In the car, I have two Anza Knives, first aid box, two maglights, extra set of batteries for maglights, Sawyer water filter in bottle, pistol in holster with extra magazine, full set of BDUs with extra wool socks. I know there is more but meh.
I think it's important to have some sort of "get out of dodge" bag if you have to leave home fast or carry in the vehicle.
IMO it’s important to be practical when estimating bag weight as well as evaluate the items you can carry that will serve you in that time of need safely.
Mine weighs 30lbs, the wifes is 18lbs. Items I have in mine:
First aid kit
ready to eat meals 3 days
water purification tablets
lighter x 2 with magnesium fire starter & tinder box
small flash light
camp style knife
paper & pen
contractors trash bag
handheld CB radio
extra AA batteries
2 large 24" bungee cords
50 rounds .45acp
After much research and debate, I’m going a different direction with my bag of choice. Sold the Triple Aught Design Fastpack EDC 28L (gasp!) and used the funds to purchase a few other bits.
Based on the current issue USMC FILBE 35L assault pack, I modified this by adding two of the USMC issue admin pouches to the front, and two sustainment pouches on the sides. I also added a second frame sheet to stiffen things up a bit.
End result is a bag that can easily carry 5 liters of water (internal 3L Camelbak bladder and two 1L Nalgenes), and everything I need for 5 full days. I can carry more if needed, and this single bag can support food/water/shelter for a family of 3 for up to three days in the wild.
Once the initial food and water runs out, I’m filtering water and fishing, snaring small game etc if there is a need to continue.
As it sits with 5 days of chow and water etc for one, it weighs 32 lbs
Available online from a variety of sellers in used but good condition, the USMC surplus FILBE stuff is a GREAT value for a bug out bag.
This is my modified assault pack that started out at 35L and is probably closer to 50L now with the extra pouches added, the larger main FILBE ruck is a great value as well if you need something in the big leagues 80L size. I have both and highly recommend them.
Just looking through that list again and something I've been thinking about (dangerous I know) is adding one of those collapsible stainless, or more likely titanium, stoves* to the pack that stays in the truck. My Jetboil lives in my truck full time with the idea that I will just toss it in my bag if needed. I use it for making coffee or tea or heating up whatever and I keep a spare unopened fuel can with it. Around here, small amounts of dry wood are easy to find and the compact and light weight of the collapsible stove wouldn't really be a hindrance but the weight and space savings might be nice; I'm not getting any younger. Obviously this wouldn't be as good of a choice if you were in a desert environment. At one time I kept a surplus folding Esbit stove in my bag but I'm not a huge fan of the tablets. Something else I've seen "bushcrafters" use as a miniature fire pit is one of those steamer baskets with the center rod removed.
Dave-I know you said you added a second frame sheet to stiffen the pack but have you considered using a sheet of closed cell foam for one of those instead? It's not going to be as rigid but would provide some shape holding ability (you can get different densities) as well as providing some additional padding, both for your back as well as your butt by being a cushion to sit on and insulate you from the ground. Having forgotten my cushion more than once when deer hunting on cold mornings, especially after it's rained, it's something I've come to appreciate a lot more. It'd also give you something to put your stove on to insulate the fuel canister from the ground if it's really cold.
I have the stainless Nano case kit that I carry in my day bag, and the larger G2 in my truck box. They come in titanium, as well, but I'me happy with the stainless versions. These fold together easily instead of individual parts like some brands.
Steve puts together some excellent use videos, and his voice is soothing and easy to listen to. Sorta that Bob Ross vibe.
Their site is acting wonky right now, so I linked to the value kits. Individual stoves are less costly. There are a ton of options available. I have an old Trangia alcohol burner that fits in both stoves, and bought a Trangia butane stove for convenience. So with just these two stoves, I can use twigs, alcohol, butane, Esbit tabs, and charcoal.
I have a titanium Esbit folder that I never use since getting the Nano. These, combined with my Jetboil, Coleman standalone propane single burner, (with Skottle) 1980s Coleman white gas stove with propane adaptor, and old backpacking MSR ensure I'll never be in need of something to cook on! Oh, and a good old fire grate.
Hopefully the site gets straightened out so that you can see what Steve offers. If not, look up Firebox Stove on YouTube to see the videos. Entertaining, too, as he hikes and camps with goats.
