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Author Topic: Any survivalists/preppers/doomsdayplanners here?  (Read 5270 times)

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Offline The Dark Raven

Re: Any survivalists/preppers/doomsdayplanners here?
« Reply #50 on: April 01, 2016, 08:30:58 PM »
"Crossbows are illegal." That is the scariest thing I heard this week. Although some of the laws in my country are as bad. Butterfly knives and switchblades are illegal. I could understand it if they had banned kitchen knives as that is the most popular killing weapon here. But in an apocalyptical scenario the last thing I will worry about is the government showing up.

They do it because crossbows are less available here, and the only option for bow season for those that are wheelchair bound.  (Keep in mind that the last time I looked at crossbow information was nearly 20 years ago, so it may have changed.)  For target shooting, it may be different, but I know it from the hunting season restrictions.  I have always preferred recurve, but have a compound bow, myself.

Offline Captain MalteseTopic starter

Re: Any survivalists/preppers/doomsdayplanners here?
« Reply #51 on: April 02, 2016, 07:20:19 AM »
They do it because crossbows are less available here, and the only option for bow season for those that are wheelchair bound.  (Keep in mind that the last time I looked at crossbow information was nearly 20 years ago, so it may have changed.)  For target shooting, it may be different, but I know it from the hunting season restrictions.  I have always preferred recurve, but have a compound bow, myself.

I have to correct myself, after doing some fine reading in the law. Crossbows are legal in my country - but you do need a permit and you have to be 18. Since I already have weapon permits it should not be much fuss to get one for this. Compound bows require no permits at all, funnily enough, and certainly not the recurve bows. However none of these weapons are legal for hunting as far as I can find. But this may change, since these kinds of weapon have increasing interest in many countries these days. There are now proper contest programs here for bow, for instance.

Offline Captain MalteseTopic starter

Re: Any survivalists/preppers/doomsdayplanners here?
« Reply #52 on: April 02, 2016, 11:14:19 AM »
Here's a nice little challenge. You and a handful of other survivors have established camp, maybe in a suitable house. On your radio you learn that a big vehicle with a number of wounded people in varying condition on board are heading your way and will arrive in about two hours. A bus or truck perhaps. Your intention is to help them; the reasons why are not relevant right now. It gives you and maybe two pairs of helping hands that much time to get a first aid station up and going. There are no ready medical supplies available beyond maybe a car first aid kit, and none of you will have proper medical qualifications. How will you prepare, knowing that some of the wounds could be from battle?

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Re: Any survivalists/preppers/doomsdayplanners here?
« Reply #53 on: April 02, 2016, 11:33:15 AM »
Here's a nice little challenge. You and a handful of other survivors have established camp, maybe in a suitable house. On your radio you learn that a big vehicle with a number of wounded people in varying condition on board are heading your way and will arrive in about two hours. A bus or truck perhaps. Your intention is to help them; the reasons why are not relevant right now. It gives you and maybe two pairs of helping hands that much time to get a first aid station up and going. There are no ready medical supplies available beyond maybe a car first aid kit, and none of you will have proper medical qualifications. How will you prepare, knowing that some of the wounds could be from battle?

(I don't have any medical training except for first aid when I was about 12, but I'll answer anyway).

I'd make sure there's a place to bring them that's clean, dry and warm, and preferably over flat ground (no stairs or long distances from where the vehicle is brought in). Make sure there are blankets, fresh water (boil it or otherwise sterilise it so it's as clean as possible), bowls/dishes, tools that might be needed, gloves if they can be found. If there's salt, extra salty water has antiseptic properties, as does alcohol (as pure as possible - it would help double for use as a painkiller). Look for bleach, natural oils (tea tree, lavender, garlic, oregano etc) in place of antiseptics  (would require water or carrier oil), sodium bicarbonate, medicines that may be in the house/can be salvaged, bandages (nothing is likely to be sterile but you have time to clean them, cut them and dry them out, which may be better than their prior state), cloths, bandaids/plasters (improvised?). A belt or two (to help stem bleeding), someone armed (in case one or more patients are a threat), and find out when the people get there if any of them are medically trained.   

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Re: Any survivalists/preppers/doomsdayplanners here?
« Reply #54 on: April 02, 2016, 03:30:34 PM »
Two hours should be enough time to sterilize bandages.  You need to boil cloth for 15 minutes to sterilize it (Cotton or other natural fibers.)

