Preppers?

What skills to learn, what tools to get
ThisDinosaur
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Re: Preppers?

Post by ThisDinosaur » Fri Sep 21, 2018 8:34 am

Aerospace projects are a porkfest. It's also argued that Kennedy's role in helping us win the space race was recognizing that porkfest jobs programs were the only way we could get to the moon. The web of goals side effect of this was mature rocket and satellite technology etc, that we otherwise wouldn't have had. Private industry wouldn't have made those things without a government organized effort.

The Space Shuttle was largely a failure because it tried to use the forced cooperation, porkfest model to make an economical, low cost, reusable launcher. SpaceX succeeds where the shuttle failed because it builds everything in house, using technology developed by all those frivolous government programs. But it still depends on government as a major customer. For now.

Lessons for preppers? Using government services when available is not the same thing as being dependent on them.

Lessons for specialists vs renaisance generalists? Sometimes it's worth it to DIY / Build In House and sometimes it isnt.

???

jennypenny
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Re: Preppers?

Post by jennypenny » Fri Sep 21, 2018 9:21 am

ThisDinosaur wrote:
Fri Sep 21, 2018 7:49 am
If the apocalypse hits and your family is huddled in your bunker, are they really going to complain that your stockpile of deodarant and canned food was all *your* preferences?
Haha, no. The problem is that I found myself providing for two versions of my life ... my current one and a post-SHTF life I've prepped for. That seems wasteful to me. I'm also a slow doomer at heart -- I believe my preps are there to protect against any temporary crises but mainly to help maintain our preferred lifestyle regardless of what state of collapse we're in at any given moment. I've been working towards finding middle ground where our lifestyle is simplified enough so I can prep for the life we live now for the most part, with only a few SHTF-level additions to the stockpile.

ThisDinosaur
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Re: Preppers?

Post by ThisDinosaur » Fri Sep 21, 2018 9:53 am

@jp
I feel you. I'm saving up to fund my wife's consumer lifestyle indefinitely. Meanwhile she busts my balls for my "pedal powered house" daydreams.

http://www.lowtechmagazine.com/2017/05/ ... alone.html

prognastat
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Re: Preppers?

Post by prognastat » Fri Sep 21, 2018 9:59 am

I doubt we'd be able to power the average American household using human power only, but if you lived a very minimalist life it might be possible(no TVs, Dishwasher, Washer, Dryer and AC etc). Definitely would be interesting.

Washing dishes/laundry by hand and air drying them would effectively make them human powered. Chopping wood for heat/cooking would effectively do the same.

A radio would be able to run on human power, but larger electronics would be trouble unless you would consider solar an acceptable alternative, but definitely wouldn't be human powered at that point.

You could potentially make a very efficient heating and cooling system by using geothermal heat pump and a house built with maximising heating/cooling efficiency in mind. Not sure if it would be possible to make it efficient enough to be human powered and there would be significant up front cost.

ThisDinosaur
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Re: Preppers?

Post by ThisDinosaur » Fri Sep 21, 2018 10:28 am

@prognastat
At current energy prices, humans could supply less than 2 cents an hour of electricity. (*)

Its frequently more efficient to use direct mechanical energy than to go through an electricity intermediary step. Instructables has a lot of designs for pedal powered clothes washers using paint buckets n such. Get your exercise while washing your sweaty clothes (#WebOfGoals).

I have this idea for a concept2 type rowing machine attached to a mechanism that pulls water into a water tower. This would provide running water to the house and could have a pipe attached to a turbine that provided on demand AC power.


(*)So,...
viewtopic.php?f=7&t=10167

jennypenny
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Re: Preppers?

Post by jennypenny » Fri Sep 21, 2018 10:40 am

ThisDinosaur wrote:
Fri Sep 21, 2018 10:28 am
(*)So,...
viewtopic.php?f=7&t=10167
That this thread is converging with that one tells you all you need to know about ERE. :)

ThisDinosaur
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Re: Preppers?

Post by ThisDinosaur » Fri Sep 21, 2018 10:50 am

I think the threads are converging because I'm questioning the opportunity cost of doomsday prep.

jennypenny
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Re: Preppers?

Post by jennypenny » Fri Sep 21, 2018 11:09 am

I'm not doomsday prepping ... I'm making sure my everyday ERE lifestyle is doomsday proof. :D

jacob
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Re: Preppers?

Post by jacob » Fri Sep 21, 2018 11:27 am

Once upon a time I was having lunch at MCD with two portly colleagues. The talk turned to calories. I was able to guesstimate the number of calories of the various fries, burgers, etc. around the table fairly well(*). One commented that it was ironic that I was the one who knew this when they were the ones who needed to know it. I told them that it was exactly because I knew the numbers that I didn't need to know them.

(*) That's back when those legally mandated menu calorie counts began to come out.

It's the same thing with ERE. Some people think I need to live the way I do because I FIRE'd on so little money and with such a small income. But it's the other way around. It because I live well the way I do that I don't need to spend very much. All that money I saved up so quickly was just a side-effect of people throwing it at me when I was working and me not finding any other use for it than putting it in investments.

Imagine that instead of money you were paid in Hallmark greeting cards. You can only send so many cards to various relatives. They're somewhat hard to give away (how many "congratulations on your promotion, 67th birthday, ... does one really need?). Presume you don't want to throw them out. So they're just piling up in boxes. Then one day you learn that a bank will take your Hallmark cards and in return give you a monthly stipend. That's how I FIRE'd.

There also seems to be two kinds of prepping. The first and most normal one is saving/stocking up stuff in case there's a problem so you can't get more stuff --- just like people save up money. The second and much more resilient one is to live without needing all that stuff.

