Monday, April 4, 2011

Entrenching tools

The entrenching tool or pack shovel - something I would never be without, I have one in every car. Every member of the family has one for their backpack, though when we pack in we only carry two and leave the other three to use that weight for other items, in a bug-out situation every pack would have one.

An entrenching tool is a must have tool, the two reviewed in this blog can be sharpened and used as a hatchet if needed (I posted about hand saws vs. hatchets).

I am a big supporter of the Cold Steel shovel because as you can tell from the photos they are well used (and abused) and hold up very well. They double as a small axe and the sharpened blades dig very well, a great tool for building shelters.

Like everyone else I always want to try out the "new and great" and bought one of the Glock brand e-tools (thats Entrenching tool BTW).

Without a doubt it is a great tool, an excellent shovel and you can tell by the photos it is the most used shovel of the bunch, it is also the second oldest (the oldest e-tool is an east german similar to the Cold Steel shovel and it is regulated to the car emergency box as I beat it all to hell).

The main thing you would ask is - would I recommend it? Honestly ONLY if you need to save the weight! I think the Cold steel shovel is a better performer at a much lower price! The advantages of the Glock are the light weight, adjustable blade, smaller compacted size (the handle extends and locks), and an included saw-blade (pictured below) that stores in the handle and attached with a screw cap to the end of the shovel. The Glock I think also would not hold up to the same abuse to the blade as the Cold Steel shovel as the blade attaches at the end while the Cold Steel has an extended metal bracing that fits over the handle making it a fixed length.

I would not even consider any of the cheep e-tools for camping (and they are often more expensive than the Cold Steel shovel) and that triangle folder that is surplus is awkward to hold, almost useless as a weapon, sucks to dig with and is not even close to the long lasting quality of the two featured here. The only folding shovel I would ever buy again would be another Glock. Look well across the internet for good prices, it is not uncommon to find the Glock for under 35 bucks and the Cold Steel under 18 bucks.

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