If you have one, you can use a 4-quart pressure cooker as an autoclave to pre-sterilize bandage packets.  That might not be possible within the 2-hour time window of the exercise, but would be a good technique to have in one's survival repertoire.

Offline Captain MalteseTopic starter

Re: Any survivalists/preppers/doomsdayplanners here?
« Reply #55 on: April 03, 2016, 08:40:35 AM »
Hm, this went well - I am learning from your replies. My personal education in this area are a couple of first aid lessons while in the army and in the boyscouts, and their scope didn't really extend beyond trying to stop people from bleeding to death before the medics could get there. By now that's almost 30 year ago.

My own reply was going to be something like this:
With two hours to get ready, I would be looking for a few kettles and a stove of some kind to put them on. One kettle would be dedicated to cooking medical tools, for 20 minutes before use. Beside that I would hunt down shirts and tees and other thin clothing, for striping down into bandage material. And some small flat rocks to put into the bandages for the pressure point. Then I'd hunt down the sewing kits for thread, needles and scissors and safety pins, before heading to the garage to scrounge for tools like tongs and snippers, sharp knives, hand metal saws, thin metal wires and strings, a rubber club or a hammer, and rubber gloves. From the rest of the house I'd want towels and blankets, and tea and sugar.

You ladies are improving on this grisly scene though. Amber; salt water and bleach are things I would not have thought about. Okay bleach is already in my emergency supplies but it's there to deal with toxic agents and biohazards, not to deal with wounds. Please tell more. Salt water I very dimly recall but the one guy I know whose untreated open wound had improved by it had been hanging on for his life to an overfilled life raft in the sea for two week... how much salt do you recommend per litre, I assume for washing a wound? Interesting thought there about the need for an armed guard at the station. I will keep that one in mind. Scavenged meds are something I am leary of, because it is often hard to know what they will do without a medical handbook ready. As long as Google works it's not the apocalypse yet, haha. But I'd probably put them aside at least, in case they could prove useful later on.

Oniya, a pressure cooker is an excellent idea. I know about autoclaves, but I am also familiar with the old army gas cookers who are barely bigger than a lunch box. What I had not thought about was sterilizing bandage material in one. That is so going into my emergency skill set. So is that link.

Anyone else?


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Re: Any survivalists/preppers/doomsdayplanners here?
« Reply #56 on: April 03, 2016, 11:42:27 AM »
Scavenged meds are something I am leary of, because it is often hard to know what they will do without a medical handbook ready. As long as Google works it's not the apocalypse yet, haha. But I'd probably put them aside at least, in case they could prove useful later on.

There are text versions of the Physician's Desk Reference available (standard paperback size, smaller than your average Michener novel).  If you're able to have a 'base', such a thing wouldn't be too unwieldy to have on hand.  You may not have the more cutting edge meds in there because of printing delays, but you'd have the things you're most likely to find and want to use.

Eight drops of bleach per gallon of water makes a good solution to sterilize bandages - I believe it's on that site I linked as well.
« Last Edit: April 03, 2016, 11:43:29 AM by Oniya »

Offline SmokingCamels

Re: Any survivalists/preppers/doomsdayplanners here?
« Reply #57 on: April 03, 2016, 05:55:10 PM »
On Crossbows:  Try pulling an 80 pound crossbow back and then knock a bolt, without making a fuss and blowing your cover.  The crossbow found widespread use because anyone could pick it up and use it.  It was just as effective against armor as not.  And the wounds were ridiculous.  Pope Innocent III outlawed them because of the wounds they were causing.

You needed to stand up and be able to use both arms to fire the English Longbow.  Which was, until the French started winning the 100 years war, the be all and end all of ranged weaponry.  However, the French soon figured out that a wounded, and even maimed man could sit 50 yards away from active combat and shoot the musket just fine.  He might even be able to reload it.  Whether or not he hit anything remained open to debate, but the function was still there.  The early firearm was also obnoxiously loud.  Which, given the "god fearing" nature of most commoners pressed into militia at the time, was nerve rattling.

The Crossbow's obvious downsides were the amount of time / strength required to reload it and it's relatively short range.  The faster you wanted to shoot it meant the less pull on the string, which meant less force from the bolt, which meant less impact when it struck a target.  Given that the crossbow was also a point and shoot weapon opposed to arc high and fire across the battlefield, gravity was not a crossbowman's friend, either.  There was no trajectory arc for the crossbow.  Given a modern choice?  Invest in a .22 rifle and a box of .22LR shells.  Then, take a 2 liter bottle.  Seal that bitch on the end of the barrel with some duct tape.  Congratulations.  You have a makeshift suppressor that might work for 1 or 2 shots.  Either way.  At least you're not drawing attention to yourself trying to reload a crossbow.

