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Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Long Term Survival Food Needs Explained






Here is an excellent Youtube video from The Wooded Beardsman site that explains how hard it is to live of the land for long periods of time. I liked how he explained  how the Naked and Afraid survivalist were only enduring without food instead of thriving off the land.

You must constantly be on the lookout for food and water to replace lost calories so that the body can function properly and allow you to make smarter decisions in your survival situation.

Stay Prepared! Stay Alive!

Charlie






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Wednesday, October 26, 2016

How To Treat Gunshot and Knife Wounds




Here is a great video on treating gunshot and knife wounds. A very important skill set to know in a survival situation. I will let the experts in above video show you how its done.

Stay Prepared! Stay Alive!

Charlie

Monday, September 26, 2016

Grass Seeds As A Survival Food Source





P.S. There is a survival quiz in this video to test your knowledge. 




From Just One Cluster Of Grass


Despite there being hundreds of varieties of bladed grass found in the Americas, almost all (99% of them) can be eaten. This ranges from wheat, oats, and bamboo to the wild meadow varieties.

The young shoots up to 6 inches tall can be eaten raw and the starchy base (usually white and at the bottom when you pluck it) can be eaten as a trail nibble. The more mature the grass plant gets, the more fibrous the plant becomes. For older plants the base can be chewed and spit out — extracting the beneficial juices in the process. Or a tea can be made from the fresh or dried leaves.

The best part of the grass plant to eat are the seed heads, which can be gathered to make millet for breads or filler for soups & stews. 


Of the 99% that can be eaten raw, about 1% have toxic seeds and require that you roast or cook the seeds first.


Ergot fungus



As a word of caution, stay away from blackish or purple colored grass seeds. This is a good indication of toxic fungus. Just make sure they are green or brown. Also use common sense when gathering. Don’t gather where there has been recent spraying of weed killer.

Ergot: Dark-purple or black grain kernels, known as ergot bodies, can be identifiable in the heads of cereal or grass just before harvest. In most plants the ergot bodies are larger than normal grain kernels, but can be smaller if the grain is a type of wheat. A larger separation between the bodies and the grain kernels show the removal of ergot bodies during grain cleaning.


Stay Prepared! Stay Alive!

Charlie

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Solar Compass







Here is another was of finding direction. You will need a thin straight stick, the current time and month, the sun, and a compass rosette template that you can print out here.

First, print out a copy of the compass rosette. You can print it on regular paper, but card stock paper makes a better tool.


If there is enough sun to cast a shadow, place the rosette compass paper on a flat piece of ground. It must be as very near to horizontal as possible.

Now note the current time and push your stick though the corresponding position on the ring of dots labeled 4 through 20. 


For example, if the current time is 3:30 in the afternoon that will translate to 15:30 on a 24-hour clock. Place your stick through the ring of dots halfway between the numbers 15 and 16. Be sure that the stick is as vertically straight up and down as possible.

Now rotate the compass rosette around, keeping the stick in place, until the shadow of the stick crosses the middle line at a point corresponding with the current month.

Your compass rosette is now oriented to north - South.



Although in an emergency survival situation you are unlikely to have this compass rosette handy, it does illustrate there are many ways to accomplish the same goals.

Make several of these rosettes and put them in your survival kits, bug-out bags, vehicle, boat, etc. Print them about 5" x 5". You can go smaller, but it makes it harder to line up the shadow.


Click compass rosette to download a printable version.


 Compass Rosette


Stay Prepared! Stay Alive!

Charlie

Monday, August 29, 2016

Proper Knife Sharpening Angles




Being able to keep your survival knife properly sharpened is critical. Different knife manufacturers have different angles of blades. If you are poor at using a sharpening stone, you may damage or dull your blade worse than it already is.

The use of a sharpening tool that has the ability to keep the same blade angle while sharpening should be an item that is in your survival gear.

The Smith's sharpening tool (picture shown above) allows you sharpen many different brands of knives.

Below is a list provided by Smith's of the most common knife manufacturers and the angle at which the blade has been sharpened.

