Tuesday, March 17, 2015

consuming to invest 3



[Part Two will be the skills section]

Cloth Diapers

I start here because, frankly, this is pretty idiot proof.  I’m sure that in the main, most of you are about my age which means getting a bit long on the tooth.  And I think we were close to one of the last generations to wear cloth diapers.  I’m sure it was no more of a chore for our mothers than birthing us, feeding us or losing sleep over us.  I’m not even sure how it became such an accepted necessity to switch over to disposables.  Which, by the way, is slowly giving way back again to cloth due to economics ( the late teens/just twenty gal at work we had with us for a few years was as cell phone text Tweeting rap music centric as all her age, and she quickly switched when it became necessary ).  Besides never getting started on formula ( the evil ex produced milk like a faithful Holstein and we expressed/froze for when she went to her work shift-but even then we had to supplement with formula after a time as our kids ate and grew like crazy.  I can’t imagine the cost today of formula feeding exclusively ), using cloth diapers is the best way to keep raising kids close to zero cost.  Which, most of you are going to have to do as the hospital bill, even if you have some sort of pathetic form of health insurance, will take all your extra money.  You know that home births with midwives going mainstream are just around the corner as hospitals price themselves out of the working class market ( and wet nurses will make a comeback- but that should signal Game Over for the economy as I can’t imagine formula sales will ever stop unless no jobs/money is available.  I think the concept is just too foreign ).


Now, I understand cloth diapers are not cheap, per se.  $13 for a package of ten Gerber brand ( go with brand name as this and all these other tools are investments, not consumables.  Buy as quality as possible ) does add up by the time you have enough.  But, they will be needed and you won’t lose any money stockpiling them.  Any fool can turn a square of cloth into a diaper ( the pins will be harder to make so get a lot of those ), but there won’t be a domestic replacement of Chinese supply for some time.  When it does come around, I hope hemp will be the item used rather than cotton since a weed doesn’t compete with soil for food, but no matter.  The point is, infrastructure replacement takes time.  Few will be using other clothing as diapers since larger children and adults will be needing those until they can make replacements.  The preference, if not a ability to buy/barter, will be for purpose made diapers.  You will see a demand.  Then, even if you don’t, you can always use them yourself.


I know you all have a hall closet stuffed with toilet paper.  Prepping 101 teachers you the first thing is to never run out of TP, nor find yourself in a rioting line needing to buy some.  But you can’t stockpile enough unless you devote a lot of money to outbuildings-money much more intelligently spent of food which is a lot more compact and necessary.  There won’t be any more Sears catalogs sent in the mail.  In fact, it amazes me that both Sears and the post office are still in business ( well, I guess the tens of trillions-don’t you dare believe the much smaller published numbers-of Quantitative Easing Forever had to go somewhere, so into corporate stocks and government agency funding ).  Eventually, you will need to wipe your ass with something.  Better a scrap of paper for the initial more solid matter wipe, then cloth for the residue.  I’d rather clean fecal smeared diapers then wipe my ass with my hand.  Or sand/dirt or poking vegetation.   It is, surely, the far lesser of evils.  And, I’m sure the ladies will have no problem cutting them down in size and using as sanitary napkins. Laundry soap is a lot easier to make than toilet paper ( and I’ve read that liquid soap is a lot easier to make than bar-something about homemade soap not always firming up properly as the chemical balances are far outside modern tolerances ).  You can also easily make vinegar, a future disinfectant and cleaner ( you can even use in questionable drinking water, but while I’ve read of the practice I have no measurements ), with wood ashes ( acetic acid ).  So there should be little issue with cleaning.  But considerable issues, at least right away, with replacement paper.

