Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Reasons why MRE's are Better than Backpacking Meals

There is a common misconception among people who have never eaten MRE’s that they are the same as backpacking meals. They are both lightweight meals on the go; that’s about where the similarities end.

1. Calories

Most Mountain House backpacking meals have 400-600 calories. All military MRE’s have approximately 1250. Everyone knows survival is a calorie game. You have to put as much or more in than you use and MRE’s are a more efficient way to do that.

2. Side Dish

Every standard issue MRE comes with a side dish, usually something like rice, vegetables, or fruit. Backpacking meals only come with one main entree unless you buy extra sides.

3. Cracker or Bread

Every MRE comes with a cracker or break package. I don’t know about you, but I’m a good southern boy and I like to have some kind of bread at every meal. You gotta have something to push with…

4. Dessert, Candy, Spread

MRE’s come with a dessert package and candy (yes, both) as well as a spread for your bread like peanut butter, jelly, or cheese. Backpack Meal: No, No, and No.

5. Drink Mix

MRE’s get a sports drink, hot chocolate, tea, coffee, or shake. Of course with backpacking meal you have to bring your own.

6. Accessories

Every MRE comes with an accessories packet that can include things such as (but not limited to) spoon, matches, TP, wipes, sugar, salt, chewing gum, and of course Tabasco. You know where this is going: Backpack meals have none of these.

7. Heater

And finally the most important reason MRE’s are better than backpacking meals: the Flameless Ration Heater. If it’s driving rain, freezing, and you have no fire supplies, with an MRE you can still have a hot meal. Just tear open the heater pouch, add water, add entree, and wait.

To cut down on weight in your B.O.B.'s and backpacks, you can "field strip" the MRE's.  Field stripping an MRE is basically taking it out of its plastic and cardboard packaging.  In my BOB I have included "smooth move" tea (laxitive) and extra toilet don't EVEN want to know how to use those little squares included in the MRE.

My favoriate MRE is made by First Strike.  It has all three meals within one package and the meals taste MUCH better than the other MREs on the market.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Rugers new pistol - Just for Obama - The "Union Worker"

Ruger has just announced that they are coming out with a new pistol in honor of Barack Obama. It will be named the “Union Worker”. It doesn’t work and you can’t fire it......

Yea...I'm ANIT Union sooooooooooo what....this is still funny!

Found this at Kaching

Pump Shotgun - Machine gun of the brush

In some ways you can liken your shotgun to a machine gun. One press of the trigger sends out a spray of lead that encompasses the diameter of a dinner plate (depending, of course, upon the range) that the typical rifle cannot compete with - especially at close quarters.

Consider also, a single shotgun blast of nine or more pellets is typically more controlled than sending out nine bullets from submachine gun, which tends to rise as each round exits the barrel – making accuracy difficult.

Which Shotgun Load to Use?

Which shotgun load to use is an age old question that has many answers depending upon the conditions you are traveling through and personal preference.

My choice for tracking in thick forest or brush, as you may have guessed, is something along the lines of the Remington 2-3/4 inch 00 buck with nine .33 caliber pellets. There are many good reasons for this choice for use in thick forest.

2-3/4 inch Shotgun Shell vs 3-inch

Many, but not all, shotguns can use both 2-3/4 and 3-inch shotgun shells. The advantage of the 3-inch shotgun shells is that they can carry a somewhat greater number of pellets. However, in a tracking role the added bulk and weight factors make the shorter shells a better choice. The smaller shotgun shell is still excellent, and you can carry more of them!

In addition, the kick of a 12-gauge shotgun is hard enough as it is. This forceful beating that the shooter takes can affect accuracy. There is little sense in making things more difficult for little if any gain by blasting off more powerful loads.

My choice is to carry more 2-3/4 inch shotgun shells and leave the 3-inch shells for the range at home.

Shotgun Shell Load

Adequate Penetration. For use in the tracking of larger sized game such as men, the type of load in your shotgun shells is extremely important.

To eliminate a large enemy, which includes man sized targets, studies have shown that a minimum of 12-inches of penetration into the body is needed to insure the destruction of vital organs and the ending of the threat. This is known as “adequate penetration”.

This 12-inches for adequate penetration is not necessarily from, say, chest to back. Often your shot will have to penetrate from the left or right side of the body and on through to the opposite side – hence the need for a full 1-foot of penetration.

When in the forest you must also take into account that the lead you let fly must plow its way through leaves and twigs, which diminishes its force along the way. The larger the ball of lead, the more power it has to force its way through to the target.

Leave the Birdshot at Home

Additional studies have shown that the smallest shot size needed to make the required 1-foot of bodily penetration is number 1 buckshot, which in a 2-3/4 inch shell typically has 16 pellets of .30 inches in diameter.

Number 1 buckshot may be a good choice for home defense, since it covers the minimum shot size for 12-inches of bodily penetration but will likely not over penetrate anywhere near as much as larger pellets – potentially going right through the aggressors body, a wall, and into family members.

