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Sunday, November 22, 2009

Basic Guide to Knives

Re-post courtesy Riverwalker's Stealth Survival

Knives come in a multitude of shapes, sizes, types and functions. Knowing the basic types and styles of knives available will allow you to determine which knives will best suit your own needs. The following is a very basic description of several different types and styles of knives that are available.

Fixed Blade Knives

A fixed-blade knife is a solid piece of steel anchored to the handle. This is a type of blade that is usually the most trusted for the tougher jobs and more rugged use. For most hunting and camping activities, a fixed blade knife will be the best choice. Fixed blades are durable and hold up to the elements well because of their straight, simple construction without any of the various folding-type mechanisms. In fixed blade knives, the knife blade is one piece of metal that runs the length of the knife. When the knife blade reaches the beginning of the handle, it can either taper into a “rat tail” that is surrounded by the handle or continue as a tang that is covered on either side by handle pieces or what is commonly referred to as “slabs”.

Folding Knives

Folding blade knives are generally not quite as durable as fixed blade knives, but provide safety and the convenience of compact size. Folding blade knives come in a variety of configurations, some of which may even lock into place. Locking folders allow much of the same confidence of a fixed blade while letting you close the knife blade into the handle for safety.

Pocket Knives

Old fashioned pocket knives are still high on the list as everyone’s favorite. These can be great to carry in your pocket for all the times you might need a knife. Not all models lock in an open position. This does not affect their main use as a basic knife for a variety of uses. Some pocket knives offer multiple knife blades for different uses.

Lock Back Knives

A lock back knife is a type of folding knife that locks in an open position. Locking folders provide much of the confidence of a fixed blade knife when open; yet they enable you to fold the blade for your safety and carrying convenience. A lock back gets its name from a rocking lock plate visible on the back of the handle. Opening the knife blade causes the “rocker” to lock against the blade so that it locks open. Pushing down on the “rocker” at the back of the handle releases it. This enables you to close the blade. Lock back knives generally require two hands in order to close them.

Single Hand Operation Knives

Many knife users are looking for the convenience of a knife that opens and closes with one hand and that also provides additional safety by being locked when open. For climbing and activities where one hand is occupied, a knife that can be operated with a single hand is considered essential by many people. For other types of activities, a single hand knife may be simply a personal preference. There are many types of knives that allow single hand operation. It is important to choose one that fits your activities. This type of knife is often referred to as a “one hander”.

Liner Lock Knives

A liner lock knife is a folding knife that locks open by means of a tensioned metal liner inside the handle. This is similar to a lock back knife. Opening the blade will activate the lock. Unlocking is achieved by placing your thumb on the front part of the liner and pushing to the left. This releases the blade. A liner lock enables you to close the blade with one hand. A thumb hole or thumb stud in the knife blade is typically used to allow single hand operation.

Frame Lock Knives

A Frame Lock knife operates similar to a liner lock. The main difference is the lock is a tensioned part of the handle frame with an open channel. When the knife blade opens, the frame lock moves into the handle opening and locks against the blade. Pushing to the left releases it from its “locked” position so you can close the blade.

Assisted Opening Knives

Assisted Opening knives are the ultimate in knives offering the convenience of single hand operation. They also use a liner lock for locking the blade open. To open, release the safety, and then push the blade release ridge. After the knife blade starts opening, the assisted opening mechanism completes the knife blade opening, which releases the liner to lock the blade open. To close, push left on the front of the liner lock to unlock it, close the knife blade and engage the safety on top of the handle.

Special Note: These knives are illegal in many areas. Check the applicable laws in your area.

Due to the complex and changing nature of knife laws, it is your responsibility to investigate and comply with all federal, state and local laws relating to the possession, use, or transport of knives.

Staying above the water line!


Saturday, November 21, 2009

Survivalist 101

Re-post courtesy Riverwalker's Stealth Survival

The term survivalist is a label placed on a part of our society that has been largely ridiculed for a number of things. We’ve been called “whacko gun nuts”, “food hoarding freaks”, and just plain crazy. Perhaps if we did a better job of informing people of our true objectives, people might have a better view of survivalists and what we are attempting to accomplish.

What makes a person a survivalist? Does surviving a bad car accident or a serious illness make you a survivalist? No. It makes you a survivor and in most cases it makes you very lucky, but it doesn’t make you a survivalist. A true survivalist won’t trust his or her life and the life of their family to luck.

A true survivalist doesn’t trust luck to always be in their favor. A lot of people have “bad” luck, as well as “good” luck. What makes a person a survivalist is the enduring mindset and preparation ahead of time that makes them refuse to be a victim. The mere thought of being a victim of something that could have been avoided with a little advanced preparation is totally repugnant to most survivalists. They don’t trust their luck to see them safely through an emergency or natural disaster. They put their trust in their skills and abilities. They make advance preparations to deal with the everyday occurrences that can affect their life and their family. They simply refuse to become a victim of circumstances, whether natural or man-made, by being knowledgeable about how they can be avoided or minimized to limit the effects on them and their families.

Too many people prepare for the simple things because they refuse to realize that it’s the bigger events that will cause the more serious problems. They carry a spare tire in their vehicles because they refuse to be a victim that has been stranded by a flat tire. Why? Because they fear the ridicule they might suffer if someone found out they didn’t have a working spare tire. They will probably wind up with several labels as a result. They may be called silly, foolish or perhaps just plain ignorant. A true survivalist would see this in a different light. They see it as a failure to prepare in advance in order to avoid being a victim. They know that a flat tire, late at night, and in the middle of a cold, dark night in a strange area or neighborhood could be a life threatening event for them and their family. Tires go flat and cars break down all the time, but what if it happens at the “wrong” time and in the “wrong” place? Are you prepared to survive? Or will you become a victim?

Do you fear the label “survivalist”? Labels are really good things when you think about them. They tell you what’s in the food you eat and the drinks you consume. They tell you what’s in the books you read. They allow you to recognize family and friends when you call them by name. Labels are a good thing!

My name is Riverwalker. I am a survivalist and I refuse to be a victim!

Staying above the water line!


Friday, November 20, 2009

Simple Survival Tips - Ammo Cans

Re-post courtesy Riverwalker's Stealth Survival

Just curious to see if there are a lot of people out there who use ammo cans for storing "stuff" besides ammo. If the seals are good, they are pretty much dust-proof and water-proof. They're usually pretty sturdy and are good for storing lots of different "stuff".

Here are some of the different items I've stored in ammo boxes:

1.) Nail, bolts, screws, etc. - they don't get rusty

2.) Sandwiches and drinks - sort of a survival lunchbox

3.) Tow chains - sturdy ehough to hold the heavy ones

4.) Misc. tools - whatever I could stuff in there

5.) Ammo and gun cleaning kits ( I think this is the intended use!)

What have you used your ammo cans for other than ammo?

Staying above the water line!


Saturday, November 14, 2009

A Different Way To communicate

I am packing and getting everything ready for a trip north to go deer hunting. Putting meat in the freezer is a yearly goal of my personal survival plan. Sorry for the short article but I need my time spent other places the next couple weeks.

