If you had $100-200 to spend, what supplies/preps/gear would you buy?

Started by Beowolf, February 22, 2024, 04:52:42 PM

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Uomo Senza Nome

I'd probably lay back some silver. It's been cheap lately. I don't keep much for alternate currency and due to it's low historical usage in my lifetime it is a low priority item.
"It's what people know about themselves inside that makes 'em afraid. "

"There's plain few problems can't be solved with a little sweat and hard work."

Moab

Quote from: Uomo Senza Nome on March 04, 2024, 08:40:51 AMI'd probably lay back some silver. It's been cheap lately. I don't keep much for alternate currency and due to it's low historical usage in my lifetime it is a low priority item.
Depending on what your investing for... 

Medication. Antibiotics and pain meds would be worth far more in a shtf situation. And you can carry far more weightwise. Meds are ultra light weight. The same weight in silver or gold vs pain meds - you'd have far mire vakue in meds. And priceless if none are available. Gold and silver would be volatile price wise until things settled down and everyone could agree on worth. And then your carrying around pounds of metal vs ounces of meds. Even common meds. 
"Ideas are more dangerous than guns. We don't let our people have guns. Why would we let them have ideas?" Josef Stalin

Beowolf

Just purchased a 3-day package of Mountain House along with a sampler pack. That's $105 plus the $30 on the Aqua-tainers. I figure another $50-60 on prep related items will be money well spent.

Thanks to everyone for your suggestions. I'll be in a better place than I was when I started this thread, and that was the point. But please do keep any additional suggestions coming.

Uomo Senza Nome

Quote from: Moab on March 04, 2024, 06:35:53 PM
Quote from: Uomo Senza Nome on March 04, 2024, 08:40:51 AMI'd probably lay back some silver. It's been cheap lately. I don't keep much for alternate currency and due to it's low historical usage in my lifetime it is a low priority item.
Depending on what your investing for...

Medication. Antibiotics and pain meds would be worth far more in a shtf situation. And you can carry far more weightwise. Meds are ultra light weight. The same weight in silver or gold vs pain meds - you'd have far mire vakue in meds. And priceless if none are available. Gold and silver would be volatile price wise until things settled down and everyone could agree on worth. And then your carrying around pounds of metal vs ounces of meds. Even common meds.
I wouldn't want people knowing I had meds, especially pain meds. It's a great way to get robbed by violent people willing to kill to get them. I have plenty of non-script stuff though.
"It's what people know about themselves inside that makes 'em afraid. "

"There's plain few problems can't be solved with a little sweat and hard work."

Moab

Quote from: Uomo Senza Nome on March 04, 2024, 08:09:30 PM
Quote from: Moab on March 04, 2024, 06:35:53 PM
Quote from: Uomo Senza Nome on March 04, 2024, 08:40:51 AMI'd probably lay back some silver. It's been cheap lately. I don't keep much for alternate currency and due to it's low historical usage in my lifetime it is a low priority item.
Depending on what your investing for...

Medication. Antibiotics and pain meds would be worth far more in a shtf situation. And you can carry far more weightwise. Meds are ultra light weight. The same weight in silver or gold vs pain meds - you'd have far mire vakue in meds. And priceless if none are available. Gold and silver would be volatile price wise until things settled down and everyone could agree on worth. And then your carrying around pounds of metal vs ounces of meds. Even common meds.
I wouldn't want people knowing I had meds, especially pain meds. It's a great way to get robbed by violent people willing to kill to get them. I have plenty of non-script stuff though.

Selco has several strategies for exchanging goods in a shtf. The guy that survived the Bosnian War? Remember him? His online shtf instruction is very good. I purchased it. 

Its all the same whether you have gold or meds or any supplies. You have to set up secure ways of trading with anyone. Anything of value your using to pay for goods and services. Is worth killing you over - in the extreme. 
"Ideas are more dangerous than guns. We don't let our people have guns. Why would we let them have ideas?" Josef Stalin

Uomo Senza Nome

Quote from: Moab on March 05, 2024, 01:07:23 AM
Quote from: Uomo Senza Nome on March 04, 2024, 08:09:30 PM
Quote from: Moab on March 04, 2024, 06:35:53 PM
Quote from: Uomo Senza Nome on March 04, 2024, 08:40:51 AMI'd probably lay back some silver. It's been cheap lately. I don't keep much for alternate currency and due to it's low historical usage in my lifetime it is a low priority item.
Depending on what your investing for...

