February 2020 Meeting Notes

February 8, 2020

  • Survival Fishing with the yo-yo reel
  • Making apple cider vinegar and the “mother”
  • The importance of vinegar, baking soda, garlic, cinnamon, and red pepper
  • Essential oils, tinctures, and herbs
  • Bucket storing techniques – O2 absorbers with type and volume, Mylar bags with type and models, bucket options

Yo-Yo Reels – Automated fishing
Yo-Yo reels were demonstrated and passed them around so folks could see how they work. These are essentially a spring-loaded reel that retracts when a fish takes the bait. These can be baited, set, then checked later. Note that, as far as we can tell, Florida freshwater fishing rules do not clearly indicate if they are legal or not to use here. We’re talking about fish as a food source under survival conditions when sports fishing rules would no longer apply.

Also demonstrated was a minnow trap – minnows make good bait. These occasionally show up at yard sales.

Video demonstrating the Yo-Yo reel:

Video showing a modification to the Yo-Yo reel:

 


Making apple cider vinegar and the “mother”
The importance of vinegar, baking soda, garlic, cinnamon, and red pepper

Hand-outs from this meeting can be found on the link at Kelly’s Corner. Two members shared information about loved ones who had been bitten by brown recluse spiders and how homeopathic remedies made the big difference to both these very serious cases.

Tip: Spiders hate peppermint. Spray a mix of peppermint oil and water around doors and windows. Always check your shoes if you leave them outside or in the garage. Works for mice too.

Demo – making vinegar. See Kelly’s Corner for further info on this.
Various essential oils and herbs were discussed, along with their use.

 


Bucket storing techniques – O2 absorbers with type and volume, Mylar bags with type and models, bucket options

Sealing up a Mylar bag filled with rice, along with oxygen absorbent packets.
Several days after this was sealed at the meeting, you can see how well the oxygen absorbent packets have worked by the way the bag has been pulled down as the oxygen was removed.

January 2020 Meeting Notes

January 11, 2020
These are the BASICS. If you’re just getting started, don’t miss this one.

  • Water – THE Most Important Prep
  • How much you really need and where to find it
  • Gutters, harvesting rain water, swimming pool, hot tub, ponds, filters, and purification
  • How to find water in the wild
  • Water storage and transportation options
  • Barrels, jugs, kiddie pools, plastic containers
  • Food, Part 1 – How much do we need – Time, Souls, and Calories
  • Food – Shop for the year, starting right now
  • Food – Methods of storing overview – canning, buckets, dehydration, meals-in-a-jar, MREs, 30-day storage buckets
  • Food – The 52 Week Method

Some of the items demonstrated and discussed:

1
2
3 (Note: StoveTec is apparently no longer in business)
4

It is important that we not get distracted by “Arts and Crafts Prepping” – cobbling together something that can easily and affordably be purchased today. Leave that for those who refuse to prepare. “Arts and Crafts Prepping” is kind of like building furniture out of old pallets – it might be fun, but that is very low quality wood and it will not last long. This isn’t a game that we’re playing, so quality matters. Don’t trust your drinking water to some plans you found on the web that use plastic buckets and sand, when you can buy something made for the purpose that will do the job right.

We are way past teaching “Arts and Crafts” prepping a.k.a. “How to survive in the wilderness” and are now focusing on how to prep in the here and now. Instead of learning how to sterilize water in a soda bottle using the sun…just buy a 100% proven, safe water filter. Now is the time to prepare while the good stuff is readily available and trucks are still delivering from Amazon.

Are you really wanting to go to Walmart or Publix if the coronavirus hits big time in the US or when Antifa takes to the streets because they don’t agree with the election and trucks stop delivering. Do you have a water barrel or 2 or 3? Water is the first to go in a “crisis”. Do you have a large supply of N95 masks?

To that end…prepare now.

Food self-sufficiency is important goal, but it is not a substitute for a good food storage program. A can of “Survival seeds” is not a plan – it is a way to sell a false sense of security.

REFERENCES
How Much Land Do I Need? – “David The Good” gives a great overview of gardening for self-sufficiency.

131 Survival Foods

One Year Supply Guide

Meeting Notes August 2018

August 11, 2018

  • Demo of Rogan Tools, by Mike Rogan
  • Tools for efficient vegetable gardening
  • Turning a lawn into a food-producing garden
  • Tower gardening and container gardening
  • Authenticating gold and silver coins
  • Group Radio Purchase

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:

Mike Rogan (left) showing tools to John.

 


Tools for Large Scale Gardening

A well-stocked garden tool shed will make gardening far more efficient.
An American hoe and an African hoe – both of current manufacture, but a world of difference. Two lessons: 1) Quality matters, and 2) It is possible to improvise if you failed to plan ahead.
Gardening tools demonstrated at the meeting

 

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

 

Maintenance:

  • Wash tools after each use
  • Store in clean, dry place
  • Thin coat of oil if needed
  • Keep a file handy to sharpen tools

 

Tool Sources:

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.

Push-Pull Hoe – similar to the scuffle hoe; used the same way.

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.

Seed Starting Tray (162 Cell) – Injection molded plastic from Hoss Tools.

Seed Sower – Easily handle small seeds.

 

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).

The local source is Living Towers in Eustis.

 

Authenticating Silver coins:

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
[Most Recent Quotes from www.kitco.com] [Most Recent Quotes from www.kitco.com] [Most Recent Quotes from www.kitco.com]
[Most Recent Quotes from www.kitco.com] [Most Recent Quotes from www.kitco.com] [Most Recent Quotes from www.kitco.com]

 


 

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.

Maintaining Nutritional Adequacy

Seriously consider printing this out for reference at a future time when it may no longer be just a mouse-click away.

Office Depot will turn 100 printed pages into a nice coil-bound book with heavy front and back covers for about four dollars. If you don’t have a capable printer, they can do the printing also.


Maintaining Nutritional Adequacy During A Prolonged Food Crisis

  • August 1979, PDF format, 94 pages
  • Kay B. Franz and Cresson H. Kearny
  • Department of Energy, Oak Ridge National Laboratory
  • Download this file

“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.”

Key Sections

  1. Nutrient Needs
  2. Application of Nutrient recommendations to Practical Rations
  3. Long Term Survival Rations in the United States
  4. Infants and Young Children
  5. Pregnancy and Lactation
  6. Radioactive Fallout and Food
  7. Nutritional Value of Germinated Seeds
  8. Some Suggestions for Using Wheat, Corn, and Other Grains and Legumes
  9. Radioactive Iodine and the Prophylactic Use of Stable Potassium Iodide
  10. Procedures for Obtaining Safe Water Under Emergency Conditions
  11. Method for Sterilizing Infant Feeding Utensils Without Boiling

Editor’s comments:
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