I see an earlier post deals with communication. I like using a hand held radio. I always tried to be the guy carrying the radio, even when it was the big PRC-25. When the newer small units came out they were great. “Papa Mike Oscar, Papa Mike Oscar this is Romeo Papa Two, do you copy?” (Provost Marshal Office this is Roving Patrol 2) Yeah, good times.

But what do you do when your batteries are long passed dead, or you need to remain silent at your post, but still need to pass on information? A friend of mine told me how his Special Forces team handled that problem, hand signals. Now how do you send hand signals that can be seen from a distance? Easy, just like is done every Saturday all across the country, use football signal.

Think about it. You can use touchdown, both arms in the air, to mean people coming. Crossing both arms over each other like incomplete pass can mean no information to relay. There are a lot of signals you can use, from several sports to mix it up and you can make them mean whatever you need them to mean.

That can also be adapted to other uses as well. “I saw a deer headed toward you” could be illegal procedure. “It’s a doe” could be holding. “I’m cold and headed back to camp,” could be face mask. Shouting through the woods is never a good idea, but if you per-plan your communications you can help your success. Your communications are limitless if you care to figure out the signals in advance.


Friday, November 6, 2009

Sharing the Wealth As I Understand It

The President, then a candidate, told Joe the Plumber he wanted to “spread the wealth around.” Several of his top Czars have been quoted as having a strong desire to have a “redistribution” of wealth in the country. In other words, they want to take from the haves and give to the have not’s.
OK, so let us see how that would work out on a small scale and then we can expand it to the whole. Let us say that the Lions are playing football. In the second quarter the Lions rack up a total of 124 yards offense and hold the opponent to 8 yards offense. Barry Sanders rushed for 62 yards, and Bill Simms ran one play for 22 yards and a TD. Bobby Layne tossed three completions for the remaining 40 yards.
Now, as I understand it we need to spread the wealth around. So Barry has to give up enough yards so he and Billy are the same. The three passes need to be evened out so that Eric Hipple and Milt Plumb each get some credit. After all that would be social justice.
In that quarter the team scored two TDs and a FG. Yale Lary kicked two PATs and one FG. Barry scored one TD and Billy the other. Points are fairly even at 5, 6 and 6. But wait. What about the guys on defense. Alex Karris and Night Train Lane both feel they should get some points too. After all they held the other team to 8 yards. Maybe the center should get a point for hiking the ball to the holder, who gets a point and the kicker only gets one point for kicking it. Now that seems fair doesn’t it? Sims and Sanders can pool their two TDs and each player on offense can get one point. Of course defense is upset and as soon as Rodney Pete goes under center Nick Petorcelli steps aside and the defense goes in and the QB gets creamed. As he is getting picked up off the ground his “team mates” explain that unless he tosses each of them a pass he will meet every blade of grass in Briggs Stadium.
Now that the Lions have everything equal for all, let’s work on the whole league. After all, Joe Montana got to go to a lot of Pro Bowls and Eric Hipple didn’t. How about Eric gets in a couple of Pro Bowls so he doesn’t have to make his living selling guitar lessons after football? Why should Jerry Rice always go to the Superbowl, it is not right that the rich get richer. Down with the elite, up with the common player!
And what about the fans? Why should some fat cat get to sit in a box or on the fifty and the poor slugs have to sit in the upper deck end zone? I say we are all entitled to fifty yard line seats, hell make it field passes, and first come first served, no a lottery, no a bid, no … oh hell, just make it fair!
At the end of the season every man woman and child in America gets their free Superbowl ring along with their refund check. Illegals can pick theirs up at any city hall. After all they are entitled too.
Ok, that is how I understand sharing the wealth. I guess there is no room in our society for those that are successful. The CEOs that toss the ball for the company and get rewarded for it and the running back managers that make the company work get paid more just like in the NFL. There are linemen that are important, just like the workers that make the widgets. They all work together, hence the term “teamwork”. For whatever reason some guys have been blessed to be better at some jobs than others. I believe the bible calls it talents. Do not waste time on wishing you had the CEO job, learn to use your talents so that you become the highest paid for that talent. We can all make a ton of money.
I heard Rich DeVos speak once. I have been lucky enough in my life to meet, talk to, and listen to several folks that are/were on the Forbes 400 list. DeVos made the statement that there is not a finite amount of wealth. The poor do no get poor because someone else made money. Wealth is created and anyone can create it and become wealthy. The poor become poor because they do not do those things that the wealthy do to get and stay wealthy. The quarterbacks will always be the guys in the spotlight and running backs will always be talked about. You can not spread the wealth around in football and you can not spread the wealth around in America. You need to do your thing and educate yourself on becoming wealthy. Do not wait for the President or congress to do it for you because rest assured, if they do they will be first in line for the most and the rest of use will get hind tit.

Friday, October 30, 2009

When Did You Become A Prepper?

I had a discussion with a couple of people that were just getting into prepping. They asked me when I first became a prepper. I normally answer that I started back in the early 1970s.However, I made a trip to a gunshow a county or so away today and while I was driving home I got to thinking about prepping and when I started. What prompted those thoughts was seeing a single canteen setting on a table for sale. It reminded me of the old World War One (dated 1918) surplus canteen that sits on the floor beside me as I type this. It was the canteen that my grandfather always carried in his truck on every trip we ever took. After he died I took the canteen and carried it in my vehicles for a lot of years. I replaced the old worn out canvas cover that it originally had with a “newer” World War Two cover.

I realize now that making sure that canteen was full and in the truck was preparedness. I can still hear my grandfather saying to me, “Have a drink on me.” as he would pass me the canteen while we were driving to any of the camping or fishing spots we traveled to while he was alive.

We traveled Michigan a lot back then. Back in the day there was a spring next to the road on M-66. We always stopped there on our way north and filled the canteen with that spring water, after we had both drank our fill from the spring. (Michigan decided to tear out the spring and let a high school get built there instead.)

Having a canteen of water was a very small thing, but it was an important part of our trip preparations none the less. I now look back on that as the roots of my preparedness beings. I guess the steps I took in the 1970s were just a maturing of the canteen and expanding to making sure I had a lot more bases covered that just water. All an eight year old boy needed back then was a canteen of water and his grandfather.

I even laugh at myself when I think about what I did for preps back in the 1970s. I sure had a long way to go before I could be considered prepared based on what I did then. One big step for me then was to acquire 100 rounds of ammo for each of our rifles and pistols. Today at the gunshow I picked up an additional 40 rounds of .30-30 and 50 rounds of an oddball pistol round, both for a very good price.

Being a prepper is not only storing away ammo and filling a canteen of water. It is gathering skills and knowledge, materials and supplies, building a strong network of friends and family that are like minded, and having faith in God and yourself that you /WILL/ pull through any coming calamity. Hopefully that is why you come here and check us out, so you can help yourself prepare. When you started does not matter as much as the fact that you are now walking the walk. Just keep the faith and keep prepping. It can start with as little as a single canteen.


