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Discussion in 'Survival & Sustenance Living Forum' started by tinbucket, Feb 4, 2018.
on second thought, i can now understand the funny looks he might be getting!
I'm not telling anyone here what to do with their money. If having extra gas makes people sleep better at night, then I think they should do what they feel they must. I want them to recognize that they're not preparing for any reality-based disaster scenario, apart from a localized natural disaster, that typically does not require gas to survive to begin with.
After Ike and Harvey, we didn't drive anywhere because there were no passable roads. After Ike, there was no gas available at the gas stations because the stations use electric pumps and most of Houston's electricity distribution infrastructure was toast. After Harvey, we had hoarders buying more than they actually needed. There were idiots filling plastic garbage cans with gasoline. We still don't own a gas powered generator because it's a waste of money and a favorite target of thieves. We lived for 3 months in summer heat without AC after Ike. It was miserable at first, but we quickly acclimated to it, and we're all still here. Being physically fit helped a bit.
Reality says that in the event of a full nuclear exchange, many who don't die will be joining the dead shortly thereafter. The reason has nothing to do with radiation or even the blast from the weapons. I'd conservatively estimate that a third of our population would be immediately eliminated if Russia and China fired off every nuclear weapon they have and they weren't headed to the same targets. The radiation from the weapons used in Hiroshima and Nagasaki killed very few people compared to the heat and flying debris from the blast and those were "dirty" (highly radioactive) weapons, as all low-yield weapons are. High yield thermonuclear weapons convert more of the radioactive material to heat and pressure and produce less radiation (it can still kill, but I'd expect 1% casualties, maybe 2%, from radiation). In the real world, we target sites of military utility with multiple weapons, as do our enemies, which incidentally include civilian population centers when located near military installations, oil refineries, ports, or factories that make military equipment. We use airbursts and surface detonations, but the airbursts are at altitudes that maximize the destructive power of the blast against the intended targets. EMP and radiation are not even considerations, as we only care about what the blast will BBQ or pulverize.
If every nuclear weapon in the world, including our own, was set off over the US, then the maximum area destroyed would be less than half of our land mass. As devastating as that would be, it might kill half of us (an extremely pessimistic casualty projection) as a function of what I previously noted about real world use of weapons on targets of military utility. Over the course of less than a year, survivors would slowly starve to death or die of disease for lack of sanitation and medical care. The only way we manage to feed and care for so many people is with enormous quantities of fossil fuels. That is our Achilles heel. After every oil refinery and natural gas pumping station in the country has been obliterated, there won't be any fossil fuel energy readily available to "make it go".
What concerns me is that we have members or readers here who would spend their hard earned money on things of little utility in the improbable situations they fear for lack of basic education about electricity, magnetism, and radiation. If they had a basic understanding of those topics, then I don't believe they'd be purchasing and storing extra fuel at their homes for fear of nuclear war or major solar events. If they live a long way from a gas station or in areas that have floods or fires or earthquakes or volcanos, then having a little extra gas could be useful to evacuate the immediate area. That's as far as it goes.
My best advice is that you need the following, in the following order:
education is always your best tool (if you know enough about the world around you, then you have a good idea about what to focus your attention on and what to ignore)
weather appropriate clothing and shelter
first aid or medical supplies and prescription medications
sanitation supplies (soap, toiletries, chlorine, insect repellant, prophylactics- humans are still humans, even after a major disaster)
hand tools (this includes firearms)
a water filter that provides potable water free of bacteria, viruses, cysts, and contaminants like heavy metals and pesticides
water storage containers and chemicals that inhibit growth of biological nasties
a one month to three months supply is appropriate for major natural disasters
if you can't obtain food for more than three months, then you need to grow your own or move to somewhere that has food
real transportation solutions for the masses involves boots and bicycles when there is no power or gas
personal motor vehicles are luxury items and in WWII, even Americans had to learn to live without them; it's like we've forgotten our own history
5. Everything Else:
Entertainment is an unnecessary luxury if basic needs aren't met first, so electronic gizmos that have little to no utility for everyday life are superfluous
Nearly all of the fatalities from Nagasaki were thermal burns and flying debris. Solve those issues and you can survive nuclear attacks at distances where the blast won't pulverize your internal organs.
