Thursday, December 31, 2009

Survival Fishing gear

This is based on the Pathfinder Fishing Kit, but add your own equipment which is applicable to your fishing areas.

Begin with 1" Sched 40 PVC and 2 end caps. The Sharpie is shown to give you an idea of how long it is.

Then wrap 2 30-40ft sections of fishing line around the pipe tying it and then taping it to the tube.

Next drill a hole the whole way through about halfway down the pipe to string through some 550 cord. This is to provide something to wrap around your wrist in case a big fish gets your hook and the kit doesn't jerk out of your hand. This kit isn't for big fish though, it's for smaller panfish. This is, of course, a survival fishing kit and any fish is food, not just the near trophy sized bass.

As you can see, every bit of room in this kit is used. When you shake it, it's so packed that it doesn't make a sound.

On the fishing end, using pill baggies you can get at Walmart, you can bag up sinkers, small hooks, a spoon and 2 flies. I'd hope to use worms I'd find in a true survival situation, but in case I'm unable to or it's too cold, I have alternate ways to fish. The black things hanging out are the ends of the zipties you'll see next.

This end contains 4 zipties, 2 homemade frog gigs, a baggie of cotton & vaseline tinder and a lighter. The homemade frog gigs are made out of coathanger wire. The zipties are used to attach the gigs to stick, and the lighter can not only start a fire to cook up whatever fish or frog you can catch.

So from actually getting a meal of various types of critter to cooking it up, this little kit can do most of it. It's lightweight, fits in a back pocket and is able to supply you with enough material to run multiple lines at once to further increase your odds at getting a meal.

It's small and compact; perfect for the BOB, BOV, or backpack.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Free stuff from American Preppers Network

I am a member and contributor of American Preppers Network.  It is a network of preppers who moderate for their State...and their own blogs.  Here is a note from Tom, the creator and moderator of American Preppers Network.

We have a Brand New Look at American Preppers Network! We are inviting all of our moderators and members of our old forum to check things out. Most of the state networks have a new look as well, plus we are on facebook now! There are random drawings for people to win survival seeds on the forum so be sure to sign up!

New Forum, Join Here:

Free Seed Contest, Go here:

Facebook, go here:

Blog go here:

Chatrooms go here:

Fast and simple perimeter security system…party poppers

Enough said

Monday, December 28, 2009

You can't wait until UN forces roll into town to find a way out of town!

Picking a route out of town

OVERVIEW: This article covers the basic steps and principles required to prepare a proper course of evacuation (Bug Out). This article is for a specific beginning and end, and primarily deals with the concerns between these points. By nature, bug out plans should not be overly rigid, but flexibility will only come when all the options have been well explored.

STARTING POINT: The starting point of your bug out route should be carefully examined and inspected. More than one means of exiting the site should be available, and every possible avenue of entry or exit should be considered. It is important that this information be well known and up to date: an emergency situation is not the time for reviewing notes. Some possible starting points may be your workplace, your own home, or a relative’s home. Speed is the concern, at this point, and only by knowing as much about your route as possible can this be achieved.

ENDING POINT: Any bug out destination should be carefully chosen to provide safety and protection. As with any location, all avenues of entry or exit should be inspected. If possible, frequent inspections of this site are best, as the highest level of familiarity is desired. If this is not possible, detailed notes are acceptable, for security and caution. While you may have to hurry from your starting point, be slow and deliberate as you near your destination. Some likely destinations may include your home, a retreat, or a prearranged team meeting place. Security is the main concern at this stage; hurry to leave, but be slow to arrive.

DIFFERENT ROUTES (AT LEAST 3): The rule of three should be considered, in this case. The primary route should be the most direct route between start and end. Of course the direct route is the most straightforward and quickest route. The secondary route is a backup route, another passage should the primary route become obstructed. The secondary route should be most direct route still available. The alternative route is nothing more than another option, a route for use when the primary and secondary routes are not usable. Decisive action is necessary. To make the proper decision, you must know your options. It is essential that the routes are well known, in advance, so that modifications to the route can be made. Once committed to a route, complete change of course is not an easy undertaken. Given the specific situation, a detour along the route may be required.

TRAVEL CONDITIONS: Road conditions, or any conditions that might affect vehicle travel. Narrow roadways or bridges, damaged or easily damaged roadways, any potential obstruction should be considered. Attention should be paid to any passageway (driveway, path, etc.) capable of handling vehicle travel so that a vehicle can be removed from the road quickly, avoiding undo attention. Traffic patterns are important for the potential obstacle they represent. There is no substitute for firsthand knowledge of your route. Maps should be used for reference, but not as the sole source of information, unless no other means exists. The focus of this condition is speed, making your travel from and to as quick and as easy as possible. Knowing the route can provide you with alternatives; should one way be blocked, another way may be decided upon quickly.

ENVIRONMENTAL CONDITIONS: Closely connected to travel conditions, the weather can drastically alter your surroundings. Heavy rain could possibly flood low areas, while strong winds might bring down trees or structures. Earthquakes could affect roadways or bridges, making them unsafe, just as rioting or massed crowds can affect whole cities. Awareness will provide opportunities; by knowing how your options may be affected, you can better prepare for the alternatives.

SECURITY CONDITIONS: Conditions along the road can and will affect security. Look for places that provide cover or concealment, such as wooded areas, hedgerows and structures. Any of these places could possibly provide a hiding spot for yourself or a cache. Keep in mind that others may have already noticed the value such places represent, and may have already taken advantage of them. The same features that provide cover and concealment for you may provide the same to those seeking to harm you or others. Terrain features could aid in map orientation, or could serve as obscure references among a team. Bodies of water could represent alternative routes or a primitive resupply point. Personal safety is important, at all times during your movement. Knowledge of your surroundings can allow you to spot a problem before the situation is out of hand. Should the situation dictate moving from a path of travel, for security reasons, precious time is gained by knowing what options are open to you.

RECORDING THE BUG OUT ROUTE: Unless your escape routes are intimately familiar; a record should be made of each route. Be sure to keep accurate notes with your maps, including all of the above points. The maps and notes should be kept close to hand, so that they are both easily accessible, and secure.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Alternative to buying pre 1965 dimes and nickles

If you want me to purchase some for you, let me know. I will be returning to the State every four months or so and if you want me to get some and bring them home with me, you gotta let me know soon, as I will be returning home to CA in January. Send me an email to and we can discuss pricing.

US Silver Trade Dollars 1875 - 1885 Found in Afghanistan

Designer: William Barber
Weight: 27.22 grams
Net weight: 0.7874 oz
Composition: 0 .900 silver, 0.100 copper (almost 100% pure Silver content)
Diameter: 38.1 mm
Edge: reeded
inted at: Philadelphia, Carson City, San Francisco
Years Minted: 1873 to 1885
Mint mark: On reverse below eagle and above the 'D' in the word 'dollar.'

Federal officials faced a dilemma in the years after the Civil War. The Comstock Lode and other Western mines were producing large quantities of silver, but the government could use only limited amounts of it in coinage. This seems puzzling in retrospect, for silver coins were few and far between in circulation (a lingering legacy of wartime hoarding), and Americans presumably would have welcomed major infusions of silver coins. But Mint officials feared that new silver coins would be subject to hoarding as well, since the marketplace was awash with paper money, including fractional currency born of wartime need. People would have been only too happy to exchange these notes, which brought less than full face value, for precious-metal coinage.

For a time, the miners found outlets for their silver, often in coinage form, in foreign markets. Canada, Latin America and Europe all absorbed significant quantities during the 1860s. But then, for various reasons these markets became glutted. In Europe, for example, Prussian Chancellor Otto von Bismarck established a gold standard for Germany after unifying the country in 1871 and promptly dumped huge amounts of silver on the international market.

