Just Starting? Feel Way Behind? Don't Get Frantic! Try This!

Discussion in 'Suggestions and Requests' started by LastOutlaw, Jun 1, 2019.

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  1. LastOutlaw

    LastOutlaw Master Survivalist
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    So, are you just starting out and feel way behind the curve? Feel overwhelmed by all that you need to buy, store, acquire and learn? Don't be frantic about any of it. That will only cost you a lot more money than you need to spend and you may end up with a lot of junk or things that you really do not need.

    Here are a few simple tips that may help you keep a handle on it and also steer you in the right direction.
    What do you feel is the most important yet the hardest thing to do? Many people feel storing enough food seems almost impossible. I'll start there

    Storing food.
    Fist of all. Just buy a bit of extra every time that you go shopping. Before you know it you will have an extra month then two and then three. There are a few foods that store really well, and will keep you alive in a pinch and are not real expensive. I hate to say it but Rice and Beans are a sure "stay alive" staple to get started with. You can buy an extra bag of each at your grocery store when you shop or do what I did and get into a Sam's store and buy a 25 or 50 lb bag of each. My next step was mylar and O2 absorbers. First I made the mistake of buying Mylar off of Amazon. Big mistake. Very thin crap. I found the good thick mylar bags are found in the LDS store online. Real thick and good sized. I did buy my O2 absorbers on Amazon. I used a clothing iron and an aluminum level to seal my bags. Aluminum level has a nice sharp edge that transfers heat easily to use under the bag and the clothes iron on the hottest setting seals them well. I usually did two seals. I also got 5 gallon buckets and lids to store food in for free from either a bakery or once I found a very good supply at a BBQ place who got a lot of BBQ sauce in them.

    Storing water. Don't try to fill milk jugs. They will leak in a short time and make a mess and they are very hard to get clean enough. Juice jugs work better or even two liter soda bottles. Keep in a cool dark place. Heat and light are the enemies of your food and water. Oxygen is another enemy as well, especially for food.

    Defensive weapon.
    When I first began everyone said I needed an AR15. That weapon seemed so out of reach at the time due to my meager income. There are ways to get an affordable AR and I will go into that in a moment. My very first rifle was a Russian made WWII Mosin Nagant 91/30 rifle. It was a nice one in good shape and I paid $100.00 for it. They are a bit more now but still an affordable rifle. It has iron sights and that can be changed out down the road by removing the rear sight and utilizing the 3/8 dovetail found underneath the rear sight on most 91/30 mosin rifles. Once removed a set of scope rings can be installed and a long eye scope (pistol scope) mounted and will leave the bolt clear to function correctly.

    If you want to buy an AR rifle at a reasonable price I suggest finding someone selling a complete lower at a gun show. Somewhere around $100 to $150 can usually be found when buying from someone walking around at the show rather than a dealer. Once you have your lower you can either buy a complete upper from a dealer there or online for anywhere around $300 to $400 if you shop around.

    Gear
    DO NOT>>> I REPEAT DO NOT run out and frantically buy a bunch of gear at Dicks or Academy sporting good stores. Much of what they sell is junk. Chinese made junk that will not last. To be honest if you want good quality gear that will last buy US Military gear. Often it is more heavy in weight but is almost always quality stuff that actually works and will last. ( The US ARMY sleep system is highly recommended by me.) Take your time and look online for Army surplus sleeping bags, canteens, backpacks, cooking equipment and most other items. If you live anywhere near a military base then get on craigslist and look for gear being offed by someone who just got out or even run an ad that you are looking for surplus gear. I found piles and piles of gear from soldiers who just got out when I lived near Ft. Hood.They usually want it GONE!

    Now I'm pretty sure others here may have a lot of other ideas and all of these ideas may not work for you but pick and choose what you want out of these tips and dump what you don't, Foremost of all do not get frantic and run out buying a bunch of stuff because you feel like you are behind. A bit at a time as you find what you need and before you know it you will be sitting on a year's worth of food, water and equipment and can keep adding to your list.

    Good luck and I hope to see you on the other side!
     
  2. Keith H.

    Keith H. Moderator Staff Member
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    Think sustainable when thinking of purchasing equipment. You do not know how long you will need to use this gear, so if it is not sustainable, don't get it!
    Keith.
     
  3. Pragmatist

    Pragmatist Master Survivalist
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    L.O.,

    What does the word "sleep" mean ?

    ...

