Added new article: July 2017
Survival strategies – Personal coping mechanisms .
One of the best definitions of survival intelligence in my view is the ability to adapt to one's environment. If possible, to adapt the environment to aid survival. June 2017
Added new article:
General advice on dealing with attacks by wild animals.
Historically, the majority of humans attacked by wild animals in the apex predator category have died a horrible death. There are, however, a select few who have overcome the odds, fought, won and lived to tell the tale. They either killed the animal or injured it enough to escape. How they succeeded is immensely valuable learning for others to try if attacked. May 2017
Added new article: Dog attacks.
What to do and how to survive.
Note: This section contains information for both civilians and military personnel. You may find some of it distasteful and disturbing, no one likes to hurt an animal but a vicious dog attack is life threatening, crippling or can result in permanent disfigurement. Put squeamishness and sentiment aside — you need to know how to defend yourself. The information given on how police dogs attack is meant for protection only in a survival situation. If challenged by a police dog handler you should not resist arrest and follow the dog handler's instructions or you will be bitten.April 2017
Added new article: Edible shellfish
Part two of a two–part article. March 2017
Added new article: Edible shellfish
Part one of a two–part article. February 2017
Added new article: Making survival bread
Extracting flour and making survival bread.January 2017
Added new article: Edible seaweeds
Common edible seaweeds to eat in a survival situation. December 2016
Added new article: Edible seashore plants
Common seashore plants to eat in a survival situation. November 2016
Added new article: International distress signals
How to attract attention from land, sea and air and how to communicate between survivors and rescuers. October 2016
Added new article: Navigation using nature's signs
How to find your way around without a compass using the natural signs provided by man and nature. September 2016
Added new article: Assembling an Abandon Ship Bag
Following the great success of our article on making your own personal survival kit, we have now added an article on making your own abandon ship bag for those interested in survival at sea.August 2016
Added new article: We product test four of the best lightweight cooking stovesTest one: The Trangia Mini Trangia 28-t Stove KitTest two: The Esbit 585 ml CooksetTest three: The Swiss Gel Fuel M1 Stove KitTest four: The Bushbox Titanium Outdoor Pocket Stove
We updated the March product review of the Silva Explorer compass as Silva have brought out a newer model. July 2016
Added new article: Best water filter for survivalJune 2016
Added new article: Can I eat this plant?May 2016
Added new article: Survival on the StreetApril 2016
Added new article: Mini Survival TipsMarch 2016
Silva Expedition compass, 2016 model.
Silva Expedition 2016Manufacturer's description
The Silva Expedition Compass features easy–handling Dryflex™ housing, silicon rubber feet for precision map work, detachable safety–release lanyards, night–enabling luminous markings, magnifying lens, a clinometer for measuring slope angle, map–measuring scales in mm or inches, 1:25,000, 1:50,000 and GPS scales, plus built–in adjusters for magnetic declination (including permanent local adjustment). The Expedition can also map–measure 1:40,000.What you get
The new Expedition Compass comes with two new innovations for this compass type by Silva, a slope card and a scale lanyard. Both simple but useful additions.The slope card
The slope card is used for measuring the extra distance of travel up and down a slope, rather than measuring distance on the map "as the crow flies." It also has the facility of determining avalanche risk. By matching the map index contour, or contour lines with the lines on the card, the angle of the slope can be determined. Reading off the scale gives an idea of potential avalanche risk, also the extra distance travelled up and down the slope can be quickly calculated. We found it a useful addition to have.The scale lanyard
The scale lanyard has two scales on it; 1:25, and 1:50, It is soft and flexible and a useful addition to the actual compass as it is part of it. When placed directly on the map (using the appropriate scale) it is easy to measure approximate distances but is not as accurate as a map measurer made specifically for the job. We liked it, however, and thought for such a simple innovation it was a long overdue addition.Description of Baseplate
The new graphics contain a more distinct arrow and also a more contemporary font making it clearer and easier to read. We missed a 1:20 k scale card, although there is a limit to what can be printed on the base plate.Summary
How we found it performed overallValue:
- Detachable safety–release lanyard, flexible with 1:25, and 1:50 scales.
- Permanent adjustment for local magnetic declination.
- Magnifying lens.
- Scales: 1:25 k, 1:40 k, 1:50 k, GPS scales, mm, inch.
- Additional slope card.
- Silicon friction feet.
- Weight: 50g (1.76 oz).
- Variants: Magnetic East, Magnetic South, Magnetic North.
