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News for the week of 2024-02-19

Make a top-level comment for a new story/topic. Discussions about the topic should be in the replies to the top-level comment. That way things stay organized and every main comment as you scroll down is a different piece of news.

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Recap from the 2024 SHOT Show

This is a casual overview of what I noticed/liked a few weeks ago at SHOT Show. If you’re not familiar, SHOT is the biggest annual trade show (2,500 exhibitors, 1M square feet) for the firearm industry, with secondary focuses on military/LE, survival, hunting, camping, etc.

Summary:

There aren’t big or important things to point out, and I didn’t see anything I think is a must-buy. The industry has been in a cycle the last few years where it’s less about big (r)evolutions and more about iterations. Some other experts/influencers complained it was a weak show year. The few trends I did notice and like are the attention on thermal optics, finally moving to USB-C as standard for electronics, better threat labeling on body armor, lots of drones, and a focus on respirators. For example, the makers of my personal BOB headlamp, Armytek, are finally moving to USB-C charging (instead of their proprietary magnetic cable) later this year. The marketing pitches for most new products were centered around customization/personalization, comfort, using different materials and manufacturing methods (eg. 3D printing and self-healing waterproof zippers), and filling in the niche use-cap gaps with lots of permutations. Retro/throwback gun designs, lever actions, old M4-style carry handles, and ‘modular’ platforms meant for swapping to different calibers were the main trends. None of which I like or think are appropriate for preppers. I got to shoot the new 8.6 Blackout caliber via the new Q Boombox. The 8.6 round is a spiritual successor/compliment to the 300 Blackout round, and the Boombox is the successor to the Honey Badger. I really liked both and will probably lean into them as a core part of my firearm mix — but broad adoption of the 8.6 might take a few years. The industry still has a problem with focusing on proprietary parts and manufacturer lock-in. And the industry still sucks at communicating with and selling to the general public. 

Empty “New Product Center” shelves, showing how there wasn’t a lot of distinctly-new stuff.

Geopolitics are noticeable. Putting this up front since it’s of broad “what’s going on in the world” interest. I couldn’t help but notice an increase in attendees from NATO and similar countries that have a renewed interest in national defense — countries like Poland, Finland, Lithuania, Taiwan, and Vietnam that have good reason to fear Winnie the Pooh and his pink-faced sidekick Piglet. Turkey had a lot (dozens?) of manufacturers present, trying to sell cheaper but still Western-acceptable knockoffs. The Chinese manufacturers are still there promoting their IP-theft knockoffs, but it was less than previous years.

Thermal optics (and ways to stay hidden from thermal optics) are getting the attention they deserve. One of the big lessons from the Russian invasion of Ukraine, for example, is just how much thermal makes a difference in the field. Which also matters to you in a home defense or hunting situation. The tech has always been prohibitively expensive in the past (eg. I got to play with a $85,000 military unit) but we’re hitting the “J curve” in the tech and prices are starting to become reasonable for civilians without sacrificing usefulness. We’ll probably soon be at the point where traditional “night vision” is no longer worth it. Very excited to watch this space over the next years. Holosun and Pulsar are examples of brands to watch here. 

For example, I got to use a ~$3,000 Thales prototype (first two pictures below) that mostly functions like a typical EOTech-style rifle optic while it real-time overlays a silhouette around warm targets. So you can easily spot a person hiding in your woods, or a predator you’re trying to keep away from your livestock, etc. 

Note the faint yellow box in the middle 50% of the view, outlining warm targets inside, while the guys around the periphery aren’t highlighted. 

Example of a typical military thermal, placed in front of a normal rifle scope.

Saw a growing number of these products that attach to an NVG monocular, projecting thermal/other info over top (the little nub protruding from the bottom unit over the big glass of the monocular). Seems very impractical and heavy, though.

Respiratory protection is a logical market focus in the post-Covid years. Especially among the military and law enforcement brands, there were many new products and marketing pitches about making respirators easier to use — such as focusing on reducing weight and neck fatigue, making it easier to get a cheek weld on a rifle while wearing a mask, more powered (PAPR) units that move the filter canisters to your body (connected to mask via hose), etc. 