On Water & Fire Supplies:  Actually I made a point to mention that I keep a Zippo, lighter fluid, and a box of wooden matches in addition to my unopened pack of Bics.  Water is still easy enough to come by, depending on the disaster.  But the obvious solution is to check the faucets you come across.  Sooner or later, someone has a well.  Sooner or later someone paid their water bill before everything went to Hell, and since there was nobody around to actually press the button to have it shut off from the Utility Company's end... 

On Most Recent Scenario:  I'm vetoing whoever gave me those stupid orders.  Seriously.  That bus isn't coming anywhere near me.  I'm not wasting what extremely valuable, almost non-existent medical supplies I have at my disposal on a bus load of people targets.  There are other, better, more equipped places for them to go.  And if there isn't?  Then guess what?  The healthy and able bodied need to be kept separate from the others and not draw attachments that will ultimately, get them killed.  If there are no medical supplies to be had, and nowhere else nearby to divert that bus of people too?  They're on their own.

That said.  If there is somewhere else I can take them, or even more likely, somewhere else I can raid to get those medical supplies IN TIME, then I'll try.  I'm not cruel for no reason.  I am practical, yes.  Tactical.  Efficient.  Perhaps even callous.  But I am not needlessly cruel to sick and wounded people. 

In that type of situation, assuming I can't take what I can carry and be on my own way, what I'd do then, is turn the floor over to those most medically able.  I'd stay the hell out of their way.  And I would let the experts do what they're best at.  Which means, I'm on the "Away" team.  It'll be my job to go load up at the nearest gas station for coffee, salt, sugar, rolls of paper towels, cleaning supplies, and whatever first aid kit they've got available.  I'd also do the same for whatever garage / mechanic is nearby.  Gasoline and Oil are fuel sources.  Any place that has chemicals is also required by federal law to have an accessible first aid kit.  So, the gas stations and garages are quick ways to find alcohol, things that can be used for bandages, tools, fuel, and if you're lucky, food that hasn't spoiled.  These places are also a lot less obvious than say, a Walmart.  It's also quick and easy.  You're not going to waste time digging through overturned isles to find the one bottle of peroxide left. 

Offline Captain MalteseTopic starter

Re: Any survivalists/preppers/doomsdayplanners here?
« Reply #58 on: April 04, 2016, 04:20:21 AM »
Water will always be an issue in emergency planning. You can't carry much, and depending on the disaster the official supply lines can be very vulnerable. One main pipe busted in an explosion, the power line to the main pump and cleaning stations cut, one toxic element spread into the local environment and that tap water gets mixed with sewage with no maintenance crew left to sort it out. IF the local authorities were able to deal with that sort of thing in the first place... Flint, Michigan anyone? Rain water cannot automatically be relied on either, depending on what disasters have happened. My own initial solution is a canteen and a set of military water cleansing pills, but that is very short term. Making a water filter with the help of a small tank and gravel is more long term. Distilling water with a kettle and a pipe-rigged lid is a desperate measure unless you have time and lots of heating energy or fuel.

My bug out bag firemaking options are wood matches, fire steel and a zippo. I also keep a few small firestarter pressed wood cubes in the bag to help get a fire going,  and I have a small alcohol stove with some fuel in the set too. I also have other stoves in the extended reserves, for butane/propane gas and white fuel. As an old camping stove collector I have a few to choose from.



Hm, gas stations are the first target for looting where I live. EVERYONE would think of them. They'd be the closest shop for everyone outside the town centers. But you might be right that there could be first aid kits there that not everyone would look for after emptying the chocolate and food counters, so I will keep that in mind.

Back when I was a kid, a gas station had a few chocolate bars and coffee and coke, and otherwise it was all car parts and tools. And porn mags. The attendants were half way car mechanics. Then they started to sell hot dogs, put in sweet self service bars, coffee that had not been standing heated for hours, and the car section got smaller and smaller and smaller... today you are lucky to get windshield wipers and the salesgirl is 17 and specializes in hip hop music, but they will have enough foodstuffs there for 30 different dinners. 

