Monday, October 26, 2015

Movie Monday - Comms Up!

This Week On Movie Monday

COMMS UP! An Introduction to AmRRON

This video is an introduction to a prepper communications system that has been going strong for several years.  AmRRON, American Redoubt Radio Operators Network, was originally created as a communications network to keep communities and states within the American Redoubt connected in the event of a major disaster situation, or socio-economic collapse.

I present this video not as a call to join AmRRON, but simply as an introduction to what having a network of radio linked preppers could do for you and your community.

 These films are presented as an exception to the copyright act as fair dealing for the purpose of research, private study, education, parody or satire. See bill c-42 article 29.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Preparing Your Stove For Winter

Weather you want to admit it or not, winter is almost here.  Most of us have seen flurries already, and although there is no snow cover for most of the inhabited really won't be long.  Past is the time to get your wood stove up to par for the year, but I find people are procrastinators in general, so here are a few things you NEED to get done to get your wood stove ready for the heating season.

Clean the Chimney

If you are a do it yourself type, this chore may be quite a dirty one, but relatively easy.  Use a proper sized brush and make a few passes to ensure you get as much crud out as possible.  If you decide to have it done professionally, only pay the company you called.  There are a lot of chimney sweeping scams out there, especially in urban areas that claim the job has already been done according to municipal regulations and now you have to pay for the service.  Guess what...none of these people ACTUALLY clean anything.  I've met people that received this type of letter that don't even have a chimney.

Check & Replace Door and Window Gaskets

this is a bit of a pain in the rear job, but most stoves today have a fiberglass gasket around the door that keeps air from flowing into the firebox uncontrolled.  A compressed gasket can feed too much air to your fire and cause overheating stove pipes and chimneys to ignite flameable items near them, even when kept at recommended distances.  Most gaskets will need replacing every year, two at the most.  Take a sample of your existing gasket to your home center and ask for a replacement kit.  This is a completely DIY job and all you need is the supplied gasket and heat resistant glue supplied in the kit. If your stove has a window, a kit with self adhesive gasket material is available

           Replace Broken Fire Bricks

           Broken fire bricks don't do as good of job absorbing and            transferring heat into the room.  Check for broken and cracked bricks and replace them with fire bricks.  Don't use regular bricks or stone as they can crack, explode, and damage your stove.

Stock up on Maintenance Supplies
I like to use a creosote inhibitor throughout the year.  No, it doesn't replace a good chimney sweeping, but it does make the job a lot easier.  A jar of this stuff will last a long time and make yearly maintenance easier.

Happy Heating!

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

How to Choose the Right Survival Pocket Knife - Guest Post by Lee Flynn

One of the most important tools that you can have with you in any situation, from a household chore to survival in the harsh elements of the outdoors, is a high-quality survival pocket knife. You shouldn't pick just any survival pocket knife, however. To ensure that you have a durable, versatile survival knife that suits your needs, there are several factors that you should keep in mind while shopping.


Large survival knives may seem appealing for self-defense purposes and for the added bonus of some sleek designs. However, bigger knives are typically clumsier to handle, take up a lot of space and they are not useful for more detailed and intricate uses like carving and dressing small game like rabbits. However, you don't want a knife that's too small as these also have problems with larger tasks such as chopping. Most people will find that a knife with a length of about 9 to 10 inches will be best for most situations.

Handle Material

You'll want your survival pocket knife's handle to be just as strong as the blade. Remember, it's not just the blade that is subject to wear and tear as you use the knife. The handle also suffers from hits, falls, friction, weather and more. To ensure that you get a strong handle, look for solid handles in thick rubber, antler, bone and micarta. Wood is another viable choice, but it may crack easily due to sudden hits or water damage. While smooth metals such as titanium and stainless steel provide durability, they may lack in grip. Textured metal and rubber grips can help with this, but it's usually better to choose an alternative material.

Blade Material

For the blade, carbon or stainless steel work best for survival pocket knives. For frequent use, it's best to find a carbon or stainless steel that is wear-resistant to improve the life of the blade and help prevent dulling. The blade should be fairly thick without seeming unnecessarily heavy. Thinner blades are great for more detailed jobs, but thicker blades are needed for several basic survival functions like opening some quick emergency food in aluminum cans.

Blade Types

There are many different types of blade that you can choose for a survival pocket knife. It may seem like a blade will suit any job no matter what tip it has, but it's actually a major consideration point in your purchase as certain blade types are most beneficial for some purposes and fairly useless in others.

For everyday purposes and survival purposes, straight-back, spear point and drop point are your best options. They have a sturdy design for everyday use, sharp points for self-defense and suitable shapes for skinning.

If you're looking for more of a hunting and survival knife, trailing point, spey points and clip points are best. They have thinner designs for easier skinning, large cutting areas for long and clean cuts and some piercing power for self-defense.

Finally, if you're looking for a blade meant for more rough survival use such as carving, cutting and chopping, tanto points, sheepsfoot blades, hawkbill blades and wharncliffe blades are the best options. Their unique designs and thick metal make them perfect for tougher jobs.


In the end, what is likely the biggest consideration of your survival pocket knife purchase will be the cost. High-end survival pocket knives can run upwards of $500, but these are usually for collecting purposes. You can find fairly decent survival pocket knives for $10 to $50, and this is the range you'd likely want to stay in if you want the knife for everyday use as well as survival. If you only plan to use the knife for specific occasions, you can spend around $100 or more. Remember, a good survival knife is an investment. If you're going to put a lot of money into it, do proper research and ensure that it's a strong, durable and useful knife for your needs.