Tools for Off Grid Living and When the SHTF

We as humans have a love/hate relationship with the post apocalypse. We’re simultaneously repulsed and fascinated by the idea of living in a collapsed society, numerous novels and stories have been written. Movies like The Road, The Omega Man, and Terminator keep us on the edge of our seats and even videogames like The Last of Us all have us imagining “what if?” and “what do I do when the SHTF?” It goes without saying that there’s even a ton of resources online available or in magazines like OffGrid that give us advice on what to do when a natural disaster hits or society collapses. These are all really good resources, but when it comes down to it, you and I really have to be the ones to do the actual preparation. Here at Haus of Tools, we sell a lot of tools and DIY materials that would be helpful not just in your trade or day-to-day life, but they would make living life in the end of the world just a little easier. Here’s a quick look at a few types of tools you’re going to want to have on hand in a survival situation, and make sure you have quality tools on hand, because a life or death situation is not the time trust your Harbor Freight tool to stand up to a tough job.

Basic Tools

Everything in this section is something you should, and probably do have already. This group of stuff includes your standard safety gear like safety glasses, work gloves and respirators. Safety gear is important during a natural disaster during volcanoes and forest fires to help make breathing easier and the other stuff is helpful if you need to build something or find yourself having to protect your eyes and hands.

oschsenkopf emergency preparationIn addition to safety equipment, you’re going to want some normal hand tools like your screwdrivers, pliers, hammers and so on. These will help you with making survival shelters, opening canned food and in making survival equipment. You’ll also want to have a high quality hatchet or axe, like Ochsenkopf, for harvesting wood and to use. You could also supplement this with a saw as that’s handy not only for wood but also cutting things like PVC pipes. Wrenches and socket sets are also essential to help repair any vehicles or other equipment in the event of a breakdown. For these you should go with a solid German brand like Felo or Wiha and if you want something made in the USA, take a look at Bondhus and Klein, though we carry many other great brands too.

Supplements for basic tools would include things like tape measures which will help you in any construction you need to do, things like greenhouses, emergency showers or even small shelters. Buckets are good for a variety of things too, from helping manage and divert water or dirt, to holding tools or collecting food. Good quality knives are good for many uses like cutting rope or shaping wood.

These basic tools will make you a little more self-sufficient in a SHTF scenario. For a more comprehensive list of other helpful tools you can check here and this list, while smaller, has a more specific angle.


In a survival situation, few things will be more invaluable than a good amount of rope. Chains can work too, but the key point here is that rope is really good for tying and securing things and it’s light enough to carry around everywhere. Rope will help you haul things and has nearly unlimited uses, whereas chains are similarly useful, but obviously far stronger.

duct tape castAnother great tool to have on hand is the “handyman’s secret weapon” duct tape. You can use duct tape to seal openings in clothes to keep bugs, water and chemicals away from your skin. You can also make duct tape into a rope, it can be a cast for broken bones and used with a splint, its reflectivity makes it a great signal too. Duct tape really comes through as a winner for survival situations, so keep some on hand always. 

Lastly, if you decide you need to do some hunting and you have nothing to do it with, you can make your own bow and arrow. You can do this the really old fashioned way with wood, a knife and some curing time or you can use your crafting skills to make one with stuff from the hardware store and even make one for under $10. You can also use duct tape to make fletching on your arrows. This would be a great thing to use your tools for and it you have the option to use it keep rabbits and animals out of your garden and also putting them on the plate with your vegetables.

While it’s possible to get too carried away with prepping and being ready for when the SHTF it doesn’t hurt to have something on hand to be ready. With tools and certain accessories like knives, duct tape, buckets and more you’ll have that much more of a chance to survive in an emergency. When you look at the list of tools and stuff that would help you succeed in an extreme scenario, it’s stuff that most people have on hand anyways. Everyone has saws, hammers, pliers and so on, but you want to make sure that what you have is high quality so that your tools will be sure to last through the emergency. Be sure to stalk up on some high quality tools when you’re planning your emergency plan.

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