If you've landed on this blog by mistake, please follow this link:


Please update your bookmarks and the links on your sites.

Join our forum at:

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Fuel to $5 preps

Post by: imtnt1

So a couple big analysts are predicting fuel will hit $5/gallon by 2012. It hurt pretty bad when it was just $4.25 last time, but with the additional WA state gas taxes, it could easily be higher inland (not to mention the current state of fuel being trucked inland due to the 14 week lock closures on the river). We've considered food a good hedge since it will obviously go up in price to compensate for transportation expenses, making it a good thing to buy now. How else are you local WA preppers tweaking your preps to deal with the anticipated fuel increases?

To comment to this post please follow this link:

Join the APN Forum at www.AmericanPreppersNetwork.net
Visit the Washington Forum at www.WashingtonPreppersNetwork.net

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Alternative Home Heating Methods

Do you have more than one way to keep your home heated? These preppers do!

Thanks to MudMaiden for starting the buzz!
Join the APN Forum at http://www.americanpreppersnetwork.net/
Visit the Washington Forum at http://www.washingtonpreppersnetwork.net/

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Avoiding Java Jitters During TEOTWAKI!

About 2 years ago I found myself standing in front of the wall of coffee in my local grocery store. I noticed immediately that the price of a pound of coffee was higher than ever. I decided at that very moment to do something about it! I knew that somebody had to roast the coffee, so why couldn't I do it too?!
I went online and started researching the "how, what, when, where and why" of coffee. Coffee is grown all over the world. Many factors go into the flavor that make up the green (unroasted) coffee bean: soil type, climate, age of the plants etc.
No matter who grew the beans or where they were grown, I quickly found vendors that were eager to sell me their unroasted coffee. I find it very cool that I can order beans from Columbia in my office in Seattle and a week later they arrive on my porch!
Upon first inspection, green coffee is much different from any store bought coffee I have ever seen (think popcorn kernals vs. popcorn). Green coffee beans are very very hard and quite a bit smaller than roasted beans and usually have a pale green complexion.
More online research led me to several ebay auctions for "home coffee roasting equipment". Much of the home coffee roasting equipment is fairly expensive, especially considering what you get. I settled on a design that utilizes a drum that attached to the spit rod of any standard gas BBQ grille. I bought a small sheet of perforated stainless steel. I rolled this into a cylinder. I made up 3 L-brackets that are the same length as the cylinder. I used a drill with a 1/16" drill bit and rivets to secure the L-brackets inside the cylinder at equal spacing.
Once the brackets are secured and the overlapped edges of the cylinder have been riveted, I concentrated on the ends. I cut a circle from another sheet of stainless steel that was just bigger in diameter than the cylinder. I attached the disc to the end of the cylinder with small L-brackets and rivets. The other end I cut out the same oversized disc and used hi temp springs that attach to small holes drilled in the edges of the disc. With a pair of needlnosed pliars, I carefully curved the ends of the springs so they would fit in the holes of the cylinder with good tension.

I measured the diameter of the spit rod with a caliper and carefully drilled out a hole in the center of the disc on the "fixed" end. I slid the spitrod into the hole and lined up and marked where the 4 sharp "prongs" touched the disc. I used a drill bit slightly larger than prongs to make 4 holes in the disc. I repeated those steps for the removable lid and voila! One homemade BBQ roasting drum was made.
Since I had never roasted coffee before, I had several trial and errors (mostly errors) before I found a good combination of flame and time and amount of beans to get that rich dark roast. For my Jenn Air stainless grille, it takes 3/4 turn on all 3 burner knobs, basket slightly less than half full and about 28 minutes to get a good medium/dark roast. More trial and error taught me to let the entire set up cool down for atleast 25 minutes before handling it without hi-temp gloves.
Once the assembly is cooled sufficiently, you can remove the drum from the rod and open the top. I simply dump the beans onto a cookie sheet and let it sit overnight on the countertop in the kitchen. The smell is incredibly wonderful! Even folks who don't like the taste of coffee usually like the aroma. Coffee is optimally fresh for about 7-10 days, then the vapors will have released from the beans and the taste degredation is noticeable! Most of the coffee in the grocery stores are flavored. I suspect it is to mask the fact that it isn't optimally fresh...
Green coffee beans can stay years and years without going bad as long as moisture stays out of the packaging. Only after roasting will the beans start emitting their essential oils. In a pinch, you could use a popcorn basket and shake the beans gently over an open flame until they crack. When they have started cracking a second time you need to pay particular attention to the color. I HAVE made charBQ coffee before. I don't recommend it to anyone.
Join the APN Forum at http://www.americanpreppersnetwork.net/
Visit the Washington Forum at http://www.washingtonpreppersnetwork.net/

Monday, December 6, 2010

Welcome New Washington Members

Welcome New Member:


New guy here. Live in Redmond. Been around awhile, currently pretty active on the Survival Forumns on AR15.com. :)

Please welcome our newest member by following the link below:

Join the APN Forum at www.AmericanPreppersNetwork.net
Visit the Washington Forum at www.WashingtonPreppersNetwork.net

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Storing Water at Home.

Want to start stocking up on water at your home?
Thanks to Lamb on the APN site for starting the discussion!

Join the APN Forum at www.AmericanPreppersNetwork.net
Visit the Washington Forum at www.WashingtonPreppersNetwork.net

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Washington Preppers Roll Call

The Washington Preppers Network is conducting a Roll Call on our forum.  If you are a prepper please check in.

* Here is a link to the Roll Call:

You have to be registered to check in.  If you aren't registered please join here:

* If you are a HAM Radio Operator check in here:

* If you are an A.N.T.S. member please check in here:

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Missile Launch On The West Coast?

Was it a jet airplane? A rocket? An ICBM? Read all about it HERE

Thanks to tsparks2626 for starting the conversation!
Join the APN Forum at www.AmericanPreppersNetwork.net
Visit the Washington Forum at www.WashingtonPreppersNetwork.net

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Solar Flares!

Lots of talk about solar flares going on!

Thanks to JackieP for starting the topic

Join the APN Forum at www.AmericanPreppersNetwork.net
Visit the Washington Forum at www.WashingtonPreppersNetwork.net

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Vinegar And It's Many Uses!

