (1) for heartburn and acid reflux

one pair of disposable foam earplugs

one packet of Woundseal (i.e., Quikclot)

one bottle of Liquid Skin (liquid band-aids)

three disposable alcohol wipes

a large 2"x3" waterproof band aid

a pair of 7/8" x 3" fabric band-aids (under the big one)

a pair of 5/8" x 1.5" fabric band-aids (under the big one)


Bottom row (L to R)

a pair of generic Excedrin tablets (aspirin, acetaminophen and caffeine)

a pair of generic Motrin tablets (ibuprofen)


Not shown in pictures

Cash scotch-taped to the back of the poncho information card:

one 20 dollar bill, one 10 dollar bill, one 5 dollar bill, two 1 dollar bills, and 4 quarters taped inside the last dollar bill

Edited by survivalcyclist

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The theory behind the various items is that I want Protection (from bugs/environment/injury/illness), Tools (to fix my clothing/self/gear), and Money (to buy food/water/transport).


When the chips are really down in the city, you end up walking a long way. Since you probably won't be in your great hiking shoes, hot spots and blisters are likely to occur. This is what the Molefoam is meant to deal with. The rain poncho is a clear, disposable one but it works to keep you from being totally soaked and miserable (and you can always tie off the hood and make a big bag out of it).


The medicines either prevent further suffering, or they relieve pain from an injury. The liquid band aids can handle all the minor stings/cuts you might get. The surgical tape can be used with the gauze, big band-aids, Woundseal, and the ziplock bags to handle big lacerations. Sunscreen and bug repellant are always useful in Florida.


The flashlight, lighter, multitool, and eyeglass repair kit give you an arsenal of small tools for repairs, and when all else fails, you have super glue, safety pins, bungee cords, and even your surgical tape. I chose surgical tape over Duct tape because it is less affected by extreme heat (I'm in Florida).


The space pen & index cards let you leave messages, copy information, make a small map, whatever you need. The space pen writes anywhere, even upside down and under water. The dental brush is small and fairly stiff, so it can be used for a lot more things than just getting annoying popcorn husks from between your teeth. :)


The energy Gel is a quick pick-me-up, providing 27g of carbs, 110 calories, and electrolytes to help ward off dehydration and cramps. This is basically the same thing a diabetic would carry (glucose gel) but with added electrolytes and more energy.

Edited by survivalcyclist

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There were a couple of things I wanted to add, but couldn't locate easily this weekend. An ampule of benzocaine (for toothaches), and a pair of vinyl (not latex) disposable gloves. I can get the gloves at work on Monday, so I'll add them to the outer layer then. Latex gloves melt and stick together in the heat, the vinyl ones don't. They would be good for blood borne pathogen issues.


The dental relief item I used to have, it came 5 to a box and it worked like a small 'sting-eez' applicator. Unfortunately, it looks like they no longer sell them in my area (at least i couldn't find them in two different drugstores or the Walmart near my house). That's a shame, because it would have been the perfect size to add to the case, and it would have provided a strong topical anesthetic. My wife says she will try and find them online for me.

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I'm really impressed.


My only concern would be that you don't think you would need a compass in an urban environment. While that might be true most of the time, if there's a natural disaster or a major event like a skyscraper coming down, debris, ash, dirt, snow, etc. could make the familiar environment look almost foreign and could seriously limit visibility for orienting yourself. If multiple landmarks are impacted, or if normal/obvious routes are blocked off, it could also make it difficult to keep your bearings without having the independent verification of a compass or functional GPS. Since a compass is relatively small, why not add one to your pack?

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Looks great. Here's my everyday carry/GHB. I don't have a desk and work at a few different sites, so have to carry everything I need with me in my backpack/Timbuk2. Since this post, I added a old school G-Shock watch to my EDC, as well as a small compass attached to the band. This helps when I'm in another city or in Northern VA so I can get oriented (I understand DC's layout, others not so much). Could see it coming in handy if you are stuck in a building and need to get out and want to be sure you're heading the correct way.

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considering i have a large family would you recommend one of these per person?

It depends on how much weight you want to carry, and what kind of clothes you wear regularly. Because of my job (and my personality) I wear tactical pants or shorts pretty much all the time. So, I have cargo pockets available pretty much anywhere I go, and having a fist sized package in one pocket doesn't bother me. My wife does not wear tac pants, so this package is too bulky for her daily carry. She uses a little Altoids tin version for herself, and tucks it in her little handbag thingy she has (its like a baby sized backpack, I have no idea what to call it).


