2nd Amendment to the Constitution of The United States of America

A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.

"I ask sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people except for a few politicians."
- George Mason (father of the Bill of Rights and The Virginia Declaration of Rights)

Thursday, October 29, 2009

If the SHTF....what are you taking?

A lot of web pages, blogs and forums deal with the SHTF (Sh!t hits the fan) and TEOTWAWKI (the end of the world as we know it) scenarios, I cannot really add much more on this topic than what you can find by doing some Google searches on the subject. I have never really thought of myself as a hardcore (or medium core) survival type, but I am definitely not a sheeple either. I outlined in my article on "Go Bags" and "Bug out bags" that I consider the most likely SHTF scenario for me to be some type of localized emergency that I would have to evacuate my family from central Ohio, while possibly providing armed security to my party in the process.

So with that in mind I decided to have a little experiment. I called a few of my friends and asked them to help out. What I wanted to do was give them a simple SHTF scenario and see exactly what they had available to react to it, take a photo, and post it up here. Hopefully, some of you will do the same and email me your results so I can publish them in another post.

I gave them the following scenario:

You have been following a crisis situation that affects your city of residence in the news for the past few days. You have now found out you must IMMEDIATELY evacuate your home with your family. There are reports of looters and gangs conducting criminal activity on a widespread basis and the police are reactionary, at best, to stop them. You have FIVE minutes to grab whatever weapons and accessories you may need for a few days to safeguard you and your family before you head out the door. What are they?

The conditions:

  • The items must be things that you can grab now and currently own, no "well, I plan on getting one soon" items.
  • They must be taken "as is", so if you have 20 mags for your AR but only 2 are loaded, you take 2 loaded mags and 18 empties.
  • You are limited to one long gun and one sidearm (just to keep it simple).
  • Assume you are the only one in your party armed and you cannot hand off a secondary weapon to a spouse or child (again done for simplicity's sake).
  • Again for simplicity, I am only concerned with 1st and 2nd line gear, leave the rucks packed with a months worth of MRE's out of it for now.
The Standard:

Take 5 (and only 5) minutes to grab your gear and take a picture of it.

The results.

Subject 1. Me

Well, after a bit of deliberation, I chose my AR over my AK as my rifle. This pretty much goes against every written and spoken comment I have made about this issue over the past year. It came down to familiarity and ammo. I have a Smith & Wesson M&P15 fitted with quad rails, a generic foregrip and a 4x12 scope taken from a friends stock Remington 700. In the lowest magnification the scope offers fairly quick target acquisition and helps my aging eyes pick out those fuzzy shapes I sometimes have a hard time identifying. Hidden in the pic, I have the original carry handle with rear iron site mounted on the left side of the fore grip rail as a back up sighting system. I also grabbed my CountyComm EOD bag which has an additional 9 mags for the AR (0nly 3 are currently loaded, the rest would have to be loaded from the boxed rounds in the pic). In the bag (I should have pulled it out) is a full bandoleer of 5.56 (120 rounds) on stripper clips. I also have about 240 rounds of ammo in boxes. Yeah, all of my ammo is the Brown Bear soviet type, its cheap and goes bang. To help counter the inherent mess associated with corrosive primers I also have an Otis cleaning kit, bore snake and rag in the EOD bad to perform maintanance as time allows. Also on the outside of the bag is my Blow out kit (described in an earlier post), Surefire flashlight, shemagh rag, tan aviator gloves and a "sustenance ration" consisting of a couple of cliff bars and small granola snack shrink wrapped in a seal-a-meal pouch. A bottle of water was in the pic also from the bag but fell off the table and I was too lazy at the moment to pick it up. For the pistol I chose my Glock 22 in .40 S&W. As much as I would of loved to pick my P220 in .45, I have more experience shooting the Glock (in steel plate competitions) and have more firepower available with 3 mags in it than I do in 5 mags for the P220. In addition to the 3 mags (45 rounds) carried, I have another 150 rounds of Winchester Ranger ammo (JHP) carried in the bag. I have an Streamlite M3 tactical light in the bag that fits on both the rifle and pistol (I don't know why I didn't pull all of the bag contents out, sorry!) That bag is pretty damn heavy to start. The shemagh can be used as a shoulder pad for the bag. The pistol sits in a Blackhawk Serpa holster on a generic pistol belt/1st line rig along with a aviators survival knife, Nite-Eyez flashilight/pocketknife pouch and a black utility pouch holding a field dressing, some 550 cord and a broken shell extractor for the AR.

