[Weird] Survival Tools & Supplies

Having the right tools is an important part of survival. Mankind stands out from the rest of the animal kingdom with the ability to create and use those tools. Since the first caveman picked up a stick to hit his obnoxious neighbor, we've been finding ways to use the materials around us to do things that we can't do with our bodies alone. As time has passed, the number, variety and complexity of those tools has increased exponentially.

When the "ideal" tool is not available, make do with what you can find. In a crisis, make the most of everything you have; that means getting a little creative. The only limitation is your imagination.

Acorn Cap:
Whistle for Help

Air horn for Security Perimeter Alarm

Aluminum/Tin Cans Projects:
Recycle and Melt Aluminum to Mold into any New Object
How to Make the Mini Metal Foundry    [Video]
How to Make Metal Casting Molds    [Video]
[Blog Link]

Make a Soup Can Lid Ulu Cutting Tool: An Ulu is a traditional crescent-shaped-blade cutting tool of the Inuit people of the Artic. A make-shift version can be formed from soup can lid. Remove the lid with a can opener or by smashing the can level with the can lid to remove the lid rim holding the lid in place or rub the can on a rock until the seal breaks. Fold 1/3 of the lid over to create a flat folded edge to hold the tool. Sharpen the exposed rounded edge on a stone. This tool can be used as-is or a handle can be added to the folded part for a better grip.

Survival Uses for Tin Cans
  • Scoop
  • Signal Mirror
  • Survival Whistle
  • Pail/bucket - add wire/cordage handle
  • Cooking pot
  • Perimeter alarm
  • Candle lantern or stove
  • Arrow head
  • Fishing lure
  • Cutting tool

Aluminum Foil:    [Blog Link]
Make containers to eat/drink from, collect or boil water or cook
Solar oven
Fishing lure or signal device
Sharpen knives/scissors
Scrub cookware or remove rust
Resize batteries (fill big-battery space with foil when using a smaller battery)
Transport fire coals
Ground cover
[Uses List 1]    [Uses List 2]

Ammo Can Stove

Asphalt shingles are a type of wall or roof covering that uses asphalt for waterproofing. It is one of the most widely used roofing covers in North America because it has a relatively inexpensive up-front cost and is fairly simple to install. According to annual estimates the US accumulates approximately 11 million tons of asphalt shingle waste hauled away from construction sites, natural disaster clean ups, or just regular home repairs. Here are Ways to Recycle and Reuse Asphalt Shingles (remember to remove roofing nails or staples first - depending on the project):
- Doormat
- Oil stain absorber
- Tiling for an unfinished attic
- Non-slip floor mat for equipment
- Weed stoppers: use old shingles around plants to keep weeds down in the garden.
- Garden paths or driveways: asphalt shingles are a perfect substitute for gravel
- Winter walkway aide: why spread sand or salt on the footpath when you can toss down a row of shingles
- A kitchen sink back-splasher: size and cut up asphalt shingles, paint or shellac them, and fit them in place
- Art projects for home or school: There are many artistic things to do from cutting shingles into different shapes
- Stair Grips
- Donate left-over new ones to low income housing, houses of worship, or other organizations that can repurpose them
- Take them to a local recycler of asphalt shingles; maybe get paid for them.
Markets for Recycled Asphalt Shingles

How to Make 19 Primitive Tools
From Stone and Stick (video)
From Stone and Stick (article)
From Scrap Metal
Primitive Hand Tools (video)

Battery (12v) as Spot Welder with Jumper Cables and Carbon Rod    [Video]    [Article & Video]
Learn Blacksmithing
[Blog Link]

Beer Can & Liquor Could Save a Life in an Emergency
Uses for Liquor After The SHTF

Body Language: Every person and creature speaks "body language". Knowing how to read a person, animal or situation is hugely beneficial in everyday life and survival situations. Body language is one of the best ways to do this for Bartering and Survival Companionship and Self-Defense.

Boron / Boric Acid / Borax is a trace mineral, common supplement and nutrient that is neglected by many. Found naturally in several plants, it offers several benefits, not just to plants but also to all of us. Do lots of research before using Boron products. Read links about sources and overdose symptoms. Uses:
Plant growth nutrient
Weed killer - ½ tbsp. of borax to a gallon of water - spray on weeds
Insect control (including ants, roaches and fleas)
Eye infection wash
Ear infection drops
Wound Antiseptic
Yeast Infections
Antioxidant - strong detoxifying properties that can clean the body from the inside and remove heavy metals from the bloodstream.
Antifungal - very effective in curing toe fungus and other fungal infections in the body.
Anti-Cancer Properties
Reduces bone density loss
Anti-Inflammatory - Arthritis treatment
Improves Brain Functionality
Fights against heart disease - Prevents Blood Clots and Lowers Plasma Lipid Levels
Improves Fertility Hormone Functionality - testosterone and estrogen
Improves Skin Problems
Treats Kidney Stones
Fights Diabetes
Improves Muscle Mass
Often used in the making of fiberglass, fire retardants, and even laundry bleach