It also depends on your family members, I would think. Are they mature enough to use the items within, and would they know when/how? You can make individual (and smaller) versions for everyone, and have them carry them - but it will be a matter of weight/bulk/convenience. The smaller and lighter the package, the more likely they won't leave it at home in a drawer or something.


Ask yourself "What kind of emergencies am I likely to face away from my home?" then think of what you could carry to help you get through those emergencies. Make a list, then see what you can do to minimize size/weight/bulk - an EDC survival kit is useless if you don't actually carry it, right?

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Since a compass is relatively small, why not add one to your pack?

Well, Tampa doesn't have much in the way of skyscrapers (our skyline is kind of pathetic, actually, it's a Florida thing). I also don't travel much on foot these days - I'm either in the pickup or on my bike. The pickup has a ball compass mounted on the dash, and the bike has a cycling computer and digital compass attached. If I can get to either of my vehicles, I'll have a compass. (I want to get myself a watch with digital compass, but they are way out of my budget right now).


The big reasons for not adding a compass are the package is already bulkier than I like, and I don't travel outside of my regular routes much (and I am extremely familiar with Tampa's layout).

Edited by survivalcyclist

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SO ive been searchin round for a more convenient way to carry my EDC, whether it be on me or in the car. First i wanted something less conspicuous to transport my MP.45 to the range than the manufacturers BLUE plastic case. I figured id get dbl-duty out of it and just keep it in the car as my EDC. SO the intended inventory would be my pre-existing EDC stuff in the car, as well as the .45 and 3-4 mags.

I decided to get a Maxpedition FatBoy GTG S-type (for Leftys), in Black.


PROS: VERY WELL constructed, all the materials and stitching are good stuff!!

The pad, on the shoulder strap is removeable, it has velcro loops holding it on the strap. Making the pad easily adjustable while wearing it.


THe main front flap (with the Maxpedition label on it) is one big pocket itself, the zipper is in the middle. THe bottom part of the flap-pocket is big enough for most wallets, or could easily fit 2 9mmclips.

Couple other useful sized pockets under the flap.


THe main compartment, big enough to fit my 3mag .45 pouch inside with PLENTY of room for more. I could fill this compartment with i think 9 x .45mags, or 2x Mainstay 3600calorie rations. My current EDC is in a Drop-leg Molle Pouch, I can just drop the Pouch into this main compartment comfortably.


THe front-facing edge pocket, 'cellphone pocket', is big enough for i think any cellphone made in the last 10years and Iphones.

THe waterbottle pocket, is a perfect nice snug fit for my Aquamira


CON, but not really, just to me:

THe CCW pocket , zipper behind the main compartment.

Its big enough to fit my MP .45. THe whole backside (INSIDE) the CCW pocket is the soft part of the velcro (not the hooks) So i got also got a 'Hook&Loop' (velcro) Universal Holster to position the .45 in this pocket.

THe .45 fits, but its not a smooth draw. Ill keep working to position it better, but it doesnt look promising. Any handgun smaller than a .45 (4" barrel) should be just fine though.

Edited by NavyVet_77

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Lets revive this thread

WHEN something happens, most of us wont be home where most of our preps are. It is my belief that whatever you have ON YOU at that moment of SHTF, will determine if you live through the multiple waves of disaster. THe contents of your EDC must be customized to where you expect to be during your normal daily routine. WHen Not at home, where do you usually go ? THe office building sitting in a cubicle ? Construction site 50miles+ from home? WHatever

Keep in mind an EDC is not a BOB, jut giving you what you think youll need to get to your supplies/home.

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I go one of a few different places frequently that cause me to leave my immediate nest. I'm at work with nothing to do and am sure no one will read this, but here it goes.


I work my RN job at a hospital 29 miles from my apartment. I work one of my part-time police jobs in the town my apartment is in, and I work my other part-time police job six miles from my apartment.


When I'm not at my apartment I'm either at work, and the only significant distance is to the hospital. Either police job allows me to readily go home whenever I want for whatever I want. I've sort of tapered off on those as of late due to requirements for my master's program, but it's still part of my life.


