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Eager To Learn aka Newb
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I hope i dont get flamed for posting redundant questions , I have read alot of the threads and gained valuable information , this site is a great learning tool for me . I was just hoping to engage a few of you who have been at this for awhile to maybe pick your brains for advice.

I never really thought to much about being able to survive when TSHTF untill i seen all the people suffering from katrina. Even then i didnt start planning untill gas hit 4 dollars a gallon then started thinking about whats going to happen to society when it hits 8 dollars , 15 dollars ++++ a gallon.

So anyway i have been stocking up on food and storing it in 18 gal rubbermaid boxes . I figure i might have a months worth so far and now i am starting to try and figure out the best way to rotate my stock. So here comes the redundant questions.

1) I've stored bags and boxes of rice and pasta - i'm wondering what the shelf life is on those types of food.

2) i've gotten spam and canned tuna , again wondering about the shelf life? The tuna i wont have a problem with rotating but the spam is strictly for emergency. I like it but i dont consider it to be very healthy for me.

3) i've gotten several 7 gallon plastic water containers , i read how you should use a few drops of bleach to keep it from going bad. How long could i expect water to stay good in the containers without the bleach , I think i would rather change the water more often then put bleach in it. the thought of drinking bleached water just sounds like poision to me.

4)Are rubber maid containers a good way to store supplies? Should i fill one with all pasta and rice - one with all canned goods or would it be better to make each one have a little of everything . I've yet to make a BOB so i have been filling each box with a variaty, my thinking being if i would need to evacuate fast i wouldnt have to load a half dozen tubs. I suppose this is really just personal prefrence huh? I guess i should work on getting my BOB in order and make sure i keep foods that should be rotated once or twice a year in one tub and other foods with long shelf lifes in another .

Again i hope i dont get flammed for posting what i am sure i could of found on my own . I suppose to i would just like to have a conversation with some of you who have some advice to offer up to a newb:thumb:
 

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DIY RPG's
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your being smart here so theres no flaming coming from me. as to the water i store it and when i want it i can add the bleach when i'm ready to no point in bleachin your water every month when you can just bleach it the day before you need it and if you need it right that minute then boil/ disstill it
i keep like food togather but then i'm bugn in i do however have a rubber made tub for bugn out that has a mix of differnet foods to go in the bug out vehicle

and yes rubbermade is good
 

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1) Depends on how and where stored. A lot of us use a vacuum sealer for packaging food for long term storage. Some use buckets with sealed lids. All will agree on storing in a cool area. Do the best you can. Rotate and/or check your supplies.

2) 3 to 5 years in this camp. Some recommend a shorter time, some a longer time. Nothing seems to be set in stone. Rotate and/or check your supplies.

3) Some store bottled water, some use water purification devices or chemicals. Some use solar stills and some catch rain. I store bottled water. Select what works best for you. I understand that chlorine can be reduced by simply aerating water by pouring it back and forth.

4) Bins work great. I use them for BO supplies. Some use shelves. Some use caches. Select what you think applies to your situation the best.

There is no perfect way to prepare that applies to everyone. Customize your preps for your needs and select a storage method that most closely meets your needs and budget. Sounds like you have a good start.
 

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Eager To Learn aka Newb
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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the response ! I did make a list of what i need to prepare for. I live outside of st louis Mo - Ranked number 3 in the country for murder , so my main concern is riot/civil unrest specially with how the economy is going. I've also re applied for my FOID card , Ive never been a hunter or real big fan of guns although i own several that have been handed down to me . Once i get my FOID card i am going to take a gun saftey course and then have a professional make sure the weapons are in working order. I have a couple of pistols ,.38's an M1 carbine an over and under i'm not even sure of the caliber. Like i say , the gun saftey course will be first - then i will learn to shoot at the local range and then i will probley put them all back into storage. Once i have them checked out and fire them and clean them - is it safe to say that firearms and ammunitions can be stored for how long? do bullets go bad? of course i would be sure to have everything in proper cases and dry storage. Second on my list of disaster would be weather. We see tornados in this area , winters are normally mild but last year a bad ice storm knocked out the power to the whole area for 8 days. I ended up sticking it out with the help of a gas generator and a extension cord i spliced together to the furnace. So what i am trying to get at is that i am hopefull that if TSHTF i will be able to stick it out in my home, I relize though that might not be my best option so my next steps will be planning evacuation , getting together a BOB. Ive been trying to convince my ex to get in step with the program. We have a little boy who if he is with her i will have to secure him first. She is a good 20 minute drive :eek: ahhh just thinking about her response to any type of situation stresses me out. we dont always see eye to eye on things and i can just hear her now trying to rationalize how they would be just fine on there own.:taped: which i can say right now wouldnt be my solution. I just relized that is what is going to be my biggest fear in any senario-I guess there really is no sence in stressing about it now , I know if the day comes it wont be a topic of debate who he will be with , she will just have to decide if she wants to come along or not. Anyone else out there have situations such as the one i just described? love to get some input on how to make her open her eyes to the worst case senario.
 

