Preparedness Notes for Tuesday — January 19, 2021

Today is the birthday of the late Carla Emery (born 1939, died October 11, 2005). She is well known in self-sufficiency circles as the author of The Encyclopedia of Country Living. (This book was re-released in a 40th Anniversary edition.)

January 19th is also the birthday of General Robert E. Lee.

SurvivalBlog Writing Contest

Today we present another entry for Round 92 of the SurvivalBlog non-fiction writing contest. The prizes for this round include:

First Prize:

  1. The photovoltaic power specialists at Quantum Harvest LLC  are providing a store-wide 10% off coupon. Depending on the model chosen, this could be worth more than $2000.
  2. A Gunsite Academy Three Day Course Certificate. This can be used for any of their 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 (a $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 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.
  2. A Glock form factor SIRT laser training pistol and a SIRT AR-15/M4 Laser Training Bolt, courtesy of Next Level Training, that have a combined retail value of $589,
  3. Two 1,000-foot spools of full mil-spec U.S.-made 750 paracord (in-stock colors only) from www.TOUGHGRID.com (a $240 value).
  4. Naturally Cozy is donating a “Prepper Pack” Menstrual Kit.  This kit contains 18 pads and it comes vacuum-sealed for long term storage or slips easily into a bugout bag.  The value of this kit is $220.
  5. 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. 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)
  2. A Royal Berkey water filter, courtesy of Directive 21 (a $275 value),
  3. Two Super Survival Pack seed collections, a $150 value, courtesy of Seed for Security, LLC,
  4. A transferable $150 purchase credit from Elk Creek Company, toward the purchase of any pre-1899 antique gun. There is no paperwork required for delivery of pre-1899 guns into most states, making them the last bastion of firearms purchasing privacy!

Round 92 ends on January 31, 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.



Simple Heat Treating for a High Carbon Steel Knife Blade – Part 1, by Steve A.

Modern civilization owes its existence in part to the early discovery that iron containing small amounts of carbon could be made much harder than other iron compounds. This substance, iron with between about 0.6 and 1.7 percent carbon and no other alloying elements, was the first predictably hardenable steel and can be referred to as “high carbon plain steel”. Such steels can be made as hard as a file and form the most basic group of tool steels, where tool steel is defined as steel that is able to cut softer steel. The range of these steels include the simple mixtures of iron and carbon we will discuss here as well as steels that exhibit very different behaviors from their older kin due to the addition of alloying elements such as chromium, cobalt, molybdenum, nickel, niobium, titanium, tungsten, vanadium, zirconium, and others that significantly change the properties of the steel.

Many manufactured products such as files, automotive leaf springs, and wood cutting saw blades are made from various alloys of high carbon steel. If you elect to use such scrap to make knives, chisels, gouges, or other cutting tools, first test harden a piece of the scrap steel to insure that it has enough carbon content to harden file hard when quenched. This testing will prevent an unwelcome surprise when you later unsuccessfully try to harden that particular steel.

Many hardenable steels can be shaped and taken to the desired degree of hardness by using relatively simple processes. Cutting tools, springs, and high strength machinings can all be made from appropriate new or used steels using these processes to anneal, shape, harden, and temper such items. Fully hardened steel can be tempered using different times and temperatures to have the properties needed for fasteners, tools, springs, knives, and myriad other items. We will concentrate on applying this information to the making of a simple but very serviceable knife.

Implicit in this work is a source of high temperature heat such as an oxy-acetylene torch or a coal/charcoal forge. Indeed, blacksmiths were well known for recycling high carbon steel scrap into tools for their own and other’s use. These craftsmen had a practical understanding of the processes used to work high carbon steel. The need for high temperatures immediately mandates cautions such as proper clothing, fire protection, and ventilation before starting. All temperatures will be given in degrees Fahrenheit.

