EDC Summer 2015 – (Compendium)

Alright, it’s been half a year and my EDC has changed, probably much more than enough to warrant an update, but creating an itemized list and finding all of these product links takes time, so I only want it done when I feel it’s changed enough.

In the time since I last did an EDC update, I’ve been thinking a bit about what “EDC” is. Obviously, the words mean something by themselves. But on the internet they mean different things to different people. It’s hard to carry around the same things day-to-day for years, especially if you care about what you carry. You always want the best, and that requires you to keep searching and trying new things. But if something is changed often is it EDC? Can you “EDC” something for a couple of days?

Another problem is how to define when something is “EDC” or when it is carried infrequently enough to not qualify. This also changes depending on the scenario. If one is on a vacation their EDC may vary wildly from in the city, but if they only have it for a couple of days is that really every day? Or in my case, is it really EDC when you go most of many days without “carrying” it?

Thinking about these questions, and how I used my previous EDC items and tiers has led me to the following system. It still has tiers, but only 3 this time for simplicity. And the functions of each system has now changed.

Tier 1, which will be covered in this article, is my Person, Pockets, and Belt. This stuff is on me most of the time, and always when I leave my living area (i.e. out the door for more than to check the mail). When I’m in my home it is always at hand as well. If you catch me, I’m 99.9% likely to have these tools at hand. This could be considered my real “EDC”.

Tier 2, which will be covered in the next part, is my backpack. It is also close-by when I’m inside, and with me 9 times out of 10 when I leave the house. Occasionally, when I’m just going to the store, or in a car packed with people, it will be left behind, but this is rare. This is bordering on the edge of EDC. It isn’t always on me, but I feel it is around enough that I can consider it in that category.

Tier 3 is my travel and “other” section. There are many tools I use every day, or specifically want when I’m traveling, that I don’t necessarily always carry with me, but in some situations they will be integrated. For instance I use my notebook every day for at least one drawing (That’s a personal challenge of mine) and while I don’t always carry it with me, I can easily do so if I need to, and I use it more than some of my “real EDC” gear. So it gets put in this category with several other items used in similar ways.

With that in mind let’s take a look at the first tier (Specifications and Comments on gear in parentheses):



  • Wallet (Book Book Phone Case) (A bit beat up at the moment, I need to upgrade my phone and this case at some point.)
    • Cash
    • Cards
    • Business Cards
    • Phone (iPhone 4s)
  • Knife (Ontario Rat model II) (I have a few other knives I carry, {Victorinox Super Tinker, Sanrenmu 7010, Rat I, etc} But I feel this one work the best for me in a myriad of fields.)
  • Watch (Armitron Face, Timex band) (The original band for this watch was a stretchy kind, and I break those quickly, so I replaced it with an all-metal band.)
  • Shirt Pocket
    • Pocket Book (Bull&Stash) (This notebook is currently in for testing. I use Field Notes and Rhodia more often than not.)
    • Pen (Zebra F-301) (It’s not my favorite, but it’s very solid, cheap, and easy to find. For most places I go, my favorite Cross pen seems a bit too flashy.)




Knife (CRKT SPEW {also on neck sometimes}) (A nice blade shape for both general package and letter opening, and emergency self-defense.)


Pouch (Case Logic DCB302) (Completely stuffed. I’m looking for a new pouch currently, but this one is still the best I’ve found for me.)