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I personally don't like to rely on the original packaging of beans and rice, so I'd recommend a vacuum packer as others have. I've found that large Rubbermaid containers are fine for larger bulky things like saltines and the like, but you can herniate yourself with one full of beans and/or rice, so I'd suggest smaller, well-labeled [cryptic labels that tell you but nobody else what the contents are] containers that stack.

We plan on a propane or gas generator; if gas, plumbed in, but hopefully we can figure out how to run it on propane if gas gets problematic.

What we found during our 8-day outage is that 1) freezer and fridge are first on the list of things to keep going, along with the blower for the furnace; furnace is gas, but won't run without the electric blower [yep, we were cold]; 2) lights at night are important so that you can at least read or knit to keep from going stir-crazy; 3) a gas stove is a blessing...already liked it, but found it to be so much more useful given that it worked when the electricity was out. I could boil water, fry, poach, probably even bake if I put my mind to it [have a camper's oven for that].

As far as your ex goes, one thing you could do is couch it in terms of how you worry about her and your son, like 'I am worried about you and little Jimmy, not because you' aren't capable, but because together we can work to protect him better than either of us on our own.' Emergencies are very stressful for kids as well as adults, and having both parents might make it easier on 'little Jimmy'. Rehearse several times until you have it down, but not sounding rehearsed, so that when you tell her you are being truthful and sincere.
 

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Eager To Learn aka Newb
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Discussion Starter #7
excelent ideas about dealing with the ex - she hardly couldnt argue that point . and your totally right - much better discussing it now then in a time of crisis. thanks for the response , this forum is great with so many people sharing there thoughts and experinces :thumb: to the admins
 

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bad grammar deal with it
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Thanks for the response ! I did make a list of what i need to prepare for. I live outside of st louis Mo - Ranked number 3 in the country for murder , so my main concern is riot/civil unrest specially with how the economy is going. I've also re applied for my FOID card , Ive never been a hunter or real big fan of guns although i own several that have been handed down to me . Once i get my FOID card i am going to take a gun saftey course and then have a professional make sure the weapons are in working order. I have a couple of pistols ,.38's an M1 carbine an over and under i'm not even sure of the caliber. Like i say , the gun saftey course will be first - then i will learn to shoot at the local range and then i will probley put them all back into storage. Once i have them checked out and fire them and clean them - is it safe to say that firearms and ammunitions can be stored for how long? do bullets go bad? of course i would be sure to have everything in proper cases and dry storage. Second on my list of disaster would be weather. We see tornados in this area , winters are normally mild but last year a bad ice storm knocked out the power to the whole area for 8 days. I ended up sticking it out with the help of a gas generator and a extension cord i spliced together to the furnace. So what i am trying to get at is that i am hopefull that if TSHTF i will be able to stick it out in my home, I relize though that might not be my best option so my next steps will be planning evacuation , getting together a BOB. Ive been trying to convince my ex to get in step with the program. We have a little boy who if he is with her i will have to secure him first. She is a good 20 minute drive :eek: ahhh just thinking about her response to any type of situation stresses me out. we dont always see eye to eye on things and i can just hear her now trying to rationalize how they would be just fine on there own.:taped: which i can say right now wouldnt be my solution. I just relized that is what is going to be my biggest fear in any senario-I guess there really is no sence in stressing about it now , I know if the day comes it wont be a topic of debate who he will be with , she will just have to decide if she wants to come along or not. Anyone else out there have situations such as the one i just described? love to get some input on how to make her open her eyes to the worst case senario.
first off let me say you are taking great steps but taking just a safety class and going to the shooting range once is not enough. you need to know your weapons in and out. most weapons now a days you can get an owners manual online in pdf format. in it it shows you how to take the weapon down and reassemble it. you should try and become as proficient with the weapons you own as best as possible . as for ammunition i dont know that it goes bad but if you leave a magazine loaded for home defense make sure about every two weeks you rotate the magazine to keep the spring follower from compressing which can cause malfunctions when firing the weapon. also make sure you eliminate moisture from around ammo because the casings can rust and can possibly lead to the casing blowing up in the barrel.