Knife Sharpening Angles by Manufacturer & Brand
(degrees per side):

Chef’s knife:

Global – 17
Shun – 16
Wusthof – 14
Zwilling Henckel/Cronidur – 12.5
All other Zwilling Henckel – 15

Serrated Knife:

All Brands – Manual Sharpening; Serrated Slot ONLY

Santoku Knife:

Global – 17
Shun – 16
Wusthof – 11
Zwilling Henckel/Cronidur – 12.5
All other Zwilling Henckel – 15

Paring Knife:

Global – 17
Shun – 16
Wusthof – 14
Zwilling Henckel/Cronidur – 12.5
All other Zwilling Henckel – 15

Utility knife:

Global – 17
Shun – 16
Wusthof – 14
Zwilling Henckel/Cronidur – 12.5
All other Zwilling Henckel – 15

Boning Knife:

Global – 17
Shun – 16
Wusthof – 18
Zwilling Henckel/Cronidur – 12.5
All other Zwilling Henckel – 15

Everyday Pocket Knives/Multi-Tools:

Al Mar – 20
Benchmade – 18-20
Blade-Tech – 20-22
Boker USA – 20-22
Buck – 13-16
Camillus – 23
Case – 19-22
Cold Steel – 23-25
Columbia River (CRKT) – 17-22.5(depending on designer)
KA-BAR – Listed on their website on a per knife basis, but generally 15 degrees per side
Kershaw – 20-22
Knives of Alaska – 18-20
Outdoor Edge – 20
SOG – 22 for flat grinds; 18-20 for hollow grinds
Spyderco – 20
Victorinox – 15-20
Winchester – Suggest using Smith’s recommended angle for knife type

Hunting/Outdoor – Fixed Blade:

Al Mar – 20
Benchmade – 18-20
Blade-Tech – 20-22
Boker USA – 20-22
Buck – 13-16
Camillus – 23
Case – 19-22
Cold Steel – 23-25
Columbia River (CRKT) – 17-22.5(depending on designer)
KA-BAR – Listed on their website on a per knife basis, but generally 20 degrees per side
Kershaw – 20-22
Knives of Alaska – 18-20
Outdoor Edge – 20
SOG – 22 for flat grinds; 18-20 for hollow grinds
Spyderco – 20
Winchester – Suggest using Smith’s recommended angle for knife type

Hunting/Outdoor – Folder: 

Al Mar – 20
Benchmade – 18-20
Blade-Tech – 20-22
Boker USA – 20-22
Buck – 13-16
Camillus – 23
Case – 19-22
Cold Steel – 23-25
Columbia River (CRKT) – 17-22.5(depending on designer)
KA-BAR – Listed on their website on a per knife basis, but generally 15 degrees per side
Kershaw – 20-22
Knives of Alaska – 18-20
Outdoor Edge – 20
SOG – 22 for flat grinds; 18-20 for hollow grinds
Spyderco – 20
Winchester – Suggest using Smith’s recommended angle for knife type

Fillet Knives:

All Brands – 15-16

Tactical Knives:

Al Mar – 20
Benchmade – 18-20
Blade-Tech – 20-22
Boker USA – 20-22
Buck – 13-16
Camillus – 23
Case – 19-22
Cold Steel – 23-25
Columbia River (CRKT) – 17-22.5(depending on designer)
KA-BAR – Listed on their website on a per knife basis, but generally 15 degrees per side
Kershaw – 20-22
Mil-Tac – Generally 25 for Folders and 30 for Fixed Blades
SOG – 22 for flat grinds; 18-20 for hollow grinds
Spyderco – 20
Surefire – 28

Custom Knives:

A.G. Russell – 15
Chris Reeves – 18-20
William Henry – 17-22

Common Sharpening Angles (degrees per side): 

Pocket Knives – 20
Hunting Knives – 22
Euro/American Kitchen Knives – 20
Asian Edge Kitchen Knives – 16
Fillet Knives – 16
Tactical Knives – 23
Custom Knives – Varies by Designer


Sharpening Abrasives

Types of sharpening abrasive materials include Diamond, Carbides, Ceramics, Arkansas Stones, and Synthetics. Each have their own unique characteristics and sharpening capabilities.

Diamonds: Because diamonds are the hardest substance known to man, diamond abrasive sharpeners are fast, durable, and very effective. They are very aggressive and remove metal quickly. Premium diamond sharpening surfaces are characterized by a (interrupted) surface that collects and hold the metal filings that ordinarily build-up. This allows sharpening with or without honing solution. Excellent for use on very hard tools or stainless steel. Diamond stones always remain flat, as opposed to Natural Arkansas and Synthetic stones which wear down with use. They come in multiple grits.

Carbides: very aggressive; removes metal quickly; great for quickly restoring a good working edge in 3 or 4 strokes.

Ceramics: removes very little metal; excellent for finishing and maintaining a sharp edge. Can come in different grits, colors, or shapes.

