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Old 08-06-2019, 09:00 AM
juju72782 juju72782 is offline
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Default Things we throw away now... useful in SHTF



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Newbie here, though I've been lurking for about a year or so. I'll probably rarely chime in much less start a new topic, but here it goes. This may have already been discussed but...

I watch little tv but recently re-watched The Book of Eli and The Road. In the first, a girl asks what things were like before SHTF and I loved this quote:

"People had more than they needed. We had no idea what was precious and what wasn't. We threw away things people kill each other for now."

In that particular movie, that one quote really got me thinking. You see them bartering with little wet wipe packs (as if that wouldn't be dried out by then but...).

What items do we throw away now (and consider "disposable") that you think would be very useful in a SHTF scenario?

For example... One of the items I save that doesn't take up much room are twist-ties, especially the thicker and longer ones that come in toy packaging. I use them a lot around the holidays for hanging things and I also use them a lot when we go camping (hanging things in the tent).
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Old 08-06-2019, 09:10 AM
Dixie_Dude Dixie_Dude is offline
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Books, because when the SHTF, there will be no TV for entertainment or internet for how to do things.

Food, Americans waste a lot of food. Prepare less, eat less, don't waste it prep it.

Good quality long lasting clothing, and shoes, and leather boots, and waterproof boots.

Loose bolts, nuts, screws. Put them in a jar and save them. Many times we needed one and went to the jar and found one that would work.

Reading glasses, sun glasses, if broken, save the lenses and screws out of them. Buy the same type replacements and you can repair a lost screw or even a scratched or broken lens from a saved broken pair.

Old clothing can be used for cleaning rags, patchings, even quilting after SHTF.

Just some things right off the top of my head.
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Old 08-06-2019, 09:28 AM
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Glass jars. I have plenty of canning jars and all, but I throw away jars all of the time. Mostly I'm talking about grocery store items that still come in jars.

I kinda feel bad throwing them away, but I just have so many. But in a SHTF situation I would keep them all, just in case.

I might keep more stuff but I worry about being a hoarder. I have a Grandma that lived through the Great Depression. (she's over 100) She keeps everything she thinks could be useful in case the Depression hits again.

To me she's nearly crossed the line into hoarding. Her house is completely full of what I would call garbage but she sees as useful. The only difference from the hoarders you see on TV is that her stuff is extremely organized and her home is spotlessly clean.

So I really wanna be careful not to be like my Grandma. Apparently it's easy to cross the line of saving a few useful items to full blown hoarding/trash collecting.
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Old 08-06-2019, 09:31 AM
MattB4 MattB4 is offline
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When you live remote as I do you learn to have things saved to avoid making the long trip to town. Plumbing supplies, electrical supplies, building supplies, lumber, clothes, medical supplies, and the list goes on. However you do have to avoid become one of those "Hoarders" that never throws anything away and ends up buried in all the junk.

BTW: Welcome to the Forum.
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Old 08-06-2019, 09:35 AM
juju72782 juju72782 is offline
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Originally Posted by Dixie_Dude View Post
Loose bolts, nuts, screws. Put them in a jar and save them. Many times we needed one and went to the jar and found one that would work.
That's a good recommendation, one that we do now that I never really thought of as an example. Not to mention, it doesn't take up a lot of room either.
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Old 08-06-2019, 09:37 AM
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I am thinking the biggest amount of trash we have is paper towels and plastic bags. I use paper towels for everything, just hate the idea of reusing dirty towels over and over, or doing laundry all the time. Plastic bags get used until the have holes but they seem to get holes really fast lately ( grocery bags).
I save my glass jars for canning and to put stuff in for the animals we have ( like goat dewormer). I save empty cans to pour hot bacon grease in, or use them as scoops in the animal food, or in the garden to plant stuff in
Any food scraps go to either dogs, goats or chickens, or if all else fails, compost pile
ripped clothes turn into rags
older towels become animal and floor towels
junk mail that is not plastic becomes fire starters in the wood stove

we have lots of buildings on our property so running out of space is not an issue.
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Old 08-06-2019, 09:42 AM
juju72782 juju72782 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cornly2 View Post
I have a Grandma that lived through the Great Depression. (she's over 100) She keeps everything she thinks could be useful in case the Depression hits again.

To me she's nearly crossed the line into hoarding. Her house is completely full of what I would call garbage but she sees as useful. The only difference from the hoarders you see on TV is that her stuff is extremely organized and her home is spotlessly clean.
Yes, this thought experiment reminded me of the stories from the Great Depression for sure. Things were re-used, re-purposed, etc. back then and now we consider almost everything disposable.

