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Showing posts from 2007

Haaaaappy New Year

Just wanted to take the time to wish everyone a happy New Year. It's still 30 minutes away for me but it's close enough. Thanks for reading and I hope that your New Year is excellent.

Loose Change

Everybody has a coin jar. It's that container that you throw your loose change into every night. The question is what do you do with all of those coins? Some people just sit on them in case of a rainy day. Other people wait until they have a good pile and then take them to the local coin star, give the machine it's 8% cut and cash them in every once in a while. Others just put them back in their pocket every morning. Your coin jar can be a pretty significant part of your preps if you educate yourself a bit about coins.

There are a lot of coins out there that are worth a lot more than their face value. Any quarter, dime or half dollar with a mint mark of 1964 or older is made up of 90% silver. A quarter is worth $3 just in the silver value alone. Dimes are worth $1 a piece. From 1942-1945 the nickels that the US minted were 40% silver. From 1965 to 1970 they lowered the silver content in half dollars from 90% to 40%. A lot of older coins that you're not likely to…

So a nuclear bomb goes off in your AO...

If you're reading this site then you probably already know how big of a nuclear target your area is. You can check out this site http://www.unitedstatesaction.com/nuclear_targets_addtl_shelter_info.htm to get a good idea if you're not sure. It's easy to believe that your chances are pretty slim if you're anywhere near a nuclear bomb when it detonates. The thing is that nuclear attacks are a lot more survivable than a lot of people seem to think. Sure you're screwed if you're at ground zero when the bomb drops but even if you're just a couple of miles away your chances are pretty good. The farther you are from the blast the better your chances are. While the blast itself would be absolutely devastating the fallout is also extremely dangerous and will end up killing a lot of people. Just surviving the initial blast is the easy part. You have to know what to do to survive for the days and weeks following the blast.

So a nuke goes off close enough to you…

AK vs AR, .45 vs 9mm, .308 vs 5.56 etc etc

This argument just gets beaten to death. It seems that every time I turn around I get sucked into a debate on the subject. The bottom line is that there are pros and cons to every one of these calibers and the weapon systems associated with them. When you think of the 5.56 round the first gun that comes to mind is the M-16/AR-15. Everyone knows what this gun is. Anyone that's been in the military in the last 30 years or so has probably had experience with it. It's also got a huge following with firearms hobbyists all over the US. The AK is probably one of the most easily recognized firearms in the world. To some it's a symbol of freedom. To others it's a symbol of terrorism and anarchy. Then there are the sensible people that recognize it for what it is...an inexpensive, durable, reliable piece of equipment that you can always count on to work when you need it. .308 is another "serious" rifle caliber. Most hunters would recognize it as a solid int…

Emergency Cash

One thing that you'll see pop up a lot in "survivalist" discussions is the worthlessness of cash and the practicality of material possessions. According to some people that you talk to if something really big happens then cash will be worth about as much as toilet paper while things like silver, ammunition and food will be worth their weight in gold. Every time I read things like that I roll my eyes. I do believe that things like silver, ammunition, gold and a lot of other extremely useful items that we take for granted will be highly valued. I also believe that cold, hard cash will be accepted before any of those in the early stages of any kind of societal crash. Since birth we have been conditioned to accept cash as a form of payment. In my opinion it'll take a HUGE disaster for money to become worthless. They have turned it into a commodity in and of itself due to the difficulty of counterfeiting it.

Our money is almost impossible to counterfeit. It won…

Water Storage

This one is pretty basic and it gets touched on a lot. It's important enough that it deserves a dedicated post, though. Being able to turn on the faucet and get thousands of gallons of fresh, clean water with no effort and for very little cost has spoiled us. What do you do it if stops flowing or your normal supply gets contaminated? If you don't have water then you'll die fast. There are several options. You can get a filter or a purification system but in that case you need access to water to filter. You can build a rain catchment system but you need it to rain on a regular basis for that to work. That leaves storage. It's the easiest system to have in place before a crisis hits. It can be done extremely inexpensively. The most important thing to keep in mind is that you need about 1 gallon per day per person. That is a very small amount and it will take a lot of discipline to go from living off of city water to living off of what you have stored in your …

Just One Gun!?!?!?!?!