Arkansas Stones: Arkansas stones are genuine silica “novaculite,” indigenous to Arkansas. They remove the least amount of metal while polishing your edge to razor sharpness; No other sharpener can perform both these tasks simultaneously. They are the best abrasive for honing and polishing an edge to razor sharpness and are known as “the world’s finest finishing stone.”

Synthetic: man-made stone; great for quick edge setting as well as final finishing. They also come in multiple grits, colors, or shapes.

Stay Prepared! Stay Alive!

Charlie

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Water Purification Using Chemical Treatments


Water purification tablets are a great back up form of water treatment. They are excellent Bug Out Bags and survival kits because they are light weight and inexpensive. Water purification tablets are also great to store in your vehicle or your bug out location to disinfect water on demand.  If the water supply I am drawing from is extremely shady I combine both a filter and the tablets to ensure my safety. Also, be aware that water purification tablets have a shelf life. Check the expiration dates on your tablets and replace any that are expired.

Water purification can come in tablet or droplet form. The tablet form is better because it is a lighter weight that droplets and easy to use when in a stressful situation.

Two water born pathogens that commonly found in untreated water- Cryptosporidium and Giardia.

Cryptosporidium is a genus of apicomplexan protozoans that can cause gastrointestinal illness with diarrhea in humans. According to the CDC it is one of the most frequent causes of waterborne disease among humans in the United States. In a disaster situation where government maintained services are effected, it is highly likely that this protozoa parasite will find its way into our water supply.

Giardia attached to the wall of the small intestines. Giardia is also an infectious protozoa and it is a big deal in emergency preparedness because it can have such a dramatic effect on your health. The symptoms of Giardia, may begin to appear 2 days after infection, include violent diarrhea, excess gas, stomach or abdominal cramps, upset stomach, and nausea. 

The typical infection within an individual can be slight, resolve without treatment in about 2–6 weeks, although sometimes longer and sometimes the infection is more severe requiring immediate medical attention. 

There are three main types of water purification tablets on the market (Chlorine (NaDCC), Iodine and Chlorine Dioxide) . Not all are equal as each one has its strengths and weaknesses. Choose the purification tablet that works the best with your situation and location.



Chlorine Dioxide Tablets (Potable Aqua, Katadyn and Aquamira Brands). Even though the word “chlorine” is in the name, chlorine dioxide is neither iodine nor chlorine. It uses a highly active form of oxygen to purify water so it leaves absolutely zero taste. As a nice bonus the action of chlorine dioxide causes a lot of sediment to drop out of suspension (fall to the bottom) leaving the container of water more clear and further improving flavor. Chlorine dioxide tablets are a good choice for those allergic to iodine, with thyroid problems, or on lithium. Always follow product usage instructions.

Chlorine NaDCC Tablets (Potable Aqua, Oasis Plus, Aquatabsand Rothco’s Military “Chlor-Floc“ Brands). NaDCC, also known as sodium dichloroisocyanurate or sodium troclosene, is a form of chlorine used for disinfection. NaDCC tablets are different and improved over the older chlorine based (halazone) tablets. When added to water, NaDCC releases hydrochloric acid which reacts through oxidization with microorganisms and kills them. Many tablets advertise no chlorine after taste. Unopened NaDCC tablets have a shelf life of 3-5 years, if opened they should be discarded after 3 months. Always follow product usage instructions. 

Iodine Tablets (Potable Aqua,Coleman, and Coghlans brands). Iodine Tablets use iodine to purify contaminated water. Most iodine purification tablets tend to leave a funny taste to the water and some discoloration, however vitamin C or ascorbic acid can be added after the treatment time to improve the taste and remove the color. This often comes in the form of two bottles with two separate tablets. Iodine water treatment has been proven to be somewhat effective against Giardia and not effective against Crytosporidium.  Always follow product usage instructions. 

Stay Prepared! Stay Alive!

Charlie




Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Improvised Survival Life Vest




Your pants can be used for more things than just holding your wallet and keys. Your pants can actually help save your life in a water survival scenario.

Lets use a scenario where you are out boating several miles from shore and for some unforeseeable reason the boat sinks. The boat owner did not have life jackets or any other flotation devices on board. Hopefully, you are not the boat owner that made that costly mistake.

Now, the boat is nowhere in sight because it is now at the bottom of the lake. You are alone and hopefully have some type of swimming skills, especially on how to tread water. If you can not swim, I would suggest learning now before you need the ability to do so. If you can't swim or tread water, this technique will not work for you.

