Completing any project requires tools. Survival is no different. In fact, it is a project that your life depends on. It only makes sense to have the proper tools. Although there are many important aspects to a successful survival strategy, the tools you rely on are crucial. Firearms, knives, and other weapons serve many purposes. Food procurement is imperative in a survival situation. Self-defense is another consideration. Knives can also be used for everything from preparing a meal to aiding in a construction project on the survival homestead.
When selecting gear for your survival kit, the key trait should be versatility. Specialized tools are required for some jobs but the most valuable survival tools are those that can be used for many different purposes. The good news is that with a little bit of knowledge, selecting gear that is practical and versatile is not all that difficult.
Firearms are an essential part of a survival plan. There are a variety of different firearms available that have unique traits specific to one or two uses. For instance, a pistol is great for self-defense in close-quarters combat or for dispatching an animal caught in a trap. Shotguns excel at hunting waterfowl and other flying prey and second as excellent self-defense weapons. Rifles are best suited for long range shooting duties such as when hunting large game. Ideally, you own all three types of weapons along with a sufficient ammunition supply for each. That ensures that you are well-equipped no matter what situation you find yourself. At the very least, understanding the limitations of each weapon allows you to choose what option is best for you.
1. Pistols can provide exceptional stopping power while remaining compact and easily concealed. Especially in an urban survival setting, the ability to conceal your weapon allows you to avoid unnecessary confrontation. Like any survival tool, reliability is important. As a result, the best pistols are usually single action revolvers. Although these pistols may not have the capacity of semi-automatic models, the presence of fewer moving parts translates to greater reliability in a world devoid of gunsmiths and spare part suppliers.
A pistol should be large caliber. Smaller calibers such as the .22 are simply not effective enough in a post-apocalyptic world. Staying with the theme of versatility, there is one pistol that stands out as a sure bet. The Taurus Judge is a compact revolver capable of shooting the .45 Colt cartridge. This round is well-known for its stopping power and accuracy. What makes the Judge unique is that it can also shoot .410 gauge shotgun shells. Although the .410 cartridge isn’t suitable for large game hunting, it is perfect for small game and bird hunting. Accuracy of a handgun will never be as good as a long-barrel gun but the Judge gives you options as a survivor by allowing you to quickly change between ammunition types depending on the situation.
2. A shotgun is versatile by design because the type of shell can be changed depending on the intended usage. When hunting large game, a shotgun is effective when loaded with slugs or buckshot. For shooting birds and small game animals, specialized shells with more pellets are used.
A good shotgun should offer reliability and few have proven this more than the Remington 870 Express. The pump-action design of this weapon lasts for years with minimal maintenance. It is effective as a hunting instrument while being an admirable self-defense tool as well. Other considerations include the Mossberg 590 and the Weatherby PA-459. Whenever possible, stay away from semi-automatic shotguns. Although their reliability is often on par with pump-action designs, the complicated mechanisms are almost impossible to fix without the help of a trained gunsmith and specialized tools.
3. Rifles are required to hunt many species of large game. The heightened senses of these animals makes approaching within shotgun or pistol range nearly impossible. Bolt-action rifles tend to be the most reliable and easy to maintain although some semi-automatic models are adequate as survival weapons as well.
The .30-06 is one the most versatile calibers for a survival rifle. Although it is often too powerful to use against small animals, its range and accuracy make it a long range killing machine capable of taking down practically any game animal in North America. As a defensive weapon, the .30-06 is an excellent choice for defending your position from distant enemies before they get too close. Fitted with a decent scope, these rifles have an effective range of nearly 1,000 yards. Hundreds of manufacturers produce rifles chambered for the .30-06 cartridge. Look for one with a history of reliability such the Remington 700 or Winchester Model 70 to ensure the longevity of your weapon.
A common misconception about survival knives is that they need to big “Rambo” style knives. In most cases, knives like that are not practical for survival situations.
A smaller, fixed blade knife is better suited to most duties including field dressing animals, cutting rope, and many other tasks. Some newer model survival knives actually have a magnesium fire starter built into the handle. By striking the back of the blade against the magnesium bar, you are able to start a fire even in damp conditions. Gerber manufactures a knife like this under the Bear Grylls series of knives offered by the company.