Debris mask over nose and mouth in case of an air-contaminating emergency. If a fire breaks out and air gets smoky, cover your face with a bra cup to keep harmful particles from entering your lungs. Most cups are sized perfectly to cover the nose and mouth, and you can tie the bra straps around your head for hands-free use. Once your DIY mask is in place, quickly move to safety.
Knee Pads
Make a quilt
Patches on jeans, pants and shirts
Smart Phone Protection
Repurpose Old Bras

Bubble Wrap Uses

Can Opener: To prevent metal shavings from contaminating the contents and injury with sharp tools, rub the can on concrete/rock, to break the lid/bottom seal. Other options video.

Chapstick As a Survival Tool

Clamps & Vise:
Viking Clamp - Sandwich the project between two boards. Tie a rope around the 2 boards and a few inches back from where they need to grip the project. At the opposite end (not the gripping end), drive a wedge between the 2 boards to spread them apart. This will close the gripping end onto the project to be held. The rope acts as a hinge point, forcing the gripping ends of the boards tighter together as the opposite ends are wedged open farther apart. Kind of like the opposite of a spring-loaded (hinge point) clothespin which you close one end to open the other end.
Rope Vise uses a circle/loop of rope to hold the project (on a table at the top of the loop) in place by stepping on the rope loop on the floor/ground. Ideally, the rope loop is fed through a hole in a piece of wood below the project and the foot pulls the rope tight in a noose.
Improvised Woodworking Clamps Using Household Items

Condoms (and the wrapper also): A latex condom can hold up to a gallon of water when filled carefully. They are over-engineered for their intended use so their strength enables amazing feats as listed here:
Cordage: Having, or knowing how to make, cordage is one of the necessities of survival. Making cordage from plants and animals is a good skill to master. It will help in the construction of almost any need; the benefits of Cordage are endless. Making cordage from the wild is a forgotten skill; one that is being kept alive thanks to survivalists and bushcraft enthusiasts. When in a wilderness situation, gather these materials as you find them so you have them BEFORE you need them. [Blog Link]

Corn Cob Uses:    [Article 1
Crayons and Crisco for Light or as a Fire-Starter

Dental Floss is fairly strong to use as cordage and can be made even stronger by braiding multiple strands or just using multiple strands. Know the strength needed for your particular applicaion(s). Generally, floss will hold up to 5 pounds of dead weight (depending on floss quality).
Dryer Lint Uses

Duct Tape    [Many Uses 1]    [Many Uses 2]    [Photos of Duct Tape uses]

An Electromagnet can be made using common items. A magnet is always a magnet. It always attracts. Sometimes you want that, such as with a fridge magnet, but not always. Because the magnetic field, of an electromagnet, can be turned on/off at will, the applications for electromagnets are endless. Here's how to Make Your Own Electromagnet (video)    [ Instructions]    [Uses Videos]    [Uses Article]

Fertilizer (DIY - Improve Your Soil) Made With:
Fish emulsion
Coffee grounds
Wood Ash
Epsom Salts
Green Tea
Corn Gluten Meal
Animal Feed
Egg Shells
Seafood Shells
Worm Castings (poop) Tea
Grass clippings
Powdered Milk
Bone Meal
Fish Aquarium [fresh] Water
Cooking Water

File: See Knife Sharpening

Flare Gun for emergency signal or defense

Expanding Foam is the next best fix-it tool next to Duct Tape. Here are some interesting uses:
[Fence Post Support Video 1]    [Fence Post Support Video 2]
- Dull the Noise in walls
- Secure decorative rocks and fill gaps to build household projects
- Firm Up a Wobbly Shower Head
- Filling gaps in walls
- Carve Spray Foam into any shape for models and crafts
- Protect Breakables inn packing boxes
- Picture frame
- Shore Up the Tub
- Keep the Critters Out - Close possible points of entry by filling cracks
- Prevent Mold in Corners of exterior walls
- Insulate and soundproof an aluminum sink
- Shore Up Concrete Problems
- Insulate the House
- Prevent things from shifting by making a comfy nest that will keep items from blowing over

