xmlns:og='http://ogp.me/ns#' May 2016 ~ The Prepared Guy

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Hybrid Light PUC Lantern. Now I need more of them.

Yet another product that I stewed about for some time before I decided that I had to have one.  Why did I hesitate you ask?  Well, that is a bit of a complex question, for me at least.

First, I have lots of flashlights.  LOTS.  Very few do I use regularly.  So, when it comes to adding yet another light to my arsenal of lights I... take my time.  One type of light that I have very few of is a lantern, a flood light.  I have generally focused on task oriented lights or particular lumens and features.  However, an area light has many uses and benefits as well, especially when it come to use within the home, tent or camp trailer.    

PUC light fully charged, plugged in and in flashlight mode. 

Second, the Hybrid light PUC is not a traditional flashlight.  Anything that does not look or work like a traditional version of itself immediately sets off warning signs and red lights in my mind.  Warning!  Gimmick!  I'm not one to immediately jump on the bandwagon when it comes to breaking the mold.  Because it doesn't always work out.  However, this light design works well.    

The Hybrid Light PUC lantern is rechargeable by a USB and it has a built in solar panel for charging as well.  The light is also capable of charging a cell phone or other USB device which makes this much more than just a flashlight slash lantern.  Devices that only charge via one of these methods makes them impractical.  Keep it charged via the USB and use it often.  On a camping trip or during an emergency it can charge by way of the solar panel.  Pair this up with a K-Tor Pocket Socket, www.k-tor.com and you'll always be able to keep it charged.  No additional batteries required.  I like the sound of that!     

PUC light expanded.                                                                                          PUC light fully charged.

Notice the two photos below.  This is where the Hybrid Light PUC really excels.  I turned all of the lights off in our home and walked around with the lantern, to simulate a power outage.  I kept looking around to see if I had turned off all of the lights as there seemed to be more light than what this little lantern could provide.  I was pleasantly surprised at its ability to comfortably fill our small home with light.      


Being an experienced amateur photographer I did my best to match the exposure with what I felt was the actual output of the light being careful to not under nor over expose these shots.  As you can see, on the high setting of approximately 75 lumens, and being diffused through the expanding according style translucent plastic material, the results of the diffused light was amazing and far better than I anticipated from this little powerhouse.


The PUC lantern has an internal 4000 mAh Lithium-Ion battery which means lots of hours of light as well as many years of reliable use.  Lithium batteries can sit for years without losing their charge. This means that you can charge it and if you forget about it, it's likely to retain the charge and be ready when you need it.  As you can see my youngest daughter enjoyed playing with it.  During a power outage children can become fearful.  Light can be comforting to children and the unique design qualities of this light make it more entertaining and versatile than just a simple flashlight.






Signal mirrors in your EDC

Why do I never see this item on anyone's bug-out/get-home/go bag list?  Seriously!  I don't recall seeing it on any list whatsoever in my recent memory!  I may very well be wrong, unobservant or I simply haven't seen enough lists lately.

When I was a Boy Scout a signal mirror was one item that I never went hiking or camping without.  One of the few scouting projects I actually do remember was making a signal mirror.  Where that mirror is now I haven't the slightest idea.  I really wish I did.  It went with me everywhere.  

In this pictures you see two mirrors.  The small one is made of plastic and the larger is glass.  The plastic one will not break nearly as easily as the glass mirror but there are disadvantages with plastic.  It scratches a lot easier, which will make it less reflective, and the reflection is not as bright or crisp as with the glass mirror.  Yes, a plastic mirror of the same size is significantly lighter.


These tiny Lexan or plastic signal mirrors are very cool.  They ensure that you can quite literally always have one with you as they come is various sizes.  Size is everything with a signal mirror.  The larger the better, the easier to use and further the signal can be seen, especially under low(er) light conditions.  Even on an overcast or hazy day a signal mirror can be an effective signaling device.

