Essential Checklist for Emergency Preparedness & Outdoor Adventure Planning – Including Vehicle Preparedness – Latest Update

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By Denis Korn                                                                                                                    emergency_preparedness1

NOTE:  The demand for the information given in this list has been significant – so I am posting it again with additional comments and items.  I have decided to keep adding comments under selected items on a continuing basis – so you may want to periodically check back at this post for new comments.  There are listed both convenient and essential items required for proper preparedness & adventure.  Only you know your unique situations and anticipated scenarios – prepare accordingly.

Many of the items listed in this checklist are available at our product website PrepareDirect.  We will be adding new items and categories continually so please visit us.

 

This exceptionally comprehensive essential checklist for emergency preparedness should be a crucial assist in your emergency, survival and outdoor adventure planning – study it carefully! It is one of the most (if not the most) comprehensive lists available – thankfully copied by many.

For most people planning for emergencies is similar to planning for a camping trip or any other outdoor adventure where the normal conveniences of home are not available. The biggest difference is determining whether to plan for being away from home or in your own residence – or perhaps both. The equipment to include in your emergency kit or camping supplies list will be very comparable. Differences and variations will generally depend upon the severity and length of time you anticipate for your emergency scenario. Long term emergencies and outdoor explorations will require, in addition to this list, more extensive planning and provisioning.

Important questions to answer as you do your planning: 

  • Are the equipment and supplies necessary to fulfill your needs going to be based on how cheap they are, or on the quality, value, and reliability of the product?
  • What are the repercussions or benefits from the choices that are made?
  • Who is affected?
  • What chances are you willing to take with inferior and inadequate provisions?
  • What will the climate be during the emergency or adventure – weather and political?
  • What is the probable availability of essential goods and services at the location where you are or where you are going for your adventure or during your anticipated emergency?

Although this list is an authoritative and comprehensive compilation of crucial supplies for emergency preparedness and outdoor adventure, these suggestions focus on basic necessities, and are not intended to be an exhaustive and detailed list of all choices, as each person or group has their own special requirements and needs. While there are numerous options to choose from in each category, use this guideline of essentials to ensure you have evaluated all the possibilities given the scenarios and circumstances for which you are preparing and provisioning, whether for preparedness planning or outdoor adventuring.

Your comfort, enjoyment and life may depend upon it!

Be clear about the time factors, persons involved, and situations that you anticipate will occur in an emergency or an outdoor experience. Knowing this information is crucial to stocking the appropriate items in the appropriate quantities. Many of these items will be essential for bartering if supplies are exhausted and the emergency you are preparing for is long term.

Proper provisioning is about safety, health, protection, comfort, and peace of mind – for not only you, but also your family and friends.

Items with an asterisk * are recommended for a “grab-and-go bag” or “bug out bag.” This is an easily accessible bag you keep near by to grab when you only have a moments notice to evacuate. Items with a double asterisk ** indicates items for your bag whose quantity will depend on the length of your anticipated emergency scenario. You may require more than one quick-grab-bag depending on your specific needs.

As a complement to this checklist I highly recommend answering the questions in: The 12 Crucial Questions of Preparedness Planning article.

THE LIST

 

  1. Carrier for Provisions

If you anticipate having to relocate, have your transportable supplies in one or two easily accessible carriers, especially if you must leave in a hurry.

  • *Backpack
  • *Large duffel/canvass bag with duel shoulder straps in case it has to be carried for some distance
  • Lightweight suitcase/sturdy container/Food and Supply Brick™
  • Wheeled device
  1. Water

An obvious necessity for everyone. Know what water sources are available to you during an emergency, or in the outdoors. Plan accordingly and don’t hold back preparing for this essential category. Don’t go cheap!

  • *Gravity/hand pump water purifier/filter/extra cartridges/straw filters
  • *Bottle purifier/filter
  • *Purification tablets – Chlorine Dioxide/iodine
  • *Separate containers for dirty and treated water
  • Multiple containers depending upon situation
  • WaterBricks™ water container
  • Camelback™ & bladder type containers
  • **Specially packaged water (5+ years storage life), Aqua Blox®
  • **Bottled water (2 years storage life) – can be filtered or treated if older
  • Solar or stove top distillers
  • Survival Still® non-electric portable distiller
  • Desalinators for salt water
  • Reverse osmosis purifiers
  • UV purifiers
  • Additives – colloidal silver/bio-active silver hydrosol/stabilized oxygen/BioFilm drops
  • Chlorine (5.25 % sodium hypochlorite, non-scented only with no additives – 6 drops per gallon)
  • Manual pump if near a well
  • Water gathering supplies – plastic tarps/containers/instructions
  • Water stored in your own containers – large and small
  1. Food

Numerous options are available. This category must be accessed carefully depending upon the length of time of the emergency or outing, and severity of circumstances you anticipate might occur. Remember, certain foods will require more water and fuel to prepare – is this appropriate to your anticipated situation? Would you store foods for an emergency that you would not normally want to eat? Foods should be shelf stable and easy to prepare. Consider nutrient dense foods not empty calorie foods. When considering whole grains, seeds, legumes and beans don’t forget sprouting.

NOTE: Many newer food companies are promoting their pouched foods to have a 25 year plus shelf life – beware! Many of these food companies market their foods as “survival” foods – they are just that – eaten to survive only – their quality, packaging and shelf stability is questionable. Would you store foods for an emergency that you would not normally want to eat?

  • **Bars/energy bars/trail mix/food tablets
  • **Other eat-as-is simple and nutritional compact/nutritionally dense foods
  • **Freeze-dried/dehydrated from established companies in pouches, cans or bulk – numerous varieties available
  • Canned – wet pack
  • **Retort wet-pack pouches/trays/self-heating meals
  • **MRE’s (Meals-Ready-To-Eat) – military specs (These military designed rations were developed for troops to be eaten for no longer than one month at a time – they are not appropriate for exclusive long term consumption)
  • Boxed – eat as is/mixes/individual items
  • Baking soda (numerous uses)
  • Non-perishable basics
  • Powdered items – milk/cheese/whey/vegetables/fruits
  • Wild foods/foraging – get a good illustrated guide
  • Bulk commodities – Rice (brown rice has a short – 6 months – shelf life), grains, seeds, honey, beans (smaller grains and beans are good for sprouting and cook quicker with less water)
  • Bulk freeze-dried, dehydrated, air dried, instant, just-add-water, powders – fruits, vegetables, beans, pasta, oats
  • **Ready-to-eat comfort and nutritional foods
  • Garden seeds if appropriate – longer term scenarios – heirloom/organic (You will find many who promote storing garden seeds. You must research the shelf life, storage conditions and germination viability of the different varieties you are storing – they vary considerably.       Garden seeds alone are inadequate without tools, gardening knowledge, the ability to remain in place and of course water. In the long term emergency situation where survival depends on growing your own food, significant planning is vital.)
  • Supplements – vitamins/minerals/powdered green drinks/energy formulations
  • **Concentrated energy powders/bars/tablets
  • Condiments/seasoning blends/salt/coffee/tea/bullion/sweeteners (as natural as possible such as stevia and coconut sugar)
  • Gravy – dry mix or canned (can be added to bland foods for flavor)
  • Cooking oil (olive oil in a steel container has a decent shelf life – avoid hydrogenated oils containing trans-fat)
  • **Special needs foods – Those with food intolerance’s/nursing mothers/children/medical conditions
  • Baby foods
  • Red wine
  • Freeze-dried meats
  • Tuna fish in oil/sardines – high protein and long shelf life
  • **Cooking/heating required for the foods you have in your grab-and-go bag?
  1. Food Preparation

If you must relocate and plan on cooking or heating water, consider lighter weight and efficient equipment.

  • **Stove – camping/alternative/very portable/Kelly Kettle®
  • **Pots and pans – stainless steel/cast iron/non-stick – avoid aluminum
  • **Utensils
  • Pressure cooker
  • **Cookware kit
  • Grills
  • **Fuel – propane canisters/butane canisters/white gas/alcohol/wood/solid fuel cubes/charcoal/kerosene/lighter fluid
  • *Water/food bottle
  • *Hand operated can opener/opener on knife or multi-tool/P38 (for all of us military folks)
  • 5 or 6 gallon plastic buckets
  • FoodBricks™ – from WaterBrick™ company
  • Cleaning supplies
  • Chlorine bleach – non scented
  • *Plastic bags/containers
  • Cheese cloth
  • Thermos for “prepare in container” whole and cracked cereals (Add about a 1:1 ratio of boiling water and cereal –       mix in dried fruit, nuts and sweetener if desired – close container tight – let sit a few hours or overnight.)
  • Knife sharpener
  • “Package-you-own” equipment and supplies
  • Solar oven with cookware/GoSun Solar Stove/All American Sun Oven (both units will also purify water)
  • Manual grain mills/grinders/juicers/mixers/beaters
  • Sprouting equipment – portable and/or stationary/sprouting jars
  • Canning equipment if appropriate
  • Twist-ties
  • Corkscrew/bottle opener
  • Paper plates/bowls/cups/towels
  • Coffee filters – has multiple filtering uses
  • Small storage containers
  • Aluminum foil
  1. Fire Starter – Matches

Be prepared for any situation and the possible need to start a fire, especially if weather conditions are severe.

