04 February 2011

Am I Prepared?

"Big Berkey!", he said.
"Berrr....?" I responded.
"B-E-R-K-E-Y" he said.

He's a former student of mine.
He's also the former Chief of Surgery at a hospital here in the MidWest.
I'm proud now to call him "friend".
Like me, he fears what's coming. So whenever he calls we inevitably end up talking about bein' prepared.
"We have plenty of deer", I said. "We also have a five-acre spring-fed pond full of fish adjoining our property to meet our water needs."
"Got a water filter?" he asked.
"Not yet. Got a suggestion?"
"Get a 'Big Berkey'!"
I did some research and liked what I saw, so this week I bought one.

As you may have read here earlier, we had a weather scare here this week. The forecast weather failed to materialize, but, like realizing you need new windshield wipers only when it's too late after the rain has started, for us it was a reminder...
Our home is total electric. If we lose power we lose everything except the ability to build a fire in the fireplace, and that inefficient thing won't heat our home.
So I made a mental note...
We need a way to keep pipes from freezing in the event of a total power failure.

Back online for research...
This heater puts out 18,000 BTU's and with proper accessories can be made to run for weeks on its fuel supply.
I bought it.

Now I'm in the market for a portable generator and I could use your advice...
We were in the Big Box store last week and I was amazed to see a 4,000 watt (peak power) model for sale for less than $300. That seems like a pretty great deal, and might meet all our needs if I shuffled it around and hooked it up intermittently to our various power users.
Whatd'ya think? Is 4,000 watts adequate, or should I be in the market for MORE POWER?!!!

So I think I am almost at my goal:
Guns and ammunition.
Precious metals.
I'm still tryin' to figure out how I'll defend our home, but our neighbors are of like minds and I think we may be able to come up with a workable plan.

I'd love to hear your advice and comments.


jinksto said...

I'm sure someone can do the math but depending on your primary heat source it might work. A generac 4kw is what I have for my house. It'll get the electric heat going and keep the freezer cold.

We also run our camper on it, TV Microwave, lights, AC/Heat all at the same time.

It'll be at it's limits I think but you should be able to run most of the house on it.

Red Shoes said...

How do you find your supply of ammo to be at the retailers in your area? Friends who reload have run into huge problems finding primers...

I try to buy extra ammo any and every chance I have...


Anonymous said...

I enjoy your blog. Am a regular reader.

Generator sizing. If purpose is to run entire house for very limited time, as in a weather outage your approach is correct...If you are running the generator in time of civil collaspe you will want something that will burn less gasoline. Look into a honda eu2000. Also it is very quiet.

Old NFO said...

I'd recommend you contact Genrac- They've been around 50 years, and do a pretty good job. We put one on the family place.


Bloviating Zeppelin said...

You're doing the right thing. I could use a generator myself. But mine would likely have to run on propane, because I have a HUGE 500-gallon tank for winter. I wonder if there IS a generator that runs on propane?

Solar power is OUT for me, because I have a lot of trees around me and no clear southern or northern exposure -- which are the directions of the slopes of my severely-pitched snow roof. The snow would probably break any solar panels anyway.


Greybeard said...

Our local Wally World frequently surprises me with White box stuff...
I've had NO difficulty finding 30-06, 30-30, .308, the .30 AK ammo, and much of the handgun stuff at reasonable prices. I make a point of checking and buying a box or two every visit.

Check here.
All you'd need is quick disconnects and a long hose to your big tank!

Timothy Frazier said...

Man, I kid all the time about the zombie apocalypse, but I really do need to buy some property out in the woods and start some real disaster planning and prep.

All set with firearms and ammo, but I'm sorely behind you on the rest.

And more and more these days I keep thinking that corporate life just ain't worth it. Going off the grid now and learning to be self sufficient out in the hills somewhere is looking like a wise move for sanity and retirement...not just in case of disaster.