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HANDY MAN
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I've searched the interwebs for a thread specifically about Children's BOB's. I did see some but they were old or not very informative. Keep in mind the BOB I threw together for my older son (8) is not the end all be all BOBs.

Basically what Im trying to accomplish is a thread in which parents/grandparents can come together and share ideas for an ideal BOB. I know situation dictates and some needs will vary but there has to be a bare minimum SOP!

I know some people dont "see the need" for BOB's. I for one may never have to use mine, but, I am doing my best to be prepared for ALL possible situations. And yes, the situation MAY arise where I may need to abandon my home/preps and hit the road with no return ETA. All the while towing behind me a Wife and two young boys (8, 4). Obviously I would never PLAN to separate from my family. But stuff happens. I could not look at myself in the mirror if my son was separated from the rest of us and in his bag was a stuffed animal and a bag of M&M's.

Please feel free to comment and share your ideas. Please do not turn this thread into a debate on whether or not BOB's are necessary. If you dont think BOB's are necessary then you probably dont belong in this thread to begin with! :wink:


First is just an overall view of the bag. I think we paid a buck for it at a yard sale. I picked this one because of the bright orange color. If by some chance my son is separated he will be easier to spot. I toyed with the idea of him using a camelback but I couldn't reach a happy medium in weight. As it is this bag as its configured weighs in at 16lbs. Like I said, this bag is a constant work in progress and so I am always open to ideas on how to reduce that weight.


Front bottom pocket content: All of this is in a zip-lock bag.
1x hand crank flashlight
1x hand crank radio
1x book of matches (soon replaced with strike anywhere matches)
2x vaseline candles (tinder) These are in a little tupperware container with the matches.


Next pocket up:
1x Home made MRE (1 full day worth of food, could be stretched)
1x Bottle of water


Next pocket:
1x Emergency blanket/tarp


Main compartment:
Waterproof sack/Bottle of water.


Main compartment contents:
1x Poncho Liner (Woobie)
1x Book ("Lost in the woods", child survival)
1x FAK
1x Small towel
4x Socks
1x Long sleeve T-shirt
1x "comfy" pants
1x BDU pattern pants
2x change of underware
1x Bright winter hat
1x Pair bright winter gloves


FAK


FAK open


FAK on top of opened VS17 panel. I taught my son to use this by tying it to a tree he is near or to his emergency blanket/tarp if he is climbing into it. So he is still noticable.


Side compartment: All in water proff bag.
1x signal strobe
1x "swiss army type knife
2x Orange chem lights
1x small lighter
1x water treatment
3x insect repelant wipes


Other side compartment:
1x Rain poncho
1x hunting vest (brightly colored) Told him to slip this on over his OD Green rain poncho if he WANTS to be found!


This is a small pocket on the shoulder strap of the backpack. Best part of this pocket is how accessible it is to him at all times wearing the pack. Also, if you notice the whistle on the pack. When the bag is warn the whistle WILL reach his mouth so he can signal instantly.
1x Small LED flashlight
1x small folding knife. (self defense/tool)

Knife/ flashlight


Well, this is where the rest of you come in! Lets see some pics and hear some ideas regarding your childs BOB or even any ideas if you have no children.
 

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HANDY MAN
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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Since putting this thread together I have removed some redundant items. I also removed some of the first aid meds. All in an attempt to minimize weight and risk.

Anyone else?
 

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As with anything, items without the knowledge to use them are useless. If you haven't already, I'd schedule some one-on-one time to go on several overnight campouts to use these items. That way he could take it more in stride if he ever has to use them without you.