One question that I see come up a lot is "If you could have just one gun what would it be?" I hate this question. I will never own just one gun. Choosing one gun is all about compromise. I'm not willing to compromise when it comes to issues like that. Different guns do different things. The thought of having to rely on one gun for everything for the rest of my life just doesn't sit well with me. If you have no other choice but to choose just one gun then there are a lot of things that you need to consider.

If life goes on as it has been for so many years and the worst that you have to worry about is getting held up by a crackhead or being in a mall when some psycho decides that he wants to make a name for himself then a handgun will be about all that you can expect to have handy if you're ever forced to protect yourself. The chances of living your life every day without incident are very good under those circumstances whether you carry a gun or not. That&…

Worried about bird flu?

We're overdue for a pandemic. With so many people living so closely together in so many different parts of the world it's a miracle that something hasn't hit us hard recently (although it has happened within the last century). If something big breaks out then "they" will just contain it immediately won't they? Even if they don't contain it and it spreads globally then there's nothing you can do, right? Either the bug is going to kill you or it's not. What can you do to stop it? Modern medicine is so advanced that something like that couldn't possibly break out before we could cure it could it? These are all fallacies. You CAN take steps to protect yourself. Modern medicine DOESN'T cure everything. A virus that acts a certain way could easily spread globally before anyone has a chance to contain it. Let's analyze all of this shall we?

First of all our system of travel would make it incredibly easy for the right virus to spread…

The Get Home Bag (GHB)

Now that you've got your BOB all figured out what are you going to do if you're not at home when disaster strikes? If you're alert and you pay attention to the news then there aren't many things that can happen that will happen so fast that you have trouble making it home. That doesn't mean that you'll always have prior warning if something bad happens, though. Earthquakes happen fast. One minute you're plugging away on your computer or patiently waiting in line at the grocery store. The next thing you know you've been thrown around like a rag doll, there's a huge 12 foot wide crevice between you and your car and even if you could make it to your car you wouldn't be able to get 50 feet because every other car on the road is upside down or on it's side. That inconspicuous mushroom cloud that suddenly appeared 10 miles away might be another thing that makes it a bit difficult to get home. Weather can also be a major deterent. I can rem…

72 Hour Kits

Organizations like The Red Cross and FEMA call them 72 hour kits. Survivalists call them BOBs (Bug Out Bags). Whatever you want to call them everyone should have one. The idea behind them is that just in case you need to leave your home RIGHT NOW you won't be leaving empty handed. Also, if you have a kit prepacked and a plan in place you'll waste a lot less time if you need to get out of dodge in a hurry. If a disaster happens that forces you out of your home then it will likely force everyone else out of their homes as well. The farther ahead of everyone else you are the better off you'll be. Just look at the people that spent days stuck in traffic after they were driven out of NOLA by Katrina. The hotels were full and the gas stations were out of gas.

So where should you start? You never know what could happen and you may just end up having to hoof it if something happens to your vehicle. Now imagine if you were trying to get to your grandparents house 150 m…

Just watched I Am Legend

I must say that this could quite possibly be the best "zombie" movie that I've ever seen. I realize that the bad guys in this movie were more like a zombie/vampire mutant hybrid but they were zombie like enough for me. Let's face it. Night of the Living Dead style zombies just aren't that scary and getting them under control would be a lot easier than the movies would have you believe. These things were more like 28 Days/Weeks Later style zombies on steroids with a little bit of intelligence thrown in. Now THAT is scary. Anyway, back to the review of the movie.

I haven't read the book but I've seen The Last Man on Earth which was the first movie based on the story I Am Legend. I'm not sure how closely The Last Man on Earth followed the book but the new movie was a hell of a lot more satisfying and believable. As usual Will Smith did a very good job. He seems to be the type of actor that you either love or you hate. I have yet to see a movie…

Why Bother Prepping?

One question that I see come up a lot is "What are you so worried about?" or "What could happen that makes you think you need all of that crap?" Obviously those people didn't pay much attention to the news after Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans. Thousands died. There were packs of feral dogs roaming the streets. Neighborhoods were organizing to defend against looters. People were getting shot at. Some of them even shot back. Panicked government officials were ordering the disarmament of average citizens in a time when they most needed their guns for protection the most. Just read some of the testimonies and you'll see why it's not such a bad idea to prepare for the worst.