For the miners and their powerful allies in Washington these developments were doubly disturbing: Not only was it hard to sell their silver, but the market price was steadily declining. Initially, coinage did offer one escape valve: Under a long- standing law, silver could be deposited with the Mint for conversion into silver coins, for which it could then be exchanged. Having no other ready outlet, miners took advantage of this one. Invariably, they chose silver dollars, the one denomination that hadn't been changed when silver coins were reduced in weight (and precious-metal content) in 1853. As a direct result, silver dollar mintages soared above one million in both 1871 and 1872.

But with the Coinage Act of 1873, Congress closed this loophole by suspending further production of silver dollars. And that's where the trade dollar came in: Flexing their muscle, the mining interests won approval for this new silver coin-one that would, in theory at least, not only provide an outlet for the metal, but also open a whole new market for it in an area that was already receiving Congressional attention.

The market in question was Asia, particularly China. Some U.S. silver had found its way to that region previously, but now a full-fledged offensive was planned. The Chinese had shown a decided preference for silver coins, and up to then the bulk of American trade with China had been carried out with Spanish and Mexican dollars. The trade dollar's architects set out to supplant those rivals by giving the new coin a higher silver content. They even had it inscribed on the coin: "420 GRAINS, 900 FINE."

At first glance, the trade dollar looks much like a regular silver dollar. It's the same diameter and about the same weight as its predecessor, the Seated Liberty dollar, and its portraiture is similar: a seated female figure representing Liberty on the obverse and a naturalistic eagle on the reverse-designs prepared by Mint Chief Engraver William Barber.

In contrast to the new trade dollar, the regular U.S. silver dollar weighed just 412.5 grains, and the Mexican dollar weighed only 416. But the architects had miscalculated; though it weighed slightly less, the Mexican coin had a higher fineness and therefore contained slightly more pure silver. The astute Chinese recognized this and, in many provinces, gave the U.S. coin short shrift, favoring the Mexican coin.

That's not to say the trade dollar wasn't used. On the contrary, over 27 million went overseas and found their way into Asian commerce, many later being sent on to India in trade for opium. Numerous pieces show chop marks-distinctive Chinese symbols-placed on them by merchants to attest to their authenticity. But usage of the coins never approached Americans' expectations.

The trade dollar's biggest problems occurred not in China but at home. In a last-minute deal, Congress had made the coin a legal tender for domestic payments up to five dollars. In 1876, millions were dumped into circulation in the United States when silver prices plummeted, making them worth substantially more as money than as metal.

Congress quickly revoked their legal-tender status (the only time this has been done with any U.S. coin), but the seeds of serious trouble had been sown. In the late 1870s, employers bought up huge numbers of the coins at slightly more than bullion value (80 to 83 cents apiece) and then put them in pay envelopes at face value. Merchants and banks accepted them only at bullion value or rejected them altogether, so the workers effectively lost one-sixth to one-fifth of their pay at a time when that pay often amounted to less than $10 a week.

Spurned abroad and despised by many at home, the trade dollar soon faded into oblivion. After 1878, production was suspended except for proofs-and even those dwindled to just ten in 1884 and five in 1885.

Like many other "fantasy" coins before them, the 1884 and 1885 pieces were clandestinely struck for Mint crony William Idler and were unknown to the numismatic community until six pieces from Idler's estate were sold by dealer John Haseltine in 1908. Notwithstanding their questionable origin, these two dates are viewed as great rarities today.

In all, fewer than 36 million trade dollars were struck during the coin's 13-year lifespan, including about 11,000 proofs. Production took place at Philadelphia, Carson City and San Francisco. The rarest business strike is the 1878-CC with a mintage of 97,000, many of which appear to have been melted. All high-grade business strikes of the trade dollar are rare to non-existent, leaving proofs to fill most of the demand from type collectors.

The extraordinary beauty of originally-toned proofs entices many collectors to attempt complete proof runs (excluding the virtually unavailable 1884 and 1885, of course). Indeed, any trade dollar is highly prized and sought in pristine condition. Points to check for wear include Liberty's ear, left knee and breast and the eagle's head and left wing.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Do you really need a Bug Out Vehicle?

Bug Out Vehicles, do you need one?

Firstly, a BOV or Bug Out Vehicle is some form of transport that will take you away from your current location in a time of crisis or distress. Almost anything that will move can be considered a potential BOV candidate. That includes motor vehicles, animals, human powered devices or anything that can carry or tow some kind of load.

Do I need one?

The simple answer is yes, it is very likely that you will need something to move you and your stuff around at one time or another. Even if you are well set up in a great location, there may come a time you will need to move. I can’t elaborate on what the circumstances may be to make you move, but I can make some suggestions that will help you decide what you may require when that time comes.

Firstly, how many, how far, how much, how often?

 This is where you start to question what you need to move and how far you need to move it. If it is just one person, and they have a small bag of things, then the demands are not great. However, if it is a whole tribe of folks, and everything goes with you including the kitchen sink, then you will need something more substantial.

How many?

So, how many people are included in the group that is willing and able to move from your established location? Take into consideration that if your group is large, some might not wish to go even if it is against their better judgment. Some of the group may have special requirements that will take up more space, things that cannot be left behind like medical equipment. Also consider that you may even have extra people to move around. You never know what might happen, and if you can make provision for these possibilities, within reason, more power to you.

How far?

Is your new location across the road, across the city, across the state, across the country, maybe even across the world! You will need to identify the location you wish to get to, and what might be required to get there. That includes consumables, possible repairs and any chance you might have to adjust your course. Make allowances in your plan to get there via the ‘scenic route’.

How much?

This is what you plan to take with you if you do have to move. If you are in a set location with good resources and a chance living well, then your absence may be short, until you can return. In that case, short term items are of prime consideration, with a few longer term items thrown in just in case. If you plan to bug out, and stay bugged out, then you will have to take a lot of gear with you. You must make plans to take all that gear with you safely and efficiently. You may have to leave some of it behind, or hide it until the time is right to retrieve it. You may have to hide some of your gear before hand to lessen the burden later on. This must all be considered and factored into your plan.

How often?

Do you plan to move once, a few times or be continually on the move? If it is just once, think about where that one move is going to, and will you have to move again? If the answer is yes, then your plans for the one move have already failed. Also, if you plan to continually move, will you be able to stay for an extended period in one spot if the circumstances permit? You must be willing to be flexible in these plans, even if you have no thoughts of going anywhere, is it wise to be prepared ahead of time if the unthinkable occurs and you do have to move. Different styles of travel require different modes of transport, and the transport you select must be able to follow those plans or you aren’t going anywhere!

In the end, if you plan to survive for a long time, you will very likely have to move around a little no matter how well prepared you are, as even the best-laid plans sometimes fail. In this case, consider your BOV as ‘plan B’. If your continued existence requires you to move away from your current location, then your BOV needs to be ‘plan A’. Whichever way you decide to go, a good reliable BOV should always be placed high on the list of needs, even if it is just as an emergency.

Oh you say you already have a BOV???????

When was the last time you packed it up, while in a rush, and drove to your desired location?  How long did it take you to pack?  Were all your neighbors watching (OPSEC)? Did you get everything in your vechicle that you needed AND wanted? Did you make a list of everything you didn't take, but really needed and vi-sa-ver-sa?

Practice makes perfect...get out there an practice.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

When the SHTF - you will have to too...sewage treatment

In interesting times, depending on your sophistication level, you will have (probably) one of the three type of treatment systems. The privy or outhouse, a cesspool , or a septic system with leach field. In a shelter situation you will also need the basic bucket behind the screen which I will also cover.

The overriding reason for treating sewage is to prevent disease and contamination of ground water and food stuffs. Fecal matter is full of bacteria, some of them quite toxic. Two of the hardiest are the many serotypes of Salmonella and Aeruginosa. They can survive over 5 months in topsoil when directly applied to it. Composting at 140 to 160 degrees Fahrenheit can kill them.

Without going too deeply into the biological action of sewage decomposition, there are three useful types of bacteria and 4 enzymes needed to break the stuff down. Anaerobic, aerobic and facultative bacteria break down sewage. They are aided by enzymes which work on breaking down starches and carbohydrates (Amlyase), cellulose or paper (Cellulase), fats ( Lipase) and proteins (Protease). All commercial systems use these basic components to turn sewage into sludge. Sludge if processed properly is an excellent fertilizer.

