Elements of a Security System – Part 5, by J.M.

Observation As I mentioned earlier, direct observation of an intruder approaching is another form of detection, but I’m focusing on situations where you may not be able to have eyes everywhere 24×7. However, if an alarm does go off you’ll need some way to get ‘eyes on’ to determine what caused the alarm without unnecessarily exposing yourself to potential danger. There are a number of possible options to enhance your ability to observe a potential intruder. The simplest and most obvious option would be magnified optics, such as binoculars or a monocular, assuming you have a line-of-sight to the area …




Elements of a Security System – Part 4, by J.M.

(Continued from Part 3.) The second type of alerting – remote signal back to a centralized alarm console with a wired or wireless connection when the tripwire is tripped – can be a bit more complicated. In either case you can use something as simple as the clothespin switch to connect two wires to close the circuit, or to ‘press’ the button on a remote transmitter to trigger a relay that set off a light/buzzer. Regardless of the use of local versus remote alerting, if there are any electronics or other components that could degrade when exposed to the elements …




Editors’ Prepping Progress

To be prepared for a crisis, every Prepper must establish goals and make long-term and short-term plans. Steadily, we work on meeting our prepping goals. In this column, the SurvivalBlog editors review their week’s prep activities. They also often share their planned prep activities for the coming week. These range from healthcare and gear purchases to gardening, property improvements, and food storage. This is something akin to our Retreat Owner Profiles, but written incrementally and in detail, throughout the year. We always welcome you to share your own successes and wisdom in the Comments. Let’s keep busy and be ready! …




A Weapons Systems Approach to Firearms and Training

Being well-armed and trained is a cornerstone of preparedness. I’m writing this to reiterate and expand on a subject that I’ve briefly mentioned several times in the more than 12 years that SurvivalBlog has been published. This is the concept of a taking a Systems Approach to firearms and firearms training.  By this, I mean changing your entire mindset about simply “buying a gun.”  You are not just buying a gun. Rather, you are acquiring a weapons system, including logistics and training. Here is a thumbnail list to consider: The Firearm Itself Ammunition. (At least 1,000 rounds for each primary …




Stalking the Night- Part 2, by Mark B.

Yesterday, I wrote about my experience where I needed night vision while being stalked on the mountain “alone”. I also wrote about the various generation technology advancements of night vision. Let’s proceed to outline the details of night vision technology and what it means. Understanding Resolution and Signal-to-Noise Specifications The two most important specifications for any night vision device are resolution and signal-to-noise ratio. In fact one of the main parameters for determining whether a night vision device can be exported is the multiple of these two specifications, also known as “Figure Of Merit”. If the NVD you are considering …




Stalking the Night- Part 1, by Mark B.

I remember as a young man I spent a considerable amount of time hiking, backpacking, and camping in the mountains, usually by myself. Getting away from it all and honing my skills of self-reliance at the same time has always appealed to me. Maybe it is something, on a primal level, relating back to my cave man ancestry. Senses Go Into Overdrive It has been my experience that anytime you are completely alone that your awareness and senses go into overdrive, bombarding you with all sorts of new stimuli. At times, this can become overwhelming, and I would be lying …




Thermal Headset for Under $250, by Ricky B.

I’ll bet my step-mama’s grave that anyone visiting SurvivalBlog either has a thermal headset or night vision device or would really like to have one. I was never able to emerge from the latter category until this year. I simply couldn’t afford to plunk down a thousand bucks or more on a limited family budget. That was the case, until now. Smartphone-Mounted Thermal Camera I recently discovered that a small, smartphone-mounted thermal camera can be had for about $200. Flir1 and Seek are the two competitors in this arena. Their cameras come in versions for both android and iOS devices. …




JWR’s Recommendations of the Week

Here are JWR’s Recommendations of the Week for various media and tools of interest to SurvivalBlog readers. This week’s focus is on thermal night vision monoculars. (See the Gear section, near the end of this column.) Books: How Not To Be Hacked: The Definitive Guide for Regular People o o o Nuts! A 101st Airborne Division Machine Gunner at Bastogne Music: Silly Wizard: Wild & Beautiful