    Add: in suspension system of hard hat...forget excursions wearing boonie hat...rig pouch with mosquito net "just in case". If rich girlfriend a member of excursion party, ask to get a couple of bee keeper head nets without the hula hoop.

    ...

    Great that you're helping new-comers get started - properly.
     
  4. GateCrasher

    GateCrasher Expert Member
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    One thing I found helpful for prioritizing requirements when first starting out was to test our shelter-in-place plan for 48 hours. Shut off all the utilities feeding your home on a Friday after work and don't turn them on again until Sunday evening. Electric, water, natural gas, phone/internet/cable, sewage* - everything. If you pay a bill for it, turn it off. You're only allowed to use what you currently have onsite and have complete control over, like a private well or septic tank. No trips to the store, don't purchase anything during the test - but take plenty of notes on what parts of your plan works well, what doesn't, and how much of everything you're using. I'd recommend the first test at a pleasant time of the year, but be sure to test at the worst too. In cold climates don't forget to drain your water lines and protect the water in the drain traps from freezing if you're not heating your whole house. In hot climates don't forget your freezer food is thawing quickly. That is another benefit of the testing, learning/preparing on how everything in your home works and being able to switch from grid-up to grid-down, and back again, without property damage or loss.

    *For sewage, this means not using the sinks or toilets for black or gray water disposal. We were lucky that we had a septic tank and could flush with non-potable stored water, but if you don't have a septic I'd put a high priority on sewage/sanitation needs.
     
  5. Pragmatist

    Pragmatist Master Survivalist
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    Gate Crasher,

    Excellent post. Compliments !
     
  6. poltiregist

    poltiregist Legendary Survivalist
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    I look at surviving a crises in three stages . Stage one utilizing everyday on hand food such as frozen stuff in the freezer and canned goods . Also the easiest to accumulate . Stage two utilizing more long range and long storage food that requires no electric power to preserve . Stage three , relying on milk from my milk goats, wild game such as deer , fish from a nearby stream and gardening . My approach to prepping was to start with stage one . Depending on the crises if someone will find themselves moving from stage one to stage two or on to stage three .
     
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2019
  7. LastOutlaw

    LastOutlaw Master Survivalist
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    I am very interested in learning how to milk wild game such as deer. J/K.
     
  8. Morgan101

    Morgan101 Master Survivalist
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    Great post, LO. I really don't understand why people get that overwhelmed feeling, But I'm sure you are right. They do. They have taken the most important step; and that is getting started. Everything they do from that day forward will put them ahead of the madding crowd that has done nothing.

    There are many You Tube channels that offer tips for prepping on a budget. I would watch these for tips on food. You can amass a remarkable amount of food in 30 days by only spending a dollar or two a day. I have done it. Take a buck a day out of your lunch money. Drink water instead of buying a soft drink. Buy "last forever" foods and put them in a five gallon bucket. I wanted to see if the system worked, and I thought it did. Quite well.

    I would be more careful with gear. Your life may depend on it, so you want it to be reliable. Although, you can start with budget, and move up as your finances allow.
     
  9. LastOutlaw

    LastOutlaw Master Survivalist
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    Thank you @Morgan101

    I think it is because of a couple of things. When you become awoken to the fact that you need to be prepared you realize how lucky you have been up until that point that it S didn't HTF before now and also realize that it could possibly happen any minute.

    Also when you think about a year's worth of food or more (which one actually does need) , weapons, lots of ammo, lots of supplies, a plan of action or two or three, equipment, a place to go to, preparing for numerous different possible SHTF scenarios, people to work with as a team it all feels very daunting and a HUGE undertaking...which it is. To put all that together takes a lot of work and sounds like a huge financial endeavor.

    However over time and taking it a step at a time each day it becomes a very satisfying undertaking as you check more and more of your needs off the list.

    It also helps that once awoken your priorities change. No longer is that new ski boat or diving equipment or that trip to Cancun or the newest car the most important expenditure in your mind. Being prepared is.

    I have added a link to a review of the military sleep system that I mentioned above.

    http://woodtrekker.blogspot.com/2014/05/us-military-modular-sleep-system-mss.html
     
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2019
  10. Weedygarden

    Weedygarden Expert Member
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    Great post and topic, LO!