Got to spend time with our friends at MIRA Safety, who were promoting their CM-7M full face respirator and smaller options for kids and dogs, along with an optional powered PAPR unit that mounts to your pack/plate carrier. The 7M has been out for a while, but this was the first chance I’ve had to get hands on. It looked good enough (especially for the $275 price) that I plan on buying one, including the PAPR (another $400), and could see it becoming the main full-face respirator in our personal kits.

3M promoted their new one-finger Secure Click feature on half- and full-face respirators, which makes it easier and more sanitary to verify you have an airtight seal against your face. Traditionally, to conduct a seal check you have to use both hands to block the canisters/cartridges that bring air in. 

Body armor is maturing nicely, with better threat labeling and a recent focus on ballistic helmets and even ballistic eye protection. One of the things I really harped on when writing the web’s first ‘consumer friendly’ guides on body armor was the lack of marketing transparency about what specific ammo would be defeated — partly because the government standards (eg. Level 3, Level 4) are very outdated and didn’t match the reality of the technology progress. Things are getting better in this regard, and I noticed many more manufacturers printing the specific calibers on the back side of the plate. So you can quickly know if a piece of armor could stop the common “armor penetrating” rounds like M855A1, for example. But the government needs to update their standards so that commercial marketing wankers stop using cutesy meaningless labels like “Level Super 3+X” or “Level 3+++ STR”. 

The market for helmets (whether ‘armored’ or just bump helmets / mounting platforms) is maturing, with lots of needed advancements in accessories, comfort, ability to run power cables in a way that’s secure but easy to undo, etc. 3M promoted a new design that makes it much easier/quicker to change your ear headset/comms between helmet mounted and strap mounted — a no-brainer design that should’ve existed years ago. 

I’ve never recommended armored “ballistic” helmets (typically Level 3A) in the past because they were too heavy, costly, niche, etc. to be worthwhile for civilians. But as materials sciences and manufacturing improve, it seems like we’re starting to cross the line into worthwhile as I noticed more companies prototyping in this space. Example from Team Wendy:

Modularity continues to be a trend, and I continue to dislike it. It sounds great in theory: you buy “one gun” (the serialized part regulated by the government) and swap out different parts so that one gun can fire 9mm, 5.56, 7.62, 300 BLK, and so on. There’s a lot to like about that idea from a prepping perspective. But I’ve yet to see it done well enough that it’s worth it in almost any product category (not just guns) — you end up with something that’s sorta fine at lots of things but not better than a standalone product for a specific thing. And they tend to break more often, have proprietary parts, etc. It’s the same reason why we dislike other survival tools that try to do too much, like a “32-in-1” axe that also has a compass, knife, bottle opener, allen wrench, toothpick, etc.

A good example at this year’s show is from Primary Weapons Systems — a company I’ve liked for a long time, and I own multiple of their piston rifles for >10 years. Their big launch this year is the modular UXR rifle. But I got to shoot it… and it did not change my mind on this issue. 

The new 8.6 Blackout round is promising, and I’ll probably buy the new Q Boombox + Porq Chop suppressor in 8.6. I’m generally a Q fan and already have their predecessor to the Boombox, the Honey Badger in 300 BLK + Trash Panda can. You can read more about the 8.6 round, but it’s a bigger/heavier bullet than the 300 with more effective range — sub-MOA at 300 meters, even when subsonic. 

The round is still very new and expensive at >$3 a round! But it’s the early days, and I suspect the merits of the round’s performance + that it fills a use-case gap in the market + the tie-in with sexy hardware like the Boombox will make it a viable option for primary use in the future (rather than just a toy for gun nerds). 

We got to fire the Boombox + Porq Chop in 8.6 and everyone in our group was honestly surprised by how much we liked it. One of the design changes from the Honey Badger is easier disassembly/reassembly — a much, much needed change, since the HB bolt can be tough to get back in place. The extra power compared to a 300 BLK is noticeable, but while still being a very light setup that doesn’t recoil much. The Boombox is not yet on market, but should be in a few months. 

Review from TFB: 

There’s finally a “turn a pistol into a PCC” chassis that I want to buy: the Flux Raider for Sig 365. This was broadly considered one of the more exciting new products at SHOT (eg. James Reeves picked it as the #1 PCC). With the stock folded, you can carry it in a waistband-concealable holster. And when you draw it from the holster, the stock auto opens for your shoulder / third point of contact. The mag release also releases the spare second mag (which acts as a vertical foregrip until needed) at the same time. 

