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If you drive a vehicle, what do you keep in the trunk of the car? If you have a truck or SUV, what do you keep in the back or the toolbox in the bed?

You have a lot of space in there. Use it. We’ve got a list of things that don’t take much space that can really come in handy in all kinds of circumstances.


A box of gallon zip-closure bags takes up very little space. These bags can be used to carry home leftovers, hold ice to place on a sprain or other wound or cool down a drink. Keep up with small items. If you have children big enough to manage a plastic bag, save money on road trips. Buy a giant-sized bag of snacks at a convenience store and divide it into bags.

Get several heavy duty 55-gallon drum liners. These giant plastic bags take up no more room than a box of gallon bags. In addition to holding so much more, these bags are big enough to double as raincoats in case of getting caught in a storm. Cut one open and you have a large plastic sheet you can place on the ground to sit on or a temporary lean-to type shelter roof.



A container of assorted zip ties is also about the size of a box of gallon bags. With 100 or more in a container, you’ll have plenty. They can be joined together to make a much larger single zip tie if needed. Close off that giant garbage bag. Strap something to the luggage rack on the roof or in the truck bed. Zip ties can also be used to tame an octopus of cables or ropes. They make decent impromptu fish stringers.

Sometimes you just need a bit more. Light gauge baling wire will do. Sometimes known as electric fence wire, a quarter-mile of wire is smaller than the box of gallon bags. It is not very strong. It does weigh a lot until you compare a quarter mile of the wire to a quarter mile of rope. If you take several strands and wind them together, it is strong. You don’t need pliers or snips to cut this wire. Simply bend it back and forth rapidly and it will break. Use it to hang things, secure things or as a fish stringer. Since it is wire, you can also poke it through meat to hang the meat above coals for cooking.


Get a hatchet, a good one. You can use the blade side to cut things. Use the other side as a hammer. It does not have the same heft as an ax, but it is also a lot smaller. Given enough time and elbow grease, anything you can cut with an ax can be cut with a hatchet.

Get a good machete. Why a machete and a hatchet? Cutting through vines, very flexible tree limbs and briars is just not going to worth with an ax. Since a machete is nothing more than a big knife, you can use it like a knife, if it is sharp, to skin game, clean fish and more. The machete can also be used to cut tag ends from zip ties and cut them off completely when done.

Sometimes, you will use both at once. Set the machete to start a cut. Instead of slamming the big blade down, tap the unsharpened side with the back of the hatchet. You now control how fast and how deep you cut. You can also get a precision cut you might not manage with either one by itself.

Need more ideas about practical and handy stuff you can use? Keep reading our blog.

John Bishop

Category Tactical

Type article
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