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Showing posts with label Survival Firearms. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Survival Firearms. Show all posts

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Dollar Collapse, Banks Close,...What Will You Do?

One of our neighbors, a woman who always struck me as a busy body type, organized a neighborhood cleanup and a cook out afterwards. I consented to both the cleanup and the cook out as I had the agenda to get to assess my neighbors better - so I could categorize their personalities, strengths and weaknesses. Only six couples out the group came to the cookout after the cleanup with the women in the kitchen and the men congregating around the outdoor grill - it was fairly cold and the gas grill provided a little heat.

One the men (I'll call him Hal) and another man (I'll call him Frank) were discussing the upcoming Super Bowl, when Hal's wife walked up and asked Frank how the burgers were coming, then she looked at Hal and said "don't let me keep you from talking about the Zombie Apocalypse".....using her fingers to denote quotation marks for Zombie Apocalypse. Then she walked off and nobody said anything for maybe 10 seconds before Hal said "She's still mad at me from finding out I bought a couple of buckets of survival food. She asked me what it was for and I said something Like "I don't know,..possibly the Zombie Apocalypse", and she has been made for the past week.

I said to Hal, "well what did you buy it for?" Hal replied "It seemed like a good idea just to have some extra food, plus Melissa found a machete, camp axe and camp saw which she is also pissed about. While mentally pegging Hal's wife, Melissa, in that those who have a difficult personality category, I then said "Well, makes sense to me. Lot's of potential bad things that could happen where it would come in handy".

A couple of side conversations took place about how bad things seemed. One guy said his health care premium went from $300 something to over $800 a month.

Trying to get the conversation back to prepping, I said "well Hal what would you do if the Government called a bank holiday for, say four days, and that included the ATM machines and debit card transaction?"

Frank spoke first and said words to the effect that it would certainly screw up a lot of people and possibly cause panic.

Chris, another guy, said "that would never happen." I said, "well, just suppose it did happen, what would you do? Most people only have three of four days of food in their pantry. And even if food wasn't the immediate concern, people would be panicked without access to their accounts. I'll be there would be more than a few cars running out of gas and I'll be you robberies, especially around grocery stores, would increase."

Hal mumbled, "yeah, maybe I need to get a gun." I said, "you don't have a gun?". And to make a long story short, I fielded about a hundred questions about guns, buying guns, guns laws, training and the like. Frank has a 12 gauge hunting shotgun which he has never shot, and one of the other guys said he had a rifle given to him by his Dad, but he didn't know anything about it, the make/model or caliber.

Bottom line is that this cleanup and picnic, while a pain in the ass, paid off for me as I now have five new friends who see me as the "gun expert" and are going to call me to talk about buying a gun for personal protection and getting some firearms and shooting lessons.

By the way, the bank scenario didn't just come of the blue. Read below what is happening in England, from Yahoo news a couple weeks ago. Are you prepared for any of it? Stocked food and water/ firearms for protection? Cash on hand? Someplace to go and a plan in case it all comes crashing down?

If you bank at HSBC in England, don’t plan on making any large cash withdrawals. At least not without a good explanation. Or, maybe even a permission slip.

That’s because a previously unannounced change in banking policy is blocking some customers from making large withdrawals without “evidence” explaining why they need the money from their accounts.

The policy affects customers attempting withdrawals for amounts as little as £5,000 ($8,253).

HSBC says it’s all done in the name of customer protection.

"The reason being we have an obligation to protect our customers, and to minimize the opportunity for financial crime,” HSBC said in a statement. “However, following feedback, we are immediately updating guidance to our customer facing staff to reiterate that it is not mandatory for customers to provide documentary evidence for large cash withdrawals, and on its own, failure to show evidence is not a reason to refuse a withdrawal. We are writing to apologize to any customer who has been given incorrect information and inconvenienced."

The change in approach comes after the BBC aired reports from multiple HSBC customers who said they were denied in their recent attempts to make cash withdrawals.

Banking customer Stephen Cotton says he attempted to withdraw approximately $11,000 to repay a loan from his mother but was blocked from doing so.

"When we presented them with the withdrawal slip, they declined to give us the money because we could not provide them with a satisfactory explanation for what the money was for,” he told the BBC. “They wanted a letter from the person involved."

Cotton says the bank wouldn’t even tell him how much he was allowed to withdraw under the new policy, which was not announced to customers when taking affect last November.

"So I wrote out a few slips. I said, 'Can I have £5,000?' They said no. I said, 'Can I have £4,000?' They said no. And then I wrote one out for £3,000 and they said, 'OK, we'll give you that.' "

In the U.S. there have been rumors of similar restrictions that major banks such as Citibank have denied. After the massive security breach at Target retail stores in December, JP Morgan did place a temporary limit on how much cash customers could withdraw from Chase ATM’s at Target stores and how much they could spend on their debit cards at one time. But that limit has since been removed.

A Conservative member of the British Parliament said the change in policy “infantilizes the customer.” However, the head of retail at the British Bankers Association defended the policy.

"I can understand it's frustrating for customers,” Eric Leenders told the BBC. “But if you are making the occasional large cash withdrawal, the bank wants to make sure it's the right way to make the payment."

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Prepping with a Hippie

Sent to me by a reader, who we'll call Tom:

Tom:  "Urban, pay close attention now: I've been married for 6 years and never knew about one of my wife's relatives living close by until she wanted to re-establish contact. Apparently she was embarrassed of them but I guess her conscious got to her. This relative, now pay close attention, is the Uncle of my wife's mother's half sister. I know. I couldn't even draw that out on a piece of paper. Well, it turns out that this "uncle" and his wife, both now in their 70's live less than 2 hours away and live totally off the grid, except for electricity which apparently he (Uncle Ted) is still pissed off about, but he used it for light and I think a frig and his water well or pump."

Tom:  "Uncle Ted is an honest hippie from the 1970's that hasn't changed. He drives, seldom, but still has a running VW van. Ted and his wife have home solar panels which provide some electricity and some sort of manure heated hot water system. They have a small creek (about 12 feet wide and maybe 6 inches deep) running about 300 feet from the farmhouse. They have chickens, some milk goats and his farm borders a large plot where another farmer has cows and horses."

UrbanMan's note:  The VW van picture above is one I found. The van, to the best of my knowledge, does not belong to Tom's Uncle Ted.  

Tom:  "When we were visiting the second time, I noticed a big stack of buckets that Ted said the neighbor gave him and used to contain livestock supplements. Ted gave me six of them, with lids. I intend to use these for stocking foods items. I will take two of them and make a water filter system for Uncle Ted and Aunt Maureen." "Ted also fishes at nearby lake. But their primarily food comes from growing and canning their produce. They have a basement that is at least 16 feet by 20 feet with shelves floor to ceiling that are stocked with canned foods which they sometimes sell at a Farmer's Market during the Summer and Fall months to trade for whatever."

Tom:  "I asked Ted's wife if they were vegetarians and she said No, not really that the neighboring rancher has a wild pig problem and occasional traps these pigs, slaughters them and gives Ted and Maureen some of the meat."  