Medication. Antibiotics and pain meds would be worth far more in a shtf situation. And you can carry far more weightwise. Meds are ultra light weight. The same weight in silver or gold vs pain meds - you'd have far mire vakue in meds. And priceless if none are available. Gold and silver would be volatile price wise until things settled down and everyone could agree on worth. And then your carrying around pounds of metal vs ounces of meds. Even common meds.
I wouldn't want people knowing I had meds, especially pain meds. It's a great way to get robbed by violent people willing to kill to get them. I have plenty of non-script stuff though.

Selco has several strategies for exchanging goods in a shtf. The guy that survived the Bosnian War? Remember him? His online shtf instruction is very good. I purchased it.

Its all the same whether you have gold or meds or any supplies. You have to set up secure ways of trading with anyone. Anything of value your using to pay for goods and services. Is worth killing you over - in the extreme.
I guessed he missed the part of the movie where a close friend or family member sold him out. Doesn't matter though. Drug dealers kill each other every day in record numbers in the US. Home invasions often happen just because someone thinks there is a stash in a house somewhere. Practically every violent criminal in the US who isn't a psychopath (and many who are) has a substance abuse problem.  That is with ROL. If they no longer fear going to jail it will only get worse.

You do you, but my threat matrix says it isn't worth it.
"It's what people know about themselves inside that makes 'em afraid. "

"There's plain few problems can't be solved with a little sweat and hard work."

MacWa77ace

I wouldn't accept gold or any precious metals or gems as barter in the PAW. I'd have no way of knowing if they are fake. Or drugs.

Question for those collecting large pieces of precious metals. How are you going to buy small items with them in the PAW? What's your strategy going to be? You have this 1 oz silver bar, I have this loaf of bread.  :smiley_shrug: Maybe you'll see trades of 10 gallons of gas or 20 lbs of rice per oz. Some metals are sold in gram sizes within an authenticator card. Maybe those would work. Smaller denominations.

Now if you were really going to corner the market on precious metals in the PAW you'd stockpile the testers for metals and gems. And trade them for oz of metals or carats of gems. And also offer a service for traders to come and exchange stuff. Pawn shop owners will be set already unless they need power to operate these testers and don't have it. [yeah zirconium and lab grown gems can fool electronic testers]

Bullets as currency, and skilled work, unskilled work, as services or commodities for commodity barter.

Example of Currency denominations using bullets; a rough breakdown in the PAW. Valued as per cartridge/round.

Lead/copper/powder/brass component parts by the oz or gr
22LR
32 cal / 380 No value in the PAW, melt them down and collect the powder.  :greenguy:
9mm / 40 S&W
45 ACP
Hunting Cals [243, 30-30, 30-06, 7mm, 300 wsm, etc. all the same value]
Surplus Cals [303, 762x29, 762x54, 8mm, etc]
223/556/300BO et al
762x51 or x39 / 308 cal
Anything larger

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#TRowPriceSucks
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Uomo Senza Nome


QuoteYou have this 1 oz silver bar, I have this loaf of bread.  :smiley_shrug: Maybe you'll see trades of 10 gallons of gas or 20 lbs of rice per oz.
I will take a thousand of gas at 10 gallons per ounce of silver. That is under selling by gas prices at my local station. It's true, nobody knows how much anything will cost in the future PAW. That is why it has been a low priority for me. But you are assuming a WROL type scenario. 

So long as there is some kind of structure to society, precious metals will continue to have value and in times of economic crisis those values tend to rise. But even if they don't let's try an example:

Let's say my government local peso is worth 5/Euro and I have 100 ounces of silver which is worth 4 Pesos each or 20 Euros an ounce. So 100 ounces = 400 Pesos or 2000 Euros

The government decides to borrow $100 Trillion dollars and give it away to buy votes for the next mid-term election, creating hyper inflation. Our peso is now worth .5/Euro but my silver is still worth 20 Euros an ounce.  That means that my silver should now be worth 2000 Euros or 4000 Pesos.

