Tag Archives: Emergency Gear

Live Fire Gear Ring O Fire Featured in OffGrid Magazine

Live Fire Gear Ring O Fire Featured in OffGrid Magazine!

Our Ring O Fire product was featured in yet another great outdoors magazine, OffGrid Magazine Issue #22 (December 2017 issue). They loved the Ring O Fire and stated:

“Any prepper worth their salt knows you have to have multiple means of starting a flame. The Ring O Fire kit from Live Fire Gear will certainly deliver on that concept. This kit consists of three fire-starting items. First is the FireCord, a 550 paracord with its eighth inner strand being a color-coded red tinder that’s waterproof and easy to ignite. Use the FireCord as neck lanyards, zipper pulls, or boot laces and you’ll always have a way to spark a flame wherever you go. Second is the Live Fire Original, essentially a firestarter made from mineral oil, polymer resin, and other material that’s waterproof, cedar scented, and can be relit again and again. It comes in a tiny tin with a slide-top lid, so you can limit its burn and even use it as a candle. Third is a ferro rod with striker. Together, they’ll provide you with much needed redundancy this coming winter.”

We couldn’t agree more! If you’re interested in purchasing this issue of OffGrid Magazine click here. Also take a look at their website for some great articles and tips. If you haven’t already purchased a Ring O Fire pick one up today here, and grab a few extra for your family members, they make a great stocking stuffer!

C.U.M.A. Protector Knife

Introducing the C.U.M.A. Protector Knife by DayOne Gear

The C.U.M.A. Protector Knife is far from those cheap knives you buy at the store. Designed in conjunction with DayOne Gear, this knife was specifically made with Police and Fire personnel in mind. This bad boy features a glass breaker, seatbelt cutter and a functional edge to assist with weapon retention. Designed by Waysun Johnny Tsai, this knife features a 1095 high carbon steel blade that has been black powder coated and heat treated to 56-58 Rockwell. That’s one thick, solid piece of metal that will never break. Comes with a black Kydex sheath.

  • Overall Length: 10.88”
  • Blade Length: 5.25” (Tip to handle)
  • Cutting Edge: 4.63”
  • Blade Thickness: 0.19”
  • Blade Steel: 1095 RC 56-58
  • Blade Finish: Black Traction Coating
  • Handle Material: Black G10 or Blue/Black G10
  • Knife Weight: 14.5oz
  • Sheath Material: Black Kydex

You can buy the C.U.M.A. Protector Knife from BugOutBlade.com which is owned and operated by DayOne Gear.


The C.U.M.A. Protector is the first Waysun Johnny Tsai design that was designed by request and for mission specific end users. In late 2015, Johnny was approached by a former Marine, current Member of the Coast Guard and field supervisor for an “un-named” Federal Law Enforcement Special Response Team Supervisor. The Agent wanted a design that could be carried by the other officers on his Police Vest team as well as something that he could use while working his weekends with the Coast Guard.

The knife needed to have a couple of things:

1: A glass breaker.
2. A a seatbelt cutter.
3. It needed to be a functional edged tool to assist with weapon retention.

Johnny knew that this design was one that active military and law enforcement personnel would be using and depending on to save lives so he wanted to put extra care into designing it. While visiting his friend Matt Szbuka, Johnny noticed one of his C.U.M.A. Battle cleavers had broken and Matt had drawn a Karambit style hawkbill blade on the broken blade with a sharpie. After brainstorming on how to add the required features, Matt then ground down a very crude prototype out of the broken blade. The two then showed the proto to the agent and with his nod of approval, Johnny then sent the prototype to TOPS KNIVES and had them redraw it and created a much cleaner prototype. After two or three takes, both the Agent and Johnny were confident that this new C.U.M.A. Protector would fit the bill.

Finally available for production, we are PROUD to present to you the C.U.M.A. Protector. A 1095 high carbon steel blade that has been black powder coated and heat treated to 56-58 Rockwell. The blade is available with two scale color options. Black G10 with Red liners or Black and Blue scales with white liners. The knife includes a fitted Kydex sheath complete that has a swivel belt clip

The C.U.M.A. Protector is a Waysun Johnny Tsai design. It is made 100% in the USA by TOPS Knives and is EXCLUSIVELY distributed by DayOne Gear.