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  1. repost

    vlad June 18, 2013 at 12:04 PM
    Save ammo with pull-bolt SKS.
    (The Yugo 59/66 has a gas cutoff.)
    http://www.okiegunsmithshop.com/lvl25.html (many rifles)
    http://tinyurl.com/686z35p (SKS only)

    To make SKS a pullbolt
    See disassembled SKS
    Remove gas piston (part 1) from inside gas tube (part 2).
    Replace gas tube. (If you do not replace gas tube, gas
    from gas port can blow your eyes out.)
    Make every shot count. Ammo is limited.
    One shot kills them dead.
    Save ammo.
    Kill the wounded enemy with a hammer or ax.
    If knuckles up and you get a slamfire
    the bolt handle will relocate your thumb
    3 inches closer to your elbow.

    1. You don't need to remove the gas piston to make an SKS 59/66 a bolt-action. Just put that little gas switch over to the right hand side. It has this little switch for the grenade launcher's benefit. You can operate it like any other bolt-action rifle then.

    2. Regarding acetic acid:
      I tried replying but I think it went into nowhere the first time.

      Wood ash makes lye, not acetic acid. There are 2 kinds of lye and the kind made from wood ash is potassium hydroxide. The other kind is sold as drain cleaner and is sodum hydroxide. However, not all kinds of drain cleaner are pure sodium hydroxide. You have to get the pure stuff to make soap.

      There's plenty of soapmaking recipes online but the most important thing to have on hand should the web go down would be a saponification chart for different kinds of fat. Then you can calculate how much lye to put in your soap.

      The only food use I know of for potassium hydroxide is in very dilute form, to soak corn in for making hominy. And then you rinse the crap out of it. I don't know any food use for sodium hydroxide.

    3. To get the acid, you had to use a still, I believe. From "The Knowledge" book.

    4. I didn't think all SKS's had the gernade launcher?

  2. After reading another article about wiping with a sponge, which made me cringe and start collecting free ad pads as an alternative, I found this to be a much better option. You could have a 40ft conex filled with tp and if you have a female or a kid it would be gone in a year. I do suggest stocking a few maxipads as expedient battle dressing.
    Vlad is right about a semi bolt tearing a thumb off. I shoot left handed and the first time I shot a semi, my thumb obstructed the bolt travel, tearing off the nail. After dropping the rifle, doing a jig that made the Irish proud, and using words that made my daddy less than proud, I had learned my lesson for hand placement. And that was a 22lr. Hate to see what a SKS would do.

    1. The sponge idea must have been from the "roman sponge on a stick in saltwater"

  3. I was introduced to the *squat toilet* concept a few years ago when researching the Dubai tower and the fact that they had to have toilets adapted to the multiple cultures of people they cater too. Seems a majority of the worlds population use squat toilets and there are major health benefits from using them (think colon cancer). Also, because of the geometry when one is squatted, clean up is less of a chore.

    Anyway, weather permitting, my favorite bathroom for number 1 is the giant oak tree just south of the workshop. Nothing like swingin' free in the breeze, and less costly too as county supplied (flush) water is at a premium, around these parts.

    1. I saw the squat toilets in Korea-I was astonded at the small size of the hole one had to aim for

  4. My maternal grandmother would buy toweling fabric and sew up wash cloths for the purpose of TP. Being a country farm wife, she did her laundry outside. First, sheets would be boiled (yes, BOILED) and washed outside in her laundry kettle. Then they were rinsed and wrung out and hung up to dry. Then, the clothing, with the less soiled clothes first down to my grandad's work clothes, until finally, the *poop rags*. She made her own soap, so an extra cup or two of it grated up was thrown in with the rags. They were thoroughly boiled, scrubbed on a washboard and then boiled and rinsed and hung on the line to dry. No one in her house ever got sick from using *poop rags*. Yes, a lot of labor involved. But if we get down to off grid living and you can't run down to CVS to restock your TP, it is a viable alternative! (For those curious, the wash water was poured near the garden when it cooled off. No one ever got sick from the food out of her garden, either!)
    You can go to Family Dollar, Dollar General and many other dollar type stores and buy packs of washcloths (usually 10or 15) for 5 bucks. A lot cheaper than trying to hoard TP and will save the diapers for using as ....diapers!

    1. Although, the fifty cent washclothes are crap and won't last long. In the long run, I think the diaper will be cheaper.