Specialized Items – #4
Truly surviving in place will require stocking up on some specialized items that you will have to budget extra for. Most would not normally be in a home. Many of these items can be obtained at rock bottom prices if you watch for them at the local second hand store and, God forbid, Antique shoppes. Yup, every once in a while I pick up a hand operated sumpthin’ or other that won’t plug in, and without paying new price..
A hand cranked grain grinder will be essential if you have six hundred pounds of wheat sitting around that you intend to live on. They run from cheezy plastic pieces of “equipment” to the one I picked up at Salvation Army for three bucks, cast of iron, heavily galvanized, probably older than I am. Right now ours stores next to a meat grinder of similar construction.
A hand powered brace and bits will be essential if there is no electricity. They even make twist bits for them, for drilling through metal, and three jawed chucks that fit in the two jaw chuck to handle normal round shaft bits. I recommend the geared version over the “U” shape, though I own both. Holes from 1/16th to 4″ can be drilled with this tool.
A professional’s paint shop can supply you with sheet plastic, and inexpensive duct tape. Seems to me a 12’x100’x6mil roll of plastic was about twenty bucks, and would go a long way to sealing up a room, (a safe room, not so much from predators as air borne problems), or making a few impromptu tents. And the duct tape runs barely over three bucks a roll. I can imagine a roll of duct tape would be an EXCELLENT barter item. In a pinch how much would you trade for a nice big roll of duct tape.
A rip and a cross cut saw will be essential. A limb saw saves wear on the good saws. A good claw hammer, maybe a fifty pound box of sixteen penny sinkers.
Probably be a good idea to have three or six of those two dollar rolls of 1/4″ rope on hand. (Ever look at the pictures of the Swiss Family Tree House?) And a hundred feet of good quality braided half inch nylon rope for moving heavy stuff, with a strong three or four wheeled block and tackle. Or a come along.
Pick an old tool box, or ammo can, and fill it up with packs of batteries from Costco. Alkalines have a shelf life of three to six years now, and you should be using from them as you replace them. Some double and triple A’s, D’s, Nines. I honestly shy away from tools/appliances that use proprietary batteries because of the cost. Those lithium batteries may have a ten year shelf life, but the cost, whew! I would rather just know to replace my stock.
A Kerosene room heater and five gallons of fuel can be stuck in a corner in the garage. Make sure to crack a window if using one. We actually watch TV in cold weather wrapped in “Magic Blankets”, (my daughters’ term).
Probably should stick a replacement V/Serpentine belt under the truck seat. Stash a spare headlight or two, and a flat tire patching plug kit.
No matter what you save, you’re eventually gonna have to trade for something. Just about anything you have would be good for that, but think about what might be in short supply. If you are any good at avoiding using up your “stock,” it could be very tradable to have a few bottles of liquor stashed. I watch the “spoils” rack at my favorite grocery stores, and occasionally they put two or three bottles of a discontinued whiskey out, marked down to three or five bucks. I stick them in the basement. How much do you think I could get for 750 ml of whiskey in dry times?
Ammo likely would make a good trade, but be sure to separate it from the firearms during the trade. Wouldn’t want a terminator episode right in your front room.
Good planning, and God Bless.