We all know what it tastes like.... But there are many facets to this pungent fluid called vinegar...

Thanks to PeteJr for starting the discussion!
Join the APN Forum at www.AmericanPreppersNetwork.net
Visit the Washington Forum at www.WashingtonPreppersNetwork.net

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Getting Your Vehicle 72 Hour Kit Fixed Up!

With winter approaching, it's time to get your vehicle prepped with a 72 hour kit

Thanks to ReadyMom for starting the thread!

Join the APN Forum at www.AmericanPreppersNetwork.net
Visit the Washington Forum at www.WashingtonPreppersNetwork.net

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Baking Your Own Bread

Can't decipher the ingredients in that store bought loaf of bread? Why not try baking your own bread at home? It's cheap, wholesome, and tastes much better!

Thanks to Edea1976 for starting the discussion on the American Preppers Network

Join the APN Forum at www.AmericanPreppersNetwork.net
Visit the Washington Forum at www.WashingtonPreppersNetwork.net

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Welcome New Members

Welcome new Washington members:


Retired Army Spook, living in the Northwest. Not much to say, except it's raining and I'm bored stiff!

Please welcome our new member by following the link below:


I guess I was a prepper long before anyone was called that - or a survivalist. I just thought of it as part of smart every day living to make sure you had a stock of supplies in case of emergency. My Dad lived thru the Great Depression and taught me the motto of "use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without". Even tho he was a "man's man" & had been a soldier in both world wars he also knew how to cook, sew, clean, garden, can foods, etc.

These things stuck with me as I grew up & moved to the mountains of Washington state. I learned to go shopping once a month or less in the winter - how to stock up, make great meals with what you have on hand, cook on wood stoves or campfires year round, take care of animals (still can't bring myself to kill them tho *laughs*), etc. I did these things because of necessity at the time - not because I thought in the future there might be a political collapse, Armageddon, alien invasion, etc.

I guess I'm still not very paranoid about those things happening but I do believe in being prepared in case of natural disasters or crazies of the world. I'll be honest & say I'm more afraid of the ultra religious Christians than I am of the Muslims or any other religious or political groups. :lol:

Anyway, I still stash things away like a crazed squirrel as winter nears. And I want to become even better prepared "just in case". Pardon me tho if I don't make a pretty tinfoil hat.

Please welcome our new member by following the link below:


I just moved to the Seattle area from North Carolina a few months ago. I have been into prepping for a few years now, but there is always something new to learn.

Please welcome our new member by following the link below:


Greetings all. Avid prepper here who is glad to be among such strong, self-reliant folks. I've been lurking for quite a while and realized that the best way to plan and to spread the message is to become more involved. Looking forward to learning from some of you life-long preppers!

Please welcome our new member by following the link below:

Join the APN Forum at www.AmericanPreppersNetwork.net
Visit the Washington Forum at www.WashingtonPreppersNetwork.net

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Storing Shoes for Family

This discussion highlights shoes as preparedness items for you and your family!

Thanks to juju_mommy for starting the discussion!

Join the APN Forum at www.AmericanPreppersNetwork.net
Visit the Washington Forum at www.WashingtonPreppersNetwork.net

Friday, October 15, 2010

How To Start Your Years Supply For A Few Hundred

Author: The Light

Start your years supply of food for a few hundred dollars!

This is a great article on starting your home preparedness pantry by our own "The Light"!

Join the APN Forum at www.AmericanPreppersNetwork.net
Visit the Washington Forum at www.WashingtonPreppersNetwork.net

Saturday, October 9, 2010

No Rain Check Required

How many times have you had to hop in the car and drive to the grocery store for a single item? Maybe you spent time clipping coupons, just to find out that the store was out of your favorite item that was on sale? You have to wait in line, ask for a rain check and come back later for the item you needed 2 weeks ago... Then prepping is for you!
Prepping is simply the mindset that you don't want to rely on anyone else for your own basic needs. It's a way of life that helps you to be more sulf sufficient, especially in times of trouble. It is both prudent and practical to have some food stored up for you and your loved ones, water to drink, first aid for boo-boos, home security, and some cash or precious metals tucked away.
One question I hear alot is: "How can I do all that when I live paycheck to paycheck?" Well, you certainly don't run out to the local grocery store and spend 2 grand on your credit card! Here is a rough outline I used when I first started out:

1. Take inventory of your current preps. That is, write down ALL of the food you currently have in your pantry, fridge and freezer.
2. Write down all of the items you use the MOST in your household.
3. Look for sales at your favorite stores.
4. Next time you go shopping, buy two or three of the items you use MOST in your household that's on your list. Get 2 boxes of detergent or packages of razors or toilet cleaner. Whatever is on your list and is on sale, you get at least two.
5. When you get home from shopping, you place the first item where you normally would and the second, you put in the garage or under the sink or wherever you deem appropriate.
6. Update your list and keep up on your inventory.

If you keep up on it at all, you will find that you already have what you need in your own pantry! You can apply these principles to other aspects of your home, such as: garage/tools, yard and garden, clothing, etc. Most of us are conditioned to think that we need to go to a store each and every time we run out of something. Not so. Gain a little sovereignty over your own life and "store what you buy and buy what you store".

Welcome to the Washington state
Join the APN Forum at www.AmericanPreppersNetwork.net
Visit the Washington Forum at www.WashingtonPreppersNetwork.net

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Join the APN Forum at www.AmericanPreppersNetwork.net
Visit the Washington Forum at www.WashingtonPreppersNetwork.net

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

How To Join The Washington Preppers Network

Come learn survival, preparedness and sustainable living with us!

The Preppers networks are all about volunteering our knowledge and skills with each other. We share ideas, tips and basically network with each other to survive any type of disaster whether natural, man made, or economic. Information that you learn and share with others will help everyone learn how to find "Freedom Through Teaching Others Self Reliance."

Joining the Washington Preppers Network is simple, and most of all, it's Free! To join, just follow these few steps.

