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Talking to young adult daughter about being prepared

So my brothers and I have embraced being prepared, as this year has convinced us of the plausibilty of events or chains of events occuring that could lead to scenarios that would require hunkering down and/or bugging out.  We have enjoyed talking about how we will respond to different things, what we’ve purchased, stuff we already have that we’ll share at our vacation home, I mean, bug out location….  

My question is have any of you men or women talked with your young adult daughters about being prepared and what were some tips you would provide?  I’m pretty ok with talking about the basics of being prepared with her as I’ve already talked about financial preparedness and currently addressing having her vehicle “prepared” since she just bought her first used car, ie, the fix a flat, first aid kit, etc, etc.  So I’m wanting to go the next level.  How will we meet up, where, why are we even talking about that (she lives 40-50min from me and closer to urban)… “Here daughter, here’s your go bag….  ummm, why do I need this…”  

Now she isn’t stupid or completely helpless, and I think she’d be open to the next level, but she is a thinker and may or may not see the need.  I’m just looking for thoughts from people (guys and women) who have had this converstation with their young adult daughters.

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Water storage tanks

Hi All

Thinking about getting some potable drinking water storage tanks installed in my home – any suggestions on how I should go about this and where I should look (UK based).

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Opinions on rifles?

I’m not a “gun guy” although I did grow up in North Texas, learning to hunt and shoot safely throughout my teens in the 70s. In the intervening decades, I have paid no attention to guns, and have never felt the need to have one around the house.(Except for 110-year old bolt action .22 that my grandfather used for rabbits on the farm) But now that I have prepped  reasonably in most other areas, I’ve been thinking of getting a modern rifle with some decent stopping power.

Any suggestions on selecting one? I am not a gun noob, but I’m 40 years out of practice. Thoughts on safe-yet-rapidly-acessible storage would be welcome as well. Just to make things more complicated, I now live in New Jersey. I’m applying for the rifle-purchase permit now, and have heard some stories about the state making it difficult to get. We’ll see.

 

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Learning to fish

At the risk of embarrassment & shame, I’m going to admit this in front of all of you who have awesome outdoor skills: I don’t know how to fish.

But I want to learn.

Now that I have my confession in the open, let me ask my questions. 🙂

– There are a zillion “how to fish” videos on YouTube. Can anybody help me pair it down & recommend some of the better videos, as well as any other sources? (Unfortunately, I don’t have any local friends who can teach me.)
– What is a good, basic set of fishing equipment (rod, reel, tackle, etc.) for inland, freshwater fishing? It seems like half of the local sporting goods store is dedicated to fishing equipment, and I’m sure most of it is stuff I don’t need.

Thanks in advance.

-WS

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Increasing your readiness when driving near protests

I wrote this on Sunday, relying in part on the work of others who have researched this.  I thought I would share this in case someone was looking for some guidance on dealing with these events.

https://paultmartin.com/blog/f/project-increasing-your-readiness-when-driving-near-protests

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Any eyewitnesses on scene in Portland, Louisville, and other hot zones?

I’m just curious if any of our readers have been near the civil unrest in Portland, OR or any of the other hot spots. I’d love to hear first-person accounts of what’s happening in these places because I get the sense that we don’t get the full picture in the mainstream media.

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“Sane Prepping” Car/vehicle selection criteria

I realize there is A LOT of room for debate and preferences on this topic and everyone might be optimizing for slightly different scenarios, but I was curious if there were any top well balanced contenders, or even semi-universal criteria for selection of automotive transportation with an eye towards prepping?  Going with the theme of this site (“sane prepping”) I’m lobbying for criteria biased towards a combination of every day use but also some specialized use, also something that doesn’t stick out like a sore thumb (I am NOT interested in hummers, tactical/mad-max ready vehicles, or even cloth-covered Jeeps with snorkels).  I don’t want/need more than one car so a multitasker is ideal, though I’m open to upgrades like non-stock tires, non-obvious skid-plates, and removable roof cages, etc.

The criteria I’m thinking of so far include a lot of “normal” considerations:

Reliability/durability Fuel economy (conceptually open to electric but feel like its still too specialized?) Serviceability Inconspicuousness/affordability Safety/survivability Cargo capacity (probably more than a sub-compact sedan, but nothing crazy big before it eats into fuel economy?)

The “Prepper” related extra considerations:

All wheel drive? Higher () than average) ground clearance? upgradability/the availability of upgrades (I imagine some car markets have more options than others?)? at least light off-road capabilities (should be able to go over a curb/through light mud with confidence, maybe over small logs, but not planning on fording a river or scaling a boulder).

