Skip to comments.Words from a Bosnian Survivalist
Posted on 04/04/2013 1:47:57 PM PDT by virgil283
"I am from Bosnia. You know, between 1992 and 1995 it was hell. For one year I lived, and survived, in a city with 6000 people, without water, electricity, gasoline, medical help, civil defense, distribution service, any kind of traditional service or centralized rule.
Our city was blockaded by the army and for 1 year life in the city turned into total crap. We had no army, no police, we only had armed groups those armed protected their homes and families.
When it all started some of us were better prepared, but most of the neighbors families had enough food only for a few days. Some had pistols, a few had AK47s ( ) or shotguns.
After a month or two gangs started operating, destroying everything. Hospitals, for example, turned into slaughterhouses. There was no more police.......
(Excerpt) Read more at sovietoutpost.revdisk.org ...
The city was divided into communities along streets. Our street (15-20 homes) had patrols (5 armed men every week) to watch for gangs and for our enemies.
2. What about wood? Your home city is surrounded by woods, why did you burn doors and furniture?
3. What knowledge was useful to you in that period?
4. If you had 3 months to prepare now, what would you do?
5. What should you stockpile? depends. If you plan to live by theft all you need is weapons and ammo. Lots of ammo.
9. What about security? Our defenses were very primitive
Compare and contrast to Selco...
Let’s not forget what happened in California after their AW ban and registration scheme was put into effect.
A 911 call was received from some home. A quick look at records showed the HOUSE ACROSS THE STREET had a registered AW. The police then moved on that house, secured the AW, then moved on the house where the 911 call came from.
Wow. Depressing read.
—— Families and groups, well-prepared, with skills and knowledge in various fields thats much better. ——
I’ve been predicting the return of the clan.
Yes. I personally traded all the gold in the house for ammunition.
I plan to be a Selco and lock my door and stay in my house and little back garden as no one can see in there. My clothes will be a pair of jeans and shirt, all well worn, not fancy, and I'll wad them up before putting them on, so they will have wrinkles.
One should picture in his/her mind what a person would look like who has nothing - and look like that in case one is seen by others.
Ok, flame me if you will, but Bosnia and Argentina are NOT the USA. Yes, there will be parts of the US that will be like Bosnia and Argentina at times, but what happens here will have a distinctly different flavor.
For comparison/contrast with Selco (((ping)))
No flame, just comparison.
Some of our cities are already like Sarajevo today. Post-event, the cities will be like amoebas, extending out toward the hinterlands.
My hope is, they just eat each other, and leave America alone.
You burn doors and furniture because it's hard to cut down a tree--harder than you'd think, especially if you're an urban-dweller who doesn't have experience at felling trees and doesn't have a long-bar chain saw with gas to run it.
Then you have to cut it up, drag each length home, and split it. A man can hold only a few logs in his arms, and is vulnerable while he's trying to transport those. While he's carrying each individual log home, the other vultures descend and make off with the rest of the tree.
If bad things happen here, I expect the local woodlands to be promptly denuded by idiots who don't know you can't burn green wood. In hard times people go into the nearby nature preservers to cut down small Christmas trees, so imagine what they'll do when they're actually cold and their kids are hungry.
When the Great Depression hit, most of the people in the US lived on farms and knew how to take care of themselves. Their houses weren't built out of Styrofoam, baling twine, Elmer's glue, and spit, as our are today. They had some idea of how to hunt, and there just weren't as many people competing for the same resources. This is going to be just terrible, folks.
Hail Sarge, I read you. But the upcoming collapse will be so different here in the USA, even in the Sunshine State compared to other states. I pity the fools in the inner-city because of the riots and looting. But what we are talking about is speculation and supposition.
By the time the newly formed gangs from the 'hood start raiding outer areas like your area, the grocery stores will have armed security detachments at their stores. It will be amazing (not) how these gangs wither away once the see a bunch of pissed-off citizens with guns. Neighborhoods will be on the lookout. Rednecks will be valued for once. All in all it will be dynamic and fluid. But we will survive.
“2. What about wood? Your home city is surrounded by woods, why did you burn doors and furniture?
You burn doors and furniture because it’s hard to cut down a tree—harder than you’d think, especially if you’re an urban-dweller who doesn’t have experience at felling trees and doesn’t have a long-bar chain saw with gas to run it.
Then you have to cut it up, drag each length home, and split it. A man can hold only a few logs in his arms, and is vulnerable while he’s trying to transport those. While he’s carrying each individual log home, the other vultures descend and make off with the rest of the tree.”
Don’t you have to let the freshly cut wood dry too, before you can burn it? (And that takes weeks, if not months.)
Nevertheless it won't be tasty.
More like 18 months, once it is split and stacked in a sunny spot.
Or, the gangs will get better organized, better armed, and aggressive. That school of thought is out there, too.
I don't usually follow James Wesley COMMA Rawles, but this was a VERY good article that someone contributed.
I came across this blog and urge EVERYONE on this thread to read it! No, I am not “blog pimping”.
It takes months, up to a year. And the drying wood needs not only to be open to circulating air, it needs to be covered on top to keep it from getting wet. When wet, it will then freeze when the temperature drops. You then have to break the individual pieces out of the ice w/a maul, if you can, take it somewhere relatively warmer to melt the ice and let it dry. It can take days for iced, thawed wet wood to dry out if you have no other source of heat.