Redundant items you may have already deleted:
2 lighters, matches and candles-I don't know many 8 year olds that can consistently use a lighter or matches.
Crank flashlight and crank radio -combine into one item or
Crank flashlight, small led flashlight, lightsticks-do away with the crank flashlight, stick to lightsticks and/or small led. The long flexible fun lightsticks could be molded to go around the neck and free up his hands. What about a headlamp instead?
Swiss army knife plus small pocketknife-neither unless trained to handle safely. I think there is more chance of cutting or pinching himself than his needing it for other purposes.
Bright vest-backpack is already orange. Put some reflective tape on the straps that can be seen from the front or trade in the long sleeve t for a bright windbreaker that could be draped on the front if it is too hot to wear it. Or write directions to wear the strobe on the front of him.
Two pair of pants plus what he is wearing-overkill.
reduce to one pair of underwear or none. I don't know many boys who change undies daily without being reminded.

Water chemicals-can an 8 year old remember or read how long to leave the water to make sure all the germs get killed and can he measure the correct amount of water per tablet? What if the directions get wet and ruined? Heck, I can't even remember without reading it. Maybe something easier? A filter straw?

Long sleeve pullover-if this is cotton, it could lead to hypothermia. Hopefully it is a synthetic material that will keep him warm/get him warm without pulling away his body heat. Cotton kills.

Need to add-
emergency contact list with addresses and phone numbers including his own. Adrenaline can cause memory loss of memorized numbers.
Medical information including insurance, immunizations, allergies, etc.
Maybe a recording of mom or dad's voice on a small device of some sort. Small toy for comfort, photos of family.
Hand sanitizer and/or wet wipes
Bandana(did I miss seeing this?)
Toilet paper or Posh Puff tissues/tissues with lotion. I can attest to how sore nose and lips can get from windburn. Regular tissue and bandana feel like sandpaper!
Chapstick and/or lotion (or teach him to use the vaseline for these instead of as candles?)
Sunscreen/bug stuff combo-sample size

Hope this helps.
 

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Maximus
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12,320 Posts
My son just turned 4. So his pack is pretty light and I had to find one that fit him right. Most important thing is water. He loves to drink from the hose. He has a whistle, flashlight, band-aids, toys and compass. These are the things that he has learned to use. As he learns more, I will stick more in there.

But basically I wanted him to get used to the idea of going into his gear-bag when he needs something while we are out. Also not to stick things in there he doesn't know how to use :D:

backpack.jpg
 

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HANDY MAN
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1,472 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
As with anything, items without the knowledge to use them are useless. If you haven't already, I'd schedule some one-on-one time to go on several overnight campouts to use these items. That way he could take it more in stride if he ever has to use them without you.

Redundant items you may have already deleted:
2 lighters, matches and candles-I don't know many 8 year olds that can consistently use a lighter or matches.
Crank flashlight and crank radio -combine into one item or
Crank flashlight, small led flashlight, lightsticks-do away with the crank flashlight, stick to lightsticks and/or small led. The long flexible fun lightsticks could be molded to go around the neck and free up his hands. What about a headlamp instead?
Swiss army knife plus small pocketknife-neither unless trained to handle safely. I think there is more chance of cutting or pinching himself than his needing it for other purposes.
Bright vest-backpack is already orange. Put some reflective tape on the straps that can be seen from the front or trade in the long sleeve t for a bright windbreaker that could be draped on the front if it is too hot to wear it. Or write directions to wear the strobe on the front of him.
Two pair of pants plus what he is wearing-overkill.
reduce to one pair of underwear or none. I don't know many boys who change undies daily without being reminded.

Water chemicals-can an 8 year old remember or read how long to leave the water to make sure all the germs get killed and can he measure the correct amount of water per tablet? What if the directions get wet and ruined? Heck, I can't even remember without reading it. Maybe something easier? A filter straw?

Long sleeve pullover-if this is cotton, it could lead to hypothermia. Hopefully it is a synthetic material that will keep him warm/get him warm without pulling away his body heat. Cotton kills.