Heh, alcohol would be the hardest thing to scrounge up here in my country. All sale of booze heavier than beer is done from state shops and short of banks, those places are the best protected places of all. How do I put it? Jewelry shop are broken into on a monthly basis, diesel is stolen from trucks while the drivers sleep in them, but noone have ever successfully broken into one of those monopoly stores yet in spite of whisky going for 40 dollar per bottle for the CHEAP brands. Undrinkable fuel for stoves are however available everywhere. 
« Last Edit: April 04, 2016, 04:31:10 AM by Captain Maltese »

Offline The Dark Raven

Re: Any survivalists/preppers/doomsdayplanners here?
« Reply #59 on: April 04, 2016, 11:47:51 AM »
On Crossbows:  Try pulling an 80 pound crossbow back and then knock a bolt, without making a fuss and blowing your cover.  The crossbow found widespread use because anyone could pick it up and use it.  It was just as effective against armor as not.  And the wounds were ridiculous.  Pope Innocent III outlawed them because of the wounds they were causing.

You needed to stand up and be able to use both arms to fire the English Longbow.  Which was, until the French started winning the 100 years war, the be all and end all of ranged weaponry.  However, the French soon figured out that a wounded, and even maimed man could sit 50 yards away from active combat and shoot the musket just fine.  He might even be able to reload it.  Whether or not he hit anything remained open to debate, but the function was still there.  The early firearm was also obnoxiously loud.  Which, given the "god fearing" nature of most commoners pressed into militia at the time, was nerve rattling.

The Crossbow's obvious downsides were the amount of time / strength required to reload it and it's relatively short range.  The faster you wanted to shoot it meant the less pull on the string, which meant less force from the bolt, which meant less impact when it struck a target.  Given that the crossbow was also a point and shoot weapon opposed to arc high and fire across the battlefield, gravity was not a crossbowman's friend, either.  There was no trajectory arc for the crossbow.  Given a modern choice?  Invest in a .22 rifle and a box of .22LR shells.  Then, take a 2 liter bottle.  Seal that bitch on the end of the barrel with some duct tape.  Congratulations.  You have a makeshift suppressor that might work for 1 or 2 shots.  Either way.  At least you're not drawing attention to yourself trying to reload a crossbow.

On Water & Fire Supplies:  Actually I made a point to mention that I keep a Zippo, lighter fluid, and a box of wooden matches in addition to my unopened pack of Bics.  Water is still easy enough to come by, depending on the disaster.  But the obvious solution is to check the faucets you come across.  Sooner or later, someone has a well.  Sooner or later someone paid their water bill before everything went to Hell, and since there was nobody around to actually press the button to have it shut off from the Utility Company's end... 

On Most Recent Scenario:  I'm vetoing whoever gave me those stupid orders.  Seriously.  That bus isn't coming anywhere near me.  I'm not wasting what extremely valuable, almost non-existent medical supplies I have at my disposal on a bus load of people targets.  There are other, better, more equipped places for them to go.  And if there isn't?  Then guess what?  The healthy and able bodied need to be kept separate from the others and not draw attachments that will ultimately, get them killed.  If there are no medical supplies to be had, and nowhere else nearby to divert that bus of people too?  They're on their own.

That said.  If there is somewhere else I can take them, or even more likely, somewhere else I can raid to get those medical supplies IN TIME, then I'll try.  I'm not cruel for no reason.  I am practical, yes.  Tactical.  Efficient.  Perhaps even callous.  But I am not needlessly cruel to sick and wounded people. 

In that type of situation, assuming I can't take what I can carry and be on my own way, what I'd do then, is turn the floor over to those most medically able.  I'd stay the hell out of their way.  And I would let the experts do what they're best at.  Which means, I'm on the "Away" team.  It'll be my job to go load up at the nearest gas station for coffee, salt, sugar, rolls of paper towels, cleaning supplies, and whatever first aid kit they've got available.  I'd also do the same for whatever garage / mechanic is nearby.  Gasoline and Oil are fuel sources.  Any place that has chemicals is also required by federal law to have an accessible first aid kit.  So, the gas stations and garages are quick ways to find alcohol, things that can be used for bandages, tools, fuel, and if you're lucky, food that hasn't spoiled.  These places are also a lot less obvious than say, a Walmart.  It's also quick and easy.  You're not going to waste time digging through overturned isles to find the one bottle of peroxide left.