It’s not on the market yet, but will be within months. It honestly might become the primary weapon in my wife’s BOB, since it’s small and lightweight but still offers improved performance over just a pistol.

Deeper review from TFB:

3D printed suppressors are now a thing, more all-titanium options, and a focus on reducing gas blowback. I shot my first 3D printed suppressor and it was surprisingly nice. The pictured can was manufactured by PTR, and you can see a closeup of the material in the pictured logo below. While not 3D printed, SilencerCo released the titanium Spectre 9 that handles 9mm + 300 BLK in both super and sub — I might pick this up for my personal stash.

Many suppressor companies are talking about “vent through” designs that reduce blowback into the shooter’s face by deflecting gas forward and/or holding the gas in place for longer so it can dissipate — a much needed improvement in this market. No more tears! 

Misc

Magpul released a translucent magazine (TMAG) — a product category that isn’t neccesarily new, but Magpul is known for better quality and testing, which matters in this case because the transparent-type mags are inherently weaker than their opaque versions. I also liked Omega’s magazines and the MagRipper speed loader.

Work Sharp, makers of some of our favorite blade sharpeners, released a new rolling knife sharpener. I didn’t get to use it enough to endorse it, but it’s intriguing and I definitely want to play with it.

I noticed manufacturers are paying more attention to better designs/options in medical packs, where they’re making it easier to see and label different pouches. I liked the pictured kit that had velcro across the grab handles for these clear, swappable labels:

Saw some focus on comfort improvements, whether in clothing, pack/load carrying, etc. Pictured is a pad worn between your chest and body armor plate that adds cushioning and airflow / sweat reduction:

I noticed more firearm manufacturers playing with bullpup designs. Although many of them still seem to have the issue where spent shells/casings are ejected downward onto your exposed inner wrist (which is the #1 reason I sold my Kel-Tec KSG bullpup shotgun).

Not sure why, but there was a noticeable increase in 40mm grenade launchers. 

I did not notice much new in the Pistol Caliber Carbine (PCC) market. Seems like we’re in the maturation phase of this cycle, with higher-end groups like Daniel Defense starting to offer their own models, which are nice but not really revolutionary. 

Variable optics, which you normally have to adjust/rotate by hand (which interrupts your firing, sight, etc.), now have a push-button powered option with the Scopeswitch from Antimatter Industries:

Darn Tough told me they have no plans to remove or reduce their legendary warranty even though they’ve started ramping up the “lifestyle” lines of socks meant for more casual use — which have thinner fabric than the more rugged traditional models and thus are more likely to wear out.

Watertight, self-healing zippers are being adopted by more designers. Yay. I hope the long-term durability tests turn out well and this becomes a new norm.

Small drones are a logical market focus given how effective they’ve been in the Ukrainian war. Nothing special to mention for our context, but I’d expect to see new advancements trickle down into the consumer market in the coming years.

And although not at all relevant for us normal folks, this $500,000 fully armored skid steer + breaching platform that attaches to the skid steer boom arm was really awesome. Imagine the police rolling up to a barricaded house with this bad boy:

Good SHOT recap videos from others, if you want to see more:

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New product center

Smart water management system

Smart water management systems, such as KarIoT, leverage Internet of Things (IoT) technologies to optimize the use and allocation of water resources in urban and rural settings. These systems employ a network of sensors and smart devices to monitor water quality, detect leaks, and manage distribution efficiently. By analyzing real-time data, KarIoT enables precise control over water flow, pressure, and consumption patterns, facilitating sustainable water usage. This innovative approach not only conserves water but also reduces waste and operational costs, making smart water management a key solution for addressing global water scarcity challenges. Also check: Highrise building 

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Some things to consider when building fallout shelters

I’ve long had an interest in the construction of nuclear blast and fallout shelters. Most preppers will be familiar with Cresson Kearny’s guidebook, “Nuclear War Survival Skills” (NWSS), which is available as a free pdf here (save a copy!). Anyone interested in the construction of a fallout or blast-resistant shelter should start by reading this guide, which is excellent.

