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#265263 - 11/22/13 05:14 AM Building a cost effective BOB
Am_Fear_Liath_Mor Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 08/03/07
Posts: 3078
Building a cheap Bug Out Bag.

I was looking to build a cheap Bug Out Bag for a colleague who asked what I would recommend on a budget, so it was to use some of those Autumn deals, which are currently available. The kit also was specified to be capable of sub zero temperatures in poor weather.

It was not going to use low end junk but some reasonably good specification kit with durability in mind. It turned out more expensive than I thought it would.

Here is how I got on for the Basic Kit that is probably not readily available already within a household. (i.e. doesn't include Outdoor Clothing such as Goretex Rain.snow gear etc)

Backpack/Rucksack – PLCE British Patrol pack 38 Litres – these can be had for £25 (well made copies for £20), well this is what I was able to get on sale. Big enough for a72 hrs kit and is very durable and tough being constructed from camoflauge DPM IRR 1000 Cordura @1.6kg It also has numerous attachment points (Not PALS Molle) to add additional capacity to the pack.

Tent – Vango Mirage 200 - £90 - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ulhtQ0iI0Bc
2 man 3 pole Semi Geodesic tent @2.8 kg suitable 3 season use, using materials found in higher specification 4 season full geodesic 4 pole mountaineering tents. (Recommended for Duke of Edinburgh Expedition Award)

Sleeping Bag – Vango Latitude 200 – £32 - Sythentic Sleeping bag rated to 2-20C Comfort (EN13537:2002) Limit -2C and Extreme -18C Weight 1.45 kg. (Recommended for Duke of Edinburgh Expedition Award)
Vango sleeping bag
Offset double layer construction to prevent seams getting cold
Polair diamond rip stop shell
Polair silky micro lining
Thermal embrace system
7-hole siliconised hollow fibre insulation
Aluminised reflective interlining
3D enclosed hood with dual draw cord closure
Grab loops
Low profile, wo way auto lock zip
Zip guard
Hanging loops
Internal pocket
4-strap compression stuff sac for easy transport
Arrow foot
Horizontal stitching
Cosy shoulder 50g/m2 additional fill around top opening

Sleeping Pad - Karrimor Explorer X-lite Self Inflating Mat. - £19
Season rating: 4
Tog Value: 4.2
Temperature range: +55 degrees Celsius to -15 degrees Celsius
Weight: 720g
Length: 183cm
Width: 51cm
Thickness: 30mm

Cook System - Karrimor X Lite 2 Person Cookset 2012 - £15 > 2 person camping cookset
Hard anodised aluminium
Suitable for 2-3 people
Mesh storage bag included
Pots nest together for compact storage
1.7L pot (diameter 170x92mm)
1.1L pot (diameter 136x78mm)
0.9L pan (diameter 180mmx46mm)
0.6L pan (diameter 152x43mm)
Weight: 650g

Stove - Karrimor Alpine Stove £16 – Remote Cannister stove with Piezo ignition which can be used with inverted cannister for sub zero operation. - 450 gram Cartridge - £6

First Aid Kit - Karrimor Advanced First Aid Kit -£13.

Total so far - £216 or around $350.

This is without Food, Water Bottles, Water Filter, Navigational kit, Work Tools (Knives, saws, Axes etc) and Specific Clothing or Foot wear

Building a BOB is expensive even with the substantial seasonal discounting!

#265265 - 11/22/13 02:29 PM Re: Building a cost effective BOB [Re: Am_Fear_Liath_Mor]
hikermor Online   content
Geezer in Chief

Registered: 08/26/06
Posts: 6815
Loc: southern Cal
"Building a BOB is expensive even with the substantial seasonal discounting!"

It certainly is when you are buying brand new, first line material, even when it is on sale. If you start scrounging, it will be much cheaper. Really fine bargains can be found in second hand stores....
Geezer in Chief

#265267 - 11/22/13 04:44 PM Re: Building a cost effective BOB [Re: Am_Fear_Liath_Mor]
Denis Offline

Registered: 01/09/09
Posts: 631
Loc: Calgary, AB
I have to ask, but what is the anticipated use of this BOB? What are the anticipated emergencies it is intended to be deployed in and what is the actual probability that such an emergency would occur?

While this is a common type of BOB you see around, I've determined that for my local the likelihood of needing something like this is so low that spending limited funds on this type of gear is not worthwhile - at least for pure preparedness reasons. Realistically, this looks like a decent start at a low-cost backpacking & camping kit, but while the idea that I'll need to leave home and head to the woods alone is romantic, I don't find it overly realistic.

I would think that from a pure preparedness perspective limited funds would be best spent on stocking one's home for bug in (food, water, fak, etc) or, if for bug out, making a BOB that is more society centric (for lack of a better term ... ie., with the assumption that you'd be heading to friends, a hotel or community relief shelter in the event of a disaster).