edit you can buy nickel cased ammo to help fight the rust issue
 

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Information is Ammunition
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3rd in the country for murder- I think you mean EAST St Louis there... ^_^
 
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Eager To Learn aka Newb
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Discussion Starter #11
3rd in the country for murder- I think you mean EAST St Louis there... ^_^


hello - i see your familiar with my area . For those who are not , East St Louis is actually a town in Illinois -right across the mississippi from downtown St Louis Missouri. I live in a town called Belleville , which is the next town past east st louis . And yea per population east st louis has a high murder rate. I'm not sure when i had seen the ranking for STL missouri being third in the country but i wasnt mistaking east st louis illinois for st louis missouri. Here is some research i came up with when i was checking my statement out for accuracy.

http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0921299.html

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2002/12/06/national/main532163.shtml

http://blogs.riverfronttimes.com/stlog/2006/10/its_murder.php

http://www.statestats.com/safecity.htm

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/10/30/AR2006103000004.html

pretty credible news sources as far as news sources go :D:

Some of these links reflect articles that are a bit dated - the first link is 2007 and ranks STL as number 2 , others date back as far as 2002 and rank St louis mo as #1.

Regardless of semantics , my point being this is a rough area and when TSHTF its likely to become alot rougher.

I will say though regardless of rankings , i would rather walk through any part of St Louis Missouri at night then any part of east st louis illinois.

I had spent my youth growing up in a small town called merrimack in new hampshire. when my family moved here , talk about culture shock ! it was like night and day. As an adult i had some old pals visit me here who have never been out of New England before , they were really shocked to see the major difference between the two area's. Just as i was when i visited mexico - there slums made our slums look like gated communities. poor people have poor ways . Seeing the other side really showed me just how blessed i have been in life and i would not take that for granted again.

Once again i would like to thank you all for responding to my post:thumb: This site has been a wonderful source of information and i take everyones thoughts and comments into consideration in the hope of educating myself further on all of these topics that are a concern to us all in the current time. I think a decade ago if someone would of told me " hey you should be thinking ahead , you never know what could happen" i would of dismissed them as a looney:eek::D: Its amazing what you see when you open your eyes and mind.
 

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I'm new here as well but i do know firearms.

I agree with the firearm safety course and having a gunsmith check the weapons. As stated earlier I do not agree with one trip to the range and then putting them away. Proficiency with a firearm is an ongoing process of training and accuracy.

Once you have learned to shoot and have a basic safety course under your belt, I highly recommend a defensive shooting course and maybe later some advance defensive shooting courses. Practice as often as time and ammo costs will allow. Even if we avoid SHTF, these courses and practice will allow you to defend your home and family in other situations as well.

I do not know what firearms you have, but for a beginner I recommend:
1 - 9MM semi auto handgun - for personal defense
1 - 12 or 20 guage shotgun - for home defense or close up combat
1 - 22LR rifle - great for small game and easy for a beginner to learn with
1 - center fired rifle - great for taking large game like deer and long range defense.

This is what I have for firearms. I do have a CHL so I have more handguns.
Ruger P94 - 9MM - Main carry
Ruger SP101 - 357 mag. also shoots 38 special - BUG
Keltec P11 - 9MM - another BUG
Ruger MKI - 22 LR - Great training gun and good for emergencies where a handgun may be practical.

My long guns
Ruger M77 hawkeye - 223 - Great for long range defense and all around game
Winchester model 06 - 22 LR - family heirloom and very accurate and dependable rifle for small game
Mossberg model 195 - 12 guage shotgun - Great hunting shotgun

I still want to get another hunting rifle in 308 for hunting deer and other large game.
I also would like to get an AR15. Great general purpose rifle that works well for hunting or defense.
I also need a good pump action shotgun which would be better for hunting and defense than what I have.