Need to add-
emergency contact list with addresses and phone numbers including his own. Adrenaline can cause memory loss of memorized numbers.
Medical information including insurance, immunizations, allergies, etc.
Maybe a recording of mom or dad's voice on a small device of some sort. Small toy for comfort, photos of family.
Hand sanitizer and/or wet wipes
Bandana(did I miss seeing this?)
Toilet paper or Posh Puff tissues/tissues with lotion. I can attest to how sore nose and lips can get from windburn. Regular tissue and bandana feel like sandpaper!
Chapstick and/or lotion (or teach him to use the vaseline for these instead of as candles?)
Sunscreen/bug stuff combo-sample size

Hope this helps.
These are all great ideas. We have had a lot of one on one time with responsible fire building. Im confident he can use both lighter and match.

The crank flashlight/ crank radio idea I love but dont have the funds currently to purchase the combo.

The small pocket knife stays. I know its risky, but I couldnt sleep at night knowing I took away any chance for self defense.

The only reason for the bright vest is to drape it over himself in case he crawls under his poncho. I told him to put his bag between his legs to keep it dry/accessible. So if his bag is under his poncho, it cant be seen.

The clothing will be re-done. It is a bit over kill:thumb:

I have since purchased him a filtered water bottle. It will take the place of one of the bottled waters and the chemicals.

Contact list will be added. Tissues are there, just not pictured. ALLERGIES! Dang, thats a no brainer!

Thanks again Maggie!:thumb::)
 

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HANDY MAN
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Very nice looks food. Just one water bottle? Maybe add an emoty nalgene.
Thanks, there were 2 bottled waters. I have since replaced one with an empty filtered water bottle.

My son just turned 4. So his pack is pretty light and I had to find one that fit him right. Most important thing is water. He loves to drink from the hose. He has a whistle, flashlight, band-aids, toys and compass. These are the things that he has learned to use. As he learns more, I will stick more in there.

But basically I wanted him to get used to the idea of going into his gear-bag when he needs something while we are out. Also not to stick things in there he doesn't know how to use :D:

View attachment 53073
Great ideas vic. KISS:thumb: Now, my only argument to keeping things in there he doesnt know how to use (meds and other) is that there may be someone there who does know and they can render aid. I dont know. Im still not sure.
 

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Land of the free my....
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We have two young boys and losing site / contact with them in an emergency situation is a huge concern for us. So we have 4 hand held radios similar to these:
http://www.northerntool.com/shop/tools/product_200422247_200422247
The ones we have ran about 40.00 per set and they weigh next to nothing.

We live on 15 acres, so when our boys are out playing they have to have a radio with them. They check in every so often or tell us if they are leaving one area and going to another. This has allowed them to become familiar with this "tool" so there is a comfort level there if needed in an emergency.

If we have to take two vehicles to town (rare, but some times it happens) my wife and I will use the radios to talk instead of our cell phones. We (my wife and I) will also take them if we are going shopping and are going to be split up (doesn't appear we attract much, if any attention using them).
Again, it is just practice and becoming familiar with a tool / piece of equipment.

Great thread BTW.
 

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HANDY MAN
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Agreed R.N. My wife and I dont have cell phones. So for long road trips we use hand held radios.

Having your sons use them when playing is an awesome idea! Way to build training into playing.
 

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HANDY MAN
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
There has to be more parents/grandparents on this site. This is exactly why I put this thread together, hardly any info on childrens Bob's.

Seems most people dont want to talk about it because childrens bob's aren't as cool? No 1911's and ninja swords maybe? :rolleyes:
 

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Make sure he has a secret word that only the child and his parents know; if anyone else tries to take him (not necessarily in a *hTF situation) they should know this word. Also, it is a good itdea for him to learn a game which we call Mousie...if you say Mousie, he goes to a pre-determined place and stays there until his parent/s come for him. I used to play this with my own children, now with grandchildren. It gets them used to being in a small, (maybe) dark-ish place for short periods of time. Start with only a few seconds and add time, little by little. It may be helpful if, for instance, a bad guy came to your house and you wanted the children to be in a safe place while you dealt with the BG...say Mousie, and they go immediately to the safe place, no questions asked.

I know this isn't about a BOB, but when children are involved, we need to keep them safe(r).