In addition to a fixed blade general purpose knife, a short blade machete is also useful to have. This blade can be used for heavier duty tasks such as clearing a path through dense foliage, cutting down small trees, and as a formidable self-defense weapon. Easily carried in a sheath on your belt, a short blade machete can prove to be a valuable asset in your quest for survival.
The tools you have available to you in a survival situation are an asset overshadowed only by your own will to survive. Having a versatile selection of survival weapons can provide a sustainable food source and protect you from the many unprepared people looking to capitalize on your preparedness. _______________________
Aug. 3rd: WANT A FREE & CLEVER BURGLAR ALARM...that could save your life? Put your car keys beside your bed at night! SHARE THIS GREAT IDEA!
"Tell your spouse, your children, your neighbors, your parents, your Dr's office, the check-out girl at the market, everyone you run across. Put your car keys beside your bed at night.
If you hear a noise outside your home or someone trying to get in your house, just press the panic button for your car. The alarm will be set off, and the horn will continue to sound until either you turn it off or the car battery dies.
This tip came from a neighborhood watch coordinator. Next time you come home for the night and you start to put your keys away, think of this: It's a security alarm system that you probably already have and requires no installation. Test it. It will go off from most everywhere inside your house and will keep honking until your battery runs down or until you reset it with the button on the key fob chain. It works if you park in your driveway or garage.
If your car alarm goes off when someone is trying to break into your house, odds are the burglar/rapist won't stick around. After a few seconds, all the neighbors will be looking out their windows to see who is out there and sure enough the criminal won't want that. And remember to carry your keys while walking to your car in a parking lot. The alarm can work the same way there. This is something that should really be shared with everyone. Maybe it could save a life or a sexual abuse crime.
P.S. I am sending this to everyone I know because I think it is fantastic. Would also be useful for any emergency, such as a heart attack, where you can't reach a phone. My Mom has suggested to my Dad that he carry his car keys with him in case he falls outside and she doesn't hear him. He can activate the car alarm and then she'll know there's a problem." ___________________________
Wed., Apr. 3rd:
For those planning on 'Bugging In' some thought needs to made how to protect your home from looters. When it comes down to: survival of you and your loved ones or a stranger? Here are some ideas on how to fix up your home on the Cheap. Get a good Dead Bolt with Key for your front and back doors that has at least a one inch bolt. Keep the key OUT of the lock, put it nearby for emergencies. Then for your windows there's plywood (you will feel like you are in a cave after a short time) or get 3M Safety & Security Film from Home Depot put on your windows. It is on the windows of all embassies around the world, and on all the windows along the parade route at DisneyWorld due the influx of people during the parades. That way no one will be hurt by glass. It will hold up to cement blocks being thrown at it or being beaten with a hammer. The glass with shatter, but not break. by: Barb's Bulletins _________________________
Holding Your Ground
Publication Date: June 6, 2011 HOLDING YOUR GROUND is an instructional guide and planning tool that addresses defensive preparation of a location. If the government can no longer protect your home, farm or property, HOLDING will teach you how. HOLDING covers virtually every aspect of protecting you and your family in the event society breaks down. Many people have preparations for food, water, shelter and personal defense. HOLDING will teach you how to configure your home, train your team, and properly equip any location for defense. Covering topics ranging from hiding in plain sight to pre-positioning of supplies, HOLDING uses common sense, military tactics and historical examples that allow you to prepare for defense without affecting your property's value or appearance. Rating 4/5
Mon., Feb. 11th:
Survival Without Firearms - The current furor over the threat of a new round of restrictive firearms laws in the aftermath of the Sandy Hook killings has gotten me to think further about what kinds of weapons we might choose to protect ourselves. By Dr. John J. Woods, a contributing author to SurvivalCache.com
Here we are talking about defensive modes of protecting ourselves against any uninvited menace that might befall us. However, and intended only as a sidebar, consider also if we were to find ourselves without traditional defensive firearms, then some of these same weapons choices could also be as easily applied effectively in an offensive mode. How does the government intend to protect us against these tools?
Which of these “weapons” could be used for self-protection, an AR-15, 1911 in 45ACP, a wheel gun revolver in .357 Magnum, a swing blade, combat knife, screwdriver, ball peen hammer, a pipe wrench, sledge hammer, machete, 12-gauge shotgun, an ax, a 30-06 deer rifle, a ball bat, length of log chain, or a Kaiser blade?
