Bahco Laplander

My Monday Blues cured almost immediately when I see a package from USA waiting at my doorstep.
I finally got my hands on this rugged little Swedish beauty after searching high and low for one (locally) without luck.

Lightweight, compact and extremely efficient. Bahco Laplander has earned its reputation as one of the most well known folding saws on the planet. Ironically, in all my years of enjoying the outdoors, I've never actually owned/carried a saw. A saw seems redundant, and I have to admit that I'm a big fan of Parang. 

 However, on second thought, safety comes first. Engaging in wood processing activity (in the presence of children) with a saw is much safer compared to a swinging Parang. Besides, it's interesting to see how would a Laplander live up to its reputation, and how well would it fare in the hot, humid and wet tropical jungle.

Mid-Autumn Festival 2013

I skipped my evening MTB ride yesterday...

... and I'm so glad that I did.

Wild Camping, Bushcraft & SurviVacation

Just got back from holiday...

 Hours of gruesome treks through overgrown jungle on a mission to explore the most isolated, wildest and least visited part of Penang National Park. The "Golden Beach" a.k.a. Pantai Mas.

My Mini Fishing Kit

What makes a good fishing kit?

For me, the best fishing kit is the one i have with me whenever i need it.

A little kit for survival and those opportunist 
fishing moments... Close at hand.

 There are many times that we are either mountain biking, hiking or going on a bikepacking trip exploring the great outdoors, we happen to come across some nice spots that are perfect to fish from but regret that we did not bring any fishing gear with us. Well, those are a few instances when a little fishing kit in the pack can come in handy, and what's more, if i'm stuck in a survival situation. Having a fishing kit close at hand in those events would be invaluable. 

Taking that in consideration, this fishing kit was designed to be compact and lightweight that  i can keep in the pack and forget that it's there until i need it.

The kit holds over 60 feet of line wrapped around the bike inner tube that works as slip stopper. The loose end of the line and a little inner tube loop (for finger holding) are secured by a strip of double sided velcro strapped right below the cap. The kit is watertight and has plenty of room for hooks, sinkers, floats and other stuff.

The basic ingredients for making my pocket fishing kit. 
A 2 oz. plastic container, some old road and mountain bike inner tubes, double sided velcro and of course fishing line.

DIY Cat Stove, Stabilizer & Mini Windshield for Trangia Mess Tin

Apart from my usual DIY Mini Cook Kit which i normally carry when outdoors, I've put together another ultralight cook kit for trips that require more cooking by using my old Trangia mess tin with a homemade Cat Stove. Lightweight, efficient and super simple to make, the Cat Stove is one of the most popular DIY alcohol stoves among ultralight hikers/bikepackers.

Here's my own version of the "Super Cat Stove" with a twist...

A Cat Stove with stabilizer and mini windshield...
Safer, better and more dependable.

It's always fun to make my own gear for my needs

  The "X" stabilizer was made from 2 pieces of triangular Yoke plates that can be easily bought at any hardware store. As usual, all work was done with very minimal tools, a hack saw, a file, a knife and some other common tools around the house. As for the stove, you can use a cat food can or the Ayam Brand "Snack Pack" tuna spread can, and punch the holes with a standard office hole punch.

 The stabilizer could easily put together or come 
apart and lay flat for storage...

 To set up, simply clip the plates together by interlocking the center notches.
Place in the burner and the mini windshield, and they're all set!

All in one... Trangia mess tin cook kit

The mini windshield was made from a 100g RICOLA Swiss Herb Candy can.
Cut 4 deep "V" notches to allow the windshield to sit slightly below the burner's rim.
All alcohol stoves are extremely wind sensitive, the mini windshield was tested and it worked out 
pretty well in mild windy condition. However, it would be nice to have a bigger windshield 
as backup, and the ultra lightweight kitchen aluminium foil is just perfect for that.


With only 30ml of spirit, it boils 500ml of water in 7 minutes and continue
to burn for around 2-3 minutes after I had removed the mess tin.

Let's climb trees

Did you climb trees? I bet you did. Do you remember the fun and the fear of climbing higher and higher for bird's eye view, or swinging from branch to branch to reach for fruits and eat them straight from the tree? Climbing trees is an activity that seems synonymous with our childhood. Unfortunately, the reality is very different for today's children. Most of them have never climbed a tree.

Why does this matter?