Guest Article: The MVT Lite Fight Concept- Part 2, by Max Alexander

We’ve covered the first two components of the MVT Lite Fight Concept —Lite Hydration Pack (LHP) and plate carrier. However, I haven’t wrapped up my comments relating to plates. Here are my notes: Ballistic Plates: There is a persistent tomfoolery about steel plates. These are heavy, suffer badly from spalling (ever shot a steel target; you are wearing one). You cannot navigate while wearing them (magnetic compass). In the winter it would be like wearing a refrigerator. Ceramic/hybrid plates are criticized for needing a little more care, like not throwing them off the back of your truck lest they crack (which …




Letter Re: Night Vision Gear and Infrared

Hugh, I’ve read JWR’s books and have been reading your site for a year now. I am a big fan. However, I’ve seen little or no verbiage on where to buy reasonably priced NVG or IR. Obviously your books and those of other good writers, like Joe Nobody, talk constantly about using them, and yet, it seems none are priced less than $1500. Any info would be appreciated. Thanks in advance. – J HJL’s Comment: As an entry level device, you can get a first generation device (usually Russian made) at nearly any sporting goods store that carries hunting/camping equipment …




Bushnell Equinox Night Vision Scope, by Pat Cascio

This week, I will be reviewing The Bushnell Equinox Night Vision Scope.

Most SurvivalBlog.com readers readily know that I’m a bargain hunting hound. I have to be. I simply don’t have enough income to purchase all the “toys” I want. It’s been this way my entire life, too. Several of my are amazed at my bartering skills and survival mindset, but I have to be this way. Now that I’m semi-retired and collecting my very meager social security benefits each month, I once again am forced by life to make do with what we have.

I know that many people believe that all writers make millions of dollars a year. If only that were the case! Most gun writers I know hold down a second regular job. They can’t live on what they are paid for their articles. What we do is akin to a “ministry”, if you will. Our hearts are in it. We love to pass along information to our readers. When testing various products, we all hope we get it right most of the time.

The local gun shop knows that I love a bargain. It has to be a bargain before I’ll even look at a firearm and consider purchasing it. Every now and then, the gun shop will set a firearm aside for me. They seem to know that I’ll probably buy it some how! I know I’m in trouble when I walk in the front door and someone starts waving a gun in the air to get my attention. Grrrr!!




Firefield Nightfall-2 Night Vision Scope, by Pat Cascio

We all know, or at should know, that there are certain pieces of kit that we should have if we are truly preparing for a SHTF scenario of any type. We always discuss firearms, and that is first on most lists. We then have to add food and water, as well as shelter of some type, because we never know what the emergency might be that brings us to a scenario where we might have to bug out or are left to our own devices to survive as best we can. To many of us, this is an excuse to …




Amazing Affordable Force Multipliers – Part 1, by Tupreco

Night Vision, Thermal Vision, Wireless Video, EMP Protection I decided now is the time to put this together because the consistent theme in every prepper blog and financial publication today is that TIME.IS.RUNNING.OUT. Even non-preppers know something is up because it is starting to pop up now and then in random conversations. Many average people are finally realizing that something is different this time. However, they mostly still want to complain and do nothing, but at least it’s a start. In the meantime, the more motivated among us are making ready for the pending disruptions we know are coming. This …




Scot’s Product Review: Armasight Night Vision Accessories

I recently reviewed the $549 Russian-made Armasight Spark Core night vision device and promised to do an update on some of the accessories that can be used with it. If you recall, I liked the monocular unit (which was $90 less when I bought it) and felt it offered a lot of bang for the buck, enough so that I purchased it on my own and then reviewed it. I still like it, but I am very concerned about not being able to get a response from Armasight on several questions. I contacted them both as a purchaser looking for …




Letter Re: Light Blocking Suggestions for Windows

Hi, Here in Alaska, people often block incoming light with a single layer of aluminum foil.. the kind from the supermarket.  It is difficult to sleep here in summer when the sun never sleeps.  This same method would work to keep light in.  Advantages: Inexpensive light weight easy to store non-permanent non-toxic Regards, – Carol S.