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Sunday, September 30, 2012

10 Rain Gear Items For Your Survival Preps

Original Article

Rain gear. ‘Mostly’ items to be worn on the body to help keep you dry in rainy weather. Just as with survival clothing, you should be sure to have a decent variety of good quality rain gear. One of the worst things for well being during inclement rainy weather is to get wet, which can rapidly lead to hypothermia or other issues. If TSHTF, will you have all of the rain gear that you will need going forward?
The following is a simple list and a few reminders of various rain gear that you may wish to secure for yourself and the rest of your family if you have not done so already.
Raincoats. Rain coats are usually unpadded, but tend to be more fitted in style. Many raincoats include hoods to cover the head, but separate rain hats are also available.
Rain hats. A Southwestern, or “Southwester,” style of yellow synthetic rain hat is known for its large flap-like brim that fits over the ears. This type of rain gear is popular with fishermen and others, because it protects the head from both wind and rain. The snug fit over the ears, as well as the straps under the chin, helps keep the rain hat on in stormy weather. Other types of rain hats include bucket-shaped caps made from waxed cotton or synthetic materials.
Ponchos. A rain poncho is a piece of waterproof material with openings for the head and the arms and it drapes over the body. Some advantages of wearing a rain poncho are that it fits many sizes and can be worn over warm jackets or layers of sweaters.
Parkas. Unlike plastic rain coats, are usually padded Parkas are hooded jackets that offer warmth as well as rain protection. Some parkas have a removable fleece lining, so that the jacket can also be worn as an unpadded raincoat.
Rain pants. A raincoat will keep dry your upper half of the body, but don’t forget about your legs.
Rain boots are usually made of rubber or synthetics and are often unpadded. Since rain boots are a type of rain gear that isn’t usually well insulated, thick socks may be needed to keep feet warm and comfortable.
Umbrellas. Although they aren’t worn on the body, but rather are held above it, umbrellas could also be considered a type of rain gear as they help direct rain away from the body.
Tarps. They come in many sizes, colors, materials, strengths, and thickness, usually with grommets around the perimeter for easy attachment of lines.
Trench shovel. Use it for digging trenches around and away from objects like tents, or other things in the way of water runoff.
Goggles. If it’s pouring and wind-swept rain, wearing goggles will help your vision.
Remember this… a problem with wearing rain gear is that your body continues to sweat or give off moisture and the moisture will tend to condensate on the back side of the rain gear – which will eventually come back on to your skin. Dressing in layers will help, and purchasing rain gear that is designed to ‘breathe’ will help.

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Saturday, September 29, 2012

DIY Survival Kit Mods - Adding a Lanyard

Original Article

In DIY Survival Gear - Building a Survival Kit - Part One, a reader made a comment on how to add a lanyard to your survival kit when using the small waterproof containers. The picture above shows a survival kit container, as used in my series on building a survival kit, with a lanyard attached.

Here is his comment:

Ed said...
"There are sort of finlike protrusions near the hinges on the back; I made holes in those with a soldering iron, so I can put a loop of paracord on it and cow-hitch it to the thwart on my canoe, a belt loop, whatever. Could do the same with a drill but my guess is melting the hole would stress the plastic less than drilling a hole the same size.

Of course, you could drill a much smaller hole and use thinner cord, wire, whatever. "
To make it easier for those wishing to make this gear mod to their survival kit, here is a pictorial of Ed's suggestion for adding a lanyard.

The  picture above shows the fin-like protrusion on the case where you can drill a hole to attach a lanyard.
The picture above shows the fin-like protrusion after the lanyard hole has been drilled.
The picture above shows a lanyard secured to the survival kit container with a simple overhand knot.

This gear mod does not affect the structural integrity of the case and is a simple modification that most anyone can make. Just exercise a little caution and don't make the hole too large.

Thanks go out to Ed for a great gear mod that was very simple to accomplish.

Got DIY Survival Kit Mod?

Staying above the water line!