On water and fire:  For water, nothing is clad in steel.  You are lucky if infrastructure continues past the event.  Keep actual water (a few gallons for the first day, per person), and then purifying equipment (a tarp, some duct tape or rope) for after, and always travel by inland streams and lakes for the easiest purification.  Fire is best had by flint and steel.  It doesn't wear out and people have been using them for a very long time.  You flint wears out?  It's in the ground, where you can get more.

Regarding places to find supplies, look for the more obscure places in that scenario.  Walmart or a quickie mart are going to be the first places hit every time due to visibility.  Torn cloth, a good knot, and naturally antibiotic materials (honey, if you luck out on antibiotic cream, lye soap) are going to be your best friend. 

Offline Captain MalteseTopic starter

Re: Any survivalists/preppers/doomsdayplanners here?
« Reply #60 on: April 05, 2016, 08:24:04 AM »
From the Lord Of The Rings:
Sam eased the pack on his shoulders, and went over anxiously in his mind all the things that he had stowed in it, wondering if he had forgotten anything: his chief treasure, his cooking gear; [] linen; various small belongings of his master's that Frodo had forgotten and Sam had stowed to bring them out in triumph when they were called for. He went through them all.

"Rope!" he muttered. "No rope! And only last night you said to yourself: 'Sam, what about a bit of rope? You'll want it, if you haven't got it.' Well, I'll want it. I can't get it now."


Rope. Is it part of your gear?

Personally I do reason like Sam in this matter; rope is vital. My primary plan in a disaster scenario is to get the hell out of Dodge before it burns down and I consider it essential. In my bug out bag alone I have two fresh ropes of 15 meters length each (almost 50 feet) with a breaking point of 650 kilo (about 1400 lbs) plus a handful of carabine hooks.  I also have a good pair of gloves specifically intended to help me deal with the rope. All this isn't specialist gear for climbers, just stuff from the hardware store. I still lack some of the things I want for this, like a small grappling hook and a few bolts and a small strong block and tackle set, but all things in time and as the budget allows.

There are a thousand uses for a bit of good rope, but the most important reasons I am adding it to the weight and volume of my pack is to help me scale moderate obstacles like cliffs, walls, smaller rivers, and hoist my gear after me. It will also come in very handy for rigging up my tarp into a tent or shelter. I am not an experienced climber but I am an experienced construction yard worker and I think I could put this type of equipment into good use.
« Last Edit: April 05, 2016, 08:31:05 AM by Captain Maltese »

Offline Captain MalteseTopic starter

Re: Any survivalists/preppers/doomsdayplanners here?
« Reply #61 on: April 24, 2016, 09:36:05 AM »
Okay, new topic. You face the apocalypse with one and only one blade or tool. Which will it be? Axe, combat knife, multitool, butcher knife, sharpened e-tool, any other preference?

For my part it will be a combat knife of utter simplicity; full tang good grip and not too finicky steel quality because sharpening will have to happen eventually. And it looks nasty too, which has a bonus in a potential fight because I'll rather have an enemy back off than receive a few cuts while he tries to win - and also, because I would rather win than lose and most multitools are near useless in a fight.

Offline Far eyes

Re: Any survivalists/preppers/doomsdayplanners here?
« Reply #62 on: April 24, 2016, 09:46:46 AM »
A chain saw i have strapped to my wrist, and a lot of LSD...   seems like a good short term plan.

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Re: Any survivalists/preppers/doomsdayplanners here?
« Reply #63 on: April 24, 2016, 09:47:16 AM »
A lightsaber.  ;D

Offline Aiden

Re: Any survivalists/preppers/doomsdayplanners here?
« Reply #64 on: April 24, 2016, 10:35:26 AM »
Small crowbar

Good for bashing, building and demo.

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Re: Any survivalists/preppers/doomsdayplanners here?
« Reply #65 on: April 24, 2016, 10:59:35 AM »
Swiss Army Knife - not the overly-huge unwieldy ones, but the one I can comfortably wrap my hand around.  In addition to all of the standard uses (including 'making more tools'), you can also drop it in a sock and make a bludgeoning weapon.

Offline Cycle

Re: Any survivalists/preppers/doomsdayplanners here?
« Reply #66 on: April 24, 2016, 12:00:30 PM »
A felling ax.  It'll help me make shelters and other weapons (e.g., spears), as well as break into places.

