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The Importance of a Shovel?

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So, one thing I never quite understood about survival prepping for your BOB is what is the importance of a shovel? Where I live at least the ground is very thick and can't be dug for more then about a half a foot to a few foot. At least in most of the area. However where I frequent for school and live most of the time I can actually use a shovel, but in a survival situation, I can really think of few justifiable reasons to carry one. Perhaps to dig a trench, which I don't see as a likely scenario, dig a fire pit, which isn't necessary in the first place unless your planning on building a fire on a bed of pine needles, and maybe a trap for small game, or two footed predators? Perhaps I'm just naive, but what justifies packing a shovel in your BOB and why would I need it in a survival situation?

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wow a book can be writen on the reply to this one.

buring things. to build dekota fire holes. as a weapon. to make traps. to cover your camp fires. to pry with.

to move hot rocks in and out of your camp fire. i mean this is w/o even thinking here. dig a place to go

relieve yourself. to cover that up with. to dig your bov out of a jam. to bury the dead. oh man the list just goes on.

you dont need a 5 ft garden shovel. as a paddle if you loose one. alot of wildlife areas it is a requirment for your fires to

be in a pit. besides its a great safety step too. there really is a near endless list of reasons to carry a small shovel.

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The Importance of a Shovel?


The shovel is what got mankind to where we are now... Moving any typ of soil(DIRT/SAND)/turning sod,making sod bricks,Trenching to move water where you want it to go,removes snow,dig a shelter(even 2ft hole with a tarp over it gives protection from wind)solar still needs a hole dug,burry everything that you want to hide or get rid of..Traps...everykind.. will dispatch small and large..always have it sharp on at least one side and the working end.


A entrenching tool in my hands meams I can preform work to advance my situstion..


Give me an entrenching tool against a person with a knife and I win..Beat them with it..or I can plant enough food to feed a family...


Here is a great deal.



just an old Combat Engineer here..I would NEVER go to the woods with out one..

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I am with ricksconnected


it is not the list of what it does as what it cannot do the video on the Chinese shovel really is not just for the Chinese

one it could be for any good folding shovel about 1/2 of them even a straight short camp shovel can do many of the

things the Chinese shovel video shows.


in field survival a big part is shelter from the elements a sod or rock wall or berm shelter or dig out a cave in a dirt wall

and mix clay and straw or mud and grass for making brick or blocks or chinking a log cabin.

in the desert using your hands to roll or lift rocks exposes you to spiders and scorpions, Gila monsters, snakes and other

insects that can nail you to the ground for an hour or forever depending on your constitution.


equipment is a shield even a back pack with clothes will protect from strikes with a bat, stick or machete.

A shovel can be used as a sled in sand or snow unless you got a big azz then you need a bigger shovel.

digging for clams worms for bait roots to eat ankle breakers dispatching wounded or trapped game hell as back scratcher

it is worth it's weight in gold.

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MuckSavage that thing looks like it could use a chicago screw instead of that pin in the middle of the handle.


that looks like it could smart if you raked your hand on it.


Yes! When I use it in axe mode, I surely don't to the "one hand fixed, one hand slides" routine. I need to see what a "Chicago Screw" is. the tool surely has room for improvement!

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I carry both a folding shovel and pointed shovel with about a 4ft handle with a loop at the end in each of my truck toolboxes. The big fixed handle shovel is to dig myself out, the folding one is so my passenger has to help. All jokes aside a good folding shovel is a good tool. Be sure to get a good one, I have a couple SOG shovels that are worthless on anything harder than sand or snow. The Gerber version seems much sturdier in my use. The SOG I had failed by bending the blade completely over backward when I pushed it into hard soil with my foot and started to put some torque on the handle leaning back.


Another thing I have considered for a BOB if you are in country where you really think a shovel is necessary is modifying a shovel head to carry. A shovel handle is not a hard thing to build in the woods at all, provided you have a decent screw or bolt through method of attaching it and a way to drill the correct size hole. A shovel is definitely on the list of things to have in a BOV and at a BOL, even in a large cache. When my shovel starts getting left out is when I have to carry it on my back, makes it a harder decision.

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I carry one of these in my Jeep. It's not the best (kinda clunky, not balanced) for every job, but it packs well and serves a purpose. I didn't buy it (and probably wouldn't have) I won it as a door prize at a 4 wheel drive club function.


I've used their jacks for years with good results. It's a good brand product, just not sure about how well it would work in real life with that handle design. Definitely alot of options for a small space allotment and way better than nothing.

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