1) Register to become a member of the American Preppers Network www.AmericanPreppersNetwork.net The registration page is here: http://americanpreppersnetwork.net/ucp.php?mode=register

2) Once you have your account, go to the index page of the forum and do your first post by introducing yourself in the new members area. http://americanpreppersnetwork.net/index.php

3) Once you know how to do posts, visit the Washington forum and introduce yourself. The Washington forum can be found by scrolling to the lower section of the index page where you will find a list of states, or you can go directly by following this URL: www.WashingtonPreppersNetwork.net

4) After you've visited the Washington forum, follow this link to learn how to join the Washington Preppers Network group:

APN's success depends on your contributions. If you would like to donate to our organization by becoming a Gold Member you can join the APN Gold Members club by following this link:
Gold Membership is only $5 per month. For a list of Gold Member benefits go here

Thank you for your support!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Stovetec Update

StoveTec stoves have become very popular and with popularity has come a price increase. Stoves for wood only with a single door opening are now retailing for $65 and stoves that burn both wood and charcoal and have a second door are now retailing for $69. For local availability or additional information, email me at: ldsscouter1@yahoo.com ; or, contact StoveTec direct at: stovetec.net (Stovetec pricing includes shipping and handling)

Join the APN Forum at www.AmericanPreppersNetwork.net
Visit the Washington Forum at www.WashingtonPreppersNetwork.net

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Building your own CQ Group

The following is an email that I received from another prepper who felt this CQ has some great merit. It is complete with some really good ideas. H. B. is not a member of the LDS Church but references it as a source for information. He also disclaims that all faiths should avoid politics and religion at meetings, in order to build a larger collective group. Good wisdom involves avoiding offending others but also taking advantage of all available resources. Enjoy:

Colloquium (CQ) Groups--Part One, by H.B. in North Central Idaho

The Beginning
CQ has a unique definition to many people. One military and another for the Amateur Radio ("ham") community. I’d like to add another definition for CQ. CQ to us refers to our local community preparedness group that we started five months ago. CQ is actually short for Colloquium- which basically means an open discussion about various topics. I chose colloquium to shorten the even longer original name-”community preparedness meeting at the Big Cedar Schoolhouse” Whew! What a mouthful! You can see why it was abbreviated. I soon got tired of having to explain what a colloquium meant so CQ it became. I prefer the original and classical word but will concede to our generational ignorance caused by 100 years of government schooling.

The following is a concise record of how we formed our group, how it is organized, what it has accomplished and how it will continue to grow and mature. We are sharing this information in hope that you will be encouraged to take the same step and be empowered with information to be successful in your endeavors to organize your family, friends, neighborhood and community. So let us begin.

The original idea for a preparedness group came from the most obvious place--"Patriots: A Novel of Survival in the Coming Collapse". (Just a quick side note: any attendee of our CQ who hasn’t read it is soon ridiculed, harassed, admonished and put on the rack until they read it). SurvivalBlog is a primary source for any research done by me if I am presenting a topic.
I realized that I couldn’t have a group the same as the “Grays” in "Patriots" so I gave careful consideration to individual prepping. Individual prepping leads quickly to recognition of the fact that you can’t do everything yourself and the futility of trying. You need other people to complete the total package of fulfilling daily needs. No one person has the time, money or expertise to be a all-in-one survival community. Who would want to anyway? I like the idea of needing neighbors and sharing skills, assets and blessings. For instance, my wife is an excellent cook but I really enjoy potluck dinners. It gives you variety and flavor that you would otherwise never experience, especially desserts! More on that later.

The CQ acorn was planted one sunny day when I was talking with two other 4H dads. The kids were busy with their 4H project so us Dad’s started conversing about the bad state of affairs and the coming economic troubles. I then broached the subject and asked, “..wouldn’t it be great if we all got together to discuss preparedness and get organized as a community?” The response was overwhelmingly positive. One of the men belonged to the LDS church and he gave me a thorough review of their church preparedness model and how they have a program dating back 60+ years. I was impressed. They have a great program and lots of resources for preparedness minded individuals. Just one problem. I’m not a member of the LDS church nor do I see myself joining their church.

I realized that I wanted to know more about their program but I didn’t want to open the door for the “Amway Guy” either--if you get my drift. Once I started to inquire of acquaintances that were LDS I was pleasantly surprised that they actively encouraged all community members to prepare-whether they are LDS or not. They do so without proselytizing or recruiting. I haven’t asked but I think they have a real common sense approach to preparedness philosophy. Every family outside their church who is prepared is one less community member who may need help when times get rough. They prepare for not just themselves but to dispense charity also. As for proselytizing, the young men on bikes will get to you eventually for a visit at your doorstep so let prepping be prepping and mission work be mission work.

I, obviously, can’t speak for the LDS church but my dealings with them have been honest, straightforward and mutually respectful. I know they are LDS and they know I am a Christian Reformed Evangelical. So be it! We disagree on doctrinal issues but agree on the coming storm and we have grown to care for one another. Christ called us to be in the world and have dominion over our culture for Him. How can that happen if we don’t have acquaintances outside the church-even friends who are of different faiths and beliefs? Being in the world is not being of the world-two different things. I retain close friendships for those who are of my covenant community all others are just friends or acquaintances. The point is don’t be afraid to interact with the LDS or others. They won’t bite.

Anyway, once I found out about their preparedness history and apparatus I asked how we could access those resources. I was encouraged to speak with people in the LDS church membership who had specific duties or leadership. In our area one individual had tried to start a community preparedness group but it only had buy-in from those who were LDS and no others. The problem was that non-LDS saw it as an LDS thing. I immediately realized the potential of garnering support from the vestiges of this group and build from there. One thing I hate is re-inventing the wheel and this would save us time and energy in getting the word out to potential attendees.

Each community has a business or businesses that have their pulse on the community. It may be a coffee shop or café where the locals meet and exchange information and discuss politics or the like. I was fortunate to find just the thing here in my small community. I explained to the man who owned the business my plan and he said it was a great idea and new for a fact that most of his customers would be interested. He also thought that CQ would succeed because I was organizing it. Meaning that would calm the fears of non-LDS folks and so we would see attendance from everyone. We also had another local asset, a small schoolhouse we could rent for $10 dollars. The location was central for all my neighbors as we are several miles out of town.
Choosing a good location is vital. An old-schoolhouse, grange, or community center. Making the location neutral is important as some folks don’t like going into houses of worship not their own. Being considerate of the entire group can pave the way for much consensus and team building.

