The Zombie Combat Manual

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The Zombie Combat Manual contains everything that Max Brooks may have missed in his survival guide about actually combating the undead.  The book opens with a much needed chapter on dispelling common misconceptions about zombies and the proper ways to combat them.  Alongside information for effectively selecting weapons, as well as varying techniques and strategies for combating the undead, the book stresses the importance of preparing for the unknown.  We here at Zombie Gear Review couldn’t agree more with the underlying messages of this book.

Roger Ma brings new concerns to light about the practicality of melee combat, mental preparedness, and a much needed reexamination of the claims about firearms put forth by Max Brooks’ zombie survival guide.


Here is a glimpse at what the book contains:

  • Section 1: Disinformation and Misconceptions
  • Section 2: Anatomy
  • Section 3: Conditioning and Preparation
  • Section 4: Weapon Selection
  • Section 5: Combat Strategies and Techniques
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Zombie Survival Guide by Max Brooks

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The Zombie Survival Guide: Complete Protection from the Living Dead is something that should be studied or at least skimmed by any self-proclaimed zombie survivalist.   Max Brooks (son of Mel Brooks) pioneered and formalized much of the early zombie survival research.  At the very least his book has been cited by many zombie research and discussion groups.  This book is included our recommended reading list.


Here’s a sneak peek at the contents of the book.

  • Chapter 1: The Undead: Myths and Realities
  • Chapter 2: Weapons and Combat Techniques
  • Chapter 3: On the Defense
  • Chapter 4: On the Run
  • Chapter 5: On the Attack
  • Chapter 6: Living in an Undead World
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Rothco Combat Shirt

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When it’s time to move from your safe house, your going to want a good base layer of clothing.  Whether your aiming to travel fast and light or pile on the body armor and make one last stand, this shirt is going to make a great addition.  The Rothco combat shirt wicks away moisture from sweat and the elements and comes with a mock turtle neck to help keep your body temperature regulated. It has been ruggedized where its needed most.  The elbows have anti-abrasion padding and the entire upper body has been coated to resist melting and dripping (rated to 230 degrees Fahrenheit).


The sleeves are gusseted with Velcro for quick adjustments and best of all each sleeve comes with a zippered storage pocket large enough to store a phone, camera, or wallet.


We will be taking this shirt through an extensive barrage of tests ranging from long runs across town, to camping in the backwoods of Arkansas and we’ll be reporting back with our findings, but so far this shirt looks like a keeper.


— Update 10/5/2011 —

We took this shirt on a backpacking trip in North East Iowa this weekend and must say that it performed very well.  The temperature dropped to about 30 degrees over night and wearing this shirt as a second layer worked surprisingly well as a wind barrier (the melt resistant coating blocked wind along the entire upper body and along the arms).  The mock turtle neck proved to be very warm during day hikes, and so the shirt was better worn in the evening or during down time activities.  The melt resistant coating held up to the hot embers from a campfire, and the sleeve pockets came in super handy for storing topographical maps and flashlights.

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Israeli Gas Mask

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Note:  Don’t be fooled by the list price for this mask, it actually runs for much cheaper (around $24) if you click through to the site!


The Israeli M15 Military Gas Mask is one of the most widely used and trusted gas masks on the market.  It comes with impact resistant lenses, an internal drinking system, and is fully compatible with both the Israeli NBC (nuclear, biological, chemical) filters and the NATO standard filters (40-mm threaded canisters).  The Israelis have lived under a constant threat of chemical warfare and as a result have really taken the time to build a quality protective mask.


The M15 gas mask has a 20-year shelf life and comes with 5 quick-release head straps for easily securing and removing the mask when it’s needed most.  The M15 even features a voice box to help remove the muffled sound of your voice from under the mask.


When we received this mask, it was stamped to denote that it was made in 1988, and so is 3 years out of date to be considered within the shelf life.  Our mask came new and still holds a good seal, so it may still be effective, but if your serious about being protected you will want to look for a mask from the 2003 surplus (but be prepared to spend somewhere between $100 and $200 dollars).  If you just want a fun mask to play around with, at $24, this is the mask for you!

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If you purchase a mask from the link above, you will also want to but the canteen and tube accessories.  The mask has a screw off adapter for connecting a drinking line to a sealed canteen, but the canteen and drinking lines are sold separately.  These arrived in new condition for us, but remember you to rinse out the drinking line and canteen before using them!

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If you already have a few canteens and just want to get the NATO standard military gas mask adapter cap you can buy the cap separately.




If you want a good resource determining mask and filter effectiveness we would recommend that you read the buying guide linked below.


WARNING:  Some old surplus filters are potentially poisonous!  Check this list before using any filters that are not certified as being new.

NOTE: Old filters will be ineffective towards blocking most hazards, and will most likely only be as good as your standard particulate filter when they are past their effectiveness date.  We recommend using only new filters.  You can buy new filters for a variety of masks from the link below.


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If you opt to get the gas mask canteen, your also going to want to get a good canteen holster because the mask canteen doesn’t come with anyway to secure the loose accessory.

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After purchasing the above mask we found a nice package deal that includes a canteen, surplus filter, and mask for a cheaper overall price.

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There is also an Israeli civilian mask model that offers similar protection, but does not have the voice box and wide-angle lens features of the military masks.

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German Riot Gear has a limited supply of medium sized used German riot gear suits.  We got one to play with and while the suit isn’t 100% complete (no helmet or boots), its a step in the right direction.

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Full Body German Riot Gear

The leather gloves (with metal protective inserts and quick access trigger finger holes), chest and shoulder protectors, and knee and elbow guards makes for a really intimidating suit.  If your going to go out with a fight, you might as well look good doing it too.

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German Riot Gear Set

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Riot Gear Gloves

A few items to note about this suit is that the jacket zipper is a European style zipper (the zipper is left handed instead of right) and that the suit was definitely used.  The suit has seen some decent field use (ours came with some Euros, German coins, and some instructions in German for using a tear gas grenade in the pocket).  The pants are starting to show their age and could probably use a patch or two.  We will be taking this suit to a tailor to get the zipper replaced with a proper right handed rugged zipper and to patch up a few other areas of wear before we can call it combat ready again.

You can get one of these bad boys today from here.

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