The Five Best Places To Bug Out In The USA

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I don’t care who you are or where you live, bugging out is one of the most complex scenarios for any prepper.

The huge number of factors that you have to consider, prepare for and execute in an effective bug out make bugging out a logistical and organizational nightmare.

More, these factors tend to change as times goes by, due to social and political issues that impact the natural resources and landscape in different areas of our country. 

Nevertheless, anyone who knows survival and preparedness will tell you that you need a good bug out plan in place, even if your Plan A is to bug in, sheltering in place in your home.

The first and possibly biggest problem that has to be considered is where to bug out to. You really can’t do any of the other parts of your plan, until you decide where you’re going. Nor can you build a shelter, stockpile supplies or even make an accurate list of what equipment you’ll need, without having that one detail figured out.

Finding a good bug out location isn’t easy. A lot depends on the type of disaster you’re going to have to face. Another huge factor is where you live. Your bug out location needs to be far enough away from your home, so as to not get caught in the same disaster your home is caught in, while being close enough that you actually have a chance of getting there.

This is easier in some parts of the country, than it is in others. Generally speaking, it’s going to be easier to find a bug out location and develop a bug out plan, if you live in one of the less populated states.

The closer you are to the big cities, especially in the high population areas of the country, the harder you will find it to build yourself a bug out plan, with a survival shelter that is isolated enough to protect you from any marauders sweeping the countryside, looking for food and anything else they can get.

Those marauders are the biggest reason to have a bug out plan, with an isolated survival shelter. You can survive many things by sheltering in place, but when it comes down to it, the worst thing you could possibly face is a concerted attack on your home. That is the biggest trigger for bugging out.

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Requirements for a Bug Out Shelter

Regardless of what you’re bugging out from or where you’re bugging out to, there are some requirements that any bug out shelter needs. While there may be many different ways of meeting these requirements, finding the ideal location will be narrowed down by your personal situation. Where you live and how well you can get out of Dodge will be the biggest considerations.

Distance

As I’ve just mentioned, you want to be far enough away from home, that whatever disaster causes you to bug out, won’t hit your survival retreat. At the same time, you don’t want your retreat to be so far away, that you can’t get there. A retreat that’s 500 miles away from your home might be great, if you can get there. But if you can’t, all it’s going to do is give you reason to bemoan your choice.

You’ll want to be able to get there on one tank of gas. But you’ve got to consider that in any bug out situation, you’re likely to have traffic problems to contend with. So, you won’t get as far as you normally would on a tank of gas. Therefore, you should keep extra gas on hand, ready to take with you when you bug out.

Just recently Oroville, in Northern California was evacuated due to the risk of the dam’s emergency spillway failing. Since most of the people weren’t preppers, the bug out went just like everyone has said they will, with long lines of traffic creeping along the highway, gas stations out of gas, and people abandoning their cars when their tanks ran dry. You’ve got to make sure you’re not one of those people.

Defensibility

If you’re bugging out because of the aforementioned marauders, you need to take into consideration that you might have to defend your survival retreat. The more difficult the retreat is to access, with the more obstacles in any invader’s way, the better.

At the same time, you’ll need good defensive positions for your family or survival team, with good routes of escape, should that become necessary. While you probably won’t want to abandon your survival retreat unless absolutely necessary, it’s better to do that when needed, than it is to die defending it.

Concealability

An important factor in defending your retreat is keeping people from finding it. A log cabin sitting on the open prairie isn’t very well hidden; but one in the woods can be. Does the location you’re looking at give you the ability to hide your retreat, so that people aren’t likely to find it?

You need to look at this from both short and long distance. Some locations may be hard to see up close, but highly visible from the opposite mountainside. Others will be invisible from a distance, but once you get close, they are obvious. Proper planning and a good location will help you with this.

Of course, a lot has to do with how you build your shelter. If you’re going to build a big fancy log cabin on the side of a lake, with its own dock and an entire wall of glass, you’re going to have trouble hiding it. Going underground helps, as an underground shelter or bunker is harder to see. Even building an underground home, cut into the hillside, makes it hard for others to find you.

Resources

This is probably the single, most important item on the list. If you’re bugging out from home, then there’s a good chance that you’re going to need to be away for a while, maybe even permanently. No matter how much you stockpile, eventually you’ll need to live off the land. Does the location give you that possibility.

More than anything, this means having access to a good water source, fuel for the fire and game that you can hunt. But the soil matters too, as you’ll probably end up planting a garden to augment your food. Building materials may be important as well, especially if you can’t build your long-term shelter ahead of time.

Population

By definition, a survival shelter just about has to be in a low population area. That’s necessary for concealability, defensibility and resources. The more isolated the location, the better.

So a good way to start your search is to look at maps and define low population areas that are reasonably close to your home. Go and visit those areas, to see how well they meet the other needs for survival. When you find those that do, you can start looking for property that might be available.

Nuclear Risk

While the Cold War is long gone, with the thousands of nuclear-tipped missiles that the United States and Soviet Union had ready to launch, the nuclear threat has not gone away. Actually, it’s increased in recent times, with unstable nations joining the club of the nuclear capable. The risk of a nuclear strike, especially by EMP, is higher than it has been in decades, and it looks like it’s going to continue going up.

But a country doesn’t even need to own nuclear weapons in order to create a nuclear strike, all they need are good hackers. Every nuclear power plant in the world is controlled by computers, and most of those are tied into the internet in some way. Regardless of how good the security is, someone can hack it.

Our nuclear power plants have already been “tickled” by hackers, searching out their defenses. There have even been cases where one power plant or another was taken over and controlled remotely. This is extremely dangerous, as all it would take to create a nuclear disaster is for someone who hacked in to bypass the safeguards and let the reactor go wild.

Then there’s the risk of reactors being damaged by natural disasters. We’ve all head of Japan’s Fukushima reactor and how it’s spilling tons of contaminated waste into the Pacific Ocean per day. That sort of thing can happen anywhere, especially with aged reactors, which we’ve got our share of.

Affordability

Finally, you’ve got to look at what your budget will allow you to do. It won’t do you the least bit of good to buy a piece of property to use as a survival shelter, and then lose it, because you can’t make the payments. Don’t assume that whatever disaster you face that causes you to bug out will also make it possible for you to stop making payments. Some disasters might cause that, but others won’t.

Perhaps the worst thing that could happen to any prepper is to have their home or survival shelter foreclosed upon. Yet, if you do something that’s beyond your budget, that’s a very real possibility.

On to the Best Areas

The criteria I just listed actually narrow down the possible places where you or I can have a survival retreat considerably. There are large parts of the country which are just not going to work. While they might be good in one regard, they would be totally ineffective in others.

Take the Southwest, for example. There are many places in West Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and Nevada which are isolated and defendable, with very little nuclear risk. But those areas don’t have much water either. Unless you can find a place in the Southwest and can put in a solar powered well, your chances of effectively creating a survival retreat are minimal.

Other parts of the country just have too much population. Much of the Northeast and the West Coast fall into this category, although there are some areas that are more isolated. Even the most populated states have places you can hide, you just need to find them.

1.      The Rocky Mountains

Whenever I think of bugging out or even owning a cabin in the woods, I think of the Rocky Mountains.

The fact that I grew up at the foot of the Rockies, in Colorado, may have something to do with that.

There’s a rugged romanticism associated with the Rockies, which were the home of Jim Bridger, Kit Carson and many other mountain men, long before ranchers and miners moved in and took over.

I’ve spent a lot of time in the Colorado Rockies through the years.

Today, much of the property is owned by somebody or other and what isn’t privately owned is owned by the government.

Nevertheless, there are many places where you can go and not see another person for miles around. Game is plentiful, there’s water in abundance and plenty of wood for building and a fire.

For that matter, many of the mountain communities would make good places to bug out to, especially if you owned a “cabin” or vacation home in one of them. If you could spend enough time there to become a familiar face, then when the time came to bug out, the community would accept you readily.

The nuclear threat in the mountains would be negligent, although Denver has been a big target for years. But then, if you were going to hide out in the mountains, it probably wouldn’t be near Denver anyway.

The only problem with the Rockies is price. Land in the mountains is expensive. But there’s always the possibility of using public land, bugging out to a state park or national forest. While you couldn’t build a cabin there ahead of time, you could probably cache some supplies by burying them.

2.      The Appalachian Mountains

Not as isolated as the Rockies, the Appalachian Mountains are an excellent place to bug out to, especially in West Virginia, Kentucky and the western part of Tennessee.

Many of the people who live in those mountains are survivalist types anyway, who hunt, fish and keep their long guns in the back window of their pickup trucks.

There are actually areas in the Appalachians which are being developed as survival communities.

By developed, I mean that someone has broken up a large tract of land into ten acre lots and is selling it to people who want to build a survival retreat.

Since the area would be populated by like-minded people, there’s a good chance that they would band together to help each other out.

Resources shouldn’t be a problem, with these mountainous areas being just about as good as the Rockies.

Being closer to populated areas will also make it easier to buy the supplies and materials that you need for establishing your survival retreat.

For those who live in the eastern part of the United States, going into the Appalachians is the easiest way to get to an isolated area.

There aren’t too many other areas east of the Mississippi which will offer you as much privacy in a wooded mountain area.

3.      The Northwest

When I’m saying the Northwest, I’m not talking about the Pacific Northwest. While Washington and Oregon are beautiful states, they’re also blue states.

That means that you’re more likely to run into government interference and restrictive gun laws. Rather, I’m referring to the states of Montana, Wyoming, Idaho and the Dakotas. These are some of the least populated parts of our country, making them ideal places to survive any social unrest.

There are very few nuclear sites in these states, although there were a fair number of nuclear silos dug into the countryside during the Cold War. Some of those are available and are being converted to survival bunkers. While you might not want to build million dollar survival condos for the wealthy, a silo or control bunker still makes a great survival retreat.

The low population of these states means that you’re unlikely to have problems with marauders or other two-legged vermin. Hunting and fishing are common, with game being plentiful. Actually, this area is one of the few places in the country where I’d say that living off the land is a very real possibility.

4.      The Gulf Coast

The Gulf Coast states, especially Louisiana and Mississippi are another part of the county where the gun culture is strong, with many people who hunt and fish on a regular basis.

If nothing else, you could always hunt alligator to eat. They’re a bit hard to skin, but the meat is good, especially when cooked Cajun style.

Getting close to the Gulf Coast has other advantages in the food department as well. Much of the world feeds itself from the world’s oceans.

That’s another important source of food to consider as part of your survival plans.

Adding a boat to your gear could make it very easy for you to survive.

For that matter, why not bug out onto a boat and live in the Gulf?

While salt water is not drinkable, it can be made drinkable by distillation.

All you’d need to do is build a still or even a solar still. Distilled water is the purest water you can find.

So, you could get both your food and your water from the Gulf.

5.      Parts of Texas

While Texas poses its own challenges for survival, the fierce independence of Texans make it an attractive state to bug out to. There’s lots of open country available and the state is known for not putting up with any nonsense from troublemakers.

Remember the attempted Muslim attack on the Mohammed art show in Garland, Texas, shortly after the Charlie Hebdo massacre in France? Those attackers didn’t get more than a few feet from their car, before they were cut down. Had the people in France been Texans, things would have gone differently.

The big problem with Texas is water. Unless you happen to be fortunate enough to buy property with water on it, you’d better plan on putting in a well, and it might have to be a rather deep one at that. But if you can get a well in, the land is good for survival, with a lot of game. You could live for years on the feral hogs in some parts of the state. They breed so quickly that ranchers can’t keep their numbers down.

The other problem is building material. You’re probably not going to find enough tall trees to build a log cabin. That’s why our ancestors built with adobe in the Old West times. But don’t worry, homes made of adobe can last for over 100 years, much longer than the typical log cabin.

From building a shelter to orientation, there are so many survival skills you can learn from our ancestors who wandered the American lands hundreds of years ago.

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This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia. 

This Is How To Make And Recycle Rubber

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You need a fully functional tire (as opposed to a donut) in the trunk of your vehicle, and you may have gone through the extra expense to get it. Many other people haven’t even thought that far ahead, even this problem alone would lead to endless traffic jams and other problems in times of distress.

And there’s more bad news: even if you take good care of your tires and have a viable spare, there will come a time when all of your existing tires will have to be discarded.

Modern tires actually need to make contact with roads on a regular basis or they will begin to crack and rot. That’s why having the skill of making or refurbishing tires would worth a lot during crisis or after a major collapse.

Rubber is Older than You Think

While Europeans are credited with spreading the use of rubber throughout the world, it was first used by the Maya. They used latex from Hevea trees to coat balls that were used in a game similar to basketball.The latex was mixed with sap from the Ipomoea alba vine to make it less sticky and more durable.

In the 1700’s, French and English explorers discovered that rubber could be used for many other things. “Vulcanization”, which also makes rubber less sticky and more durable was not invented until the 1800’s by Charles Goodyear.

Since latex bearing trees only grew in South America, a great deal of effort went into protecting this monopoly, and it didn’t change until thousands of seeds were smuggled out of Brazil in 1876 by Henry Wickam. The plants that grew from these seeds were eventually used to build enormous rubber plantations in India, Indonesia, Asia, and Africa.

As automobiles became more popular, it became harder to keep up with the demand for rubber. Eventually, scientists found a way to synthesize rubber from petroleum. During WWII, this became a vital source of rubber that was used to keep the war effort moving forward.

Today, most, if not all rubber used in automobile tires is made from petroleum sources. As different nations become more unstable, there is an increased interest in finding plant based sources of rubber.

Russian Dandelions (T. kok-sanghyz) produce a latex that makes rubber almost as good a what you would get from a rubber tree. Milk thistle, or Prickly Lettuce, also produces enough latex to be used in making rubber.

There are also several other plants in the United States and around the world that may be suitable for this purpose, however much work needs to be done to find out which ones work best and how to get the most out of them.

Where to Get the Rubber From

Many preppers feel that it is very important to store away essential building materials such as wood, metal, glass, plastic, and cardboard. How many of them did ever think about storing away rubber, which is also a very important material to have on hand?

If you are building a stockpile of materials, you may find it a bit difficult to find rubber at a place other than Grainger. Rubber that hasn’t been made into some kind of product isn’t available to consumers. Make your own research in the following places, and you may come across limited supplies as they become available:

  • Repurposed materials
  • Public Surplus – if you are interested in used tires, this site may be a good place to start. Check if your local community has abandoned properties or other places where tire dumping is a problem. If you can get ahold of these tires, then you could do something with the rubber from them.
  • Salvex
  • Skycraft Parts and Surplus
  • Surplus Record – If you are part of a large enough prepper community and have plenty of land to work with, then think about building a small rubber factory. This site will give you information about equipment used to make synthetic rubber from petroleum. If you also have land that can be drilled for petroleum, it may be worth your while to think about turning some of it into rubber.

Even if you do not need to make rubber immediately after a major crisis, it could be an important commodity as society rebuilds and regains its capacity to bring people together to achieve goals. If you can produce petroleum and rubber, you and your group will prosper as different groups of people seek to regain the technologies and conveniences that may have been lost due to social collapse.

Never forget that future generations of your family will have to compete, and that will entail having marketable skills and products. As expensive as this equipment may be, it may be a wise investment that will set you and your family further ahead than you realize.

ENERGY SAVING PLAN – Find out how you can save energy following two simple steps! 

Basic Guide for Making Plant Based Rubber

If the Maya could make perfectly good rubber centuries ago, then it may also be possible for preppers to do the same. Making rubber from petroleum will more than likely be a lost skill after a major social collapse occurs.

As long as you have a source of plant based latex, then you should be able to make small as well as large batches of rubber to meet a range of needs. Here are the basic steps:

Step 1

Start off by harvesting latex. While Hevea Trees have to be “tapped” with V shaped slits in the trunk, the process is a bit different for plants.

For example, if you are going to use Milk Thistle, you will need to break open the plant stems to get at the latex, which is a milky white colored substance. If you decide to use dandelions (ideally Russian dandelions), you can get latex from the roots as well as the stems.

Step 2

Once you have collected enough latex, add some water and an acid to the sap. You can use vinegar or other weak acids. The ratios of sap, water, and acid will depend on the amount of latex in the sap as well as the strength of the acid.

For example, if you are using regular or Russian dandelions, you would use 1 part sap to 8 parts water and then enough vinegar to make the latex and water stick to whatever you are using to stir the mixture.

Step 3

Even though rubber made from dandelion will finish to “cure” or dry out on its own, you may still need to add sulfur and heat it to produce a more durable form of rubber. You may also want to try using Ipomoea alba sap to vulcanize the rubber.

Remember, different applications will require different levels of flexibility and durability. You will need to study the different characteristics of each type of rubber you plan to work with, and see what will work best to make them.

Video first seen on DSCDocumentries

When making plant based rubber, remember to start off with small batches and see how the resulting compound holds up over time and across different temperature conditions. Among other things, you will need to assess if the rubber will crack, and how well it will bounce back to its original shape after heavy weights are applied.

Give yourself plenty of time to explore this fascinating topic. Since there is still a great deal of trial and error involved in making rubber from dandelions and other more common plants, it is best to see what others are doing in this field even as you develop your own recipes and methods.

How to Recycle Rubber

Overall, there is a point where you can recycle rubber easily enough, and a level where it is well beyond the technical skills and assets available to most preppers. The complexity associated with fully recycling rubber lies in the process of vulcanization.

Let’s say you want to bake a cake that requires using eggs, flour, and some sugar. Let’s say you sift together the flour and sugar. Even though the sugar and flour are well mixed together, you can still separate them using various means. Once you crack open the eggs, in theory you can still put them back into the shell. To some extent, you can also still retrieve the eggs, sugar, and flour after they are all mixed together. Up until the cake is baked (the heat from baking drives off water and also causes different molecules in the batter to break apart and from bonds with other molecules), it is actually possible to separate out all the ingredients used in it.

In a similar fashion, once latex is treated with sulfur and heat, the molecular structure changes to a point where it cannot be reversed – or at least not reversed with ease.

Over the years, a great deal of effort has been made to see if there is a way to take rubber and turn it back to the latex stage. There is one patent, held by The Goodyear Rubber and Tire Company, on a process that uses high pressure and 2-butanol to reverse vulcanization.

This process is not something that can be done easily enough at the consumer level. Therefore, if you are interested in recycling tires or other rubber materials, you will need to take the existing rubber and use it for some purpose other than simply remaking tires.

3 Tips to Know Which Tires can be Salvaged

Consider a situation where a major catastrophe has made tires unavailable. While you are searching for replacements, you find a landfill and hundreds of tires stacked up. It may take a lot of work to find salvageable tires with a little bit of patience and effort, but you can do it if you keep in mind the following:

  • Tires with cracks in the sidewall and tread area more than likely have dry rot. The tread and sidewalls cannot be restored or reused for making new tires. If the tire is of a size that you need, you could take it apart and use the belts in combination with new rubber that you make from a plant based source. As long as the tire doesn’t show signs of having more than two patches, there is a chance that the inner anatomy of the tire is still intact. Even if you have to recoat the inner structures with more rubber, at least you will have some belts to work with.
  • Avoid tires that were punctured or slashed in the sidewall. If the tire is punctured deep enough, than it might have been discarded because it would not hold air. There are some methods you can use to repair a sidewall, but the tire may fail at a critical moment and cause a very bad accident.
  • Be wary of tires that are patched, even if the patches are less than ¼ inch in diameter and located far enough away from the sidewall.

Video first seen on Tank0923.

There are several different ways to repair punctures in tires. Depending on the size and age of the tire, you may find one that is worth patching even though the former owner chose to discard it. Remember, many people throw away good tires or repairable tires because their vehicle must be inspected and they don’t want to risk it failing. On the other hand, if you really need tires, then you could get some mileage out of them so long as you repair them correctly and drive carefully.

6 Ways to Use Tires for Your Homestead

  • The rubber part of tires can be ground up into a smaller bits that can be added to paving materials.
  • Rubber from tires can be cut into pieces and shaped into everything from shoe soles to waterproofing for containers.
  • When treated with acid, rubber softens and can be shaped into different objects.
  • Rubber products such as tires can also be burned to generate heat. From campfires to operating a steam turbine, you can easily use rubber tires and other products for this purpose, but keep in mind that it might have some health impact.
  • The rubber from tires can also be separated from the steel belt; which can be used to make new tires or for other purposes.
  • Rubber tires can also be used as raised bed planters. This may be especially useful if you plan to grow a garden in an area where water supplies and good soil are limited. In fact, if you want a cheap, easy way to make a multi-level potato planter, just stack up tires as the plants grow, and then harvest in the fall when it is time. Needless to say, if you are looking to hide your plants in open sight, a stack of tires may just look so unappealing no one will bother to look there for edible plants.

Video first seen on Just Az.com productions

Anatomy of an Automobile Tire

Today, there are many different kinds of tires that can be used for the same vehicle. For example, “all weather tires” are different from snow tires, mudders, and ones used for racing. Regardless of the tire type, they all have the same basic parts, however these parts may be designed a bit differently to accommodate different driving conditions.

Even though each layer of a tire also has many parts, here are the most basic ones you need to know about:

  • Treads – this is the outermost layer of the tire. It is the part that grips the road and wears out from friction with the road. The treads may also have sipes, or smaller grooves that increase traction when the tires are moving over ice, water, sand, and snow.
  • Grooves – these are also found in the outermost layer of the tire. Grooves are the long, deep channels cut into the tire. They help the tire to shed water and moisture so that it doesn’t clog up the treads.
  • Sidewall – this is the side of the tire that covers the other inner parts. It serves to protect and keep them clean and dry.
  • Belts – even though rubber bounces back to its original shape, it is not very strong. Without belts of nylon, steel, and even fiberglass, the tire would not maintain its shape very well. Depending on the tire, it may have several belts organized into layers just under the treads. When reclaiming rubber for other purposes, you will also be separating out these belts so that they can be used to make more tires, or for some other purpose.
  • Inner liner – separates the belt layer from the plies. It is also meant to act as a barrier to air so that it cannot escape into the belts, sidewall, and treads.
  • Plies – this part is what gives the tire most of its strength, and also the layer that holds air in. Typically, this layer is made up of materials that are organized so that the fiber runs across the tire instead of around it (the plies are perpendicular to the treads).
  • Bead – this is a metal cable coated in rubber that runs all the way around the inner rim of the tire. It is meant to keep the tire from slipping once it is mounted on a rim.

Why to Make Your Own Tires from Scratch

If you look at a modern tire factory, you may feel like it is impossible to make tires on your own. The task is going to be a bit difficult, but do not give up on researching and looking into automobile history to see how tires were made before robots and large factory machines were used.

Even if the tires you make aren’t as good, or don’t last as long as ones made in a modern factory, they may still be of use for short trips or keeping a tractor up and running.

Once you know how to make rubber and feel confident in your skills, the next step will be to see if you can recognize which tires can be retreated, and then figure out how to design your own tires and build them from scratch.

Retreading Tires

Not so long ago, retreading tires was seen as something dangerous and to be avoided at all cost. In many countries, including the United States, retreads are seen as a way to keep tires out of the landfill, and also as a means of cutting costs associated with vehicle maintenance.

As a prepper, you won’t have a modern retread factory or some of the more complex tools to work with. Nevertheless, if you look at retread factories in other places in the world, you can get some ideas about substitute tools, and then also figure out how to make the safest and most durable retreads possible.

Regardless of the factory type or situation, retreading requires the following basic steps:

  • Start off by inspecting the tire to check for signs of dry rot, punctures, slashes, and anything else that might have damaged the internal structures of the tire or its sidewalls.
  • If the tire is basically sound, strip off the treads. You will still need to leave some rubber behind for new material to adhere to.
  • Make sure the new surface is perfectly clean and ready to accept new rubber. If you see signs of belts showing through, or other damage, repair these issues first.
  • Apply rubber to the ground down surface of the tire. You may need to do this in several layers.
  • Next, apply the treads. These should be pre-made from rubber. If you know how to make rubber, then you can also use basic casting methods to produce strips of rubber treads that can be used for retreading.
  • Use heat and pressure to finish binding all the tire parts together.
  • Check the tire again for signs of holes, damage, or other problems.
  • Finally, apply a coat of paint or some other sealant to complete the tire.
  • Once the tire is dry, it should be ready to use. Make sure that you test the tire out in a safe area after mounting it to the rim. Do not forget to balance the tires and make sure that they are inflated properly.

As you can see, there is more to making rubber and using it for tires than you may have realized.

At the same time, tires and many other rubber products are integrated into almost every area of life. Since it is not always possible to replace rubber items with plastic ones, knowing how to make rubber and use it for a variety of purposes will help you a lot.

From fixing your own tires to bartering these services, you will always have something of value no matter what is going on in the human world around you.

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This article has been written by Carmela Tyrell for Survivopedia. 

Resources:

http://opensourceecology.org/wiki/Rubber_from_Dandelions#Temperate_Climate_Plants_that_Produce_Latex_and_an_Evaluation_of_their_Practical_and_Ecological_Use_in_Rubber_Making.

https://phys.org/news/2015-06-natural-rubber-dandelions.html

http://www.repurposedmaterialsinc.com/den-rolled-rubber-cheap-surplus-salvage/

http://www.publicsurplus.com/sms/browse/cataucs?catid=2503

http://www.scienceprojectideas.co.uk/make-rubber-band-from-dandelion.html

https://www.google.com/patents/US5891926

How To Flag And Tag Your Home For FEMA

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“We are from the government and we are here to help you!” – these words inspire distrust in many Americans. I know because I have seen peoples’ reactions as I have uttered them trying to help them in emergencies.

Don’t want FEMA to kick your door in? Want to be a good citizen and do your part in an emergency? Download this article as a .pdf, print it and put it in a sheet protector and store it with supplies to tag and flag your home. It will help you a lot.

If you have seen pictures of the aftermath of a major disaster, you probably noticed cryptic markings on homes and buildings. Some are from insurance adjusters, some are made by search and rescue personnel and others are graffiti, warnings to looters or pleas for aid.

This article will help you understand search and rescue tagging methods and symbols and teach you how to flag your own home.

Why Flagging Your Home?

There are a number of reasons you may want to learn about tagging and flagging structures:

  • Avoid duplication of effort – thereby speeding rescue and recovery efforts.
  • Speed rescue effort – thereby saving lives and property.
  • Prevent property damage – I’m not saying this is the best way to accomplish this goal under all circumstances, but if you are able to effectively communicate that there are no victims trapped in your home and it poses no danger to surrounding property, then there is less reason for honest responders to break into your home.
  • OPSEC (Operational Security) – prevent others from seeing what resources you have and possibly decide to commandeer them or return with armed officers to do so. You might think, “How selfish!” But there is a difference between voluntarily sharing and being compelled to share, especially if it creates undue hardship or endangers loved ones. Many people consider it a reasonable precaution not put all their cards on the the table.
  • Situational awareness – understanding the markings helps you understand.

Find out more on how to improve your layered home defense to survive disaster! 

In the US, FEMA (the Federal Emergency Management Agency) partners with a number of both professional and volunteer emergency management organizations under a program known as the Citizen Corps. These organizations offer training and service opportunities to citizens to better prepare their communities for emergencies too large for their first response infrastructure to handle.

Hurricane Katrina exposed many obstacles to communication and joint operations between agencies and departments. All first responders at all levels of government now follow a single SOP (Standard Operations or Operating Procedure) framework called the ICS (Incident Command System) to improve communication and standardize training.

In cities that already have a CERT (Community Emergency Response Team) or block captain program, groups of homes (typically 8-10) are organized into blocks with a block captain and assistant or co-captains checking on each block and reporting number of reds and greens to the EOC (Emergency Operations Center) which passes them up the chain to the municipality.

If your municipality does not have CERT yet, it will, but the pace at which the program is adopted varies with public perception of municipal risk and exposure to catastrophe. The residents of each home (or the block captains if residents do not flag their own home) flag the home Green (no assistance needed) or Red (assistance needed.) This is accomplished by placing a green or red marker (typically green or red construction paper inside a sheet protector or several feet of green or red flagging tape) to the side of the front door, as long as it is visible from the street.

If the front door is not visible from the street, the flag is placed in a conspicuous place that is visible from the street. Flagging or tagging a door right on the doors should be avoided because the marking will not be visible when the door is open.

If homes are not flagged, block captains will attempt to size up the situation without entering the home and flag it, but if they suspect (or even imagine) that someone may need help, emergency workers will likely gain entry into your home when they are available to do so.

Tools to Flag Your Home

  • Public Alert Certified All Hazard Radio – without it, you may sleep right through the all-important first hours of many types of emergencies.
  • Headlamp – the power may be out.
  • Turnout bag – a bag containing everything you need to dress quickly and don PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) in an emergency.
  • Sheets of red & green construction paper – stored in a plastic sheet protector with a copy of this article. If you do not have this on hand, a piece of cloth or several feet of flagging tape or anything conspicuously so colored will do.
  • Duct tape – to affix flag.
  • Non-sparking gas wrench – large non-sparking crescent wrench or other tool to shut off gas if necessary. Steel wrenches can spark, resulting in a gas explosion. Aluminum is a more effective material for this application.
  • Water shutoff tool or key – to turn off water main if necessary.
  • First aid/trauma kit – To administer first aid if necessary.
  • Smoke/Gas/Carbon Dioxide alarm
  • Fire extinguisher
  • Non-contact voltage tick meter – An inexpensive tool to discover live electrical lines without touching them.

How To Flag Your Home

Self-assess and Don PPE (Personal Protective Equipment)

Make sure you are not seriously injured. The rescuer is the most important person in an emergency. Not only will you not be able to help anyone else if you become a casualty, but you will further strain emergency response resources that are already likely overtaxed.

If you jump out of bed and onto glass without your boots on, you are not off to a good start.

Establish Situational Awareness

Hopefully you already have a Public Alert Certified All Hazards Radio. It will issue information and instructions that will aid you in making decisions that will save lives. If you do not have one, turn on a NOAA weather radio or tune AM/FM radios to stations issuing emergency information for your area.

These frequencies should be part of your communications plan. Label radios with them. Turn on 2-way radios.

See If Family Members Are Injured or Trapped

Determine whether anyone in the home needs medical attention. If yes, call for help and flag the home red by taping a piece of red construction paper in a sheet protector to the side of your door or someplace visible from the street, and render first aid.

If you are in an apartment, condo or building, tape it on the wall beside your door or entryway where it will be visible to someone walking by. Diagnose and treat the three killers first: breathing/airway, bleeding and shock. Once the patient is stable or you have done all you can do, proceed to the next step.

Rescue personnel will go to flagged homes first if communications are down or if the number of injured exceeds their capacity to treat immediately.

If no one is injured, tag your home green instead of red and proceed to the next step. If injuries are minor, treat them and proceed to the next step. If family is trapped, flag the home red and rescue the most lightly trapped individuals first so they can help extricate more heavily trapped individuals. Use cribbing to safely extricate those within your ability and know when to go get more help.

Walk-around

Walk a complete circle around your home, checking for gas, water, live electrical lines, small fires and structural damage.

  • Gas – if you smell gas, turn it off at the meter by turning the valve 1/4 turn in a clockwise direction. The gas company must run a check and turn it back on.
  • Electrical – in the event of an electrical fire, short or gas leak, turn off main breaker in fuse box.
  • Water – if a water pipe is broken, you will want to turn off water to your home until you can repair it to prevent flooding and water damage.
  • Fire – if you hear, see or smell fire, size them up before attempting to fight them. Extinguish small fires within your ability with a buddy if they are smaller than a kitchen trash can and you have the equipment to safely do so. For larger fires, evacuate and call for help.
  • Structural Damage – if there are dangerous power lines, gas lines, water lines, fires, sunken ground, impaired access, down trees or damage to the structure of the home, it may not be safe to inhabit. Tape off any hazards to prevent injury if it is safe to make repairs, but understand that emergency workers may deem your home inhabitable and ask (force if necessary) you to relocate.

This is one reason why everyone should have an evacuation or bug out plan, supplies cached off-site, financial reserves and places to stay. How will you “shelter in place” if your home is leveled?

Be able to shelter in place or evacuate as the situation dictate. It’s not the strong who survive, but the adaptable. If you cannot relocate for a time, your contingency plan is less-effective. Make it more effective.

How to Tagg Your Home

Whereas home owners or Block Captains flag their homes red or green to indicate whether or not they are in need of assistance, tagging of structures is typically done by SAR (Search and Rescue) Teams, organizing pertinent information around an “X” symbol. They will typically tag with contrasting colors.

Just as with flagging, tagging is done to side of the door, instead of on it, so the tag will be visible even if the door is closed.

Tools to Tag Your Home

  • This article – in a plastic sheet protector, for further reading and knowledge.
  • Marking instruments – choose colors that contrast with your home.
    • sidewalk chalk
    • lumber crayons
    • XL paint markers or spray paint
    • green and red flagging tape
    • yellow caution flagging tape
  • Camera or notebook & pencil – optional
  • Binoculars – optional.

Finally, let’s see what to do to rag you home properly.

Observe Markings

If other structures in your area have already been marked, take note. You may want to sketch what you see or snap a digital photo to help you duplicate the markings. Depending on why you are marking and what you are trying to accomplish, this may be helpful.

But SAR Teams do not always follow SOP. After flooding from a hurricane, the SAR Team flagged all the homes by tying Yellow Caution or Crime Scene Tape to the door knobs. This should never happen because you can’t see the flag when the door is open.

Things don’t always go as planned in emergencies. Maybe some of their gear didn’t arrive and they borrow crime scene tape form local law enforcement, who knows, but that’s why it’s important that you observe they are tagging if possible.

  • Marking Instrument(s) – What are they using to mark structures? What colors?
  • Time – Are they writing the time or time and date, and in what format?
  • Team Initials – Who is doing the marking? Take note of the initials.

Diagonal Slash

Upon entry, the SAR (Search & Rescue) Team makes a diagonal slash to communicate that searchers are inside and a search is in progress. This prevents duplication of effort and alerts others to their location, should they become trapped…

“X”

Upon completion of a search and extrication and removal of all victims, the SAR Team makes a second diagonal slash, completing an “X” communicating that the search of the structure is complete and that both the victims and searchers are safely out.

Time

The SAR Team writes the time operations cease in the structure (and possibly the date) in the 12:00 quadrant of the “X”.

Actions Taken

The 3:00 quadrant of the “X” is for actions taken that need to be communicated to the homeowner such as: “Gas Off” “Elec Off” “Water Off”

Unit/Team Initials

The 9:00 quadrant of the “X” is where the team or unit is identified by its initials.

Even if you flag with the wrong material, SAR workers will understand the markings. What they conclude upon reading it will be dependent on a host of factors. They may decide it was a local team or the residence belongs to a first responder.

Either way, they were going to gain forcible entry to your home before they saw the markings and no one answers when they knock. If they see the markings, they may pass you by, especially if they think it was done by another worker on their team.

Interested in keeping you and your family safe? Click the banner below for more!

This article has been written by Cache Valley Prepper for Survivopedia.

Resources:

https://www.fema.gov/

https://www.dhs.gov/citizen-corps

https://www.fema.gov/incident-command-system-resources

https://www.fema.gov/community-emergency-response-teams

How To Recover Gold And Silver From Scrap

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If you’re reading this article, you’re probably a gold bug, or maybe a gold digger. Either way, you probably don’t know that in 100,000 cellphones there’s about 2.4 kilos of gold to be collected (as in recuperated) by a competent gold digger.

Yes, I know – 100,000 cellphones is quite a lot of old hardware. Besides gold, you’ll also find 25 kilos of silver and more than 900 kilos of copper (that’s almost a metric ton).

Considering the fluctuation in market prices, all that stuff combined makes for a cool quarter million dollars, give or take. The problem is, where on Earth can you get 100,000 cellphones and how can you get the gold out of those darn circuits?

How to Recover Gold from Electronics

Recycling electronics can be a lucrative business provided it’s done on an industrial scale. For regular folk, this kind of enterprise is quite difficult and time consuming, especially if not done nice and proper. Now, if you want to make your own personal scrap fortune, today’s your lucky day, so keep reading, I’m giving pearls here folks!

Besides cellphones, gold and other precious metals can be found in almost all types of electronic circuits, ranging from computer main-boards to processors and what not.

The idea is that instead of throwing your old gear in the garbage, considering that there’s a small amount of gold in all types of circuits, how about putting that gold in your pocket instead of making some scrap metal company rich?

Phones, laptops, cameras and the like are packed full of gold-plated circuit boards, due to the precious metal’s excellent conductibility. Even scanners and printers have silver, gold, copper, and sometimes platinum inside their guts.

Besides being pretty expensive, as in precious, gold is a highly conductive and pliable metal which was used for thousands of years by humans as a highly valuable commodity, as it retains its value better than almost any other commodity.

Until Nixon nixed (pun intended) the Bretton Woods system in 1971, even the US dollar was backed by gold. Since then, the dollar lost a lot of its value, i.e. $1 in 1971 had the same purchasing power as $7 today (official figures), but take a load of this: back then an ounce of gold was $35, now it’s like what, $1200 (it was almost $1900 at some point)?

So, you do the math and ask yourself if scrapping gold from old electronic gear is worth your time and effort. I am digressing – of course it is!

Let’s recap: due to its excellent properties, gold is the material of choice for manufacturing various electronic parts in computers, cellphones and what not.

Removing the gold from scrap parts requires access to various equipment and it’s a pretty complicated process. However, if you’re well-armed with the right tools and knowledge, you can extract, refine, and maybe sell scrap gold, provided you have enough raw materials to extract it from.

As a general rule of thumb, considering that you’ll have to deal with highly corrosive acids, you should perform all these operations outside and always use protective gear, such as gloves, goggles and even a respirator.

Start your own woodworking business – $9500 per month guaranteed! 

Here’s a short list for starting a gold recovery enterprise:

  • rubber gloves
  • goggles
  • a rubber apron
  • hydrogen peroxide 3% from your local pharmacy
  • muriatic acid 31% (it’s available at hardware stores)
  • methyl hydrate (this is basically 99% methyl alcohol) available at automotive supply stores or hardware stores (it’s used for fuel line antifreeze)
  • a couple of large glass-made containers (a coffee pot would do the trick.
  • a funnel filter (a drip-coffee filter)
  • a stir stick made of plastic or glass
  • a blow torch powerful enough to hard solder
  • an accurate weigh scale (at least to one tenth of a gram)
  • borax
  • clay bowls or anything that has a melting point above gold
  • a measuring cup
  • and of course, a lot of scrap electronics.

The general rule is that you should collect any type of electronic scraps which are prone to contain gold inside, including computer processors, jewellery, gold tooth crowns, and old telephone wiring with an emphasis on outdated electronics, which may contain parts with a higher level of gold than modern ones.

Video first seen on indeedItdoes

In the first step, you must sort the gold into gold-plated parts: circuits which require cleaning, gold fingers, gold plated pins and so forth and so on.

Before working with chemicals, don’t forget to put on your safety gear.

In the second step, you must put the clean circuit boards and the gold fingers  inside the coffee pot. Using a different container, mix one part hydrogen peroxide with  2 parts muriatic acid and add the mixture to the coffee pot until it just covers the gold-containing stuff inside (gold fingers for example).

You’ll have to wait for about a week for the process to complete and don’t forget to stir your concoction on a daily basis.

After 7 days have passed, it’s now time to collect your gold. You’ll see that the acid has darkened and there are flakes of gold floating around inside the coffee pot. If you pour the acid through the coffee filter, the gold flakes will be captured by the filter.

Save the acid though, don’t dump it. The remaining circuit boards/gold fingers must be checked out, the clean parts thrown away, and the uncleaned parts saved for re-dipping.

Now, pour some water through the filter and then flush using methyl hydrate to clean it.

In the next step, you’ll have to add borax to your “mined” gold. Borax works by reducing the melting point of gold from its regular 1063 Celsius. By adding some borax to your cleaned gold flakes, you’ll be able to melt your gold out of the heavy mineral concentrate to salvage it.

Next you’ll have to heat the clay bowl (don’t worry if it splits or cracks) and add borax. When the borax melts, put the gold flakes in too and add more borax, then heat it continuously until you end up with a nice bead of gold. Let it cool and weigh it. There you have it, your own gold from scrap electronics.

That’s one method, the simplest actually.

Here’s an interesting tutorial about the top 10 most valuable computer processors, as in the ones with the most gold inside for recovery by weight counted down.

Video first seen on eWaste Ben

Here’s a detailed hard drive tear-down video tutorial, teaching you how to look for precious metals (gold, silver, palladium and aluminum) inside your old hard drives.

Video first seen on Rob The Plumber

Good luck and scrap hard!

Click the banner below and find out the easy way to earn part-time income!

This article has been written by Chris Black for Survivopedia. 

Prep Blog Review: Homesteading On A Budget

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Whether you are preparing for a disaster, or you just want to be self-reliant, homesteading should be an important part of your prepping plans. And here comes the real challenge – building a sustainable homestead on a budget is everyone’s dream, right?

You don’t have to spend a fortune to start homesteading so this makes the topic for this week’s prep blog review. I’ve gathered 4 articles on this topic and I hope you will enjoy them.

  1. 10 Hacks for Homesteading with Almost No Money

“Homesteading is about being self-sufficient and self-reliant. To do this, you need to figure out some hacks to make it easy and simple. This involves adopting better gardening methods, conserving electricity, minimizing wastage, and consuming locally grown food. You can also go a step further and produce your own clothing, craft-work, and other home accessories.

The following are some simple hacks you can adopt:

Leave your Clothes Out to Dry

Forget the dryer. You can still dry your clothes in the outdoors, balcony or rooftop. Light clothes dry within a few hours even in the chilly weather while heavier garments will take longer. Besides saving you high monthly energy bills, this hack leaves your clothes smelling fresh and natural.

Grow Tomatoes Vertically

Having a small space doesn’t mean you can’t farm your own tomatoes. There are some breeds that grow vertically rather than horizontally. Besides taking little space, most of the plant is off the ground and is less-likely to be affected by parasites and diseases. You also use fewer pesticides to take care of it.”

Read more on Plan and Prepared.

  1. 45 Homestead Tools for Off the Grid Living

“Laura Ingalls didn’t have a power drill, but I bet you her life would have been a lot easier if she did. Listen, your homestead isn’t going to collapse and crumble without having every single one of the tools on the list–at least not right away. But over time as weather wears on your roof and rain mucks up your roads, you are certainly going to need some reinforcement. The following list of homestead tools includes just about everything you will need.

Homesteading isn’t a process that happens overnight. Purchase these homestead tools as you need them until you have everything covered. Start taking stock now and begin gathering the essentials. To make it simpler, I broke the list into four sections: everyday tools, emergency tools, agriculture tools, and luxury tools.”

Read more on Homestead Survival Site.

  1. Homestead Geese – Easy to Care for Barnyard Protectors and Weed Eaters

“Homestead geese are not the first animals that come to mind when you consider homestead livestock. That award usually goes to backyard chickens, or dairy goats with the occasional pastured pig thrown in. But geese deserve to be fourth on that list in my opinion.

Geese are entertainment, lawn control, homestead guardians that also happen to taste pretty darn good.

Goose fat is prized among top chefs, and many a hawk or fox has been scared away from a chicken dinner by the threatening wing span of an angry goose.

You might share that opinion if you encountered an aggressive goose in childhood (or adulthood for that matter).

However, geese raised by you, from goslings (a young goose), can be as friendly as the family dog and twice as formidable when strangers or predators happen on to your homestead!”

Read more on Common Sense Homesteading.

  1. How to Raise Meat Rabbits in Small Spaces

“Whether you are planning to survive disasters or simply want to be self-sufficient and less dependent on outside resources, raising your own meat animals is a smart choice. That said, raising farm animals can be tough for those who live in urban areas, small homes or apartments, or under the rule of restrictive homeowners associations. If that sounds like you, consider raising meat rabbits.  Rabbits make it possible to produce your own meat without raising an eyebrow!

Why rabbits? Meat rabbits are an excellent way to supplement your family food supply.  Rabbit meat is tender and mild, plus rabbit meat is one of the healthiest meat sources, even beating chicken for low calories, high protein, and lower cholesterol levels. Not only that, rabbit meat is also far lower in fat and is higher in calcium and phosphorus than other meats.”

Read more on Backdoor Survival.

This article has been written by Drew Stratton for Survivopedia.

10 Current Nuclear Risks Every Prepper Must Know

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Over the years, the media has done an excellent job of minimizing the immense risk of nuclear contamination.

No matter whether mainstream media makes their reports late at night, or the newspapers print somewhere in the middle of the paper, American citizens remain largely unaware of just how bad the nuclear contamination problem really is.

While these problems continue to be understated or ignored, cancer rates continue to skyrocket and large scale animal die offs go on without other explanation.

Since the media cannot provide an accurate barometer, preppers must take extra care to investigate nuclear risks and be ready to deal with them long before a critical level warning is issued.

Fukushima

Even as I write this article, the #2 reactor at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant is pumping out over 530 sieverts of nuclear radiation per hour. It only takes 1 sievert to cause radiation sickness, and 10 to kill. Right now, the radiation levels inside the reactor are so high, even the best radiation shielded robots cannot survive more than 2 hours.

Now, if you do a Google search in the news section for Fukushima, you only find Fox News reporting on this matter. If you watch TV or read a newspaper from other mainstream sources, there is every chance that you won’t even know that the ongoing situation in Fukushima has gotten much worse.

To add insult to injury, for some time now there are massive die offs of fish all along the west coast from Alaska to Chile. There are also genetic mutations popping up in fish and other animals that suggest they have been exposed to nuclear radiation.

Very soon, perhaps, the US government will have to admit that coastal areas of the Western United States are experiencing higher rates of cancer; and those cancers are being caused by nuclear contamination from Fukushima. In the meantime, all we hear from Japan is that it can take 40 years or more to stop the radiation leaks and fully decommission the reactors.

If you live along the west coast, or plan to bug out to any area west of the Rocky mountains, it is best to move further inland as quickly as possible. Your best options will be locations that are on the east side of the Rockies, and in the lowest valleys on that side. Just make sure that you aren’t near any nuclear plants or nuclear waste dumps.

Because nuclear radiation from Fukushima is being detected all over the world, it is also very important to have your own Geiger counter as well as a Kierney Fallout Meter. In addition, it is also extremely important to avoid buying foods, beverages, or anything else from Japan or anything from businesses along the western seaboard.

Since people are not aware of the level of nuclear contamination, it is all too easy to ship products that have low levels of contamination all over the place.

Never forget that ionized radiation exposure produces effects as it accumulates in the body. What looks like a safe amount right now may not be when added to continual exposure.

The Bear is Still out There

Right now the media claims that just about nothing can stop the tawdry bromance between Trump and Putin. Nevertheless, there are many tangible points of contention between our two nations.

While Trump and Putin may ultimately agree on Syria and be able to work together on this issue, there is a very real possibility that they will not be able to reach common ground on nuclear disarmament.

