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Friday, April 5, 2013

10 Lower Prices Solutions to Survivalism

Original Article

A few ways to make preparedness fit your budget a bit better.

1. Prioritize. I know this is is a far bigger thing and really arguably negates the rest of the article but I do need to touch on it briefly. Choosing preparedness stuff instead of other things is a very valid option. I find it easier to have the goal in mind and do the math working towards it. Example doing the math that at 4 bucks a pop you would need to choose drip from home instead of fancy coffee 15 times to get the medium fixed blade knife you want or 10 nights out at $50 a pop to buy a rifle or whatever. For me this makes it a choice to prioritize that specific goal instead of just general budget tightening which kind of sucks.

 2. Cut down on your vices. Drink less, smoke less, chew less, gamble less, go from $5 coffee out to drip from home, use that money to prepare. [This is probably #1 for overall life improvement but for saving cash to fund preparedness, which is the topic of the post, I put it at #2. The reason is that prioritization (which also touches on vices) is more all encompassing.]

3. Buy used. Many things can be had gently used for 50-80 cents on the dollar. Once you take the tags off, use it a couple times and it will have a few scratches or wear marks anyway so save the $$$.

4. Build the same systems but with lower priced (but not junk) items. Common Mans $150 BOB by TEOTWAWKI Blog (though I think it's more of a Get Home Bag) is a great example of this.

5. Get basic guns. A tight budget does not mean to buy cool guns because you like them  and then skimp elsewhere. If you can't afford food you definitely can't afford an AR and a Glock, let alone an M1A and a high end 1911 with a bunch of mags each especially with prices these days!. It means you need to get basic but quality guns that will serve your needs but not bust the budget. The odds you need an AR-15 over a bolt action 30'06 or pump shotgun or a Glock 19 over an old SW Model 10 are a lot lower than that your family will start eating drastically less. Honestly if tomorrow our gun collection was a 30-30, a bare bones Rem 870/ Moss 500 pump shotgun, a pair of .38/.357 revolvers (his and hers) and a .22 it would be a decent enough setup. If we had 2 of everything and I had a J frame as well as a bigger revolver (aside from her pistol) it would be a good setup. Bought over time most folks can afford a $400 30'06 or 30-30, a $300 shotgun, a $300-400 pistol and a .22 of some sort along with plenty of ammo to go with them.

6. Get items that serve a lot of purposes. If money is tight it might not work in the short term to have 6 dedicated preparedness knives (huge camp, medium general purpose fixed, small fixed, folding EDC, multi tool and "fighting") a folding saw a hawk or hatchet and an ax. Instead a small ax or hatchet/ hawk (AO dependent), a medium sized fixed blade and a folding EDC/ multi tool (lifestyle dependent) might just be it. Those 3 tools would handle most all of your realistic preparedness cutlery needs.

Coming back to guns because we dudes tend to gravitate there and thus overspend limited resources which should be spent elsewhere. In terms of guns that can do a lot of things compact sized pistols are a good one. A Glock 19 or 3" small/ medium framed revolver can fill a lot of roles adequately. A pump shotgun with long and short barrels can do a ton of things. Toss in whatever center fire rifle fits your lifestyle and budget best then round it out with a decent .22 and you are good to go.

7. Put in the time. Oh you are busy too, well make some choices. Watch less tv or something. Learn stuff from people you know. Helping them is a great way to do this. Ask somebody to HELP YOU fix your car or wall or whatever and just maybe they will do it. Say you will HELP THEM with their next project and you'll get a phone call in a bit. Expect to carry some stuff and do some other nugg work but you will learn stuff. Also once they see you care enough to put in the time and energy most folks will go out of their way to help you learn.

8. Avoid mistakes. Buying items that don't fit your needs/ wants must be avoided at all costs. I have a variety of stuff that has been purchased then cast off to be extras or backups or sold at a loss. Even if you research enough to find out an item is quality there is the ever unquantifiable ergonomics. If money was tight I would only buy items I could personally handle and ideally try out (like borrowing a friends for a week) before purchasing.

9. Trade. There are some balancing acts there as you have to be a bit flexible but can't lose sight of your real needs as you can't afford to get unneeded or significantly lower priority stuff.  On the other hand turning your unused guitar and amp (or whatever) into the backpack and sleeping bag you need is just irresistible. Sometimes, though rarely especially with vastly different types of stuff, you can trade strait across. However more often you end up selling the music stuff to get money which pays for the camping gear.

10. Gifts. This isn't exactly a savings but it does help. Instead of asking for stuff you don't really need for birthdays, Christmas, etc ask for preparedness stuff you can use. Many folks would be happy to get you a preparedness item of comparable price than whatever the usual gift might be.

That is about all I can think of right now. Anyway I hope these ideas help give people some ideas on how to become better prepared on lower budgets.

Edited to include: After Snoops comment I went back and put them in what I feel is rank order.