A little theory will help us understand how simple high carbon steel can be changed by the actions of heating and cooling it. Imagine a cube. On each of the eight corners of the cube is an iron atom. In addition, there is an iron atom in the center of the cube for a total of nine. This “unit cell” is the smallest grouping of iron atoms that forms the basis for the crystalline structure of iron. It is referred to as “body-centered cubic” structure, a cube with an iron atom in the center of its body.

Each unit cell shares its corner atoms with the unit cells that surround it. Body-centered cubic is the form iron has at temperatures ranging from below freezing up to approximately 1400 degrees F. It also is the form associated with the magnetic properties of iron. When steel is heated to the” critical temperature” of around 1400°, the heat makes the iron atoms more active. The iron atoms reorganize as the metal expands. The central atoms leave their positions and new locations are established at the center of all faces of each unit cell in the red-hot metal. This reorganization means each unit cell and all the surrounding unit cells now effectively have fourteen iron atoms each, one at each corner of the cube and one in the center of each face. These atoms are, of course, shared with all the adjoining cubic cells. The number of atoms has not changed, but the organization of the crystalline structure has. This form of iron is called “face-centered cubic” and is not magnetic.Continue reading“Simple Heat Treating for a High Carbon Steel Knife Blade – Part 1, by Steve A.”



SurvivalBlog’s News From The American Redoubt

This weekly column features news stories and event announcements from around the American Redoubt region. (Idaho, Montana, eastern Oregon, eastern Washington, and Wyoming.) Much of the region is also more commonly known as The Inland Northwest. We also mention companies of interest to preppers and survivalists that are located in the American Redoubt region. Today, we focus on migration between the 50 states. (See the Idaho section.)

Idaho

COVID causes Bogus Basin to lose $3 million in revenue, “our goal is to stay open and safe”

o  o  o

The big influx:   A moving company migration map.  And here is some more detailed data, to match. Here is a snippet from the latter article:

“In any case, what is quite clear is that such “progressive” bastions of Democratic power such as New York, Illinois, California and Michigan saw the biggest population outflows in 2020, while the biggest winners were the sunbelt states Texas, Florida and Arizona. Expect this trend to only accelerate.”

o  o  o

Snowmobiler hospitalized after crash near West Yellowstone

Continue reading“SurvivalBlog’s News From The American Redoubt”







Glock Model 44 Pistol in .22 LR, by Pat Cascio

Look, I don’t care how many firearms you own, if you don’t own at least one firearm chambered in .22 Long Rifle (LR), then you don’t have a survival battery! When I worked for the late Colonel Rex Applegate, he had more than 850 firearms in his collection. Quite a few of them were chambered in .22 LR. If the good Colonel needed firearms in .22 LR, then so do you.

For many years, I used to recommend that the first firearm people purchased, should have been a 12 gauge shotgun of some type. I was wrong! I honestly believe that, if you are into survival in any situation then the very first firearm that you purchase should be chambered in .22 LR– period! You can do more with a .22 LR chambered firearm than you can with most other calibers. Plus, not counting the current ammo drought we are in – once again – all things considered .22 LR ammo is relatively inexpensive. You could purchase a brick of 500-rounds for under $20. These days, you are lucky if you can find any .22 LR at all. And, I fear, it will be this way for a long, long time – maybe years! However, if you look around, you can still find some .22 LR – some place! My very first rifle was a Marlin .22 LR. This was a model that was styled to look like an M1 Carbine. I wish that I still owned it – have no idea what I did with it.

A friend of mine, now long deceased, was raising two kids on his own, and he was always short of funds. He was a teacher in the same two-room schoolhouse where my wife worked, many years ago. He had a tough time, as you can imagine, feeding two growing kids – and he resorted to poaching some deer in our area. Everyone knew he did it, and no one reported him. His weapon of choice for his poaching? A .22 LR rifle. A head shot would put the deer down instantly. Now, don’t get me wrong, poaching is wrong. However, I can look the other way, if that is the only way that a person can feed their family. So, save your hate e-mails.