  • Outside
    • Flashlight (Coast A5) (Attached by a Velcro strap) (This light has no frills, it’s a cylinder, with no modes and a button.)
    • D-Ring
  • Front Pocket
    • Multitool (Leatherman Juice S2) (Mainly used for the scissors and the pliers. It replaced my Micra because it’s easier to hold in the hand.)
    • Measuring Tape (3ft) (Surprisingly useful, but I love to rearrange furniture and I understand that most people don’t, so that’s 50% of the times I use it gone for most people.)
    • Lighter (BIC Mini)
    • Whistle (My particular whistle was owned by my grandmother and is from a car dealership in California. It’s not the loudest, but I like having it around as an heirloom type of thing.)
    • Nail file (Attached to knife) (Victorinox Companion) (I love the knife, so any excuse to have it around. A nail file is something that other items can’t really make up for.)
    • Worry Stone (I talk with my hands, and they go all over the place far too much. This prevents me from looking like an idiot, and Goldstone is an amazing color.)
    • Altoids Smalls Tin (I almost never use this, but it’s nice to have around.)
      • Flash Drive (Patriot Tab) (Another item that can’t really be replaced by other items. I’ve never “needed” it, but it’s been useful when others are farther away.)
      • Knife (Opinel #2)
      • Cord
      • Cotton Ball
      • Ziplock Bag
        • Matches
        • Striker
        • Kleenex
      • Nail
      • 4 Straight Pins
      • Paperclip
      • Electrical Tape
      • 2 Migraine medications (Relpax)
      • Butterfly Bandage
      • Cash ($10)
  • Main Pocket
    • Keys (Key Pouch) (It is a bit bulky, but I love it, and it keeps my keys nice and organized.)
    • Work Phone (Samsung S125G TracPhone)
    • Mini First Aid/Hygiene (Ziplock sealed with Electrical Tape.)
      • GUM Soft Picks in Travel Case (Toothpicks are gross, but I do really need something for my teeth, this was the compromise.)
      • Electrolyte Tablets (Can be really good if you need them, and in Texas they might be needed a lot.)
      • 6 Alcohol Swabs
      • 1 Alcohol Towelette
      • Bandages
        • 2 Knuckle
        • 2 Fingertip
    • Mini Tool Kit (This isn’t the best toolkit ever, but it works in a pinch, and is mainly geared toward glasses, which can be a real pain if they start to have problems.)
      • Razor Blade
      • 5ft of wire
      • Mini Pen (Cut Down Bic Pen Sealed with Electrical Tape)
      • Second Bag
        • Snare Wire (From Bear Grylls survival kit)
        • Glasses Screwdriver
        • Glasses Pads
        • 4 Glasses screws (2 sizes)
        • 4 Paperclips (1 insulated)
        • 3 Straight Pins wrapped in Electrical Tape
    • Cash Bag

The backpack has moved up from my previous EDC iteration, from tier 4 to tier 2. It’s still between 10-15 pounds, which is not too heavy, but can get uncomfortable at times. I’ve condensed the items contained within it to eliminate redundancy, and added a few more that are specific to the urban environment that I live in. There isn’t as much room to expand since I got a new, smaller backpack, but I’ve found the need to put things I haven’t planned on carrying in my pack to be minimal, and I have a shopping bag if the need arises. So without further ado, let’s take a look at what I carry in my backpack.


BACKPACK (Swiss Gear CityPack)