Saturday, September 15, 2012

DIY Survival Gear - Building a Survival Kit - Part One - The Container

Original Article

Survival Kit Container_Closed View
Building a quality survival kit can be a definite challenge for even the most experienced survivalist. This will be a step by step tutorial of how to build a survival kit. You will always want to include as much gear as possible to increase your chances for survival but you will also want to keep the size and weight to a minimum. This will give you a wider range of carry options and still allow you to carry more than enough gear to help you survive.

Survival Kit Container_Open View

This is not going to be the cheapest survival kit ever built but it will be a good one. All the items used in this survival kit will be available at your local big box store at a very reasonable price.
So let’s get started.
The first item you will need is your survival kit container. It should hold all your gear items safely and in a manner that will protect your gear from the elements. It should also allow you a variety of carry options.
The largest container that would fit in the front pocket of my jeans was chosen for this project. It is a Plano Waterproof Stowaway Tackle Box Model # 3440 and its dimensions are 7.38 in. x 4.5 in. x 1.75in. (LxWxH). This container is waterproof, weighs in at approximately 5 ounces, has a secure latching mechanism, allows a clear view of the contents and costs less than $5.00 at your local big box store. This container will hold our survival gear.
At the end of this tutorial, the completed survival kit will be given away in a random drawing to one of my readers. To be eligible to win this survival kit, you will only need to leave a comment on each survival kit post.
The next installment will be:

Got DIY Survival Kit?
Staying above the water line!

Monday, September 3, 2012

Survival Cash For After The Disaster

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Original Article


After a disaster or a deflationary economic collapse, CASH will be King… for awhile. During an inflationary economic collapse (which would be runaway hyperinflation), GOLD and SILVER and other commodities will be King. Well, actually either way, Gold and Silver holds its value with respect to buying power, but I’m getting off track. What I’m trying to say is that having a quantity of cash (yes, Fiat paper funny money), will be invaluable for awhile after a disaster.
Almost all of the current money supply is electronic money, digits, computer data entries… it’s not cash. Most of the so called wealth in the world today is actually ‘credit’… promises to pay. That’s not cash however.
Statistically, only only a very small fraction of today’s money supply in the United States is actually physical cash or coin! This is known as the M0 Money Supply. Although the real percentage is elusive, it is apparently quite less than 10% of all ‘money’.
So think about that. Nearly all of the transacting that occurs in day-to-day purchases are electronic digits. It’s no surprise to most of us that this is the way it is. Having said that, imagine getting through ‘days’ without the availability of the electronic systems that allow us to purchase the things we purchase.
Most merchants will take cash. While some merchants cannot accept cash when the power is down, most smaller shops will not be bound by electronic systems of payment.
Given that today’s ‘savings’ interest rates are near zero and NOT worth the miniscule rate of return to keep money tied up in the bank, why not keep some for yourself? Even though the dollar is slowly (sometimes not so slowly) being eroded and devalued, when it comes time for collapse or disaster, those with cash will be able to buy the ‘things’ that they will need.
It won’t be until later on during a major collapse when some merchants may realize that things may not be the same again for quite some time (if ever) and start accepting silver coins, barter, or other commodities in exchange for goods. Not until they are convinced that the present system is ‘over’. Until it gets really bad, people will hang on to their belief that things will get back to normal. Maybe they will, maybe they won’t. In either case, having a cash stash could save your a$$.
Don’t let on though that you have cash. Unfortunately, today it has become almost taboo to have lots of cash. It is truly amazing actually. People that see you with a large sum of cash may look at you in near horror or amazement, as though you are carrying contraband. A person could spend $300 on something without a second thought while using their electronic money, but if they see a wad of cash totaling $300, it somehow seems like it’s a lot of money… Go figure.
In any event, think about it. Convert your digits to cash. Not only will it provide you a layer of financial security (to a point), but if you substitute a portion of your electronic spending with cash-only spending, you may be surprised at how you pull back the reins. Psychologically and comparatively, cash money in your hand feels like more money than electronic (invisible) money.