Sunday, October 25, 2009

Supply Depots After TSHTF

Ok, the fan was thoroughly and squarely hit and life changes forever. Your idea to shelter in place or bug out worked like a charm and you are now relatively secure for the time being. However, you discover that Murphy is a survivalist too, and his law jumps up and bites you in the butt. You discover that several tools or supplies you thought of before the fan got hit were never put away for later use or broke, or the kids left them out and they are ruined. Where do you get them now? Face it, every store, shop, big box store and hardware place will be wiped clean. Trucks will not be supplying replacements.
I would suggest that you think outside the box. (Yeah I know, I hate the phrase too, but it does convey the message.) I work in an office building. You know the place, desks, phones, file cabinets, and more paperwork than you can shake a stick at. I am the maintenance guy. I move the desk and files around when needed and fix the plumbing, repair the electric, and solve problems. You might be surprised to see the amount of tools and supplies that are stored in the maintenance area. Since we have trees and brush on the grounds I have saws and axes. There is copper plumbing and fittings, roof patching material, and hand tools of all kinds.
Almost every large office building has a maintenance shop and guys that do the work. I have discovered over the years that even people at work in the building are surprised we have so many supplies. Janitorial has their supplies too, soaps, toilet paper, cleaners and the like. These are items that a year after TEOTWAWKI will be useful. I am willing to bet that most readers never thought of those places for getting supplies.
Understand one thing up front. I am not talking about going in and stealing from work. What I am saying is that there might be places overlooked by MZB and looters that will allow you to help yourself out when TEOTWAWKI hits.
Since I am the maintenance man I have made a list of items that I have at work that I might need. The list is in the back of a notebook I keep in my desk. I have the list so I don’t forget something or if I need one item I know it is there and where to find it. I included supplies from the nurse’s station too.
I would never jeopardize my job of 25 plus years for a few thousand dollars worth of supplies, but if we have full blown TEOTWAWKI then I have a place to acquire supplies for use or barter. Go look up your maintenance guy, buy him a coffee and ask him to show you his workshop. You may be surprised at what is there.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Have you looked around work?

In my last post I mentioned being prepared at work for an event that might “lock you in.”
I have touched on that theme several times over the years. It seems that a lot of preparedness minded folks skip over the idea of being prepared at the workplace. Oh, they have their BOB in the car, but they do not necessarily have items in the BOB that will work for sheltering at the workplace.

Think of it this way. I will bet that you built your BOB around the idea of walking home if TSHTF while you were at work, correct? You have a map and compass, several fire starters, shelter cover of some kind and a cooking kit with some trail food. How close am I? Hell, folks that is basically my BOB too.

Here is the difference. I have loose items in the truck for just such a case as getting stuck at work for a couple days. I carry a sleeping bag in the truck that I would not hump on a trek home in an evacuation. I have several meals, MREs, cans of soups and beans, and a few items of clothing to change into if need be. When I was stuck in Detroit for three days I did not have a change of socks. By the third day I hated my socks but could not wear my work boots without them. Now I carry spares of those and a few other items. (I am also smart enough to wash them out a night now too.)

I have a steno notebook in my desk at work that has a list of all the items I know are there that I might need come TEOTWAWKI. I always have to explain that I keep the list in case the world goes to crap and I need supplies and I have a shot at getting them from work. I would never, ever steal those supplies from work. My nearly thirty years of employment is not worth risking over a few hundred dollars worth of goods. I have the list for a TEOTW situation, or if I get stuck at work.

Let’s say a train derails near your worksite and your company is forced to shut down all the air intake equipment and the police seal the building from the outside and quarantine the whole place for 72 hours. Drat, my example just stopped me from going out to the truck for my BOB! Ok, now what?

Have you really looked around where you work for survival items? How about that fire blanket, would it keep you warm enough to sleep? Can you get water from the drinking fountain or do you know where the water jugs for it are kept? Is there a nurse’s station, first aid cabinets, or first aid kits around? Who has access? Is there any way to get food other than breaking into vending machines? Are there coffee filters around that can strain water if need be? The questions go on and on.

You should give work a good going over and see what they have in case you ever need to hunker down there for a few days. Remember that in a Michigan winter you will want warmth long before you want food. It doesn’t matter what survival situation you are in, the rules of three always apply.


Next Friday I will re-post my original work place post from the April ’08 Bison.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Why I Would Not Serve

I was at work the other day and one of the managers asked me about joining a county wide committee that would cover emergency preparedness. I told her no. She of course asked why, after all I had completed over a dozen FEMA courses, was a qualified CERT Instructor, and seemed to be knowledgeable on the subject. I told her that those were the reasons I couldn’t serve on that committee.
I have been into preparedness since the 1970s. I have read and written on survival for a long time. I have very clear goals and plans for survival. If we get snowed in at work I can stay for two to four days just on the supplies in my truck. I have already scoped out my workplace for water supply, food supply, off grid heat and light, and know where I would go during everything from tornado to nuke attack. (I assume you have also done this at your place of employment?)
When I hear the county talk about preparedness they are never thinking of the individual, but rather ”the people”. They talk in terms of shelters, not sheltering in place. They talk about Red Cross shelter management and food service, not off grid cooking. They want to take care of the most people they can at one time, not help each family be prepared for self-reliance. I am a self reliance guy, I would much prefer to see everyone take care of themselves as they see fit, not move to a shelter for someone else to take care of. My kind of thinking does not go over well at those meetings, I know because I did sever on that committee several years ago.
As I talked to the manager about my thoughts on preparedness and the priority list I would approach I saw her eyes glaze over and her mind wander away. I do not know how to write this without it sounding way too egotistical, but I know too much about preparedness to serve on a committee like that.
If we got snowed in at work most of the office wonks I work around will be breaking into the vending machine for food thinking that is ok. I will dig out my BOB from the truck, my sleeping bag, and a few other items and go out to the maintenance barn and cook my dinner and go to sleep warm and comfortable. I will of course be an A-hole for doing this because no one else has planned for just such an event. They know that those things just don’t happen and they will always be able to get home to food and shelter. They should have been with me when I got snowed in at work in Detroit many years ago.
I made a list of events that I have seen happen in just the last decade. I could go back to the 70s for my list, but the truth is the list about repeats itself every ten years or so. Just a few of the local events I listed are:
Black out and power grid loss in Eastern US
Major snow & ice storm that shut down schools and work for two days
Train derailment that caused evacuation of houses for more than one day
A riot in the town I work and at my son’s college
Major flooding that caused loss of life and homes and closed many businesses
Factory accident that caused chemical release that evacuated homes
And from around the country and the world:
Tsunamis that wiped out coast lines. (Do you think the Great Lakes can have a tsunami, we are on an earth quack fault line you know?)
Wide fires that burned out of control for days
Hurricanes that wiped out major cities
Bombing and terrorist attacks
Ok, so just which of those events is the county committee suppose to prepare for? Hell, which ones are we to prepare for? As a preparedness type individual I know I can prepare for all of those events and be ready to bug out if I need to. The county templates are open shelters and provide food. Past that they do not have a clue. How can they? They have not read what we read nor thought about much past the cost of housing and feeding the multitudes.
Every one of the preparedness folks I know all have the same goal, protect their family and shelter from the storms of life. Oh, some want to head for the National Forests and live off the land and others want to set up a small compound where they are king, but even those do not want or need the county, state, or federal government to help them.
How about you? Do you want help from the county or would you rather handle it yourself?


