Emberverse Inspired Ranger kit (pic heavyish)

Babylon 5, S.M. Stirling's Emberverse, Ranger's Apprentice, something else? Let's talk.

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Emberverse Inspired Ranger kit (pic heavyish)

Postby man_of_tanith » Thu Jun 27, 2013 12:11 am

I've made this drawing on items I already own or have made.
it has a leaning towards woodcraft/bushcraft as that's the main outdoors activities I get up to, plus living in the UK i can't necessarily carry around some of the items I would like to....

So first i feel a ranger would be quite selective of their tools, the following are the ones i have experience using and am happy with, nothing too flash, nothing too heavy but enough to facilitate most woods based chores, reading the emberverse books there is a level of competency with wood working and so on so i may include a crooked knife as well.
From Left to right we have a Svord mini Peasant, this was rehandled by a friend of mine using wych elm from Ireland i use it for fine detail work, food prep and such like. Opinel Folding Saw useful for processing small sized firewood,or anything that requires a good clean cut, most of the rangers in the emberverse are pagan and damaging trees is something I personally feel goes against that ethos/religious out look. Gransfors Bruk Outdoor Axe-i really really love this axe, its the size of a hatchet but having used it to make a self bow, various carving projects,felling trees and processing them i am confident in the use of it and it doesnt weigh as much as a larger sized axe. Finally a 'reindeer' Pukko i've tried various full tang knives and find them too heavy for me which results in the knife causing my hands to become tired this pukko is nice and light but copes with all the needs i have of a fixed blade
knife. thats all the sharps i intend to carry, possibly in winter i will trade the outdoor axe for a larger axe as more firewood is required.

Eating and Drinking items- i really wracked my brains for this area and decided that as the emberverse is still 'kind of' along the same road as our own time line i could justify using some of my own cooking equipment, i've honed it down as speed and minimalist approach is definately part of the ranger way to me.
From Left to Right once again
Two Leather bags, one contains my brew kit it should mainly hold stuff like acorn coffee and herb teas however at the moment its got tea/coffee/hot chocolate in it. The other contains dry foods such as bannock mix, polenta (corn meal i believe its called in the US?), rice and such like. just like the Mackenzies i premix my bannock mix with baking soda to speed up the preperation time. next to this leather bag is a premixed bannock mix.
small Can opener, spork and foon.tea spoon. i recall a reference to Rudi Mackenzie (possibly after he becomes Artos) using something which whilst not called a spork definately sounds like one to me.
Hip flask this usually has a delightful beverage called Stag's breath in it, purely medicinal i assure you....its a whisky and fermented comb honey liquor and absolute bliss to have a nip once in a while.
Metal plate-i am not a fan of eating out of billy cans and it also acts as a chopping board/ mixing bowl and such like.
MOLLE pouch this i am justifying as its a very convenient holder-i dont think MOLLE was issued when the Change occoured but its such a good holder i am over looking that whilst i hunt sometihng more appropriate out.
A Stainless steel guyot water bottle-says it all really
Tatonka handled mug, Zebra 10cm Billy can and a small length of chain i use to suspend the billy can over a fire with.
all of the above fits into the MOLLE pouch as well as the spork, foon,teaspoon and can opener, usually there is a millbank bag in there as well for filtering large detritus out of water but i couldn't find it when i was taking the photographs
Swedish army surplus water bottle. i like to have plenty of water on me, safe water in the UK especially in my area isn't a guarentee due to farm run off so its an added piece of insurance.
thats all the cooking/eating stuff i carry. although i have a mors pot which is very similar to a mucket which i would add in for longer journeys/camps and a tatonka stainless steel cookset which has a frying pan included

Clothing-here i have gone with predominantly natural materials readily available post change and in my experience more suited for the trials clothing experiences in the wilds.
From Left to Right once more
Swedish army snow smock dyed Green, good for wind resistance and water resistant if not waterproof. its hood helps to break up my silhouette and also acts to keep me a little warmer. it also hides the colour of the next big item
which is a Swanndri bushshirt, i broke from Uk norm and bought a nice colourful red and black check patterned one,
Filson tin cloth hat-keeps the sun and rain off my head and glasses
wool headover/scarf. a nice wooly scarf for keeping my neck warm, it can also be worn as a hat and as its effectively a tube i can stuff it with the swanndri to act as a pillow when bedding down for the night
Leather Gloves, these are mainly used when gathering nettles for food/cordage, tending the fire to prevent burns, removing cook pots out of the flames,
possum fur and merino wool hat. this is the WARMEST hat i have ever owned, good for evenings/cold mornings and just a pleasure to wear. wool hats are mentioned a few times in the emberverse books so i can justify this to myself

