BattlBox Subscription Box Review + Coupon – December 2016
BattlBox is a subscription service delivering survival and tactical gear every month. Each month has a theme based on a different experience with a focus on preparedness and survival.
This box was sent to us at no cost for review. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)
This review is of the Pro Plus, $149.99 a month, box.
The Subscription Box: BattlBox
The Cost: $24.99 plus shipping for Basic, $49.99 plus shipping for Advanced, $99.99 for Pro, and $149.99 for Pro Plus. The Pro and Pro Plus options ship for free.
The Products: A variety of tactical, survival and EDC gear
Ships to: U.S.
Keep Track of Your Subscriptions: Add this box to your subscription list or wishlist!
Each month’s box is themed as a Mission and includes a detailed list of products and their values in all the different level options.
Here are the items included in the Basic level ($24.99 cost / $91.95 value):
BattlBox 70% Wool Military Blanket – Value $33.99
First up in this box is this enormous wool blanket. I am a sucker for a good warm surplus-style blanket, and this was no exception. I grew up with a similar blanket from my grandfather’s WWII days, and it was nowhere near as soft or as large as this one.
It comes with a Battlbox patch containing details about the blanket including size and material makeup: 70% wool, 30% synthetics.
I’m 6’1” and I’m holding this up as high as I can. It would definitely be enough to wrap myself up while out in the woods on a chilly weekend, or just at home during a snow storm.
You can see here how big the blanket really is. I have this wrapped around myself and a rucksack (more on that later) and it still covers me really well. This kind of versatile item is exactly what I hope to get out of a box like this one.
This Fatwood firestarter is a lightweight piece of wood that is “highly impregnated” with resin, according to the manufacturer. Just shave off a few small slivers and you should be on your way to toasty fire goodness. Dragon Fire teamed up with Live Fire to include a piece of their 550 Firecord as the lanyard. The center strand of Firecord is a waterproof strand that burns slow and for a longer time than just paracord alone. Lighting a pile of shavings from the Fatwood with the Firecord should get a fire going in no time. I threw this right in my backpack, I know I’ll be using in on my next camping trip.
They include a coupon for 25% off your next order at Dragon Fire Tinderbox, which is going to come in handy when I inevitably decide to buy all my camping pals some of these as gifts.
The flip side of the coupon is more detail about the firecord, which really seems like a great idea. You can buy it in lengths of 25’ in all sorts of colors, and can make every zipper pull or line in your camp double as a firestarter.
Morakniv Por-C Bushcrafting Knife – Value $12.95
What are you going to use to make those shavings from your Fatwood? Well, probably this handy bushcrafting knife from Morakniv in Sweden.
Morakniv lists this as a “real, professional knife” and I couldn’t agree more. It’s got a carbon steel blade (keep it clean!), a TPE rubber grip for ergonomics, and a locking sheath to keep it in. It’s super sharp and very light and would be a great tool to have on hand for any time spent outside or even as an addition to your work bench. That’s where I plan to keep mine for the time being because thanks to BattlBox I’m currently rich with knives.
I love the detail on the knife and on the sheath. Morakniv is very proud of their Swedish heritage and includes a Kronor in their logo, seen on the little knob on the front of the sheath.
The Bushcraft Bible – Value $10.39 on Amazon (retail price $14.99)
The Bushcraft Bible is a guide to surviving in the natural environment by teaching skills like fire building, shelter-making, and other essential survival skills. To me, this book is a bit of a disappointment, but maybe it’s because I learned most of this stuff as a young boy scout. Actually, this reminds me quite a bit of my first scout handbook from back in the 90s. Most of the content is outdated, and the pictures are very tiny.
It’s not really a high-value item so I can get past it thanks to the exceptional value in all of the other items in this box. Also, if you are new to any sort of outdoor activity and want to tote this book around with you while camping, you might as well toss this in the bottom of your pack. I don’t know if the paper is recycled or what, but for the size of the book it is surprisingly lightweight.
I was pretty excited about this multi-use item when I saw it in the box, but I had some serious problems trying to get it to work as a striker. I’ve had flint and steel strikers in my backpacking kit for as long as I’ve been a backpacker, it’s an essential item to me, and I could not get this to even create the tiniest spark. That said, it’s amazing as a brooch to hold the Battlbox blanket closed, and would be a handy defensive tool if needed – The awl/pin is super sharp.