  • *Flint/magnesium starters
  • **Waterproof tinder/very fine steel wool/products designed to start fires in adverse conditions
  • **Windproof high quality lighters/disposable Bic type lighters
  • **Matches in a waterproof container/storm proof matches
  • Magnifying glass
  1. Medical

When your health and survival during a medical emergency is at stake, you don’t want to rely on cheap or inadequate medical supplies. This is an important category to thoughtfully evaluate. Don’t forget medications or products needed for those with special medical conditions.

  • *Quality kit with adequate components for a multitude of emergencies
  • *Accessories – dental emergencies/suture kit/snake bite kit – instructions/tweezers/safety razor blades/cotton balls/scissors/safety pins/tick removal
  • Syrup of Ipecac (to induce vomiting if poisoned)
  • *Essential prescription medications/allergy medications/birth control
  • *First Aid manual
  • *Insect repellant (non DEET recommended)
  • *Sunscreen/lip balm
  • *Eyeglasses/sunglasses/contacts/repair kit
  • *Copies of prescriptions
  • *Foot care/moleskin/blister pads
  • Aspirin/Tylenol/ibuprofen/other over the counter drugs for minor issues/antibiotics
  • Homeopathic remedies
  • Colloidal Silver – internal/external – gel
  • Herbal kits/aloe vera
  • Dust masks/gas masks
  • Potassium Iodate (Iodate is recommended over Iodide)
  • Isopropyl alcohol/rubbing alcohol
  • Anti-itch salve
  • Medications for head lice
  • Ear plugs (it could get noisy at night)
  • Quik Clot® (stops bleeding)
  • Baking soda/hydrogen peroxide
  • Tourniquet
  • Thermometer
  • Latex gloves/Nitrile – latex free gloves
  1. Personal Hygiene – Sanitary Supplies  

Depending on individual circumstances and your location, it is vital to prevent any problems that might arise from unsanitary conditions. Take precautions to ensure a disease free environment. The length of an emergency and living/camping conditions require different approaches to personal hygiene.

  • **Personal hygiene items – soap/toothbrush/toothpaste/shampoo/deodorant/hair brush/comb/dental floss (multiple uses)
  • **Feminine hygiene
  • **Treated towelettes/waterless wipes
  • **Sanitary toilet provisions – portable toilet/powered chlorinates or lime/disposable urinals – solid waste bags
  • *Plastic bags
  • Latex gloves/nitrile – latex free gloves
  • **Toilet Paper
  • Towels
  • Solar shower
  • *All purpose soap/cleaning agents
  • *Anti-bacterial sanitizer
  • Kleenex
  • *Nail clippers
  • Lime/disinfectant/bleach
  • Cloth diapers (multiple uses)
  • Small shovel
  1. Clothing

For warmth, comfort, and protection from insects and the elements.

  • *Proper and adequate clothing for the appropriate season and location
  • *Appropriate shoes/socks/boots/snow shoes/extra laces
  • *Rain gear/poncho/rubberized boots
  • *Cold weather gear – coats/layered clothing/thermal underwear
  • *Hat/gloves/bandana
  • Extra stuff sacks
  • Insect head net
  • Belts – regular/military type with small pouches
  1. Shelter – Warmth

For protection from insects and the elements, warmth, sleeping, comfort, privacy.

  • *Tarps
  • Plastic sheeting/large plastic trash bags
  • *Tent – *tube/*lightweight/regular
  • Shelter building material
  • Nylon patch repair kit/seam sealer
  • *Sleeping bag – *emergency/*lightweight/*bivy bag (small individual size tent/bag)/compact lightweight/regular down bag
  • Sleeping pad/cot/air mattress
  • Hammock
  • *Emergency blankets
  • Regular blankets
  • Sheets
  • Hand/body warmers
  • Insect netting
  • Extra stakes/rope/bungee cords
  • Umbrella

  10. Communication

It is essential to be kept informed during an emergency with friends, family, and appropriate governmental agencies and emergency organizations. When in an outdoor environment, unsettled weather considerations necessitate weather alert radios. Avoid a sense of isolation during serious emergencies.

  • *Radios – hand cranked/solar/batteries
  • Two-way radios
  • Short wave/CB (citizens band)/GMRS (general mobile radio service)/FRS (family radio service)/VHF (very high frequency) radios
  • Ham radio for radio amateurs – need license to transmit and/or radio with Ham frequencies for listening
  • Radios with NOAA (government agency) weather channels (7) and weather alerts if necessary in your area
  • *Cell phones/smart phones/charger
  • Satellite phones
  • *Whistle
  • *Signaling devices/flares/mirror
  • *Notebook/pen – regular & space pen that will write in any weather and position/markers/waterproof paper
  • PLB (personal locator beacon)
  • Small TV – battery/solar operated
  • Telephone not requiring external power
  • Morse code chart

11. Lighting

This is an essential category to address when anticipating any situation where you may be in darkness. Not only for a sense of security and comfort, but to be able to see clearly and act accordingly if emergencies happen in the dark.

  • *Flashlight – hand cranked/solar/batteries/LED and regular bulbs
  • *Lantern (*small or large size) – hand cranked/solar/batteries/propane/mantel/ candle/LED and regular bulbs
  • Oil lamps – kerosene/clear lamp oil/wicks
  • Strobe light
  • *Head Lamp
  • **Extra batteries/power source
  • **Candles
  • Extra mantels/extra propane canisters
  • Light sticks
  • Solar charger for charging rechargeable batteries

12. Tools – Instruments – Accessories

Numerous unforeseen situations or just routine conditions occur during an emergency or during an outdoor adventure. Be prepared and secure with the proper quality tool.

  • *Knife/knives/knife maintenance/sharpener
  • *Multi-tool/Swiss Army knife
  • *Navigation/compass/GPS device
  • Repair tools – hammer/screwdrivers/pliers/wire cutters/nails/screws/nuts & bolts/crowbar/spikes/pulley
  • Repair Kits
  • *Axe (*small or large)/saw (*hand controlled chain or special outdoor)/hacksaw/wood splitting/wedges
  • *Rope/wire/bungee cords/straps/paracord/heavy cordage/cable ties
  • *JB Weld/super adhesive/superglue/epoxy
  • Goo remover
  • Lubricating oil/WD-40®
  • Chain
  • Padlocks
  • *Work gloves
  • Shovel/multi-purpose folding shovel
  • Garden tools if appropriate
  • Fishing/hunting/trapping gear/Ronco Pocket Fisherman®/snare wire
  • *Duct tape/Hurricane tape/nylon repair tape/patches
  • *Plastic bags/trash bags/plastic sheeting
  • *Aluminum foil
  • *Sewing and repair supplies
  • Velcro
  • Safety goggles
  • Weather condition instruments/thermometer
  • *Watch – regular/multi-featured
  • Binoculars
  • Stuff bags for organizing
  • Scissors
  • Rubber bands
  • Small broom/rake
  • Buckets
  • Files
  • Clothes pins
  • Dust/gas masks
  • *Siphoning tube/hose
  • Hand pump
  • *Auto/bicycle/boat emergency items (keep in vehicle)
  • Can of red spray paint to indicate emergency information
  • Shut-off tool for gas/water supply
  • Tool for braking auto glass and cutting seat belts/webbing
  • Fuel – gasoline/diesel/kerosene/propane
  • Fuel stabilizer
  • Fire extinguisher

         13. Emergency Instructions – Guidance – Support – Back up – Personal Documents

Important and accurate information can not only be helpful it can be life saving. Researching reliable and trustworthy information sources is a vital component to preparedness and outdoor survival planning. Establishing family communication and reunion plans is also essential for security and peace of mind. Certain documents should always be available.

