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Thread: First Aid Kit...Pre-Packaged or Custom? Reply to Thread
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Topic Review (Newest First)
04-13-2012 01:53 AM
SirThrivalist
Wow! I just remembered I had this "little" gem!

I was just about to go out and buy some supplies for my IFAK when I remembered
this FAK that I bought a couple of years ago from a Roofing supplier online.
So I climbed into my attic and started digging around and pulled it out.

The supplier had this First Aid Kit on sale. I looked at it and thought great!
I'll pick this up to keep it in the truck for my crew. I thought it was a small kit
(about 8"X10" or so) with some basic bits in it for non-critical injuries.

Imagine my surprise when this 24"HX18"WX6"H behemoth arrived at my door!
It's a nice steel case that can be hung up on the wall and quickly removed for transport.
I'm going to cannibalize it however and distribute the contents throughout my kits.
...........................................

Best part? It was only $2.95/shipped!






04-09-2012 02:34 PM
Prepper Save your money until you have taken a good first aid course, if you haven't taken one. I recommend a wilderness first aid course. Then build your own first aid kit with items you know how to use and when.
04-09-2012 02:41 AM
SirThrivalist
Quote:
Originally Posted by TMcArthur View Post
I assume you've taken some kind of advanced first aid training?
Yes I have.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TMcArthur View Post
...

This doesn't need to cost much, weigh much or occupy a large volume. REI has various first aid ointments in the squeeze packet sizes so you won't need to carry entire tubes. Everything can be picked up at the local drug store for cheap. Stick everything in a locking Tupperware container or a Ziplock freezer bag to keep it dry should you take a dunking.
^^^ Good stuff.

I'm taking the time to learn what are the most prevalent local issues that
require first aid (insects, plants, common injuries in my region, etc...).
First thing I'm going to do with the kit that's coming is to empty it,
see what I don't need and replace it with what I will potentially need.
04-09-2012 02:37 AM
TMcArthur I assume you've taken some kind of advanced first aid training? It is more valuable than any kit, weighs nothing and you won't easily lose it. Without it you are just twisting in the wind if a real emergency crops up.
04-09-2012 02:19 AM
TMcArthur Many commercial FAKs focus too closely on minor cuts and scrapes and very little on the significant injuries you are likely to have. The "tools" are the cheapest ones they could find.

Every FAK should include basic medicines. That means the user needs to first learn how and when to use them. (Lot of people skip that step.) Antihistamines, antidiarrheals, antiemetics, antibiotics, Advil, Aspirin & Tylenol. Hydrocortisone ointment for skin allergic reactions and lidocaine topical pain killer. All this is OTC. Of course a selection of any prescription meds you might have. (I have these little tiny ziplock bags I got from a fabric store that are prefect for holding a few pills and I insert a small label for identification purposes.) You should already know if you need to bring epi pens, inhalers, insulin or other specialty items.

I like to use Betadine for cleaning wounds. Hurts a lot less than an alcohol prep pad or a packaged wipe. For a topical antibioptic I use Neosporin or other triple antibiotic ointment.

The basic gauze bandage is a Kerlix gauze bandage roll or the equivalent. You can do almost anything you'd need with a Kerlix if you know what you are doing.

Telfa dressing pads (don't stick to a wound so they are easily changed) are for use on significant open wounds and taped in place, so you'll need tape. I use veterinarian bandaging tape, 2 inch wide roll. Quick Clot sponges are for bleeding that doesn't stop quickly with just the pressure of a bandage. (Some folks use tampons as first aid for penetrating wounds with deep bleeding and "sanitary napkins" for general bandaging. Zeolite powder will also assist in stopping severe bleeding. These are perfectly viable alternatives.)

The tools you need are a high quality tweezer, preferably with integral magnifying glass, a head lamp, a razor for shaving off body hair, a small scissor for cutting bandage material and possibly a suture kit. (I advise against a suture kit unless you really know what you are doing. Suturing a wound can lead to greater damage from anerobic infection than leaving it open would.)