The Prepper Scenario A common thread among the planning tactics for both Bug Out and Bug In preppers is the concept that we might eventually be confronted by rogue groups or a solo assault of “zombies”, common criminals, starving crowds of non-preppers, aggressive neighbors, or others just wishing to take from you what you have.
We tend to rely on a first front of defense using firearms. There is no need for an in depth discussion of that here. Our arsenal would likely include rifles, shotguns, and handguns. Any types and all types in a wide range of suitable (or not) cartridges chambered for self-defense or property protection can expected to be found in stock.
A gross generalization of a tactical stance would be to use rifles for long(er) range defense or deterrent, shotguns with buckshot (not slugs) could be used for closer ranges, but perhaps not point blank, but maybe. Handguns would most likely be relegated to close quarters work.
Hopefully what you choose to use works for you best because you are confident and skilled in the use of the weapons choices you have made. If not, then get there as soon as it is feasible.
But in all of this keep in mind that despite the fact that you may have an ample supply of firearms and ammo available to defend or protect yourself, family, and escape hide out partners there are other alternative tools to consider. Plus there may be times when a firearm is not the closest defensive tool within reach.
On the Cutting Edge I am not a knife fighter or blade expert. My plan is to be the one that brings a loaded 1911 Kimber to the knife fight, but being a realist I know that might not always happen. Still I have a wide selection of blades, long and short, fixed blades, folders, meat cleaver types, pocketknives, fish filleting knives, and nearly everything else in between. While most of my blades are not designed for defense, at some level any one of them could be pressed into service likely with varying results.
I do not harbor a desire for that kind of hands on self defense work. But what if we get faced with a situation in which that is the first or only option? Then some training is called for as well as keeping such tools within reasonable reach just in case. Knives may not draw attention like a firearm, so it is reasonable to add these to your kit.
One of the characters on the program Doomsday Preppersbelieves one of the critical weapons to his theoretical “circle of seven” tools of self defense needs to include a samurai type sword or other similar long blade with a long handle or hand grip. There are many such tools on the market made by outfits like Cold Steel, Gerber, and others. Even hardware stores and farm supply outlets will have a variety of tools that are for brush cutting and other heavy duty cutting/hacking tasks. Add these to the mix.
Blunt Force Instruments As we work around the house or at a bug out escape location, we are highly likely to have a variety of impromptu weapons around. We might think we’ll always have a firearm within reach, but maybe not. If someone comes up on you in the workshop, garage, or storage shed, what might you grab to defend yourself?
Viewing another movie recently of the fictitious zombie genre’ I was taken by the choice of a sledgehammer as a tool of offensive and defensive self defense by one of the actors. Understanding that depiction was “Hollywood” nevertheless it spirited my consideration of such heavy tools as a possible weapon of choice. A ten pound hammer may not be a first choice, but it could an effective one at any rate. A forward thrust to the throat or knee cap is likely to change the course of an aggressor.
Now I own a mega sledge and I would be the first to admit I would not want to tote that thing around all day. At camp I strap it in the carry rack of the ATV. At my age swinging a sledge about ten times is the equivalent of trying to do twenty pushups. Good luck with that. My point is to consider the defensive strategies with any tool you might buy for bug in home or bug out camp use.
Look in your garage on your pegboard wall or in your tool boxes. See what items in there could be used as a last resort grab. Perhaps all this sounds too elementary, but when is the last time you thought about taking a shovel off the wall to defend yourself?
Consider other tools as well. What about a pipe wrench, a rake, heavy long shaft screwdriver, pry bar, broom, claw hammer, or any number of dozens of other implements found around the house. At the very least consider thinking through the process.
Again, I don’t personally promote close quarters essentially hand-to-hand confrontations. It’s only that whatever we are prepping for or planning for will likely not work out exactly as we had imagined.
Choosing and selecting weapons for our prepping strategies does not automatically imply the sole source of self-defense tools have to be firearms. In reality and practice, I think we all intend to include that component, but there are many other options to have at the hand if needed
Successful burglars have lots in common — home owners who unwittingly give invitations to robbery. Here’s how thieves thank you for your generosity.