The Rules

One final thought about this prior to going into the systems. Whatever you put into the system will most likely be there for you to take out of it. SO, minimize what you flush. No garbage grinding using the disposal, wipe with the minimum amount of paper. No harsh chemicals to kill the bacteria when using wet systems, AKA the septic system or cesspool. No fats which can be skimmed. No oils that are solid at room temperatures. In other words, nothing you would not want to have to muck out later because it didn't breakdown to humus.

The Systems

In a shelter situation, the simplest form of toilet would probably be the 5 gallon (20 litre) bucket with a plastic bag liner. After so many uses the bag's treated with enzyme, sealed and stored until the occupants can leave the shelter. There are many companies who sell the lids for these camp toilets and they are well known to many who use the out doors. Plan to have supplies sufficient for 3 weeks of use. The list is 3 liners with seals, 3 packets of treatment media and 1 roll of toilet paper per person per week. A family of 4 will generate about 2 cubic foot of sewage bags per week.

A pit privy or out house should be an enclosed structure sited away from the retreat/homestead and 150 feet from the water well should you have a shallow one. It should be well drained and vented to facilitate the decomposition of the material. Using a cyclone vent above the structure and the application of lime to the pit can reduce smells. The pit should be used for a period of 6 months then filled and allowed to rest for a year. Over the long haul a small group (about a dozen people) would be able to rotate between 3 pits without too much hardship. Do not dig the pit deeper than 2 foot above the local water table.

One variation of this system originated in Scandinavia. It has proven quite useable and is called the two can system. A 5 gallon can is filled to the depth of 2 inches with fine wood chips or saw dust. Then the can is used as a toilet. Alternate layers of waste and wood chips/ saw dust are placed in the can until it’s full. Then the can and contents are placed in a “ bread box”. The bread box is a miniature green house with south facing glazing and the north interior wall painted black. The sides can be insulated for greater heat gain in northern climates. The angle of the glass for the roof should be the latitude plus 15 degrees. The can is placed inside it and a small amount water is added to aid in the decomposition of the mixture. The rotting material will heat itself along with the solar gain of the box and sterilize the contents of the can. Sustained temperatures of in excess of 140 degrees Fahrenheit will kill the bad bacteria and produce fertilizer. This process will take around 7 weeks to complete. When it’s done you take the product, dump it into the compost pile for later use and scrape out the can. The container can then be rinsed and reused. Depending on the number of users there may be more than 2 cans involved obviously.

Cesspools come next. They are basically a porous covered underground vault. The vault is vented to allow for the combustible gases to dissipate without danger to the users. Indoor plumbing drains into the vault. The liquids drain out and the solids stay. And depending on how fastidious you are at maintaining crapper discipline, you only have to deal with it once the vault is full. If you generate lots of greasy waste or lots of hard to decompose fibrous material you will have to deal with it sooner than some one who keeps the system clean. Usually what happens to this system is the porous tiles become impregnated with grease or ossified material and stop draining. The vault overflows and the users scratch their heads and call the septic pumper. In interesting times this would not be an option. Therefore users should refer to the rules above.

Septic tanks and leach fields are common fixtures in rural areas. They are basically a vault which in this case is impermeable that has the sewage fall into it. There are baffles to cause solids to fall out. Then the liquid effluent is piped by gravity to a network of permeable pipes which drain it into the soil. Sizing of these systems is straight forward and controlled by the local building code. Depending on how well the soil drains, the sizing of the leach field follows. Slow draining soil means large leach fields. Fast draining soil means small leach fields. Since these require a substantial outlay in money and time to complete, they should be in place at the site well in advance of occupying the retreat/homestead. Also, sizing of the tank and field is required to handle the population of users. This is necessary to prevent overloading the system and causing failure of the biological processes required to decompose the sewage. Most people think a septic tank if properly maintained will not require pumping. This is a rare bird indeed. In the real world, most septic systems are working very well if they can break down 2/3’s of the sewage solids placed in them. As a general rule they require pumping about once every 5 years.

To increase the longevity of your system, you should put in place the following aids to allow you to maintain your setup. Have all cleanouts and manholes or access points clearly marked. Maintain a good “as built” schematic of where the stuff is. Install a grease pit and a trash screen. The grease pit will collect the fats and stuff which was liquid at room temperature but gelled when it hit the cold underground piping. The trash screen will filter out “chunks”. These are things like the prim 5 year old who managed to get a half roll of toilet paper to flush and it didn’t plug the outfall line. That Tango Papa (TP) isn’t going to rot in your lifetime, so why put it in your system? Have on hand the enzyme and bacteria starters needed to keep your system active. And when in doubt, READ THE RULES above.

How to Survive when you live in an apartment

I hear it all the time, "I live in an apartment, How can I prepare for survival".. Or "I live in an urban neighborhood"... Living in an apartment, Dorm, or urban neighborhood doesn't mean you can't be a survivalist, you just have to be smarter about your preparations.

Living in these areas DOES have unique challenges.. for instance storing 100 Gallons of unleaded fuel in an apartment is probably frowned upon by most landlords... Carting crates of ammunition from your SUV to your urban garage is probably not the brightest idea either, and I'd bet your insurance company would have hissy fits.

But even these settings are not impossible to deal with... you'll just have to do what I call "Pre-preparing".

Pre-preparing is simple once you get the hang of the concept.. it's storing the things you'll need to get the things you'll need. No this is not a Zen thing, it's just called "Beating the hordes to the punch".

For example... You get an early alert from a fellow prepper... You're ahead of the game (and crowds) already. Since you're smart, your BOV's (Opps, sorry, I meant "Your SUV's") are already at least half full of gas. You rush to the store with the empty Gas cans you bought (but didn't fill) and you have cash money on you to fill them up... You have the money because you DID NOT fill up the gas cans, and you DID NOT have to buy gas treatment for storage, nor did you have to rotate out old gas when you didn't need it.

This is but one example of "Pre-preparing". You bought empty plastic gas cans on sale and didn't fill em... therefore you could simply store them under the bed, in a closet or in the rafters of your garage. While your neighbors rush around lost, you're already filling up your cans.. by the time they realize they need fuel and start trying to find gas containers, you're back home working on something else... A REALLY smart survivalists would have already taped a 10 dollar bill to each can to be used when filling them in an emergency...

We ALL have problems with "Storage space". Even those of us that live "Way out" struggle with this problem. Stored fuel, stored water, stored food, etc, all take up a lot of space and most of this stuff is heavy... meaning it has to be stored on the floor (and floor space is "premium space". But what if your "Water supplies" consist of a few gallons of actual stored water, and a stack of clean collapsible water carriers? 20 of these 5 gallon collapsible containers fit in a very small space. When needed, you simply fill them... if the emergency passes without incident, empty them, let em dry, stack em back up out of the way. Be sure to fill your tub and sinks with water too after you fill the collapsible containers!

Of course, Most apartment dwellers like to get away from it all.. in most apartments and urban neighborhoods you'll find fishing equipment and Backpacking equipment... You can fit a lot of "camping equipment" in a modern back pack.

Packing stoves don't even cause a non-survivalist to raise an eyebrow.. yet they are tiny, easily stored in a pack and can be used for cooking and heat in an emergency.

What survivalist doesn't have friends that live in the country? It's not unusual for our city dwelling friends to leave their hunting rifle and some ammo in one of my gun safes. Heck, that's what friends are for.

Why build a "safe room" for bio-emergencies when you can simply store sheet plastic and duct tape in a shoe box or two? You can then use a common HEPA type air cleaner as your pressurization method when needed... plus you can run the HEPA cleaner in your apartment 24/7 and you get to breathe cleaner air during "normal times"... simply store a new filter "for emergencies". Precut your sheet plastic for the room(s) you want to seal, then you're ready! This even makes sense if you DON'T live in a city.