Wednesday, September 30, 2009

A Michigan Asset and CYA

Michigan as a great asset that her citizens can use to good advantage and a lot of the info can be of useful to preppers. I am talking about the PBS program /Michigan Out-of-Doors/.

Each week Jimmy Gretzinger and Jenny Olsen come into our homes with stories of hunting and fishing. They also have stories that deal with trapping, bird dogs, hunting stands, shooting, and just about every outdoor activity you can think of.

I like the information the show gives me so that I can improve my field time to be more productive. If the time ever comes where the meat on my table has to come from the woods I want to make sure that I can provide for the family. I enjoy watching the trapping episodes too. I have traps, stretchers and lure, but I have never had the time to run a line. My knowledge of trapping comes only from reading and watching, but being a visual learner, watching how it is done helps a lot.

I would recommend that you add watching /Michigan Out-of-Doors/ to your preps. It is sort of like chicken soup, it couldn’t hurt.

On a related topic, I hope that if you do take to the woods for hunting/fishing/trapping as part of your survival plans you have the correct licenses. I fished for thirty years on a Michigan lake and never saw a DNR officer. Never bought a license either. I now make sure that I buy a license every year for deer hunting, trapping, small game, and fishing. It has come in handy several times and saved loosing a nice rifle, fishing gear, and heavy fines. The DNR found that lake I fish and I see them there several times a year now. Got stopped once with a rifle in my truck. I told the guy I was headed to a friend’s farm to hunt woodchucks. When I showed the hunting license I was allowed on my merry way. (The gun was cased and empty per Michigan law.)

The reason I do this now is that a friend of mine from the reserves shot and killed a skunk on his place. The Ohio DNR found out and he ended up with a fine since he did not have a small game license. It didn’t matter that he was on his own place. I do not want those kinds of hassles with MDNR shooting woodchucks on my own farm. For the money I spend each year it is cheap insurance.

One other story to add. I fellow I know buys his wife a trapping license each year. She has a long drive to work early each morning. She stops and picks up any road kill raccoons, muskrats and the rare fox on her drive. When I last talked to the guy her fur check was near $700 and about paid for her yearly gasoline bill to go to work. Without the license she could not legally keep the critters she picks up. Just another reason to make sure that you CYA with the correct licenses.


Saturday, September 19, 2009

Open Letter to Michigan Preppers Network

Michigan. God how I love this state. As I sit and write this it is a beautiful Saturday morning. Michigan and Michigan State will both be playing football as well as lots of other state schools. The warm afternoons and bright blue sky will have the squirrels and rabbits moving about the woods preparing for winter. Fish are slowly working their way to deeper waters in our lakes and rivers but a mess of them can still be caught. This is the time of year that you see folks finishing collecting the goods from their gardens and working late canning and preserving for the coming winter. Farmers are looking at the crops trying to judge the best time to harvest for the best yield. If you watch people you will see a lot of them look up into the deep blue September sky. It is unspoken when they do, but they all know that those cloudless skies are a foretelling of the coming winter.

A lot of people in our great state are prepping and yet they are not “preppers” as we know them. It is part of growing up here; it is part of the rural work ethic and part of the fabric of our heritage. Take a drive out in the very rural areas of the state, out were the villages are small and the farms are large. Look at the farms as you go by. See the gas tanks sitting by the outbuildings? See the large gardens? See those three guys, looks like a dad and two sons in blaze orange vests and shotguns headed out for a hunt? How about those stacks of firewood, do you see them? Looking at those items from a prepper’s point of view the case could be made that every farmer in the state is a prepper. In some respects that is true, but only to the point that we have that prepping heritage. (Yes, I know this same heritage applies to most Midwestern states as well.)

The weekend on several blogs seems to be the time to reflect on what you did for prepping that week. It makes you stay focused on your long term goals and makes you think about the short term action needed to reach those goals. You are forced to ask yourself if you did anything to help yourself reach that state of independence we all strive for.

So with all these thoughts I ask myself one question. Why is it that with a network of preppers and multitude of items and skills that go into prepping the Michigan Preppers Network has only had two postings since the 30^th of April! Are we not willing to share ideas, not willing to talk about our goals, hopes dreams and plans of action to reach those goals?

I readily admit to being a lurker on this site. Before this site started I have been writing on several of the other sites and stayed with the ones I had been with. I figured that I might try my hand at a contribution or two down the road, but I wanted to see the tenor of the site tone before I did. Appears to me the site is tone deaf.

Information is the life’s blood of anything. For prepping we all need to have those short notes that remind us that there is a great way to freeze rabbits for later, or that Jay’s has shotgun shell on sale dirt cheap or that the DNR has a warning on deer harvested in Montmorency County. (Examples only folks) The exchange of ideas creates synergy, a multiplying of knowledge. Each thought helps build on the next until problems can be solved and things accomplished.

Ok, the dirty little secret is that most of us have a Michigan public school education and are not thrilled with the idea of writing. That is ok. We will all promise to not make fun of anyone that hits the wrong key or doesn’t use spell check. You do not have to be a great writer to share information and contribute. Beside, give the editor a chance to do some work cleaning stuff up.

When I started writing for the other blogs I used the pen name Wolverine not for the football team, although I am a fan, or some comic book character, but rather because I am from the grand and glorious sovereign state of the Wolverine, /Michigan//!/ I am proud of this state, warts and all and Lord knows she has some serious warts right now. Maybe those are even more reason to make sure we share information with each other. Come on people, let’s start using this site and help each other. If everyone that reads this site were to write just one short article we would be able to help each other many fold.



Monday, August 24, 2009

“Emergency Communication....What Works???”

Original posting at Canadian Preppers Network

Edited and re-posted at American Preppers Radio Net

How people communicate with one another when land line phones, cell phones and the internet are at best unreliable or nonexistent, is one thing that seems to get very little attention and is wide open to speculation.
A small group trying to survive hard times (which, depending from your viewpoint seems inevitable) will need to have a plan to communicate with each other. Aside from carrier pigeons, or smoke signals, there are modern options to consider and prep for. Three most readily available are GMRS or FRS radios, CB radios, and Ham radio.

GMRS/FRS: These radios are good for short distances with little terrain interference. Used as pagers/communicators inside a building or a camp, GMRS/FRS radios offer low-cost & convenience. Small and easy to carry, GMRS/FRS radio family biggest drawback is their range. While fine as a group communications tool, they lack the ability of medium or long rage communications.