Relations between the United States and Russia soured during the Obama administration. Virtually all of the work done starting with the Reagan administration is lost, as evidenced by Putin’s videos saying that war with the United States was inevitable. While he often said that he held hopes for better chances with a new president (Trump), his actions since the election say there are problems.

For example, Russia is performing snap air raid drills and has been conducting civilian nuclear bomb shelter drills even before Trump was elected.

Keep any eye out for more news of large scale civilian preparedness drills and military maneuvers, especially in relation to the Ukraine or Russia’s border with other nations.

Chinese Aggression

Even though former President Clinton was eager to sell China super computers, it remains very clear that this communist nation can and will flex its muscles in military matters. Aside from serious trade deficits, China is becoming increasingly hostile to the United States with regards to the South China Sea.

There are several tiny islands in the South China Sea that are claimed by different nations. They may not be worth much of anything in terms of real estate, but the sea floor beneath and around them is believed to be rich in natural resources such as oil and natural gas. Given China’s economic growth and population size, it is very clear they need the South China Sea for fossil fuels.

While China isn’t likely to start a nuclear war over this incident, they may be more inclined to follow North Korean aggression if the situation is to their advantage. Never forget that the government of China takes the issue of saving face very seriously.

A nation that issues decrees that attempt to tell supernatural entities where they can and cannot incarnate is not likely to forget a slight no matter how minimal. This, in turn, can make China very easy to control by North Korea even as they seek to make it look like they are the ones controlling the situation.

The very fact that North Korea continues with its nuclear arsenal says that China will use them as a scape goat to start a nuclear incident, and then follow up, either from the position of “protecting an ally”, or more likely defending Chinese honor.

North Korea

Considering the number of other nuclear threats we face, it is not likely that North Korea will develop its own arsenal (including delivery systems) fast enough to be a risk to us or any other country.

The real risk from North Korea stems from it’s position as an ally of China and the interest ISIS has in being recognized by North Korea. We cannot discount the role of South Korea in this problem given that the people of both nations are keen in being one nation again.

While that is a positive thing in cultural terms, it is not so good for the global economy because South Korea has been infiltrated by Sharia Banks. Even though the majority of these banks may be peaceful, we cannot ignore the possibility that these banks secretly support ISIS and other terror organizations.

As it stands, the greatest risk we face from North Korea is a diplomatic one. Because it is a small country, other nations such as China can use it as a front for hostile actions.

It is, and remains my contention that China, and perhaps even Russia will not attack directly. They will attack through North Korea, a state run by what western media paints as a “madman”. In my opinion, it gives North Korea far more leverage in the nuclear arena than we are led to believe.

Video First seen on AFP news agency.

Watch the news carefully for signs of these developments, as well as the Sharia watch group site that gives excellent information on the progression of Sharia law and banks throughout the world.

Israel Upping the Stakes in Iran

Iran is similar to North Korea in the sense that it is not likely it will develop a nuclear arsenal and delivery system fast enough to compete with established nuclear nations.

On the other side of the equation, Iran is favored by many people in Islamic nations and seen as a crown jewel. As messy as the situation was in 1981 when Israel bombed Iranian nuclear material sites, it did give the rest of the world some time to think about how to manage a nuclear capable Iran.

History still paints this action as something of a disaster because Iran is now far more protective of its nuclear sites and has gone to great lengths to protect them from bombings.

Even though Israel stopped short of bombing Iranian nuclear targets just a few years ago, there is a definite chance they will go through with their plans sometime soon.

Because there are no Middle Eastern nations that admit to having nuclear weapons, it is not likely this action would trigger an immediate nuclear attack on the United States from a country in this region.

On the other hand, Russia remains supportive of Iran as front much as China does North Korea. Given that stance, it is likely both Russia and the United States would be drawn into the fray. If other tensions continue to escalate, there is a chance we will be right back to facing nuclear war with Russia.

Before closing the topic of Iran, let me point out that two of the five nuclear weapon states (United States, Russia, China, UK, and France) have puppet nations in front of them that claim to want access to nuclear arms. I think these puppets hold far more power than we estimate because they might be bought for the right price by the nations hiding behind them as well as other nations that want to push China or Russia into a war with the United States.

In the end, never forget that smaller nations always want to get bigger and have a better place in the global pecking order, while large and powerful nations must struggle to maintain it at their own level plus watch out for the effects of smaller nations acting en masse.

Use business activity sites to watch for where large companies are moving or building their factories as well as FOREX sites that revel changes in one nation’s currency in relation to another.

The Dilemma of Pakistan

Even though Pakistan is a nuclear nation and ally of ours, it is at odds with India, another ally and nuclear nation. At this time, Russia makes no secret of its interest in strengthening economic and cultural ties with India while Pakistan struggles with terrorist groups trying to take it over from within.

Unlike Iran and North Korea, I don’t necessarily see Pakistan as a puppet that could be used by the Trump administration. Nor do I see Pakistan as a nation that would attempt to start a nuclear war on its own.

However, if a terror organization gets control of any of nuclear assets (not just weapons), it can spell disaster for nations surrounding Pakistan that are aligned with the United States. It is through this form of aggression that a major global nuclear war can be triggered.

This weapon that can instantly end modern life in America by knocking out our power grid!

In the arena of Mutually Assured Destruction, diplomatic ties are always complicated when two groups are leery of each other. In this situation, the media tends to sway public opinion into thinking that “other countries” will break their promise first, or fall to terrorism long before the United States will.

The mirror here works two ways and the media in these other countries may also cast doubt on the strength and integrity of the United States. No matter whether Pakistan chooses to align with Iran, or gives another non-Israeli Middle Eastern country the promise of nuclear weapon support, it can be a very dangerous trigger.

Escalating levels of mistrust alone can create a self-fulfilling prophecy of horrifying proportions. If there is one warning I would look for insofar as Pakistan serving as a trigger to a major nuclear encounter, it would be support of a Middle Eastern nation against Israel, or increasing indicators that radical Islamic terrorists are controlling the government and nuclear assets.

A World Ready to Stop Our Nation

When Trump made his inaugural speech, many people in the United States cheered when the candidate they voted for proclaimed “America First”. This phrase, however, has become a point of mockery via viral videos that are being shared around the world. These videos, which seek to “introduce” Trump to their nations say “we don’t mind you being first, but us second, or third, etc.”

While these videos pretend to be humorous, the “me second” theme can be seen as threatening from the standpoint of war, in particular, MAD.

In a MAD scenario, it is often thought that the first strike is not always the defining one. Instead, as other nations join not the fray and launch nuclear weapons, the destruction of the first striking nation, and quite possibly the rest of the world, is assured. Since many of these nations “nuclear sharing” contracts with NATO, it is entirely possible these videos are a warning.

Many of our allies, including Israel have made these videos. While they may, in fact, just be a joke (which in an of itself can be seen as an act of aggression), the fact remains that nations will always look for the most advantageous positions for themselves. Mocking a president of a world power is not a way to grow an alliance. If anything, it will only lead to more aggression.

Insofar as nuclear risks, watch for points where nations making these videos move to contribute to the destabilization of the United States or act in some way that increases the risk of the United States being drawn into a nuclear conflict with one of the other main nuclear nations.

Never forget about France and the UK. While they are historically some of our best allies, they also have many ties to other nations and are on a path to global unity. Trump may not want to bring the United States into that conglomeration especially if our nation cannot be the leader or act with unreserved autonomy.

Aging US Nuclear Reactors

If you think the overseas based threats of nuclear disaster are troubling, then you haven’t been watching Fukushima or Chernobyl close enough.

Source: Radiation Network

What is happening at Fukushima can easily happen right here. We have hundreds of aging nuclear power reactors spread throughout the nation. For example, Indian Point has been showing signs of trouble for decades, however it never gets shut down because it brings in too much money.

For the most part, you won’t get any warnings from the media or government sites about nuclear reactors that may be in trouble. Earthquakes, hurricanes, or other natural disasters could also cause problems at these power plants.

As a prepper, you will be best served by always being informed and aware of how close or far away you are from nuclear reactors. Avoid being downwind of a nuclear power plant and within 200 miles.

It is also very important to have several Kierney Fallout meters located around your home and work place. These will help you detect sudden changes in ionized radiation. If you see something going on, you can always follow up with a Geiger counter.

What Else is ISIS Hiding?

One of the biggest problems with ISIS and other terror groups is they have a lot of money. While many people want to stereotype radical Islamic terrorists as being of Middle Eastern descent, the fact of the matter is many radicals are in Asian and Oceanic countries.

For example, Indonesia and the Philippines both have fairly large terror cells that may well rise up and take the place of ISIS on the world scene. In some cases, some of these groups may already be aligned with the Taliban, ISIS or Al Quaeda or are offshoots of these groups.

This is how you prepare to face ISIS threat to put the entire American nation on our knees!

Since these groups have so much money and access to gullible people of all races, lone wolves can slip through even the best clearance processes for nuclear facilities. No matter whether they get in as janitors for a nuclear medical testing facility or work in a nuclear power plant, there are probably dozens of ways they can gain access to nuclear materials.

Also, with money comes the capacity to buy scientists. In this case, even if we don’t have the technology to turn medical grade nuclear materials into warheads, that doesn’t mean terrorist based scientists aren’t trying their hardest.

Unlike other scientists committed to curbing or inhibiting weapons development, rest assured that drugged up, knocked up, brainwashed and radicalized terrorists will not hesitate to find as many deadly tricks as they can. Just as sadly, they more than likely have all kinds of money at their disposal to do the job.

From dirty bombs to close range warheads, the best thing preppers can do is be aware. Keep a close watch on abandoned buildings and people that go in and out of them. Get to know the homeless people in your area so that you can figure out who is new or using that as a cover. Make it your business to keep a Kierney Meter with you at all times. If you detect suspicious levels of radiation, report it. You just never know what might be hiding under your own nose.

Other than that, never assume that it is just Middle Eastern people that may be plotting to launch an inside nuclear attack in our nation. Even if the final perpetrators wind up being from this part of the world, it is entirely possible that people from other races were part of the process.

In short, let the trail of ionized radiation be your guide and suspicious behavior patterns be your guide more than race based stereotypes.

Improper Medical Testing and Nuclear Waste Disposal

Speaking of obvious sources of a nuclear disaster, never forget about how much radiation you are getting from x-rays, mammograms, CT scans, and other medical diagnostic systems. While these are supposed to be safe over a lifetime, they may be enough to cause serious damage when combined with contaminated food, air and water.

It is best to limit your exposure to these tests as much as possible. Ask for, and demand tests that use other means to view internal organs and systems while providing suitable information. If your insurance company will not pay for alternative tests, do not hesitate to take the matter to social networking, the media and your elected representatives.

From mundane things you deal with every day to large scale conspiracy theories turned real, our nation is in serious danger from nuclear fuels and technologies.

Now is the time to make sure you know how to detect nuclear radiation and spot global trends that indicate dangers are increasing. This is also the time to make sure you can follow appropriate steps based on what you find. Do not forget to include nuclear survival gear in your bug out bag and EDC, and learn how to survive an attack!

This article has been written by Carmela Tyrell for Survivopedia. 

References:

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/mar/09/fukushima-nuclear-cleanup-falters-six-years-after-tsunami

http://www.ibtimes.com/russia-nato-war-moscow-deploys-nuclear-missiles-europe-subsonic-weapons-sea-2504854

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/islamic-finance-insouth-korea-pastandfuture-yagoub-elryah-phd-

http://www.jpost.com/Israel-News/Politics-And-Diplomacy/Peres-bombshell-I-stopped-an-Israeli-strike-on-Iran-469112

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2017/jan/22/isis-finds-easy-recruits-in-prisons-of-indonesia/

 

How To Turn Your Bike Into A Bug Out Vehicle

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The first thing that people do in the movies when there’s a catastrophic event is try to get out of town. They end up in gridlocked traffic and end up surrounded by panicking people abandoning vehicles that can’t go any further. Obviously, there was a lack of planning.

As preppers, we’re prepared to avoid these types of situations either by bugging in, or by having bug out vehicles that can navigate terrain, and will allow us to avoid major roads so that we have a better chance of getting safely away.

Though many people don’t consider a motorcycle a good choice for a bug out vehicle, don’t discount the advantages out of hand. After all, while all of those cars are gridlocked, you can ride the berm or split the lanes to continue traveling. This would, of course, come with the risk of somebody knocking you off your bike, so you’d have to be extremely cautious while also traveling quickly.

You can also travel off-road if you have the right bike and it’s properly equipped. Oh, and if you have an EMP room that’s at least 5 or 6 feet square, you can keep the bike right in there along with an extra motor and parts and still have plenty of room left for your other stuff.

Also, a motorcycle gets anywhere from 30-70 mpg. The average dual sport bike has anywhere from a 3-6 gallon tank, which means that you can make it 150-300 miles on one tank. They’re also versatile and do well both on the street and off-road assuming you choose a good bike and put knobby tires on it.

Many people like to use a 250cc for a bug out vehicle, but I like a little more speed and power – I’d recommend a 600 – it doesn’t weight that much more than a 250, though you will lose a little mpg. That’s negligible, though – 10mpg maybe. Chances are good that your bug out place is still going to be well within your tank range.

There are downsides. You can’t realistically take more than two people and will only be able to take the bare essentials with you. Ideally, you should probably use a bike to get you to a pre-stocked bug out location. Most sport bikes, enduros, motocross bikes and duel sports are light enough that 2 people can lift them up into the back of a truck.

However, there are a few modifications that you should probably make in order to optimize it for bugging out. These are just general suggestions – you’ll have to account for your individual terrain and bug out plans.

Put Headlights on Toggle Switch

Motorcycles typically have headlights that turn on as soon as you turn the key as a standard safety feature. Since you may need to hide, it’s probably a good idea to put the headlight on a toggle switch. Fortunately, the wiring on a motorcycle is fairly simple, so this is easy to do.

Paint to Match Your Terrain

I absolutely love the electric blue and neon green paintjob on my GSXR, but it doesn’t exactly lend itself to hiding.

Not only do you want to keep from being seen on it if possible, but you don’t want it to stand out for somebody to target as a potential getaway vehicle for themselves should you need to stop and be away from it. (i.e., bathroom breaks, etc.)

Fortunately, it doesn’t take much paint to cover an entire motorcycle. Choose a paint that will help you blend into your terrain. Whether it’s green or tan, or somewhere in between, camouflage that ride.

Cargo Racks

You can buy a cargo rack for behind the seat, or you can do what I did for my last bike and build it yourself. This allows you quite a bit of customization because you can add a little bit of storage here and there.

For instance, you can potentially add a rifle carrier that would ride under your thigh, or a storage rack in front of it. You can also buy or build saddle bags. We are, after all, the kings and queens of DIY.

Use Quiet Exhaust

On a standard day, I’ll preach that loud pipes save lives all day long, but not in this case. Your goal is to fly under the radar, so you want the bike to be as quiet as possible. Because of the way a motorcycle motor works, you’re not going to be able to get it whisper-quiet like a car is, but you can muffle it significantly by modifying the pipes.

Especially if you’ve opted to use a small-cc bike, don’t do too much in the way of modifying the heads to muffle the sound because you don’t want to restrict the airflow.

Have an Extra Motor and Parts in Your EMP Room

If you have an EMP room, you have room for a motorcycle motor. They’re small and fairly light – less than 150 pounds in many cases.

Discover how to assemble a simple device that will shield your electronics from the EMP!

Magnetic and Handlebar Bags

Once you start looking, you’re going to be surprised by how many places you can put a storage bag on your bike. There are handlebar bags made to sit in the triple tree. I put mine on the front between the forks when I carry it.

You can also get magnetic tank bags that will carry a surprising amount of gear and supplies.

Magnetic Holsters

These are great. The magnets are seriously strong enough to hold onto the tank even if things get rough. I had one on my last bike that I used when we went camping and I kept it on the front of my tank up by my gauges. You can, of course, always customize them or have them custom made.

Backpack

This is probably my most important piece of survival gear because it stays right with me all the time. I don’t have to worry about it falling off or catching on things, or slowing me down as long as I’m on my bike. Put what you can’t live without in here, in case somebody steals your bike.

I always keep, at a minimum:

Sounds like a lot, but actually if you think about it, the only big item is water. It all fits in the bottom of one of my pouches, and I have a nice little “just in case” kit.

I also keep a toolkit underneath my seat that holds the main 3 sockets and small wrenches that work on my bike, a pair of pliers, and zip ties.

Suspension

Depending on the bike that you have, you may need to adjust the suspension so that it’s fit to ride off-road. This is a topic best researched before you decide on a bike. I can’t really offer much advice that would be any good because everything depends on what you have to work with.

Tires

If you’re going to take your bike off-road, you need to have knobby tires on it. If you’re not, you need to keep your street tires in excellent condition because in the middle of an emergency is the worst time possible for you to have a blowout.

These are just a few tips to help you get your motorcycle ready to use as a bugout vehicle. I considered recommending armoring the tank and you can do that if you want, but truthfully, you’re using it as a vehicle that is light, nimble, and maneuverable. You want to avoid weight where you can.

Do you have any other tips to help prepare a motorcycle so that it will serve as a good bug out vehicle?

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This article has been written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia. 

Prep Blog Review: Quick Tips To Survive A Disaster

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We never know what type of disaster will hit us next. Will it be an EMP, a tornado, a flood, a riot, a shootout at a commercial center, or an economic crisis? We never know, but there is one thing that we can all do – prepare!

Maybe you have already started stockpiling food and water for survival and you have prepared you bug-out-bag, but are you really physically and mentally prepared to survive any disaster?

For this week’s prep blog review I’ve gathered 4 articles on this topic.

  1. 4 Quick Tips to Survive an Emergency

“Plenty of articles talk about how to make large supplies and other preparations for various emergencies. In what follows, I want to take a different approach: I’m going to give you nothing but quick, down-to-earth tips of what to do and what not to do when these 4 disasters strike.

Keep in mind that, although the advice itself sounds simple, taking action on it when everyone around you is panicking will be a huge challenge.

Surviving a Riot

We’ve all seen numerous riots spark in the United States as well as in Europe. Here’s some quick tips on what to do should you get trapped in social unrest:

Never move in the opposite direction of the rioters. You will stand out and they might pick you as a target, possibly dragging you along. “

Read more on Plan and Prepared.

  1. 6 Totally Insane Things that Will Happen if the Power Grid Goes Down

“Imagine if you will, what would happen if you pulled an American family from the 19th century, and plopped them in the middle of downtown Los Angeles during rush hour. They’re not given a warning, they’re not given any kind of primer on what they’re about to experience, and the occurrence is completely inexplicable. How long do you suppose they would last before they cried uncle?

Would they even survive? The odds probably aren’t so good.

Of course, the reverse is probably also true. If you and your family were wrenched from the comforts of the present and hurled back into a previous era, you might not fare so well either.”

Read more on Ready Nutrition.

  1. How to Survive a Flood

“In the deadliest flood ever recorded, every person on the earth —  except for the first “prepper family”– died.

Thankfully, there hasn’t been a flood like that since.

However, that doesn’t mean that there haven’t been some nasty and deadly floods. In fact, there have been many, and according to FEMA floods were the number-one natural disaster of the 20th-century.

If you look at the graph below (provided by the NOAA), you will see that on a ten-year average, floods account for 84 deaths each year. However, in 2015 that number was blown-out-of-the-water (pun intended) with a total of 172 deaths nationwide.”

Read more on Sheep Dog Man.

  1. How to Prepare for a Tornado

There are many natural disasters that might befall a community, but a tornado is one of the most unpredictable.

Several people were killed in the last few days as a rash of storms wreaked havoc in the South and Midwest.

Indeed, hundreds of people are killed yearly by tornadoes, but many injuries and deaths may be avoided with sound preparation.

A tornado is a violently rotating column of air that is in contact with both the surface of the earth and the thunderstorm (sometimes called a “supercell”) that spawned it.

Read more on Doom and Bloom.

 

This article has been written by Drew Stratton for Survivopedia.

11 Tips For Riding A Motorcycle In Bad Weather

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Survivopedia 11 Tips For Riding A Motorcycle In Bad WeatherYou’re out on a ride on a lonely backroad, thirty miles from home, and it starts pouring rain. Ideally, the best option would be to pull over and wait it out.

Realistically, you may have to pick up the kids, be riding to work, or be bugging out. At that point, pulling over is not an option.

Rain changes the game, but with the proper skills you can make the ride much safer when the roads are slippery and you can hardly see. Here’s what to do!

Wear a Full-Face Helmet

Wearing a full-face helmet, at least during inclement weather, is the first step toward making your ride safer. Broken legs heal. Broken skulls or brains usually do not.

As an additional bonus, a helmet serves to keep your head dry and warm and keeps the rain from beating in your face and eyes, thus preventing distraction and improving vision.

If you’ve never ridden in the rain, even a light drizzle feels like you’re getting hit with gravel when you’re going 40 or 50 mph. It’s hard to focus on the road and other drivers when it feels like you’re getting exfoliated with a sandblaster.

Adding a layer of Rain-x to your face shield will help repel the rain so that your visibility is improved even more.

Have Good Boots

There are all kinds of fancy boots out there that look great but remember that their primary purpose is protection.

For riding in bad weather, it’s good to have tall boots that cover your shins. This helps keep you warm and dry (if they’re waterproofed) as well as protect you from losing your footing when you put your feet down.

Especially in inclement weather, it’s important to have boots that have non-skid bottoms. You can find non-skids in every design – cruising and racing. The most important factors are comfort and grip, so try several pairs on to see which ones fit the best. Scoot a little to see if they truly are “grippy.”

Wear a Sturdy Coat Designed for Riding

I’ve been down twice – once while wearing a T-shirt and once while wearing full race gear, which included high-quality racing leathers. Fortunately, I was going slow – about 20 mph when I went down wearing the T-shirt, but I still have the scar on my arm from the road rash, and it was difficult and painful to clean out the dirt and gravel, and care for it while it healed.

When I was wearing the leather, I was on the track and went down at 65 mph. I had no skin injuries whatsoever, and I slid for over 20 feet. The leather made all the difference. I also have both a leather motorcycle jacket and a nylon/Kevlar jacket that’s more in line with the sportbike that I ride. The leather is waterproof and offers supreme protection in cold, rainy weather.

I specifically recommend jackets/coats designed for motorcycles because they have three features developed just for riding

  • the tail is longer in the back so that it doesn’t ride up,
  • there are zippers on the sleeves that zip so that they’re snug around your wrists to keep out cold air and rain/snow,
  • the zippers have pull tags on them so that you can zip/unzip with gloves on.

Also, the pockets zip up instead of down to prevent the zipper from opening while you’re riding.

Keep in mind that safety is number one priority when riding a bike and you have to be prepared for anything and to assume full responsibility for your personal safety.

Carry Survival Tools

I never leave the house without my backpack (saddle bags are nice, but don’t really come with sport bikes). I carry various survival/emergency items that include:

  • The common sockets/wrenches that fit my bike
  • Zip ties
  • Faro stick/striker
  • Fire starter – Vaseline-soaked cotton balls in a baggie
  • A Bracelet made of 550 paracord
  • A bottle of water
  • OTC pain killer
  • A knife
  • A baggie to put my phone and gadgets in so they stay dry
  • A couple of granola bars
  • A hand mirror
  • A whistle
  • A sweatshirt/extra T-shirt – wet shirts are miserable when you reach your destination, and it tends to get chilly once the sun goes down.
  • A small flashlight

Yes, that may sound like overkill and some of my rider friends tease me about it, but only until their bike breaks down or it starts raining and they want to put their phone in my baggie. Then I’m not so silly.

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Wear Gloves

Wearing gloves serves two purposes – they protect your hands and keep the oils in your hands from degrading the rubber in your grips.

Choose gloves that are reinforced on the top of the knuckles and palms in case you go down. Those are the two areas that are most likely to come into contact with the pavement.

Wear Chaps

You’d be surprised how much a pair of chaps protects your legs from the cold and rain/snow. Of course, they also provide an extra layer of protection in case you go down.

Avoid Road Paint and Other Road Debris

Now that we’ve covered gear, let’s talk about some road hazards. Road paint – you know, those white lines used at stop lights/signs or to designate parking spots – is like stepping on ice when it’s wet. Even in non-skid boots, it’s slick. Avoid it.

The same thing goes for sand, leaves, oil, and other materials that gather on the road. Watch where you put your feet.

Also, when it first starts raining, the oils, grease, and other slick material on the road is washed to the surface and distributed all over the road, so the pavement is going to be extra slick.

Look Ahead

In good weather, leave yourself plenty of room to see what’s on the road at least 30 feet in front of you. Double or even triple that if the roads are wet or icy.

Remember, you’re on two wheels, so you don’t have the ability to lock up the brakes, and if you run over something such as large stones, animal carcasses, puddles, or small limbs, it’s hard to stay in control.

Also, it tends to hurt when you rear-end them and you need more road to stop than you would in a car. Pay attention.

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Ride Staggered

I know that riding what’s called 2-up (side-by-side) seems nice, but it’s not safe for a wide variety of reasons, especially in bad weather.

You (and other riders) need room to dodge road debris, standing water or ice, loose sand or gravel, and cars that may not see you and come into your lane. You also need room in case you take turns a bit too wide or have a tire blow-out.

For all of the same reasons, you need to ride on the opposite side of the lane as the rider in front of you, with your front wheel no closer than several feet behind and to the side of him/her. In addition to being safer in case something happens, this also keeps you from getting a face full of road water coming off the spray of the rear tire in front of you.

Keep Bike in Good Repair

This is the safety tip that you can’t afford to ignore. If your bike breaks down in inclement weather on a back road, you may just find yourself stuck for hours or even overnight., a flat is tough to recover from when road conditions are perfect, but if they’re wet or icy, the chances of an accident increase exponentially.

Slow Down

It’s tempting to want to hurry to get somewhere warm and dry, but when you combine decreased visibility with poor road conditions, you’re asking for trouble. You’re likely already soaked to the bone, so another few minutes or so isn’t going to make much of a difference.

Riding a motorcycle in bad weather is hazardous to say the least. Following all of these tips will help to make it safer for you, but when it comes right down to it, you need to watch the weather, ride within your abilities, and use your common sense to determine what’s best for you in your individual situation.

Ride safe, and keep the shiny side up!

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This article has been written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia. 

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New To Prepping? Here’s Where To Start From

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New To Prepping

Bit by bit, the ranks of preppers are growing all the time. More and more people are waking up to the fact that the government can’t protect them and doesn’t even do a very good job of providing support in the aftermath of a disaster. Oh, they throw money at it, but money isn’t the answer to everything.

Every new prepper is faced with the same problems and the same questions they have to answer for themselves. It’s not that there’s no information available for new preppers to use, it’s that there’s too much information.

Check online for prepping or survival and you’ll find an enormous amount of information, not all of which agrees with other sources. Wading through all that and finding the information that one needs can be a daunting task.

You might very well be one of those newbies; someone who has just decided to look at prepping for the first time. If so, welcome to one of the most important movements in our country today.

Prepping is an individual journey that each of us take, with no two walking exactly the same path. Yet we are preppers together, part of a fellowship of like-minded people who have decided that it’s time to do something for themselves.

If you’re reading this, you’ve probably already decided that just looking at information isn’t enough. Being a prepper means taking action; preparing yourself and your family for whatever problem or disaster might come your way. Preppers believe in self-sufficiency; trusting in themselves in an emergency, not in the government.

But where does one begin? Of all the things that one can do to become more prepared, which one or ones are the most important? What does one have to do, in order to truly be prepared?

These questions are complicated by the fact that each person’s situation is unique. Oh, we all have things in common, but we also have our own needs, our own family, our own skills, our own resources and our own risks that we face. So cookie cutter prepping doesn’t work. Each person has to determine what their own needs are and how to best meet them.

Even so, there are some things we should all do at the beginning; things to get us on the road to becoming better prepared. The first steps we need to take on this journey may not be what you’re thinking. In fact, I’d be surprised if many preppers thought about these steps, before walking along the path for a ways.

Educate Yourself

It’s easy to think of prepping as just stockpiling supplies for a rainy day. That’s actually where most of us start off. Whether we just buy a couple of bags of beans and rice or go hog wild buying prepackaged survival food, squirreling food away for a rainy day seems like an almost instinctive act; something we easily gravitate towards, as a starting point for our prepping.

There’s nothing wrong with stockpiling food and in fact you need to do so; but before you start stockpiling, it’s a good idea to know what to stockpile. Not all foods keep well, nor do all of them provide the right nutrition to get you through an emergency. Take some time to research, before running off to the grocery store.

While you’re at it, you need to research much more than just what foods to stockpile. Our modern society doesn’t prepare us well for survival. If anything, it prepares us to die blaming others. But you can’t count on those others to help you survive. They don’t know how to either.

Our ancestors of 200 years ago were much better suited for survival than we are. For them, every year was about survival. They either stockpiled enough preserved food and cut enough firewood to make it through winter or they died. There weren’t too many other options available. Their lives were simpler, their needs and wants more closely associated with surviving and they had the skills they needed to take care of themselves.

There are a wide range of skills that you need to learn, some of which you might actually already know. If you like to go camping and spend time in the outdoors, you’re off to a good start, as the skills associated with those activities are closely related to survival skills.

Remember that a knife is a must have tool for outdoor survival as it helps you hunt, make shelter, start a fire and defend yourself.

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Hunting, fishing, and starting a fire are all good survival skills. But you’ll also need to know how to grow food in your garden, purify water and defend your home as well.

For preppers, learning isn’t something that begins or ends, it’s just something that is. We start out learning about survival when we get into prepping, and we keep on learning for the rest of our lives. There’s always some new skill or information to learn; all of which is ultimately useful.

Develop a Survival Mentality

Most people tend to look at survival as a physical activity; but it’s as much mental as it is physical. You have to have the right attitude to survive or no matter what you do, you’ll fail.

What do I mean by the right attitude? I mean the attitude of a survivor. You have to be convinced that you’ll survive. You have to be convinced that you’ll overcome. You need to be convinced that you can do whatever is necessary to keep yourself and your family alive.

Here in America we’re protected from many of the harsher realities of life. Few Americans have had to kill and prepare their own food. Unless you’re a hunter; you probably don’t have the slightest idea of how to kill and clean a chicken for dinner, let alone how to properly field dress and butcher a deer or other large animal. But if it’s not done properly, the meat from that animal can be tainted in the process.

But you know the hardest part of killing and preparing that animal? It’s getting over the idea of having to do it. Most of us are squeamish when it comes to things like that; squeamish to the point that we’d die before killing that chicken.

Family food

Yet for millennia our ancestors hunted, killed and ate their own game, without the slightest bit of squeamishness. Men would bring the game home from their hunt, and their wives would clean and cook the animals. They didn’t throw up; they didn’t feel funny about it; they did it, and they enjoyed the meal that they prepared.

For us, here in America, overcoming the imprint of our society and accepting the needs of survival is paramount to being able to survive. Most have to do so at a moment’s notice, when they are faced with their first disaster. But those who develop a survival mentality learn to make the adjustment at their leisure, when it’s easier to do so.

Interestingly enough, attitude is so important to survival, that every military manual on survival starts off with a section on attitude. When you consider the amount of money and effort that goes into the preparation of those manuals, that one single fact is rather telling. Attitude is key to survival.

Analyze Your Family’s Strengths and Weaknesses

Each of us has a different family, with different strengths and weaknesses. Some family members might have skills or abilities which easily translate to a survival setting. Others have special needs that have to be considered when making our survival planning. Typically, we find a bit of each in our families.

Surviving as a lone wolf is much harder than surviving as part of a team. In a team, each individual is able to take part of the load, helping each other. With each one learning the necessary skills and doing part of the necessary tasks, not only does the work become easier; but more importantly, the chances of the team’s survival becomes greater.

Your family is your first survival team. Even if you join with others, in a larger survival team, your family is still the core of your personal team. As such, it’s important that you understand what your family is capable of doing, what it is capable of learning, and even more importantly, what you might need others to do for you, because you are incapable of learning to do it for yourself.

As part of this, you also need to analyze the assets you have at your disposal.

Do you have a vacation home somewhere, that you could use as a survival retreat if you needed to? Do you have a four-wheel-drive vehicle? Do you have enough land to turn your home into a homestead? Do you have camping equipment? How much money do you have available to use for prepping? What tools do you have, which will help you survive? Does your home have a fireplace? All of this, and more, will ultimately affect your ability to survive.

This process of analyzing your family will ultimately tell you what you need to do, in order to get from where you are today, to where you need to be. But don’t just do it once; from time to time you should reanalyze the situation and make any necessary adjustments.

Decide What Risks You Face

Prepping is ultimately about being ready to face a disaster, whether that’s a personal disaster, a regional disaster or a nationwide disaster. The problem is, none of us know the disaster that we are going to face. That makes prepping a little bit difficult.

But not knowing doesn’t mean that we can’t prepare. It just means that we prepare for likelihoods, rather than certainties. In other words, while it’s safe to say with certainty that we’ll all face some sort of disaster, sometime in our lives, what exact disaster we might face is nothing more than a likelihood.

So, the thing you need to do is figure out what the most likely disasters are, that you are going to face. That stats with figuring out what possible disasters you could face, ranging all the way from loss of a job to a zombie apocalypse, with natural disasters and the loss of the electrical grid in between. Don’t leave anything out at this point, as all you’re really doing is brainstorming possibilities.

Once you have your list of possible disasters, you need to give each of them two scores, say on a scale of one to five. The first scale is how likely you feel it is that you’ll actually face that disaster. The second scale is how much of an impact that disaster would have on your life. Some disasters, such as a zombie apocalypse might have an extremely low likelihood, earning it a one on that scale, but an extremely high impact, should it actually happen, earning it a five on that scale.

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(Note: The term TEOTWAWKI is commonly used by preppers to stand for “The end of the world as we know it.” This does not mean the literal end of the world, but rather, the end of our  modern lifestyle that we are accustomed to.)

Combining the two scores gives you a number from 2 to 10. That number is the one you use to prioritize considering that particular disaster in your planning. The way that usually works out, is that we concentrate on the highest ones and ignore the lower ones.

But in preparing for the highest ones, we are probably going to be prepared for whatever happens with the lower ones.

Begin Planning

Now that you’ve got a pretty good idea of what you have to work with and what you’re likely to face, you can start your survival planning. Once again, this is a process that will continue throughout the rest of your life. Everything you learn has the potential to change and improve your plans.

Your plan needs to define what you will do in each of the potential disaster situations you are likely to encounter, especially the high likelihood, high impact ones. You will find that there will be some overlap between different scenarios, but there will also be things that are unique to each one.

From this, you can determine how much you need to stockpile, whether it’s for a month, six months, a year or the rest of your life. You’ll also be able to determine the best place for your family to survive, in a variety of different situations. In many of those scenarios, you’ll be better off sheltering in place, or “bugging in.” But there might also be some which require you to bug out and go to a survival retreat somewhere.

Don’t expect that you’ll get everything right the first time around. You will most likely forget some items, because of being focused on other needs. That’s okay. As you continue to study, you’ll find the places you need to fill in, to make your survival plans and your stockpile more complete.

Prepping is a process, not a destination. You’ll probably never reach that point of perfection, where you sit back and say to yourself: “Self, I’ve arrived. I’m ready for anything.”

But rather, you’ll gain more and more confidence that you can take care of yourself and your family, no matter what comes your way. Each little step will give you and your family more security, and ultimately, that’s what prepping is all about.

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What We Can Learn From The California Evacuation

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Imagine waking up one morning, to find that your home, which you thought was safe, was in fact, is in danger. Not just a little danger, either; but one which could destroy your home, wiping it off the face of the Earth. What do you do?

That’s the situation which has faced almost 200,000 people in Northern California, as the risk of flooding from the Oroville Dam and Reservoir is increasing. An unusually wet winter has led to the reservoir reaching dangerously high levels.

Erosion damaged the primary spillway, as a 200 foot long, 35 foot wide hole formed in the bottom. Closing this spillway merely caused the water to rise even higher, overflowing the emergency spillway.

However, the emergency spillway only had a concrete lip, with the rest of the spillway being nothing more than an open hillside, leading down to the river below. Not capped with concrete, it was subject to erosion, which the water flowing over it quickly caused, raising concerns about the emergency spillway collapsing and releasing a 30 foot tall wall of water on the towns below.

This prompted an emergency evacuation that touched on four counties, with all the confusion and problems of any mass exodus. People had an hour to get out of their homes and on the road, where they found traffic moving at a snail’s pace and gas stations overwhelmed by people who needed to fill their tanks. As gas stations and then cars ran out of gas, people were forced to abandon them and take out on foot.

What’s Wrong With Conventional Prepper Wisdom

This is where the average prepper says it’s time to grab the bug out bag and put Plan B (for bug out) into effect. While that is a logical conclusion from a near-term survival viewpoint, it may not be the best possible solution from a long-term survival viewpoint. Even if your home is destroyed in such a disaster, there are many things within that home, which you will need as you rebuild your life.

“The clear answer is to bug out to some other urban area, which is far enough removed from the epicenter of the danger your home is facing, to make it a safe haven from the pending disaster.”

The problem is, most of us think of bugging out as something to be done in an emergency, with the intent of living in the wild. But that’s not necessarily the best solution. Living in the wild is infinitely harder than living amongst our fellow humans, where we have the entire infrastructure of modern society to support us. It really only makes sense to bug out into the wild when we need to escape from our fellow man, such as in the case of a breakdown of society.

In those cases, we’re usually referring to a nationwide catastrophe which has led to the breakdown of society. There is no safe populated place to go, leaving us with heading into the wilderness as our only viable option.

On the other end of the scale, we have bugging out to a refugee relocation center, often referred to as a FEMA camp. That option works for those sheeple who expect the government to care for them from cradle to grave, but it doesn’t work for us. Most of us don’t trust the government all that much and definitely don’t want to put ourselves and our families into their hands.

So if prudence dictates that we bug out, but it doesn’t make sense to either bug out to the wild or bug out to a FEMA camp, what are we to do?

It is easier to find the things you need to have in order to survive, if you’re in an urban area, than if you’re in the wilderness. Not only that, but if you have to rebuild your life somewhere, it’s also easier to do that in the company of others, than out in the middle of nowhere.

We have to understand that not all bug-outs are equal. There’s a huge difference between bugging out due to a natural disaster, than bugging out due to a breakdown in society. Because of this difference, we need to adjust our plans accordingly and not use a “one size fits all” style of prepping. The bug out bag might be the only thing we can take with us so make sure you have your bug out bag ready to go.

Planning for an Evacuation

9343130 - tsunami roadsign near pescadero, california

While mandatory evacuations are by no means common, they aren’t unprecedented either.

There was a mandatory evacuation ordered before Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans and the Gulf Coast. A similar order went out for Hurricane Sandy.

If a tsunami was ever to head for any of our shores, you can be sure that a general evacuation order would go out.

But the most common evacuation orders are those that happen for floods and forest fires. This evacuation in California falls into that category.

If we accept that such an evacuation is different than bugging out due to social unrest or a breakdown in society, then we need to determine what we should do differently. More than anything, this affects the things we should being with us.

Since we would not be heading off into the wild, we wouldn’t need a massive amount of wilderness survival gear. Oh, we’d need some, as there would always be the possibility of being forced to abandon our cars and take out on foot. In such a case, it would probably be wise to avoid the roads and head cross-country, especially if a lot of other people were caught in the same predicament.

The simple fact of being prepared makes you and I too good a target for mooching and stealing, for us to stick around others who have had to abandon their cars as well.

In that case, the bug out bag might be the only thing we can take with us. But if we work things right, we won’t have to abandon our cars. In that case, we can take a whole lot more with us. Specifically, we can take the things we’ll need to have in order to rebuild our lives.

So, what are those things?

  • Clothing: both rough clothing for the wilderness and professional clothing for seeking a new job.
  • Valuables: there’s no sense leaving valuable jewelry behind to be looted or buried in the mud. Better to take it with you, so that you can use it. If nothing else, it can be sold to provide you with food.
  • Cash: whatever cash you have on hand will be needed to keep your family going, wherever you are going to end up.
  • Photos and other important memories.
  • Professional tools that you would need to have so that you could continue working or working a new job.
  • Important documents: birth certificates, professional degrees, marriage license, certifications, car titles, property deeds, medical records, kids school records.
  • Computer: today, so much of our lives and our work is on our computers, that we will need them to help us rebuild our lives, if our homes are destroyed.

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The thing is, with only a few hours to pack up and leave, or even less, chances are that you won’t be able to pack those things up, or even that you’ll think of them all. That’s why you need to have a checklist of things that you should take with you, besides your bug out bag.

In fact, you probably need several different checklists, based upon different scenarios. That way, you’ll be able to choose the checklist that’s most appropriate to the situation.

It’s much easier to think through what you need to do, when there is time, and things are calm. In the moment of crisis, the mind tends to go blank; so don’t wait for that moment to come. Prepare your lists and note where those items are kept. That way, you won’t need to waste precious time looking for it.

Lessons to Be Learned

As with any such disaster, there are lessons for us to learn. Professionals who deal with disasters and crisis situations always do an after-action-review, to see what they can learn. It doesn’t even have to be a situation that they were involved in; they’ll review other actions, so as to find what lessons they can learn.

We can do the same thing, simply by looking at what happened and putting ourselves in the place of the families who became victims of this potential disaster. In doing so, we can see what went wrong and what remedial action needs to be taken, to make sure that it doesn’t happen to us, as it did to them.

Know Your Area

The people living downstream of the Oroville Dam should have known that they were living in an area with a high risk of flooding. It doesn’t matter that there has never been any problem with that dam before, the very fact of its existence creates risk, especially in earthquake-prone California. Knowing that, they should have planned what they would do if anything ever happened to the dam.

Granted, their problem isn’t yours or mine, but we need to ask ourselves what risks we have overlooked. It’s easy to look around us and totally miss the most dangerous things in our area. As preppers, we need a good handle on every risk that exists in our area and we need to know if something happens to increase the risk from any of them.

Keep Your Ear to the Ground

One of the most important elements of an effective bug out is knowing when to bug out. Most survival instructors teach that it’s best to shelter in place as long as you can; but there are always cases that go against that advice. The situation in Northern California clearly fits that description. In that case, getting out sooner is clearly better than getting out later. If nothing else, it helps you to avoid the traffic.

But that requires knowing what’s coming, before it becomes public knowledge. In other words, you need good, solid information about each and every one of the risk elements that can affect you. That way, you can take action before it is too late.

Don’t just depend on traditional sources of information. The news media has proven that we can’t trust them; so why should we trust them for this? They could easily avoid telling of a pending disaster, just to further some political point that they feel is more important. To the left, we are nothing more than pawns in their power game, so they don’t really care what happens to us.

In the case in point, the knowledge that they had just passed through an extremely wet winter should have been a warning to anyone who recognized that dam as a threat. That would then lead to further investigation, finding how high the water was. From there, they would want to keep an eye on the water level, seeing it continue to rise and the mounting risk that it was creating.

Don’t Trust “Expert” Analysis

While experts have their place, we shouldn’t put all our trust in what they say. In this case, experts had said that the emergency spillway was safe for much more water than what was pouring over it. Yet they quickly found that their analysis was incorrect. Hey, they’re human, they can make mistakes too.

Those experts were even faced with complaints, filed by various organizations, which stated that the design of the emergency spillway was inadequate and not up to government mandated standards. Yet, bowing to the pressure of their own senior management, who didn’t want to pay the expense of capping the emergency spillway with concrete, they stood their ground, saying that it was safe.

So listen to what the experts say, but don’t put all your eggs in one basket. Make your own analysis, based upon the knowledge you have and logic. If something doesn’t look right to you, there’s a good chance that it isn’t.

Trust Your Gut, Don’t Wait

While the people weren’t given much notice, I’m sure there were one or two who had developed their own idea of what was happening. Knowing that, I would be surprised if they didn’t have thoughts of bugging out early. Had they followed their instincts, they would have been the safest and most comfortable people out there.

I understand that we don’t want to disturb our lives for nothing. That makes sense. At the same time, there are situations where we need to disturb our lives. This is such a situation. Maybe nothing will happen; but maybe it will. With that being the case, it’s better to be safe than sorry. You can always call it a practice drill.

Have Gasoline on Hand

fuel Unsurprisingly, one of the problems the evacuees faced was that the gas stations ran out of fuel, leaving them without enough gas to get their cars to where they were going.

Gas stations don’t stock fuel for an emergency, but rather to meet their daily sales. There is no way that they can meet the needs of a mass evacuation.

In this evacuation, as in any other, a large number of vehicles ended up parked on the side of the road, when they ran out of gas.

When you consider that most people run their cars on the bottom half of the tank, that’s not at all surprising. I’ve got a shocking message for those people, it doesn’t cost any more to keep the top half of the tank filled, than it does to keep the bottom half filled.

More than that, you should have a stock of gasoline on hand, all the time. That’s a bit tricky, because gasoline doesn’t store well. But if you rotate that gas supply, putting it in your vehicle’s tank and replacing it with fresh gasoline every six months, you’ll always have a good supply of gasoline for bugging out with, should the need arise.

Have Alternate Escape Routes

Not only are the gas stations inadequate for a mass evacuation, the highways are too. Highways are expensive to build, so they build them based upon actual and projected traffic. Adding enough extra lanes to handle a mass evacuation is impractical.

This means that the highways are going to be overcrowded and that traffic will slow to a snail’s pace in any evacuation. But in most cases, the side streets and back ways will be totally devoid of traffic. There will be ways that will be open, especially country and farm roads that aren’t used a whole lot. Learn those routes and make sure that you have maps to use in figuring out alternate ways to get out of Dodge.

Have a Destination

Finally, make sure you have somewhere to go. I don’t know about you, but the last place I’d want to go is some overfilled school gymnasium, which had been turned into a refugee center. I’d much rather pitch a tent outside and have a modicum of privacy.

Most people will only go as far as they have to, in order to avoid the disaster. So, you can easily get away from the crowd by going a little farther. Don’t stop in the first town you get to, go on through and stop in another, on down the road. There will be less people there competing for hotel rooms and other necessities.

Better yet, scout out some good locations to go to in the case of an emergency. Take a few weekends off and do some traveling, visiting other cities and finding the resources that you’d need to have, if you have to abandon your home. That way, you have some idea of where to go.

Be Prepared

Emergencies can happen at any time. I’m sure that the majority of the people living downstream of that dam had no idea that they were in danger. Their first indication that there was a serious problem was when they were told to evacuate. Since most of them were unprepared, they ended up leaving with whatever they could grab.

The truly sad thing is that they could have received adequate notice, if the authorities were willing to share information about what was happening. But they didn’t.

While they gave a flash flood warning to Sacramento, miles downstream, they didn’t say a thing to the people who lived closer. Those were the people who ended up having to evacuate with a one hour notice.

That’s the way we can expect things to happen. That’s why it’s a good idea to be prepared. We never know when an emergency will happen, how much information will be withheld from us or how much time we’ll have to evacuate, but we can prepare to deal with a disaster.