  • Books/*Bible/novels
  • Morale builders – personal items that help children and adults cope in stressful situations
  • *Medical information
  • *Emergency/survival information
  • *Manuals appropriate for equipment you have
  • *Maps
  • *Pen/magic marker/paper/chalk
  • *Compass
  • Edible wild foods publications/field guides
  • *Essential personal documents – photo ID/will/insurance/stocks/bonds/birth certificates/DD214/bank account & credit card numbers/family records/personal property inventory for insurance/deeds/pink slips/passports/ Social Security cards/check books/credit and debit cards/irreplaceable photographs and certificates – IN WATERPROOF CONTAINER
  • *Phone numbers and addresses of friends, relatives, and emergency organizations/agencies
  • *Spare keys
  • *Instructions on meeting and/or communicating with family and/or friends during or after an emergency
  • Duel language dictionary if appropriate
  • Solar calculator
  • Back-up computer discs/flash drives
  • Laptop/iPad/tablets/PDA’s/mp3-4 players
  • *Entertainment – music/instruments/cards/games

14. Power – Energy

A reliable power supply can be crucial in an emergency or for various outdoor recreational activities. Many valuable communication, radio, entertainment and lighting devices require power. Currently there are a number of dependable portable solar (large and small), storage, and hand operated units available to power your electronic devices.

  • *For power – a small portable solar charger for electronics and rechargeable batteries
  • For lighting
  • For radios
  • For electronic devices
  • For communication
  • *Hand cranked radios and lanterns with USB charger & power cords
  • Solar/storage/hand cranked power devices – fuel free portable power/small power packs
  • Solar panels
  • Generator – gas/propane/back up fuel
  • Appropriate linking cables
  • *Batteries of all sizes – alkaline/rechargeable
  • *Battery charger – wall/car/solar
  • Deep cycle battery
  • Inverter

15. Cash

It is impossible to know for certain what circumstances might exist during a serious emergency and for what duration normal financial activities will be disrupted. Access to electronic funds or use of credit cards may not be possible. Cash or barter may be the only means of paying for goods or services.

  • *Cash in smaller denomination bills
  • Gold/silver coins
  • Smaller items for barter
  • *Credit/debit cards

16. Personal Security

Each individual must decide the extent to which they will provide protection for themselves and their families from physical harm by others or wild animals. Don’t forget fire safety.

  • Weapons/ammunition/gun cleaning supplies/bow hunting supplies – If you have firearms make sure all those who might use them are properly trained
  • Tazer
  • Mace
  • Pepper Spray
  • Bear repellant
  • Sling shot
  • Clubs/bats
  • Fire extinguisher
  • Large dog

17. Special Needs

This category must not be overlooked if you, other family members, or friends have specials needs and require individual attention.

  • **Personal items specifically required by special needs individuals
  • **Medical items and prescriptions – consider having an adequate supply on hand in the event of a unforeseen and prolonged emergency
  • **Special foods or other items for children/elderly/disabled/nursing mothers
  • *Children’s items for comfort and a sense of security – blankets/dolls/toys/diapers/pacifiers
  • **Pet needs

18. Transportation Support

An often overlooked category, specific transportation support must be assessed especially for longer duration emergencies or for outdoor activities where the transportation devices are critical. Evaluate these options, determine which ones you will utilize, determine what you will need to ensure safety, comfort, repair potential, and adequacy to handle the transportation of your provisions.

  • Motor Vehicle – car/truck/van/RV/motorcycle/extra gas/repair and emergency equipment/trailer
  • Boat – motorized/sail/canoe/kayak/paddle/inflatable/folding
  • Scooter – gas/electric/solar
  • Bicycle – regular/folding – repair parts/tire pump – special towing cart/small gas engine
  • Horse
  • By foot
  • Wagon/garden cart/wheel barrow – for manual needs

Emergency Preparedness Items for Automobiles – Trucks – Vans – RV’s

These items are especially important for long trips, family outings, new younger drivers, inclement weather, remote areas and at night.

  • Spare tire
  • Jack with tire iron and supporting tools
  • Device to break window and cut seat belts from the inside in an emergency
  • Tire inflation device – portable power and/or aerosol can inflator/other tire repair materials
  • JB Weld®/super adhesive
  • Jumper cables
  • Portable power unit for jump starting and backup power
  • Tow cables/rope
  • Chains/cables/bungee cords for tightening
  • Crowbar
  • Reflectors/flares
  • Hidden spare key
  • Extra oil
  • Extra gas/funnel if appropriate
  • Siphon hose
  • Extra fan belts/bulbs/hoses/additives/sealers/hard to get parts/repair kit
  • Window scraper
  • Important phone numbers/documents/insurance information
  • GPS device if appropriate
  • Empty gas can
  • Material to gain traction if stuck in snow or ice – cat liter/sand/wood shavings/old rug

Additional critical items from the above Essential Checklist to carry in your vehicle:

  • Tarps
  • Blankets/emergency sleeping bag
  • First Aid kit
  • Baby supplies
  • Food and water/water purification/containers if appropriate
  • Maps
  • Pen/magic marker/paper
  • Personal documents and photo ID/registration/insurance
  • Gloves
  • Duct tape
  • Rope/wire
  • Repair tools
  • Plastic bags large and small
  • Cell phone/smart phone/charger
  • Emergency radio/hand crank radio
  • Emergency lighting
  • Rope/wire/bungees
  • Small solar/12 volt power packs for small electronics
  • Cash/credit card
  • Extra clothing in harsh and/or wet weather/hat
  • Hand/body warmers
  • Rain gear/rubber boots/poncho
  • Knife/multi-tool
  • Whistle
  • Toilet paper
  • Towels
  • Shovel
  • Small fire extinguisher
  • Matches/fire starter
  • Extra batteries
  • Personal protection devices or items as appropriate/pepper spray                                                                                                                                      
  • Refer to the Essential Checklist for other items relevant to your vehicles specific needs.

Reproduction of this important Checklist for other media is granted if Denis Korn and Learn To Prepare is appropriately credited

The post Essential Checklist for Emergency Preparedness & Outdoor Adventure Planning – Including Vehicle Preparedness – Latest Update appeared first on Learn To Prepare – Expert Emergency Preparedness Information.

INFLATABLE SOLAR LANTERN

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LUCI Solar Lantern

 Ok, seriously this is what would be classified as AWESOMENESS!!

Imagine a product that is very lightweight, compact, safe, does not need any batteries, pretty powerful and  very cheap to buy.

What else can you ask better in a product? This thing has tons of uses when it comes to the outdoors and emergencies. Let me present to you…. LUCI.

Inflatable Solar Lantern - Luci   Inflatable Solar Lantern - Luci

Inflatable Solar Lantern - Luci

Inflatable Solar Lantern - Luci

GOOD ENERGY!

At MPOWERD, we develop and manufacture game-changing micro-solar energy products for use by people living and playing on and off the grid. Our award-winning Luci® family of patented inflatable solar lanterns is infinitely versatile.

Inflatable Solar Lantern - LuciInflatable Solar Lantern - Luci

MORE CONVENIENT AND SUSTAINABLE THAN FLASH LIGHTS! SAFER AND BRIGHTER THAN CANDLES AND KEROSENE LANTERNS!

Fully waterproof and shatterproof, with a built-in rechargeable battery, all-in-one Luci lanterns hold a charge for up to 12 hours and stay bright all night. Perfect for camping, boating or hiking; emergency breakdowns, power outages or hurricanes; home décor, weddings or celebrations, Luci is ready for anything – anytime, anywhere, any weather.

  • Inflatable
  • Lightweight
  • Affordable
  • Rechargeable
  • Waterproof
  • Shatterproof
  • Portable
  • Versatile
  • Stylish
  • All-in-one
  • Eco friendly

65 LUMENS

WEIGHT 4 OZ

10 FT LIGHTING AREA

3 SETTINGS (BRIGHT, SUPER BRIGHT, FLASHING)

8 HOURS FULL CHARGE TIME

12 HRS MAX LIGHT ON BRIGHT SETTING

HEIGHT WHEN INFLATED (ABOUT 4.5″)

5″ IN CIRCUMFERENCE

Inflatable Solar Lantern - LuciInflatable Solar Lantern - LuciInflatable Solar Lantern - Luci

Other Blog that may Interest You:   Solar Radio

 

Women’s Shooting Self-Defense & Target

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One For the Ladies – Women’s Shooting Self-Defense & Target
By GunsmithG
First of all, I’d like to thank Elaine for suggesting this, for the new female target and self defense shooters.
As I started gathering information for this article, I was surprised by the changing demographic of people becoming involved with the shooting sports, for target, pleasure, and self defense.
In target shooting

The Ultimate Secret to Preparedness

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A while back, my family and I were at a cookout at a friends house. Also attending were several couples that I’d never met before. After the festivities started to wind down, one of the new acquaintances mentioned my website, catching me off guard. I was well aware that my friends that were hosting knew […]

Engaging with Facebook

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likes

This past week, I had the opportunity to chat with a community group who wanted to learn more about how to spread its message on Facebook.