CB radios: Around for several years as an offshoot of Ham Radio,CB does not require a license and, unlike amateur radio, it may be used for business as well as personal communications. Enjoying a boom in the mid-seventies and are readily available today, CB radios are still the main short range communications choice for Truckers.
You can find CB’s fairly cheaply at yard sales and flea markets. Mandated by regulation as a low power device, the range on these radios is much greater when combined with a signal amplifier, or “Linear” Amp. It is not advocated using a linear amp, however for the most part, enforcement of the restrictions are few and often only when an illegal stations signal interferes with other communication methods. Long distance communication is possible when atmospheric conditions permit.
CB radios come in many different forms, ranging from legal 40 channel/4 watt models, to a grey-area type of “export radio”, that skirts legality by being built for ham radio use, but are easily modified for the CB band. Operating within the 10-12 Meter HF Band, CB radios need a longer antenna than UHF/VHF GMRS/FRS radios. The unregulated “outlaw” nature of CB radio often fills the airways with raucous and foul language. At times, it’s best to keep small children out of the radio shack when the CB is on.

Ham or Amateur Radio: Offers the farthest operating range, and broadest array of communication modes, from voice communication, to text, photo, video, and digital telemetry. Requiring a license to operate, ham radio is well organized and self regulated.
Ham radio is fairly cheap to get started in as there are many used radio bargains around. New ham radios cost run from hundreds, to several thousands of dollars, but with frugal shopping, one can set up a rather nice base station and talk all around the world.
Some of the best ham antennas are homemade, simple to conceal, wire antennas strung between trees. This type set up is very portable if need be, and can be setup almost anyplace. Mobile ham rigs are available that can talk all over the world... A typical ham might check into a long distance radio net during a morning commute, rag chew with regular’s everyday from Florida to Canada and make contacts from east coast to west coast hams with ease.

Choosing a way to communicate outside normal everyday methods, can be a daunting task. So much of it depends on your needs, but how you apply your limited resources, and for what return is inconsequential as long as your ability to get your message heard at a critical time can be assured. For further help in weighing options and to learn more about what choices are available, these websites can be of some help.

Original work by W4DMH refined by KI4HEE

CB/Ham and Other

Ham Radio In US

Ham Radio In US

Ham Radio In US

Ham radio in Canada

Ham radio in Canada
(C) 2009 W4DMH.com

Saturday, June 20, 2009


OK now I have done it in true DX fashion for all you HAM'S out there.
I know others that read this will be real confused now but I would really like to hear from you HAM'S out there so I figured I would write in a language you would understand. We need to get HAM'S involved here so we can try to get a net going to help with off the grid communication among the prepper networks. I know there are many Ham's already involved in the prepper network and many more that read so please come forward and help us with getting this going. Now that all the people that read this (that are not HAM'S) are confused let me add one more slang that only the HAM'S will understand.

73 de W4DMH

PS Please email me so we can get to work on this. wvsantaclaus@aol.com
God Bless all from the Wild and Wonderful West Virginia


From W4DMH Dave aka Santa

To everyone that has showed an interest in the HAM radio net

Just to let everyone know Bob KI4HEE from South Carolina and myself Dave W4DMH held a test run Thursday night on 40 meters at 9:00 PM Eastern Time or 0100 UTC time.

I am sorry that I did not get this info out but this all came about by email at the spur of the moment. It was a success even though I do not have the proper antenna in the air for 40 meter. I will cure that this weekend however. Bob will be posting the results on the South Carolina Page on Saturday June 20 2009. I invite you all to read that to see how the impromptu net turned out. For a spur of the moment thing, I think it was great. This little test run proved to me that if we try we can make this work.

I will let you know when this all gets worked out for sure but for now I believe we will try this on Thursday Nights from 9 pm to 10 pm Eastern time or 0100 to 0200 UTC on the frequency of 7.245 or there about for any that wish to come join in or just to listen.

Thank you all for your interest in the American Preppers Network Ham Radio Net. Hope to hear you soon.

73 All
Dave aka Santa

Fell free to copy and post this on your blogs

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Swine flu in here!

There are two confirmed cases of the Swine Flu in Michigan. So what do you need to do to prepare? You need to know the symptoms and they are:

fever, headache, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, muscle aches, chills and fatique.

The Swine Flu is spread like any other flu. Such as coughing and sneezing, you can also catch the flu by touching something that has the flu virus on it such as subway rails, ATM's, door knobs, or opening a door.

There are prescription medication that will help the flue from reproducing in your body.

How to prevent it: avoid contact with sick people, if you get the flue stay home and avoid contact with people, cover your nose or mouth if you cough and sneeze, and most importantly, wash your hands!

The CDC says you cannot get the swine flu from eating pork.

How to prepare your family - I am not sure how fast spreading the swine flu can be, but it does seem to spread very easily and pretty quickly. I would take a good inventory of your food stock in your house and make sure you have enough food and water for at least 30 days - this may sound extreme, but if a bad outbreak comes here to Michigan you don't want to take a chance of running out of food.

Stock up on those medical supplies:
kleenex - even if you do not use disposable products it never hurts to have something on hand if you do get sick so you can throw away what you wipe your nose with.

Over the counter meds- These are good to have on hand to help subside the symptoms of the flu. Although it won't cure the flu they sure can make you feel better while you have it.

Hand sanitizer - really important to use many times throughout the day to keep your home sanitized.

chicken noodle soup - even just the broth will make you feel better! Hopefully you have this at home already canned, but if you don't, stock up on soup at the grocery store.

The most important thing to remember is use common sense.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

preparing for power outages - lighting

Now would be the time to prepare for our wonderful power outages that is very common in the spring here in Michigan. Make sure you have backup light options that can be used off grid.

Candles - stockpile on those candles! The worst time to realize you are out of candles is during a power outage! So, don't think you have enough, get up and take an inventory and put them in a spot that is easy to get to. The last thing you want to do is fumble around in the dark trying to remember where you put your emergency supplies. Candles are a good supplemental light. They are widely available and you can get them at a decent price. Remember, when purchasing candles to see at night, the wider the diameter of the candle, the more light the candle will give off. Tealights or votives will give you a little bit of light. Three pillar candles that are 3" in diameter will give you enough light to brighten a room pretty well. The bigger diameter, the more light the candle will give off.

Lanterns - another easy to get item, the cost is a little more. Coleman lanterns are a terrific way to have alternative lighting during a power outage. They give off good light and are easy to use. Make sure if your lantern uses a flint that you have extra's on hand.

Light sticks - a little harder to obtain, but always good to have on hand, and great for power outages. Unlike candles or lanterns, they are easy to light, most all you have to do is bang them on your hand and they light up. Cost can range from $10 - $100.

Flashlight - A good ole' fashioned flashlight is a must for your emergency supplies. This tends to be one of those items you know you have, but aren't sure where it's at, and when was the last time the batteries were replaced? If it was last year make sure the current batteries didn't leak and check to make sure they are still in working order. While your at it, stock up on extra batteries.

Crank lanterns - This is a lantern that can take batteries, or it has an internal battery that works by using a handcrank on the bottom of it. With this option, you don't have to double check on your battery stock, you will never be in the dark with this this handy lantern! Prices can start at $30.00

Spring is a good time to review your emergency lighting situation. The two easiest things to have readily on hand are light sticks and a crank lantern. Both products don't require accessories such as batteries.

Interactive message board

The American Prepper's Network now has an interactive message board where you can post questions or answer questions.

Lots of topics are covered, please visit the link below and check it out!