Climbing trees not only helps children develop physical and mental well-being, it also helps children to form connections to nature... After all, who is going to be bothered looking after the planet if there's no one left with any understanding of, interest in or connection to their natural environment?
 Let them climb trees...
Wien & Iwen (not pictured) climbing their first tree in Pantai Kerachut.
When was the last time you climbed a tree?

LifeStraw - Ultralight Water Filter System

After years of searching for the best way to purify water for my outdoor needs, i think i've finally found what i'm looking for. A no-nonsense ultralight, durable, compact water filter that capable of filtering up to 1000 liters, and does not require replacement parts or batteries, or any chemicals. LifeStraw truly is a must have piece of gear not only for outdoor adventure seekers but also a great survival tool for disaster situations such as local flooding which can contaminate drinking water supplies.

Instant clean and safe drinking water! 
 Just drink directly from the stream/water source...

 LifeStraw filters down to an incredible, 0.2 microns in size! This removes virtually all the bacteria (99.9999%) and protozoa (99.9%) from contaminated water, and reduces turbidity (muddiness) by filtering out suspended particles.

...and watching groups of fish swimming at the same time. 
What a fun and convenient way to rehydrate ourselves!

 Ultralight at its finest! LifeStraw accomplishes the same thing as other filters, but does it at just a tenth of the weight. At only 2 oz (56.699g), it's the lightest way of filtering water while on the go. 

Without a doubt, this would be a great piece of ultralight gear to be included in my ultralight bikepacking setup. Just imagine how 'less'  water i need to carry and how much weight will be saved with just a LifeStraw attached to the bottle cage.

Bushcraft Whistle

Once again, as if the kids are not having enough whistles to make enough noise to be heard around the neighbourhood, i made them more whistles from wild Fig tree that the kids and me harvested from the bush near our house. It's great fun to make, and they are annoyingly LOUD! The kids love them, i love them, but i doubt my neighbours feel the same way we do.

A great find on the material...
 The young Fig tree branches are hollow, soft enough to be easily cut with a knife and just hard enough to hold the plugs tightly at both ends of the whistle. 

 Well, apart from the risk of being labeled as "annoying neighbour", 
it was fun to have a little bushcraft project like this to share with the kids at home nevertheless.

 Sorry neighbours..... Fweeeeeeet...!!  Fweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeet...!!!

Mora 511 knife sheath modification - Cord End Whistle

From signalling for help in a survival situation to getting the noisy kids attention when going on a picnic, a whistle is an important piece of gear and it makes a lot sense to me to have one like this easily accessible.   

Loud, small and lightweight. This cool little whistle conceals the ugly ends of the elastic cord loop for a clean finished look. 

Functional beauty in a compact package... I’m blown away!

Flame Of Friendship

What is proper when given a knife as a gift?

Oops! Superstition suggests that it's bad luck to receive a knife as a gift because it "cuts" the friendship/ relationship. To avoid such bad luck, usually a coin or a valuable item is exchanged for the gift as "payment."

Luckily, i’m not really a superstitious person but i like the idea of giving something back when a gift is received. And so, this is what i made and plan to give in return...

A Bow Drill Fire set and share the “secret” of primitive fire making technique... and hopefully that the flame of friendship will be burning bright.

Mora 511 Knife Sheath Modification - DIY Belt Clip

For as long as i can remember, it was while fishing with Khairel (many many years ago) that i was introduced to the “ultra sharp” Mora Knife, a Mora fillet knife to be exact. Used primarily for slicing ikan Kembung (Indian Mackerel) as fishing bait.

Since then, the ultra sharp Swedish made fillet knife has made quite a deep impression on me, and the impression remain unchanged and locked in the tackle box for so long until recently a friend of mine got me a Mora 511 knife as a gift...

Now i’m thinking outside the tackle box...
And this leads to me to another fun project modifying and personalizing the knife to better suit my needs.


While this may look simple and straightforward, but the idea doesn’t come to me right away without days of searching, sourcing and testing only to realise that  a jeans button and a belt clip are the solution. 
The bony "Kembung Fish" jeans button was such a great find and it certainly gave the belt clip a very nice personal touch.

Fortunately, most metal belt clips came with a hole,  so a small hammer was the only tool of the trade...

Nailed it! 
The belt clip/button fits tightly and snugly together with the sheath. Simply perfect!

Just and go! No more belt or belt width problems. 
For added safety, a small loop of elastic cord with cord lock around the handle was added to further secure the knife in the sheath. "Peace of mind" even with some "out of mind" activity.
 Oh yeah, did i mention that the belt clip also swivels for comfort when sitting?