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Urban Survival with The Prepping Academy

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Urban Survival Forrest & Kyle “The Prepping Academy” Audio in player below! On “The Prepping Academy” for this episode our host Forrest and Kyle are discussing urban survival. You might be thinking to yourself this doesn’t apply to you. Let us assure you it does. Current statistics say that approximately 82% of the United States population … Continue reading Urban Survival with The Prepping Academy

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How To Make Lye At Home

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Making Lye At Home

Knowing how to use what you have on hand to make what you need is one of the hallmarks of a true prepper or homesteader. So is repurposing items and avoiding as much waste as possible.

So, in that frame of mind, what do you do with all the ash left after you build a fire, or dozens of them throughout a winter? Make lye!

There are many uses for lye, chemically named potassium hydroxide. You may also hear it called caustic soda or caustic potash. There are two different chemicals referred to as lye – the type that we’re talking about today that’s made from wood ash, and sodium hydroxide, which is made from salt.

The reason that we’re focusing on the type made from ash is that all of the ingredients that you need to make it are already right there in your house. Actually, you only need two ingredients – water and ash.

That’s it. To make sodium hydroxide, which is a common ingredient in industrial cleaners and caustic products such as drain cleaner, you need carbon electrodes and a power source. Not exactly prepper-friendly.

What’s Lye Used For?

So what, you may ask, is lye used for? Well, several things. First, it’s a necessary ingredient in soap.

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You also need lye to make biodiesel and can use it to adjust the pH of your soil. There are also cooking uses for lye, such as making chocolate and preserving processed foods, but that’s pretty delicate and it’s completely outside my wheelhouse.

Oh, and lye also degrades soft tissues and, given enough time, will soften and break down bone. This was actually a trick used by a famous mobster to dispose of bodies. So on that note, let’s talk about how to safely handle lye.

Handling Lye

You need to exercise extreme caution when using lye because if it comes into contact with your skin, it will almost instantly start interacting with the fatty tissue to turn you into a bar of soap!

Seriously, that’s kinda what happens. Wear goggles because it can – and will – put you blind. It’s a good idea to use gloves and wear long sleeves, too. If you happen to get lye on your skin, pour vinegar on it to neutralize it.

Lye will also erode some metals – specifically aluminum – so be careful what you make it in.

Ingredients Needed to Make Lye

We’ve already discussed that you only need two ingredients to make lye: water and ash. Sounds easy, right? Yes it is, but you can’t use any water and ash or else the lye won’t leech properly out of the ash and it will be too weak to be effective.

Rainwater is the best and cheapest water to use. You don’t want to use tap water regardless of whether it’s city or well because of the minerals and chemicals in it. You can use water distilled using a steam process, but that can get expensive quickly. So, get a nice rainwater catcher and you’re in business.

It’s always a good idea to have rainwater collection vessels anyway, because it can be used as a backup water source or as a source of gray water to wash clothes and water plants. Well now you have yet another use for it.

You can’t use just any ash, either. Well, technically you can, but the soap that’s made from this type of lye made from softwoods and coniferous trees will be soft soap instead of hard soap. Good woods include ash, apple, hickory, beech, cherry, birch, elm, oak, walnut and maple.

You want to use hardwoods for your fires anyway because it burns longer, and we all know that you can’t use pine in your woodburners or fireplaces unless you want the resin to accumulate and burn you out at some point, likely in the middle of the night.

Lye Making Methods

So now that we know what woods and water to use to make the best lye, let’s talk about a couple of methods.

There are three basic ways to make lye at home:

  • the ash bucket method
  • the barrel method
  • the cooking method.

They all three work; it’s just a matter of personal preference and how much effort you’re willing to invest.

We’ll discuss them in the order that I just listed but again, a reminder not to use aluminum containers. Use glass, wood, enamel, stainless steel, or heavy-duty plastic.

One final tip: some of the old timers would add 2 percent or so lime to the ash mixture to make sure it produces a good hard soap. Salt works too, but you add it to the fat during the soap-making process instead of at the lye phase. Use about 2 ½ pints salt to 5 gallons of fat.

The Ash Bucket Method

This is pretty much exactly what the name implies. It’s kind of the lazy prepper’s way of making lye. Add a few cups of hot water directly to your full ash bucket and stir. Make sure you have a second ash bucket to hold your dry ashes! Let it sit for a few hours, stirring every thirty minutes or so.

Use a ratio of about 2 parts water to one part ash. Equal amounts work, too, but don’t exceed a ratio of around 3:1 water to ash if you want your lye to make quickly.

Once you’ve stirred it several times throughout the afternoon, do the egg test. This is a great way to test the alkalinity of your lye water. If you drop the egg in and it sinks, the lye is too weak and you need to let it sit for a while longer. Stirring more frequently may be helpful, too.

The lye has the perfect pH when the egg floats with about a quarter-sized part of it sticking out of the water. If your lye accidentally gets too strong, just add a bit more water. Throw the egg away when you’re done because it’s not edible after coming into contact with the lye.

Once your lye is perfect, pour it slowly and carefully from the ash bucket into another bucket making sure that you don’t pour any of the ashes into the mix.

Video first seen on Eddie Borges.

The Barrel Method

To make lye using the barrel method, you’ll need a water-tight wooden (or stainless steel) barrel and three catch receptacles. Drill several small holes in the bottom of the barrel, then set it up on bricks or blocks that you can get your catch basin underneath of it to collect the lye. Make sure it’s stable – the last thing you want to do is spill lye everywhere.

Line the bottom with a layer of clean stones so that the straw that you’re using in the next step doesn’t clog the holes. Put a thick layer of straw over in the bottom of the barrel, then fill it almost all the way with ash. Pour hot water over it, then remove the container underneath that’s now full of weak lye water.

You’ll have to repeat this process several times, just pouring the used, filtered water over the ash and straw until the lye becomes strong enough. Just so you know, the lye is perfectly fine, but the straw may discolor it a bit by turning it yellow.

After you’ve repeated this process five or six times, do the egg test and continue accordingly.

Alternatively, you can use a barrel with a spigot instead of the holes and just let the water sit in it for several hours and test. When it’s done, just drain the lye out the spigot, leaving the ash residue behind.

The Cooking Method

This method is perfectly acceptable but you need to make sure that the room is well-ventilated just to be on the safe side. We’re going to start the process by adding the ashes and the water to your pot. Bring it to a slow boil or simmer and cook it for a half hour or so, then allow it to cool and do the egg test.

If it’s not strong enough, pour the water over a fresh batch of ashes and repeat until your lye is as alkaline as it needs to be. And be careful that none of it splashes on you as you boil it.

See, now that you know that lye isn’t so hard to make, you can do it yourself whenever you need it as long as you have ashes and rain water, just like our ancestors used to make it.

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Read This Before Start Building An Utility Trailer

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Survivopedia Read This Before Start Building An Utility Trailer

Even though there are plenty of pre-built new and used utility trailers on the market, they may not meet your exact needs. If you are going to use the trailer for any kind of prepper application, it is best to make sure you have everything you want in the design.

As with so many other things, this means you will more than likely need to design and build the trailer yourself. While this may cost more in terms of time and labor, in the end it may save your life and make living in the post crisis world easier than expected.

If you are looking to expand or upgrade your DIY skills, building a utility trailer will give you plenty of practice.

Stages of Building Your Trailer

These brutal financial times make it difficult to justify building a utility trailer that may or may not be needed to address some kind of major future crisis. Surprisingly enough, you don’t need to build a utility trailer years, or even months in advance of a major social collapse.

By keeping the following points in mind, you can build a suitable trailer in just a few days, or even do so after a major crisis happens.

As you think about how long it will take to build a utility trailer, keep the following points in mind. You can divide the timeline into five main parts:

1. Planning and designing the trailer

You can plan and design a trailer at little or no cost. Make your basic plans on paper, and then do your research for free online. Look at other designs on the market, find out what materials are available, and get a good sense of how much all the parts will cost. Once you have the blueprint, parts list, and projected assembly plans, just about everything else can be done in a matter of days.

When of making up a parts list, include as many recycled or salvage parts as you can, and add at least 2 or 3 alternatives that suit your needs. This will make it easier to choose parts later. If you run out of time before acquiring all the building materials, you can use this list during and after a major crisis as a guide to viable materials.

2. Obtaining raw materials

Before you buy materials, purchase any tools that you might need. These tools can also be used for many other household and travel needs, so they won’t go to waste. The more time you spend using basic power and hand tools, the better off you will be in any situation.

The more time you have for obtaining building materials, the better. Aside from being able to budget more easily, you will see if there are reusable materials in flea markets, junk yards, or estate sales that might be of use.

Individuals that are building and maintaining comprehensive bug out plans should take the salvage and alternative material list along on test excursions. This is an excellent time to take note of what items may be available on the way to your bug out location.

3. Building the trailer

Preparing for an emergency is never easy, especially when you are concerned that all your hard work will be stolen by rioters or others. An utility trailer can be a bit hard to hide, and just about everyone that sees it will know what it is, or remember that you have one. Once a major crisis occurs,these people will be looking for you and ready to take anything of value that you might have.

This is the main reason why I don’t recommend building a utility trailer from the top down and having it all ready to go. Rather, it is better to build the trailer in units, test them out, and then be ready to assemble them at a moment’s notice. Many systems are small enough to be hidden in your home or garage, and then assembled later on when the need arises. If you make fast assembly and modular system designs part of your plans, this process may be easier than you would expect.

 4. Testing everything out

There is a definite trade off between testing out a completed trailer and keeping its existence as secret as possible. Doing your best to test specific modules may not be enough when you actually assemble the trailer.

Your best option will be to try and assemble the trailer in a quiet location where no one will know. Once you know everything works together as a unit, you can always take everything apart and then reassemble it in time of need.

5. Maintenance

As soon as you begin keeping supplies on hand, or materials to build the trailer itself, you will always need to be concerned about maintenance.

For example, if you purchased aluminum for the sides of the trailer or other parts, they may still need painting, lubrication, or other routine care to prevent them from being ruined.

Where to Get Materials From

Have you ever gone to a local hardware store, home improvement store, or automotive shop only to be disappointed by the inventory? You may find some items in these stores to get you started on a DIY product, while other items may not be available (thicker aluminum, for example).

Be careful how you shop online, and you should be able to keep your building plans secret.

Here are some other places where you might find building materials at a more reasonable price:

  • Local auctions and surplus events. Newspapers and websites dedicated to your town or city may list these venues as well as what kinds of materials are available.
  • Watch the classified ad listings in supermarkets, department stores, or other areas where estate sales, flea markets, or other private sales might be listed.
  • Military surplus outlets may also be of some use.

Check the end of the article for a list of websites that may help to salvage or find construction surplus materials.

Basic Parts

The absence of a means of propulsion doesn’t mean utility trailers are simple, or that you can build them with a lack of care and consideration. A poorly designed or constructed trailer can spell disaster. Do not cut corners or reduce quality if you want to build a reliable trailer!

Wheels, Axle, Suspension, and Braking Systems

The axle and suspension system must be able to support the entire weight of the trailer and everything in it. These parts must also have the flexibility to absorb shock as the trailer moves without bending excessively or breaking.

Many utility trailers have smaller wheels, but bear in mind that you might take the trailer off road or into areas with deep ruts, mud, or broken pavement. Spend a bit more on larger wheels with deeper and heavier treads so that the trailer passes more easily over these areas.

Basic Frame

The frame must work in conjunction with the suspension, axle, and braking system to provide a solid foundation for the rest of the trailer. No matter whether you choose an open design or a closed one, the suspension must be sturdy and durable. A frame that is built independent of the suspension will give you more options and also much better performance.

Coupler and Tongue Jack

If you do not have a good quality coupler and tongue jack on the trailer, it can lead to a number of problems including:

  • The trailer may break way from the vehicle pulling it along.
  • It may sway from side to side or be very hard to control when the pulling vehicle turns.
  • A poorly designed coupler may be difficult to connect and disconnect as needed.

Wall Frame

The wall frame must still be study enough to keep all of the items in the trailer secure no matter whether you design an open trailer or a closed one. Choose frame material that will not bend or buckle if objects inside the trailer hit it.

It is also best to choose a frame material that is sturdy enough to accommodate the weight of a roof and enclosure if you decide to make these changes later on. Even if you decide on low walls now, make sure that you can bolt on taller pieces later on without sacrificing on frame strength.

Roof Frame (optional)

Try to make the roof frame sturdy enough to accommodate the roof covering and storage for other items. It never hurts to create a roof top frame that can also be used to house solar panels, small wind turbines, or other devices used to generate electricity, gather water, or carry out other tasks.

Enclosure

If you are looking for a cheap easy way to enclose the trailer, start off with canvas, and then keep a vinyl covering for times when you need to keep the interior as dry as possible. As time and budget allow, enclose the trailer with aluminum or some other more permanent and durable material. As long as the roof is made from a solid material (polymer or resin might work), you could also generate power and still use canvas for the trailer sides.

Access Points

Most people that build low walled trailers do not worry about doors or windows. On the other hand, even if you plan to live in a canvas covered trailer, you’ll need to enter, exit, add to, and remove items from the trailer.

Ventilation and adequate air flow are also important so that you don’t wind up with moisture, mold, and mildew buildups inside the trailer. Doors and windows on solid side, enclosed trailers can also make it more comfortable to live in.

Security System

When all your worldly possessions are going to be packed in a trailer going a long distance, security systems are crucial.

You can use electronic surveillance systems as well as specialty locks and bolts. Just remember that these systems are only as good as the materials used to build the rest of the If the sides are made of canvas or vinyl, there will not be much sense in installing locks. Instead, think about what kind of weapons you can use to defend the trailer as well as any devices that can be used to deter people from approaching it.

Internal Features

Shelves, seats, tie down areas, and privacy enclosures are all important for a multi-purpose utility trailer. Keep weight down by using plastic furnishings or ones that can be packed away easily.

For example, beanbag chairs are lightweight and can be put together to make a bed. Alternatively, use plastic tubs to store your items and then put an air mattress on top of them. Just because internal features need to be light weight and simple, that does not mean you have to be uncomfortable or unable to enjoy whatever time you may need to spend in the trailer.

Electricity

Aside from running computers or other devices that store important data, electricity is important for power tools used to fix the trailer or build parts that were not complete before started using it. There are many devices that can be used to power a utility trailer, like different wind turbine designs that will lend themselves well to sitting on top of a trailer. As long as the trailer is in motion, the turbines will spin.

You can make a series of smaller turbines that are housed in other parts of the front of the trailer and then combine them into a single battery pack. This is especially important if you want your trailer to look as inconspicuous as possible. A few fans hidden behind grills will not be as noticeable as solar panels or a shell design turbine sitting on top of the trailer.

Make your home 100% immune from future power outages or blackouts with this DIY Home Energy System! 

Water and Sanitation

Many people that don’t plan on living in a utility trailer after a major crisis occurs think they can ignore water and sanitation issues.

On the other hand, you are always going to need clean water. As such, you should at least have some tools on hand so that you can purify water or pull it from other resources. Even if you store away plastic and a shovel so that you can retrieve water vapor as it evaporates from the ground, you will be ahead of the game.

Setting aside a small part of the trailer for sanitation and privacy needs is more important than you realize. At the very least, bring a few items along that you can use to meet these needs once they are assembled.

Tools and Skills You Need for the Project

You will need common tools such as screwdrivers, hammers, pliers, metal cutters, drills, and hand saws for building your trailer, but also other items. These tools require electricity to operate, but it’s not impossible to make a sturdy trailer without them.

  • Welder – you need a welder to join together steel rods used in the trailer frame. Even though welding is not especially difficult to learn, you need some practice before you weld the rods together. Remember to wear a welding hood, gloves, and an appropriate apron. No matter how fascinating welding and the sparks it makes may be, remember that you are working with very high temperatures and a light source that can blind you in a matter of seconds.
  • Circular saw, jig saw, and hand drill – these power tools make cutting boards and other materials much easier and faster. Perhaps I am a bit old fashioned in my preference for corded tools, however I have yet to find battery powered tools that lasted as long or provided as much power when I needed it most.
  • Hydraulic Jacks – you need at least 4 to support the frame while you are mounting the axles and wheels.
  • Hoists and Pulley Systems – if you start building in modules, hoists and pulleys make it possible to assemble completed parts in a matter of minutes.

Equipment and Furnishings: Buy or Make Your Own?

When you make your own racks, shelves, and other furnishings, it’s easy to create what you need and in the size that you need it. But if you don’t have the time or patience to make furniture, it can be a very tedious task. Unless you upcycle free wood palettes or other materials, you’ll find that the cost of making your own furnishings is about the same as buying pre-made models.

Research on camping and RV gear, and you’ll find all sorts of things that can be used to make the utility trailer more comfortable and convenient. In many cases, this equipment may not meet all of your needs. You may not be able to repair the items if they break down, or they may not be as durable as you would like.

If you want cutting edge designs or newer technologies, those devices may also be more expensive. For example, if you want to include a wind turbine, it may be impossible to find the best in a pre-fabricated form, so you’d better look at different bladeless turbine designs, and build something that meets your needs.

Newer polymers and other materials on the market can make this task as simple as working with a 3D printer and a few well designed templates. Aside from cost and innovative concerns, when you make your own equipment you can always add room for adaptability. If you need to scavenge parts or build systems that are easy to repair, there is nothing like developing your own designs.

DOs and DON’Ts When Building an Utility Trailer

Building an utility trailer is like many other things in life. There are some basic things you should always do, and others that you should avoid.

Here are some of the most common practices that lead to building a trailer that will be durable and useful or one that will not be worth the effort you put into it.

  • Do not cut costs on critical components such as the frame, suspension, axle, and coupler. Everything in the trailer depends on how sturdy and durable these items are. If you don’t know how to weld, or don’t have enough practice in metal working, make sure that you know what you are doing before you tackle building these parts.
  • Do seek training for everything you need to do. From wiring the trailer for electricity to installing windows and shelves, it never hurts to take a few courses on these and other building oriented topics.
  • Never work on the trailer when you are tired, angry, or sick. Most of the time, you will be working with power tools, chemicals, or something else that can cause injury or death. Exhaustion, excess emotions, and illness can make you careless and impatient. Even if you are not injured, the mistakes you may make can come back to haunt you when you put the trailer on the road and discover these “hidden features”.
  • Always observe safety precautions. Goggles, ear protection, gloves, aprons, steel toed boots, dust masks, and respirators are all necessary safety gear that should be used. While many people today recognize the need for goggles, far too many do not wear protective ear plugs and respirators. Never forget that everything you are working with will create some kind of dust, smoke, or gas. None of these fumes or dust are good for your lungs or your health.
  • Give yourself plenty of room to work. Over the years, I have seen many accidents caused by a simple lack of working space. Make sure that you have plenty of room to lay all the parts and tools out. Keep your work area neat and clean. No matter whether you are working indoors or outside, it is all to easy to take a step backwards and trip over something you forgot was back there.
  • Make sure that others working with you observe safety and good working habits. If you work with a team, it is all too easy for you, and others to put things where they can pose a risk to others. If everyone makes it a point to put things back where they belong, it will be much easier to avoid accidents.
  • Always keep detailed records of everything you did and how each system fits together. Later on, if you need to diagnose problems or make repairs, these notes will give you a valuable point of reference. Include photographs taken during the construction process, these will make it easier to orient and prepare for making any required changes. Do not forget to update your notes and photos once you are done.
  • Never use drugs or alcohol while working on the trailer. As soon as you lose any kind of control of yourself, both the tools you are using and the materials can also get out of control. This can lead to cuts, bruises, burns, and other serious injuries. If you must have a drink or take some kind of medication, stop for the day and then go back to it when your thinking and your reflexes are in better condition.

Take the time to design and build a custom utility trailer, and you’ll develop a perfect prepper solution!

While this task isn’t as difficult as it seems, you will need to put in a considerable amount of time, effort, and money. When a disaster strikes and you are able to move and live comfortably in the trailer, you will see that it is well worth the effort.

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This article has been written by Carmela Tyrell for Survivopedia.

References:

http://www.americanbuildersurplus.com/

http://www.salvex.com/

http://www.contractoryardsale.com/

http://www.bmomn.com/

http://www.govliquidation.com/Scrap-Metal.html

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9+ Essential Items For Your Bedroom Survival Kit

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Survivopedia 9+ Essential Items For Your Bedroom Survival Kit

We spend about a third of our lives sleeping, so there is a good chance that you will awake to some sort of emergency at some point, if you haven’t already.

There you are, sound asleep until you are jolted awake by a bump in the night, a deafening siren, the rumbling of an earthquake or the shouts of a loved one. How prepared are you?

The purpose of the gear you have bedside should be to get you oriented and situationally aware and then get you to a safe room (often the master bedroom closet). This will delay attackers and provides hard cover as well as structural support against disaster to keep you safe and give you time to communicate and ready an appropriate response whatever emergency you are facing.

Situational Awareness

As you start awake, the first order of business is whether this is like a thousand other times you have awakened and gone back to sleep or whether this time is different.

Since you may be making that determination in a state of sleep drunkenness, it is to your benefit to make use of tools that can improve your situational awareness.

1. Worn Equipment

I make a habit of wearing an ordinary-looking necklace that has a small LED on it and some restraint escape tools inside it. This way I can always find my way in the dark, start a fire and have a shot at escape should I be unlawfully detained, even if I am hauled out of bed in the middle of the night in my underwear or otherwise caught at a disadvantage.

I started wearing it because I travel to places where the kidnapping of US citizens is a significant threat, but I found it so useful to always have an LED handy that I just kept wearing it. I vary its configuration depending on where I am and what I am doing.

The Survival Necklace

You can purchase a basic necklace pre-tied from Oscar Delta or contact them and ask if they’ll build you a custom model that meets your needs and level of training, which may require that you email them from a DOD or Department email, depending on what you want, since they are in the UK.

I suggest that you learn to tie and build your own so you can customize it as your environment and needs change and because survival is the king of all DIY pursuits. If you need help, just ask.

Survival Necklace

I’ll list the contents of mine as it is today, but I change it as needed and tie new ones as old ones get worn out in life or used in training.

  • Technora 200 Friction Saw – Cut zip ties, flex cuffs, rope.
  • Zirferrotech Zircon Ceramic Microstriker Bead – Great ferro rod striker and breaks tempered glass (side & rear car windows) with surprisingly little force both due to its extreme hardness. Your car door could be jammed in a crash, you could need to exit the rear of a vehicle when the locks have been disabled or you could need to safely break auto glass to rescue someone else. Non-ferrous.
  • Tungsten Carbide Microstriker Bead – Like the wheel on a lighter. Breaks tempered glass.
  • Large Fishing Swivel – I could have used any number of snap hooks but wanted mine to be able to pull double duty as fishing gear if needed. I just smooth any sharp edges.
  • SO LED – Red or White light models made by CountyComm. Availability is spotty but very inexpensive so buy a bunch if you find them. The slide switch is easy to actuate with one hand. Positive on/off. Simple design. MOLLE/snap clip accessory for bags and gear.
  • Silicone Tubing – Fuel line tubing conceals handcuff key and bobby pin.
  • Advanced Handcuff Key 3 – Matches the tooth spacing for TOOOL’s ultimate handcuff key. SnakeDr removed some metal from the barrel on this model so it works with the maximum number of high security handcuff models possible and still opens standard handcuffs.
  • Bobby Pin – “Reach around” tool for the handcuff key in case you get illegally detained in handcuffs with your fingers away from the keyways. Handcuff shim, lock pick, lock tension tool, sharp bit of metal to work knots or duct tape, etc.
  • Ferro/Magnesium Toggle – I use firesteel.com. Availability is hit and miss, but they are the best performing ferro rods I have tested to date and I have tested dozens. The bond between the magnesium and ferro rod is probably as strong as either and this combination gives magnesium to use as tinder which is a big plus in the Rocky Mountains in winter or in 99% humidity in the Brazilian jungle.

2. Light and Footwear

If you are jarred awake by an earthquake or similarly destructive event, your bedroom windows may be all over your bedroom floor, making footwear necessary to prevent injury.

When you wake, your eyes are adjusted to the dark, but you need enough light to orient yourself and grab what you need without making racket.

I prefer an LED with a low red setting work setting to save my night vision while I get my bearings when I wake up in the night. I tried the Streamlight Sidewinder Compact Military IR but it turned out to have a design flaw.

Boots

The switch takes a lot of force to turn and is just soldered to the circuit board without any load bearing support to the housing so they end up breaking after a year or so of moderate use.

I replaced it with the Petzl Strix IR, which has been rock solid to date. It has an IR IFF strobe, but lacks a visible strobe. I guess Petzl decided that was outside the scope of use for this type of light.

3. Cell Phone & Charging Cradle

Your smart phone can be a powerful tool for situational awareness, but the problem is that mobile voice service is often the first thing to stop working in a major emergency, so be sure to choose emergency notification services that notify you via text messaging.

If you haven’t yet, check out the National Weather Service page if you are in the USA or the equivalent in other countries and choose SMS notification services that are the best fit for the risks you face based on your location, climate, employment, etc.

Most of the notification services are free, but you can always pay for more features. Get the FEMA app if you are in the US (I haven’t had any black helicopters come for me yet) and any other notification services that apply to you.

Just keep in mind that these notification services are third party and are no substitute for All Hazards Weather Radio. The technology necessary to run the cellular phone network makes it inherently fragile. Because the All Hazards Weather Radio system is much simpler, it is much less fragile.

4. Public Alert Certified All Hazards Radio

Midland WR-120 Public Alert Certified RadioEvery survivalist should have one of these radios!

They can notify you of severe weather alerts, large scale disasters alerts such as earthquakes or any event warranting notification of the public and has saved my bacon more than once.

Given that most of us spend a third of our lives sleeping, without something to wake us up in an emergency, we very well may sleep right through the first crucial hours of an emergency. In an emergency where it is necessary to bug out to survive, you very well may miss your window.

As I consult with survivalists, I often find that they have spent thousands of dollars on 4-wheel drive vehicles and bug out bags and made elaborate preparations to bug out, but don’t have a $30-$60 Public Alert Certified radio that close a chink in their armor that leaves them exposed 33% of the time.

It’s good to have that warning the other 67% of the time that you are not sleeping as well.

There are two types of All Hazards Weather Radio:

  • NOAA Certified
  • NOAA Public Alert Certified.

Here, we are focused on the later. Many radios are NOAA certified, but not Public Alert Certified. They will receive NOAA alerts and can listen to weather radio channels but lack many of the features of Public Alert Certified radios, which are programmable with codes for each county to only receive alerts for the counties you specify.

They are programmable by severity, have a “wake up” feature that allows alerts to turn on the radio, display information important about the threat as a banner in their LED display, and have ports to attach external notification devices such as strobe lights, sirens or pillow shakers to help notify the hearing impaired and talk to other equipment.

To clarify, the words “Public Alert Certified” only appear on the programmable radios with external notification and auto wake up. If possible, you want a radio that is not programmable to your county, type of threat and threat level. Otherwise, your radio will constantly alert you to events that will not affect you.

By telling the radio what you are and are not concerned about (programming it) you can eliminate false alarms.

5. Security System Reporting Mechanisms

If you have a home security system, make sure that you have reporting mechanisms at your bedside. Many older alarm panels will tell you which zone was breached, but this will not be of any help unless you have a panel installed beside your bed so you can see it.

Many newer systems can send notifications and even real-time video to your cell phone, but may need Internet access to do so. Make sure that all alarm sensor and reporting has battery backup all the way from every sensor to the panel to your hub, switch or router to your cell phone.

If your system includes Dakota Alert MURS sensors, you will want a MURS radio receiver on your nightstand.

History has many survival lessons to teach on the subject of situational awareness sans electrical grid.

In the 1800’s in Utah Territory, there lived a man named Orrin Porter Rockwell.

Depending on who’s account you read, Porter Rockwell was an outlaw, a lawman, a bodyguard, a tracker and a scout in the Nauvoo Legion that waged a guerrilla campaign of harassment, robbing and burning supply trains, and preventing resupply of the US Army in the Utah War.

Porter was as famous as famous a gunfighter as Wyatt Earp, Doc Holladay, Bat Masterson or Tom Horn in his time and killed more men than all of them combined.

Between the friends and family of those he killed, upstart gunfighters looking to make a name, the men he jailed and those he fought against in the Utah War and other skirmishes, he certainly had to watch his back.

His employment had him on the trail tracking outlaws and guiding parties West to California during the gold rush which had him returning to the Salt Lake Valley alone and sometimes sleeping off a night of drinking on the trail, so Porter developed a strategy to give him some warning.

You might expect a man like Porter to have a large ferocious dog, but as many miles as he made horseback in a day would have killed most domestic breeds. Instead, he chose a little white dog that could ride with him horseback, behind his saddle.

He trained the dog to lick his face to wake him instead of barking when someone approached his camp. Porter’s portable biological alarm system helped him to die of old age instead of a bullet and is easily duplicated today and even easier if you don’t travel on horseback.

6. Smoke, Flammable Gas and Carbon Monoxide Detectors

It is easy to plan for the spectacular but improbable (based on history) threats and neglect threats that cause a lot of death and suffering. Make sure you have detectors throughout your home and in your bedroom.

Action

Situational Awareness Is Key Gear Can't Help You If You Are Asleep

So, you are now awake at bedside with your headlamp and footwear, have identified a threat or possible threat and it’s time to act. For most threats, you will sound an alarm (if necessary, to alert other members of the household) strap on your home defense waist pack and make for your safe room.

7. Home Defense Pouch

A standard preparation that I recommend is to seek professional self-defense, firearms and legal training and then put together His & Hers’ home defense waist packs as-long-as it is legal for you and your spouse to carry concealed weapons in your home.

If you carry openly, a belt can serve the same purpose. The idea behind this approach is that you can grab a single piece of gear, buckle it on and have the basic tools of self-defense at your disposal. I recommend keeping this in a hidden and locked safe that can be accessed quickly and in the dark.

I am not alone amongst firearms instructors in recommending this approach. Should you come out on top in defending your life, a second battle begins, one that will determine your liberty.

Consider your jurisdiction, the laws and how officers, prosecutors and judges may apply them. Depending on their dispositions, you may have a better chance of not going prison if you use ordinary-looking equipment and firearms than if you sleep with full battle rattle at the side of your bed.

Self Defense Pouch Contents & Training Gear for Drill with Hand to Hand

The main purpose of the home defense pouch is to give you the tools you need to fight your way to the cover of a safe room.

Click here to get your Green Beret’s Guide To Combat Shooting Mastery & Active Shooter Defense!

8. Home Defense Waist Pack

  • Centerfire Pistol with tritium sights – You need to be able to see your sights. You can keep a sidearm in the waist pack or place your sidearm in the waist pack when you take it off at the end of the day.
  • Spare Magazine or Speed Loader
  • Tactical Flashlight – You need to clearly identify intent, ability and opportunity and see what is behind your attacker.
  • Knife – Will never experience a stoppage and won’t run out of ammunition until you stop swinging.
  • Less-lethal Option – Lethal force is not always the best solution.
  • Compact GSW Kit – Any time you strap on a firearm you should also strap on a trauma kit.
  • Cell Phone – You are not going to want to have to go looking for a cell phone if you need to use this waist pack.

9. Turnout Bag

You may have seen firefighters using turnout bags to get ready quickly without forgetting anything. Under the stress of a life and death emergency, we are more likely than normal to forget things.

Checklists and turnout bags help mitigate this risk. It is important for survivalists to include checklists in turnout bags because we need to include ID, passports and other items that we can often only have one copy of. I keep these items in an EDC valet and check them off as I turnout.

The turnout bag concept lends itself handily to the Modular Survival Kit Model as turnout bags and specific ensembles can be layered on top of turnout gear as needed based on threat, mission, environment, climate, mode of transport and other relevant factors. You can read more about turnout bags and checklists here.

Common Types of Turnout Bags and Ensembles

  • Covert (Everyday) TOB – Normal “gray” concealed carry clothing in earth tones.
  • Overt TOB – Minuteman bag with overt camouflage.
  • First Responder – If you work or volunteer as a first responder (or plan to) you will need a dedicated turnout bag for that.
  • CBRN (Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear) Ensemble – These threats require specific personal protective equipment and training.
  • Extreme Cold Weather Ensemble, Covert
  • Extreme Cold Weather, Overt

Safe Room

A safe room provides a protected area to shelter in place or to get ready out of your turnout bag before grabbing your bug out bag and proceeding to an assembly area in the event that your home becomes unsafe.

Many families decide to locate safe rooms in master bedroom closets or adjacent to them. Locating it at ground level or above gives heavier-than-air gases someplace else to go, but requires more shielding to protect against radiation if it is planned to also serve as a fallout shelter.

Safe Room Features

  • Turnout Bags
  • Hard Cover – Protection against small arms. If you lack the funds, you can measure between studs and pour steel-reinforced concrete panels to install between them.
  • Structural Reinforcement – Protection against earthquakes, hurricanes, tornadoes.
  • Reinforced Locking Steel Door – To slow down aggressors.
  • Alarm Panel
  • Monitor – For cameras so you can monitor the situation outside. Lacking money for this for my first safe room, I installed a framed one-way mirror which worked well and didn’t require power.
  • Long Guns with Lights – Don’t forget spare ammunition and a PC way to carry. Carrying it in a satchel instead of a plate carrier may avoid the appearance that you were hoping to need it.
  • Fire Extinguishers
  • Escape & Utility Shutoff Tools – The rubble you escape from may not resemble the home you live in today. Windows and doors may jamb or be blocked.
  • First Aid & Trauma Kit – Include gear based on your family medical needs and risks such as Epi-pens, inhalers, insulin or Naloxone which can save lives.
  • Concealed Emergency Exit
  • Water & Food
  • Blankets & Pillows
  • Portable Toilet
  • Bug Out Bags
  • Materials to Flag Your Home – Flagging your own home can save time and may keep Search and Rescue personnel from breaking into your home to search it if you decide to evacuate. I will write an article describing how to do this.

Training

Independent of what preparations you decide to implement, training will help iron out the kinks.

Start the drill in bed, dressed as you normally sleep. Don’t cheat and think you have it down because small details matter here and differentiate your precise situation, equipment and body from everyone else’s.

Note the time and kill the lights. Choose a few different emergency scenarios based on the types of emergencies you believe to be most probable. Run through the most probable. Note the time when you finish.

Debrief afterwards nothing what worked smoothly and effectively and was less effective than you would like and make changes. Running the most probable scenarios in sets of three times each will give the best return on your skill training.

When you are comfortable with the drill, work it in as the first step in a timed bug out drill. There is no substitute for experience, but stressed, timed training is about as close as you can get without responding to real emergencies.

spec_ops_shooting_cover

 

This article was written by Cache Valley Prepper for Survivopedia.

References:

http://www.weather.gov/subscribe

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Porter_Rockwell

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3 Steps To Start A Fire When Everything Is Wet

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Start a fire when everything is wet

Starting a fire in adverse weather, whether is rain or wind or both is a very important survival skill every outdoors aficionado must possess. The ability of igniting a fire when things are less than perfect is a fine art which must be learned and practiced until mastery is achieved.

The thing is, nature doesn’t care much about our best laid plans, mice and men alike and an emergency never comes alone. I mean, when confronted with a survival situation, you’d at least expect fine weather, cool breezes and sunshine.

In reality, your survival in an emergency situation will become much more complicated than initially thought and I would dare to say nine times out of ten, as you’ll end up not only lost in the woods or wherever, but you’ll also have to deal with rain, cold and high winds.

Emergencies almost always bring bad weather with them, it’s almost like a 2 for the price of 1 deal. And that’s fine as long you’re prepared both physically and mentally.

However, in critical times, your survival may depend on your ability to light a fire under rain and/or wind and any hardcore survivalist, even Bear Grylls will tell you that you should always carry at least 2 primary and 2 secondary tools for starting a fire.

The idea is that a regular fire starter may not always provide you with the best results, especially if it’s raining and it gets wet. Also, if it’s windy and rainy, your chances of igniting a fire with just one match are pretty slim. If it’s freezing cold, your BIC lighter (which uses butane) may not work at all.

Basically, starting a fire when it’s windy, cold and rainy is one of the worst situations imaginable, other than starting a fire under water, which is a skill only Chuck Norris masters (he uses phosphorus by the way).

I think I have already told you a dozen times in my previous articles about the holy trinity of survival, which includes fire as a means of providing you with (cooked) food, (safe) water and shelter (warmth, protection from wild animals etc), but also about the importance of location.

But do you know which survival essential is the first most important?

Find out how this little survival stove that fits in your pocket can save your life!

1. Find an Adequate Location for Making the Fire

Everything in life is location, as Van Helsing used to say back in the day, and the same mantra is true when it comes to making a fire.

The first thing to look for is an adequate location for making a fire in harsh weather conditions. The idea is to provide your fire with as much protection possible from both wind and rain if possible. And if you’re not in the middle of a frozen desert with no snow around, that’s not impossible.

Shelter means three basic things:

  • shelter from the wind
  • shelter from the rain
  • shelter from the ground water.

2. Shelter the Fire

Ideally, you should shelter your fire on more than one side (upwind).

Build a Windbreak

You can protect your fire by building a C shaped windbreak with the open side downwind. You can build a windbreak using wood, rocks, snow, dirt, just use your imagination.

To shelter your fire from the rain when outdoors is the hardest job, but it can be achieved.

Make the Fire Under a Tree

But pay attention! The easiest way is to make your fire under a tree, as evergreens can be regarded as a natural tent of sorts. All you have to do is to pick a big one and make your fire under the lowest branches.

Making a fire under a tree may not seem like the best idea, as there are inherent risks attached, like setting the tree on fire, but if you’re paying attention and keeping your fire under control, the chances of such an event happening are minor.

You can minimize the risks further by building a good fire pit with no combustible materials around the fire.

Build a Fire Pit

The third requirement is how to protect the fire from ground earth, with the previous two taken care of by now. The easiest method is to use rocks for building a fire pit on a spot where the ground is raised from the floor.

Or you can do that yourself, i.e. you can build a little mound and on top of the mound you’ll put a layer of rocks, thus preventing your fire from staying directly on the wet ground and also making sure any running water will be drained ASAP.

3. Tinder, Kindling and Fuel

So much for location folks, let’s move on to the next issue and I will start with an axiom: if you don’t have the Bear Grylls flame-thrower with you, starting a fire using wet wood is basically impossible and a no-go under any circumstances. You’ll waste your time and your gear, bet on a dead horse and the whole palaver.

Video first seen on CommonSenseOutdoors

However, there are ways, as Gandalf used to say, but ideally, you should try to find something dry for starting your fire. As a general rule of thumb, a fire gets started in 3 stages: tinder, kindling and fuel.

The tinder is a combustible material which is very easy to ignite, i.e. it will catch fire quick and easy.

The kindling can be improvised using pieces of finger-thick wood that will be lit from the kindle.

The rest is pretty straight forward, as far as your kindle gets ignited you’ll start the main fuel and you’ll have a fire burning in no time.

Two of the best survival-tinder (fire starters actually) which can be used for igniting a fire in adverse conditions (even with wet wood) are cotton balls soaked in petroleum jelly and dryer lint mixed with paraffin. These will burn for at least 2-3 minutes, thus providing you with plenty of time to get your fire started. I’ve already written an article about this issue.

As an interesting factoid, even in the midst of a rainstorm, you can almost surely find dried branches under the bottom of big/old pine trees. Another great place to look for dry combustible is the underside of uprooted (or dead) trees.

Video first seen on IA Woodsman

How to Make the Best Fire Starter for Wet Wood

The best fire-starter for wet wood can be home-made using black powder (gunpowder) and nail polish remover (the one that contains acetone). The acetone will be the solvent for the gunpowder. The idea is to make something that burns slow and as hot as possible and the gunpowder/acetone mix is by far the best in this regard.

Making the mix is fairly easy, as you’ll start with a small quantity of gunpowder the size of a golf ball put inside a ceramic/glass bowl. Start adding nail polish remover so that the mound of gunpowder is totally covered then mix it together slowly and thoroughly (always wear rubber gloves).

Once the stuff inside the ball gets in a putty-state, you can pour off the extra nail polish and then start kneading the putty, just like when making bread. i.e. folding it over time and time again.

The purpose of the kneading is to create layers inside your fire-starter. In this way, the burn rate is more controlled. The more layers, the better your fire-starter will be. The finished putty can be stored in an airtight container, but keep in mind that you’ll want to use your putty when it’s still moist. If dried, it burns too fast.

This fire-starter burns at 3000 degrees Fahrenheit and a golf-ball sized piece will burn for more than 3 minutes. Basically, you can set anything on fire with this baby and even  dry out damp wood in the worst conditions imaginable.

One final thing, it would always be nice to use fire accelerants, like gasoline (or alcohol, paint thinner etc), for starting a fire in rain or wind.

If you have your car around, the better, as you can siphon out some gasoline from the tank and start a fire even with damp wood in a jiffy. Okay, you’ll not receive those extra bonus style points, but that’s okay.

You’ll always have the peace of mind knowing that no matter where you go and no matter how bad the weather is you’ll be able to start a fire and safely cook food and boil some water. Click the banner below to grab this offer!

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This article has been written by Chris Black for Survivopedia. 

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How To Build Your Best Camouflage

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Survivopedia How To Build Your Best Camouflage

When talking about camouflage, there are basically two types of gear: camouflage clothes and ghillie suits.

Camouflage gear is is a must have piece of gear  if you’re a sniper, a soldier or a hunter. Ghillie suits were originally designed for hunting purposes, but later on they were used by military forces, because they’re great at making people invisible or very close to it.

Basically, regardless of your intents and purposes, if you want to blend into your surroundings, camouflage gear is essential.

The key elements for efficient camouflage are inspired from the animal reign (think polar bears or chameleons), i.e. the color scheme is essential, together with  efficient 3D dimensional textures, which is aimed at diffusing and blending your figure/silhouette into the surroundings, thus fooling the eye.

If these two work together as a whole, the color scheme and the 3D (three dimensional) textures, you’re hitting the sweet spot in terms of good camouflage, being basically unrecognizable and virtually invisible from the distance.

It’s just like in the cool meme, with the apprentice sniper being admonished by the sergeant, something like “Smith, I haven’t seen you at camouflage practice” and Smith going like: “Thank you Sir”.

Let’s take a closer look about camouflage basics and start from there.

So, commercial or home-made regular 2D (bi-dimensional) camouflage is pretty good at helping you blending into all sorts of backgrounds, but it can’t mitigate one of the most tell-tell signs of you presence, i.e. your silhouette.

Hard core hunters and veteran hiders, such as military snipers or undercover spooks always rely on 3D camouflage, which consists of entire suits that are built using billowy materials, which help with blurring their outline, thus allowing them to become virtually invisible or to disappear in plain sight.

So, there’s regular 2D camouflage and the ultimate 3D camouflage, namely the ghillies.

Ghillie suits were first invented by Scottish folk, game keepers who probably were pretty good at tax evasion too using those suits (just kidding).

To begin with, let’s quote Sun Tzu, the Chinese general who wrote The Art of War thousands of years ago:

“Be extremely subtle, even to the point of formlessness. Be extremely mysterious, even to the point of soundlessness. Thereby you can be the director of the opponent’s fate.”

Find out more on how to improve your defense techniques to survive disaster! 

Camouflage Clothes – the Basic Gear for Ghosts

The first step is to determine your required 3 base-colors i.e. the top three most prevalent colors which are to be found in the environment you want to blend in. Don’t worry about exact tones and hues, just choose general colors.

For example, go for dark green/dark brown/black clothes and don’t waste your time trying to find pine needle green or chestnut brown.

If you’ve already determined the color scheme required for your camouflage purposes, buy plain colored T shirts/long sleeve/whatever you need in the respective color and stay away from fancy/expensive brands, the name of the game is utility and economy, otherwise you can buy commercially available camo, right?

The same concept goes for the hat and pants. Here’s a video tutorial with a guy who made his own camo shirt and pants using just a few common items besides the clothes themselves, namely a spray paint, some spare newspapers and some foliage with leaves.

Video first seen on Random Things.

The trick is to spray paint the leaves pattern onto the clothes and that’s about it, you’ll end up with home made camo for dirt cheap prices, especially if you’ll be using old clothes. The end result is pretty convincing.

The Ghillie Suit

Ghillie suit Now, with the basics taken care of, let’s see about the really good stuff, namely the ghillie suit.

Ghillie suits are arguably the best type of camouflage one can wear, as it helps you to integrate seamlessly (if it’s proper made obviously) into your surroundings, as it uses branches, foliage and/or leaves to break up your silhouette.

You’ll start with your already-made camo clothes, i.e. normal clothing spray painted (you can also use fabric patches) to match your desired surroundings.

A ghillie suit is basically 3D camo and it’s usually built using burlap, netting, sewing needles, dental floss and glue. Nothing fancy, nothing expensive.

The thing is, there are two basic designs for ghillie suits: the simple net for fixed positions and the suit construction.

The simple net design has advantages and disadvantages. For example, it’s pretty hard to use while on the move through forests/brush and it’s also very difficult to crawl in. The bright side is that simple net ghillies are light weight, hugely adaptable to fixed positions and they roll up forming a small bundle.

You can use camouflage netting which can be bought at army surplus stores, else you can always choose shrimp net or fish net (the former is the best as it’s treated with anti rot coating).

Suit construction requires a decoy bag, raffia grass, burlap, fabric dye, rubber bands, jute twine and seam reaper. Here’s a video on how to build a ghillie suit from the ground up using readily available and dirt cheap materials.

Video first seen on Zachary Crossman.

The most important customizing option for your ghillie suit it the use of natural vegetation, but this trick comes with the disadvantage that natural vegetation will wither and brown in a couple of hours. Here raffia grass comes into play, as it’s perfectly suited for dyeing and it’s extremely effective in desert, grassland and winter environments.

Other options include using spanish moss, carpet moss or even artificial vegetation and there’s a wide selection of artificial vegetation at hobby stores. You can mitigate its glossy appearance which is common with plastic made plants by using a flat spray paint in your desired color. Plastic vegetation can be painted/repainted ad nauseam,

Don’t worry, building your own ghillie suit doesn’t require mad skills, you’ll just have to know how to tie simple knots, to recognize plant shapes and mix different colors together.

What’s important before proceeding with your DIY job is proper fieldwork research, namely taking notes and photos that will help you with color matching your ghillie suit. Yes, you’ll have to do some scouting, going out to the grasslands/woods/desert plateau or wherever you plan to use your camo and observe the coloration of the terrain with your own eyes.

Building your own ghillie suit offers you some advantages and tactical options vs the commercially available ones (which are also pretty expensive).

For example, you can add a recoil pad pocket if you’re using your suit for hunting purposes, or a hydration pack for wearing it in warm climates, not to mention waterproofing on the areas that come in contact with moisture, thus helping you stay dry in wet environments.

Another advantage of a home made ghillie suit is that it will match accurately the color of your desired environment you wish to blend into, as opposed to commercial ones which are usually available for just 2 environments.

That about sums it up for today. I hope you enjoyed reading the article. If you have questions or comments, don’t hesitate to use the dedicated section below. Good luck, and stay prepared folks!

