Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Why you need spares

I mentioned this in my book a couple times and was reminded of the importance a few days ago.
Of course we can’t have spares for everything, it would cost a fortune, but the 3 is 2, 2 is 1 and 1 is none should be applied to important gear without exceptions.
The more essential, the more redundancy you’ll need.
People into backpacking or camping know well that you need at least 1 spare blade and about 3 different ways of making fire. Even if you go minimalist with your gear, this still applies.
Waterproof matches, a couple Bic lighters and a Firesteel is a typical setup. Why so much redundancy? Because it’s basic to your survival to be able to start fire when out in the woods or mountains.
Now that I think about it, I’ll usually have no less than 3 knives and 4 fire starting methods in my EDC bag and on my pockets and wallet. And no, I don’t carrying a ton of stuff either, but I do believe in redundancy for the important stuff.
This same redundancy is applied to various other aspects of preparedness.

Cooking and heating.

Right now, how many cooking methods do you have in your home, the place you live in right now? Natural gas oven, smaller electric oven?


A small gadget like this one costs only a few bucks yet allows you to boil water as long as you have electricity, no matter where you are.
I found one in a nearby hardware store for 2 pesos, less than a dollar so I bought a few to have around and have in the car. For urban locations, it’s a neat thing to have.

Brookline Dual By Boston Stove Foundry Gas/Wood Combination Stove

The wood cooking stove is another terribly useful item. Not only does it work as primary or secondary means of cooking, it also works as alternative heating is you already use other methods, or can even heat water with the right plumbing set up.
So you have electricity, natural gas, and wood. If you loose electricity because of a storm or natural gas because of other problems, you can still use wood, but if you suffer an illness of some sort and are too weak, you still have electricity and gas.
At least a portable BBQ would allow you to use wood or charcoal, and a camping stove can save you during short term emergencies as well.


Anyone that actually uses the gear he buys instead of setting it aside for a “rainy day” knows tools brake. It’s a fact of life and we all know it.
People will sometimes ask, “why would I need more than one gun? That’s all I can use at a time” and the answer is that you need spares because, as unlikely as it is that you may have to use it, it falls in the “hell, yes! It is important” category.
Braking is not the only concern. It might get lost or robbed as well.
During holydays, I got my gun robbed once and sure was glad I had others when I went back home.
Also consider that after a shooting, you will have to surrender your weapon to the authorities, and depending on the case it may go months or years before the gun is returned to you.
This is just a reminder. Know there’s certain items and tools you really depend on and try having spares for them, and alternative methods of heating, cooking, water purification and self defense.

Take care guys.


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