And, for most emergency situations, we don’t ever worry about how to spread our messages because people actively crave information during times of crisis.

This means that good information about emergency responses spreads quickly, but how does one spread messages on Facebook when there isn’t an active emergency?  What about those public education campaigns about preparedness? Do you ever feel frustrated that your non-emergency messages aren’t seeming to get much traction?

Let’s chat about a few ways to ensure that your messages will reach as many people as possible.

First and foremost, if you are administering a “fan page” on Facebook, spend some time building your Facebook community.

  • If you have employees or volunteers to your agency, ask them to follow your Facebook page. Be sure that those you work with most closely know that you are actively sharing key information on Facebook.
  • If you follow or “like” a Facebook page, spend a few minutes to invite your Facebook friends to also “like” the page.  In the left hand side of any Facebook page, you’ll see an option that says “Invite Your Friends to like this page”

Then, as a follower of a page, there are 4 basic actions that you can take:

  1. You can “like” the posts of a page.  This important because when you like content on Facebook, it will show up in the activity column that shows up on the right hand side of your desktop view of Facebook.  Friends are often snoopy and may click on your actions to see what you are liking.
  2. You can comment on posts of the page.  Comment also show up in both the news feeds and activity column, thus sharing your activity even broader than just “liking” content.
  3. You can “click-through” to the articles and links posted by the page.  This is important because Facebook is actively calculating whether or not the links being shared by the page are interesting to its followers. Because Facebook is actively trying to weed out spam, it is looking for pages that getting likes, but may not be posting quality content.
  4. You can “share” posts by the page you are following. By sharing interesting posts to your friends, you broaden the reach of an initial post.  When you click the “share” button, look at who you are sharing the content with.  To the left of the “cancel” button on the share window, it may say “Friends.”  Change this to “public” so that not only your friends see the content, but friends of friends see the content.  This allows your posts to have a much broader reach than just your friends.

The other important thing to consider is that these 4 actions don’t have to be done all at once. If you are participating in a public education or messaging campaign, mix it up a little. Choose to do these actions at different times of the day.

Behavioral research suggests that posting on Facebook between 3p-7p is a popular time to share information AND towards the end of the week is more active than the beginning part of a week.

If you are an administrator of a public page, you can also schedule posts by clicking on the little clock at the bottom of your posting window. This can be important if you are targeting your audience during the more popular hours of the day to engage.

The other important thing to consider when engaging with Facebook is to make your content interesting. You essentially only have 1-2 seconds to engage with people who are actively scrolling down their Facebook feeds.

Video and images are generally much more popular than word. Keep the videos as short as possible and make your images interesting.  It is no secret that pictures of pets, food and travel are some of the most popular images on Facebook. Why is this? Images of these items are specifically not divisive. Content that is religious or political items will directly divide your audience in ways that you might ultimately regret.

Have fun with your campaigns and encourage your community to actively participate so that your messages can be heard and seen throughout Facebook.

What Else Can You Char? Beyond Char Cloth Experiment

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What Else Can You Char? Beyond Char Cloth Experiment When it comes to charring materials into tinder, cotton, wool and puck wood work extremely well But that’s a very limited amount of materials. Sometimes it may not be viable to rip apart our t-shirts and sometimes we can’t find punk wood. So, what else can […]

The post What Else Can You Char? Beyond Char Cloth Experiment appeared first on SHTF DAD.

How To Make And Start A Fire With Flint & Steel

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How To Make And Start A Fire With Flint & Steel Some may consider starting fire with flint-and-steel to be an advanced skill, used only by the wise old sages and mountain men but that’s not true, it’s incredibly easy; even my grandma could do it. So, what is it? And how do we use it? […]

The post How To Make And Start A Fire With Flint & Steel appeared first on SHTF DAD.

Keep pics of your pups…and kitties!

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No one likes to think about it, but it’s quite possible that after a disaster, you’ll be separated from your beloved furry and/or feathered friends. In addition to having your companion animals microchipped, keep a recent photo of them in your wallet or smartphone. It’ll make it that much easier to be reunited…just in case.

DIY RV Project – Exterior Utilities Hook-up Light

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Many times you will find yourself trying to hook up the utilities to your RV at dark thirty. Installing an exterior light on your RV will make the task a lot simpler. It doesn’t matter if you are boondocking or hooking up to a park space. You may find yourself in the dark and fumbling around with a flashlight. An exterior light will leave your hands free to make the process of getting things hooked up a lot easier.

Using a $10 light from the local tractor supply outlet and about 8 feet of two strand 12 volt wire is all you need to accomplish this RV mod. The cover for the power cord was removed and a wire was run from the 12 volt connections inside the RV.  A small hole was then made in the side of the RV for the wire after a suitable location for the light was determined. A piece of coat hanger wire was then snaked behind the siding of the RV until it came out at the side of the electrical cord cover opening. The wire was then hooked to the 12 volt electrical wire and pulled through the hole. It was then a simple process of hooking the wires to the light and mounting the base plate to the side of the RV and installing the light cover.

The light included an on/off switch and the cover was mounted with the switch in the down position. Even though the switch was water resistant, mounting it where it was on the bottom helps avoid rain hitting it directly.

It’s a quick and simple RV mod that can be done in less than an hour.

Got RV mod?

Staying above the water line!

Riverwalker

Rule Of Threes

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In survival training, many instructors refer to the “Rule of Threes”.
 
Here they are, as taught to me by Hank, of Green Earth Survival School:
 
3 minutes without air
3 hours without shelter
3 days without water
3 weeks without food
Please note that the second one, Shelter, is not normally included, but for survival reasons, SHOULD be. While it […]

How To Keep Communicating Even When the Internet Stops

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How To Keep Communicating Even When the Internet Stops These days, no popular movement goes without an Internet presence of some kind, whether it’s organizing on Facebook or spreading the word through Twitter. And as we’ve seen in Egypt, that means that your Internet connection can be the first to go. Whether you’re trying to check […]

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What Was Your Preparedness Aha?

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Today’s prepisode is a simple question, “What was your preparedness aha?” You know exactly what I’m talking about–that moment where you actually realized that it’s a good idea to be prepared for disasters. Our preparedness ahas come in different forms. To some of us, it’s a natural disaster. To others,  a riot. Some preppers began […]

The post What Was Your Preparedness Aha? appeared first on THE DAILY PREP.

Apricot Harvest: Trying To Make The Most of It

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Today’s prepisode about our apricot harvest is actually from The Daily Prep archives–footage that was shot a while back but never posted. So here’s what happened guys: Since we moved into our new house early last spring, we have been working on things, fixing things up, buying stuff, and being parents. While all this is […]

The post Apricot Harvest: Trying To Make The Most of It appeared first on THE DAILY PREP.

Is that duct tape in your pocket?

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Duct Tape: is there nothing it can’t do??

But who wants to carry around a big ol’ roll of it on their person, let alone in their already-bulky emergency kit?

For a clever way to store this handy “tool,” just wrap a strip of it around something, then unspool as needed. That “something” can be as thin as an old credit card, or even an empty tube of lip balm! Get creative!

Portable Kitchen Sink

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Outdoor Kitchen Sink

Water is very important… we all know that. But how to carry it from the water source back to camp has always been a puzzle to me. Whether it be for washing dishes, for hygiene, for cooking, or even putting out your fire, a container is important.

portable camping kitchen sinkportable camping kitchen sink

There are many different types of water containers that you could bring depending on where you are going. I think that this one is worth sharing! I actually spotted this a while ago and finally got it.

Mike & I recently camped overnight and it was the perfect moment to try my new gear. The KITCHEN SINK! It contains 5 litres of water. They also exist in 10 & 20 litres as well. portable camping kitchen sink

This gear is superlight. It opens up pretty wide and doesn’t fold/tip over. I filled it up with water and sat beside the campfire and it stayed there all night ready to be used the following morning.

I had fun using it last night to hold and wash my vegetables for cooking then went back to the creek to get some water as a reserve just in case I need more water for my beef stew!  portable camping kitchen sink

Of course you could wash your utensils and dishes but please try using a biodegradable soap.

Measurements:

Top Opening 8 inches

Bottom 10 inches

Height 5 inches

It comes with a small round pouch (4.5”) in diameter and (1.5”) in thickness, super handy, compact, and lightweight. I also like the mark “LEAVE NO TRACE” at the bottom of the sink.

Once the sink is open it may look complicated to put it back in the pouch, but it`s not. Just look on the bottom side of the pouch and it tells how to quickly fold it back into place. Just make three circle folds then put it back into its pouch. portable camping kitchen sink

Actually it can be used as a hat as well just in case someone really needs it! It covered both my ears pretty good and part of the back neck when it got chilly last night. portable camping kitchen sink

I think that this is a very cool product. I should have brought it with me when I picked up some wild blueberries on the trail a while back.

