Archive for July, 2012

Preparedness Fuel Sources – Coal

What are the fuel sources on your preparedness list?

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Have you ever considered coal?

Black coal or charcoal for cooking

Black coal or charcoal for cooking (Photo credit: epSos.de)

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Have you got a few extra yards of space in your landscaping?

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Consider adding a random hill or a few mounds of grassy noll with a stash of coal hidden under it.

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When it comes time to heat your home or add something to your fire pit for warmth in a major SHTF situation digging up this fuel source will make you glad you did it.

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***NOTE!! BE VERY careful when using coal. It smokes heavy and needs to be exhausted correctly. Not following a safe burn outline can lead to carbon monoxide poisoning! Please, use extreme caution and safe practices when burning coal. Burn ONLY in approved VENTED places.

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From the blog: Coal in the Home

About using, not mining coal

By Andrew Alden

When I was a kid in the mid-1960s, we moved to a house that had a pile of coal in the cellar—lump coal, nice big chunks with a clean cleavage and little dust. Who knows how long it had been there, perhaps 20 or 30 years. The current heating system was a fuel-oil furnace, and all trace of the coal furnace was long gone. It seemed a shame to throw it away. So for a while, my family revisited the 1800s, days of King Coal, and burned coal at home.
We had to get a cast-iron coal grate for the fireplace, then we had to learn to kindle and burn coal correctly. As I recall, we started with paper and kindling to get a hot start, then put smaller coal chips on it that would ignite quickly. Then we would pile larger lumps on, taking care not to smother or overload the fire, until we had built up a good pile of evenly burning coal. That would minimize smoke. You had to arrange things so that blowing on the fire wasn’t necessary—blowing on it just spread coal smoke through the house.

Once ignited, coal burns slowly with little flame and high heat, occasionally making gentle ticking sounds. Coal smoke is less aromatic than wood smoke and has a dirtier smell, like cigar smoke compared to a pipe mixture. But like tobacco, it was not unpleasant in small, dilute doses. High-quality anthracite makes almost no smoke at all.

A grate full of burning coal would easily go all night without any attention. We had glass doors on the fireplace to help modulate the draft, which allowed us to burn more slowly at a lower temperature and also greatly reduce the risk of carbon monoxide exposure. Looking around the Web, I can see that we didn’t do anything badly wrong. The two main things to be sure of are having a sound chimney that can take the hotter fire and regular chimneysweeping. For my family, burning that old coal was just fun, but with good equipment and careful operation coal can be as good a heating solution as anything else.

Today very few Americans burn coal at home any more, just 143,000 homes in the...(read more)

Demo Video on how to use coal in an iron stove:

Hand Feed Anthracite Coal Stove, Burning Nut Coal

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If you are into “green energy” you certainly aren’t going to condone burning coal. But, then again, if you are facing a 20 degree or lower winter temperatures, I doubt you’ll argue it’s benefits, then…

I know folks that have this added to their emergency supply. Catch a pile of it before it’s price gets crazy.

Related ArticleThe war over coal is personal – CNN.com.

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Spam Talk On Survival Recovery

Spam or spam – Observations on Survival Recovery

Spam

Spam (Photo credit: kellinahandbasket)

Spam the meat product by Hormel is a staple item in a long term food storage plan.

Talking about Spam on Survival Recovery seemed appropriate today because of it’s unique status. It’s content is a wonderful contribution to emergency preparedness as part of the protein food group.

It is a meat product that can keep for years if stored in cool temperatures. Using it is easy. Simply remove the can opener key and insert into the can tab on the side. Turn the key until the tab strip has completely opened this little rectangular can and you slide the contents out. (Older cans had this feature)

Dice it up into small squares for adding to dishes or fry with scrambled eggs or seasoned rice. It can make a good sliced meat addition to a survival meal. Just warm it up in a frying pan. It can also be eaten right out of the can. Many islander residents use it in traditional ethnic recipes. It is a necessary source of protein in their culture because of the lack of grazing area for cattle and other meat source animals. That and it’s a really handy item to have in the pantry.

English: Two small cans of Spam. One is closed...

English: Two small cans of Spam. One is closed and the other open and sliced. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

My addition of Spam is also relevant to some of the commentary we are receiving here on Survival Recovery. Post a link that is NOT a related subject and you will not be approved. Where the wonderful food product Spam, gets stored, saved, and eaten your spam gleeful gets tossed in the trash bin!

Interaction brings good results and a posting on our comments board. Quality links will be posted!