Leaving boxes by the curb alongside the trash lets burglars know you've got new toys inside. Image: Liz Foreman for HouseLogic
You come home to an open front door, a ransacked house, and missing valuables. How did a burglar know you’d be gone? How did they get in?
In these 10 thank-you notes, your friendly neighborhood burglars share advice on how to stop lending them a helping hand.
1. Thanks for the ladder!
Call me a social climber if you will, but I did discover a ladder in your back yard. Thank you for leaving it where I could lean it against your home and easily reach a second-story window. I really love it when upper story openings aren’t wired to a home security system!
So, if you want to keep me out, store your ladder in the basement or a locked garage. And call your security company to wire upper-story windows into your alarm system.
Vertically yours, A rising star
2. Loved your trash
Can’t tell you how much fun I have driving around neighborhoods on trash day (especially after big gift holidays) when the empty boxes on the curb reveal what wonderful new toys you have. Your thoughtfulness made it possible for me to land a new laptop and a flat-screen television in one easy trip to your home!
Next time, break down the boxes and conceal them in the recycling or trash bins.
Happy shopping! Curbside Cruiser
3. Dear Can’t-Get-Around-to-It
Recently, I noticed you hadn’t trimmed trees and shrubs around your home, so I knew I’d have a wonderful place to hide while I worked to break into your home. I really can’t thank you enough for all the great new things I grabbed.
Next time, trim back bushes and trees near windows and doors. Make sure entry points to your home are easily visible from the street — I much prefer to work in private! While you’re at it, install motion-sensor lighting. I’m scared of bright lights!
Cordially, The Tree Lover
4. Su casa es mi casa!
I was sincerely relieved to find your back door was a plain wood-panel door. I had no trouble kicking it in (my knees appreciate how easy that was!) Imagine how silly I felt when I discovered that your windows weren’t locked anyway.
You may want to take a cue from your neighbor and install steel-wrapped exterior doors with deadbolts on all your entries. And be sure your windows are locked when you’re away.
All the best, Buster Door
5. Bad reflection on you.
You’d be surprised how many home owners position a mirror in their entry hall so I can see from a window if the alarm system is armed. (Yours wasn’t, but I’m guessing you know that by now!) Thanks for taking a lot of pressure off of me.
A little free advice: Relocate the mirror so your alarm system isn’t visible if someone else would peer through a window.
Fondly, Mr. Peeper
6. The telltale grass
Wow, isn’t it amazing how fast the grass grows these days? I swung by now and then and noticed your lawn was uncut, newspapers were piling up on the front steps, and your shades were always closed. To me, that’s an open invitation.
Next time, hire someone you trust to mow regularly, pick up around the doorstep, open and close various window shades, and turn different lights on and off (or put a few on timers). One more thing: Lock any car you leave in the driveway, or I can use your garage door opener to get in quickly.
Best, Your Trip Advisor
7. Getting carried away
Many thanks for putting your valuables into an easy-to-carry safe that I could carry right out your back door. (Nice jewelry, and thank you for the cash!)
You may want to invest in a wall safe, which I rarely attempt to open. Or, rent a lock box at your bank.
With appreciation, Mr. Safe and Not-So-Sound
8. Dear BFF
Thanks for alerting a professional acquaintance of mine via your social network that you were away for the week in Puerto Vallarta, having the time of your life. Me? I enjoyed a very relaxing visit to your home with no pressure of being caught.
If only you had known that posting comments and photos of your trip on social networks is fine — but do that after you return so you won’t broadcast your absence!
Sincerely, Cyber Savvy
9. Tag, you’re it!
Where are you? When you use popular geo-tracking apps, such as FourSquare and Glympse, I might know if you’re not home. Web sites such as www.pleaserobme.com help me keep track of your whereabouts.
If you prefer that I not visit your home, be careful about geo-tagging. But, otherwise, thank you for the loot!
— Just Tagging Along
10. Thanks for the appointment
Thanks for inviting me into your home to view the laptop you wanted to sell. I do apologize for the scare I gave you when I took it (and your purse).
Did you know that some large U.S. cities are averaging one so-called “robbery by appointment” per day? If you want to sell high-ticket items to strangers, I suggest you arrange to meet at the parking lot of your local police station. I definitely won’t show up, and you’ll still have your valuables (and your purse!)