2012 Is Upon Us

I would like to wish everyone a Happy New Year. Please keep it safe.

Follow Prepology on Twitter

Weekend east coast storm warning

Well it looks as though we have our first winter storm warning issued for the east coast.
6" to 12" in a few spots, got shovels?
Accuweather link

Follow Prepology on Twitter

Countdown to Winter

     Winter will be upon us in the blink of an eye, many of the trees here in my area have already changed their color and some have also completely lost all their leaves, time to get ready.

I would like to focus today on being prepared with respect to your vehicle, we spend a great deal of time in our modes of transport and we should be prudent with some basic supplies that we should keep in them. It should go with out mention that first and foremost your vehicle should be in proper working order to start with, regular maintenance should always be in your mind because nothing can be more disheartening than being broken down due to something that could have been taken care of at an earlier date, common sense really helps here.

Two things that I really like to keep track of are proper radiator mixture and your battery condition.

An improper radiator mixture has the potential to ruin you whole day, you do not want to walk out in the morning only to find that your radiator has been split due to freezing, or worse yet you blow out your freeze plugs in your motor. Don't laugh people it happens every year but it is one of the easiest things to prevent with a little forethought so please get your antifreeze checked.

Another area to pay close attention to is your battery condition, this really comes into play during cold weather as a battery looses some of it's performance as the temp drops. It really sucks to jump into your car and turn the ignition only to hear CLICK CLICK CLICK. Fortunately this is another issue that can be headed off pretty easily, most reputable auto parts stores will provide a free battery load test that can measure the quality of your battery performance according to the manufacturers specs. Free maintenance here so please take advantage of it. Also while your battery is being tested they will usually look at the cables and more specifically they will look at the connections as this is where corrosion usually develops.

Now luck being what luck is, both good and bad that little guy Murphy will make an appearance and screw things up one way or another. Having a few basic supplies in your vehicle can make the difference between having a minor inconvenience or a major life threatening situation. Face it we all have a few nooks and crannies available to us that we can store a few thing to get us by in the case of a breakdown, why would we not. Below  is a rough list that can be tailored to your needs and location.

  • Spare tire, yeah it happens. You have a jack as well right? Lug nut wrench? While you at it are you sure you can change the tire by yourself? Try doing it in your driveway and see, it would be much better to fail their where you can get help in doing it right than finding out the hard way on the side of the road.
  • Jumper cables? That's like AMEX, you should never leave home without them. As with this item there is a proper way to do it and the internet is riddled with instruction on there proper use, your local auto parts store will help as well. Some jumper cable manufacturers also have written and pictorial instructions that come with their product.
  • Communications, I generally like to have at least two forms and the first being my cell phone and 9 time out of 10 this will work for you. My backup for me is a CB radio due to the fact that it is a stand alone system and it works when cell phone may not, the limiting factor though is that you need to have   someone with in range of you for it to work. Another good option if you do have to travel in bad weather is to let someone know where you are going and what time you are supposed to be there and check in when you do get there because if no one knows you missing than they can't report it, simple common sense. 
The next group of items I would recommend are the ones you can really tailor to your own needs.
  • Blankets, If your car stops running it will get really cold real quick.
  • Snack foods, what can I say, comfort foods come to mind.
  • Water, this can be a tough one due to freezing so you may need to add it daily before you go out or go without.
  • A small first aid kit because you just never know, I would also include a 1 to 3 day supply of any special medications you may be on.
  • Flashlight, maybe a combination flashlight, radio, signal device, more here is better.
  •  Spare jacket, socks, gloves.
As you can see the above list is very basic and it can be expanded upon greatly but everyone has different needs and circumstances to consider.

Do you have a list of items that you like? please feel free to chime in.

Follow Prepology on Twitter
     Yeah it's been a while, darn life and work keep getting in the way here and my brain has not been able to do more than the snide remark in other areas but no matter, not much has changed.

Really it does seem to be true that the more things change,  the more they seem the same. Case in point we seem to have lost a few dictators here of short, hooray the world will be a better place.... Really, Really. It seems that when one dictator is take out there are almost always a half dozen in waiting, oh the message might be different but the proof is usually in the pudding and it usually takes a little bit of time to see how things REALLY play out, Meet the new boss same as the old boss comes to mind. I think that covers the middle east pretty well.

