Plan and Prepared

Chance favors the prepared!

How to know when it is time to bug out

timetogoI receive emails from time to time asking about how you will know when it is time to bug out. This is not always an easy question to answer, as many emergencies strike without warning, and typically the situation remains fluid.

I am a big proponent of riding out most emergency scenarios at home. (Click the link for more details.) I believe that if you are properly prepared and have adequate plans in place, you should be able to make it through most disasters and emergencies by staying at home.

But as I have said before, you need to have bug out plans in place as well. There may come a time when you need to get the hell outta Dodge.

“But James, how will I know when it is time to bug out?” you might ask.

bugout-traffic

Oops…too late

If you bug out too soon, you may find that the emergency was not really as bad as you first though. Hence you end up wasting time and resources.

But if you bug out too late, you could find yourself in a worse position than you were in had you stayed.

Well, here is an old adage I have used before. I wish I knew who to give credit for it. I heard it years ago and honestly do not remember who I heard it from. But I like it and want to pass it on to you.

When it comes to bugging out, I use the acronym R.E.D.O.U.T to help me know when that time has come. Hopefully this will give you some ideas as to when it is time to carry out your bug out plans.
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Safety and security tips for Uber

Uber (Uber Technologies Inc.) is an American multinational on-line transportation network company headquartered in San Francisco, California. It develops, markets and operates the Uber mobile app. This app allows consumers with smartphones to submit a trip request which is then routed to Uber drivers who use their own cars. As of May 2016, the service was available in over 66 countries and 449 cities worldwide.

Uber was founded as “UberCab” by Travis Kalanick and Garrett Camp in 2009. The app was released the following June. Beginning in 2012, Uber expanded internationally. In 2014, it experimented with carpooling features and made other updates.

Uber processes all payments involved, charging the passenger’s credit card. Uber takes a cut for itself (which ranges from 5% to 20%), and direct depositing the remaining money into the driver’s account. This makes all transactions completely cashless. (Although riders can give tips.) So it is a great convenience for both the rider and driver!

Although Uber is considered a safe mode of transportation, there have been instances where an Uber driver or someone posing as an Uber driver have perpetrated crimes against unsuspecting clients. (And vice versa.) So I wanted to give you the latest security and safety tips that can help prevent you from becoming a victim.
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Building your own AR Revisited – Premium Build

BCM upper/Spikes Tactical lowerr

BCM upper/Spikes Tactical lower. Click for full pic

Several months ago, I wrote an article on building your own AR on a budget. (Click the link if you missed it.) It has become this site’s most popular article as more and more people take an interest in owning and building an AR rifle.

In that article, I wanted to give readers the information they would need to build their own AR 15. I tried to stick to the basics and not overwhelm the reader. I also listed AR parts that would not “break the bank”. The response was very positive.

I received a lot of email about it, asking all sorts of different questions. The one question that kept popping up was: “I want to build a quality AR and I am willing to spend more $$. Which parts would you recommend?”

Now before I answer this, I want to give a little clarification. While I have always advocated getting quality firearms (because some day your life might depend upon them), that does not mean that I believe that you always have to spend huge amounts of money to get quality. Yes, I believe that you get what you pay for. But sometimes, you can find quality on a budget.
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5 Gun Myths Dispelled

myths1If you are like me, you love watching exciting “Action” movies. Who doesn’t love a good movie scene with an exciting car chase and lots of explosions? Unfortunately, many times what we see in the movies is NOT what happens in real life. Firearms are no exception. In fact, many times Hollywood (and the public in general) gets firearms and how they really function completely WRONG.

So I thought I would take a look at 5 myths or beliefs on firearms that are either erroneous, or at the least very misleading.

#1 – Silencers are whisper quiet

If you are a James Bond fan, you have seen our hero sneak into some fortified castle, and use his Walter PPK with a silencer to quietly take out the bad guys. Sadly, this Hollywood depiction of a silencer is not accurate.

Silencers reduce a portion of the noise, this being the pressure wave from the expanding propellant gases. It does NOT reduce the noise of the sonic crack a supersonic round creates when fired.

To put this into layman’s terms, a typical supersonic round fired from a commercially available firearm is between 140-190 decibels. Variables such as caliber, barrel length, etc can change this some. But typically, this is the most common range for the sound made from firing a gun.
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How to start prepping in 5 easy steps

I receive emails quite often from people who are new to prepping. A few says they have thought about it for a while, but haven’t really got started. I’m sure it can feel like a daunting and overwhelming process to the beginner. But it does not have to be.

Being prepared is really not hard if you approach it the right way. If you are brand new to prepping, or just aren’t sure where to begin, here are 5 easy steps to help get you started.

There are plenty of links throughout this article dealing with many various prepper topics. These are a great source of information, so please be sure to check them out.

#1 Begin with a Plan

Start off by sitting down and figuring out what your plans would be if you have an emergency or disaster. Making plans now will help you to not feel lost or overwhelmed should a catastrophe strike. Failing to plan is planning to fail. And hope is not a plan!

In the beginning, I would not plan for worst case scenario. Instead, start off with the more realistic and probable scenarios. (The more extreme the event, the less likely it is to occur.) These scenarios should be based upon your location, situation, and the conditions you are in or could realistically be in.

For example, if you live along the Gulf Coast, hurricanes are a realistic possibility. So having hurricane plans makes sense. I know states like Montana and Idaho are subject to winter storms. I live in “tornado alley”, and have planned accordingly. Many large metropolitan cities are seeing an increase of violence, and riots are now something (click the link for more details) that urban city dwellers might consider planning for.

Most emergencies don’t have to be regional or even local. Job loss, medical emergencies, house fire, car wrecks, etc are all things you should be prepared for that are specific to you and your family.
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What you need to know about stockpiling ammo

ammoPreviously, I discussed how to protect your ammo storage long-term. If you missed it, be sure to check it out by clicking here.

Now, I want to discuss building your stockpile of ammo. Maybe I should have written this first, but regardless, here it is. 🙂

I’ll look at the reasons why you should stockpile, I’ll dispel some myths about stockpiling ammo, and I’ll give you some hints and tips on how to do it. So let’s jump right in!

Why should I stockpile ammo?

Let me say this right off the bat. If you stockpile thousands of rounds of ammunition because you anticipate a WROL (Without Rule Of Law) event where you will be engaging in dozens of gun battles, you might want to reconsider your plans.

First, the chances of a TEOTWAWKI (The End Of The World As We Know It) event are slim. I’m not saying that it can’t or won’t happen someday. But keep in mind that the more extreme an event, the less likely it is to occur. The complete collapse of society as we know it is at the FAR end of the “possibility spectrum”.

Second, even if there is a WROL event, you must remember that the more often you engage in armed conflict, the greater your chances of being hit/killed by return fire. As I have stated before:

“an over eagerness to engage in conflict runs the risks of unintended collateral damage, injury and/or death to you and loved ones. It also leads to the potential destruction of vital gear and equipment.

Your primary goal is to avoid conflict. Guns are the back-up plan!”

Rambo is Hollywood fiction, and bullets do not discriminate. The more often you get into gun battles, the greater your risk of being injured or killed. And the greater the risk you put those close to you.
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Preparedness tips from a veteran police officer
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