Retailing at around £40 ($56 USD, €60), or less if you shop around, this compass is good value for money.Base–plate:
The compass has a long, transparent plastic base–plate for sighting and calibrated straight edges for measuring and ruling points on a map. One end is rounded so you cannot inadvertently hold it the wrong way round. Friction feet keep it stable even on a plastic coated map. Strongly made with a good magnifier and a lanyard hole. Good selection of scales, better than most comparable compasses, but lacking a 1:20 k scale. All markings are clear with direction of travel clearly marked.Dial:
The bezel has a serrated edge and is easy to turn when wearing gloves. We did not think the degree markings were clear enough in comparison to the Silva Expedition 4, for example, (Expedition 4 photo below left) and the lower position was not ideal. The Expedition 4 bezel can be turned without obscuring the markings but when turning the Expedition bezel (photo below right) the markings were easily obscured, especially when wearing gloves.
But it is a matter of personal taste whether or not one prefers the markings at the top of the bezel or at the bottom.Lightweight:
For a full base–plate compass the weight of 50 g (1.76 oz) is good.Magnetic declination:
Having built–in adjusters for magnetic declination (including permanent local adjustment) this compass meets the needs of advanced users.Needle:
Reaction time and dampening of the needle was marginally better than earlier, similar compasses in this range by Silva. The needle is not globally balanced. You need to buy the correct variant for your geographic zone. Not so useful if you travel between zones.
- Zone 1 covers most of the north hemisphere (North America, Europe and Russia);
- Zone 2 includes Mexico and northern South America, North Africa, India;
- Zone 3 – Brazil, Middle Africa;
- Zone 4 – southern South America, Southern Africa and Malaysia;
- Zone 5 – Australia and New Zealand.
We found the luminous points lacked visibility in comparison to similar compasses but worked OK for three minutes after recharging with a photon light.Conclusion:
It does what it claims as a compass sold in Silva's walking / mountaineering range. Is this the only compass you would ever have to own? Probably, if you use it only in your Zone as a hiking / mountaineering compass it probably would last for many years as the quality is as good as all Silva compasses and we haven't found a really bad one yet. It couldn't double, for example as an orienteering compass as the needle reaction / dampening speed is not in the league of the Silva Jet orienteering range, but it settles quickly enough not to be an issue for most people if using the compass whilst on the move. It is definitely value for money as it has all the features needed for both the amateur and advanced user. We scored the compass 8/10 for usability and value for money.February 2016
Added new article: Organizing an Expedition Part 3 — Expeditions in Savannah (veldt and the bush)
If you would like to see which articles are following soon in this section, see Expedition Articles coming soon.December 2015Welcome to our website.
Many people have written to us over the past two years asking if we can expand on our article on organizing an expedition. In response to this, we intent to try and add a new expedition article each month starting December 2015 with a rewrite of the initial article and adding a new feature on Expedition Leadership. November 2015
November saw the launch of our new style layout featuring more free survival articles and a revision of some of our popular pages. The most important changes included making the website a responsive design and the addition of a new mobile–friendly website. A warm thank you to the many who frequent our pages, we hope you enjoy the new browsing experience.
Webmaster at Survival Expert ™
Product testThe Ken Onion Edition Knife & Tool Sharpener
Worksharp, Oregon, USA contacted us and asked us to trial the Ken Onion Edition Knife & Tool Sharpener from the standpoint of the users in the "survivalist market".
The sharpening guide is fully adjustable from 15° to 30° angles, it has a variable speed motor and takes 1.9 cm (¾ in) x 30.5 cm (12 in) flexible abrasive belts.
What we particularly liked is that it grinds giving a convex edge. This method of grinding leaves more steel behind the edge to support it, so the edge stays sharper longer than a flat ground edge.
We found it an excellent product, which produced a razor–sharp polished edge on pocket knives, survival knives, tactical knives and serrated knives. It will also sharpen kitchen knives and scissors.
The sharpener comes with a selection of belts: Extra Coarse for repairing a damaged blade, course for shaping the blade, medium for sharpening, fine for honing and extra–fine for serrations. The sharpening guide can be removed to allow grinding of axes, etc.Summary
An excellent electric knife sharpener, cleverly designed and easy to use. Essential you read the instructions and take note of the safety warnings. Idea for a club or group of survival enthusiast, or for the individual with a lot of knives to sharpen.
To see the Worksharp Guided Field Sharpener, go to article on sharpening systems. New free survival articles
- Making survival shelters — The essentials on finding and making survival shelters
- Sharpening knives — This article has been updated and largely re–written to include sharpening serrated knives and gut hooks.
- New basic survival quiz — our very popular quiz page has been expanded to include a new quiz for survival beginners.This is not available on this mobile site because it is made using Adobe Flash.
To try our quizzes go to our non–mobile site