Letter Re: Coin Roll Hunting for Remnant U.S. Circulating Silver

James, The Coin Community site forum has many areas in their forums but has a section specific to coin roll hunting. There is a lot of silver in the wild from what many of these posters state. Even the War Nickels are still out there if nickels are searched. Halves are the best most likely since many don’t realize the 1965 to 1970 dated halves are 40 percent silver. ‎ I have searched some and found a few but a pain to later dispose of the halves. We just end up spending them on small items, or as tips to waiters and waitresses. Banks for the most part don’t want them back in bulk, especially the bank from which they are ordered from! It’s fun to find the stray coin every so often. God Bless. – D.S.V.

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Making a Living in the Hinterboonies

One of the great quandaries faced by many American preppers is that their desire to move to a lightly-populated rural region is usually not consistent with the ability to earn a good living. Let’s face it: The job opportunities in the Hinterboonies are scarce. Unless you are retired, self-employed, or you are in a high-demand profession (such as medicine or dentistry), then it might be difficult to have the same standard of living that you’ve enjoyed in an urban or suburban community. Part of the following repeats what I wrote in SurvivalBlog back in 2009 about the sorts of jobs that will likely survive an economic recession or depression, but it is still sound advice. Even if you are currently employed somewhere in a “safe and secure” job, keep in mind that there are no absolutely secure jobs. You could have a small town civil service job, for example at a water treatment plant. But what if the city or county that you work for goes bankrupt? You could be laid off in a heartbeat. The phrase “under new management” often means firing you and hiring the nephew or an old pal of the new boss. The fictional character Sarah … Continue reading

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Letter: Starting a Manufacturing Business on a Tight Budget, by M.B.

In case you have not kept up with the Maker movement the last couple of years, great strides have happened in the average guys ability to build advanced micro-manufacturing facilities for very little money versus even a few years ago. I will note that this discussion is not all inclusive as this field changes on a sometimes weekly basis. The ability to do advanced manufacturing with relatively small amounts of money is the dirty secret of China’s present economic success.  I should know, since I have been there, I have friends in the industrial automation business who have been there, and I regularly import items from China, although my capacity to produce many of the the same items that I import is growing rapidly. The parts to make these items allow are sold in nearly every small town in China.  They sell stepper motors and automation equipment at the hardware stores in China.  First off and the easiest to learn tool is a CO2 laser cutter.  Good quality 40 watt laser  engraver/cutters are now around $425 USD, plus shipping.  They do work, and I have bought several of them. While only having a small 8×10″ inch work area, they allow … Continue reading

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Sew and Grow, Save and Recycle Your Way Into Preparedness – Part 2, by S.T.

Minimum Quantities Needed You will need the minimum quantities that are listed below. However, you can start on your path to reusable products with lower quantities and can continue to add additional quantities each and every week as you produce additional quantities of final product. Washable feminine hygiene products- 50- 8” for each female in the home 25- 12” for each female in the home Washable toilet paper- 50 for each male in the home 100 for each female in the home Washable dish towels- 20 each Washable napkins- 21 for each person in the house Washable aprons 2 for each person in the house Growing You can grow not just food and cooking herbs, but medicinal plants and household products. For example, gourds such the little dipper and big dipper can be used to make ladles for your kitchen. Bottle gourds can be made into bowls. These will be very useful and needed items when there are no more manufactured products. Loofah gourds make wonderful kitchen sponges. AloeVera plants are also another item to grow. Saving & Recycling Egg cartons make a very good way to start seeds, make fire starters, and to hold fresh eggs from your hens … Continue reading

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Sew and Grow, Save and Recycle Your Way Into Preparedness – Part 1, by S.T.

As a society, we all rely upon a vast amount of manufactured products every day from canning jars and lids to dishes to pots and pans to toothpaste and dental floss. This list goes on and on. However, we can not forget that gasoline and diesel fuel and electricity are the most important manufactured items. Without these there will no longer be any other mass produced manufactured items made or delivered to a store near you. Every disposable item that you can now replace with reusable items will put you well ahead of the sheeple, save you money, and make you more prepared. Do you want to save from $25,000 to $100,000 per year and become better prepared? On average each and every woman will spend over $7,500 from puberty to menopause on disposable feminine hygiene products. Now add to that cost of toilet paper, kleenex, paper towels, paper napkins, paper plates, and other disposable products that people purchase every week and month that are thrown in the trash or down the toilet. Just check out the other shopping carts next time you are in line at the grocery store. If you have two daughters that is over $22,000 for … Continue reading

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The Costs and Benefits of Hunting, by J.B.

I’m a lifelong hunter that has gone from being a kid taken to a hunting club by his father, as an introduction to hunting back in the mid-70’s, to being a self-sufficient property owner, who can hunt year round for the non-game species (hogs) if need be. I’ll be the first to say that hunting for self-sufficiency in today’s world, particularly in the Eastern U.S., would be a short-lived venture during a TEOTWAWKI situation. The reason being is that there would very likely be a mass migration of people from the major metropolitan areas out in the rural areas looking for food. As people become hungry enough, shooting, killing, and butchering of animals will take place without any regard for regulations, since all that will be gone. People may say that these “City Folk” will not have the skill set to hunt. I beg to differ. In the last 20 years, most of the guys I’ve hunted with live in the major city area of Atlanta, GA and have lived most of their lives in this city’s sprawl. That hasn’t stopped them from joining hunting clubs well outside their home area and hunting successfully. I’ve had members come from middle … Continue reading

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You Can Tune A Piano, But You Can’t Tuna Fish, by K.Y.

