Survival "Math":

Discussion in 'Vintage Topic Archive (Sept - 2009)' started by Jag, Jan 11, 2008.

  1. Jag

    Jag Member

    PLEASE NOTE: Sorry about the length of this post—I tried to shorten it as much as I could; if it is too long for you to read now, please feel free to copy the text and print it out for reading at your leisure!

    So, I figured I'd start a second thread. This one is meant to examine some practical aspects--and numbers--in a survival situation. To start with, these numbers are pretty much the standard rule of thumb to properly prioritize your bodily needs in an emergency situation. You can: only survive three minutes without air, three hours without shelter, three days without water, and three weeks without food. Of course, maintaining a Positive Mental Attitude (PMA) is perhaps the most important thing to do in any life-threatening situation, for without a somewhat optimistic view of your current situation (while leaving out an out-and-out disillusioned perspective on the reality of the threat), a person may not be able to actively and clearly analyze a dangerous situation to extradite himself from it. In order of priority, the needs of survival are as follows: immediate flight to a safe location, shelter/heat, water, signaling devices/means, food, and, finally, rest. On average, real-world survival situations last only around 72 hours or less in about 95% of situations (like plane crashes in wilderness areas and car breakdowns on less-traveled roads), so you stand a statistically high chance of being found provided you do not panic and survive the initial emergency.

    Another important set of numbers is something more foreboding. Say you had a scenario where you were faced with a physical threat that included dealing with multiple attacking tangos--be they four-legged or two, it doesn't matter much, except that the two-legged ones tend to shoot back from a distance--that needed to be dispatched to protect yourself. You have in your possession (at a stationary, semi-fortified position where you have no need to immediately move) seven firearms, your choice of a compound bow, recurve bow, or a crossbow (for the parameters of the scenario), two pneumatic weapons (air guns, whether they run off of atmospheric gases or off of compressed, factory-produced CO2 cylinders is your choice), and a decent amount of melee hand weapons (such as hatchets, machetes, knives, spears, cudgels, and improvised throwing weapons like darts and sharpened tree branches flung with atlatls; also, any other modern projectile arms, like slingshots, slings, or bolas, that are factory manufactured or readily made out of available materials are also fair game to include in this situation). The rules are, for each of the respective categories, as follows:

    * You have seven guns, but they must fall into this sequence: three rifles, two shotguns, and two pistols; in addition, you can choose the calibers, but, if the rifle is bigger than a .22 LR, the shotguns are bigger than 20 gauge, or the rifles and pistols have interchangeable ammo, you have these restrictions placed on the ammunition: you can only have 300 rounds of large-caliber, bottleneck rifle cartridges for any of the rifles or pistols, you can have up to 1000 rounds for any .22 LR or .22 WMR caliber weapon(s), and you can have only 100 rounds for each shotgun if they are bigger than 20 gauge (if you choose a .410-bore, 28 gauge, or 20 gauge shotgun, you may have 150 rounds per shotgun). Also, you may choose any type of action (i.e., pump-action, lever-action, semi-automatic, etc.) or dimension (i.e., length, width, depth, etc.) of firearm in any of the categories above (rifle, pistol, or shotgun).

    * You have 60 bolts/arrows for your choice of bow (compound, recurve, or crossbow).

    * You can have/make/obtain as many of the melee weapons and short-range projectile weapons as you could possibly pack in to this location (it is a remote locale accessible only by horse, walking, or a well-built ATV; assume that this locale is a 12 hour walk from the nearest road or trail in a wooded area), but bear in mind a few facts: these weapons have a short effective range, must be used in close proximity to your enemy, and may put you at a greater risk for injury or death in an armed engagement. Is there a place for these tools in your conception of such a scenario, can you use them effectively (i.e., do you know how to fight in a hand-to-hand combat situation as a last resort), and would you even be willing to close with a foe to dispatch it (man or beast) at these ranges (in other words, can you fight back the fear of being so close to a predator or armed human with only hand weapons at your disposal)?

