Archive for the ‘Product Reviews’ Category

Produced By Cameron McKirdy

Take a look at my new commuter bike called the Giant Sedona.  It’s been way more comfortable to cruise in than my hardtail mountain bike.  I like being able to ride up high, and adjust the handlebars so I can sit up straight.  In the HD video you can see all of the extras I threw on it.  Building a bike, although it not from scratch, is still a blast,  I purchased new Defender fenders to keep myself fresh, a tiny black bell so I don’t have to scream at all the tourists to move or die, water bottle holders for hydration 24/7, and a big manly basket to hold my wildflowers in (more like edible mushrooms).  Andy at Prom Bike Shop in Seaside, Oregon told me this bicycle would be an excellent candidate for a 49cc motor, so I’m thing about that upgrade.  It’s a work in progress.  I’m just grateful to have a bike that doesn’t destroy me after riding it short distances.  I’ve never owned a Giant before, but I’m sure I will be satisfied.  Like the satin black color with gold trim?  It’s different.  You’ll see more videos and blogs featuring this whip soon.  Thanks or supporting Survival Bros.  The website has been doing great, and our YouTube audience is growing rapidly.  So please subscribe to our channel here if you haven’t, or click the link to discover other related fun videos.  Peace.

prom bike Seaside OR

Biking The Prom in Seaside Oregon

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Produced by Cameron McKirdy and Tactical Gypsy

Survival Bros opens a brand new blade called the Cold Steel Recon Tanto.  Watch the HD video for the glorious tech specs, and the reasons why we purchased this model.   The weapon will be going to Afghanistan on deployment soon.  It’s a magnificent tool, and a work of art.  Plus, since it’s a Cold Steel, you know its been torture tested to the max, and can take any beating you can dish out.  Like the Recon Tanto knife?  Tell us about it.

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In this video we check out a new tool for the woods, cover the details, and our planned usage.  I can’t wait to throw this tomahawk!  The Cold Steel Frontier Hawk feels extremely well balanced.  It’s an excellent value for the low retail price of just $39.99.  Make sure to visit http://www.coldsteel.com to watch their awesome videos, and request a free product catalog and DVD.  

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You can’t go wrong with the Cold Steel Frontier Hawk in your hand. 

Produced By Cameron McKirdy and Tactical Gypsy of Survival Bros.

I need coffee, and I need it now.  I’m addicted to Joe, so when the portable GSI Outdoors Commuter Java Press walked into my life, I didn’t let go.  This lightwight, modern french press must have taken years to develop, because it’s awesome.  Survival Bros loves everything about it, plus it makes loose leaf.  Some of the product feature highlights include it being BPA-free, grippy, insulated, and having a non-slip foot.  All this combines for an easy to use, practical, and tactical coffee maker.  The GSI Java Press costs only $22.95.  So at that price why not steal one from them?  There’s nothing negative to say about this product.  It’s been Survival Bros tested, and came out on top.  Visit http://www.gsioutdoors.com for all the information on this piece of gear.  Please comment if you want.  

gsi coffee pressUse the GSI Outdoors Commuter Java Press for hot, fresh coffee!

Produced By Cameron McKirdy

In this HD video I show you my new Dr. Scholl’s Pain Relief Orthotics.  I’ve been testing them for about three weeks, and they have scored off the chart in overall quality.  This type is made just for men, and they fit size 8-12 shoes.  I cut them down to size, threw them in my sneakers, and went to work.  I was standing on concrete for 10 hours a day, and before I bought these inserts my feet were absolutely killing me.  I had intense heel pain, and cramping throughout my entire foot.  I couldn’t take a break, so I had to try something.

First I purchased a pair of flat, massaging gel inserts.  They sucked.  I still had heel pain.  I took the off-brand cushioners out of my kicks to return, but they left a strange indentation on my insoles, so I’m going to keep them in those dress shoes for good.  Then I stepped it up, and spent a few more dollars on the Dr. Scholl’s.  I’ve never owned a pair of arch supports that weren’t custom to my flat feet, so I was skeptical.  However, like I said in the video, they worked to relieve my pain immediately, and I forgot all about my discomfort.  I’ve been using these ever since, and I had to recommend them to everyone that follows the Survival Bros blog.  Please comment if you have purchased these orthotics, or something like it.

dr scholls pro heel mens

By Cameron McKirdy

In this HD video I drop my new LG G2 and Ballistic SG phone cover on gravel, then concrete from 6 ft high!  I just got this smartphone, so I was terrified it would break.  However, I know there’s fellow geeks out there that want to see Survival Bros stress test all kinds of gear, so I went for it.  The Ballistic case worked well, but after taking off the cover I did notice a tiny dent on the rim of my LG G2.  It’s purely cosmetic, and I can live with it, because my screen did not crack.  Of course I would have preferred no damage, which I expected since it’s rated to six feet according to the manufacturer.  The minuscule chip isn’t worth taking a picture of, and I’m pleased with my purchase overall.  Therefore, I give it 4 out of 5 Stars.  It’s still probably the best case out there for this recently released Android device, so until better cases are produced it’s staying on me as one of my everyday carry items.  Have you had any experience with Ballistic Cases?  Let us know.  Thanks.

