Letter Re: Swords and Bows for that Dreaded Multigenerational Scenario

Hello James, In Sid Near Niagara’s posting he makes many helpful tips about archery. He also touches on the potential to have an arrow embed itself in your supporting arm, but states he has not seen this. A very avid hunter friend of mine had a carbon fiber arrow that disintegrated into his arm. He spent 6 hrs in the operating room removing all the fiber shards and lost some mobility in his wrist. Fortunately this was not permanent and he has regained most all movement. He strongly regrets not having on an arm guard, and mentioned that he now …




Letter Re: Swords and Bows for that Dreaded Multigenerational Scenario

Jim, With regards to the mentioned topic, I am surprised no one has mentioned axes, or better yet, tomahawks. I recently purchased one from American Tomahawk Company. The model I purchased was designed by Ernest Emerson (CQC-T) and is a wonderful tool. I have used it to clear brush, pry boards, dig holes, and have thrown it without damage. Our forces in Iraq and the ‘stan are using it today with great success, and even some of our law enforcement officers carry them. Thousands of Native American Indians couldn’t be wrong for using the tomahawk. Early Americans fighting during the …




Letter Re: Swords and Bows for that Dreaded Multigenerational Scenario

Jim: Some corrections and additional points regarding swords, crossbows, leaf springs, etc. 1) The Japanese do not have a monopoly on “cutting” swords; most European swords before c. 1500 (and even after this point) were quite capable of serous shearing blows. See Ewert Oakeshott’s “Sword in the Age of Chivalry” and “Records of the Medieval Sword” for more details. 2) An “epee” or “foil” is utterly useless as a weapon, being for sporting use only. The rapier (which is what the epee/foil is based loosely on) is somewhat useful, but is a somewhat degenerate sword style, introduced after swords were …




Letter Re: Swords and Bows for that Dreaded Multigenerational Scenario

James: In a multigenerational TEOTWAWKI, consider having a good set of swords (and crossbows). Unlike ammo which may only last 50 years, a good sword will last hundreds. You can choose a Japanese style cutting sword, an epee or foil style piercing sword or a hacking style great sword. All other swords are some variation and combination of these types. A great sword for hacking will take the most abuse but be the heaviest. You should have great arm strength for this. A European style fencing stabbing sword requires speed over strength. If you are a wiry and fast but …




Letter Re: Do It Yourself Meat Preservation Methods

Jim, Have there been any writings different methods of preserving meats, such as canning, drying, smoking or any other methods? I was going to try canning. Is that what you’d recommend? Any other instructions on safe methods? Thanks, – Greg in Michigan JWR Replies: The topic has been briefly discussed in SurvivalBlog, but we ought to encourage more extensive discussion. The Memsahib and I have made lots of jerky over the years, but have never tried canning meats. Canning meat makes sense for a fixed location retreat. But for “Get out of Dodge” use, jerky is preferable. (Less weight and …




Letter Re: Stocking Up on Stanley Knife and Saw Blades

Dear Mr Rawles, Congratulations on a great blog, which I have just discovered. I am in the U.K. and am probably one of the few people here who has a copy of “Patriots”… a great read. Two things it may be worth mentioning to your readers: I haven’t seen mentioned before the importance of stocking up with small tool consumables — I am thinking of Stanley knife blades, “Olfa” type snap off blades, hacksaw blades and especially jeweler’s/gunsmith’s saw blades (who will want to make their own 3/0 saw blades WTSHTF?). You might also note the importance of keeping the …




Getting Out of Dodge Convoy Operations, by Seand406

Introduction One of the greatest areas of risk for many of the regular readers of SurvivalBlog will come about while taking our exfiltration routes from current locations to safe areas/hidey holes following a TEOTWAWKI situation. While this topic has come about to some extent in previous postings, (and covered to great extent in the novel, “Patriots”.) I feel that a greater discussion is called for in regard to the seriousness of this event for group travel preparations. The following information is based upon a year-long stint in Afghanistan throughout which my three-man team conducted daily un-armored convoy patrol/recon operations while …




