Is more expensive better in prepping? What is really important?

“He who knows these things, and in fighting puts his knowledge into practice, will win his battles. He who knows them not, nor practices them, will surely be defeated.” Sun Tsu

For so many preppers the push for the newest gear, that “brand”, that “style” tends to outweigh the need for regular training. This approach is great for those of us who train but do not have allot of money, simply because, in the end we know there will be caches of materials available for those of us who don’t mind looking or foraging from the dead.

Training with what you have is far more important then buying new equipment. However, I will be the first to tell you that buying new equipment is also extremely important at times especially if what you have is not working as it should. This is where MORE training and testing comes in handy and becomes necessary.

For instance, for the last few decades I have used aluminum or steel mil spec canteens and over time added camel backs because I simply liked them and they work! However, with time and much use has come the realization that a better approach was necessary. So I switched around a year ago too wide mouth canteens, the type many day hikers use. I have remained with single walled steel canteens simply because it was essential. After testing a small variety I settled on the Klean Kanteen as it was simply the best all around decision for myself. The sport version is the one I prefer as it is built a little more rugged then the standard and works quite well for my needs.

So now it is time to answer the questions.

Is more expensive better in prepping? Honest answer, rarely. It is the rare instance in which a less expensive but still structurally sound device will not preform to the same standards as the more expensive designer name brands do these days. When it comes to knives I have found that $9-$20 Moraknivs will work better then others in the same size. Or for folders the $9-$15 Opinel is an amazing bit of gear. Always be smart, always be ready, always train with what you have! As a side note, currently there is a great price on the Bahco version of the Morakniv Companion– same company, blade size, stainless steel just branded for Bahco, $9.40 you cannot beat the price- grab a couple!

What is really important? That’s easy, training (practice), always. The most important aspect of prepping is training!


Free the mind and the body will follow.


About Jesse Mathewson

Jesse Mathewson is the author of the popular blog, and provides commentary to many varied places based on a background that includes education in criminal justice, history, religion and even insurgency tactics and tactical training. His current role in his community is as an organizer of sorts and a preacher of community solidarity and agorism. He also runs Liberty Practical Training, a self defense school specializing in the practical applications of defensive approaches versus the theoretical. As an agorist, voluntaryist and atheist his life is seen as crazy and wild by many, though once they get to know him most realize he is a bluntly honest individual who will give you the shirt off his back if he believes it is necessary to help you. Very simple, "That which is voluntary between all individuals involved is always right, if it is not voluntary, it is always wrong."
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4 Responses to Is more expensive better in prepping? What is really important?

  1. jeffreycanthony says: Is supposed to fit nested nicely with the Kleen Kanteen wide mouth 40oz i think. 🙂


    • It does, I have a mixture of cups- two made for my personal favorite biomass using cooking machine, Kelly Kettle- (linked on side) they fit the Kleen Kanteen as well, also, the titanium 450 ml Toaks cup.

      Love it 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. jeffreycanthony says:

    The balance of price and training gets interesting for one big reason.

    When we buy things, we (should be looking at least) look at criteria on how those things will help us meet our needs.

    When emergencies happen, when life changes happen, our needs change dramatically.

    So if we aren’t training, if we aren’t customizing our training to also meet our needs for those scenarios (no matter how nuts we might seem to present society, which hasn’t seen many serious situations for a long time) then our gear might just be useless no matter how expensive if it’s not been tested for what our needs might be in the future.

    Like everything else this should be applied to just about any purchase we make, either understanding that what we buy is only targeted for use for so long as our present situation maintains, or considering how these items will work in emergencies, and then testing it.

    Even things as seemingly not for the future as home computer systems… you could build a $10k server that does everything under the sun, and if your lifestyle changes, it could be plain useless. Not just the consideration of “worst case” like an EMP… but what if you are without power out of nowhere but need to get to information? What if you are rendered homeless? There are actually homeless people out there who use computers regularly to help meet their needs. So as we look out there at all the SoC offerings, beaglebone, odroid, minnowboard, and the like… the Raspberry Pi still tops out as one of the lowest electricity use computers out there that still has a lot of features to get life done.

    We can buy a brand new iphone that is all the rage… or shop around… i just picked up a ruggedized waterproof Kyocera Hydro Icon from FreedomPop for $30 that isn’t bleeding edge tech but does the job after a few simple fixes. And is free for their lowest tier service plan. Has built in induction charging capability. And uses a more universal micro USB charging cable that more people will have available even if they own iphones since many other devices (including a raspberry pi) use.

    Even for those that don’t have the ability to constantly train, should consider every alternative possible, not just to build muscle memory, but to train the mind. When you go shopping, spend a few minutes more just looking at everything and thinking about how those items work in various scenarios… when you buy things, think about what kind of use they will have in limited resource scenarios. Dried beans vs canned beans and water shortages. Looking at home water filter pitchers? Why not get brita water filter that hooks up to the tap and happens to filter giardia and cryptosporidium that is about the same price? Sure, you wont have water pressure in “grid down” but in our area we’ve had the wonderful government water supplier compromise our water supply every 2 years now. And it almost always doesn’t let us know until a week after the event.

    Think differently about everything. Train the mind. Even the strangest things have application.


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