Saturday, March 31, 2012

A Beginner’s Guide To Medieval Weapons

I like to insert an occasional, relevent (to me) article. I think everyone should be prepared, at least in a modest way, for the coming dark times. I recently found a nice home for sale, with a seperate studio & guest house, plus a 1000 sq ft concrete bunker! I'd buy that in a minute if I won the Lotto (House=$850,000)! Not everyone can buy huge stocks of firearms and ammo. At some point even that will run out. Home made "medieval weapons" may be a necessary choice".

Technological conditions and nature of availability of raw materials form the basis of any culture's arsenal at any point of time in the history of mankind. Prehistoric human race, often better known as the Stone Age civilization were known for their intelligent usage of grinding tools, stone and shaping axes, and creating arrows and spears as weapons for survival strategies. But these implements improved over the years as the technological skills of these cultures improved.

The development of the metallic tools, implements and weapons that persisted through the Middle Ages were actually originated during the Bronze and Iron Ages and following that, these implements have dramatically altered over time. Eventually, with the appearance of gunpowder in Europe in the early 14th century most of these weapon were rendered useless and the castle too took a backseat to the extent of becoming redundant.

The castle was considered to be one of the most formidable weapons of medieval warfare while if we consider the smaller weapons, there were also a lot of lethal ones, the ones that were movable and capable of wreaking havoc and death of an opponent. Thus despite having played a key role in the deaths of many people during the Middle Ages, it is a category of its own and hence will be kept out the following discussion on medieval weaponry.

The Middle Ages witnessed the dominance of double edged swords, metal-headed spears and axes among weapons while arrows and short bows were also in vogue. A very interesting fact that is pretty well known in this regard is that the Saxons valued swords very highly to the extent of considering the value of a sword to be equivalent to the value of 120 oxen or 15 male slaves and thus according great importance and status to a man possessing a sword. Because of these weapons being simple to construct and easy to wield, throughout the Middle Ages these weapons remained popular.

In spite of the three weapons of the sword, the spear (or lance) and the battle-axe being very prevalent during the 12th century, yet the crossbow quickly gained popularity. Compounded with the rapidly rising popularity of the horse warfare that supposedly made movement easy and allowed a benefit to its martial riders who held spears and the beginning of massive siege engines, eventually these hand-held weapons helped invaders like the Normans to overpower these less technologically advanced people.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Best Family Dog Breed for Survival?

I don't currently have a dog, but I do lots of research and see what I like walking on the streets.  I have young grand-children and don't want an attack dog like a Rottweiler or a Pitt bull around them (or me).  From what I've seen and read so far, I like three breeds for an overall useful dog around a compound and is safe with children.  As a responsible pet owner, I also realize any dog needs to be properly trained.

The top three breeds for me are:
  • Australian Shepard
  • Golden Retriever
  • German Shepard
I think anyone of these three breeds would be ideal for myself as a "guard" over a small herd of pygmy goats and other barnyard critters, and would be good watchers and playmates for small children. Decisions, decisions!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Add "Survival" Apps to Your Mobile Device"

Have an iPhone, iPod, or iPad type mobile device?  There are many applications devoted to DISASTER Survival...most are FREE or cost under $2.
There are pure Survival apps like the "SAS Survival Manual", medical apps like "Red Cross First Aid" or "Web MD", edible plant apps, Emergency Radio Scanners, Nuclear and radiological apps, and "Disaster Survival".  Also many free government apps such as FEMA!  I found several new ones today and added them to my iTouch4...lots of information to digest and no internet connection needed!

Most or similar applications are also made for Android based phones or tablets.

Another mobile device which has many documents available for it, such as military manuals, government documents, and eBooks is the Amazon Kindle.

I loaded an Earthquake Alert app the day of the Mexican quake, have it set at 4.0 and 5,000 miles from my goes off several times per hour!

#preppertalk  #prepperproducts  #doomsday

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Top 10 Books to Have in Your Bunker or Hide-Away!

I'd like to suggest what I consider to be the top 10 books to have in any survival bunker or hide-a-way.  Disaster survival may be from a few days or forever depending on what happens.  Reference books can be put to good use at anytime.

