Imagine buying a house, and then discovering a fallout shelter hidden among the overgrown back yard. That’s what happened with a house in DeLand. For reasons that are obvious to any prepper, we cannot disclose the name of the owner or the exact location, but it is in or near DeLand. When the new owners started looking for a vaguely-named building that was on the property description, it took three attempts searching the property to find it. Among the undergrowth was a rusted wheelbarrow turned upside down. Beneath that was a rotting sheet of plywood. When the plywood was removed, a door and stairway was revealed.
Especially during the 1960’s, fallout shelters were a popular option in homes. This is the fifth fallout shelter in this area that I am aware of. Since people are generally very quiet about their existence, it’s a safe bet that they are far more common than one might think.
Today’s issue of SpaceWeather.com reports on the Solar Minimum that we are now entering.
THE CHILL OF SOLAR MINIMUM: The sun is entering one of the deepest Solar Minima of the Space Age. Sunspots have been absent for most of 2018, and the sun’s ultraviolet output has sharply dropped. New research shows that Earth’s upper atmosphere is responding.
“We see a cooling trend,” says Martin Mlynczak of NASA’s Langley Research Center. “High above Earth’s surface near the edge of space, our atmosphere is losing heat energy. If current trends continue, the upper atmosphere could soon set a Space Age record for cold.”
The Grand Solar Minimum (GSM) will be the topic of an upcoming meeting as soon as we can schedule it. In the mean time, this PDF is a formal paper presented at the Actuaries Summit in Sydney, Australia; it gives a very detailed overview of what GSM is, and how it is projected to affect us.
Rogan Tools – Mike Rogan gave a demo of the tools that he produces. These are very tough, made-in-the-USA, multi-use tools. Each tool is designed to do the four functions shown in the graphic below:
Tools for Large Scale Gardening
Tools to Consider:
Note: Be sensible; you don’t need everything;
start slowly; buy quality
Work gloves, leather and rubberized
Hat, long sleeve shirt, sunglasses, sweat band
Grubbing Hoe – breaking new ground
Broad fork – breaking new ground
4-tine Spading fork – breaking new ground
Standard round shovel – “everything”
Short small shovel – transplanting, digging potatoes
Scuffle hoe / stirrup hoe – weeding
Wheel hoe – weeding, cultivating, planting prep
Earthway (or equivalent) Seeder – row planting
Jab seeder – large seeds, more control, slower
Landscape rake or iron rake – seed bed prep
Speedling trays – seed starting
Harvesting bucket – frees up both hands for picking
Garden knife – harvesting, general work
Pruning shears – pruning and harvesting
Garden trowel – planting and transplanting
Wash tools after each use
Store in clean, dry place
Thin coat of oil if needed
Keep a file handy to sharpen tools
EasyDigging.com – excellent source for a wide variety of top quality hand tools for gardening.
Tools: Meadow Creature Broadfork – as close to an indestructible tool as it gets. Manual tiller for breaking new ground and preparing ground for gardening. Expensive, but your great-grandchildren will probably still be using it.
Hoss Wheel Hoe – The key to weed control is to cut them down when they first come up, and then keep cutting them down. The Hoss Wheel Hoe is perfect for running down between the rows. In our sandy soil, you can weed almost as fast as you can walk.
ProHoe Scuffle Hoe – ProHoe tools are made from recycled disc blades, and are about as tough as it gets. All of their tools should last a life time (or more) if given reasonable care.
Harvesting Bucket – An ordinary bucket or basket will work just fine, but these allow you to use both hands to harvest, it keeps the bucket close to you and not swinging around. Well worth it if you have a large garden or more than a couple of fruit trees. It’s also easier on your back since you don’t have to keep setting the bucket down and picking it up to move. Very heavy duty construction.
Earthway Garden Seeder – There are other seeders available, and for some applications, the Earthway might not be the ideal choice; however, for general garden use for average size seeds (most of what is planted in the Central Florida area), you can’t go wrong with the Earthway seeder. They have been around for a long time, replacement parts are readily available, and it is a simple design in a rugged package.
Speedling Tray (72 Cell) – One of the fastest, most efficient ways to start larger quantities of seeds. These are made from Styrofoam.
Marilyn described how tower gardening works – the advantages and disadvantages. If you are away traveling, this might not be a good choice for you. If you’re usually at home, tower gardening is a good way to grow a lot in very little space. Marilyn does a good bit of traveling, so she is selling hers. Please contact her directly if you are interested (members-only email went out with details on this).