UrbanMan's note:  I read someplace that if you have wild pig problem, you can never get rid of it.  I also read something else that there are only two types of rural properties:  one that has a wild pig problem and one that will soon have a wild pig problem.  Well, that may be a decent problem to have if you could figure out a way to protect your survival crops. 

Tom:  "Here, lies the problem: I asked Ted if he hunts and he aid he doesn't believe in guns and he says guns have only one purpose - to kill people. He said he's not willing to kill another person so he doesn't own a gun." "Uncle Ted's farm and his lifestyle provide my wife and I with a legitmate place to bug out to if we have to. I haven't told anyone else about Uncle Ted (not his real name) because I it would freak Uncle Ted out if a couple of my friends showed up at his farm all gunned up, etc. But my wife knows my plans to Bug Out to Ted's if necessary, and I will be taking all my guns. She wants me to get some sort of acceptance from Ted."

Tom:  "With the buckets that Ted gave I fill one up every 7 to 10 days as it takes about two trips to the grocery store to get items that will fit the best and build a 4 to 6 day survival bucket. I put rice, pinto beans, bullion, dried soup mix, peanut butter, hand sanitizer, a butane lighter, a dozen tea bags and sugar packet's, several bags of assorted nuts and dried fruit. These give me a chance to continue my preps and do it on a budget. These smaller type buckets are great. They have wire handles and the lid secures well. I can throw them around or into the back of my SUV if in a hurry and they provide a small package without giving the store away for barter as well."

Tom:  "My plan is to make the bucket water filter, on bucket on top of the other, with ceramic filter in the top bucket and a spigot in the bottom bucket and give this to Ted and show him one of the other survival bucket I built and just come right out and tell him about my concerns about a total collapse where we will be left on our own."

 UrbanMan's note:  I the included the picture of what I envision the bucket water filter looks like.

Tom:  "It's not like I'm a gun freak or anything. I just know the value of having a gun. My doomsday arsenal is an M-1A1 with iron sights; a Remington 700 also in .308 with a scope (my deer rifle); a Springfield Armory M1911 .45 and a H&R .22 LR revolver."

UrbanMan replies: "Ask Uncle Ted if there is anything worth protecting? Ask him if he would be willing to point a gun and shoot someone who is going to rape and murder his wife."

I envy your potential bug out. If Uncle Ted doesn't like the gun business but is non-violent, then I guess there is nothing he can do abnout it if you show up and occupy his farmhouse if Bug Out was necessary. And I mean occupation in a nice way,...still his house, his rules, but you have guns - sort of like a disability, in fact you can tell him to think of guns as your disability.

Maybe you can leverage Uncle Ted's probable dislike or distrust of the Government as well.                              

By the way, nice selection of a survival firearms armory. You may want to consider a 12 gauge shotgun and maybe a good .22 rifle like a Ruger 10/22. Maybe another decent caliber handgun for your wife. Think of the two man rule and a two gun rule as well. Good luck.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Need a Anti-Vehicle Survival Rifle?

Jared wrote and asked my opinion on a big bore rifle having a place in a survive the collapse arsenal.

"I am thinking about buying a large caliber rifle capable of stopping vehicles. The Savage .338 lapua is an affordable piece, but a Barret .50 caliber semi-auto may be a better choice. If I was living in the swamp I wouldn't think about one but in Arizona where I plan to be I can see for miles and it may come in handy stopping people from getting too close to me. what are your thoughts? Jared."

Wow, wish I could afford a heavy rifle like a Barrett. But I just have too many priorities right now. I could be convinced to buy one under given circumstances like long observation distances (which you talk about) and a need to engage threats at that far out. But the costs just may it impossible especially when compared to other needs.

A Savage .338 Lapua bolt gun, with a decent scope and an adequate amount of ammunition will run you $3,000. A Barrett .50 caliber semi-auto double that. The .50 cal Browning round is much preferred to the .338 Lapua for stopping threat vehicles. .50 caliber is usually a little more expensive but probably more easily available given military surplus and the fact that it is not an uncommon cartridge limited to the military anymore.

.50 Caliber Ballistics
661 grain bullet
Barrett Model 82A1 29 inch barrel produces 2,750 feet per second muzzle velocity.
Barrett Model 82A1CQ 20 inch barrel produces 2,500 feet per second.
10 rounds of Barrett M33 ball will cost your $49, while 10 rds of Match grade ammunition from 50 BMG Ammo Supply would cost you $59.95.

.338 Lapua Ballistics
250 grain bullet
2,900 feet per second out of 26 inch barrelled rifle.
20 rds of Hornady Match will costs you $90.

Lets get back to needing a heavy rifle,..........I suppose if I had all my other firearms requirements met, a couple AR-15's, several semi-auto handguns, a goods hunting bolt gun in a medium caliber, or two 12 gauge shotguns, a couple of .22 LR's guns, AND is my other preps were sufficient then I may consider a heavy caliber gun like a Barrett. I don't think I'd consider a .338 Lapua or other calibers in that category. My .300 Win Mag can come pretty close or close enough to make a .338 Lapua redundant.

When thinking on being able to stop vehicles that may be bringing people with bad intent close to my survvial position, I would be more concerned with good observation points; good defensible positions with over lapping fields of fire; using obstacles to deny vehicles getting too close where an assault could overwhelm my group. These obstacles could help channelize attackers to points where they could be dealt with more easily.

As far as what points on the vehicle to shoot,...the driver is always a good place to start. Also flat tires don't move several thousand pounds of steel very well through sand or heavy gravel, or through serpentine obstacles.

Interdicting the radiator, while disabling that vehicle for the long run won't immediatley stop it. Likewise hitting the engine block and creating fluid leaks. Other critical components would be a hit and miss (no pun intended) affair as they are small and protected from your direct vision by the vehicle body. Anyway my point is that trying to immmediatley stop a vehicle without explosives or explosive munitions would be pretty hard.

But then again I know from personal experience not to get between a man and his focus on buying a particular gun.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Survival Firearms Skill Sets

I received this through e-mail from a reader: "Dear Urban Survival Skills I have been reading your site, other prepper sites and as I am into the prepping movement hook, line and sinker as much as I can be with a wife and two kids, both under 8 years old. I have a AR -15 rifle with the straight military butt stock. A buddy who works with me who was in the Air Force tells me it is a duplicate of the M-16A2 but mine only shoots one bullet at a time. He thinks I should either buy another shorter barrelled one with a telescoping stock or modify my AR-15. My friend and I were both talking about some professional training. He was a airplane refueler and I have never served in the military. Although I could probably never afford it, what do you think about the firearms schools? My friend has read about Gunsight(?) Do they have classes for civilians? Any ideas about getting my skills built up? I can shoot pretty good, but I do not have the gun skills like I see on T.V. Sincerely, Chet."

UrbanMan replies:: It is a credit to you Chet that you recognize the need for training. If what you mean by television is the action movies, then you are seeing rehearsed and much edited scenes which are make believe. Although Hollywood does do a good job sometimes about hiring professionals to teach the actors how to be professional looking in their weapons handling. Enough about that - it just isn't real.