Anything obvious I miss?  Anything non-obvious that might be worth thinking about?  Also interested in  “upgrade” suggestions that I haven’t covered that might be generally applicable to any/most choices.

So far my limited research is making me wonder if a Subaru Outback might be worth looking into seriously?  I imagine the Jeep brand is popular, but I’m less sure about that for myself (but open to hearing more if you’re a fan).

 

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Visual guide to bug bites

This is oversimplified but I thought it was a useful graphic if you’re spending time outside right now.

Does it seem right to you?

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bug bites

Portable solar and power banks best practices?

I admit, I’m starting this thread to highlight a comment I made here (hoping to get it noticed and get answers.)

https://theprepared.com/gear/reviews/portable-solar-chargers/

I wound up getting the Big Blue but for my home, to charge small devices. I have a few questions on this topic.

1) If we’re not supposed to fry our phone battery by putting it in direct sunlight, why is it okay to fry the battery pack?

2) Is it a viable strategy to try to shield the gadget or battery pack from the sun by putting it, for example, under the solar panel or otherwise in the shade?

3) What happens if you plug more than one device into the solar panel? for example, what if you plug in two battery packs. Do they each get charged at half the rate? I’m sure it’s not that neatly broken out, but I’m trying to get the general idea.

4) I am a little bit confused about how to figure out what “perpendicular to the sun” means because the sun is a ball not a plane, to be simplistic about it. Could you explain? Also, what are best practices for propping portable panels up so that they are at the correct angle? .

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Handheld ultraviolet light sanitizers

I recently read a review on these sanitizers and I was curious if anyone knows if these are any good for cleaning bacteria and Protozoa from water?

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Requests for research?

Hi, I’ve lurked the site for a while after discovering it on a subreddit some time ago, and I’ve since found it to be the most unbiased, fact-based resource on preparation, like, anywhere. In fact some of the advice here helped me and several friends and their families to ride out the rough early days of the Covid-19 pandemic in relative ease, so thanks for that as well.

On to my question: Is there a way to request research/articles about certain topics that might not have been covered yet but could be useful for the community?

This question is prompted by a pretty recent experience, going to my first protest. I intend to remain apolitical in this forum as per rules, so thats all I’m gonna say about that, but I realized I was woefully underprepared for what could happen at a protest, and ended up scrambling to find clear, accurate, fact-based information on how to neutralize and remove pepper spray from skin as i sat there feeling like my hands, arms, and anything else that hadn’t been covered at the protest were on fire for almost two hours after i got home. I did find a decent solution – letting dawn dish detergent break down the OC oils and then washing it off with cold water, several times i might add, between 5-10, i lost count somewhere along the line.

Anyhow, all that to say, could we get a preparation guide/checklist for protests and rallies, like what to expect, what clothing to wear, how to protect eyes/ears/mouth/nose, what to do in case you come in to contact with pepper spray or tear gas, etc?

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If you have checklists, do you have triggers for using them?

I’m a huge proponent of checklists.  As the Texas coast may experience some tropical weather later this week, I pulled out mine and made sure I was comfortable with my pre-set trigger for the Level A checks in the list.

Do you use pre-determined triggers for your checklists?

https://paultmartin.com/blog/f/project-setting-triggers-for-your-checklist-tasks

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Shelf-stable pantry meals for snobs

there are lots of lists online of meals that you can make from your emergency or long-term food storage, but a lot of them cover the same, uh, familiar American ground. i thought we could brainstorm some more exciting ideas for eating out of your emergency pantry. I’ll start off with a couple on my list:

Meatless mapo tofu — (silken tofu in aseptic packages is shelf stable!)

Soondubu jjigae (soft tofu kimchi stew)

Masoor (red lentil) dal — red lentils cook so fast

what do y’all make out of your pantry?