Here on the home front or the good old US of A life goes on, the economy is still a problem and in my opinion will remain so for a good while, some would argue that we have not hit bottom yet, I am inclined to agree. We have the obligatory 800# gorilla on our backs that is called the economy, debt, unemployment and social disorder. Now either one could be a book in itself and most likely will be someday. You could say that those issues have culminated into the "Occupy -your city here-" for good or worse a small part of the US populace have decided to do their own Arab spring of sorts, I think they will be allowed to vent for a little while and then be asked to leave, they won't so they will be arrested and forced out such was the case in Oakland and other places. Where any on it goes is anyone's guess but I am sure it will all cost a boatload of taxpayer money that we can't already afford, what a wonderful circle huh.

For what it is worth and for those who have read me in the past I will admit that I usually sit one the pessimistic side of things, it is what it is I guess. It is not too hard to see all the bad in the world and I scratch my head as I take it all in and a good chunk of it looks like it gets worse all the time, now granted there is a lot of good out there too but as a whole are we really in better shape? Now me being a parent I do want better for my kids and I try to foster an environment that would lead them to that direction. I keep my opinions about where I think the world is going out of their daily lives as much as possible hoping for the best but planning for the alternative. As far as what that alternative is your guess is as good as mine but for me the end result is the same no matter the situation you will need basic items to keep your proverbial ass out of the fire so to speak.

Most of what I try to push in the prepared area are the basics, Water, food, shelter, communication, medicines and protection. What order these come in is usually dependent on the exact situation but what ever the situation is they will usually involve needing many of the above mentioned items. I like to think of them as very cheap insurance, whats a life worth? Especially compared to you having a few extra items around that can help you out in a pinch, the answer Priceless.

Follow Prepology on Twitter

9-11 Thoughts, 10 Years Later

     Today marks an important day in out history that we should never forget, 10 years ago we were attacked in a most vile and cowardly way, sadly it seems too many have forgotten.

     The goal of terrorism is not only to inflict death and mayhem but to also inflict fear and change, on that day they achieved those goals  and the fallout is ever present even today. History does indeed repeat time and time again so if we do not want another event to happen it would behoove us to stay vigilant in ourselves but not to the extent that we find ourselves giving up every single freedom that so many have worked tirelessly for  or given their lives for, there must be balance.

     Terri over on her site has a few things also on this day so please if you have a moment drop in.

Heroes And The Price Of Liberty

Follow Prepology on Twitter Tweet

Katadyn Vario Product Review

Katadyn Vario Multi Flow Water Microfilter
This weekend I was able to do a product review on the Katadyn Vario water filter. Out of the box the unit is fairly small and should fit in most peoples BOB along with the filter also comes a basic repair kit of O rings and a small cleaning pad as well as a carrying pouch.

This unit while plastic seems to be decently built but one of the weak points that I observed is the pumping handle, if you get in a hurry or are rough this seems to be the area to break. I would also add that the two hose barbs that the inlet hose and outlet hose connect to can be subject to breakage if mishandled. Overall though if you do not abuse the pump you should get good life out of it for the class it is in. Also one good feature of this filter is that you can connect various types of bottles directly to the bottom of the unit making one less thing to hold.

The reason this unit is called Vario is that you have two modes to choose from when filtering, mode one is when you can bypass the ceramic filter and only use the carbon filter. This mode allows for faster flow of about two liters per minute. Mode two is where you use both the ceramic and carbon filter at the same time, this would be used for the worst water you need to filter such as water contaminated with Klebsiella terrigena, Giardia and Cryptosporidium. Efficiency of the filter in removing the previously mentioned bugs is around 99.9%

Speaking of the previously mentioned filters (Ceramic and Charcoal) about $20 and $30 respectively seems a little pricey for a ceramic filter that is good for about 1000 gallons and a charcoal filter for 50 gallons. When you add the cost of the filters together you are over the 50% replacement cost of what a complete new system would cost. Your results may vary though depending on your water quality and conditions.

Overall for a filtration system that is under $100 in cost along with it's low weight and compactness and being made by the Swiss buts it in the buy category for me, is is the best? No, but it is a good piece of gear at a reasonable cost and should provide a good amount of service. As I tested it on well water that I am sure was being fed from a lake I found the taste to be very good, I can't vouch for what it removed at the microscopic level but as I am here writing this today I am alive and kicking so that's a plus.