I can’t wait to use it again!

Sorry folks, been so busy lately but we are working on getting more blogs into the website. Thank you for your patience and we always appreciate your time looking around.

If you have any questions, just write them below and I will be glad to answer them for you. I have also left a link for you where you may be able to purchase this wonderful KITCHEN SINK if you are interested.

Have fun and stay safe on the trail! Remember… Leave No Trace. :)

Josie

Get Home Bag

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Get Home Bag: While sometimes confused with a Bug Out Bag, a Get Home Bag is put together with a much different objective. Bug Out Bags (BOB) are generally relatively large backpack based survival kits that are designed to sustain the user for up to three days; because of their large size, and variety of gear such as tents, saws, cooking equipment and so forth these bags are somethimes kept at home.

Bugging Out vs. Hunkering Down

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What Would You Do In a Bug Out vs. Hunker Down Emergency Situation?

Bugging Out vs. Hunkering DownThe idea of Bugging Out vs. Hunkering Down in an emergency situation is never cut and dry in our opinion.  The type of situation, your preparedness and your location would really determine which is the best logical choice.  Bugging Out is the idea of leaving your home and heading to a more remote location in a catastrophic emergency.  Hunkering down is the idea of staying put in your home or in the home of friends or family members during a catastrophic emergency.

Bugging Out vs. Hunkering DownBoth have their risk – reward and could spell disaster (no pun intended) if you make your decision based on fear.  If you have young children that could be a game changer as well and the idea of hunkering down in the middle of a big city. That  might be a dangerous place to be at the same time.

So what is the best option you might ask?  Our friends over at the survivalistblog.com have given us some things to really consider if a catstrophic event were to happen.  The key is preparation regardless of your choice, using logic and not fear to make your decision, and to weigh your options per emergency scenario instead of a blanket decision for all scenarios.

For more information read their article Bugging Out vs. Hunkering Down by M.D. Creekmore

So what are you prepared to do?  We want to know, so please leave a comment and tell us your thoughts on this topic.

Make sure to like and follow us on Facebook

Thanks for stopping by,

Jeff “The Berkey Guy”

 

The post Bugging Out vs. Hunkering Down appeared first on LPC Survival.

Saiga 12 Afterthoughts

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I purchased a Saiga 12 about a year ago and decided I would test it out in a variety of ways that I found suitable for my primary home defense shotgun. The Saiga 12 is one of the sexiest shotguns I have ever seen, unfortunately that is all I have to say about the Saiga in a positive manner. There is not much out there in the market for magazine fed shotguns and you have to wonder if it’s for good reason. Why would I need a 20 round drum weighing 10lbs in any scenario that is realistic? If you need that much shotgun ammo you should have grabbed your rifle. This shotgun on average weighs in at 8.5lbs. Throw a 10 round magazine that is about a foot long and weighing about 3lbs and you have one heavy ass gun.

By now everyone reading this should know the basics of a Saiga 12, if not do some research and then read this, it will save you some time. In this nontraditional style review I will be comparing the

Saiga 12 to a Mossberg 500/590 as a common reference point. I decided to compare the Saiga 12 to the Mossberg 500/590 because they are what I feel is the standard to which every shotgun should be compared to. The Saiga has a few fatal flaws for me and yes most of these can be overcome with modifications to the gun. Keep in mind this review is on a factory Saiga 12, not a super modified aberration of this firearm. The only modifications that I did to this firearm are the addition of the

Carolina Shooters Supply reliability kit, a Polychoke muzzle brake, and some de-burring of the internal rails. If you decide to purchase a Saiga after reading this please follow these steps prior to purchase. Take off the gas plug, visually inspect the gas ports for sign of a “Vodka Special” meaning there is only 2 of the 4 gas ports that are required, if you have a 3 gas port gun and you can live with a possible issue then buy it, but by no means can I suggest that you buy a 2 gas port gun. Yes, you can have the 2 other holes drilled. But why? Buying a brand new gun should never require you to fix a known factory issue. Second item to look for is proper fit of the top cover (some can be a bitch to get on and off). When you are inspecting this gun prior to purchase be sure to disassemble it and inspect all moving parts including the internal rails, feel for burrs or deformities. If you have 4 gas ports, an easy to remove top cover and smooth rails you have a good Saiga. If any of these parts are not up to snuff I suggest waiting or buying a different shotgun. Where you live and the availability of this gun will influence the asking price for this gun drastically. Let’s just agree they are an expensive shotgun. Keep a running count of potential money you will be sinking into this firearm prior to purchase to achieve the end result you require. Let me know if it is a monetarily responsible purchase for your needs after reading. For the purpose of this review I am using the MSRP of $799.99. If you stop reading here and buy a Saiga 12, you have a shotgun that will run 3” magnum shells with relatively no issues and you might be happy with this, I was not. I had major feeding and ejecting issues that got me running to online gun forums to figure out what I can do to relieve myself of an issue that could be a disastrous if I was defending myself or home. Carolina Shooters Supply has an overwhelming amount of parts to maintain, replace, and modify your shotgun and they do a great job of explaining what may suit your needs best. I just went simple and got a reliability kit and went to a 5 position adjustable gas plug, a better functioning gas puck, and a low recoil spring. This kit took me about 3 minutes to install, it takes no skill to do so. This kit gave me the opportunity to now shoot high brass and low brass of most kinds 2 ¾” and 3” both ran decent and after some fine tuning I was satisfied. I went to the range for some fun with a state trooper I know and he brought along his Mossberg 590A1. First thing I noticed in comparison is the simplicity of design and function of the Mossberg. Economy of effort is big with me and the Saiga takes too many movements to get into action compared to the Mossberg.

 The reason for me getting rid of the Saiga is that you cannot have this gun in Condition 3. You cannot have this gun with a magazine inserted, bolt forward, safety on and no round in the chamber. When the bolt is forward it sits too low and does not allow for the magazine to be inserted and locked into place on this firearm in the factory configuration. The purpose of this shotgun for me was to be a home defense firearm and not having the option of a magazine inserted was not acceptable. Yes I could have the bolt locked to the rear and hope that it stays locked and nothing horrible will happen, but that is just not safe to do. I also could have left the gun in condition 1 with a round in the chamber but the downward pressure that the low sitting bolt puts on the rounds in the magazine starts to deform them over time and can lead to a malfunction. Again this is not acceptable to me.  A misfire or jammed round is not something we need to deal with in a serious scenario. Putting aside the life or death scenarios, this shotgun is some of the most fun you can have with your clothes on. You can modify the magwell to accept an AR15 style magazine operation, making the gun accommodating to Condition 3. You can move the trigger group and convert the gun to take anything from a side folding stock to a 6 position Ar15 collapsible stock. The aftermarket support for this gun is massive; you can go full retard quite quickly by adding a 30 round drum, full length quad rail, a door breaching barrel shroud, ambidextrous charging handles, rock n’ lock magazines etc. Try to keep in mind what your original reasoning for buying this was for in the first place. If you bought it just for 3 gun competitions or just some range fun then knock yourself out and modify it till the cows come home. But when you are done you could have bought yourself 5 Mossberg 500/590 pump shotguns or a high end Benelli M-4 semi auto. Sometimes we lose our way when trying to make our firearms reach their maximum potential. A shotgun will never be anything more than a heavy, low capacity, and short range firearm. Try not to become the person who tries to make their shotgun into an AR15; it’s not a good look.

I sold my Saiga and went back to basics; I replaced the Saiga for a Mossberg 500 Flex with XS Ghost-Ring Sights. I was issued a Mossberg 500 during my time in the military so I had a bit of familiarity with this firearm already. I took the Mossberg to the range and put it through the same tests as I did for the Saiga 12 at distances of 25-50 yds. I used 2 ¾ and 3” slugs to establish zero on both guns. The Mossberg was easier to acquire proper sight alignment and sight picture in 

comparison to the Saiga12.  I am no shotgun guru but I was able to shoot 6” groups at 25 yds. and I shot 8” groups at 50yds. In comparison on the Saiga I was able to get a 10” group at 25 yds. It was ugly at 50 yds. The rear sight on the Saiga is terrible; there is no method of elevation or windage adjustment on the Saiga. If your shotgun is like mine and is extremely off target you are stuck with that, just make a Kentucky windage adjustment and try to remember that when your life is on the line. You can again drop some more cash into an improved set of adjustable sights. This is again your call to keep throwing money at this gun or to cut your losses and go in a different direction like I did.