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This article has been written by Chris Black for Survivopedia. 

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Prep Blog Review: Are You Prepared For An EMP Attack?

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As we all know, the U.S. power grid is in danger and one thing is for sure: when the power will go out, the economy, the defense infrastructure and more than that, our own safety and health will go down. The U.S. Government

In this situation, the only thing we can do is to prepare for that moment when the lights go down rather than wait and see what happens in the aftermath.

That’s why, for this week’s prep blog review I’ve gathered 5 useful articles for some off-grid scenarios.

  1. Gov’t Reports Warns: Power Grid In ‘Imminent Danger’

blackout-doe-report

“ The U.S. power grid is in constant danger of a cyberattack that could cause widespread blackouts and impact millions of citizens, according to a new 492-page report from the Department of Energy that warns if nothing is done to protect the system, the nation likely will suffer.

“The U.S. grid faces imminent danger from cyberattacks,” the report, released Jan. 6, states. “Widespread disruption of electric service because of a transmission failure initiated by a cyberattack at various points of entry could undermine U.S. lifeline networks, critical defense infrastructure, and much of the economy; it could also endanger the health and safety of millions of citizens.”

The report, titled “Transforming the Nation’s Energy System,” notes that the electric grid in the 48 contiguous states is comprised of 21,500 substations and about 700,000 miles of power lines.”

Read more on Off The Grid News.

  1. How to Protect Your Power System Against an EMP

electromagnetic-pulse“Hello my friend and welcome back! I received a letter from one of my readers who goes by the name of Dan.  What he wants to know is how he can protect his wind turbine and solar panels, as well as his electronics, from an EMP or another Carrington Event CME.  He also wants to know how deep his underground shelter needs to be to protect what he has there.  WOW!  That was a mouth full.  This is the subject of today’s post, so grab a cup of coffee my friend and have a seat while we visit.”

Read more on American Preppers Online.

  1. Living Off the Grid with Solar

“The moment you go off-grid, you rely entirely on a system that generates electrical energy and utilizes the same to support all your electrical solarappliances, either at home or on a business premise. For your system to be exclusively off-grid, it must have absolutely no link to the utility grid.

Going off-grid is possible, practical and beneficial to you in many ways. You will not have to pay utility bills and in the long run, you will save money! Other motivations include: environmental concerns and endeavoring to only use renewable energy; energy independence, you won’t have to rely on the blackout-prone utility; social values, which mean taking responsibility for your energy consumption effects; costs, when the distance to the grid is too big, your decision to go off grid becomes a lot cheaper.”

Read more on Ed That Matters.

  1. 7 Ways to Generate Power After a Disaster

7-ways-you-can-generate-power-after-a-disaster-wide-2

“Whether it’s a nuclear holocaust, a deadly plague, the perfect storm, or a large-scale terrorist attack, when a cataclysmic event goes down you can guarantee one thing: the power will go out. And while you don’t need electricity to be a hunter-gatherer for the rest of your life, if you want to help return human society to its former greatness—or just be able to have a James Bond movie marathon again—you’ll have to figure out how to generate your own power.”

Read more on Urban Survival Site.

  1. 15 Things You Think You Know About Faraday Cages But You Don’t

EMP

“This article takes into consideration only the effects of a nuclear EMP, not a solar flare. A solar flare would only affect any electronics connected to the grid.

Will a microwave work as a Faraday cage?

No. If an EMP strikes, you will notice that all your electronic devices that you stored in a microwave oven will be rendered useless. The microwave is not a Faraday cage.

Will a refrigerator work as a Faraday cage?

No, most refrigerators do not work as a Faraday cage. I tested mine, and it’s definitely not a Faraday cage.”

Read more on Ask A Prepper.

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This article has been written by Drew Stratton for Survivopedia.

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Wilderness Survival: 5 Self Feeding Campfires

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Self feeding fire

If you’re an outdoors aficionado and you go camping often, today’s article will tick you in all the right places, as I will present you, dear readers, with 5 ways to start a self feeding campfire.

Making a campfire is arguably one of the most fun and interesting parts of camping, as it keeps you warm and safe on cool nights, not to mention that it gives you the opportunity to make the best barbecue you’ve ever had in your life.

You know, food cooked outdoors on wood-fires tastes best. However, there’s a downside to this kind of activity. I am talking about the boring job of keeping the fire alive and kicking.

We’ve all been in this situation – sitting and chilling by the fire, trying to relax and all that, when once again, we’re forced to get up and tend the fire. That’s pretty unpleasant when your belly is full of your latest barbecue, not to mention during the night when you’re sleeping like a baby, yet you awake frostbitten and what not.

However, there’s an answer to these problems with regard to camping, and I am talking about a self feeding fire. Think about our forefathers, they were the experts of this basic skill as for them, a self feeding fire lasting all nigh long meant they could take a nap after a harsh journey.

This may sound nothing short of miraculous to you, but I’ll present you with some videos and you’ll see that I am dead serious, as usual.

So, considering that you can’t really enjoy the warm glow from your campfire if you’re forced to constantly feed it with fresh logs, let’s see about some self feeding ideas which will keep your fire going forever and ever.

1. 15+ Hours Self Feeding Fire

The next idea is about a 15 hours-plus self feeding fire, which sounds pretty awesome providing that it really works; i.e. a fire that will burn for more than half a day all by itself, requiring zero maintenance. That almost beats central heating, don’t you think?

The self feeding fire was invented by the pioneers that had to travel for months. We still have a lot to learn about their skills, as they are depicted in Claude Davis’s book “The Lost Ways”, who unearths the long forgotten ways and lifestyles of the ancestors of ancient times.

Discover the ancient secrets that helped our forefathers survive in the wild!

This type of fire will work if you’re doing it right and proper. The idea is that you’ll have to work a little bit in order for it to function, but it will be worth it. The concept is pretty simple: you’ll have to build two ramps opposing each other and load them with big logs.

The logs will self-load as the ones in the middle get consumed by the fire, but check out the video tutorial about this method depicted in “The Lost Ways” book, and see the concept in action for yourself.

Video first seen on Know More.

As you have noticed, the ramps are constructed in a very easy-to-understand way; there’s nothing fancy involved here.

In order to get the fire started, you’ll have to remember to leave a gap in-between the two logs at the bottom by putting a couple of pieces of dead wood in there to keep them open. In this way, you’ll be able to start the fire, and that’s kind of important.

You’ll also have to cut pretty big (and flat-that’s crucial) logs and the trick is to start the fire from below and make sure the logs burn completely all the way down to succeed.

2. The Upside-down Fire

The second self feeding campfire idea is called the upside down fire. The general idea is that you put the biggest stuff at the bottom, like the big logs, in layers, in a crisscrossed pattern, and as you build the logs up, the woods will get smaller, ending up with the tender pile of the top.

This is a very efficient way of building a self feeding campfire and here’s a comprehensive video tutorial.

Video first seen on NorthSouthSurvival.

The idea works and it’s pretty easy to DIY, ending up with an almost maintenance-free fire which consumes itself from the top down. This method is also known as the fall-down fire.

3. Self Feeding Fire Cigarettes

The third idea is called self-feeding fire cigarettes, just another moniker for a self feeding, long-lasting campfire. The goal of this project is to build a small scale fire as opposed to the previous idea which involves big logs for creating a heavy duty campfire.

So, what we’ll be dealing with here is a minimal campfire, ideal for cooking and lighting your cigars and, you know, keeping the lights on, so to speak.

The concept is to make a hole in the ground and stick 4-5 fire cigarettes (wooden sticks basically) inside, light them up from the bottom and as they burn slowly, the burnt parts collapse under their own weight. This is elegant, very easy to put into practice, and it really works. You must remember to dig out the ventilation tunnels required for keeping the fire alive.

Video first seen on Redfuel Bushcraft

4. 18+ Hours Self Feeding Campfire

Next on our program is how to make a long-lasting, self-feeding campfire that will stay alive by itself for approximately 18 hours, give or take (depending on the size of the logs).

First things first: you’ll have to find 2 big logs. The thicker they are, the longer your fire is going to last.

The general idea is that you’ll put these 2 thick logs on top of each other and set a fire in between them using dead/dry debris or something similar. You’ll have to use 4 stakes, 2 on each side of the logs, for keeping the logs from rolling out; something like a safety precaution. It’s best to use green wood stakes, as these don’t burn so well.

It’s important how you set up the fire; i.e. it works especially well if you set up in the direction where the wind blows, as it will fan the fire for you.

Video first seen on coydog outdoors.

5. Finnish Rakovalkea Fire

Lastly, let me present you with a clever system to build a self feeding campfire which is very popular in Northern Europe, in Finland and Sweden respectively, where it’s known as rakovalkea and/or nying.

This self feeding system uses for two notched-out short logs for its base that keep the fire lifted up off the ground for better ventilation, or more oxygen if you like.

The rest of the job is pretty similar to the previous project; i.e. you’ll have two logs on top of each other with the fire being set in the middle. Both the log on the bottom and the one on the top have a flattened edge as they’ll be facing each other, and in between you’ll have to put the combustible materials required for starting the fire.

Two poles are used to keep the logs firmly in place (via nails). But take a look at this video tutorial and you’ll see what’s up.

Video first seen on Far North Bushcraft And Survival.

Click the banner below to discover more long-forgotten secrets that helped our forefathers survive the long journeys in the wilderness!

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This article has been written by Chris Black for Survivopedia. 

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Taking your Home Back!

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Taking your Home Back! Host: James Walton “I Am Liberty” Audio in player below! If you have lived through a terrifying survival situation the disaster itself could only be the beginning. This is especially true in urban areas. Are you prepared to be under siege by multiple attackers in your home? You may or may … Continue reading Taking your Home Back!

The post Taking your Home Back! appeared first on Prepper Broadcasting |Network.

How To Speak Survival Abroad: SOS Signs And Languages

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Survivopedia How To Speak Survival Abroad Sos Signs And Languages

So, it just so happens that you’re on vacation in Italy when SHTF in a small or large way. You were dependent upon your little English-to-Italian dictionary or Google Translate, but somehow it seems inefficient to stop to look up the translation for “help me, I’m choking.”

Are there universal words or gestures that transcend language barriers so that you can survive no matter where you are? Sort of.

We’ve had some questions about learning a “universal language of survival” and we are going to adress them now.

“One thing I have never seen suggested is to learn a few key words or better yet, phrases, in multiple languages. As our communities become ever more diverse, knowing a few phrases in at least two other languages may make the difference between getting help or getting shot! Just knowing the word “Doctor” in another language may save you or a member of your family or team and could mean life or death in a SHTF meltdown. I hope we never need any of these things we prepare for but as my dad always drilled into my head, “Better to have it and not need it, than to need it and not have it!”. I had no idea how important that saying would be until I was face to face with a situation that required prior prepping to have survived it. Thank God I did and I am here to report it works but you need to do it now (prepping), when you find out you should have, it will be too late. Thanks daddy for riding me hard and may you rest in peace, I had it when I needed it!”

Twister Jones

First, understand that you need to be very clear when using gestures, and at least educate yourself a bit about local customs and gestures.

For example, the A-OK sign here (pointer and thumb touching, other fingers up), and in most other places, will get you a smile and an acknowledgement that everything is, indeed, OK. However, in France, it means zero or worthless. In Venezuela or Turkey, you’re implying homosexuality, and in Brazil, just go ahead and save yourself some time by flipping them the bird. That one’s universal.

The thumbs-up sign is another that you may want to avoid, especially in the Middle East. Here, we have a similar meaning if you start with the thumbs-up sign by your leg and jerk it up – it means, basically, “up yours.” There, just the thumbs-up is enough to convey the sentiment.

On the other hand, there are some gestures that are universal: shrugging for “I don’t know,” nodding for “yes,” shaking your head for “no” (except from Bulgaria, where they are reversed) and putting both hands to your throat to indicate that you’re choking. And that’s about where the open line of universal communication ends.

Even different militaries can’t get on board with a universal signaling system. There are, however, two realms that DO have international signals: sailing and diving. Very few people outside of those two worlds understand all or even most of the signals.

Learn the long forgotten secrets that kept our forefathers alive!

The same thing goes for Morse code. One thing that everybody should know, though, is Morse code for SOS, or distress. It’s three long (or slow) taps, three short (or quick) taps, and three more long (or slow) taps.

Video first seen on survivexnonprofit

Come here, or follow me

If you’re trying to get somebody to come to you or follow you, it may be a good idea to use the closed palm, sweeping gesture instead of the one-fingered come-hither gesture that is perfectly acceptable in the states. That one is offensive in several places.

Stop

This one is crazy confusing and has even been associated with examples of lethal miscommunications. Stop means stop, but there is no universal sign for it. Some people use a closed fist, which can be associated with a “right on” expression or even a Seig Heil-type sentiment.

An open palm, which is more common with Europeans, can be a sign of welcome or a sign that a person isn’t armed in some cultures. It is, however, the universal diving signal for “stop”.

Listen

This one actually is pretty universal. Cup a hand to your ear to tell somebody to listen.

Look

To get somebody to look at something, the gesture of pointing your pointer and middle fingers at your eyes, then toward whatever you want the person to see is fairly universal. Again, this is also the universal diving sign for look.

Distress

This one is much more universal, though not in a social scenario. You may have noticed that the distress signal in Morse code had a bunch of threes in it.

Three is a common number for distress signals. If you’re building an emergency signal fire or sign, place three fires or indicators in a triangle pattern. If you’re using a whistle, use three blasts.

Choking

This one actually has a universally-recognizable signal. Place both hands at your throat. If only everything was this simple.

Buddy up, or stay together

This one is pretty much universal. Point to the people that you’re referring to, then touch your index fingers together horizontally. You can also pair the middle fingers together with the pointer fingers, which may indicate more than two people.

I’m cold

Cross your arms over your chest and rub your upper arms.

Throughout my research for this article, I was hard-pressed to come up with any words at all that are universal, and very few signs or signals other than those used to indicate distress. I have, however, had some experience with diving and believe personally that their system is a good one. The signals are clear, concise, and universal to the diving community.

There are, of course, some signals that are local due to native dangerous fish, etc. but for the most part, the signs are recognized all across the community.

With a combination of signals and body language, you may be able to get your point across. For example, if you cross your arms over your chest with your fists closed and shake your head vigorously, people may understand that you’re trying to tell them that something is dangerous.

The “X” is sort of a universal code for dangerous or poisonous – think skull and crossbones.

There doesn’t seem to be any single word or phrase that can be used to communicate effectively even in a survival situation. The best thing that you can do is coordinate with the people whom you are traveling with.

It’s also a good idea to learn the native words for stop, danger, food, water, cold, shelter, help, come here, fire, exit, and any other emergency word that you can think of that you may need in a survival situation.

the-lost-ways-cover_wild

This article has been written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia. 

References: 

http://www.neadc.org/CommonHandSignalsforScubaDiving.pdf

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How To DIY A Paracord Survival Grenade

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DIY Paracord Grenade

If you’re an outdoor aficionado, you’re probably checking constantly for survival tips and tricks and, as you may already know, paracord is one of those special items you should have on your person when SHTF. In other words, always have it within reach.

When it comes to survival gear, there are 4 basic things you should be capable of doing with it: shelter-building, filtering water, gathering food, and starting a fire. In an ideal world, your survival kit must be able to resolve all these issues without problems.

If you’re able to achieve this goal, you’ll be able to survive for a few days until help arrives, or possibly even indefinitely, in case the cavalry is busy somewhere else. You know what I am talking about – if you can procure water, food, shelter, and make a fire in a survival situation, you’re pretty much guaranteed for winning the prepper academy award.

This brings us to today’s topic, how to DIY a paracord survival grenade. Truth be told, a well-made (as in smart) paracord survival grenade can be described as the mother of all survival gear.

That’s because a properly made paracord grenade will provide you with all the basics of survival, i.e. you’ll be able to hunt and fish, start a fire, build yourself a shelter and, why not, even boil water.

The devil is in the details. That’s an old saying which is truer than ever when it comes to paracord survival grenades.

The thing is, you can buy a pre-made one. In case you’re wondering why, well, paracord survival grenades have already achieved legendary status among the prepper community, which is growing exponentially year after year. Because of that, this pre-made item sells quite well indeed.

13 Essential survival items are included inside this Paracord Survival Kit. Grab this offer now!

In a nutshell (pun intended), a paracord survival grenade has a core which contains essential survival items, all wrapped with paracord, which in itself is another crucial survival piece of gear, ending up in a nicely-wrapped, portable, space-saving packet of survival goodies.

Now, talking about commercially available items, some of them are wrapped together using a cobra knot with the paracord. This style knot makes the grenade look great, but looks won’t help you survive if it’s not functional.

The problem with the cobra knot is that despite its cool appearance, when the rubber hits the road and you need to use it, it is pretty hard to deploy. It’s not as quick as you may need it to be at the critical moment when your life depends on it.

Now, the problem with using other types of knots is that you may end up with an ugly looking paracord grenade, but in my book, usability trumps beauty, so fair warning.

As per future reference, I would suggest DYI-ing your paracord grenade using the quick-deploy type of the cobra knot, which is the solomon bar.

This type of knot requires some practice and patience, but it’s fairly easy to do after you get the hang of it, and it’s lightning fast to deploy if so desired. Here is an example, take a piece of paracord and start practicing.

Video first seen on TyingItAllTogether

Moving along with our story, nowadays almost everyone has heard about paracord bracelets, which actually became more like fashion pieces rather than survival items for the urban prepper. A survival paracord grenade has more than just plain rope, but what’s inside is what matters the most. It’s here that you must pay extra attention.

A basic survival paracord grenade holds about twenty feet of paracord. Ideally, you should go for mil-spec paracord, but any type of high-quality paracord, rated to at least 500 pounds, will do the job if you’re stranded in the middle of nowhere, in the wilderness and all that jazz.

Obviously, you can create a bigger or a smaller one, depending on your needs and personal preference, but as a general rule of thumb, 20 feet, or roughly 6 meters, of paracord are marking the sweet spot, dimensions-wise. The idea is to strike the perfect balance (as in portability/convenience) with your survival grenade, else you can choose to carry some rope and a bunch of survival tools in a bag if you’d rather.

As I already told you, one of the key issues with DIY paracord grenades is to be able to take them apart easily. For example, consider that you’re out there in the cold (it’s winter after all) and your hands are frozen stiff. Struggling to untie the knots of your paracord grenade for deploying your survival gear in order to make a fire is not the best idea in a survival situation, right?

Video first seen on MOD

5 Essential Steps to DIY the Perfect Paracord Survival Grenade

So, if you want to build the perfect paracord grenade, you must follow a few simple steps, together with knowing perfectly well what survival tools to include inside.

1. Built it around a carabiner

A paracord survival grenade is built around a carabiner. That’s what makes it look like an actual grenade. Aesthetics aside, a carabiner is a staple item in any respectable survival kit.

2. Put some fishing and trapping gear inside

Next, considering that one must eat in order to live to fight another day, you must put some fishing and trapping gear inside your survival grenade. Items such as snare wire, small game trapping items and a small fishing kit would be perfect.

3. Add a small LED flashlight

A small LED flashlight would come handy when in need, i.e. starting a fire is not possible and you can’t find your way in the darkness. After all, the sun has a tendency to disappear for hours, especially during the winter, and if you’re afraid of the dark … I’m kidding of course, but an LED flashlight is an excellent item to have in your survival kit in any situation.

4. Include a small blade and a Ferro rod

Another item to consider is a small blade and a Ferro rod, as an additional fire-starter item. Ideally, one should carry a survival knife at all times, but having a backup is always smart, hence the small blade recommendation.

These are the bare minimum survival items to consider, but use your imagination and don’t be afraid to improvise (a small lighter or match sticks, striking sheet, etc).

5. Wrap the survival items in tin foil

Last but not least, once you have decided what to put inside the core of your survival paracord grenade, don’t forget to wrap ’em all up using a tin foil. Besides keeping your survival gear inside dry, the tin foil sheet can be used as a water container and you also can boil the water in it, thus destroying the bacteria.

Remember – all items must directly contribute to base survival in one way or another.

Video first seen on LittleMtnOutdoors

This particular paracord grenade hides essential survival tools inside:

  • 6 feet of fishing line
  • a razor blade
  • 2 small hooks
  • 2 split shot sinkers
  • a small strip of sandpaper
  • 6 strike-anywhere matches,
  • 2 band aids
  • 1 foot of jute twine for tinder and aluminum foil
  • the paracord itself.

Click the banner below to grab your Paracord Survival Kit! 

paracord-grenade

 

This article has been written by Chris Black for Survivopedia. 

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23 Ways To Compromise A Backpacking Trip

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Backpacking Trip

Backpacking can be great fun or a death march. It is up to you to control the ratio of fun to suffering.

I have crisscrossed the globe since I was a child and have been in plenty of situations I would rather others learned about through observation rather than experience, patching bullet wounds in people and vehicles, exploring ice caves in the Eiger in the Swiss Alps without any socks (don’t ask), being robbed by a gang of Gypsies in Portugal and battling prehistoric mosquitoes in Brazil, to name a few.

If you are new to backpacking, please take a moment to review a few too common mistakes in order to maximize the recreational aspects of backpacking and dial down the Suck-O-Meter.

We started with only seven mistakes, that you might know already if you read our previous article on backpacking. But there’s more to it, so here is what you need to know!

1. Thinking you can put everything you need in your backpack.

  1. First off, the most important things one can bring into the outdoors are outdoor survival skills, judgment, vision and adaptability. If an individual is gravely deficient in one or more of these areas, there is nothing they can put in a pack that will save their lives. If this is you or someone you know, be sure you or they are accompanied by someone you trust who can teach and guide.
  2. Second, core survival/self-recovery equipment should be carried in your pockets, not your pack. That way, when any of untold numbers of unpredictable scenarios where you can be separated from your pack occur, (you are ejected from a vehicle, pinned in wreckage, set your pack down to rest, lose your pack in an avalanche, you are compelled to ditch your pack in order to swim, etc.) you will not lose your core survival equipment along with your pack.
  3. Third, don’t be too much of a gear critic. The other day, I heard someone trashing a great pack because a strap broke on theirs. By definition, survival is the most DIY (Do It Yourself) of disciplines. All equipment is a compromise between light weight and durability. If you use your gear, you will break it and must be able to repair it in the field. You should be able and equipped to repair gear or to improvise.

Repair Kit 4. Fourth, strive to become less gear-dependent. There is a balance to strike between gear and knowledge. The more you know, the less you need. I’m not saying not to bring any gear and backpack barefoot and naked, but that there is a balance between gear and knowledge, and most folks tend toward the equipment-dependent side of that balance. If you strike a balance, your back will thank you as knowledge is lighter by far than gear.

This versatile bag can be your next best backpack!

2. Trying to fill your backpack.

There is a tendency to see a backpack as a container to be filled. “You have space, so you can fit one more piece of gear in there.” Make a list of everything you need and nothing you don’t. Pack that.

If you don’t fill your pack, tighten down the compression straps or move your gear to a smaller pack, but it’s better to have a little extra room in case someone gets injured and you need to pack out some of their equipment on top of your own.

3. Lack of research.

You need information to plan effectively.

Some examples would be: distance you will hike, change in elevation, terrain, climate, possible extreme weather events, altitude, creepy crawlies and other environmental dangers, which water sources are year-round or seasonal and their condition, road condition, distance from services, permits or licenses needed, cell coverage area, local radio frequencies and repeaters.

You should also check if there is a waiting list or mandatory check-in with a ranger station, local laws, local customs, if you will be hiking in hunting season or other events that mean more pressure on the area, ecological concerns specific to the area and endangered species, presence of historical or archaeological sites and so on.

4. Don’t use a checklist.

This is a great way to forget important equipment and the tendency is exacerbated by stress so be sure to include checklists, contents lists and instructions with all layers and modules of survival and emergency gear. Someone else may be using it to save you and they won’t know what you packed.

5. Don’t empty your pack before you pack it.

Having a pack ready to grab on your way out the door is a great thing … for emergencies. If you have the time, use it by emptying out your pack, doing a gear inventory and repacking it. It is decidedly less effective to haul some heavy piece of gear you don’t need along on a punishing trip because you forgot it was hiding in your pack.

6. Don’t pack the items you will need first where you can easily access them.

If you are going to stop along your trek to filter water, you don’t want to have dig the gear you need to do it out of the bottom of your pack. Thinking modular terms will save you time and money and help you to not forget important gear.

7. Don’t bring a notebook and pen.

Keep an adventure journal or pertinent information such as position, date, time, temperature, humidity, weather, altitude, injuries, incidents and so forth on your trips. Note what works and what doesn’t and what you wished you had brought with you. Eliminate non-emergency-related gear that you don’t use regularly.

Notebook

8. Packing heavy items low in your pack.

Pack heavy items like water high in your pack and close to your back.

9. Adjust your pack so that weight rests on the shoulders.

This will tire you out and make you sore. A backpack should have a well-padded waist belt and a sternum strap. If yours doesn’t, add them or get a new pack. Adjust your pack so most of the weight rests on your hips.

This perfect waterproofed bag is light, tough and durable!

10. Forget to trim your toenails.

Foot Care Or round them off instead of cutting them straight across before your trip. This causes your toenails to be driven back into your toes on long downhill stretches causing pain and discomfort.

11. Don’t layer

Or don’t use layering properly. Pack and wear clothing so you can add and remove loose-fitting layers of clean, dry clothing as needed to control your temperature and provide ventilation.

It is better to be a little bit colder than is comfortable as you backpack than to let sweat and moisture accumulate inside your clothing. Your clothing is your first line of protection against exposure.

12. Dress for daytime temperature.

Instead of nighttime temperatures on day hikes. Any time you head out, you may end up spending the night due to unforeseen circumstances.

13. Don’t know how to use a map and compass or don’t bother to bring them.

Even if you know every inch of the terrain your are in, you may still end up needing a map to convince a lost group of their true position or to call in coordinates for a rescue.

Map and Compass

14. Pack a filter that uses micro-tubule tech on a trip where it may freeze during the night.

I have seen rashes of five star reviews extolling the virtues of new water filters using hollow fiber technology claiming to filter 100,000 gallons of water. They must not camp in cold weather. If you allow even a single microscopic ice crystal forms in this type of filter, the only way you will know is when you double over vomiting with a terrible case of diarrhea.

“No problem, just keep it in your jacket and your sleeping bag.” says the guy who can’t manage to wash his hands before meals on the trail. But he will remember to move his wet water filter inside his jacket, not gripe when it dribbles and gets his base layer wet and then transfer it to his sleeping bag after he forecasts that the temperature will dip below freezing … sure he will.

15. Eliminate essential safety gear because you haven’t used it on the last 10 trips.

The thing about emergency gear like trauma kits and signal gear is that unless you are incompetent, you won’t need it often, but when you do, you will REALLY need it. While you are at it, don’t be the ultralight guy who brags about how little weight he carried and then turns around and borrows half a dozen pieces of gear from his buddies and eats their food either.

16. Wear brand new boots.

Break in new boots before you take them on the trail to avoid blisters.

17. Fail to plan as a group.

Boy could a lot of survivalists stand to learn from this.  A well-run scout troop is organized into patrols. Each scout carries his personal gear and then his share of the patrol gear. They understand that if each guy brings every conceivable piece of gear that he could possibly need, you end up carrying a lot of unnecessary weight.

A group of 6 people doesn’t need 6 axes, 6 files, six sharpening pucks, 6 rain flies, 6 frying pans and so on. If you are traveling as a family, plan as a family. It is also nice to have access to a variety of tools instead of everyone carrying exactly the same equipment.

18. Poor planning exacerbates poor hygiene.

Maintaining proper hygiene takes planning and extra effort in a survival setting or while backpacking. Folks who have lived their whole lives with hot running water tend to back-burner hygiene if it means a cold bath in the creek, but you will be more comfortable and suffer less if leave your comfort zone and

  • Don’t pack gear to wash your hands before eating. Much is made of treating water to kill parasites like giardia and cryptosporidium, but water is only one way to become infected. You are just as likely to be infected with giardia by failing to wash your hands before eating as not treating water, yet even graduates of some of the best survival schools on the planet either don’t understand this or regularly fail to put it into practice.
  • Plan to eat meals inside your tents and cook near where you bed down instead of in a separate spot. For every person dragged out of a tent by a bear, there are 100’s who have had holes chewed in packs and tents by rodents, raccoons or skunks looking for a meal. With a more sensitive sniffer than a bloodhound, if you eat inside your tent even once, you should not use that tent in bear country ever again. You don’t want to become a soft taco for a bear, but you don’t have to be camping in bear country for eating inside your tent to be a bad idea, and it does not take a bear to chew holes in your gear in search of food.
  • Don’t bring gear to wash up properly after meals. I once left a camp full of scouts on the beach of lake in the Sonoran Desert to help drain a boat and change its plug in the middle of the night since the boat was taking on water. Upon our return to camp, I swept the shore with the spotlight to find a troop of skunks in the camp with one standing atop a sleeping scout lapping the remnants of the young man’s supper right off his face.

19. Make your pack weight conform to some arbitrary number that likely has nothing to do with you and your abilities.

Despite what “professional” backpackers (I never imagined I’d see the day where backpacking would be a profession) may write, there is no magic number for how much weight to carry.

Learn your limitations, know them and abide by them. You may be able to safely carry 2-4x recommended weights based on your bodyweight, sex and physical condition or you might need to carry a fraction of it.

20. Don’t bring a hiking stick or trekking poles.

They can prevent ankle sprains, dunks in cold rivers and disastrous spills in addition to acting as shelter poles, fending off snakes, preventing you from needing knee surgery one day, reaching someone who has fallen through ice and saving you pain two dozen other ways.

21. Don’t stop when you start to feel a hot spot.

Giant blisters start out as hot spots. If you feel a hot spot, don’t be shy about it. Stop and take care of it before it turns into something worse.

22. Head out on an expedition with untested companions.

If your friends are going to give you grief over stopping to take care of your feet, educate them or get some new friends before you need to count on them in a real emergency. You shouldn’t head out on the trail or a hunt with people you can’t count on. Try some afternoon outings with them until you feel you could count on them on a serious expedition.

23. Bet your life on battery powered equipment.

There is a false perception that the moment you press the SOS button on your PLB (Personal Locator Beacon) you are saved, a Blackhawk will immediately swoop down and pluck you from the jaws of death in the middle of a blizzard. In reality, electronics break, batteries die, everything that uses radio waves to communicate is capable of experiencing interference and human error can cause Murphy to rear his head at any of a number of points between you pressing that button and when you are safely home.

Do bring a PLB, cell phone, radio or other communications equipment, but don’t bet your life on it. You may be out longer than planned, so be sure to bring extra batteries.

Consider the following:

  • Who would respond to your call for rescue? Know who would get the call and what their capabilities are. This will help you to plan realistically.
  • How will they get there and when? Not all SAR teams have access to air assets and even if they are available, the weather has to be good enough for them to be able to fly, and they have to have the visibility to search for you. Many SAR teams are county volunteers. It may take 8-12 hours for them to muster and they will probably need daylight. Bad weather may delay a search so be prepared to survive another day or two and signal once they are in the general area
  • Who will foot the bill for the rescue?

This bag has the very best closure seal on the market which allows for heavy duty use.

This article has been written by Cache Valley Prepper for Survivopedia.

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Nuclear Survival: Bugging Out Safely After An Atomic Blast

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Nuclear Survival

With the North Koreans gathering plutonium for nuclear warheads, and their Supreme Leader unhappy with Trump’s ascension to the office of President, nuclear preparedness should be everyone’s concern. How to stay safe while bugging out makes part of this plan, for sure.

Even someone that can navigate by looking at the sun or using other “low tech” means can easily fall prey to radiation poisoning after a nuclear incident. In fact, people interested in bugging out or moving from one area to another might be at higher risk than those who are staying in one area.

So if  you are in an area where more nuclear incidents are likely to occur or you need to travel for some other reason, safe navigation is extremely important.

While the basics of using maps, compasses, and other tools will not change, your path from one point to another may be far more different than expected. In particular, you will need to know more than how to skirt around  areas where radiation intensities are highest.

You will need to know how to predict where radioactive materials are most likely to disburse as well as how shifting weather and tide patterns will affect where additional materials will build up.  This is even more important if you intend to gather water and food along the way and happen across what appear to be low or non-contaminated areas.

Calculating Rate of Radioactive Travel By Land

Calculating how fast nuclear radiation will spread over land is no more difficult than knowing how fast breezes and the wind will move from ground zero to your location.

First, you must know the source of the radiation. You can use the links we posted at the end of the article to test out different areas and nuclear yield in order to get some idea about how large an initial area will be affected. Next, study the predicted wind currents for the area surrounding the contaminated site. Use the national climate archives to figure out the general wind direction for each state during specific months, as well as for major cities within each state.

For example, if you want to know how a nuclear blast in Alameda, California will affect Los Angeles CA, you might start off by visiting the Western Regional Climate Center, and then click on Average Wind Direction by State. You’ll see that the winds in Alameda usually go to the West, and in January they tend to go towards the NNW. Since Los Angeles is roughly Southeast of Alameda, you could go from Alameda towards Los Angeles for most of the year and more than likely escape fallout from the nuclear zone.

Unfortunately, since the wind from Alameda moves to the SE in December, you would not want to try and escape to Los Angeles as the nuclear radiation would follow you or precede you out of Alameda.

If you have a bug out plan that lists this information, you can also use real time estimators of wind current to project how fast the radiation is moving. Use the Beaufort Wind Scale to help you figure out how local winds are moving. If you get contradictory information between the historical tables and your observations, it may be best to get underground as quickly as possible and wait a few days to see what the air currents are doing.

Take the time now to observe wind directions and durations in your local area. If you have projected bug out paths, make sure that you have year round information on wind currents in those areas as well as studies on how wind from other areas moves into the ones you plan to travel through.

Calculating Rate of Radioactive Travel by Water

When it comes to calculating the spread of nuclear contamination over land, it can be said that air and its associated wind currents determine both the speed and distance. In a similar way, water acts as the medium of transport when attempting to calculate the rate of radioactive travel by water. If a detonation spreads water and debris into the air, you would need to calculate both the air mass and the water currents.

To calculate the rate of radioactive travel by water, start off once again by visiting Nuclear Secrecy so that you can get some ideas about how large the initial impact area will be. Then you will need to look at charts of the tides, water currents, and wind directions in the area.

There are two free resources that may be of some help to you. First, Open Nautical Chart offers global charts that also provide information about global wind and precipitation patterns. You can try using this chart for predicting how nuclear contamination will spread over areas of both land and water just by looking at the general trends. For more specific information about the currents and tides around the United States, visit Office Coast Survey.

Once you have the maps, all you need to do is compare the information between where the nuclear fallout is, and the maps will show you where it is most likely to go. For water calculations near the coast, you may also want to take the daily tides into account. For this, visit Salt Water Tides, and then select the region and date of interest to you. You can also use this site to project future tide timings.

Set up your own system that will generate you an endless supply of fresh, pure, clean water right in your home!

Mountains and Other Geographic Mitigating Factors

Even though you may be aware of seasonal changes in precipitation types or storm intensities, you may not realize that wind patterns also have seasonal and predictable fluctuations. Aside from that, mountains, hills, valleys, and other geological features can alter the way both wind and rain will affect any given area.

When it comes to getting away from nuclear fallout, you can think of mountains and hills in two ways. First, you can think of them as shields that you will want to put between you and the source of the radiation.

Typically, both wind and precipitation contaminated by nuclear materials will fall on the side of the mountain closest to the blast. As with everything from hurricanes to snowstorms and other weather systems, the precipitation-bearing clouds will drop in temperature as they try to move over the mountains.

This, in turn, will cause them to a good bit of water before they reach the other side. In some areas where this effect is especially pronounced, you may notice that rainfall data is less than it is on the other side of the mountain.  The “drier” side of the mountain will be safer in a nuclear crisis because prevailing rain patterns will not carry fallout over to the other side.

Second, you can think of mountains and hills as places where prevailing weather patterns may offer clues about lower fallout risk regions.  Excessive dryness on one side of the mountain may indicate that prevailing winds shift in the opposite direction. In this situation, even if the source of radiation is closer to the drier side of the mountain, it may still be safe because the debris will be carried in the opposite direction.

That being said, an area in this situation is also apt to be desert, or at best, scrub  lands.  If you are considering using an area like this as a nuclear bug out location,visit the area first and make sure that you know how to live in a desert region and be sure that you can secure water on a regular basis.

Locality Based Mitigating Factors

While you are moving from one place to another, it is important to realize that just about anything can act as a shield to nuclear radiation. If you are always aware of wind direction in relation to your location and ground zero, you will have a better chance of knowing when to take cover. While underground locations will always be best, buildings and even a tree can mitigate the amount of radiation that reaches your body.

Just remember to stand or sit in a place where the object is between you and the direction the contaminated air is coming from.

As you move through different areas, you are also bound to need water. If you cannot locate underground sources, some terrains may offer safer water than others. For example, if you are near a pond with bushes or shrubs growing nearby, take note of where the shrubs are in relation to the prevailing wind. If the shrubs stand between the wind (and the nuclear debris it carries), then the water may have less radiation.

The taller the shrubs or trees, and the denser they are, the more protection they will afford. As long as it hasn’t rained since the nuclear blast occurred, the water may be a bit safer than what you would find in other locations. At the very least, if you have no water purification options available you can try using this:

  • Start off by taking water only from the uppermost part of the pond. Dust and heavier contaminants will settle to the bottom.
  • Let the water settle for at least 24 hours so that any additional radioactive material will settled towards the bottom of the pitcher.
  • To get rid of any bacteria or pathogens, it is best to let UV light from the sun kill them off. It is best not to boil the water in this situation because it will only concentrate any dust particles that remain in the water while the lighter water molecules escape.

If you come across a moving stream or river, be very careful about the direction of the water flow in relation to the fallout zone. Even though moving water will dilute the nuclear material, it is best to seek a water source that is upstream of the blast. As with ponds, the more shields and distance that exist between the water and the nuclear site, the better.

Areas to Stay Away From at All Cost

Did you know that there are unsafe areas right here in the United States because the levels of nuclear radiation are too high?

What you may not realize is that the surrounding areas may also be contaminated to a point where they can endanger your health. To make matters even worse, Fukushima and other nuclear accidents may make an area you thought was safe far too dangers for a bug out location. When it comes to navigating after a nuclear disaster, you will need to factor in these locations plus the locations of any nuclear facilities that may pose a risk to your well being.

radioactive

Source: climateviewer.com

Remember, if our nation is under some kind of nuclear attack, it is also entirely possible non-nuclear attacks may happen at the same time. Large hospitals with nuclear diagnostic equipment, medical waste transports, nuclear power plants, and other sites that have nuclear materials will be a target.

As such, personnel that are best trained to control the situation may also be unavailable. If you try to pass through these areas, the chances of you coming into contact with high levels of nuclear radiation is very high even if the direction of contamination from a nuclear ground zero indicate otherwise. Always remember that nuclear radiation exposure is cumulative. It does not matter where the radiation comes from; only that you were exposed to it.

What About Edibles Along the Way?

No discussion on navigating during a nuclear disaster would be complete without a discussion on how to recognize which foods are safe to eat in an area that might have been impacted by nuclear fallout. While it is risky to eat anything in these areas, you can reduce the risk to some extent by taking the following advice:

  • Choose foods that were stored underground first.
  • If you must consume plants, use the deepest roots you can find first. It would also be best to choose plants that have not been exposed to rain since the nuclear blast occurred. For example plants in the middle of a patch, or covered by other plants may be safer.
  • If fruits and vegetables are available, try to use ones that have skins that can be removed. Smooth skinned fruits and vegetables will be safer to wash off and eat than rougher skinned items.
  • Canned foods should be ok; but choose ones in an area that is best protected from the blast direction. Consider a situation where the nuclear blast occurred to your west. If you are in a pantry, you would select foods from the east shelves because the radiation would have to pass through all the cans on the western side before reaching the others.  As with transportation, always look for foods where the largest and heaviest shields stand between the radiation and the food resource.
  • Avoid dried foods such as beans and fruit. You will find it very hard to wash nuclear debris off them or remove skins that might have captured the radiation. Also avoid leafy vegetables or anything else that you cannot peel or wash vigorously.

How do You Know You are Close to Ground Zero

Let’s consider a situation where a nuclear blast occurs and you must evacuate immediately. As you run to get your bug out bag, something distracts you, and somehow all your maps and important information about wind directions and navigation get left behind.

But thing can go worse than that. You have your cell phone, but you never uploaded these important files (so you wouldn’t have to go online or to the cloud to get them) because you were afraid an EMP would knock the phone out and make it useless. Upon turning on the phone, you realize it works perfectly, but you cannot get online. You have a compass, but never took the time to learn how to use it. Tucked deep in the bottom of the bag, you find a pair of binoculars that can be used to reveal wind direction and cloud formations. Since you don’t remember how to assess wind direction, you conclude the binoculars won’t be much good.

Realistically speaking, if you are in this condition after a nuclear blast and somehow managed to find safe shelter for a few days, you are going to have a fairly hard time finding a viable path to safety.

If you remember nothing else about how to navigate during a nuclear crisis, at least remember the signs and signals that you are at or near ground zero. At the very least you can try to skirt through these areas, avoid eating in them, and try to get out of them as quickly as possible.

Animals and Plants in Distress

Animals may have mouth sores.They may also bleed more from the nose and eyes, and may also show signs of fur loss. Large numbers of animals and insects may be dead and just laying around. Large numbers of fish may also be dead and have open sores on them.

Baby animals may have unusual numbers of digits on their paws. They may also be completely misshapen or have organs growing outside the body.

Animal or human feces may be in the form of diarrhea or have blood in it.

Plants will have tumorous knots on the stems, or unusual leaf patterns. For example, a three leaf clover plant may have five, six, or even seven leaves on a single stem.

The Black Rain

You may find signs of black rain: a combination of nuclear debris and soot from all the fires that happen after a nuclear blast. You may see streaks of thick, sticky  black liquid on walls, dripping from trees, or anything else that it lands on. If you look carefully at the ground, you may also see signs of this “rain” laying along the ground. Animals and plants may also be covered with it.

If you encounter black rain, it is extremely toxic, and will most often be found in the debris field surrounding ground zero.  Once you encounter this kind of debris, your best bet is to go back the way you came, an then try to choose another direction.

f you are closer to ground zero, permanent shadows may exist to reveal where objects once stood. For example, if you see a tree shadow on a sidewalk, but no tree, that means the tree was vaporized by the blast. The angle of this shadow will reveal the direction of the blast in relation to where the object was. To get away from ground zero, just go in the direction where the tree or object “points”.  In this case, just walk in the same direction as where you see the “top” of the tree’s shadow pointing.

You can also get some rough ideas about how far away the object was from the blast. The shorter and more perfectly proportioned the shadow is, the closer it was to ground zero. A longer shadow means you are a bit further away.

Signs of Disaster

Any area that was hit by the heat wave will show signs of having fires.  You can expect to see buildings, cars, and many other objects that may be charred beyond recognition.

The closer you get to ground zero, the signs of disaster you will see: walls, buildings, and even motor vehicles knocked over.  This damage occurs as a result of the air blast created by the explosion. Since the shock wave bands usually extend beyond other types of damage, finding them is a good indicator that you are either heading into ground zero or away from it.

For example, if you passed through areas that showed signs of being on fire, going through a blast zone might be an improvement.  If the radiation shadows are getting longer as you go along, this might also be considered a sign that you are heading away from ground zero.

Tools That Can Help You Avoid Contaminated Areas

Here are a few tools you might find useful:

  • Maps listing known nuclear material zones
  • Maps of historical wind current
  • Maps of water tides and currents
  • Long range binoculars
  • Small drones or robots that can be used to deliver testing equipment into a suspected area of contamination.

It is often said that if you have a map and compass, or know how to navigate by the sun and stars, you will never get lost. That being said, navigating during and after a nuclear crisis requires far more than simply figuring out how to get from Point A to Point B. Your plans can easily be disrupted by other situations involving nuclear hazards as well as radiation sickness.

Learn how to navigate when you aren’t feeling well along with how to recognize the signs that increased radiation may exist in an area that you plan to travel through. No matter how you look at it, radiation is a hazard no matter where you find it, and avoiding it will still be a primary concern while you are traveling.

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This article has been written by Carmela Tyrell for Survivopedia. 

References:

http://nuclearsecrecy.com/nukemap/

https://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/customer-support/partnerships/regional-climate-centers

http://www.wrcc.dri.edu/CLIMATEDATA.html

http://www.wrcc.dri.edu/htmlfiles/westwinddir.html

http://www.spc.noaa.gov/faq/tornado/beaufort.html

http://atomicbombmuseum.org/3_radioactivity.shtml

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7+ Tips To Survive When Camping In Winter

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Survive When Camping In Winter

For the average Joe out there, myself included, winter camping usually means renting a cabin somewhere nice in the mountains and spending the holidays with friends, family, and a few bottles of booze while chatting, listening to CCR and enjoying the downtime. (Still I would survive out there without these, if I have to.)

However, there are hardcore outdoors aficionados who actually resent the idea of camping in a heated cabin by a romantic wood stove. That’s not camping – it’s glamping.

Moreover, there are adventurous folks who prefer to grab their backpack, rent a snowmobile, and go somewhere in the wilderness away from the mad world, the rush, and the insanity of civilization for a few days or weeks.

Regardless of what your pleasure is about camping during winter, there are a few tips and tricks you should know before going out in the cold.

Hypothermia is a very “cold” (pun intended) fact to consider if camping outside in extreme weather conditions. If you want to return home in one piece, with all your thumbs and toes in working condition, then keep reading, as I will share with you some important information about how to stay warm even in -45 F. Okay, maybe not toasty warm when it’s that cold, but you got the idea.

To begin with, you should be realistic and realize that winter camping is not for everyone. However, if you’re properly equipped and trained, you may very well have the time of your life even on Everest.

Let’s begin with the basics: pre-trip planning. Pre-planning prior to any type of endeavor is the key to success, especially if we’re talking about camping during winter.

If you remember that old Bob Dylan song, you don’t need a weatherman to tell you where the wind blows. In other words, regardless what the weather forecast says, you must always prepare for the worst winter conditions possible. Better safe than sorry, right?

1. Plan Your Trip

Even if it may sound like overkill, make sure you’ll be packing all the emergency supplies you’ll ever need in a winter survival situation, such as extra food and water supplies (or means to procure water by melting snow and ice), extra clothes, etc., especially if you’re going somewhere remote.

Also, if the weather conditions are likely to bad, as in dangerous bad, you should play it safe and postpone your trip, that is, if you don’t want to win the Darwin award, if you know what I mean. If not, Google it. It’s fun in a macabre sort of way.

Pack light, but don’t scrimp on essential gear, like a camping snow shovel, plenty of lighting, spare batteries, a first-aid kit, ski poles/walking poles and always go for a strong/sturdy waterproof tent.

