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Stay Alive: Survival Skills You NeedBuild The Perfect Survival Kit Practical Self Reliance
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Build The Perfect Survival Kit

Build The Perfect Survival Kit - 2nd Edition

By John D. McCann

Build The Perfect Survival Kit Front Cover

John D. McCann, is the author of the first book ever written exclusively on building survival kits. It was published by Krause Publication (now KP Books), April, 2005. It was so successful that the publisher asked that he do a 2nd, Expanded and Revised Edition. Well here it is; Revised and Expanded, with a new Forward by Christopher Nyerges. With major additions to the components section and new chapters on Cookware & Stoves, Modifying Your Gear, Everyday Carry & Get-Home Bags, and Evacuation Kits & Bug-Out Bags. The 2nd Edition is 30% larger than the original.

An emergency can arise at anytime. Now everyone from the average commuter to the risk-taking sportsman can benefit from a survival kit. Each kit is described with a list of components, a picture of the finished product, and a discussion of each component and its value.

The book advocates careful planning and building a personalized kit specifically tailored to each outing or possible emergency. Readers will learn about the nine component categories: Fire & Light, Signaling, Navigation, Water & Food, Shelter & Protection, Knives & Tools, Multi-purpose Items, and Miscellaneous Items.

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The above photo Shows the comparison in size between the 1st & 2nd Edition.

Armed with the kit-building techniques found in this book, You Will Be Prepared To Survive!

Softcover, 256 Pages with over 375 photos.

Note: If you would like a copy signed by the author, and are ordering on line, please indicate the name of the person you want the book signed to under "customer notes" in your shopping cart.

23101 - Build the Perfect Survival Kit - 2nd Edition - $18.00
23104 - Both - Stay Alive! Survival Skills You Need & Build the Perfect Survival Kit - 2nd Edition - $38.00


Christopher Nyerges - Forward to 2nd Edition

The concept of “survival” can be reduced to two basic aspects: your experience and practical knowledge, and the gear that you carry. Your gear can be things that you fabricate yourself, from the forest, or from the hardware store, or from a trashcan. McCann has provided us with a clear guide to the vast spectrum of stuff that is out there, and how we can select it, modify it, pack it, and learn how to use it to live well, and yes, to survive emergencies.

The very nature of being ready for the unpredictable's in life is to carefully consider our own life patterns, and consider the very basics of maintaining health and sanity when things get chaotic. We all know – almost without thinking about it – what it takes to get through our normal day. But when our patterns are disrupted, somehow we just can’t think straight. We go crazy. We go into survival mode. Which is why it’s far better to think all this stuff through before you’re in survival mode. You should think through the basic categories of what it takes to keep your body safe, and keep your mind at peace.

McCann has provided us with a valuable tool for doing that assessment. What do you put in a survival pack? McCann has broken it all down into the component aspects – clothes, lighting, fire, first aid, tools, cordage, etc. You need to read why he chooses what he chooses. Remember, this is survival, and so your gear and tools should be able to serve two, three, four purposes. And they should be durable.

And then, what do you do with all that stuff? You can’t carry it around in a shopping bag! You assemble different kits for different perceived situations.

McCann points out that there are many situations in which you might need to rely upon your own resources – which means, among other things, relying on the stuff in your pack. You could be in your car, on a backpacking trip, walking the dog, or just at home. You might have a special kit ready if you had to evacuate on foot. What stuff should you have to give you peace of mind? And what stuff will stand up to the kind of rough use that it’s likely to get in a survival situation?

If those are the very questions you are asking yourself, then that’s why you need this book. John McCann has provided us with what we all need: a clear guide to all the things that we need for the continuity of life under adverse conditions. Read this book and apply its many lessons to your particular situation. Read between the lines and be ready for adversities that can and will affect all of us.

I have found McCann’s book to be the most practical guide to filling my pack and increasing my level of mental peace and ability to survive. Plus, I have learned new things, and thought about some of these things in ways I’d not done before. It is with all this in mind that I give McCann’s book my highest degree of recommendation.

Ron Hood - Hoods Woods - Forward to 1st Edition

The book you hold in your hands is remarkable.

It is remarkable for at least two reasons. Forst, a book on building survival kits has never been published, and secondly, the book is very good. How ooften do we find an original work that identifies a glaring hole in the body of knowledge and then successfully fill the hole?

John is no opportunist in this book. What I mean by this is that he hasn't just created a bunch of showy kits and offered them up as "do-this-and-you-will-survive" kits. He has actually taken hundreds of products, tested them and then worked them to their limits and beyond. He has taken the surviving products and placed them in arrangements that allow them to form mutually supporting kits that are not only effective and usable, they are dependable and reasonable to assemble. They are also fun to make.

Not happy to leave us with functional and tested assemblies, John has gone into the philosophy of kits and explained the hows and whys of each piece of gear so the readers can decide for themselves what they want in their own personal kits. It is in the customization of survival kits that we find true utility. A custom kit will be used while a "kit in a can" might languish in a glove compartment or pack, forgotten.