If you are wearing shoes, attempt to remove at least one show string and discard your shoes. This will remove some wait that will drag you down. Hold the shoe string in your mouth until needed for the next steps. If you are able to tie the bottom of the pant legs together into a knot, then you may not need the shoe strings. It depends on how thick your pant material is and the pant size. The larger the pants, the more difficult to tie. I know from experience. 

Remove your belt if you have one. Remove any heavy objects from the pockets like keys, etc.

While doing these steps, it is important not to panic. You may need to go under water once in awhile to do some of these steps to relieve some pressure from treading water. Just hold your breath, sink a little, do a step, and then come back up for air. The colder the water, the harder it is to do these steps.

After removing the belt and other items, if you are able to slip your pants off without undoing the snap and zipper then do so. If not, you will have to close the snap and zipper after removing your pants.

Once the pants are off and everything is snapped up, you will need to tie the pant legs together at the cuff so that air will not escape through them. If you are able to tie the legs together into a knot without using the string, then do that. If it is difficult, then use the shoe string. I prefer to use the shoe string because I can tie the pant leg opening closer to the ends so that it will hold more air.

Next, will need to place your head between the opening of the pant legs with the cuff facing to your back and the zipper facing down into the water. You should be looking at your rear pant pockets if done correctly. 

Next, bring the opening up above your head and the scoop downward toward the water trapping air into the pant legs. You need to squeeze the belt opening together at chest level so that air does not escape back out. You will need to do this step as needed to keep air in the legs. You can also slightly open the belt area up and slap water and air into the opening and then close it back up.

Next, after the pant legs are puffed up with air, lean back slightly while keeping the belt opening closed at the chest with your arms. Determine where the nearest landfall is and start pedaling with your feet toward that direction. You will be traveling backwards, so every now and then look back to make sure your are not heading for any type of hazard or danger.

There is an alteration to this technique. You can tie off each pant leg individually resulting in two floating ends. You keep the belt opening down into the water and place your chest between the crotch area and you can pedal forward on your chest rather than on your back.

Note:  If your pants have holes in the knees or crotch area, this technique will not work.

Stay Prepared! Stay Alive!

Charlie

Friday, July 22, 2016

Cotton Ball Friction Fire






Items needed:

100% cotton balls
Wood ash (the white part of the burnt fire)
Two wood boards (2 x 4, 1 x 4 etc.)
Tender bundle

Prepare the cotton ball by opening it up and form it into square shape. Put about a teaspoon of wood ash on top of the bottom 1/3 of the cotton strip. 

Starting from the bottom, roll the cotton ball as tight as you can get it. Next, roll the cotton cylinder on the board with the palm of your hand to make it tighter. Then, using one of the flat boards, roll it again to make it even tighter.

Next, using the same board, begin rolling the cotton cylinder back and forth in a sawing motion, pressing down with firm pressure. After about 12-15 strokes, lift the board and check for embers. If you see smoke, you make have to open the center of the cylinder a little, to let in some oxygen.

If it has not started to smoke or catch and ember, continue to with the sawing motion until an ember or smoke is produced. If the material is spent and has not produced smoke, you may need to make another bundle and start again. Add a little more of the ash on the second attempt.

Once you have obtained an ember, transfer it to the tender bundle and complete your fire making steps.

Other materials can be used to produce the same effects. Cotton cloth strips, paper towels, dried yucca fibers can be substituted for the cotton balls. Rust from metal can be used in place of the wood ash.

A flat rock can used as a base instead of wood.

Stay prepared! Stay Alive!

Charlie

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Survival Uses For Mullein







Uses:

Note: Use the first year growth for leaf remedies and second years growth for the flower remedies. This is when the potency is the best for this plant.

Great mullein has been used since ancient times as a remedy for skin, throat and breathing ailments. It has long had a medicinal reputation, especially as an astringent and emollient, as it contains mucilage, several saponins, coumarin and glycosides. 

Non-medical uses have included dyeing and making torches. The soft leaves were used as toilet paper. Native and pioneer women used the leaves as a sanitary napkin.

Mullein can be found in dried river beds, along roadsides, in disturbed soil areas. Mullein like a lot of sunlight.