I have some reservations about strict adoption of NWWS to mitigate contemporary nuclear threats. Kearny’s book was largely a response to underfunded civil defence. He operated on the premise that prior to a Russian first strike there would be a significant exodus of civilians from Russian cities. Having detected this migration via satellites, the US civilian population would have 3 days to migrate to rural areas and construct fallout shelters. There are many open questions regarding this strategy. Some thoughts on how contemporary shelters could be modified:

Today, threats are more likely to be sustained at low probabilities for extremely long time periods. Consequently, shelters don’t have to be constructed hastily but should be highly durable. There are several historic examples of accidents nearly resulting in a nuclear disaster. Obviously these scenarios wouldn’t have provided sufficient time for people to construct a shelter. Independent of their durability, the materials and techniques used in NWSS were quite crude – i.e. tools and materials that could be taken from most suburban homes. In addition, we’ve had ~35 years of building science and product advancement since the last version of the book was published. Scientists seem to be converging on the idea that a 5-10 year nuclear winter will be likely after a full-scale exchange, and perhaps even after a smaller exchange such as the sort that would occur between Pakistan and India. This would result in the near total collapse of the industrial agricultural system. Launching a full-scale reboot of technological civilization is outside the scope of this post. However, it might be worth considering the integration of protected food storage, tools, and technology. Although Kearny did provide details for high capacity shelters, I’m of the opinion that in many areas the default shelter size should have at least moderately high capacity. If you’re going to the trouble of constructing a shelter, the marginal cost of adding some neighbors is low. And this isn’t strictly a bleeding heart perspective. Just think of how smug you’ll be in the middle of armageddon, surrounded by people who dismissed you as a survivalist crank! How many times can you pointedly glance at someone and say “good thing I built this, right?” in 3-14 days?

We should divide shelters into 2 major types, those that are within an existing building – usually the basement of a home – and those that are separate. How should you decide between the two? Kearny believed that freestanding shelters were significantly more robust, mainly due to fire risk. On the other hand, basement shelters are considerably less expensive to construct. In addition, it’s somewhat of an open question whether basement shelters could add reasonable fire protection – or even shockwave protection – given contemporary materials, back-up power systems, filtration, ventilation, and airtightness levels. Overall, my sense is that people would ideally have some idea of the threat of fire risk, and gravitate towards basement shelters in the majority of cases where the fire risk isn’t extraordinary, due to the cost savings. I’ll try to cover both types, but will start with the basement.

I’m going to start with a basement shelter that modularly moves through a descending order of priorities. The basement would ideally have a clearance to the bottom of the first floor joists of 7’6″ (or more), which should provide an interior headroom clearance of ~6’. I’ll add an asterix where where I have a lot of uncertainty.

Overhead ceiling mass; Wall mass; Water (possibly integrated into ceiling/walls massing); Food (possibly integrated into ceiling/walls for massing); Fire protection; Ventilation; Air quality and radiation monitoring*; Sleeping; Hygiene; Entertainment and activities; Shockwave protection *.

The driving principle to reduce gamma radiation exposure is to place a high mass between you and the source. We have to assume that gamma-laden fallout dust will be distributed everywhere outdoors, so this means placing mass between you and all lines of sight to outside (gamma doesn’t tend to bounce around corners). In fallout literature, people often refer to a material’s “halving thickness” which is the thickness required to reduce gamma radiation by 50%. Concrete’s halving thickness is 2.4”. In the case of a basement shelter, a realistic target is to place 12″ of concrete overhead, which is 5 halving thicknesses. In conjunction with other materials in the joists directly overhead, or other layers of the building, we could likely achieve 6 halving thicknesses, equivalent to roughly a 98.5% reduction in gamma penetration (2).

Here are some instructions for building a shelter with an interior of roughly 7′ wide & whatever length you specify (although working in modules of 4′-8′ is sensible). The frame consists of a supported ledger and a parallel stud wall. These support joists that support ceiling joists that support a ceiling mass (ideally concrete). I have a spreadsheet cutsheet in the works but it’s not ready for primetime.