The included piece of flint was very small, much smaller than the piece pictured on their site, and that could have been the issue as to why I couldn’t get a spark.
They did include a coupon for 35% off for future orders, and they have a ton of fire starting supplies available beyond this particular striker, so I’m definitely going to keep them in mind.
Readyman Basic Membership – Value $10.00
Included for free is a basic membership to ReadyMan, a community founded by US Special Operation Forces veterans and skilled outdoorsmen. With the basic membership, you get the following:
In addition to the six items from Basic, the next 2 items are included in the Advanced level ($49.99 cost / $158.14 value):
Large Bushcraft Style Canvas Rucksack – Value $42.19
This was the first thing I saw in my box, and I was immediately excited. I get stoked about bags, I feel like I have a bag for everything, and now I have a bag to carry all this bush crafting gear.
This bag has 3 outer compartments and 1 zippered compartment inside the main interior compartment. It isn’t easy to fill up!
The main flap and back pocket both have belt-style cinches and snaps, so you have the option to loosen and over-pack the compartments if needed.
The interior zippered pouch is perfect for smaller doodads, electronics and/or a map.
While I don’t think it would replace my ultralight backpack, I could see this becoming a staple for car camping or even for general light travel. It’s stylish and functional and seems very sturdy and well-built.
Wazoo Survival Gear Viking Whetstone Necklace – Value $24.00
All these knives, how to keep them sharp at all times? Luckily Wazoo created this nod to the Vikings of the Iron Age who would often carry small stones around their necks for quick access to blade sharpening. Each pendant comes in a drawstring bag, making it easy for gifting if you’ve already got a whetstone kit.
Each whetstone is attached to a leather tether tied with a beautiful Napoleon Claw knot. The stone itself is substantial and looks pretty cool, but I don’t know how often I’d feel like carrying a piece of stone around my neck. I’m not dulling my blades super fast over here. I’ll admit it, I’m a terrible Viking.
Included is a use and care card so you can keep everything in good shape.
In addition to the six items from Basic, and two items from Advanced, the next 2 items are included in the Pro level ($99.99 cost / $218.09 value):
Self-Reliance Outfitters Bushcraft Knife Making Kit with DVD – Listed Value $49.95
This knife making kit is awesome! With the included materials and a handful of other items you probably have at home already, you can make your own knife in just a few hours.
There’s a DVD that includes all the instructions you need.
I didn’t end up making the knife myself just yet, but here’s a video provided by the manufacturer.
The finished product is really beautiful, and I think it’s great that you can customize it to your personal preferences. This would make a great gift as the kit or even as the finished product.
Self Reliance Outfitters also included a 20% off coupon for future purchases.
Readyman Premium Membership – Value $20.00
Pro and ProPlus Battlbox subscribers automatically get access to the Premium side of ReadyMan, which includes the following:
In addition to the six items from Basic, two items from advanced and two items from Pro, the following item is included in the Pro Plus level ($149.99 cost / $338.09 value):
Tops Knives C.U.B. with Ballistic Nylon Sheath – Value $170.00 (Battlbox lists the value as $120, but it is selling from the manufacturer for $170, which adds an extra $50 to the overall value of this box!)
Are you ready for a serious knife? Because this is a serious knife. It’s super compact, very lightweight, and well-balanced. The designer says it combines two knives into one: A Finnish Puukko with a Scandinavian grind and a Kephart style knife. I immediately tossed this in my camping bag because I know it’s going to be perfect for pretty much anything I need from cooking to site prep and beyond.
It comes in a really nice, heavy duty ballistic style sheath that latches, and includes a length of paracord at the bottom.
The main flap is also detachable if you want quick and easy access to the C.U.B.
Within the sheath is a heavy plastic sheath to hold the blade in place and save it from doing any damage where it’s not supposed to.
It also comes with a certificate of authenticity.
Tops included a 30% off coupon good for 1 knife purchase. They have a huge selection and this is a really nice discount!
Verdict: I am 100% behind the BattlBox. They have done an awesome job, again, of curating a great group of items at a fantastic value to the subscriber. While the book was a miss for me, I know I can probably pass it along to someone who needs to expand their outdoor knowledge. Since they undervalued the C.U.B. knife, the final value for this box comes in at $388.09. That’s more than double the $149.99 cost, which is amazing. I’m going to get use out of nearly every item and I can’t wait to see what Battlbox has in store for future installments!
What do you think about this month’s BattlBox?