Building the Castle – Part 2, by Jake R.

(Continued from Part 1. This concludes the article.) Metal Siding Metal siding is common on a lot of the newer barndominiums and shop houses. Essentially, it’s the same as the metal roofing used on the building. These are becoming more and more popular and have their advantages and disadvantages. Pros Durability – This type of metal is typically durable and has good longevity. To top that off, it’s also easy to maintain. Easy Installation – The installation of this is also straight forward which reduces the labor costs to have it installed. Fire Safety – This material is also good …




Living Off The Grid – Part 2, by V.F.

(Continued from Part 1. This concludes the article.) In October of the first year, I remember going out to take a shower in the “shower room” outside. By the time I had finished I was sobbing, crying incoherently, full of pity for myself. You see, it was already freezing cold and while I thought of solutions like adding a heater and so forth, I realized that I just didn’t want to have to deal with this anymore. But I had made my bed and I was going to have to sleep in it as the old saying goes. I let …




Living Off The Grid – Part 1, by V.F.

When I was a child, my mother moved to a very remote area of Eastern Washington and we lived off the grid. This was long before the term had been coined, as far as I know. The property did not have a house. We lived in a little travel trailer. We went to town once a month and did laundry at the laundromat. We boiled water from the creek to wash dishes. The creek was also our refrigerator. We ran a PVC pipe in the creek and placed a horse trough in the creek. This is where we kept drinks …




Getting Out of Dodge – Part 3, by Doc

(Continued from Part 2.  This concludes the article series.) Getting back to the construction details:  I welded up a steel frame and built hinges using 1” bolts and pipe and 3/8” steel plate for the roof of the patio on the East end of the building. I used metal roof material supported by 6”x2” heavy tubing and 2” angle and a lot of rebar and a 3/8’ steel plate for the hydraulic cylinder to lift against. I bought a 5” diameter hydraulic cylinder 48” long and welded a trunion to steel plates on both ends. With the cylinder attached to …




Getting Out of Dodge – Part 2, by Doc

(Continued from Part 1) Two slanted walls were poured on the East end. They were 22′ wide at the building and 14′ wide at the East end and went from 8′ to nothing at the end. This was for a roof for the patio and security when I was traveling. Then I had the messy job of coating the outside with tar to seal it. Next a layer of 2″ closed cell styrofoam was installed on the outside walls. Then part of the ditch was back filled to hold the foam in place. The temperature was hot and I was …




Getting Out of Dodge – Part 1, by Doc

In 1993, I was practicing in a large city and had a home on a lake in the suburbs. I had an attractive younger wife and life was good. I bought a new computer and was stopped in traffic on my way home while ahead of me, a backhoe was digging a hole in the street. I was hit from the rear by a truck loaded with pipe fittings. The truck had a sprinkler company sticker on the door, and was driven by a Mexican with no insurance. The impact was so great that my car was slammed into a …




How Plastic Saved Our Homestead – Part 2, by H.P.

(Continued from Part 1. This concludes the article.) For covering all of the crop rows, we use a black on white 1 mil UV stabilized poly film. This versatile material must be replaced every year after the grow season ends. Depending on which crop is being planted, we roll it out either white up or black up. The white, best for greens and brassicas, has a cooling effect on the soil by reflecting sunlight. The black warms the soil by absorbing sunlight and is used for the majority of crops. When used in the hoop house, drip tape would be …




How Plastic Saved Our Homestead – Part 1, by H.P.

A Disclaimer: I have zero commercial interest or connection to the plastic industry or any link contained herein. All links and references below are provided for informational and educational purposes only. I strongly encourage readers to use locally owned suppliers and make your purchases face to face for all of the products I recommend. Or better yet- source them via second hand, scrap, or salvage. All photos are originals and taken at my property. — Plastic has been getting a lot of bad press lately. Plastic pollution in our waterways is certainly a problem that deserves our attention. Leaching of …




Prepper House Hunting – Part 2, by Mrs. AK

(This installment concludes the article.) — We do have towns here in Vermont that lack any zoning. While some might consider this good, it can get ugly when people turn their properties into junkyards or want to start noxious commercial operations in a residential area. I’d like some protection from that sort of thing, while not living in a place that controls every aspect of your life. I want to avoid large commercial dairy operations and their associated spreading of liquid manure. The odors, traffic, dust and noise can be unbearable and has really caused a diminished quality of life …




A CONEX Cabin at Our BOL, by Montana Guy

Editor’s Introductory Note:  This article (in shorter draft form) was originally posted in 2016 at Survivalistboards.com, and is posted with the author’s permission. (He retained his copyright.) Author’s Introductory Caveat: Some government authorities may not allow living like this. It worked for us in Montana but then we chose to not seek permission from them. — Our first Montana winter was spent in an 8′ x 10′ shelter. We survived. And yes, we are still married. This article is directed toward folks who: Live far from where they would like to establish a bug-out, and May want to eventually move …




Family Winter Greenhouse, by T.M.P.

We moved to the American Redoubt five years ago, from Northern California. We wanted something located away from any big cities, with some acreage, well water, a septic system, a big shop, and with wild game. While surfing the net for real estate which would be suitable for long term sustainability after a SHTF event, I found a listing of a property with a description of amenities that sounded ideal. In fact, on the way to see the property with our Realtor I commented to my wife that it really sounded too good to be true. Included in the description …




Picking a BOL by Pete Thorsen

Many people think that there are very troubled times ahead for the United States. Some who think that realize if that comes to pass their current residence could make their very survival problematic. So what to do? Move now or if tied down, like because of a job, etc, then maybe set up a bug-out-location (BOL). Great but where would you go? And what would be the determining factors in BOL selection? The “where” and the many deciding factors will likely be different for just about everyone. And anyone who has ever been house hunting knows that buying a house …




Property Scouting in the Redoubt, by Pickled Prepper

Like many others SurivivalBlog readers, I hope to one day move to the American Redoubt. In the summer of 2018, my wife and I took the first step: an eight-day trip to Montana and Idaho to look at properties, get a feel for the places in which we were interested, and to meet people. Our goal was not to buy a house or property this trip, but to start what may be a multi-year process that ensures that when we pull the trigger we hit our target rather than making a decision we come to regret. We also want to …




A Greenhouse for Your Homestead, by Ozark Redneck

“Breathe in. The air is rich, humid, fragrant and full of life, warm on your face. It’s comfortable. What is it about a greenhouse or sunspace that feels good to almost everyone? It’s more than just stimulation of the senses. It goes deeper, further back. The tropics were the womb of human life, and the greenhouse is a connection to our origins.” – Shane Smith, in Greenhouse Gardener’s Companion Having a greenhouse can extend your growing season, allow you to start plants earlier and perhaps allow you to grow food that couldn’t survive in your outdoor garden. We started our …




Shelter Preparedness, Pt. 2, by Pete Thorsen

(Continued from Part 1. This part concludes the article.) Obviously, the best bet is to stay with your vehicle if possible. You can carry a lot of stuff in your vehicle, and the vehicle itself can always be a temporary shelter. You might have to leave your vehicle to be closer to a water supply or for a different reason. Once you are bugging out and away from your residence, you might have to be much more flexible in your thinking. Such as: Your shelter can be anything, depending on the circumstances. If it is hot, maybe all you need …