To be prepared for SHTF I also recommend having at least 1,000 rounds of ammo on hand for each caliber you own. With the low cost of 22LR I recommend even more. You can get decent 22 LR at Walmart for $13 for 500 rounds.

Ammo will last indefinitely. I do not recommend steel cased ammo. It does rust and also causes excessive wear on your guns. Any brass or nickel cased ammo will be fine, and some calibers are even fairly reasonable in price. I do reommend rotating it as you practice.

Another option is reloading your own ammo. I can reload all I have but 22LR. I only recommend this for people who are experienced with guns and ammo.

Here is what I keep on hand for ammo:
22 LR - 5,000 rds and thinking about increasing to 10,000
9MM - 1,000 general purpose, 500 defensive, and supplies to load 5,000 more
38 spec. - 500 practice/ general purpose, supplies to load 2500 more
357 mag - 500 defensive, supplies to load 2500 more
38 and 357 reloading supplies are interchangeable so they do match my 9MM stash.
223 - 500 hunting/ defensive rounds. Supplies for 5,000 to reload 5,000 more. I need to get this up to 1,000 but I am working on getting the brass to do so.
12 guage - 1,000 mixed rounds from bird shot to 00 buckshot to deer slugs. I do not reload shotgun, but also do not have more as i prefer rifles over shotguns.

If anyone has any questions let me know. You can also let me know what you do have so I can help you plan for a well rounded armory.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
first off let me say you are taking great steps but taking just a safety class and going to the shooting range once is not enough. you need to know your weapons in and out. most weapons now a days you can get an owners manual online in pdf format. in it it shows you how to take the weapon down and reassemble it. you should try and become as proficient with the weapons you own as best as possible . as for ammunition i dont know that it goes bad but if you leave a magazine loaded for home defense make sure about every two weeks you rotate the magazine to keep the spring follower from compressing which can cause malfunctions when firing the weapon. also make sure you eliminate moisture from around ammo because the casings can rust and can possibly lead to the casing blowing up in the barrel.

edit you can buy nickel cased ammo to help fight the rust issue

So where would be the best type of place to learn about firearms - saftey , how to break them down and the proper way to clean weapons? I applied for my foid card at a small sporting goods store And we do have a indoor firing range here. I was just assuming that the firing range would offer some sort of saftey course. But as far as learning to break the weapons down and clean them i would much rather have a professional teach me rather then hoping i understand a .pdf i had gotten on my own off the net ( although i am for sure going to search them out and read them) The guns i have were passed to me from my father who had them passed to him from his uncle- i can say with certainty none of them have been fired in over 25 years - and no telling how long before that. Wouldi want to find a gunsmith to check them out? how would i go about finding someone , what qualifications would i want to look for? I suppose i could get the answers to these questions from people at the range but i would like to have a bit of an understanding of what i am talking about when i ask them. :thumb:
 

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So where would be the best type of place to learn about firearms - saftey , how to break them down and the proper way to clean weapons? I applied for my foid card at a small sporting goods store And we do have a indoor firing range here. I was just assuming that the firing range would offer some sort of saftey course. But as far as learning to break the weapons down and clean them i would much rather have a professional teach me rather then hoping i understand a .pdf i had gotten on my own off the net ( although i am for sure going to search them out and read them) The guns i have were passed to me from my father who had them passed to him from his uncle- i can say with certainty none of them have been fired in over 25 years - and no telling how long before that. Wouldi want to find a gunsmith to check them out? how would i go about finding someone , what qualifications would i want to look for? I suppose i could get the answers to these questions from people at the range but i would like to have a bit of an understanding of what i am talking about when i ask them. :thumb:
The best place to learn about firearm safety is find an NRA certified instructor. You can go to the NRA website to find one. When you contact the instructor tell him your concerns. Most are very helpful and will modify their course to teach you.

DO take the guns to a gunsmith to be checked out. If you ask he will also show you how to ield strip for cleaning, how to clean, and how to lube.

I am curious as to what guns you have. PM me with any information you can get off of them and any pics if you can provide them. If I know what you have I may be able to help more with some of these topics.

I am an instructor myself, so I am willing to do what I can to help.
 

