Preparedness Notes for Friday — September 27, 2019

Your last call! There are just three days left until the U.S. sales ban on multi-band Baofeng UV-5R handie-talkies takes effect. As of October 1st, 2019, it will be illegal to advertise or sell them. But they will still be legal to operate. Only licensed amateur can operate on their ham bands. However, unlicensed folks can operate with them on their FRS, and MURS bands. So get yourself a six pack, ASAP!

This is the Birthday of Samuel Adams (not counting the change in dates due to the change from the Julian calendar to the Gregorian calendar). He was an American statesman, political philosopher, and one of the Founding Fathers of the United States.

SurvivalBlog Writing Contest

Today we present another entry for Round 84  of the SurvivalBlog non-fiction writing contest. The more than $12,000 worth of prizes for this round include:

First Prize:

  1. A $3,000 gift certificate towards a Sol-Ark Solar Generator from Veteran owned Portable Solar LLC. The only EMP Hardened Solar Generator System available to the public.
  2. A Gunsite Academy Three Day Course Certificate. This can be used for any one, two, or three day course (a $1,095 value),
  3. A course certificate from onPoint Tactical for the prize winner’s choice of three-day civilian courses, excluding those restricted for military or government teams. Three day onPoint courses normally cost $795,
  4. DRD Tactical is providing a 5.56 NATO QD Billet upper. These have hammer forged, chrome-lined barrels and a hard case, to go with your own AR lower. It will allow any standard AR-type rifle to have a quick change barrel. This can be assembled in less than one minute without the use of any tools. It also provides a compact carry capability in a hard case or in 3-day pack (an $1,100 value),
  5. Two cases of Mountain House freeze-dried assorted entrees in #10 cans, courtesy of Ready Made Resources (a $350 value),
  6. A $250 gift certificate good for any product from Sunflower Ammo,
  7. American Gunsmithing Institute (AGI) is providing a $300 certificate good towards any of their DVD training courses.

Second Prize:

  1. A gift certificate from Quantum Harvest LLC (up to a $2,200 value) good for 12% off the purchase of any of their sun-tracking models, and 10% off the purchase price of any of their other models.
  2. A Front Sight Lifetime Diamond Membership, providing lifetime free training at any Front Sight Nevada course, with no limit on repeating classes. This prize is courtesy of a SurvivalBlog reader who prefers to be anonymous.
  3. A Glock form factor SIRT laser training pistol and a SIRT AR-15/M4 Laser Training Bolt, courtesy of Next Level Training, which have a combined retail value of $589,
  4. A Three-Day Deluxe Emergency Kit from Emergency Essentials (a $190 value),
  5. Two 1,000-foot spools of full mil-spec U.S.-made 750 paracord (in-stock colors only) from (a $240 value).
  6. An assortment of products along with a one hour consultation on health and wellness from Pruitt’s Tree Resin (a $265 value).

Third Prize:

  1. is providing a $400 purchase credit at regular prices for the prize winner’s choice of either Wise Foods or Augason long term storage foods, in stackable buckets.
  2. Three sets each of made-in-USA regular and wide-mouth reusable canning lids. (This is a total of 300 lids and 600 gaskets.) This prize is courtesy of Harvest Guard (a $270 value)
  3. A Royal Berkey water filter, courtesy of Directive 21 (a $275 value),
  4. Expanded sets of both washable feminine pads and liners, donated by Naturally Cozy (a $185 retail value),
  5. Two Super Survival Pack seed collections, a $150 value, courtesy of Seed for Security, LLC,
  6. Mayflower Trading is donating a $200 gift certificate for homesteading appliances.

Round 84 ends on September 30th, so get busy writing and e-mail us your entry. Remember that there is a 1,500-word minimum, and that articles on practical “how to” skills for survival have an advantage in the judging.


  1. Best Baofeng for the buck

    The price of Baofeng seems to have increased. If these accessories are seen as useful, that makes this offering a bargain. If the average price is around $30, for an extra $16 dollars, the accessories in this package are an incredible value.

  2. Iceman: Please provide a solid investment option other than Baofeng to help others and expand upon your views as to why these other ‘options’ are advantageous vs the Baofeng radios. I would appreciate it greatly as I am sure others would as well. The hour is late and the need for communication across broad ranges remains despite legislation/regulation from our government.

    All: What other options should we consider other than Baofeng for more options, capabilities and communication needs? Sure Baofeng are affordable, but value for our money should also be provided in more options than just one. Any help would be appreciated. Thank you very much for your concern, support and guidance regarding our ability to communicate.