  1. Bible
  2. How New Way Things Work By David Macaulay
  3. Back to Basics: A Complete Guide to Traditional Skills By Abigail R. Gehring
  4. Black & Decker The Complete Photo Guide to Home Improvement
  5. The American Red Cross First Aid and Safety Handbook
  6. The Vegetable Gardener's Bible By Edward C. Smith
  7. The Survival Manual (Outdoor Life): Urban Adventure - Wilderness Survival - Disaster Preparedness By The Editors of Outdoor Life Magazine
  8. Western Civilizations: Their History & Their Culture By Judith Coffin, Robert Stacey
  9. The Art of Blacksmithing By Alex W. Bealer
  10. Nature's Garden: A Guide to Identifying, Harvesting, and Preparing Edible Wild Plants By Samuel Thayer
There are of course almost an infinite numbers but I believe these books will be a valuable resource for a long time.  All can be ordered through by clicking on one of the links in the side bar!  Remember, "Knowledge is Power"!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Underground Bunkers

As a former General Contractor, I'd like to say a few words about Underground Bunkers.  Building underground is similar to, but on a much higher scale than building a house basement foundation.  Both require proper drainage and waterproofing. Underground requires waterproof membranes, sealant, and I'd suggest insulation.  Temperatures over 10 feet in the ground, in most areas of the United States,  remain about 55 F most of the year, but you'd be uncomfortable at those temps for long periods of time.

I used "Underground Wood Foundation Systems" in my solar buildings.  They were sealed and insulated with 2" Styrofoam, then covered with 6 mill poly before back filled with 24" of gravel, then excavated material, drainage pipe went around the perimeter.  These buildings were all constructed in the Rochester, NY area...real winter!
The show "Doomsday Bunkers" appears to throw the steel building into the hole and cover it with insulation or drainage that I've seen.  I thinks that's trouble down the road!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Alternative Weapons to Firearms

Initially it sounded like an exciting post...until I did the research.  The original premise was that not everyone owns or has access to firearms for survival scenarios.  Hunting, self-defense, etc may be difficult for city dwellers that aren't in a gang.  Then there is the waiting time, background check, the government knows where your guns are, details. But that's another story.

My first choice for alternative hunting and self defense was a crossbow or hunting bow & arrows!  Research shows that quality bows cost about the same as a firearm, arrows more than bullets!  Yes, you need to practice to be skilled, but you should do that with firearms also!

Next came bladed weapons such as knives, swords, spears, etc.  Yup, you need to practice to be fact your life depends on it.  There are plenty of great web sites and probably several local sources in your area, for all the above.  I have added several, and will add, to my lists on my sidebar.  Lastly, while thought of as a kid's toy, a slingshot, such as a wrist rocket can be used for small game hunting...and yes that .38 ball bearing can put your eye out!

What's the point?  Non-firearms require no license to own or operate, legal hunting requires a proper license.  They are quiet and deadly...a fact that may matter in some survival situations.  Rather than being a substitute for firearms, I strongly suggest they are a valuable addition to firearms.  Don't forget extra strings, bands, ammo, arrows, tips, sharpeners, etc.  Also in addition to stocking ammo for firearms, reloading supplies are probably a great idea, as many "preppers" will agree.

Be safe and be prepared out there!

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Basic Survival on a Budget

Someone Tweeted me that they want to survive, but can't even afford a gun.  I've had "72 Hr Kits" in various sizes since Y2K (yes, that was real).  Where is my stuff?  In my apartment in a go bag and fanny packs.  What happens when I am away from home?  I'd suggest at minimum, always carry a pocket knife (maximum legal blade size) and a multi-tool on you belt or in your pocketbook at all times.  These don't take up space, usually come in black nylon sheaths and are obtrusive, even in a three piece suit guys!

I like black...most of my gear is black.  My fanny pack came from Walmart on clearance.   It contains:
  • sheath knife
  • fire starter
  • small mag lite
  • small first aid kit & KI pills
  • power bars
  • compass
  • cell phone pouch
  • alcohol wipes
  • polycarbonate sporks
  • extra glasses
  • emergency whistle/match case/compass
The entire "kit" probably cost less than $35.  In my large bag I have a change of clothes, emergency radio, candles, extra pocket & sheath knives, second flashlight, extra batteries, space blanket, water bottles, etc.  Don't forget to keep any chargers for cell phone, iTouch, shaver, etc. in you bag!  Also your computer files on flash drives is also an idea.

My third small bag is a nylon fishing tackle box that I set up for a first aid kit.  I have redundant first aid supplies, an extra 3 months supply of KI tablets, knives, more power bars, first aid booklet, another flashlight, etc.  You can buy an excellent prepackaged first aid kit (Johnson & Johnson) in a poly case for $10 at Walmart...fits in the bottom of my bag!  Don't forget prescription medicines...if possible buy 90 days supply each time.

All three bags sit on the bottom shelf of my Microwave cart near the front door, ready to go.  All three weigh less than 30 pounds and are easy to carry!  Buy items on sale, and a few at a time if on a tight budget.  My total for all three kits and supplies is less than $100, and no guns!

Hope this helps...start outfitting now!

*****Important Note:  My gear is for a single!