I bet you're still pondering why you should add a signal mirror to your EDC gear.  First of all, to me,  EDC does not just mean what I have on my person.  It is anything I carry with me every day and could be part of the gear in my vehicle.  For my work I carry a business bag.  In it I carry more EDC stuff than work stuff.  It is a quality Victorinox shoulder bag that looks like a work bag; not a tactical bag that could attract attention.  I'm not gonna carry a glass mirror in my pocket BTW.  


Other than the obvious use of being able to signal for rescue in a dire circumstance a signal mirror can serve many other valuable purposes.

  • You can use a mirror to look around corners or over the top of solid objects like a desk without being noticed or exposing yourself to attack in an active shooter or other tactical scenario.  
  • Working in a group or team efficiently over distances requires communication.  Use a signal mirror to send Morse code in complete silence to other team members or as a pre-determined sign to coordinate efforts.  Signaling at night under a full moon is also possible however more difficult.  
  • Place a mirror in a tactical location so that you can watch your own back or where it will give you an additional viewing angle around obstacles.  
  • Use the power of sunlight to distract and/or temporarily blind an attacker... or rooftop sniper.
  • Direct sunlight into a dark place with far greater power than a flashlight. 
  • Deflect an incoming laser beam from an enemy satellite. 
  • Use it to apply your Camouflage face paint.
Of course a mirror can also give away your location to others if they are as perceptive as you.  So, use caution and good judgment and, yes, practice.  Know how to use a signal mirror and become familiar with and be able to quickly reference what the incidence angle is between the sun and your subject.  Practice will help you to make angle determinations quickly and accurately, which mistakes might otherwise give away your position.

Do you have any other suggested uses of a signal mirror?  Please feel free to leave a comment. 

Thursday, May 26, 2016

PrepperCon Radio Episode 34, 05 25 16 Thrive: Tim Ralston and SHTF Sanitation

What once was a stressful few hours each Wednesday has become the highlight of my week.  I very much enjoy talking about the many topics we cover.  Today was no exception and it is always especially great when we have an exceptional guest.

Tim Ralston, perhaps the best known Doomsday Prepper joined us to tell us about his latest invention, the Timahawk.  We also get to talk about sanitation during an SHTF event when it becomes much more difficult.


Check out his latest video demonstrating the Timahawk.








In an SHTF situation it is NOT more likely that you'll be killed by a bullet but rather much more so by disease.  Without sanitation diseases spread quickly.  Thus the need to plan how you'll keep yourself and your home clean without running water or power from the grid.  How will you deal with trash and human waste?  What supplies will you need to keep your family from getting sick because of unsanitary conditions?

We will address this in a future broadcast as we ran out of time to address the majority of these questions during this broadcast.

Here's a quick list of basic supplies you'll need to keep it clean.

  • Bleach
  • 5 gallon buckets
  • Latex/Vinyl gloves
  • Toilet Paper
  • Option when TP runs out
  • Garbage bags
  • Household surface cleaners
  • Baking soda
  • Vinegar
  • Shovel
  • Contaminant suit/kit
  • Feminine products
  • Hand/Bar soap
  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Paper towels
  • Wet wipes
  • Hand sanitizer
  • N95 masks
  • Personal hygiene supplies
  • Toothbrush/paste
  • Laundry soap
  • Colloidal silver
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Spray bottles



The Cover Up Kit from www.survival-medical.com will help to keep yourself sanitary when dealing with un-sanitary conditions.


Some conditions you should consider:
  1. Toilet facilities and dealing with human waste
  2. Shower/bathing provisions
  3. Cleaning dishes
  4. Washing and drying laundry
  5. Grooming/facial & body hair
  6. Home cleaning and surface sanitation/sterilization
  7. How will you deal with the dead?



PrepperCon Radio Episode 18, 02 03 16 Prepare: Gardening with Beuna Toma...

My apologies to Beuna as we had thought that this episode was lost.  Thankfully we have found the full audio of the broadcast.







