Saturday, 13 August 2016 Home made first aid kits

Based on comments from a previous post, here is some discussion of basic first aid kits.

FWIW, I like to build my basic kits and my much more capable ‘car kits’ around a makeup organizer or a toiletries organizer. I find them often in thrift stores and yard sales for only a buck or two.

New comments, or additions are in [square brackets]


Dave says:
22 August 2015 at 15:18 (Edit)

Here are the contents of my under $10 first aid kit:

30 clear adhesive bandages
0.33 oz triple antibiotic ointment
50 extra strength acetaminophen tablets
50 alcohol prep pads
5 2×2 gauze pads
5 3×3 gauze pads
5 yards of 1/2″ adhesive tape

Everything listed above fits in a one quart zip top bag.

[I think you are a bit heavy on bandaids, and could use more styles. I like the fabric ones as they stick well. Consider having a couple of sizes of traditional shapes, plus finger tip and knuckle, and at least one big one for a skinned knee.]

nick says:
22 August 2015 at 20:15 (Edit)

Hey Dave, some things to think about adding,

tube of crazy glue (to glue skin, stings like fire but works)
wet naps (get some at chick fil a)
packets of sunscreen (like a condiment pack at fast food, might be in the sample size section of your store)
sunblock chapstick
fewer tablets,
gloves- vinyl if you are worried about latex allergies.

[trauma shears are great, but a good sharp ‘kitchen’ style scissor works well. Any scissor is better than none, as long as it is sharp. For a knife, even a ‘wallpaper’ style disposable box cutter works- the kind with snap off blades. It’s cheap, sharp, and small.]

OR just buy one of these kits. I have several versions and like the quality and what’s included.

The 1.0 kit is a good balance of price and performance.

In general, you are right that you can put together a better kit for the money, but the Adventure Medical kits do a good job of proving that wrong (or LESS right.)


BTW- great job taking that step! Keep adding to your preps!

[I still like the AdvMed kit as a starting point.]

Dave says:
23 August 2015 at 14:06 (Edit)


The first aid kit is intended to go in a vehicle emergency kit, which will be a little stripped down to start with. I’m betting that I’ll be there with a knife and a flash light that I’ll remember to grab the flash light out of the car. The other suggestions look like things I will want to add when I expand the kit.

The things I think are missing:

1. Oral rehydration salts.
2. A splint and a more effective pain reliever than acetaminophen.
3. A weeks supply of my prescription meds.
4. Some loratadine tablets.

The last item is for my wife, and the other things are things I actually could have used at one point or another. On our last vacation, my wife and I both could have used the oral rehydration salts. Would have made the vacation a little less memorable.

[the anti-diarrhea meds are a staple of my kit, and in my briefcase, and my boo boo kit. I don’t think you need anything stronger than Tylenol but you might want to consider fewer Tylenol tabs, and adding a few anti-inflammatory tabs, like Motrin, and a few anti-histamines, like Benadryl. I carry electrolyte salt tablets, for dehydration and hangover relief. Splints are likely overkill, and are pretty easy to improvise. ]

[I also think, due to the changing nature of the threat, that you need to consider gunshot or other trauma, even in a basic kit.   I’d add 2 rolls of Kerlix and a couple of 4×4 gauze pads.

A penlight, a Sharpie marker, and a large safety pin would be good adds too.  An instant cold pack is nice if you have the space.

You can still fit this into a pretty compact package, and it adds a great deal of capability.]

[Medical prep in general is a big topic and deserves more in depth coverage, but I’m gonna limit this post to the basic first aid kit.]




ADDED_____________ 2pm


Finally found a couple of the others, so I’ll make this even more of a mega post!


  • nicksays:

    Ok, I’ll bite, since I’m in serious work avoidance mode.

    And I’ve got my ‘blowout kit’ right here in my range bag.

    Small samsonite toiletries bag, about 2.5x4x7 inches, that unzips in a clamshell and lays flat.

    Loose in the middle,
    israeli bandage
    trauma shears
    medical tape
    maglite (if you use led, it must have good color rendering)
    3 pr gloves

    in the loops on one side
    4x sterile pad, 3×3 folded in half
    1x roll kerlix
    1x roll gauze
    4x sterile pad, 3×3 folded in half
    extra shears

    in the zippered mesh pouch on the other side
    8x assorted size and shape fabric bandaids
    4x alcohol prep pads
    2x single use Povidone-iodine ointment
    4x kleenhanz antimicrobial moist towelettes
    1x envelope of wound closure strips (steri-strips) 8 @3 inches
    2x maxi-pads, full size, generic, no fragrance
    1x package, 2 @4×4 topper dressing sponges
    1x 4×4 Exuderm OdorShield (what I had handy as a chest seal)
    1x black sharpie marker
    1x sheet of paper, folded for notes

    So there is some stuff in there that is not strictly gun shot treatment, but then I don’t have to carry another ‘boo boo’ kit (although I carry my altoids tin one whenever I’m with the kids.)