I think this is more likely than trading for a loaf of bread or whatever, you would have to ask around in Zimbabwe.

QuoteBullets as currency, and skilled work, unskilled work, as services or commodities for commodity barter.
Hard pass. I can load my own. In my fantasy PAW I'm am not interested in arming potential rivals for resources or trading for ammunition of unknown quality. I'm sure you will get some takers.

QuotePawn shop owners will be set already unless they need power to operate these testers and don't have it. [yeah zirconium and lab grown gems can fool electronic testers]
Around here, pawn shop owners are some of the most prepared people out there. Most all of the successful ones I know have large spreads with everything you might possibly imagine you might need and bunch stuff you never would have thought of.
"It's what people know about themselves inside that makes 'em afraid. "

"There's plain few problems can't be solved with a little sweat and hard work."

Moab

I plan for worst case scenario. Not because I'm convinced that will ever happen. But because it's a fail safe strategy. And I'm not wasting my time on half measures. 

If the government is functioning enough that currency is being manipulated. I have no worries about when the disaster will end.

If there is gas, and roads, and I am in a vehicle. Weight is of less a concern. And again, so is the probability of a disaster turning into a PAW.

I tend to vie on the side of scenarios like Selco's. A disaster (war) that happened recently and was an extended PAW. They lost all services, safety, food, clean water, and as a result society devolved into a PAW. And there are many other examples of this all over the world. Recently.

The probability of ending up on foot, at least daily, is relatively high. Unless your a backpacker, hiker, military or long range hunter. You don't realize how precious little room there is in a pack. Ounces equal pounds very very quickly. Just trying to meet your survival needs is a huge exercise in choosing from thousands of items with thousands of different weights. 

And the more you carry the less mobile you get. Which equals survival. When everyone has lost their minds because their children are literally starving. Or dieing from disease. (Because not even simple sanitation is available. Iirc bleach and toilet paper were some of the most valuable items in Bosnia. As lack of sanitation was a top killer.) Your need for pack contents is a knife edge between surviving on the items you have - and dieing because you were to slow and worn out - because you carried to many of them. Or to heavy of each item. 

The difference between something valuable for trade -  like heavy metals and something much more lightweight - is critical.

I have routinely read for years about what will get you killed in a PAW. Greyman this and greyman that. What you should or shouldn't prep for trade or barter. 

*The only way to survive a PAW - at a minimum - is with survival supplies and a means of protecting yourself. 

A pack and a long gun. 

A pair of Carhartts and an old tool bag with a crowbar are not going to do it. 

So at minimum - if you are surviving - you are walking around with a pack and a long gun. 

No one trying to keep their dieing child alive. Bad guy or good - the motivation is the same - cares what you look like. They can easily tell you have a bag and a gun. From far away. And thats all that matters. They are going to rob you. One way or another. Whether its trickery or brute force or both. 

That changes everything. And there is no escaping it. Your not gonna survive by having your long gun hidden in your pack. It won't deploy fast enough. And it won't do away with you having a pack or bag. Which is the main reason they are going to rob or just kill you in the first place. 

Selling or trading a piece of gold or a pain pill or a knife or a skill or anything is all going to be equally dangerous. Because they all have value, and everything you have on you (pack and gun) has value. And remember its not just criminals. 

Its motivation enough when your starving or dieing from lack of meds or other survival items to turn you into a desparate person. Now factor in your 6 year old little girl? Are you willing to steal for her? Are you willing to maim for her? Are you willing to exchange some strangers life for hers? If you have a child - you'll understand. There is nothing off limits. People kill all the time in regular life for far less.

So does it matter if your gold or silver or pain med is more or less valuable to a greedy person or a drug addict or any number of starving people trying to save one of thousands of starving or dieing children? No. 

**You need the lightest weight, most valuable commodity you can stockpile. The danger is the same either way.**

Selco was ambushed and double crossed on many occasions while surviving the war. While trying to barter for goods. Whether he was carrying ammo or toilet paper to exchange. 

He details several good strategies they developed for doing so. As safely as possible. And thats the best case scenario - "... as safely as possible.". There is no fail safe. There is no perfect way. And there is no safe barter product. 