DSC01974 DSC01973

  • Outside
    • Pepper Spray (Sabre Red, Held in a Leatherman case by Velcro) (It’s attached to the strap for quick access in an emergency.)
    • Paracord Zipper Pull (In a helix shape, it really serves no function, I guess it could be an emergency paracord supply, but there’s hardly any there.)
    • Water Bottle (Sometimes)
  • Glasses Pocket
    • Tide-to-go pen
    • Hand Sanitizer (Germ-x) (Really good to have around, especially when getting fast food in a car, or eating appetizers when stuck back in a booth.)
    • Pain and Itch Relief Liquid (This stuff really helps with sunburns and mosquito bites that can ruin your day.)
    • Lighter (Bic full size)
    • Lip Balm (Chapstick)
    • Multitool (Leatherman Juice CS4) (A bit more bulky than the S2, with a few tools I don’t think I’ll ever use. But it’s still compact and well built.)
    • WD-40 No Mess Pen (You can never go wrong with some WD-40.)
  • Main Pocket
    • Bag (HEB {Texas Grocery Store Chain} Cloth Shopping Bag) (The thin disposable shopping bags are illegal in my city, and I find the cloth bag far superior to reusable plastic or paper bags. It’s almost a “must carry”.)
    • Device Pocket
      • Bandanna
      • iPod (Sometimes)
    • Toiletry/Hygiene Bag (Case Logic TBC403)
      • Outside Pocket
      • Main Pocket
        • Medicine Bottles (Fortunately I don’t have many prescriptions, so I can carry supplies of what I need with me at all times.)
          • Pain Meds
          • Sleep Meds
        • Med Bag
          • Migraine Meds
        • Pill Container (Altoids tin wrapped with Electrical Tape) (Some spare over-the-counter medicines that most people can use are helpful. Not that I’d just be giving them out: I use them mainly for myself, but still…)
          • Diphenhydramine
          • Acetaminophen
          • Tryptophan
          • Meclizine
        • 2 Packets of single-use toothpaste (Freshmint) (These things are surprisingly cheap and easily have enough gel to last 3 or 4 brushes!)
        • Tweezers (Uncle Bill’s Sliver Grippers) (An EDC standby for many people, I don’t have to explain how well they work, but I’ve never really had to use them.)
        • Folding Nail Clippers (Bluecell) (The construction might not be as sturdy as it is in some other brands, but it’s good, and I don’t see them breaking any time soon.)
    • Mini Kleenex package
    • Change Purse (Don’t want that change banging around!)
      • Change
    • Onn Emergency Charging Kit (Modified) (All of this stuff can be summed up pretty simply as phone protection. I have a few extra items in here for other devices, if anyone I’m with has problems. Keeping electronics charged in this day and age is very important, though I’ve never “had” to use the kit. An additional piece of the kit is stored in the pack organizer pocket.)
      • Dry Bag (For restoring Electronic Devices that got wet.)
      • Emergency USB charger (2AA)
      • USB to Wall Adapter
      • USB to Car Adapter
      • Mini USB to USB
      • iPod to USB
      • iPhone to USB
      • Samsung Phone Charger
      • Samsung Phone Adapter for Car Charger
    • Glasses Case (Self-explanatory)
      • Glasses
      • Cleaning Cloth
    • Paracord (40ft Bright Orange) (I don’t know how to tie many knots now, but I’m learning, and having it around is better than not. Though I don’t expect to be in any “survival” situations where it would be necessary, it’s a backup to the cheap twine that is in the organizer pocket.)
    • First Aid Kit (CVS All-purpose Kit with Modifications) (This is a particularly stuffed kit that I’m contemplating taking some of the bandages out of. It’s made to not need restocking for some time, it would appear, but I don’t need as many bandages as it comes with. I have rearranged this bag into Ziploc bags instead of the 5-pocket container it came with to slim it down a bit. I also feel the kit is pretty self explanatory, so I won’t go into too much detail except about the items I added.)
      • Quick Access
        • 2 Tampons (For impromptu bandages, nosebleeds, and potentially deep puncture wounds. I wouldn’t recommend it for that last purpose and don’t go taking medical advice from an idiot on the internet, but I’d say it’s better than dying if it does indeed inhibit death.)
        • Israeli Bandage (I’m not comfortable using a tourniquet, and while this is much larger and not as good at stopping blood, I feel much more able to use one of these.)
        • Snake Bite Kit (Coghlans) (These have been proven many times to not be effective. But the main killer in snake bites is not remaining calm and allowing the venom to spread more easily. This kit acts as a placebo to keep calm, for both me and the people I’m with. It also has a few other useful items like a scalpel and disinfectant.)
