Every man tends to carry a few items with him every day. These are usually things that are necessary tools to get through the day or even for self-protection. Of course everyday carry (EDC) kit is something that has become more popular in recent times, especially with folks who prep, but for a lot of guys it is just something that is a part of their lifestyle. If you are a man, whether you are a prepper or not, there are a few basic items that you should consider carrying on you.
The items that I tend to carry with me every day include:
- Compact flashlight with a solid light and decent battery life.
- Reliable knife that is light and discreet.
- A pen, typically a tactical pen with specific features such as a glass breaker.
Tips for choosing the right EDC items
Every man has his own unique needs and preferences when it comes to what he will need to carry with him every day, but I will point out some key considerations when you look at your EDC options.
An EDC knife is not necessarily a weapon, but in most cases is rather a tool. If you need to do some heavy duty cutting with your knife, it won’t make sense to get a tiny little pocket knife. On the flip side, it won’t make sense to get a big knife that would make Rambo jealous just to cut open some envelopes every once in a while. The intended use of the knife will also have an effect on the shape of the blade, as each blade shape is designed with a specific use in mind. For example, knives with sharp thin points are good for piercing things, while a knife with a serrated edge is intended for sawing things.
Fixed blade vs folding knife
If you want a bigger and stronger knife that you don’t mind wearing on your belt, then a fixed blade knife is a good option for guys who will be doing a lot of work with their knives (such as hunters that need to do a lot of skinning or cutting rope etc). But personally I carry a folding knife as it takes up less space and I do not need a fixed blade knife too often. I especially like that a folding knife is usually a lot more discreet to carry on you without attracting unwanted attention.
I would also keep in mind the grip of the knife, especially if you need to do tasks with it that would require a solid grip. If you plan to use your knife in wet conditions a lot or for skinning animals, you would want to look for a grip that won’t absorb moisture and will be easy to clean.
The last consideration I would also think about is cost. Knives can range from very affordable to crazy expensive. For an everyday carry knife I prefer a knife that is reasonably affordable while still being of sufficient quality to take the punishments of everyday use.
A flashlight is one of those things that you do not realise how much you need it, until you actually need it! I carry a small, but very bright flashlight with me all the time. Not only is it a valuable tool at night, but it is also a good self-defence tool. If a would-be attacker tries to attack you, the bright light of the flashlight can be used to momentarily blind the attacker, giving you time to either retreat away or to launch a counter-attack.
The key considerations for me when I look at EDC flashlights:
Flashlights in my possession tend to take a beating as they are often thrown into a backpack with a bunch of stuff or are handled in rough outdoor environments. The better EDC flashlights tend to be constructed from materials such as military grade aircraft aluminum, which is very light but extremely strong.
Lumens are the measuring unit for how bright a flashlight’s light is. You can get some super bright flashlights that are hundreds of lumens bright, but in reality for an EDC flashlight you don’t need anything too extreme. I usually look for something that has a light of 50 lumens to 100 lumens.
Incandescent lamps used to be the lamp used in all flashlights, but since LED lamps have become commonly available, LED (Light Emitting Diode) is now the lamp of choice in flashligts. That is because they last longer, take less space, use less battery power and are much more robust than incandescent lamps.
From a prepper’s perspective, a flashlight with common regular batteries are a good choice as batteries like that would be much easier to find in an emergency scenario where there might not be power available. However for me, I want an EDC flashlight that is rechargeable. This makes it less expensive to use in the long run as I don’t need to go out and buy new batteries every few weeks.
I mentioned before that some people might think of their EDC knife as a self-defence weapon, but for me another self-defence option is a tactical pen. It might sound like a gimmick, but tactical pens are actually lethal weapons due to their strengthened points and strong construction. Admittedly, if you have to use a tactical pen then you are probably already in a world of trouble. The benefit of a tactical pen is that it is discreet (not easily recognized as being a weapon) and of course also provides you with a writing utensil!
As I want to have a tactical pen as a weapon, it needs to be really strong in order to be used as a weapon that can cause damage to an attacker. Similar to EDC flashlights, the better tactical pens are made from modern materials such as military grade aircraft aluminum to make it light-weight but also extremely strong.
When I look at the design of a tactical pen, I want a pen that would hold well in my hand as a stabbing weapon, which also has a good grip so that it won’t slip when I use it.
Some tactical pens come with additional features such as glass-breakers, seat-belt cutters, etc. Some are a bit gimmicky though, so be aware.
Above I talked about the three basic EDC items that I like to carry on me most of the time. Other items that you could also consider include:
- Multi-tool with the essential tools
- A water-proof wallet
- Watch that is water-proof and durable, along with required features (example a compass or Altimeter)
- Carry bag to keep your various items organized and available for easy access.
This article was provided by Manomics.com