    There are two quick scenarios for you to ponder: you have a pack of twenty-four wolves/coyotes closing in on your position, and alternatively, there are sixty armed, organized humans closing in on you. In both situations, your foe wants you dead so he can capitalize on your demise (the dogs want you for food, and the humans want whatever supplies and equipment they can scavenge off you when you are dead). How long do you think you could hold out on your own or with one or two companions? Do you think you would be able to take out all of your opponents with the least amount of expenditure of ammo, supplies, time, and energy possible on your part?

    For a final thought to consider, suppose you were forced to stay mobile during an evacuation of an area due to the area being exposed to a high-level of danger (be it a natural disaster, an invading army, a hunting expedition gone horribly wrong, or any other conceivable reason to abandon a geographical location and move to another area in a hurry with only what you could carry). For mobility and energy’s sake, your total amount of weight that you could carry comfortably on your person in a backpack should probably be limited to forty-five pounds or so (or whatever you could conceivably carry comfortably while still remaining somewhat quick on your feet and not lethally fatigued). Factoring in the weight of basic gear (food and water for at least seven days [which translates into about a gallon of water {which is about eight pounds and must be replenished periodically about once a day at a suitable source of water} and ten pounds of food {high-calorie, nutrient-dense foods like MRE’s, pastas, nuts, jerky, bread/hardtack, and other foods with salt and spices to allow for palatability}, tarps and/or compact tents for shelter, fire-starting kit with matches, lighters, and magnesium strikers, first aid kit, flashlight and/or chemiluminescent (lightsticks)/road flares, cooking utensils and a small pot and cup, aluminum foil, duct tape, fishing gear, rope, a sewing kit, compass, maps, signaling devices, wire, toilet paper, and any other essentials you could possibly conceive), your load-out would probably have about only twelve to fifteen pounds left for a weapon and its accompanying ammunition. Coupled with a given (just for the terms of the scenario) .22 LR revolver with a six-round cylinder for small game procurement, what kind of long arm and sidearm would you add to this pack to enable you to effectively survive any conceivable scenario you might encounter while you were traveling? Would you keep the same type of caliber for both the sidearm and rifle? Or would you choose a higher-powered cartridge for the long arm and a secondary cartridge for the sidearm? Would you choose a shotgun or a rifle/carbine for the long arm? Considering that the weight of one hundred rounds of 180-grain Soft Point hunting loads for a .30-06 caliber rifle (an average hunting/defense load, give or take) is about 6.2 pounds, 16 rounds of one-ounce rifled shotgun slugs will weigh about 1.25 pounds, and one hundred rounds of 9mm 115-grain Full Metal Jacket loads weighs about 2.6 pounds, how much ammunition would you be able to carry without overburdening yourself, especially when considering the added weight of the weapons themselves? Let’s say you carried a Ruger Single-Six stainless .22 LR revolver (approximately 1.1 pounds, Model GKNR5F) with 500 rounds (high-velocity .22 caliber rimfire with a 40 grain copper-plated hollow-point bullet; this weighs in at about 3.6 pounds), a Remington 700 ADL Model bolt-action .30-06 (approximately 7 pounds) with 100 rounds of ammunition (using the aforementioned figure of 6.2 pounds), and a Hi-Point 9X19mm Model C-9 pistol (approximately 1.8 pounds) with 100 rounds of ammunition (using the aforementioned figure of 2.6 pounds). Add on the weight of a nylon holster for the C-9 and a suitable sling for the rifle (which totals about 2 pounds), we have a grand total of 24.3 pounds for our weapon load-out. Assuming we have a thirty-five pound maximum weight for our basic gear, we arrive at an overall “backpack weight†of around 59.3 pounds—quite a substantial load for even a healthy athlete to carry. In theory, then, you have around 700 rounds of ammunition for all your weapons. Assuming that, for the sake of food-gathering purposes, you would need to shoot big-game animals at least twice with your .30-06 and small-game animals at least twice with your .22 (if you don’t get a clean kill with one round) revolver, this allows you to shoot up to 50 big-game animals with your rifle and 250 small-game animals with your revolver. By using a rabbit as a generic small-game animal and a deer as a generic big-game animal, one could calculate his maximum amount of time that he could sustain himself on his ammunition stores that he was carrying. Assuming that the average rabbit yields about two pounds of meat (here in Alaska, at least, our snowshoe and arctic hares get about that big), the average deer yields about fifty pounds of meat, and that, considering that both rabbit and deer are rather lean meats (translation: less calories per unit of weight, or a lower energy density overall when compared to domestic livestock), one could survive on about two pounds of this type of meat per day (coupled with other sources of nutritional intake, i.e., food), we arrive at a maximum total endurance of around 350 days based on this food source, or about one year (this also assumes you were successful in taking some form of game every time you went hunting, of course; bear in mind that hunting is NOT the most efficient means of procuring wild game, and trapping and fishing are more successful methods of harvesting game). This leaves us with the 100 rounds of 9mm ammo in reserve for the occasional self-defense encounter or other multipurpose use (such as pulling the bullet out of the case with your handy Leatherman or similar multi-tool, dumping the powder underneath a waiting pile of dry tinder, loading the empty case back into the firing chamber of your weapon, and firing the primer’s hot stream of gases onto the waiting gunpowder as an emergency method of fire-starting—but more on that later).

