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#295926 - 05/03/20 07:23 AM Survivorman reviews Dougs and Bears kits
quick_joey_small Offline

Registered: 01/13/09
Posts: 534
Loc: UK
In a completely fair comparison Les Stroud thinks his competitors shirt pocket kits are inferior to a combination of his larger, more expensive ones and quality, full size: sheath knife, multi tool, headlamp, compass and first aid kit.


Obvious errors.
He can't get the name of Dougs pack right, even as he's reading it.
He doesn't rate Dougs striker. Personally I'd swap any flint and steel for a one handed striker. Having used my loyalty card at the fracture clinic a few times lately I know how hard it is to do anything one handed. There is a reason you are in a survival situation and if it's a crash or fall; broken bones aren't unlikely,
'The needle and hooks shouldn't be in a simple plastic bag'; well ok if you like being pricked...
'A Wazoo $15 button compass must be the same quality as one from a christmas cracker as they are both button compasses'.
'Safety pins and needle and thread are very unlikely to be used'. He has been very lucky then; I've repaired tents, clothing, sacs, sleeping bags..... all the time.
"No container" after he's just said himself, you could make one with Dougs foil.
"I don't think a compass should ever be in a survival kit". Both his kits contain one.
His flashlight only stays on while pressed, unlike Bears which he leaves on accidently. Just try doing anything while having to keep the light pressed...

I'm not sure what the magnifying glass is for myself. Maybe Doug being a desert creature plans on starting fires with it? On an English summer day that you could start a fire with a magnifying glass, you wouldn't get cold enough to need a fire on either of them.

Did like:
"I can't cut into this table or I'm in big trouble".

Survivorman too is afraid of the most fearsome beast known to man: the wife.

Why do kits often contain several different fire tinders? Isn't there a best one?


Edited by quick_joey_small (05/03/20 07:33 AM)

#295931 - 05/03/20 08:41 AM Re: Survivorman reviews Dougs and Bears kits [Re: quick_joey_small]
Phaedrus Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 04/28/10
Posts: 2862
Loc: Big Sky Country
I watched it live/as it was premiered and immediately commented on that! I must note that since Doug's deal presumably expired with them they don't include the precise components that the original PSP contains. I can attest that some of their later kits use a similar but inferior sparker wheel. Still, I did point out that the sparker included works well in tandem with the supplied tinder. Les was off base with that one, IMO. I also disagree that's better to dump all that crap in your pockets vs that heavy waterproof pouch. Maybe he was just in a grouchy mood! True, all small compasses are not created equal.

I put a Fresnel lens in all my kits. You can use them for fire but I use them because about 1/2 the print on medicines and lots of writing on maps is too small for me to read. It sucks getting old!

The foil in the PSP has saved the day for me. Not for cooking but as a mat to set under the tinder to keep it dry and contained. And once to help jury rig the battery in a vehicle.

All that said, I love the PSP as a base to build on but experience has soured me on tiny kits. I understand there are situations that maybe you can't have a bigger kit but all my PSKs are built around steel containers, or at the minimum a Nalgene and 30 or 40 Aquatabs. In my mind the Ritter PSP does about as well as you could want for the size but I do consider to be too small for me personally to rely on as a primary kit. But as Doug says, if it's not with you it can't save you. So I do keep some stuff on my person, always a lighter, a knife, a light and a sidearm. Beyond that 99.9% of the time I'll have a pack but if it gets lost I'll at least have something.
“I'd rather have questions that cannot be answered than answers that can't be questioned.” —Richard Feynman

#295974 - 05/05/20 04:01 AM Re: Survivorman reviews Dougs and Bears kits [Re: quick_joey_small]
Burncycle Offline

Registered: 09/16/04
Posts: 561
I'm a fan of Stroud but was a bit disappointed with his attitude.

His kit and the others weren't an apples to apples comparison. He said no knife, because you should have the proper knife as part of your normal kit. Okay. No multi-tool either, first aid, or compass for the same reason.

Then he whips out a pot to boil water...

Shouldn’t that be part of your normal kit (nalgene / canteen with cup or similar equivalent)?

The ones he's comparing his kit to are pocket kits, a backup used when separated from main bag, it has to be on you for it to help you, and as useful as that pot is, it can’t help you if it’s back in your bag.

Doug Ritter's comprehensive survival kit reviews is what got me into survival kits over a decade ago, and he at least separated them into pocket vs belt pouch type kits.

#295976 - 05/05/20 04:48 AM Re: Survivorman reviews Dougs and Bears kits [Re: quick_joey_small]
Phaedrus Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 04/28/10
Posts: 2862
Loc: Big Sky Country
Yeah, I think he kind of whiffed on the point to a small kit like the Ritter PSP. I too got into the idea of kit building around essentials due to this site.
“I'd rather have questions that cannot be answered than answers that can't be questioned.” —Richard Feynman

#295979 - 05/05/20 06:54 PM Re: Survivorman reviews Dougs and Bears kits [Re: quick_joey_small]
chaosmagnet Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/03/09
Posts: 3508
Loc: USA
Knife, fire, and light are the three things that I'm most likely to have some kind of redundancy for.


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