Posts Tagged ‘prepping’

Preppin in Style

Posted: June 20, 2015 in Ideas
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

As preppers we are focused on getting ourselves and our families ready for whatever may come. But 9 times out of 10 we are ready and willing to talk about (and sometimes defend) what we do and why we do it.

I’m of the opinion that the more people who know the truth, and realize the situations that could happen so easily, the better. I’m all in favor of a well informed public.

I’ve created a line of AWESOME clothing and accessories to help those conversations start just a little bit easier. At the very least, it allows you to show pride and belief in what you do.

Always adding more to the collection, so keep checking back!

tee2bg cap tee


Ok, the title is not meant to be offensive in any way… some ghettos are very nice. But if you are like me, having extra funds to put into prepping just IS NOT in the budget! Here are a few ideas I’ve found from around the web that will literally cost you NOTHING!

1.) Making your long term food storage last longer!
 2 (and 3 where you can get them) liter soda bottles. Okay, this is genius! Storing rice, beans and even various types of flour or sugars in the bottles gives you an air tight seal and gives you a very easy way to label them!cleaned-soda-bottle






2.) Fishing on a TIGHT budget

There are two types of fish hooks that are easy to make and use, the first one, a gorge hook,Gorge_Hook1 can be made from virtually any material (metal, stone, even wood) and is a fast simple and highly useful tool that needs no pole… just a bit of string or fishing wire. Apparently it’s designed to lodge in the fish’s belly once bait is swallowed.

A recycled soda can tab can also be fashioned into a more modern looking life-saving-life-hacks871147862-jan-30-2014-1-600x450hook, using some clippers or even by sharpening it on a rough stone or other similar surface. Again, no pole required, but I’d suggest having bait unless you’re willing to wait all day for your dinner to just mosey on by…


3) Lighting the way
I’ve seen some pretty cool items that are for sale out there in the way of lighting for emergencies, but if I know myself, that’s probably the area I’ll be caught unprepared! Luckily, if I have one or more of the following items with me, and a lighter, I should be alright for a little while!

Lard lights – yeah this is news to me, but once you think about it, duh! Of course! If you have string, olive oil, butter or lard/crisco/vegetable oil you have light! Apparently even an old can of saved bacon grease or beef drippings will do the trick! (If you are not from the south, those of us who are can explain bacon grease…it’s a beautiful flavoring!)  
                       make-macgyver-style-emergency-butter-candle-burns-for-hours.w654 sardine-lamp478x640_ac


30 minute crayon candles acd946faa3ba7d53b8cf9fe30e4a3d74Well now this would likely make your kids cry, but if they are scared of the dark it’s kind of a win-lose… sorry. No wick needed! Just set the crayon on a non-flammable surface (I’d light the end a bit to get it nice and sticky first) and light-er-up! Each crayon will burn about 30 minutes! If you have one of those deluxe packs you could go for days!


4.) Refrigerate without electricity
This is cool, literally, and while here in the south it’s not as great as a Kenmore or Whirlpool during the dog days of summer, it’s still a viable option and it’s older than electricity itself!  All you need is a shovel, a large enough container (or containers) to store some semi-perishables in (terracotta pots, steel drums, heck even an old, non-working deep freeze) and a little muscle. Just pick a nice preferably shady (if you’re in the south) spot and start digging! Bury your container(s) of choice and for best and coolest results, spread some dirt over the top of the fridge, just be sure to mark your spot if you can no longer see it! There you go, meat locker or root vegges, I’ve even seen that you can put peppers and tomatoes inside, but no guarantee on the shelf life of those soft foods down there!      
                                                                                                                        215e49ee0ba8558e3b07719c15b6b5c6 1615613591_3bf4c00380_z Plastic-Pail-Root-Cellar-537x416







5.) Firestarters
Sodiyfirestarter_sourcedme of this I learned being my son’s Assistant Cub Scout Den Leader, others are just ideas compounded on the basic concept. As we all know, dryer lint is EXTREMELY flammable. And who doesn’t have some dryer lint lying around? (Even if you use a Launrdo-Mat, you can collect tons of the stuff) another thing America has a surplus of is empty toilet and paper-towel rolls…. put the two together and voila! Instant fire starter! Slightly more portable, are the wax or petroleum gel covered cotton balls or pads. The cotton balls are an easy (and kinda fun) activity the entire family can do together! Those things that look kinda like cookies? Those are these things covered in wax!