Even now we've got a serious situation that's affecting millions of Americans. The ice storms in the midwest knocked out power to a million homes. Unprepared people have been forced into Red Cross shelters because they couldn't keep their own homes warm enough. T…

Personal Responsibility

Over the last decade or so there seems to be a rise in random public shootings in the US. The anti-gun crowd would have you believe that these shootings keep happening because guns are too easy to get. I think that it's because over the last several decades we've been bred into a society of victims. Most people can't conceive of a situation where they may have to defend themselves. Why should you have to worry about defending yourself in the first place? That's what the police are there for. The general consensus in the civilized world is that unless you're properly trained then you're more likely to hurt yourself or someone else than you are to correctly handle a bad situation. In other words you don't know what's best for you. Why bother trying to do something if you're just going to screw it up? Unfortunately this philosophy spills over into just about every aspect of our lives. It's too easy to blame everyone else for your own shor…

Firearms safety.

If you plan on owning firearms then you need to know how to safely handle them. Firearms safety is pretty simple stuff but a few rules need to be strictly adhered to. A lot of "accidents" happen to people that supposedly know these rules. They're easy to forget and take for granted so it's worthwhile to review them occasionally even if you already feel comfortable with them. Modern firearms are extremely safe, precision tools. They don't just go off by themselves. With that in mind most "accidental" discharges are actually due to negligence. In other words they can be avoided if you just pay attention to the rules.


1. Firearms are always loaded - Always assume that a firearm is loaded. Until you've checked it yourself then it is loaded. Period. If you treat every gun that you encounter as if it's always loaded then you're much less likely to have an "accident". It doesn't matter if the guy that's handing it to you…

The Basic Armory

Firearms are one of the most important preps that you can have ready. Nothing says "you're messing with the wrong guy" better than a gun in your hand. There are dozens of differant actions, calibers, shapes and sizes to choose from. It's easy to get overwhelmed if your knowledge is limited and it's easy to get carried away when you start collecting them. I'm going to try and go over what I consider to be the bare minimum that everyone should have. If you don't own a gun then this is a very good list to get you started. If you do own guns then maybe you can look at this list and think about what you can do to add to or simplify your own armory.


No American household should be without a 12 gauge shotgun. It's one of the most common calibers in the world. They're capable of taking just about any game in North America from small game up to large game. They're extremely effective in close quarters and, with the right ammunition, can be dead…

Food Storage Basics

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Before you think about anything else you should stock up on food and water. A few weeks worth of extra food in the pantry will get you through almost anything. The average person needs around 2000 calories per day to sustain themselves. Less than that and you can count on being hungry. Even with a 2000 calorie diet you can die or be seriously affected by malnutrition if you're not getting the proper nutrients. That will take a really long time, though. If things get to that point then you'll have more important things to worry about. Just make sure that you stock food that everyone in your household will eat. It doesn't do you any good to have a case of spam in your closet if your family hates the stuff. You'll also need at the VERY MINIMUM 1 gallon of water per person per day. If you think that you can get by on that then I suggest you try it sometime. After a few days of it then you'll probably be convinced that you need at least 3-5 gallons per person per day.

C…

Where to get started

People tend to complicate things. The more people there are the more complicated things usually get. This is what makes urban living such a nightmare when something really bad happens. It's also part of the appeal of living day to day in an urban environment. So how do you avoid the golden horde when you're basically a part of it? Here are a few tips.

Don't talk about your preps. One thing that I see over and over are people that tell their friends about their preps hoping that maybe they'll catch on and want to do it themselves. Most of the time the only result is them saying "Well I know where I'm going when something bad happens". Most people don't want to think about what they'd do during a disaster. By prepping they're admitting that it could really happen which would cause their safe little worlds to collapse around them. You don't want these people showing up at your doorstep in the event of a crisis.

When someone hears that…

Welcome

For my first post I'll just tell you all a little bit about me. I grew up in a small town. I spent a few years in the Army infantry. I skipped college and eventually landed a solid job. Ever since then I've been stuck in the burbs working in the city. I was never really worried about much and didn't give any thought to the idea that our way of life could end. Y2K didn't scare me at all. 9/11 only pissed me off. Then Katrina hit NOLA. That woke me up. Ever since then I've been in overdrive just trying to get caught up. I've spent a lot of time on several different survivalist message boards. I've kept up on several different survival blogs. I've read books. More importantly I've been actively prepping. I don't pretend to know everything but I feel like I've got enough information to start sharing it with other people outside of a message board argument.


One thing that all of the blogs and the majority of the survivalist messag…