I agree that a picture of the family is a good idea. If he gets separated from you for any length of time, it could help him focus.
 

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HANDY MAN
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks Grandma. You obviously know your stuff when it comes to kids, happy you stopped by!

A picture will be added for sure.
 

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nice kit for the kid. I agree with grandma having a secret word is important. When i was a kid my dad had one with me. If anything ever happened to him and had someone i didn't know pick me up they would have to say it to me before i would "talk to strangers." My father had to go to the ER room one day and had a family friend who i never met pick me up and he had to say the "word."

Make the word fairly comical but not something used in every day life. Lots from thoes 60/70's sitcoms and 80's/90's/looney toons have great phrases. This will insure someone won't stumble on it like i do with my neighbors wifi password lol.

One thing you might want to do is spread out you BOB pack to him if you find yours a little overweight. 16 pounds isn't much at all at that age i was walking to school with some heavy a$$ books in my bag because of a certain a-hole teacher lol. Let him walk around with a backpack that is a comparable weight. It'll make life easier for him when he actually has to use it.
 

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Maximus
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...



Great ideas vic. KISS:thumb: Now, my only argument to keeping things in there he doesnt know how to use (meds and other) is that there may be someone there who does know and they can render aid. I dont know. Im still not sure.
True about being prepared. But honestly, at this point there is a bigger chance he might think some meds are candy or something if he did get lost ... especially if hungry :xeye:

OHH!! That reminds me! I also have the phone number and address of the nearest police station written inside in black permanent marker. That way if he was lost and found they can contact that police station where we would have already called and alerted.
 

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Limpin to safety.
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For me, I went to the dollar store and bought those cheap grill lighters.

The safety is easy to remove so that your kid can use it. Also the flame is far enough away to help your kid build confidence and not be afraid of being burned.

One thing to remember is that this world is getting more and more dangerous for children. Just in the news today, a man killed a child that was walking home. The parents decided to let the boy walk the seven blocks on his own and were waiting for him. Teach your child what to say when approached and what to do. Be it blow a whistle, or run for help, or keeping your distance.

 
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Brainstorming

I was watching on nutnfancy's you tube channel his urban survival kit video and he recommends emergency bivvy's over the emergency blankets. Apparently, the blankets don't retain body heat as well. They also weigh next to nothing. The tarp/blanket can be used to make a lean-too shelter.

Also, I like the idea of radios for the whole family. Get some pouches to mount on the shoulder straps. Extra batteries inside bag.

Paracord lanyards or longer lanyards. Teach the kids their uses and some useful knots.

Also, I can't remember if posted: knit watchmens cap and gloves.

Maybe, TP (butt wipe) lol :thumb: Some baby wipes. I think you might be able to find small bags of them. Can't remember.

Also, maybe dog leash for the little one, if your in wooded areas.

Thanks for the great post :thumb:
 

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HANDY MAN
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Some really good ideas! Keep 'em coming.

When I get a chance (hopefully today) I'll use some of the ideas given and re-do the bag.

I'll post more pics then too.
 

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Don't know if this bag is intended to be used by himself or with the family; but i recommend a pair of (preferably dad's) socks. Several uses, can be used as gators to keep minor cuts and scrathes away, emergancy turniquet, can be knotted around belt loops to make extra pockets, keep hands or feet warm in a pinch, can be filled with rocks and used as a makeshift weapon.
 

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styer sniper
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My son is 3 he has a BOB. Its a spongebob backpack his size. It has a tumble cup, bottle of water, some goldfish and other snacks, a few small toys(Hot wheels,,etc) and a small book or two, small light, taped up P38, small folder knife taped up, and lighter taped up. The taped up items are in a bag also taped up. They are not really for him but for BOB redundancy. He has a cell phone with parents and grandparents numbers in it. It is set on loud ring so we can call it and locate him. He knows how to hold down the buttons and speed dial us and how to answer calls. It is a cheapo prepaid from wal-mart and it works for this purpose very well.
 
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