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Skills >> Gucci Gear

Wanted to make this post mostly pertaining to firearms as I’ve seen a lot of people on here asking questions about purchasing their first gun, but this advice can also be applied to just about anything prepping related. Keep in mind when going to purchase a firearm, or any piece of gear for that matter, that no matter how nice the gear may be, no matter how many cool features it may have, it is nearly useless in the hands of an unskilled operator. This mainly relates to firearms in the fact that far too many people get swept up in the game of trying to find “the best” weapon or optic or accessory out there and lose sight of what actually matters; Shooting the weapon. Sure that $2,000 LMT rifle looks super cool, runs like a racehorse, and has a ton of features, but if you can’t hit a 12″ silhouette at 50yds then it may as well be a pawn shop trade in special. What I’m saying is don’t assume that you can just buy skill with a weapon. Yes I love my Gucci ARs as much as the next gun nut, but if I blow my entire budget on a super expensive rifle setup and have no money for ammo to train with then it means nothing. Now I know right now circumstances are a little rough if you didn’t stockpile ammo before all this began, but the good news is there is still a way to hone your skills without ever firing a round. It’s called dry fire. Thomas and I touched on this in a previous thread, but dry fire is a wonderful way to build skills and muscle memory that are critical to fluid gun handling, particularly for handguns. The internet is full of videos of dry fire drills you can run at home without a single bullet fired that will greatly improve your speed, skill, and overall familiarity with the weapon. I’d be glad to post some of my personal routines if anyone is interested as well. Just running simple dry fire drills will help you begin to master the basics of sight acquisition, trigger press, grip/shouldering techniques, and weapon manipulation. It may feel silly at first, pretending to fire and reload your weapon with no ammo, but I can promise you the more dry fire reps you do the work for, the more it will pay off on the range and in real situations. Dry fire is no substitute for live ammo practice, as there are still fundamentals that can only be learned with live rounds, but it is a fantastic skill building supplement, especially for new shooters. No matter what caliber of shooter you are though, dry fire drills can and will help keep you at your top proficiency levels.

So let’s wrap things up:

1. Don’t buy a weapon so expensive you can’t afford ammo to train with it. I’m not saying don’t buy gucci guns if you have the disposable income, just don’t put yourself in a position where you have a high class weapon but you’re a low class shooter because you couldn’t afford to train with it.

2. Dry fire. A lot. Especially in times like these where ammo is scarce and priced like precious metal

3. Don’t get caught up in the hype about a certain weapon or optic or upgrade etc thinking that it will magically make you a better shooter. Higher quality gear allows good shooters to push their performance, but the increase is skill-driven, not gear-driven. Save up, buy ammo, train, and then once you have acquired a level of skill and confidence in your shooting begin looking for ways to enhance your performance.

I hope this was helpful to a lot of you good folk just getting in to the world of firearms, don’t be afraid to ask if you have any questions or would like any advice. I’m no master marksman but there are a lot of people on here with a lot of great knowledge who are glad to share it. The US has had a massive amount of new gun owners arise here in the past few months and it’s our job as experienced shooters to help educate and inspire them the best we can. If anyone would like links to videos of how to get started training or good dry fire drills to run just let me know, I would be happy to post them in the comments section.

And as always,

This is the way

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Thinking ahead: second order impacts?

With the realization that there is still a lot of uncertainty (both with the trajectory of the virus and people’s behaviors towards it) I’m curious what types of second order impacts (or third/fourth order impacts, at this point) might be in store for us.

For example: if stay at home orders persist, or people’s choices leave them at home (voluntary telework, etc.) more this summer – presumably everyone will be running their A/C on hot days, rather than leaving it off while at work.  Would that increase the strain on the electrical grid as compared to “normal” conditions and thereby increase the odds of rolling brownouts, etc?

At this point its all speculative (maybe people will spend more time outside instead?) just thinking out loud.  Any other medium-term impacts on the horizon?  Doesn’t have to be doom and gloom (I’m eating better/healthier, saving money, and fairly happy with my at-home haircuts, would be glad to maintain some of these new habits!).

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About that IFAK tourniquet

Does your kit have one? I’m a bit mystified by the emphasis on this piece of equipment, perhaps because neither firearms nor big hikes are part of my life. My Red Cross and NOLS courses haven’t emphasized a tourniquet — even kind of discouraged it. But the perfectionist in me is conflicted. Why should a suburbanite like me consider investing in a tourniquet?

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Family planning or avoiding pregnancy in a pandemic

Howdy, I’m Catnip and I teach couples how to chart their fertility naturally to avoid or assist in achieve in getting pregnant. As pretty much all of us know if the power goes out or the stores are empty getting to an app or a pharmacy becomes an issue very fast. Even getting into the doctor’s office as we have seen the last 5 months can be an issue.

So what do you do when you can’t access condoms, hormonal birth control or you want to get an IUD or copper coil? You learn to chart. Some folks use an app, but that’s not reliable for reasons including the above power issue, but more importantly 90% of apps are calender based methods – counting or rhythm method.

What I teach is called the Creighton FertilityCare Model and it is done with making observations of natural biological signs and interpreting those signs to understand if a woman (or a couple) is fertile or infertile on that day.

I’d love to answer questions you have and am happy to direct you to resources for different methods.

The big ones are Cervical Mucus charting, Temperature Charting and Hormone Charting.