On a side note: I dropped this phone with the case on a few weeks back from about four feet up, and after all of my contacts had been erased!  It was the strangest thing.  My emails, and phone numbers never returned, and I didn’t delete them.  Please comment on this blog post if something similar has happened to you.

ballistic shell gel caseFor all the tech specs here’s the Ballistic website.  Visit Survival Bros again soon.

By Cameron McKirdy I sling a day pack on my back nearly every day.  I’ve mentioned the types of things I have in it before, like gear, food, and a warm change of clothes.  So when I discovered the Ribz Front Pack, I was stoked.  This innovative, steroid injected version of a fanny pack solves many of the challenges I face when backpacking.  Here I am with it on the Hummocks Trailhead near Mount St. Helens in Washington State. Ribz Front Pack One issue I have with a regular backpack is I’m constantly taking it off to grab water, my cell phone, or something else that isn’t handy.  With Ribz Wear, it’s all right in front of me, so I can continue trail blazing.  I also mention in the video how backpacks catch on trees when I have to duck under them.  It usually happens a few times each hike, and I practically have to crawl under the obstacle.  With my gear in front, navigating through heavy brush is considerably easier.  The best part of this system is the pack is easy to adjust.  My Dad’s chest and waist are smaller than mine, so after he used it, a quick tug on the straps in back and in front made it comfortable again for me.  Plus, Ribz have long, padded shoulder straps, so it feels like a natural extension of your body.   Mount St. Helens Adventures Map Check out the map of different Mount St. Helens Adventures.  Back to the Ribz Front Pack review, I must mention the Large version I tested can hold absurd amounts, with an 11 liter capacity.  Even with it packed full, I was able to swing my arms freely.  My dad wore it, and noted that you could still use hiking poles with it on.  Ribz makes smaller Front Packs with 8 liters of room too.  Internally, there are separate pouches to keep smaller items organized.  These elastic lined compartments will hold all your tools close to your ribs, and prevent them from rattling around.  We both ran with it, and the pack remained snug, not bouncing around, or swaying side to side.Mount St. Helens View In conclusion, the Ribz Front Pack is an excellent tool itself.  The quality is unbelievable, and far superior to what I expected.  It’s lightweight, at only 11 ounces, so it beats a backpack there too.  However, I think it would be best suited for use with a rear pack, so the weight of your supplies can be evenly distributed forward and back, thus giving you better posture than wearing one or the other.  But if you’re into ultralight backpacking, Ribz might be a dream come true.  You can’t machine wash Ribz, but it cleans up nicely with a wet rag.  I love the Cordura brand water resistant, ripstop material it’s fabricated with.  I will be sporting my Ribz for a long time.  I like it so much I want the smaller 8 liter pack too for shorter trips, and cross country running.  I just don’t know which color to get next.  Check out http://www.ribzwear.com to grab yours.

Cam makes instant coffee with an emergency water packet at Loowit Lookout near Mt. St. Helens in Washington State.  Subscribe to Survival Bros on Youtube for more!  Thanks for watching!  Feel free to comment.

Mt. St. Helens SelfieCam snaps a selfie with his dad on the trail

Produced by Cameron McKirdy

One of the most popular every day carry knives is the Kershaw Chive designed by Ken Onion.  This sly blade features the patented SpeedSafe assisted opening, giving it a remarkable feel.  In the HD video I put the knife to the test, slicing a can, plastic bottle, different types of cordage, and much more.  On Youtube I couldn’t find anyone doing a legit cut test with the Chive, so I made an extreme one.

I was genuinely surprised to see that the Kershaw didn’t dull after cutting the soda can.  I muscled through the bottom, and I was sure it would damage the blade, or at least scratch the titanium-oxide rainbow coating.  But even after that, I was able to shave off a good chunk of arm hair in a few strokes.  The knife did everything I wanted it to, making it a perfect EDC tool.  It’s ultra lightweight too, at only 1.7 ounces.  

The Chive comes in a wide variety of colors, some with different handle materials, but the Rainbow version is the most expensive.  There’s nothing girly about it.  The wild coating reminds me of an oil slick, which are always interesting to look at.  I like the stepped thumb studs, because they are rigid, making the small 1 15/16″ blade easy to open.  However, I prefer to use the flipper on the back, because I feel it’s a little safer, and there’s no chance of slicing my thumb on deployment.  It does have a solid tip-lock system for safety, so the knife won’t open when you pull it out of your pocket.  In addition, I love the long, sturdy pocket clip.  It’s not rainbow, just polished steel with the Kershaw logo etched down it.  Plus, the jimping on the top of the blade gives you more control, which is good because the Chive is small, and somewhat slick due to the coating.