Medical uses:

Leaf decoctions or herbal teas were used for expectoration, consumption, dry cough, bronchitis, sore throat and hemorrhoids. Leaves were also smoked against pulmonary ailments. The Zuni people, however, use the plant in poultices of powdered root applied to sores, rashes and skin infections. An infusion of the root is also used to treat athlete's foot. The combination of expectorant saponins and emollient mucilage makes the plant particularly effective for cough. All preparations meant to be drunk have to be finely filtered to eliminate the irritating hairs.

Oil from the flowers was used against catarrhs (excessive discharge or buildup of mucus in the nose or throat, associated with inflammation of the mucous membrane), colics and, earaches, frostbite, eczema and other external conditions. Topical application preparations was recommended for the treatment of warts, boils, carbuncles, hemorrhoids, and chilblains, amongst others. Recent studies have found that great mullein contains glycyrrhizin compounds with bactericide and potential anti-tumoral action. These compounds are concentrated in the flowers.

Mullein is used for cough, whooping cough, tuberculosis, bronchitis, hoarseness, pneumonia, earaches, colds, chills, flu, swine flu, fever, allergies, tonsillitis, and sore throat. Other uses include asthma, diarrhea, colic, gastrointestinal bleeding, migraines, joint pain, and gout. It is also used as a sedative and as a diuretic to increase urine output. 

Other uses:

The seeds contain several compounds (saponins, glycosides, coumarin, rotenone) that are toxic to fish, and have been widely used as toxins for fishing.

The flowers provide dyes of bright yellow or green, and have been used for hair dye. The dried leaves and hair were made into candle wicks, or put into shoes to help with insulating them. The dried stems were also dipped into suet or wax to make torches. 

Mullein tea is a traditional treatment for respiratory problems, such as chest colds, bronchitis and asthma. Mullein leaf tea is slightly bitter; a tea of the flowers is sweeter. Both the leaves and flowers contain mucilage, which is soothing to irritated membranes, and saponins, which make coughs more productive. Research has shown that the herb has strong anti-inflammatory activity, and lab studies suggest that mullein flower infusions have antiviral properties, as well.

The Creek Indians drank a decoction of the roots for coughs; other tribes smoked the roots or dried leaves to treat asthma.

Topical applications were equally varied. The Cherokee rubbed mullein leaves in their armpits to treat “prickly rash.” Leaf poultices were used to treat bruises, tumors, rheumatic pains and hemorrhoids. Mullein flower oil (made by steeping the flowers in warm olive oil) also has been used for treating hemorrhoids, as well as earaches.

Like many other herbs, mullein is not entirely benign. Some people find the plant’s hairs irritating to skin and mucous membranes. It’s a good idea to see how you react to a small amount of mullein before consuming it or smearing it on your body. And always strain the tea through fine-weave cloth or a coffee filter to remove any stray hairs.

The stalk can also be dried as a spindle for making fire either by hand drill or bow drill.

Edible parts: Leaves and flowers. Although the leaves and flowers are edible, enjoying a cup of tea made from these parts is generally preferable. Leaves and flowers can be used in a salad.

Tea:

Ingredients-

1-2 tsps of dried mullein leaves and/or flowers
1 cup boiling water

Instructions-

Pour 1 cup of boiling water over the dried mullein flowers and leaves. Steep for 10 - 15 minutes. Pour the liquid through a cheesecloth or a coffee filter to strain out the plant's tiny hairs as they may irritate the throat.

Mullein leaf tea has a soothing effect on the urinary tract and facilitates urination. It also eases a nervous, irritable bladder and incontinence. Prepare mullein tea as directed above (minus the mullein flowers) and drink 3 - 4 cups daily. (Be sure to ask your health practitioner first if this is suitable for your condition.)

Mullein flower oil:

Made by steeping the flowers in warm olive oil for 3 weeks (has been used for treating hemorrhoids, as well as earaches)

Mullein Cough Syrup:

Ingredients:

Approximately 5 handfuls of mullein flowers (not dried)
Sugar

Directions: In a jam jar, place one handful of flowers. Pour a layer of sugar on top of the flowers approximately the same volume as the flowers. Place another handful of flowers on top of the sugar. Continue to do this until you reach the top of the jar. Put the lid on the jar and place in direct sunlight for 1 week. 

After one week, the level of the layers will have dropped. Place another layer of fresh flowers and sugar until you reach the top again. Put the lid back on and place in direct sunlight for 3 more weeks. 

After 3 weeks, use a strainer and strain the liquid (brown syrup) into a dark colored glass medicine bottle and cap it off. Label the bottle with the contents and date. Use one teaspoon as needed for cough and sore throat. 

