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Friday, April 1, 2011

Urban Survival - Questions on Survival Priorities


UrbanSurvivalSkills.com receives anywhere from 6 to 15 questions via e-mail each week. I try to, but usually don’t answer all of them. Some I will answer and some of them I turn into articles or posts. However I think it is telling that about 75% of the questions I receive are for Survival weapons or firearms and on the procurement of Silver (and sometimes Gold). I am going to answer the majority of the last few week’s of e-mails in this post.

Question:   Silver is very high now (UrbanMan’s note: currently at $37.81). I can’t afford very much at all. I know I should have bought some when it was around $20 a ounce (or lower), but given the high price and the fact that many analysts think it will not higher, should I spend my sparse survival preparation dollars on Silver?

UrbanMan’s Answer:  Having Silver and/or Gold is important. Not so important to substantially do into debt to procurement or to otherwise leave other categories of survival preparedness empty. Silver may not come back down, at all, so how would you feel three months from now if Silver is $50 an ounce, then you thought “wish I would have bought some Silver when it was $38 an ounce”? I bought the majority of my silver when it ws $4.50 an ounce. Even today I still buy Silver, even though my last purchase was at $35.35 an ounce or so. In another couple weeks, I’ll head down to the brick and mortar store and buy what else I can. It may be 4 ounces,..it may be eight or ten,…not sure yet, but I will still buy some one ounce rounds. Junk silver,..that is pre ’65 silver coins for silver melt value, may also be an option for you. I also have a collection of old U.S. silver coins,….just in case. Isn’t that why we are doing all this survival prep for anyway?,…just in case?

Question:  If I had $1000 to spend on Survival firearms what would be the better way to go? Buy several lower end weapons such as a handgun, shotgun and .22 LR rifle, or, buy a M-4 carbine or battle rifle?

UrbanMan’s Answer:  If I did not have any firearms at all, I would be much more inclined to procure several different firearms to fill the diverse survival needs or protection, hunting and training, and, be able to equip more people with at least one weapon, then I would be spending all of my money earmarked for Survival weapons on one gun. $1000 will certainly buy you an M-4, especially if you shop wisely, however does not leave a lot of money for a stock of ammunition and a decent amount of magazines or other accessories. With that same $1000, you could (again shopping wisely, buy a handgun in a decent caliber (9mm, .40 S&W and such), a 12 gauge shotgun (preferably a pump action) and a .22 LR rifle and have enough money to buy a couple handgun mags and a decent amount of ammunition for all three.

Question:  I am looking at buying a dehydrator. However, I would also like a vacuum packing machine (UrbanMan Notes: Food Saver type device) and a solar oven. How would you prioritize these purchases?

UrbanMan’s Answer:  Good question. My priorities if I did not have any of these items for my survival plan would be: 1 – vacuum packer, 2 – dehydrator, 3 – solar oven, in this order. You can make a field expedient dehydrator and a solar oven, but would be hard to make your own vacuum packer. I use my vacuum packer quite a bit. My vacuum packaged foods are one of many branches of stored food I have stocked for the bad times ahead (MRE's, bulk items, pantry canned goods, dehydrated food in vacuum packed #10 cans and Mainstay bars are others). I can easily make a solar oven, but even then propane and wood cooking will be my mainstay. In fact, put some rice and beans in a zip lock bag or glass jar, fill with water and let stand in the Sun for a few hours will produce a warm, edible meal, especially if you had the foresight to store spices as well. A field expedient dehydrator is easy to make as well. So my priorities would be first the vacuum packer, which I also use to vacuum pack spare clothes and other items for Bug Out Bags or my Survival Gear Kit Bags.

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