Weather the Storm with Backup Power – Part 3, by E.R.

(Continued from Part 2. This concludes the article.) Inverters Most of us are interested in running a few 120 volt AC appliances. The fridge, the furnace, the shallow well pump – standard AC devices that we want to keep alive during a power outage. For these we will require what is known as an inverter. Inverters take DC battery power and invert it into standard 120 volt AC household power. Inverters are available in all shapes and sizes these days. You can get off-shore-manufactured modified sine wave inverters that plug into the cigarette lighter plug in your car, rather cheaply. …




Weather the Storm with Backup Power – Part 2, by E.R.

(Continued from Part 1.) Charging Overview At a high level, the stages of charging a battery include: bulk, absorption, and float. On batteries that have been discharged deeply, there is also an equalization charge required. Bulk charging demands high current. Absorption charging requires less current but a slightly elevated voltage. Float is your trickle charge which has low current at about one volt above the stasis voltage of a charged battery. As covered in a recent SurvivalBlog article, the charge levels of flooded batteries can be determined accurately using a hydrometer. Each cell should have an equal level of charge. …




Weather the Storm with Backup Power – Part 1, by E.R

This adventure begins with a windstorm after which it took crews days to repair the severely damaged power lines. At that time we had been using a pair of old end-of-life batteries rescued from a Cummins diesel pickup truck connected to a conventional marine battery charger as our backup power. We waited all day as our freezer continued operations, powered by these old batteries. Towards dusk, I finally dragged out the generator to power the rest. Surely, there was a better way. That summer, I finally made it a priority to get solar panels installed up on the roof and …




NightBuddy 230° LED Headlamp, by Thomas Christianson

The NightBuddy 230° LED headlamp uses an LED lightbar that bends around the forehead at the front of the lamp. This provides an even flood of illumination that is excellent for working outdoors in the dark. It is reliable, lightweight, compact, rechargeable, water-resistant, and easy to use. Battery life is somewhat less than advertised. I must also admit to being somewhat disgruntled by the fact that it is made in China. I feel that NightBuddy Customer Support was not 100% forthright when I inquired about its place of manufacture. The NightBuddy cost $34.95 from www.nightbuddy.com at the time of this …




Some Last-Minute Purchases and Preps – Part 2, by M.M.

(Continued from Part 1.  This concludes the article.) #6   12-volt deep cycle batteries and at least two battery charges. (I prefer the 2-,6-, and 10-Amp chargers. I do have a 50-amp charger, but it is hard on a battery. The slower the charge, the better the life expectancy of the battery). These are extremely important and are actually my #2 priority item only after fuel. Get several if they are available. You can build a light system for your property using 12-volt lights or buy an inverter that switches to A/C  use. For outside lighting go to an RV/off-road store …




Retreat Logistics: Establishing Burn Rates, by 3AD Scout

What is a “burn rate”?  It is simply the period of time it takes to go through a given commodity or resource.  Establishing burn rates are important since it is those burn rates that will help determine how much of an commodity or resource you store before an incident and burn rates will also help you manage your resources in a post-incident environment.   In the Prepping world we already have a few burn rates established.  The amount of calories and water we need per day are for the most part for bare minimums.  That is we know we need about …




A Nuclear Attack Quick Actions Checklist – Part 2, by Anon-6

(Continued from Part 1. This concludes the article.) – To filter air: Need to get fresh air into the shelter without pulling in fallout particles In rack 1 is everything you need to set up an air filter system that pulls in filtered air Checklist with step-by-step pictures is on the clipboard Instructions are also written on the plywood board that will go in the opened movie room window slot (board already has 12” holes in it for the small yellow industrial fan to pull air into the movie room through one of the furnace filters) [Rack 1 contains a …




A Nuclear Attack Quick Actions Checklist – Part 1, by Anon-6

I’ve been a prepper since 2012 and was born in the early 60s. I started prepping when Obama was reelected and realized we’re on our own to protect our families from the hazards of a dangerous world. One of my first purchases was a 1-ounce silver Eagle that stays in my pocket to this day as part of my EDC kit – a small metal cigar case that works nicely (maybe a future article on that). From there, research and then purchasing food, water storage, comms, medical supplies, guns, and getting trained. Fast forward to late 2022 and early 2023. …




My Experience with a Bluetti AC180 – Part 2, by Rick S.