Our location lasted two meeting before we moved it up the road to my own property. We have lasted two meetings here and now are moving it to a more public location due to growth and scope of CQ. Your location needs to have a few obvious and not so obvious essentials. The obvious are restrooms, water and power. I have learned the more amenities there are the more options you have for your topics. Cover from the elements, tables and even a dry erase board can add significantly your program. You may notice I didn’t mention chairs as we have had our last two CQs outside and everyone brings there own lawn chair. By the time the weather turns we will be back indoors at a location that has all these things. Sound system is recommended once your group reaches 100 people otherwise its overkill for smaller groups.

Now that we knew we wanted a meeting and I had consensus of several community leaders (not politicians) we set a date and started formulating a game plan.

First rule--Focus on excellence and everything else will follow.
Focusing on excellence requires you to see through the small details that can aggravate and disrupt your groups momentum. Momentum or positive word-of-mouth reputation is important to get your neighbors involved. Once they’ve figured out they are missing something fun, innovative and worthwhile they will make an effort to attend.

Second Rule--Keep It Simple and Short.
All our CQ’s are scheduled for Two hours every 1st Friday of the month. 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm with social time afterward so people can talk and network with each other. Our second CQ was so successful people stayed until 11:00 pm just to talk and network. We chose Friday nights for its ability to allow for later hours and it doesn’t burn a weekend day which are a commodity in rural areas. We try to have four topics discussed in 20 minute segments. If a topic takes longer the presenter gets another slot the following month or gets a double. For example, our first and second CQ had a presentation on lighting in austere environments. The first CQ he covered oil or kerosene type lanterns. The next CQ he presented part two which covered pressure fuel (Coleman) lanterns. The CQ this last Friday we had a Physician’s Assistant provide us a basic overview of the three styles of medical care: Grid Up, Wilderness, and Grid Down. This took 45 minutes but set the foundation for future topics on medical issues moving forward. This has been our one exception to the 20 minute rule so each topic stays fresh and the attendees don’t get lecture fatigue so changing topics every 20 minutes keeps fatigue to a minimum.

Third Rule--Focus on skill building.
Discernment of economic disasters and wisdom about our fragile society or thin veneer of civilized behavior is the foundation for a preparedness mindset. The building of skills becomes the obvious outcome of such knowledge. The skills that remove you from the J.I.T. supply chain are the skills we look to build in each other and ourselves. The following topics were covered in the last four CQs.
CQ-1: -Introduction to the concept and quick demographic survey.
-Pruning For Production-Fruit Trees and Bushes.
-Lighting: Lamps and Candles in Austere Environments.
-Beans, Bullets & Band-Aids-Various topics/open discussion.
CQ-2: -Review of Formal Emergency Management Plan for Area.
-Lighting: Lamps & Candles Cont.--Fuel Lanterns.
-Discussion of Topics for future CQ’s.
-Beans, Bullets & Band-Aids-Various topics/open discussion.
CQ-3 -Review of Color Code of Awareness/Plan to design Color Code
Emergency Action List.
-Latest CPR Techniques and Certification Signup.
-Radio Basics and Options.
-Water Production and Storage.
-Beans, Bullets & Band-Aids-Various topics/open discussion.
CQ-4 -Update on progress for Color Code Emergency Action List.
-General Advanced Medical Primer.
-Water Filtration, Purification and Storage.
-Knife and Blade Sharpening.
The topics were picked at random or by request. Again, keep it short and sweet. Those presenting topics should be experts in their field or have extensive knowledge otherwise you can see right through it. Focus on Excellence!

Fourth Rule--No Militia or Talk of Making War.
We all know the look. The look you get when you say “preparedness”: like you’ve got three heads and just admitted you like country dancing with Bigfoot(for the record--Sasquatch don‘t dance, especially to country music!). If you want full community buy-in and support you have to be able to give guarantees that the war mongers among us are welcome but will not be given time to speak or recruit for there own self interest.

We do discuss guns, training and other topics pertaining to paramilitary preparedness but we declare up front that guns and gun training are for the gun range. There is a separate time and place that is appropriate for such discussion but CQ is not it. Paramilitary preparedness and training are subjects best discussed quietly amongst friends you know and trust--not publicly and especially not amongst a general populace. It will turn off a large percentage of attendees and kill any momentum you might be building. Again, focus on excellence by keeping topics short, concise and on schedule. Do Not Give a Formal Platform to a Radical. It will poison your efforts. I will discuss in Part Two how we handled just such an issue.

Fifth Rule--No Politics or Religion
CQ sees regular attendance by LDS members, Christians of different denominations and a family that are Messianic Jews. We are even seeing a growing contingency of granola folks. I hope “granola” is the right word to describe the holistic/organic living group without offense. I’ve slowly been educated by our neighbors who live this culture. I’ve learned they love to barbeque (non-meat dogs or turkey burgers), drink good beer (life’s too short to drink bad beer) and some of them even love to shoot. Let’s face reality--organic chips and salsa are the best!

What I’m trying to get at with rule number five is we need to focus on what we have in common--not what can divide us. Keep the group and discussion focused on skill building. One person described CQ as "4H on steroids" or "4H for adults". A perfect description.

Sixth Rule--Don’t have a bunch of rules.
Over regulation, organization and rule making will turn people away. They want to come and be a part of something without having to join something. No call chains, emails or Yahoo groups. Again, keep it simple for you and them. You’ll thank yourself later and they will thank you by attending and complimenting you on the quality and success of your meetings. An occasional pat on the back and slice of apple pie is all I need to do my part and it should be that simple for you also. If it isn’t it’s time to look in the mirror and ask why you want to lead such a group.

In closing, I hope this helps you with starting your own CQ. “CQ-Part Two What We Have Learned” will describe some of the details of what is written above and how to avoid pitfalls and headaches associated with organizing a community group. I would like to leave you with two things: Our motto, Parasumus (Latin) “We Prepare” and our stated purpose: "To further community cohesiveness through skill building and resource networking in preparation of societal disruption and change."
Gloria Deo!

Good luck on setting up your own CQ.