Possibles/miscellaneous items
here i have pretty much put everything else that doesn't fit into a nice easy niche
From Left to Right
firstly a well filled and fully modern First Aid Kit-this will remain in the bag unless i have a major incident, however much i enjoy the emberverse series when it comes to medical or emergency aid i'm not playing i want decent and efficient stuff. (theres a new emberverse book due out in september i fully intend to be alive to read it :))
top of row-hudson bay tinderbox with flint,steel,jute cord and charcloth all in pouch i made a while back and shared on here
vintage style pocket compass-this is more for general direction finding, rangers act as scouts and need to report back to those who sent them, my natural navigation skills are not brilliant so i included this to cover that weakness.
A Mascot/Sept Totem-Boris the Bushcrafting Badger-a bit of fun and also Boris has accompanied me on 90% of my outdoors exploits i would feel guilty leaving him behind.
next is a pocket watch, watches whilst valuble resources are available still post change as long as they are clock work powered not battery powered, this one was a gift from my son for Yule so it goes everywhere with me
Possibles pouch/sporran influenced by clan mackenzie i suspect the emberverse rangers would recognise the usefulness of another pocket....plus it holds a goodly amount of the stuff in this photograph.
oiled tinder pouch-this i fill with natural tinders i find whilst out and about, currently it has char-cloth, birch bark rosebay willowherb seed down and a few other bits and bobs in it. fire lighting materials are gathered throughout the journey then i always have some when i want a fire rather than looking for something and potentially not having access to any.
oiled leather ouch pouch-dried yarrow and dressings,
One tin antiseptic ointment, one tin hand salve (i use a lot of alchohol hand sanitiser at work and my hands almost instantly shred so this protects it) one tin insect repellent i don't use it much but every so often i NEED to get rid of the biting/stinging/whining beasties then i reach for this stuff
Monocular and case-prechange monocular protected with a hand sewn leather case. observation is a main part of rangering these make it easier to do so
Strop and Stropping compound- a sharp knife is a safe knife this keeps them sharp
Pipe, pipe tobacco and pipe tool-i'm not of the elvish viewpoint on tobacco i enjoy a pipe and its an enjoyable activity whilst waiting for the evening meal to cook or when socialising
Snares-always helps to have these premade, whilst i know how to make snares from scratch premade ones speed the whole process up.

Shelter-again here i have gone for natural materials, they dont react so badly to sparks from the fire and are more likely to be produced post change
you can see in the background a Closed Cell Foam Mat i admit i was debating including this in the kit as i have a slight bad back but i relented and decided to tough it out...
From Front to back this time
Olive Canvas ground sheet
Dark Green Polish lavvu half, this should act as sufficient shelter for me from rain i have yet to test this item out but i've been assured by others that it works...we shall see
grey wool blanket-i have adapted this to also work as an over head poncho with a T cut. it still works well as a blanket,
Not very noticeable in the photo is a heavy duty wool blanket solely for sleeping in/on
Tent pegs-a concession to where i go camping-i use the same area most the times i go, i dont want to strip out resources purely to practice making a tent peg from a stick i know how to do it, its about minimising my impact as much as possible
blanket roll straps i spent a while working on these, they still need tweeking but they nicely hold all the shelter and spare clothing i've shown in these photos,
twisted hazel walking staff, used for walking, as a quarter staff and also to hold the polish lavvu up right
cordage i plan to replace this more natural material rope/cord but i've not yet had time to do so.

finally a shot of it all packed and good to go
i am away camping using this set up on friday so will give it a good test, ( i am going by car so carrying is only for a short distance admittedly but it will be a good initial test to see what needs possible reassessment)for winter i believe i would swap the blanket roll for a pack just for carrying more warm clothing.
i still have a few projects in mind mainly the war cloak of the Mackenzies (i have a plan for that).

Photos of the camp trip will be posted in due course with a no holds barred assessment of the kit i have listed, i'm pretty certain i've covered most if not all the needs apart from weapons (unless you count the outdoor axe and pukko), and illumination but i have something up my sleeve for that need watch this space to see if it comes to anything

Hope you have enjoyed the photos and all comments welcome-just be gentle this is the first time i have done something along this lines
Man of Tanith
Only the Wilderness is Pure Truth
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Re: Emberverse Inspired Ranger kit (pic heavyish)

Postby Mirimaran » Sat Jun 29, 2013 1:52 pm

Well thought out and compact kit! Well done! I have yet to read the books but need to! How did the camping go? I have been thinking of getting one of those svord knives, what is your review of it?

"Well, what are you waiting for? I am an old man, and have no time for your falter! Come at me, if you will, for I do not sing songs of dastards!"
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Re: Emberverse Inspired Ranger kit (pic heavyish)

Postby man_of_tanith » Tue Jul 02, 2013 8:55 am

Aye you really need to read the books, i'm rereading them again (to the disgust of my fiancee)
the camping went well i learnt a few things-main one being i am getting old and need to work out some padding from the ground, i also added in a couple more pots as the friend who was meant to be bringing the bigger cook kit bailed at the last moment.
Svord knives-love em they are good straight from the pack but lend themselves to modifications nicely.
i'll do a mini write up of the camp soonish however the friend who did make it wasnt using ranger style kit.
my fiancee and i are going for a two night camp in a couple weeks to celebrate our anniversary and i intend to use this kit then as well (maybe with some more treats in it is our anniversary after all)
Only the Wilderness is Pure Truth

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