The most common injuries in the outdoors are mechanical injuries; sprains, strains and breaks. A four inch Ace bandage is a valuable addition to any FAK. Finger and thumb splits, SAM splints, inflatable splints, eye bandages and so on belong in any group first aid kit but individuals would tend not to want the added weight. I can improvise if I need to.

Salt for heat problems and sugar for blood sugar problems could be in there but I have plenty of that in the food I carry. Don't really consider Chapstick, sunscreen and bug repellent as part of first aid but they are nice to have.

Last and least important are Bandaids of various sizes. Other than the 3 & 4 inch size, I prefer to improvise with a piece of cotton or gauze under a strip of vet tape.

This doesn't need to cost much, weigh much or occupy a large volume. REI has various first aid ointments in the squeeze packet sizes so you won't need to carry entire tubes. Everything can be picked up at the local drug store for cheap. Stick everything in a locking Tupperware container or a Ziplock freezer bag to keep it dry should you take a dunking.
04-09-2012 12:58 AM
SirThrivalist I'm pretty stoked.

I think I just came across a brand new Army issue IFAK
(not the current issue, but the previous kit with the plastic box).
I'm going to see if it is what it claims to be and if it is, I'm gettin' it.

Best part, it's selling for way "less" than what used, surplus boxes & pouches
are selling for AND it includes the FAK Kit. That'd be a cool find in my book.



Edit:
Ha. The kit I was going to purchase was about $14. and it'd come out to $23./shipped.
I just found another never issued IFAK for $14. and that's with 3-Day Shipping. Score.


www.onlinemedicalresources.com
04-08-2012 10:11 PM
the cow I bought a precon, mainly for the container itself. The contents were pretty mediocre and really not worth the money.
04-07-2012 09:12 PM
exetermedic101 Always build your own. You can custom design it to your particular needs and or conditions. I have a number of kits. All designed for certain situations. My truck bag is loaded with every bit of BLS gear, including BLS airways, that our units have in them minus the O2. The kit in my bug out bag is geared for the worst case senario event, basically trauma related. The kit in my wifes car is built for her to take care of her and my daughter if there caught out (nothing in there that she hasn't been taught to use PROPERLY), that bag gets added to occasionally after we have a session or two. The houses kit is enough to load out an ALS ambulance, including intubation equipment, chest decompression kits, needle crich kit, minus narcs and certain drugs, two surgical kits, sutures, skin staplers, and antibiotics for any infections, IV solutions, sets, catheders,valves, etc., its very extensive, including combat medicine and surgery manuals, herbal medicine guides, pharmacology books, etc. Alcohol, peroxide, collodial silver + generator with spare batteries, normal saline wash and flushes, misc. meds, dental kits, 1,3,6,&10 mL syringes. Very extensive. There are things out of my scope but after it all goes down I'm not going to worry too much about my certs and licenses. Lets just say, I love Chinook Medical.
04-07-2012 08:39 PM
knightnday We've tended towards making our own kits, modeled after information found on these boards and off people like the above mentioned navy er doc, The Patriot Nurse, Nutnfancy, and so on. That way we don't have just a bunch of band aids, which seems to be the major component of many of the pre-made kits.
04-07-2012 08:33 PM
Big Blzn Like some of the others, I bought a nice pre-made kit in a carry bag that I liked and then added to it for my potential needs. It cost me about $50 and is nice. I thought about buying everything separately and it just seemed to get real pricy quickly. Now, I do have plans to make several of my own kits that are duplicates of each other. I am going to make them this time as I can buy the individual items in pairs or triplets and spread them out to multiple kits. Before, I would have had a to buy, say a package of three and would have had two left over and didn't want the "waste". Not to mention, quality first aid supplies can be expensive.
04-06-2012 09:25 PM
JoeF check out these guys, They make the kits themselves and they are great.
The owner is a en ER doctor, and ex navy emergency doc


http://amp-3.net/
04-06-2012 08:33 PM
wilbanba take a basic first aid class then a wilderness first aid class/emergency care then the answers should be more clear