In a country with more clothing, water, and food than you can shake a stick at, every year Americans die from injuries, disease, exposure, dehydration, and starvation. The old killers still kill most often, period. Precisely zero people in the US have been killed from radiation associated with commercial nuclear power, all fatalities being the result of electrocution or falls or high pressure steam explosions. A handful have died during the manufacture of nuclear weapons. Less than two thousand have died globally since WWII, mostly in Russia, and almost all of those from nuclear weapons production accidents. I think a grand total of 45 people died from radiation from the Chernobyl accident.
In closing, buy all the gas you want, but store it appropriately and cycle through it on a regular basis. After living through two major natural disasters, I don't bother with stuff like that, but won't fault anyone else for doing so.
I meant to say the overwhelming majority of casualties from both Hiroshima and Nagasaki were thermal burns (not always directly from the weapon) and flying debris (glass and brick or bits of wood). I believe surveyors at Nagasaki concluded that nearly 95% of the fatalities were from thermal burns and a smaller percentage were killed by either burns or flying debris (either injury would have been fatal). Third degree burns over major parts of your body tend to be fatal from subsequent infection, even if the injuries sustained don't kill you outright. The flying debris tends to tear off flesh and infect the burns sustained.
Thermonuclear weapons incinerate more stuff because they're more efficient at converting that uncontrolled chain reaction into heat (20%, on average, but it varies a bit even between different weapons of the same type), unlike Fat Man (Nagasaki; 13% efficient) and Little Boy (Hiroshima; 1.38% efficient). The subsequent firestorm that killed so many in Hiroshima was not observed at Nagasaki, so terrain and atmospheric conditions have a major impact on the after effects of nuclear weapons use.
Hiroshima was a puny 15kt (kiloton) airburst. The fireball was a little less than a quarter mile in diameter and its surface temperature was more than double what is required to melt Tungsten. The gamma and neutron radiation was lethal to a little more than three quarters of a mile. That coincided with approximately half of the area that was subsequently damaged by the blast. The lethal area to nearly 100% of unprotected people from the blast overpressure was nearly two and a quarter miles. A lethal overpressure varies between 5psi and 10psi, in case anyone was wondering. The Mach wave effect roughly doubles the blast overpressure from the pressure wave directly created by the weapon.
In protected structures that were well within the lethal radiation dose area, some people literally died where they were sitting from the gamma and neutron radiation and had no other discernible injuries. It was like flipping a switch. Some of the others were not so lucky. In all, I think fewer than 10K died from radiation from both weapons. There were also no discernible effects on children born subsequent to the bombs from mothers who were injured by the radiation.
The 1,000kt (1Mt) warheads that we have on our Minuteman ICBM's and that Russia has on its SS-18 ICBM's create fireballs just over a mile in diameter. In stark contrast to Little Boy and its mere 10,000 degree surface temperature, the surface temperature attainable from thermonuclear weapons can be about 180,000,000 degrees, which is hot enough to vaporize all known materials, and roughly corresponds with the temperature inside the Sun.
It takes the Mach wave about 40 seconds to travel 10 miles, after which the overpressure has dropped to about 1psi over atmospheric.
A 1Mt airburst over Houston would create a 5psi overpressure out to nearly four and a half miles from the point of detonation and third degree burns out to just over seven and a half miles from the point of detonation. Most residential windows would break from the blast out to about twelve and a third miles, which corresponds to a 1psi overpressure. There would be very little fallout as long as the fireball didn't touch the ground. We like low altitude airbursts (a couple miles above the target), as do the Russians and Chinese, because it maximizes destruction from the blast and heat. Surface detonation is for amateurs, but it does produce a lot more radioactive fallout.