Store in a 139470919680526373ubfgkOyAc92naa51eeede4ed3aaZiploc baggie and you’ve got an instant, lightweight way to start a fire!





6.) DIY Emergency Blanket

Not long ago my (then) 9 year old daughter experienced a revelation; “Mom! I figured out how blankets work! I warm it up for it to keep me warm!” she cried! Yup… I guess it made her wonder why blankets were never already warm when she picked them up, but grew warmer the longer she used it… any how, even extremely warm days can lead to chilly nights and hypothermia is no joke! This is so easy and simple it floored me! All you need are several empty (clean) potato chip bags and a roll of duct-tape! Carefully cut the bags down the back seam, opening them flat and duct-tape (both sides) edges together… instant emergency blanket! 6 regular size chip bags makes a 3×5 foot blanket. Mylar balloons would take a bit more work, but would produce the same result (and for a kid, would be totally cooler on one side!)





7.) Emergency Shelter

There are several ways you can do this and anyone who has watched Bear Grylls or Survivor man can tell you all the different things in nature you can use to make a quick and efficient lean to. However not all of us are gifted with MacGyver genes, so we use what we know. I don’t know one redneck anywhere that doesn’t have at least one tarp and a length of rope. If you have those things you have a home. Now the pictures I have posted below are obviously a one man dwelling, but in the event you have a larger party to shelter, just use some of that duct-tape and create yourself a family size dwelling using several large tarps, some sticks, a tree and some rope.(Tree optional)

2bdb56c59efea06fd1b6cb01ac77bd8d tarp-shelter-620x330





As you can see here, this concept was used to create an entire neighborhood during the reparations of the earthquake in Haiti in 2010. 






That’s all i have for the moment, but there are so many other DIY cheap or free survival hacks out there! I’ll post more in the future! If you have a survival hack that I’ve missed, you’re welcome to post it in the comments! Stay Safe!

Picture1Just about all bullion investors worry about counterfeits.

Those concerns are magnified when someone is buying for the first time.

Stories about fake coins from Asia and gold bars drilled and filled with Tungsten have been in the headlines recently. But the truth is, counterfeiting is just about as old as the concept of money itself.

Fortunately, making phony coins or bars isn’t easy. The equipment involved is significant – it takes far more than a color printer and the right paper. And making fakes good enough to pass a few simple tests is darn near impossible.

Some testing equipment, such as mass spectrometers and sonogram machines, are expensive and impractical for the typical person to use.

However, here are some lower budget ways you can determine whether or not the bullion you hold is genuine:

Picture2Size and Weight

Gold and silver are extraordinarily dense metals – much denser than just about any base metal (even lead and mercury in the case of gold). That means just about all fakes that weigh correctly will be too large in diameter and/or thickness. Or they will be underweight in order to achieve the right diameter and thickness. Simply comparing the diameter and thickness of the coin in question with others known to be genuine could be enough to put you at ease.

If not, an inexpensive set of calipers and a jeweler’s scale are a good way of checking. Every coin or round is produced with close tolerances in terms of diameter, thickness, and weight. You can find these dimensions on the “Specifications” tab on our coin and round product pages.

Investors might also consider Fisch Testers. Genuine coins will be both small enough in diameter and thin enough to fit through a slot in the tool, while remaining heavy enough to tip the tool on its fulcrum. Simple and very effective.

Sound or “Ping” Testing

Authentic gold and silver coins chime when struck and the difference is notable versus base metals.

Base metal coins will sound duller and their ring will be shorter — much like the difference between clinking crystal versus glass champagne flutes.

Try balancing the coin on your fingertip and strike it with another coin. This video provides a good demonstration.