    Well, I shall now close this obscenely long thread. Please weigh in on the topic with any comments, opinions, or insights that you might have. I hope you’ve enjoyed the read, and I’ll post something again (definitely something a little shorter) soon!

    Later, all!

    Jag :shock: 8)
  2. griff30

    griff30 Member

    Your math is great but your English composition leaves alot to be desired.
    Run-ons and lack of the begining or end of an identified paragraph makes for a long and incredibly hard to read thought, which most people will stop reading and simply close the window. See What I mean?

  3. Strangerous

    Strangerous Member

    Hey griff30, at least he isn't like other new members, posting "cool" and "me too" their first 20 posts. I've enjoyed Jag's contributions so far. But Jag is new here, and Jag will get better as he learns to write and format the native vernacular. (Do you like that word Jag?)

    Remember we're all friends here, and personal attacks are not cool.

    Jag, I can read your posts just fine. Not to say others will not have a difficult time with it, but i'm good.
  4. Jag

    Jag Member


    ...Oh appears I've been criticized...I feel so hollow and worthless :cry: ...must resist...must resist complete emotional warm, furry puppies in sight to hold...oh, what to do? Sarah Brady, I think I need a politically-correct hypocrite to offer me trauma therapy...

    ...maybe I'll just go postal--hey, ol' sawbones said I should find other stress relievers apart from those funny looking pills... :shock:

    :twisted:, just kidding :p!

    Thanks, Strangerous! Oh, and I definitely like that word (heck, I use it in everyday conversation; maybe that's why people look at me weird... :mrgreen: ).

    griff30, first off, thanks for the compliment on my math skills (seriously)! And, I actually found your sentence that you wrote quite easy to follow--I know, I sound like I'm bragging, but honestly I have no problem reading long phrases or sentences (hey, I write that way myself 'cause I've got a lot to say). However, your point is well taken. It has already been noted that I can be long-winded and might need to shorten my posts; this is why I threw this sentence in at the beginning of this thread's first post: "PLEASE NOTE: Sorry about the length of this post—I tried to shorten it as much as I could; if it is too long for you to read now, please feel free to copy the text and print it out for reading at your leisure!" Sorry for any confusion or inconvenience on here due to the length of the text.