Obviously skills are at the top of the list in a safe community. If such a thing will exist - a safe community. It didn't in Bosnia. Beyond your barricaded block or house. Which was still not secure. He ribbed several times. 

But skills require a fixed position for a set amount of time. Which has it's own safety issues. If said community or group wants your doctor, or welder, or dentist skills its easy enough to move you to their secure compound. And make you their resident professional. Or simply hold you at gunpoint while you weld their trailer or fix their kids tooth.

Goods on the other hand can be hidden. 

Selco had a few techniques for dropping goods, trading, and finalizing the transaction. Not perfect mind you. But it at least gave you a chance.

And didn't matter if he was dressed as a member of the clergy or an assassin. It didn't matter what he was trading. And he always had his pack and rifle. Because he never knew when or if he would be returning to a relatively safe location. And without those two things, his pack and his rifle, he wasn't going to survive.

I highly encourage anyone to buy his course. It's full of very valuable knowledge. And if nothing else it might open your eyes to what a total breakdown of society actually looks like. It's not like the movies. And to often we as Americans see to little of the very real world outside of our country. That has been breaking down and building back up for centuries. 
"Ideas are more dangerous than guns. We don't let our people have guns. Why would we let them have ideas?" Josef Stalin

Uomo Senza Nome


QuoteSo at minimum - if you are surviving - you are walking around with a pack and a long gun. 
Not happening. I'll stay right here with my friends, coworkers and neighbors until it is time to flee to the hunting cabin in the mountains. Then we take a select few and disappear in the middle of the night. Then we stay there till the internet and lights are back on, or not. I'm too old and cranky to be walking around with a pack and a long gun. Not to mention the nephropathy in my feet from 24 years of walking around with a pack and a gun. 
"It's what people know about themselves inside that makes 'em afraid. "

"There's plain few problems can't be solved with a little sweat and hard work."

Moab

Quote from: Uomo Senza Nome on March 05, 2024, 09:39:42 PM
QuoteSo at minimum - if you are surviving - you are walking around with a pack and a long gun.
Not happening. I'll stay right here with my friends, coworkers and neighbors until it is time to flee to the hunting cabin in the mountains. Then we take a select few and disappear in the middle of the night. Then we stay there till the internet and lights are back on, or not. I'm too old and cranky to be walking around with a pack and a long gun. Not to mention the nephropathy in my feet from 24 years of walking around with a pack and a gun. 
So if your not leaving your BIL or your BOL. Why are you saving items to barter? 
"Ideas are more dangerous than guns. We don't let our people have guns. Why would we let them have ideas?" Josef Stalin

Uomo Senza Nome

Quote from: Moab on March 05, 2024, 09:47:19 PM
Quote from: Uomo Senza Nome on March 05, 2024, 09:39:42 PM
QuoteSo at minimum - if you are surviving - you are walking around with a pack and a long gun.
Not happening. I'll stay right here with my friends, coworkers and neighbors until it is time to flee to the hunting cabin in the mountains. Then we take a select few and disappear in the middle of the night. Then we stay there till the internet and lights are back on, or not. I'm too old and cranky to be walking around with a pack and a long gun. Not to mention the nephropathy in my feet from 24 years of walking around with a pack and a gun. 
So if your not leaving your BIL or your BOL. Why are you saving items to barter?
You should go read my above post.
"It's what people know about themselves inside that makes 'em afraid. "

"There's plain few problems can't be solved with a little sweat and hard work."

Lodewijk

Quote from: MacWa77ace on March 05, 2024, 10:31:42 AMQuestion for those collecting large pieces of precious metals. How are you going to buy small items with them in the PAW? What's your strategy going to be? You have this 1 oz silver bar, I have this loaf of bread.  :smiley_shrug:



The short answer is that you have asked a pretty fair question about the difficulty of making change with such stores of value, I think.

Best case I think you're looking at physical division (maybe). I think a more realistic barter situation is that you get as close as you practically can in terms of traded value, and then somebody eats the difference. Probably you, if the situation is bad.