Gallon Jug to make a Tent or emergency light

Grass Clippings for:
Plant Bedding to retain water
Liquid Fertilizer
Worm Bedding
Raised bed for gardening
Green Water for Aquaculture
Weed Control Barrier
Dye (grass stains)
Fuel (fire)
Food (for humans and animals)
Pest Control

Gum Wrapper & Battery to start a fire    [Video]

Hand Warmers as Lock Deicer

Handles for Knife/Tool:
If the handle breaks on a knife, weapon or hand tool, don't "buy" a new one. Make it yourself with paracord/rope wrap, duct tape, corn cob, a section of a tree branch, using animal bone or melting HDPE (high-density polyethylene) plastic in a metal container then molding it to the desired size and shape. HDPE plastic is identified by a "2" (resin identification code) inside the recycle symbol. The fumes from other melted plastics are noxious and can cause illness.
Melted HDPE Plastic
Corn Cobs
Duct Tape
[Blog Link]

Knife Sharpening:
Ways to sharpen a knife without using a "Knife Sharpener"    [Videos]
- Bottom of a Mug
- Broken Glass Bottle
- Slate or Cement
- Another Knife
- Car Window
- Aluminum foil
- Emery board (fingernail file) from first aid or personal hygiene kit
- Sand paper (fine grade)
- Smooth, flat rock
- Metal file or other rough metal object or tool
- Brick
- Leather or nylon belt or strap
- Metal scrubbing pad
- Between nuts on the same screw

Lawn Mower conversion Into A Survival Generator

Listerine Uses:
Listerine for Mosquito Control
Antiseptic for wounds

Moss: Found in nearly any environment, moss has many properties for survival use: References:    [Ref 1]    [Ref 2]

Mud, Grass and Ashes to make [Cement]    [Article 2]    [Roman Concrete]    [Wood Ash Cement]    [Ancient Brickmaking]
There are many uses for survival cement. If you are trying to survive in the wilderness or if a disaster destroys your home, it could be your saving grace. It can also be a useful skill and tool for projects around the home.

Nail Polish & Crazy Glue:
Keep Shirt Buttons from Fraying by dabbing some on the threads at the front and back of the button.
Super (Crazy) Glue to "Suture" a Wound

Non-Power Tools for Survival

Pantyhose: From cordage to water filtering and many things in between and both sides, pantyhose have awesome potential as a multi-purpose tool and deserve a place in every Emergency Kit.
Stay Warm - wear under clothes
Prevent Blisters -wear them under socks to prevent rubbing
Prevent Bug Bites (except mosquitos)
Mosquito/Bug Netting
Dust mask/filter
First Aid - tourniquet, sling, wrap bandages, ice bag
Water filter
Sprout Seeds before planting
Protect Garden - Put dog or human hair in them and tie around garden. Stretch over squash/melons to keep animals from eating them.
Bag to store/carry small items
Hang food to keep fresher longer
Dry food and tinder - hang in the sun and keep bugs away
Catch Bait (net)
Catch Crabs - Put bait in the toe and dangle in shallow water. Lift up the hose when crab grabs bait.
Fill with rocks and use as bola to kill birds and small game.
Temporary car fan belt
Keep bar soap clean in shower
Pot scrubber
Wear over the head to distort facial features (like a bank robber)
Other resource

Floatation Device for Water Safety

Paracord: Paracord is a lightweight nylon rope initially used to suspend lines during WWII. The smooth texture of the rope is ideal for multiple uses due to its lightweight and elastic nature. Paracords are also a prepper’s best friend. Also called a parachute cord, it is a strong, versatile, inexpensive, lightweight, and easy to carry. It can be separated into multiple strands for use as rope or its thinner inside threads for sewing.
Paracord: Everything You'll Ever Need To Know
82+ Uses for Paracord That Will Surprise You
Awesome Paracord Projects For Preppers
How to Make Your Own Paracord Flashlight Strap
Paracord Survival Bracelet:    Make Your Own    Paracord Survival Bracelet Video
Tool/Knife Handle/Wrap
Purchase Paracord Products

Pet Food As Survival Food

Pine Cones:
Survival Uses - Fire Starter & Food Source
Plant Pet/Pest Control & Bird Feeder
Eating Pine Cones

Pine Sap: Pine tree sap can be gathered and stored in liquid or solid forms from inside the tree or on its trunk or branches. Its sticky substance has numerous benefits such as:
Plants to Filter Air

