Monthly Archives: October 2019

Military Field Watches

The modern wrist watch gained popularity in World War I and World War II.  Previous to the wars it was considered most un-manly to wear a wrist watch.  It took the rigors of combat to convince men that having both hands free while being shot at or while trying to fly an aircraft in combat was a worthwhile endeavor.

The GG-W-113 watch and subsequently the Mil-W-46374 watches found considerable favor with military personnel during WW2.  Essentially a quick glance at a very legible time piece was all you needed.   The watch also needed to withstand pressures, moisture, shock, vibration and not be reflective to give up your position.   (The picture below was snipped off the internet).

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The modern wristwatch evolved from military usage. Without getting into a history lesson, basically it goes like this.  First there was the pocket watch and then came the wrist watch which was not largely accepted by men for quite some time.  The wrist watch became popular during wartime, specifically WW I and WW II when men needed to know what time it was and needed maximum alertness and both hands free during the rigors of combat.

So it stands to reason that the Government had a military specification written for a combat capable wrist watch. Today’s current spec is MIL-PRF-46374G This specification was first published in 1964 as MIL-W-46374, and is now a Performance Specification on Revision G which is from Nov 1999.   The spec is interesting reading.  You probably never thought how many requirements there were for a military combat wristwatch.

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Budget Wristwatch

As a typical guy I go through phases of wrist watches. I wear them, I don’t wear them.  They aren’t as practical these days as your smart phone has a big old honking time display on it so for the purposes of telling time all your devices suffice nicely.

I have a very nice dress watch, an Omega Speedmaster that I bought in 2003.

It is an amazing watch that I thoroughly enjoy wearing on special occasions but you don’t wear a watch like this to work and you don’t wear it while going to McDonalds.

There is a time and place for all good watches.

Then I went through a bit of a tactical phase and decided to get a watch that looked slightly military in style but slightly flashy as well.

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Tactical John

Sorry about the misleading Subject Line.   I am NOT a man of tactics.   And while I work and deploy with the USMC as a DOD Civilian I haven’t learned a damn thing from them.  I’m not tactical.  I could not sneak up on you with a cup of coffee.

If you wake up in an awful place like Iraq or Afghanistan it is very comforting to know that most of the people inside your base are US Marines.   I’ve had no desire to be a wannabe tactical guy.  Always been happy to let the paid pros take care of the tactics.

But I do like to hike, and I do like to camp and living in an area known to catch a few hurricanes it is only smart to have a certain level of preparedness.   Much of being prepared involves having equipment that is tried and tested in the field by people WHO HAVE TRIED AND TESTED IT IN THE FIELD.

And I guess that’s how the term “tactical” gets tossed around.   No matter.  Contrary to the fact that I didn’t want to learn anything while buying all this cool gear I ended up learning LOTS of things.  One term that keeps creeping up is Every Day Carry (EDC).    EDC is also about being ready for things, or it is about having the tools at your disposal, on your person, that you would use in your day to day tasks.

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Get Home Bag

After having lived in Eastern NC for about 6 years I’ve already gone through an ice storm, two hurricanes, and innumerable near miss hurricanes.   I haven’t actually evacuated yet but evacuation is always a real possibility.   I figure there could be a period of discomfort, leaving or coming home where you could be stuck somewhere.

Some call it a “Bug out Bag”. I call it a “Get Home Bag”.  At any rate you should investigate putting one together for yourself.  You never know.   After much studying and consideration these are the items below that I put in my kit.  The kit will probably always be imperfect to some extent and may need tweaked but for now……….this is it.

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Flashlights And Stuff

About a year ago I became familiar with a term called “EDC”.  Every Day Carry.  What that is are the things that you carry with you on a regular basis to be ready for “Stuff”.  It’s a very different and individual thing.   Not only is it different individually but for the same person it can even be different situationally.  Your EDC may be different in the boat or camper compared to a night out at a fancy restaurant.

My EDC literally changes almost daily, but most days it is this:


From left to right,

  1. Fisher Space Pen
  2. OLight i3T Copper Flashlight
  3. Swiss Army Knife Cadet Alox

Most days this is all a fella needs.  This fella anyway.  The fancy pouch is from a company called Hitch and Timber. And keeps everything from getting banged up and slides easily into my pocket.

The funny thing is that EDC must evolve and get better with time.  And that’s kind of where this blog leads me.

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How To Add an OLED To A Zumspot DMR Hotspot

I got the distinct honor of speaking at the local Amateur Radio Club last night and it caused me to dust the, errrrrrr, dust off of my DMR Hotspots.    After the club meeting I came back and updated the OS’s (PiStar) on my Zumspot and JumboSpot and updated the firmware as well.

The JumboSpot has one distinct advantage over the Zumpsot I have.  It has a cool OLED display.

That got me to thinking.  I could probably add an OLED to my Zumspot.   I could. Here’s how you do that:

Zumspot OLED (click to enlarge)

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Olight Seeker 2 Pro Review

I’ve never really done flashlights before.  About a year or so ago I realized I had one crap flashlight at home.  Bought some inexpensive but good flashlights on Amazon and kind of caught the flashlight fever.   Also I started going camping and without a doubt you need a good flashlight walking around in the woods or for when the campsite power goes off (It will).

I’m not a Prepper, but I’m not unprepared by a long shot either.  I like quality, and I like quantity.  When it gets dark is not the time to ask “where’s the last place I had the flashlight?”  A good quality flashlight should be within reach basically in just about every room of the house.  Seriously.  You may think that is a bit much but it’s really quite practical.

Also, as a typical person in America I have a job that requires me to be there early, and since my dog can’t walk himself and since dog walks typically occur in the dark in the morning I also carry a light with me to keep from getting hit.  I also jog early in the morning, in the dark and wear dark clothes.  A high quality flashlight is a must.  Those are other smaller flashlights that I carry (from the same company) but this blog is about the Olight Seeker 2 Pro.

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