File was actually started on the date listed, as I begin the second day of staying home and fighting a sinus infection, I am continuing to write.  Postulate is that for some reason or reasons, unknown, you need to set up a long term camp, and are probably going to be "left to your own devices," for a period of time.

as usual with my web pages, best viewed at Full Screen   F11

20040331  What you probably need

 

FIRE STARTING

Good resource for fire starting.  First I would have waxed matches, especially the strike-anywhere kind. Note that the wax can sometimes cause problems when striking. Use your fingernail to skim it off.  Second I would have butane lighters.  I like them, but being mechanical, they may fail.  (Use them while they work.) 

The Magnesium fire starters are good, but hard to use.  The wisps of magnesium will blow with any small wind, and only burn a short time.  People who have mastered the more primitive fire-starting methods, like bow and drill, fire plow, etc, really like the Magnesium fire starters.  Those people are used to building nests of tinder and having all burnable materials on hand before beginning. 

The idea of the Strike Force Fire Starter is that it is basically a flint and steel.  In the base is one soaked fire cube that is said to start even in a wet situation.

I got the bright idea of trying out my strike force ( actually I have three of them) in my metal sink.  It seemed reasonable, but it might have burned the place down.  Balling up some tissue, I placed it in the metal sink.  Striking the Ferro-carbon bar, (not actually flint) with the striker, I got a full shower of sparks.  It was truly amazing, the by amount.  For several hours after that, the house smelled like you had lit one of those "sparklers" we used to burn on the 4th, when I was a child.  The manufacturer says that the Strike Force yields sparks that are three times hotter than a match, and I believe it.  Good cross use may be to shave Magnesium from that fire starter and then in combo use the Strike Force.

 

CUTTING TOOLS

Bow Saw Recommendation-  20 Dec 2003

I finally bought one of those metal saws with a large-toothed blade on it, called a “bow saw.” These are the kind intended to cut forest wood. ( I happen to like chopping with an Axe or Machete, or Kukri, but I bet I am bigger than most of my readers. Even I appreciate the ease with which one can use a pre-made metal bow saw for cutting wood in an emergency situation. )

 

You need a good axe or machete.  Estwing makes a good campers axe, for about forty dollars.

" Estwing Camper's 26" Ax: 
The Camper's Ax is 26" in length and features Estwing's exclusive nylon-vinyl deep cushion safety grip that will not loosen, come off or wear out. It features a 4 inch cutting edge and comes with a leather sheath. "

This axe is both light and durable and sharp.  The all metal handle will not break.  Very easy to use, and carry on a pack.

 

If you can find one, Get a Kukri knife. 

Main Link About the Kukri Knife

IF You Buy a Kukri with a Black sheath, warning (Article)



The Kukri shown in the picture was about thirty dollars.    When I bought it, the metal on the edge was very dull, and needed to be sharpened with a file.  It actually got sharper than almost any of my other knives, after a little work.  Seems that they make them from leaf springs from a jeep, or metal from railroad rails, or something like that.  Typically comes with a very high polish, which I buffed down on mine.  Ships with a wooden sheath, wrapped in leather.

The effect of this knife is strange, at first.  You have to pull it from the sheath in a curved fashion, to get it to come out.  Come to think of it, pulling it out is easy, getting it back in much harder. 

Something about the curve makes the cutting easier.  The angle makes the blade edge actually slice during the striking faze.  I can not quite describe it, but the effect is nice.  This small blade will do a lot of cutting, I am sure, and if you get such a blade you will find using it addictive.  Idea here is to give you a carry-able wood processing tool.

The Kukri was used by Gurka warriors, for combat use.  Stories are around of them just cutting up the enemy, running through the trenches, in the first world war.  At close quarters, a lethal weapon. 

An illustration of the way this knife works, occurs to me.  Image, for a minute, that you are using a large knife to chop through some meat, like a steak, or something.  That would take a large amount of force, and you would swing at it hard.  Now, imagine that you take a knife and cut across the top of the steak, and slice it.  That would take much less force than chopping it. 

The Kukri knife combines the two.  You swing with the force of a chop, and the effect of the blade, as it strikes is, more like the slicing action.  You can perhaps see what I mean.  Know that the action of the Kukri really has to be experienced to be appreciated.  I would choose it over any axe, hatchet, or machete I own.

Read on the disk only-convert a Kukri to a Field Knife   Very Good.   

http://www.m4040.com/Survival/Ghurka/Kukri%20Modification.htm 

Web Link to the same file on converting a Kukri to a Field Knife

 

Notes and pictures as I convert my Kukris to specs in above articles

 

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Source on web for a Kukri                    Black Die Comes Off the Imus Kukri warning

Some may wish to know why I might order two, of such a knife.  From the Beginning, when I find gear that I actually want to use, have tried to purchased two of each, if I could find them.  That way, I have a spare, for use, or barter, or to give to one other person, or family, if they need it.  It is about all I can do, at my economic level, to help others.  Jesus is LORD.

