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  1. Everything sounded great until you mentioned a home-health wound vac that you have re-purposed. Those are used on deep, non-healing wounds which are often the result of infection. I would not use that on any of my food regardless of how much cleaning it has had. It really needs to be thrown away, you can’t sanitize it enough to ever be 100% sure.

  2. https://www.ebay.com/itm/F10SC-Veterinary-Disinfectant-3-4-oz-for-Reptiles-Birds-Cages-Habitat-Cleaner/401577702577?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&_trksid=p2057872.m2749.l2649

    I disagree about throwing away a high quality vacuum pump. First you are sucking air from the food not putting air and bacteria into it. If in doubt treat the parts that come into touch with a solution of F10SC, they also make a similar product that is suitable for use on human tissue. These products should be in your medical supplies. While they are a bit pricey they have a very high dilution ratio so they are actually cheap to use. They kill both gram positive and gram negative bacteria, they are far superior to alcohol and other disinfection products. As for not being 100% sure about sanitizing, how can you ever be sure about anything exposed to the air? Most of the food we put away is cooked prior to eating, I give you my sacks of rice and beans as a good example, or for that matter almost every thing we store that is not sterilized. Germaphobia could kill you in a hurry when the Schumer hits the fan,

    1. Joe, i agree. As a nurse I have used wound vac’s for years and they normally do not get more than surface dirty. There would need to be some sort of adapter fabricated to use it well to replace the disposable tank that wound fluids are drawn into. We used most of ours at 125 mmhg suction but they go higher or lower depending on the wound’s need.

    2. It’s not germophobia. I am probably the LEAST germophobic person you’d ever meet in your daily life, and you would have no idea that I have spent decades working in the sterility of interventional procedure labs. But. I don’t wear my work shoes inside the house, and I don’t “salvage” used medical equipment. The last thing I want to happen if things go sideways is to infect myself or my family and group with something that’s barely survivable under the best treatments modern American medicine can offer. A MRSA infection, for example, without modern treatment is a miserable way to die. Do what you will. I vacuum seal all kinds of things to remove moisture and compress them for easier storage. If you want to use a wound vac to package ammo, no problem, but you don’t really need a strong vacuum for most things.

  3. I bought a manual automobile brake vacuum pump, it has a guage and short hose, costs about 30.00. You put the hose into the bag, and I have also used it on the jar sealing cap that comes with the electric vacuum sealers.

  4. What a blessing y’all and your family have been to those around you. It is really nice that you are already comfortable with a self-sufficient lifestyle. I have just gotten around to watching the BBC series Wartime Farm. It’s 8 episodes and really, really eye-opening: cooperation, self-sacrifice, duration of the manty deprivations and the communist-like control the government had over the whole British food system. However, they all did whatever it took to survive. The communal pig was one of my favorites. I am looking forward to reading the rest of your articles.

  5. My Dad and Mom both lived through the depression. Dad was a WW2 vet, and I a Viet Nam vet. Dad was a war hero, and I, a sorry troop that got my men back alive first and me second. To heck with the mission. I noticed you do not pressure can very much corn. It’s tough to deal with, takes a long time to pressure, and then seems to be less than 90% successful. We can green beans, tomatoes(water bath), peas, beef, pork(as little fat as possible), and many other vegetables with our pressure cookers. I do not have much electric back up power. I try to keep a month’s worth of fuel for gas and diesel generators. If the power stays out over two weeks, we plan to can as much as possible and feed the rest to the chickens and hogs. I have wood heat, and a large air tight cook stove in the shop. I’ve read that you can’t pressure can on a wood stove, but my Grandmother canned over a million quarts on a wood stove. I know how to rotate three Burpee’s with wood heat. Burpees have a bad rep., but with common sense they work ok and they are cheap. Good luck and God Bless. I can tell by your writing, that we are probably the same kind of people. We are getting scarce. If I never meet you on this trip, I’ll see you for the big run in the sky. Cheers, Jim

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