I can tell a lot about a person's ability by the way they handle a gun,..where his hands and fingers are, muzzle direction, how comfortable he appears with it, etc. This comes from many, many hours handling firearms. And of course without the ability to put bullets on the intended target, you just look like you are competent.

I am not convinced that a collapsible stock, short barreled M-4 clone is much better than a fixed stock AR-15. If you buy a second AR for your wife than a M-4 type would give you more versatility like carrying it in your car, truck or any situation where the shorter barrel and overall length makes it easier to handle.

And your friend is right about the possibility of modifying your current AR-15 with a collapse stock, but I would put the money into other preps.

If I did not have a suitable handgun or shotgun, before I would buy a second AR, I would think very soberly on a defensive handgun and/or a shotgun. In fact with today's AR prices you could probably pickup up two decent handguns AND a good quality 12 gauge pump shotgun for the same price or less than an AR.

Since you mentioned Gunsight Academy, a five day carbine course would cost you around $1,500 tuition not counting the cost of over 1,000 rounds of ammunition. Then you have travel, lodging and meals. If you wife lets you go, then she's one in million. If you could latch onto someone at a local gun range, such as a well versed instructor (some of which are teaching concealed carry classes now) or get involved with IPSC or IPDA shooting, you may be able to build your skills albeit slower, but saving some money. If you did go to professional training after that, you would get more out of it most likely.

In the meantime why don't you go to Youtube and check out the Viking Tactics Channel for weapons drills ands such. Good luck to you. You are on the right track. But remember while firearms are a key component to surviving the collapse, so is stocking food, having a water source, prepaing in all other survival equipment and material areas,...and above all, have a plan.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Enhanced 5.56mm Round?

UrbanSurvivalSkills received an e-mail from Hank asking if we had any information on the military replacing the M855 5.56x45mm standard issue round? Hank said he did not know what the name (designation) would be but had heard that this new round was much more powerful and accurate than the older cartridge currently in service.

UrbanMan Replies: Okay Hank, I pinged several old friends of mine and this is what they tell me:

There is a new round and it is called the M855 Enhanced Performance Round (EPR). I had not previously heard about it and my sources have not seen it, have not shot it, nor been issued it, but have heard about it.

Apparently it is a hotter round, well over 3,000 feet per second muzzle velocity, which also means the chamber pressures will be greater and the barrels will burn out faster. And just because a round is faster, it does not mean it is more accurate - in fact, when pushing the velocity issue and increasing chamber pressures, usually the accuracy suffers.

The accuracy claim may simply be a (surmised) enhanced hit probability at the longest ranges due to the higher velocity. But again, more than velocity factors in accuracy,....bullet weight, bullet design, rifling and rate of twist in the barrel, and several more factors are involved.

This new EPR round is supposed to be able to penetrate 3/8ths inch of steel at 400 meters. I am told that Special Operations will not be using this new round, but continues to use the old M855 62 grain (SS109) and a newer round called the SOST (for Special Operations Science and Technology) or sometimes called the OTMRP (for Open Tip Match Rear Penetrator) and goes by the Navy designation Mk318 MOD 0.

These new 5.56mm rounds are all designed and built at least partially due to widely believed and reported poor performance of M855 62 grain in soft tissue. Soldiers and Marines shooting skinnies with the M855 62 grain round would often experience over penetration meaning alot of the buller energy was leaving the target. Sometimes this is called an ice pick type of wound.  And as you'll remember, stopping power is based somewhat on how much energy of the bullet strike stays in the target.

Rather than going to a different caliber, such as the excellent 6.8mm SPC, the military decided to minimze costs of re-barelling, new magazines, etc. and attempted to make a better round given the parameters of the 5.56 x 45mm cartridge.

For my 5.56mm (.223) guns, I'm happy with the variation of ammunition I have available for them.  There are things more important than the bullet configuration or weight such as a person's ability with the firearm.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

The Best Survival Firearms Battery for SHTF

I received this questions from Rick, via e-mail: "What do you think the best survival gun inventory is? Can you give me a minimum and maximum list? You can use this question for your website. I really like the army skills stories."

UrbanMan replies: Rick, I'll give you my opinion, but there are so many variables involved. Some of them would be your financial capabilities; existing firearms skills and/or ability to get good training; laws within your locality; and extent of your survival family and their abilities.

Regarding your family survival team or other larger group, for instance I have a friend who has a wife and two daughters over 21 years old living with him as they work part time and go to school. The ability of him to train his wife and daughters is limited by money for ammunition and time,...or basically the wife/daughter's buy in to needing the training. So while he has an M-4 variant, a couple shotguns, and several handguns, he has bought several of the cheaper .22 LR rifles and pistols in order to accomplish some sort of training and to ensure that each family member has a gun. I think he bought Savage semi-auto .22 LR rifles and I know he bought Browning Buckmark pistols to this end.

Minimum Survival Firearms Battery. This would be for one person. If there were a number of people in a survvial grouping, such as a family, then you wouldn't really need to replicate this per person. One thought is to have firearms suitable for every inteded use, and protection; hunting both birds and small game and potentially larger game; and training as well. Some people I know collect cheaper guns, including the not so recognizable calibered guns, for barter/trading purposes. Other are dead set against this. But I can tell you that well into a totally SHTF situation, ammunition will be at least be a viable and valuable commodity.

This is what I would consider an individual minimum battery:

Primary Long Gun: A magazine fed rifle or carbine, in .308 Winchester or .223 (5.56). Good choice here are the M-16/M-4 variants or M-14/M-1A variants. An alternative selection would be a Kalashnikov variant in 7.62 x39mm or .223 Remington. A suitable supply of magazines (think 12 as a minimum), ammunition and cleaning kit/supplies would be necessary as well. I would not feel under gunned if all I had in this category was a Ruger Mini-14. A lesser suitable long gun for this category would be an SKS in 7.62x39mm but only because the ability to re-load quickly is reduced.

Primary Handgun: A semi-automatic pistol in 9x19mm parabellum or .40 caliber would be my choice. Again extra magazines, ammunition and cleaning supplies are necessary. Although a revolver in .357 magnum or any of the excellent M1911 clones are good choices as well.

Shotgun: There are so many uses for a decent shotgun. Think 12 gauge. You can use to hunt birds with bird shotshells, hunt bigger game with slugs; stop vehicles with slugs and nothing protects the home better in a last ditch effort at close range, maybe 15 yards or so, than a 12 gauge repeating shotgun shooting buckshot. A pump shotgun, also called a slide action, is generally better - more reliable, but teaching brand new shooters to operate a pump shotgun effectively is a chore. I have found that in some cases, a double barrel shotgun is more suitable to people who are only going to shoot (train) once or twice in their lifetimes. Make sure you have a suitable ammunition supply in birdshot, buckshot and slugs. I generally have most of my students use #4 buckshot.

Ideal SHTF Survival Firearms Battery:

This is like saying "what is the ideal amount of money to have in your bank account". In other words, where do you quit procuring firearms? I think the addition of a .22 LR rifle and a .22 LR handgun are great choices and maybe the next choices after the minimum battery is bought. A scoped rifle calibered bolt or semi-automatic rifle would be a good tool to have and huge advantage in some situations.