Investors with an iPhone can also install the CoinTrust application and test a short list of the most popular gold and silver coins by gently spinning them on a hard surface with the phone’s microphone positioned nearby.

Android users can install the Bullion Test app. Choose the coin from a drop down list, press the microphone button, then balance the coin on your fingertip and strike it with a fingernail or another coin. Results are instant and accurate.


The above video on ping testing also references another simple technique for using a magnet to identify fakes. Gold and silver are non-magnetic. Placing a strong magnet on a coin and tipping it to watch whether the magnet slides off, as it should, or sticks, like it would to a counterfeit, requires only an inexpensive magnet and a few seconds. (Note that some base metals used in counterfeiting are also non-magnetic, so we suggest doing this in conjunction with some other techniques listed.)

Thermal Conductivity Testing for Silver

Silver is one of the best conductors of thermal energy found in nature. That makes it easy to test silver bullion using nothing more than an ice cube. Place an ice cube on top of a silver bar, coin, or round, and you should see it begin melting almost instantly as heat is quickly transferred. Holding a coin or round between fingers or in the palm of your hand makes the results even more noticeable as the silver rapidly cools to your touch.

Acid TestingPicture3

Investors can purchase inexpensive acid test kits for gold and silver. Watching the color change in a drop of acid can reveal whether or not a sample is genuine. However, acids should be handled carefully. Your items can be permanently discolored.

Since bullion coins, rounds, and bars are valued for their metal content, not their beauty, discoloration is unlikely to reduce the value of your bullion by more than a small amount. But it’s still wise to use acid testing sparingly and with caution.

A Word about Tungsten Fakes

Some of the hardest to detect counterfeit gold products involve tungsten. Tungsten’s density is close to that of gold, and it is relatively inexpensive. Here are some of the best ways to avoid problems:

Avoid large gold bars. 10-ounce and larger gold bars are among the easiest to tamper with as they can be drilled, filled with tungsten, and then plugged again with gold. This is more difficult with units 1 oz and smaller. Tungsten is extraordinarily hard whereas gold is soft. This means tungsten is very difficult to use in minting or fabricating small items. It is brittle, and stamping it with a design will result in coins with less detail unless it has been plated with a thick layer of gold.

Ring testing as outlined above should still offer defense against tungsten fakes.

If the deal is too good to be true, it probably is. Never buy gold bullion below its melt value unless you know and trust its origins.

Buy silver. No metal shares a similar density to silver, making it even more difficult to make good counterfeits than with gold. Plus, the financial incentive is lower.

Recently some of the more prominent mints and refiners have begun employing technology to mark products with seals that assure authenticity. For example, Sunshine Minting rounds and bars carry a seal that reads “VALID” when viewed using their proprietary lens and oriented correctly.

Investors can expect this sort of technology to be more widely used in the coming years. (Note: the lens carries a cost of around $20.00 and needs to be purchased separately from the metal itself.)

As mentioned above, the best defense against fake bullion is to buy from a reputable dealer. Money Metals Exchange sources products directly from well-regarded mints and refiners and employs good quality controls. That is why we can confidently stand behind every product we sell – guaranteeing authenticity, weight, and purity.

Picture4Clint Siegner is a Director at Money Metals Exchange, perhaps the nation’s fastest-growing dealer of low-premium precious metals coins, rounds, and bars. Siegner, a graduate of Linfield College in Oregon, puts his experience in business management along with his passion for personal liberty, limited government, and honest money into the development of Money Metals’ brand and reach. This includes writing extensively on the    bullion markets and their intersection with policy and world affairs.

I’ve been giving a lot of thought lately to my own family’s survival plan.

My son and I would be fine, my daughter, however would be more of a challenge. Libby, age 10, has Type 1 Diabetes (formerly known as Juvenile Diabetes) and will require a ton more preparation than anyone else in my house.

One of our daily prepping tasks has included the process of getting her a D.A.D. (Diabetic Alert Dog) – these service dogs do NOT come cheap and take a long time to train. We are still working on paying off hers which hopefully will get to come home to us soon.