    One last note: you can say anything you want to me, including insulting me by calling me any number of imaginable profanities, but the only way I would be "insulted" is if I let myself be "offended" by such exclaimations (sure words mean things, and they may be said in all manner of intentional slander, but they have little effect unless the recipient allows them to affect him or her; with that being said, if someone DID start making such vulgar comments on this forum, they would be violating forum policy and would probably be reprimanded or banned from the forum). Anyway, thanks for the constructive critique. I will try to correct future posts to reflect the suggestions...Thanks again!

    Oh, and please continue to post your thoughts on the thread's topic!

    Jag 8)
  5. Ok, I am going to step in here before this gets out of hand, just to "cut 'em off at the pass" so to speak.

    First of, griff30, IMHO WASN'T directing a personal attack at Jag with his comments. I have experienced some confusion with a few of Jag's posts and his writing style. I have already discussed this with Jag in a PM, so that's all good.

    So, Strangerous, I appreciate your support of one of our newer members, thanks!

    Jag, no worries man, you do just fine. A bit of work on your grammar/sentence structure would be appreciated, but that will come over time. Being a bit less "Verbose" would be appreciated as well, but we have already discussed that. :wink:
  6. griff30

    griff30 Member

    Agreed Strangerous, I re-read and came off as an ass. I am sorry Jag.
    As for needing 2 shots for anything though with .06 thats a stretch, maybe raging bears.

    I think the proper calibers need to match the terrain your in. Here in Ohio we DO have bear, believe it or not. In most states you would be well served with only a .22 but others a high pwered carbine would be better.

    I like the idea of my 44 Mag revolver as a sidearm to a 44Mag carbine like the Deermaster. However I am REALLY leaning towards using my new KelTec PLR-16 as a sidearm to a 22" barrled AR15. Thus keeping the same mages and ammo, which would kill anything in North American forrests(Shot placement foremost). My shotty is my trusted Mossberg500.

    As for carrying all of it? hey where's my BOV?
  7. Little OT, Jag the reason I prefer forums to chat is because it gives me the chance to go over what I have written and think what it will look like to the other guy.

    What in my opinion will help you a lot is just going over your posts and break them into some more paragraphs before hitting the Submit button.

    It is hard for some of us old fogies to keep on track with a paragraph that has 100 lines in it ;)

    Still I do enjoy your posts, you are a smart young man.

    SHOOTER Z Well-Known Member

    "Add on the weight of a nylon holster for the C-9 and a suitable sling for the rifle (which totals about 2 pounds) " I don't know about yours but my holster and sling weigh LESS the 2 lbs
  9. Jag

    Jag Member

    No worries, griff30! That's the one major drawback of text-only communication without an actual verbal or visual connection (like a video phone or regular telephone): sometimes text alone cannot convey the proper connotation and intention of a person's message (even with emoticons), thus leading to interpretations and insinuations that aren't meant.

    Man, can I just say how AWESOME you guys all are! I have never seen such a friendly and dedicated group of forum goers in all my time of perusing the 'net (that's why I joined here--that, and my love for Hi-Point guns :wink: )! Thanks again for all the great feedback and compliments!


    Jag 8)

    P.S. The reason I designed the scenario WITHOUT a BOV is due to the fact that in some rural areas (and here across the entire state of Alaska) there may only be a few roads, and, therefore, it might be of value for those who live near such places to hypothesize about how much gear they might be able to carry just on foot (or on horseback or with a small vehicle outside of the realm of full-size automobiles, like ATV's, etc.).

    Oh, and shooter z, believe it or not, my nylon holsters that I've picked up for use with pistols actually do weigh close to a pound--I think it has something to do with Uncle Mike's brand holsters that use a thicker weave (and a thus heavier overall unit) of nylon on their holsters. Coupled with the weight of a rifle sling, it comes to an estimated figure of about 1.5-2 pounds (for me, anyways).
  10. SharpsShtr

    SharpsShtr Member

    We all end up visualizing different scenarios, so it's tough to get on an even footing with everyone else.