Thinking more as I get some coffee in me. I'd guess the situation itself would dictate how flexible you could be... take the gas example, for instance. Maybe you pay the station up front with a Krugerrand, which is like $2K or something right now, and then they basically debit down your account as you fuel up. I could see that being pretty realistic, depending on circumstances.


NT2C

Quote from: Lodewijk on March 06, 2024, 07:57:24 AM
Quote from: MacWa77ace on March 05, 2024, 10:31:42 AMQuestion for those collecting large pieces of precious metals. How are you going to buy small items with them in the PAW? What's your strategy going to be? You have this 1 oz silver bar, I have this loaf of bread.  :smiley_shrug:



The short answer is that you have asked a pretty fair question about the difficulty of making change with such stores of value, I think.

Best case I think you're looking at physical division (maybe). I think a more realistic barter situation is that you get as close as you practically can in terms of traded value, and then somebody eats the difference. Probably you, if the situation is bad.

Thinking more as I get some coffee in me. I'd guess the situation itself would dictate how flexible you could be... take the gas example, for instance. Maybe you pay the station up front with a Krugerrand, which is like $2K or something right now, and then they basically debit down your account as you fuel up. I could see that being pretty realistic, depending on circumstances.


I think the problem with the "debit down" concept is that in order for it to work there are two conditions that must exist, a reliable resupply stream to the seller; and no panic buying or hoarding.

If there's no resupply then chances are the next time you want to fuel up their tanks will be dry.  If there's panic buying, their tanks might run dry before your first purchase is completed, and will almost certainly be dry when you come back.

If both of those conditions are met then is there really any emergency happening?
Nonsolis Radios Sediouis Fulmina Mitto. - USN Gunner's Mate motto

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Current Tracking Info for My Jeep

Lodewijk

Yes, it certainly does imply that. Totally agree.

Is that an emergency... I dunno. It's on the sliding scale someplace between zombies climbing out of the ground and business as usual, I guess.

My main issue with framing precious metals as an "emergency item" rather than as a store of value in an wider investment plan is that you're banking on what Taiichi Ohno would call "value to customer" holding steady when everyone's priorities turn upside-down. I can certainly envision situations where gold won't do that.

But as a general thing to have around when times get rough or even if they don't, sure, I can see utility. It's just another tool to have available.

MacWa77ace

Is my .5 oz gold plate necklace going to be worth the same as .5 oz of 99.9 pure gold if no one can tell the difference?

I had a buddy who's family owned a pawn shop. They had a metal's polisher that was nothing more than a buffer wheel. It would take off minute amounts of the metals polished as part of the 'buffing' process, and that would 'pile up' as 'dust' on the machine. Well my buddy 'cleaned' it and everyone freaked 'cause he threw out probably a couple hundred $$s of dust.

So again, how can you tell the difference between a 'nugget' or 'dust' of 14 kt, 18 kt, or 99.999 pure gold? How can you measure, how can you test?

Hypothetical: I can melt down a bunch of 14kt chains and pour an ingot, weigh it and stamp its weight and 99.999 pure. That's a fake that almost doubled its value. Lot of work though.

https://www.amazon.com/Platinum-Appraisal-Electronic-Magnifier-Precious/dp/B08TRW9PXR/ref=asc_df_B08TRW9PXR&mcid=4a5801e90fe734f2813c9838f8e49fe0?tag=bngsmtphsnus-20&linkCode=df0&hvadid=80676783691785&hvnetw=s&hvqmt=e&hvbmt=be&hvdev=c&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=&hvtargid=pla-4584276309438275&psc=1
Lifetime gamer watch at MacWa77ace YouTube Channel
#TRowPriceSucks
Ask me about my Fully Semi-Automatic 30-Mag clip death gun .


Lodewijk

Quote from: MacWa77ace on March 06, 2024, 11:19:50 AMIs my .5 oz gold plate necklace going to be worth the same as .5 oz of 99.9 pure gold if no one can tell the difference?

So again, how can you tell the difference between a 'nugget' or 'dust' of 14 kt, 18 kt, or 99.999 pure gold? How can you measure, how can you test?

Hypothetical: I can melt down a bunch of 14kt chains and pour an ingot, weigh it and stamp its weight and 99.999 pure.