    The bags in my vehicles are scaled up versions of the blowout kit, and include gorilla tape, more of everything, ice packs, etc. I’d have to get one out to go thru and list it all.


    [OFD asked if that all fit in the Samsonite toiletries bag]

    yep all that fits in the little Samsonite bag. The bag goes into my range bag most of the time. Since I don’t travel with the range bag, the blowout kit goes into my carryon. I checked the TSA rules, and trauma shears meet the rules for allowed scissors, and they didn’t steal them on my last trip.

  • nick says:

    Ok, ‘boo boo kit’ in an altoids tin, goes in pocket whenever I go anywhere with the kids.

    Loose, or in top half

    6x assorted shapes and sizes fabric bandaids, incl one big enough for a scraped knee
    3x sheets of rite-n-rain notepad paper.
    3x imodium anti-diarrhea med

    tucked firmly and completely into the bottom half
    6x alcohol wipes
    1x single use triple antibiotic cream
    1x small tube crazy glue
    4x fabric knuckle bandaids
    1x One third of a paper book of matches
    1x wooden golf pencil
    1x prethreaded sewing needle, 18 inch black thread, wrapped around pencil
    1x lens cleaner wipe
    2x stick of caffinated chewing gum (BlackBlack, from asia)
    1x safety pin

    It is a little puffy, and won’t quite stay closed by itself, so I have a rubber bracelet around the outside (like the ‘live strong’ bracelets)

    I also wrote “med only” on it to remind myself not to put anything with a blade in it so I can take it on the plane.

    If I had a small tweezer, I’d include that too. and since I carry a credit card sized magnifier in my wallet, I don’t need one in my kit.




I like toiletries organizers or cosmetics organizers for medical bags. They fold open flat, sometimes with a pouch that folds out again for a tri fold, they have zippered mesh pouches and elastic loops. They are super cheap at yard sales and thrift stores, and some of them are better quality than the chinese import tactical bags. No external molle, but that’s not a problem. I like them about 8 x 9 x 3 inches for truck bags. Big enough to hold a lot of supplies, small enough to fit under a seat. I wouldn’t recommend the classic ‘dopp’ bag, or any other that just zips open on the top (shaving bag). You want it to fold open and lay flat so you can see everything.



17 Comments and discussion on "Saturday, 13 August 2016 Home made first aid kits"

  1. SteveF says:

    Wouldn’t a pint of alcohol be a good idea? Not isopropyl — the “prep pads” cover that, or rather are covered in it — but ethanol. It wasn’t called the universal specific for nothing, you know.

    (To those reading this post for the good advice: this comment is not what you’re looking for.)

  2. Rick Hellewell says:

    @Nick : Good list.

    (I fixed the links for you. FYI, use the ‘link’ tool in the WP editor to put in a link, although links should normally get ‘linkable-d’ with a save/publish. Not sure why those didn’t.)

  3. Nick Flandrey says:

    Thanks Rick, I’m learning as I go!


  4. Nick Flandrey says:

    Added the contents of my Boo Boo Kit, and my Blowout Kit to the mega post above….


  5. Dave Hardy says:

    “[I also think, due to the changing nature of the threat, that you need to consider gunshot or other trauma, even in a basic kit. I’d add 2 rolls of Kerlix and a couple of 4×4 gauze pads.”

    I always seem to have this focus thing in my head for some odd reason concerning firearms- and CQG-related stuff, so I EDC a tourniquet in a pouch on my belt at 5PM, right behind the firearm. At 7PM on the other side I have the Leatherman Signal. I’ve also stolen Mr. nick’s idea and keep the spare Shield mag in another Leatherman pouch on that side, so it looks like I have two of them. (just gotta remember under fire, lol, which is which, amirite?)

    There is a med go-bag and a pistol go-bag in the RAV4, each hanging from the front seat headrests in back. Going to and from the range I’m likely to have other ordnance in gym bags behind me on the back seat, too.

    And as a long-ago former LEO partner once told us, in a very small town between Woostah and the Road-Eye-Lun border, “stop the bleeding and call an ambulance.” Add to that a good knowledge of CPR and Bob’s yer uncle!

    For most events; but a thorough knowledge of and practice with, EMT-level stuff would be a marvelous thing for any of us to have.

  6. pcb_duffer says:

    Re adhesive tapes: The strongest, most durable tape I’ve ever experienced is called Elastikon. It’s available in a variety of widths, for basic first aid 1″ is convenient. You aren’t going to tear it by hand, and it isn’t going to come off skin without a bit of a fight. But in a SHTF situation, that’s what I want.