20 Survival Uses For An Emergency Survival Blanket. Get yours today! 

2. Take a Friend With You

Another crucial rule when it comes to winter outdoors survival is a rule I’ve learned from a Jack London novel. Never travel alone. Period.

3. Research the Campsite

Research the area you’re going to visit, check the surroundings, see if there’s a forest nearby (read firewood), see if there are any villages or small towns around, learn how long it will take to get from point A to B, etc. We’re living in the age of Google Maps and satellite imagery, so you don’t have any excuse not to get proper intel before going in!

Choose the right campsite (the sun is your best friend during the winter, so check out where it rises), start your fire first thing, before anything else, plan ahead, and stay warm folks.

4. Inform Your Family & Friends

Also, remember to inform your friends and family about your whereabouts, i.e. where you’re going to be for the next couple of days/weeks or whatever, thus making sure you’ll be able to get help if SHTF. If you can give them a detailed map of your route, that’s even better.

5. Keep Warm

Now, let’s talk about keeping warm. Obviously, the main thing to consider when camping outside during the winter is the right clothing. That’s the detail that will make all the difference in the world.

Dress in Layers

Layers is the word. Wear layers of clothing, as layers are the outdoors explorer’s best friend, besides a good fire. Layers work by trapping air between them, thus insulating your body from the cold. A few layers of clothing are more efficient than a single one, regardless of how thick it is.

Also, stay away from cotton clothes, because cotton absorbs moisture (you’ll get sweaty at some point during your trip) and damp or wet clothes are your worst enemy when it’s cold outside.

Basically, you should use three layers of clothing: the base layer, something like a second skin which helps you trap the body heat (synthetic materials/merino wool are the best for the base layer), the mid layer, which works as the main insulator (you can go for fleece lined trousers/heavy fleece) and the outer layer, which must be waterproof.

Dress In Layers

Keep Your Feet Warm

Feet are the infantry’s secret weapon, as my old drill sergeant used to say, so when you go out camping during the winter, pay extra attention to your feet.

To avoid cold feet, keep your cotton socks at home and go for polyester socks or wool socks. Specialty stores stock special foot gear (read socks and boots) designed for hiking. Obviously, the boots are very important too, as they must be waterproof and grippy, especially if you’re going to hike through the snow or ice.

Never Neglect Your Head and Your Hands

A huge amount of body heat, almost half of it in fact, is lost through the head during the winter, so make sure you wear a hat that’s going to block the wind and keep your heat in. Finally, don’t forget a nice pair of gloves.

6. Know Your Gear

The sleeping bag is an essential piece of gear when it comes to winter camping, so know your gear well if you want to survive low night-time temperatures. The idea is that you’ll require a high-quality sleeping bag if you want to be comfortable during the night and wake up healthy.

Or, double up your existing one just in case by putting one inside the other. Remember to always put a foam roll mat (or 2) under your mattress.

The idea is that shelter is pretty important when camping during the winter, as you may experience snowstorms, strong winds, and the whole palaver. Don’t get cheap on your tent, nor on your sleeping bag. They can make the difference between waking up relatively warm and safe and having somebody find your popsicle body.

7. Know Your Body

Together with knowing your gear, knowing your body is very important. Some folks sleep cold, others sleep warm. There are variables, like your age, sex, fitness level, experience, the amount of body fat and lots of other factors, which differentiate between the comfort levels achieved by different people using the exact same gear.

If you’re not familiarized with winter camping, it’s better to be over-prepared than not prepared enough. I am talking about layers of clothing, sleeping bags, and just about anything else that counts toward survival.

Go to Sleep Already Warmed Up

Always remember to go to bed, (inside your sleeping bag that is) already warmed up. The idea is that warmth cometh from within, while the sleeping bag is playing just the insulation part, so if you’re freezing and sleepy, do a few press ups/sit ups or just jump around a little before getting inside your sleeping bag. You’ll thank me later.

Eat Late

Another trick for a good night’s sleep while winter camping is to eat late, ideally a hot meal just before going to sleep. The ideal meal would be fatty (as opposed to carbohydrates), as fat gets metabolized slowly by your body (it lasts longer) and, needless to say, you’ll require fuel to make heat, right? Cheese, olive oil, bacon, pork; you know what I am talking about.

Eat high-energy food at all times, preferably in the form of warm meals. If you can’t, go for nuts, chocolate, and energy bars. Cover your exposed skin in animal fat or vaseline, just like the Inuit have been doing forever, thus preventing frostbite and windburn.

Keep Your Sleeping Bag Dry

Keep your sleeping bag dry at all costs, add more layers outside eventually as you need them. This doesn’t have to be clothes; it can be as simple as putting a metallic survival blanket over your sleeping bag.

This Emergency Survival Blanket helps retain 90% of your body heat. Get yours now! 

Video first seen on Survival Frog

Avoid breathing into your sleeping bag while sleeping (it introduces moisture) and sleep with your boots in your bag. Put them at the bottom of your sleeping bag so they don’t freeze during the night.

Leave your water filter at home and concentrate on boiling the snow. Chemical filters work painfully slow in the cold while mechanical ones may crack/fail due to the cold.

Hydrate

Don’t forget to drink enough water, even if you don’t have your usual thirst reflex, which is common in extreme cold. However, dehydration is a serious danger in sub-zero conditions, especially if you’re sweating. Also, a lot of moisture gets lost while breathing in and exhaling the cold air, as the air is very dry during the winter.

Try to prevent your water supply from freezing, but that’s easier said than done.

If you have other ideas or suggestions, feel free to comment in the dedicated section below.

This article has been written by Chris Black for Survivopedia. 

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Prep Blog Review: Preparing For What 2017 May Bring

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Preparing for 2017

Happy New Year!

I want to wish you all a prosperous, healthy, safe and prepared new year!

2017 brings a lot of challenges and unknown events. We never know what the future brings so the best solution is to prepare for the unexpected. I hope you’ve already set your prepping-related resolutions for the new year.

Here are 5 articles I’ve stumbled upon this week that will help you stay safe in a lot of SHTF situation 2017 may bring.

1. Prepare For the Worst and Hope For the Best

prepare-for-the-worst-and-hope-for-the-best

“When it comes to preparing for any sort of SHTF event it really is a guessing game. All we can (and should) do is prepare for the worst and hope for the best. There is no way to know exactly what might happen, but we can stack the deck in our favor by learning new skills, maintaining our health and preparing for these disasters while we still have the opportunity.

Next week we are going to expand on this a little bit and go over how people will be the X factor that could change the dynamics of a disaster. The way certain people react could make a disaster more tolerable, or make it even worse.”

Read more on Survivalist Prepper.

2. Natural Disaster Emergency Preparedness

Video first seen on sab7sam7

“Emergency, like natural calamities such as flood, typhoon or hurricane, and earthquakes are a dangerous situation, requiring an immediate and fast response to avoid unwanted results ̶ injuries or death. Being able to make sure that you are safe before, during, and after any disaster is needed to counteract or respond effectively. What is needed is preparedness.

According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency in the U.S., it means a continuous cycle of planning, organizing, training, equipping, exercising, evaluating and taking corrective actions in an effort to ensure effective coordination during incident response. Emergency Preparedness can save your lie or your loved ones lives.

Now, that sounds really intimidating. But we cannot just depend on all, everything, every time to the government agencies for security and emergency, or a non-profit charity organization such as Red Cross. We too must take our part, be on a mission to help ourselves during these times.”

Read more on American Prepper’s Network

3. How to Prep For a Quarantine

prep-for-quarantine

“All too often, the world is shaken by a new flu bug or the resurgence of an old one. This article caught my eye, as it’s about a mutated version of avian flu H7N2 that was transmitted from a cat to a human, quite a rare occurrence. I also have a long enough memory to recall the Ebola panic just a couple of years ago and shaking my head at the incompetence and poor decision making by those in authority, including the CDC.

The history of Ebola, as detailed in this book, is helpful to know and understand how a deadly virus originates, mutates, and spreads.

With an eye on the future and knowing a little about how quickly certain viruses can spread, I have put into place a number of preps that would see my family through the duration of a widespread outbreak, similar to the ones described in Steve Konkoly’s The Jakarta Pandemic. I know Steve personally and the massive research he put into this book, although a novel, is spot on. Read it to learn even more strategies to keep your family safe.”

Read more on Preparedness Advice.

4. How to Survive a Mass Shooting

mass-shooting-logo

“With the terror of the Orlando shooting, people all over the country are reevaluating survival tactics for mass shootings. The general consensus is that the decisions you make in that first few minutes will largely determine whether you live or die. It is easy to mourn the dead and tell yourself that victims were trapped and had no choices. While your choices are limited, you do still have them.

In this article I want to dispel some myths about survival. As an advocate of the 2nd amendment, it is easy to say that fewer people would have died if more of them were armed. That is not always the case. Even with a gun, fighting back should be a last resort. The order of actions for any mass shooting should be to flee, gain security, and fight back if absolutely needed.”

Read more on Survival Sullivan.

5. 7 Steps to Protecting Your Livestock From Deadly Disease

goat-1914084_640“Twenty-first century homesteaders have the advantage of being able to pick and choose between ancient practices and modern technology, selecting the one that works best in every situation. At my place, I love old-fashioned methods, but not when it comes to biosecurity.

I get some startled looks when I say the word “biosecurity” out loud to farm visitors. It sounds a little scary, like a scene from a sci-fi movie with people running around in crisp white hazmat suits. While biosecurity may or may not look a little like that on huge corporate agriculture farms, that is not how it is on my small sustainable farm. However, it is every bit as important here.”

Read more on Off The Grid News.

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This article has been written by Drew Stratton for Survivopedia.

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Predicting The Future!

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Predicting The Future! Forrest & Kyle “The Prepping Academy” Audio in player below! Welcome to “The Preppig Academy.” This program in the player below is all about the future. That’s right, Forrest and Kyle predict the future. Well, kind of; you’ll have to stay alive and listen next year to see if they were right! It … Continue reading Predicting The Future!

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17 Ways A Prepper Can Reuse Motor Oil

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Motor oil is commonly considered a waste material, but it may become something of value to people trying to put their lives back together in a post-crisis world. People will try to scavenge whatever may be of use, and it’s understandable since it will take some time for mechanization to re-emerge with new products.

You’ll also have to deal with what you have, so learn to speak multipurpose, and don’t skip motor oil from this equation. So here’s how to reuse motor oil regardless of whether there is a major crisis to deal with or not.

Where to Find Used Motor Oil

Right now, used motor oil is more of a nuisance than something else you might consider valuable in the post crisis world.

For the most part, mechanic shops and recycling facilities will be the first places to go for used motor oil, but you should also consider:

  • Abandoned cars – any car that has been abandoned may still have motor oil in the bottom pan. While you are scavenging, don’t forget to look for other things that may be of value such as wire, springs, and anything else that can be reused.
  • Abandoned home garages – even though many people take their car to a shop for basic maintenance, just about everyone has a quart or two of used motor oil hanging around in the garage.
  • Junk yards – no matter whether the junk yard caters to cars or other kinds of abandoned equipment, you are likely to find motor oil in many different places.  As with any other abandoned car, you are sure to find any number of useful items once you start looking around.
  • Trash piles, back yards, or rubbish storage sites – aside from looking for used motor oil stored in containers, be on the lookout for oil filters that appear to be intact.  If the filter does not have a hole punched through the top of the dome, there is a good chance that some motor oil can be found inside the filter.  To release, the oil, simply punch a hole in the top of the filter, and let the oil escape from the bottom into a clean container.

Read This BEFORE Reusing Motor Oil

While used motor oil is a common part of daily life, that does not mean it can be handled without precautions, and here are a few of them.

  • At a minimum, wear latex or rubber gloves. Aside from tiny bits of metal, reused motor oil also contains all kinds of chemicals that can cause rashes, dizziness, nausea, or other ailments if they get absorbed by your skin.  It is best to use oil resistant gloves, or ones that are rated for use with a wide range of toxic chemicals.
  • Oil resistant garments – any kind of spill can allow oil to get through your clothing and into contact with your skin. It does not matter if this contact occurs on your face, neck, hands, or other body parts. The toxins from the oil can still get past your skin and wreak havoc.
  • Oil resistant shoes or boots – make sure that the soles are also oil resistant.
  • If you don’t handle motor oil very often, it may not make much sense to wear a mask. On the other hand, if you are going to repurpose motor oil, then the amount of exposure might be enough to irritate or harm your lungs. Therefore, get a breathing mask or respirator that will filter out any harmful agents that might be found in the motor oil.

17 Uses to Keep in Mind

And finally, here’s how to use the motor oil instead of throwing it away.

1. Mix with Creosote to Weatherize Wood

Even though many people have used plain motor oil to preserve wood over the years, it is best to mix it with some creosote in order to avoid dry rot. You will also find that used motor oil can make a very slick surface.

While this may be ok for fence posts, it can pose problems for floors or other areas where you need some traction.

Video first seen on Anlex Garden Centre

2. Protect Wood From Insects and Animals

When people think about protecting wood from the elements, they are usually most concerned with water and dampness. Insects and animals can also wreak havoc on wood and cause it to be destroyed very quickly.

In particular, if you have a homestead or farm with horses or other large animals, they might want to chew on wooden posts or other objects.  Motor oil mixed into creosote will create a taste these animals do not like; and thus deter them from chewing on the wood.

3. Mix With Diesel to Make Penetrating Oil

If you are plagued by corroded or stuck bolts, screws, or other fasteners, then you may be well accustomed to using penetrating oil to try and loosen them up. While you may already have a few cans of good quality oil in your stockpile, the need for penetrating oil will never end as long as there are metal fasteners to contend with.

If you have some diesel and used motor oil, you can mix them together to make penetrating oil. Give this a try now to see how it works when compared to other formulas. Knowing when and how to use this replacement can help reduce the need to draw from your stockpile as well as enable you to innovate during an actual crisis.

4. Burn as Fuel

When you have nothing else for fuel, used motor oil can be burned to provide heat.

But used motor oil has many contaminants in it that can be toxic when burned and then released in the air. You will be better served by burning used motor oil outdoors.

Aside from reducing the smell of burning fumes in your home, tent, or other enclosure, you will also avoid deposits of toxins on the walls and ceilings.

5. Make a Torch

As plentiful as flashlights and batteries might be right now, that can all change faster than you realize. If you find yourself in a situation where you only have motor oil, some rags, and a wooden stick on hand, you can still make a torch that will produce light and heat.

Just remember to use the torch in a well ventilated area so that the fumes from it do not make you sick.

Video first seen on Jennies Garage

6. Prevent Attackers from Scaling a Wall

There is no question that many people wind up thinking about high tech or “modern” solutions when it comes to protecting their home from invaders. On the other hand, sometimes the simplest and cheapest answers may be found in items such as used motor oil.

For example, if you want to keep attackers from scaling a fence, or even climbing up to the roof of your home, just pour used motor oil on the walls.

If you are fortunate enough to have stone walls far enough away from your home, you can also set the oil on fire and make the invaders even more uncomfortable.

7. Fireballs for a Siege Engine

It is fair to say if you have a few acres of land, eventually you will become a target for roaming gangs of thugs and others that will want to take what you have. When it comes to military grade fortifications or weapons to strike attackers, you may find it difficult or impossible to get useful systems for your property.

Siege engines, on the other hand, have been used successfully for centuries as attack and perimeter defense devices. You can do some research on siege engines construction plans and make your own with relatively few problems.

If you need to stave off attackers, you can simply lob fireballs fueled by used motor oil at the attackers and have a reasonable chance of stopping them in their tracks.

Dead Simple Trick Brings Any Battery Back To Life (Never Buy Batteries Again)

8. Kill Mange, Mites, and Fleas

If you have pets, then you have probably also encountered flea infestations. Chances are, you have also felt quite helpless when your pets developed allergies to modern flea medications, or worse yet, got very sick from them.  Surprisingly enough, motor oil can be used to get rid of fleas, mites, and mange.

Just be sure to wash it off thoroughly and use with caution.  Motor oil can be used both in a crisis and in these times if you have no other remedy available for these problems.

9. Keep Hand Tools Clean and Rust Free

Hand saws, drills, and many other hand tools require cleaning and oiling in order to keep them in the best possible condition. No matter how much lubricating oil you keep on hand, chances are your stock pile will run out long before your hand tools need to be discarded.

You can always try used motor oil to keep your tools free of dirt and rust.

10. Filter and Reuse as a Lubricant

Once motor oil is too dirty for use in an auto engine, there is no point to trying to filter it and reuse it for that purpose. There are still many other devices that build up less heat or have less stringent tolerances between parts that may still benefit from used motor oil as a lubricant.

Just be sure to filter out the oil so that you remove as much debris as possible.

When using discarded motor oil as a lubricant, it is also important to bear in mind that the oil itself may have broken down a good bit from heat generated by the engine.

Even if you filter the oil, it will not alleviate this problem.

You may need to change the oil more often, or pay more attention to device operation in order to avoid the kinds of damage that would normally be avoided by using oil as a lubricant.

11. Mix With Gas to Run Tractors

Unlike motor vehicles, older style tractors can run on a surprising number of different fuels without being damaged.  In this case, you can stretch fuel reserves for your tractor by adding some motor oil. You may be well served by filtering out the oil so that stray bits of metal or other contaminants do not damage the tractor engine.

Since every tractor is a bit different, you should start off with small amounts of oil and then see how the engine performs.  The last thing you will want to do is add too much oil and wind up with a seized engine.

12. Start a  Fire

Rainy weather, damp wood, and other conditions require something a bit more than a match to ignite.  A little bit of used motor oil can help you start and maintain a fire in just about any situation.

Video first seen on sixtyfiveford

13. Kill Mosquitoes in Stagnant Water

The vast majority of preppers already suspect that insects such as mosquitoes will multiply beyond belief when a social collapse occurs. While these insects do play a role in nature, they still spread enormous amounts of disease and wreak havoc among humans.

You can use discarded motor oil to seal off stagnant water and kill off mosquito eggs before they have a chance to hatch. When using motor oil for this purpose, remember that even small amounts can contaminate large amounts of water and the ground that the water seeps into.

If you must use motor oil on stagnant water, make sure that the water is fully contained and cannot get into the ground or some other source of water.

Do not be surprised if you find that it is easier to simply dump out or drain stagnant pools of water as opposed to trying to treat them with used motor oil.

14. Use With Steel Wool to Remove Rust

If you are scavenging for all kinds of metal items, you’re also very likely to find that possible replacements for needed items have a good bit of rust on them.

Rather than discard these items on sight, you can use motor oil and steel wool to clean the items up a bit. Needless to say, if you have items in your stockpile with rust on them, you can also use this method to remove the rust and restore them to good order.

15. Soften or Clean Leather Boots

Unless you have a stockpile full of shoes and boots made from synthetic materials, it is likely that you will need to use leather conditioners to keep footwear in good condition. You will also wind up making shoes from leather that must also be kept clean and soft.

Using discarded motor oil for this purpose will work well enough now as well as in a crisis situation.

16. Temper Steel

It is fair to say that the art and science of forging metals into knives and other useful items can be very complex. If you study metallurgy carefully, however you will find that the tools and materials required are not especially difficult to build and maintain.

In this case, if you want to temper or harden steel, you can dip the item in used motor oil to cool or “quench” it from the red hot stage down to black.

17. Attract Wild Hogs

Individuals that believe they can live off the land after a social collapse occurs are apt to find they need to expand their list of edible plants and animals. In this case, you can draw wild hogs to you by leaving some used motor oil around. As may be expected, you should be well prepared to kill the hogs and remain safe while you are attempting to take them for food.

Used motor oil is one of those materials that you may believe is useless now, and probably serves no purpose in a crisis situation. If you look at the basic properties of used motor oil, you will soon realize that it can be effectively used for heat, home defense, and even keeping tools in good condition.

Rather than throw away this valuable resource, go ahead and store some away for future use, or make a list of places where you can obtain used motor oil in time of need. And keep these tips in mind, they might save you one day!

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This article has been written by Carmela Tyrell for Survivopedia. 

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New Year Prep Blog Review: 5 Resolutions For Preppers

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resolutions-for-preppers

Here we are at the end of 2016, a year full of changes. I hope you had a wonderful Christmas with your loved ones and you are properly preparing for New Year’s Eve.

This is the time of the year when I usually make a list of prepping resolutions for the year to come in order to improve my life and increase my chances of survival in case SHTF. I don’t know if this works for everyone, but for me it certainly does.

So, what about you? Do you use to make a list of prepping resolutions at the beginning of the year?

A new year provides opportunities to learn new skills.

For this special Prep blog Review I’ve gathered 5 articles to help you set your prepping resolutions for 2017. Make this year the best, improve your family’s life and increase your chances of survival.

1. Learn New Skills With Your Family

woman-preparedness

“When we hear the word “survival”, it seems most of us think of things like starting fires, building shelters, hunting, fishing, searching for water and other basic survival skills.

Although those things are essential to our survival, there are other areas that we need to take into consideration that are just as important.

For years I walked around with my head down and just went with the flow. I didn’t take notice to the people around me or my situation. It would have been very easy for anyone to walk up behind me and take my purse, or worst case scenario, attack one of my children or myself. Times changed though and so did I.”

Read more on The Well Prepared Mama.

2. Upgrade Your Stockpile

13-survival-foods-that-will-outlast-you

“Let’s say that disaster hits tomorrow, do you have the basics like food and water covered? Stockpiling food and water shouldn’t be a prepping trend and every sane person should do it. We live in a world where natural and man-made disasters are no longer far-fetched scenarios and people have no excuse for being unprepared.

The following survival foods are available to anyone and they have an indefinite shelf life, so make sure you have them in your pantry.

I keep looking at what Venezuela is going through and although the media seems to have forgotten about it, the situation is still critical out there. People are stealing pets to eat them as a last resort and there are families protecting their gardens 24/7 as they no longer trust their neighbors.”

Read more on Prepper’s Will.

3. Use More Natural Remedies

headache_human_normal_remedies“Headaches are a part of being human. Some people get them regularly, and others get headaches only rarely. Severity varies from person to person, as does the cause of the headache. Even when only mildly annoying, a headache can affect your ability to function fully and alertly.

If you’re in a situation where Tylenol, aspirin, or prescription pain medication isn’t an option, nor is doing nothing because you have to be focused on taking care of yourself and others, you need to know how to keep a headache at bay.”

Read more on Survival Cache.

  1. Cook New Survival Recipes

7-pioneer-recipes-every-prepper-should-learn-wide-1

“There is a bit of a romantic fantasy about what it must have been like for the pioneers who traveled out west more than a hundred years ago.

The idea of land that stretches on for miles without a single building or road was both exciting and frightening to them. However, they had the skills they needed to fend for themselves without the conveniences of big cities. If a major collapse happens, it will be the people with those kind of skills who make it.

If we ever find ourselves in a world that resembles the pioneer days (no electricity, no running water, etc.), people will have to learn how to cook all over again. Cooking over a fire is a lot different than cooking in the microwave or on an electric stove. Certain meals and recipes are going to require a little tweaking.”

Read more on Urban Survival Site.

  1. Learn New Self Defense

selfdefense

“Imagine being in the middle of a crowded festival, enjoying your time with your family.  All of a sudden, you find yourself near some drunks who start a fight, and you can’t help but separate from your family, and get pulled into the fray. You’re a prepper, and like most preppers, you’re carrying a small firearm, in this case a small pistol.  Do you use it?

Some would say yes – it’s time to defend the family, and that’s what a weapon is for, right?  Others hold off – bringing deadly force into a relatively small conflict is a certain legal issue and is probably not necessary considering that these people are drunk.  That said, this is clearly a self-defense situation. “

Read more on The Prepper Journal.

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This article has been written by Drew Stratton for Survivopedia.

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2016: An Apocalyptic Thrill Ride

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2016: An Apocalyptic Thrill Ride Host: Bobby Akart “Prepping For Tomorrow“ Audio in player below! On this year-end episode of the Prepping for Tomorrow program, bestselling Author Bobby Akart looks back upon 2016 and the apocalyptic roller coaster ride it provided us all. 2016 provided us one of the most intriguing political elections in our … Continue reading 2016: An Apocalyptic Thrill Ride

The post 2016: An Apocalyptic Thrill Ride appeared first on Prepper Broadcasting |Network.

11 Reasons To Stockpile Castor Oil For Survival

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Castor Oil For survival

Old timers used castor oil for everything from colds to parasitical worms, but recent generations have pretty much forgotten about it. That’s a shame because, if our elders are to be believed, it’s one of those multi-purpose items that deserve a place in your stockpile.

Read the following article, and you will see why our ancestors were so right about this natural cure!

Castor oil is made by cold-pressing the seeds of the castor plant and is composed mostly of the fatty acid ricinoleic acid. That’s the ingredient that is responsible for the healing, analgesic, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties associated with the oil.

Though most of us don’t keep it at home any more, it’s still a common ingredient in cosmetics, soaps, massage oils and even textiles.

I’ve done some research and, though there isn’t a ton of formal research available to support its effectiveness as a home remedy, there’s usually something to be said for centuries of use by entire civilizations.

As you probably know, in order to garner our attention, an item has to do more than treat constipation or hydrate dry skin in order to make our list. We need products that can be used for everything from treating sunburn to sharpening scissors, and castor oil fits the bill.

Note: The treatments outlined here can also be used on your pets.

1. Skin Care

We’ll start with this one because, in addition to keeping your skin soft and youthful, it’s also used to ease the pain of severely dried and cracked skin and lips. In a survival situation, this is a condition that can quickly lead to gangrene, so it’s a big deal.

Castor oil is also a good base ingredient for soaps, lotions, and cosmetics because of its hydrating properties. It has omega-6 and omega-9 fatty acids, both of which are often used to promote healthy hair, skin, and nail growth. Some claim that it has anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties that can help get rid dandruff and possibly athlete’s foot.

It has been shown to have analgesic properties, so it’s good to treat sunburn, rashes, bug bites and other minor skin conditions. It’ also used to treat ringworm. Just rub it directly on the skin.

Finally, the anti-inflammatory properties are great for treating cystic acne. The best thing is that it works fairly quickly. Swab it onto your clean face at night and you should notice improvement by morning.

2. Digestive Issues and Parasites

This is one of the most commonly-known uses for castor oil. It helps your bowels move. Be careful that you don’t use too much because it works remarkably well for this condition. You don’t want to become dehydrated, so start with a tablespoon and give it a few hours. Take more if needed.

If you want to just “take your medicine” and get it over with, just swallow it straight. If not, you can mix it with juice or a food. Apple juice would be good, because it also helps relieve constipation.

Castor oil is also a common home remedy for intestinal parasites.

3. Arthritis, Muscle, and Joint Pain

This is another common reason that it was used by our elders because of its analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties. Some say to make a poultice with other herbs and rub it into aching joints for relief. You can also take a tablespoon internally. If you have diarrhea, you may want to try the rub.

Video first seen on Ancient Current

4. Gets Rid of Corns, Moles, and Warts

The fatty acids in the oil are purported to dissolve these conditions. For corns, simply dip a cotton ball in castor oil and tape it over the blemish. Change it out once a day, but in a week, the corn will be gone. For moles and warts, add a bit of baking soda to the cotton ball, too. It may take a couple of weeks for this method to work. You can also try just dabbing it on regularly.

5. Get Rid of Yard Pests

Apparently, moles and other yard pests find the smell of castor oil as repugnant as people do because if you mix 1/2 cup of castor oil with a couple of gallons of water and sprinkle it around your garden or yard. It won’t kill them, but it definitely encourages them to find a better place to live.

The upside to this is that ferns and other greenery respond well to castor oil. It helps them look greener and lusher.

6. Hemorrhoids

Because of the anti-inflammatory properties, castor oil is often used to treat external hemorrhoids. Dip a cotton ball in the oil and apply it over your hemorrhoids. Leave it on for 15 or 20 minutes a few times a day if possible. If not, just applying daily will provide relief.

7. Lubricate Just About Anything

Because of its viscosity, castor oil doesn’t freeze, so it’s great to use to lubricate hinges, scissors, meat grinders, motor parts, and anything else that gets sticky.

8. Boosts Immunity

Because of the fatty acids in it, castor oil has been shown to boost your immune system by increasing white blood cell production. The odd part about this, though, is that it does it when you apply it topically. That’s right – just rub it on your skin and, according to the study, your white blood cells may increase by as much as 20 percent.

9. Treat Infected Cuts or Rashes

The antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties may be helpful in healing a mild infection. Just dab it on with a cotton swab or dribble it directly onto the wound a few times daily until the infection heals. There are also many herbs that you can add to it to help even more.

Along the same lines, you can use it to help treat vaginal infections.

10. Treat Aching Feet

This is a treatment that waitresses have been using since, well, since before they were called waitresses. Just warm a bit between your hands and rub directly into your feet. You can also help lessen the pain throughout the day by rubbing some on your feet before you go to work, then wear cotton socks.

If you have extreme pain, you may want to try generously applying castor oil then wrapping the effected body part in plastic wrap before you go to sleep.

11. Pilonidal Cysts

I’ve read several testaments where people swear that a gauze coated in castor oil works to get rid of the pain and inflammation of pilonidal cysts. It may also help draw out the infection so that the cyst opens, drains, and can heal. Lay the gauze over the cysts, then place a heating pad over it and keep it there for an hour. People reported tremendous improvement just after the first treatment or two.

There are many uses for castor oil – these are just a few of the big ones. I’ve combined several of them under the skin care and digestive issues section because there are so many different uses for it for those particular areas.

Click the banner below to discover more natural survival remedies that helped our forefathers survive harsh times!

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This article has been written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia. 

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Winter Survival: How To Start A Fire In The Snow

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With winter here and global warming a thing of the past (now it’s climate change or something), knowing how to start a fire in the snow may save your life someday. I don’t know about you, dear reader, but in my neck of the woods it’s been snowing for days.

If you’re asking yourself why you should learn how to start a fire in the snow, well, the simple answer is: you never know, so be prepared for any situation.

Winter time is arguably the hardest in terms of outdoor survival and if you can’t build a fire, you’re dead meat regardless of the gear you have at your disposal.

And if you’re out there, stranded in the snow in the middle of nowhere and waiting impatiently for help from above, knowing how to make a fire will make the difference between life and certain death.

As night falls, the temperature will plummet, making you feel like you’re in an icebox. If you can’t make a fire, you’ll find yourself in a life-threatening situation if there ever was one. In addition to keeping you from freezing to death, fire keeps wild animals away and it allows you to cook (or defrost) your food, and even make water by melting snow or ice.

Fire is your best friend when it comes to wilderness survival, as it takes care of all that’s important for a prepper: food, water, and shelter (warmth).

For most modern folk, especially youngsters who live their lives pecking at their smartphones, starting a fire in any type of outdoor scenario is a rare occurrence, let alone making fire in extreme weather conditions (snow, wind).

On the other hand, if you never leave your house or the city, you may think bad things will never come to you. That works for hobbits, yes indeed, but then again, there are plenty of scenarios when your bubble can burst in a matter of hours.

For example, what will you do as you get trapped in the snow during your vacation in the Rocky Mountains or wherever, with a blizzard coming out of nowhere, blocking the roads and/or your car somewhere in the middle of…well, you see where this is going, right?

How to Start a Fire in the Snow

Getting back to our “story”, starting a fire in the snow is the second hardest thing after trying to do it during a rainstorm.

Starting a fire in the snow will present you with two basic problems.

First things first – snow will definitely melt at some point and the water may quench your hard work, together with the flames.

Another thing to contemplate about fires, snow, and winter is that cold comes into play, i.e. you’ll have to raise the temperature of your combustible materials farther than in the summertime in order to ignite them. That means that making a fire during the winter is more difficult than in the summertime, as it starts slower than “normal”, provided you know what normal is.

Video first seen on The Outside Files

Choose the Right Spot

Everything in life is location, and the same principle applies to starting a fire in the snow, obviously. Selecting a proper site is the first thing to consider and is exceptionally important for your success (survival). The location should ideally be protected from wind, water, and snow.

Folks traveling outdoors during the winter prefer to make a fire under a tree most of the time, but be aware of trees carrying a lot of snow on their branches, as the snow may fall into your fire as it melts and put it out. And then you’ll be in a world of pain.

If you’re going to start your fire under a tree, make sure you knock the snow off the branches first. That eliminates the aforementioned risk and also, it will make sure you don’t have to clear your spot twice.

Start with a Clean Spot

This brings us to the next step: clearing the snow from your desired fire location. You can’t actually make a fire directly on snow, maybe on ice though, provided you can build a platform from rocks/logs.

You can clear the snow by brushing it away or you may walk on it in order to tamp it down. If you’re going for the tamping, you must realize that the snow will melt at some point, so make sure the water resulting from melted snow can drain away from your fire.

Also remember to clear the snow off the ground on a place near the fire for storing your extra wood, and, if possible, try to use rocks for raising your wood storage spot above the ground. If you don’t have enough rocks, you can use sticks laid cross-ways or make a platform using branches (the same can be used for the fireplace itself in case you can’t find rocks).

Both ways are good for keeping the wood from coming in contact with the ground, thus offering it the chance to get as dry as possible before using it.

When it comes to starting a fire in the snow, or in rainy weather for that matter, it would be ideal to use a large, flat stone as the fire-floor.

Video first seen on ExploringWithGeorge.

Prepare Your Tools

Raising the combustible materials just 1’’ or 2’’ above the ground will make all the difference in the world by offering the water the required drainage channels to run off through.

Another thing to consider and that is hugely important is the heat reflector because, after all, starting a fire in the snow is all about keeping you warm, and a good heat-reflector is aimed at accomplishing exactly that.

A cliff face makes for a good heat reflector, also a big tree or a large rock. You can always improvise one from a blanket, the silver survival types, using the silver side which will provide you with the best reflection.

Read more about these 52 ways to save your life while laughing!

Starting the Fire

Now, with the “preamble” taken care of, let’s talk a little bit about the actual fire-starting procedure. Lesson learned the hard way: along with a first aid kit, always carry something that can be used as a fire starter. A packet of waterproof matches and a couple of BIC butane lighters are a must-have item in any survival kit.

Ideally, you should also carry a dedicated fire-starter kit, which consists of a block of paraffin and sawdust mix, available just about anywhere. You can DIY a good fire starter using cotton balls soaked with Vaseline (petroleum jelly), carried inside a film canister.

The idea is to use a fire starter that doesn’t die out fast whilst providing a lot of heat at the same time.

If you don’t have a dedicated fire starter, you can always use small pieces of dry wood, which may be a problem, but these fellas are usually easy to spot near the trunk of trees. Avoid wood that was in contact with the snow, as it definitely has a high moisture content.

If you can’t find small dry pieces of wood, get your knife, find the driest dead  branch possible, and whittle down until you hit dry wood. If you don’t even have a knife, I don’t know what you’re doing outdoors, really. You’ll have to get creative.

Tips to Remember

  • Always collect enough fuel to keep the fire burning for a long time. You don’t want to stop in the middle of the “show” to get more wood, as the fire may die out while you’re hunting for combustibles and you’ll have to start again from the beginning.
  • Always remember to gather large pieces of wood if possible, along with tinder kindling and smaller pieces for the initial fire.
  • The big chunks of wood are excellent for keeping the fire burning overnight, thus keeping you warm and allowing you to go to sleep without worrying about your fire dying and all that.
  • To get the most out of your fire, you’ll have to make sure that the fire and your shelter (if any) are as close together as possible.
  • Try to build your fire right at the shelter’s entrance and to use rescue blankets on the roof and at the back of the shelter for keeping the heat inside, thus keeping you warmer.
  • Don’t set it close enough that it’s going to catch your tent or shelter on fire, though.
  • Always travel with several rescue blankets in your survival kit; they’re hugely important and you’ll always want one of them between you and the ground, right?

You can also heat rocks into the fire and use them for warming your bed before going to sleep, or wrap a heated rock using a sweater or something like that and use it as a heater (yes, sleeping with a rock, a true love story). If it gets cold enough, you’ll see what I mean.

One thing to remember: coals generate the most heat in a fire, so make sure you keep adding enough wood to your fire so it can burn and turn to charcoal.

If you have any ideas or comments, feel free to comment in the dedicated section below. Stay safe, stay warm.

If you want more tips, click the banner below and discover the survival secrets that helped our ancestors survive harsh winters!

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This article has been written by Chris Black for Survivopedia. 

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8 Bentonite Clay Uses For Survival

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Bentonite clay has been used for centuries for everything from treating constipation to making toothpaste. There are so many practical uses for this versatile material that it’s a must-have for any prepper or homesteader.

Let’s talk about why this wonderfully useful clay should have a place in your survival planning or homesteading daily life.

Bentonite clay, also known as Montmorillonite, is composed largely of volcanic ash. It should be light grey or cream colored and should feel silky. If the clay that you get is white, it’s unlikely that it’s pure Bentonite. It’s also odorless and won’t stain your clothes, which is one reason why it’s used in so many different personal hygiene items.

There are two main types of Bentonite clay: Sodium Bentonite and Calcium Bentonite.

The primary difference is that Sodium Bentonite swells up to six times its size and has the most electromagnetic properties. It’s the one that you want to use for your face masks and external detoxifying.

Calcium Bentonite has smaller particles that don’t particularly swell like Sodium Bentonite particles do. This makes it better for ingestion because the smaller particles can pass through the colon and into the bloodstream. There, it does pretty much what Sodium Bentonite does; it attaches to the toxins in your body and leaves minerals behind.

1. Removing Impurities

Bentonite clay is named such because of the primary, huge deposit of the clay is located at Fort Benton, Wyoming. It’s unique in that it develops an electrical charge, a negative electric charge to be specific, when it’s wet.

This is important because toxins, heavy metals have a positive charge, so Bentonite clay can bond to them and carry them out of your body.

How? Bentonite swells and opens like a sponge when it comes into contact with water. The negative charge of the clay attracts the positive charge of heavy metals and other toxins and the toxin is absorbed into the clay and carried out of the body.

During this process, the minerals in the clay are also released into the body, so it’s taking the bad parts and leaving good.

2. Deodorant

First, bentonite clay can be used as an ingredient in your personal hygiene items. It may make your toothpaste or deodorant look a little more like mud than what you’re used to seeing, but because of its absorbent properties, it’s great to use as an antiperspirant.

Commercial deodorants are packed with chemicals that stop odor and prevent your pores from perspiring. These include aluminum, phthalates, talc, parabens, diethyl alcohol, and others.

To make deodorant, simply mix bentonite clay with equal parts baking soda (neutralizes odor), arrowroot or cornstarch (absorbs moisture), and a few drops of your favorite antibacterial essential oil.

Once you combine the powdered ingredients, add enough coconut oil to make it a smooth, thick paste, then add your food-grade essential oils. Remember that coconut oil liquefies at 74 degrees, so depending upon the temperature in your house, it may be the consistency of butter or it may be liquid. If you keep it in the fridge, it will be closer to the consistency of lard.

Video first seen on Steven Parente

3. Face Masks

Many people also like to use it because of its ability to draw toxins out of the skin. This is one of the main reasons that it’s used in face masks. In addition to drawing toxins out with its negatively charged ions, the texture of the clay makes for a gentle exfoliant. This, along with the antibacterial properties of the clay, helps keep your skin free of blemishes.

Video first seen on Healthy Living on a Budget

4. Wounds, Bites, Skin Ulcers, Eczema

A study conducted by Arizona State University shows that minerals in Bentonite clay have the potential to kill many antibiotic-resistant bacteria including MRSA, e.Coli, Staphylococcus aureus, and others.

It’s already been shown to effectively treat Buruli ulcers, and the only other treatment option is remove the lesion surgically and hope for the best. That’s saying something, even if it did take months of treatment with the clay to completely heal the wound.

To use it, for wound dressing or treatment of other conditions, make a poultice and apply it directly to the wound, changing it out when it dries. Remove the sting and itch of bites, burns, cuts, and scrapes by applying Bentonite clay and letting it dry.

Treat eczema in the same way daily. There are many different remedies for skin conditions that would meld well with bentonite clay.

For centuries, our ancestors survived using natural remedies to heal their wounds and other health problems. Click the banner below to discover more survival remedies for our forefathers!

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5. Baby Powder

You’ve likely read about the link between talc and cancer. If not, check in to it, because it’s a big deal. Bentonite clay is a great option because it’s absorbent and has healing properties that may help prevent infections that love warm, moist environments.

6. Toothpaste

Bentonite clay is a great additive for your toothpowder because it may help brighten and re-mineralize your teeth. Some people also like to mix it up in water and use it as a mouthwash to kill oral bacteria than can cause tooth decay and bad breath. Simply add the clay to your standard tooth powder or toothpaste recipe.

Video first seen on Live Healthy and Blessed

7. Morning Sickness and Nausea

Pregnant women who have tried taking 1/2 tsp. of Bentonite clay in a small glass of water to treat morning sickness have reported success in reducing nausea. Most doctors and midwives say this is fine, but check with you doctor before starting it, just in case.

People suffering from other digestive issues such as gas, bloating, and even parasites report positive results from simply drinking a 1/2 to 1 tsp. of Bentonite clay to water or juice daily.

Don’t use more than that, and drink a glass of plain water after you ingest the clay in order to keep the clay from settling in your stomach or digestive tract. Taking too much can also cause constipation.

8. Digestive Cleanses

Toxin buildups cause many symptoms including fatigue, allergies, headaches, skin conditions, and other conditions that apparently have no cause. Add a teaspoon of clay to your water, juice, or smoothie.

Though I couldn’t find any research supporting it (that’s pretty common with natural remedies because Big Pharma doesn’t want cheap, natural remedies to cut into their profits), it seems to me that if Bentonite clay removes heavy metals, it may be at least partially effective in removing radioactive substances. It certainly couldn’t hurt.

The most important things to remember about taking Bentonite clay are that need to follow it with plenty of fresh water so that it flushes through your system without settling, and that you shouldn’t take more than a teaspoonful a day.

Personally, I’m more interested in the external healing effects of the clay, but there are many who firmly believe in the benefits of taking it internally as well.

That decision is, of course, up to you.

This article has been written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia.

References:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2413170/

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Christmas Prep Blog Review: 5 Last Minute Gifts

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Christmas Gifts

Wow, it’s already Christmas Eve!

I thought I was done with all my Christmas prepping until I realized I forgot to buy presents for a prepper friend of mine who is coming to dinner tomorrow.

I am sure he will be delighted by my delicious traditional Christmas turkey, but I want to offer him something special because this day is about offering, is about joy, peace and wonderful moments with friends and family.

As I am in a rush and there is no time to start searching for the perfect present, I am going to try one of the projects I will share with you below.

So, if you have unexpected guests or you forgot to buy a present, here are some great and unique ides of stocking stuffer you can make from scratch right know.

Or you could buy this pack of cards containing  52 encapsulated survival tips, covering everything from water purification to OPSEC.

1. How to Make a Paracord Belt

paracord belt

“These paracord belt instructions and easy to follow instructions show you how to make a DIY paracord rescue belt, my favorite of all the paracord belts I tried.

Paracord bracelets can come in handy but only have 8-12 feet of rope, while a paracord belt can have up to 50 feet or more of 550 paracord. In extreme survival situations, 50 feet of rope would be a lot more use for you than 8-12 feet.

However, this paracord belt gives you at least 50 feet of paracord rope that is quickly accessible, and depending on your waist size, up to 100 ft of 550 cord.

This belt is a quick deploy survival rescue belt that uses Slatt’s rescue weave. You can unravel, or deploy, the paracord in a matter of seconds.”

Read more on DIY Projects.

2. How to Make an Arm Knit Blanket

arm kit blanket

“One of my most favourite projects and the one that been the most popular on my blog this year is my arm knit blanket from January. I made this fringed arm knit blanket in a couple of hours. Let me show you how easy it is to make a soft & squishy blanket like this! For this project, you’ll need an extra bulky yarn. Five skeins made my lap-sized blanket with a fringe. I love the way this yarn gets thicker and thinner in parts to give this blanket even more texture.

I did a test swatch, and the gauge of this yarn was 0.5 stitches per inch. If using a different yarn, you’ll need to make your own test swatch to see what your guage is and determine how many stitches you’ll need to make your blanket. For a lap-size blanket (about 36″ wide by 40″ high), I made my blanket 18 stitches wide by 20 stitches long.

To begin, measure out about 18 arm lengths of yarn for your tail, and then create a slipknot.”

Read more on The DIY Mommy.

3. How to Make Flannel and Felt Last-Minute Handwarmers

Hanwarmers

“Flannel and Felt Last-Minute Handwarmers… a quick gift that you can mass-produce and have by the door, ready to share with someone who needs their heart warmed as much as their hands. Ever needed a last-minute gift to reciprocate or just to show some love and appreciation?

These felt and flannel hand warmers are a quick gift that you can mass-produce and have by the door, ready to share with someone who needs their heart warmed as much as their hands. The felt heart embellishment adds an easy, personal touch.

I’m personally smitten with all of the cute black, red, and gray flannel plaids available this year. I used a bunch for a quilt and decided to use some of the scraps for these cute, quick hand warmers.”

Read more on IHeartNapTime.

homemade-rosemary-mint-goat-milk-soap-recipe4. How to Make Homemade Rosemary – Mint Goat Milk Soap

“Oh my goodness you guys! This rosemary-mint goat milk soap smells divine, and that creamy milk-based soap just can’t be beat! I have a whole list of our favorite essential oil blends for soap making, and this particular blend isn’t on the list – because this is the first time I’ve ever tried it. I love all of those blends, but to be honest, at least 50% of the soap I make, I’m always trying new things. That’s what makes life interesting!

Another thing that was a first for me with this batch, is that I used canned goat milk that I bought from our local grocery store. much to my surprise, canned goat milk is brown! Always before, I’ve used either fresh, or frozen goat milk either from our own goats, or my sister-in-law’s goats, and of course, it’s the brightest shade of white. Even better, if you get it icy before you add it to the lye for making soap, it stays a beautiful creamy white.”

Read more on Frugal Farm Wife.

5. How to Make Bath Bombs (video tutorial)bath-bombs

“If you guys have followed my blog for a while or watch my Snapchat’s, then you know I’m a little obsessed with bath bombs. There are few things I like more than soaking in a hot bath with a bath bomb.

The essential oils help nourish and moisturize my skin, especially during the winter months. Today I want to share a bath bomb video tutorial to show you exactly how I make my bath bombs. I receive a lot of questions on my bath bombs tutorials and figured this would help answer a lot of them.

I’d also like to answer some frequently asked questions and share my new bath bomb recipe.”

Read more on A Pumpkin And A Princess.

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This article has been written by Drew Stratton for Survivopedia.

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11 Gifts Under $25 For Preppers

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Preppers gifts

I don’t know about you, but just thinking about what to get a few of my friends and family members for Christmas makes me crazy.

They either already have everything, or I just can’t think of something that they’d like. I’m just not good at it. Plus, who thinks of prepping gifts for Christmas? It’s just not at the top of most people’s minds.