Waysun Johnny Tsai is a Chicagoland native. He is a freelance writer and published book author (Practical Kung Fu/ Triumph Books 2008). Johnny has also authored and published 9 DVDS on the topic of Practical Street Defense. Johnny currently designs knives and self-defense products for the following companies: TOPS Knives, Smokey Mountain Knife Works, Slysteel Knives and DayOne Gear. As a lifelong practitioner of the martial arts, Tsai has over 30 years of professional teaching experience in practical street defense. He is the founder of C.U.M.A. Combatives and The C.U.M.A. Survival School and regularly teaches courses on Disaster Preparedness as well as on the topic of Bugging Out and Urban/Wilderness survival.

For more information on Sijo Waysun Johnny Tsai please visit www.cumasurvivalschool.com

Creating an At-Work Emergency Bag

Creating an At-Work Emergency Bag

Like many other preppers all over the world I find myself in daily situations where I feel less than fully prepared. While you can never be ready for everything, and yes this includes when you are hunkered down in your bunker with the Fort Knox of dried foods and more guns and ammo than the Israeli army, there are some things that we can do to help minimize this. One of the biggest holes in my preparedness plan is work. Like almost everyone else I spend the majority of my time at work, specifically a school. While the school does have standard emergency provisions such as emergency blankets, medical supplies and enough salvageable materials and resources to at the very least, coupled with my EDC (everyday carry), put me in a very good position to head home to re-evaluate the situation. However, it could be better. As preppers we also have a moral responsibility to aid others when we can. Having an emergency bag, or preferably several, at work could make the difference for not only you but for the unprepared as well.

So what would this emergency bag or kit contain? In this article we will look at several points of consideration and areas that will need to be explored for you to make your own at work emergency bag. This is by no means a how to guide or my own personal opinion, more an aid in helping you, the reader, evaluate and create your own kit specifically tailored to your situation and the legal requirements and regulations in your area.

Some Big Questions

The first thing to ask yourself is what is the purpose of your kit? Is its purpose to get you to a specific place? To manage the immediate situation? Or to equip you and your co-workers with the means of effecting self rescue. If you are looking to get to a specific place you will be needing something lightweight and comfortable to wear even if you have sustained injury. If you are staying put you will be more concerned with medical supplies and provisions. Also, you will require materials and ways to secure your surrounding area. I.e clearing debris and checking for immediate threats like water, gas and electrical lines. If self rescue is your goal then a means of reaching help quickly and safely will be your main points of concern.

Mini bolt cutters can be carried easily and cut though locks or metal in an emergency.

Mini bolt cutters can be carried easily and cut through locks or metal in an emergency.

The next big question is how many people will be in your group and how many kits will you have? While safety in numbers and the additional manpower can be a big advantage, will everyone share your point of view or plan for survival? Will you have a set hierarchy or chain of command in place if an emergency does require it? An emergency situation is only made worse with the chaos of panic. Looking into or addressing these situations now will directly affect your gear and plan of action.

Let’s say you will go it alone or with a very small group. This will mean you will need gear that is lightweight with more weight and space being taken up by necessities such as water or medical supplies. On the other hand, if you go with a larger group you will be able to transport more gear and will have more options for what you can do in your situation. For example, you could carry a range of tools that could help you bypass obstacles easier, such as a crowbar or bolt cutters. You may also have more chance of people having access to a functioning vehicle or medical/emergency training.

Finally, and in many ways the most important question and without an answer to this, even your best laid plans will never leave the drawing board. How will you fund and start this endeavor? Can you get permission from your boss to store gear at your place of work? Will your co-workers be on board or just go with it when the time comes leaving you with stressed out, unprepared, possibly dangerous people to have to handle? Training or including others in your preps is a necessity if you plan includes others. See How to Make a Prepper by Benjamin Burns for more information on this.

If you have a single kit you will limit options for space and weight, if you have several the storage space and price may go up, one for everyone it certainly will. So before reading further these questions need to be answered.

Gear, Gear and More Gear for your Emergency Bag

Paratus 3 Day Operator’s Pack has a lot of features for less than $100.

Paratus 3 Day Operator’s Pack has a lot of features for less than $100.