Bottom line is this; are you looking for something that is fun to shoot but could cost more money than the gun is worth on modifications to make it run reliable?  If you answered yes, the Saiga may be the perfect shotgun for you. On the other hand if your shotgun is for defending your life/property or tactical shooting, and you don’t want to spend all of your money on making it run as good as a gun that costs 1/3 of the price you initially paid, then maybe a shotgun such as a Mossberg 500/590 or a Remington 870 maybe is in your best interests.

Short summary on Saiga 12

                    Magazine fed.

                    Semi-automatic.

                    Threaded barrel for chokes, muzzle devices.

                    Fantastic aftermarket support.

                    Most mechanical problems can be fixed.

                    Fun factor is 10 out of 10 when working properly.

                    Factory sights are pure junk.

                    Will not make condition 3 in factory configuration.

                    Condition 1 configuration will warp shells in mag over time causing failure to fire.

                    Weighing in on average of 8.5lbs unloaded is heavier than most shotguns.

                    With magazine inserted this gun is awkward and not easy to maneuver with.

                    Factory configuration will not feed or eject 2 ¾ inch shells in a consistent manner.

                    Size of 8-10 round magazines are massive and are difficult to reload.

                    Storing extra magazines in your pockets or plate carrier is near impossible.

I left my AR for an AK

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WASR 10/63 in action
For the past 12 years I was a die hard AR fan boy, but was never a hater of the ultimate rival of my go to rifle. I just didn’t pay any attention to it, similar to an annoying younger sibling. After some extensive research and peer pressure by Olmsted Risk Solutions I decided to go to the dark side

and get an AK to give it a fair trial period, I mean what’s the worst that could happen? I was that guy who said “Sure it’s reliable and powerful, but you can’t hurt them if you can’t hit them!”


Yugo M70 pre beautification
I was fortunate to find a quality Yugo M70-B1 with the nice beefy receiver and the much desired magazine dimples on the receiver. Unfortunately it didn’t have original wooden handguards, it had a shitty UTG quad rail that just had to go in order for me to obtain the look I was going for with this rifle.

Almost complete
 I made it my duty to make this beauty look the part of a traditional AK that might be seen on a battlefield overseas. I first changed out the things that irritated me the most; I ordered a custom handguard set from Ronin’s Grips and added the US Palm AK Battle Grip. At this point the rifle started to look the way it should, I thought it best to add Krebs Custom safety (Not a must have, but they are nice) and Krebs retaining pin (A must for AK owners).
Krebs safety for a final touch

I had an easy decision to make after taking the AK to the range, replace and upgrade the piece of crap factory rear sight with the Rifle Dynamics rear sight in 800m option. At the conclusion of the second trip I was really happy with the rifle, so happy in fact that my AR started to get dusty.

AK #2 WASR 10/63









Let us put an end to this madness of bolting on useless heavy junk that has no real business being on an AK in the first place and start thinking about Function over Flair. Focus on the capabilities of this beast and enhance its strong points and avoid the temptation of trying to overcompensate for its shortcomings.

 In my humble opinion if you make the following changes you will have succeeded in achieving a lightweight and functional modern AK.


  • Tapco G2 trigger or Red Star Arms adjustable trigger (Only needed if you have trigger slap)

  • Krebs retaining plate

  • Rifle Dynamics AK to M-4 stock adapter

  • Milspec buffer tube, castle nut, and Magpul asap end plate

  • Adjustable stock that offers a solid cheek weld (B5 systems Bravo stock, Vltor E-mod, etc)

  • US Palm AK Battle Grip or Magpul MOE AK grip

  • UltiMak optic rail or Troy AK-47 gas tube rail

  • Rifle Dynamics rear sight (optional if using optic)

  • Bolton gas block if you have canted sights or canted gas block (armorer needed for this)

  • Muzzle brake (Too many good options to list, do some research)

RD venom antidote brake
This is the complete list of quality upgrades I find to be of most value. I am slowly chipping away at this list and am actually forgoing a few items on this list since I have a limited budget at this time. Proper cheek weld from a quality stock is top on my list followed up by a quality muzzle brake and optics rail/gas tube.

Before the AK vs AR debate begins do me a favor, write down how much you paid for your rifle and all of its accessories and then do the same for the opposing firearm. If you own an AR you most likely have 1200-3500 invested depending on optics and initial rifle cost. If you own an AK you may have 500-1200 invested. You can pick up an AK for the same price of 1000 rounds of 5.56 and the AK is .27 cents/round, that’s hard to beat if you like to shoot a bunch.

Finished product
WASR 10/63



When reliability comes in to conversation regarding the AK platform, even AKs can have issues. Luckily we have Rifle Dynamics on call for the unexpected hiccup. Check out what Lance with Olmsted Risk Solutionsdid with when his AK failed to feed reliably here.


Iraq 2003 I’m on the left with my first AR

















In conclusion, the AR has been a part of my life since 2002 and I will always love my AR, but adding an AK to your armory is a no-brainer when you consider how much it costs to own and shoot in comparison to the AR. The AR hands down is more accurate than the AK, but I’ll take the reliability of the AK that is a bit less accurate over the AR. Expanding your proficiency with multiple platforms is always something to keep in the back of your mind as well, the AK can be a bit quirky and definitely takes practice to get comfortable with.

For the “Can’t hurt em if you can’t hit em” people, I hit 8” steel at 250yds using my WASR with little difficulty, I am confident I could stretch this rifle to 350yds and still hold my head high with my groupings.


Do you even AK, Bro? If so how did you set yours up and why?  Share your AK pics to my page at Koufos Emergency Resource and let’s see what you got!


Stay fit and Keep that Warrior Mindset! 

Items a prepper should never throw away

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What are some items a prepper should never throw away

 Items a prepper should never throw awayIt’s National Preparedness month in September and you’ll see a lot of information about getting prepared and the types of things you should have on hand.  An important aspect of getting prepared should also include making the most out of the things you might already have on hand.

If we pay attention we would see that there are items a prepper should never throw away that we might need in an emergency.  What might that be?

For instance:

  1. Broken crayons, candle stubs, and any other form of paraffin wax can be used to make new candles, or along with other items to make fire starting tablets.
  2. Dryer lint can be used as tinder, or when combined with paraffin wax or petroleum jelly, to make fire starting tablets.
  3. Cardboard egg cartons can be used to sprout seeds or as the container for fire starting tablets.
  4. All types of wood. Lumber can be used for construction and scrap wood (not pressure treated) can be used as fuel and in hugal beds/permaculture.
  5. Water jugs/soda bottles can be used to store water, rice, beans, etc.

Read the entire list here >> 19 Things a Prepper Should Never Throw Away

 Over at how to survive it they point out that the  key is knowing what to keep and what to throw away. Otherwise, you go from being prepared to being a hoarder. That’s both inefficient and unhygienic.

We’d like to hear your thoughts. Are there other items you would add to this list?  Let us know by commenting below

Don’t forget to Follow Us on Facebook

Thanks,

Jeff “The Berkey Guy”

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ISIS Attack on Power Grid Could Kill 90% of Americans

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Imagine our cities with no power.  Now try to imagine how you could survive in that situation.

Imagine our cities with no power. Now try to imagine how you could survive in that situation.

The new Islamic terror group, ISIS or ISIL, is only slowly appearing on the radar screens of the mainstream media, and indeed is so fresh to the public eye that there isn’t even yet agreement on what to call it.  But if you cast around, you’ll see plenty of ‘buried’ news stories quoting senior military and political leaders who describe ISIS as now the most dangerous threat to the US and the West in general (most recently Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel).

If we take their desire to attack and harm the US at face value (and what possible reason would we have not to believe them when they say this) then the question becomes simply one of understanding what they might do, and when/how they might do it.  Well, yes, there’s another question too – how to stop them!  But that’s a question few people are asking, and outside the scope of this article in any event.

The Texas Dept of Public Safety believes they have found evidence that ISIS plans to orchestrate an attack on our power grid, and it has been speculated that ISIS might not even mount the attack itself, but could instead pay one of the Mexican drug cartel gangs to carry out the attack on their behalf.  Dr Peter Pry, head of the Task Force on National and Homeland Security, said that a gang such as the Knights Templar (no relation to the middle ages religious order!) has experience in destroying grid infrastructure in Mexico and could readily black out much or all of the US for an extended period.

His gloomy predictions were supported by Frank Gaffney, founder and president of the Center for Security Policy in Washington.  At a joint press conference with Pry, Gaffney quoted sources as suggesting that a twelve month power outage would see 90% of the US population wiped out.

More details here.

We definitely agree that a grid attack could see the grid down for at least 12 months, and quite likely very much longer.  For more on this, we’ve written regularly about the vulnerabilities and difficulty in repairing the nation’s electricity grid.