Tuesday, March 31, 2009

increase in Consumer's Energy and DTE electric

This comes at a bad time for most of us. On March 23rd two major utilities announced rate increases for Consumer's Energy and DTE Energy. These two companies are the two leading utility companies in Michigan.

Consumer's Energy announced an 11% increase starting in May, which according to my local paper will raise your bill about $10 per month.

DTE announced they will raise their rates in July, resulting in a 11% increase, which will raise your bill about $7.00 per month.

The state agency who is in charge of regulating utilities is the Michigan Public Service Commission. These rates will automatically increase if this agency allows it.

I have e-mailed this agency to ask them to give Michigan residents a break and not increase the rates and I encourage you to do the same. It is important at times like this to voice your opinion and tell your story of why it would be a hardship if the rates increase.

Here is the web site for the Michigan Publick Service Comission.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

follow up on organic gardening

This was a comment that was felt by American Prepper that I felt should be posted here. It further explains, better than i ever could, the dangers of this bill.

keep reading further, wait till you get to section 206 where "food production facilities are regulated" Food production facilities are excluded from the same regulation as Food establishments, but fall under separate regulation under section 206. Now, As in the definitions: food production facility' means **any** farm, ranch, orchard, vineyard, aquaculture facility, or confined animal-feeding operation. That is so broad that it could include hobby farms and even gardens. Let's say you have a couple rows of grapes. Can that be a Vinyard? Lets say you have 5 goats and a horse on a 5 acre piece of land. can that be considered a farm? Now go to section 206 Here is just a small part of it, this is where it gets scary

SEC. 206. FOOD PRODUCTION FACILITIES.(a) AUTHORITIES.—In carrying out the duties of the Administrator and the purposes of this Act, the Administrator shall have the authority, with respect to food production facilities, to—
(1) visit and inspect food production facilities in the United States and in foreign countries to determine if they are operating in compliance with the requirements of the food safety law;
2) review food safety records as required to bekept by the Administrator under section 210 and for other food safety purposes;
(3) set good practice standards to protect thepublic and animal health and promote food safety;

***Notice this part**

(4) conduct monitoring and surveillance of animals, plants, products, or the environment, as appropriate; and5) collect and maintain information relevant to public health and farm practices.(b) INSPECTION OF RECORDS.—A food productionfacility shall permit the Administrator upon presentation of appropriate credentials and at reasonable times and in a reasonable manner, to have access to and ability to copy all records maintained by or on behalf of such food production establishment in any format (including paper or electronic) and at any location, that are necessary to assist the Administrator—

Plus there's tons more very restrictive legislation. This is an evil bill Co-sponsored by the wife of someone who works for MonsantoNot to mention, even if it did specifically exclude gardens, hobby farms and organic farms, the cost would be so enormous that our already high food prices would go through the roof....If Monsanto favors this bill, it cant be good.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

How to read legislation 101

There has been talk on the internet that organic farming is under attack by the House of Representatives and the Senate. Because of the recent Salmonella outbreaks from Peanut Butter, the federal government feels the need to regulate the nations food supply more accurately. This is good,, right?

Maybe. First off, don't believe everything on the internet you read. It is best to go right to the source. To understand what laws are being put in place it is important to know how to read the bills before the House and Senate This post will briefly go over how to look up the bills and how to read them. For those of you who want to jump right to the legislation the link is below.

To look up bills you are interested in keeping up on go to the web site www.senate.gov . Click on Legislation and Records. The search engine to look up bills on the senate web site is called Thomas. Click on the link for Thomas and a page will come up where you can search either by bill number or by the word or phrase. You can also look up any bills in your area by searching under your representatives names.

Link to the house

The link to the senate did not work for this bill.

How to read a bill is important to know. Once the bill you are looking for comes up, click on Text of Legislation. This is where you can read the bill. It's important when you are reading legislation that you read over and understand the Definitions in the bill. This is where they define certain words such as what they define as "Food Establishments" in bill H.R. 875. What we consider Food Establishments is not neccessarily what they do. For example in the bill H.R. 875 they have five different definitons of Food Establishments. Then they have a different definition for Food Production Facility. We are primarily interested in paragrah 13(b). This is where it lists exlusions in the bill. Here is an example:

(B) EXCLUSIONS- For the purposes of registration, the term `food establishment' does not include a food production facility as defined in paragraph (14), restaurant, other retail food establishment, nonprofit food establishment in which food is prepared for or served directly to the consumer, or fishing vessel (other than a fishing vessel engaged in processing, as that term is defined in section 123.3 of title 21, Code of Federal Regulations).

So now we have to look at Paragrah 14 to see what they define as a Food Production Facility. Here that is:

(14) FOOD PRODUCTION FACILITY- The term `food production facility' means any farm, ranch, orchard, vineyard, aquaculture facility, or confined animal-feeding operation.

So, from how the bill reads they are excluding the places listed above. As of right now, our backyard gardens seem like they are safe. This is where it gets a little sticky. Just because this is how the bill reads now does not mean this is how it will be passed. It has to make it through the House and the Senate and each commonly change the wording as the bill progresses, which is why it is important to keep up on things that may affect you. The link to the bill is above, you are welcome to read it over and come to your own conclusions and i welcome your opinions.

This is my view point only, but this is how our gardens, farms and orchards can come underfire. Legislation such as this is how it starts. For this reason, we need to keep up and be aware of how these bills affect our daily lives.

There does indeed need to be oversight to the facilities that provide food to the majority of the US citizens, we just have to watch to make sure they don't violate our right to be self sufficient.

A terrific time to purchase a home in Michigan is now!

yep, you read that right! There couldn't be a better time in Michigan to purchase a home. With foreclosures at an all time high and predicted to go higher, purchasing a foreclosed home is something to think about.

Aside from how many horror stories you have heard about purchasing a foreclosed home, if you do your research, contact a knowledgeable realtor that deals in foreclosures and get the home inspected you will have an idea of what you are getting into. The thing you don't want to do is jump on the first house you find. Due dillegence is vital.

How to purchase a foreclosed home confuses people. They contact phony ads in the newspaper, get the runaround and give up before you start. Folks, it can be easier than that. HUD has a web site that you can go to and browse foreclosed homes in your area. The link to Michigan foreclosed homes is at the bottom of this post.

HUD inspects foreclosed homes before they list them on their web site. When you do a search by zip code and price range HUD homes for sale will come up. To find out what their inspections revealed click on Property Inspection Report. This will tell you what they found. You will still want to get your own inspection done by someone you hire yourself. Also linked on the property pages is HUD registered brokers. What most people don't realize is on some HUD homes you can get a mortgage or a loan - imagine, purhasing a three bedroom for as little as $10,000 in the city. Or as little as $50,000 with acreage in the country.

Purchasing a foreclosed home can bring you one step closer to self sufficiency. One major accomplishment that most people have a problem attaining is not having a house payment. If you are renting, think about all the money you are paying every month to your landlord, wouldn't you rather pay a mortgage company and eventually own the house? These days in Michigan, this is easier than ever.

