What have you been doing to prep lately?

This week’s preps – November 25 2018

It’s not like I haven’t done any prepping since August 12, I just haven’t had time to write about it. I’ve actually done a few things:

  • Rebuilt the shelves in my garage
  • Cleaned out my storage unit
  • Worked on my long term food storage
  • Started researching property and jobs in the American Redoubt
  • Bought a sewing machine
  • Made lots of homemade beef jerky
  • Signed up for an online programming class
  • Finished programming my 5 UHV/VHF HT radios
  • Upgraded the sights on my carry pistol
  • Prepped my truck for winter driving
  • Bought a ping pong table

I learned the most from rebuilding my garage shelves and putting up the shed so I’ll touch on those below. Some of the other things might have you scratching your head and wondering wtf they have to do with prepping or being a Backyardsman, so I’ll post about those in the future. Anyway…

Rebuilding my garage shelves

The shelves in my garage were a falling down mess. They’d been “built” (that is stretching the term) by the previous home owner. The shelves were particle board with no support on the back side, so the sagged badly. The shelf supports were 1×4 boards nailed together at the corners so they wood was splitting. The shelves were too wide to comfortable get a car into the garage bay. One of the shelves finally collapsed so i decided to rebuild them. I used 3/4″ plywood for the shelves and made them 18″ wide (originals were 24″). for the supports I used 2×4 for the back support and 1×3 for the front. They’re not perfect, but a lot nicer than what they replaced.

Building a shed

One problem I have is lack of storage. We bought a small metal shed kit last year but never got it put up. My brother and sister are going back to China this week, so we wanted to get a shed put up before they left. A couple weeks ago we had a concrete pad poured to put it on, and over Thanksgiving weekend we got the shed put up. Instead of using our metal shed kit we decided to go with a wood framed shed. Home depot had kits for between $1000 and $3600. The $1000 shed kit looked like a cheap piece of junk and the $3600 was more than we can afford right now, so we decided to scratch build.

Our DIY shed is 7×10 feet, has a real window, and the siding is tongue and groove lumber. Total cost (including a hammer drill for installing the anchors) is about $1800. In my opinion it’s also a lot nicer shed than even the expensive model from Home Depot. It’s not perfect but we learned a lot and the next one we build will even be better. I’m really glad we decided to scratch build instead of going with a kit.

What does THAT have to do with prepping???

You might be wondering what a ping pong table has to do with prepping. What does a programming class have to do with being a Backyardsman? Or programming 2-way radios? I’ll explain it soon I hope. In the mean time, what did you do to prep this week?

Peace out,

Finally bought a sewing machine

Singer 328 sewing machineI never really learned how to sew. When I was a kid, my mom had a sewing machine that I used a little, but not enough to get good at it. When my Dad passed away in 2014, my Mom decided to downsize and gave the sewing machine to my sister. I’ve always been a little interested in learning how to sew, so I wish I’d have asked for it. Oh well… A few months ago I asked my mom for advice on a sewing machine and got the standard lecture I always seem to get when telling ANY woman I want something… WHY??? You can’t afford it. You don’t have room for it. It’s cheaper and easier to just buy what you want instead of trying to make it yourself. You’ll regret it. I made the even bigger mistake of asking in front of my wife, so it was a pile-on. Well, whatever. I did some looking around, and last week I finally bought a sewing machine. I don’t care if buying things already made is cheaper and easier, I want to learn how to sew. So risking the wrath of my wife, I bought a sewing machine…

My “vintage” sewing machine…

My mom was party correct. New sewing machines that I can afford are pretty much crap. The Singers of today aren’t your mom’s Singer. The minimum price for a “good” sewing machine is about $900 – $1000 and I don’t like them because they have “digital control” – if the CPU board goes out you have a very expensive door stop. In one way, my mom and wife were right – if I was going to try this with a new sewing machine it would probably be a waste. Well screw that, there must be better options and there are…

On a Hi-Point forum I found a post from someone who’d just made their first nylon holster. Looked pretty good so I PM’d him to ask what kind of sewing machine he had. He replied that it was a 60’s vintage Singer 328. After a little looking around I found these can be had for around $150 so I bought one on eBay…