Homestead Design from a Practical, Tactical, Agricultural Survival Perspective, by C.F

Let’s talk about practical, tactical, and agricultural survival principles and details that pertain to developing land in a way that will facilitate agricultural productivity, sustainability, and security.

Prepare thy work without, and make it fit for thyself in the field; and afterwards build thine house. Prov. 24:27.

Assessing the Land

The Land

First of all, we are likely to be constrained by property boundaries. Therefore, in selecting property, what are our priorities?

Not everyone has the same priorities, and priorities change as the world around us changes. For example, a property that is perfectly usable today may become untenable if grid power is cut off. This occurs because the ample well water is too deep to access effectively by primitive means. Or, it may be too public, or too inaccessible.

Agriculture being our focus, the first priority is soil. Meadow silt, especially when found on a bench partway up a … Continue reading

Radio Basics Presentation, by Saratoga

My purpose in writing this article is to focus attention on an area that is lacking for too many people. Having been in a group that did a lot of training, it became clear that this was an area that needed attention. We used email and cell phones to coordinate training location and times, but the thought was always in the back of my mind; what if there was no Internet or cell phones? How would we form up as a group? I have compiled the information into a simple, bullet-point scenario to make it easier to grasp and to focus on key areas. Also, there are exceptions to specific parts of this information, but for the majority of people it will apply.

Section 1 Radio Fundamentals

Radio Basics

  • Radio waves are all around us.
  • They transmit data, conversations, pictures, and music invisibly through … Continue reading

A Year’s Supply of Food on a Budget, by J.H.

Without enough food, all other preparations you do are worthless. In a SHTF (grid-down) scenario if you are out of food, there may not be any way to obtain more. This article represents my own research on how to get a year’s supply of food on a budget. By the end of this article, you will see how I can feed a family of four for under $2,000 for an entire year.

Initial Criteria and Plan

First off, let me tell you why my focus is on inexpensive instead of nutrition or other criteria. The short answer is I don’t have a ton of extra money laying around, and when I do have some extra money to spend I prefer to get something that could last as long as possible. Lastly, and this is probably the most important reason to me, the more I research I do the … Continue reading

Inexpensive and Simple Mono- or Multi-Band HF Ham Radio Antennas, by PrepperDoc

One of the distinguishing features of traditional Ham radio, particularly shortwave (high frequency or “HF”) Ham radio, was that you generally had to literally make your own antenna. You could purchase transmitters, receivers, transceivers, microphones, and even Morse code keys, but you likely had fabricated at least one wire antenna. In the event of a national disaster, many people may wish to have effective HF communications for medium- or long-range communications, and they may be faced with the need to construct an antenna. Other forward-thinking preppers may wish to gain Ham radio licenses and experience in HF communications and need to put up such an antenna right now. This article will explain two simple antennas.

Resonant half-wave dipole

The easiest antenna to make at home is a resonant half-wave center-fed dipole.[1, 2] This antenna’s length is selected to work well on one Ham radio band, with an … Continue reading

Recipe of the Week: Chili in An Electric Crock Pot, by D.D.

We spend a lot of time talking about off-grid living, so I try to balance the endless chatter with gear tests. It’s better to learn now whether a clever scheme actually works when there is no consequence for failure.

Cooking is a big deal and one that I’ve given much thought to, both here in my city house (bug in location) and at our secret lair in the base of an inactive volcano (bug out location). Solar cookers are fun but of limited OPSEC, and they only operate when the sun is out. I had it in my mind to see where I could go with electric cooking, like an upgraded Easy-Bake Oven. Fortunately, much of this leg work has been done and is conveniently for sale at truck stops all over the country: 12V portable cooking systems.