Here is the link to the Michigan HUD homes. Just follow the link, type in the zip code you want and the price range. Remember, do your research!


Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Getting ready for summer gardens!

Now is the time when we are thinking of starting our gardens. The growing season in Michigan, depending on where you are, starts at the end of May and runs mid way through September. With survival in mind plan your garden. This post is going to go over what type of seeds you will use and how to plan for your family.

Most people who garden purchase plants or seeds from the local garden center. If you plan to start most of your garden by seeds, plant them inside now to let them get a good start. By the time the end of May comes they will be ready to put in the ground. As far as seeds go there are two types of seeds you can purchase.

Hybrid seeds - Hybrid seeds are a cross polinated seed that is genetically produced and chemically treated to produce vigorous plants. Seed produced from these plants will rarely give more vegetables of quality the next year. Not really what a survivalist is looking for.

Heirloom Seeds - Heirloom seeds are what some people refer to as True Seeds, they are open pollinated, not chemcially treated and not genetically modified. The result of using heirloom seeds means you the same quality plant year after year. The seeds are not sterile seeds which means you can save the seed from your vegetables and use the seeds year after year. The plants will be better acclimated to your enviornment, since they were produced in your climate. This is what the surivialist is looking for!

Using Heirloom seeds means once you have a good seed collection going, you won't need to purchase seeds or plants the next year - a self sustaining garden! You will have to keep in mind to plant extra vegetables. Those extra vegetables are what you are going to save your seed from. For cucumbers, for example, you would carefully cut a cucumber from one end to the other. Scrape the seeds out of the cucumber, wash them off in cheese cloth, set them on a counter and let them dry for about two weeks. After two weeks your seeds should be good and dry. Put them in a small brown envelope, label and date the envelope, then store in a cool dry place. Some people store their seeds in the freezer, I personally just store them in a cupboard and have had no problem. I order my seeds from The Seed Saver's Exchange. The directions for saving seeds are on the back of every packet.

Planning what you are going to grow in your garden.
Planning a garden is usually alot of fun. You go through your seed catalog and dream about what you are going to plant. When it comes down to actually filling out your order keep in mind what your family eats. If none of them like Green Beans, don't plant any. Plant what you eat and eat what you plant is my philosophy. Every year I do plant something new just for fun, but we usually end of eating it. As you plan your garden think of food you can preserve. The first year I planted a garden I planted alot of Lettuce, much more than my family could eat. That was alot of wasted garden space for two reason's. The first one, I planted way to much, the 2nd reason is you can't preserve lettuce. Instead I could have planted carrots, beans or more tomatoes.

The following year I planted my garden with these things in mind. We tend to use alot of carrots. I use it as a vegetable for dinner and in various soups I make and can. We also eat alot of green beans, you can bet the 2nd year i planted beans on the circumference in my garden, and in every flower bed I had. I always grow Beefsteak tomatoes because they are excellent on hamburger's or just to eat. I plant a 2nd type of tomato called Amish Paste because it is an excellent tomato to make spagetti sauce and tomato sauce. So as I plan my garden i try to keep in mind what vegetables we use, but also vegetables we use in other things.

Every year I plant potatoes. You can make quite the meal out of potatoes and rice! There are companies that carry seed potatoes. I encourage you to check these companies out. I personally purchase organic potatoes from our local fruit market to plant. There are no shipping costs and organic potatoes are not chemically treated. Potatoes are amazingly easy to plant. You just cut the eye off the potato, with a chunk of potato along with it and put it in the ground.

Here is a few links to a few Heirloom companies. I don't endorse any of these companies but these will give you a good start to researching Heirloom seeds




Monday, March 2, 2009

If this doesn't change your mind,,,,,

The D. word - Will the recession become something worse?


Above is an article that was on the news section of Yahoo. This is exactly what I have been telling my friends about. If you talk to a senior who lived through the depression they will tell you during the depression people did not know they were in a depression, they just knew times were hard. The depression wasn't called a depression until the late 1930's.

This article is something to pay attention to. The government will not tell you we are going through a depression because this would cause panic. Today the stock market is at it's lowest in over a decade, unemployment is skyrocketing and jobs are scare.

For an interesting perspective keep an eye out on the History Channel for a show called Crash. It compares the era before the depression and now. Very intereting.

Friday, February 27, 2009

More money saving tips

Below is on the comment section of the site, I thought I would repost the idea's here because they are terrific, and important to remember.

A few other tips:
Whenever we put something in storage, we write the expiration date on the lid/package with a Sharpie - it makes it a lot easier to find the date in the future Then we organize by that date. That way we can rotate things that are approaching the expiration date.

Don't forget to buy some toiletries whenever they're on sale. You might still want to brush your teeth or wipe your butt once in a while!

Your right, hygiene is very important.

Thanks for contributing to the site,, your idea's are always welcome!

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Financial tips on how to stock up

One of the hardest parts of stocking up is being able to afford the extra supplies. To get your finances in order you have to budget. You have to know exactly what is coming in and going out. Some people say they budget, but yet, can't tell you how much they actually spend a month in groceries, they have a budget for groceries, but never actually keep reciepts and add up exactly what they spend. Do it for a month and you may be surprised, i was. For one month I used my debit card for all purchases including food, pop, candy, gas, eating out and any errands with the exception of monthly bills, which were checks. At the end of the month I added up our expenses in seperate columns. I spent $100 more on going out to eat then I thought and i spent $300 a month extra in groceries than i had budgeted for. And i spent $50 more a month in gas than I budgeted for. That was $450 more in one month than I thought. i always thought I was pretty frugal until that time. If you don't like to use your debit card and pay cash for everything, put all your reciepts in an envelope and save them for one month.

My next goal was to cut out things I considered a luxury. This was hard. I had to define what is a want and what is a need. I've had the same spending habits for years, but I made a decision, I was going to cut the expenses for my family. We cut out eating out completely, I cut out all comfort foods, i made a grocery list and did all my errands that day instead of running somewhere everyday. This really helped cut down our expenses. Once we knew our actual budget we started going back out to eat once per month. We put back about $75 a month into eating out and comfort foods - after all, you can't give up everything! All I'm saying is be selective.

My next goal was to tackle our food bill. I spent alot of money on the kids food. As i looked over my grocery reciepts I found alot of things I could make instead of purchase. All these years i just bought their food at the grocery store and because life was always busy I never gave it a second thought. I bought some Amish cookbooks and started cooking alot from scratch. Including most of the snacks we eat in the house. Here is some of the money saving tips I have done to cut down our budget.

-cookies/snacks for the kids

-their cereal in the morning

-I learned to water bath can for their fruit

-I learned to pressure can for stews and soups

-I bought a clothesline ( retractable to take up less room - this saved $30 a month on the electric bill)

-I freeze left over meals that can be reheated another day

-bought a food saver to package flour, salt, etc.