You can check out further reviews of this filter on the Amazon site link that I provided above or you can also visit my store in the link bar at the top of the page or go to the link here.

Follow Prepology on Twitter

Irene, The Unprepared and Under-prepared

     No one is immune from a natural disaster in this world, at some point you will be exposed, that's a fact you can not change.

     While the above statement holds true and you can't change it you can lesson it's effects on you and your family with a little forethought. If you look at the situation this week and weekend on the east coast you know that far too many people came up short with some very basic items. This is nothing new and it happens every single time there is some sort of disruption in our daily lives and it just does not need to happen.

     We as in with many other things take far too much for granted and it has a nice way of turning around and biting us in the AZZ, I am guilty as anyone else being the procrastinator that I can be sometimes. I believe we dodged a pretty big bullet with this hurricane, yes there were fatalities but not quite what some people were predicting and less in this case is always better.

     One good thing that did happen was that many who were asked to evacuate did so, better to err on the side of caution if you can, still there will always be die hard's that will want to remain behind and that is their choice. With that choice though please be prepared and keep in mind "what are you protecting" stuff can be bought again so is it worth it?

Follow Prepology on Twitter
Terri from SurvivalGoddess has an article out on a familiar subject, I do enjoy reading on the subject from a women's point of view, especially when us men seem to focus on a narrow field so please check her out if you have a few.

SHTF Is Not The Only Reason To Prep

Follow Prepology on Twitter Tweet

Dow Jones, today's causality

     Well today did not go to well for the American stock market, the Dow ended up -634.76 points to cap the day or -5.5% down.

     Asian markets took a beating as well last night and so did the markets in Israel, Global economy at it's best. You can say that the downgrading by S&P last Friday really rocked the world's financial markets and in a way that might be a good thing, yes I know people lost money and that sux but if you invest in what amounts to legalized gambling then there will always be those risks. The reason I see it as a good thing is that we have been  living beyond our means for some time and the reality of it all has finally come home to bite us in out collective ass.

     We never seem to learn a good lesson until it is too late, we are going learn a lesson off of this one way or another, I hope. I am not going to hold my breath though, common sense seems to have left the building a long time ago especially when it is something government is involved in.

     To me we are just one step closer to being in a world of hurt, I would love to know when or how far it will go but a psychic I am not so I will just go with the good old gut and ear-ball it. I will say though that we are in for some changes in the future and they are not the good hoe and changes that were muttered years ago by a certain person, time will tell. 

Follow Prepology on Twitter

Question for the readers

     OK everyone seems to have an opinion as of late on how the markets will fair when they open, it went terrible for the markets in Israel today and I have seen predictions that the Asian markets will not fair even better. What in turn does this mean for the US markets? Who knows but we will find out come Monday.

I do not expect for it to be too devastating but I would think it may not be too good either.

What are your opinions? I would like to hear them.

Update: As of 6:38 pm the New Zealand markets are already 100 points down. Yikes

Update as of 11:15 pm: all Asia/ Pacific markets are down, not terribly but they are still down and that may be a pretty good indication of how our markets may go come Monday, oh well such is life, the pied piper will be paid.

Follow Prepology on Twitter

S&P downgrades US debt from AAA

     Well I just saw a news blurb that the S&P has downgraded our debt from Triple A status, This should be interesting, it is funny how this is released late on a Friday after the markets close so I wonder how the markets will be affected come Monday. Are We SCREWED? Link below


Edit to add: I do wonder how many people knew about this impending downgrade and if it can be attributed to the 500+ point stock market crash this week, Things that make you go HHHMMM

Follow Prepology on Twitter

This months jobs numbers, up, Really?

     So everyone is all excited about this months jobs numbers of around 117,000 + or -

Well on the front side yes it would look like things are moving forward for a change, pun pun.  I have one small problem though that ruins the party, the above number does not take into the account the fact that you have new people coming into the job market every month as well.

That number of new employment seeking individuals is roughly the same as the jobs added this month so I wouldn't call this report good at all, it just means we stopped the bleeding for one month and who knows what next month will bring. Now a good month will be a quarter or a half million jobs added followed by about four dozen months of the same numbers and I just do not see that happening either.

