Tuesday, March 19, 2013

More Observations...

Cyprus looks to be a Watershed Event.  Depositor funds seized to render bank solvency.  Casinos wish they could get house odds like that.  Got money at risk?  Been thinking about relocation or funding some equipment that would enable a greater mode of self-sufficiency? Not really a lot to think about, if you ask me.  Figure your job is solid and your 401(k) and profit-sharing will be there for you?  Best think again...

Lots of people have missed the ammunition train.  That same train has made Handloading Components very scarce and desirable.  Looking for a place to park some money?  Looking for ammunition?  If you can obtain PRIMERS and POWDER (smokeless propellant, not black powder) there are cartridge cases and bullets to be found; albeit on internet gun-board forums, in the classified sections.  Some high quality gear often sells there for way under current values.  Ebay is also a venue for Handloading Tools and other gear.  Using paypal means you get your stuff in 3-4 days. 

Would be hard to get hurt if you found some brass and bullets in sizes that are common or are specific to your own weapons.  Jeff Cooper in the late 70s wrote a column for Mel Tappan's Personal Survival Letter.  In Ballistic Wampum Col. Cooper advised buying ammo to store and have for trade/investment.  Most popular centerfire (reload capable) cartridges are these basics:  .308win, .223rem, .30-30win, .30-06, .270win, .243win, .38sp, .357mag, 9mm Para, .44mag, & .45acp.  The .300win mag and 7mm rem mag are also very popular.  Basic .30-06, .308win, and .22-250 are used in many different bore sizes and can be necked up or down.  A basic loading manual will give cartridge case dimensions.  With the above 3 rifle casings about 20 different common cartridges can be handloaded, not to mention wildcatted.  Got other handguns and rifles that use other specific cases?  Buy empty brass and whatever you can find.  Components can also be scrounged or salvaged if you have a bullet puller.

The .177 lever-cocking pellet rifle is a decent substitute for a .22lr.  For anywhere from $70 to $200 you can buy a new (always want new) spring piston .177 rifle that will deliver pellets at 1000fps.  Quality pellets cost about $10 per 500, cheaper ones much less.  These rifles really work effectively within 25yds and with a scope can be super-precise if your rifle is capable of fine accuracy.  RWS/Diana offers the model 34 as a basic fine-accuracy entry rifle.  Cheaper if buy w/synthetic stock.   For what .22lr is selling for, you can buy several thousand pellets and a rifle.  Pellet rifles have different report than a rimfire so offer opportunities for city-dwellers.  NEVER fire a piston pellet gun w/o either a pellet or cleaning felt pellet in the barrel; to do so will ruin the leather gasket which requires resistant pressure to retain function.

Money being removed from bank accounts in Cyprus.  English minister Daniel Hannan calls this event "precedent setting",  So, now government honchos have a precedent for looting deposits from private banks... 

How're you  set for food?  Got food that will keep?  A place that is cool and out of the sun to store foodstuffs?  Got a means for cooking should the grid go down or the natural gas be unavailable?  Got water in storage or access to a source?  Something like your own well or a freshwater lake?  Got a Berkey or Katadyn DRIP Filter?

The archives here have posts on how to put-up whole grains using 5gal buckets and Dry Ice.  Got any food reserves that you put-up?  No other way to KNOW What You Have for sure, unless you do it yourself.  Cooking is likely to be a once-a-day thing.  If you cook big batches of soup, stew, beans, sauces and make jerky and dehydrate fruits and vegetables, you are getting best value from your food, energy used to cook & prepare it, and your time involved doing so.

A couple decent quality solar panels can keep a couple of 12v deep cycle batteries going.  Interstate deep cycles are very high quality.  Trojan 6v golfcart batteries are the best entry-level battery for a solar array, inverter system.  Still a decent 2500w inverter, 300w of solar charging or a wind generator, and several Interstate Deep Cycles would enable you to keep a chest freezer running, especially if the freezer were out of the sun and in coolest location in house, often on concrete slab in garage.

If you have a freezer, you can make ice and store food at its most nutritious.    If you have a generator, can charge your battery while you run washing machine or run your well pump.  A 2100 gal cistern would be great to have if you've got a well.  Run that pump for an hour or two and fill the cistern.  Run high efficiency battery charger once pump is fully actuated, if you have the excess capacity.  We chose a 2.25hp deep well pump because it could be actuated by our 5kw genset and once running only needed about 2.5kw to work at full capacity.  This left 2kw or more to do other work.

Canned food stores really well for longterm IF can keep it from freezing and in moderate temp environment.  Food storage can be packed in Rubbermaid Totes and stacked in an empty closet or basement area.  Canned vegetables are packed in water and don't need valuable water to cook them.  Can heat and eat direct from the can if need be.  Empty cans are a side bonus and have many uses.

Resale and Thrift shops are a great resource.  If you need extra clothes, shoes, linens, cook-gear; really ought visit your local thrift resources and buy there.  Shoes are the real biggie.  Good ones cost real money these days.  If you routinely shop your resources, you will find really good deals.  Just like pawnshops for tools, camping & fishing gear, and electronics.  Always offer 30% less at a pawnshop.  Great places to find & make deals.  Used bookstores and Thrifts will also have resource books on many subjects, including cookbooks, first-aid and medical resources, technical and professional guides and books on gardening, carpentry and auto repair, plus outdoor themes.  Might also make room for an older set of encyclopedias.  Shouldn't have to pay much over a buck for a hardcover book, or quarter for softcover.  Lots of novels and other recreational reading matter at the thrifts.  Often 10 for a buck.  People will rediscover reading when the grid goes.  Having some paperbacks to trade might be just what you need to make a friend or clinch a deal.

How're you set for medical supplies?  Band-aids, tape, gauze, pads, rubbing alcohol, hydrogen peroxide, dental floss, toothpaste?  Suture kit and some hemostats might be a great thing to have...

Just some last minute ideas from Lester...

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