At the end of the day, the Kershaw Chive is a legend.  Trust me, you want one.  It makes a great keychain knife, and if you carry it on you, you’ll use it daily.  For additional tech specs, and to view other models, visit http://kershaw.kaiusaltd.com/  Thanks for visiting and supporting Survival Bros – your emergency preparedness blog.  Comments, likes, and shares are appreciated.  What knife would you like me to test next, and what should I destroy with it?  Peace.

rainbowchive_1600vib_1The Kershaw Rainbow Chive – Model 1600VIB

My survival keychain video starring The Chive

Popping Blisters with the small knife after hiking on the PCT

Produced By Cameron McKirdy

Last week I requested a free product sample from Wise Company of their emergency storable food.  I only expected one packet with four servings, but I got two entrees on the house.  So I scored six servings in all.  I will try at least one meal out, and let you know how it tastes.  Get your own sample, good for up to 25 years, by visiting this webpage:  http://wisefoodstorage.com/request-a-sample/

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Update:  The Savory Stroganoff was scrumptious.  It was 100% vegetarian, but I added Parmesan cheese and black pepper.  My sample was made on 10/30/2013, so it was super fresh.

Produced By Cameron McKirdy with Tactical Gypsy

Homeless.  That’s what we were.  My bro and I stayed on this boat for weeks last summer to avoid paying rent, and getting a regular job.  We were free, and so was our lodging.  But with that comes less.  We had to deal with a lot of crap.  It’s noisy in the Skipanon and Warrenton Oregon Marina.  Sleeping is challenging.  People work on boats at all hours, so there’s usually people clamoring, and trucks hauling.

skipanon marina oregon

Skipanon Warrenton Oregon Marina at Night

Once we had to stay on the boat right after our host varnished the interior.  We opened the craft up, but the stench was still awful.  I got a headache, and while grateful for the place to lay down, I was ready to split and catch the bus into town.  In the HD video above we got a solid fire going, but I didn’t film the smoke that filled the cabin, and it was horrible.  I got a headache from that too.  Again, we lifted the lid on the boat, and opened up the ceiling, but sacrificed warmth.  The Survival Bros slept on a wet mattress because the boat had recently sank.

We had a key to the shower and restroom, but that was a hike from the boat.  Plus, we didn’t want to get hassled by security, so we kept our creeping to a minimum, and laid low.  The smart move was to pee in plastic bottles to avoid detection.  However, the other fisherman on the marina were typically very helpful.  We had their assistance many times when we had to do work on the boat, or move it to another slip.  Speaking of, the rent for a spot there is only $70 per month, and our buddy paid that.  You have to pay a little more for electricity, but it’s still the cheapest place to crash in town.  In exchange for a bed, Tactical Gypsy worked on the boat, making sure the bilge was pumping out water, or whatever.  I kept him company, and learned what I could from the Maritime Scientist.  It was an adventure for sure, and I’m happy to share it with you.  More homelessness tales soon.  Thanks for supporting Survival Bros.  Peace and love.

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Selling waterlogged boat motors for cash

Produced By Cameron McKirdy

Watch Survival Bros repair Oregon Ducks Nike shoes with an officially licensed Survival Straps bracelet.  My shoelace broke, and I needed a solution ASAP so I could get back on the road.  It worked out great, because the green color matched my player edition, team issued kicks.

It was easy to unravel the tightly bound milspec 550 paracord strap, taking only a few minutes to get the cordage I needed.  As I mention in the HD video, I did have to cut off the ends so they could pass through the adjustable plastic clasp.  However, it was no problem reheating the tips so they wouldn’t come undone later.  I had plenty of cord to work with, and I cut it to length.  Luckily my new laces were able to pass through the holes as I relaced my Nikes.  Now my shoelaces are stronger than ever, and handy if I need them for another purpose.  Plus, because this was an emergency I will get a new band when I share my story with Survival Straps.  I was worried I was going to be barefoot this afternoon, but I was prepared with my paracord bracelet nearby.  The last thing I want is my shoe to come off when I bike through a busy intersection.  I’m good to go.

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They have so many cool designs, you really have to look at them for yourself.  I also like the wide double fish tail designs.  At $29.99 the Oregon Ducks Survival Straps is a deal.  You’ll get up to 15 feet of military spec super strong paracord from one bracelet.  Having a little extra cordage in an emergency situation could be the difference between life in death.  Thankfully, I wasn’t in true danger this time.

Here’s a link to my other blog post about Survival Straps.  Please visit Survival Bros again soon.  Best wishes.

Oregon Ducks Nikes RepairedMy fixed kicks with green 550 paracord laces