(Continued from Part 1. This concludes the article.) THE BLUETTI 180P This brings us to a real-world solution: the Bluetti AC180. This is a charge controller/battery bank/inverter in a single, elegant package. The heart of the AC180 is a bank of Lithium Iron batteries with an advertised life of 3,500 charge/discharge cycles and is warranted for five years. Integrated into the package is a charge controller capable of charging from a number of sources: 120 VAC house supply, car charger, or solar panels. It then is capable of supplying that stored power in a number of ways: various USB connections, …




My Experience with a Bluetti AC180 – Part 1, by Rick S.

INTRODUCTION One of the more useful new technologies for preppers is photovoltaic power generation. Twenty years ago this technology was in the early stages with very limited applicability due to a high cost/benefit ratio. Today, due to a number of significant advances, a solar power generation capability on some scale is entirely practical. At the same time, entirely off-grid solar power is not yet practical unless one is prepared to make some significant sacrifices in living circumstances. This can be illustrated by simply referring to your monthly electric bill where you will find a wealth of information regarding your electrical …




The Death of the Incandescent Lamp, by OhioGalt

I was recently walking through the local Amish hardware and noticed a variety of 12 volt LED lamps with power tool battery adapters for Dewalt and Milwaukee tools. So it seems the Amish have been moving away from the old Aladdin kerosene lamps (which we have a house full of) and more towards modern electric lighting. Along side of the 12volt LED lamps were standard 120v LED and Incandescent lamps. I remembered at that moment our Washington DC administration had quietly banned the sale of Incandescent lamps as of August 1 of this year. My guess is the Amish probably …




Long Term Storage of Household Batteries, by OhioGalt

Several years ago, I began purchasing Lithium Batteries in AA and AAA sizes for long-term storage in case of some event where batteries were not readily available. I was also using them in several trail cams around the property because they would last roughly 10-to-12 months before replacement. I recently went to buy another couple of 48-packs and found the price had significantly increased. The cellular cameras I use offer a rechargeable lithium pack and comparing to lithium AA I found I could pay for the rechargeable pack in less then two sets of AA lithium batteries. Unfortunately, you cannot …




A Recent Power Outage Experience – Part 1, by Big D.

INTRODUCTION I am writing this within a few days after a power outage on June 18, 2023, so that I will remember the details. I am a 74-year-old and somewhat handicapped grandpa who lives alone in the country. I still get around okay but a lot of physical effort wears me out rather quickly. Sometimes I think that I still have the physical capabilities of the athlete that I was as a younger man. Mentally, yes. Physically, not so much! I was awakened just after midnight on Sunday morning by the sounds of a storm with very high winds buffeting …




Building A Bicycle Generator, by Ed J.

Being able to generate even small amounts of electricity post-SHTF will be very valuable. A simple, human-powered, 12-volt generator can be constructed easily and for very little money. I started with a used bicycle that I picked up for $50 bucks. I recommend a bike with multiple gears as you are probably going to be using a very low gear most of the time. Single-speed bicycles tend to be geared very high, and it would take a large amount of effort to pedal one of those while powering a generator. To construct this system, at the very least, you will …




Maglite Flashlights, by Thomas Christianson

I am a flashlight junkie. I love flashlights. I love big flashlights and small flashlights. I love bright flashlights, and flashlights that project a gentle glow. I love flashlights with AAA, AA, C, D, or rechargeable batteries. I love flashlights with polymer cases, rubberized cases, wooden cases, bamboo cases, and metal cases. I love flashlights with standard incandescent, halogen, krypton, xenon, or LED bulbs. I just love flashlights. Sometimes my addiction causes strains in my relationship with my wife, “Kari.” She says things like, “Do you really need another flashlight?” or “How many flashlights does one man need anyway?” I …