10 Most Awesome Hardware Store Items For Your Survival Kit – Up Your Prepping Game With These!

10 Most Awesome Hardware Store Items For Your Survival Kit
graphic – off-grid.info. Images – amazon

Survival gear doesn’t always have to be expensive, complicated or hard to find. Here are 10 inexpensive “hardware store” basics that are an absolute must for preppers!

1) 550 Paracord

A survival kit essential with countless uses. It’s also very lightweight, meaning that you can carry a good length with almost zero effort. Here’s a 100-foot 550 paracord we found on Amazon for under $10. Great reviews and tons of colors available.

2) Headlamp

Another item that goes with me everywhere. A headlamp enables you to work in the dark, where a regular flashlight requires that you hold it, making whatever you were doing more difficult; or attempting to balance the flashlight in some precarious way, where it (inevitably) falls and plunges you into darkness at the vital moment… The Petzl Tactikka is a great choice – however these are higher cost. For a much lower cost option, this headlamp by Vont got tons of 5 star reviews.

3) Gaffer Tape

The old joke is that duct tape holds the universe together; however event production, television and film professionals will choose cloth-backed gaffer tape over plastic-backed duct tape every time. Being cloth-backed, it is ultra-flexible, strong and easy to tear off a strip to the size you want. If you get the standard 2″ wide rolls, you can also tear the tape lengthways to make long, thin strips and make your roll go further. Gaffer tape is also longer lasting than duct tape, generally peels off with less residue and makes a stronger, more secure bond. I keep rolls of this Real Premium Grade Gaffer Tape By GafferPower Made in the USA in my car and in my survival kits at all times – and wouldn’t be without it.

4) Zip Ties

These of course hardly need an introduction, as almost everyone in the world is familiar with them. One of the great advantages they have is their rapidity of use and the variability they have – you can hold things tightly, or you can make a larger loop that is also strong.

Zip ties are also super cheap. You can get a pack such as this 500-Pack of Self-Locking 4+6+8+10+12-Inch Width 0.16inch Nylon Cable Ties for just over 10 bucks on Amazon.

5) High Quality Work Gloves

Another item you will never catch me without. Proper work gloves are the difference between tearing through a project and tearing through your hands. They are an absolute essential – not only for safety, but will increase your productivity when doing rugged work.

I tend destroy gloves and boots fast because I have this tendency to go at what I am working on like a tiger. The result of this is that I have personally abuse-tested most of the work gloves out there. There are numerous great brands – so find the ones that work best for you and then buy a stash of several pairs so that you can replace when needed. You want something that has great grip, flexibility, durability and protection. They should have super-tuff pads on the fingers that wood splinters and so on will not go through. If you find that you still get splinters and cuts despite wearing gloves… you need tougher gloves.

Get in the habit of putting your gloves on before you start any kind of work, rather than after you cut yourself. You’ll learn. 😉

My personal faves are the Dead On Python gloves, but all these brands get my thumbs up:

Wells Lamont Synthetic Leather Work Gloves.
Dead On DO-803XL Python Anti-Vibe Glove.
Estwing EST7790XXL Premium Multi-Purpose Work Glove With Cut-Resistant Aramid Stitching Synthetic Leather Re-Reinforced Palm.

Also worth checking out are the cheap pigskin gloves but they are more cumbersome, meaning you have to take them off and put them back on more times during the day when doing something detailed. Great for concrete work because that destroys gloves faster than anything else I can think of.

6) Metal Hanger Strap

Love this stuff. An incredibly useful quick-fix item. Together with screws / small nuts and bolts, you can use Metal Hanger Strap to ‘earthquake strap’ so many different things, and as a quick-but-super-strong construction material. I have also found the Perforated Nylon Pipe Strap to be incredibly useful.

7) Rebar Wire

Simple, cheap, strong and with so many possibilities.  Always have a roll of this on hand in your survival kit and especially in your car kit. For example I’ve used this to secure a broken fender that was hanging loose after a minor fender-bender and make it home without having to get a tow! We’ve found rebar wire on Amazon – but you will probably want to buy this item at your local hardware store as a roll weighs a few pounds. Make sure you have a good pair of Linesman’s Pliers on hand for perfect twists and easy cutting.

8) 3M Respirator

A reusable respirator such as this 3M Half-Face Respirator is a survival kit essential as well as a work safety essential. Note that to be fully up to code you should use the exact mask and cartridge that is rated for the work you are doing. But for general purpose, these will solve the problem of numerous types of toxic fume and airborne particulate. Having one of these respirators saved my lungs during the California wildfires.

9) Bic lighters

This is the 21st century, and your primary goal is to survive, not to look like a modern primitive. So let the others sit there shivering, rubbing sticks together and try to get some smoke going. Keep a pack of Bic lighters on hand: You’ve got flame when you need it and you can be sipping your hot chocolate asap. 🙂 Sometimes the most awesome pieces of gear are the most simple. Here’s a 12-pack of Bic Lighters on Amazon that work out at just over a dollar each. Another reason these are great for survival kits is that they are good for many years. I was going through some stuff that had been in storage over 15 years and found one of these lighters. It sparked and lit up first time. Gotta love that. These lighters will probably outlive you, just get some.

10) Kneeling Pad

An item that doesn’t look like it should be on this list, but believe me, one of these makes an incredible difference to your ability to work in rough, cramped spaces, such as kneeling on rough ground or crawling or laying on your side in a tight crawl space. The kind of thing you didn’t think you needed until you have one and then don’t want to be without it. I found this 5050 Ergo Kneel Handy Mat II to be much more versatile than regular knee pads. The world agrees with me: It scored 94% 5-star reviews, the other 6% were 4 star. That’s an extremely high score on Amazon.