We’re not so sure that a 12 month power outage would see the death of 90% of the population, however.  If we assume that the grid outage did not extend to Canada and Mexico, then we would expect many people close to the borders would simply move north in typical classic refugee manner, and considerably more than 10% of the US population is close to the Canadian border.  Plus it seems reasonable to assume that the Red Cross and other relief organizations would come to our assistance, because hopefully the rest of the world would still be functioning.

However, we do agree that the sudden loss of electricity across the nation, and extending for a year or more, would be extraordinarily disruptive and would involve in massive loss of life.  This is a classic example of what we refer to as a Level 2 type scenario.  It is something we should plan and prepare for, and with appropriate planning and preparation, it is something that we and other appropriately prepared people could survive.

Whether there would be a 90% casualty rate or ‘only’ a 50% casualty rate, or whatever other number is in some regards a relatively ‘minor’ detail (and we’d also point out that most/all of the unprepared survivors would live a very miserable existence while the nation struggled to recover and restore power.  Furthermore, when the grid went live, a year or two or three later, what would the country then look like?  We’d not all then return back to our normal jobs and resume our lives and lifestyles as if nothing had happened.  The economy would be destroyed.  Much of the infrastructure would be destroyed, many cities would be burned out looted hulks of their former selves, and people would have moved away, out of the cities and to places where life can be sustained.

The recovery would be as difficult as the outage, and would take much longer.  This is something few people focus on.  There is an understanding that when the power goes off, things get very bad, very quickly.  But it seems that some people are assuming that when the power is restored, the problems are solved and everything snaps back to normal.  Not so.

The three key credible messages from this press conference are :

  • Firstly to point out the growing risk of an attack on our power grid
  • Secondly to point out that if our grid was attacked and disabled, it is likely to remain down for at least a year
  • Thirdly, the consequences of an extended grid failure would see massive deaths, obviously from lack of food, water, and climate controlled shelter, and less obviously from disease due to the failure of plumbing and sewage treatment services, and also from the lawlessness that would result.

How well prepared are you for a sudden loss of power for say two years?

One last point.  Maybe it is unrealistic to expect the government to ‘harden’ our power grid and make it resistant to such threats.  But couldn’t they at least be directing some of our enormous defense budget to neutralizing the ISIS threat?

The post ISIS Attack on Power Grid Could Kill 90% of Americans appeared first on Code Green Prep.

National Preparedness Month is September!

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National Preparedness Month is Here.

National Preparedness MonthIf you haven’t recently, now might be a good time to access your overall preparedness during National Preparedness Month.  With so many reasons to have some of the essentials you’ll need on a daily basis at your disposal, it makes sense to take some time to do a needs assessment.  Unfortunately, this is something we should all be doing on a regular basis and not just in September.  But for those who are fairly new to self reliance and preparedness it’s a start.

Most of the time “Preppers” are not thought of as anything more than crazy people preparing for the end of the world by the media as we have seen on television.  However, being prepared or prepping is not defined by “Doomsayers” but actually includes over 3 million Americans from all walks of life and from every corner of the country.  Why is this you might ask?  There are a few good reasons that prepping is growing and it has mostly to do with living a more sustainable lifestyle and getting back to basics while realizing the government isn’t going to be there to help  when a major disaster strikes.

Amazingly, according to a new survey conducted by the Adelphi University Center for Health Innovation, 55 percent of Americans believe that the authorities will come to their rescue when disaster strikes. We have news for you,  FEMA is not going to come to anyones rescue anytime soon if disaster strikes.  If we think back to Hurricane Katrina of any other natural disaster in recent memory, or consider some of the potential scenarios including a major financial collapse, It’s time to get prepared so you can take care of your own family if need be.

So what are just few of the things you and your family can start to do today?  We compiled a short basic list to help you to start to get your “Preparedness”  house in order.

Air> Air is the most important thing we need to survive.  It is said that you can live “four minutes without air, four days without water, and forty days without food.”  So, are you CPR certified?  Can you help someone if they stopped breathing? If not get certified.  Here is how to get certified 

Water > Water is an essential to have on hand.  30 gallons per person (2 gallons per person per day for 1 week). This might sound excessive, but look at your water bill this month! This figure assumes that when at home, you will occasionally want a sponge bath, or to cook something like pasta or rice. You might even wash your hair or clothes, and will eventually flush a toilet. Large food grade 55 gallon plastic drums are ideal for bulk water storage. A good location is in your detached garage. Remember that your water heater in the house is typically 50 gallons, and may be used if your dwelling survives. Additional water may be purchased in single use plastic bottles, and should be stored away from the house or garage. Remember that these water bottles will need to be rotated out since they have a limited shelf life unless water treatment is used.  A portable water filtration system is a must.  These systems can provide a very high quality of clean fresh water.  A good water test kit is also recommended so you can evaluate your stored water on an on-going basis.

Shelter > Where would you go if a disaster struck and left you without your home?    FEMA recommends that you know that information now as well as some other important evacuation routes in your area. Do you have a temporary shelter at home that you could use if needed?  If not get one and keep it dry and easy to get too.

Fire > We have all seen survival television shows and each and every time lighting a fire is paramount to survival over the long haul.  We may need it to keep warm, to cook, to disinfect water, for light and protection.  Can you light a fire if needs be?  How to build a fire so it will light – survival 101

Food > If you’re considering a food storage system at your home, than a food storage calculator is going to be required so you have the right amount to meet your families needs. The type of food you store can vary but it might include canned foods long term food storage systems to MRE’s, grains, legumes and alike canned fruits and veggies from your own garden.  Cooking and heating tools for survival incase of a disaster or emergency are easy to use and not very expensive to get.  Wondering how much grain to store? You might be surprised.  Read more at http://www.preparednesspro.com/do-you-have-enough#u1fS0AHFwQfYJ2vg.99

First Aid Kit > A good first aid kit could save a life during a disaster  Make sure you have a good one.   Off Grid Survival recommends “30 Things you Should Have in Your Medical First Aid Kits

Survival Kit > A survival kit is a short term kit of essentials to last you approx three days.  It can be kept in your car incase you get stranded in an emergency. > Learn more

BOB or Bug Out Bag > A Bug Out Bag is more of a long term survival kit designed to help you get out of town or “bug out”.  It would include all of the above mentioned items to a greater or lesser degree plus much more.  Some examples of items included might be weapons, shelter and bedding, clothing, a heat source and tools to name a few.  A good example can be found right here.

 

There is so much more that you can do to get your self prepared both in the short and long term but this will be a good start.  Remember the Internet is a great source of information on all things “Preparedness”.

If you start today you will be better off than most Americans are in case of a natural disaster or National emergency.

Follow our Facebook page for more info on all things preparedness.

Thanks,

Jeff “The Berkey Guy”

 

Sources:

http://scoutingrediscovered.com/scout-skills/the-scouts-guide-to-survival-the-big-5/
http://endoftheamericandream.com/archives/55-percent-of-americans-believe-that-the-government-will-take-care-of-them-if-disaster-strikes
http://theepicenter.com/howto.html
http://www.preparednesspro.com/do-you-have-enough#u1fS0AHFwQfYJ2vg.99
http://www.bhs.idaho.gov/pages/Preparedness/PDF/Disaster_Preparedness_Kit_Supply_List.pdf
http://www.directive21.com/
http://offgridsurvival.com/30-things-you-should-have-in-your-medical-kits/
http://www.preparednesspro.com/do-you-have-enough
http://www.isu.edu/outdoor/survkit.htm
http://bugoutbagacademy.com/free-bug-out-bag-list/
http://www.philly.com/philly/health/HealthDay666756_20120720_Many_Americans_Not_Prepared_for_Disasters__Poll.html?cmpid=138896554
http://graywolfsurvival.com/2810/build-fire-basics/

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Survival Defense When Guns Are Not Allowed

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In the time before a major crisis occurs, private ownership or use of firearms, bows and arrows, and crossbows may be illegal and banned. As the situation gets worse, the government will impose martial law and confiscate weapons no matter how well you may think they are hidden.
Here are a few weapons that may be overlooked and that can be used to protect your family and loved ones.

Edged Weapons

Edged weapons are the oldest implements used by man. Then, as now, you can make knives and other edged weapons from flint, obsidian, bronze, arsenic copper-bronze, tin-bronze, iron. Today, there are three kinds of steel that you may be interested in:

  • Damascus steel – originated in India about the 5th century BC. The steel was heated to red hot, hammered, folded, and then quickly cooled in water. This process was repeated at least 500 times. This produced a better weapons grade steel.
  • Carbon steel – will rust if exposed to air and moisture. The rust if heavy will flake off causing the steel to weaken and break.
  • Stainless steel is an alloy with a minimum of 10% chromium by mass. Stainless steel does not rust or stain by water as ordinary steel does. When heated the chromium becomes chromium oxide that acts to form an air and water tight film that seals off the metal. This steel comes in many grades and finishes.