(Warning: check with your doctor before taking this application to make sure it will not react with any medications that you may be taken. Also, make sure you are or anyone taking this recipe are not allergic to mullein. Take at own risk this is for educational purposes only as the author is not a doctor. Do your own research.)

List of Uses:

1. Bandages
2. Toilet paper
3. Sanitary napkins
4. Flowers- edible, as well as making medicine for ear aches, wounds, infections, hemorrhoids, chap lips
5. Leaves- edible, as well as making medicine for cold and flus. Dried leaves smoked for lung congestion and throat problems (bronchittus). Inhale the steam from boiling leaves to help relieve cough. Boiled leaves were placed on inflamed area to help with healing and swelling.
6. Leaves were used to make candle wicks.
7. Dried stalk used for hand and bow drills for starting fires. Stalks were also dipped in wax or tallow and used as torches.
8. Seeds- not edible. Used to stun fish by pounding the seeds and placing in a cloth and then placed into a shallow pool of water containing fish.
9. Root- pounded into a powder and made into a poultice to put on sores and infections and helps heal athletes foot.

Stay Prepared! Stay Alive!

Charlie


Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Field Kit For Expedient Reloading Of Shotgun Ammo


Warning: For educational purposes only. Use these techniques at your own risk.




Tools used for field expedient reload

Correct primer surfacing

Tools/Equipment:

1. Brass shot shells (size for weapon system being used, 12 gauge, etc.)
2. Shot
3. Pyrodex Rifle and shotgun powder (or preferred brand)
4. 209 shotgun primers
5. Large pistol primers
6. Wadding material
7. Over shot card material
8. Lighter and glue stick
9. Primer crimp tool or "C" clamp setup with deep well socket
10. Primer removal tool
11. Powder tamper tool
12. Powder and shot measuring tool
13. Container for brass shells
14. Container to store kit
15. 15/64 inch drill bit
16. 23/64 inch drill bit
17. Wad and over shot cutter tool
18. Drill
19. Flat piece metal stock
20. Rubber hammer or similar 
21. Flat piece of wood stock

Converting brass shell to accept the 209 primer:

1. First use the 15/64 drill bit and drill out the primer hole.
2. Using a 23/64 drill bit, drill a slight recess in the primer hole deep enough to allow the primer rim to seat flush with the bottom of the shell. See photo above.
3. Seat the 209 primer like you would a regular 12 gauge shell when reloading.

Note: Shotgun firing these types of reloads need to be cleaned more often than factory loaded ammo.

Friday, June 24, 2016

Reload 209 Primers Using Field Expedient Methods


Warning: For educational purposes only. Use these techniques at your own risk.





Tools used for field loading

Items needed to reload 209 primer

Set up to separate 209 primer components

209 Primer separated


Suggested tools used:

1. Antique hand primer crimp tool
2. Wood dowel for powder, wad and shot compressing
3. Primer removal tool with socket base (5/8 inch socket)
4. Rubber hammer
5. Wad cutter tool (for what ever size shell you are loading)
6. Flat punch that fits inside primer cup to flatten out dimple
7. Flat piece of metal stock
8. Flat piece of wood
9. Strike anywhere matches
10. Powder and shot measuring cups
11. Wad material (paper, plastic, wool, etc)
12. Over shot card material (cardboard, playing cards, etc)
13. 5.5 mm socket (used to remove primer cup)
14. Pin or finishing nail used to pound out primer cup.
15. Lighter or similar flame source
16. Glue stick
17. Rifle and shotgun powder with container (I used Pyrodex RS)
18. Bird shot with container (I used #7 1/2 in the video)


Note: Do not allow the ammo to get wet. Do not jar the ammo around by throwing into an ammo can or something of that nature. Protect the ammo until it is needed. It is best to shoot this ammo from a single shot or double barrel shotgun rather than a pump action. A pump action can be used if you load and fire one round at a time rather than using the pump action.

One drawback from reloading spent primers is the chance that the match head powder or what ever other ignition source was used may not ignite and you get a dude fire.

In the event the primer does not ignite, wait about 60 seconds with the end of the barrel pointed on target in the event there is a cook off. A cook off is when the powder could be smoldering but has not yet ignited. If it ignites and the end of the barrel is pointed toward someone, there may be a chance of an accidental shooting.

Always inspect the shells for damage and cracks. Do not reuse or shoot damaged ammo. Use safety glasses when loading your ammo and keep open flames away from your powder. 

Stay Prepared! Stay Alive!