Select an ideally windowless corner of a basement with minimal overhead obstacles. The selected corner should also be as far below ground as possible. Wiring is OK if stapled to the joists, but avoid significant plumbing (esp waste) or duct-work if possible. Ideally the width of the shelter (short axis) would run parallel to the overhead ceiling joists. Measure the height from the floor to the bottom of the existing basement ceiling joists. Deduct 20″ from this. This is the stud length for support wall. Cut one stud for every 16″ of length + one for the end. Cut 5 pc 2×4 at the specified length of your shelter. These are your ceiling ledger, 2 ceiling rim joists, wall bottom plate, and wall top plate. Mark a level line on the long side of the wall at a height above the floor of (stud length + 6.5″). This is the top of the ceiling ledger. Back the ledger with ice and water shield or sill gasket and attach it to the wall using construction adhesive and masonry anchors. Individually measure and cut studs for placing beneath the ledger 16″ on center. Attach ice and water shield or sill gasket to the flat side of the studs and attach them to the wall in their measured locations using masonry anchors. Frame the wall by connecting the wall plate to studs placed vertically every 16″. Set the wall well back from the work area. Attach ice and water shield or sill gasket to the bottom plate of the wall. Cut the ceiling joists to the specified width Deduct 4 1/2″ from the overall width of the shelter. This is your ceiling joist length. Cut the same number of ceiling joists as wall studs. Frame the ceiling by attaching the ceiling rim joists to the ceiling joists placed horizontally every 16″. Install 1/2″ sheathing over the ceiling using glue and construction adhesive. The sheathing should be flush on 3 sides, but project over one rim joist by 1 1/4″. This projection will be attached the ledger. Apply either asphalt impregnated 15# felt or ice and water shield over the sheathing. This will serve as a capillary break between the concrete and the plywood to prevent rot. Optional: Drill 1 1/8″” holes 12″ on center ~6 1/2″ above the ledger. Epoxy 1″ dia rebar exactly equal to the length and width of the shelter long into each hole, with 2″-4″ embedment in the wall (this will leave the rebar 2″-4″ short of the penetrating the outside edge of the concrete). Connect each point in the rebar grid using a tie wire loop. Run a bead of construction adhesive along the top of the ledger. Measure from the base of the ledger wall (overall width minus 10″) and mark a line the length of the shelter. This part will suck and will require several pairs of hands. Place the ceiling assembly over the top of the ledger and connect several screws through the plywood into the ledger. Quickly place the support wall under the ceiling assembly on the opposite side. Align the outside edge of the wall with the line you struck in 13. Fasten the wall to the floor slab using masonry anchors. Plumb the wall at the two outside studs and fasten the plate at these two locations to the ceiling joists above. Straighten the wall in between these points by sighting the wall along the top. Fasten the top plate 2x at every joist. The ideal overhead mass is 12″ of concrete, but you can use other heavy objects if you prefer. For concrete, prepare plywood edge forms roughly 16″ wide to be attached to the perimeter joists. Don’t install these yet. This part will also suck. Mix concrete and shovel it into the deck. As you approach the nearest edge of the form, install the plywood edge forms so the concrete doesn’t spill out. Once the concrete has set, you can apply more heavy things into the overhead joist cavity to provide even more protection.

This should complete a reasonably well protected overhead mass. If folks are interested I’ll try to work on the wall section. Hope you enjoyed this!

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Packing 5 gallon buckets

Does anyone have any tips on how to be able to get more Mylar bags in a 5-gallon bucket? I’ve freeze dried some food and put them in Mylar bags (5-7 mils thick per side). I haven’t been able to get that many individual bags into each bucket. I didn’t know if there are any tips out there! I didn’t want to end up with tons and tons of buckets. 

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Looking for Long Term Food Storage Ideas

I love this site — thank you to everyone who makes this such a great place. I am wondering if anyone has any specific suggestions for long term food storage that supplements rice and pasta. My pantry is as deep as it can be if I follow the maxim of storing what we eat and eating what we store. BUT . . .  my ratios are off for any slightly longer term emergency. I keep more rice and pasta in storage than food I could put on it. I can’t store a bunch of canned chili or tomatoes without waste. Perhaps powdered tomatoes? Powdered cheese? Has anyone used these? What else? I’d love to hear about anything you all keep that is both shelf stable and long term to go with rice and pasta for flavor/nutrition. (Yes, I have lots of herbs and spices already — I am looking for more substantive additions.) I’d appreciate any new ideas!

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Altoids First Aid Kit

I’ve been making up some kits lately and thought I would share. 