The following edged tools and weapons can be used as a substitute for firearms for protection. All of them can be dipped in poison so that even a single glancing blow can be a lethal one.

  • dreamstime_s_31704591 
  • Farm Tools: Any of the metal farming or gardening tools can be used as weapons to protect yourself or the family. The spade, rake, pitchfork, pick, sickle, hand hoe, and garden claw all make excellent choices for either offensive or defensive weapons.
  • Bayonets: Either spike or flat knife designs can be used as is or cut back to make push knives. You can also add a set of brass or other metal knuckles by welding it to the shortened bayonet.
  • Daggers and Boot Knives: These double edged knives have a blade longer than 6 inches and are used to stick or slash. Most have a skull crusher at the back of the hilt.
  • Small Knives: Usually the blades are shorter than 6 inches long and can be a folding or a non-folding version. These knives are good defensive or offensive weapons because they can be “palmed” and used without them being seen.
  • Swords: There are two different edge designs for swords. The first is the single edge the other is the double edge. There are several lengths of swords. The first is the short sword which is 16 to 18 inches long, regular size sword which is 20 to 24 inches long, and the two handed sword that measures over four feet long. The short and the regular size swords can be used for protection and carried inconspicuously, but the long two handed sword is too large to be practical for anything other than staving off an attack on your home.
  • Spears: Have a 4 to 6 foot shaft with a metal spear point at the top. These weapons are designed to be thrown or thrusted into a human target.
  • Throwing Stars: Are metal shaped stars that have sharpened points that were designed to be thrown at a target and stick into it. In the hands of a trained individual they can kill or do great bodily harm.
  • Axes or hatchets: Are used for chopping. Some axes have double or single edges. As a weapon it can be thrown and deliver a bloody crushing wound or blunt trauma if the back blunt end hits first.

Blunt Force Weapons
Blunt force weapons use weight instead of sharp edges to kill or do great bodily harm. Damage to the body is caused by crushing instead of cutting.

  • Canes: originally used to steady and help a person in walking. A cane can be used as a nightstick type weapon and can deliver knockout or death blows to the head, break arms or legs, or cause deep blunt trauma wounds to the central body core. Historically the cane sword was a way to carry a sword concealed and at the ready if needed. This weapon is easy to carry in plain sight.
  • Clubs:  Usually made of heavy wood or metal scrap. These are crushing weapons that break bones or deliver deep trauma to inner organs.
  • Bats: Wood or aluminum bats used to play baseball also make a good weapon. A bat can easily break bones or kill if they hit the right part of the body.
  • Staffs or walking sticks: For thousands of years staffs were a defensive and sometimes offensive weapon for the poor or peasants. An individual who was good with a staff could disarm a person with a sword or a gun.
  • Maces: Maces were a medieval blunt force weapon made of steel or other strong metals. It was designed to crush skulls and brake limbs with blunt force. Today it is still a good defensive weapon in times of major crisis.
  • Chains: Chains made of steel or other heavy metals can be used as weapons in a defensive roll. They can be made to look like every day clothing accessories such as belts. They can deliver deadly crushing blows or break limbs.
  • Slings (2 Cord Type): Is a very old weapon that goes back thousands of years. It is easy to hid or conceal. With a little bit of practice it is possible to hit or kill your target out to 200 feet or better with rocks or scrapes of metal. Slings can be either defensive or offensive weapons.
  • Slingshots for stone, metal projectiles, or arrows: Slingshots are no longer a toy. They can be used to hunt small game by launching a ball bearing, rocks, and even arrows with deadly accuracy. This weapon can also be used defensively to protect your family in the absence of firearms.
  • Hand to Hand Fighting techniques: There are many forms from boxing to martial arts. Choose the fighting technique that best meets your needs and start studying today. Do not wait until the last moment to start the training.
Defense Arms

In a time when all private firearm ownership is banned or illegal, the above are a few alternatives for weapons that might be put into service to protect your family and loved ones. Almost anything can be used as a weapon regardless of the situation.
As with prisons and jails, you only need a creative mind and the will to have a weapon in order to get around any law or force used to try and take away your ability to defend yourself.

Original article – http://www.survivopedia.com/svp-survlgnsnotalwd/

Old-Fashioned Bread Pudding

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This is now my favorite frugal food. A few days ago we had some sweet croissants that someone had allowed to get completely stale. I made bread pudding and sprinkle it with a bit of coarse colored sugar.  I could have doubled the recipe because everyone loved it. This morning, I’m making it again. This […]

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Major Change in Canning Procedure!

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There has been a major change in the procedure for canning in Mason jars.  I’ve been pondering hard on why I’m having too many jars not seal when canning lately.  I’m very careful with my process, so I’ve been very upset to have jars not seal.  As it turns out, there was a change in process that wasn’t widely publicized.

I’ve always trusted my grandmother as the expert on all things canning.  I’ve followed her recipes and advice to the letter.  The same thing goes for my mom.  These ladies have me on experience by decades.  I’d be a fool not to listen.  This new change has taken us all by surprise.  I guess we learn to adapt and overcome!

This change involves the lids we use on our jars.  For 100 years, the process has included simmering the lids in a saucepan of hot water on the stove.  We do this to sterilize the lids, and until recently, to soften the rubber so the lid would seal.  This is now WRONG!  100  years of tradition is gone now.  If you simmer new lids, there is a decent chance they will not seal.  I’ve experienced this a lot lately.  I’ve had a ton of jars not seal while following the process I grew up with.

After all the failures, and researching online to get the new information, we’ve just been washing the lids with warm water and putting them on jars.  We’ve processed a couple dozen jars this weekend and have had no seal failures.  This is a big change, since we’ve had a lot of failures to seal this summer.  I was really getting concerned about my abilities to can.  I’m happy to report, it wasn’t anything I was doing wrong, just a change I wasn’t aware of.

I wish the lid manufacturers would have made a better attempt to inform us of the change, but at least I know now and can pass the information along.  If you are having issues with lids not sealing, stop simmering.  We have, and it has made all the difference.

It is rare that I post two articles in the same day, but I thought this was worth sharing immediately.  If I can spare one of my readers the hassle I’ve been experiencing with canning and having failures, then I will feel a lot better.

Here are a couple of links explaining the change.

http://www.freshpreserving.com/tools/waterbath-canning

http://livinghomegrown.com/2014/08/changes-in-canning-lid-procedures.html

 

Take Action To Prepare!

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Today, we sit on the eve of September 1st which is the 10th Year of…..

National Preparedness Month! 

This month is focused on getting people to think about and take action towards becoming better prepared.

For many emergency service organizations, event planning is underway for various community events, CERT trainings and open houses to put services and activities on display.

And although being prepared is EVERYONE’S RESPONSIBILITY, there are still just a handful of events that everyone can participate in through the avenue of social media.

They include….

  • 30 Days, 30 Ways which, started in Washington, provides a daily challenge and call-to-action.  Players and observers are asked to consider taking one simple step per day to get them more ready for future crises that you may encounter. Not only will the tasks cause you to think, but you can win prizes and will meet others who are participating in preparing themselves as well.  You can follow the game on Facebook at www.facebook.com/30days30ways and on Twitter by following @30days_30ways or the hashtag #30days30ways

 

  • Emergency Kit Cook-off which, started in Arizona, provides a specialized set of shelf-stable ingredients which the public can vote on until midnight of 9/1/14.  Players and observers are then challenged to make a great recipe involving the specific ingredients.  This will creatively cause you to think about items you might be stuck cooking with if disaster were to strike in your local area.  You can follow this challenge on Facebook at www.facebook.com/pages/Emergency-Kit-Cook-Off/ and on Twitter by following @kitcookoff or the hashtag #KitCookoff

The American Red Cross has some creative partnerships this year that are creative as well for National Preparedness Month.  They include:

FEMA also has some helpful tools for local programs to honor National Preparedness Month.

  • America’s Prepareathon which aims to ask people to come together for a National Day of Action on September 30th.  You can register your activities at this site.
  • FEMA’s Digital Engagement Toolkit also provides emergency services programs with suggested preparedness messages to be used during September

We also expect to see a variety of hashtags in use on Twitter as well which include #NatlPrep, #NPM14 and #PrepareAThon.

Regardless of how you engage with National Preparedness Month, it is our hope that you will take at least one action to become better prepared for times of crisis.  One simple thing you do today can help make you and your loved ones better prepared for the unexpected.

Take Action!