A Micro Survival Kit for Everyday Carry – Part 2, by M.B.

(Continued from Part 1. This concludes the article.) Tool #2: Cordage Cordage — string, rope, etc. — is another of our oldest tools. Early people would have used animal sinew or plant fibers. No matter what its form, cordage is an essential element for making shelters, tools, and weapons, in first aid, and for making needed repairs. Smallest Considered: Dental floss Largest considered: Paracord Final choice: Paracord, plus several feet of fishing line AND thread Honorable mentions: Braided fishline, carpet or upholstery thread Thread – Strong thread is wonderfully useful for small tasks and repairs, such as attaching a feather …




A Micro Survival Kit for Everyday Carry – Part 1, by M.B.

In Jules Verne’s 1874 novel, The Mysterious Island, a group of Union men escape from a Confederate prison during the U.S. Civil War, in an observation balloon. They are swept away into a massive storm and survive a crash landing on a Pacific island with nothing but what they are wearing and what’s in their pockets. In an early scene, the castaways have gathered food, firewood and tinder, but the character preparing the fire suddenly discovers that he has lost his waterproof match container. A frantic search among the castaways uncovers a single match in one character’s vest, and this …




Black Gold: Organic Matter – Part 2, by R.M.

(Continued from Part 1. This concludes the article.) Do you have access to sawdust? In most places where I have lived, I have had access to free sawdust. Sawdust is almost pure carbon = organic matter (yes I know it’s not quite that simple, but for the purpose of how to make your soil better, it really is). Put it on your plants and they will most likely die from lack of nitrogen as the sawdust absorbs it. For the best and fastest composting, you need a ratio of carbon to nitrogen of 7:1, and sawdust is all carbon, no …




Black Gold: Organic Matter – Part 1, by R.M.

Organic matter should be considered black gold. This aricle will describe why you need to work on it, now. Summary: Higher organic matter soils are just about drought-proof, need far less fertilizer, and the organic matter will balance out acid/base and many other conditions resulting in healthier plants that are more resistant to everything from too wet / too dry to insects and disease. I started gardening in the sand hills of Florida over 50 years ago. 78 feet of sand until you hit clay. My first garden was a total failure. For my second garden I followed the exact …




Basic Clock Repair and Few Thoughts on Time, by St. Funogas

In The Novice’s recent article Timekeeping When the Grid is Down, he asked for someone with a better knowledge to write an article for TEOTWAWKI clock and watch repair. While we’re waiting for that person to step up to the plate, and I hope they do, I thought that I’d offer some of the clock-repair basics I’ve learned in the past eight months. I’ve always loved any kind of windup time piece. Some combination of the beauty, intricacies, and the mechanical aspects of clocks captured my imagination at a young age. Once I used my birthday money to buy $2.50 …




On Leadership, by Old Bobbert

Editor’s Introductory Note:  This is the 30th article written by Old Bobbert that has been posted in SurvivalBlog.  In all, he’s written more than 97,000 words for SurvivalBlog, and we are grateful! — True leadership is a status conferred by knowledgeable persons whose choices reflect their recognition of ability, experience, integrity, character, and a full commitment to a common cause or endeavor. Being chosen as a leader generally is a result of a decision that they will be supported and enabled by the leader to be successful and secure in the common group efforts. Often the new group members have …




Raising Beef on a Small Homestead – Part 2, by K.R.

(Continued from Part 1. This concludes the article.) Transportation We started out not owning a trailer. We bought calves from someone who would deliver, borrowed trailers to purchase hay, and used a mobile butcher who killed and quartered the animals on site. I think it is possible to limp along in this manner for a while until one figures out whether or not beef production is going to be a permanent thing. We have since purchased a new Maverick stock trailer (from Quality Trailer Sales of Boise, Idaho), which seemed the best quality for the price. We bought a new …




Raising Beef on a Small Homestead – Part 1, by K.R.