I've seen literally thousands of kits over the 35 years I've been teaching survival. Most of them are in a class I'd call "keepers"; you keep them till you need them. The problem with those sorts of kits is that when and if a need arises you might not recognize it and could fail to utilize the components to your potentially everlasting grief. This is because of the very human desire to conserve resources you don't really understand. Another feature of "keepers" is that even if you wish to employ them, you might not know how the components work or how they might work synergistically. John has solved those problems. When you finish this eminently readable journey through gear and application, you will know your kit, you will carry it, and you will use it at the least provocation. That is what a real survival kit is all about.

A survival kit is the epitome of innovation, and the book you hold in your hands will start you on the path to a new sort of creative thinking. Now take my advice, bring the book to the cashier and buy it. John will take it from there.

How To Survive Anywhere
Book by Christopher Nyerges

Christopher Nyerges has instructed thousands of children and adults on basic survival and living skills for both wilderness and urban environments. In his book, How To Survive Anywhere, under survival kits, he indicates; "Perhaps the best single reference on making your own survival kit is John McCann's 'Build the Perfect Survival Kit.' Get it, read it, and follow his advice."

Tactical Knives Magazine
Review by Steven Dick

If you have ever carried a commercially prepared "survival kit," you know there are often items included for which you will never have a need in your own situation. On the other hand, items that might be highly useful for the emergencies you are preparing for are totally absent. The answer, of course, is to build your own kit based on where you are going and what conditions you are most likely to face. "Build the Perfect Survival Kit" is the book to help you do this.

...Survival kits are then separated down by size, "Mini," "Medium," and "Large," as well as those designed for vehicles. Selecting the right container for each kit is also covered in detail.

In general, this is a well thought-out and researched book with much useful information. It is the ideal place for anyone designing a personal survival kit to start.

Wilderness Way Magazine
Review by Dude McLean

It seems almost impossible, but this book is the first of its kind. There are no other books exclusively about survival kits! I believe this book will stand as the definitive "work" for years to come.

John McCann informs us all about mini kits, then works his way through small, medium, and large kits, as well as canoe and vehicle kits.

This book is well researched and concise, no beating around the bush! John has included close to 200 sharp photos of items he uses, including containers.

...The author gives his ideas and extensive research to you. He explains why each item works. The most important part is when you follow his guidelines, you build your own survival kit. What you end up with will be a custom survival kit that is uniquely yours, not John's, or anybody else's.

With this book, you will gain a complete understanding of the component groups and how they all tie together. Then all you have to do is practice with your gear so you will really know how and why it works.

...If you follow this man's advice, you will be compelled to build your own perfect survival kit that is customized for you and your needs, and that is important.

...After reading this book you will have an entirely new perspective on the matter. This is not some trashy rehash of the same old tired mantra from an article or a quickly written section thrown into some wannabe survival book. John McCann's book is fresh, original, and the real deal.

This book gives you a great read. I strongly believe it belongs in every outdoorsman's library. In my opinion, John McCann has written an instant classic.

Tactical Gear Magazine
Review by Fred Baumann, associate editor, Gun List

A thoughtful and extensively researched new book offers detailed advice on creating customized kits for adventure, sport or travel. What this modest book has to suggest could save your life.

... Being prepared and having a survival kit with the .. fundamentals can greatly increase the odds of survival. As recent events attest, survival kits are not just for those interested in outdoor activities.

McCann, ... schools us in the art of creating personal survival kits - of any size, for almost any contingency - in his new book.

... Copiously illustrated with more than 150 black and white photographs, "Build the Perfect Survival Kit" advocates careful advance planning by creating survival kits customized as to size - from a coat pocket up to a large duffel bag or rucksack suitable for the back of a truck or light aircraft - for the type of emergency or situation you are likely to encounter...

Following a helpful introduction covering "the basics," McCann devotes chapters to each of the essential components of various types of survival kits. ... Varieties of each type of component are thoroughly described and evaluated.

This is followed by chapters on how to select the right kind of containers for each kind of kit, from the smallest to the most comprehensive...

As Ron Hood, a well-known survival expert for more than 35 years, writes in the book's forward, "[McCann] has actually taken hundreds of products, tested them and then worked them to their limits and beyond. He has taken the survival products and placed them in arrangements that allow them to form mutually supporting kits that ... are dependable and reasonable to assemble."

Frank Sorrentino - Email from a Reader

I just finished reading and put to use the topics listed in "Build the Perfect Survival Kit." This is a great book that helps the reader think out what he/she needs to survive in any environment. I have structured a number of mini kits, a fanny pack kit and a car kit. I am retired and enjoy working on these constructive exercises. My next step is to ensure I can operate all the equipment in case of an emergency. I thoroughly enjoyed how John D. McCann put this book together. It is a survival kit masterpiece.