I like the saying "One is none, and Two is One", meaning have backups. Just like planning contingencies, secondary guns including hide out guns are a good idea. Having guns to cover most major calibers maybe something to consider.

Okay, having run my pie hole on the above, remember the first rule of a gunfight and that is to have a gun. I am sure that there are people armed only with a bolt or lever action rifle and maybe an old revolver,....or maybe an M-1 Garand and nothing else, who consider thmesles good to go entering into a collapse. There is another saying, "beware of the man who only has one gun" - meaning he is probably pretty good with it.

Hope this helps Rick. Good luck and Good Prepping. Cheers.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Survival Firearm: Marlin Camp Carbine

I received this via e-mail, but I edited some of it to reduce the chances of exposing this young man's identity. In fact, that brings up a good point: I don't need to know your location or name other than what appears on your e-mail address. If you write me and do not want this to appear in print then let me know, otherwise you are going to have to trust me to edit any identification information for your OPSEC:

"Sir, I wanted to thank you for your information. I am new to survival prepping but I think I am an example of how you can do prepping when you are broke. I am a former Marine, 4 years in the Corps as a mechanic but first a rifleman. My wife left me and gave me a shit pot of debt which I am paying off. My father died last year too and left me a .45 pistol. As I am trying to get out of debt and do some prepping with basic foods. I work at a automotive shop and I am a good mechanic and not just with cars. I put cards up all over town advertising myself as a honest and responsible mechanic who does house calls. Think about it, most people have car trouble and can't get their car to a shop. I do estimates, routine maintenance, small repairs and even workout tows to my shop (my bosses) or any shop the person wants to go to.

I worked on a an older Olds for a elderly woman. I guess she liked me as I was respectful. She made brought me ice tea and asked me if I knew anything about guns. I said a little bit, so she showed me a couple guns that her husband left when he died a few years earlier. The end result was that she traded me a Marlin .45 Camp rifle and a old side by side shotgun for the labor and parts (oil, filter, air cleaner) I put into her Olds. The Marlin does not have any magazines. I think it can use the .45 pistol mags? And I am trying to get out of debt by am now thinking if the country collapses how would it be bad to have debt if everything is gone and they wouldn't be trying to collect. Thanks.

UrbanMan's reply: Mechanic Man, good for you finding multiple streams of income to fund not only your debt reduction but your survival preps. Remember that survival preparation for the coming collapse is not just about guns, but about stocked food, essential survival gear and equipment, maybe some junk silver coins or silver bullion, a defensible safe place to hide out and a plan that includes contingencies such as multiple Bug Out sites, maybe caches of essential supplies,....

Yes, the Marlin Camp Carbine can use the same magazines as your M1911 .45 ACP pistol. Make sure you stock up on them.  Camp carbines, which they also made in 9x19mm parabellum, are probably going for around $350-$450 at gun shows if you can find them, so yours is a real good find. However it is still a carbine firing a pistol caliber. The .45 ACP even when fired out of a carbine length barrel is still less than a 100 yard gun.

The pistol, carbine and shotgun that you now have is a great start to a survival battery. The good thing is your ammunition compatibility.  The bad thing is you don't have a gun using a longer range cartridge,..e.g.. .223 Remington, .308 Winchester, etc.  Via e-mail, I sent you links to several ammunition shops selling .45 ACP at the best prices you will find. I suggest you stock up on some ammunition. You did not send the make/model of the shortgun you traded for, but hopefully it is a 12 gauge. For any shotgun I suggest having a good supply of buckshot, slug and bird shot as well.

I am too trying to keep my debt as low as a I can. If (or really when) an economic collapse hits this country, it may not necessarily be an Armageddon type situation. Maybe it is a major depression type of collapse where the money supply is restricted and value deflated where interests rates skyrocket, so this is the scenario where having debt is not good, not to mention it just takes away from the maximum spending power you would otherwise have.But I would agree that if you could predict a total, catastrophic collapse having a brand new truck with extended fuel tanks, etc. would be a great thing to have especially if there weren't banks or financial corporations around to hound you for payments.  ha ha

With you being a mechanic, I think you have skills that may be in demand during a really bad collapse. In the latest James Wesley Rawles book, "Founders", one of the characters is a mechanic and built a pre-electronic ignition vehicle for survival, but it got shot to hell as they were bugging out and the character was forced to move on foot, - hence the Bug Out Bag and contingency just got to have them.

I don't want to be too redundant, but since you already have a good start of survial firearms, you may want to consider filling your other basic needs. Good luck to you.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Armageddon Arsenals

Kelly at Orion Entertainment sent us notice of a television showed called Armageddon Arsenals that will premiere Thursday December 13th on Discovery's Destination America. This promises to be an entertaining show as Orion Entertainment production goes inside the fascinating world of weapons other words,, me and friends of ours.

Here is the press release:

Denver, Colorado--Officials from Orion Entertainment have announced that 'Armageddon Arsenals' will debut Thursday Dec. 13 at 10pm Eastern on Discovery's Destination America network. The series explores the weapons and security aspects of the massive new prepping movement, focusing on individuals and families across the country who are preparing for a variety of worst case scenarios--many of them more plausible now than ever.

"Once thought of as a fringe movement," says Orion Entertainment President Chris Dorsey, "millions of Americans now call themselves doomsday preppers and are taking extraordinary measures to plan and prepare for catastrophic events. While some viewers might find weapons caching extreme, by the end of the episode many will be asking what they should be doing to prepare. There is a lot of uncertainty and fear in the country and preppers are a manifestation of the larger national movement toward self-reliance."

The one-hour pilot features weapons preppers in Texas, Utah, and Colorado who have amassed significant arsenals but who have also created elaborate security strategies to stay safe should the unthinkable happen. As one of the featured preppers warns, "If things get really bad it won't matter how much food and water you have stored if you can't protect it."

Watch the trailer on You Tube:

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Gun Toting, Survival Prepping Pastor

I have a friend of mine who asked me to come along with him as he visited with his Pastor. The Pastor had a previous conversation with my friend, a member of his congregation, concerning buying and owning guns. Apparently the Pastor approached my friend because he knew my friend was a hunter. Like many people new to gun ownership, the Pastor was confused about the laws and what he had thought of as a "requirement to register guns" with the government.

We visited with the Pastor at his house with his family that included his wife and two children. Other than that, I’m not going to publish any other identifying factors for the Pastor for obvious reasons.

It turned out that the Pastor had struggled with the thought to own a gun for protection because he knew that it would be pointless to own a firearm without the will the use it if necessary. It was also apparent that, all on his own, this Pastor had arrived to the conclusion that times are going to be tough and if he wanted to be around to provide security for his family, or for others that he felt some sort of responsibility for, then he needs to get prepared.

I made sure that the Pastor understood that “brandishing” a firearm at a would be threat often only escalate the threat and I assured myself that the Pastor fully intended to protect his family by any means necessary. His words were to the effect,…..”I wholeheartedly believe in God and our place beside him in heaven. I would like my family to get there naturally and cannot bear the thought of them being victims because of my indecision. I will use a gun if need be.” Okay, fair enough.