Bill Allen

Join the APN Forum at www.AmericanPreppersNetwork.net
Visit the Washington Forum at www.WashingtonPreppersNetwork.net

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Stovetec Rocket Stoves

In third world countries, Stovetec is rapidly becoming a household name. It is the name for a rocket stove design which has delivered over 70,000 stoves to third world countries and disaster areas such as Haiti and Chile after their two major earthquakes.

I have studied quite a few rocket stove websites for the purpose of obtaining one or making my own stove to add to my emergency preparedness gear for disaster preparedness. When I discovered the Stovetec, it was love at first sight. Here are my reasons for purchasing one and why I am now assisting my wife in distributing this stove.

1. The stove has been tried and tested in real situations where the world as we know it has ended from refugee camps and Red Cross shelters to small villages and hamlets in disaster areas. Stovetec has delivered over 70,000 units to third world nations as of this time and works with many humanitarian organizations worldwide.

2. The stove burns a minimum of 50% less wood and has 70% fewer emissions of carbon monoxide than standard stove fires because of it's design, which acts as a 'gasifier' effect to more completely burn the gases produced.

3. It burns sticks, charcoal and coal and can be adapted to burn wood pellets, thus, when there is no longer any gas or propane or other fuels left after "teotwawki" happens, you can burn just about anything, from just a handful of sticks to dried cow and steer manure to boil your water or cook your food with.

4. Stovetec stoves are put together well with a metal bucket design with firebrick and cast iron grates and cast iron stove top. It has two metal doors. An upper door which, when removed can load sticks on the accompanying metal rack shelf. The lower door can be opened to allow air flow under the fire to fan the flames and better cook the fuel, creating a rocket affect with better combustion and better concentration of heat. When burning charcoal or coals, the top shelf firebrick is returned and the upper door is closed. Only the bottom door is used to adjust the amount of air flow to the coal or charcoal. Also the kit includes an aluminum pot skirt which hugs the pot you place on top of the stove and helps reduce another 25% in fuel use as it concentrates the heat around the bottom of the pot and the sides of the pot. The skirt is adjustable for different size pans up to 10 inches in diameter.

5. Want to cook with your cast iron frying pan or your dutch oven? No problem.

6. Cleaner burning translates to less smoke to breathe.

7. The Stovetec Wood-Charcoal Stove retails for $49 and coupled with shipping and handling from Southern Oregon the price comes to $65.00, a very good price for a very good stove of this quality.

8. This is a great addition to your emergency preparedness gear. When there is no fuel left after an emergency, there will always still be sticks to fire up your stove for free.

9. Boiling water or cooking with a handful of sticks is very conservative and helps save our environment in many ways.

If you would like to see a Stovetec Rocket Stove or pick one up locally in Lewis, Pierce or Thurston County, send me an email at photowild@yahoo.com.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Shelter made from large plastic bags or sheets of plastic

Gene Ward, a former US Air Force global survival instructor and prior owner of Survival and Outdoor Safety (before he passed away), created a video entitled "Survival beyond the 10 Essentials". In it he shows how to take plastic bags and make shelters. Unfortunately I could not locate any photos available outside his video so I built a shelter from his ideas myself and had my wife assist me in showing how functional the shelter can be. He recommended using four things, all of which could be contained in a small pouch: 8 inch cable lock ties, duct tape, two or three large plastic bags and 12 poles (6 - 8 footers and 6 - 6 footers). Plastic tarps will work also, either for sides or for a ground cloth. See the below photos.

This photo shows a standard A-Frame tent.

This photo shows how the tent can be opened up and with the addition to two extra poles (not shown) you have a very open shelter for multiple uses and abundant room to work with.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

What's a basic sewing kit?