I started with a Crock-Pot for a couple of reasons. … Continue reading

Recipe of the Week: Old Kimber Girls Granola Cereal


3/4 cup brown sugar

1/4 cup honey

1/3 cup water

1 tsp. vanilla extract

5 cups old fashioned oats

1 cup coconut

1 cup raisins

2 cups dried cherries

2 generous cups chopped peanuts

2/3 cup sunflower seeds

1 cup wheat germ

1 5oz. can ice cream nut topping mixture (optional)


  • Combine brown sugar, honey, and water. Bring to a boil, remove from the stove, add vanilla and set aside.
  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. In separate bowl, combine oats and coconut; pour out onto a sprayed or greased, large, baking pan, and bake in 325 degree oven until nice and toasty brown, stirring mixture every few minutes so it doesn’t burn.
  • Pour oat mixture into a large bowl and add the remaining ingredients (raisins, cherries, peanuts, sunflower seeds, wheat germ, and optional ice cream nut topping mixture); toss well.
  • Add … Continue reading

  • Letter: An Argument Against Milsurp Rifles

    Dear Jim,

    Good article on Mauser rifles, but I have a few comments to consider.

    The cost of a milsurp, plus the cost of a free float barrel stock, plus the cost of gun smithing scope mounts on the receiver, plus the cost of the mount and rings cut to fit the receiver profile, plus the cost of a bent bolt that then needs to be fitted to your receiver is more than a bolt action 270 or 308 or 30-06 sporting rifle, which are already setup for off-the-shelf mount, rings, and a standard hunting scope with modern optics.

    Old milsurp ammo is often (not always but often) with corrosive primers, so any time you shoot milsurp ammo you often need to clean the barrel with strong ammonia to denature the salts, or you get pitting in your bore and possibly your receiver. Most people like milsurps because … Continue reading

    Making Your Own (An Ebola Unafraid Followup), by ShepherdFarmerGeek – Part 1

    Optimistic. I continue to be guardedly optimistic that Ebola will not become the pandemic many people have feared.[1] News about its limited transmission in the United States is very encouraging.

    Also encouraging is the fact that, should Ebola (or some other dangerous virus) become a pandemic and crash the nation’s healthcare system, we can still purchase our own protective equipment and supplies and even have a reasonable chance of treating it, which was the premise of my recent article “Ebola Unafraid: A Preliminary Ebola Treatment Protocol Part 1 and Part 2.”

    Objections to Previous “Ebola Unafaid” Article

    Now I’m hearing three main concerns about that article. The very idea of treating an Ebola patient may seem overwhelming, but it’s actually do-able.  Follow me as we look at these three objections:

  • So much of it seems arbitrary.

  • Guest Article: Substances, by Dr. Lewis Dartnell

    The Knowledge: How to Rebuild our World from Scratch is a new book out in the U.S. now, and a New York Times science bestseller. If civilization does collapse, whether it’s caused by a viral pandemic, coronal mass ejection, or financial meltdown, the break in normal services is likely to cause a great deal of panic and perhaps a severe depopulation among the unprepared. The world as we know it has ended, but what now? What can the survivors do to ensure they thrive in the long-term, and how can you begin rebuilding a proficient society over the generations? Many preppers keep a large stockpile of preserved food, defensive weapons and ammunition, and other consumables, but this won’t last forever. What do you do when it starts running out? How do you teach your children to make for themselves all that they need and their children will need?

    Continue reading

    News From The American Redoubt:

    Police investigate officer shooting of black lab. – RBS

    o o o

    Related to the above: Threats pour into Coeur d’Alene for officer who fatally shot lab. – RBS

    o o o

    Now, federally-issued money is apparently no longer able to pay debts. City limits coin payments to $2

    The justification given for the limitation is that customers would leave large amounts of coins and then walk away with their bills underpaid. They seem to be unable to carry the underpayment amount on to the next bill, or even demand that the customer count the coins.

    Letter: Rechargeable Batteries and a Solar Charger

    Hello HJL and JWR,

    I was wondering if you could review and recommend the latest generation of rechargeable batteries available and a solar charger as well. I am leaning towards stocking up on rechargeable AA and AAA and the spacer packs that allow these sizes be used as C and D cell batteries. The vast array of options is overwhelming, and I am hoping someone with the expertise required can help. Thanks for all you do. Take care. – J.W.

    HJL Replies: I have chosen to use a modular route so that I have the flexibility to charge whatever I need charged. Many of my electronics utilize proprietary batteries, but all can be charged from a vehicle (12-16VDC). I separate my solar setup from the charger so that I can attach whatever charger the item needs, to the solar module, which simply acts like a vehicle. I currently use Eneloop … Continue reading