there are many ways to do it but feed your head first then you will know whats right for your skills, budget, comfort, area etc.
04-06-2012 12:40 PM
Thewaker43 I agree with what pretty much everyone else has said. I bought a few kits then dissected them, add stuff/ remove stuff. Bought a handful individual things. I ended up with a small compact kit for EDC, a more comprehensive kit for camping and whatnot and tons of stuff for home use and resupply. Also I just found out about these http://www.amazon.com/Ezy-Dose-Disposable-Pill-Pou... cover
http://www.amazon.com/Ezy-Dose-Disposable-Pill-Pou.... They can found at drug stores or the grocery store. Much cheaper to fill with a bottle at home than buying the individual packages.
04-06-2012 05:26 AM
Woodswalker I bought a pretty good kit from cvs drug store . I removed a couple of items and added a couple things .
I also have a couple of smaller , basic first aid kits that I put together myself .
04-06-2012 05:19 AM
SirThrivalist
Quote:
Originally Posted by SurvivalistChick View Post
I kind of did mine sideways. I found a kit that came in a great bag/container with great organization inside, and used what came with it as a starting point, then added to it. I wanted my first aid kit to be very organized, recognizable if I needed to grab it in a hurry (so it is bright red and says First Aid Kit) on it. I spent a lot of time looking for a suitable bag/container to build my own kit from scratch (even when I hadn't decided on a specific color), but didn't find one I liked nearly as much as the pre-built one I found.

For the curious, it is clam shaped, and hard sided for protection, with inside plastic sleeves with pockets to hold supplies and all well labelled. It has both a handle and also two clips on the backside of it so you could attach it to the outside of a backpack, railing, fence or put a couple hooks in a wall to hang it on.

I can take a pic if anyone is interested.
I'd like to see it.
04-06-2012 04:25 AM
SurvivalistChick I kind of did mine sideways. I found a kit that came in a great bag/container with great organization inside, and used what came with it as a starting point, then added to it. I wanted my first aid kit to be very organized, recognizable if I needed to grab it in a hurry (so it is bright red and says First Aid Kit) on it. I spent a lot of time looking for a suitable bag/container to build my own kit from scratch (even when I hadn't decided on a specific color), but didn't find one I liked nearly as much as the pre-built one I found.

For the curious, it is clam shaped, and hard sided for protection, with inside plastic sleeves with pockets to hold supplies and all well labelled. It has both a handle and also two clips on the backside of it so you could attach it to the outside of a backpack, railing, fence or put a couple hooks in a wall to hang it on.

I can take a pic if anyone is interested.
04-06-2012 03:29 AM
richard4939 I'm with either custom build or start with a bought one and add to it, that way you know whats in it, you have what you want in it. I still have my issue kit apart from it looks nothing like the issue kit.
04-06-2012 03:21 AM
SirThrivalist
Quote:
Originally Posted by Doc_Shane View Post
Always custom, build them to your skill level, environment, and group size.

Store bought kits do lots of things generally, but none of them well.
I'm thinking about starting out with a FA101 GP Military Issue Kit and swap out
what I can improve on it. The case is waterproof and looks sturdy enough.

04-06-2012 01:59 AM
Doc_Shane Always custom, build them to your skill level, environment, and group size.

Store bought kits do lots of things generally, but none of them well.
04-06-2012 12:46 AM
SirThrivalist
Quote:
Originally Posted by Borrowed time View Post
i build my own, far more useful to me if i buy, in my case, a 5.11 first aid MOLLE pouch. then i buy a very basic kit, then add a bunch of extras like Quick Clot, Benadryl, immodium, surgical stapler, suture kits, three differnet over the counter pain meds, .... well, the list goes on.

Also, even though i carry a first aid kit, i ALWAYS have on my shoulder strap a small military compass pouch with a Mil-Spec battle dressing, a pouch of quick clot, and a paice of physical therapy excersize rubber banding that i could use as a tourniquet. i think they call this a "blow-out kit". mostly i have it when im out hunting.
I want to put together a kit and use a waterproof "hard" (metal or plastic)
box that'll slip into a milspec pouch I an attach to my pack.
Custom seems like the most reasonable way to do it and avoid wasted space.
That, and a little kit that can fit in a pant's cargo pocket.
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