Field kits

Snows

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Like with the Useful Kit and Fieldcraft threads, thought I'd put some detail to one of the things that tends to be on packing lists but without much detail.

You'll often see 3-4 requirements for particular 'kits': medkit, washkit / housewife, weapon cleaning kit, and occasionally although not too much, survival kit. It's less often that you'll get a rundown of what should be in them. I've listed the stuff I have in mine below and why, although I've highlighted bits where it is post-recruit training or for real-world (expeditions etc) where you don't necessarily have a lot of support behind you from the Army. A lot of these are disposable, so it makes sense to buy lots and transfer them into your field kits when necessary.

As with previous threads, serving guys please chip in with suggestions or your own versions.

Bold = The Army isn't coming to save me
Italics = Advanced or not required in recruit training

MEDKIT

Biggest kit, although as with everything aim to cut down all packaging (obviously not for sterile items) and reduce weight where possible. Personal bag no bigger than a webbing pouch, Section bag twice that size or larger, depending on support / contents.

ITEMNOTES
Antiseptic wipes
Small tube antiseptic cream
Spray plaster canister (with antiseptic, read labels)Quick to close minor cuts and abrasions
5 x CompeedGreat for blister treatment, but you need to cut the skin off first or they will get infected.
20 x plasters (finger length ones)
Small pair scissors
20 x ibuprofen / paracetemol mixMax strength (400 or 800mg)
5 x diarrhea tabs
10 x cocodemolProbably unavailable or prescription in UK, morphine substitute
20 x steristripsQuick closure of small wounds
Tin of Climb On moisturizerMoisturizing hands prevents cracks and infections
Issued tourniquet
First Field Dressinga.k.a. Israeli bandage
Lighter
Small roll medical tapeBinding, securing bandages
Permanent markerMarking treatments on casualties
Small bottle (airplane shampoo) with malaria etc medication
1 x pair surgical glovesOperating in places with common blood diseases
Asherman chest sealSection medic kit in Army
5 x hemostatic bandagesSection medic kit in Army
2 x burn dressingsSection medic kit in Army
Razor blade (in sheath)Lightweight scalpel
Mini maglightBackup to pinhole torch, Section medic kit
2 x syringe (sterile packaging)For drainage, not injection

WEAPON CLEANING KIT

Second most important kit. You are going to be issued a weapon cleaning kit, and I won't include all the bits from that. What I would recommend is adding some bits, and putting it in a different container. Please note some of the following recommendations are not official advice from your local armourer...

ITEMNOTES
Plastic screwtop cleaning kit containerThe issued cleaning kit leaks oil when it inevitably gets compressed in your webbing, then you have no oil left. A plastic container will protect it.
Spray oil bottleSpray > issued squirter thing. An extra one outside your cleaning kit for mid-contact is also useful.
Carbon dissolving oilNOTE: May be officially banned in the Army, ask around. Lubricant that also helps dissolve carbon buildup, various brands.
Boresnakehttps://www.hoppes.com/boresnakes/
Note that armourers will complain this just polishes the barrel, rather than cleaning it, and they are partially right (it does clean as well). You cannot only use a boresnake. But for quick cleaning either in contact or daily admin, it's invaluable. Remember to use a wire brush during downtime or weekly cleaning, however. Make sure you get the right caliber!
Spare combitoolMain combitool in your combat jacket. Where you get a spare is up to you.
2-3 tools from dental tool setBrilliant for getting into hard places the combitool doesn't reach, which will otherwise shred your fingers (which get infected, which reduce your combat effectiveness)
Rods, wire brushesFrom issued weapon cleaning kit
Oily rag, clean ragWrap all of the above in the two rags to ensure they don't rattle in the plastic container - get the container last so you can fit it to the size of the items. You should be able to fit your weapons cleaning kit and comms cord reel in one webbing pouch with a bit of room spare on the sides for extra bits.

FIELD ADMIN KIT & HOUSEWIFE

Second smallest kit, absolute minimum requirements. Note this may differ in training, depending on your DS, as teaching you to admin yourself in the field means they often hit all bases so you know how, even if you may not use them all the time subsequently.

ITEMNOTES
Cut down toothbrush
Travel toothpaste tube (airplane / travel size)
Nail varnish remover pads, acetone basedWiping permanent marker, cleaning some items
Mini-pack wetwipesFor emergencies only, not constant use!
TweezersRemoving spines, ticks, etc.
Lighter
Salt bottleFor removing leeches (jungle only)
Housewife: 2 x needle, thimble, 2-3 spare buttons, tough thread (dental floss works brilliantly)

SURVIVAL / RESCUE KIT

This isn't needed too much in the Army, as you almost always have a lot of support designed to come for you. Also the problems of SERE on military operations are different to those of a civilian expedition. But I thought I'd include it anyway. This should be as small and lightweight as possible, in a double waterproofed bag. It's no real use if you don't have it on you. Note that "survival" kits aren't really for survival. They are kickstarters, to make otherwise onerous and difficult tasks immediate and easy, if you are in a really bad condition (e.g. lighter and hexi), or to improve your chances for basic functions for a short period (e.g. puritabs for water), or to aid rescue. A decent compact knife, the lighter/matches and puritabs are the most important elements.

ITEMNOTES
2 x cyalumesOne with ~1m cord attached to use as a 'buzzsaw' signal
Lighter
Matches (waterproofed)
Compact knife blade
Fishing wire & hooks
1-2 small hexi blocksCan usually be bought in Cotswolds type stores
Small flexi mirrorSignalling
Gauze netFishing, straining water.
5 x glucose tabs
Plastic wrap sheet
40 x puritabs

Notes:

Yes, there are 3 separate lighters on these lists. The value of short-cutting millennia of survival skills which you've all forgotten anyway cannot be overstated. The same applies to the knife / razor blades / etc. You can't DIY modern metallurgy in the field.
 
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