Don't have a lot of room for books and manuals? SO? You have a computer, and I guarantee every scrap of info you'd need in an emergency can be found on line (Or on your Rubicon CD). How many CD's and disks can you store on ONE book shelf... probably the combined knowledge of human-kind.

"But I need to power that computer"

Again, SO? Flexible solar panels are easily stored out of the way anywhere.. when you need power, simply unpack them and tape them to the windows of your apartment.. if you buy wisely, it'll look like you've simply tinted your apartment windows. Have a second battery added to your vehicle and make sure BOTH batteries are big deepcycles. When you need a deepcycle Battery in your apartment to run your computer, simply yank the second battery out of your SUV.. BAM! It's charged and ready to produce power for you! PLUS you get the added bonus of never having to worry about being stuck with a dead car battery in a dark parking lot.

Modern inverters are small, easily stored, and produce MORE than enough power for a computer... If you have a laptop, you get bonus points for "Pre-preparing". Combine the Solar panels, battery and the inverter and you have a small power company in your Apartment during the emergency.. just be careful about charging the battery.. you might want to stick it in a rubbermaid container and vent it outside during charging.

"Emergency lighting?"

Decorative candles, Decorative oil lamps, backpacking lanterns, etc (Light AND heat).. plus no one outside will know you have lights on, because you have solar panels taped to your windows :)

"Uhhhh, Security?"

Precut a few 2x4's and store em under the bed... in an emergency you can nail them into a "T" shape, nail a small piece of 2x4 to the floor a few feet from the door and then jam the "T" between the floorboard and the door... it takes a LOT to break down a door that's reinforced like this.


Rain suits and duct tape... Gasmasks are small.

If you DO have to leave the city.. do you know where the nearest U-haul rental place is? Or the nearest Home improvement store that sells trailers? Since you haven't bought one, you have the cash you saved on hand to buy one in an emergency before the sheeple know there is a problem, right?

Just because you can't have "one of something" where you live doesn't mean you shouldn't save up the money to buy one. One of my friends has this mind-set and we had the following conversation:

"I don't have anyplace to park a yard trailer"

(Me) "So do you have the money to buy one if you need it?"
(Him) "No.. Why should I? I can't buy one, I don't have a place to put it"
(Me) "But you think you might need one if you have to bug out?"
(Him) "Yeah, but I can't buy one... I don't have a place to put it"
(Me) "So save the MONEY and buy one when you need it! Go ahead and mentally pick one out and put the correct hitch and wiring harness on your truck NOW... then save the money so you can buy the trailer when you need it."

(Sometimes my friends can be dense)

You should know already "what" you need for survival purposes... if you live where you can't have some of those items then you should know where you can get them quickly in an emergency and have the purchase price already saved up for it.

We have items on our "Wish list" also, but you can modify a wish list to your situation.. simply make a list of what you need. Look that list over and see if you can get Some parts of the items you need now (The gas can example above). Then shop around near home and see who carries the items you'll need in an emergency... note down their price, store location and the item's location in the store...

IE: "Coleman fuel", "Jack's Camping supply", "Isle 3, bottom shelf", "$4.00"

Now put the list in an envelope and stick 5 bux in there with it for the Coleman fuel.

While you are making your survival supply list, keep these things in mind... Keep SMALL BILLS with the list. This way you'll have close to exact change if the store's computers are down... also presenting exact change in small bills reduces the temptation of the store owner to price-gouge you... if the item costs 45 bux (Plus tax) and you hand him 5 tens, yer close enough to the actual price that you didn't get hurt. If you produce a 100 dollar bill, you potentially won't get change, and the store owner may have just mentally marked the price up.

ALWAYS have TWO places on your list that sells what you need in case one place is closed, sold out, or whatever... our list actually has four places listed for some of the items we may need (Which includes a bobcat front end loader)

Make an ORDERED list!

Make your emergency purchases in a smart manner.. you need Gas first, THEN you can go get the bulk cans at the grocery store (People hit gas and groceries first in an emergency, and you need to beat the crowds), THEN you need to pick up the trailer(AND a tarp, bungie cords and a good lock!), THEN go get the other bulky items you'll need and put them under the tarp in the trailer... THEN go home and load up and get outta dodge.

That scenario may not work for you exactly, but you get the general idea.. it does no good to get the genset before you have a way to haul it, and it does no good to go to the gas station and grocery store when those places are already stripped clean.

Think about your situation

I'm not saying that Urban or Apartment dwelling is a permanent solution.. it is not. But you can find many ways to survive for WEEKS even in the city.

In other articles I have stated that the only reason to be in the city is to make more money. If you make more money, you can afford a "vacation home" in the country. If you're in the city and barely making ends meet, then you need to SERIOUSLY reevaluate your reasons for being there! It may not be what you want to hear, but it IS the truth.

If you're here at Prepare to Survive in California, chances are good you have like minded friends that will help you out. If they are within 200 miles of you and have a nice retreat or homestead, ask if you can preposition some stuff with them.  Don't be a leech... make it worth their while to store your stuff for you, their storage space is probably already limited too. If you plan to go to their house in an emergency, it's only fair that you help pay for some of the retreat maintenance and improvements.. after all, YOU aren't having to buy a retreat, or hook up alternate power, or buy water filters, or fix roofs.. so you should offer to help keep the retreat in order and help with making it a better place to be when TSHTF.

If they don't have the physical space to store your stuff, put it in a "U-Store" storage facility nearby their house.... be sure to add "Bolt cutters" to your list of things to get in case the storage facility is abandoned and you have to cut a lock off the gate to get to your storage area.

If the cost of renting a storage facility, or the security of a storage facility bothers you, offer to help your friends build a storage building for BOTH family's supplies on their land. If you assume that rent on a storage facility is 35 bux a month, then you can help pay for a BIG CHUNK of a good storage building on their land for what it would cost you to rent a facility for two years.... You both get something valuable out of the deal, BOTH of you are saving money!

If you put money into someone else's home or retreat, REMEMBER that it is THEIR home. They've offered to provide you with a safe place should TSHTF, but if things go sour, don't get into money arguments over who paid for what... You've basically been renting a retreat in case something happens... if the thought of this makes you angry, then think about your insurance bill... you rented protection from the insurance company, but if they cancel your policy, their responsibility to you is over. Simply go get the supplies that belong to you and store them somewhere else, all you've lost is the same amount of money you'd have lost renting a storage locker for the same amount of time. However, Choose your friends wisely and this will never be a problem.

Pre-preparing strategies can give you that edge you need to survive while those around you flap their arms and run in circles. It can help you get out of the city to your retreat (uhhh scuz me, "Vacation Home in the Country"). It takes some thought and planing, but it DOES save you money while you prepare and allows you to gather the equipment you need to have the edge on the crowds.

Oh yea, get out of the house and practice....something....anything which will help you and your family when The Shit Hits The Fan.

Monday, November 16, 2009


I can't take credit for this was sent in by a friend.


By cooking and dehydrating beans and rice in advance, you can save time and energy when using them for a meal.

First I cook the rice or beans fully! Then I spread it on cookie sheets and dry it at about 200 degrees for about 4 or 5 hours. To test I put some dehydrated rice in cold water. Cold because I figured if it would rehydrate in cold it would do great with hot. It rehydrated great. So now, in soups, or just a dish, all I have to do is soak it in cold water, and add it to a dish I am warming. Also, if we do have more problems and work than we think it sure will be a lot quicker. And one more thing. It is crunchy and not all bad! My 17 year old son grabs a handful every time he passes the cookie sheet I've taken from the oven.

We also presently eat our dehydrated corn (with salt) just as it is. My husband has taken pinches of most everything (spinach, collards, pineapple (I have to hide), etc. and has eaten them dry. He said they are not bad at all and he could tolerate them. So, there you have it.

I bet it's alot cheaper than buying it at Wallyworld.



Native Americans used to garden with the 3 sisters - corn, squash and beans.