Weight bud

Edit: going by memory so I could be way off, but on the last item above a 14kt bar and a 24 kt bar both weighing one pound should not be the same size dimensionally.

MacWa77ace

Quote from: Lodewijk on March 06, 2024, 11:46:10 AM
Quote from: MacWa77ace on March 06, 2024, 11:19:50 AMIs my .5 oz gold plate necklace going to be worth the same as .5 oz of 99.9 pure gold if no one can tell the difference?

So again, how can you tell the difference between a 'nugget' or 'dust' of 14 kt, 18 kt, or 99.999 pure gold? How can you measure, how can you test?

Hypothetical: I can melt down a bunch of 14kt chains and pour an ingot, weigh it and stamp its weight and 99.999 pure.

Weight bud

LOL, how much volume per gram and who can eyeball that without some sort of scales etc. We're talking humans here, not metallurgists.

So what preps are you going to need to be a successful trader in gems and metals in the PAW?

I can't really tell the difference by 'looking' at at 14kt chain  and a plate chain that both have different links and lengths. And if you weigh them, of course they will be different weights cause one has a thick link and is two inches longer than the other. Now I might know to look on the clasp for a 925 which means gold plate on sterling silver, but what percent of people know that?

Lifetime gamer watch at MacWa77ace YouTube Channel
#TRowPriceSucks
Ask me about my Fully Semi-Automatic 30-Mag clip death gun .


Lodewijk

 :clownshoes: 

I mean... you pretty literally asked how to tell gold purities apart. Weight (really mass density) is a valid answer.

Sorry about that? lol

Moab

Quote from: MacWa77ace on March 06, 2024, 12:16:47 PM
Quote from: Lodewijk on March 06, 2024, 11:46:10 AM
Quote from: MacWa77ace on March 06, 2024, 11:19:50 AMIs my .5 oz gold plate necklace going to be worth the same as .5 oz of 99.9 pure gold if no one can tell the difference?

So again, how can you tell the difference between a 'nugget' or 'dust' of 14 kt, 18 kt, or 99.999 pure gold? How can you measure, how can you test?

Hypothetical: I can melt down a bunch of 14kt chains and pour an ingot, weigh it and stamp its weight and 99.999 pure.

Weight bud

LOL, how much volume per gram and who can eyeball that without some sort of scales etc. We're talking humans here, not metallurgists.

So what preps are you going to need to be a successful trader in gems and metals in the PAW?

I can't really tell the difference by 'looking' at at 14kt chain  and a plate chain that both have different links and lengths. And if you weigh them, of course they will be different weights cause one has a thick link and is two inches longer than the other. Now I might know to look on the clasp for a 925 which means gold plate on sterling silver, but what percent of people know that?


Can't you just bite into it? Like how they check gold coins in the movies? That's how I thought it was done. ;)

Seriously though. I did see an electronic device the other day. Like a voltage checker. But this guy was going around his local thrift store and testing chains. If the device lights up green. There's gold in it or on it. I have no idea if it's real. But it certainly doesn't tell you purity.

I think some people have this idea that a PAW is like Medieval times. Where everyone gathers in the town square. And trades goods with each other. While laughing and singing. 

More likely I think its going to be a location guarded and controlled by whatever local militia has taken control. Otherwise you're just trading outside of that one on one. Or small group to small group.

In any event it's not going to be safe. I think the US food economy is like 3 days (don't quote me on that. But its something stupidly short) away from total collapse. Everything is trucked to just about every store in the nation. Once that shuts down stores will be empty within a day. If not quicker. And the food will run out shortly there after. So you can imagine how quickly the world will devolve into chaos.

Imagine the 20 million people in your local largest city. Fanning out within a few days, with their children, across the countryside. Desparately looking for food. Wanting to trade you a gold necklace for a case of beans. Are you going to even answer the door? After the first 1200 people stop by? And when you don't answer - how long before they just start breaking into houses?

Not to mention within a week the price of that case of beans is going to be easily worth a life. People lose their minds after a few days without food. Not to mention cold, wet, walking on foot because their gas tank went empty. People are going to start hoarding. Not pretty. 
"Ideas are more dangerous than guns. We don't let our people have guns. Why would we let them have ideas?" Josef Stalin

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