After talking and showing the Pastor a couple of handguns, rifles and a shotgun, he settled on the plan to buy a .357 magnum revolver (so he can also shoot .38 Special) and a 12 gauge shotgun. We talked about the need for adequate instruction not only for him but for his family. I think he’ll most likely also buy a .22 LR rifle primarily for the training aspect but to also be able to employ another firearm during any collapse, and as well as the obvious small animal hunting capability.

While neither myself nor the Pastor are of the Mormon faith, we discussed the Mormon religion and their noted preparedness, especially stocking food. The Pastor war gammed with us about the establishment of a food pantry within his church to provide for church members who cannot provide for themselves, as well as stocking supplies and material such as cots, blankets, water, candles, battery and lanterns, etc. Boy, his church started sounding like a Bug Out location to me.

The ability to leverage many people’s efforts in any catastrophic situation is huge, but the price is being able to care for these people’s basic need as well,….food, water, shelter and security. With a church group serving as the core of a survival group, basic morals and beliefs, which may be a problem in an ad-hoc group, should not be nearly as large of a problem.

I also talked to the Pastor about having a plan in depth,…or PACE planning (Primary, Alternate, Contingency and Emergency), meaning having contingencies. Contingencies for safe sites,…for food storage,…for security and for route of movement and escape. I said he could set the example for his flock by having his own stock of emergency supplies at his home,…, water, medical items and survival equipment. And not to necessary advertise it. This would pay off if he could not get to the church for any reason, or if the church location ceased being a safe site.

We talked about having an alternative site to go to if things in the city became too unsafe. The Pastor mentioned that he had conducted a church camp for children at a Boy Scout camp about 4 hours away by car. The location ended up measuring about 170 driving miles away.  Close enough to use as a follow on Bug Out site, especially if you could go half way or more by vehicle. But the Pastor did not know what supplied the water at the camp, although there is a pond close by so natural water, basically a necessity for a long term Bug Out Site, was possible. So we discussed the Pastor finding out more about the camp including who owned it and/or could be possible having the same idea for a Bug Out site.

I told the Pastor that the idea of offering some basic CPR and medical training to his church, through the church, may be something he should consider.  Canning classes would also be something to be considered.

I committed to being a source for the Pastor for information and when he bought his survival firearms, to provide him with some basic training. Other than that I left him with some survival and preparedness sites listed on a notebook for him to research and read on his own, as well as the names/authors of a couple books to read.

If this country is destined to come out of a major collapse and re-build to any degree, good men and woman, with a strong moral foundation and belief system is necessary. I knew that survival prepping is becoming more and more mainstream, but to be able to assist an obvious good man who is looking out for others really made my week.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Ammunition Re-Call

We just received word that Federal Law Enforcement Agencies are working with Winchester on a potentially serious production error that may effect all recently Winchester produced .40 S&W, 180 grain, bonded service ammunition.   Although the most predominate use of this cartridge is within Federal Law Enforcement, we all have seen sales of ammunition marked "Law Enforcement Only"

Some of the cartridge casings were produced without a flash hole. The lack of a primer flash hole eliminates the ability of this Service cartridge to fire – this cannot be detected as no visual inspection by anyone can detect this manufacturing defect and it would only be known at the time the person attempted to fire their handgun.

Affected ammunition will have a four character “day code”, two letters, two numbers, i.e., FA42. All Q4355 with day codes beginning with the letter F and any Q4355 with the two letter combination of EN are included in this recall. See picture below.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

More Gun Control Commentary

HalfElf has left a new comment on your post "Gun Control Looming": "Saw on google search yesterday that the ATT (UN Arms Treaty) has been rejected by the US. Somebody must had told his nibbs that maybe pissing off 1/3 of the voting population might not be a good idea less than 4 months before the election."

UrbanMan's reply:  I listened to an interview with noted second amendment author John Lott yesterday. I'll paraphrase what he had to say: The U.S. did not reject the treaty. Repeat. The U.S. did not reject the treaty. Secretary Clinton just did not go to the UN meeting to vote on it........because, you see, she does not have to in order for it to be placed into effect.

If two thirds of the U.N. main body (general membership - not the security council) votes for this treaty, then this treaty becomes defacto law for at least four years unless rejected by the President or the Senate. If this treaty goes into effect it will have the effect of a Constitutional Amendment. Supreme Court precedence is that International Treaties, that the U.S. is a signature to, trumps U.S. Law. And again, the U.S. will be de facto signatures unless either the President or the Senate reject it.

Figure the odds on a newly re-elected Barack Obama rejecting this Treaty. Figure the odds on Sen Harry Reid allowing a vote on this in the Senate. And what is scary is that only a reported 51 Senators were against the original treaty. The treaty would require nations to register guns and their owners. Certain types of guns will be outlawed. And the subsequent U.S. Government performance in the treaty provisions will most assuredly require no notice inspections of those people considered to own "arsenals". There would be no other way to determine extnet of the export of firearms.

This is bad news not only Survivalists and Gun Owners but for the American people as well. If you think 16,000 new IRS agents to enforce Obamacare is a large step towards massive Government control,.....imagine how many new hires in the BATF or maybe a newly created organization would do. On related news, there will be several attempts to limit internet access to ammunition especially if the current administration wins another term.

This is not intended to be a political article, just stating the facts as the Liberal and/or Progressive section of American politics has always been for gun control measures. Whether or not you believe the goal is some sort or "we know what is better for the American peope and their safety", or, if it is some evil plan for a massive government controlled socialist society doesn't change the facts. Many other people think this way as well, since in the days following the Colorado Theatre shooting, gun sales in Colorado sky rocketed.

It's going to be much harder for people embracing some sort of preparedness posture to secure firearms and adequate ammunition for their security. The recent theater shooting in Colorado, of all things, recently pushed a couple that I have been dripping Survival and Preparedness to, to purchase a couple of additional firearms. I had previously helped this new to firearms couple select a couple of handguns, one a Glock 19 and the other a Taurus .38 special revolver. Last week they purchased a Ruger 10-22 carbine and a Mossberg 12 gauge shotgun.  They now feel much better about having to drive a few hundred miles east to get to their son's property in New Mexico in case the collapse situation warrants it.

Before any of you chastize me for the selection of these guns not being a couple of black rifles,....well, this is what the couple is comfortable with......and remember the first rule of a gun fight,...have a gun...if the government allows it.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Survival Firearms: Dot Scopes and Zeroing

Anonymous sent a comment on a prior article about Zeroing the M4 Carbine: ”To zero the scope, why not just keep the rear-flip-sight up and while maintaining sight alignment with the front sight, adjust the red dot to coincide with the sight alignment of the iron sights?”.

UrbanMan’s reply: What you are describing is actually how you do a mechanical zero on the dot scope before you head to the range to shoot live and adjust the scope zero from there. There are a many people who have zero’ed a lot more dot scopes than me but I have done my share. After I mount the scope, and with a rifle/carbine that have already been zero’ed with iron sights, I would do as you suggest:

With a weapon on a stable surface, I will flip up the BUIS (Back up Iron Sights) and looking through the rear sight using the smaller peep sight, I wll use the windage and elevation screws on the scope to put the top half of the dot on the top of the front sight. Again, this is a mechanical zero. You will still need to shoot live ammunition and make adjustments, mostly likely fairly small adjustments on the scope.