So where does this lead us? No where good that's for sure, the only place it will lead us is to where sooner or later and I am betting the latter we wake up and force Government to get the hell out of the way and quit meddling  and regulating us to death. It is tough enough to do business in this country as compared to other countries, now do not get me wrong I do not want out of control business practices that would harm the environment or workers but you have to be able to compete and we make that pretty hard right now. Another aspect that we really need to do is to shift our purchasing choices to more products made right here, that means jobs here. I really believe in taking care of our own workers first, I want to keep the money here. Will that product cost more? most likely yes but what is the cost of not buying it, lost jobs is the cost and you will pay for it dearly in other ways, food for thought....

Follow Prepology on Twitter

Question, Are We Really Broke?

     I was asked a question the other day, " Is the US really broke "

Now everyone has their own opinion on this and they are pretty varied. My answer to the question was pretty short, in fact I turned it around with my own question " You do know that the US BORROWS  about 5 BILLION  dollars a day right? "

Now I am no rocket scientist but to me when you have to borrow money everyday to support your habit and yes it is a habit then you have problems, namely that your broke right?

Follow Prepology on Twitter

Sunday Misc Thoughts, Debt Ceiling, Jobs and Adult supervision?

     For those of you who are familiar ICS-100 or other parts of the incident command system you know about "span of Control" now apply this to our Washington D.C. situation and we are clearly exceeding it on many fronts.
     A civilization needs it's rules and laws or else you have anarchy and a pretty poor standard of living, The District of Criminals or D.C. is making decisions for us that for a while now do not seem to be in our best interest, an echo from our past as I seem to recall we fought a war to break free from another ruler a couple of hundred years ago. Are we ready for another change? I think so. I have the feeling that being elected and moving to D.C. has an immediate negative affect on the I.Q. of said elected person, they seem to loose touch quite quickly with those who sent them there and thus fail to represent, Shocker huh. You have all heard that "all politics is local" well it should be but it is not, more and more it seems to be dictated by a few in D.C. that have lost all sense of reality in what it means to be a common working stiff, Oh they think they know whats best for us but do they really?
     As is painfully obvious right now these ( Insert Colorful Adjective Here ) have no concept of basic math and therefore have no clue in how to balance a budget hence our growing debt problem, you have to do it, I have to do it, most states have to do it, so why not our government? A common theme running around is that the rich need to pay more or corporations need to pay more, tax this or tax that well good luck with that because the rich already pay the bulk of taxes, corporations pay as well, GE didn't pay anything you say, yes they do but by other means, sales, property, payroll and other forms of taxes, keep in mind though that they employ people, but if you tax them more you will earn less and there product cost will go up and you will have one big vicious cycle.
     I have some novel concepts, how about for one we spend less, SHOCKING. how about we stop giving BILLIONS away to other countries, WW2 is over we won, how about we close all of the bases in Europe and Japan and let them be adults and spend their own money of their defense instead of us subsidizing them. Iraq, Afghanistan? we will in now way change thousands of years of culture or religion so why try, if we were to leave today or in ten years the end result will be the same they will both plunge into civil war the minute we leave, the only reason we are still there is that the Big O doesn't want it to happen on his watch.

     Entitlements, the nastiest third rail of all, Government promises that they can't keep and should have never made, Social Security I.E. Ponzi scheme on steroids who's time should end, too many people collecting when they have never paid in, not adjusted for inflation or a falling dollar, not adjusted or never meant to support you for twenty or thirty years after you retire. Sorry government was not created to take care of you, your supposed to have a brain for that but we have become lazy and greedy to the extreme as well as dependent on someone else taking care of us and we are now more happy than ever to vote in the people who will give us more of this.

     Granted there are still quite a few people out there with their heads screwed on tight but some still fail to recognize the fact that voting for the other party will change anything, I have long ago come to the conclusion that both the R's and the D's are but two shades of the same color yellow, as in chicken yellow and gutless to boot when it comes to dealing with the problems. We have example after example of how countries fail but we seem to at every chance decide to follow their lead down the wrong path, We are the United States we do not know failure, well we are not so United anymore and we will know failure, to what extent is unknown.

     Jobs, whats there to say, the numbers are IMHO still under reported , the funk seems to be with us still. There is demand out there for products and service, unfortunately too many people are buying those products that are made in other countries , hell I will be lazy on this one so as to not duplicate a previous post just go here and you can see my thoughts on the situation.