Dave-I know you said you added a second frame sheet to stiffen the pack but have you considered using a sheet of closed cell foam for one of those instead? It's not going to be as rigid but would provide some shape holding ability (you can get different densities) as well as providing some additional padding, both for your back as well as your butt by being a cushion to sit on and insulate you from the ground.
Just looking through that list again and something I've been thinking about (dangerous I know) is adding one of those collapsible stainless, or more likely titanium, stoves* to the pack that stays in the truck.
I think the non-reliance on store bought (gas) fuels is key. To survive, you have able to make fire. And be able to boil water. Lots of it over time, however long you are out there.
So, I just added this stove and pot by Überleben. Made in USA, their Stöker Flatpack Stove in titanium is featherlight at a mere 9 oz. for the Titanium (including waxed canvas sleeve), and 15 oz. for the Stainless Steel version. I’ve been really impressed with it and the best part (besides only weighing 9 oz.) is that it takes up almost NO space in my pack because it's flat. And since it's fueled entirely by organic matter (twigs, bark, pine needles, etc.), this stick stove / bio stove will keep you going indefinitely. No need for fuel canisters.
Their Tindår Wick + Bellow is also pure genius IMO.
A paraffin-wax infused hemp wick, it literally can’t get any easier than this. Meet the Tindår Wick + Bellow. Simply fluff the end, spark it with a ferro rod, and maneuver your flame wherever the heck you want it. Like a matchstick, but this'll burn for an hour. And if you need a quick vortex of oxygen to stoke your fire, don’t let the 3” size fool you. Just pull the wick out and blow into your new micro bellow. Seriously.
Their minimalist Kessel pot is also extremely well thought out. The lid doesn't rattle when stowed, and it's stainless steel with a waxed canvas bag. Hardwood knob on the lid makes it easy to use, and the main handle lends itself nicely to hanging over a larger fire if desired.
The Kessel has a capacity of 1.1L (37 fl oz.) and weighs only 16 oz. The downside is the size and how much room it takes up in my pack but the loss of pack volume can be compensated for by utilizing the interior of the Kessel to stow your fire starting equipment (tinder, ferro rod, Bic lighter if you're a dirty little cheater) as well as some snacks.
Being able to boil water and cook in 1 liter batches makes this an easy choice for me to include in my gear list.
Guess I should have clarified, I meant as a removable stiffener (sliding it into the rear pocket and then taking it out to sit on), not to sit on your pack.
The Uberleben brand is actually the brand of packable stoves I've been looking at so your recommendation helps. I've got one of those collapsing stainless bellows (like an old style car antennae) in each of two of my packs and I made a couple of those wicks years ago after reading an article about them somewhere, (maybe an old issue of Backwood's Home Magazine? I used to have a subscription years ago.). A piece of copper tubing and a piece of waxed jute works well but keep it in a Ziploc or something to keep the wax off everything else.
I really like that pot and the canvas storage bag!
The older I get the more I appreciate something a bit elevated (dropping a motorcycle on one leg may have something to do with that). I've tried a fair number of chairs and stools and still haven't found one I particularity like for all around use. I've got one of those lightweight three leg stools in the back of the truck but I think it was designed for a skinny teenage girl and it's not particularity comfortable for more than a short sit. I had one of the Helinox or Alps chairs that you balance on the two legs (I can't remember which brand), also a PITA to get in and out of, especially after a drink or two (not that I would ever do that); I sold it here or on ExPo. I'd like to try something like the Helinox Chair Zero but again, you have a chair that's designed to be sat in, not on the edge while you actually do stuff like cook. I had one of the three leg GSI chair things that someone gave me but it wasn't very light or compact and again, not particularity comfortable so I gave it away. I've got one of the old Ridge Rest chair kits for their sleeping pads and it's comrtable if you have something to put it on, but again, not elevated. My overall favorite is a wooden Kermit style chair of unknown origin that I found in my grandfather's camping stuff but it's definitely a car camping* item and while it folds, it's still bulky.
Not a bug out item unless you've got an RV or trailer but I wish you could still find the old school folding lawn chairs that had the woven webbing on them. We had them growing up and I remember everyone using them. They were lightweight, which was good because they had to be strapped onto the roof, and you had to replace the straps every so often depending on how much UV they saw but they were actually comfortable.
* I know it's a bug out essentials thread but I made it and I thought it was funny.