          • 2 Large Suction Cups
          • Small Suction Cup
          • Lymph Constrictor
          • Snake Bite Instructions
          • Glass Iodine Vial
          • Scalpel Blade
        • CPR Breathing Barrier (I have an idea of how CPR works, but I am by no mean qualified to administer it. If someone else has to {or the situation is bad enough that I have to} this is a nice thing to have at hand quickly to protect the administerer.)
        • Triangular Bandage
        • Bandanna
        • Red Cross First Aid Guide
      • Tools Bag
        • Vinyl Gloves
        • Plastic Tweezers
        • Bent Scissors
        • Flat Thermometer
        • Safety Pins
        • Paper Tape
        • Tongue Depressors
        • Cotton Swabs
      • “Pre-Treat” Bag
        • Instant Cold Pack
        • Chloride Wipes
        • Electrolyte Tablets
        • Alcohol Wipes
        • Ibuprofen
        • Aspirin
        • Acetaminophen
        • Pill Fob
          • More Acetaminophen
          • Migraine Medication
      • “Treatment/Bandage” Bag
        • Gauze Bandages (2 Sizes)
        • Gauze Pads (2×2 to 5×9)
        • Finger Tip Bandages
        • Knuckle Bandages
        • Circle Bandages
        • Spot Bandages
        • Butterfly Closures
        • Elbow Bandage
        • Knee Bandage
        • Eye Pads
        • Standard Size bandages (Plastic and Woven)
        • Mini Size Bandages (Plastic)
      • “Post/In Addition to Bandages” Bag
        • Neosporin Tube
        • Die cut Moleskin
        • Space Blanket
        • Insect Bite Relief wipes (Maybe these two {this and the one after)should go in the Pre-Treat Bag?)
        • After Burn Gel
        • Single-Use Triple Antibiotic ointment
    • Back Pocket
      • Poncho
      • Guest parking pass
      • Gloves (In Ziplock Bag, Wells Lamont Suede Cowhide 1012) (I’ve forgotten gloves so many times when I needed them, and just bought another pair. Now I have so many pairs I find them popping up everywhere. I guess I reached my saturation point.)
  • Organization Pocket
    • Cash Wallet (Flex By Filofax) (This can be used in so many different ways, and I love the versatility and high-quality construction)
      • Cash (However much I want that day)
      • Business Cards
      • Pen Loop
      • Pen (Monteverde Poquito Stylus) (Combo phone and paper use is very handy in a backup pen)
      • Flex by Filofax notebooks
        • Notebook
        • Jot Pad
    • Key Chain Dangle
      • Knife (Pittsburg Mini Utility Knife) (Not the best quality, but much better than nothing, the mini utility blades are super sharp, and it’s attached to the pack to prevent it from being lost)
      • Flashlight (Maglite Solitaire) (Strategically placed to allow for easy viewing of the Organization pocket when turned on)
    • Maps Bag (For some emergency navigation and making notes on said navigation)
    • Water Filtration Straw (A present from my brother. I never intend to use it, but it doesn’t take up much space and could be very handy.)
    • Checkbook
    • Earplugs (I was reminded of how noisy things can get when I went to an Independence Day festival. I was never uncomfortable, but I realized it could quickly escalate to that.)
    • Flat Sewing Kit (This is super handy and the size of a credit card, but a bit thicker. I have a few hotel sewing kits that I ordered to refill it with, just in case.)
    • Hand Warmers (It’s not winter, but they take up almost no space, and will be there when the cold jumps on me.)
    • Cheap Plastic Twine Wrapped around Gift Card (If I need to tie some things together, I’ve got something, and it’s cheap and easy to use.)
    • Pen (Bic Tech) (Like the Monteverde, but larger, and not as well constructed.)
    • 3 Small Zip-Ties (Another form of lashing things together.)
    • Business Card Holder
    • Notebook (Moleskine Volant)
    • Car Charger Adapter (For use with Emergency Charging Kit)
    • Red Electrical Tape (The red color has no real purpose, it’s just what I had.)
    • Battery Cases (These cases link together and hold 4 of either type of battery, or 5 batteries if you stuff it. All of my flashlights use the AAA, and the emergency charger uses AA.)
      • 5 AA
      • 4 AAA
    • 2 Small Ponchos (Can’t have enough rain protection!)
    • 2 Bandannas
    • Strap For Belt Pouch (for over the shoulder carry.)
  • Small Back Pocket
    • Bicycle Cards (Games are important for eliminating boredom when something is delayed, or just when you’re around people who like to play games. Everyone knows card games, and Love Letter is simple to teach and only has 16 cards.)
    • Love Letter Card Game (minus the Bag)