      1. Wouxan is a better quality equivalent to Baofeng. There are many options. This is only one. Define the task, then seek a radio. I used to carry a $2,500 Motorolla for 20 years that was the ‘start of the art’ of the trunked 800Mhz radio systems that goes beyond the typical Amateur Radio experience. We were on the ‘cutting edge’. I like the Baofeng too. A cheap radio on a good antenna, using Vietnam era techniques, can be as effective as the latest and greatest. And like some magazines, these radio can be disposable. I would carry two. If one gets wet, then use the spare. An expensive radio can also get wet, but you likely cannot afford a spare.

        Baofengs have proven to be effect on the battlefield, namely the Ukraine. Government forces were defeated by those forces in many battles in their civil war. 4 watts of power will often propagate just as far as 5 watts. It is the antenna and operator skill that make it go. The Baofeng does have it’s limitations, it is deaf on receive, it can be less reliable in performance, so step up to the Wouxan or Anytone if you can. But have big box of Baofengs too. Different radios and quality levels for different jobs.

      2. Excuse me if I do not respond right away, a huge box of tri band Baofengs just arrive at a personal depot, so gotta deliver the cash in a flash. 220mhz would be a good place to be.

    1. I have programmed over 100 Baofengs for my local CERT group. Some come with missing/broken parts, or just not work out of the box. Several people have dropped them once, and they failed to work. On the other hand, some people have abused them and they still work like a champ. They are hit or miss. Take your chances. I simply cannot imagine a soldier, fireman, or policeman getting one of these. I have a couple but I rarely use them. I’m just relaying my experiences, and giving my 2 cents.

      1. That uneven quality control and fragility are two reasons that I recommend buying them by the six-pack. What is a broken Baofeng UV-V5R? It is a source for a spare antenna, battery, battery case, and earbud for your OTHER Baofengs. At just $20 apiece, it is feasible to use them in lieu of a spare parts bin.

  3. Radios are like guns and cars, everybody has their favorite. Now that being said, I recommend besides a Baofeng is a Yaesu FT-65. Which usually runs around $85 to $95 depending on which vendor you buy from. Like all HT’s I also recommend buying an aftermarket antenna for the radio, which will run around $25. Yes I have and use Baofengs when I am out walking the neighborhood or hiking in the woods. The Yaesu is higher quality but the Yaesu company buys it’s radio components from the same company that sells to Baofeng. But side by side you can tell the difference between the radios and see that the Baofengs are cheaply made. The FT-65 is dual-band, 2M/70CM (440) and also has FM broadcast radio just like the Baofeng. Kenwood, Icom, Alinco, besides Yaesu all make quality HT, mobile, or base radios. It’s just how much money you want to invest in equipment. I recommend that those of you wanting communication equipment go over to and click on REVIEWS and see what other Hams are saying about different equipment and their evaluation.

    1. Just got back with a buncha tri-bander Baofengs that will be programmed up for others, and I’ll get some too for the effort. The more the merrier, if you like to have help. A cheap radio on a good antenna can tie a communities together, and multiply the eyes and hears that can alert and inform an intelligence network. The ability to flood the community with a dime a dozen radio, one radio per household is all that is really needed, and the lowly Baofeng is force multiplier of significant proportion in relation to it’s low price.

      Yes, it is not only the components, but the build quality in general that does make a huge difference. However the ubiquitous Baofeng has become the AR-15 of radios. The AR is not my first choice, but because the proliferation of the platform, and massive amount of 5.56 Nato, it would be best to have some exposure to it. Like the AR, the Baofeng is affordable and familiar. And logistics will be the key to victory.
      Having a bag of Baofengs is like have boxes of PSA AR’s, or racks of bolt actions that can empower your assets and friends. It is is necessary contingency, because your favorite flavor might just run out. There is a certain advantage in numbers, that no force multiplier can match.

  4. Is there a particular UV-5R that is being banned for sale? Or are all UV-5R radios being banned? I’ve been looking at the 1/4/8-watt models, but the listings don’t mention MURS anywhere. I don’t know much about radios yet, but I’m planning on studying and getting my Tech license, so are there better options available than buying a UV-5R right before they become unavailable? Thanks for any input!

  5. It concerns me when I hear of people just stockpiling baofengs. There can be quite a bit of a learning curve to use radios effectively. You cant just learn this stuff in a minute and under pressure. Skills skills skills folks.

  6. The ham radio gustapo are the reasons people shy away from hobby radio and are same reason these great units are being banned.. folks buy um cheap and stack them deep dont let the old farts steer u away.. same people argue against stripped lower builds and or psa ar rifles.

  7. Not a conspiracy nut, but I tried three different times to send an email to my friends and relatives about this ban on these radios, and three times my email was blocked to over 40 people. I have sent other emails about articles on this site and never had a problem, don’t know what key word I was using that Google or whoever picked up on that was blocking my gmails. Any who, I can see how our flow of thoughts will be stopped when the time comes. Yes gettem if you still can, may be one of the few ways we will be able to communicate. Trekker Out

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