Onto the matter of the gear. Like all good BOBs (bug out bags) a good emergency bag relies on the same principles. With that in mind let’s look at the first aspect: the bag itself.

You have a wide variety of options to consider here. You could go with durable military bags with ample padding, strapping and webbing for gear or a more discreet civilian bag that doesn’t draw attention. Others prefer high visibility bags with attached lights and whistles for easy access similar to the design of airplane life jackets or flame retardant bags that while not all too well designed will ensure your gear remains safe from fire and is partially waterproof. Each has their pros and cons and should be chosen when and only when the rest of your kit has been assembled. One of the golden rules of BOBs: buy the bag to fit the kit not the kit that will fit in the bag.

Next, clothing and protective gear. Most everyday office buildings, schools or company work spaces are built of similar materials, concrete, re-bar, steel (possibly corrugated) and plywood. These materials while dependent on size can be moved if blocking an escape route. However, doing so without adequate hand and eye protection would be a mistake. Strong work gloves,goggles and masks can be extremely useful. Be sure to take in mind the amount of protection verses dexterity you will need. If working with wires and fine tools is what you expect bulky industrial work gloves may not be the best choice. In regards to goggles and masks the standard N95 mask and standard full eye and nose goggles should suffice for keeping dust or smoke at bay.

Onto the case of footwear. While work boots are preferable don’t underestimate a comfortable pair of dress shoes. Try yours out on a long distance walk in the city or on a short jog. It may sound strange but it could save you time, money and space on gear you may not need. While helmets may be unnecessary they are a fair consideration depending on your place of work, but be sure to make sure you can wear it with your goggles and mask with good visibility.


The next main concern in any kit is signalling and communications. For this aspect of your kit you should be looking at mid/long-range ham radios, solar/kinetic emergency radios, flares and glow sticks. The reason for this is that you can keep in contact with whoever is in the area, keep track of emergency broadcasts and signal for rescue. Replying on cell phones and land line communication is a gamble in a survival situation and should not be relied upon. If you are going to rely on ham radio then you first have to learn how to use it and all the relevant emergency frequencies. A good source of information for that is Grid Down Communications by Pat Henry.

Now let’s move onto medical matters. If any of your party are injured leaving them untreated can only make matters worse. Having a basic knowledge of first aid can prove invaluable and as the saying goes: Knowledge doesn’t weigh anything.

A small axe can make survival in many situations much easier.

A small axe can make survival in many situations much easier.

However basic supplies don’t hurt. Having a standard trauma kit in your pack can provide you with. A kit I would recommend is the Bighorn Sportsman Medical Kit, or at least one which contains similar provisions. That said, the best medical kit is always one you put together and tailor yourself.

The last but by no means the least important is food and water. While having a store at work for several days a head would be great it unfortunately isn’t possible most of the time. Having cooking gear and fuel, while they double as a heat source are, for most, quite unnecessary. Dried long life foods such as Datrex bars which are well suited to a small lightweight kit. While they are by no means gourmet but they will get the job done of sustaining you until rescue or self rescue occurs. Water, like food, does not need to be stored in great volume. A one liter bottle of water per person should be sufficient for 1 – 2 days. While glass containers will allow you to store water for longer periods of time and should be considered for at home stores, plastic is the best choice here due to its weight, durability and flexibility. Cooking equipment and food that requires such should be avoided to save weight and space. That said if it is within your capability to do so a hot meal can go a long way in regards to boosting moral.

Locked and Loaded

The last aspect of a kit to talk about is weapons and tools. While carrying a small axe, firearm or full tang knife is something that most, if not all, survivalists consider essential it may not be safe nor permitted in the work place. While it is tempting to simply conceal these items from people in your personal belongings it is also worth talking to your boss or manager about these things with the aim of having all your gear approved. Depending on where you work you may be faced with different rules, restrictions and regulations for what you can carry. Always make sure that you have the right permits and documentation. Who knows you may even make a Prepper out of them.


Creating an At-Work Emergency Bag was written by Mike Turner with Prepper Journal and can be viewed here:


Stocking Your Survival Cache To Compliment And Strengthen Your Survival Plan

survival-cache-supplies-670x250Before you start stocking your survival cache you need to think about your preparedness plan as it will have an impact on the type of gear you stash inside them.  There are literally hundreds of different types of scenarios that we can try and prepare for so trying to cover every one of these as best we can is where things start to get a bit complicated.