They planted corn and when it sprouted, planted pole beans around each stalk of corn so the beans would go up the corn.

They planted squash (pumpkins, winter squash, vining types) in between the rows.

This conserved space and also reduced the amount of weeding required.

SNAILS - Get rid of them or eat them...whatever


Place crushed egg shells around the base of plants in the garden if you are having a problem with snails or slugs. They don't like crawling over the sharp edges. The shells are good for the soil too.

Or you can just eat the little buggers...the common garden snail was imported as a fine food.  If you want to learn how to raise snails to eat (like they do in San Francisco) send me your email and I'll send you a free ebook...or your can find it online...just look up "Raising Snails for Food".

Try solar cooking in your wheelbarrow


Prepare dinner at breakfast time when the day is over 23 degrees Celsius.

1. Wash out the wheelbarrow, then line with aluminum foil.

2. Select a sheet of glass to cover the top of the barrow.

3. Position in a sunny spot.

4. Place potatoes and veggies into a Dutch oven with lid and put them in the wheelbarrow on a couple of bricks, replace the glass.

When setting it up wear sunglasses as light reflects off the foil, wear oven mittens as it gets very hot. I also recommend an oven thermometer so you can gauge the temperature correctly.

Practice makes perfect.

When your batteries run out of you back up lighting?

Kerosene Lamp Info


Use #2, water-clear kerosene; tinted/scented lamp oil gives less light, can gum up the wick or smoke up the chimney excessively. Lower grades kerosene with higher number will work but may cause similar problems with wicks and the chimneys will be dirty sooner.

Cost of Fuel:

May cost as much as $2.00/gal. Using 5 traditional lamps and a lantern 5 hours /night in the winter will use about 1 gallon/month.

Transferring the fuel:

Use a cheap bulb siphon and ONLY use it for kerosene (gasoline residues in a kerosene lamp is extremely dangerous). Try not to siphon any of the sludge and throw away the last 1/2 cup in the can. Siphon outdoors to minimize problem spills. If you spill over several thickness' of newspaper, do not burn in wood burning stove (chimney fire).


Do not overfill kerosene reservoir. You need air space between the bottom of wick holder and top of the kerosene for good wicking. When installing a new wick, soak it in kerosene first. You will then burn the kerosene and not the wick. If the top of the wick is dry only ht wick will burn. Trim the wick occasionally while using it and the first time you use it. A wick trimmed straight across will give a wide, flat-topped flame and will smoke excessively; too pointy of a wick produces a thin flame and little light. You should cut off the corners, and round the top of the wick a bit. After many hours of burning, the top of the wick will get ragged and charred. The flame may even have two lobes. Trim the char off into the shaped that works best for your lamp. There are two kinds of lamp owners: those who've burned themselves and those who will. Always check before touching the chimney. You cannot see heat.

To light a kerosene lamp, remove the chimney, turn the wick up a bit, and light and replace the chimney. As the wick begins to smoke, turn it down, just enough to keep from smoking. Adjust the wick for max light without smoking.

Extinguish a kerosene lamp by holding your hand just behind and above the chimney top. Adjust the angle of your palm to direct your breath straight down the chimney. Blow against your palm and a quick puff will blow it out.


Cleaning the chimney. Remove soot with a facial tissue and wash in hot, soapy water(Dawn?). Rinse in very hot water, to which baking soda has been added to eliminate spotting and then air dry. Wicks: Take stub of wick with you when buying a new one. There are circular wicks, and flat wicks, which come in different widths and thickness'. One that is too thick or thin will not feed through the wick adjuster and may even damage it. It is better to use one that is too narrow than one that is the wrong thickness or width. A narrow wick will not produce as much light, obviously.


Keep spares on hand. A lamp without a chimney is worthless. Thin glass cost less but break easier; frosted diffuse the light but are less bright. Tall, thin straight chimneys produce a thin, very bright flame, while bulbous chimneys produce wider flame and maybe more total light. Different chimney styles means adjusting to trimming the wick differently. You may eventually have to put on a new wick adjuster through normal usage or by damage by improper wick. You will have to replace the whole burner. Keep an extra one or two on hand. The best lamp has a heavy glass base which allows you to see how much kerosene is left. The weight of the base gives stability.

Aladdin Lamps:

They are more expensive than traditional lamps. They use pressure to volatilize the kerosene and a mantle to distribute and intensify the flame. They use twice as much kerosene as a traditional lamp and the mantles have to be replaced frequently. The parts of one model of Aladdin lamp may not be interchangeable.

It's always good to have a back my friend DAVE S. reminded me TWO is ONE and ONE is NONE.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

How to properly use an N95 face mask

Using Facemasks or Respirators

Avoid close contact (less than about 6 feet away) with the sick person as much as possible.

If you must have close contact with the sick person (for example, hold a sick infant), spend the least amount of time possible in close contact and try to wear a facemask (for example, surgical mask) or N95 disposable respirator.

An N95 respirator that fits snugly on your face can filter out small particles that can be inhaled around the edges of a facemask, but compared with a facemask it is harder to breathe through an N95 mask for long periods of time. More information on facemasks and respirators can be found at

Facemasks and respirators may be purchased at a pharmacy, building supply or hardware store.

Wear an N95 respirator if you help a sick person with respiratory treatments using a nebulizer or inhaler, as directed by their doctor. Respiratory treatments should be performed in a separate room away from common areas of the house when at all possible.

Used facemasks and N95 respirators should be taken off and placed immediately in the regular trash so they don't touch anything else.

Avoid re-using disposable facemasks and N95 respirators if possible. If a reusable fabric facemask is used, it should be laundered with normal laundry detergent and tumble-dried in a hot dryer.

After you take off a facemask or N95 respirator, clean your hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.

Oh yea, try to do some work around the house with one of these on, just so you can get used to the discomfort.

Friday, October 30, 2009

I'm no expert on Ammo, but did you know use can use .30-30 in a 7.62x39 chamber?

The 7.62x39mm cartridge fired by the SKS is sometimes said to be roughly equivalent to the Winchester .30-30 round when used as a deer hunting round. However, the 7.62 is sometimes considered inferior to the .30-30 as a hunting cartridge, due to its historical use of relatively lightweight bullets by caliber.

At 200+ yards, a 7.62x39mm bullet, due to its more aerodynamic shape and slightly higher velocity, will provide a flatter trajectory and will retain more energy than a round nose .30-30.

Hollowpoint 7.62x39mm and 154-grain (10.0 g) soft point 7.62x39mm hunting bullets are available, but 7.62x39 hollowpoint bullets are slightly lighter than maximum grain .30-30 loadings, giving a slight edge to the heaviest .30-30 bullets over 7.62x39mm hollowpoint bullets for close-in hunting in brush amid typical Eastern United States hunting scenarios encountered while hunting for deer.

On the other hand, the 154 gr (10.0 g) soft point 7.62x39 bullets have a slight advantage over the round nose 150 gr (9.7 g) .30-30 bullets, at all ranges beyond approximately 100 yards (91 m), due to the spitzer shape of the 7.62x39. Another factor is that the most common 7.62x39 ammunition uses the harder Berdan primers, unlike the standard American boxer primers.

Some SKS rifles tend to rupture the softer primers, leading to possible mechanical fouling.

So, in can use 30-30 if you can't find any 7.62x39...but use it as a last resort.

I never write about guns and ammo, but I sure do miss my SKS

I was taling guns today with some know it all and it got me thinking about one of my favoriate toys....My long lost SKS.  I never write about guns and ammo because I don't know enough to be an expert.  I write about what I know and I stick to that, besides there are thousands of sites dedicated to Guns and Ammo and this site is just not one of them.


The SKS rifle is a simple gas operated auto loader with some very strong attributes in its favor. For all its glory and simplicity few rifles have been surrounded by more confusion than the humble SKS. I have fired both Russian and Chinese versions and am very well versed in its use and maintenance.