Charlie

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Field Expedient Ammo Reloading





Caution: This lesson is for educational purposes only. Gun powder is dangerous. Firing damaged or incorrectly loaded ammo is dangerous as well. 


PRIMER CRIMPER



WAD CUTTER


There may be a time in ones life when it may become necessary to have to reload ammo in the field, especially in a wilderness survival situation or the collapse of society. 

We are comfortable in knowing that at the moment we have access to ready made store bought ammo. But, what if that luxury was some how taken away? What if there were no stores left or available to purchase our ammo?

In such as situation, ammo can still be available if one knew how to obtain what was needed to reload their own. Spent ammo shells, especially shotgun shells can be found laying around all over the desert. Primers can be reconditioned and reloaded. Black powder can be homemade. Lead shot can be made from scrape lead.

You really do not need fancy reloading equipment in order to reload ammo in an emergency or self reliant situation.

Learn now to start saving your spent ammo hulls and shells. Set them aside to be reloaded at a later date when the time is needed.

Here are the steps that were covered in the video to reload a 12 gauge shell: (if this is the first time a plastic shotgun shell is being used, cut the top crimp fingers off the shell where the crimp line meets the star crimp.)

1. Remove primer
2. Install a new primer
3. Measure powder and add to shell
4. Using dowel rod, gently compress the powder in the shell
5. Add correct amount of wading (plastic, paper, animal hair, leather, etc.)
6. Using dowel rod again, gently compress the wad into the shell
7. Add correct amount of shot. (insure that there is enough room at the opening of the shell to add the over-shot card)
8. Add over-shot card and compress gently with dowel rod
9. Add glue over top of shot card ensuring that the inside walls of the shell receive glue as well
10. Immediately add another shot card over the top of the first one and apply gentle pressure to allow glue to spread out

Note: Do not allow the ammo to get wet. Do not jar the ammo around by throwing into an ammo can or something of that nature. Protect the ammo until it is needed. It is best to shoot this ammo from a single shot or double barrel shotgun rather than a pump action. A pump action can be used if you load and fire one round at a time rather than using the pump action.

Always inspect the shells for damage and cracks. Do not reuse or shoot damaged ammo. Use safety glasses when loading your ammo and keep open flames away from your powder. 

Stay Prepared! Stay Alive!

Charlie


Saturday, May 14, 2016

Survival Basket Weaving






Learning a couple of weaving techniques will open the door to a whole new way of being able to store survival items. Weaving baskets for containers is more of a skill to utilize for long term survival situations.

The above basket on the left was made from grass and the one on the right was made from Yucca leaf.

This is a skill that needs to be practiced in order to make it proficient for the survivalists.

Stay Prepared! Stay Alive!

Charlie

Friday, May 6, 2016

Paracord Fishing Lures










Here's a new saying, "One mans trash is another mans fish bait". When in a survival situation, always check out your surroundings for things that can be useful in saving your life. 

These days trash can be found everywhere, even in places you would not expect it to be. Bottles and cordage can be found washed up on shore lines. Bottles and cordage both have many survival uses.

After watching the video, maybe you will get some ideas of your own on how to turn discarded items into survival trinkets. I use to throw away the cut off ends of my different colored paracord cordage, but now, I add pieces to my survival kits to make fish lures.

Next time you go fishing, try fishing with lures made from trash like bottle caps and soda can pull tabs. The more practice you have at using these type baits, the better ahead of the game you will be when you really need to use them.

Stay Prepared! Stay Alive!

Charlie

Friday, April 1, 2016

Pebbles Anyone?





"Great information sent to me by a good friend"

Hey Charlie,



Yesterday I was out on horseback for about 4 hours. I did not drink water, only coffee, before that and was getting kinda thirty. I thought about the pebble in your mouth tip to keep saliva going. Have you did a post, likely a short one, addressing this old tip? and what type of rock to use. Saliva comes from your saliva gland next to the lymph nodes in your neck-jaw line. I'm thinking more of the mental support of having a moist mouth, rather than the discomfort of having a dry mouth. Also keeping a pebble in your mouth will likely keep your mouth closed and thereby not losing extra moisture to evaporation.

From WebMD:

Saliva is a clear liquid made by several glands in your mouth area.

Saliva is an important part of a healthy body. It is mostly made of water. But saliva also contains important substances that your body needs to digest food and keep your teeth strong.