We’re here to save the day and, thanks to Amazon Prime, if you’re subscribed there’s still plenty of time to get these gifts and have them wrapped so that the prepper in your life can shake it and wonder about it for a bit before it’s time to unwrap it!

These gifts are also great for birthdays or just because you want to be nice.

1. Emergency Mylar Blanket

blanketWhen it comes down to surviving, a Mylar blanket is useful for many other things than just keeping warm, though it does trap up to 90% of your body heat.

They’re 52”x82”, so you only need 1 to cover you unless you’re really tall.

It’s waterproof and can be used as an emergency windbreaker, blanket, or raincoat.

It can also be used to catch water and form the top, sides, and bottom of a shelter.

The best part is that they take up less space than your wallet. As a matter of fact, you could get 3 in the space that your wallet would take up.

We chose the Titan brand 5-pack because they’re an American company owned by veterans, and all of their products have a lifetime guarantee. You can buy the cheaper ones sold in China, but why would you do that?

2. Ferro or Magnesium Fire-starting Rod

Without fire, you won’t last long in the wilderness, and your prepper knows it.

The problem is that matches get wet, tinder and kindling get rained on,ferro and lighters run out of fluid.

Starting a fire doesn’t have to be hard, though. Magnesium and Ferrocerium are two minerals that create extremely hot sparks that give you a leg up when you need to start a fire.

This one is our top pick because it comes with everything you need to start a fire quickly: wood chips, hand-cut fatwood sticks, jute string dipped in wax that catches fire easily from the sparks that are created by the ferro stick and striker.

The stick will light thousands of fires. It’s all packaged in a tin can that fits in a shirt pocket, and it’s extremely affordable.

This one doesn’t come with the tinder, but it IS attached to a paracord lanyard that can be used for many different things in the wilderness.

3. Water Filter

bottleYou can only survive for three days without water, but it’s not safe to just drink any water that you find. Water filters are a must-have in a survival kit, and there are a wide variety of them out there.

The thing to remember is that it’s not necessarily the thing that you can see in the water that you have to worry so much about; it’s the chemicals and pathogens in the water.

This bottle is BPA-free and converts crude water to potable water by filtering out 33 contaminants, 99.99% of microbial pathogens, and undissolved impurities from the water. It also reduces chlorine and trihalomethanes. That may sound technical, but your prepper will appreciate it!

4. Dutch Oven

Preppers, homesteaders, and just people who love to cook love cast iron, and a Dutch oven is a classic. These wonders are so great for camp cooking dutch oven that pioneers reserved precious space and weight in their wagons to carry them across the country.

The thing about cast iron is that it can literally last for hundreds of years. I have an iron skillet that’s more than 150 years old and it’s still an integral part of my cookware.

Dutch ovens such as this one serve triple duty because it can be used as a pot on the stovetop or in the oven, and the lid serves as a skillet, too.

Put the two together and you can bury them in coals in a campfire and cook anything that you want, including cakes, breads, and biscuits. Even though this one is $35, it’s still list-worthy because the lid is a full-sized skillet. This one falls within the $25 price guideline and is good, too.

5. Multi-tool

multi-toolBecause a person can only carry so much, multi-purpose items take top priority for a prepper.

There are many types of multi-tools that range in price from just a few bucks to nearly $100.

This one is a flat one that also comes with a flint fire starter, an emergency whistle, and pocket cover.

The tool itself has 25 uses including a knife, bottle opener, ruler, smartphone stand, saw and butterfly wrenches.

You can also go for traditional ones that offer hand tools, like this one. It’s attractive and the tools in it are actually useful instead of repetitive even if a person wants to carry it around as an every-day pocket knife. It comes with a bonus keychain mini-mulitool.

6. Prepping Books

One of the things that any good prepper will tell you that they know for sure is that they don’t know everything! It’s impossible to remember everything about survival, especially if you’re not doing it every day.

Since most of us aren’t living in the woods on a daily basis, or trying to exist without power, a guide is always a good thing.

The Bushcraft Field Guide to Trapping, Gathering, and Cooking in the Wild is good because it’s not easy to remember how to make a trap or memorize every tip for gathering and cooking outdoors in an emergency. Another skill that’s important to preppers is using everyday items in many different ways.

This book provides some useful uses for common household items.

Finally, this book is great for comprehensive information that touches on a bit of everything. Consider it an all-around guide to survival.

7. Paracord Jewelry

550 paracord is an integral part of any prepper’s kit because it has so many uses that you really can’t even count them all.paracord

Paracord jewelry is the best of both worlds because it has an earthy,  stylish look but is extremely functional; one bracelet has around twelve feet of paracord. That may not sound like a lot, but it really is!

This one has a fire starter and compass on it, or if you’d like to design your own unique piece for your favorite prepper, or even his dog, check out this site!

8. Gun Cleaning Kit

gun-cleaning-kitWhen it comes to weapons, cleanliness is next to godliness, because a dirty gun can quite literally be the death of you in a few different ways.

If your prepper is a gun owner, he or she will most certainly enjoy a gun cleaning kit.

This one is nice because it’s universal. You don’t need to know what kind of weapon your prepper has because this one works for any kind, handgun, shotgun, or rifle.

If you’d like, you can also buy some bore cleaner and lubricating oil to make it a total package.

9. Camping Mess Kit

camping-messOne of the biggest decisions that face a prepper is deciding what to pack in the bug-out bag. There are many things that a person will need, but one person can only carry so much.

This camp mess kit has everything needed to cook and eat a meal in the wilderness, and is lightweight anodized non-stick aluminum.

It even has a wooden spatula that can be used for many different things. It’s all nicely packaged in a carrying bag.

The way that it’s made, a person could even pack some fire-starters or any other smaller items inside of it, making even better use of the space. It goes over our $25 limit by a dollar, but it’s a dollar well-spent.

10. Tactical Vest

tactical-vestWhether your favorite prepper enjoys shooting or just needs space and pockets to put other survival items in, a tactical vest is always a good investment.

The weight is carried in the front, leaving the carrier’s back open for a backpack.

There are many different types out there, but this one is economical and functional. For additional surprises, fill the pockets with goodies such as a fire-stick or ammo!

11. Biomass Camp Stove

This biomass stove is a bit bigger than the original SoLo stove, but it can hold a pan instead of just a can. It’s lightweight but sturdy and allows your stoveprepper to build a fire without the need for oil, charcoal, or gas.

Its lightweight design makes it a viable addition to any survival kit.

We’ve tried to include diverse products with a range of prices, but if you’re still having problems thinking of a great gift for your prepper friend, head to your local Outdoor World, Bass Pro Shops, or Cabela’s. Better yet, hit the local Army surplus store.

Chances are good that you’ll not only find a gift for your friend, but will find something cool for yourself, too.

This pack of cards contains 52 encapsulated survival tips, covering everything from water purification to OPSEC.

This article has been written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia.

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Urban Survival: 9 Tips For Living Small In The City

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Living Small In The City

When you live in the country, it’s easy to live small. But what does living small really mean?

The concept is pretty fluid and has different meanings for different people, but the general idea is that you cut the fat and learn to live simply. That’s all.

Unclutter your life, physically and figuratively, so that you can open up other, better possibilities for yourself. It’s about freedom.

Here are the steps to take for living small in a big city. Read the article and look for more: a collection of survival tips can be yours easily!

We’ve surrounded ourselves with so much stuff that we don’t know what to do without it. We don’t know where our food comes from, and most of the people don’t care. We buy things, then throw them away when they break and buy new. We do the same thing with relationships.

We order huge portions of food, then throw half of it away. We buy cars we can’t afford and clothes we won’t wear. Our lives are based upon consumption and waste.

Well what would happen if all of those sources of consumption were no longer there? What if you had to grow your own food, or fix your shoe instead of throwing it away?

What if you had to get to know your neighbors, and work with them to survive? What if you were forced to give up your large living and live small?

It’s not such a horrible concept, and it’s completely possible, even if you live in an urban area that’s built entirely on the precept of living big.

As a matter of fact, learning to live small will teach you to appreciate the truly big things in life.

How to Start Living Small

Living small is a process. You can’t just go from being $50k in debt to living small. Your journey to living small will begin with tiny, fettered baby steps, but can end in long, free strides.

1. Make a List

The first thing you have to do to heal the wound is stop the bleeding. Sit down and make a list of ways that you’re living above your means. Next, figure out what steps you can take right now to live smaller.

Nobody needs a new pair of shoes once a week. Seriously, find out where you’re spending frivolously and decide if having all of those shoes is really worth being tethered to a credit card payment. If it is, then living small isn’t for you. Stop reading.

Now, make a plan to get rid of the debt. Can you really afford your apartment or would you be better off with a smaller place that costs less?

Don’t sacrifice your safety by moving into a bad neighborhood, but don’t put yourself in the poorhouse paying $2k/month in rent when you only make $3k. The big stuff will take a while to pare down. The important thing right now is to NOT make it worse.

Make a list of 5 things that you’re going to change today to live cheaper, because adaptability is one of the key attributes of a survivor. All of the things that we’re going to talk about from here on out are all about adapting a new, simpler lifestyle.

Living small isn’t about giving things up. It’s about living life on your own terms, in pursuit of your own happiness.

2. Fix Things!

Oh no – your jeans have a tear or the leg on your chair is loose? Well grab what you need and fix it! Don’t know how? Well thankfully you have the internet at your fingertips. What happens if you find out that you enjoy sewing?

You may just end up with a new hobby. Even if you don’t you’ll end up with a new skill. And you won’t be in debt any deeper. You just took your first step toward living small.

3. Learn Something

There’s something to be said for the power of learning to do things for yourself. Pick three skills that you’re interested in learning, then learn them.

Be open-minded and flexible. Try something that you may not have thought about doing up until now.

Having skills if SHTF will put you head-and-shoulders above 99 percent of your neighbors. Besides, this country was built by people who knew how to do things for themselves.

You can learn something new anywhere, anytime, even when playing cards with your loved ones.

However, if you want to take it to the next level, we also recommend these Urban Survival Playing Cards, featuring 52 more life-saving lessons, you can learn through play, that also act as a quick-reference ‘cheat sheet’ in times of emergency.

urban_survival_cards_optin_620x350_1

4. Learn How to Barter

There are flea markets and thrift shops in every city – it’s just a matter of finding them. Learn how to barter, or at least how to haggle. It’s a trait that will serve you well, and you may just find some great stuff that you can use instead of allowing it to go to a landfill.

5. Downsize Your Life

This is, after all, about living small. Go through your closets, drawers, and cabinets and if it isn’t something you’ve used in the last year, get rid of it. I’m not talking about your wedding video, but do you really need those shorts that are two sizes too small or that ugly shirt that your great aunt Sally got you for Christmas?

Don’t throw it away – have a yard sale or give it to charity. Better yet, do you know somebody that could use it? If so, give them first pickings before you take it to charity. This is all about learning to live. Nothing feels better than to do something good for somebody else.

6. Start a garden

So what if you live in a tiny apartment. That doesn’t mean that you can’t grow your own food. There are all kinds of ways that you can garden indoors.

You can live in a city and grow plenty of things. You just have to be creative. Terrariums are great and vertical gardening is good, too.

Indoor Herbs

7. Teach your kids to live small

The path to a better world starts with our kids. Teach your children how to garden, and how to fix things. Raise them with the “living small to be happy” mentality.

Life isn’t about stuff, and now is the perfect time to teach them that life is about embracing what they have and what they can do, not about collecting material things and drowning in debt to get it.

8. Slow down

Take time to smell the roses. Literally. Don’t get so trapped in the rat race that life passes you by. Look at the clouds.

Take time to go for a walk or take a bike ride. Eat lunch in the park. Take the kids with you, but sometimes go by yourself. You only get one go-round so make it worth it. Make memories, not worries.

9. Learn about your resources before disaster strikes

You’re going to need to know where to find water and food if things go on beyond what you prep for, so learn about your local co-ops and resources. Network and find like-minded people. Holing up and making it through on your own may sound like the thing to do, but it’s not.

Build relationships. Since you’re living in an urban environment, it’s going to be next to impossible to live independently because you won’t have the resources to do so.

Know how to get out of the city if you need to. Know what’s around the city, including water sources and escape routes and maybe even hiding spots, just in case.

Living small isn’t about living less. It’s about living life in a way that makes you happy and safe. Nobody is happy living in debt and struggling just to make it from payday to payday.

Also, you won’t be safe and able to survive since you rely and depend totally on the wealth around you. Start practicing your survival skills by turning to living small!

Get more 52 survival secrets to help you thrive after disasters and breakdowns in urban areas!

This article has been written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia. 

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Prep Blog Review: Ultimate Winter Survival Tips

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Winter tips

Winter is here! The winter season and the holidays bring a lot of joy but the cold weather adds significant challenges to your prepping, such as health problems, home heating issues and even extreme situations when you have to survive a winter storm.

But you can overcome any challenge with the proper knowledge, with practice and experience, right?

Have you ever imagined how our ancestors survived during harsh winters? Well, for this week’s Prep Blog Review I’ve gathered four articles with winter survival tips, many of them inspired by the lessons of our great forefathers.

1. 15 Live Saving Tips for a Winter Bugout

Winter Bugout

“In 1939 the Soviet Union invaded Finland in what was called The Winter War.  This war caused about 70,000 Finnish causalities with most of them being innocent civilians.  As a result of this invasion many Finnish civilians were forced into a winter bug out in order to avoid death or being captured.

At the beginning of this invasion Finnish military went through towns and villages letting them know that they had 15 minutes to leave and burn down their own houses so that the Soviet army couldn’t use them for cover.  They had to leave all of their belongings.

The Finnish people didn’t have time to sit down and put together a bug out bag list or even given the wealth of knowledge that we have in the preparedness community.”

Read more on Smart Prepper Gear.

2. Winter Storm Warning! Surviving a Winter Storm Trapped Outside

winter storm

“Winter weather can go from beautiful to deadly in a matter of hours. Whether you’re on the road or in the wilderness on a winter camping trip, it’s important to know how to keep yourself and your loved ones safe when a winter storm warning is in effect and until the storm passes.

According to Farmers’ Almanac, the winter season for 2016-17 is expected to be much colder this year as opposed to last year.”

Read more on Survival Life.

3. 20 Herbal Remedies for the Winter Season

Herbal Remedies

“While the winter season brings joy to both the young and the old as families come together, it also brings some health problems we shouldn’t ignore.  We are all familiar with the common cold and the flu and we know they can strike when we are stressed or run down. The following herbal remedies will help you deal with all the problems the cold season may bring.

In this polluted world we have to be careful of what medicine we take as we are bombarded with chemicals every day, from every direction.  I’ve been using herbal remedies ever since I can remember and I learned their secrets from my mother and grandmother. “

Read more on Prepper’s Will.

4. 7 Things Our Ancestors Stockpiled To Survive The Winter

Ancestors

“Life was hard for our ancestors — much harder than it is for us today. Most of them didn’t have running water and electricity to make their lives easier. These modern conveniences have changed our way of life, to the point where we often forget what people had to do throughout history in order to survive.

We look at survival today as something needed in a time of emergency, but to many of them, survival stared them in the face every day of their lives. That was especially true in the wintertime, when it wasn’t possible to glean what you needed from nature. Basically, if you weren’t ready for winter, you didn’t survive.

So our ancestors all became experts in stockpiling. They’d spend the warmer months preparing, so that when the cold winter months came around, they’d be ready. You could tell a lot about a family’s wealth and industry by that, as there were those who struggled through the winter and those who didn’t.”

Read more on Off The Grid News.

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This article has been written by Drew Stratton for Survivopedia.

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8 Survival Hacks Using Plastic Wrap

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Survival Hacks Using Plastic Wrap

You’ve probably battled with your fair share of plastic wrap while trying to cover a bowl of leftovers, but that stickiness is one of its biggest assets when it comes to using it for survival.

That’s right – you can use plastic wrap for many different things if SHTF, so keep several rolls of it in your stockpile!

When I say plastic wrap, you can use the kitchen plastic wrap in a pinch, but you can also buy an entire roll of clear or green translucent plastic wrap at the hardware store that they use to wrap pallets. This type is much more durable than the plastic wrap meant for use in the kitchen. It’s dirt cheap, too.

1. Staying Warm and Dry

Possibly the best thing about plastic wrap is that it’s pretty much impermeable. That means that air and water can’t pass through it, so if you’re stuck in a storm or have to venture out in the cold, plastic wrap can be one of your best friends.

Not only does it keep air and moisture out, it keeps body heat in, so if you wrap your torso, limbs, and feet in it, you  can preserve a ton of body heat and stay dry at the same time, which will also help you stay warm.

The only thing to remember when you’re using it this way is that your skin needs to breathe. That means that as soon as you get someplace warm and dry, you need to take it off.

2. Collecting Rain Water

There are a couple of different  ways that you can use plastic wrap to collect water. The first way is the obvious way –hang a sheet of it so that it’s horizontal to the ground and let it collect either rainwater or dew.

If you have a bucket or container, even better – set the bucket underneath the plastic and use a stone to tilt it to one side, so that the water pours off of the plastic into the bucket.

If you just set the bucket out when it rains, you’ll only catch the water that directly drops into the bucket, but the plastic wrap will give you a larger area for the rain to hit, thus collecting much more water.

3. Create a Solar Still

The second way that you can use plastic to collect water is to build a solar still. This sounds a lot fancier than it actually is.

Dig a hole in soil that is in direct sunlight – this is important because you’re using the sun to dehydrate the moisture from the damp soil.

Solar Still

As the soil dehydrates, the water evaporates and rises, creating condensation on the plastic. Here’s how to do it:

  • Dig a hole in direct sunlight, preferably early in the morning. Make the hole a foot or two deep – the more damp soil you have exposed, the more water you’ll get.
  • Place a mug, bowl, or some other vessel to collect the water in the center of the hole.
  • Fill around the cup with any damp vegetation that you can find. The more moisture, the better.
  • Cover the hole completely with plastic wrap.
  • Place sand, dirt, and rocks around the outside perimeter of the hole to seal the plastic wrap to the ground.
  • Place a small stone or some dirt on the plastic directly over the center of the cup so that it forms a V into the cup. The plastic can’t touch the cup, though.
  • Leave the still there as long as possible – either until the dirt dries up or the sun goes down, whichever comes first.
  • If the hole dries up, either dig it deeper to reach more damp soil, or dig another hole and start over.
  • Enjoy the water. You won’t collect much this way, but in a survival situation, some is better than none!

You can also use plastic wrap to make a solar still to distill dirty water or salt water into drinking water. For a better visual for this purpose, check out this video.

Video first seen on desertsun02.

4. Build a Shelter or a Greenhouse

Yup, you read that right. You can build a shelter using plastic wrap. As a matter of fact, we just built one to use as a make-shift paint booth. We used the skeleton from a picnic tarp for the frame, but trees would do just as well.

Simply wrap the plastic wrap around the trees, or poles that you cut, then cover the top of it, too. We used a piece of cardboard to fashion a door, but you could just as easily cut a small, 3-sided entrance in the hole then wrap a stick around the vertical side and stick it in the ground to “close” the door.

Seal it up from the inside with another piece of plastic. You’re creative – I’m sure you can figure out an entrance.

It also collected dew on the top, so your plastic wrap house serves double duty as a water collector. This will make a wind-proof, waterproof shelter that is actually fairly durable and will hold heat inside.

This trait would also make it excellent material for building a greenhouse.

5. Start a Fire

You can use plastic wrap to start a fire. I didn’t really believe this was possible until I found a video that proved it. The idea is that water in a piece of plastic wrap acts as a magnifying glass.

Video first seen on The Outdoor Adventure.

The paper actually caught fire fairly quickly – within a couple of minutes, so it’s not something that I would discount.

Actually, starting the fire with the plastic and water seemed easier than using a bow, so if those were my only two options, I’d probably try the plastic wrap and water first. We have other great ideas for staring fires.

6. Waterproofing Your Gear

There’s nothing worse than trekking through a downpour and stopping for the night only to find that everything in your pack is soaked, too.

Maybe you’ve dropped it in a stream that you were crossing, or had to swim at some point. In any of these scenarios, plastic wrap would have kept your gear dry.

It’s not a total waterproofer, but I have used it when I’m out on a long distance ride – I don’t have saddlebags – to keep my pack dry. I just have a piece folded up in the bottom of my bag and when I need it, I unfold it and wrap my bag in it.

It probably wouldn’t do a lot of good if my bag was submerged, but it would give me a few extra seconds to catch it if I dropped it in the lake. You could also use it to cover things such as your firewood in camp to protect it from a downpour.

7. Rope or Lashing Material

Yes, rope is always good to have on hand. There’s no doubt about it. Plastic wrap used for shrink wrap is extremely strong and if you twist a piece into a rope (you have to twist it), it will stretch to about three times its original length then hold there. We tested it and it held 115 pounds without threatening to give.

That’s pretty solid for some plastic, especially when you consider that you can untwist it and use it for other things.

8. First Aid

There are several ways you can use plastic wrap for first aid.

First, a sucking chest would needs to be covered with plastic. You could also use it as a non-stick covering to keep water and debris out of a wound. It would work as a sling, or you could wrap it around as a binding. Throw some in your first aid kit.

In a survival situation think of what you can do with what you have. This is what our ancestors used to do.

Click the banner below and discover their most valuable survival secrets!

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This article has been written by Chris Black for Survivopedia.

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Prep Blog Review: 13+ Essential Winter Survival Tips

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Winter Prepping

I hate to tell you but winter is almost here. I hope you have already started preparing for the bad weather as you have so many things to do around your home and not only.

As The National Weather Service has declared the week of October 31 to November 5 as Winter Weather Preparedness Week, let’s take a look at these 5 useful articles on this topic I’ve gathered for you for this week’s Prep Blog Review.

  1. 13 Tips You Need to Get Your Family Ready for Winter

Winter tips

“I have 13 tips you need to get your family ready for winter. It’s freezing outside! This picture was taken from my front door right here in Southern Utah a few years ago. We get ready for winter in different ways than up north, like Salt Lake City, Utah folks. They get a whole lot more snow than we get here. But we still have similar things we must all do to be ready for winter, no matter where we live. I must admit, I don’t miss the heavy slick snow storms up north.

Whenever the TV weather reports tons of snow…I am so glad I moved away from it. Or at least the real heavy snow. We get a little here, but it melts very quickly. Last winter was not the normal winter where I live. We had so many neighbors with frozen pipes and ice on their north facing driveways. Yikes!”

Read more on Food Storage Moms.

  1. How to Cope With Extreme Weather If You’re Stranded Outside

Winter“People find themselves caught outside in freezing weather for a variety of reasons – maybe you have broken down and the car isn’t safe to stay in for some reason, you may be hiking and an unexpected storm blows in, or even you can’t make it out of the weather because someone is injured and wouldn’t make it on their own so you have to stay with them. There are dozens of variations on the theme and the important thing is knowing what to do about it.”

Read more on Underground Medic.

  1. What If Your Water Filter Freezes?

“Do you have a portable water filter? Do you keep one in your vehicle, perhaps in a GHB (get-home-bag) or BOB (bug-out-bag) or simply in your 72-water-filter-freeze-damagehour emergency kit? Do you bring a water filter with you when you hike?

Does the weather freeze where you live? Have you ever wondered if your water filter might be damaged if it gets below freezing?

Maybe you’ve not thought about it before, but you should…”

Read more on Modern Survival Blog.

  1. How to Store Water During Winter

frozen-water-shutterstock124202434“Water is the most important item to keep in your storage because it is essential to survival. However, this can become more difficult in the winter when temperatures drop below freezing. If your water freezes, you’ll need to use precious energy and heat to thaw it out for use again. But there are precautions you can take to keep your water storage from freezing in the winter.”

Read more on Peak Prosperity.

  1. 10+ Must Have Winter Preps

winter

“ReadyNutrition Guys and Gals, “Old Man Winter” is starting to rear his ugly head.  Yeah, so what?  So there is a difference this year on three fronts. The first has to do with the weather itself, and the second is the situation in the U.S. and the world.

Throughout history winter has been (at times) so severe as to cause large numbers of deaths and great hardships. Throughout history warfare has been conducted during the winter months after the harvest has been taken in. Between you and I, the harvest is being taken in, and the whole world has been on the brink of war for quite some time.  The third front: in the U.S., with the election.”

Read more on Ready Nutrition.

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This article has been written by Drew Stratton for Survivopedia.

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PREPPER BASICS Should I stay or should I go?

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PREPPER BASICS: Should I stay or should I go? Bobby Akart “Prepping For Tomorrow” Audio in player below! On this week’s episode of the Prepping for Tomorrow program, Author Bobby Akart will continue his month long discussion of prepper basics. The Prepper’s Conundrum is Bug In or Bug Out—Should I stay or should I go? … Continue reading PREPPER BASICS Should I stay or should I go?

The post PREPPER BASICS Should I stay or should I go? appeared first on Prepper Broadcasting |Network.

Winter Survival

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Winter Survival Josh “7 P’s of survival” Listen in player below! In this episode of the 7 P’s of Survival Radio Show we will be talking all things winter survival and preparedness. While we are all most likely a few weeks away from out first major winter storm now is the time to stock up. Get … Continue reading Winter Survival

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Devil In The details & The Trash Man

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Devil In The details & The Trash Man Bob Hopkins “The APN Report” Listen in player below! Just how prepared are you? We can all go on & on about how we’ve set aside for a rainy day. We stockpiled this, acquired that, planned for this, that, or another. Have you really made ready when … Continue reading Devil In The details & The Trash Man

The post Devil In The details & The Trash Man appeared first on Prepper Broadcasting |Network.

Surviving Civil Unrest, Riots and Terror Attacks!

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Surviving Civil Unrest, Riots and Terror Attacks with Guest Chuck Hudson Cat Ellis “Herbal Prepper Live” Listen in player below! Learn how to survive civil unrest, riots and terror attacks this week on Herbal Prepper Live. My guest will be Chuck Hudson, Survival Instructor and founder of The Medic Shack. We are going to discuss: … Continue reading Surviving Civil Unrest, Riots and Terror Attacks!

The post Surviving Civil Unrest, Riots and Terror Attacks! appeared first on Prepper Broadcasting |Network.

How To Survive With Kids In Small Spaces

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Survive with kids

If you and your family are stranded in a small space or hidden shelter, you’ll need to have a plan to keep your kids entertained. Otherwise you’ll all end up on each other’s nerves and the already serious situation can quickly become much worse.

It’s essential to be as prepared as possible, so take time now to integrate some of these ideas. That way they don’t seem as strange to your children.

If you have a shelter or panic room already in place, practice spending time there. That way your kids aren’t dealing with both a brand new environment and a crisis.

Don’t Leave Your Kid in the Dark

If you’re in hiding, the kids are going to figure it out. Do them a favor, and tell them the truth. You don’t have to get into all the details, but definitely talk to your kids in an age-appropriate way.

Share what’s going on and what you have to do. That way your kids know your expectations and you can work as a team to survive.

Kids are perceptive, and will often pick up on emotions they’re parents are exhibiting. Taking time to talk about the situation will help ease their fears. They’ll know what they need to do, and most of the time kids rise to meet our expectations.

Have a Variety of Activities on Hand

You won’t be able to bring much into small quarters, but by being prepared you’ll make your shelter more enjoyable for everyone.

The age of your kids will definitely impact the activities you plan. Here are some ideas that’ll work for a large range of ages. Of course you know your kids best, so be sure to pick somethings you know they’ll enjoy.

Games

Surviving with children

Having a variety of games on hands is great, but if space is tight you probably won’t have that luxury. The good news is with a little creative thinking you can create your own games with some basic items.

Games are a fun way to keep the family engaged. You’ll help distract your kids from what’s going on. Games are also relatively quiet activities, which helps if you need to stay hidden.

Here are some things to keep on hand for game time:

  • A deck of cards
  • A couple of card games that don’t take up much space such as
    • Tell Me a Story
    • Uno
    • FastWord
    • SkipBo
    • Phase 10
  • A couple of dice
  • A pack of index cards and a marker or two

With these items, you can create hours of entertainment. A plain deck of cards gives you everything you need for dozens of games. Here are ten popular games that are easy for kids to pick up.

  1. Solitaire
  2. Speed
  3. SlapJack
  4. 21
  5. King’s Corner
  6. Crazy 8s
  7. War
  8. Snap
  9. Golf
  10. BS

If you start learning one of these games a week as a family, you’ll build great memories now. You’ll also be familiar with them in the event of a crisis. Then playing cards will seem familiar instead of like a foreign activity.

In addition to playing the card games according to the traditional rules, you can experiment with adding rules or changing game play completely. With the boxed card games, you’ll have plenty of variety to create your own family favorites.

For instance, you can use SkipBo cards to play Go Fish. You can hide all of the wild cards from the Uno deck and have your kids go find them. The letters from FastWord can be used to see who can build the longest and shortest words.

You can use the dice to learn about probability, to roll for a treat, or to create new games. The index cards and marker will give you everything you need to create customized cards. Perhaps you’ll write words on them and use them to play Charades or Pictionary.

The possibilities are endless!

Pen & Paper Games

With a stack of paper and a pen, you can create a variety of games. Like the card games, take time to learn these now. That way you’re all set if you need them. Here are five favorite pen and paper games for kids:

  1. Hangman
  2. The Dot Game (where you try to make boxes out of dots by drawing lines one at a time)
  3. Tic-Tac-Toe
  4. Categories (everyone writes down a word from a named category)
  5. MadLibs (write a story but leave some words blank. Then have your child name a color, a noun, a number word, etc. to fill in the blanks.)

Games with No Materials

If you didn’t have time to grab any supplies, or you just need some fresh ideas, these games are perfect. They don’t require any materials.

1. Guess Who

One person secretly selects a character or person. The other players take turns asking yes or no questions to figure out who the mystery character is. You can ask:

  • Are you a female?
  • Are you in a TV show?
  • Do you wear fancy shoes?
  • Are you a real person?
  • Have we ever met you?

And all sorts of other questions. Once someone guesses the identify correctly, another player takes a turn. This game can keep everyone entertained for hours.

2. The Alphabet Challenge

Work together to name an object from a given category that starts with each letter of the alphabet. You can try to name:

  • Animals
  • Food
  • Vehicles
  • Boy Names
  • Girl Names
  • Verbs

You can decide in advance that you’ll skip a given letter if no one can think of an answer. That way you don’t get discouraged.

3. Math Drill

You can take turns giving math problems to each other. They’ll help keep your brain sharp. For younger kids you can ask them to count to a certain number. Older kids and adults can tackle multiplication or division questions, or problems with multiple steps.

4. I Spy

This classic is a great game for young kids. One person secretly picks an object in the room and then says, “I spy with my little eye something…..” and says the color of the object.

Everyone else takes turns guessing what the mystery object is.

White Boards

Since space will be tight, you won’t be able to bring an arsenal of art supplies. But, a small white board and a couple of markers for each child will help. Remember to throw in an old sock to use as an eraser.

On the boards you can have your kids:

  • Draw
  • Practice writing their letters or words
  • Write a short story
  • Practice math facts
  • Play any of the pen and paper games

They’re can be used individually, which makes them an ideal silent activity. If you’re able, you can have your kids take turns sharing what they worked on. That’ll help them feel connected.

Books

Kids Activities While you can’t fit your whole library into your survival space, you can select a couple of books to bring.

You can either select read alouds or family favorites, or bring a couple of each.

If you bring enough books for everyone to have one, you can implement a daily reading time.

If you’re reading aloud, you can encourage your kids to draw something from the story on their white boards. Keeping their hands engaged will help them listen and stay quiet while you read.

Depending on your situation, you might have your kids act out a part of the story. Bringing books to life is a fun way to pass the time.

Simply talking about what you’re reading will encourage reading comprehension. After all, you don’t want to stop learning while you’re in your shelter. These discussions will also help draw you closer as a family.

Simple Sewing or Needlework

A needle and thread along with some scrap fabric is all you need to help your kids learn a new skill. They can practice sewing squares and then take the seams out and try again.

This Survivopedia post shares how to recycle an old pill bottle into a sewing kit. That doesn’t take up much space.

If you bring some yarn and knitting needles or crochet hooks, you can teach your child a skill that’ll help keep them quiet and engaged. They’ll be able to practice, and can always undo what they’ve created and make something new.

A Family Journal

When the crisis passes, you’re going to want to remember some events and feelings from your time in your survival shelter. Keeping a simple spiral notebook and a pen around can help preserve these memories.

Encourage everyone to write in the journal regularly. Your younger kids can draw a picture about how they’re feeling or what they did. Writing is therapeutic for many people. This process might help provide your children with an outlet to share the thoughts they’re having.

Fun Distractions

kids activities

There will be times when everyone just needs to hit the reset button. When the kids are fighting and everyone’s temper is short, it’ll help to have a few fun distractions to bring out.

You shouldn’t use these things regularly, but instead save them for when they’re needed most. You can pick up most of these items at the Dollar Store or around the house, so you don’t have to worry about spending a ton of money on them.

  • Glow sticks
  • Stickers
  • A pack of bubbles
  • A coloring book to rip pages out of
  • A sheet and some clothespins to create a fort
  • A new game
  • A puzzle book like Crosswords or Word Searches
  • A toy car

Once everyone’s mood is lifted, you can put the special items away for another day.

Encourage Activity

Sitting for extended periods of time is rough on the human body. Break up your positioning if possible. Roll a die and see how many jumping jacks everyone should do. See who can do the most sit-ups in 1 minute. Take time to do this several times throughout the day.

You’ll help improve blood flow, and will help keep your muscles from getting stiff.

Food

Of course you’ll need food in your survival space. If at all possible, ensure it is food that your family is used to eating. You don’t need any battles in your tight quarters.

In addition to your food reserves, you’ll want to have a few treats on hand. These can be pulled out to boost morale, to use as bribery in the event of immediate danger, or simply as a reward for something.

These foods make good treats for kids, and the adults:

  • Candy
  • Chocolate chips
  • Raisins
  • Small crackers
  • Dried cereal with fun shapes or marshmallows
  • Fruit snacks

While these aren’t the most nutritious foods, they can help provide a sense of normalcy to your children.  They’ll also help break up the routine of survival food and feel even more special.

Water

Be sure your survival space has plenty of water on hand. You’ll need water for drinking, and also for hygiene purposes. You don’t want to run out of water!

A Place to Relieve Oneself

Kids have to use the bathroom, just like adults. Be sure you’ve thought through how this will work in your survival shelter. You’ll need a way to dispose of your human waste.

If you have babies, you’ll need diapers and wipes on hand. You can use cloth diapers and wipes if you have enough water to keep them clean.

You’ll also want to have toilet paper or substitutes on hand. Also bring along a bottle of hand sanitizer to help keep germs from spreading.

If you’re able to hang a sheet or something around your bathroom area, it’ll help add a sense of privacy to your shelter.

Give Your Kids Jobs

Kids love to feel useful. In a tight space, there might not be much that needs done. But, any job you can give your kid will help them realize that they are playing an important role in your family’s survival. You might be able to ask them to:

  • Dry dishes
  • Entertain the baby
  • Pick up the trash
  • Organize the supplies
  • Count the different items to help you take inventory
  • Dust

These jobs might not seem critical, but they’ll help your children embrace the situation.

Your Attitude Matters!

Your kids will know how your feeling. If you’re getting sick of being in the tight space, they’re going to pick up on that attitude and amplify it.

Even if it’s hard, try to have a good attitude for the sake of your kids. Look at it as an exciting adventure. Be cheerful about the activities you’ll do.

A little bit of enthusiasm on your part will do wonders in helping the family survive this tough time. This is especially true if the crisis lasts for an extended period of time.

What Ideas Can You Add?

Keeping kids entertained in tight spaces can be challenging, but it’s definitely possible! What ideas can you add to this list? Please share them in the comments section so everyone can have a solid list remember if they ever need it.

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This article has been written by Lisa Tanner for Survivopedia. 

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Nature’s Calling: Preparing For The Worst

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Nature’s Calling Preparing For The Worst By H.D. Imagine yourself at home in the living room, relaxing while listening to the news. During the broadcast, you hear one of the anchors say, “The state has officially issued a tornado watch and warns all residents to be prepared in case they have to evacuate.” You glance … Continue reading Nature’s Calling: Preparing For The Worst

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Prep Blog Review: Are You Prepared For The Worst?

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Are You Prepared For The Worst

What is your worst-case scenario? Are you prepared for it?

Whether or not you have the answers to these questions, one thing’s for sure: surviving the unexpected will be our biggest challenge when SHTF. “Hope for the best, and prepare for the worst”, according to the old saying.

This is what I had in mind when skimming through the last week’s articles on survival blogs and websites. I gathered 5 articles that provide useful information about different worst-case scenarios, from riots to pandemics, and how to prepare for surviving them.

  1. How To Survive A Riot?

How To Survive A Riot

“When the shit hits the fan, one of the first things people will do is riot. This is especially true in larger cities where a massive population in one location almost guarantees a mob reaction to any number of disasters. This is a serious problem because, as you probably already know, riots are very dangerous. And in many cases, they are deadly.

No matter how tempting it might you, you should never ever join a riot. Doing so is asking for trouble. Instead, your number one goal should be to get as far away from the riot as possible.”

Read more on Urban Survival Site.

  1. How To Drive Safely After The SHTF?Drive Safely

“Driving is so simple and relatively safe nowadays. But after the SHTF, that could all change. Desperate people do desperate things. Law and order could breakdown, leaving motorists to fend off criminals without much help. Visitors to the Summer Olympics in Sao Paulo, Brazil, earlier this year, needed to use caution when traveling the city. “

Read more on Prep Blog.

  1. Are You Prepared For A Pandemic?

Are You Prepared For A Pandemic

“If the news announced tomorrow that a pandemic had begun and that your area, in particular, was at risk, would you be prepared? It was only a couple of years ago that Ebola arrived on the shores of the United States. By sheer luck (certainly not by a well-managed response) the virus was contained. I had been prepping for quite some time, and had dealt with lengthy power outages, winter storms, and nearby forest fires with aplomb, but when Patient Zero was diagnosed in Dallas, I realized that out of all of the things I was prepared for, a pandemic was not one of them. Sure, I’d have been better off than people who were completely unprepared, but I was lacking some vital supplies.”

Read more on The Organic Prepper.

  1. How To Disappear Completely When SHTF?

How To Disapear

“Maybe it’s the fact the we are inherently a corrupt race. Mankind in and of itself is questionable. It’s now clearer than ever that this big wheel is running on greased palms and padded pockets. There is very little regard for human life at this level. Those at the highest levels of government, those supposed to protect us, are involved as well. What happens if they decide to come after you?”

Read more on Ask A Prepper.

  1. Are You Prepared For A World Without The Internet?

A World Without Internet“Can you imagine a world without the internet? Consumer Affairs posed the question What goes up when the Internet goes down?  In the infographic below they have some answer’s. I don’t think that the world will ever go without the internet for long. Humans like to be conceted. Many young adults have never known a time without the internet.”

Read more on Survival Punk.

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This article has been written by Drew Stratton for Survivopedia. 

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Bug Out Bags, Get Home Bags and EDC

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Bug Out Bags, Get Home Bags and EDC Forrest & Kyle “The Prepping Academy” On this live broadcast of “The Prepping Academy” join Forrest and Kyle as they discuss: everyday carry items, get home bags, and bug out bags. These are literally the backbone of prepping. The items you carry with you can literally make or … Continue reading Bug Out Bags, Get Home Bags and EDC

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Bugout pt 2

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Bugout pt 2 James Walton “I Am Liberty” On this second installment of the I AM Liberty bugout discussion we are talking all about movement. Our first show was about the factors leading up to the bugout and in this episode i want to talk more about being on the road and safe movement. Again … Continue reading Bugout pt 2

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Family Emergency Planning!

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Family Emergency Planning Forrest Garvin “The Prepping Academy” In today’s world we are always connected. Cell phones, computers, and social media are almost always within our reach. This ease of access also comes with ease of mind. With a few swipes you can see where your children, wife, and even friends are. It’s not hard … Continue reading Family Emergency Planning!

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The Bugout!

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The Bugout! James Walton “I Am Liberty” This show may turn into a two or three part series on the Bugout! An in depth look at the bug out from start to finish. Its much more than just the bag that should be considered. For starters the most important decision you make will have nothing … Continue reading The Bugout!

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Prep Blog Review: 32+ Ultimate Survival Allies

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PBR_30thJuly

In a real survival situation there’s not much you can use for help. Yes, we’re trying to prep and control that. BUT… if I were to quiz you about what to have close when disaster strikes, what would you say? 

Here are some articles from this week that can provide some answers.

1. 6 Useful Preps You May Not Have Thought Of

Surivival Allies

“One of the very first things I did when I adopted the prepping lifestyle was a walk-around inventory.  This was years ago and although I had not consciously considered myself a prepper at the time, I discovered that I had a lot of stuff, but it was woefully disorganized and lacking in many key areas. For example, I had lots of canned goods, supplemental lighting, off-grid cooking devices, tools and more.  On the other hand, except for a 55 gallon water barrel and a small first-aid kit, I was sorely lacking in water and medical supplies.  My how things have changed!”

Read more on Backdoor Survival.

2. Five Step Mental Practice For Psychological Preparedness

Survival allies

“One Month after SHTF; Are you Psychologically Prepared? Psychological preparedness is a radically important part of survivalism and might possibly be the determining factor for long-term survival. In fact, the first step toward getting prepared is making a conscious affirmation to develop a will to live. I am writing this article because I suspect that most people probably have no idea where or how to begin psychological preparation for SHTF. One can only wonder about the psychological well-being of most Americans given the statistics of Americans on antidepressants, anti-anxiety medications, mood altering drugs, etc. We live in an isolated world where people mentally escape into social media, television and Pokemon-go.”

Read more on The Prepper Journal.

3. The 11 Best Survival Foods To Store For NUTRITION

Survival Allies

“I was listening to a podcast the other day, the host was talking about the best survival foods you should be stocking up on. He was suggesting the typical rice and beans diet, with a few dollar store spices thrown in for flavor. I was a little taken aback when he commented, “It’s not so much about nutrition, it’s about survival!” Huh?? I instantly felt regret for the new preppers who were likely listening to his show. It’s not so much about nutrition? Doesn’t he realize that when your body is lacking key nutrients it begins to suffer physically? Doesn’t he realize that it’s the sickly who die first?”

Read more on The Prepper Project.

4. 10 Essential Herbs

Survival Allies

“Here are 10 essential herbs, including some of their uses and guidelines to get started on your herbal apothecary. Health made simple and easy.
A few herbs that you can grow indoors or outside. Herbs you can use for preparing medicines with simple techniques as our ancestors did.

As far back as 5000 BCE, Sumerians used herbs in medicine. Ancient Egyptians used fennel, coriander and thyme around 1555 BCE. In ancient Greece, in 162 CE, a physician by the name of Galen was known for concocting complicated herbal remedies that contained up to 100 ingredients. Herbs have long been used as the basis of traditional Chinese herbal medicine, with usage dating as far back as the first century CE and far before.”

Read more on Around The Cabin.

5. Why Having a Portable Toilet Should Be a Top Prepper Priority

Survival allies

“How do you feel about digging a hole in your backyard, then covering, for emergency sanitation? Ummm…not me. I’d rather already have a portable toilet (port-a-potty) handy, along with appropriate heavy-duty bags, before an emergency comes — or to take camping if needed. Having some sort of port-a-potty may be one of the most important and least thought of aspects of survival planning.”

Read more on Family Survival Planning.

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This article has been written by Brenda E. Walsh for Survivopedia

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Prep Blog Review: 2016 Survival Assessment (So Far)

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pbr july 23

Seems like this year, on a global scale, has been straight out of one of our prepping guides.

Venezuela is a study case for economic collapse, food shortage, looting and anything in between. Riots can be found anywhere from our own country, to what we witnessed in Turkey.

And the most frightening of all, are the terrorist attacks all over the world – and it gets scarier by the day.  So, what are you prepping for these days?

1. Define Your Disaster

2016 review

“Until I seriously became a prepper, the most likely disasters in my life involved my nail tech quitting or my husband insisting on a homemade dinner! How times have changed. Now when I think of disasters, I’m thinking more along the lines of The End of Days scenarios with an unsettling feeling they could happen now, in my lifetime.

For which disaster, or disasters, should I prepare? These days of hard, uncertain times it’s a little like playing the odds. Hmmmmm, should I prepare for a nuclear attack? If so, I’ll need an enormous amount of sheet plastic, duct tape, and I read somewhere that you’re better protected from fall-out if you have a few feet of earth piled up against your outside walls. Our HOA would just love that!”

Read more on The Survival Mom.

2. Venezuela: This is How SHTF Will Look Like

2016 review“Two years ago, Venezuela was a normal functioning nation, relatively speaking of course. It was by no means a free country, but the people still had a standard of living that was higher than most developing nations. Venezuelans could still afford the basic necessities of life and a few luxuries too. They could send their children to school and expect them to receive a reasonably good education, and they could go to the hospital and expect to be effectively treated with the same medical standards you’d find in a developed nation. They could go to the grocery store and buy whatever they needed, and basic government services like law enforcement and infrastructure maintenance worked fairly well. The system was far from perfect, but it worked for the most part.”

Read more on Ask a Prepper.

3. Potential Crisis Triggers Continue To Pile Up In 2016

2016 review

“We are a little over half way through 2016 and, at the current rate, it will be a miracle if the year finishes without outright catastrophe in half the nations of the world. Some might call these events “Black Swans,” some might call them completely engineered threats, others might call it all a simple “coincidence” or a tragedy of errors. I stand strictly by the position that most of the dangers we see today have been deliberately escalated, if not strategically implemented.

Here is the problem; international financiers and globalist nut-jobs are clearly operating on a timeline with the end goal of creating enough general chaos to convince the masses that complete centralized authority over every aspect of our lives is preferable to constant fear.”

Read more on Alt Market.

4. Erdogan’s Staged Coup Has Resulted In A Purge Of 50,000 Teachers, Judges, Soldiers And Government Officials

2016 review

“Barack Obama’s “friend” in Turkey is a deeply corrupt radical Islamist dictator that has just staged a coup to consolidate his grip on power.  As I have reported previously, 1,845 “journalists, writers and critics” have been arrested for “insulting” President Erdogan over just the past two years, and a couple of years ago he had a monstrous 1,100 room presidential palace built for himself that is 30 times larger than the White House.  With each passing day, more evidence emerges which seems to indicate that the recent “coup” was a staged event meant to enable Erdogan and his allies to eliminate their enemies and solidify their stranglehold over the nation.  At this point the number of victims of “Erdogan’s purge” has hit 50,000, but the final number will not be known for quite some time.

Of course there is a possibility that the coup was not staged, but if it wasn’t staged it was the worst military coup that I have seen in my entire lifetime.  As Fox News has pointed out, not a single high level member of government was killed or detained…”

Read more on The Economic Collapse Blog.