What nuclear weapons will and won't do is actually pretty interesting if you take the time to read the government reports on this subject. I hope this sheds a little light on what will and won't ruin your day, as it pertains to nuclear weapons. The very last thing I'd worry about would be the negligible EMP and radiation effects.
As the Church Lady said "Isn't this special ?" If you've ever participated in disaster planning with "professional" emergency people, you might find (as I did) nearly total disregard for our indigenous population of predators (2-legged). Witness unabated looting during even minor disturbances (i.e. Ferguson Missouri and others). At the disaster planning/training sessions i attended, not one included planning for dealing with gangs, mobs, or drug addicts. Understand that when the controls are perceived to be lifted, a sizable portion of our population go absolutely, back to caveman crazy.
We've seen this time after time. If a ballgame incites riots, WTH will happen if we have a serious problem? Natural disasters, up to now, have been limited to mostly hurricanes and tornadoes - go a few miles outside of the affected area and it's a pretty normal situation once electric power is restored.
Following the assassination of Dr. King, riots broke out everywhere. Kansas City was no different with the exception of Governor Hearnes who set up a curfew and orders to shoot looters and leave them lay. Does anyone really think we have one government official willing to do that again ?
We keep everything on the farm full of fresh fuel and sure hope STabil works.
I have to agree with Sheriffjohn. Any civil disturbance is enough to bring out the looters. During the Watts Riots the Korean shop keepers protected their store with AK's which are now illegal in the PRK. 12 gauge shotguns would work too. After the riot they were the only source for supplies in the affected area. They would only let women in a few at a time.
The bad people will come out of the woodwork like roaches.
Roger that. Both civilians and LE are LEGAL if they shoot looters, BUT the PC crowd will not say so!!! You are correct, 1. You must have the basics, food, water, and shelter, BUT, 2. You must have the means and ATTITUDE to protect your 'stash' and your loved ones!!! Which the 'snowflakes' do not!
Jim, A lot of people will get a very rude awakening. Some will turn vicious while others will curl up and be totally useless until they become entertainment and/or part of the food supply for the ones that turn vicious.
I don't worry about it. My house is two miles from the main gate of F.E. Warren AFB. Home of the 90th strategic missile wing
Maybe you should line your attic with aluminum foil.
Ya reckon that would help???
it will if you use the heavy duty tin foil.
kbd, perhaps you misunderstood or perhaps I wasn't as eloquent as I should have been.
Gasoline (and diesel) storage is for the mowers, snowblower, our Kawasaki Mule, and our tractors. It is not for a SHTF (my 7.5kw gasoline generator I bought in 2006 has never even been started). Our propane for the whole-house generator is exclusively to avoid the inconvenience of an extended power outage. If things look to be pretty bad, I can manually cycle the whole-house generator to preserve consumption. We were pretty much there a few years ago during a pretty bad snow/ice storm. Got down to 10% without manually cycling by the time the gas company could replenish. Should SHTF occur in the winter time, our gasoline storage won't be used for mowing, but powering that 7.5kw generator (assuming it will even start).
Aside from our house and barn (both powered by the whole-house generator), I have one emergency 20A circuit to my workshop (from the barn) to power a fridge and a small heater. The entire climate-controlled part of my workshop is hyper-insulated (>R38 throughout), and the water lines are limited to one small room (bathroom). I did that for the very specific reason of an extended power outage in the winter. A very small electric heater in the bathroom will keep pipes from freezing. I have stinky kerosene heaters (with 40+ gallons of fuel) as a back-up, just in case.
It sounds like you've already prepared for the types of disasters you have already faced. That makes a lot of sense. Purchasing a few extra gallons of fuel when you're not likely to have any more for years is a waste of money and a detriment to long term survival. Life's problems won't quit coming when the fuel inevitably runs out. That was my point.