Friday, May 20, 2016

PrepperCon Radio Episode 33, 5 18 16 Survival Myths and Mistakes with Cache Valley Prepper

Don't believe everything you see, hear or read on TV or the internet.  Don't be misled by survival cable TV show 'experts'.  Cache Valley Prepper joins us to help dispel common and not so common myths and mistakes of survival and emergency preparedness.



A survival mindset should not simply be associated with wilderness survival.  Take it with you everywhere you go.



Below is the email collaboration with myself and Cache Valley Prepper in preparation for this show.  I have left the notes in their rough format.  I think you'll find them informative and entertaining.

PG:
Some of these are some pretty heavy Prepper specific topics.  Which is great.  I think we should at least, at the first of the show, touch on the more basic survival myths concerning water, shelter, tourniquets etc.  These will only take a short while.  Maybe we focus on these during the first segment(s) then get serious with these items during the last segment?

CVP:
I was actually wondering about that and should have asked specifically. That makes sense and is perfectly fine. Would you like to confine it specifically to wilderness survival? If so, that would be fine, I have plenty to contribute on that subject and can reuse this content no problem.

Sorry for the long comment, but this an important investment for the long haul. I understand that the heavier subject matter takes longer to discuss ... curse of knowledge. I notice in lectures that when I get heavy duty technical questions, a few of the people light up, but a larger number glaze over. You'll have to guide me as to what degree we are speaking to the masses with the radio show. I don't know the demographics of the listener base and in what direction you are taking it. Those are steering decisions and don't I don't want to tug the show off mission. If you want it geared toward new listeners, I'm totally good with that and don't want be a high-maintenance collaborator with an agenda who overvalues his contribution. In this capacity, I can fulfill my mission while still helping you achieve yours.

PG:
Here are some of my thoughts:
Water: Don't rely solely on boiling to purify water.  You don't have to boil water for 10 minutes to kill all the microbes.  Bringing it to boiling temp does the trick.  Also, boiling water doesn't make all water safe as it doesn't address chemicals and other possible contaminants.  Stagnant or dirty water needs more treatment/filtration. 

CVP:
Absolutely. I have trained with a water quality engineer. You don't always fuel available to boil, nor is it always safe to make a fire, especially in E&E and urban scenarios. I have some tips for boiling, solar, chemical disinfection methods. I built a chemical water disinfection kit that can is perfectly sized for pocket survival kits. It uses two MRE beverage bag which are as close as you'll get to a sterile material (multi-use) in the field and withstands higher temperatures (multi-use) than a Whirlpak bag that I install Gorilla tape-reinforced eyelets in so they can be carried as a water bladder or hung to avoid punctures and package with 2% Iodine Tincture (multi-use) in an opaque 3ml & 6ml eye dropper bottles and vitamin C, foil packed chlorine-based tablets and/or foil packed potassium permganate (extremely multi-use.) I have also built kits to improvise a chlorine bleach stock solution from calcium hypochlorite pool shock granules because of the shelf life issues with bleach. For boiling I use a WAPI to conserve fuel. I can explain these in simple terms, but guide me if I'm getting into techniques that are too advanced. I also have some water purification cheat sheets that I plan to make available for free download and eventually for purchase in various form factors on water-resistant materials and with the mini water kits that explain all this stuff because it's pretty easy to do as long as you have instructions. Without instructions, there is no way the average prepper will remember the procedures and formulas under extreme stress ... I have seen SF guys will 4 million $ in training screw up super basic stuff when operating at far less than 100%.
PG:
Shelter:   Means having a roof over your head. It's better to have a bed and no roof over your head than a roof over your head an no bed.  You'll lose more body heat thru the ground.  Shelter can mean having a good goretex jacket, hat and appropriate clothing, including hiking boots and an emergency blanket. 

