May 29

Some Preps You Might Have Overlooked

You’ve got the guns, the ammo, the first aid equipment, the food, gardening supplies, library of how to books, various tools and a lifted 4×4 with steel bumpers.  All great things to have but what about some of the often overlooked preps that could be a serious problem if you don’t have them (or something similar).  When I think of what those items might be a few come to mind, read this list and let me know your suggestions (or additions) in the comment section.

1- Crutches.  Think about the injuries which might be sustained after SHTF, with no medical help readily available how bad would it be to have to hobble around on a stick or home made crutch?  At least with a set of crutches you’d be able to move around in relative comfort and with more speed than a hand carved stick.

2- Old School Grass Cutting Device:  What happens when you can’t mow at least a few feet out in front of your home after 2 to 3 months?  Critters and pests will abound, not to mention you won’t be in the running for best yard of the neighborhood!  I guess you could go out there and hack away with the zombie machete you got for Christmas (I got one) but a dedicated tool is probably a better option.

3- Binoculars:  I realize you probably have a long gun with a powerful scope on it but there is value to be had in plain old binos.  You’ll be able to scan a few hundred yards or more around your property with relative ease and if anyone spots you it won’t raise that much of an alarm.  Of course if you have eyes that allow you to see humans in detail at 500 yards feel free to pass on this suggestion.

4-  Wheelbarrow:  Most who work in the yard will have one of these but if you don’t how do you propose to move large amounts of dirt, rock, or those sandbags once filled?  Even pre-SHTF I can’t imagine moving all of the rock, mulch, dirt or wood I’ve had to handle without a stout wheelbarrow.

5- Sharpening Tools:  Ok I’ll be a bit more clear with this one as I’m quite sure you already have a few ways to sharpen your small knives, but what about larger blades or tools?  What’s the plan for that axe which you bought from Lowes 6 months ago which is collecting dust in your garage?

6- Board Games / Cards:  No more internet, no more TV, no more going out to shows or movies.  Personally I prefer chess and Monopoly but I’m sure there are plenty of other games which can be used to pass the time.

7- Dog Food:  So you have 1 year of food for your family and a spare 20 lb bag of dog food?  Hmmm….something isn’t right.  Granted if push comes to shove your fido can eat people food but that’s not a best case scenario now is it.  Fido needs good nutrition to stay strong, especially if he/she is supposed to perform some sort of task after T-SHTF.  Bear in mind dog food expires rather quickly so you’ll need to rotate your stash.

Any more ideas?  Post them up!


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    • Muleskinner on May 30, 2014 at 2:19 AM
    • Reply

    How about:
    A. an 8 lb maul with two splitting wedges
    B. a hacksaw with extra blades
    C. a pick mattock and/or pickaxe
    E. Fence post driver
    F. Range finder

      • PJ on May 31, 2014 at 9:10 PM
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      I’m with you on the pioneer-ish tools. Good call on the range finder too.

    • Muleskinner on May 30, 2014 at 2:52 AM
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    I received this email from a very close friend who is also a master mechanic. I think you will find the following interesting. We have tested the mixtures using either acetone or lacquer thinner in our shop on farm equipment with rusted bolts and not only does it work; it works better then we even hoped it would.

    His email mail follows:

    Machinist’s Workshop magazine recently published some information on various penetrating oils that I found very interesting.

    Some of you might appreciate this. The magazine reports they tested penetrates for break out torque on rusted nuts. They are below, as forwarded by an ex-student and professional machinist. They arranged a subjective test of all the popular penetrates with the control being the torque required to remove the nut from a “scientifically rusted” environment.

    Penetrating Oil Average torque load to loosen
    No Penetrating oils 516 pounds
    WD-40 238 pounds
    PB Blaster 214 pounds
    Liquid Wrench 127 pounds
    Kano Kroil 106 pounds
    ATF* Acetone mix 53 pounds

    The ATF-Acetone mix is a “home brew” mix of 50 – 50 automatic transmission fluid and acetone. Note this “home brew” released bolts better than any commercial product in this one particular test. Our local machinist group mixed up a batch and we all now use it with equally good results. Note also that “Liquid Wrench” is almost as good as “Kroil” for about 20% of the price. Steve from Godwin-Singer says that ATF-Acetone mix is best, but you can also use ATF and lacquer thinner in a 50-50 mix.

      • PJ on May 31, 2014 at 9:13 PM
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      Wow, very cool and thanks for sharing! I have WD40 and Liquid Wrench but am going to mix up some of this home brew for future projects. Did they just use a heavy duty spray bottle?

        • Muleskinner on June 2, 2014 at 1:36 AM
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        We used a cheap oil can and put a few drops on the rusted nut let it sit for 5 minutes and off it came without the least bit of stress.

          • Muleskinner on June 2, 2014 at 2:02 AM
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          This is the oil can we are using:

    • J on May 30, 2014 at 10:51 AM
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    I would add basic hand tools if you have the space to keep them. if even it is just a kit from Home Depot, this can make a world of difference.

    oh, and nails. lose power and your screw runner isnt going to last long. also, you can make some rather interesting home security with a box of nails and a bit of ingenuity 🙂

      • PJ on May 31, 2014 at 9:15 PM
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      Here’s the sad thing: I bet most people don’t know the difference between a flat head and cross tip screw driver. I agree though, probably $500 worth of Craftsman tools in the garage would be a good place to start for just about anything.