  7. nick says:

    ” (just gotta remember under fire, lol, which is which, amirite?)”

    maybe not. FBI gunfight stats say 6 shots on average. Reload afterwards. Or for the Ferguson situation.


  8. lynn says:

    @nick, Thanks for the good advice !

  9. Miles_Teg says:

    Rick, how do you “name” links? Can you give an example please?

  10. nick says:

    can’t put an example here because the template strips out anything that looks like a tag.

    I can’t ever remember how to do it, so I usually just post the monster ugly link. As a post author, I need to step up my game (and there is a tool that makes it easier for the post author than for commenters.)


  11. Rick H says:

    @Miles_Teg : not sure what you mean by the ‘name’ links thing. “Name” is an attribute you can put in an A HREF tag, usually used by a URL that has a ‘target’ parameter that points you to a specific part of the page – so when you click the link, you jump to the spot where the ‘name’ is. The “target” parameter is the one you see at the end of a URL (before any query parts) preceded by a ‘#’ character.

    So in : the ‘downhere’ would be somewhere in the page as an A HREF NAME=’downhere’ tag. Clicking on that link would load the page, then jump to the spot where the that NAME parameter was.

    If you want to add a name tag to the A HREF in the WordPress editor, you have to go into the ‘text’ side of the editor and manually add it.

    The ‘name’ attribute is different from the ‘title’ attribute, which specifies what you see when you mouse-hover over a link (displays a little popup box of the text of the ‘title’ attribute. That also would have to be manually entered via the ‘text’ input of the WP editor.

    For an example of the “#” attribute (the target going to the specific spot on the page), just look at the links in the Comments column here. Click on one, and see the “#” as part of the URL, which is how the page jumps down to the specific comment within the page.

  12. SteveF says:

    I think what Miles_Teg means is displaying text which isn’t the link itself.

    You want

    <a href=”your_url”>the text you want to show</a>

  13. Rick H says:

    SteveF and Miles_Teg:

    In that case, inside the WordPress editor, highlight the text you want to be the link (in SteveF’s example, “the text you want to show”) then use the link icon to add the URL.

    If the URL is already there, left-click once on the URL, you’ll get a small dialog box with a ‘pencil’ and ‘gear’ icon. The ‘pencil’ icon lets you change the URL, and the ‘gear’ icon gets you into the settings for that link so you can change ‘the text you want to show’.

  14. Miles_Teg says:

    Rick, suppose SteveF posts a link like, depicting he and Hillary having rough sex. If he wanted to have the link appear as “Steve bonking Hillary’s arse” how do you get the latter to display, and not “http…”?

  15. SteveF says:

    Miles_Teg, what Rick said about the link icon does not apply to me and may not apply to you. I don’t see a link icon anywhere near the edit window. This may be because I use TOR Browser Bundle as my browser and it has some limitations compared to more common browsers, and it may be because Rick is a Daynotes editor and I am not.

    If you see a link icon (probably looks like a couple links of chain), use that. If not, then what I wrote at 20:02 is what you need. I’ll repeat, with the fixed portions in bold and the “your choice” portions in italics.

    <a href=”your_url“>the text you want to show</a>

    The first “your choice” part is the URL, the http… stuff.
    The second “your choice” part is whatever text you want, with few exceptions. (eg, if you want a lessthan symbol, you need to instead type the HTML &lt; entity.)
    Those angle brackets are bold because they’re mandatory; that’s not clear. Also, the quotes are supposed to be straight quotes, not curly.

    Perhaps one of the Daynotes editors can gather up this various comment-writing advice into a post, and even stick it in on the sidebar as a reference page.

  16. nick says:

    Yeah, the link button is only available on the Edit a Post page, not in comments. Even if you are a poster, it’s not available in the comment.

    The first link I posted to the w3 org has a good explanation.

    Like I said, I always forget, and even with the w3 page open, it usually takes me a try or two to get the spacing quotes and brackets in the right place.

    If I was gonna do a lot of commenting with links (HA) I might download something like Texter and build a macro to insert links. Good thing I never do that….


  17. Rick H says:

    Although the ‘link’ icon is not available in a comment (only when writing a post, or when editing a comment through the WP Admin pages), you can still do links in a comment:

    Hover over this link A tooltip will appear (because of a ‘title’ attribute) and the URL can be seen in your browser (lower left corner, usually).

    I put in the HREF code block manually, which is allowed by this commenting system (you can disallow HTML commands in comments if you want via a plugin, like my FormSpammerTrap for Comments plugin

    That last link was done by typing in this code in the comment area:

    a href='' rel="nofollow">FormSpammerTrap for Comments plugin</a

    (I removed the leading ‘greater than’ and trailing ‘less than’ symbol so you could see the code.)

    Although there are plugins that will put “Rich Text Editor” stuff for comments, there is not one on this site. But there are a limited amount of codes you can put in, like bold and italic.

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