I'm far from a hoarder myself (I'm very clean and actually find organizing fun LOL). But I do tend to hold on to some things that others would just throw away, simply because I think they may be useful in a SHTF scenario. I just make sure that things have a place. Using the twisty-tie example I mentioned, those are in a neat container in my kitchen (one section of the container are those ties and the others are rubber bands). I have another container like that with binder clips and paper clips. And yet another for pens and pencils. All of that is in one drawer. Easy to find and organized.

Another example I just thought of are rags (someone else mentioned that). I try to donate used clothing that's still in decent shape. But if something isn't, I ALWAYS cut them into scraps and I have one storage basket in the utility room just for that purpose.
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Old 08-06-2019, 10:16 AM
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I use paper towels for everything, just hate the idea of reusing dirty towels over and over, or doing laundry all the time.
We are the opposite. Supply chain, stores & ATM machines ever shut down for an extended time, paper towels will become nonexistent.

Whereas, 2 or 3 dozen high quality bar towels are not expensive & will last a decade or more, if not abused. Adding a few bar towels per load in the washing machine isn't an issue & they come out CLEAN - every time.
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Old 08-06-2019, 10:37 AM
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Tin cans, the water in partially drank bottles of water (this has bothered me for a long time). The air in bubble wrap.
Glass jars

I believe that land fills will be a literal resource mines in the future, methane generation, and materials.
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Old 08-06-2019, 11:03 AM
FalconsBravesHawks FalconsBravesHawks is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by juju72782 View Post
Newbie here, though I've been lurking for about a year or so. I'll probably rarely chime in much less start a new topic, but here it goes. This may have already been discussed but...

I watch little tv but recently re-watched The Book of Eli and The Road. In the first, a girl asks what things were like before SHTF and I loved this quote:

"People had more than they needed. We had no idea what was precious and what wasn't. We threw away things people kill each other for now."

In that particular movie, that one quote really got me thinking. You see them bartering with little wet wipe packs (as if that wouldn't be dried out by then but...).

What items do we throw away now (and consider "disposable") that you think would be very useful in a SHTF scenario?

For example... One of the items I save that doesn't take up much room are twist-ties, especially the thicker and longer ones that come in toy packaging. I use them a lot around the holidays for hanging things and I also use them a lot when we go camping (hanging things in the tent).
Love the toy twist-ties. Keep all of them, they are super heavy duty and usually are very long...can cut as needed.
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Old 08-06-2019, 11:12 AM
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Originally Posted by bunkerbuster View Post
We are the opposite. Supply chain, stores & ATM machines ever shut down for an extended time, paper towels will become nonexistent.

Whereas, 2 or 3 dozen high quality bar towels are not expensive & will last a decade or more, if not abused. Adding a few bar towels per load in the washing machine isn't an issue & they come out CLEAN - every time.
yeah, I know, my paper towel addiction is bad...and yeah, there won't be any after SHTF... I know, but I will use them as long as I can

If you knew what it takes for me to do laundry here ( we do not have proper utilities) you might be understanding why i don 't want to add any more towels to the wash...
We already have a lot of towels, use them to dry off including dogs and goats, and dry floors when they get washed and it's humid out

I use the paper towels mostly in the kitchen to dry off kitchen counters, wipe up spills , dry dishes, put food on if the counter is not clean
in the barn I wipe off the milk goat udders, put it under the milk bucket, use them when I trim hoofs to clean the dirt off first, for injuries , to clean out water buckets that have dirt on the bottom, it's practically endless
I tried the towel thing first, and I found that I need 2 new towels in the kitchen each day ( the just get wet and dirty) , too much laundry and paper towels are cheap
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Old 08-06-2019, 04:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by juju72782 View Post
Newbie here, though I've been lurking for about a year or so...

I watch little tv but recently re-watched The Book of Eli...

What items do we throw away now (and consider "disposable") that you think would be very useful in a SHTF scenario?
That is a great question, should be a long tread.
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Old 08-06-2019, 05:12 PM
MattB4 MattB4 is offline
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A item that I find useful that is a throwaway item is the little plastic tub containers that deli meats come in. I don't throw them out until I reuse them a few times. They make great freezer containers for leftovers and food storage. Much sturdier than freezer bags. I also chop up fresh onions, tomatoes and lettuce to keep in separate ones of these containers, for quick use, kept in the refrigerator.
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Old 08-06-2019, 05:29 PM
InOmaha InOmaha is offline
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Originally Posted by Dixie_Dude View Post

Loose bolts, nuts, screws. Put them in a jar and save them. Many times we needed one and went to the jar and found one that would work.
....
Jar you say? I sort mine and store them in 2 - 60 drawer organizing bins. Nails, screws, nuts, bolts, etc. Sorted by approximate or exact size. I have a bin with larger drawers for brackets, clips, drywall and concrete anchors, etc.