To be approved:

  • First – good grammar.
  • Second – GOOD CONTENT!
  • Third: Quality Site Links

Sharing information is important in preparedness and there are many, many great sources to be had.

Like the canned meat Spam, your spam may sit on the shelf collecting dust never to see the light of day. If it is beyond the use by date it will go into the trash.

Just a thought… 😉

CB Radio Equipment

 CB Radio – Emergency Communications Equipment

Learn how to install one of these key Communications Devices

In the 70’s CB’s were made popular in the move Smokey and The Bandit starring Burt Reynold’s and many other A list stars from the era.

CB Radio – Basic Vehicle Set Up. Radio and Mic. Image: M Burgess

The Citizen’s Band Radio (CB) is the back bone of most transportation businesses from trucking companies to the limousine company I work for. In an emergency we are able to relay messages back and forth to our dispatcher. In getting our job done we likewise relay information. Using the 10 codes is a familiar part of my day.
 
I am going to 10-7 for lunch a bit… read on about this great device!
 CB Radios And Emergency Communication (Installation Video!)

Bike Generators

Cover of "Soylent Green"

Cover of Soylent Green

Where I learned about a Bike Generator?

I remember the movie Soylent Green and the bike generator system they had set up to power the lights that were dimming in the scene from the movie. (Am I showing my age???) “The Book” jumps on it and peddles for a bit and the lights came back up bright.

The simple bike generator system wasn’t shown up close but there are ways to build one of these handy gems yourself if you have enough smarts to create it.

On the site http://scienceshareware.com I found just the diagram I needed to explore this subject further. These energy creating machines can be attached to any device such as a Wheat Grinder or a bank of marine batteries to hold electricity for your home in the event of an emergency. I am going to show this to my techie family and get one built soon!

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Video Showing A Bicycle Generator:

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For more information on bicycle generators ad the technical details of building one of these handy gadgets preview the article here:

(Bicycle Generator)

DEEP CYCLE / CAR LEAD ACID BATTERY CHARGING

You can charge lead acid deep cycle or car batteries using a pedal power bicycle generator OR solar power or  wind power.   One type of configuration is to use a permanent magnet DC motor style pedal power bicycle generator through a charge controller as shown in the diagram HERE.

You can tell if a battery is fully charged if you measure its voltage when it is not hooked up to anything.  It should read around 12.8 volts DC.    This is also known as its “state of charge”  which would be 100% if the battery is full.

Technical information for you geniuses! –> 

(You may be wondering how many DC Amps a lead acid car battery or deep cycle marine battery may draw at different charge voltage levels when you hook it up to a pedal power bicycle generator.  Graphs 1, 2, & 3 below show you some typical Amp and Watt values assuming you were to hook up your pedal power bicycle generator to a…) [more technical stuff]  

Assemble one yourself :

Free plans & instructions for DIY BYO  pedal power bike generator

This would be a great alternative to a fuel generator in the event you may have to shelter at home OR your fuel supply diminishes! It would also be a great way to get some needed excersize which we all could use, eh?

Food Storage A Biblical Reference

One of the earliest references to Food Storage was in the book Of Genesis.

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English: Joseph and His Brethren Welcomed by P...

The story of Joseph interpreting the Pharaoh’s dream of cows and corn leads to the establishment of a grain storage system in Egypt.

By following suggestions from Joseph to their leader the people in Egypt are able to weather a 7 year drought and famine.

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This reference may be found in The Bible’s Old Testament in the book of Genesis 41:15

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In the story people endure through wise planning. The events of this tale are not new. They are part of the times we live in as well. We see drought, famine, hunger, and the like daily. Through properly supplying necessary grains the impact of this calamity is softened on these citizens and hunger is eased through this planning. They are also at a position to charge a high price for it!

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Dramatized for your amusement!

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This is one of the earliest examples of food storage. It runs along the lines of “God Helps Those That Help Themselves!” another piece of wise information. But did you know that this phrase is actually a quote by Ben Franklin? In my studies I have often thought of this phrase and naturally thought it was a Bible reference. I was very surprised when I searched in scripture references for it! I then turned to Wikipedia to look up where it came from. The details are not important but the effect of the statement are.

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If we are to truly help ourselves in planning for emergency and good food storage I have no doubt our God will help us make it through whatever crisis we may face. This is not meant as a preaching post but a simple reminder that accepting good advice is a great excersize in helping our lives be easier and better off in the long haul than ignoring suggestions and paying dearly for not heeding helpful, kind words.