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So where would be the best type of place to learn about firearms - saftey , how to break them down and the proper way to clean weapons? I applied for my foid card at a small sporting goods store And we do have a indoor firing range here. I was just assuming that the firing range would offer some sort of saftey course. But as far as learning to break the weapons down and clean them i would much rather have a professional teach me rather then hoping i understand a .pdf i had gotten on my own off the net ( although i am for sure going to search them out and read them) The guns i have were passed to me from my father who had them passed to him from his uncle- i can say with certainty none of them have been fired in over 25 years - and no telling how long before that. Wouldi want to find a gunsmith to check them out? how would i go about finding someone , what qualifications would i want to look for? I suppose i could get the answers to these questions from people at the range but i would like to have a bit of an understanding of what i am talking about when i ask them. :thumb:
"taking a gun down" is what we refer to as field stripping. It just means to take the weapon apart into its primary components- you don't have to know how to completely disassemble your gun into all of its individual parts, that's something only a gunsmith needs to know (though that would be a VERY useful skill post-SHTF). For example, the main parts of a semi-auto pistol are the slide, the barrel, the recoil spring and guide rod, and the frame.

Field stripping is actually pretty easy to learn from a pdf, and you can often find videos on youtube as well. Once you've done it a few times, it becomes second nature. It's really not as daunting as you might think.

As for cleaning, there are several different methods, but I'll explain the method I typically use. Others may use other methods, and can explain those. Note that I don't take credit for thinking up this method- I heard about it from someone else, and they probably heard about it from someone before them, etc. The method I use has the benefit of being quick and easy, and gets the weapon very clean. So, here goes.

What you are trying to accomplish in cleaning is to remove all of the unburned and partially burned powder, lead, copper and other nasty dirty things that deposit on the gun during firing. There is also the dirt and dust that is naturally attracted by the lubricant that you put on the gun- see, a gun generally involves pieces of metal moving against each other at a high rate of speed, so it needs lubrication to function properly.

For cleaning, I use a non-chlorinates brake parts cleaner in a pressurized can. It two things. First, it removes all (or least a LOT more than "standard" cleaning methods) of the powder and debris from the gun, and second, it removes all of the water from the gun- very important, as water causes rust. It only takes a couple of minutes to clean an entire handgun thoroughly. I also run a bore brush dipped in alcohol through the barrel several times to get the metal deposits out of it. Note that if you shoot lead bullets (as opposed to jacketed or plated bullets), you will need to scrub the barrel much more as the lead will deposit more than the copper. You then set the gun aside for about 15 minutes to let all of the brake cleaner evaporate away- I always wipe the excess off to speed this process. Then I lubricate it, and put it back together.

For lube, I use a synthetic motor oil. It's far cheaper than specialty CLP oils, and I believe, at least as good. It is designed to lubricate metals running against each other at greater speeds, far higher temperatures, and for a far longer time than it will subjected to in a gun. I have never had any problems with it. Different guns need lube in different places, and in different amounts, so I can't really give a lot of specifics, as it depends greatly on the gun. In general, parts that move against each other (such as the inside of the slide and the slide rails) are places that need lube.

Now, some people will consider my methods unorthodox, but I assure you, I have not as yet experienced any problems using them. However, I caution that I do not own any high value or antique guns. I don't think I would use these methods on a $2500 nickel-plated 1911, for example. The guns I own are practical, sturdy working guns, not show pieces. When I go to the range (usually every week), I generally shoot 3 or 4 different guns, and I really don't have time to spend 2-4 hours cleaning them afterward.
 

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I am the bug in type and have a dedicated set of shelves just for preps. I started prepping by buying the stuff that I normally eat by the case instead of buying a can here and a box there. After a while I got a feel for how quickly or slowly I went thu certian foods and adjusted my buying to keep a three month supply in rotation. Now when I break a case I buy a new one. You may find that buying by the case helps you in getting started. I worked for me...
Peter
 

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Tommy we want you to know that most of the people here are just like you. We are working to make ourselves and our families more secure and well prepared. Flaming is something we never want to see. As many of the good folks above have said, the only bad question is one not asked. Stick with us and best wishes to you.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Tommy we want you to know that most of the people here are just like you. We are working to make ourselves and our families more secure and well prepared. Flaming is something we never want to see. As many of the good folks above have said, the only bad question is one not asked. Stick with us and best wishes to you.
thanks for the vote of confidence and i plan to do just as you sugjest !
 
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