In the past, we've been accused of being survival gear snobs. We'll admit, when you're exposed to some of the best gear the world has to offer, it's hard not to get a little selective and opinionated about quality. However, it's undeniable that useful survival gear can be found regardless of your budget. Whether you're working at a drive-thru or running a Fortune 500 company, survival is the great equalizer — it's not just about the price tags on your gear, it's about how you use it.

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Take, for example, the following video from YouTube host Wranglerstar. In this video, a challenge is posed: is it possible to build a functional survival kit for only $10? That's about as low-budget as it gets, considering ten bucks won't go very far at most retailers. Even at big-box store chains that emphasize low prices above all else, you might not be able to buy more than 3 or 4 items.

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They may not look cool or last very long, but these simple kitchen knives could save your life in a pinch.

So, where do you go for survival gear when your budget is minimal? The dollar store, of course. Theoretically, you'll be able to find up to 10 items, although you'll have to sift through a lot of junk to find what you need. Watch and learn:

In case you missed it, here's a breakdown of the requirements Wranglerstar set for his challenge:

  • The kit must provide the resources for a fire, a shelter, and two meals.
  • The kit must be waterproof.
  • The total cost of all items before tax must not exceed $10.
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Items were tightly packed into bins, along with some free plastic shopping bags.


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Now, here's a recap of what he chose:

  • Pack of matchboxes – $1
  • Box of tea candles – $1
  • Orange plastic tablecloth – $1
  • 200ft jute twine – $1
  • Flashlight with AA batteries – $1
  • Dual chef knife and paring knife set – $2
  • Two pull-top cans of pork and beans – $2
  • Dual pack of plastic food containers – $1

This seems like a reasonable allocation of funds, depending on the environment you'd be surviving in. The combination of matches and tea candles provide a long-lasting and transportable fire source, while the tablecloth and twine cordage could be used to build a waterproof tent or A-frame shelter. Excess twine could also be turned into char cloth for more fire-starting material.

Our biggest critique would be with the lack of dedicated water purification method. Sure, you could boil water in the tin cans, but that requires time to set up camp and light a fire. So, we would omit the flashlight, and instead get a small bottle of plain household bleach. By adding a few drops, you could easily purify water on the move.

So, what would your $10 survival kit contain? Let us know in the comments below, or head to our Facebook page.


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