Rourke on Real Estate Development Proposal Ideas

For those who have ever considered the idea of a survival community, I would like to propose a few ideas for consideration from a real estate developer’s perspective. The idea of cluster communities in rural areas is a growing idea in states including Colorado. The idea is to take some land, say 100 acres, and rather than breaking it up into twenty 5 acre lots, you instead cluster the lots into twenty 1 acre (or less) lots, and leave the remaining acreage as an undeveloped buffer owned by the subdivision association (or a LLC it controls), which is then controlled …




Letter Re: Photocell and Seismic Intrusion Detection Systems

Jim: Could you tell us more about a seismic intrusion detection system? Until your recent comments on this being necessary for the security of a hidden retreat, I had never even heard of such a thing. There must be more novices like me who are soaking up like a sponge everything you write, and would be very interested in knowing more. Thank you, – Joe. JWR Replies:  I cannot over-emphasize the need for a proper intrusion detection system for a retreat. The simplest are the photocell “driveway alarms” which are commonly used on farms and ranches in the west. Most …




Letter Re: Pre-1993 Dodge Diesels–EMP Proof Survival Rigs

Mr. Rawles, One vehicle that I would like to point out which I believe is pretty EMP proof is the earlier Dodge Diesels…from around 1989-1993. They have 12 valve Cummins engines which are completely mechanical driven with the exception of a 12 VDC battery which basically keeps the fuel pump open. As long as you have simple 12 volt battery power the vehicle cannot be shut down. These vehicles can be acquired from around $4-10k depending on condition and options. For simplicity you do not want the 24 valve and it should also be noted that one can easily get …




Letter Re: New FINCEN Regulation on Precious Metals/Gemstones Transaction Reporting

James: Bill in North Idaho’s letter intrigued me, so I did some digging and thought you would be interested in what I found. The FinCEN FAQ is pretty clear that the requirements of being a ‘dealer’ only applies if you buy and sell more then $50,000 in one calendar year/tax year, so if you’re buying up bullion and not selling it (i.e. hoarding it) you don’t count as a ‘dealer’ so this specific ruling doesn’t touch you. What it does do, is make most people selling lots of gold/silver/jewels into ‘dealers’ which means they file IRS form 8300 and report …




Letter Re: Dealing With Buckshot Bruce

Hi Jim, Just wanted to send a short note to let you know how much I enjoy the site and the information there. Also, awhile back, Buckshot had posted a great article on trapping and a special on his DVDs trading for some 90% [pre-1965 U.S.] silver. I wanted to let you know what a great guy Buckshot is, and Mrs. Buckshot is pretty terrific as well. I’ve done a little trading with him and found him to be an honest and straightforward guy. His videos and traps are terrific!  Their e-mails and service is second to none. I’d recommend …










Muddying The Waters on EMP–Jack Wheeler and the BLOS Imponderable

SurvivalBlog reader Joe. K. mentioned in a recent e-mail that one of my heroes, Dr. Jack Wheeler, posted a dismissive article about the EMP threat, back in June. (It was posted at Wheeler’s excellent “To The Point News” subscription website: http://www.tothepointnews.com/  )  Wheeler is a fascinating fellow. Back in the 1960s, he swam the Hellespont, climbed the Matterhorn, and went tiger hunting as a civilian in Vietnam during the Vietnam War. All of this before he was 25 years old. He also spent a lot of time living with head hunters in the Amazon jungle. But I digress…  Wheeler’s article, …




David in Israel Re: Firearms for Survival

James: I’ll start with a confession: It is hard for me, a true “heavy battle rifle/ M1911 .45/ one shot is all it takes” kind of guy to advocate hosing down and running. Reading posts about the tinkering and modding is fun but as I hear the Arabs across the wadi from me get all fired up and shoot into the air (I hope). I realize it is not about looking cool but staying alive. Attacking the most controversial issue, let’s sit back and watch the flames spread from this! 1-Concealment and deception. Be “The Gray Man” (see my post …




Letter Re: Potential for Earth Strikes by Large Asteroids

Jim: See: http://neo.jpl.nasa.gov/ A sub part of this site was mentioned in the article that you posted Friday, but I’d recommend posting this main page of the site. People forget we had an asteroid pass very close to us last year, just 2/3 the distance to the moon. (Called a lunar distance or “LD”). Let’s look at two more things. 1.) NASA just recently proved they can hit an asteroid with a satellite. Doesn’t that strike you as at least a little odd they would spend the money to do that just for researching the impact? 2.) Now, did you …




Letter Re: Faraday Cage Grounding

Mr. Rawles, I have been enjoying reading your excellent blog. Some thoughts for you on the post from Rourke and the troubles presented by EMP. The only circuit breaker that could possibly open before an EMP surge could do damage are some large (400+ pounds) industrial types and they start at about $40,000. Be quite the installation. Any breaker you can get for less than that just ain’t nearly fast enough. You want to be a bit careful about installing a grounding system in your house that isn’t connected to the house’s grounding system, if it has one. The National …




Letter Re: Online Sources for Military Manuals

Jim, Most all of the current US Army field manuals (FMs) are available for download directly from the Army at: http://atiam.train.army.mil/soldierPortal/appmanager/soldier/start?_nfpb=true&docGroup=official&_pageLabel=rdlservicespage Note: Some are restricted access to those with a .gov or .mil address, but many can be downloaded by anyone. BTW, the Army for some reason decided to ‘modernize’ the numbering system and the 5-series manuals are now 3-series. Generally, though, the older manuals (some of which are available, as mentioned, from globalsecurity.org or FAS.org) are also useful. The newer manuals are more technology intensive than the older ones. It’s good knowing the current state of the art though. …




Odds ‘n Sods:

I just discovered that SurvivalBlog reader Matt C. has his own blog: www.parallaxadjustment.blogspot.com. Matt’s blog centers on his tactical firearms training. He is a regular shooter at a weekly class taught by a certified CHL/Lethal Use of Force trainer. Matt chronicles these lessons and passes on some great pearls of wisdom. Be forewarned that he uses a bit of off-color humor and language, but I recommend his blog. Good stuff. … Some disturbing reading on GWB’s opinion of the Constitution: http://www.capitolhillblue.com/artman/publish/article_7779.shtml … I heard that George at The Pre-1899 Specialist has put some of his hand selected Model 1893  8x57mm …







Making a Faraday Cage, by Rourke

Electromagnetic pulse (EMP), is now a commonly know effect thanks to movies showcasing the nuclear version such as Goldeneye (James Bond) and the remake of Ocean’s 11 which shows a non-nuclear version. The real question for survivalists is: what is EMP actually going to do to my valued equipment and what can I realistically do about it? Let’s start with lightening since it is very well understood. We know that lightening will tend to seek out the highest conductive point that is grounded and then seek to flow through a conductor, often back and forth a few times, until the …