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Saturday, September 1, 2012

Topical Home Remedies the Easy Way

Original Article

What will you do when tubes of triple antibiotic cream is no longer as close as the pharmacy department of the nearest Wal-Mart?
With a little study and preparation, you’ll make your own, of course. I have a child with numerous allergies and sensitivities, so even now, with the commercial salves readily available, I prefer the peace of mind that comes from making my own topical remedies so that I know every single ingredient contained within.
Salves and balms are very simple and can be made in a few easy steps.  They have two basic components – the base and the healing herbs.
Step 1: Create a Base for Your Salve Base
  • Petroleum Jelly – I’m not a fan – if you are going to the effort of using natural non-chemical products, you might want to reconsider a base made from petroleum.
  • Beeswax (not good for people with pollen allergies). Also added to salves to harden the oils more easily. For two cups of plant based oil, use 1 1/2 ounces of beeswax. For smaller quantities of salve: one ounce of oil will need about 1/2 teaspoon of beeswax to harden the salve.
  • Lanolin
  • Plant oil (grape seed oil, coconut oil, olive oil) – these are rich in vitamin E
  • Honey (has the benefit of being a natural antibiotic)
Typically, for a larger quantity of salve, you will use around 1/2 to 1 cup of oil. Keep in mind that you want to use enough oil to cover 1 inch above the herbs while they are heated. Once you have chosen your base, then it is time to select your “herbal medicinal” ingredient or ingredients. (See below for a directory of some commonly found medicinal herbs.)
Step 2: Add the Healing Herbs or Essential Oils
If you have essential oils available you can skip the step for extracting the medicinal qualities from the herbs. Otherwise, use this process to extract the healing properties of the herbs.
  1. On a double broiler, stir the 1 cup of plant-based oil and herb or herbs on low heat for one to two hours, stirring often. Ensure the oil is covering the herb blend. The longer you cook the herbs in the oil, the stronger your mixture will be.
  2. Alternatively, use your crockpot on a low setting to extract the medicinal qualities from the herbs.  In the crock pot the process takes 3-5 hours but the mixture does not have to be tended and stirred.  It takes longer to extract the healing qualities from roots than from leaves.
  3. Using cheese cloth or an extremely fine mesh colander, strain the herbs from the oil. Place the oil back into the top of the double boiler and add beeswax to harden the salve. Stir until completely melted.
  4. Check to see if the balm has hardened sufficiently by dipping out a small amount in a spoon and allowing it to cool. If it is still runny, you need to add more beeswax.
  5. Pour the mixture into a sterile container and add essential oils or vitamin E oil (if desired), stirring well.  Store in a cool dry place.
  6. Always test a skin patch before wide use, and then, if there is no reaction, most salves can be used as needed several times per day.
Using the directions provided above many different salves can be created. Try some of the following combinations or refer to the 30 Most Popular Herbs for Natural Medicine for more examples of herbs that can be used medicinally.
  • Aloe Vera and Vitamin E – great for burns and sunburns
  • Calendula and Comfrey – soothing for rashes, burns and minor irritation
  • Aloe Vera and Vitamin E – great for burns and sunburns
  • Goldenseal, Comfrey and Echinacea – antibacterial
  • Black Walnut, Burdock, Echinacea and Tea Tree Oil – fungal infections
  • Eucalyptus oil and Camphor oil – Chest rub (like homemade Vick’s)
  • Arnica Flower – sprains, sore muscles and bruises
  • Tea tree oil and Lavender oil – antibiotic
  • Chamomile and comfrey – soothing for rashes and insect bites
  • White willow bark – mild analgesic
One day you may be looking to nature for your pharmaceuticals.  As well, consider planting the herbs (many of these are perennial) and/or locating places in your area where they grow wild. Do some research – find out what bounty nature provides in your locale and find out how the items can be used in your natural medicine cabinet.

For more homemade salve recipes, click here.

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