DSC01979 DSC01975 DSC01976 DSC01977 DSC01978DSC01980 DSC01981

And that’s the second, and by far the most expansive tier of my EDC.

And now it’s time for the final part of my EDC. This tier might be straying from the “EDC” mentality, and instead of everyday carry, it might be more everyday use, like EDU, but that’s already taken. I use my computer, notebooks, fountain pens, and many other things every day, and they can integrate into my EDC when I need to carry them, for travel or work purposes. I feel that while they are outside of the normal EDC realm, I should still include them. The various items will be shown here mostly without comment, but the uses of each section will be talked about. Let’s take a look at what I have here.


Emergency Satchel (Unknown source Map Bag) (This satchel is close by but not right next to me in most places. It’s more like an emergency car bag. It isn’t a survival kit. It’s meant to get me through one emergency situation and one only, not many days and not after the apocalypse. But if my regular EDC stuff is lost or isn’t handy, I strive to keep this one near as a backup.)

  • Emergency/”Survival” Pouch (Maxpediton Barnacle Pouch)
    • Outside
    • Front
      • 1ft of Dental Floss
      • Bear Grylls priorities of survival guide (For a bit of fun)
      • 3 Toothpicks
    • Inside
      • Altoids Tin
        • Cotton Ball
        • Fire Steel + Striker
        • 10ft Cord
        • 8 Waterproof matches and striker
        • Small vial
        • AAA Battery
        • Electrical tape
        • Flattened Produce Bag
      • 3″ Glowstick
      • Lighter (Bic Mini)
      • Whistle (Cheap, flat. Gerber from survival kit.)
      • Flashlight (Maglite Solitaire)
      • Knife (Gerber Mini Paraframe, partially serrated.)
      • Multitool (Leatherman Micra)
  • Mini First Aid Kit (Bear Grylls Water resistant Bag/ziplock {With a red cross added})
    • Forceps
    • Gloves
    • Tissue
    • Johnson and Johnson first aid guide
    • Waterproof Ziploc
      • Paper medical tape
      • Electrolyte Tablets
      • Single Use Neosporin
      • Motrin
      • Hand Cleansing Wipes
      • Butterfly Closures
      • Small Gauze Dressing
      • Medium Non Stick Pad
      • Band Aids
  • Emergency Firearm (Walther P22 with second magazine)
  • Pen (Paper:Mate Write Bros)
  • Pencil (Half of a Sanford Eagle)
  • Pencil Sharpener (Unnamed Cheap)

Fountain Pens (I love fountain pens and use them every day. I believe they are the perfect writing experience, but not the most practical, since my regular EDC doesn’t include them. But when I have a bit more luxury room I always try to fit one or a few in.)

Notebooks (I always need to jot things down, and replacement books for my standard pocket notebook are common. I also try to come up with a cartoon idea and a drawing every day, making my notebooks very important to me.)

Toiletries bag (Not in extreme detail) (This bag I have arranged so that I use it every day, and when I need to go on a trip I can simply zip it up and have all of the things I normally use around my sink right there with me.)

  • Toothbrush
  • Toothpaste
  • Tissues
  • Nail Clippers
  • Scissors
  • Comb
  • Floss
  • Trimmer
  • Deodorant
  • Mouthwash
  • Shampoo
  • Medicines
  • Petroleum Jelly
  • Bulb Syringe
  • Stain Remover

Computer Bag (I don’t use this bag every day, but the items in it are in almost constant use, and if I need to go somewhere you can be certain I’ll pick it up.)

And that’s it for my summer 2015 EDC. I’ve slimmed the main parts down some and added a few more. I think that EDC is ever-evolving for most people, and for me it’s no different. Sometimes it changes day to day, and I want to try and get what is best for me specifically. I hope I’ve given you a few ideas, or showed you some things you may have forgotten about. And even if I didn’t, I hope you enjoyed reading it. I’m almost positive I’ll be doing it again in another 6 months.

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