CVP:
Good points all. The poly-backed space blankets are the ones to buy like Adventure Medical and SolKoa over straight Mylar. If hikers would wear clothing based on the nighttime lows in the Mountains as opposed to the days, many fewer would succumb to exposure. Cache County has cold sinks that can be 60 degrees colder than surrounding areas, so I'd add that picking your camp site is pretty important too.
PG:
Survival:  You can't learn everything you need by watching Bear Grylls.  You'll actually more likely get yourself killed faster.  Survival is not romantic.  Survival is about staying out of situations that can get you killed.  You don't need to worry about survival unless you're going on a major adventure of some kind, false.  Even an overnight trip or day hike can quickly turn into an emergency situation. A helicopter or SAR is not always gonna be able to rescue you in time.  

CVP:
lol ... especially that guy ... oh, man. If we knew about emergencies ahead of time, they wouldn't be emergencies.
PG:

Tourniquiets: This is a double agent myth.  Use a tourniquet to stop severe bleeding.  But, don't use a tourniquet unless it's the last resort, that it will do more damage than good. I still see this myth all over the internet.  This has been proven to be false.  Do not apply a tourniquet for bleeding that can be controlled by direct pressure but if questionable use a tourniquet.  Should not be a last resort measure.  Will not do more damage than good. 

CVP:
Absolutely. It's also one of the most easily-improvised pieces of first aid kit. I carry one that I can also use for multiple other applications in case I don't need it for it's intended purpose. 


CVP:
Survival Mistakes That Will Get You Killed:
All guns, no groceries. For newbie survivalists, this a seductive mistake. Guns are sexy, shooting is fun, and all you have to do is slap down some plastic to get them.It's true that a physical threat can kill you in a hurry and that having the ability to defend yourself should be a priority, but there is a tendency to invest a disproportionate amount of total available resources in arms and ammo as oppose to food, water shelter, medical and other equally important preparations. I think they really believe that they can get anything else they need through force of arms. I think about the oldest joke in LDS emergency preparedness is, "Bishop, I don't need food storage ... I have a ward list and a 12ga." I have been hearing this joke for decades. But prepare along those lines puts these guys in the position of being starving and armed ... eying the stores of much better prepared individuals who are often much, much better armed and trained and are expecting them ... and have often been preparing for this eventuality for decades and are very well networked. The reality is that the all guns, no groceries crowd will be trading guns and ammo for food and medicine at pennies on the dollar. Why food? Because meal sized shelf-stable portions of it quickly becomes the gold standard of barter when infrastructure has been interrupted long-term.
Break Glass In Case of Emergency Kit as opposed to a working kit that you use daily that probably contains a few BGICoE items. "Break Glass In Case of Emergency Gear" presents you with some built-in obstacles that make it less-effective. Disposable space blankets are a great example of the fragility inherent in BGICoE gear and how it's lack of effectiveness contributes to avoidable deaths. I'm not talking about the reusable rip-stop combat casualty blankets or grommeted rip-stop camper's blankets, I'm talking about the ones that are Mylar only. Because they are BGICoE, there are built-in obstacles to using them:
  • The first obstacle is BCICoE packaging. You'll never get them back into the package they came in, so you can only use it once ...
  • which increases the cost. It's disposable and most folks have limited financial resources so that becomes an obstacle to using the space blanket.
  • Cost per use makes people less likely to train with it. It's expensive, so you don't want to crack it open and use it. You fight the way you train applies to any stressful emergency situation. If you don't use it training, you aren't likely to use it for real.
  • The sum of these obstacles to  BGICoE gear, cognitive dissonance becomes more of a factor. 
Because they don't open them in training, they often won't use them in an emergency. It might seem obvious if your head is clear because your belly is full, you haven't lost any blood, don't have any broken bones and aren't afraid. You are try and hypothermia isn't setting in. In an emergency, they are seldom operating at 100%. Creates obstacles to use  create Many folks don't want to admit they are in an emergency  as admission of defeat or failure and want to keep pushing as opposed to saving themselves.
Carry your restraint escape gear all bundled together someplace that almost certainly will be taken from you at the outset of capture ... like in your wallet or the watch band of your expensive watch or sticking a handcuff key underneath your Rolex with a glue dot. I am seeing all these kits in wallets or in credit card form factor. You might as well strap to a knife or a firearm because someone who takes you prisoner is about as likely to let you keep your weapons as your wallet or your Rolex. A lot of the guys teaching restraint escape or designing kits are current or former soldiers or LEOs and because they don't take wallets and watches from they people they restrain, that criminals or enemies won't either, but they aren't like you. They have different goals and beliefs than you. They don't think like you.
Carrying your personal survival kit in your pack instead of in your pockets. People get fixated on the go bag, bail out bag, bug out bag, GHB, GOOD bag or INCH bag but bags tend to get separated from us. We set them down to rest, sleep or when we travel or arrive. Critical survival and recovery gear should be carried in your pockets, attached to your belt or otherwise strapped to your body so it is with you when things go sideways. Which firearm is the most effective? The one you have with you when you need it. Just like sidearm won't help you if it's home in your sock drawer, if you have your backpack, you are not in a 
No turnout bag. Every effective first responder has a turnout bag because they have to be able to get ready in a hurry and be sure than they didn't forget anything. Every prepper should have one at least one for each family member too. You have your bugout bag, but what about all the stuff that doesn't go in the bag? I organize them by role. I have a gray one and one for my role as a volunteer first responder and then I have modules for specific threats such as home defense, a medical emergency, a CBRN incident and so on. I also have roll out bags for organizational use, resupply, tailgate medicine and so on.
Myths