I love my SKS and I think it’s the best carbine I’ve ever fired. Having stated that it should be obvious that I am not a “the SKS is the best rifle bar none” kind of guy but I will say that:

A. For the money spent and knowledge required to own and become competent with one it is the best overall value.

B. It is battle tested (the wise reader will never overlook this quality when choosing any firearm for survival purposes).

C. Parts and ammo are everywhere and cheap compared to many of its competitors.

D. It is a tough son of a bitch in field

E. You can go buy an SKS, some simple cleaning supplies, a bag of stripper clips, and a thousand rounds of quality FMJ ammo for the same amount or less than the cheapest AK/Mack-90 type rifle on the market (that takes hi-cap. Magazines).

Remember that an SKS in the hand (or trunk or closet for that matter) is better than a Fal/L1A1, G3 or full auto H&K MP5 in fantasy land.

That brings us to the most important thing you can learn about the SKS….Leave it alone! There are dozens of accessories available for an SKS but most do nothing to improve the performance of the weapon and some can really screw you up if you are not careful. I have seen so many go out and get a good SKS and then spend money left and right: a scope mount here (now it’s a sniper rifle), a folding stock there (hey what do you mean it’s not legal) and of course the biggest scam the hi-cap magazines.

In a word, save your money-that is the main reason to own a SKS over an AK or FAL. None of the gadgets are worth a damn or they would be illegal, some hi capacity magazines are better than others but none are as reliable as the stock fixed 10 round magazine. Don’t even think about a full auto conversion (unless you really like concrete walls and steel bars).

The SKS is best left in semi auto and you don’t need full auto anyway. If you think you need full auto then you need more time at the range or maybe trade in on a shotgun if you’re just that bad. The SKS is reasonably accurate but will never be a sniper grade rifle and is not designed for use with a scope. Don’t waste your time and money (by the time you get a scope zeroed in TEOTWAWKI will already have come and gone and then it will just shift anyway). Even if you do get it stable enough you will have traded in quick target acquisition for a crappy scope that will get you killed when you can’t get that stripper clip out of the way fast enough anymore.

The twenty round fixed will be your next stop on the “how much money can I waste” express. With some minor filing mine now works and NO you can’t reliably get two stripper clips loaded in a timely manner (one stripper clip will load fine). On the up side it is made out of crappy pot metal! (it now resides in the bottom of my closet-somewhere!!) The 75 round drum (I don’t even want to talk about it), DO NOT even think about wasting that much money. Do we see a trend developing yet???

Repeat this ten times out loud before you go to the next gun show and buy some stuff you really need instead (ammo anyone?) My SKS is a solid semi-auto battle rifle with a ten round fixed magazine; it uses stripper clips, when I pull the trigger it goes “BANG”- that is the purpose for which it was designed. It is NOT a poor man’s AK-47 anymore than it is a sniper rifle.

I will not waste my next two paychecks making it look like either. I will leave it the way it was designed to function and move on with my life. Now that we have settled that issue, let me close with the following argument. You may own several firearms, many of which will seem better than the SKS in various aspects of their performance BUT everyone can afford a decent SKS and learn how to shoot it.

The ammo is as cheap as it gets and when the sh*t hits the fan- it is comforting to know that everyone on your team has parts and ammo that will work in your gun. The SKS is a junk yard dog. Drop it, scratch it, see how much crud it can digest and still fire, it likes it (well…sort of) the experience you can get because you are not afraid to hurt it are worth far more than the rifle itself.

Smaller framed team mates usually find it comfortable and with the addition of the $5-$10 rubber but pad/spacer. Go get one, buy a thousand rounds for it, shoot the hell out of it, clean it up really well and stick it in the closet you may be very glad you did one day.

You can never have too many good cheap rifles that eat up good cheap ammo. Hey one day you may want to cache something somewhere for undisclosed reasons (vague enough??). So just keep this in mind “friends don’t let friends waste money” leave the plastic crap at the table and move down to the next table and buy some more ammo, the life you save may be your own!!

Oh yea, since they are considered illegal.  I don't own one anymore. I got rid of it a long time ago.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Thank you Frugalsquirrels for LIGHTS OUT by Halfpast

I got hit with flu epidemic floating around the camp.  When I was flat on my back, I decided that I was going to recharge my preppers battery and read Lights Out by Halfpast.  I downloaded a free copy from, and I am glad I did.  It's not really a hard core novel and is very easy to read.  I took some good notes and plan on taking it out everytime I have to fly to another location for work.

Rejuvinate your batteries, go to his website and download a free copy.  If it's not available, send me an email at and I will email you my download.  You get it for free, so please dont resell it; in fact, its advised you give it away for free.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

First hand account of Flu outbreak

Many of you know that I took another job out in Ass-crack-istan. I want to share my firsthand accounts on my experience with an influenza epidemic. It's not pretty at all. We are all living, pretty much, belly button to butt cheek, in a tent. One of the employees we hired came from a third world country and brought the flu with him.

Two days after he arrived, he began showing symptoms of the flu; chills, fever, and cough. Did he say anything to anybody? Hell NO he didn't. One week after he is here, he is coughing all over everyone, vomiting, and spreading the germs. Today, he comes in with his friends and asks to go to the medic. I take him and after speaking with the doctor, I find out he has an acute infection in his lungs and should be quarantined.

The next day, 1000 am, 3 more show up with the same symptoms...quarantined.

By 2:00 PM, 15 more are getting on a bus to come to my office to see the medic....quarantined.

People, when the SHTF, there will not be any medical professionals available to take care of you and your family. If you haven’t gone out and begun stocking up on Tylenol, decongestants, expectorants, hand so now. Seeing all these people flat on their backs is scary.

Be prepared, practice now because you don't want to get sick and then go to store, only to find the shelves bare.

Make your own shampoo - when your expensive stuff runs out

I recently found a recipe for making your own shampoo. It will certainly save you money. If nothing else, it might come in handy in an emergency:

Distilled White Vinegar

Baking Soda

Combine the two so that it’s runny. Dip your head back or forward. Pour mixture over hair. Use your fingertips and massage the mixture through your hair and scalp. Rinse. Follow with a light conditioner.

You will not believe how squeaky clean your hair will be - and feel! You might even find that you don’t have to wash it as often.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

100 things which disappear first during an emergency

I can't take credit for this's been passed around so many times that I don't know who the original writer is.  Nevertheless, I use this to help me prioritize my preps....I hope this helps you too.

#1. Generators

#2. Water Filters/Purifiers

#3. Portable Toilets

#4. Seasoned Firewood (About $100 per cord; wood takes 6 - 12 mos. To become dried, for home uses.)

#5. Lamp Oil, Wicks, and Lamps (First choice: Buy CLEAR oil. If scarce, stockpile ANY!)

#6. Coleman Fuel - Impossible to stockpile too much

#7. Guns, Ammunition, Pepper Spray, Knives, Clubs, Bats & Slingshots

#8. Hand-Can openers & hand egg beaters, whisks (Life savers!)

#9. Honey/Syrups/white, brown sugars

#10. Rice - Beans - Wheat (White rice is now $12.95 - 50# bag. Sam's Club, stock depleted often.)

#11. Vegetable oil (for cooking) (Without it food burns/must be boiled, etc.)

#12. Charcoal & Lighter fluid (Will become scarce suddenly.)

#13. Water containers (Urgent Item to obtain any size. Small: HARD CLEAR PLASTIC ONLY)

#14. Mini Heater head (Propane) (Without this item, propane won't heat a room.)

#15. Grain Grinder (Non-electric)

#16. Propane Cylinders

#17. Michael Hyatt's Y2K Survival Guide

#18. Mantles: Aladdin, Coleman, etc. (Without this item, longer-term lighting is difficult.)

#19. Baby Supplies: Diapers/formula/ointments/aspirin, etc

#20. Washboards, Mop Bucket w/wringer (for Laundry)

#21. Cook stoves (Propane, Coleman & Kerosene)

#22. Vitamins

#23. Propane Cylinder Handle-Holder (Urgent: Small canister use is dangerous without this item.)