-made my own jam

-bought powdered pudding instead of pudding cups

-made bread from scratch instead of buying specialty loaves

The last item is a catagory in itself and deserves some attention. The biggest monthly spending expense I cut out was purchasing commerical laundry soap. This is my biggest beef against consumerism,, purhasing commercial products and paying more but getting less quantity. Instead of spending $25 a month in laundry soap, I now spend about $40 a year, simply by mixing it myself. Here is the recipe,

1/2 cup of Borax
1/2 cup of super washing soda
1/3 bar of Fels Naptha. - you can use Ivory if you can't find fels naptha

Grate 1/3 of the Fels Naptha into a container with your measured out borax and Super Washing Soda. Mix ingredients together and use.
The directions say to use 2 tbsp. of soap per load. I use about 4 tbsp. per load.

If you research making your own laundry soap there is a recipe for making your own liquid soap. I would suggest to you not to use it, which is why it is not listed here. From my reserach, you cannot melt down commercial soap (like fels naptha) without releasing harmful chemicals into the air. We want to cut down costs, but not to the risk of our health.

Using these cost cutting measures enabled me to purchase anything at the store while the items were on sale. I make use of the 10 for $10 sales, save-a-lot for some things and Sam's Club for basic staples. Now, I only purchase food items while they are on sale, using coupons help also.

If anyone would like a recipe for anything either leave a comment or e-mail me and i will be happy to share with you. If you have a cost saving measure you have found useful, e-mail me and i will post it on here to share.

Our next topic will be gardening and we will focus on Hybrid seeds versus heirloom seeds.

Rain barrels in Michigan

I am thinking of getting rain barrels this summer to help ease the water bill with summer watering for the garden. If you have a water purifyer the water it can be for a lot of other uses. My problem was any water barrel i found was over $100 each. To expensive.

I was looking over Craigslist and came across someone who was selling them for $58 a piece. In one month one water barrel will pay for itself. I am reposting the ad (with permission from the owner) in case anyone in Michigan needs one. He will be in Ann Arbor March 21st in the early afternoon. Here is the ad:

These heavy duty rain barrels have a SOLID BRASS faucet at the bottom so you can connect your garden hose, an overflow on the side and a hole in the top where you can connect your downspout. The overflow on the side can be used if you want to connect 2 or more barrels together.
These are CLEAN, plastic 55 gallon FOOD GRADE barrels. ** They have never contained anything but food grade products, EVER.
Every rain barrel comes complete with all hardware installed, just add water! The standard color is blue. Also available painted in green or brown to match your house or trim for just $64.
Shipping them individually is very expensive, so here is what I am going to do. I will bring down a trailer load, from West Michigan. I'm not looking for cash upfront, just a verbal commitment and how many you want. I will drive down to Detroit if enough folks show an interest. At that point you you can buy one, two or as many as you requested, and pay for them when you pick them up. Lets help reduce, reuse & recycle. They're great gifts for friends and family also.Only ¼ inch of rain is needed to fill a 55 gallon barrel. 55 gallons can cover about 100 sq feet with 1 inch of water. This can go along way in offsetting garden and lawn watering needs in the spring and summer when water consumption increases anywhere between 50 and 200%. Capturing rain water in a barrel before it hits the ground decreases storm water runoff , which carries pollutants from paved surfaces into our groundwater, lakes and rivers. You can save money by saving rain water - if your water is supplied by your city and you also use city sewer - more often than not the sewer usage is measured by your incoming water. So you are still paying sewer fees on the water that you use to water your lawn, your garden, and wash your car! SAVE RAINWATER, SAVE MONEY, SAVE the ENVIRONMENT! The barrels could pay for themselves in the 1st year.


You can click on the link here to e-mail him, or you can e-mail me and i will get your order to him. Be sure to specify how many you will want and what color. Keep in mind BLUE is $58. GREEN or BROWN is $64

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Why Prepare?

Years ago when a person would hear the word "prepare" or "survivalist" various images would come to a person's mind. Maybe someone in a military uniform or a person stockpiling food, water and guns, and you would chuckle to yourself thinking you would never be like that.

And you may not want to be. But I will tell you something those people won't be doing. They won't be going hungry, they won't be standing in soup lines, they won't be defenseless when crime skyrockets, and they won't be struggling as much as other people when the government crumbles. Why? Because they prepared for rough times. Because they *prepared*. Not neccessarily for a government takeover, but in case of any situation. An economic collapse and financial collapse is deemed *any situation*.

If there was ever a time to prepare in Michigan, this would be the time. Unemployment is in double digits here, more people are applying for state assistance, the Chairman of the Federal Reserve started with the word "Recession" and changed it to "Deep Recession" the next word would be "Depression". Now is the time to take control of your life and future. Now is the time to prepare.

Michigan is going through a change that we haven't seen in my lifetime. Gone are the days of thinking we deserve certain luxuries, and gone are the days when a good excuse will get you out of a situation that you don't want to be in, and gone are the days of self entitlement, easy credit and the easy road. I keep hearing local people say " I can't wait until this is over". My question to them is "Who says it's going to be over any time soon?". And who do they expect to come in and make this mess go away? They never seem to have an answer.

The good thing is it's never to late to start preparing and providing for your family. If you have come upon this site and don't know where to turn, keep up with this blog and i will teach you from the beginning to end. When you get to the end you will wonder why you didn't start a long time ago!

Next topic will be getting your finances in order.

Welcome to The Michigan Preppers Network

Thank you for viewing the Michigan Prepper's Network. There is finally a place we can come and have a virtual network in one place. I am very excited about this.

One of the most exciting things is this network is for all of us to distribute information to each other, for experienced prepper's to lend a hand to new preppers, and for new prepper's to know it can be done.

Please feel free to e-mail me with any topic you would like to see on this blog. If there is a topic you want to know about, chances are other people will want to know about it so don't be shy to speak up and leave a comment or shoot me an e-mail.
My e-mail is Michiganpreppersnetwork.com@gmail.com

Coming Soon...

Kathy will be operating the the Michigan Preppers Network. Welcome Kathy!! If there' s anyone who would like to to be a Team Member and Contribute, Please leave a comment.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Michigan Preppers Network Authors

Join our team and become a co-author for the Michigan Preppers Network!

Our current List of Michigan Preppers Network Authors:

katie (moderator)
scoutmaster (moderator)


Michigan Preppers Network TERMS OF USE


Introduction. This agreement (”Agreement“) between You and Author(s) (”the Author(s)“) consists of these Michigan Preppers Networks Blog (the “the Blog“) Terms of Use (”Terms“). “You“, “Reader” or “Commenter” means any entity identified by its comments, e-mail, registration information or IP address. If You use this Blog on behalf of your employer, organization or company, they shall also be bound by the terms of this Agreement.

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Michigan Preppers Network makes no representations as to accuracy, completeness, currentness, suitability, or validity of information on this site and the authors will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from it's display or use. All information is provided on an as-is basis. Although we work closely together and share common goals, Michigan Preppers Network is not directly affiliated with other prepper networks. Also, there are other independent authors and commenters to the Michigan Preppers Network. Any disputes with issues of copyright infringement, faulty information etc... should be directed to the original author. The moderator of this site will not accept liability from postings of guest authors, or commenters. If you are an Author and find any violations of copyright through any cross-postings, please contact the administrator of the particular Prepper Network and your article will be removed immediately at your request.

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