A bicycle is unaffected by fuel shortages and it doesn't care about what the weather is like if you don't. A heavy coat or blanket doesn't require fuel to keep you from freezing to death at night. It's that sort of thing that the OP brought up that I was attempting to address.
A full-on nuclear war or another Carrington Event is basically a low probability but highly destructive scenario that requires very different solutions than what most people here are contemplating. Nothing wrong with a generator, but if you haven't started it in more than a decade, what's the probability that the money could've been better spent on something that's more generally useful? How about a pedal powered transport that can carry a stretcher or cargo and provide exercise? Maybe a shooting training class since this is a gun forum? Just a thought.
i am with RJF, and do pretty much similar. mainly for power outages or short term emergencies. i keep a couple of full propane bottles for the gas grille, gasoline for the generators and the chainsaw. we have enough old trees that i can cut wood for the other grille or smoker to cook in in emergency if needed, hence the chainsaw. but also it could be handy in clearing downed trees if they were in the way and needed to cut up and moved. i could also use the generators to use for recharging cordless battery operated tools, phones, or rechargeable flashlights as well.
some of the other things i keep on hand for short term emergencies are plenty of batteries for things that use batteries. toilet paper! at least twenty gallons of water in jugs for drinking and brushing teeth. and plenty of canned goods.
as long as i have food to eat, water to drink, can brush my teeth, wipe my butt with real TP, and have some sort of music, or a book to read, i can live without some of the other luxuries of life.
Dont forget you can tap your water heater for drinking water in an emergency.
kbd, have a bicycle from my long-term TDY in Italy in 1992. Haven't ridden it much since 1992, but it is still here along with Lord-knows how much other crap that 1-800-Got-Junk should come and get (better bring a semi!).
After so many years, I decided to ride it about three months ago. Great around the shop, but outside, I had a problem, fell over, and darned-near broke a rib of two. Was sore for about a week. Viewing from afar, it would have been a great shot for a Monty Python show. Walked it back to the shop and fully retired it. My nephew or his son are welcome to it! G.W. Bush is also welcome to it. I'm done with that.
Plenty of Army poncho liners, arctic sleeping bags, etc. We can deal with things for a bit, but prefer not to - hence the whole-house generator (love our electric blankets, hot showers, brewed coffee, etc).
Those of us in rural Bama will not have to do that as we have NUMEROUS springs within walking distance of the house!!!
Back to fuel storage. An instructor at a chainsaw instruction class said that the majority of small engine repairs in their shop were due to gas left in the saw. Water separates from the gas to the bottom of the tank but there may be enough gas in the tube to start the motor. Then, the water is drawn into the motor, causing problems. This is with ethanol. Thus, always run your saw dry before stopping, even for a day.
He also advised dumping ethanol mix after 30 days.
My question is this: I know enthanol separates. Does "Sta-bil" correct the problem?
I've switched to using the canned 2-cycle gas for our small engines - expensive but have had no problems in two years. Before that, well...
nothing will totally prevent gas from going bad. even if it's treated with something like Stabil. it just lengthens the time it takes for it to degrade or break down.
exactly how long, who knows? i think it depends upon too many factors to simply state a determined length of time as to when it would go bad. temperature, humidity, premix, or straight, the grade and quality of the gas that you started with, how much if it does contain ethanol, where and how the gas is stored, and probably several other factors that i may be overlooking.
personally, i try not to buy more gasoline than i will use in about a two to three week period, even though i still treat it with a fuel additive for the ethanol. at about that time, which usually if i haven't used it all, i pour it into the tank of my old truck, even if it's premixed with two strike oil. the old truck don't care! it usually never amounts to more than a gallon or so at most. and from past experience, it seems that small engines, two or four stroke tend to have more problems with the ethanol gasoline than most vehicles do. could be the fuel filtration systems on vehicles may be much better at filtering the gas than the small engines have, if they have any at all.
I've gone 100% to TruFuel for my 2-cycle engines. Expensive as heck, but in the long run, not too bad. It is occasional use, and I'm willing to have reliability over cost.