    I have a working notebook where I keep lists of what I want or need and do not have. I also keep track of food goals and bulk food purchases. I have separate pages for wheat, corn, beans, oatmeal, milk, pasta, potato flakes, sugar, salt, corn, dried fruits and vegetables, and more. This is where I mostly track the basics, but not canned goods. I am not saying it would be a good idea, but that is much more tedious and difficult to track. It helps me to focus on what I have and what I need. This is a notebook that is half the size of a sheet of paper, spiral bound, and is easy for me to take with me.

    I started out much like you, I bought a large bag of rice and a large bag of beans. I tried to round it out for a month's worth of eating, then two and three. I also thought about what I would use to cook rice or beans--spices, condiments, others. Beans--canned hams, spam, bacon bits. Rice--fried with onions (garden), bean sprouts, dried carrots, peas.

    Food storage is very important. Many have a goal of one year's supply. I have thought about Joseph from the bible who wanted 7 years of grain in the graineries. It is so much food. Where to store it is a big challenge for many. After you reach one goal, you can raise the bar and set a new one.

    I also look at the grocery ads and buy extras of good sales.

    Equipment--I read lots of blog posts about equipment. Going camping is one way to figure out about your equipment. Does it work or not? What else would help?

    One way to increase your equipment is to go to garage sales. I search online and go to sales that say camping equipment, but you never know who will have what.

    I keep several bags packed, ready to go, in case we needed to evacuate in a hurry. I am always looking for duffel bags and back packs.

    Another way to increase your preps is to utilize Craigslist. The free section has been a great place for me. I have gotten 5 gallon water cooler bottles, oil lamps, tools, garden plants, and so much more. I once saw a company that was moving and had t.p. to give away, first come, first served. I drove there and filled my car up. Many others could have done the same with the pallets they had of t.p.

    When searching for specific items, you can register on Craigslist and sign up to be notified every time one of those items is listed. It has helped me tremendously to get certain items by responding quickly.
     
  11. LastOutlaw

    LastOutlaw Master Survivalist
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    I became aware of the need to prepare in late 2010 or 2011. I was awoken by my girlfriend at the time. She woke me by asking me a couple of questions when I came home from work. First I think she asked me.."If the power went out and didn't ever come back on what would you do?" Then she asked me... "Could you protect us and if so how?" It was shortly after that discussion that I realized how close we all were to SHTF in 2008 and didn't know it. At that time I was into jet skiing and boats and motorcycles. I had one handgun and if I'm lucky a box of ammo for it.

    If SHTF then I would have been in a world of hurt.

    I think once I became aware things began to slowly line up for me. It seemed like I was destined to become prepared and things began to fall more and more into place the more I prepared. It is so strange. I lived near a military base and gear began to become available and the extra money to buy it as well. Opportunities that lined up with my needs also became available one after another. Property I owned elsewhere and had been for sale finally sold and shortly thereafter a piece of land in the mountains with a small cabin near other like minded people became available and was purchased. Within a couple years of that purchase, sustainable land in the flat -*lands within easy driving range of the mountains became available and was purchased.
     
  12. LastOutlaw

    LastOutlaw Master Survivalist
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    Sleep means that a prepper can not survive alone.
     
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  13. lonewolf

    lonewolf Legendary Survivalist Staff Member
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    rubbish!! there are plenty of ways of providing security without having people(people fall asleep on guard anyway).
     
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  14. Pragmatist

    Pragmatist Master Survivalist
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    Last Outlaw ; Lone Wolf;

    Well framed, L.O. Concur.

    Lone Wolf, IF, for example, a sliver of top horizontal stone from Stonehedge flies off and makes its way to N. Devon and you've got an injury, would you not need human intervention ?
     
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  15. poltiregist

    poltiregist Legendary Survivalist
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    Feeling behind on prepping ? Do you like homemade biscuits and tomato gravy ? I would suggest storing bags of flour in vacuum sealed bags . A five pound bag of flour will make a lot of biscuits and remain good for about seven years , even though it will loose it's yeast in about one year . I have no idea how long canned tomatoes will last . Don't forget you will need something to grease your biscuit pan .
     
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  16. LastOutlaw

    LastOutlaw Master Survivalist
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    Flour doesn't store as well long term. I've seen lots of different estimates on flour storage. 20 years, 7 years and 10 years. I prefer to store wheat berry. Grind and bake with as needed.
     
  17. poltiregist

    poltiregist Legendary Survivalist
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    I am basing my storage time on flour on my actual experience . No doubt this will vary on the climate they are stored in . I am not familiar with wheat berry but will try to investigate it . What is the storage life of wheat berry ?
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2019
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  18. Radar

    Radar Master Survivalist
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    Doesn't wheat berry simply mean the actual wheat grain?
     
