In just about every list I’ve ever seen of the recommended contents of a Bug-Out-Bag or emergency survival kit Duct Tape is always on there. Personally I’ve been a lover of duct tape since I was a kid. It’s truly great stuff. So I thought I’d take a bit of time to talk about some of the lesser known uses for duct tape.
Repairs. I think we all know that duct tape is great for making quick repairs to just about anything but there are a few items some may not have thought to use it on. Clothing is a good example. A strip of duct tape will patch up a torn pair of jeans, a ripped winter jacket, even a shoe that’s coming apart can be quickly mended with a strip of good old duct tape. Windows, screens, tents, pipes, hoses, fan belts, even a hole in the wall of your house or roof can be temporarily fixed with duct tape. Now that I think about it, it would be tougher to put together a list of things that Can’t be fixed with duct tape!
Used as Rope. Twisting a length of duct tape quickly creates a pretty strong piece of makeshift rope. Whether you’re using this as an impromptu clothesline, to lash together a survival shelter, or to make a sling for a rifle the stuff plays the part pretty impressively. I’m not sure how much you would have to use to support the weight of a human but I’m betting it’s not that much. (Please don’t try at home)
As a Bandage. Yes, duct tape actually makes a pretty effective bandage. You can use small strips to hold a deep cut closed, much like you would with a butterfly bandage. You can also use a piece in combination with a little tissue, paper towel, or gauze to cover a cut or scrape and keep it all sealed nicely until you can get proper treatment. In creating an emergency splint the stuff is invaluable.
As a Weapon. Twisted up properly and perhaps filled with some sand or rocks, duct tape can become a handy weapon in a pinch. Now I wouldn’t recommend trying this unless the S has truly hit the F and you’re without any type of self-defense, but you can make a pretty effective sap or bully club with duct tape.
As Clothing. Again, thin pieces twisted up properly can replace shoelaces and keep your shoes on your feet to get you out of a tough situation. A thicker length can be used as a belt to keep your pants up. Of course if you need a little emergency hemming or patching duct tape again works wonders.
Waterproofing. Duct tape is very good at repelling water. If I was stuck out somewhere and facing a long walk home in the rain with nothing but my sneakers I would absolutely tape them up to keep the water out. Likewise if I was stuck with a jacket that was not water repellent. Taping up the shoulders, back and sleeves would keep out a lot of water and add to the insulation.
I know there are hundreds of uses of duct tape and my thought here was not to list them all but rather to get everyone thinking of how they could use the stuff creatively. Of course, it’s also a reminder to make sure you have plenty laying around. So next time you’re out at the store pick up a few roles, no matter how many you already have at home.