Raising beef cattle may be outside the comfort zone of many Survival Blog readers, but it doesn’t need to be. At least that is what my wife and I found out. Doing so on a small, manageable scale has significantly upgraded our level of land management, food preparation, and enjoyment. Now we can’t imaging our high altitude (6,500 feet) American Redoubt retreat without full freezers of steaks, roasts, and burgers, all the nutritious compost we could ever hope for, and our two Highland cows roaming our mountainous 20 acres. Many might say that, “I’ve never raised livestock and want to …




Survival Gardening: The Most Vital Prep – Part 3, by T.J. Dixon

(Continued from Part 2. This concludes the article.) Your crops should be started indoors 4 to 6 weeks before you’re ready to put them out. Since your space is small to start, you will only need one or two 72 cell starter trays; you can also use egg trays or make pots from rolled up paper. When you are selecting your seeds look for heirloom or “open-pollinated” seeds; they will be labeled on the seed packet. Since you will be harvesting next year’s seeds from your little garden, you do not want hybrid seeds. Heirloom and open-pollinated seeds will reproduce …




Survival Gardening: The Most Vital Prep – Part 2, by T.J. Dixon

(Continued from Part 1.) The planting process starts by seeding most crops indoors under artificial lights about 4-6 weeks before it is time to plant them outside; Here, refer to the USDA Hardiness information for planting times. Most crops need from 60 to 90 days to mature after you’ve transplanted. In Zone 5, I start spring seeds indoors in February, summer seeds indoors in April and fall seeds in July. Once things have sprouted, they need to be transitioned outside. You cannot just take a plant from the low light of the indoors into the full power of the sun …




Survival Gardening: The Most Vital Prep – Part 1, by T.J. Dixon

Many of us would regard someone with one year of freeze-dried food as a good example of someone who is prepared. They are ready to ride out the storm when a major Without Rule of Law (WROL) scenario comes along. The issue then becomes, what happens after that first year? Even if they escape mob violence because they have effective self-defense supplies and have trained both at the gun club and in tactical scenarios, they will be out of food in one short year. While they have may all the medical supplies to handle small and large emergencies throughout that …




Planting Productive Orchards, by David K.

When someone says the word ‘orchard,’ most people begin to immediately conjure images of fall and vast acres of fruit trees, hayrides, pumpkin patches, corn mazes, apple harvests, making cider, and so forth. But to those with a preparedness mindset, the word ‘orchard’ also implies benefits like self-sufficiency, the attraction of wild game for hunting/trapping, diversified protein sources, fur for blankets, boots, hats, coats, and gloves, as well as bartering. The term ‘orchard’ can have broader connotations beyond your typical fruit tree acreage. For many, myself included, the term ’orchard’ stretches beyond fruit trees and includes nut trees, berry bushes, …




One Year Review: Blackhawk Trident Boots, by Desert Al

Back in January of 2020, SurvivalBlog’s Field Gear Editor  Pat Cascio reviewed the Blackhawk 6-inch Trident Ultralite Boots, and caught my attention. I am wary of buying gear online without physically holding something in my hands and trying it on. But I have used many Blackhawk products over the last 10 years and have been pleased with the price point and quality of their items. I had my boots picked out waiting in my shopping cart on Blackhawk’s website for several months until they went on sale for Father’s day in June of 2020 and I purchased them for right …




Antique Schmidt-Rubin Straight-Pull Rifles, by Rick C.

I would like to share with you my experience with the Schmidt Rubin Model 1889 rifle. Antique because of its pre-1899 status, it can legally be shipped directly to the buyer in most states, if the seller properly understands the law. I’m sure you’re aware some will not ship without FFL regardless of antique status. Your exhortations to buy antique firearms have not gone unheeded. Prices have indeed gone out of sight. These rifles are now in the six or seven hundred dollar range, or more. I am not a gunsmith nor an expert on firearms, antique or otherwise. My …




The Science: Reusing Canning Jar Lids – Part 2, by St. Funogas

(Continued from Part 1. This concludes the article.) #4. “Tempered less than Mason jars.” Nearly every book, website, and blog discussing this subject insists that Mason jars are tempered. They’re definitely, absolutely, NOT tempered. Glass has three basic hardening options: tempering, heat strengthening, and annealing. All commercial and home-canning jars are annealed, not tempered. Annealing is a process where jars are cooled down very slowly after production to make them more consistent and to minimize stresses. Whenever glass breaks into the sharp jagged pieces seen when we break a jar or window it’s merely annealed, not tempered or heat strengthened. …