Repost on the Buy American Circular Firing Squad

Follow Prepology on Twitter

Cabin Update: Deck and Roof

      My apologies everyone for the severe lack of posting in the last few weeks but we have been buried with a mish-mash of events that have pushed this blog to the side. I hope to get back to regular posting here in a few weeks but I am trying to finish up a few technical aspects of this cabin and then deal with a 1,500 mile movement to the mid-west.

     As you can see here we have started the deck that will go all the way around the cabin, we have started on the side in the middle so that we could get the roof started.
      As usual we get limited by the wind and we had to stop at three sheets here, were hoping for better progress tomorrow.
      Here we have a close up of the roof material and the valley trim, we are still waiting for a decision on what the siding will be here for the third floor.
      The front angle of the cabin where you can see the 6x12 laminated beam going around the cabin, we will also have 6x6 post going from this beam to the logs that protrude at the roof line. Once we have the deck completed on the front we will also cut in the double door and the two windows that will be on the 2nd floor.
      A shot of the ceder deck that we are installing, we will also be continuing the roof line above this deck so that it is covered.
     Our other wonderful issue for the last 2 weeks has been the fire in Arizona that has been sending us this wonderful smoke I guess when 700 square miles burns you can't miss it.

Follow Prepology on Twitter

TSA To the Prom?

     We have all come to expect to see the TSA or Transportation Security Administration at our airports and some train station,  bus stations, sporting events and many people have strong feelings for and against this right?

Well we may  have a new location to add to the mix, you child's Prom?

 No one will argue that some level of security is called for in ones travel but at what point do we draw the line between security and flat out absurdity. Recently the school system wanted  TSA certified people  to be involved in the security of a Santa Fe New Mexico high school prom, now this is either an indication of ineptness on  the part of  local authorities or an ever increasing case of authoritarian control being imposed upon us one slice at a time.

I have ZERO respect for the TSA and their thuggish and demeaning ways and some states are beginning to agree as state legislation now being proposed would allow for the arrest of TSA agents for what amounts to sexual assault. They should also arrest for general stupidity on the part of the public for putting up with it in the first place. I would in no way, shape or form allow a grown man to grope me, my wife or especially my child and I hold those who do in the lowest form possible, HOW CAN YOU SUBJECT YOUR CHILDREN TO THAT.

     Wrong is Wrong and putting a badge on a person and calling it necessary for security DOES NOT MAKE IT RIGHT!!

I have news for you, the TSA fails every single day, they are tested every single day by agencies that are tasked with breaching security, the TSA is all window dressing to make people think they are safe, you are not safe, you will never be safe, Life is not safe. To exist on this planet you must accept a level risk and then deal with it.

Your safety resides in you as well as morals and dignity, don't ever sacrifice them for a false security.

Scott R

New Blog Debut.

Today I wish to welcome to the blog world " expedient wired comms " headed up by Dr. D who is a veteran of the telecommunications industry. Dr. D's initial  post is Getting Started so if you have a chance please stop by and add a few words of encouragement, feedback is always appreciated.

Scott R

Cabin Update: Tankless, Bath, Misc.

Well we got a little bit done over the last few days including a little progress on the plumbing, we made a few changes and still have a few to do but they are minor. We have slowly been bringing up the temperature on the radiant heating that is in the floor and as I write this it is quite comfortable, it takes a while to warm up this giant heat-sink  but it will hold the heat for a good while. 
 Here is another view and obviously the LP tank will not stay here it is just temporary to get things started, we should have the permanent gas lines installed by the end of the week, I do have a few more lines to plumb in yet but they go to the 2nd floor and part of the first. 
 Another install for the day was the washer and dryer, the washer works very well and is extremely quiet and only makes any kind of noise when it drains, the dryer is not hooked up yet as it is gas but hoping for the end of the week. We did elevate the units about a foot.
In the 3rd floor bathroom we installed the concrete board counter base and also for now the copped miners sink and faucet, the tile will be next sometime down the road. This bath is now functional and will be put into use to that we can finish some things in and around the 1st floor bath area.

As always questions and comments are welcome and also we have more up on the Cabin Update Page.