I received another question from Jer4421 asking ”If the EO Tech was a good scope and what reticle type I would choose.”

UrbanMan’s reply: I am aware that EO Tech has different reticles available, however I became comfortable with the circle dot reticle. Once you get used to something and get older, comfort is important.  I mainly use these three dot scope:  the EO Tech with the circle dot reticle; the standard single dot Aimpoint; and, the circle dot reticle of the Leupold CQT scope. 

However, I'd have to say I prefer the EO Tech’s scopes on a couple of my M-4’s. Both are Model 552 which are night vision compatible. I have the circle dot reticle with the 65 MOA circle and 1 MOA dot - see photo of this reticle at the top of this post.  If I had to buy another EO Tech, I would look very closely at the AR223 reticle, however I’m happy with the Model 552 and standard reticle. If you do not have a need for night vision compatibility, then you can probably save a hundred bucks or more going to the Model 512.

When I first got a Model 552 I remember being told the battery life was 70 hours. But I asked around since I received your question and 100 hours and then some seems more the norm. The EO Tech have a cut off or automatic turn off feature so in case you inadvertently leave the dot on it will turn off in 8 hours, or you can change that to 4 hours.

No matter what scope or reticle you use, the most important factor is competency born by many sweaty hours on the range making it second nature to mount the rifle/carbine, acquire a sight picture and engage your target accurately.  

But's it not just about accurate shooting.  Clearing stoppages, changing magazines, shooting from disadantaged positions,...recognizing cover and using it correctly,....and a host of other skills.  Good luck to you on your venture with dot scopes.    

Monday, May 28, 2012

Full Automatic Weapons for Survival?

GB has left a new comment on your post Urban Survival Firearms - M-4/M-16/AR-15 Magazines...: "Do you have an opinion on installing a bump stock on a Carbon-15?"

I actually had to look this up as I had never heard of the "Bump Stock" or "Bump Firing". Although this stock does not turn a semi-automatic firearm into an automatic weapon, it allows the shooter full automatic like control and capability.

So for GB, my answer is "Yes, I now have an opinion and No, I will not be adding a Bump Stock or Bump Fire Stock to my equipment load list, for several reasons:

1 - God forbid I ever have to use any of M-4's or other semi-automatics when a life is on the line, I want to be as accurate as possible - I don't need a stock moving around to become another factor to overcome or master.
2 - A couple of those would eat up my ammunition reserves in short order.

Automatic weapons can be useful for certain situations. Walking at night on patrol and having a chance contact with a large group of armed bandits,.......using a high volume of supressing fire to allow the rest of your team to manuever,.....useful as a final protective fire and breaking the back of an assault on your property or defensive position,...... but in a midst of a collapse where the availability of ammunition would probably be finite and therefore the conservation of ammunition a critical task, I would feel just fine with semi-autos only.

I would not pass up a great deal on a old Belgian MAG-58 with 20 cases of linked 7.62, but I ain't going to put it at the top of my priority list either.

GB,...I would rather spend $300+ on an additional 800 rounds of ammunition or practically anything else. I am not bad mouthing the creators of the Bump Fire type products,...they evidentally have plenty of business,....they just aren't going to get mine. However, be that as it may, here is a video on one of these


Friday, February 17, 2012

M1 Garand Suitable as a Primary Survival Weapon?

Received the following on e-mail from William who wrote ”UrbanMan, appreciate all the info man, and having a hard time deciding what gun to base my SHTF needs on. Don’t have a lot of money but don’t want to depend on my 7mm Mag in a firefight. What do you think about the M1? Good enough? I think I can talk my brother into buying one too then we can have the same ammunition. He now has a 30-06.”

UrbanMan replies: William, the short answer is "yes", but I am assuming that you are not basing all your SHTF preparations just on guns. While it is necessary to own firearms, several in fact, for security and protection as well as sufficient stock of ammunition, it is also necessary for the well prepared survivor should be looking at all categories of survival: food, shelter, water. Procuring the necessary gear and equipment as well to allow one to survive a collapse with the infrastructure grocery stores, no electricity, no running city water, etc.

But back to the M1. Assume you mean the venerable M1 Garand in .30-06 caliber. Great gun! Accurate and reliable. These two traits go along way in making up the lack of extended firepower – that’s capability to load fast and carry a lot of ammunition. Now there will be some readers who’ll write that they can re-load an M-1 Garand as fast as I can an M-4. Not true, but even if it was, reloading after every 8th round is certainly not as convenient as using 30 round magazines! Before I lose the M1 lovers, one could certainly do 1,000 times worse than the Grand.

If your brother already has a .30-06 rifle, and I am assuming some type of bolt action or pump, either with a five round magazine capacity, then the procurement of M1 Garand’s to base your primary survival weapon on make even go over easier on him. Just make sure you get a bunch of 8 round clips.

You do state that you don’t have much money. Did you know that you’ll pay over $600 minimally for a beat up M-1? The Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP) offers M1 Garands for sale to qualified buyers,…you must be a member of a CMP affiliated shooting club. This would cost a minimal fee for an annual membership if you have one close to you.

This is what the CMP say’s about their M1 Garands for sale,....

"In my opinion, the M1 rifle is the greatest battle implement ever devised" - General George S. Patton, Jr.

John Garand's rifle was the single most significant small arms development in the history of modern warfare. No other rifle in this nation's history so outclassed that of its adversaries. The accuracy, reliability, ruggedness and most of all, its firepower, could not be matched by any of the Axis powers during WWII. It performed with distinction throughout WWII to Korea and to the early days in Vietnam . The popularity of the M1 Garand continues to grow as hundreds of new Garand "Fun" Matches are being held all over the USA each year.

In the past ten years, the M1 Garand, regardless of condition, has become a very hot collectors’ item and sound financial investment. The popularity of the M1 Garand continues to grow as hundreds of new Garand “Fun” Matches are being held all across the USA each year.

Over the past 65 years, most M1 rifles have been arsenal rebuilt, refinished, rebarreled or repaired at least once and often several times. Most will show signs of service (often considerable) and replacement of various parts. They are seldom encountered with all original parts and original finish as delivered from the manufacturer. Such "original" rifles, even in well-used condition, are highly prized by collectors.

Each M1 Garand rifle sold by CMP is an authentic U.S. Government rifle that has been inspected, headspaced, repaired if necessary and test fired for function. Each rifle is shipped with safety manual, one eight-round clip and chamber safety flag. Orders are filled on a first-come first serve basis. Rifles of all grades are packed for shipment purely by "luck of the draw". Prices are subject to change. If price has changed after an order has been received, customers will be notified before new prices are charged. Shipping and Handling is $24.95 per rifle.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Request for Target Source

Ahmet sent us a request for a source of military targets: ”Hi, could you assist me finding information on the right suppliers of M4 Paper Target 10 Column, M240 and M249 Paper Targets, Half Body Paper Targets and Qualification Target? Thanks.”