Plastic Bottles: It's sad that we've come to a point where tons of destructive plastic are discarded every day; a large percentage consisting of plastic bottles. These simple recycling methods won't solve our greater problem on plastic management, but it will help out in our own little way:
[56 Brilliant Ways to Reuse Plastic Bottles]    [Convert Plastic Bottles into Survival Tools]
Knife/Tool Handles: HDPE (high-density polyethylene) plastic can be melted and molded into any object. If the handle breaks on a knife or hand tool, replace it by melting HDPE plastic in a metal container. HDPE plastic is identified by a "2" (resin identification code) inside the recycle symbol on the container. The fumes from other melted plastics are noxious and can cause illness. During the melting process, pause occasionally to press down the plastic to remove air bubbles and make it more dense. When it is fully melted and compressed, stick the tool handle into the melted plastic and let it cool. When it is cool, remove the plastic from the metal container and file or carve the plastic into the desired shape.    [Video]
Bottle Cap Pulley: Melt 2 equal-sized HDPE plastic bottle caps together at the flat tops. Let them cool. The flat top edge of the caps are slightly rounded which will form an indented seam around the middle of the fused caps. This will act as the pulley channel. Drill or carve a hole through the center of the caps to insert an axle. Depending on the thickness of the axle, the pulley is capable of a large amount of weight.
[Bottle Cap Projects 1]    [Bottle Cap Projects 2]

Plastic (Saran/Cling) Wrap: - Clever and Survival Uses    [Blog Link]
Many everyday objects around the house are helpful for prepping, survival and alternative purposes for which they were not intended. One such ordinary household item is plastic wrap. From kitchen wrap to stretch wrap ("clinging" or "stretching" properties) or heavier plastic sheeting, there are an incredible number of uses. Use your imagination. Always have a roll nearby. Resources:    [Article 1]    [Article 2]    [Article 3]    [Article 4]    [Images]

PVC Pipe: Not only is PVC pipe a valuable and incredibly versatile survival tool, but it’s also super affordable. It can be found in different hardware and home improvement stores and even junkyards all across the nation. You may even buy or barter for it from a friend or neighbor; it's so common that they likely won't have an issue selling it to you, or letting you have it for free. If this stuff isn't in your bug out bag yet, you're going to want to throw some in once you've read this list and viewed the projects photos. The video describes available components, cutting and gluing (if necessary).    [Video] Photos of Home PVC Projects
Photos of Prepper PVC Projects

Restoring PVC Cement with Acetone: I figured out this hack during a PVC project when I discovered that my PVC cement had turned to gel after a long period of non-use. I didn't feel like going to the store, or spending money, to buy another can for this small project. I have used Acetone to do lots of things including cleaning and removing graffiti paint from my car so I always have it in my shop. There was about 1/2" of gelled cement at the bottom of the can. I added about 1" of Acetone on top of the cement gel and stirred it with a stick, then replaced the lid and shook the can vigorously. The cement was a bit lumpy but it successfully bonded my PVC project. The bonding seemed to be permanent; it wasn't moving but I can't guarantee it would be water-tight for plumbing purposes because the can label actually reads that if the cement turns to gel, do not use and do not thin. All I know is that it worked for my non-plumbing project.
[Blog Link]

Recycled paper into briquettes for fire
Many Uses for Old Newspaper:    [Article 1]    [Article 2]    [Article 3]    [Crafts]
Upcycling Old Books (Crafts)
Re-Uses for Empty Toilet Paper Rolls:    [Photos 1]    [Photos 2]    [Photos 3]

Salt (Sodium) has many uses, not the least of these is curing an preserving meat/food. When you can't buy it, extract your own. There are many sources to find it.
Extracting Salt from seawater is as simple boiling away the water or letting the water evaporate. Some plants (like coltsfoot leaves and hickory tree, dandelion, walnut, or pecan roots, wild carrot and parsnip) and vegetables have enough [mineral] salt (black in color) in them, it can be boiled out of them. Animal blood also contains salt.

Ninja Throwing Stars (Shuriken) were commonly used to slow down attackers or as a distraction. Evidence shows that they were sometimes partially buried in the ground to maim attackers when stepped on.
[Shuriken History]    [Scissors Link (made with screws not rivets)]

Soda Can Pull-Tabs:
Rope Tensioner -    [Video]    [Article]
Fishing Hook
Other Uses

Soda Cans:
to make a Portable Camp Stove
Other Survival Uses

Tampon as a mini survival kit and other things

Tires can be recycled into useable items such as:
- [Tire Body Armor (Photos)]    [Tire Body Armor (Video)]
- [Other Uses 1]    [Other Uses 2]

Toothpaste has many uses outside the mouth, even when it's expired:
Tree Bark from a Willow Tree to Make Aspirin