Follow Prepology on Twitter

Cabin Update: Start Of The Tankless Water Heater

 It has been one of those days so please bear with it a little.

STEP 1: Locate ideal location to install a Tankless LP gas hot water heater, CHECK.

STEP 2: Bore a 5" hole through your 8" block wall that has been filled with rebar and concrete, CHECK.

STEP 3: Make obligatory hand statement and make fool of oneself. CHECK, CHECK and CHECK.
 STEP 4: Verify daylight through 5" exhaust hole and that the specialty exhaust pipe fits. CHECK and CHECK.

STEP 5: Stand around and admire hole and double check measurements to be certain the hole is in the right place. CHECK and It's too late to move it now.

STEP 6: Install one Tankless hot water heater and temperature controller. CHECK and CHECK.

OK in all seriousness, the water heater we have installed will be for the radiant heating of the floors on the 1st and 2nd and we will also use it for the regular domestic water heating. The unit is rated at 188,000 BTU so it is on the large side for a home unit but it will work nicely for our application. we should have this unit running sometime next week but you know we'll keep you updated.

Follow Prepology on Twitter

GGRRR Blogger...Repost of Cabin Update: Bathroom

Follow Prepology on Twitter
I am re-posting a few pics due to the Blogger Issue.

Cabin Update: 3RD Floor Bath

 Heavy concentration this week on the third floor, with emphasis on the bathroom. Today went well as we got the commode hooked up as well as the shower. Cold water is flowing to all the fixtures except for the vanity faucet, that should come tomorrow. Hot water is another matter as we are waiting on a delivery but that should be here in a day or two if UPS decides it is important that is.
 A different view, on the left side where the pex lines are we will be using T&G as well but I am going to hinge it so there is access to the plumbing.
 Also installed today was the wraparound for the tum as well as the plumbing, tomorrow we will use silicone to do some sealing and I will install the handles.
The door was also installed today and I just need to do a little tweeking on the reveal and it will be set. Off to the right below the outlets where the insulation is we will will put OSB and then start the counter and install the sink and back-splash. We are hoping to have a really good day and wrap up with trim and the only thing left to do will be the floor (EASY) and the decision needs to be made for the counter top tile ( we will be using concrete board for now )

As always if there are any questions or comments please feel free. Additional posts of this cabin build can be found here.

Follow Prepology on Twitter

Cabin Update: Ceiling, Bath And Misc

4 out of 6 bays are now done on the main ceiling and I gotta tell you that I am really getting tired of ceiling T&G, I don't normally complain but you just can't get at a comfortable height on the scaffolding to work comfortably so on that note no ceiling work for a while, it is nice to look at though, this pic is from a different angle from the third floor.
 This is some of the work from the third floor west bedroom, we are hoping to finish this up pretty soon so we can get on to other things.
 Something new for the week, we got started on the bathroom on the third floor, it will have a full shower and a huge vanity and yes it will have T&G as well.
 I had too throw this one in, someone who will remain nameless had to fill a void with expanding foam and they went a little overboard, I love the stuff but damn it makes a mess.
Something also new this week, WINDOWS, yeah no more screwing and unscrewing plywood to let in the light anymore, This really added a sense of getting things done to add the windows and of coarse it got windy as we installed them, go figure.

Follow Prepology on Twitter

Bin Laden DEAD

Fox News is reporting that the US  Forces/ Ground troops have Killed Bin Laden and that we have the body and have DNA confirmed the results, OUTSTANDING.

Reports are that a predator drone ( conflicting statement, may have been a ground attack)- Verified Ground attack:  Verified NAVY SEALS: in Pakistan took him out with a missile/ Gunfire and that team took custody of the body for DNA testing and verification.

Sources have stated that he was killed just outside of Islamabad in a mansion just outside of a Pakistani military academy and that the CIA may have been involved as well. Confirmed:

Additional information as of this morning is that OBL has now been buried at sea, He now swims with the fishes, poor fish.

Travel warnings have also been issued do to the almost certain retaliation  from that will be generated from taking out OBL. While this terrorist is now dead physically he will likely become a martyr in the eyes of radical Islam and the result will be the continued intrusion into our rights for a "feel good safety"

One chapter has now been closed but the book surely is not, as we have seen before there is always someone else who will fill the shoes of the fallen.

Follow Prepology on Twitter


free web site traffic and promotion