Stahlmann
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Re: Preppers?

Post by Stahlmann » Fri Sep 21, 2018 12:05 pm

wow, I remember many/most JLF anecdotes posted by him :o :lol:
PS. Stop, Stahlmann time!

ThisDinosaur
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Re: Preppers?

Post by ThisDinosaur » Fri Sep 21, 2018 12:13 pm

Needing less stuff is better than needing more stuff. But, supplying your own stuff may be more expensive than buying it from specialists.

Prepping and minimalism are good insurance, so I'm totally gonna keep doing it. But insurance is an expense. A cost. A liability. And by definition, you'll probably never need it.

It's not a "system that eliminates work and pollution allowing goods to flow through me with little effort or waste."

jacob
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Re: Preppers?

Post by jacob » Fri Sep 21, 2018 1:29 pm

@Stahlmann - That's because I only have a handful of them. To make up for that, I repeat them a lot.

@TD - In terms of supplying your own stuff ... I agree, but it depends. For example, ...

In college (pre-ERE), I built a 20W classB stereo amplifier. Using a standard rack and a torus transformer (the most expensive components), it cost as much to build as it would have to buy a similarly sized amp from Sony. Same quality result. If I value my own labor at >$0, it was much more expensive to DIY. So call this one a hobby or a wash.

A few months ago, my $600 scroll saw conked out. Because of my experience with electronics, I was brave/smart enough to fix it. Only cost a buck in materials. W/o electronics skills, it would have been at least $50+ to send it on insofar the warranty was still good.

Now I build furniture. If you just want a random piece of furniture, it makes no sense to DIY. You can get a lot of furniture for free on craigslist. Recently, I finished this: https://www.facebook.com/earlyretiremen ... =3&theater ... the cost was under $20 ... probably closer to $10. However, this was custom made to the dimensions of our TV/DVD/Roku/zvox(*). If I had to buy a custom piece from a cabinet maker it would have been somewhere between $500 and $5000 and only marginally better than what I could DIY. So what do you compare to here? A $0 freebie, a $10 DIY, a $40 IKEA, or the $500+ custom? It depends on what kind of lifestyle you associate the various kinds of consumption (custom vs unmatching random vs Fimsebordet fran Ikea) and production (fun hobby, shopping, or dreadful work).

You can somewhat specialize here ... even if it's not a job. In terms of prepping I'm better at digging holes or installing birdhouses at 7ft+ than I am at nursing for example. So if I install birdhouses in high places .. maybe someone else will bring me some chicken soup some day. That's the benefit of building voluntary donation channels beyond standard impersonal/arms-length dollar transactions.

jennypenny
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Re: Preppers?

Post by jennypenny » Tue Oct 02, 2018 4:31 pm

fyi ... FEMA is running a text alert test tomorrow at 2:18 EDT. If you don't get a text, you're not plugged into the emergency alert system.

https://www.fema.gov/emergency-alert-test

wood
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Re: Preppers?

Post by wood » Tue Oct 16, 2018 5:38 am

What are typical stuff you can think of that are cost and space efficient now, but might be worth a lot in different shtf scenarios? Stocking up on something tradeable might be a worthwhile strategy (?)

prognastat
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Re: Preppers?

Post by prognastat » Tue Oct 16, 2018 10:01 am

Water would definitely be most important, even in non SHTF situation, but a serious storm or snow in having water is always important in case the water supply becomes compromised.

Having a source of heat would be important too so having a supply of gas and a gas stove or wood and a wood stove or even some way of generating electricity(possibly solar panels? better than a gasoline generator at least) along with an electric stove.

Rice and dried beans keep for a long time, are relatively energy dense and keep for quite a long time.

Of course renewable sources of sustenance would be even more useful. So either being able to grow, raise and/or hunt for food would be very useful in the long run as any pantry is going to run out eventually.

Jean
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Re: Preppers?

Post by Jean » Tue Oct 16, 2018 12:31 pm

Nothing is cost and Space efficient if it's an addition to What you already have. It is more efficient to chose à résilient solution wenn you replace the previous solution. Like replacing à broken heater or cooking plate with à wood stove, walk to most places, etc..

jennypenny
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Re: Preppers?

Post by jennypenny » Tue Oct 16, 2018 1:03 pm

wood wrote:
Tue Oct 16, 2018 5:38 am
Stocking up on something tradeable might be a worthwhile strategy (?)
Stockpile the stuff you can't live without (water, food, etc). If you can't live without it, others can't either, which will make it a tradable item should SHTF. Why introduce a middle step?

If you can attain a stockpile item during normal times at a lower cost than everybody else, it might make sense to stockpile some extra in that case for trading purposes. Generally though, I don't think it's a good idea to waste space storing potential currency when the space could be used for food, water, or medicine.

ZAFCorrection
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Re: Preppers?

Post by ZAFCorrection » Wed Oct 17, 2018 6:47 pm

If we are talking at least a medium-term situation, quality of life stuff like lip balm might be useful to keep extras of for trading. If you are hustling for days outside in an Idaho winter, you might be willing to put up a lot for a small amount long before the chapped lips became a real health hazard.

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chenda
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Re: Preppers?

Post by chenda » Tue Oct 23, 2018 4:13 pm

Some prepping music for y'all, 21st century survival blues:

https://youtu.be/T--R1O3zJks

jennypenny
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Re: Preppers?

Post by jennypenny » Tue Oct 23, 2018 5:18 pm

@chenda -- It says I can't watch the video in the US. Bummer.

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