Also, I may go back to my house 34 miles away in the suburbs of the town I grew up in. I've got an acre lot with a brick house, and if I had to bug in this is where I'd prefer to go. My biggest stash of stuff is there as well. I may also go to my gf's house who incidentally just moved from the town my apartment is in to the town my house is in, lol.


My EDC bag (black NorthFace), as it were, includes overnight man items, a change of undershirts, socks, and boxers, some lithium batteries, a Fenix LD20 light, customized FAK, a package of BIC lighters, some paracord, a few Ziploc bags, zip ties, Leatherman Supertool (from 1998), two spare Glock 23 magazines, a headlamp (black Petzl - gift), neck gaiter (no clue why), Hot Hands (yes it's summer), trauma shears, package of Kleenex, packages of Wet Ones, assorted OTC meds, 12 quarters, some safety pins and paper clips, waterproof match container with REI waterproof matches, a list of what's in the bag, a set of titanium utensils on a little D-ring (forget the brand) that were ridiculously expensive, Sharpie, couple of pens, notpad, one of those small test tube looking bug repellant containers, and some other items I can't recall offhand.


In the truck, I have some safety glasses, sunglasses of course, ear plugs, shooters ear muffs, N95 masks in package, leather work gloves, some assorted hand tools, a Mora knife (gift), this absurd combination hatchet/hammer/prybar, several bottles of water, a carton of Lance wheat and cheddar crackers, a box of Clif bars, my Glock 23, several holsters for whatever occasion I decide to wear it, a single mag holder and spare mag, a couple of boxes of spare ammo, spare ammo for my Glock 21 (.45), spare ammo for my Ruger LCP (.380), some 00 buck, some hand towels, an OCD-like array of hand sanitizers, an Emergency Response Guidebook (hazmat), several maps, power cords for an array of portable devices, a power inverter, box of Kleenex, several napkins and straws from drive thru places, a stapler and staples (LOL), one of those Maxpedition organizer pouches with sundry items, monocular (less conspicuous than binoculars), compass, handcuffs and key, body armor in an outer carrier (see above police reference), VHF emergency services and weather radio, my stethoscope (Cardiology III see above RN reference as I have to leave it somewhere and people at work would steal it), a handheld spotlight (Gall's brand), a SureFire 6P LED, quite a bit of change, and wow this is getting ridiculous. It's all very well organized, and nothing is just laying around. I'm a bit anal retentive about things like that.


I ALWAYS have my Motorola Droid, my Kershaw Leek, either a Wenger SAK or Leatherman Juice S2 (depending on what I'm doing, but the other is in my truck console), Streamlight Microstream, Ruger LCP with a spare mag, and wallet with hideaway money and an unused credit card...unless I'm at the gym working out or running in which case I have nothing on me. I'm thinking of getting a prepaid phone card and/or one of those cheap pay as you go cell phones with a different carrier than what my current phone has.


I frequently have a Mossberg 590A1 with shortened LOP Hogue overmolded rear stock on it and Blackhawk sling. Usually my laptop, portable power strip/surge protector (Belkin), a USB extension cable, mouse, charger, bag, jump drives, and additional phone charger are with me in the laptop bag as well as the cable for my GPS.

Edited by ArkansasFan30

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Current EDC, got the 5.11 Load Out Bag free from US Cav for buying stuff




MP.45acp, 4mags, 2 sardines, 1200calorie rations, 2sets spare flashlight batterys, corn skewers, LED light, Ferro rod, Bic, Magnesium, 3pair hand/foot warmers, compass, earplugs, car lighter/usb adapter, book, 5hour energy, hand sanitizer, matches+cotton, toiletpaper+miniTowels, space blanket, gun oil, gun cleaning stuff, cleaner rod, 25ft para, fence cutters, BG fixed blade, Med kit



3 sterile pads, 3 non-sterile pads, med tape, 3xantiBiotic cream, burn cream, Iodide TIncture, Ziplok w/ painkillers, meds, pills etcetc, 2"ACE bandage, assorted bandaids, alcohol wipes, antiseptic wipes, exacto knife, orajel, chapstick, ziplok w/ cottonballs and Latex free gloves



In my pockets daily

LED light, Leatherman Wingman, 2" folding blade, 3" folding blade


MOre food and Case of bottled water in the trunk.

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