You will most likely be killed by a bullet. With few exceptions, you are statistically far more likely to be killed by microbes as the direct result of violence. Should you learn to defend yourself? Absolutely. Do most people killed in disasters die violently?. Absolutely not ... historically, not even in most wars. Far more die from disease, exposure and trauma related to the event. In the outdoors, you are more likely to be killed by another human than by a wild animal, but accidents and exposure are still greater risks.
Survivalists prepare for a singular threat. The Doomsday Preppers TV show used a formula designed to portray survivalists as all obsessed with single threat to the exclusion of all others. Prior to that show, I knew of very few preppers who were preparing for a singular threat. The vast majority of people who do that are people who learned about prepping from watching TV shows like Doomsday Preppers. Ironically, the show seemed to have backfired on on the producers. They underestimated the ability of their viewers to see through their agenda and ended up bringing large numbers of people around to the fact that they need to prepare. But now there are a lot of new folks who largely learn about emergency preparedness to 
That we can foresee future disasters or emergencies. Mankind has a lousy track record of predicting disastrous events. Taleb noted that you can crack open any history book and it will read as a list of Black Swans ... non-linear events that we failed to predict. He is a risk manager and singles out economists in particular, but history books aren't just full of economic events that we failed to predict. He is right that while we cannot predict nonlinear events, we can measure fragility and replace it with antifragility. What people really ought to become prepared for is for volatility and the unknown. If we know enough about a an event to be able to predict it, it's no longer an emergency ... just one more thing we can plan for.
You only need to prepare for some predetermined amount of time ... like 72-hours, 7 days, 14 days, 90 days. Depending on the nature, severity, scope and duration of a catastrophic event or events, life may not return to normal along your time line. Interdepartmental turf wars have led to huge delays in the past. Other countries are prepared for risks that we are at risk for, yet ignore.
Those are some I see as some of the most relevant. Dumbest would probably be things like ...
EMP isn't really a threat, either scientifically or because it's impossible for anyone but a nuclear power to carry out.
No need to prepare, that's why we have 911 and FEMA.
If you have to defend yourself you should shoot, shovel and shut up.
There is no longer a nuclear threat.
All survivalists have a screw loose.
I'll let you two choose which ideas from the three of us get brought up in the show. If you'd like me to bring some up specifically, please let me know beforehand.
Thanks,
Cache

Follow Cache Valley Prepper on Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/cache.valleyprepper?fref=ts&ref=br_tf

and Survival Sensei:  https://www.facebook.com/SurvivalSensei/?pnref=lhc

Follow The Prepared Guy on Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/thepreparedguy/

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

EcoZoom Versa. The champion of rocket stoves!