#24. Feminine Hygiene/Hair care/Skin products

#25. Thermal underwear (Tops and bottoms)

#26. Bow saws, axes and hatchets & Wedges (also, honing oil)

#27. Aluminum foil Reg. & heavy Duty (Great Cooking & Barter item)

#28. Gasoline containers (Plastic or Metal)

#29. Garbage bags (Impossible to have too many.)

#30. Toilet Paper, Kleenex, paper towels

#31. Milk - Powdered & Condensed (Shake liquid every 3 to 4 months.)

#32. Garden seeds (Non-hybrid) (A MUST)

#33. Clothes pins/line/hangers (A MUST)

#34. Coleman's Pump Repair Kit: 1(800) 835-3278

#35. Tuna Fish (in oil)

#36. Fire extinguishers (or large box of Baking soda in every room...)

#37. First aid kits

#38. Batteries (all sizes... buy furthest-out for Expiration Dates)

#39. Garlic, spices & vinegar, baking supplies

#40. BIG DOGS (and plenty of dog food)

#41. Flour, yeast & salt

#42. Matches (3 box/$1 .44 at Wal-Mart: "Strike Anywhere" preferred.

Boxed, wooden matches will go first.)

#43. Writing paper/pads/pencils/solar calculators

#44. Insulated ice chests (good for keeping items from freezing in wintertime)

#45. Work boots, belts, Levis & durable shirts

#46. Flashlights/LIGIITSTICKS & torches, "No. 76 Dietz" Lanterns

#47. Journals, Diaries & Scrapbooks (Jot down ideas, feelings, and experiences: Historic times!)

#48. Garbage cans Plastic (great for storage, water transporting - if with wheels)

#49. Men's Hygiene: Shampoo, Toothbrush/paste, Mouthwash/floss, nail clippers, etc

#50. Cast iron cookware (sturdy, efficient)

#51. Fishing supplies/tools

#52. Mosquito coils/repellent sprays/creams

#53. Duct tape

#54. Tarps/stakes/twine/nails/rope/spikes

#55. Candles

#56. Laundry detergent (Liquid)

#57. Backpacks & Duffle bags

#58. Garden tools & supplies

#59. Scissors, fabrics & sewing supplies

#60. Canned Fruits, Veggies, Soups, stews, etc.

#61. Bleach (plain, NOT scented: 4 to 6% sodium hypochlorite)

#62. Canning supplies (Jars/lids/wax)

#63. Knives & Sharpening tools: files, stones, steel

#64. Bicycles... Tires/tubes/pumps/chains, etc.

#65. Sleeping bags & blankets/pillows/mats

#66. Carbon Monoxide Alarm (battery powered)

#67. Board Games Cards, Dice

#68. d-Con Rat poison, MOUSE PRUFE II, Roach Killer

#69. Mousetraps, Ant traps & cockroach magnets

#70. Paper plates/cups/utensils (stock up, folks...)

#71. Baby Wipes, diapers, tampons, oils, waterless & Anti-bacterial soap (saves a lot of water)

#72. Rain gear, rubberized boots, etc.

#73. Shaving supplies (razors & creams, talc, after shave)

#74. Hand pumps & siphons (for water and for fuels)

#75. Soy sauce, vinegar, bullions/gravy/soup base

#76. Reading glasses

#77. Chocolate/Cocoa/Tang/Punch (water enhancers)

#78. "Survival-in-a-Can"

#79. Woolen clothing, scarves/ear-muffs/mittens

#80. BSA - New 1998 - Boy Scout Handbook (also, Leader's Catalog)

#81. Roll-on Window Insulation Kit (MANCO)

#82. Graham crackers, saltines, pretzels, Trail mix/Jerky

#83. Popcorn, Peanut Butter, Nuts

#84. Socks, Underwear, T-shirts, etc. (extras)

#85. Lumber (all types)

#86. Wagons & carts (for transport to & from open Flea markets)

#87. Cots & Inflatable mattresses (for extra guests)

#88. Gloves: Work/warming/gardening, etc.

#89. Lantern Hangers

#90. Screen Patches, glue, nails, screws, nuts & bolts

#91. Teas

#92. Coffee

#93. Cigarettes

#94. Wine/Liquors (for bribes, medicinal, etc.)

#95. Paraffin wax

#96. Glue, nails, nuts, bolts, screws, etc.

#97. Chewing gum/candies

#98. Atomizers (for cooling/bathing)

#99. Hats & cotton neckerchiefs

#100. Goats/chickens

Thursday, October 15, 2009

If the dollar does collapse how well prepared are you?

I came across this article when I was over at Steve Quayle's web page.  I have attached the links.  I work with Third Country Nationals (TCN's) from India, Kenya, etc... and they tell me horror stories of how they are abused by thier "Leaders"...economically, phyically, and mentally.  Some have asked me whether or not the US people will continue to let the US fall from grace.  Economic collapse has happened recently to Argentina and they were a fast boombing economy. Nevertheless, if you can leave out the political stuff (as I normally do) this story may influence you to go out and acquire some more tangible goods....I know I can't afford gold or silver, but I will instruct my brother to buy me some seeds, toilet paper, and water filters for the house.

1. Inflation will skyrocket. If you are in the market for new clothing, expect the price for common, ordinary garments to quadruple overnight. Food, even the basic staples, will become so expensive that the largest percentage of what we spend out of our paychecks will be used just to stay alive. The poorest among us will have trouble merely surviving.

2. Paper money will be basically worthless. That means those dollars we use to purchase goods and services will have absolutely no real value any longer. The dollar, at that point, will have been so thoroughly devalued that it will be worth only the paper its printed on. Unless you have invested heavily in gold and other precious medals, you will be big trouble.

3. Gold and precious medals, which have intrinsic value of their own, will become vastly important. At present, the price of gold has skyrocketed to over $1000 per ounce. This means that a gold coin that at one time carried a value of $20 will now be worth over $1000. Those who have bought these gold coins and bricks as a hedge against inflation will be in a good position to weather the coming storm. Those who have not will be at the mercy of the coming economic storm where goods and services will quadruple in costs and where their paper money will be basically worthless.

4. Starvation will become common. Homelessness will overwhelm American society. Businesses will go under. Joblessness will sweep over the nation, setting us on a course to either match or outmatch the unemployment numbers of the Great Depression.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

When, Where, and most will you meet with your loved ones

Terrorists are planning attacks on our cities throughout our crumbling Nation. These attacks may be in larger cities, but they will most likely happen in the mall, bus stop, or fast food place near you. No way, you say? Well, attacking big cities is the plan if they want to kill a lot of people fast; but, if the organization wants to instill FEAR, well...that is another story. Imagine multiple attacks throughout the country at multiple malls, at bus stops, or movie theaters, at the same time (or even staggered over a period of time) and what type of impact that would have on you, your family, your neighbors, and your coworkers.

Have you taken the time to discuss how you will get home, how your wife or girlfriend, your kids, and your friends will get home? What routes will they take? Will they stay with friends? Do you even know where your kids’ friends live? Does your wife or girlfriend know how to use the stuff in their B.O.B.? Do they have an extra pair of walking shoes in the car...just in case they need to walk home? Have you even tried to walk home from work or the equivalent distance around your neighborhood? Do you have a tracking device on your dog if they get freaked out and run away from home?  Have you discussed how you will communicate with eachother when the cell phones stop working?  Or do they plan to just sit where they are, wait for help to arrive, and then do what they are told by who ever shows up?

Very soon into the conversation, my coworker looked like he was punched in the groin. I asked him what was the matter and he stated that he had never thought of all response was, "Dude, I think you better start thinking about it; if not for it for your wife and kids. You can still take care of them even if you aren't home." I also advised him that they ought to practice by turning the power, water, and gas off to the house for a weekend, just so they can experience what it would be like. They could take notes on what they needed, what they wanted, and what they could have done better.

We talked about mending bridges with unfriendly neighbors, coworkers, and relatives...just in case they may need their assistance in the future.