UrbanMan replies: Ahmet, you may try Law Enforcement Targets, Inc., phone 1-888-489-7830, for some of these target needs.

Additionally, you can access a downloadable or printable pdf file of the M4 Zero target, here: 25 Meter M4 Zero Target

If any readers can assist Ahmet as well in finding what else he is looking for, please drop a line in the comment box.

One more thing Ahmet, The targets I use are just 8.5 x 11 inches white bond paper (standard printer paper) clipped, stapled, taped or glued to various scrap pieces of cardboard. If you place the white paper long axis up and down this represents the chest area on any human, obese or skinny for that matter. This is a huge cost savings if you shoot alot. And this becomes your standard for any weapon and any distances, sans zeroing and precision rifle use. I have also used 3x5 inch and 5x7 inch index cards, mostly for handgun use between distances of 3 to 15 yards. Another money saver. Scrap cardboard can be obtained practically anywhere.

cheers, be safe.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Request for More on Bugging In

Jay wrote "Have you thought of an article on people who, due to age, physical disability, or taking care of someone who falls into those categories and can NOT bug out? There may be something on the site that I haven't seen yet but I encountered your blog for the first time tonight. And some of us do have need to stay put. Any ideas?"

UrbanMan replies:  Jay, the primary reason I started this site was for Urban and Suburban dwellers who would, for the most part and for whatever reason, stay put during a collapse.   Having said that, no matter how secure your site is, you ALWAYS plan for a Bug Out. 

Temporary Patrol Bases, semi-permanent operational bases and permanent forward bases all have a planned and hasty evacuation protocol.  This necessarily means packing load lists, individual and group responsibilities, routes, link up or rally points, maybe caches implanted to support a Bug Out, and a destination to a temporary or permanent safe site. 

I fully realized that more many reasons people and families will not be able to Bug Out, but will have to hunker down.  This could be because of caring for infirm or elderly family members, outside situation too dangerous to attempt movement, or simply having no place to go.    I believe a person can mitigate, not eliminate, but reduce these risks and should have a Bug Out plan in case staying in place, even if intended for the duration, is too dangerous. 

I have written many times about common, low cost preps.  About the use and selection of common types of sporting firearms for protection and security as opposed to a unrealistic arming with the latest high dollar, custom semi-automatic copies of military assault weapons.

Staying in place most assuredly requires a survival team. In fact, my plan is to stay in place in my near-Urban environment, relying on my current survival team of eight families, not counting the local neighbors who are in various stages of preparation. I have a phone alert roster system, for some of my neighbors can call me or others if they need assistance, which can be to change a tire to respond to prowlers. I have several neighbors who now garden for vegetables based on me giving them some of my produce and talking to them about the advantages of growing our own crops. Several of them have stocked pantry foods, have a water service deliver so they have water on hand for several weeks, and, I have taken two of my neighbors shooting and helped them pick out guns for self defense.

If you are planning on Bugging In, you cannot do it alone. You have to have an organized effort, maximizing and leveraging people's resources and skills.

Hope this convinces you to come back and visit this site from time to time. Prepare well.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

OPSEC Alert - Firearms Owner Identification and Targeting

It has come to me that U.S. based gangs have been conducting reconnaissance and surveillance on vehicles parked close to gun shops and gun ranges and marking these vehicles with subtle signs so that the gangs or surrogates can rapidly identify vehicles for burglaries or vehicle theft that may have guns or ammunition stored inside.

Another use is to identify vehicles parked at homes to alert home invaders that the occupants have guns, and to burglarize the home after that vehicle leaves as most people would probably put their weapons back inside the house after range time is complete.

Vehicles at gun shows are also be targeted. The gang bangers will mark the vehicles with a paint dot, chalk or a host of other changing signals to denote the vehicle being associated with gun shops/shows and gun ranges. Places on the vehicles that are known to be marked include bumpers, wheel wells, wheels and tires. Get in the habit of making daily checks on your vehicle.

In one known case, a vehicle and driver were followed from a gun shop. While the driver stopped at another store and went inside, the gang bangers broke into the vehicle and stole a weapons. So also be concerned with being followed from these locations, as well.

If you think you are being followed make a detour that no one else would make to the same destination, and once you get back on your route check to see if that same vehicle(s) are still following you. By the way, this detour is called a Surveillance Detection Route or SDR. It has to be a large enough detour or change of direction, without spooking the potential surveillance, to be able to detect possible surveillance.

You may have to drive to a safe spot such as a police station. A cell phone, which is now as universal and common as people having teeth, would come in handy if the best option for you was to call the police and alert them to someone targeting you.

The next logical step for gang bangers are to mark private vehicles in parking lots adjacent to or associated with law enforcement agencies to enable bangers to rapidly determine if that vehicle belonged to a law enforcement officer and hence an armed individual.

Be aware, be safe.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Urban Bug Out after the Collapse

Received this message from an Urban Survivor: ”Dear Urban Man. I have recently came across this site and have found it very informative and eye-opening. It got me thinking a little bit about what will I be able to do. I live in the greater (city deleted) area, living paycheck to paycheck, in a small 2 bedroom apartment, with my wife and 7 month old baby. For supplies we only have a weeks worth of food tops, a Ruger GP100 and a Winchester M12 with about 50 rounds each. Also some camping gear I like to hold on to (sleeping bag, ponchos, old army ruck sack). Not much, but it's what I have to work with. What advice if any would you be able to provide myself and for people living in these apartment buildings, if any, should the need arise to bug-out? Thank you.”

UrbanMan’s response: I intentionally left this gent’s name and city off, but suffice to say it was a large city on the Northeastern coast.

Unless a substantial part of your apartment complex population are prepared, equipped and can act as a cohesive unit, your best bet is to develop a Bug Out plan. You are reduced simply by the nature of geography on what direction you can go. You are hampered by the fact that one of you, your wife or you, will have to be a full time caretaker of the baby for several more years. You have a good start on a survival firearms battery with the Ruger GP100 and the Winchester Model 12 shotgun.

You Bug Out plan should consider a safe place to go, outside of normal refugee routes, possibly is the mountainous areas to your West. If you do not know anybody in a remote or rural location, then you may want to consider some weekend trips to do so. A lot of small communities are slowly dying. Looking around and letting people know that you are thinking of re-locating is a good way to get the feel of the area and to meet some people. You don’t need to articulate that you would be re-locating there just ahead of a Zombie mob or Mushroom cloud. You may have some close friends who do have some other friends of relatives in rural – remote areas.

As far as how you are getting there the best option is to be able to get ahead of the crowd of refugees. That’s means being ready to execute your Bug Out plan before all hope is lost or even if the situation is still undetermined. You probably be using a vehicle. It’ll pay to always keep your vehicle in some stage of readiness such as with some gear loaded and a fuel tank probably never below ¾ full. If you plan requires travel at the very limit of your vehicle range, then to pre-stage fuel cans and to fill them when the small indicators of a collapse start tingling your spidey sense.