I love discussing fertility, woman’s gynecologic health, and all around topics of intimacy. No question is too gross, too weird, or too complicated. If I don’t have an answer, I’ll find out or I’ll direct you to someone who has an answer.

-Catnip

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What do you think about “news” roundups on the TP blog?

I’m Jon, editor of the TP blog. We try to keep general news off of The Prepared. But there were times, like with COVID (where we were one of the first in the West to ring the alarm bells about it), where it seems worthy to talk about news in a prepping context.

We’re trying to figure out where the balance is. How much “news” do you want?

We’re planning to reduce the COVID “Key Developments” posts to about twice a week, but I wanted to take the forum’s temperature on this. We don’t (yet) have polling support in here, but if we did I’d post a poll with the following options:

Reduce COVID key developments posts to twice a week Eliminate these link-dump posts altogether Turn Key Developments into a generic prepping link-dump post that includes non-COVID news, interesting gear finds, etc.

Thoughts or feedback? Other alternatives?

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Do you think the media should be showing more visual imagery of the medical consequences of COVID?

I’d love to hear if you disagree, but it seems like the mainstream media has been holding back on showing sensitive medical images/videos of what it’s like with COVID and how nuts things are in certain hospitals.

(This is not a political/tribal discussion, eg. Fox News vs. Mother Jones.)

It’s understandable in normal times that this would be distasteful, but these aint normal times and a major problem in society is a culture of people who seem to not comprehend all of the facets.

Sometimes those visuals and sounds are the best way to make things click for a person. It’s similar to how the public campaigns against underage smoking stopped focusing on pitches like “if you smoke, you’re going to die!”or “these yummy-looking scrambled eggs are your brain on drugs!”, and instead started saying narratives like “if you smoke, you’re going to smell bad and get ugly!” and “your sperm die and your friends dump you!”

… the latter being far more effective at ‘moving the needle’ in the real world.

I have no way of editorially-vouching for this image, but I saw it in a Facebook group and it struck me that it was effective imagery. What do you think? Should this happen more?

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Air Purifier for Small Office/Home

Any recommendations for air purifiers/filters that are effective in ‘vacuuming’ the coronavirus? Aware that it may only be a small percent if any at all in filtering out a room. But friends and family are returning to work, and anything would be considered if it helps. Any experience with these?

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What the media didn’t understand about toilet paper hoarding

Not only was it aggravating that some media referred to the people panic buying as “preppers”… but they all seem baffled by why people were stocking up on toilet paper.

Here’s my theory. I poop in my home less often than I poop at my work or other places. So does my wife and our kids mostly do their business at school. I did not yet have a stock of toilet paper in my preps. So when this all started going down, I knew I wanted to go stock up… but I honestly had no idea just how much my family would use when we are all at home 24/7 for weeks.

Are there any good rules of thumb in prepping about how much TP a person uses? Or some other formula to use?

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Contact-free grocery shopping and prepping

I know that many items have limits, say 2 of this, or one of that. I was going to the store physically less than once a month and getting as much of any item that I could get or needed, except toilet paper, which I have alternatives for, mostly. I try to not take things that other people might need more. That being said, for anyone who does InstaCart, do you notice differences in limits on how much you can purchase at once, or are your purchases being tracked so that if you do it once a week, it becomes obvious that you are trying to stockpile for shtf? Does it even matter? New-to-Instacart question. My question is not “how to do InstaCart” but “how to do InstaCart when one is prepping for more than a week’s worth of stuff”?

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Masking little kids

Will your smallest children wear masks? Have you found particular products (either masks or faceshields) that work best for little kids? How about motivational techniques to help kids want to wear masks?

In many places, mask mandates apply to kids over age 2. When schools try to reopen in the fall, they are also likely to require masks, but it’s unclear which products are best for kids or how to get them to comply.

 

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Preps of shame?

So, I was loading three empty 5 gallon gasoline jerry cans into the back of my Toyo last night, strategically pre-placed so that, should I need to GTFOH, I can quickly double my range with 15 gallons of extra fuel from the corner station before we slip away towards the horizon as NYC goes all Snake Plissken in my rearview. Amaze-balls, right?

But then I had this thought, “Um, maybe this is overkill? Or even misguided? Am I killing too much gear space for potentially unneeded fuel? Am I just dumb?”

And then I had this idea for some chuckles in the middle of all this insanity. Hence, this thread.

So, what has been a prep of shame for you? Something you thought was initially unbelievably amazing but, upon reflection, feels, um, not so great. Let’s keep it light, funny and sharing some good-natured fun at our own expense, despite all our best, logistical intentions. 

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