Imus - Plus Kukri Initial Look- See  they came in the mail

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KNIFE

One good knife I like is a Gil Hibben Thrower.  This "thrower" doubles as a good hunting knife, with a four-inch blade.  The solid-stainless steel construction makes the blade easier to clean in the field.


SHELTERS

You need a tent.  Years ago I found a good three-person tent, for myself.  I like the dome tents, that use a central criss-crossing system of fiber-glass, corded, folding tent poles. You basically set the base of the tent on the ground, pin the ends of the poles on to the four corners, and set up the tent.  My tent is somewhat like this picture.   

The domed fly on the top is there to give you the benefits of insulation, and rain-shedding.  Remember how touching the inside of a tent, in the old days, if it was raining, caused it to leak at that spot?  The rain fly on the top keeps that from happening.  In the heat and in the cold, the rain fly gives a double-blocking thermal effect, as well.

Under any tent , a ground cloth of some sort, is recommended.  I have some thick plastic from roof construction, that I lay on the ground before I set up my Sportiva Camouflaged Dome Tent.  The manufacturer of mine says to make the ground cloth, or plastic, be slightly smaller than the floor of the tent.  You do not want to have the cloth, or plastic, extend outside the drip-edge of the tent, where it might take up water.

Words of caution.  These types of tents, of nylon, are intended for recreational use.  I am told that if such a tent is left up for a month or so, it will begin to deteriorate, in the sun.  If for long-term emergency shelter, you may want to buy a cloth tent, or create still another canopy over your tent-house, using some kind of tarp.  As well, there seem to be some types of four-seasons tents, good in the winter.  For myself, if in such a long-term situation, I would be building a shelter of logs, or some type. 

Always buy a tent rated for more people than you want to have use it.  Tent manufactures have an optimistic system for rating the number of people who can use a tent.  It seems like they intend you to sleep like sardines, in a can.  What about your gear? I like the three-person size, for one person, and that method of multiplication will work for most people.  In my case, one person, and their gear, fits well in a tent rated for three.

You may want to have another tent, for your gear, as  well.  I have collected a large sheet of heavy plastic, from a construction site, for making a shelter, and have several tarps, from several sources, for emergency use.

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Post Script on a Tent Purchase. Now, I do not own one of these, but some may be able to afford one.  If there is a need to have a long term shelter, then one might consider an investment such as is detailed in the following picture.  They have not paid me for this, nor do I yet own one, but this is what I might choose, or one like it.

Obviously, an investment.  The tent I bought was about $120.  (Gander Mountain Camo Spotiva, three person dome tent, of rip-stop nylon.)  Something in that range, larger if you have more people, is probably a good, medium use, choice.  Stay away from the thirty-dollar ones, you waste your money.

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DINING CANOPY, OR ANTE-ROOM

A good idea is to purchase a dining canopy, and use it as an anteroom, or covered area just before your tent.  In bad weather, you will want to have some place to dry off, before getting into your tent.  As well, many people keep a small section of carpet, to put at the entrance to their tent.

 

Black and white photo-sketch of a dining canopy.  Not expensive, place in front of tent entrance.

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Very good book on making a log cabin, or any other shelter, and furniture, and food gathering.

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Cooking

On Church camp my site had a small section of bent iron re-bar, pushed into the ground, for cooking.  Very good system.  Here is another system.

Save your old simple cooking grates.  When an old cooker wore out, I saved the grate.  These can also be purchased in stores, sans the cooker, itself.  In the field, lay them across logs, or rocks, or something that will not collapse.

We live in an area, in Western North Carolina, that has many trees.  Sources of heating will never be hard to find.  There are many ways to arrange a fire for cooking. 

As well, there are a variety of stoves you can buy, for camping.  One idea, as an alternative, has been used by both Boy and Girl Scouts, for years.  Involves taking a coil of corrugated cardboard, placing it in a can, and pouring melted wax over it.  (Melt the wax with a double boiler.)  The resulting buddy-burner will allow you to cook in an emergency situation.  My mother, a good girl scout leader in her day, used to make them in tuna-fish cans.  A guy I work with, took a large number-ten can, made one in it, and cooked all the way through some winter power-outs with the rig.

 

LIGHTING

You need a light, for the night, and many varieties are right.  Some people like those in the picture at right: 

 

I have Maglite, Brinkman, Workhorse, Garrity, and other varieties.  I just collect flash-lights, and have extra bulbs for them.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The material reflected here is mainly in my Paul's Corner Section.  Guess I discovered the initial material I wanted to write about was gear.  I use a lot of pictures. These things are fun for me to write, or compose, but can take a long time to load.  Let's link to some other "gear" pages.

    Kit article

 

    Metal Walking Stick Article

 

    A brush fire is much like what a survival fire may be like

 

    Notes upon a folding shovel

 

    Marine Combat Knife"  Hit F-11, Full Screen for best viewing.

 

    Good Article about knives, by Joe Talmadge

 

    Knife Sharpening Article, again by Joe Talmadge