A well stocked Bug Out bag for you and your wife is a requirement. Sleeping bags, ponchos, survival gear like multiple lighters, knifes, Gerber or Leatherman pocket tools, flashlights are all necessary; canteens and hydration packs are very necessary as well. I would put long stay food like MRE’s and/or Main Stay Food bars in my Bug Out Bags. A bucket or two of Wise type Survival meals and larger water containers like five gallon water jugs would be in my vehicle.

I would choose my routes out of the city carefully, avoiding the more dangerous choke points like narrow bridges and two lane roads. Have multiple routes so that you can transition from your primary to alternate to contingency to emergency (PACE) as necessary. Have some linkup points that are easy to find and that provide some cover and/or concealment in case you and your wife get separated.

Consider a couple more firearms so that you and your wife each have a handgun and a long gun. I think you priority on weapons now would be a decent repeating rifle. An AR platform such as an civilian M-4 is great, but you would not be handicapped much a pump action or small magazine fed semi-auto rifle.

I would also think about adding some Silver coins, bullion or old U.S. silver coins for their melt value to my Bug Out bags. They may come in handy. Have adequate amount of ammunition for each firearm.

Read the Survival Chronicles of Jim, from Chapter 1 to present and you’ll get an idea on how Jim and his plan and preps have evolved. Good luck to you.

Monday, December 26, 2011

New Father Fears the Future

Received this from Anonymous: "I am 27 years old and recently married. We have a three year old daughter and a 4 month old daughter. I live in a duplex, in I guess you would call it the burbs, because I went to school with the owner and he gives me the best rent price possible. My wife is not working now because of the baby, before she was a temp secretary but had work about 60% of the time. I am a
school engineer (really a fix it all guy), plus I do home repairs for the guy I rent from for extra income. Now I need it the extra money more than ever. One of the men I work with taught me about the Survivor Movement with me some magazines to look at and talking about the economy. I am not into guns, recently I have been thinking about getting one and I find myself thinking about what happens if the power goes off and doesn't come back on."

UrbanMan replies: I am curious if you are from the Northeast where a power outage went on for quite a while for some folks. Hopefully, the people who were affected by this used the lessons learned to get better prepared for an alike event,.....or something much worse.

You are wise to start considering what can happen, to include providing for security and protection for your family. Just having a gun is not going to solve everything. If the power goes off and does not come back on, that will only be the beginnings of your problems. Lack of food and fuel, disruption of water utilities, reduced emergency services, a fast and substantial rise in angry, hungry people are can occur quickly if the catalyst for the event are severe enough.

There are four generally categories of Survival Preparation: Food; Water; Shelter; and, Security/Protection. Each with many facets of understanding and preparatory actions.

Consider food for instance. You could have months worth of frozen goods in a freezer, but when the power goes off, what are you going to do? Canned and boxed pantry goods will have an expiration date at some point. Dehydrated foods require water to hydrate. Ready to eat meals like Military MRE's are expensive. You final survival preparation solutions for food, will probably be a combination of all these food items.

One of the easiest things to do is to buy dry and canned pantry goods on sale or when you find good deals.  Put away several months of items and rotate them using the first in, first out principal. 

Security and Protection. I believe all law abiding Americans should own multiple guns. One gun cannot accomplish all your protection tasks as well as possible hunting applications. An individual prepping for survival against many different collapse scenarios would be best served by having several firearms (and ammunition) such as a handgun, shotgun and rifle.

There are other factors of security. Where you live; potential threat streams; refugee routes; defensibility of your home. Protection and security are usually best achieved in a teamwork approach. I say, "Survival is a Team Sport".

And of course, you cannot live without water. You will dehydrate and die without water long before you die of starvation. You simply must have a full time water source, best if not dependent upon power solutions to provide you the water. Some people have a water service where they, like stocking pantry items, buy 15 or 20 five gallon jugs as their stock then reduce the periodic delivery to what they use and use their existing stock again using the first in first out principal.   This is not the cheapest way to insure you have some water on hand when the lights go out or SHTF, but having some emergency food and water on hand gives you time to make a decision, stay or bug out.

Shelter is important as it provides protection from the elements and two legged threats. No matter how defensible or strong your survival location is, a Bug Out plan so you can rapidly vacate and move to another safe location are paramount. The Bug Out just doesn't consider where you are going, but how you are going to get there; but what you will take with you.

You can learn much and need to learn much in as quickest time period as you can. This site, as well as many other on-line sites reflect alot of planning tips, lessons learned, techniques, equipment ideas and much, much more. Make use of all these resources. Many of which we are linked to on the bottom right side of this page. Quickly develop a plan. Objectively review that plan continually. And prepare for some unfortunate things to happen to this country be it from an economic/dollar collapse or externally generated chaos. Educate yourself, prep well and good luck.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Mosin Nagent or British Enfield?

Nick wrote and asked UrbanSurvivalSkills which would be a better rifle, the Russian Mosin-Nagent or the British Enfield: "Hey I like your web site, especially the discussions on low cost preps and some of what some people do with about nothing. I am going to pickup a second rifle. My first is a M1 Garand in .30-06 and I have been looking at either a Russian 7.62 bolt action rifle or a British Enfield each I can get for less than $250. What do you think?"

UrbanMan's comment: With the price of the British Enfield at $250, I assume that it is a British Short Magazine Lee Enfield (SMLE) in the .303 British cartridge, and the Russian rifle is a Mosin-Nagent in 7.62x54R mm. Both are good rifles. If the Enfield you are talking about is an 1917 Enfield - then the discussion stops right here - buy that gun assuming it is in shootable condition. But lets go back to my first assumption that the Enfield is a Short Magazine Lee Enfield, thoughts on deciding between the two,....

Do you have enough ammunition stocked for the M1 Garand? Do you have a 12 gauge shotgun, with a decent magazine capacity and enough shot shells stocked for this gun? Both would be considerations for me before I bought a surplus military rifle.

The relative effectiveness of each cartridge - the .303 versus the 7.62x54R mm Russian are similar given the same bullet weight. If I am not mistaken, the .303 British has a very slight edge in muzzle velocity, too little to be a concern of mine. Both are accurate on large animal or man targets, certainly at 100 yards.

The advantages of the Lee-Enfield is a detachable 10 round box magazine, which presumably you could procure several more for a basic load. The disadvantages of the SMLE is that some were made in Canada (called Long Branches if I am again not mistaken) with only two grooves and were not very accurate at distances greater than 100 yards. Well, now I have to admit that thirty years ago, when I was in my twenties and buying guns left and right, I owned a SMLE of Long Branch manufacture and it was inaccurate. Maybe another disadvantage is the ammunition availability .....probably not nearly as available and more costly than the Russian 7.62x54R mm.

You can find 76.2x54R mm at multiple surplus and commercial sources, and at reasonable prices - stick to the non-corrosive primered stuff. The ammunition availability fact would drive me to choose the Mosin-Nagant over the SMLE. However, there are some SMLE re-barreled to 7.62 x 51mm Nato and if I found one of those in good condition it would be my choice over the Mosin-Nagent. Hope this helps you out. Prepare well and stay safe.