Over the years, I’ve hunted all sorts of small game, and have literally taken thousands of ground squirrels on my in-law’s 2,000-acre ranch. They are such pests that the landowners would even offer to supply .22 LR ammo to anyone who wanted to come and hunt those little critters. So, I know the effectiveness of the .22 LR round on small and even medium-sized game – with proper shot placement and the right bullet. For a lot of small game, a good hollow point bullet puts them down fast. For self-defense, and I’m not advocating you carry a .22 LR handgun, for self-defense. But if it is all you have, then load it with hollow point ammo. We all have to live within our budgets, and if you can only afford something in .22 LR – then go for it – it sure beats a sharp stick or throwing rocks for self-defense.

The handgun under review today is the fairly new Glock 44. This model is chambered in .22 LR. How I came about owning this gun, is somewhat funny, but sad at the same time. My beautiful wife, who can shoot with the best of them – isn’t totally gun-savvy for the most part. Our local small box store told her that they had “a Glock 22” and she purchased it for me – as a gift. Turns out the store clerk was wrong, it was NOT a Glock Model 22, it was a Glock 44, that shoots .22 LR ammo – of course, being a small box store, that only sells new firearms, they wouldn’t take the gun back. Not the end of the world, that’s for sure. You can’t go wrong owning a Glock – of any type. At first, I was a little disappointed because I was looking forward to owning another Glock 22, chambered in .40 S&W – but like I said, it wasn’t the end of the world – but my wife still feels bad she made such a mistake – it wasn’t entirely her fault, the clerk was wrong!Continue reading“Glock Model 44 Pistol in .22 LR, by Pat Cascio”



Recipe of The Week: Carrots And Peas With Green Mint

The following recipe for Carrots And Peas With Green Mint is from The New Butterick Cook Book, by Flora Rose, co-head of the School of Home Economics at Cornell University. It was published in 1924. A professional scan of that 724-page out-of-copyright book will be one of the many bonus items included in the next edition of the waterproof SurvivalBlog Archive USB stick. This special 15th Anniversary Edition USB stick should be available for pre-ordering on January 25, 2021. The 14th Edition sold out quickly, so place a reminder in your calendar, if you want the latest one.

Ingredients
  • 1 very small bunch fresh mint leaves
  • 1 cup cooked peas
  • 2 cups cooked cubed carrots
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Butter or butter substitute
  • Sugar
Directions

Boil together carrots, peas and mint leaves for five minutes. Drain, add salt and pepper (to taste), a generous amount of butter or butter substitute, and sprinkle with sugar. Set in the oven until the sugar melts. Serve with a garnish of fresh mint leaves.

Do you have a favorite recipe that would be of interest to SurvivalBlog readers? In this weekly recipe column, we place emphasis on recipes that use long term storage foods, recipes for wild game, dutch oven and slow cooker recipes, and any that use home garden produce. If you have any favorite recipes, then please send them via e-mail. Thanks!



Economics & Investing For Preppers

Here are the latest news items and commentary on current economics news, market trends, stocks, investing opportunities, and the precious metals markets. We also cover hedges, derivatives, and obscura. Most of these items are from the “tangibles heavy” contrarian perspective of SurvivalBlog’s Founder and Senior Editor, JWR. Today, we look at some more indicators of mass inflation ahead. (See the  section.)

Precious Metals:

First up, from Jim Curry: Gold Update – U.S. Stocks Bracing for Correction.

o  o  o

Gold and silver prices react to this week’s events in some unexpected ways

Economy & Finance:

A bond market alert: For The First Time Ever, Real US Investment Grade Yields Turn Negative. JWR Adds: For those who aren’t familiar with the bond market, read this primer: Why Bond Prices and Yields Move in Opposite Directions

o  o  o

At Seeking Alpha: BlackRock sees ‘new nominal’ accelerating as inflation expectations hit 26-month highs

o  o  o

“A Huge Reversal” – Louis Gave Warns “Inflation Will Come Back With A Vengeance”. Here is a snippet from the interview:

“When I look at markets, there are three key prices in the world economy: Ten year Treasury yields, oil, and the Dollar. One year ago, yields were going down, oil was going down, and the Dollar was going up. Today, Treasury yields are going up, oil is going up, and the Dollar is going down. This is a huge reversal. When I see a market where interest rates are rising and the currency is falling, alarm bells go off.

o  o  o

And at Wolf Street: Stunning Brick & Mortar Meltdown, Manhattan Style: The Collapse of Retail Rents Before & Now During the Pandemic

o  o  o

Another from Wolf: Massive Inflation in Shipping Costs. And the Reasons

o  o  o

Five Reasons Why Runaway Inflation Is Imminent According To Morgan Stanley

o  o  o

And one more word of warning: Fed-Driven Bubble Destined To End Badly. JWR’s Comment:  So, with some major inflation approaching, what changes to your portfolio should you be considering? See the Economy & Finance section.

Continue reading“Economics & Investing For Preppers”





Preparedness Notes for Sunday — January 17, 2021

On Jan. 17, 1920 the 18th Amendment to the United States Constitution went into effect, establishing Prohibition. By one account, 286 distilleries, 992 breweries, and more than 300,000 bars and saloons were closed.

This is also the anniversary of the Battle of Cowpens in 1781. This small battle was the turning point of the American Revolution in the South. In it, the best battlefield tactician America produced, the backwoodsman Daniel Morgan, decisively and utterly defeated the most arrogant, bloody and successful field grade officer in the British Army, Lt. Col. Banastre Tarleton. The battle set in motion the chain of events that led directly to the decisive siege at Yorktown and the British decision to give up on the war.

On this day in 1994 the 6.7 magnitude Northridge Earthquake struck Los Angeles. It caused about $20 billion in damage and killed 61 people.

Because we are still having some severe Internet access problems — following a huge windstorm —  I wasn’t able to edit a feature article for today’s blog. My apologies. Hopefully our local Internet Service Provider will be back to normal connectivity within a few days. But presently I can only get to our server for a few minutes at a time. Again, my apologies!





The Editors’ Quote of the Day:

Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children;

And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour.

But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints;

Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks.

For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God.

Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience.

Be not ye therefore partakers with them.

For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light:

(For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;)

Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord.

And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.

For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret.

But all things that are reproved are made manifest by the light: for whatsoever doth make manifest is light.

Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light.

See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise,

Redeeming the time, because the days are evil.

Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is.” – Ephesians 5:1-17 (KJV)



Preparedness Notes for Saturday — January 16, 2021

The Space Shuttle Columbia launched from Kennedy Space Center in Florida on January 16th, 2003. STS-107 would explode on re-entry 15 days later, killing all seven of the crew members on board. SurvivalBlog salutes all seven crewmembers: Commander Rick Husband, Pilot William McCool, Mission Specialist David Brown, Mission Specialist Kalpana Chawla, Mission Specialist Michael Anderson, Mission Specialist Laurel Clark, Payload Specialist Ilan Ramon.

A new listing in Arizona, marketed by Survival Realty Brokerage Services: Desert Sky Ranch, $795,000, near Snowflake, Arizona.

SurvivalBlog Writing Contest

Today we present another entry for Round 92 of the SurvivalBlog non-fiction writing contest. The prizes for this round include:

First Prize:

  1. The photovoltaic power specialists at Quantum Harvest LLC  are providing a store-wide 10% off coupon. Depending on the model chosen, this could be worth more than $2000.
  2. A Gunsite Academy Three Day Course Certificate. This can be used for any of their 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 (a $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 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.
  2. A Glock form factor SIRT laser training pistol and a SIRT AR-15/M4 Laser Training Bolt, courtesy of Next Level Training, that have a combined retail value of $589,
  3. Two 1,000-foot spools of full mil-spec U.S.-made 750 paracord (in-stock colors only) from www.TOUGHGRID.com (a $240 value).
  4. Naturally Cozy is donating a “Prepper Pack” Menstrual Kit.  This kit contains 18 pads and it comes vacuum-sealed for long term storage or slips easily into a bugout bag.  The value of this kit is $220.
  5. 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. 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)
  2. A Royal Berkey water filter, courtesy of Directive 21 (a $275 value),
  3. Two Super Survival Pack seed collections, a $150 value, courtesy of Seed for Security, LLC,
  4. A transferable $150 purchase credit from Elk Creek Company, toward the purchase of any pre-1899 antique gun. There is no paperwork required for delivery of pre-1899 guns into most states, making them the last bastion of firearms purchasing privacy!