Offline SmokingCamels

Re: Any survivalists/preppers/doomsdayplanners here?
« Reply #67 on: April 28, 2016, 06:01:56 AM »
Once again more cringing on this.  But it has more to do with the scenario.  It assumes I am a moron and do not understand the 7 Ps.  What are the 7 Ps?  Proper. Prior. Planning. Prevents. Piss. Poor. Performance.  Catching me in the newest type of situation is... for lack of better terms, more or less impossible.

But for the sake of playing along.

The Axe isn't a bad choice, but this early on, a hatchet is just a bit better.  It's lighter and faster.  At this stage you're not doing anything where you need to focus on chopping trees down or trying to chop through an urban fire door.  The Gerber tool is also an obvious choice.  How useful a lot of those things on there are... like, the can opener and the wire snips.  Those things are insanely useful.  But they're only useful when you actually need that particular item on the spot.  Any other time, they're useless.  And the tiny tiny blade?  In a fight?  Really?  What are you going to do?  Scratch me on the arm once when I lead with it just to draw out that feeble attack and then -assuming I am unarmed- grab that knife arm with my follow up?  I'm the kinda guy that for giggles, would scratch you back with that dinky knife and be all, "See!  See!  I told you!  Now look at you.  You're all scratched up.  How do you like it?  Gonna make some stupid scars you'll have to explain and that's it."

The Crowbar is the best choice mentioned so far.

I concur with it.

But I would also be completely okay with one of those heavy duty metal flashlights like the police used to carry.  The kind that took 4 D batteries and could survive being dropped off the Empire State Building?  Yeah.  :D

And for the sake of humor?  I'll take my bowl and a lighter.  It's still packed so I'm good.  :P

Offline Captain MalteseTopic starter

Re: Any survivalists/preppers/doomsdayplanners here?
« Reply #68 on: May 07, 2016, 07:35:21 AM »
First of all I want to express my sympathy to the more than 90.000 Canadians who are facing their personal apocalypse and have been evacuated in the Fort Murray area, due to the raging fires which so far have claimed 1600 homes - the numbers can be expected to rise to even the double. The fire services do NOT have control and some people have been evacuated several times as the initial evacuation areas have been eaten up by the expanding fire zones. For us living in safety this event should be a lesson that our safety is not granted just because war or earthquakes are not currently an issue.

The next challenge then - I loved all your previous answers btw - is packing food for a two week emergency absence with no guarantees of resupplying anything but water before arrival. To be carried in your backpack, together with clothes and other necessities, which you will have to carry on your back while heading to safety. What do you bring? You have just time enough to grab supplies from your own shelves, so no shopping. Chief issues should be weight and volume.... I think. Prove me wrong.

Offline NiceTexasGuy

Re: Any survivalists/preppers/doomsdayplanners here?
« Reply #69 on: May 26, 2016, 12:45:12 PM »
I avoid thinking in terms of labels like survivalist or prepper because of the negative connotations fostered by the popular media & etc on people who are intelligent enough to be prepared for emergencies.  Modern society (in the U.S. at least) seems to have the view that "if it's never happened before, it can't happen" - while forgetting the hundreds of times it has happened before.  Civil unrest, severe weather, forest fires, even losing one's job.  Of course Big Brother and Dancing with the Stars are important, but during the commercials, put a little thought into what you'll do if the power goes off.

It is (probably) impossible to plan for every possible contingency - the idea is to be generally prepared with things you're likely to need in any disaster, develop a mindset of survival, add survival skills to your toolbox, then think about those things most likely to happen and specific preparations you can make to deal with them.

If I'm going to hunker down in place, it's good to know I have rifle, shotgun, pistol, and billions of rounds for each, along with a thousand gallons of water, chainsaw with spare fuel, etc etc etc.  If I need to travel, my vehicle will carry a lot of this.  If I need to walk out, something's getting left behind.  Yet, every self confessed expert will pick apart anything anyone has done in order to prepare, even though perfect preparation is not possible.

What can the average person do to enhance his or her chance of survival -- or perhaps not be entirely miserable while waiting for the lights to come back on or the 18-wheelers to deliver food to the local grocery store?

Water.  In gallon jugs.  Expiration dates on water might seem silly, but even if the water is relatively safe to drink, the plastic is not made to last a long time. It will break down.  Trust me on this.

A means to purify water.  Iodine tablets, household bleach, filters.  Read up on how to do it before the internet goes down.