The fact that #1 buck is less likely to penetrate right through a body also means that more of its energy is expended IN the body – leading to greater wound damage than larger diameter pellets may cause.

An Angry Swarm of Lead

In deep forest and brushy areas there are a couple of important special factors to consider that you do not generally have in home defense:

The need to shoot through dense vegetation in order to reach your target – larger, heavier pellets will have improved penetration.

The deflection of the pellets by leaves, twigs, and branches - in general, the heavier the pellet the less its course will be deflected as it plows through to the target.

With this in mind, you might initially think a big fat shotgun slug would do best. And considering penetration alone you would be right. However shooting a single slug every time you fire your shotgun puts you in nearly the same plight as our AR-15 adversary in the story – that one slug has a single narrow trajectory that has a good chance of entirely missing its target while traveling through thick brush.

The idea is to send out a hail of lead the diameter of a dinner plate with every shot in the hopes that at least a few pellets will get through dense vegetation and hit the target. But there are trade-offs in numbers:

The more pellets put in a shotgun shell:

The smaller each individual pellet must be smaller pellets have reduced penetration through thick brush

Smaller pellets have greater deflection away from the aiming point when striking twigs and leaves.

A smaller pellet will not travel as far, reducing the range of your shotgun somewhat.

A smaller pellet with generally cause less damage to the creature it hits.

BUT, more small-sized pellets can be crammed into each shotgun shell – increasing the numerical swarm of lead sent toward the bad guys and increasing the odds of a hit

The fewer pellets put in a shotgun shell:

The larger each individual pellet can be

Larger pellets have increased penetration through thick brush

Larger pellets undergo less deflection away from the aiming point when striking twigs and leaves

A larger pellet will have a somewhat greater range

A larger pellet will generally cause greater damage to the creature it hits.

BUT, fewer large-sized pellets can be put into each shotgun shell – decreasing the numerical swarm of lead sent the bad guys way and decreasing the odds of a hit.

A Compromise betweet Shot Size and Shot Number

With these factors in mind and after experimentation in thick forest and brush, in my opinion the #00 buckshot with nine .33 caliber pellets is the best compromise in shot size and numbers of shot per shell.

Although #1 buckshot (an excellent home defense load) has:

12 pellets per load, each individual pellet weighs in at about 2.62 grams and is .30 inches in diameter (7.62mm).

#00 buckshot has:

three less pellets (9 pellets), but each pellet is heavier in weight by about 1/3 at 3.49 grams and .33 inches in diameter (8.38mm).

This significant increase in size is like the difference between a 150 pound man and a 200 pound man. All else being equal – which size would have the best strength to bull through obstacles at close range? I’m betting on the larger size.

In my opinion having 3-less pellets in the #00 load is more than made up for by the increased force each individual pellet has.

So there you have my experience and opinions on some of the important advantages shotguns have over rifles in thickly forested and brushy areas. What do you think?

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Dehydrated Eggs - make your own

There are a few reasons to dehydrate eggs, and one of them is emergency preparedness. Dehydrated food, including eggs, will store for a long time without refrigeration, so if you're worried about doomsday, you can start getting ready by stocking up on dried food.

Eggs are a popular choice because of their high protein and fat content. You can discard the yolk to save on calories, but if you're doing this for survival, you'll want to eat the whole egg.

What about salmonella?

I recommend that you cook your eggs before dehydrating. . Do not use oil, if you use oil, the oil will go rancid while drying and in storage.

Whisk or blend the eggs so their smooth
Fry your eggs dry (don't use oil)
Pour onto a tray
Dry at 145 degrees F until they're dry and brittle
You can grind them in a blender to make powdered eggs 
Store them in glass jars or plastic containers

Make sure to note how many eggs you've used up, so you can record that on your storage containers. That way you'll be able to make the correct substitution when cooking with eggs.

When you're ready to rehydrate for cooking, add water at about a 1:1 ratio. Then use them like you would fresh eggs.

When you preserve your eggs this way, you increase the shelf life to several months. It's a good way to save them if you have chickens or bought a bunch on sale. It's just another great use for a home food dehydrator.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Just some pics of Ass-Crack-istan

I post these pictures to show you what I have to endure with our Military.  It's a challange, of which, I could not have found in the U.S.  I have learned how to eat MRE's three times a day, take cold showers, sleep in the cold, and what it's like not to use a toilet on a regular basis...toilet, I mean a clean bathroom.  Being out in the middle of nowhere with our troops has taught me a great deal about prepping and survival.  It IS kinda like living in a FEMA camp; in that I am here to serve the Military.  Anything they want, we get it or do it for them.  The most difficult part of being here is being away from my loved ones for so long.  Fortunately, I teach my wife something everytime I go home.  She can shoot, start a fire without matches, operate a generator, cook meals without a stove, fish, and hunt. I have no fear that if I can't get home anytime soon that she will be able to take care of herself and her adult kids.  She didn't "get" the prepping idea at first, but now she's all over it.

Yes, it does snow in Ass-Crack-istan.  Huge snowflakes.