5. How California Still Isn’t Prepared for the Next Big Earthquake

“California is well-known for its diversity. The state is home to every race, culture, religion, or ideology that you could possibly think of. But if there’s one thing that all of these millions of people have in common, it’s that they are all well aware of the dangers lurking underneath the state. Everyone knows that someday, the “big one” is coming, and it’s going to bring California to its knees.

And not only is everyone in California well aware that the state is overdue for some major seismic activity, but everyone has known this for decades. It’s a very basic fact of life that is even taught to Californian kids when they’re in school. It’s not just something that Californians hear about on the news from time to time, it’s a story they tell to each other over and over again. The impending threat of the next big earthquake is ingrained in California’s culture.

Everyone knows what’s coming.

Read more on Ready Nutrition.

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This article has been written by Brenda E. Walsh for Survivopedia

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Prep Blog Review: 5+ SHTF Facts

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PBR_SHTF

That’s what we’re all prepping for, thinking of and questioning about. So today, I’m highlighting the latest preparedness findings on survival websites and blogs. From must haves, to actual scenarios, to upcoming threats and more.

Here is what I found out and what you need to know:
1. Advanced Tools and Equipment For When the SHTF

SHTF

“An acetylene/oxygen flame burns at about 3,773 K or 6,332 °F/3500 C. Imagine, what can you do with that kind of heat and it doesn’t take any electricity to operate one. Of course, the tanks will deplete over time, but a torch like this is not something you would use every day, so you could conserve and have a valuable survival tool for months or even years to come.”

Read more on Prep For Shtf.

2. Your Car is Caught in a Flash Mob, What Do You Do?

SHTF

“You are driving with your family in a rented car in a foreign country on vacation.  You make a wrong turn and find your vehicle and other cars around you swarmed by demonstrators. Car windows start being broken out and down the block you see Molotov’s being thrown.

What do you do?  If you just hit the gas and run folks over, depending on ground clearance of your vehicle you will move only a short distance before getting high centered on bodies. Then you are surrounded by a large group of hostiles you have made angry. Not good.”

Read more on Preparedness Advice.

3. Preparing your survival compound for SHTF and things you need to consider. Part 1

“Hello my friend and welcome back to today’s post.  Today we are going to look at preparing your Survival compound for SHTF and things you need to consider.  It is part one of a multi-part post, as the subject is just too large to cover in a single post.  Grab yourself a cup of coffee and have a seat while we visit.

In the next few posts, I hope to cover: Communications, Food Storage, Livestock, Water Storage, Gardening and Security; so check back each day for the other parts of this series.  First off, let me start by defining what I mean by your Survival Compound.”

Read more on American Preppers Online.

4. Why Drones Could Save Your Life When The SHTF

SHTF

“Drones have a rather negative reputation these days, and for good reason. They bring to mind government surveillance and extrajudicial killings in foreign countries. And in the civilian world they are at best a nuisance, and at worst they can be used by hobbyists to spy on their neighbors. And among the more paranoid members of our society (though in all fairness, being paranoid doesn’t mean you’re wrong) drones bring to mind the possibility of automated killing machines taking over the human race in the near future.”

Read more on Ready Nutrition.

5. Preparedness Alert: Radical Groups Planning Major Riots throughout the U.S.

SHTF

“If you live in any major Urban Area you need to be aware that radical activists are planning massive protests over the next couple of weeks in the lead up to both the Republican and Democrat National Convention. Radical groups like #blacklivematters are pushing their followers to riot and commit acts of violence in what they are saying is a justified reaction to two police-related shootings over the last week.”

Read more on Off Grid Survival.

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This article has been written by Brenda E. Walsh for Survivopedia

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Emergency Preparedness Generalized

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Emergency Preparedness Generalized Josh “The 7P’s of Survival” This week on the 7 P’s of survival we will be talking about generalized emergency preparedness. The recent flooding that devastated southern West Virginia gave me pause and made me reevaluate my own level of preparedness. 99% of the people we rescued from the flood waters barley … Continue reading Emergency Preparedness Generalized

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Prep Blog Review: The No.1 Priority in Surviving

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PBR 2016 july 9

What’s going on in this America of ours? Seems like a new attack or a riot is always around the corner.

Dallas finally convinced me of something, we – as a nation – are overwhelmed.

Worry not, that just means we need to up our prepping game NOW. Protecting us and our loved ones is what matters here. That’s what prepping is all about. Don’t get lost in the “haves”, focus on what to do in all worst case scenarios.

More below!

1. How to Make Your Life a Declaration of Independence

Survival Priority“This year, the 4th of July simply makes me sad. I was trying to summon up a rush of pride to write about what makes our country great, and all I could think about was how far we’ve sunk. How distant we’ve ventured from those original settlers who said, “No more!” and declared their independence. They fought and sacrificed to be free of a government that oppressed them, taxed them, stole from them, and enforced rules without any type of representation upon them.”

Read more on The Organic Prepper.

2. Prepping is More Than Bug Out Bags and Food Storage

Survival Priority“Sometimes we get so consumed with preparedness supplies that we forget that prepping is about more than what you have in your bug out bag, and how much food you have stored. Sometimes we get so focused on the “sexy” parts of prepping (supplies and tools) that we forget about truly important stuff. All of these tools and supplies for prepping are important, but even the best bug out vehicle in the world is not going to do you much good if it only has a quarter tank of gas, and a top of the line ferro rod is worthless if you can’t get a fire started with it.”

Read more on Survivalist Prepper.

3. How do I know when it’s time to hunker down because SHTF has begun?

Survival Priority

 “Hello my friend and welcome back!  In today’s post, we are going to look at a common question that even many seasoned Preppers have.  “How do I know when it’s time to hunker down because SHTF has begun?”  Grab yourself a cup of coffee and have a seat while we discuss this very important question.”

Read more on American Preppers Online.

4. Escaping A City During SHTF

Survival Priority

“Learn how to escape any urban environment and find out where to go when you DON’T have a dedicated bug out location in the country. If you spend much time reading prepper or survivalist blogs (including this one) you’ve probably heard the standard advice to get out of any city or heavily populated areas when the SHTF. This is for good reason and solid advice. There’s no doubt that cities will be dangerous, much more dangerous than areas outside of the city. You can look at Venezuela for proof. The problem is over 70% of the US population lives in or close to an urban area. The second problem is not everyone has a place to go if they leave their homes.”

Read more on Be Survival.

5. If You Have to Bug Out, Don’t Become a refugee.

“Since we have been talking about bugging out for the last couple of days, I want to continue this discuss a bit longer.  You will become a refugee if you don’t bug out correctly.  The biggest bug out in US history was the result of the hurricane Katrina hitting New Orleans.”

Read more on Preparedness Advice.

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This article has been written by Brenda E. Walsh for Survivopedia

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10 Lightweight Items for Your Bug Out Bag

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10 Lightweight Items for Your Bug Out Bag Every prepper knows that a well-equipped bug out bag can mean the difference between life and death during a natural disaster or SHTF scenario. The tendency is to want to stuff as much equipment as you can into your bug out bag just in case you need … Continue reading 10 Lightweight Items for Your Bug Out Bag

The post 10 Lightweight Items for Your Bug Out Bag appeared first on Prepper Broadcasting |Network.

The Preparedness Wheel: At-A-Glance Balance Check for Readiness

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Written by R. Ann Parris on The Prepper Journal.

It’s not about the mental and emotional health. It’s about the balance. When wheels are balanced, we roll much more smoothly through life’s up and downs and this exercise will show if the rest of our preparedness needs and goals are in balance.

The post The Preparedness Wheel: At-A-Glance Balance Check for Readiness appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

15 Ways A Prepper Can Use Magnets

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Survivopedia 15 uses for magnets

If you only think about magnets as the things that keep your shopping list stuck to the fridge, then you are missing out on dozens of ways to use them. Both before and after a major crisis, you will be amazed at how much you will need them.

Have a look at this list of applications so that you can see where not having a robust supply of magnets in your stockpile can cause more problems than you anticipated.

Speakers and Radio Receivers

No matter whether you use a foxhole radio or build something a bit more robust, the system will be useless without some kind of receiver that translates the radio frequency back into sounds. Just about every speaker and receiver on modern communication devices rely on magnets.

If you cannot scavenge speaker parts, but you have a few magnets on hand, then you can still build a receiver with relative ease.

For example, this receiver is made of little more than paper, copper coil, and a magnet. It will work as well with a crystal radio as more complex designs that may be in your stockpile. In fact,if you need to replace a speaker/receiver for a phone, CD Player, DVD player, or just about any other device, you can use these crude speakers to gain access to the sounds made by the device.

Video first seen on Plusea.

Generating Electricity

Of all the uses for magnets, this is truly my personal favorite. All electricity generating systems come down to finding ways to get a magnet to cause current to flow in a nearby wire (coil).

Today, most systems set the magnet in the center of a complex, tightly wound coil to form a motor. Motors can be used to generate force to turn other objects, or they can be used to generate electricity. Depending on how the motor is designed, it may or may not be possible to use the motor for both purposes.

When it comes to generating power in a situation where “low tech” requires simple tools and low skill levels, it is my personal belief that it is better to find ways to get the magnet to spin while keeping the coils stationary. Even though less power may be generated using this method, the coils are far less complicated and can easily be wound by hand if needed. That being said, if you don’t believe this, try opening up even a simple 1 – 2 volt DC motor.

Pay careful attention to the coil wound to fit around the main shaft. Feel free to unwind it, and then see if you can rewind it exactly as you found it before. In just about every case, you will find this task impossible to achieve. Winding a coil is not like winding up a ball of yarn. Wire tends to be much stiffer, and it also can be much harder to line up without good quality motor winding tools. You will also need fresh wire on spools made specifically for winding coils.

From personal experience, and more than a few adventures with shorting motors and other assorted mischief, I can safely say that you should not, as a prepper, rely on anything that you can’t replace from scratch.

While there may be people that have the tools and materials available to build more complex coils, others are best served by using simpler methods that still get the job done. When it comes to generating electricity, you will find it easier to develop systems in which the magnets move and then you can replace simpler, DIY winder/hand wound stationary coils as needed.

Convert any Motor and Speaker into a Generator

Remember all those old motors you have laying around that you’ve been told can’t be used to generate electricity? Were you told that it would cost more to “convert” these motors than it was worth? This video reveals an incredibly easy way to attach a magnet to the shaft of a motor so that it can be used to generate electricity.

In this video, the magnet is placed near a speaker so that the vibrations from the speaker generate power. You can use this or other means to generate power. Just make sure that you are able to generate more power than what is consumed by the motor.

Video first seen on Giesbert Nijhuis.

Clean Algae from Hydroponics Aquariums

If you have any kind of aquarium, then you also know that algae is going to form and cause all kinds of problems. While you may be able to use a simple sponge to remove algae from smaller tanks, that is not going to be an option for bigger tanks that have areas that are hard to reach. In the meantime, during a crisis, any chemicals that you may be using to control algae will also be unavailable.

You can get rid of algae easily enough by placing one part of an aquarium safe magnet inside the aquarium. Next, use the other half to move the magnet around from outside the tank. As the magnet moves, it will also take the algae along with it. This option will release algae into the water, where it will be picked up by the filters. Just change the filter media in a few days and you will have solved your current algae problem.

Extend the Life of Your Hot Water Heater

Did you know that corrosion is the single greatest enemy of your hot water heater? Contrary to popular belief, it is not the water itself that causes the corrosion. Rather, it is calcium dissolved into the water that causes the corrosion.

Before producing scale on the inside of the heater, calcium will either form carbonate or aragonite. Even though calcium is not magnetic, strong magnetic fields do have an impact on it. In this case, as the calcium and water pass through a magnetic field, it will form aragonite instead of carbonate. Aragonite will either form no bond or a much weaker bond than carbonate on the inside of the water heater.

To take advantage of this effects, make sure that you have copper pipe going into the hot water heater. Place two neodymium magnets on the outside of the pipe and leave them there. When placing the magnets, make sure they do not interfere with the internal electronic workings of the heater.

The whole arena of magnetic treatment of water remains a controversial topic. Nevertheless, there has been some research done on reducing scale buildup inside hot water heaters. At the very least, adding two magnets won’t harm the heater, and might just do some good.

Extend the Life of an Engine

No matter whether you have a tractor or some other kind of farm equipment, the engines will wear out even if you have good oil and filters on hand.

Some of this wear can be reduced if you are able to keep metal bits from the piston and engine block from getting past the filter and back into the oil. Since many of these bits are magnetic, you can try placing a ceramic magnet in the oil pan.

As the oil flows into the pan, the metallic bits will be attracted to the magnet and trapped by it. When you change the oil, make sure that you clean the magnet before replacing it.

Close off Heating and Cooling Registers

Have you ever been in a situation where you had to close off parts of the house because you didn’t have enough resources to keep all the rooms warm or cool enough?

If you have central heating or any other system that relies on vents, your efforts to close off unused rooms will be of little use because the vents won’t completely close. You can use tinfoil or any other flexible, fireproof material to cover the registers , and then use the magnets to hold the material in place.

Why wait for a bad weather situation to use magnets this way? You can cut back on your heating and cooling bills right now just by finding a better way to close central heating registers in rooms that you aren’t using.

Cold Weapons

Some of the most interesting, and deadly weapons for defense can be made with magnets. There are three basic kinds to consider. If you have enough magnets and power, these devices can also be used for perimeter defense.

Railguns

These devices require two rails, a source of power, and, in the original versions, a projectile that conducts electricity. The projectile serves to close the circuit between the rails and the power supply.

railgun

Once the projectile reaches the end of the rails, it is going so fast that it will continue on its path without using more energy from the power source. There are also newer designs that do not require a projectile. Newer rail guns being developed by the military can use pure energy as the “projectile”. Typically, these guns fire as much as 33% faster than conventional explosive based guns.

Coilguns

Instead of using rails, coilguns are little more than a series of coils that are energized in a sequence that causes magnetic ammunition to move forward at great speeds. This sequence may also include inducing current in such a way that the bullet also rotates in the barrel without the use of rifling.

Coilgun_animation

When compared to railguns, coilguns are much easier to make. You can build a hand held version from magnets, wire, and a few capacitors.

Directed Energy Weapons

Instead of firing a projectile, these devices are designed to emit large amounts of energy at a specific target. Usually, the energy will disrupt or destroy electronic circuits or cause some other kind of damage.

Even though many of the more robust applications are beyond the average prepper, there are others that you may be able to build for the purpose of jamming radar or any number of weapons that use unshielded electronics. If you do decide to try and build magnet based weapons, make sure that you also know how direct energy weapons may be used to neutralize them.

In some cases, you may find that a few simple adjustments to the shielding will be enough to ensure your weapons continue working regardless of the kind of energy beam aimed at them. Other times, you may need to go back to more simple designs that eliminate integrated circuits and other vulnerable technologies.

Find True North Without a Compass

These days, just about everyone uses a GPS and a smart phone with a map app to find out how to get from Point A to Point B. In fact, even if you go camping, hiking, or off the beaten path, you may use a GPS for navigational purposes. No matter how many times you read about adding a compass to your bug out bag, chances are you haven’t gotten around to buying one. Worse yet, you may have settled for a cheap compass that doesn’t even work properly.

Let’s say a major disaster happens and you don’t have an hour or so to chart the position of the sun in order to figure out where North is. If you don’t have a compass, but you do have a magnet, you can make a crude compass with it. Just take a straight pin or a sewing needle and rub it across the magnet around 50 times. Make sure that you always rub the needle across the magnet in the same direction.

Next, push the needle or pin through something that will float easily in water. A cork, or any other buoyant item will work perfectly. Set the needle and the cork in a bowl of water so that the needle lays flat on the surface. The needle will point to true north as long as there are not other large metallic objects in the area to throw it off. As with any other compass, you must be careful about where you take your readings so that you do not wind up going astray.

Locate Magnetic Objects Hidden in Walls

As simple as this one may sound, it is also one of the most versatile ways to use magnets. If you are trying to locate studs, chances are they were nailed into place with nails that will respond to the presence of a magnet.

Why spend all that money on a stud finder when a magnet can just as easily do the job? Aside from that, anything magnetic in the walls will also cause the magnet to be attracted to it. This is a good way to locate magnetic pipes and anything else would be of interest.

Find Missing Magnetic Objects
When you have a homestead, or must maintain your own bug out location, you will wind up building and repairing many things. From building a wind turbine to adding on to your home, nails and other magnetic items are bound to fall and get lost. Instead of taking the chance of getting a nail stuck in your foot, or pulling everything apart to reach a valuable object, you can use a magnet to find and retrieve the object.

To get the most out of the magnet, simply attach it to a pole and then use the magnet end to sweep across the area where you have been working. Not only will you avoid a tedious visual search, you may just find a whole bunch of other magnetic objects that escaped your attention earlier.

Keep Metal Objects in Place 

No matter whether you are building a deck or sewing up some new clothes, you will wind up reaching for things like nails, pins, and other items that will rest in some kind of container. If you want to save time and make your tasks easier, you can use magnetic containers and bands to hold these items. For example, if you pinning a pattern to cloth, just use a magnetic strap around your wrist to hold the pins. You can also use a similar wrist strap to hold nails, screws, or even paperclips if you are assembling paper packets.

Here are some other simple ways to use magnets to keep objects organized and in place:

  • Take a plastic bowl and place a flat magnet under the bowl. Now you can add screws, paper clips, or anything else magnetic to the bowl. As you add items to the bowl, they will be drawn to the magnet and stay in place.
  •  Use magnetic strips on desk surfaces to store paper clips or other items that you use often. You can also use another magnet to hold paper notes to the magnetic strip.
  • If you happen to be driving and need to spread out a map, you can use magnets to hold the map to a flat surface on your vehicle.
  • When making repairs to your vehicle, you can also use magnets to hold diagrams in place while you are working.

Save Space and Organize Your Desk, Walls, and Cabinets

There is no such thing as a cabinet shelf or drawer that can be filled to capacity without creating more chaos. Magnets can be used to reclaim all kinds of wasted space and also help organize areas that you thought were impossible to manage.

Here are a few things to try:

  • Embed magnets in wood or other materials to create shelves that you can hang on the refrigerator. Just make sure that you use strong magnets and that the weight of the rack and items stored on it do not exceed the power of the magnet.
  • Use magnets to keep paper clips, nails, screws, and even keys organized in drawer systems.
  • Use magnet pairs to hold blueprints to walls and other locations where they will not take up space needed for other things.

As Parts of Toys for Children

When was the last time your kids actually built something or engaged in some activity without running off for the smart phone or the video game as quickly as possible?

No doubt, as prepper parents, you are struggling to find ways to keep your children active in the real and tangible world instead of constantly escaping into a virtual world that will disappear and leave them unable to manage even simple tasks in a crisis. Because magnets can be used for so many fascinating things, they can be used as parts in all kinds of projects.

Here are just a few things your children might enjoy building and exploring:

  • Simple experiments that show magnetic fields – just take some paper, a magnet, and iron filings to show your children what magnetic fields look like. For even more fun, try slowly spinning the magnet or seeing how the wave form for a magnet in an electric circuit looks
  • Magnetic levitation toys – your children can make everything from tops and spinners to vehicles that will run on rails.
  • For younger children, DIY versions of Mr. Potato Head, buildable construction sets, and much more can be built at little or no cost using magnets. If you are tired of throwing away all kinds of plastic toys because they break or require batteries, some of these ideas may be the perfect alternative. Try building these items with your kids and give them the chance to improve on motor and logic skills.
  • Science fair oriented projects – children of all ages that love to build things will have a wonderful time using magnets to build linear accelerators and explore other useful topics. This link offers just a few projects that can be built using household scraps and magnets. Take a look at the References section for links to more ideas. Do you see some things that can help you along with prepping or ways to adapt them for use as something more than toys?

As you can see, there are many uses for magnets that go far beyond what you may have thought possible. From weapons to extending the life of key appliances, magnets can help you save money and also make survival in a crisis scenario a bit easier.

If you explore all the different ways to use magnets, you’ll develop a set of tools and equipment that can be used to survive in any situation.

EMPCover1

This article has been written by Carmela Tyrell for Survivopedia.

References:

http://www.all-science-fair-projects.com/science_fair_projects.php?s_terms=magnets&s_difficulty=&s_category=

https://www.kjmagnetics.com/blog.asp?p=water-treatment

http://www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/article/0,,1099731,00.html

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magnetic_weapon

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Railgun

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coilgun

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Directed-energy_weapon

http://www.rd.com/home/7-ways-to-use-magnets/

http://www.hellowonderful.co/post/7-FUN-MAGNETIC-TOYS-AND-GAMES-TO-MAKE

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Are any of us prepared? prepper checklist

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Are any of us prepared? prepper checklist Highlander “Survival & Tech Preps” This episode I will talk about how prepared we think we are, or aren’t. I will make a generalized checklist of what we should have and maybe a few things you might not have thought of. Many of us get a general Bob … Continue reading Are any of us prepared? prepper checklist

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DIY Projects: How To Re-purpose Old CDs 

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Survivopedia Re-purpose Old CSs

Today’s article is about an almost extinct technology, the dinosaur of today’s modern digital media. Yes indeed, the good ole compact disc is near the end of its life cycle because it’s been almost completely replaced by USB drives, flash sticks and things of that higher-tech nature.

But what can we do with the zillions of CDs already in existence? Throw them away in the garbage can?

That’s not what a super-prepper would do; au contraire, waste is not cool in my book, as I’m all about recycling when it makes sense and repurpose as much as possible. Hence, today’s piece will present you with a few ideas about how to re-purpose your old CD collection.

solarstove

Are you ready? Let’s start with…

1. How to make a solar panel (using your old Metallica CD collection, boot legs included)!

It sounds relatively implausible, I know. I mean, how on earth can you build a solar panel using shiny old plastic disks? Well, this is not a “real” solar panel, but it makes good use of the CD’s reflective surface for creating a solar heating panel. It’s a very simple and efficient project that even your kids could finish in a couple of hours.

Materials required for the CD solar panel:

  • super glue,
  • cardboard,
  • measuring tape,
  • a couple of dozen CDs (depending on the size of your window),
  • a utility knife,
  • a pencil,
  • a clear plastic drop cloth,
  • a few S hooks,
  • scissors,
  • an awl,
  • black spray paint,
  • masking tape.

You probably already have the gear, so let’s move it along.

Directions: The first step is to measure the width and the length of your window. Use your utility knife to cut a piece of cardboard using those measurements and adding four inches to the previous window measurements – add8 inches extra for the width and 8 inches extra for the length. For example, a 20 inch by 30 inch window will require a cardboard piece of 2 inches by 38 inches.

Next, use the black spray paint on the cardboard piece, and paint one side completely black (black is excellent for its heat retention capability). Let the paint dry completely and if necessary, add one more paint coating for best results.

In the next step, you’ll have to form a box from the cardboard piece, by cutting a four inch square from each of its corners, then bending the sides of the cardboard in such a way that the corners meet i.e. making for a box with the black painted side inside. Now you must use the masking tape for taping up the corners.

The CDs are now ready to be put inside the box in rows with the shiny metal side out. Make sure the rows are as even as humanly possible. You’ll have some wiggle room left, but that’s not a problem. Just make sure that the bottom row of CDs touches the bottom side of the cardboard box, and the same story goes for the top row – it should touch the top of the cardboard box.

Next, use a pencil for tracing the center holes of the CD rows (both top and bottom), then remove them and using your utility knife, cut the holes out. Next, you’ll glue the CDs with super glue over the holes. After that, you’ll glue down the rest of the CDs, but remember to leave a tiny space below the top and above the bottom row. Also, allow for some space below and above the center row.

It’s time to cut 4 rectangles out of the left-over cardboard, four inches wide and 3 quarters of your box’s width. Glue the rectangles into your box like maze walls, on the edge. The first rectangle will be placed above the bottom CD row/against the left side of the cardboard box, the second below the center row/against the right side, the 3rd above the center row/against the left side and the 4th below the top row/against the right side. After you’ve finished, allow the glue to dry for a few hours.

The final step is to cut a piece of plastic drop cloth, three inches longer/wider than your cardboard box then stretch it over the top, gluing it well over the sides,  making it as airtight as you can. Let the glue dry overnight, then make 2 holes in the upper corners of your cardboard box and introduce S hooks in each hole.

Now you can hang the solar thermal panel on your window, preferably on a south-facing one for best results, and benefit from free heat.

2.  Tesla CD powered-turbine

Using plain old recycled CDs, you can actually build a working turbine.

The Tesla turbine is very different from regular ones, as it uses just disks, working on the boundary layer effect principle. For this DIY project, you’ll require

  • CD spindle,
  • CDs,
  • glue pipe fittings.

Obviously, this is a beginner project and functions on garden-hose pressure. However, the same idea/design can be used with an air compressor. It’s extremely versatile and useful.

The CD turbine project comes with a unique design which doesn’t require bearings, seals, or a moving shaft; it’s almost frictionless. This particular design can run on either air or water pressure, mainly for fun purposes.

The materials required are half a dozen hot glue sticks, methylene chloride for welding the CDs to each other, ABS to PVC cement, PVC pipe primer, ¾ inch PVC plastic pipe, garden hose shut off valve, 1-1/2 inch plastic tube or straw, CD spindle with cover, Orbit WaterMaster Extension Nozzle Model 91129 and of course, CDs.

The tools needed for the job are a utility knife, a glue gun, sand paper and a dremel tool if you have one (optional). Here’s a video tutorial or read this Survivopedia article for detailed instructions for this project.

Video first seen on MrfixitRick.

3. Secret Safe

Too much high tech for today? Let’s see about how to build a secret safe using old CDs, and keep it simple folks!

Check out this cool video tutorial. I find it very interesting – I mean a stash of old CDs transformed into a secret safe for your money and valuables? Pretty smart, don’t you think?

Video first seen on Shake the Future.

4. Old CDs for Pest Control

The next project is even easier and more fun, as it involves using CDs for pest control, and I don’t mean playing your favorite CD from a boom box to scare the crows out of the field (though that might work, too).

The idea is to hang old CDs from a fishing lane around the perimeter you want to secure from pests, and as the wind blows, they move. Their random movement, together with the prism effect, will (hopefully) scare the garden-gobbling birds away from your property.

Video first seen on eHow.

5. DIY Lamp from Old CDs

Now, let’s see about how to make a lamp from recycled CDs in just 2 minutes with absolutely no tools required. If you still own stacks and stacks of unused CDs lying around your room (like your truly, I just can’t let them go), why not put them to good use?

The easiest and smartest way for DIYing a lamp using old CDs is to slide a source of light down the middle of the CD stack. Pure genius, right?

The problem is that you’ll have a hard time finding a fluorescent tube thin enough to fit that tiny hole, so you’ll have to buy under cabinet LED lights, as they come in thin strips that will perfectly fit the core of the CD stack.

Also LED lighting doesn’t produce much heat like regular bulbs or fluorescent ones, hence you’re in no danger of setting your house on fire. Here’s a video tutorial, enjoy.

Video first seen on HACKADAY.

The CD repurposing adventure stops here, with an interesting video that depicts even more uses for old CDs, such as turning them into USB-powered fans or even a clock.

Video first seen on MultiPenat.

I hope the article helped and you’ll have tons of fun tinkering around with your old CD collection.

If you have questions or comments, don’t hesitate to use the dedicated section below. And if you are in the mood for DIYing something bigger, click on the banner below to find out how to build the ultimate survival shelter on a budget! Good luck, have fun folks!

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This article has been written by Chris Black for Survivopedia.

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Special Needs Preppers: Pregnancy, Babies, and Toddlers

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Preppers- Babies pregnancy toddlersMy children are big enough to not need many special accommodations, but when they were younger, just keeping their emergency supplies up to date (in other words, clothing that fit and food they would eat) could be a challenge! The truth is that little kids end up with a lot of emergencies, most of the potty, food, and otherwise messy variety. Parents already carry a lot of “emergency supplies” with them!

In a larger disaster, the challenges are determining what you need for a longer period, quite possibly away from home, and ways to keep your little one comfortable and content away from home. If you’re an expectant mother, you have your own set of unique needs.

Emergency needs for pregnant women

Given how swiftly needs change during pregnancy, your Bug Out Bag or emergency kit may not be up to date. You’ll probably want to add a month’s supply of prenatal vitamins, a portable water filter (hydration is extremely important and you may end up in an area with questionable water), a few Mylar pouches of water, high calorie nutrition bars, and antacid tablets. Another good addition is a small bottle of acetaminophen, deemed to be safe for pregnant women, Benadryl (can be helpful as a mild sleep aid, too), a laxative, and any other medications your doctor recommends.

Nutrition will be an extremely important consideration, so carefully consider the emergency food you have on hand. These store especially well:

  • Canned or dry beans (naturally high in folate)
  • Lentils and lentil soup
  • Freeze-dried bananas for potassium and energy
  • Freeze-dried and/or canned chicken (quick meals, great protein source)
  • Eggs — dried eggs are handy and store well
  • Oatmeal — Make your own “instant oatmeal” by briefly processing oats in a blender and adding dried fruit, dried milk, and a little sugar.
  • Freeze-dried spinach — a good way to have a leafy green that stores long-term
  • Orange drink powder — I don’t love the sugar content, but the Vitamin C is necessary and the sugar can give you a quick energy boost.
  • Almonds, walnuts — a healthy source of fat
  • Freeze-dried or dehydrated fruit

If you’re pregnant and have strange cravings, it wouldn’t hurt to add a few servings to your kit. If it’s something like Taco Bell Quesaritos, well, I guess you’ll just have to keep on hand a map of all Taco Bells within 100 miles or so!

Whatever you pack, it’s smart to keep a basic list with notations of where to find the items in case someone else needs to pack for you because you either aren’t home or aren’t feeling well. Pregnancy brain is infamous for making women forgetful, and so is sleep deprivation, which continues until at least when they start school. Lists are your friend!

Along with food and water, at a bare minimum, you will need pre-natal vitamins, any other medication, doctors’ diagnosis, and comfortable clothing with room to grow. If you have any kind of sleep or comfort aids, including wedge pillows, belly bands, etc. note it. If you have any medical issues, have up-to-date copies of your prescriptions and medical charts. It’s also a good idea to bring something from your doctor, like an ultrasound picture, that shows your Estimated Delivery Date. There may be restrictions (and extra assistance) once you reach a certain gestational point and the last thing you want is to be unable to prove either that those restrictions don’t apply to you or that you do rate the assistance (if needed) because you don’t “look” the way someone thinks you should.

If you are pregnant, part of your emergency preparedness should also include a “Plan B” for your birth. Few things are as scary to a pregnant woman as the prospect of birthing in unfamiliar or dangerous conditions. Mothers-to-be are busy enough making “Plan A” for their birth, most of us never even consider a “Plan B” that involves giving birth elsewhere because of evacuation or inability to get to a hospital. Even if your “Plan B” isn’t meticulously planned out, it’s helpful to have a general idea.  Many birth classes go over what to do if you unexpectedly find yourself in the middle of an unplanned unassisted birth.

Potty Issues

Some women have pregnancy-related bladder leakage problems. If you are one of them, pack accordingly. Even if you aren’t, be prepared for your water to break, even if you don’t think you are far enough along. A few extra maxi pads don’t take much space and if you don’t need them, you might help out another woman.

Diapers

If I could go back in time I might not make the same decision, but I only used disposable diapers. Even so, I kept a pack of cloth diapers on hand, just in case of emergency. We still use them as dust-rags. If you don’t use them, you  know they will definitely be in the bag in the event of a true emergency. After all, would you rather use a cloth diaper or dad’s shirt? It’s kind of a no-brainer when you think about it.

READ MORE: Want to learn more about the pros and cons of cloth diapers vs. disposables? Read this.

Diaper wipes and rash ointment are the other obvious needs. Even if your child rarely (or never) gets diaper rash, you could end up in a situation where you aren’t able to change them as often as you normally would or are forced to use a different brand of wipes or diapers, resulting in a rash.

Potty-training

If your little one is in the middle of potty-training, or has recently been potty-trained, the stress may cause them to regress, so be prepared. Bring plenty of diapers, pull-ups, wipes, extra big-kid or training underwear, and resealable bags for soiled clothing. A reusable wet bag is very helpful for containing all types of messes.

THINK ABOUT THIS: Pack a roll of dog waste bags in your emergency kits and diaper bag. One roll usually has 40 to 50 bags and these have infinite uses.

In an evacuation or other emergency situation, accidents can be even more of an issue. No one wants trapped in a car for hours with the smell of poopy diapers or vomit. Kids ‘n’ Pets is a great solution for that. There are foldable travel potty seats, although you may just want to bag the one they are used to and bring it along. Don’t forget a stool to help them reach the seat safely!

Food for infants and toddlers

If you are pregnant and have had cravings, try to plan for that. Some foods are easy to find, like the burritos I craved during one pregnancy. Others, not so much, especially regional or seasonal treats.

Nursing

I joke that I was designed to be a wet nurse. When my son needed 20 ccs of milk, I was pumping 12 ounces. The amount of leakage was no joke. I was wet and uncomfortable for the first three months of my sons’ lives, then engorged and intermittently uncomfortable for at least another three after that before everything settled down. (For a more in-depth discussion of breast-feeding, keep your eyes out for a forthcoming post on subject.) If you are like me and produce lots of milk, pack lots of both disposable and reusable nursing pads, every bra that fits, and about four times as many shirts as you normally would if you have to evacuate. As long as you can do laundry, that should work out.

READ MORE: In a time of major crisis, the concept of wet-nursing may make a comeback. Read more here.

Whether you produce a lot of a little, definitely pack at least some nursing pads, whatever you use for privacy while nursing, your breast pump, bottles, and a bottle brush. If your breast pump has an option for a car power plug, buy and bring it along. That gives you more choices about when and where to pump, especially if you have a solar power source that has a similar power outlet. For a more portable option, consider a simple hand pump. It’s smaller and requires no electricity, but the trade-off is that it is not as efficient as an electric pump.

Formula

Bring two or three times as much as you think you’ll need. It is all too easy to spill or lose items, especially away from home. This is especially important if your child is picky or has dietary restrictions. If they do, make a note of places you can order more online, chains that often carry it

It may sound obvious, but don’t forget water to mix the formula, and a small bottle of dish detergent (with a bottle brush) to clean everything after each feeding. Bonus points if you bring a small dish basin, which can also double as a small toy corral. Double bonus points if water can be heated on that basin to allow warming bottles. (Grills are available at many rest-stops and campsites.) Depending on the situation, you may also need a way to filter and treat the water to make it potable.

READ MORE: Wondering about all the different water filters out there? Read this for more information.

For at-home emergencies, you still need a way to heat water both to warm formula for feedings and to adequately clean and sterilize all parts of the bottles in case there is a power outage. A Sun Oven can heat water to pasteurization temperature and is also helpful for heating and cooking food when the power is out.

First Foods and Snacks

With small children, pickiness definitely comes into play at meal and snack time. If you know your toddler will absolutely melt down if they do not have Honey Nut Cheerios mid-afternoon, be sure to grab an extra two or three boxes as soon as any potential weather disaster enters the forecast. Include these on your packing list because they are as essential as diapers and formula for your sanity and well-being.

Small amounts of snacks can be kept in Ziploc bags or sealed using a Food Saver. Try giving your kids various freeze dried foods, such as freeze-dried yogurt bites and get them accustomed to the taste and texture. When you purchase these in either pouches or the smaller #2.5 size cans, they are lightweight and very packable when it comes to getting an emergency kit ready or having extra food on hand for the duration of an emergency.

If you make your own baby or toddler food, bring the basic equipment you need. Don’t assume it will be available wherever you end up. This may be as simple as a stick blender, scooper (or one of the new “spoonulas” – a great invention in my humble opinion), and a bowl.

Entertainment

Back before most audio music was purely digital, we old-timers listened to our favorites on CDs and owned small carrying cases to hold our favorite disks. These same carrying cases can hold DVDs, and that makes them take less space while still protecting them. As soon as it starts looking like you may need to evacuate, select the DVDs the kids will tantrum without, along with some family favorites to enjoy as “family movie” time. If you have time, a brand new DVD is a great way to provide a fun surprise and a few hours of quiet time for mom and dad.

CHECK THIS OUT: Our list of survival movies with a romantic edge.

Pack a portable DVD player or a laptop with TV connector cables so you can watch them. If you have Amazon Prime, toss in the Fire Stick and remote, but know that you may not be able to access it when you get where you are going. Favorite books (especially for bedtime), read aloud chapter books, coloring books (including adult coloring pages for older kids), and electronic devices also go a long way toward making long trips less unpleasant.

If you have time, create a few new music playlists for the trip – or have the kids do it! Then they’ll have something fun to listen to. You may even want to download some new tunes to surprise them. Perhaps a soundtrack you don’t hate from one of their movies?

Naps for all!

Babies are often quite content to nap either on a blanket or in their car seat. A blanket that blocks out the light and dampens the noise can be thrown over a stroller or car seat in a pinch. I’ve always kept small Gymboree blankets and a few towels rolled up and stored beneath the back seat just for this reason.

If your baby is used to sleeping in a Pack ‘n Play on a regular basis, those are fairly easy to pack and move.

Toddlers may not be quite as easy to put down for a nap as babies. They are infamous for being picky about when and where they nap. In an emergency, there will probably be a lot of commotion and stimulation making napping difficult. At the very least, there will be a new environment, which is not relaxing or safe-feeling for a young child.

The easiest solution is to have a small tent or shelter for them to sleep in. Let them use it at home, too, so it is already familiar. The Privacy Pop is a great solution is you want something that goes over an entire bed, including the mattress. An inexpensive tent or play space works, too.

Pets

Bring them. You don’t want to abandon them and the kids will probably flip out if you try. They may even endanger themselves and others by going back into a dangerous situation to rescue their beloved pet. This will require some advanced planning, and is the subject of another post, but a few advance phone calls should help you find a place where your pet is welcome along with the family.

READ MORE: Pets have always been a popular topic on The Survival Mom blog. Here are a few articles that will help you get your beloved pets ready for emergencies:

Clothing tips for pregnant moms, babies, and toddlers

Finally, remember that babies go through about six to seven outfits per day. Pack your 72 hr kit accordingly. They’ll also need blankets. If you have to bug out on foot, ditch the 40-lb baby carrier/ carseat. Invest in a wrap, or make one yourself. Wraps are more comfortable than other baby carriers because they put the weight of the child onto your hips instead of your shoulders and upper back. Wraps have the added benefit of leaving your hands free and any other adult or older child/teen can also “wear” the baby.

If your toddlers suffer from what we call “sock bump anxiety disorder,” make sure that you have non-bumpy socks in their kids. Whatever their size, check their bug out bags regularly to make sure their clothing, socks, and shoes are a good fit.

For a pregnant mother-to-be, loose clothing, socks, and comfortable shoes are a must. If you find that your feet swell during the day, plan on wearing socks or slippers and bring along a firm pillow or small step stool to elevate your legs. Some pregnant women tend to be cold, no matter where they are. If this describes you, store a sweater or another warm and cozy outer layer with your emergency supplies.

Preppers come in every shape, size, age, and physical condition. It’s smart to consider now, ahead of a crisis, what you will need to prepare so that each of your loved ones is equipped to handle an everyday emergency or a worst case scenario.

Other “Special Needs Preppers” in this series:

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Sensible Food Storage For a Year (Video)

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Sensible Food Storage- A video by Wendy Dewitt

In the video below Wendy Dewitt teaches us sensible ways to plan, organize and store our food storage for a year. She makes learning very easy and understandable for many of us who get overwhelmed with the entire process once we start researching the many different ways to become prepared.

She also discusses realistic and unrealistic expectations that can occur when thinking about SHTF scenarios. She touches on what our responsibilities will be to ourselves so that we can survive any long term situation.

If you have been trying to figure out how to make sure you have 3 meals a day for a year then Wendy is the person you will want listen to. She goes through how to meal plan for your family a week at a time and how to calculate the ingredients you need so that you are not overspending your budget and storing things that you may not need. In the long run, if you are buying sporadically for your food storage, you could be wasting money and lose track of what you actually have in regards to meals. Worse, you may not even have as many meals as you think. Meal planning and sticking to the food you have planned for not only saves you money, but it saves  you space as well. It will make you feel more confident KNOWING that you have 3 meals a day for 1 month, 3 months, 6 months and then finally…for 1 year. She makes that goal reachable for you.

I hope you enjoy the video below and that it helps you and your family become prepared for natural/man made disasters that may be in store for us in the future.

 

The post Sensible Food Storage For a Year (Video) appeared first on American Preppers Network.

Prep Blog Review: This Is The Time for Planning Preps

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prep blog

Easter is here and for most of us, that means the kids are out of school for a week or so. Finding activities to keep them occupied may seem like an exercise in futility but we’ve found some prepping posts that offer some great exercises that involve the entire family.

Kids need to be prepared just as much as the adults in the family; maybe even more because they have less ability to defend themselves if faced head on with danger. It’s also important that kids understand that they’re part of the household and have a responsibility to kick in and do their share.

These posts all contain good advice about ways to instill responsibility and get the entire family into the prepping frame of mind.

  1. Daylight Savings Time – 12 Chores You Should Do

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“Daylight Savings Time always brings big groans at our house. We dislike the change to our routine, to our sleeping pattern, and the sun setting so late in the day for most of the spring/summer when we tend to not be sun-lovers in the first place.”

Read more on Mom with a Prep.

2. 10 Tests, Exercises, and Games to Heighten Your Senses and Situational Awareness

Car-Accident-1

“STOP: BEFORE YOU READ ON, STUDY THE PICTURE ABOVE FOR 60 SECONDS. THEN, SCROLL DOWN AND SEE IF YOU CAN ANSWER THE FOLLOWING QUESTIONS:

  • How many people total were involved in this accident?
  • How many males and how many females?
  • What color were the two cars?
  • What objects were lying on the ground?
  • What injury did the man on the ground seem to be suffering from?
  • What was the license plate number of one of the cars?”

Read more on Art of Manliness.

3. Prepping With Children: Getting Them Interested

Prepping-With-Children-Getting-The-Interested

“It is a perfectly fine, pleasant Tuesday evening. You are playing with your children in the park. Your son is climbing up to the slide while your daughter is whooshing in the air on the see saw. A perfect day until an Earthquake strikes! One minute, this one minute will be changing your entire world. Your evenings may never be this perfect again.”

Read more on Survivalist Prepper.

4. Be Prepared For Unprepared People

unexpected

The unprepared. They are the vast majority. While the word “unprepared” is enormously generic, in the context of ‘survival and preparedness’ the prepared should consider being prepared for the unprepared… Kind of a tongue-twister.

Read more on Ask a Prepper.

5. 10 Prepping Tips Everyone Should Know

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“Unless you’re a psychic, you never know when s*** is going to hit the fan. If and when a crisis occurs, the last thing you want is to be unprepared. But prepping isn’t always easy. With so much contradicting information out there, it can be difficult to separate the good information from the bad. With that said, I want to show you 10 awesome prepping tips that actually work. By following this advice, you’ll be ready for any survival situation.”

Read more on The Prepper Journal.

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This article has been written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia.

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What You Need To Know About Using Wool For Survival

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big wool

Cashmere sweaters, fleece socks and woolen blazers; wool has held a place in our lives for eons, and for good reason. This wonderful textile has many qualities including elasticity, fire-resistance, durability and resilience that make it an excellent medium for a wide array of purposes.

Wool absorbs moisture more effectively than cotton, wicks it away from your skin, and dries faster than any other fiber.

The survival uses of wool are probably way more than you can imagine, just off the top of your head. Before we get into the actual uses, let’s discuss these qualities; it’s elastic, fire-resistant, and resilient.

Now, let’s talk about the survival uses of wool maybe you’ll get some ideas that we haven’t thought of yet!

Where Does Wool Come From?

The answer here seems obvious, right? Wool comes from sheep. That’s right, but it’s not a complete answer. Wool can come from a wide variety of animals; sheep, yaks, rabbits, alpacas, llamas, oxen, camels, and even goats. Each of these animals provides wool that is great for a variety of uses, though sheep wool is probably the most versatile because there are so many different breeds of sheep.

Though nearly every sheep has wool, some of it is fine and suited to clothing, while other sheep produce wool that is too course; it’s best used for stuffing or for carpeting. You’ve likely heard of wool made from rabbits, though you may not realize it; that beautifully soft angora sweater that you love to wear is made from rabbit fur.

The wonderful thing about wool is that, regardless of what animal it comes from, the animal isn’t harmed during the process. As a matter of fact, removing the wool (called shearing) actually makes the animal more comfortable.

There are different grades of wool, which is determined by the diameter of the fiber and the crimp. The crimp is exactly what it sounds like; the amount of wave in the hair. Generally, the more crimp wool has, the finer it is.

Some of the finest wool is Merino, which comes from the Merino sheep. This is excellent for clothing. Wool with less crimp is coarser and better suited for use as carpets, batting or insulation inside jackets.

Historically, wool was used by just about everybody because of its ability to hold in heat and wick away moisture from the skin but a particular wool was used by sailors for sweaters. Usually wool is cleaned of its natural lanolin and treated before it’s spun into wool, but sailors’ wives left the lanolin in the wool for extra waterproofing.

The wives also wove patterns into sweaters with different meanings. For instance, some patterns may represent safe sailing while others may convey plentiful fishing. Irish women also made sweaters for men who they were interested in as a way to show off her knitting skills, thus showing her readiness to be a good wife.

Who knew sweaters had such an interesting history? Anyway, back to wool and its many uses for survival.

7 Types of Wool

These are just a few types of wool, but it will give you a good idea of where to start. These are the most commonly used types of wool, but you can use what you have in a pinch. On the flip side, you may also choose to select some of your survival animals based on this information.

  • Alpaca: Fine, silky, and warmer than sheep’s wool. It’s great for just about any type of clothing, though it may not have the durability of coarser wools if you need something tough.
  • Angora: Has excellent heat retention and is great for thermal underclothes. It’s soft and lightweight, which makes it extremely comfortable.
  • Camel Hair: Comes from the underbelly of a camel and is extremely fine and soft. It’s the best insulating of all wools, which makes it great for lining coats and winter boots. Beware though because it’s not very durable.
  • Merino: This is a more traditional type of wool that comes from the Merino sheep. It’s softer than other sheep fleece and has excellent moisture wicking properties, while the outside of the wool will repel water. Great for clothing of any sort that you want to be comfortable and dry in. Makes a good blanket, too.
  • Mohair: We’ve all heard of Mohair suits thanks to a popular seventies song but you probably don’t know that it comes from a goat. It’s fine and lustrous but works as well as Merino at wicking moisture and insulating. Its sheen makes it more attractive but don’t let the good looks fool you; it’s as durable (if not more so) as sheep wool.
  • Cashmere: Ahh, the luxury. A cashmere sweater is known for its softness and warmth and also comes from a goat: the Kashmir goat to be exact. It’s a fine wool, and not quite as durable as other types.
  • Llama: This fiber has a lustrous appearance much like alpaca hair but it’s weaker and coarser. If you need something warm and light, and durability isn’t an issue, this is a great fiber.

There are, of course, many different types of wools from sheep because there are numerous breeds but that’s an entirely different article. To learn more about different sheep breeds and which ones are best for wool, check out my other article here.