Letter Re: Out-of-Print Bushcraft Book Now Available Online

James: I just found my way to this site and thought it would be another good source of survival information for your readers, especially as it had been compiled with military rescues in mind at the time. I have no affiliation with the site, author, etc. Just wanted to pass on a link: http://tions.net/CA256EA900408BD5/vwWWW/outdoor~03~000 Here is a snip from the site: “The section is home to an on-line edition of a classic text that is sadly now out of print, ‘The 10 Bushcraft Books’ by Richard Graves. Richard Harry Graves was born 17th July, 1898 (some sources list year of …




David in Israel on Fire Starting

James: Here is a dry topic that most people have no skill in they just rely on the old Indian fire trick (liquid fuel on wet wood) which is wasteful, dangerous, and teaches you nothing. My school of thought is as follows: Carry two major tools: 2 or more – butane/flint lighters 1 – Longer life flammable (such as Hexamine fuel tablets or bars and/or a 15 minute road flare) The butane lighter can be quickly dried and burns for many minutes about as well as hundreds of strike anywhere matches in a match safe. The flint over electrical ignition …




David in Israel on Sleeping in Comfort

Sleeping can be a real challenge when you are away from your soft American style bed. here are a few tips to beat the cold and discomfort. 1. Cardboard. Whether it is making a mattress base or a refrigerator box bedroom its insulation to cost ratio is amazing. The box provides wind stop and warmth, even if you are making a barn or a warehouse your temporary home. Trash sacks around the lower layers (not the uppers or, you will soak in condensation) will keep ground moisture at bay for awhile. 2. Earplugs and Sleep Mask. These allow you to …




Survivalist Skills–Secondary Skills from Your Day Job, by Rourke

In our modern world, jobs are incredibly and increasingly specialized. Many of us have jobs that may be of little use if TSHTF and society collapses. As many of us may have to look for another way to make a buck, or perhaps more accurately to trade or barter with, consider bettering yourself by attaining a high level of proficiency in at least one secondary survival skill (the more the better). I have listed below a few useful to survival skills, or secondary occupations that you can learn quite a bit about if you just treat it like a hobby, …




Eskimo Sod Huts–60°F Inside and Minus 50°F Outside

SurvivalBlog reader “KonTiki” sent the following article excerpted from the Duffy’s Law web site: http://www.duffyslaw.com/current14.htm The following is from a collection of random notes from the 1913 book My Life With The Eskimos by Vilhjalmur Stefansson. For serious research, one should read the unabridged edition. Eskimo Housing Eskimo houses were constructed with a hole in the roof to allow in light. The hole which was most often left open was covered with Bear intestine. The base of the house was five to six foot thick made of earth and sod and tapered and thinned out towards the top which was …




Letter Re: Survivor Man TV Series

Hello, I highly recommend a TV show called Survivor Man. It is on the Science Channel on Direct TV it is Channel 284 on my unit, and it comes on Friday Nights. This fellow goes into the wild and stays seven days in different locations without much in the way of supplies. He shows some pretty decent survival techniques. Fire starting, water locating, food sources etc. He has done everything from the Arctic to Deserts. I find it quite informative and it may be of use to some other readers as well. I just thought I would pass it along. …







“Rick Smith” on Blacksmithing as a Valuable Trade

Introduction In a truly long-term TEOTWAWKI scenario, the ability to fashion and shape metal will become critical. If you can work with metal, you will be able to make tools; repair, fashion and heat treat gun parts; fabricate household, farm and mechanical implements of all shapes and sizes; and have a valuable trade to generate income or barter for goods and services. On the frontier west, no town was complete until it had a working Smithy. To start into blacksmithing, you need two things: tools and information. The good news is that you can make many of your own tools …