    I would say the question of whether you could defend yourself from the wolves / bag guys would depend on the help you have. Good support makes all the difference. A wife & daughter may not be much help (but then again they may). A couple of hunting buddies could provide good fire support (but maybe not). It's hard to say. But by yourself you could easily be surrounded unless there is some sort of terrain funneling effect.

    As far as the pack-out scenario, I would have to have a good idea of what I'm running to & from. Generically though:

    Rifle = M-1 Garand in .30-06
    Shotgun = Norinco Model '97 clone in 12 Gauge
    Pistol = if I get 2 then a 1911 in .45 ACP & some sort of .22 (otherwise just the .22)

    Just an initial hack on the weaponry. I want them to dependable, tested, and tough. Generally that means some sort of ex-military stuff. I could swap of the Garand for a single shot without too much trouble though as I have several that I am very comfortable with. I would be willing to trade some of the niceties you listed for more ammo if the scenario warranted. I might throw in some type of high power slingshot for rabbits, squirrels, and such.

    Good stuff to think about though. The math you list is rarely thought about.

  11. survival

    Here are some of the items I feel are essential to survival. Being a outdoors men and hunting my entire life I have thought about this a great deal and thought I'd share some things with everyone.

    1) A compass-
    you must have a way to know your away around terrain your not familiar with and you also need to know which direction your heading in.

    2) A tent and sleeping bag-
    the outdoors can be rough you must protect yourself from the elements. The human body loose heat fast and when your cold or wet you loose energy and motivation this is very important to have shelter in any form you can find it.

    3) Fire starters-
    you have to have a way to start a fire, fire is a essential part of life. You need this to stay warm, cook your food, ( cooking your food can prevent disease and you can boil water to make it safe to drink ), and fire can protect you from wild animals. I recommend carrying several lighters Bic makes very good lighters that last a long time.

    4) Pots and Pans- this may sound like it would not be possible to carry but I myself have a pot and pan kit that has 2 forks, a pot, pan and two plates and weighs about half a pound if even that much; you can pick this up at any outdoors store.

    5) Knife, hatchet, machete- these are very essential to survival so you can make weapons if needed and shelter. Fire wood is a must in the outdoors a well made machete can mean the difference between life and death in some situations.

    6) Clothing- you must dress for the season and be protected. Sturdy cloth can protect you from plants that can hurt you and of course keep you warm.

    7) Weapons- for me the essential weapons include a 12 gauge shotgun, a rifle preferably a 30-30 ( this gun is good for shooting at a distance as well as in brush ), a handgun of your choice I would pick the Hi Point 9mm as everyone knows their reliable and don't require a lot to maintain them and you can carry more ammo of this caliber to lessen weight, and last and not least a .22 LR rifle this gun is a must you can hunt small game at a distance and carry a large amounts of ammo. I would carry as much ammo as I could handle for each gun.

    8) A survival handbook- having this book will teach you the things you can and cant eat as well has how to build a shelter, start a fire, tan animal hides, etc. Trying to survive isn't gonna do you much good if you don't have a clue how.

    9) A first aid kit- this is a obvious thing and should not be forgotten.

    10) If at all possible a partner- you need a partner to help carry supplies, hunt, protection and for companionship we are all humans and need human contact. I know its not always possible to have a partner in a survival situation but if you do this will increase your chances of surviving.

    11) Water- you have water, a canteen or another device to carry water is very important.
    For me these are the essential items needed to survive this is my personal preference and other may not agree or would add to this list. I just thought I'd share this information.
  12. dirtimdebbie

    dirtimdebbie Guest

    tee shirt
    hair brush
    hair spray
    lip gloss

    1 folding yard chair

    I'll wait for the best looking guy, carrying the most stuff.

    After all, that is why you guys are doing this, right?
  13. I like what ADAM posted. It seems very sensible and easily accomplished. I have all those things in my BOB right now and would probably have to trim down some things if I knew I was going to be on foot. Already have a couple of partners to share the load, so I wouldn't have to trim down too much. :wink:

  14. No freeloaders lol :)