Food.  You can spend hundreds on prepackaged survival food, but the idea here is the average person like you or me living paycheck to paycheck.  Every trip to the grocery store, buy a couple of extra items to store away for emergency.  Canned veggies - beans are the best, but variety is good for the soul.  Comfort food is good for the soul, too.  Potato chips, Reeces pieces.  Don't forget a manual can opener - preferably not one made in China (if you can find it.)  Rotate your stock occasionally, or else five years from now when forced to eat that can of beans, you won't have to wonder if it's safe because it expired three years earlier.

Toilet paper, and a place for that stuff to go if your water supply is interrupted.  Plastic bag in a bucket, maybe?

Light.  Candles, lighters, flashlights, batteries.  Try to remember where they are so you can find them in the dark with just your cell phone for light.

Kids?  Something to keep them entertained when their tablets are out of juice or the internet is down.  Books.  Coloring books.  Board games (good for adults, too.)

Now, at this point I could go on and on, and make it look like so many other sites that try to prepare you for every eventuality on your ten thousand dollar survival budget.  But I won't.  The idea is not to overwhelm, but to get started.  Next trip to the grocery store, what are you going to get that you wouldn't have gotten otherwise, and where are you going to put it when you get home?

Offline Lapine

Re: Any survivalists/preppers/doomsdayplanners here?
« Reply #70 on: May 31, 2016, 07:06:06 AM »
"Stuff" is good but skills are essential.  I think one of the best things you can do to prepare is to learn how to do things the "old fashioned" way.  Learn to garden and butcher an animal; learn how to can your own food; learn how to find and purify water; learn basic medicine; learn herbal lore; basically re-learn all the things our ancestors did to survive.  If you have older relatives or friends with these skills, hit them up and have them teach you; take a class, read books; check the internet while you still have it.  Knowledge is something that can't be taken away or lost and if it's paired with good equipment, you'll have the best chance.

Offline Captain MalteseTopic starter

Re: Any survivalists/preppers/doomsdayplanners here?
« Reply #71 on: June 15, 2016, 09:18:43 AM »
Here's a very basic tool that I think many are familiar with: the P-38 can opener.



It weighs nothing, costs practically nothing, takes no room and is immensely useful. While it was created to be a tool for opening military canned rations you can use it as a makeshift screwdriver, cutting edge, awl, what have you. And it will fit on your key ring or dog tag chain. And for those saying that they have a very nice can opener on their folding knife already I have one question: Have you actually tried to open a can with it?



If you don't have an army surplus story nearby, don't worry - budget stores with decent sports gear and camping gear selections often offer some version of these for a couple of dollars, and then you probably get two of them.
« Last Edit: June 15, 2016, 09:20:49 AM by Captain Maltese »

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Re: Any survivalists/preppers/doomsdayplanners here?
« Reply #72 on: June 15, 2016, 11:39:08 AM »
And for those saying that they have a very nice can opener on their folding knife already I have one question: Have you actually tried to open a can with it?

Yes.  Many times when the rotary one decides it's going to be cantankerous and 'skip' on me.  (Pardon the pun - it was that or 'cranky'.)

Offline WindVoyager

Re: Any survivalists/preppers/doomsdayplanners here?
« Reply #73 on: August 19, 2016, 08:13:41 PM »
Been a prepper for a good number of years. Back home we lived on a flood pain bu the house set up on a hill so we were pretty safe when the area around flooded. Now I live in Louisiana and with all the flooding I've been preparing for that and with the economy on the collapse and the stock market crash coming next month, I've been prepping big time.

I have a seed vault, stock piling non perishables, stocking up on gas for the generator and truck, stock piled food for the cats and chickens. Will eat the old hens I have to since they don't lay any more and just eat and crap.

The one thing that bugs the crap out of me is all these "prepper" vids on youtube are people pushing very expensive gear stating you have to have it or hinting you have to have it.

Offline Captain MalteseTopic starter

Re: Any survivalists/preppers/doomsdayplanners here?
« Reply #74 on: August 20, 2016, 06:42:56 AM »
Yeah, it's amazing how many of those equipment touting blogs and videos have more than a whiff of marketing about them. But then, that's how magazines have earned money on 'reviews' since the dawn of paper. My own heap of gear is getting on the heavy side but there's hardly more than an item or two who cost me serious money. In fact I have found it to be a motivation in itself, to scrounge for inexpensive items to fill the slots. Sort of survival training in itself. Which is why my bugout bag 'tent' is a three dollar tarp and a ball of thin rope.

Windvoyager, I assume the seeds are for the hens?

Has the floodings reached your area yet?