Here’s my Altoids first aid kit (including packing order):

Moleskin, Pre-cut and Shaped Pieces (1)
Bandage, Gauze 2”x2” (1)
Alcohol wipes (2)
Bandage, Knuckle (1)
Bandage, 1”x3” (2)
Bandage, Butterfly (2)
Sting relief wipe (1)
Triple antibiotic ointment (1)
Ibuprofen 200 mg (2)
Benadryl 25 mg (2)
Glue, super (1)
Tweezers (1)

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Ham Radio Protocol

Hello. I’ve got a decent ham radio plan/protocol for my family. (My wife and I have our Tech licenses). Just curious if anyone out there has a clever idea or resource as to developing a frequency rotation? Thank you

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News for the week of 2024-02-12

News for the week of 2024-02-12

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Can 5 gallon buckets be stacked?

Can you stack 5 gallon buckets (food grade with gamma lids) on top of each other? So buckets are heavier (rice) and some are lighter (freeze dried fruits). 

If not, any suggestions on how to store multiple buckets so that they don’t take up a ton of space? 

Thanks!!

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News for the Week 2024-02-05

Make a top-level comment for a new story/topic. Discussions about the topic should be in the replies to the top-level comment. That way things stay organized and every main comment as you scroll down is a different piece of news.

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When is the best time to take pain o Soma 500?

The best time to take Pain O Soma 500 or any other muscle relaxant medication typically depends on when you experience the most discomfort or muscle spasms. However, it’s essential to follow your healthcare provider’s instructions regarding dosage and timing.

In general, muscle relaxants like Pain O Soma 500 are often taken three to four times daily, with or without food. It’s essential to spread out the doses evenly throughout the day to maintain a steady level of the medication in your system and ensure consistent relief from muscle spasms and discomfort.

If you have specific concerns or questions about when to take Pain O Soma 500, or if you’re unsure about the best timing for your individual needs, it’s always a good idea to consult with your healthcare provider or pharmacist for personalized advice. They can provide guidance based on your medical history, the severity of your symptoms, and other factors that may impact the timing of your medication.

 

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In this forum, the answer is for sure yes – More Solar

Currently  I live rather remotely with a very nice place in the mountains next to a farmers village. And no, it is not in the US. During the rainy season, the grid is often down. Since about 10 years I have next to the grid also off grid solar (double outlets etc everywhere). About 5 years ago upgraded it to lifepo4. Last year next to my pickup bought an EV. I can use the battery of it to power the house upto 2.5kw. 
For the rest about everything prepperwise in place. A well with solar pump. Growing food etc..

Now thinking to get another solar solution next to the current one and with a manual transfer switch switch beteen them. The second will have a similar setup but integrated the car so I can charge the car and use the battery of the car to power the house. In this second system will have a battery as well to be like a buffer in case it gets shaded so I can continue charging the car.

Good idea?

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Hi From Florida – Loving this Prepping Site

Hi – I’m new to the prepping world but have some experience with prepping for hurricane season here in Florida. I’m very impressed with this “No-BS” site! I’m a retired water utility director (35 years water/wastewater) and now write for Global Water Works, water engineers and equipment companies. Been married to my awesome husband for 42 years. I’d like to write a handbook for preppers! – Donna 

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Jase medial

Has anyone ever used Jase medical? Any thoughts? 

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News for the week of 2024-01-29

Make a top-level comment for a new story/topic. Discussions about the topic should be in the replies to the top-level comment. That way things stay organized and every main comment as you scroll down is a different piece of news.

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“Level 2” First Aid Kit

The Prepared has articles of small first aid kits and at-home supplies, but I’ve been refreshing/restocking my in-between category recently. A larger first aid kit that I take with me on trips or to gatherings of large people (usually with outdoor activity).

This would also of course be a useful thing to grab in a bug-out scenario, and helps to prioritize what I grab (The alternative being filling a bag from a closet or cupboard trying to grab what’s important.

I am curious if others have similar kits and how they think about them/prioritize their contents.

I think of mine as a complement to my everyday carry kit, which has trauma first aid supplies (thus my level 2 kit does not).

I also have a completely separate dental kit, so I don’t have any dental supplies in my level 2, which am debating whether to change, as I don’t bring the dental kit with me when I want the level 2.

I made a Kit for this kit if y’all are interested.