If you haven't done so, begin putting up some extra canned foods, bottled water, and things you will need to make your life more comfortable in the very near future. (Especially feminine personal hygiene items).

Practice, practice, practice...

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Stuck in Kuwait

During my travel to Ass-Crack-Istan, I got stuck in Kuwait...and am still here.  Although not considered a third world country, by any means, I know I still need to prepare incase of an emergency.  With Iran testing rockets which could land here, or Afghanistan, I need to have a bug out bag ready. 

The US currency is in the toilet and it takes almost 4 dollars to buy one of their Kuwait Dinars; so, purchasing stuff at the store sucks big time.  I did buy some preps which I keep in my BOB back home....primarily peanut butter, canned tuna, and top raman.  I scavange the soap, shampoo, contidioner, cotton balls, Qtips, water, plastic bags, paper clips, pens, toilet paper, jelly, salt, and sugar from the hotel.  I also found a spray bottle I can use as a mister if I get caught outside during the heat of the day.  When I see matches laying around, I pick them up...reasons you can figure out...and no, I dont smoke. I found the emergency exits, walked to them with my eyes closed, and found the rally points outside.  I found a map and can walk to the airport in necessary, but since I am making friends with some of the hotel staff, I am sure I can get a ride from them if necessary.

Most importantly, when I do go out to the store, I make sure I dont stand out like the rest of the ExPats working here.  I dont get all dressed up, I dont speak or act loudly, and am always very polite to EVERYONE I meet...and never go out by myself. 

Here is a pic of some of my preps...and a great view from my hotel.  Remember eveyone...practice, practice, practice....and build up some preps today.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Things have changed for a while

I've decided to take another contracting job in Ass-Crack-istan again.  If anyone out there is looking for a job with tax free income (most of it) let me know.  I have a list of contractors who are hiring in Afghanistan.  Some contractors are better than others; so, if you have any questions please let me know. 

No, I will not tell you what type of work I do, but if you subscribe to my blog...I will send you a list of the contractors in an excel spreadsheet.  Shoot, even if you dont subscribe, I'll send you the list anyway.

While I am in Ass-crack-istan, I will report on how to survive in a 3rd world country (since we are heading in that direction anyway) and other useful information that I see and learn about.

I will not shut down my blog...I will continue to post as much as I can...remember...practice makes perfect.  Don't wait until you need to know...learn now, practice now, and teach others how to survive in California when TSHTF.

Uses for Borax

I didn't know how many things you could do with Borax... You can use it to wash everything from clothes to dishes to hair and body. You can sprinkle it around your shelter to keep the bugs out. You can use it as a flame retardant. If you don't want your fire burning out of control while you are a sleep, mix it with water and spray on onto your tent or shelter or sprinkle around your fire.

You can make your own deodorant by by adding just enough water to make a paste.

If you are worried about smoke from your fire giving away your location, soak your wood in water and add a cup of borax, let dry completely before burning.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Saving more seeds

The cup of veggie tops and seeds, by the sink, was getting kind of full and when I saw the canteloup that needed to be cut up...I knew it was time to start getting busy.

Washed, dried, put in a paper towel, and then outside to really dryout.
Tomato seeds on a paper towel, dried out, then then straight into the garden...yes, still on the paper towel.
These are those little pepper tops.  The seeds will be washed, dried, and put in a paper towel to dry outside, vacuum sealed and planted next year.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Go eat some crow!

I couldn't help but smile when I wrote that..however, I'm not talking about making an ass out of yourself and then having to apologize for it...I'm talking about EATIN' Some CROW!!!! Yea baby... get in my belly!

Crows are notoriously disagreeable birds, in every respect. The majority of the population would conform to the fact that the birds are scavengers, and that they are not suitable for eating.  An old joke among outdoorsmen holds that if you get lost in the woods without any food and manage to catch a crow, you should put it in a pot with one of your boots, boil it for a week, and then eat the boot.  Eating crow, therefore, is an especially unpleasant and humiliating thing to have to do.

I, however, totally disagree...since the same could be said for shrimp, lobster, crab, and snails (Escargot); yes, those animals are all scavengers and they are on many menus and are very expensive too.

 (Yes, one day soon I will post on how to raise your own garden variety escargot and cook them up too!) 

As I was outside, watching the bread cook on the BBQ, I saw a couple of crows fly by and was reminded about the website I came across last year or the year before and thought to my self...yea, I gotta post a link.

If you think you can't eat crow...go check out their website... here is a paragraph...

"In fact, we believe a natural prejudice has prevented most crow hunters from even considering this bird as wild game. Our experience is that the mere mention of dropping these birds on the menu brings a series of comments from other hunters as if we had just suggested stir frying up a batch of common sewer rats. And if you ever make the mistake of sharing these thoughts with a non-hunter, be prepared for the same reaction you might get if you invited them to dine with the Donner party. This is a shame since, properly prepared, the members of the Corvid family are as tasty as most other game birds and even tastier than some. Besides, with crow populations as high as they are, what an untapped resource we have at our disposal."

When I think about how much deer are roaming around Los Angeles and it's suburbs, I'm thinking I can add a little crow to my menu...if, I really needed to.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Testing the to speak

Finally, I put my plan into action and tested whether or not I can drink pool water with my filters.  I began with purchasing a 1HP, 8.9 gallon transfer pump; tried to run it with my 400 Watt power box, my battery bank and 1500 watt inverter, RV water filter, food grade water hose, and my ZeroWater filter & digital test stick.

On the back of the test stick there is a PPM chart, which reads from 0 to 500+.  0 PPM is the best and 500+ is the U.S. EPA's max contamination level. 

0 to 50 is pure water
50 - 100 carbon filters & mountain spring water
100 - 200 hard water
200 - 400 Average tap water
400 - 500 High tap or spring water
500 +  U.S. EPA's max contamination level

The pump worked great, except it took a bit of work to get it primed.  I know...I's a transfer pump, not a sump pump.  Ultimately, the water pressure was so great, I am considering attaching a regular hose and spray nozzle and using it for an emergency shower.

I used a RV water filter purchased at walmart for about $20.00.

This is the food grade, RV water hose, purchased at walmart for about $20.00; I think.
Inverter with cables...attached to my 3 deep cycle marine batteries.
400 Watt, Black and Decker, powerbox... It wasn't enough power to run the pump.  Perhaps, I should have fully charged it before I used it.
ZeroWater, PPM, test stick.
This is the pump and (smaller) food grade hose...same manufacturer...without the RV filter.
This is the unit with the RV filter attached...notice the volume of water...excellent water pressure.  Attach another hose and a spray nozzle and the we have an instant shower.
This is the base reading of the pool water... 197 isn't bad, I guess.
I let the water run through the filter for a couple of minutes and then took a reading. 

The filter lowered the PPM down a little bit.
Then I wanted to test the water coming directly from the main.  This faucet is by the pool in the back yard and does not get fitered by the house filtration system.  The base reading for the water from the water company is 301 PPM.
I then connected the filter, ran the water for a few minutes, and then took another reading.
I then went inside to the house filtration system and took a another base reading.
No, I did not attached the RV filter because this water is filtered by the filtration system and we drink it everyday and it gets filtered again throught the 'fridge when we want to drink it.  Then I went inside and took a sample from the 'fridge water.
Then I thought to myself that if the city water get contaminated or shuts down, then I won't be drinking it, I went back outside and put the ZeroWater filter system together.  I attached the RV filter to the hose and the pump and then began to fill up the ZeroWater holding tank and then began to take readings of the filtered water.
This reading was taken at the beging of the filtering process.  The filtered pool water in the holding taking was reading 180.
This reading was taken with two inches of water filtered.
And the final reading when the tank was done filtering all the water.  Yes, I did drink the filtered water and it was actually tasted pretty good.
Would I drink the water filtered by the RV filter only? No, I would not...but, I would probably bathe in it and use it to water the veggies in the garden.
Remember everyone...practice makes perfect. Practice now so you better prepared later.