That’s it for your next hardware store survival run! 🙂 What else do you think we should add to the list? Let us know in the comments!

40 Percent Of Russia’s Food Is From Dacha Gardens: This Is What The GMO Megacorps Don’t Want You To Know

While most people in the Western world are completely reliant on large corporate agribusiness enterprises, many Russians feed themselves by growing vegetables and fruits in dacha gardens, which supply an astonishing 40% of the country’s food. Russia is an industrialized country that is larger than the U.S. but grows about half of its total food production in home gardens in a difficult and short-season climate. These dacha gardens are proof of the viability of small-scale sustainable agriculture as a genuine alternative to the highly criticized industrial farming model.

Dacha gardening has been feeding the Russian people for a millennium. It started as simple, independent “survival gardening” and has evolved into a self-provisioning model between the Bolshevik Revolution and World War II.

One-third of the Russian population owns a dacha. There are about one million dachas in the Moscow region alone. A typical dacha has a garden plot with a cabin. With a size of 600 square meters or 0.15 acres, dachas were originally intended as recreation getaways of city dwellers and as small gardens for food. Some dacha plots are over 1,200 to 1,500 square meters, but no property exceeds 2.4 acres or almost one hectare.

Growing one’s own food supplies is a habit that has fed the Russian nation for centuries. Russians pride themselves on the desire to grow their own food. This passion has contributed immensely to the sustainability of Russian agriculture.

Despite the mass urbanization and industrialization of the past century, many Russians still migrate to their rural kitchen gardens to grow and harvest fruits and vegetables. The most common dacha fruits and vegetables in cool temperate regions of Russia include apple, blackcurrant, gooseberry, strawberry, plum, pear, grape, potato, cucumber, zucchini, pumpkin, tomato, carrot, cauliflower, radish, turnip, onion, garlic, and parsley.

According to 2011 data from the Russian Statistics Service, dacha gardens produced over 80% of the country’s fruits and berries, over 66% of the vegetables, and almost 80% of the potatoes. Dacha communities also supplied 50% of the nation’s milk, much of it consumed raw. However these figures could be a little higher as they don’t include food that was foraged; for example berries and nuts gathered from the wild.

Dacha gardening or self-provisioning gardening played an important role in the early 1990s after the collapse of the Soviet bloc. When the heavily subsidized commercial agriculture collapsed with the demise of the USSR, dacha gardens survived and were the main reason why the Russian people did not experience a famine during the period. To put this in modern parlance, the distributed architecture of their farming system made it robust.

Key to the success of the Russian mindset is the sharing of surplus food. Dacha communities would share their excess food out of sense of abundance or plenty. This system of sharing resulted in a resilient food network that is sustainable.

Another important aspect of this system is seed saving. Check out our giant database of heirloom seed suppliers.

Russian household agriculture can claim itself as the most extensive system of successful food production of any industrial nation. Dacha gardening shows the possibility of highly centralized, small-scale food production.

No wonder the megacorps hate it: It frees you from their grip…

40 Percent of Russias Food Is From Dacha Gardens40 Percent Of Russia’s Food Is From Dacha Gardens Image – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r1qK2IJMJ44

66 Awesome Shelters You Can Make With A Tarp

Tarps are great for stowing away in a backpack because they are lightweight, water resistant and very versatile in how you use them. This makes the tarp an ideal material for constructing some pretty cool makeshift shelters when it comes to survival in the wild.

Presented below are several tarp shelter designs to help you get started:

• A-Frame Tarp Shelter
Easy and fast: This shelter is made by stringing paracord between two trees. Then, the tarp is draped over the cord and staked down. You need to stretch the paracord tightly enough that it won’t sag in the middle.

• Sunshade Tarp Shelter
To construct this shelter, tie the paracord to four anchoring points. This shelter is ideal temporary protection against the rain because the water will pool in the middle, however note that as rain continues, water will continue to collect, becoming heavier and requiring that you push it off to the side. You can make this shelter sturdier by adding support to the corners.

• Lean-To Tarp Shelter
To create this shelter, tie paracord to two anchor points. Secure the tarp to the ground on the windward side. This type of shelter is great for deflecting the wind or providing sunshade.

• Tube Tent Tarp Shelter
This shelter is similar to the A-Frame tarp shelter, but the opposite ends of the tarp are secured together to provide a floor. To make it, secure the paracord between two trees and drape over the tarp. This is a sturdy shelter that can prevent rain from seeping in.

• Square Arch Tarp Shelter
Attach two paracord lengths to anchor points that are three feet apart and three feet high. Drape the tarp over the two lengths of paracord. Secure the long ends of the tarp with stakes.

• Bivy Bag Cornet Shelter
This is a simple classic that only takes a few minutes. Tie a rope / paracord around a tree at four to five feet. Hammer in a stake to the ground at the other end. Drape the tarp over the rope from opposite corners, making a diagonal line. Then pull out the corners and stake them down.

• C-Fly Wedge Shelter
Lay the tarp on the ground and secure it at the long side edge with two to four pegs. Use loop cords for the bottom fold. You can also use an extra rope to pull the fold out. Tie a rope line between two trees to use as a ridge, then fold the tarp it. Tie / stake down the overhanging edge to secure it.

Note that cheap tarps tend to deteriorate quickly under UV light exposure, not very eco-friendly! Keep them in the shade when not in use.

Ok here is the link to the rest of the 66 designs: 66 Shelters You Can Make With A Tarp

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66 Awesome Shelters You Can Make With A Tarp
Graphic – off-grid.info. Images:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2f_v7iYeHuE