No Nonsense Survival Kit




Introduction: No Nonsense Survival Kit

Most survival kits I have seen contain lots of unnecessary junk that will do nothing to keep you alive. I have created this kit through my own experience and testing. I feel this kit has everything you would need in a survival situation and none of the junk. It is jam packed with items to keep you alive longer. For this kit you need an altoids tin, preferably one with an awesome paint job, and seven feet of paracord. Enjoy :)

Step 1: Contents

In this instructable, I will be covering 6 categories: fire, water, food, medical, signaling, and some other necessary items. Everything I have packed into this kit is extremely valuable in a survival situation.

Step 2: Fire

- One SOL flint striker
- Three weather-proof matches (any brand)
- One match striker
- Two small pieces of tinder (use one that works for you)

In my experience an SOL fire striker works well to ignite tinder. Weather proof matches are a great back up if the striker fails. I use regular tinder you can get in any store bought kit. The important thing is that it works well for me. Find tinder that you like and works well in your situation.

Step 3: Water

- Six water purification tablets

In a survival situation, the last thing I want to happen is to get a waterborne illness. These are six small packable tablets that will allow me to drink even the dirtiest water safely.

Step 4: Food

- Two mid to large sized fishing hooks
- Fishing line and some weights
- Fairly thick string
- Two razor blades

It is smart to have several ways of obtaining food in your survival kit. I have included hooks and fishing line to catch fish. The string is for making a snare to catch small game. If I manage to catch some small game I can skin it with one of the razor blades. The blades can also be used to clean fish.

Step 5: Medical

- Five butterfly bandages
- A small roll of duct tape
- One surgical blade
- One safety pin

Butterfly bandages will allow me to close up fairly large cuts in a pinch. Duct tape can also be used for sealing wounds. A sterile surgical blade can be used for many things, as can the safety pin.

Step 6: Signaling

- Folded square of aluminum foil
- Flat whistle
- Small model rocket engine

The aluminum foil has multiple uses, one of which can be a makeshift mirror for signaling. A whistle is a necessity in any survival kit. The model rocket engine is my personal preference for signaling. I believe it would be very useful because it is bright, loud, and produces a lot of smoke.

Step 7: Other

- Zip lock baggie
- Needle and thread
- Duct tape
- Aluminum foil
- Safety pin

Some of these items were already in previous categories. I have included them in the "other" categore to show that they all have a very wide range of usages.

Step 8: Packing

The first things you want to pack are the flat items. Arrange them in a way that takes up the least space possible.
Next pack your semi-flat items. These can include fishing hooks and safety pins.
Now pack in all of the soft items on top of the semi-flat items.
Lastly, arrange your largest items in a way that saves the most space possible. It will take a few tries to get them all in tightly.

Please check out stannickel's Solar Powered Flashlight that he kindly made just for this kit. He did a great job making a clear and simple light to make the kit better. Thanks!

Step 9: Wrapping

Now that your survival kit is backed to the brim, it will probably not close on its own. This is where the paracord comes in.
First, close the lid on the end of the paracord. Wrap it loosely around the tin. Pull the end back through all of the loops. When it is all the way through, keep tightening it until you have a long piece at the end.
Wrap the end back around the loops. When it is tight enough to hold itself together, you are done!


I expressly disclaim any responsibly what so ever in regard to the use of items in this instructable.

Step 10:

If you enjoyed my instructable, please feel free to vote! Thank you for your time and have a good day!

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    56 Discussions


    1 year ago

    Some great ideas in that box. I would suggest adding a small tube of cyanoacrylate glue. Wonderful for sealing small wounds without stitching them.

    2 replies

    1 year ago

    Good job! I just have two comments, there's one typo,"wights". and instead of the foil for the signaling, why not just use a signal mirror with a hole for aiming" Unless there was a reason to go on the cheap. But otherwise a fine job.

    6 replies

    I was thinking about including a mirror, but there is very limited space in the tin. The foil has multiple uses but the mirror would be better.

    instead of a mirror you could polish one side of the tin or the inside of the lid down to the metal. Use the finest finishing polish you can get, something like 8000 or finer. Protect from rusting with clear varnish and there you go. You have a signalling mirror.

    How about using some tape to tape the mirror to the outside of the box, and then use your para-cord over the mirror. If size and weight aren't a consideration, I would go ahead and do that!

    Just make sure that you don't use tape over a silvered mirror because it might pull the silver off. I think more mirrors are polished aluminum.

    You could put a tiny mirror under the line you wrap around the tin.

    There you go, see what you can do! Those mirrors with the hole for signaling are usually about 1/16" to 1/8" the thicker the better for magnifying the sun's rays, but take up space. You would have to debate yourself whether the foil would serve better than the mirror, more uses for the foil, but utmost importance on signalling for the mirror. I would find a way to have both if the use of the foil was equal to surviving better than without it!

    I will definitely try this!

    I'm not sure how this would fit in such a small box. BTW, you have done a wonderful job with this project! I'm thinking that light at night is very valuable. Batteries are a bad idea because they go bad before you get a chance to use them. But, how about a small solar cell mounted on the cover to charge a super capacitor with an LED light? Super capacitors can be charged almost infinitely. It's a thought. Anyway, you did a great job. You have my vote. Thanks.

    3 replies

    That would be very neat. I don't know much about wiring circuits and all that jazz.. I would love to see an altoids tin solar led light if you could make one! I could include it in my next kit.

    OK, I did it. I made a solar powered flashlight that uses an ultra-capacitor instead of a battery. I decided to publish it as an Instructable and posted it here:

    This project could be much more compact using the Dead Bug Style of point-to-point construction--just solder each component directly to the next one. That would save space. The solar cells would be hot-glued to the top or bottom of the altoids tin. You could punch a hole in one end of the tin and have the LED poke out of the hole. The switch could also have a hole so it would be accessible from the outside..

    Is this one better than the OSIS Survival Kit?

    wouldn't a roadside safety flare be good for signaling? after all that's what it is meant for and is also safer than holding a rocket engine in ur hand and trying to light it


    1 year ago

    Adapt ad lib for different weather and terrains/situation. What's good in the desert ain't in the mountains or the cold conditions up in Canada. My first order of business anywhere in such a kit is an aluminum emergency blanket. I know the kit might get a bit bigger , but it's essential that one stays warm. If you want to be thorough have kits assembled for different activities. Never underestimate local weather in your decision making on contents of your survival kit. There is no " universal " kit that will be a help in ALL situations. Choose wisely.

    2 replies

    People can die from exposure in the desert doncha know? I have a fanny pack to carry stuff I can't fit in an Altoids tin, such as 2 space blankets, (1 is good for one person! Also have a rain Poncho and a windbreaker. Other things such as a rechargeable battery for electronics, solar powered battery backup (good because it's renewable- but slow to recharge.) I also carry my (hand-held) ham radio with an extra battery.

    more great ideas! thanks. gonna make a list of everything and fill a few small kids back packs or lunch boxes and put them in places where they will be accessible. Although the idea behind the Altoids box is to have a small "safety pack" always available. but where? I am not going to keep in my pant pocket and carry it around with me wherever I go. so I guess one in the car(?). I lived in Northridge during the Northridge earthquake. the situation was pretty grim, but I had a pool so I used pool water and a kettle and put it on the barbecue so we had coffee and we cooked on it too.