For me, having grown up sewing, it seems unfathomable that many people don’t know how to do basic maintenance or sewing, but it’s true. I have work contacts who cannot even replace a missing button – one even has a dog who likes to chew them off her blouses-while others don’t know how to hem pants or repair a split seam. If for no other reason than to not pay $5-10 a pair of pants or for replacing a button, it is worth having a basic sewing kit and knowing how to use it. The super basic small emergency kits found online or at fabric and craft stores are great for slipping into a purse, glove compartment or desk drawer for those “urgent” repairs, but not much else, so what do you put in a basic sewing kit?
First is the container, whether it is a basket or miniature box with pullout shelves, a recycled pretty metallic tin or paper Mache box from the thrift store for larger kits or a snap lock kitchen container. I have a nice collection of tins and boxes to sort out larger amounts of things since I’m a crafter/hoarder and like the Victorianesque effect to keep them organized yet pretty. The thrift stores are my friends for that, as I can pick them up for less than a dollar apiece.
Scissors: 1 reliable pair of paper scissors and1 pair of fabric shears. Color coding your handles can help keep them straight, especially since you don’t want to use fabric shears for anything other than fabric as it will dull them and make cutting a much harder job! Personally, I use Kai shears, which are a specialized brand I pick up at the Sewing Expo for my fabric cutting, and cheaper pairs from the dollar stores, Wal-Mart or 40% off coupons at JoAnn or Hancock fabrics for paper scissors or loaners. Spring-loaded Fiskar shears or Gingher blades are a good alternative for the Kais I use, and are quite a bit cheaper as well (the spring-loaded are easy on arthritis or carpal tunnel sufferers). Unless you are looking to become a full-bore sewer of any type, you probably do not need bent-nose shears or pinking shears (more on those in another post).
Straight pins & pin cushion: I like using the larger boxes of longer quilting pins since I generally have several projects in progress simultaneously, or other people needing to use them too. I have a couple of the red tomato & strawberry emery pincushions, but keep 2 magnetic bowls (found much cheaper in the tool section at hardware stores or Sears) to hold the bulk of my pins. The handy thing with the bowls is that fewer are spilled or knocked over; they are easier to pick up out of the floor if they DO spill, and it stays firmly in place on the ironing board.
Tomato pincushions have been the ubiquitous shape for seemingly over a hundred year; the best are filled with sawdust and wool roving. The lanolin saturated roving prevents pins from rusting while the sawdust gives more stability and weight. The strawberry is filled with fine sand or emery which abrades dirt and rust from your pins and needles helping them last longer. There are also pincushions which can sit on your wrist, but those just drive me batty (or battier if you prefer).
Tape measure: Whether a basic tape or a retractable, at least 60” long with centimeters and inches clearly marked. Carrying one of these on you when shopping isn’t a bad idea either, especially at thrift stores where waist/inseam tags might be missing. When making simple skirts or pants, the tape measure can also help you keep the lengths and angles even when marking out your pattern.
Seam ripper: A seamster’s best friend. Really. I have several all over the place in my sewing room-one with each of my machines and a couple in my drawers or kits. Most are the inexpensive ones from the dollar store/Wal-Mart; others are the more ergonomic handled types purchased with 40% off or 50% notion sales/coupons. Surgical blades are also used for this purpose, but may not be as easy to hold onto and honestly I seem to snap them more often. In a pinch, they’re also great for opening up buttonholes!
Hand sewing needles: Having an assortment of sizes and types is useful, especially since needles aren’t terribly expensive. Generally the finer the fabric you are working with, the finer sized needle you will use.
The most commonly used hand sewing needles are called sharps. Sharps have a medium length (in comparison with all available needles), have a round eye for the thread and are suitable for almost any fabric. Betweens are also in this category, and are used a lot for quilting. Thinner needles with fine sharp points will work better for most projects, but you can run a risk of cutting through a thread and making a snag. I’d say 90-95% of the needles I keep on hand are sharps or betweens. If I’m mending something out of a knit or jersey, I use a ball point needle rather than a sharp so that it pushes between the threads rather than through them.
Thicker tapestry or crewel needles with larger eyes can help you run narrow elastic or ribbons through laces or casings if you don’t have a bodkin or safety pin handy, and upholstery needles are sturdy enough to help you push/pull through heavier fabrics without snapping or even some leathers. You can keep them in the flimsy plastic cases or paper slips they are sold in, or use some felt, wool, or tight-woven fabric scraps to keep them together and easily accessible, or even a wooden/metallic needle case.
Thread: Definitely a must and not one to use the bargain bin threads for, honest! I’ll use serger threads for some sewing projects, but it is really meant for use with multiple needle machines and is thinner than standard thread meaning it can snap under tension sooner. Coats and Clark or Gutterman threads are good brands for basic hand or machine sewing. If you are sewing on buttons, snaps or other fasteners, I recommend using a buttonhole, quilting or upholstery thread instead as they are a bit stronger. Do NOT use rayon or machine embroidery thread for standard hand or machine sewing, it will not hold up to regular wear and tear for clothing!
Safety pins: At least a small card or packet of 10-20 is a good thing to keep in a basic kit. They can help keep things in place even more reliably than straight pins, double as a bodkin to pull ribbons or elastics through a casing, or hold an end of cords in place while twisting or braiding. And of course, the emergency hem repairs! 1/2” or larger are the types I use most, anything smaller is more finicky than I like to fiddle with.
Optional Items I recommend adding to a basic kit:
A small button jar: Using a small baby food or spice jar, I would add loose buttons of colors and sizes that go with most of the clothing in your wardrobe. From the extras included on tags of new blouses to rummaging bins at thrift stores or the button sales at the fabric store, it is a handy thing to have in case one falls off and you can’t find it, it snaps in two, or yes, having the dog or cat eat it.
An assortment of hooks and eyes and sew-on snaps: From the larger coat or skirt styles (also useful for making pretty ribbon/lace choker necklaces) to the smaller separates, these can be nice to have.
A length of sew-on Velcro: Dollar stores locally have had it in 3 yard lengths-which is much cheaper than my fabric stores.
Bo-Nash starter kit: This is a powdered glue which works marvelously for all types of projects. You simply sprinkle it between the two items to be bonded, use a presser sheet to protect your iron and in a few moments a strong flexible and clear bond occurs. You can fuse two pieces of spandex/lycra together and still have it stretch, denim or leather patches onto high-wear areas like knees and elbows or fragile fibers like Angelina to chiffon for stunning costume pieces. It can be purchased online at Bonash.com, EmbellishmentVillage.com or Joggles.com. The starter kit has a smaller amount of Bo-Nash, but includes a standard size presser sheet, which can also be used when working with a hot glue gun to protect your table.
Beeswax: A small piece for running thread through prior to threading your needle for hand sewing projects. It helps keep the thread from snagging as much and lets it run through the fabric easier. Do not do this for projects with silk!
Next post? Handy guides and sewing room tools, beginning sewing and how to find a basic inexpensive machine.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Tsunami advisory posted for Oregon, Washington, Hawaii, and California coastlines

APN Thanks Readymom from our forum for giving us the heads up on this:

http://www.sanluisobispo.com/2010/02/27 ... ornia.html

The San Luis Obispo County coastline is under a tsunami advisory, as is the entire California coast, as a result of a giant earthquake tha struck offshore of Chile early today. At least 122 people have been confirmed dead in early counts.

People were advised to stay away from California beaches as a precaution.

Senior chief Kirk McKay of the U.S. Coast Guard station in Morro Bay said that people should not venture onto beaches or marinas. "An advisory is to keep people away from beaches and marinas because there could be strong surges," he said.

An advisory means a tsunami is possible. Forecasters said there may be strong currents, but did not expect widespread inundation or damage to occur. (Continued ...)

More information:

An advisory has been posted for Hawaii and Oregon as well:

Ore., Wash. under tsunami advisory; sirens sound in Hawaii

West coast of U.S., Canada in tsunami advisory
http://www.ajc.com/news/nation-world/we ... 33818.html

Hawaii Preppers Network

Sponsored By

Monday, February 1, 2010

Evacuate or Shelter-in-Place

The decision to evacuate or to stay and shelter-in-place is dependent on many factors. After an emergency situation occurs, the following will help you to work through most of the situations which occur in a disaster.