Fisch System – The “gold standard” (pardon the pun) for authenticating most mint-issued bullion coins. It checks circumference, thickness, and weight. If a coin falls outside the specifications for the coin, then it is most likely a fake.
If your plans include the potential for a currency collapse, then having some silver on hand would be a good idea. Keep in mind, though, that silver and gold are not an “investment” – they are simply hard currency.
Mint-issued bullion coins vs. “Rounds” – A “round” is a “coin” made by a private company. There is typically a lower premium on rounds, which is what makes them attractive. The initial purchase price is lower than a mint-issued coin. The problem is that this also means that the over-all value is lower than a mint-issued coin. When a coin is sold or used to purchase something, the added premium that was initially paid is still calculated into the value of the coin. The main point, though, is that a mint-issued coin can be authenticated, where a round can not without additional testing. This is less of a factor for silver than for gold, since the value of gold makes it a high-value target for fraud. Coins and bars sold as “gold” have been found that have a Tungsten core and a thin gold outer shell – yet another reason why gold is not the best choice for economic preparedness.
Summary: Having a means to authenticate silver coins would be valuable capability – even if you only have a small handful of it yourself. Authentication would be a valued service should hard currency become “the new standard”. While gold gets the headlines, it is far too valuable per ounce to be of much practical use – silver is far more useful, and silver coins are still quite recognizable to people.
Discussion went well beyond the topic of authentication. How and where to buy precious metal coins was a popular topic. One source that several members have had experience with is True Metals Group (located here in Florida). Others have purchased coins at gun and coin shows, and at store-front coin dealers.
Before buying bullion coins, check to be sure that your bank safe deposit box is currently paid up. If you will need a larger size, then it’s time to upgrade.
Gold and Silver Price History
Group Radio Purchase – Bud described the radios that will be purchased as part of the group order. This is the same radio as the previous group order several years ago.
Luffa gourd scrubbing sponge. This plant is well suited to this area. It is a prolific vine that produces beautiful yellow flowers. Immature fruit can be eaten, and the mature fruit are used for scrubbing. Seeds will be available at the next meeting.
For most of us, preparedness can be fairly abstract. We have hurricanes, and the threat of other disasters, but they can often seem far in the distance. For the Boer of South Africa, the threat is immediate and very real. We can learn much from them and how they are preparing.
Their English web site is primarily an outreach program. Their main web site is in Africaans, but we can still glean good information without understanding that language.
The Suidlanders an emergency plan initiative officially founded in 2006 to prepare a Protestant Christian South African Minority for a coming violent revolution. We are non-aggressive and legal in our preparation. Constituted lawfully under Geneva Convention, with particular reference to Protocols I & II of the Protocols Additional, for the protection of non-combatant civilian Afrikaners (women, children, the elderly and the non-able bodied) in the event of a civil war.
This short video (published MAR 8, 2018) shows some of the preparations being made by White farmers who are facing the confiscation of their farms and very clear threats of genocide.
“Large and well-dispensed food reserves are a recognized essential part of the preparations to survive a nuclear war. The largest food reserves in a long-term survival situation would be the unprocessed grains, beans, and a few other elementary foods. There is a need for a manual on the efficient use of basic foods, both to inform persons accumulating emergency stocks before a possible food crisis arises and to guide those having responsibilities for the post-attack distribution and use of available foods.”
“This handbook is the first to assemble nutritional information and make recommendations on the efficient use of unprocessed grains, beans, and other elemental foods during the aftermath of a nuclear war. These basic foods would constitute the main resources to combat famine after a major nuclear attack. Such an attack would reduce and probably eliminate most commercial food processing for many months.”
Application of Nutrient recommendations to Practical Rations
Long Term Survival Rations in the United States
Infants and Young Children
Pregnancy and Lactation
Radioactive Fallout and Food
Nutritional Value of Germinated Seeds
Some Suggestions for Using Wheat, Corn, and Other Grains and Legumes
Radioactive Iodine and the Prophylactic Use of Stable Potassium Iodide
Procedures for Obtaining Safe Water Under Emergency Conditions
Method for Sterilizing Infant Feeding Utensils Without Boiling
Cresson H. Kearny is also the author of the classic, “Nuclear War Survival Skills”.
Don’t assume that “the government” will be using this information to feed the people. Be prepared to organize, teach, and lead your neighbors in a local recovery effort. Food will be right near the top of the list of needs, so being able to efficiently use whatever is available is a top priority.
ꔷ No one is coming to the rescue
ꔷ You’re on your own
ꔷ Everything is local