Overkill or just well-prepared?

#1
Over the years, I’ve accumulated several pieces of recovery gear, some bought, others won (thanks to the DRV and MRV raffles!). In addition to a winch, shackles, snatch block, and straps, I’ve got a Hi-Lift, a Pull Pal, a Safe Jack kit, and a pair of Go Treads. I’ve used the winch a few times, but have yet to use the rest of the gear.

Riding on the tire carrier, the Hi-Lift doesn’t take up needed space. In fact, I’ve found space to tuck everything away pretty well, but while I can see the potential use of each of them, I’m wondering if there’s too much redundancy for situations I’m likely to encounter.

Thoughts?
 
#2
It's like insurance you won't need it until you need it ;) You don't say if rig is a DD? If not and space not exceeded I'd say keep it. You may become someones BF if you are able to help or rescue them. From profile pic it looks like you may get out and about... I say better safe than sorry :)
 
#3
Yeah, it’s my daily driver and I keep everything but food and clothes in it all the time. The best average MPG I saw, back when it was brand new and unmolested, was about 15; I currently get about 13 on a route that goes through some hill country. On the one hand, a loss of 2 mpg doesn’t seem to much of a trade-off given the mods and gear I’ve added. On the other hand, that’s almost a 15% drop, and that does sound like a lot.

I don’t think I’d see much of an increase by dropping one or two of those items, as all of those items together weigh about the same as a passenger. I’m not too concerned about fuel economy, as it’s a brick on wheels (but certainly more fun than a Prius!). I’m just taking a closer look at what I’ve used, what I’m likely to use, and what I can do without as I repack the recovery gear and kitchen setup.
 
#4
Everyone has to answer the question of how prepared is prepared enough for themselves. Personally, I'd rather be over prepared and never need any of it than be caught in a situation I couldn't get out of.

Winch has been on my truck for a good 10 years. Been used once...and that was only to secure the front end of the truck on a UHaul trailer when I blew a head gasket in NorCal and had to trailer the truck home.
 
#6
12,000 lb. winch w\ 7\16" x 75ft. Master Pull Classic Synthetic Winch Rope 21,500lbs. breaking strength on the truck

stored under rear seat of truck in rigging bag (2nd from left)
3 - 3/4" Shackles
1 - 2" x 20ft. 20,000lbs. breaking strength Recovery Strap
1 - 17,000 lbs. Snatch Block
3"x 6' 30,000 lbs. Tree Saver
25 ft of 3/8″ Dyneema 18,500lbs. breaking strength extension rope
Trail Gloves his & hers
wireless winch remote
cord winch remote

First Aid \ Trauma Kit red bag
Tool Kit black bag
Recovery Bag black bag
Portable Air Compressor VAIR 400P tan bag

stored under rear seat of truck next to rigging bag under the towel
Spare \ Extra 7\16" x 50ft. Master Pull Classic Synthetic Winch Rope 21,500lbs. breaking strength

items stored in or on trailer
42" Hi Lift Jack
2 sets of (4) XBull 10 Ton Recovery Boards
Shovel
Axe
Bow Saw w\ 4 extra blades
50919592_2032174463498084_2454610106432618496_n.jpg 45767214_1924210364294495_1882812537561415680_n.jpg 51482017_2043118645736999_7684894968808210432_n.jpg
 
#7
There's no right answer, but it's fun to talk about when I can't get out.

For me the three "food groups" are safety, repair, and recovery - in that order. So always bring - Safety - (water, first aid kit, etc..), Repair (basic tools, tire stuff, etc . . .), and recovery (shovel, snatch strap, shackles, etc . . .) But how much beyond the basics you go in each area depends . . .

It depends on where you're gonna go, what you're gonna do, and who you're gonna do it with. You need different things in the dunes than you do in the forest, and even in the forest, you need different things for rock crawling than you do for leaf looking. Its all about risk, and what level you are willing to accept. You need more stuff if its hard to get outside help, and you need a lot more stuff travelling solo than you do in groups.

Then there is a kit that evolves with your experience of what you have needed doing similar stuff in the past. Everyone is going to end up somewhere different based on how they use the vehicle. Brent mentions above that he has only needed his winch once in 10 years. I've used mine quite a bit, and I get itchy if I leave the driveway without one. But I never carry maxtrax or a high lift jack. Not that they aren't good gear, but I always had another way more suited to my situation. If I am going to do something really hardcore, I'm more likely to pack a pull-pal or a chainsaw.