Again, I have to ask.  What the heck is that?  Why it's a rocket stove of course.  Actually its two rocket stoves combined into one awesome cook top!

 http://eartheasy.com/catalogsearch/result/?cat=0&q=ecozoom

Check out my short video review of the EcoZoom Versa on the PrepperConTV YouTube channel.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mc35gii2Azg

Why have rocket stoves become so popular lately?  If you have not used a rocket stove then perhaps the answer to this question eludes you.  Consider that cooking outside over a fire can be a bit of a chore.  Lots of wood to gather and cut and smoke to deal with.

What is a rocket stove you ask?  To meet the criteria of a true rocket stove there must exist a few essential traits.  It must have a combustion chamber, chimney and an opening at the combustion chamber level where the fuel is added.  Fuel can be wood, charcoal or other biomass.  The addition of insulation to the combustion chamber and chimney as well as a grate under the fire to allow for air to flow in under the fire all make for a superior design and more efficient performance.  These principles ensure that the fire will be an efficient, hot and clean burning fire, with the ability to control temperature with the amount of fuel.  A hot fire means a more complete burn of the fuel which means less smoke.

The beginnings of the rocket stove idea perhaps came from the Dakota fire hole.  A small hole is dug in the ground to contain a fire and then a tunnel is dug to provide air flow to the bottom at the base of the fire in the first hole.  See the image below.  This method creates a direct and concentrated path of air flow to be drawn in from the second hole to the base of the fire which then flows out the top of the hole.



There are many different designs and ways to build your own rocket stove.  Just do a simple internet search and you'll find lots of great ideas.

The EcoZoom Versa has taken all of these principles and combined them into what I consider to be the perfect package.  EcoZoom designed this stove for a specific purpose.  Cooking fires in Africa contribute greatly to pollution.  Wood can also be difficult to come by.  Fueled mostly by small sticks and other biomass, rocket stoves require a lot less fuel than cooking over an open fire.  For these same reasons the Versa or Dura meet my emergency preparedness campfire cooking needs.

We have a few large trees on our small urban lot.  Falling branches is the norm and many get trimmed each year.  I have been stashing branches to be used as firewood.  These small branches are the perfect fuel source for rocket stoves.  I use the small twigs to get the fire started and then feed the larger sticks into the combustion chamber.  It took less than 6 sticks smaller than the diameter of my index finger and 14" to 18" in length to boil a 2 liter pot of water.  Once the kindling got the larger sticks burning well there was virtually no smoke.

I used my infrared thermometer to check the temps.  Inside the combustion chamber the fire measured upwards of 850F with the insides of the chimney around 650F.  To achieve these temperatures with such little wood is impressive!  The outside of the Versa got as hot as 140+F.    I was able to touch the sides momentarily without getting burned but they were quite hot.

I must say that cooking over the EcoZoom Versa was the easiest fire I've ever lit, the simplest fire to keep going and the most pleasant cooking experience with fire I've ever had.  Clean up was no chore either.  After letting the stove cool I simply dumped the ashes out of the bottom of the stove and wiped it off with a paper towel.            

The EcoZoom Versa weighs just over 14 pounds. so I will not be backpacking it in anywhere.  But for ease of use at home during a power outage and car camping the weight is not an issue whatsoever.  I honestly can not imagine a better, easier or more efficient way to cook with fire than with this stove!  When I first saw it I knew I had to have one.  My instincts and experience served me well.  I was not wrong.    