Sorted By Category (recommended):

Sorted By Area of My Bag:

I appreciate feedback on my kit and would love to know if y’all have <span style=”font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, ‘Segoe UI’, Roboto, Oxygen, Ubuntu, Cantarell, ‘Open Sans’, ‘Helvetica Neue’, sans-serif;”>similar kits.</span>

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Storing preps

I know it’s not recommend to store water directly on cement floors. Can you put cardboard down first? Or thick plastic (like a tarp or construction trash bags)?

And does the same apply for food in food grade buckets (food is in Mylar bags in the buckets)? Should the bucket not be stored on cement floors? 

Thanks!

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Hello from illinois

Greetings all,

Just found this site, very pleased to join up. 52 yo married man, from Central Illinois. I’ve been getting ready, in earnest, for the last 6 years. Looking forward to meeting folks, and learning things. Thanks so much.

Bart

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News for the week of 2024-01-22

Make a top-level comment for a new story/topic. Discussions about the topic should be in the replies to the top-level comment. That way things stay organized and every main comment as you scroll down is a different piece of news.

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What is the best camp stove for an emergency power outage or camping?

I would like to get a small portable camp stove that I can use if the power is out or if I want to go camping. It’s not going to be an every day user, so keeping the cost of the stove and fuel as low as possible will allow me to buy it sooner.

I could go as cheaply as $20 and get a butane stove that runs off little butane canisters.

But for $13 more, I can get a similar one that will work on those same butane canisters or the small propane tanks. I like this idea because I believe it would be cheaper in the long run to use propane, but if I wanted to just go camping I could use butane and take the smaller and lighter tank.

And for $17, I can get an adapter hose that will allow me to use one of those large BBQ propane tanks that should be even cheaper. I wouldn’t bring this camping but if the power is out for days, it would be comforting to have a ton of fuel available. 

For $48, there is the classic Coleman propane camp stove that will give me two burners, has a wind guard, but only runs on propane and is larger and heavier if I were to take it camping.

Or I can go all out and buy this camp oven and stove combo for $330

Do you all have any other recommendations or experience with any of these? 

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Screenshot from 2022-05-31 15-01-25

Lahaina Fire: Deadliest US Fire in a Century

A wildfire destroyed the historical town of Lahaina, former royal capital of Hawaii, on August 9, 2023. Many people burned alive in their homes, unaware that a fire was approaching. Others burned in their cars, stuck in traffic while trying to evacuate, or drowned while trying to escape into the harbor.  Bodies are still being counted (93 so far), but the death toll could be up to 1000.

As fires become more common and more intense, we need to learn fire emergencies like Lahaina so that we can prevent them, or at least reduce the loss of life in the next fire emergency. Please join me in collecting information about what went wrong and what could have been done differently. What challenges did the people of Lahaina face as they tried to escape the flames. What could individuals have done differently to improve their odds of survival? What could the community have done differently to prevent the town from burning or to get people out in time?

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Netflix movie “Leave the World Behind”

Does anyone have comments about the movie “Leave the World Behind”?  I liked it, but…..

It will make many people think about how our lives can change in the blink of an eye.

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Vehicle Emergency Kit

Lately I’ve been working on my vehicle emergency kit.  I went to pick up my son from an event and ended up helping someone with a flat tire.  They had no flashlights and were trying to use their phone lights.  Their jack handle broke, so I ended up using the jack from my truck.  I had a headlamp and gloves along with an extra flashlight which made the job easier.   Unfortunately, we couldn’t get the tire off of the vehicle even after removing the lug nuts, so they just parked it and came back later.

I started thinking about what I would have liked to have.  One is a 4-way lug wrench.  I thought I had one but it was in my daughter’s car.  BTW, I looked for the lug nut size in the owner’s manual and it was no where to be found, only the BOLT size.  I couldn’t find it on the vehicle’s lug nut wrench either.  And if you do get one, make sure and try it on your vehicle.  The older ones are SAE and a lot of the newer ones are metric, so they may not fit.

I had a few items in some Plano storage trunks, but now they are full.  I also have a backpack from my CERT days that is now better stocked.

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News for the week of 2024-01-15

Make a top-level comment for a new story/topic. Discussions about the topic should be in the replies to the top-level comment. That way things stay organized and every main comment as you scroll down is a different piece of news.

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