Maxtrax are a good example. I used to do a lot of desert (dune) driving, but 95% of the time we had at least three cars. That was almost a rule. The primary recovery method was snatch straps or winches. Which was always easy because there was always another car. We drove with people who had Maxtrax, but in a few hundred trips, they never came off the roof rack. For solo travel, max trax look like they would have been a game changer. But we did that so rarely that we never bothered to get a set. For what we were doing, max trax were just additional weight. For a solo traveler in the same area, they would have been a smart move.

Likewise in that same area, our needs changed depending on what we were doing. On a club run, we would always have recoveries because we were out there to do challenging things. But on camping trips, we would drive the same areas and never get stuck. On those trips, we were probably overkill on recovery gear.

Unless you are trying to challenge yourself and get stuck, I think the ability to do repairs in the field is probably more important than a large stockpile of recovery gear. Basic tools, spares, fluids, compressor, tire repair kit, etc... This again will be different based on what you are doing. I used to rock crawl with a complete set of spare axle shafts, u-joints, hoses, belts, hubs, lots of fluids, etc... I probably carried so much weight in spares and tools that it caused the breakage that I was fixing. But we always drove our junk off the trail. These days I don't rock crawl, and I'm not going to car camp with a footlocker full of axle shafts and half of NAPA. Now its a thoughtfully filled tool roll, some fluids, belts and a u-joint or two. I use the weight savings for beer and Overlandy stuff made of titanium and bamboo.

I'm struggling right now with a rear tire carrier. It's a great, high quality piece of gear, it frees up space inside, and I can carry more stuff, but its a real pain at the grocery store, and its overkill for the way I use the truck. I find myself with cargo riding around in the front seat because its such a pain to swing open the tire carrier. I think I'm gonna rebuild my drawers so the spare will fit inside, and the tailgate becomes convenient again.
 

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#9
There's no right answer, but it's fun to talk about when I can't get out.

For me the three "food groups" are safety, repair, and recovery - in that order. So always bring - Safety - (water, first aid kit, etc..), Repair (basic tools, tire stuff, etc . . .), and recovery (shovel, snatch strap, shackles, etc . . .) But how much beyond the basics you go in each area depends . . .

It depends on where you're gonna go, what you're gonna do, and who you're gonna do it with. You need different things in the dunes than you do in the forest, and even in the forest, you need different things for rock crawling than you do for leaf looking. Its all about risk, and what level you are willing to accept. You need more stuff if its hard to get outside help, and you need a lot more stuff travelling solo than you do in groups.

Then there is a kit that evolves with your experience of what you have needed doing similar stuff in the past. Everyone is going to end up somewhere different based on how they use the vehicle. Brent mentions above that he has only needed his winch once in 10 years. I've used mine quite a bit, and I get itchy if I leave the driveway without one. But I never carry maxtrax or a high lift jack. Not that they aren't good gear, but I always had another way more suited to my situation. If I am going to do something really hardcore, I'm more likely to pack a pull-pal or a chainsaw.

Maxtrax are a good example. I used to do a lot of desert (dune) driving, but 95% of the time we had at least three cars. That was almost a rule. The primary recovery method was snatch straps or winches. Which was always easy because there was always another car. We drove with people who had Maxtrax, but in a few hundred trips, they never came off the roof rack. For solo travel, max trax look like they would have been a game changer. But we did that so rarely that we never bothered to get a set. For what we were doing, max trax were just additional weight. For a solo traveler in the same area, they would have been a smart move.

Likewise in that same area, our needs changed depending on what we were doing. On a club run, we would always have recoveries because we were out there to do challenging things. But on camping trips, we would drive the same areas and never get stuck. On those trips, we were probably overkill on recovery gear.

Unless you are trying to challenge yourself and get stuck, I think the ability to do repairs in the field is probably more important than a large stockpile of recovery gear. Basic tools, spares, fluids, compressor, tire repair kit, etc... This again will be different based on what you are doing. I used to rock crawl with a complete set of spare axle shafts, u-joints, hoses, belts, hubs, lots of fluids, etc... I probably carried so much weight in spares and tools that it caused the breakage that I was fixing. But we always drove our junk off the trail. These days I don't rock crawl, and I'm not going to car camp with a footlocker full of axle shafts and half of NAPA. Now its a thoughtfully filled tool roll, some fluids, belts and a u-joint or two. I use the weight savings for beer and Overlandy stuff made of titanium and bamboo.

I'm struggling right now with a rear tire carrier. It's a great, high quality piece of gear, it frees up space inside, and I can carry more stuff, but its a real pain at the grocery store, and its overkill for the way I use the truck. I find myself with cargo riding around in the front seat because its such a pain to swing open the tire carrier. I think I'm gonna rebuild my drawers so the spare will fit inside, and the tailgate becomes convenient again.
Outstanding post :coffee
 
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