There are many reasons to cook over a rocket stove rather than an open fire.  In an emergency or SHTF scenario you may have a limited amount of fuel.  An open fire not only uses as much as 50% more wood but also produces a lot more smoke.  Smoke is not only irritating and bad for your health but it can also give away your location.  An open fire is also messier and more dangerous.

I've always preferred to cook over a gas stove when camping rather than an open fire.  In an extended emergency propane and other fuels will be costly and hard to get.  Adding the ability to cook over a fire fills an essential void and diversifies your means of cooking.  Having multiple and various means of performing essential tasks is vital.  Cooking included.  Adding a rocket stove to your preparations will increase your ability to feed your family a hot meal during a crisis.  

If the EcoZoom stoves are considered light or middleweight of rocket stoves then these could be considered the heavyweights.

 www.titanreadyusa.com  - Helius,



www.groverrrocketstoves.com




or the super heavyweight www.bearriverrocketstoves.com.



You can get the EcoZoom Versa, Dura or Plancha rocket stoves here:

 http://eartheasy.com/catalogsearch/result/?cat=0&q=ecozoom



FYI.  I choose to call the EcoZoom Versa the "Champion of rocket stoves" because it is superior in every way to any of the rocket stoves I have compared it to thus far.  Superior in features, size, value, durability, portability, ease of use, and quality of build.  I have yet to compare it head to head with the Silver Fire brand rocket stoves which seem like excellent quality products.  However, my basic comparison of the two still gives the advantage to the Versa in my opinion.

See the Silver Fire products here:    http://www.silverfire.us/silverfire-survivor-rocket-stove

Thursday, May 12, 2016

PrepperCon Radio Episode 32, 05 11 2016 Protect: Real Home Security

On today's episode we talk about things that everyone can do to make their homes more secure.  Hardening or fortifying your home can be as simple as adding longer screws to your front door hinges and deadbolt plates.

Here is a link to a previous blog post that I wrote back in 2013 about how to better fortify your home from intruders.

http://www.preparedguy.com/2013/07/practical-home-security.html




Hardening your home is the most effective and least expensive methods to keep criminals out.  These methods include:

Replacing the short screws in your exterior door hinges and latch plates with longer (3") screws to tie them into the house framing which will make a tremendous difference in strengthening the door against kicking.


This is what happens when only short 3/4" screws are used.  A door can easily kicked in.  The door jam is the only thing keeping the bad people out.  Not good.  



Install beefier latch plates for the deadbolt and door knobs.
Ensure that your entry door hard wear is of good quality.
Install additional door locks like the door blocker lock.


These kinds of locks are best as the attached to the house framing and not the door.

Ensure that your entry door is either solid wood or steel with a steel frame, and not a wood frame.


This is what happens to a wood frame door when it is kicked in. It has metal on both sides of the door but the frame is wood,  A steel frame door or solid wood door is much stronger. 

Install security film on sliding glass doors and ground level windows to resist breaking.

Check out this video:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Maph1a2qFf4

Install manual locks on your garage door and garage door release lever.



These are just a few simple suggestions on how to keep bad guys out of your home.



Friday, May 6, 2016

PrepperCon Radio Episode 31, 5 4 16 Prepare: Panic and Social Unrest with Survival Medical

How do you respond to a traumatic event?  Do you freeze up or do you know exactly what needs to be done?  Do you run and hide or do you jump in and help?  Do you immediately hit the panic button and hope that someone comes to the rescue?  Every emergency needs that one person who can stay calm, take charge and direct others.  
Preparation, awareness and training will help you to prevail when it comes to the SHFT.  Not only will you survive but you can also thrive.




Jon Roberts of www.Survival-Medical.com joins us again to contribute to the conversation.

Survival Medical makes the only medical kits intended for long term storage.