A good prep would include Coleman indoor-safe propane heaters (Black Cat is a good brand. Mr Heater is not, IMO) and a supply of gas canisters or a regulator adapter to fit a larger tank. One pound of propane will last 4 hours on high, maybe 7 hours on low and will warm a small, enclosed space. A twenty-pound tank is rarely filled completely. It will provide around 27 hours of flame for a small corn cooker, in my experience (I use 2 of them them to keep 10 gallon pots simmering to dye fiber). *Warm* can mean you can raise the temperature to 50 (or nearly) if it is dead winter at night, so many layers of clothing are also needed.
Do not neglect to keep a wood stovepipe clean. Once a week, burn it out w/a plumber’s torch and then use a wire brush. Wear welder’s gloves. It is a nasty job and just cleaning will use up about half of a one-pound propane canister. You also need a real masonry chimney, the kind with tile inside that sheds the creosote, to warm a house. Once a year, that chimney also needs to be brushed out to avoid a chimney fire. You should have a screened cap on the chimney to keep sparks off the roof.
If the S really HTF in a big way, I have two family members (my sister-in-law and her husband) who might come here and feel sure he would bring his teen aged son. They have nothing stored so would bring nothing to contribute. I don't know if he carries any cash, I know she doesn't. If we couldn't communicate and they just showed up, they had better not bring anyone else except that son. I don't think they would, but one never knows what would happen.
Just wondering why you don’t like Mr Heater. I bought one used and had to use it once because power went out and I don’t have a wood stove or fireplace. It seem to work ok.
I’m glad you liked it. I, too, found it very informative as to what one can expect in SHTF situations, not to mention the behavior of “offialdom”, which I found disturbing.
I bought one. It didn’t work well, had no electric start, just match start, while Coleman has both. The Coleman Black Cat has been really reliable. We have 2 bought on eBay $50/ea, have used them both several times in power outage situations or really cold weather when we needed them in outlying rooms (we have no central heat). IIRC, the Mr. Heater I bought at a big box had to be returned, but it has been a few years and I can’t recall all the details.
I really trust the Coleman.
I could use another portable heater, Mr. Heater only kept one room warm. Thank you for the info.
Well, the Coleman also only works in one room. These are small units and they are supplemental or for a tent or times when you have closed off unnecessary areas.
In our situation, the main floor is open plan. We can really only close off two rooms. The wood stove can heat the main floor, but there are two areas with water supply that really need supplemental heat if the propane wall furnaces are out. The upstairs is just a converted attic and usually is ok with convection up the stairs, but in -35 outside temps, we need something else up there, although in a grid down situation, we would simply close off the entire floor. We have a generator, but in really cold weather, it won’t start w/o a warm up and there have been times when we have been lax about test running it and suddenly find the battery for the starter is low and the charger is also low. The Colemans have been important in those situations.
We have two Black Cats and I would like to have another one.
It depends on the wood.
Some woods take forever (or seem to) to dry down. Elm is among the worst, followed by things like yellow pine.
Some woods dry down very quickly, especially if you cut them in the winter. Ash, hickory, maples, fruit woods dry down pretty quickly (less than a year) if you wait until they’ve dropped all their leaves in the fall and the sap runs back down into the stump. Pin/red oak do OK, but they could do with a full year of dry down.
Some woods actually burn OK even when green - ash, for example.
Some woods are worth FAR more in terms of heat per pound of wood than others. Two that I’d select over many other woods would be hickory and pinyon pine (available only in the west, but very available on BLM/USFS ground).
Some woods are far more trouble than they’re worth - hemlock, the aforementioned elm, etc. Some woods burn very flashy and fast, leaving no coals - scotch pine, douglas fir, etc. They’re good as kindling.
If I had to stockpile wood east of the Big Muddy, I’d be looking first and foremost for hickory, then maple. They’re both easy to split, have high heat values. After that, I’d look for ash, because it splits very easily, burns even when green. After that, start looking at oaks. Oak doesn’t split as cleanly, but with long enough dry-down, it burns well and leaves good coals.
What people should store (if they have a wood burning stove) that lasts forever in a pile in the back yard is “lump coal.” Call around and look for it. You can start your fire with wood, then throw on some lumps of coal... which will take some time to get going. But once it does, you’ve got serious heat in a small package that doesn’t need time to dry down, you can pile it up in a box or even just store it outside with no cover.
I’ve been given to understand that coal has to be burned in a stove designed for coal; burning it in a “wood” stove will eventually destroy the stove because it burns hotter than wood.
You can line a wood stove with some firebrick and build a grate on which to burn the coal. Not difficult. Another thing to take into consideration is that if you’re burning the coal on a pile of wood, the wood ash will tend to insulate the wood stove’s bottom from the coal too.
All stoves, wood and coal, should be lined with firebrick for longevity. I’ve gotten un-lined wood stoves hot enough to turn bright red when burning dried hickory.
You are correct about the different flavor if such a thing happens here though. In the Balkans, they were divided by religion.
In the US it will be by race; then demographics (north vs south, east vs west, urban vs suburban vs rural); and political ideology. The politicians and those that are financially able will head for the hills (of Monaco or Switzerland). That's a heck of a lot to get sorted out. Then we'll have to throw in the foreigners who will flock in to take advantage of the turmoil, and once things have settled the monied and politicians who left will return demanding to take charge.....and so it goes.
Unfortunately, it took a despot, like Tito, to keep the country together.
At first glance, that looks to be worth it’s own post and an invite to FR to that guy.
Out now, BFL reading.