  None of us know where we will be if and when a particular disaster will strike so all we can do is try to come up with solid plan and hope for the best as nothing in life is guaranteed.  Everyone one of you will have a different idea as to what items should be stocked.  While many of you will make your decisions by relying on knowledge, experience and instinct, others will have a harder time and keep second guessing themselves.

floodingIn the rest of this article I’m going to talk about a complete preparedness plan that focuses on three main scenarios. I will go over how and where to hide your caches in my next article.  To some of you this might not sound practical or realistic as we all have our own opinions, but you need to remember that you can never be too prepared and I can’t stress this enough when I say it, don’t limit yourself to just one survival cache.  The last thing you want is to find yourself up shit creek without a paddle.  I will now go over the three scenarios in more detail and yes, you guessed it, that means having at least three (but not limited to) different caches.

Stocking a survival cache in case you lose or can’t get to your main bug out bag or emergency supplies:

This one is extremely important.  It’s all fine and dandy to have our bug out bags ready to go but the reality is that most of us won’t have them on hand when a disaster strikes and it could happen where you find yourself completely cut off and unable to access it.  A land slide could have taken out a road, your home could be completely destroyed by a tornado or maybe society has broken down and it’s too unsafe to try and get home. For this reason, it’s important to stock a survival cache which will act as a secondary bug out bag.  I had mentioned in my previous post that you can add a shoulder strap to your PVC cache to carry it, however, if you can fit it inside your cache, you should include a spare backpack or bag of some sort as it will make carrying your gear much easier and can come in handy later on down the road.

Stocking a survival cache to compliment your bug in location:

Bugging in will “usually” be your safest choice unless something very drastic has happened.  As I have said before, preparing yourself for only 72 hours is useless as you could be on your own for weeks at a time or longer depending on the extent of the disaster.  With that aside, you will want to hide one or more survival caches that are not to far away from your home.  If you life in the country, you will most likely hide your cache in a tree or in the ground at a secret location.  If you live in a town or city, you will have to be extra careful when hiding your stash.  In either scenario, you will want to stock supplies to compliment your existing stock pile that you have at your bug in location.  This means storing extra food, medical supplies, batteries, ammunition, etc.

Stocking a survival cache(s) to compliment your bug out location:

Whether you decide to bug out on your own or not, you could be forced to and for this reason it’s imperative that you have a bug out plan in place before hand in conjunction with your bug in plan.  As part of this plan, you will you will want to have a bug out location selected (preferably multiple in the case that you can’t get to one of them).  This could be a friends house, a camp, or a secret location in the woods.  Regardless where it is, it’s important that you carefully choose a secret or less traveled path to get there.  Along the way at predetermined intervals (perhaps every mile or every few miles) you should strategically place a survival cache.  Including essential survival supplies that can be used to restock or replenish your bug out bag is important, but you should also include specific gear that will help you reach your destination.  This could be rope, a climbing harness, a gun with extra ammo, a shelter (tarp), tools or anything else you think you would need depending on where you are going and the path you are taking to get there.  Having another cache near your destination is also a good idea so you can replenish your supplies.

You also need to remember that water and humidity will be a concern and protecting the contents inside your cache is vital.  Simply placing random items in your container isn’t safe enough in my opinion.  Everything should be placed in waterproof sealed bags (preferably vacuum sealed mylar bags) to ensure your items and food are fully protected.  It’s also important that you rotate the food supplies in your cache regularly.  Emergency meals (MRE’s) will last for many many years while some canned foods only have an approximate shelf life of a few years depending on what it is.

With that said, please consider taking these three extra steps and adding survival caches to your preparedness plan. Yes I know that this can get expensive especially if you are going to fully stock each cache, just do what you can as one day you may come to realize that your life is now depending on them.

This original article can be viewed here at I.N.C.H. Survival Gear

The Three Main Evasion Scenarios

concealment-scenarios-header-670x250There are three main evasion scenarios that you need to be familiar with as it’s a 100% guarantee that you will find yourself in at least one of these situations as you prepare to escape and leave the area.  It will be crucial that you scan and study your surroundings before you embark on your journey as each scenario will drastically affect your escape plan, concealment options and strategy.