    • Clarity Jane on May 31, 2014 at 9:13 PM
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    Just before my own personal SHTF scenario, I won some money on a lottery card (£20)! I pondered how to spend my riches and had a prepper brainwave.. I bought a manual carpet sweeper. Yes, I hear you manly- types snickering but just think.. if there was an emergency scenario which meant the electricity supply was off for a month or two, how are you going to vacuum the carpets? Dust and dirt will be smelly, unhygienic and is a danger to people with asthma: crumbs will encourage ants. (Shudder)
    I’ve also put ‘some sort of manual laundry washer’ on my ‘to get’ list. Now all I need to do is win a bit more money as my list is getting long!

    Re: Entertainment. I wouldn’t advise Mousetrap. I have an awful feeling it won’t be as exciting as it seemed circa 1978.

    I have read ‘War and Peace’ and would highly recommend it. : )

    • Echo5Charlie on June 2, 2014 at 12:44 AM
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    It’s a good list up there, good stuff to think about.

    As a contractor I have tons of tools. I had to make sure I had tools and fasteners that don’t require power. A nice hand saw (wood and metal), a decent hammer, basic screw drivers and wrenches with some 16d, 8d and roofing nails is a good start. Add some duct tape and 6 mil plastic and you can handle a lot of situations.

    Speaking of around the house stuff, a sewer floor drain plug could keep your basement from backing up with sewage if power is out for an extended time.

    • TEXASIODINE on June 10, 2014 at 8:01 AM
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    • Clarity Jane on June 12, 2014 at 7:17 PM
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    My sturdy little sweeper is working just fine and is doing the job…Cheeky!

    • John on June 30, 2014 at 10:37 PM
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    If you want some tinder to put in your GO Bag for starting fires, clean out the lint trap in your electric dryer. I have a big ziploc bag of dryer lint in my gobag.
    It works great and you can gather as much as you want, for each gobag.

    I tape a large ziploc bag to the side of the dryer and every time the lint
    screen is cleaned, it goes into the bag…… Unlimited supply..

    So simple nobody ever thought of it….

      • Cindi on July 14, 2014 at 9:34 PM
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      I have been saving my dryer lint for more than a year now. I pack it inside the empty toilet paper tubes. When you use them this way, they are easy to light and to catch kindling or whatever your using. I even give some away to those who don’t have a dryer but want them as fireplace starters during the winter months. Some people store them in empty cookie jars to keep them neat and out of the way until needed. I use the gallon size zip baggies and flatten the tubes, being sure to fold up one end which also takes up less room when flattened.

    • Cindi on July 14, 2014 at 9:46 PM
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    I look for the old fashioned kitchen utensils such as the hand crank mixers and a spare to go with it, the potato masher, the bench knife, the hand crank coffee grinder, manuel can openers and punch can can openers. Other ideas to add may include: Baby wipes, garden gloves, rock salt for winter months, duct tape, electrical tape, WD- 40, Cough and Cold medicine, Tylenol, OTC meds and cough drops, Dry Shampoo, Bath wipes ( in case you can’t take a proper bath) Paper plates and plastic silverware, disposable Salt & pepper shakers, Condoms, cheap Solar lights ( can also be used indoors when you take the top off) , Extra sneakers, Dr. Scholl Insoles, Toothache medicine, Oil lamp and oil, mason jars with lids, Fruit Pectin, Canning Salt, Instant coffee ( can be used as a barter item) baby teething biscuits, pet treats or bones, Clorox, Benadryl, Visine,, Disposable cups and plates, trash bags, distilled water.

    Foods such as comfort foods- Marchmallows, Chocolate Chips, Olive Oil, Goats milk, Coconut milk, Powdered milk, canned milk, Almond Milk, condensed milk, A spare hairbrush and comb, tweezers and nail clippers.

      • Cindi on July 14, 2014 at 9:51 PM
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      Snow shovel, kitty litter for traction, batteries, portable hand crank radio, playing cards, Yahtzee, Battleship, Q tips and cotton balls, a journal or diary, colors and coloring books, search a words books, Spare eyeglasses or contacts with solution.

    • Cindi on July 14, 2014 at 9:57 PM
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    Pine cones are great for using for fire starters , too! Cast iron bake ware, Potholders.Here I use lots of cake mixes, OTC meds or even OTC regular, lighters, lighter fluid are also handy to have in storage, hard hat .

    • Christopher de Vidal on July 29, 2014 at 1:38 PM
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    I was alerted to the necessity of having a good anti-fungal foot creme after a rash kept me awake at night. A lack of sleep is no good for anyone, grid up or grid down. This goes to meds in general. Over the counter, prescription, anything you can get. I’m on a maintenance thyroid med and I asked my doc for a year supply. Can get that through a Canadian pharmacy for pretty cheap. For those of you who can’t do that, try refilling every 21 days. Insurance says you can only buy 30 day’s worth at a time, but in my experience (and others, I learned this from someone else) they won’t refuse an earlier refill. Doing this I was able to get to a 6 month supply of thyroid.

    • erika on August 25, 2014 at 2:51 PM
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    Olive oil and lye for making soap and reusable canning lids (tattler) and jars.

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