Truck Alternator conversion to Wind Generator

Urine: Urine is used to flush excess salt and toxins from the body and is not sterile. Never drink it! Drinking urine puts the salt and toxins back inside the body and will accelerate dehydration and may cause other health complications. The only safe way to drink urine is to distill it into potable drinking water using a Solar Still or other distillation process. Distilling removes all contaminates from water. Here are some uses for urine that are less detrimental to health:
Vinegar Uses: People have been using vinegar for thousands of years for everything from food preservation to sanitation! There have even been traces of vinegar found in ancient Egyptian tombs dating as far back as 3000 B.C.! Discover how this one simple household staple is worth more than gold.
1. Disinfect wood cutting boards.
2. Soothe a sore throat; use 1 tsp of vinegar per glass of water, then gargle.
3. Fight dandruff; after shampooing, rinse hair with vinegar and 2 cups of warm water.
4. Remove warts; apply daily a 50/50 solution of cider vinegar and glycerin until they’re gone.
5. Cure an upset stomach; drink 2 tsp apple cider vinegar in one cup of water.
6. Polish chrome.
7. Keep boiled eggs from cracking; add 2 tbsp to water before boiling.
8. Clean deposits from fish tanks.
9. Remove urine stains from carpet.
10. Keep fleas off dogs; add a little vinegar to the dog’s drinking water.
11. Keep car windows from frosting up; use a solution of 3 oz. vinegar to 1 oz. water.
12. Clean dentures; soak overnight in vinegar and then brush.
13. Get rid of lint in clothes; add 0.5 cup vinegar to rinse cycle.
14. Remove grease from suede.
15. Kill grass on sidewalks and driveways. 16. Make wool blankets softer; add 2 cups distilled vinegar to rinse cycle.
17. Remove skunk odor from a dog; rub fur with full strength vinegar and rinse.
18. Freshen wilted vegetables; soak them in 1 tbsp vinegar and a cup of water.
19. Dissolve mineral deposits in drip coffee makers, water related appliances and water pipes descaling (video)
20. Deodorize drains; pour a cup down the drain once a week, let sit for 30 minutes, then rinse.
21. Use as a replacement for a lemon; 0.25 tsp vinegar substitutes for 1 tsp of lemon juice.
22. Make rice fluffier; add 1 tsp of vinegar to water once it begins to boil.
23. Prevent grease build-up in ovens; wipe oven with cleaning rag soaked in distilled vinegar and water.
24. Kill germs; mix a 50-50 solution of vinegar and water in a spray bottle.
25. Clean a clogged shower head.; pour vinegar into a zip-lock bag and hang it around the shower head. let it soak overnight to remove any mineral deposits.
26. Shine patent leather.
27. Remove the moldy smell from laundry that has been left in the washer too long; pour 1 cup of vinegar in with the load and rewash it.
28. Make propane lantern wicks burn longer/brighter; soak them in vinegar for 3 hours, let dry.
29. Act as an air freshener.
30. Soften paint brushes; soak in hot vinegar then rinse with soapy water.
31. Remove old, outdated, or unwanted bumper stickers and decals; simply cover them with vinegar-soaked cloth for several minutes.
32. Prolong the life of fresh-cut flowers; use 2 tbsp of vinegar and 3 tbsp of sugar per quart of warm water
33. Prevent Mildew; Wipe down shower walls with a vinegar solution.
34. Soften calloused feet; soak your feet in a mixture 50/50 mixture of vinegar and water for 30 minutes then scrub them with a pumice stone. The dead skin should slough off easily.
35. Treat Acne; start with a solution of organic apple cider vinegar and water at a ratio of 1:8, apply the toner to blemishes and leave on a minimum of 2 minutes.
36. Fertilizer
37. Make as a fixative soak after dying clothing.
Make/Grow Your Own Vinegar
Anything that will ferment (turns to alcohol) will, eventually, turn to vinegar. Make a punch from anything containing sugar (berries, apples, grapes, etc.). Let it ferment, then leave it in the open air for a few weeks and it will turn to vinegar.

Uses and Science of Vinegar

[Blog Link]

Vodka to Make Insect Repellent

WD40 Its Many Uses

Whistle for Help: Making a Survival Whistle to summon help.
Acorn Cap    [Video]
Rifle Bullet Casing
Bamboo or hollow wood
Soup Can Lid

Winch from 2 logs and rope    [Video]

Wooden Pallets Click Here for DIY Projects

14 Off-Grid Projects to Cut Your Energy and Water Usage

2-Liter Soda Bottle or Snorkle Mask to make a DIY Gas or Flu Mask

35+ Camping Tips, Tricks & Treats

5-Gallon Bucket and Plunger to Do Laundry

55 Gallon Drum Projects