Consider the aftermath of a societal breakdown, not only in terms of survival but in the quality of life issues that make surviving worthwhile. Most likely, the arts and entertainment aspects of a post-breakdown world will be radically changed– no more television, movies, large-scale concerts, or computer-generated games. We will default to a simpler era, where folks made their own entertainment and personal interaction defined the process of a meaningful life. And in a hard-scrabble existence– after the farming, hunting, homesteading, defending, procuring the basics of life-after-disaster– there will eventually need to be something more. There will need to be music, if only to salve the wounds of outrageous fortune. Where will it come from? It will come from the people, of course, as it always has but without the power boosts, long-range broadcasts, and mass communication that have been the hallmarks of the last centuries’ electronic age. We will be left with our own voices and the acoustic instruments to support them. There will still be guitars, strings, woodwinds, brass, and drums– the makings of bands and orchestras, massed voices in choirs, and soloists to be heard. And there will be pianos, literally millions of them in this country … Continue reading

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Letter: Bullion Silver Coins Versus Pre-1965 Silver Coins

Sir,I understand the need to have silver [available for barter] for the coming economic problems.  I have been obtaining silver Maple Leafs rather than pre-1965 US coins, mainly because they are less expensive [per ounce of silver].  However, many people I know and and bloggers say that people should have pre-1965 coins.To me when things get bad and the silver is used, it will be harder to explain the value of pre-1965 coins to normal people versus a 1 ounce silver coin. Is there a reason I am missing that pre-1965 coins are best? – JES JWR Replies: For anyone who lives in the United States, pre-1965 mint date 90% silver coins are still the clear choice for barter in the midst of an economic collapse.  To your average middle class suburbanite, a .999 fine silver round is a novelty.  Most people are not familiar with them. So if you hand one of them to someone in the midst of a power failure with no access to the Internet for reference, 1-ounce silver rounds from any mint are likely to be mistrusted as potentially counterfeit.  It is likely that the first words that your trading partner will say are: “How … Continue reading

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Market Garden Tools, by J.B.

At the top of everyone’s prepping list is an abundant food supply. Gardening is an essential part of making that food supply as resilient as possible. Maintaining a garden does take a substantial amount of time and energy, both of which may be in short supply in a TEOTWAWKI situation. As a farmer running a market vegetable farm, there are a number of tools that I have come to rely on, many of which would be similarly helpful on a non-commercial scale as well, allowing you to spend less time maintaining the essential food source that is your garden. The soil on which I farm, and accordingly on which I am familiar with these tools, is heavy clay loam. This means that I have a very dense soil that is sticky when wet and quite hard when dry, by contrast to sandier soils that would be looser and less prone to forming a hard, crusty surface when dry. Many of the tools that I will described will perform differently on different soils and in fact may be easier to use on a lighter, looser soil. Please note that I am not affiliated in any way with any of the retailers … Continue reading

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Letter Re: Starting a Small Business, by T & BR

HJL: I admire their enthusiasm. As an independent insurance agent I work with lots of successful businesses. Those successful business people have one thing in common and that is focus. If there is a second commonality, it is unequaled knowledge which would be a product of the first. Sure, those people are branched out in other endeavors with a goal of income diversification and asset preservation but only after significant success in the first. Rarely are the alternative investments as lucrative as the first, but they make up for that with security. Knowledge of how to get a job done is not where you stop. Understanding costs and what jobs will and will not pay for the effort is key. Figuring out who you should do business with is at the heart of success. There are people that you just cannot work with and mutually win. You learn the noises they make and politely bow out. Getting your fanny handed to you makes the success sweeter. Keep it up.

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Letter Re: The Year In Review of Starting a Small Business(es), by T&BR

I’ve owned and operated a painting contracting business in the American Redoubt for the last 30+ or so years. Something that stands out about T&BR’s experiences is their start up and the dollar amount of their losses. With all do respect and absolutely no disrespect intended, they need to hear some words. Those numbers don’t reflect a small business startup failure. They reflect the flawed thinking that throwing enough money at your problems can fix them. The problems they experienced weren’t a result of the size of their equipment. It was the job out-sizing their ability, their experience, and their knowledge of the sandblasting business, not to mention that their lack of focus is evident in their post (ranging from biofuel to sandblasting to sunflowers). I’m not trying to be disrespectful or rude, but they are all over the map. Their hearts weren’t really into making it work the first time, and they want to repeat it again only this time with 50K of other people’s money, and no track record of success? Again, I am not trying to hurt feelings here, but it must be said– people got into the biofuel business for around 3K. Some pulled it off … Continue reading

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2015 – The Year In Review of Starting a Small Business(es), by T&BR

In our goal of self sufficiency, we established that being self employed was at the top of the list. We also wanted to apply the idea of redundancy to this area, meaning multiple businesses. Our criteria: Income now, income during a collapse, and income in the recovering of a collapse. Allows us to be good stewards of the land. Something that allows us to strengthen our community by providing jobs and affordable services. Web Store One of our ventures started from a failure. We saw the sale listing for the Homestead Store site and business. We weren’t able to get our financing together in time and were not able to make that purchase. That, however, got our wheels turning, and we decided on our own web store where we would carry items we manufactured as well items via drop shipping. Anyone can build a website, or so we thought. Sites that say you can build your own website like “hostgator”, while affordable to start and easy to build basic pages, become more difficult as you try to build a web store. Watching several different YouTube videos that take you step by step, we found that the website builders change things … Continue reading

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