My daughter, unlike many T1Ds, has hypoglycemic unawareness. She can’t feel the normal “shakes” and other symptoms that lets your body know that your blood sugar is dangerously low.

The D.A.D.s can smell her blood sugar dropping before her continuous glucose monitor can detect the drop, saving us precious time and allowing us to treat her drop in enough time to potentially save her life.

Other T1Ds, especially those who tend to drop in the night, could also consider procuring one of these amazing service animals.

Another thing we do is to stock up on her insulin supply. This website is the best price I’ve found so far. Her other supplies can be bought in bulk via Amazon or Wal-mart.

With my daughter’s specific issues (as a brittle diabetic), we’re also stocking up on extra water and candies to help her adjust her extreme peaks and valleys.

Her pump supplies would only last so long, so syringes are what we are stockpiling right now as they are much less expensive and can be reused in an emergency situation.

What are some of the ways other Type 1 (or Type 2) diabetics out there are prepping? Tell us in the comments. Knowledge is power.

Here’s something that a lot of people I’ve talked to say they’d love to have, but there are a few on the market that would lead you to believe that you’d need Bill Gates’ bank account to have one.

In this post I’m going to weigh the pros and cons and also go over some of the basic costs of having your very own storm shelter, or bunker built.


* Having an underground or partially underground storm shelter or bunker actually adds to the value of your home/property. The versatility of storm shelters and bunkers built today, especially in states like Texas, Oklahoma and Kansas can add to the property value when selling your home.

* You don’t have to have the cash upfront! many loan companies will finance loans for storm shelters and bunkers. Adding something like this to your property is considered home improvement! Here are a few companies to check out!

* Securing a loan for home improvement will actually allow you to build a high tech concrete storm shelter! The saying “You get what you pay for” is no different when discussing storm shelters and bunkers. You can basically pour your own concrete form shelter in your back yard for under $4000.00, but if you want to ensure your shelter is up to standard, you’ll need to call in a professional. Pros charge a bit more, but lets look at the options you can add when having a pro do the work.

(All prices are approximate and completely optional features)

-Blast doors $4,300.00

-Integrated NBC ventilation systems $6,500.00

-Electrical wiring $ varies on how much you want done and how much you can do yourself.

-Plumbing $ varies on extent of plumbing and drainage / sewage options you prefer.

-Solar Generator back up system (in case of complete power outages) $2,500.00 +

-Additional connected storage (for anything from food and necessities to seed storage and aquaponics system via tunnels and corridors.)

-Artificial day/night simulation $ please see electrical wiring and back up generators

-Literally a home away from home!

Of course how plain or how fancy you intend to build all depends on your purpose and how much you want to spend. Most people find that something along these lines are perfect for basic SHTF survival; you can build it in any size and can take your time modelling it just the way you want! The images provided by the following company offers complete turn key building and operation start to finish.

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* You do have to own your land to begin construction. Unfortunately, if you rent, even if your proprietor agrees to the construction, the only person benefiting in the long run is your landlord.

* The land you build on can’t be in a floodplain (if you want an underground structure) – many people in the state I live in (Texas) are under the impression you generally can’t have basements or other underground structures. Not true, you just have to get the proper permits and be able to prove your structure wont flood in the event that Texas weather is normal for Texas weather.

* Interior decorating is all you. most people, this won’t bother. However, if your looking to get a full underground home, complete with furnishings and food stockpile… well, you won’t get it. Furnishing your storm shelter (whether that’s supplying shelving and cots or installing entertainment systems and compound to compound intercoms) the ball is in your court.

* You won’t benefit from a shelter if you don’t get the ball rolling NOW. Seriously, in tornado alley and Texas, it’s entirely too easy to be caught unawares when talking about the fury of mother nature. She’s slightly more on edge here than in the rest of the states. If you’re looking to build for other reasons (see: economic and governmental collapse, WWIII or the Apocalypse) you might have a slightly better chance on waiting… but if you watch the news, don’t delay too long!

Medical Prepping

Posted: April 2, 2015 in Ideas
Tags: , ,