Again, I realize this maybe local specific and my situation isn't everyone's situation, so I'd be interested in hearing how & when this BOB is intended to be used.
Victory awaits him who has everything in order — luck, people call it. Defeat is certain for him who has neglected to take the necessary precautions in time; this is called bad luck. Roald Amundsen

#265271 - 11/22/13 08:20 PM Re: Building a cost effective BOB [Re: Denis]
hikermor Online   content
Geezer in Chief

Registered: 08/26/06
Posts: 6815
Loc: southern Cal
Good point, Denis. I more or less have a BOOBIB (Bug Out Or Bug In Bag). For an Earthquake, it's a BIB. If a wildfire, it's a BOB. It all depends upon the disaster de jour.
Geezer in Chief

#265272 - 11/22/13 11:22 PM Re: Building a cost effective BOB [Re: hikermor]
LesSnyder Offline

Registered: 07/11/10
Posts: 1546
Loc: New Port Richey, Fla
I am always amazed and thankful for the amount of published information provided by the LDS Church... if you have not already looked over the latest LDS Preparedness Manual it's worth a bit of your time...BOBs start at p162


#265273 - 11/22/13 11:25 PM Re: Building a cost effective BOB [Re: Am_Fear_Liath_Mor]
TeacherRO Offline

Registered: 03/11/05
Posts: 2396
+1 to surplus stores and buying deals. Keep a list ( on your phone? ) of what you have and what you need for each kit.

#265306 - 11/25/13 04:29 AM Re: Building a cost effective BOB [Re: Am_Fear_Liath_Mor]
bacpacjac Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 05/05/07
Posts: 3601
Loc: Ontario, Canada
I'm a big fan of second hand stores, and in the same vain, one good piece of advice I got when I starting thinking about BOB, was to use things that we already had around the house. Clothes, bedding, pots and pans, bottles, etc. Most of us have extras that can put in a BOB and not be missed.

Don't overlook that value in re-purposing items either. There are a gazillion DIY projects out there that can save you a tonne of dough and are fun to make too. Watch out though, it can be addictive.
Mom & Adventurer

You can find me on YouTube here:

#265309 - 11/25/13 08:10 AM Re: Building a cost effective BOB [Re: Am_Fear_Liath_Mor]
Phaedrus Online   content

Registered: 04/28/10
Posts: 2244
Loc: Great Plains
That's a good sounding kit. For the most part I don't subscribe to the whole "bug out bag" idea; there aren't many circumstances that I would envision my best option being to run off to the wilderness. But it's good to have a "go bag" of stuff for emergencies.
“You can tell whether a man is clever by his answers. You can tell whether a man is wise by his questions.” Naguib Mahfouz

#265312 - 11/25/13 12:59 PM Re: Building a cost effective BOB [Re: Am_Fear_Liath_Mor]
Eugene Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/26/02
Posts: 2823
Having a BOB doesn't mean run off to the wilderness. To give an example when I was still a kid the farm a mile or so up the road sold to new owners. The first winter there late one night their teen-age son came knocking on our door asking to sue the telephone because their house was on fire. He ran down the road in his pajamas and bare feet so we gave him some shoes and a coat to warm up while he waited. So one of my reasons for having a BOB/Go Bag/Whatever you want to call it was to have a bag with a change of clothes and shoes and keys to the vehicles hanging within reach of where I sleep should I need to get out of the house so fast I can't get dressed.

I've seen it happen again just a couple years ago where neighbors had to evac the house when the dryer in the basement caught fire. I've had to drop and go twice from my home to my parents home 250 miles away when there was an emergency and as my parents get older I predict I may have to do the same again. So we keep "BoB's" packed all the time. Last time for example my mother called me at work to tell me they sent my grandmother home from the hospital so she could spend her final few hours at home. I was able to call home and tell me wife to just grab the BOB's and we left. No running around the house trying grabbing and packing things from the bathroom or trying to do laundry to have enough clothes to wear.

Those are the more likely scenarios that I prep for and keep a "BOB" for.

Edited by Eugene (11/25/13 01:06 PM)

#265372 - 11/26/13 05:31 PM Re: Building a cost effective BOB [Re: Denis]
Am_Fear_Liath_Mor Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 08/03/07
Posts: 3078

I have to ask, but what is the anticipated use of this BOB?

The specification of the BOB is to allow someone to be mobile (reasonably lightweight, no more than 40lbs) and have the ability to survive over a range of terrain, weather and temperatures (lowest overnight freezing temperatures down to -5 to -10C) for a period of time of around 3 to 7 days. It can also provide useful equipment and dry cold weather clothing even for bugging in, where there is a lack of stored food, no electrical and LPG gas supply and water needs to be made potable for a similar timescale.

Realistically, this looks like a decent start at a low-cost backpacking & camping kit

Yes, it is the basis for a BOB. Many BOB videos on Youtube will fail miserably in real world testing e.g.


A good tent, sleeping pad and a good sleeping bag really isn't a luxury in more challenging conditions.

Cold weather clothing is also very important as clothing found in the wardrobe might not be suitable.

So for Cold weather clothing set will include the following;

MoD Issue Reversible Green / Sand Thermal Bivvy Jacket - £30
Reversible Olive / Sand Colour Thermal Bivvy Trousers - £20
MoD Issue Extreme Cold Weather Socks - £6
Camo Goretex Arctic Issue Cold Weather MVP Hat - £8
British Army DPM Extreme Cold Weather Outer Mitts - £7.50
Goretex DPM Cold Weather Outer Mittens - £10
AFV crew Fire Retardant Base Layer Thermal polo neck - £13
Thermal AFV long johns - £8

Total (excluding Outer Goretex/Event shell) - £102.50 or $166

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