I. First Aid

After a disaster occurs 1st determine if there are any injuries or deaths:
(no injuries, injuries, deaths)

Next, determine if it is safe to perform First Aid:
(Safe or Not Safe - downed wires, gas leak, structural weakness or water leak)

Can and should the injured victim(s) be moved to a more secure area and can it be done safely?: (i.e. to a hospital or medical clinic)
(Yes or No)

II. Weigh the decision to Stay and Shelter-in-Place or to Evacuate based on needs:
(health, safety, shelter, warmth, water, appropriate clothing, food, communications, transportation)

III. Place "Thumbs Up" sign on front window or door:
(thumbs down -help is needed - specify the need - we are still here)
(thumbs up - Everything is ok - we are still here)
(Thumbs sideways - We are not here - We went to: address and phone)

IV. Types of disasters and reasons requiring possible Evacuation:
Church Leaders instruct their members to leave
Law Enforcement or State Emergency Services instructs you to Evacuate
Earthquake damage or tsunamis pending
Eminent Flooding, Flooding damage, Dams or levee Failure
Chemical Spill or threat
Bio Terrorism or biological threat
Explosions or Nuclear Attack or Accident; Radiation threats
Gang violence/ Mob mentality, including Looting
Pandemic Flu or other Pandemic Situations including Plagues
Severe injury or illness
Extreme weather conditions - Extreme heat, Extreme cold, Tornadoes
Disruption of infrastructure - water, electricity, sewage, gas
Downed Communications - Power Grid Blackouts
Wildfires or Volcanic Eruptions
Mud slides, Debris Flow or Avalanches

V. Procedures and Items to take with you if you decide to evacuate:
Keep all automobiles gas tanks at least half full all the time in readiness
Plan ahead for multiple directions and locations for possible evacuation
Coordinate with out-of-area and out-of-state contact family members and friends
Keep a minimum of $100 to $200 in cash available for emergencies
Pre-pack a 120 hour emergency go-kit to take with you, including water and non-perishable foods
Prepare and ready all important documents for emergency evacuation including proof of residence including deeds of trust or rental agreements, pictures of family members, copy of birth certificates, marriage certificates, passports, visas, credit cards, medical permission slips and identification and copies of insurance policies along with tax records and a current inventory
Place all genealogy and other important documents and computer backups in a readiness bag for easy removal. If there is room, bring computers with you.
Prepare a current medication list and have additional prescription medications, pet supplies, infant supplies or any other unique needs your family has for emergency on hand
Maintain a communication ability with CB radio, Amateur Radio, hand held walkie-talkies, cell phones and battery operated AM/FM radio and extra batteries for all of the above
Bring A good Family size First Aid Kit and Auto Fire Extinguisher
PAck Flashlights and extra batteries
Maps of the area, the journey and of destination area
Comfortable extra clothing and extra pairs of shoes and/or boots; extra pairs of socks, gloves and hats, scarves and breathing masks, extra blankets and sleeping bags
Extra tarps and tent(s) for shelter
Extra pairs of nylon stockings for vehicle air filters
Portable heaters and stove(s) and fuel for cooking and staying warm
Small shovel, tire chains, crowbar, rock salt and/or sand, hack saw and bow saw
Reading material and games for family members, possibly including edible plants and/or survival handbooks, first aid books, seasonal weather books and gardening books, etc.
Digital Camera for documenting personal affects
Extra house keys and car keys; before you leave, lock remaining vehicles and house upon evacuation

VI. Things to do before leaving your home:
If you have not done so, as soon as possible, finish topping off your gas tanks and obtain at least 10 extra gallons of gasoline in properly designated gas cans to carry with you.
Pack as much extra food and extra water as possible to carry with you along with water filtration
Notify neighbors (if neighbors are still present) of your intent to Evacuate and give them a copy of your future location and out-of-area phone number(s) to be able to reach you
Locate a small to medium trailer to haul your water, food and emergency gear/camping gear with.
Provide a key for your neighbors to your vehicles and house in case it is a long term situation or worse, "teotwawki", so they will not need to break any windows or doors searching for additional food and water you left behind. Better yet, distribute extra food reserves to your neighbors and any family before you leave.
Be sure to shut off all water, gas and electricity to your home to prevent future possible damages
Notify your Church Leader(s)on your decision to evacuate
Monitor NOAA Weather Alert Radio for additional instructions, along with any News and Traffic Radio Stations that might be transmitting so you are aware of the best directions and routes to travel.

VII. Things to do if you decide to "weather out the situation" and "Shelter-in-Place:
Shut off all heaters and air conditioners. If it is safe, use small fans to move and circulate air within your shelter-in-place
Take plastic sheeting and close off all vents by taping them with duct tape or clear packaging tape, basically sealing off a large inner room in your home.
Shelter-in-place is normally for the short haul and not the long haul in the event of chemical, biological or radiation contamination in the area
For an extended situation, follow evacuation procedures as dictated by NOAA radio or local emergency nets broadcasting on local radio channels
Decontaminate individuals who may have been exposed by washing them completely and changing them out of contaminated clothing which should be added to a sealed plastic bag and set outside the shelter-in-place
Most shelters-in-place still have sufficient oxygen from leaking vents and should be safe

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Frugal Canning

Got this from The Frugal Fraulein

How about adding a canning class to your list of 2010 accomplishments? I will be offering two marmalade canning classes in January. This year I will be offering canning classes based on local products and in the dead of the winter products grown and in season in America. This is the month for citrus.

Information about the classes can be found at my blog at http://frugalcanning.blogspot.com or call 360-705-9818 for more details.

This would be a great opportunity for local preppers and canners to get together and share ideas and information.

Come and do the Can Can with The Frugal Fraulein.

Motto: "if it isn't moving, can it"

Friday, January 15, 2010

Annual Food Preparedness Goal Review

Life's been, well interesting the past several months, precluding my desire and ability to post, but with a new year comes the desire to try start anew. Bill's most recent post ties into what I've been working on for the past 3 weeks, and here goes the start of trying to post at least once a month.

The upcoming year holds a positive major life event for me (I'm getting married), so the holidays started me planning what changes I need to make for my food storage and family preparedness. Roommates move out, a husband and 2 more cats move in, with all of their respective storage and dietary needs to consider and prepare for.

Fortunately for me, he appreciates and supports my desire to be more self-sufficient, enjoys gardening and has the enthusiastic support of my son. He also owns most of the tools that have been used around my home for the past 18 months doing repairs, adding in raised beds and creating useful bits of furniture like dog kennels and shelves.

Because of all the things I do, lists are the mainstay of trying to stay on top of everything and keep life in balance. The following is the master list of what I'd ideally like to accomplish for my storage preparedness this year, week-by-week. I've moved some things to weeks closer to when my area puts things on sale, or when my apples are ripe from the original inspiration and set the amounts for 3 people, 3 dogs and 3-4 cats. With all the wedding preparations, I know I won't be able to get all of the totals I wish for, but I can look at doing a small amount each week and being closer to the overall goal.