Round 92 ends on January 31, 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.



How To Build a WTSHTF Gas Station, by Samantha B.

Gas is often not stored safely. A vaporized single gallon of gas cause catastrophic consequences if it ignites or explodes. People often store gas in 5-gallon cans. Cans are placed in barns, outbuildings, and garages alongside valuable equipment or stored household goods. Some people even store gas in the basement of their home in cans that are not properly sealed.

Our primary reason for constructing this gas station was to have a safe place to store fuel and provide some security from short to moderate gas supply disruptions. We also wanted to avoid unnecessary trips to town just for fuel.

Where are you located on the gas supply chain?

My husband and I live in the mountains of Western North Carolina. If there is any supply disruption in oil and gas refining in the Gulf of Mexico, our area is the last place to receive fuel. A refinery accident several years ago led to gas shortages. If you are in an area that is the last to receive critical supplies like fuel, then having a small supply at home can allow you to get to work or school until supplies stabilize. We saw a lot of people that did not have the fuel they needed to conduct business. Those with longer work commutes had a tough time.

Storing just 25 extra gallons could have made a huge difference for a lot of those people.
Here is how we put together our gas station for very little out of pocket cost—many of the supplies we had laying around from previous construction projects and tasks around the farm. I encourage you to be creative when considering what materials you use. We used sheet metal for our shed, but scrap wood, pallets, and shingles would have worked just fine too!

The Pallet Platform

We had a single pallet. My husband expanded it with treated scrap lumber left over from other projects. We wanted a large enough platform for two barrels so we could have two grades of gas. Regular for our truck, Kawasaki Mule, and walk-behind tractor and ethanol-free for our weedeaters and chainsaws.

The Shed

The framework was built around the pallets. Matt used some treated boards and a few untreated to build the framework for the roof and sides. We have been working on some barns, so we have some small pieces of metal laying around. Technically we probably needed them to finish up the barns, but one side was just the cover sheet they included when they dropped off metal. Of course, the cover sheet is a different color, but who cares. The metal is the thicker gauge normally used for the sides of industrial buildings, so the whole structure should be pretty durable over the years. The first thing that will fail is likely the pallets and lumber that the barrels are setting on. Pouring a little concrete pad and then using some lumber for air space between the barrels and the concrete would prevent that, but we just used what we had.Continue reading“How To Build a WTSHTF Gas Station, by Samantha B.”



Editors’ Prepping Progress

To be prepared for a crisis, every Prepper must establish goals and make long-term and short-term plans. In this column, the SurvivalBlog editors review their week’s prep activities and planned prep activities for the coming week. These range from healthcare and gear purchases to gardening, ranch improvements, bug out bag fine-tuning, and food storage. This is something akin to our Retreat Owner Profiles, but written incrementally and in detail, throughout the year. Note that as an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. We always welcome you to share your own successes and wisdom in the Comments. Let’s keep busy and be ready!

Jim Reports:

This past week I’ve been very busy shipping out Elk Creek Company orders. Folks seem very anxious to stock-up on pre-1899 guns before the presidential inauguration.  My travels around the region revealed an absolutely pitiful supply of ammunition. I visited both gun shops and a few major retailers. But all that I’ve been seeing is just a few boxes of ammo in oddball calibers.  Otherwise, the shelves are bare. The new T-shirt from Prepper Tees (our newest advertiser) says it all:

 

 

 

 

Earlier this week, we had a wild drive to Coeur d’Alene at the tail end of a wind storm.  But I’ll let Lily describe that…

Continue reading“Editors’ Prepping Progress”