Saliva is important because it:

•Keeps your mouth moist and comfortable
•Helps you chew, taste, and swallow
•Fights germs in your mouth and prevents bad breath
•Has proteins and minerals that protect tooth enamel and prevent tooth decay and gum disease
•Helps keep dentures securely in place

You make saliva when you chew. The harder you chew, the more saliva you make. Sucking on a hard candy or cough drop helps you make saliva, too.

The glands that make saliva are called salivary glands. The salivary glands sit inside each cheek, at the bottom of your mouth, and near your front teeth by the jaw bone.

There are six major salivary glands and hundreds of minor ones. Saliva moves through tubes called salivary ducts.

Normally, the body makes up to 2 to 4 pints of saliva a day. Usually, the body makes the most saliva in the late afternoon. It makes the least amount at night.

But everyone is different. What doctors consider to be a normal amount of saliva varies quite a bit. That makes diagnosing saliva problems a bit of a challenge.

Too Little Saliva-

Certain diseases and medicines can affect how much saliva you make. If you do not make enough saliva, your mouth can become quite dry. This condition is called dry mouth (xerostomia).

Dry mouth causes the gums, tongue, and other tissues in the mouth to become swollen and uncomfortable. Germs thrive in this type of setting. A germy, dry mouth leads to bad breath.

Dry mouth also makes you more likely to develop rapid tooth decay and gum (periodontal) disease. That's because saliva helps clear food particles from your teeth. This helps reduce your risk for cavities.

If you have dry mouth, you may also notice you do not taste things like you used to.

--------------------------

P.S. Quartz pebbles or similar stones are the best to use.

Stay Prepared! Stay Alive!

Charlie

Thursday, January 28, 2016

No One Should Die of Hypothermia





If you watch the local or national news from time to time it would have been hard to miss the story of missing Country Western singer Craig Strickland, who was missing for over a week, until he was found dead, of Hypothermia.

The Oklahoma Highway Patrol Marine Enforcement Division found the country singer’s body in Bear Creek Cove on Monday, over a week after Strickland went missing during a duck hunting trip. The 29-year-old’s wife, Helen, says in a new post that he died of hypothermia.

“The night of the accident he had fought his way out of the water and up a hill before the stages of hypothermia set in,” she wrote on Instagram. “He experienced no pain in his final moments and simply felt like he was falling asleep.”

According to the Mayo Clinic - Hypothermia is a medical emergency that occurs when your body loses heat faster than it can produce heat, causing a dangerously low body temperature. Normal body temperature is around 98.6 F (37 C). Hypothermia occurs as your body temperature passes below 95 F (35 C).

When your body temperature drops, your heart, nervous system and other organs can't work normally. Left untreated, hypothermia can eventually lead to complete failure of your heart and respiratory system and to death.

Hypothermia is most often caused by exposure to cold weather or immersion in a cold body of water. Primary treatments for hypothermia are methods to warm the body back to a normal temperature.

In other words Be Able to Build A Fire!

How hard would it be to carry a water proof container with a lighter, some greased cotton balls, dyer lint, water proof matches and/or a fire striker? In fact, if you are out on the water or are leaving your survival camp during a rain or threat of thunderstorm, why not pre-build your fire pit and have kindling and wood collected and ready so if you became submersed or drenched you could much quicker build a fire to warm up and dry out. 

Stay Prepared! Stay Alive!

Charlie

Monday, January 4, 2016

Snow As A Source Of Survival Water










When the desert sees its share of snow, it does not usually last very long. As seen in the video, we received 6 1/2 inches of snow in one day. In 4 days all the snow had mostly melted away with the exception of the mountain areas. This was in Southern New Mexico, where 3 inches around this time of year is average.

Snow melts more slower in shadowy areas, like the north side of the sand dunes as seen in the video where the sun does not get to at this time of year.

The snow can be melted and drank as is if it was taken from a clean area of the ground. There is caution given about eating snow without first melting it. The caution being that doing so would lower your body core temperature making you more prone to hypothermia.

If the weather is warm and you need to hydrate, consuming small amounts of un-melted snow should not be a large factor.

In the video I gave a demonstration about how much water you would get if you melted the snow first. In this demonstration the snow was semi-wet and compacted very well. A one gallon plastic bag produced about a half gallon of water. Had the snow been more powdery and harder to compact, it would produce even less. Heating the snow in a fire would cause even more of the liquid to evaporate.

Water can still be found if all the ground snow was gone and the ground was still moist. As shown in the above picture and as demonstrated in the video, you can dig below ground and have a good chance of getting enough water to drink.

Stay Prepared! Stay Alive!

Charlie