Scenario 1: You don’t have any pursuers and no one knows you’re out there

If no one knows that you are out there then you will have a huge advantage as nobody will be actively searching for you.  You still need to exercise your concealment and evasion strategies, however, you will be able to do so in a much more relaxed and paced setting.  You will have two options available from which you can choose.  You may decide to stay where you are and lay low or you may decide that now is the right time to continue on to your next destination.

If you decide to stay put for the time being don’t allow yourself to get complacent.  Remember this isn’t just a waiting game where you’re sitting around, trying your luck and hoping you won’t get caught.  Setting up early warning systems around your site is something that should be done as soon as possible.  This can be done with fishing line, cans and pebbles as well as other items that you may have in your bug out bag.  You may also have to improvise with other materials that nature has provided.  If there are enough people in your group you can set up a watch or sentry.  Assign different people to these posts and have them rotate shifts with the other members of your group.  Keep quiet, watch and listen for any sounds out of the ordinary which could signify that someone else may be approaching your location.  This could be the snapping of a twig, crunching or ruffling of leaves and bushes or even birds and animals making unusual sounds.

Avoid using flashlights and keep communication between you and the other members of your group quiet and to a minimum.  If you need to make a fire then do so during the day.  Keep the fire small and use the driest wood you can find to reduce the amount of smoke given off.  If you absolutely need a fire at night try and build it in front of a natural wall of some sort such as a rock wall or cliff.  You could then make a barrier wall in front of the fire with piles of dirt, rocks, debris from the forest floor or even logs piled on top of each other.  This will help to obstruct the view of your fire, reflect some of the heat back to you and will aid in concealing your location.  There are also multiple ways in which you can dig a hole in the ground and build your fire inside it.  If a temporary shelter needs to be built or erected be sure to conceal it as well and take it down before you leave.  When it’s time to evacuate your location be very quiet and don’t leave any traces behind which could indicate to someone else that you were there.  The tips and strategies that I just listed here can and should also be used in the next two scenarios.

Remember that in this first scenario nobody knows that you’re out there but if you decide to leave your location then I would highly suggest that you exercise your concealment and evasion strategies as if someone was actually following you.  You never know when or where you’ll accidentally step across the path of another survival group or even the enemy – you can never be too careful.

Scenario 2: You have pursuers who have an idea where you are trying to find you.

If someone is looking for you but doesn’t know exactly where you are then your best bet is to keep on the move.  Practice your concealment skills and avoid open fires, or anything else that will give you away.  Because you know someone is looking for you, you must be vigilant. Post sentries (if you can). Use the warning system of fishing line, can and pebbles (or any other system that you come up with).  Keep the chatter down at night (sound carries better at night). Be careful lighting even something as small as a match. A sudden flare of light is really noticeable. Hide your camps well and clean it up before you move.  Don’t leave clues as to where you have been or where you are going – you want to slow down your pursuer and make them work as hard as possible for every piece of intel.

Scenario 3: You have pursuers, they know where you are and are following or chasing you.

If you know that some one is following or chasing you there several things that you need to remember. You should move as quickly and silently as you can.  Try not to disturb the ground or hold on to trees or branches that could easily snap or leave marks.  Do not travel in a straight line, travel in broad zigzag patterns. If you have time you could try and set up traps or diversions to slow down your pursuers.  Use the stop, watch and listen rule and if lucky you may get some idea of where your pursuers are relative to your own position. If you are in a group you can confuse the trail by splitting up for a bit but always keep each other in sight.  Converge on each other again and carry on repeating the process from time to time.  Only the most determined pursuers will carry on like this.  Most will realize that their own provisions are running low and their resupply camp is getting further away as the longer they keep chasing you. In most bug out cases, unless your small group is of some importance to well trained and supplied groups (military for example) the pursuit should not last long.  If your pursuer(s) do happen to catch up to you then you will probably have to fight for your life which means doing anything necessary in order to ensure your own survival.

Finding yourself caught in any of these situations won’t be an easy task.  I highly recommend that you form a group, even if it’s just a bunch of your friends and practice these skills together.  You never know when you will need to exercise these skills in a “real deal” situation and having practiced them before hand will allow you to be at least one step ahead of the game.

This original article can be viewed here at I.N.C.H. Survival Gear