Sunday, May 1, 2016

LifeStraw Family


I'm confident that most of you who read my blog understand the need for water filters.  Whether you are a backpacker or hiker or are preparing for a large scale event when our water supply will be interrupted, you get it.  If you have spent any significant time away from 'civilization' where you only have what you brought with you to sustain you, you also get it.  Maybe you have experienced a natural disaster when your culinary water supply has been interrupted or your city's water supply has been contaminated.  If any of these situations apply to you, and if you have ever been thirsty (which truly applies to everyone), you had better not take a source of clean water for granted.  This can be tough for many of those who rarely ever leave the comforts of their community to venture out into the wilderness. 

Do you leave the tap water running while brushing your teeth?  Do you use more water pressure and volume than you really need in the shower?  Do you turn off your sprinkler system when it has rained outside so that you don't over water your lawn?  Do you collect rain water from your roof to apply to your garden at a later date?  If you don't do any of these things, or are not conscious about your daily water usage, chances are that you don't truly appreciate the enormously important role of clean water in your life.   


If you don't appreciate how easy it has become to obtain clean drinkable water that won't make you sick then you probably don't genuinely understand how important and even critical a role water filters can and will play for you and your family.

LifeStraw understands how important these topics are as they continuously help families and children in developing countries to have clean water.  Many reputable water filtration businesses do the same.  These are the kinds of businesses I prefer to give my business to.  

There are many different types and kinds of filtration products available.  Many of which are excellent.  Others, not so much.  Most of which are different and excel at doing specific tasks better than others.  In this article I am focusing on the LifeStraw family of products as they fill particular gaps in our families water filtration needs.

The LifeStraw itself is likely the most simple water filter available.  They pioneered this technology decades ago and have proven themselves around the world.  For the cost, weight and size of the LifeStraw there is no reason for you not to have one in each of your EDC or bug-out/get-home bags. 

For additional capability of taking some chemicals out of your water like chlorine consider using the LifeStraw steel which contains a replaceable carbon filter in addition to the highly efficient hollow fiber membrane technology LifeStraw employs.



For my short hiking trips I choose to carry the LifeStraw 'Go'.  No water filter could be more convenient for me.  As the trail passes by a river, stream or spring I simply dip the bottle in, put the lid on and hydrate myself.  I'll then top off the bottle and continue with my hike. 



For larger volume water filtration needs like cooking and cleaning the LifeStraw 'Mission' and 'Family' water filters are excellent choices.  Every family needs to have a gravity fed filtration system like these!  I can't stress that enough!  The 'Mission' is very lightweight and portable and can easily be backpacked into your base camp.       

The LifeStraw 'Family' makes water filtration at home very easy and convenient because of its container.  Both the 'Mission' and 'Family' are capable of filtering out viruses in addition to bacteria and have a rating of well over 4,000 gallons.  They both also have a unique and easy to use built in way to clean the filter which is an essential part of extending the life span of all LifeStraw water filters. 




There isn't a single water filter that will last forever.  Some claim to be able to last up to 1,000,000 gallons.  This is just simply false and a misrepresentation.  The ratings of the LifeStraw products are very realistic.  You do have to take care of them properly or they will not last as long as the manufacturers ratings.  Be sure to follow their instructions exactly to get the most out of your filters.  Filtering silty water, water that is not 'clear', will result in a shorter filter life span as with any water filter. 

Keep in mind that when it comes to a long term event, when you need to filter water every day, you will need to not only take good care of your water filters but you will also likely need multiples of them.  Backup and redundancy is the way of the prepper.  LifeStraw is just one of many water filtration options available to you, but one of the few that I highly recommend.  

My advice is plan to have at least one high volume water filtration system, and one personal water filter, for each member of your family, whether it be a LifeStraw product or one of the other great systems I have reviewed on this blog, for your long term emergency needs.     

  

  

The purpose of this site is to provide you with information about what I have learned, my experience, and what my motivations are as a Prepared Guy. I have always felt driven to be ready for any situation by something powerful deep inside me. Being prepared has always served me well. I feel compelled to help others do the same.
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