Clothing

This is the obvious use of wool. We’ve already touched on a few reasons why wool is good for clothing, but now we need to touch on which types of wool are best. You want to use wool that is fine with a higher crimp. Wool from Merino sheep, Angora rabbits, alpacas, camels and goats all produce fine wool that is excellent for clothing.

If you’re making your own yarn, you’ll have to scour it to get the debris out of it, then carded, combed and spun into yarn. Then, of course, the yarn is knitted into sweaters, socks, mittens, scarves, coats, or basically any garment that you need.

The exact method is outside of the scope of this article, but it’s quite the process, but perfectly doable if you have fleece-producing animals and the proper equipment. The process will differ a bit if you opt to leave the lanolin in the wool.

types of wool

Household Items

Wool can be used to make many different household items, too. Tablecloths, curtains, rugs, and blankets made from wool are not only beautiful; they’re functional and long-lasting, too.

And remember, since wool is relatively fire-resistant, that makes it a good fiber for any of these uses because they’ll slow the spread of fire if, heaven forbid, you ever have to face that. Their insulating properties help keep heat inside the house, too.

Many carpets are still made from wool, though it’s admittedly often more expensive than synthetic fibers. Wools used for making household products are typically courser than clothing-grade wool. Though they’re not as soft, they are much more durable. Felted wool is also used as carpet padding.

Batting and Stuffing

Because of its insulating properties, wool is often used as batting for quilts, stuffing for coats, and insulation in home-made potholder mittens.

You could also use raw wool to stuff your pillows or to add the stuffing to homemade stuffed animals.

Barn Uses

Saddle blankets, horse blankets, padding underneath saddle pads and shining brushes are all good ways to use wool in the barn.

Yarn is used for the saddle blankets and horse blankets (used to keep horses warm at night or in cold weather) while wool fluff is used to pad the inside of the saddle pad as well as the back of the pad that touches the horse so that he doesn’t get sores from the saddle. Wads of wool are awesome to shine your horse’s coat or buff your car.

Protecting Fragile or Valuable Items

Fleece, wool straight off the animal and just cleaned, can be used as a liner in clothes and gloves or as padding to tuck away fragile items. Wool can also be felted, which is a process that’s used to pound it together into flat, woven pieces that can be used to line boxes, gun racks, or any other container in which you’d like to store items that you don’t want scratched, or that you’d like to keep insulated.

This felt can also be used to clean your weapons or to pad them in their boxes. You can also line your rifle strap with it, or with fleece. Speaking of lining things with fleece, you can line your purse straps, backpack straps, or even your blankets with the soft, fluffy comfort of this gift from your animals; after all, they use it to keep warm, so why shouldn’t you?

As you can see, there are many uses for wool in its various states, and I’m sure that there are many more that I haven’t even touched on that many. Truly, the survival uses of wool are limited only by your imagination! If you can think of other uses for wool, please tell us about your ideas in the comments section below.

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This article has been written byt Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia.

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The Ultimate Survival Kit!

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The Ultimate Survival Kit

The Ultimate Survival Kit prepared-school safety“Be prepared for the worst,” this is what we hear every day but look around- are you really prepared? If tomorrow a disaster strikes or a war breaks out, is your survival plan set? Most of us do not even know where to begin with! Preparing for the worst is very scary. Start with the basics then; make your own survival kit. You never know how seconds can change your life, hence start preparing.

Survival is only possible when you know you can handle yourself in such consequences. When you believe in yourself. This belief comes from the mental and physical preparation. How to mentally prepare yourself, start with the following:

  • To make sure you are capable enough start with some form of physical exercise and build it up to strength training. Jog and run so that your stamina can be built for such instances.
  • Self-defense is very important! Join martial arts classes where you can learn to fight. This will ensure that you can take care of yourself when things go wrong.
  • Moreover, learn to use a weapon. You may have to kill in order to protect yourself, thus master the art of using pocket knives and guns so that you do not feel weak in the moment.
  • Learn basics such as how to light a fire, how to set tents, how to hunt, how to fish, how to swim etc. These basics will give you confidence to survive what is coming forth towards you.
  • ­Survival also requires a calm mind, rationale thinking and quick decision making. Meditation helps a person to stay calm and composed and to think clearly. Try meditating twice or thrice a week so that you can practice the same when things get stressful. ­

While you are preparing yourself, start making a survival kit too! Survival pushes a person out of their comfort zone thus you cannot carry everything you own. Focus on what you need rather than what you want. The basic human needs to survive are food, water, clothing, shelter, weapons and medicine, this is how you will categorize the items that will make it to your survival kit.

Food: Make a food storage where food can be stored. Your survival kit should also have basic food supplies, and seasonings so that you can survive at least two weeks. Make sure that the food being stored has time to expire. Items such as vegetable powders, fruit powders, and dried food are available in the market. These products offer to be essentials during a survival situation. Moreover, carry match sticks to light fire, lighters, fishing rods and knives. You might have to hunt, set traps or learn about gathering, hence your survival kit should include products such as knives, wires, guns, that can help you with these acts.

3-18-16 2Water: Water is the basis of human survival. Human beings cannot survive three days without water. Your survival kit should include empty vessels and bottles that can store water for you. Keep extra water stored in your home fridges that can be picked and tossed in the kit when time comes. Also, keep water purification tablets in your survival kit as they can be helpful when you do not have a source of clean water around you.

Clothing: Having proper clothing on you is very essential. You cannot survive a cold winter night in a basic tee shirt! For your survival kit, your clothing has to be comfortable yet protective. Do not pack everything in your survival kit. Study the general climate of the region you reside in and pack clothes accordingly. For nights, keep some warm clothing because you never know how temperatures can change. Moreover, your shoes are very important! The right shoes can take you towards surviving. Shoes should be easy to walk in, protect you from the rain and sun and survive rough walks, wear and tear and different terrains. A good pair of sneakers and socks can do the trick.

3-4-16 fireShelter: Where would you survive is a question worth pondering over. Planning a shelter is very important. Mark out places where you can head to when things go wrong. If you think your home is your shelter place then you have an advantage- added space for more storage. Assign areas in your neighborhood that can serve as a shelter. However, for survival kit purposes, carry maps, compass, tents and sleeping bags so that you can seek shelter anywhere!

First Aid Kit: A survival kit without a first aid box? That is just incomplete. Make sure your survival gear has a first aid kit that includes your everyday medication, band aids, gauze, cotton, antiseptics, antibiotics, pain killers, anti-allergies and other such over the counter drugs that you would need.

Other Essentials: When you carry that survival kit and walk out of your house, your home, to survive you would be filled with mixed emotions. There are loads of memories and mixed emotions that would be over whelming you. Furthermore, the question that you will keep asking yourself, “will I come back to all of this again.” When these feelings take over, one feels the need to carry everything with them. Do not make that mistake. Essentials in your survival kit should include sanitizers, tooth brush, tooth paste, toilet paper, extra cash, batteries and torch.

Throughout centuries we as humans have survived. Survival is what has evolved mankind and put us where we are. Survival is only possible if you are prepared. Hence do not take that lightly and start your survival preparation before it is too late!

The post The Ultimate Survival Kit! appeared first on The Prepper Broadcasting Network.

Zombie Survival Camp!

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Zombie Survival Camp!
Highlander “Survival & Tech Prep

Zombie Survival Camp MarkOn this Episode we welcome Mark from theZombieSurvival Camp to talk about the services this camp offers. I know what you are thinking, the zombie survival camp, are you serious is this even legit? But It is, a real camp to train for firearms, crossbow, self-defense with knives and melee weapons, as well as bug out bags, first aid, shelter building, using night vision and team leadership.

3-6-16 Groupofgirls_1Mark has a lot of stories to talk about doing this as long as he has  and he knows his stuff! The need for training is an absolute these days when we are not certain of our future. What he offers is an edge for those that would otherwise be helpless in a shtf/wrol situation.

I know what everyone thinks when they hear the name zombie, but this is a genuine service and well worth it! Join us as we discuss the in’s and out of training for survival, and defense. It may be hard for some people to grasp the concept of having to use these skills to survive but it may save you or a loved one’s life some day.

3-6-16 InstructorsWe all know the world might not be the friendliest when shtf , so it is great we have a service like Zombie Survival Camp to offer what they do. Personally I feel this type of camp is one of the greatest things that could ever happen to the prepper community. It provides that training that you just simply cannot get anywhere else. Sure you can get firearms training in places, but when you combine shelter making, first aid, small arms, crossbows, and the other numerous services, you just simply cannot beat it.

Listen in as we talk about all of the cool things he does for the patrons of his service at the Zombie Survival Camp. As always enjoy the show!
Join us for Survival & Tech Preps “LIVE SHOW” every Monday 9:00/Et 8:00Ct 6:00/Pt Go To Listen and Chat

Listen to this broadcast or download “Zombie Survival Camp” in player below!

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Archived shows of Survival & Tech Preps at bottom of THIS PAGE!

The post Zombie Survival Camp! appeared first on The Prepper Broadcasting Network.

Stranded, Survival Without Supplies!

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How to Survive if Stranded in the Woods Without Supplies

Stranded Survival Without Supplies lostinwoods1One of the most dangerous situations for anyone is stranded in the woods without any supplies. Perhaps you intended to take a short walk and a storm rolled in and you can’t make it back home, your car broke down in the middle of nowhere, or maybe SHTF on that one day that you were at work without your EDC or Get Home Bag. Regardless of the circumstances that got you there, you find yourself forced to spend the night.

Stranded Survival Without Supplies forestRemember the law of 3’s if you are caught out in the weather without supplies. If you are stranded in the woods in an area where the weather is extreme (very hot or very wet or cold), you need to make building a temporary shelter your first priority. Most people can only survive 3 hours in extreme weather without shelter. And, although not having something to drink will be uncomfortable to say the least, most people can go about 3 days without water and about 3 weeks without food before trouble sets in.

So here’s what you need to focus on:

Land Navigation

Stranded Survival Without SuppliesIf you are stranded in the woods but you are certain of your location, then it may be just a matter of waiting for weather to clear so you can hike out. If you have somehow gotten lost in the woods, try to determine your location before the sun goes down. Climb to the top of a hill or other elevated piece of ground to look for landmarks.

Make note of the direction of any major landmarks or roads you can see in the distance so that you can travel that way once morning arrives. Pay attention to the direction the sun travels to help you get your bearing and figure out which way to travel.

Build a Temporary Shelter

stranded -seeking-shelter-in-shepherds-cave-670The quickest and easiest way to make a temporary shelter is to scout out a ledge, cave, or fallen tree that you can use for part of the shelter. A tree trunk with at least one lower branch or a dense stand of bushes will work also. This cuts down on the amount of work you need to do in order to have a secure shelter.

Collect as much brush, pine needles, vines, and branches of varying sizes as you can find. You will use the branches and vines to create a wall up against the ledge, fallen tree, or lower tree branch. Use the brush to fill in the wall to keep out the wind. Layer the pine needles on the ground inside to protect you from the cold ground when you sleep.

Find Fresh Water

5-4 strandedThe next order of business after building your temporary shelter is to locate fresh water. Scout nearby for a creek or stream. Moving water is easier to convert to drinkable water than stagnant water such as in a pond. Collect water from a creek or stream as far upstream as you dare to travel without getting lost or too far from camp. It’s best to filter it using charcoal pieces from your fire and boil it before drinking.

You will need to collect a fair amount of pebbles, fine sand, and some charcoal pieces from your fire. Tear 2 pieces of cloth from the bottom of your clothing. Layer pebbles some sand and then one piece of cloth and some charcoal into any kind of container. Add the second piece of cloth, more sand, and more pebbles. Pour the water through the top of the container and wait for it to drip from the bottom into a smaller container. It will take some time. You will then need to boil the water before drinking it.

Collect Materials and Start a Fire

3-4-16 fireThe ability to start and maintain a fire is a crucial skill to have if you are stranded overnight in the woods. Temperatures typically drop in the evening once the sun goes down and warmth will be important for preventing hypothermia. This is especially true if you accidentally got wet collecting your water or were caught out in a rain storm. Fire is also important for cooking and for warding off insects and predators.

Build your fire near the opening of your lean-to shelter but not close enough to catch the roof on fire. If weather is extremely cold, you can heat rocks in the fire and then place them carefully inside around the edge of your shelter to provide extra warmth.

Find or Gather Food

3-4-16 1252The average person can go up to 2-3 weeks without food before beginning to see serious symptoms. This is not true if you have a medical condition such as diabetes that requires you to eat at regular intervals. Once you have built a shelter, collected water, and have gathered enough material for your fire, spend some time searching for food.

Collect any edible plants, berries, and weeds you find nearby. If you are able to identify a small game trail, set several basic animal traps along it using vines. You can use a rock to sharpen a stick so you can use it as a spear if the opportunity presents itself.

Collect any food that you find along the way, even if you aren’t sure you will need it before morning. Keep in mind that some bugs and insects are edible as well. If you are able to find a small game trail, set several traps along it.

The more skills you know and practice around building a shelter, finding and filtering water, starting and maintaining a fire, and how to find edible food, the better you will be able to survive. Supplies are great and always nice if you have them with you, but the smartest prepper knows how to survive off the land. To do this effectively when your life is in peril, you must learn and practice in advance.

Are you prepared?

 

The post Stranded, Survival Without Supplies! appeared first on The Prepper Broadcasting Network.

Planning Your Bug Out Location!

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Planning Your Bug Out Location
Best Selling Author Bobby Akart “Prepping For Tomorrow

2-21-16 AKART-slide-show-IMAGE2On this week’s special edition of the Prepping for Tomorrow program, best-selling Author Bobby Akart, founder of FreedomPreppers.com and creator of Plateau Preppers, will begin the first in a series of conversations about choosing and developing the perfect bug-out location.Planning Your Bug Out LocationYou’ve heard it so many times … “I’ll grab my Bug Out Bag and Go!” Go where, you ask. “To the country, of course. Those farmers + ranchers know how to live!” Oh, okay.  Every post-apocalyptic, dystopian novel that we’ve ever read involves somebody fleeing to somewhere or trying to get home from somewhere.  It’s a horrible experience and it only ends well for the main character because it’s FICTION!

Bobby believes if you are truly a Prepper, one who believes in their gut that we will be facing a catastrophic, TEOTWAWKI collapse event, you should identify your bug out location NOW and move there! The safety and lives of your family depend on it.  After the SHTF, everyone will be heading for the hills!

Planning Your Bug Out Location

On this Thursday’s special edition of Prepping for Tomorrow, Bobby will discuss his plans for Plateau Preppers with you, his fellow preppers.
For Social Media, visit www.BobbyAkart.com
Join us for “Prepping For Tomorrow” “LIVE SHOW” every Thursday 9:00/Et 8:00Ct 6:00/Pt Go To Listen and Chat

Listen to this broadcast or download “Planning Your Bug Out Location” in player below!

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Archived shows Prepping For Tomorrow at bottom of THIS PAGE!

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Why Preppers Need To Know About Oxygen Concentrators

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ConcentratorIf you are in good health, or don’t go to doctors very often, you may not think much about prepping for extreme medical emergencies. In fact, most people thinking about the medical part of their stockpile tend to limit themselves to supplies related to wound care, basic medications, and a few herbs to manage some of the more commonly discussed illnesses.

There are reasons for adding an oxygen concentrator to your stockpile and keeping basic information about them in mind.

This includes knowing how to supply power to them in case of a major emergency in which conventional electricity may not be available for days or longer.

Why You Need an Oxygen Concentrator

At its simplest, an oxygen concentrator is a device that takes regular air in and then releases oxygen in a higher concentration that what is found in room air. This has an immense benefit to people who have lung problems that make it difficult for enough oxygen to enter the body. When there is more oxygen going in, then more gets into the blood, and then to organs and tissue.

Even though oxygen is not a cure for lung disease, it enables these people to live better lives, and also extends life as long as the lungs do not get worse or other problems elsewhere in the body do not develop.

If you are able to get enough oxygen from regular air, there is very little reason to need a concentrator. But a crisis situation can easily change your paradigm. Before using oxygen, make sure you understand how to measure appropriate levels for your needs, and remember that oxygen, like any other medication, can be dangerous if you don’t know what you are doing.

  • Everything from earthquakes to major fires will cause enormous amounts of dust, light debris and toxins to enter the air, and cause damage to the lungs. Not having a viable respirator system may lead you to needing extra oxygen in order to survive and maintain a basic standard of living. Keep a portable oximeter device on hand so that you can find out how much oxygen is in your blood: as long as your numbers are over 93 – 96%, you should not need to use oxygen.
  • Today, very few people talk about the hazards of biowarfare, despite the fact that more and more terrorists make their way into the United States, and use bioweapons into the air. If you are facing a major epidemic without getting help from trained medical professionals, access to oxygen remains one of the most important keys to surviving the situation.
  • Throughout time, there are always people that believe the human world is going to end in a major crisis. In some cases, these people wind up being partially right because the nations they live in collapse or some disaster occurs that wipes out large numbers of people. On the other hand, the ancient equivalent of modern preppers may also wind up watching political and other events for decades before their plans actually need to be put into action. During the passage of time, you may easily go from a healthy, powerful young person to a fragile elderly person that may require more help than you may have ever dreamed possible. Failure to consider oxygen generation in your plans may be a serious problem that will be harder to correct later on, especially if you have not fully developed your energy generation plans.
  • Given the way people are getting sicker at earlier stages in life these days, do not assume that you can get by without oxygen in a major crisis, or that you can wait a few years before working on this aspect of your plans. At the very least, if you start thinking about this now, you can keep some basic field information on hand to use to your advantage.

What to Choose?

There are basically two kinds of oxygen concentrators available to consumers today. While both utilize the same basic mechanism, they have different values in terms of survival and medical needs

  • Home Oxygen Concentrator – basically, a home based oxygen concentrator comes in the form of a big box that makes a good bit of noise. While they are meant to be plugged into an AC wall outlet, they can also be powered by a DC battery in an emergency situation. If you decide to purchase a home concentrator, you will find they are relatively cheap compared to other kinds. Just be sure to buy several suitable batteries so that you can power the system up in time of need. In many cases, even if you cannot power the concentrator directly, you may still be able to charge up the batteries and then run the concentrator off that.
  • Portable Oxygen Concentrator – not so long ago, when people needed oxygen at home, they could not go out unless they had a tank to dispense oxygen. These tanks would usually last for 3 – 4 hours depending on how much oxygen needed to be dispensed at a time. While tanks are still used as a backup system, there is no way to refill them at home. A portable oxygen concentrator is basically a much smaller version of a home oxygen concentrator. They are usually very quiet when operating and can fit into a pocketbook or shoulder harness. As may be expected, these devices primarily run on batteries, although some can also be plugged in. From a prepping point of view, these devices may seem more useful than larger home oxygen concentrators. It should be noted, however, that portable concentrators cost almost twice as much, and there is very little indication that they are as durable as larger units. That being said, if you are looking to build a mid-weight bug out bag, or want something to include in a vehicle based bug out system, a portable oxygen concentrator will definitely have advantages that cannot be obtained by purchasing larger units.

How Do Oxygen Concentrators Work?

Basically, an oxygen concentrator takes air in, and then runs the air through a canister of zeolite crystals before sending it to the recipient. At the start of the cycle, air is taken in and fed into a compressor. From there, the air is fed into a canister of zeolite crystals until the pressure inside the cylinder is almost 1 ½ times greater than room air. As the pressure increases, the zeolites absorb nitrogen, but not oxygen.

Since regular air is made up of almost 80% nitrogen and about 20% oxygen, removing this one gas element leaves a much higher amount of oxygen in the canister. The gas is released into a reservoir where pressure returns back to normal before being released to the recipient. As oxygen is released into the reservoir, pressure also drops in the first canister. It is then fed into a second canister and released back out into the environment.

Even though concentrators are very good at removing nitrogen from the air, they cannot remove carbon dioxide and other gases. As such, it is impossible for most concentrators to supply 100% pure oxygen. While modern concentrators are much more efficient, older ones that may be available at a lower price may not work as well or be as useful for other purposes. This includes using concentrators as a source of oxygen for oxyacetylene torches and other welding equipment.

If you are interested in using concentrators for alternative applications, do your research carefully and take the time to find someone that actually knows what they are doing before experimenting. Oxygen is a key catalyst for fire, and as such, you should always be extremely careful in its presence.

What Are the Alternatives on the Market?

Before modern concentrators became available, there were other ways to provide higher levels of oxygen in both home and other settings. Basically, there are two other ways to obtain oxygen:

  • Pre-filled oxygen tanks – Welders, and even hospitals and other medical facilities still rely on huge tanks of oxygen as opposed to using concentrators. Typically, these tanks are also refilled from a larger tank that is filled up using some other method. Today, there are home based systems that can also be used to fill up tanks at home. Unfortunately, these devices are more expensive than home oxygen concentrators. It should also be noted that a concentrator is much safer to have around than a bunch of oxygen tanks. Among other things, if you are in a crash, a fire, or some other disaster, crushing or damaging an full oxygen tank can be very dangerous. That being said, if you need absolutely quiet oxygen delivery, it may still be of some use to make sure you have a few tanks on hand.
  • Liquid oxygen systems – Basically, a liquid oxygen system compacts oxygen into its liquid form at an extremely cold temperature. When oxygen is needed, some of the liquid is passed through a tube and allowed to warm up. Since gaseous oxygen takes up much more space, the reservoir for breathable oxygen is much larger than the bottom reservoir. Usually, when people have a home based liquid oxygen system, then can also fill up smaller portable units that weigh a little over 10 pounds. Unlike concentrators, a liquid oxygen system cannot simply take oxygen from room air and compress it. Instead, the lower tank must be refilled by a service company on a regular basis. With regard to prepping, there is very little in the way of advantage to these systems. You cannot refill them, nor can the tanks simply lay around for weeks or months without maintenance. In fact, if you do not use a liquid oxygen system on a regular basis, it will simply vent oxygen into the air until all of the liquid form is gone.

Are Oxygen Concentrators Compatible With Social Collapse Survival Goals?

If you do not have a choice in terms of how your body gets oxygen, then there is no question that you will need to have a functional concentrator at all times. On the other hand, even if you can generate power for them, there are some distinct disadvantages.

  • House oxygen concentrators tend to be noisy. There is no mistaking the boom whoosh sound of a concentrator, let alone the sound of the motor as it runs around the clock. If you live in an apartment building, or any other area where sound carry long distances, this can be a problem in a crisis situation. Without a question, anyone looking for a place to rob will hear the sound of the concentrator running and realize that you have electricity, and that you may also have other things of value. This problem can be overcome when you choose the quietest concentrators on the market. Typically, these are portable versions that will also take less energy to operate.
  • In today’s economy, it is very hard to find 1500 to 3000 in extra money to pay for a concentrator and enough batteries to ensure the unit can run around the clock. As important as a concentrator may be, you are likely to put this as something in your advanced plan and acquisition category as opposed to something that you want to purchase while you are still looking for ways to meet basic food, water, and shelter needs.
  • You will need to learn a number of diverse skills in order to get the most from a home concentrator. This includes knowing when you should use oxygen and how much. It is also very important that you know how the lungs work and how to manage oxygen generating equipment. Even though a good bit of this information is available in medical courses and some online locations, you have to put in at least some effort to make sure that you know what you are doing.

How Can I Best Prepare for an Oxygen Emergency?

Overall, the best thing you can do is start off by realizing that any crisis can generate a health emergency that requires oxygen either to help you get better or to simply keep you alive. This includes making sure that you know the symptoms of oxygen shortage as well as how best to treat them until you can gain access to more oxygen. Here are some common myths that you should do away with or be aware of in your survival plans:

  • Healthy lungs mean you will not need to worry about oxygen. No matter how fit you may be and how efficient your lungs may be, bioweapons, dust, smoke, and all kinds of lung irritants can still make supplemental oxygen absolutely necessary. While good health is very important, this is one place where a excellent health won’t help you pull completely through the situation.
  • Just because you require oxygen, that does not mean you are doomed in a crisis. No matter whether you have COPD, emphysema, lung cancer, or any number of other conditions, it is truly possible for you to survive a major crisis even if commercial power becomes unavailable. If you already have a concentrator, try to get the extra batteries that you need and focus on power generating systems that will enable you to survive the crisis.

Your next step will invariably involve purchasing at least one concentrator that works correctly plus enough rechargeable batteries to power it in time of need. Needless to say, you will also have to figure this device into any power generating plans that you may have been working on.

If you have a choice between reserving electricity for something like cooking or heating up water, you may want to reconfigure your plans so that you can run the concentrator if needed. Along with purchasing a functional concentrator, it never hurts to buy one that does not works so that you can experiment with making repairs as well as replacing newer parts with older, or vintage items that may last longer and have fewer problems.

You should also know how to generate oxygen without using a concentrator. In this step, you should know how to get all of the raw materials for electrolysis methods from natural settings. This will include scavenging for wire, different metal types for Earth batteries, and making sure that you can feed the oxygen into a suitable container.

Oxygen Concentrators and Respirators

It is very important to note that an oxygen concentrator cannot filter out other gases such as carbon dioxide or any number of other toxins. While there are special filters that can be used to filter out these impurities, they must either be placed over the concentrator inlet, your will need to feed the oxygen through a respirator mask.

There are a number of ways that you can achieve this goal. Just make sure that the inlet does not allow contaminated air to get inside the mask. When you are not wearing the respirator, you will still need some way to continue taking in air from the concentrator. If you can use a cannula, this may be better, since there will be less gear on your face. This, in turn, will allow the skin on your face to breathe and also help you remain more comfortable.

Depending on your budget, you may also be able to buy a respirator that includes a pumping system and a built in concentrator. As may be expected, these devices are very expensive, and may be hard to obtain for the general consumer. That being said, you can still do some research on these devices and see if they will be of more value to you than trying to assemble different pieces of gear into a workable whole.

Things You Should Build and Test Now

Overall, it can be said that when it comes to managing oxygen in a crisis your first job will be to provide electricity. No matter whether you choose to work with electrolysis to generate oxygen from water or you choose to power a generator, making sure that you can provide enough electricity is very important.

You can always get started with wind and solar systems, or better yet, water wheels. There is also considerable room to explore gravity motors and other “archaic” engines that can be used in conjunction with magnets and coils.

Since you may be in a very weakened state in a crisis, it may not be a good idea to think you can rely on body powered devices to keep your concentrator going. Do not forget that if you come down with a very bad cold, or your lungs get damaged because of inhaling various toxins, it may not be feasible to pedal a stationary bike or any number of other devices that might otherwise be very useful.

Once you know that you can generate enough electricity on a reliable basis, your next step will be to make sure that you can keep any concentrator up and running. This includes making sure you have good troubleshooting and repair skills.

It may also be of some help to keep some items on hand that can be bartered for repair services. Make it your business today to find out if any of your friends or neighbors is a hobby electrician or even capable of fixing small appliances. Also try to find someone that enjoys bringing old technologies from ancient cultures back to life in the modern world. You truly never know who or what skills you will find in people around you until you start asking.

As you can see, oxygen concentrators are very useful devices to have on hand. If you encounter an unexpected medical emergency, they can make a difference during a crisis period in which routine medical care may not be available.

No matter whether you are facing the aftermath of a fire, earthquake, or even nuclear fallout, rest assured that air quality will be a major problem to deal with. In situations where air quality is likely to cause damage or decreased lung function, it makes perfect sense to have an oxygen concentrator on hand. Needless to say, even if you do not need the concentrator for this purpose, you may still need the oxygen for other purposes such as welding or other industrial applications.

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This article has been written by Carmela Tyrell for Survivopedia.

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Spring, getting prepared!

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Spring, getting prepared!
James Walton “I Am Liberty

Spring groundhogIt seems like every warm day in Winter is brings such a deep hope of whats to come. I don’t know about you but I experience winter fatigue about 3 days into the season. Not really. After the holidays though I do begin to climb the walls. I like to be outside and have the option to go and see and do. I love all the great things associated with Spring and its coming. The days are getting longer and I cant wait till the days are warmer.

2-22-16 GardeningWhat types of things are you planning this Spring and Summer? I want to hear from listeners and chat room folks about what you are working on for the spring and summer. I have some very clear and exciting projects that I am going to be working on and I would like to talk about them as well. Also what things didnt work for me last spring.

2-22-16 apple_tim_cookThere is a lot of news as well. I would liketo talk about the Tim Cook issue and get your thoughts on apples CEO and his decision not to forge his way into the terrorists cell phone to get information. This issue speaks to a lot more than just what is happening in this nation but all over the world.

Tom Locke: Surviving America is going to be out on February 26th! This is an incredible story about battling domestic terrorism and not turning our backs on fellow Americans, regardless of religion. Get your hands on this great book that will be available in almost a week.

Dont miss this episode of I AM liberty we are going to have a great discussion about getting motivated for the warm weather and how to take advantage of it.
Visit I Am Liberty website Go Here!
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Night Time Visitors!

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What to do if Someone Knocks at your Door in the Middle of the Night

NightImagine waking to a loud banging on your door in the middle of the night. Chances are it would be someone who just needs your help. But it could also be someone intent on causing trouble for you and your family. Do you know how to tell the difference? If it is trouble, have you talked to your family about this and do you all know what to do?

  1. Look First

Get out of bed quickly and quietly. Check that other doors are locked to prevent ambush from behind. Flip on a light in an empty room. If trouble is at the door, you may scare them off without alerting them to your location in the house. Depending on your comfort level, take your weapon with you to the door but don’t open it.

Set the chain lock on your door and quietly make sure locks are engaged. Without turning on the light, peek out a nearby window to see who is at the door. Don’t disturb blinds or curtains and alert anyone to your presence.

  1. Is it Trouble or Not?

Make a decision to either ignore the person or ask what they want. If you decide to call out, flip on the porch light first. Verify what you hear via the peephole in the door. It is possible to be shot through the door so stand to one side.

The best protection is to remain doors locked, with them on the outside. They can’t hurt you if they can’t get to you. Ask for identification from a repairman or police and then look up the number yourself and call to verify.

  1. Take Action

If you verify the person is safe, then open the door.  If not, continue to talk through the door or intercom speaker. Call help for them from inside your home. If at any time you feel unsafe, stop talking, and phone for help.

Physical Home Security Preventative Measures

Night Time Visitors!

Prevention is the most important part of home security. Before trouble comes knocking, take some preventative steps:

  • Re-install a door chain lock with LONG screws. Screws in standard door chain packages are way too short for a secure hold. Longer screws make it harder for an intruder to just push-in the door.
  • Use a one-way peephole and keep entrances visually clear. Make sure all doors have a one-way peephole. Install motion-sensor lights. Prune back bushes from entrances. Change outside light bulbs regularly so if one is out you know it’s intentional.
  • Consider installing security cameras and a speaker system. It’s never a good idea to open your door to a potential intruder. To determine intent, install a security camera so you visually see who is at the door and an intercom speaker so you can talk and hear clearly.
  • Replace your standard screen door with a heavier, security focused door with steel bars. This lets you open your main door but prevents someone pushing inside your home.
  • Store some kind of deterrent near your doors. This does not need to be your firearm but if it is, it should be in a biometric safe. Alternative deterrents could be pepper spray, a fireplace poker, or the trusty baseball bat. Make sure all family members know how to use these in the event that an intruder pushes through the door.
  • Fortify sliding glass doors. Position a solid piece of wood in the track each night. An intruder can still break the glass door but the noise will quickly alert you to trouble.
Additional Preventative Security Measures

Never make it known that you are or will be home alone. This applies to talking on the phone, to someone at the door, or even in casual daytime conversations with neighbors or sales people. If you come home alone and notice an open door or window in your home, retreat and notify authorities.

Get to Know your Neighbors. Identify neighbors you can contact when in trouble. Make sure your kids know which houses are “safe” houses. Agree to call each other if anyone in the neighborhood is alerted to an intruder outside.

Avoid being alone in common area. Schedule routine tasks like laundry so you are not alone at night in an area outside of your house.

Routinely lock all windows and doors. Check all locks each night before you go to bed. Strangers will not be able to enter as quietly if doors and windows are locked. Noise will alert you to trouble.

Develop a safety code word. Don’t use something a stranger could guess or find out by stalking you, such as your dog’s name, or street name. All family members should know how to use the code safely. Don’t give any clues. Simply ask “what is the code word or password?”

Avoid going outside. Don’t go to “check out a strange noise or person.” If you see someone breaking into a car or damaging property, report it to the police. Hit the car alarm button on your key fob. The sound will alert neighbors and may scare off an intruder.

Know how to contact help. Make sure you know the phone numbers to call for help in an emergency. Have non-emergency and phone numbers of neighbors and relatives on hand, just in case.

Know How and When to Hide or Flee. When there’s trouble, you may panic and be unable to think clearly. Identify a secure hiding place, out of sight, before trouble occurs. Keep a phone and your dog nearby, lock and barricade the door. Plan two escape routes, only flee if someone gets inside your home.

Criminals are getting smarter and more resourceful and in today’s day and age, no one can be prepared for every nighttime security issue. The tips and measures we’ve provided here can help increase the chances you come out unscathed. What other measures do you take to keep your home safe at night?

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The 12 Tools You Need For Survival

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If there were only 12 things you could take with you in a survival situation what would those be? If you take a close look at you basic needs you will come up with a list of essential things you must have before bugging out or bugging in. But that’s not all!

Check out the infographic bellow to find out the 12 tools you nee and let us know in the comments before if you’d add anything else to the list!

Survival Kit

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This article has been written by Brenda E. Walsh for Survivopedia.

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4 Emergency Preparation Tips to Review With Your Family

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4 Emergency Preparation Tips When you prepare for a potential disaster, it’s hard to know what to share with your kids and what to keep to yourself. You don’t want to worry them, but at the same time, if an emergency arises, you want to know that your kids know what to do. These four […]

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Fire Survival: The Escape Plan To Save Your Life

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Fire EscapeUsually, approximately 40% of the fires that burst in populated areas result in death, which could be avoided if people used some other option than staying in their room, hiding in a closet, or even under the bed. If you do not try to escape using a viable plan for that escape, you will find yourself trapped in a burning building.

Did you know that all fires start when you don’t pay attention to flammable surfaces, flammable objects, and heat sources? And a fire cannot happen without the three parts of the fire triangle: heat, oxygen, and fuel?

You need to be realistic about escaping from fire. Movies and TV shows can make it look like you can get out of a fire in a matter of minutes or seconds. In real life, when the building is fully engulfed and smoky, you need more time and it takes much more than expected. Do not give up, and always keep trying.

7 Steps to Prepare for a Fire Escape

  1. You need a fire escape plan.

Your ability to get out of a burning structure depends upon advance warning from smoke alarms and advanced planning, and everyone in your home should help make the basic fire plan. Households with children need to draw a floor plan of the home showing at least two ways out of each room including windows and doors.

When you have visitors, make sure they are easily aware of your family’s fire escape plan. If you go to other individuals’ homes, be sure that you know their escape plans in the event of an emergency. If they do not have one, offer to assist them in making one.

  1. Install fire alarms

Walk through your home and inspect all possible exits and escape routes, and mark the spots of each fire alarm. Smoke alarms has to be installed in every sleeping room and each level of your home, and also in the kitchens, garages, attics, basements, furnace and utility rooms.

  1. Declutter your escape areas

If you live in a small apartment, or tend to have a lot of clutter around, put up signs on every door and window that serve as a fire escape exit. Clear these areas out and keep them clean, or at least make it easier to get out of them in a time of need.

Ironically, many fires start around the holiday season and start around Christmas trees and other decorations that may have faulty wiring or other problems. Most of these decorations are also placed in front of windows that could have been used as a fire escape. So you better get a smaller tree and put it someplace where it will not impede escaping from a fire.

Remember that just because you follow safe fire rules, that does not mean your neighbors will, which means you may still need that window that is blocked by decorations because there will be no way to get through the doors.

If you have security bars on your windows and doors, it is imperative to make sure that these bars have emergency release devices inside so that they can be opened immediately in an emergency. Emergency release devices will not compromise the security of your home, but they will increase your chances of safely escaping from a building fire.

  1. Have an outside meeting place

Designate an outside meeting place. This could be a neighbor’s house, light post, mailbox or a stop sign, and must be a safe distance in front of your home, and also a place where everyone can meet after they’ve escaped. Mark this meeting place on your escape plan.

  1. Make your home easy to find for the firefighters

Make sure your outside street numbers are clearly visible from the road. If not, paint them on the curb or install reflective house numbers to ensure that responding emergency personnel can find your home.

If you do not have 911 in your area, make sure that everyone memorizes the emergency phone numbers for the fire department so that anyone can call once safely outside.

  1. Care for the weak and pets

If your family has infants, older adults, or family members with mobility limitations, have someone assigned to assist them in the fire drill and in the event of an actual emergency. They should be assigned a backup person in the event the primary is not home during the emergency.

If you have family pets, designate certain members of the family to be responsible for them in the event of a fire, and also when you have practice drills. As with children, older adults, or disabled individuals, you must have alternate individuals to get your pets out of the house in the event of a fire.

  1. Expect the unexpected

Whenever you hear the fire alarm go off be prepared for a real fire. When the fire alarm sounds get out immediately.

Once you are out, stay out, and don’t go back into a burning building. If someone is missing inform the fire department, and let the firefighters do the rescue, as they have the proper skills and equipment.

Why You Must Test Your Fire Plan

Once you create what looks like a viable escape plan, everyone affected by it needs to understand it and what needs to be done. Practicing your fire escape plan at least twice a year will help you solve in advance a lot of problems that a real fire would cause. Let’s make a short assessment of what these problems could be.

  1. How long does it take to escape from a burning house?

Make the drill as realistic as possible without actually starting a fire. Use timed drills, and always look for ways to make your plans more efficient.

  1. How are we going to make it if we’re scared?

Allow the children to master the fire escape plan before holding a fire drill, especially if those drills happen at night or when they are sleeping. The objective is to reduce the odds of panic or fear in an actual fire crisis. Tell children that there will be a fire drill before they go to bed, so that they will be more prepared. If they have been practicing with you during both light and dark hours, the actual drill should go smoothly. This will also help them be less frightened when they are suddenly awakened by a fire alarm and it is not a drill.

  1. Are we going to hear the fire alarm?

Determine during the fire drill whether the children and others can really be awaken by the sound of the smoke alarm. If they are not, assign someone to wake them up as part of the drill and in real life emergency situation.

  1. How do we know which escape route to choose?

Choose the safest escape route from the house, with the least amount of smoke and heat, and be prepared to escape under toxic smoke conditions if necessary. When you practice your fire drill, everyone in the family should practice getting as low as possible and going under the smoke to your escape exit. If you close doors on your way out, this will help slow the spread of the fire and smoke, giving you and your family more time to get to safety.

  1. What if the fire and smoke are blocking my escape route?

In some cases, smoke or fire may prevent you from exiting your home or apartment. Prepare for this by to sealing yourself in for safety as part of your home fire escape plan. Close all doors between you and the fire. Use duct tape or towels to seal the door cracks and cover the air vents to keep the smoke from coming in. If possible open a window so that the top and bottom are open to permit fresh air to come into the room. Most importantly, call the fire department to report your exact location. Use a flashlight or a light color cloth at the window to let the fire department know exactly where you are located.

Video firs seen on TualatinValleyFire

How Easy Is to Escape from Tall Buildings During Fire?

If you live in a multi-story apartment building or high rise you should have a copy of the building’s evacuation plan, which should illustrate what the residents are supposed to do in event of an emergency. These plans should be posted in areas where all residents can see and review it. Most well-managed buildings should hold a fire drill at least once a year. In most states it is also required that buildings periodically test their fire safety systems as well. It is to your advantage to participate when your building drills take place.

When looking for an apartment or a high-rise home, look for one with an automatic sprinkler system, as these sprinklers can extinguish a home fire in less time that it takes for the fire department to arrive.

Regardless of the building size, practice is still the most important key for your family to be prepared to respond to a fire alarm. Identify all the exits in your building, and if you are using an escape plan, make sure to mark the various stairwells to use in case one is blocked by fire.

Never use the elevator in a fire! Always use the stairs to get out and make sure to practice using the stairs as part of your escape plan. If someone in your family has difficulty using stairs, plan for this in your contingency plan.

Smoke is toxic and deadly no matter what kind of structure you live in. When you hold your fire drill everyone in the family should practice getting low and going under the smoke to the exit, as we’ve already mentioned. If in a fire, all of the stairways are filled with smoke, stay in your apartment and wait for the rescue firefighters.

If you can’t exit your apartment building due to heavy smoke or fire in the hallway, be sure to call the fire department to report your exact location and gather in a room with a window to await their arrival. Remember what we’ve already said about surviving when the fire is blocking the escape route, and act accordingly.

Keep windows open at the top and bottom, but do not break the window unless rescue teams have arrived and there is no other way to get through the window. Before that time, if smoke enters the room from the outside of the building, you’ll be unable to protect yourself.

7 Tips for a Safe Escape from Fire

Always react as soon as possible when you hear the smoke alarm going off. Your top priority concern should be getting yourself and your family members out safely, and you will finally make it if you keep in mind the following advice:

Get out and take with you only people, not items

When you hear the smoke detector or alarm going off, try to exit your home as safely as possible. Do not try to grab your phone, valuables, or your other important possessions unless they are right by you and you can get them and store them in less than 30 seconds.

If it’s nighttime, yell loudly to get everybody up. You may only have a few seconds to escape safely, so ignore all secondary concerns that have nothing to do with staying alive.

Exit only if the door is safe to use

If you see smoke coming through the cracks of a door, you cannot go out that door because smoke is toxic and a fire is sure to be there. If you don’t see smoke, put the back of your hand up against the door to make sure it doesn’t feel hot. If the door feels cool, then open it slowly and pass through it.

If a door is open and there is a fire preventing you from accessing the room, close the door to protect yourself from the fire. If the door is hot, or there is smoke coming from under it, and there are no other doors to pass through, you will have to try to escape through a window.

Protect yourself from smoke

You need to protect yourself from smoke inhalation. Get low to the floor and crawl on your hands and knees to avoid the smoke, as breathing smoke get people disoriented and even render them unconscious. With this in mind, cover your nose and mouth when you have to walk by or through heavy smoke filled rooms. Place a shirt or a wet rag over your nose and mouth, but only do this if you have the time. Doing this will take a minute or so but it is worth it to be able to filter out the smoke as much as possible.

Keep towels or cloths in prominent places around the house that can be used to cover your nose and mouth if needed. Good places include near doorways so that you can just grab the towels as you leave the room.

Stop, drop, and roll if you catch on fire

In the event that your clothes catch on fire stop, drop, and roll until the flames are out. Rolling around on the floor will smother the fire quickly. Cover your face with your hands as you are rolling to protect yourself from hard objects or flames.

Don’t panic if you are trapped in!

If you are trapped and cannot escape from your home and are waiting for help to arrive, don’t panic! You may not be able to get out, but you can still take some measures to ward off smoke and stay safe. Close your door and cover all vents and cracks around it with cloth or tape to keep the smoke out for as long as you can.

If you are trapped on the second floor do what you can to get yourself to an area where people will be able to hear and see you. You can take a sheet or something else preferably white and hang it out the window to signify that you need help when the first responders get there. Put something down to prevent the smoke from coming underneath the door such as a towel, blanket, or a throw rug.

Don’t jump from the window

A two story house should have an escape ladder that can be throw out in case of a fire. If you do not have an escape ladder, then you may have to go out on the window ledge. If you have a ledge, get yourself out onto the ledge. Always face the building structure when exiting a window on the upper floor. From a second story, you may have to hang down by your arms to get closer to the ground and you can let go and fall to safety. Don’t jump from the window! The chance of seriously injuring yourself or even killing yourself is not worth jumping.

Call 911 and do the headcount

The first thing that must be done once you are outside is to call 911, then do a headcount to see if anybody is missing. Tell the first responders immediately upon their arrival if you are afraid somebody is missing. Likewise, if everyone is accounted for, then let the fire responders know so they will not be sending people in to look for others.

After calling and verifying that emergency crews are coming, it is time to check yourself and family members to make sure that there are no injuries. If there are injuries, do what you can for the injured individuals until the rescue services arrived.

How to Prevent Future House Fires

Is your home prepared for house fires? Ask this question by checking the smoke detectors to ensure that they are functioning and have fresh batteries. Be sure that your windows can be easily opened, and that the screens can quickly be removed in case of emergency. If you have windows with security bars they must have quick release devices to allow them to be opened right away. Everyone in your family should know how to open and close these windows.

If you don’t have collapsible ladders to get down in case of fire, then get them. Be sure that these ladders have been tested by a nationally recognized testing laboratories such as Underwriters in case you need them to get down from the roof.

To prevent your home from catching fire in the first place, here are some safety precautions to take:

  • Teach your children that fire is a tool, not a toy.
  • Stay in the kitchen when you are cooking, and never leave cooking food unattended.
  • Do not smoke in the house. Make sure you put out your cigarettes completely.
  • Dispose of any electronics with frayed wires which could lead to a possible fire.
  • Avoid lighting candles unless they’re directly in your sight of vision. Never leave a lighted candle unattended.
  • Always check that you have turned the gas off before leaving the kitchen.
  • Always use a gun or lighter instead of match sticks when lighting gas stoves or furnaces.

If you don’t have a fire plan for your home, make time to put up one before it’s too late.

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This article has been written by Fred Tyrell for Survivopedia.

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Prep Blog Review: When Winter Becomes Off The Grid

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prep blog reviewLiving off the grid is no piece of cake, as many of us already know. Especially when you haven’t prepped and winter rushes you straight into it.

Power outages caused by heavy snow falls are not uncommon, unfortunately, and if you want to be the least affected by them, then having an off-the-grid set of mind will surely be in your advantage.

1. Powering Your Survival Homestead

Prep 1“A perennial problem faced by suburban and rural dwellers is obtaining water in the absence of utility provided electric power. Standby generators require fuel of some type, which will eventually run out, and deep drilled wells are poorly suited for use with hand pumps of most types.

As a prepper this has always been a concern for me as I live in a rural setting, but in a house constructed with the modern “central-everything” design concepts. I do have a gasoline powered generator, and maintain supplies enough for a few weeks of continuous running. After that it’s carrying buckets to the stream.”

Read more on The Prepper Journal.

2. Dropping Out Of Society: How To Prepare For A Solo Life Off-Grid

Prep 2“Many of us dream or desire to live off-grid by ourselves, enjoying a peaceful life of solitude. But it’s easy to underestimate the difficulty of this.

Living off the grid is hard enough if you have family and other homesteaders around you. Going it alone is even more challenging. Here are some things to think about before deciding to live alone on your off-grid homestead.”

Read more on Off The Grid News.

3. Easy DIY Rocket Stove You Can Build Yourself

“There are all kinds of fancy rocket stove projects and gadgets out there that cost a lot of money. This one will only cost you about $15 bucks.”

Video first seen on An American Homestead

4. Off The Grid Limitations That No One Tells You About