I tear apart everything headed to the trash or recycle bin and sort them out into similar size and type.

I have a wiring drawer with misc wiring, connectors, and electrical components I pulled out of electronics, computers and appliances. I've fixed several things using switches and chords from old appliances. I use the various connectors when wiring up things I want to be able to pull apart easily. Vacuum cleaners have long 15 amp power chords with push button on/off switches. I built a circuit for my car out of parts from an old PC and a new circuit board and transistor.

Old PCs, TVs, and Stereos are packed full of components used for communications. So I've pulled the boards out of those and tossed them in a bin.

Maybe I'm a hoarder.
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Old 08-06-2019, 05:56 PM
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Ive been thinking about putting away some card board boxes. Just in case I need to pack up some last minute items before I head to “momma’s”


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Old 08-06-2019, 08:25 PM
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Default Tee shirts

For decades I procured lawn size garbage bags of tee shirts from thrift stores for my business. We went through a lot of rags.
As I have a commercial paper cutter, they are easy to process into useful rags.
Stack up to ten of the same size.
Fold arm to arm, first clamp and chop off the arms.
Reposition and cut off the necks.
Then continue to field dress the chest, abdomen with two more cuts.
From there each stack can be further downsized if needed.
Bonus! We always found some entertaining shirts to wear.
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Old 08-06-2019, 08:59 PM
arleigh arleigh is offline
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IF I can fix it ,or use it to fix something else ,its worth saving. .
Knowing there are several kinds of plastic and how to weld it I maintain a small selection for making those repairs. If when I scrap a car I save every thing that might have a universal function.
I have used the electric window motor and gear box for making automatic feeding and door opening and closing for the chickens . I did not have the idea at the time I saved the motor10 years before, but it saved me time and money when the project came important . Fasteners are of particular value for several reasons.
Count what it cost you to stop every thing and go to town and hope the hardware store has what your want. time is money even if you are retired ,the cost of fuel and the wear and tear on the vehicle means something too .
Keeping things organized is just as important, Dad wasn't too good at it, but I am doing my best to get things straitened out. I have antiques that are coming back in popularity like the draw shave and spoke shave ,largely because of sites like this .
Some antiques offer ideas though, that can apply to modern problems .

Being able to think outside the box one can mix energies to do things the original manufacture hadn't considered having other priorities in mind.
I just finished rebuilding a hand crank bench grinder and made some modifications so that it has a one way bearing that allows the crank handle to fall in a rest position while the wheel continues to spin. also I can change the crank length at any time .
Also made an adaptor so that I can put sanding disks on the shaft, with or with out the grinding wheel for different grit.
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Old 08-06-2019, 09:04 PM
Dixie_Dude Dixie_Dude is offline
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You guys are right about jars. My grandmother saved any kind of jars to put jelly in because you don't have to pressure can just water bath. Mustard jars, mayonaise jars. Even glass ketchup bottles were used to put pepper sauce in.
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Old 08-07-2019, 06:17 AM
elkhound elkhound is offline
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one big thing we do is throw away people..the old and the young..many of the old are highly skilled in certain areas that is rare today. young often are forward thinking..couple the two together for both to benefit.a lot of knowledge is being lost with our current seniors as they die.

old farm machinery manuals.

in a shtf deal and we revert back to a more agrarian type society or a subsistence farming type society. we will need every type of plastic bucket for carrying items in and possible storage.buckets and baskets etc will be much needed. i use many now on my homestead and constantly need more.55 gallon metal drums for rodent proof feed storage. i am sure we all see drums going to dump or for sale real cheap. one item i want to get is the food grade plastic barrels of various sizes with screw on lids used for liquids. i have seen folks use those for sauerkraut making and i think they would be great for cider storage.
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Old 08-07-2019, 08:15 AM
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Originally Posted by elkhound View Post
one big thing we do is throw away people..the old and the young..many of the old are highly skilled in certain areas that is rare today. young often are forward thinking..couple the two together for both to benefit.a lot of knowledge is being lost with our current seniors as they die.

old farm machinery manuals.

in a shtf deal and we revert back to a more agrarian type society or a subsistence farming type society. we will need every type of plastic bucket for carrying items in and possible storage.buckets and baskets etc will be much needed. i use many now on my homestead and constantly need more.55 gallon metal drums for rodent proof feed storage. i am sure we all see drums going to dump or for sale real cheap. one item i want to get is the food grade plastic barrels of various sizes with screw on lids used for liquids. i have seen folks use those for sauerkraut making and i think they would be great for cider storage.
Id wager many, if not most urban & suburban folks would never think on the true utility of buckets, baskets, bins, canvas type bags & such.
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