  19. LastOutlaw

    LastOutlaw Master Survivalist
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    https://www.homesteadandprepper.com/storing-wheat-berries-flour/

    LDS says 30 year shelf life on their #10 cans

    https://store.lds.org/usa/en/hard-red-wheat?catalogId=3074457345616676768&langId=-1&storeId=10151&krypto=7Yq5TMV0xqqgxoNcAfmavBPhxIh/mcFevfHi35wFwqjeWq/dK7ftzlrpjDnLZ6alJZ1IoGZDBhaSVRZPAe7ZkSyEKP3vtoj+7yqJ4uizXlUj0/3P8YQ4VjbTg6nRlWBK92QvRpFYaBHvYfNV/MrLhLe9ohY8x6nbF+KFbfUxtgNr5VpkxnZ+4ETdd6jjW3pkx+Y38oCi2JMsdCsT9BOTSQ==&ddkey=https:SetCurrencyPreference

    Wheat the Remarkable Grain
    http://www.ldsliving.com/Wheat-the-Remarkable-Grain/s/64264
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2019
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  20. LastOutlaw

    LastOutlaw Master Survivalist
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    Yes! It is the whole grain. healthier and more filling.
     
  21. Old Geezer

    Old Geezer Legendary Survivalist
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    Listen, nobody's gotta buy 500 lbs of food in one fell swoop. Chill.

    When you are at the grocery, just toss in a few cans of extras. Do this whenever you are able. Buy those rolling dispensers of canned goods.

    dd201c591f45bd9c26121942adc2c8f4.jpeg

    You don't gotta go all out tomorrow afternoon for heavens sake.

    Now when it comes to buying bags of rice or the dried beans you like, sure you can buy some big bags even burlap bags. Keep the bugs out of your sealed buckets. Toss in some oxygen absorbers.

    dd201c591f45bd9c26121942adc2c8f4.jpeg

    dd201c591f45bd9c26121942adc2c8f4.jpeg

    People, this is NOT expensive, especially if you space this out over time. Do note however that once you open a sealed bag of O2-absorber packs, you gotta use them right now, so have a dozen or more jars filled with dried beans / rice / pasta and ready to receive a pack or two each. Plop in the packs, put on the sealing lids (have rubber ring stamped into lid at factory), and screw down the rings to set the lid into battery. Let the packs eat the oxygen at their leisure. Set the cases up on a shelf wherever.
     
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  22. Old Geezer

    Old Geezer Legendary Survivalist
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    If you are at the outdoor store, before you leave buy a box of .22 LR or a box of shotgun birdshot. Pay cash so that there is no electronic record. You see a cheap shotgun for sale in the local newspaper, so go look at it and if it is in decent enough shape, pay the fellow cash for it. It's not like you're gonna go rob some liquor store with a squirrel-hunting piece. Saw-off the barrel post-SHTF, nothing matters after the poo gets sprayed.

    dd201c591f45bd9c26121942adc2c8f4.jpeg

    Sing a song of sixpence,
    A pocket full of rye.
    Four and twenty blackbirds,
    Baked in a pie.
     
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  23. Old Geezer

    Old Geezer Legendary Survivalist
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    I buy distilled water for some machine of mine. When finished, I've got a neat 1 gal. container. Fill with clean water and toss in some Tang or Kool-Aid. Now you got some emergency drink to keep in the truck to sip on for a couple/three days. Throw in recycle bin when finished using it.

    You get stuck in your car somewhere, you got two of these big jugs and some beef jerky, maybe some hard candy, you ain't gonna die.

    I keep a larder at work with several days worth of canned food -- kippered herring, microwavable sealed packs (that you really do not have to cook), boxes of crackers, candy bars, soft drinks, lots of powdered insta-mix drinks, ... . Get stuck at work, I won't die. I eat all of this stuff anyway, so I simply rotate my work pantry. Got something to eat on my way home.
     
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  24. GrizzlyetteAdams

    GrizzlyetteAdams Crap Creek Survivor
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    Wheat berries (whole grains) will last for many, many years if kept cool and dry. Multi-purpose food: it can be sprouted, or cooked and used like rice, ground into flour (tortillas are easy to make without wasting a bunch of fuel like traditional bread making does), etc.

    I have some 20 year old grain that is still good.

    .
     
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