Subject 2. "Woody"

An "old Army buddy" of mine, Woody has over 13 years of military experience under his belt, including training in the infantry. His gear consists of a Bushmaster AR with an EOTech sight, an AR chest rig with 8 loaded magazines (nicely equipped with mag pullers), a Para Ordnance P14 1911 .45 on a drop rig attached to the chest harness, a M-9 bayonet, and ammo. He chose the AR over his other rifles due to his current ammo supply and his familiarity with the platform. I am so jealous of his EOTech. The EOTech halo sight is state of the art and quickly helps put rounds on the mark. His choice of the P14 was due to the logic of "it's got 14 rounds of .45 and its a 1911", which I find hard to argue with at any level. The 1911 pattern is a battle proven design over and over. You can see he has a box of 5.56 M193 ball as well as some hollow points to reload the mags for the AR. Obviously Woody's military experience shows in his choice of weapons and gear.

Subject 3. "Kev"

Kev is my newest shooting bud. He's a Navy vet so rifles were something his military training did not emphasize like Woody and I. He also chose his S&W AR15 equipped with quad rails, a fore grip with a palm activated switch for the mounted flashlight, a Magpul stock, and a Vortex Strikefire red dot scope with flip up back up iron sites. Unlike Woody and I, he does not have an AK to choose from. He does own an outstanding specimen of a Russian SKS in 7.62x39 that would be an excellent back up choice if for some reason the AR was unavailable to take. Being the newest and most casual shooter of the 3 of us, he only has 2 30 round and one 1o round mag for the rifle along with about 140 rounds of ammo for it. Probably enough for a 1 or 2 day evacuation drive, but maybe not. His pistol of choice is a Beretta F92 with Inox finish in 9mm. A Very nice pistol. He has 2 mags and about 200 rounds of 9mm ammo to bring. He carries it on a drop leg rig with a retention holster that he can just add to whatever belt he is wearing at the time. He has a canvas protective mask (gas mask) bag to help carry the extra rifle mags on him and a .50 caliber ammo can to put everything else.

OK, so there you have 3 examples of what you might grab if the SHTF popped up on your doorstep today. Actually, I learned a lot about what I need to be doing as I definitely had some holes that I should fill in my contingency plan and "Go bag" contents.

If you would like to take this challenge yourself and send me a pic of your stuff to my email address I will post them in the next week or so in another post. I would really be interested in getting some feedback on this.

Send your pics to me at huey148 at gmail.com (sorry, don't want spam bots to find me!) along with maybe a brief explanation of your choices. Thanks!


azurevirus said...

well...maybe I read this wrong or misunderstood..but I cant picture the scnario where I would have to BO while theres roving gangs still being here..I mean if there was a bio/chem thing or like a gas plant exsplosion they would be booking too..Im not the type to BO unless the gangs numbers were just crazy high..and even then I prob would sit in a dark corner taking them out as they came in the door..kill or wound a couple or few and their tudes would prob change quick once they heard their buds screaming in pain right afer the shotgun blast that comes from the dark goes off..need a more specific scenario here..but my bob is packed....grab my Enforcer and my 9mm ..bov..fill up canteens with water and easily be out in 5 minutes..but really all I can think of that would make me bug would be if the house was badly on fire

Huey148 said...

Well, maybe it was a bit vague, but it was better than just coming out and saying "hey, here's pics of my SHTF stuff, show me yours" :-) I can think of one recent scenario that would fit the bill, Hurricane Katrina. If I was sitting down there with all that crap, the police themselves were looting Wal-Mart (ooh, don't bring that up!) I sure would hell take off from the area with some heat packed along side of me.

Kevin Delaney said...

Katrian sucked for everyone. I don't think i'd leave my house if that situation arose here. Cops were doing whatever they want, guns were being taken away from people who were trying to protect what was theirs.I can kinda undersatnd their course of action, but i dont nessesarily agree with it...If I was in that situation i probably would have shot someone if they tried to take away my ability to defend myself. Jail or no jail...

You did pack alot of things that i didnt even think of. However you have had alot more time to think about it. I had 5 minuites. I do think the test was fair though. I didnt even think about gun cleaning kits and first aid. But if the situation does present itself then i definatly will.

Huey148 said...

Well, that was kind of the point, see how much time you have put into it now so maybe you will have a better put together plan in the future. My bag has had my BOK attached to it for months now, same with the mag carriers. I bought additional mags and loaded the speed clips in the bandoleers. Did it all just to be prepared if need be. Still have much work to do.