Just a thought! =)

Related articles

More Reasons To Do Food Storage

Good economics is one of the best reasons to do food storage.

We can save money by storing and buying things in bulk.

Do we really need anymore reminders why it’s a good idea to stock the essential foods?

Food Storage ~ Image: M Burgess

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With food stored in our pantry we know we can stretch the budget along and plan for a long term food source. If I get lazy and don’t want to go to the store for weeks at a time, I CAN! =)

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In the news drought  is causing a rise in our food prices. Add this to more reasons to do food storage!

Check out this article from FOXNEWS:

Historic drought

to bring higher food prices, experts say | Fox News.

The historic drought baking the nation’s breadbasket is about to hit American consumers where it hurts most — the supermarket checkout.

“Prices are going to go up,” Justin Gardner, assistant professor of agribusiness at Middle Tennessee State University, told the Christian Science Monitor. “The only question is when.”

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Everything from breakfast cereal to roast beef will cost more as a result of the worst drought in 24 years, which has already prompted authorities to declare more than 1,000 counties in 26 states — nearly two-thirds of land in the lower 48 states, stretching from Nevada to South Carolina — natural disaster areas.

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Only in the 1930s and the 1950s has a drought covered more land, according to federal figures released Monday. So far, officials say there’s little risk of a Dust Bowl-type catastrophe, but crop losses could mount if rain doesn’t come soon — and that means across-the-board higher food prices.

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The U.S. Department of Agriculture has lowered its crop projections for corn by 12 percent, prompting a 34 percent hike in prices in recent weeks. Since corn goes into so many food products for both humans and livestock, its effect on overall food prices is massive.

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The rising prices of livestock feed are already impacting some businesses.

Jack Sabolik, a butcher in Ohio, said customers are cutting back at his store as the rising cost of feed has brought corresponding increases in the price of meat, Fox 8 Cleveland reports.

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“A lot of people aren’t buying as many steaks as they would in the summer time, buying more hamburger and stuff like that to make it go by further with the families and stuff,” he said.

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Jeff Born, a Northeastern University finance professor and director of the executive MBA program, told the Christian Science Monitor it will only get worse. “If you like bacon [and] pork, you should buy it now, because by the fall you are going to be stunned at what it will cost,” he wrote in an email.

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In Illinois, the drought has already taken a heavy toll, with more than 80 percent of corn, soybean and other crops considered to be in fair condition or worse. Less than 10 percent of farm fields have adequate topsoil moisture. Farmer Kenny Brummer has lost 800 acres of corn that he grows to feed his 400 head of cattle and 30,000 hogs. Now he’s scrambling to find hundreds of thousands of bushels of replacement feed.”Where am I going to get that from? You have concerns about it every morning when you wake up,” said Brummer, who farms near Waltonville. “The drought is bad, but that’s just half of the problem on this farm.”

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In Ohio, produce vendor Mike Shull told Fox 8 Cleveland that the lack of water may drive corn prices up. “It’s hard to get the stuff in if it ain’t growing,” Shull, an Ohio vendor selling produce…..

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/us/2012/07/17/historic-drought-conditions-can-lead-to-higher-food-prices-experts-say/?cmpid=cmty_fb_Historic_drought_to_bring_higher_food_prices%2C_experts_say#ixzz20uiEvjX2

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Our family grew up knowing this is an important issue no matter what. In tackling this tradition in my adult years, news of this kind makes me glad I paid attention to this good advice. My only worry is will it be enough when it comes time to really have to depend on what we have set aside. Chances are we won’t go hungry, will you?

Related Information:

Survival Foods Requirements

My Favorite Food Storage Tips

Preparing For Natural Disasters

Natural disasters are just a fraction of what we need to prepare for.

The news and the climate changes forecast some serious reminders of this daily.

The chance for something happening in your area grows by the hour. We are heading into some serious storm activity at this time of year on the North American Continent. Summer heat w/ hot and cold fronts colliding can cause some tricky weather phenomenon.

Putting your survival recovery plan into action requires you construct a 72 hour kit.

 

 

The supplies in this emergency kit need to be able to sustain you for 3 days.

 

(Image: M Burgess)

In this kit make sure you have set  aside enough food, water, a temporary shelter, and tools to make a difficult situation easier.

 

In a related article from another blog by this author we review the damage caused in past years by a severe tornado. By observing past disasters we may find it possible to build a plan to steel ourselves against future ones.

Read More : Prep Everywhere!

 

 

 

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