Weekly Food Storage Purchase or Setup Concept (for 3 People)
Week # Itemto Buy Amount
1 Water Supply 14 gal min/person 2 week min, don't forget pets!
2 Detergents, bleaches, cleansers Bleach: 4 gal/person Laundry soap 20#/person
3 Medicine Chest/First Aid Kit All medications & ointments
4 Pet Food/supplies Bags: 6 dog/3 cat; 3 litter 1/2 of est. food needs
Garden seeds
5 Canned Meats 12 cans ea/per person (36 total)
(poultry, tuna, dried beef)
6 First Aid Kit All bandage-related items
7 Peanut Butter 10#/person (30#) maybe more for cooking?
8 Vegetable & Olive Oils 12#/each
9 Juices 100% juice, check for pwd too
10 Personal Hygiene (and feminine products) Toothpaste, brush, comb, razors
11 Wheat 50#/ea Total required grains 900# min
12 Spices & Herbs check for ones I use most
13 Rice: part of grain total 50#/ea Total required grains 900# min
14 First Aid Kit: catch up miscellany
15 Pasta: part of grain total 50# Total required grains 900# min
16 Dry Milk 50# 100#/person (300# total)
17 Sewing Kit: notions needed Check for needs
18 Flour: part of grain total 50# Total required grains 900# min
19 Dry or canned soups
20 More Wheat 50#/ea Total required grains 900# min
21 Pet Food/supplies Bags: 6 dog/3 cat; 3 litter 1/2 of est. food needs
22 More Rice: part of grain total 50#/ea Total required grains 900# min
23 Cord, Twine, Light Rope; flashlight/batteries
24 Cheese & sour cream: 180# cheese/30# sour grate & freeze, or buy dried
25 Towels, foil, garbage/freezer bags, etc
26 Vinegar: White & Apple Cider 6 gallons each min, use more if dyeing/cleaning
27 Condiments: ketchup/ranch/italian, etc
mayo/salad dressing/worchestershire/mustard
28 Jams & Jellies pre-made, or pectin supplies
29 Canned Soups, Dried Soup Mixes buy what we eat
30 Dry & Canned Milk buy on holiday baking sales?
31 Popcorn 50# Total required grains 900# min
32 Baking needs: b. soda, pwdr, cornstarch 2# ea, 3# for bak soda
33 Tomatoes: Juice, sauce, salsa, paste, dried Part of 150#/veggies each
34 Canned Fruit/Veg: 150#/veg; 80 qts fruit/ea
35 More Fruits & Vegetables
36 Sugar: 100#/per person 50#/ea Count with honey/molasses
37 Vegetables
38 Dried beans, peas, lentils 50#/ea 100#/person (300# total)
39 Back to school/office supplies buy on school sales
40 Iodized Salt 12# each (36#) Canning salt is separate (50#)
41 Personal Products: TP, soap, shampoo 52 rolls TP/ea;
15 bars soap, 4 bottles shampoo/ea
42 Emergency fuel supplies propane/kerosene/charcoal/wood
43 Apple stuff: dried, fruit leather, sauce
Dried beans, peas, lentils 50#/ea 100#/person (300# total)
44 Hard Candy for Halloween use in 72 hour kits too
Vitamins 365/ea Extra Vitamin C and Calcium!
45 More Wheat 50#/ea Total required grains 900# min
46 Sweeteners: sugars, honey, molasses
47 Rolled Oats, Corn Meal, Barley, Wheat 50#/ea Total required grains 900# min
48 Sugars: Brown, White, Powdered
49 Solid Vegetable Shortening 12#/person Check how lard stores too
50 Baking extras: Cocoa, chips, coconut, etc
51 Candles & matches
Emergency kit items refresh kits
52 Nuts 2#/person (6# total) on sale after Christmas
Emergency kit items refresh kits

I'll play fast and loose at times when a good sale comes up though, like with this month at Emergency Essentials, but with my shopping planner always in my purse, it helps me keep track of what I have, what I want, and what is a good price. I do a LOT of holiday baking for personal enjoyment and for work, so I end up doing major restocks at that time with the loss-leader sales. Bill's recommendation of the Kent LDS Cannery is a good one to look into, or alternatively if the dam does go, I could look at the Bremerton location-I have at least 3 planned trips to Kitsap County this year anyways.

So far I'm on track with the storage plans and purchases, keeping up with sewing and mending projects and doing a massive room-by-room declutter to simplify before July.

The hard part is looking at my gardening and other catalogs and remembering I'm not to order anything until AFTER my birthday, so that I don't end up with duplicates.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Food Storage availability

I have found that the least expensive place for me to buy wheat and rice and legumes is the Kent LDS Home Storage Center in Kent, Washington. In fact they come out on top even beating the store sales I have found, even if I pay the extra to have all of my stuff canned right there when I am there. Canning is fun!

They carry: black beans, pinto beans, white beans, nonfat dry milk, white rice, granulated sugar, hard red wheat, hard white wheat, apple slices, carrots, macaroni, quick oats, regular oats, dry onions, potato flakes, spaghetti noodles, refried beans, hot cocoa mix, white flour, fruit drink mix, pancake mix, potato pearls, #10 cans and lids, boxes, dry pack pouches, oxygen absorbers and free labels

They are located at 1412 W. Morton Street, Kent, WA 98035-0825 and their phone number to arrange a time to go do some canning or pick up already packed foods is 253-850-6392. They do not charge tax on food sold there. I think they still have some wet pack items as well as their dry pack items, but I believe they are switching to dry pack only for the near future.

An important note however: If the Howard Hanson dam fails or the powers that be have to release water to prevent further damage to the dam on the Green River, there is going to be massive flooding in the Kent Valley from Renton to Auburn and this will obviously disrupt services at the cannery and products may not be available.

Blog Archive

Washington Preppers Network Est. Jan 17, 2009 All contributed articles owned and protected by their respective authors and protected by their copyright. Washington Preppers Network is a trademark protected by American Preppers Network Inc. All rights reserved. No content or articles may be reproduced without explicit written permission.