If you’ve been into everyday carry for a while now, you’ve probably heard the saying “two is one, one is none.” In other words, it means you should carry a backup. If you’re only carrying one critical item (like a knife or flashlight) and it breaks or goes missing, then you’re out of luck. By carrying a backup (whether it be on your person, or in a pouch/bag) you can ensure that you’ll never be stranded without the tools you need. In this guide, we’ll explain the benefits of following the “two is one…” mantra, how to put it into practice, and some solid gear recommendations to get you started.
Why Carry a Backup?
While minimalism can work well in your EDC, you might also benefit from some thoughtful redundancy. To learn more about that, check out this article on the topic. There are many upsides to having backup items, but the main points boil down to these three:
- In Case of Main Tool Failure: When you put your gear through the wringer day in and day out, there’s a chance your gear can fail. Whether it’s something with moving parts like a folding knife or something with batteries or electronics like a flashlight, a backup item gives you some insurance. For example, if your flashlight battery dies, you don’t want to be left in the dark. Simple things like carrying an additional battery or keeping a small light on your keychain make great fixes.
- Increased Versatility with Complementary Functions: That serrated tanto knife you carry may not be ideal of all situations. Something in a different size or with complementary functions (for example, a small plain edge blade for precision work) can help your EDC cover a wider range of tasks.
- To Help Others Stay Prepared: If a friend needs to borrow a knife, light, or multitool, you can be prepared. Plus, why trust someone else with your favorite EDC if you can just hand them your beater knife.
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