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Survival and Preparations Long and short term survival and 'prepping'.

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  #1  
Old 02-07-2014, 7:55 PM
bill_k_lopez bill_k_lopez is offline
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Default Neighborhood state of preparedness

When the lights go out you really get an idea of who has their sh** together and who doesn't.

Neighborhood across the main street from us has been without power since about noon - its total darkness now on a whole city block of houses. Went to take a drive with my neighbor to go drop off a lantern and some flashlights to his in-laws and could only see one guy with a generator.

Unbelievable. Upper middle class neighborhood with a harbor freight about two blocks away - and nobody has ever thought to purchase a generator..

Good opportunity to take my wife outside and show her what the neighborhood looks like when its a big black hole. She was not happy, said it was very scary and dangerous looking. So I asked her what she thought it would be like after 3 days of this - and if it was city or county wide. She said she didn't want to think about it.
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Old 02-07-2014, 8:47 PM
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I think the last thing you would would want is the lights on after three days.

Just saying.
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Old 02-07-2014, 8:52 PM
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I've got a panel installed in the garage to plug the 5 kw generator into to run most of the circuits in the house. The HD cable will stretch from the fenced and gated backyard where the generator runs to the garage in the front of the house. I've used it during blackouts but I kill it by 10 p.m. so the noise doesn't keep folks awake. When the power goes off at night most people end up going to bed early.
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Old 02-07-2014, 8:56 PM
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Agreed... But that is a different point than the op is making.

I don't have a generator, but have light, food and water for about 60 days.

My problem is there is no way to really secure my house as a whole.

Big windows up front, punch through them pretty easily.
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Old 02-07-2014, 9:31 PM
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I've been cutting plywood to fit each window, so if earthquake or anything I can board up pretty easy. And spray black at night looks like not even there
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Old 02-07-2014, 10:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KevinB View Post
I think the last thing you would would want is the lights on after three days.

Just saying.
Well thanks captain obvious - but where did I say I'd be running lights in a blackout 3 days in to it?

Quote:
Originally Posted by bill_k_lopez View Post
So I asked her what she thought it would be like after 3 days of this - and if it was city or county wide. She said she didn't want to think about it.

Last edited by bill_k_lopez; 02-07-2014 at 10:14 PM..
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Old 02-07-2014, 11:05 PM
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I've been cutting plywood to fit each window, so if earthquake or anything I can board up pretty easy. And spray black at night looks like not even there
Or you can go the 3M route but that gets expensive. I'm going to do the rest of that back windows plus the side rear with the 3M transparent film. Pre-cut boards is a great idea though. Not sure how I would make them stay unless i pre-drill some holes and fashion some brackets to attach them with. Alternately I could use through bolts and 2x4s but I would have to leave my windows open.

As far as staying dark even though you have power - yup. We usually stay in the back of the house anyway so very little light is up front. For night time I'll use my battery bank and run the heavy load stuff or charge my batteries in the daytime off the generator. I've got one 64 watt solar panel but I think I need at least 100 - 150 watts. My generator is pretty quiet though so I can run it in the backyard and no one would know anything is running.
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Old 02-08-2014, 12:22 AM
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It will be a lot longer than a three day blackout before you have to worry about armed conflict breaking out in your neighborhood...unless you live in Mogadishu.
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Old 02-08-2014, 9:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KevinB View Post
I think the last thing you would would want is the lights on after three days.

Just saying.
Quote:
Originally Posted by bill_k_lopez View Post
Well thanks captain obvious - but where did I say I'd be running lights in a blackout 3 days in to it?
Well, let's see.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bill_k_lopez View Post
When the lights go out you really get an idea of who has their sh** together and who doesn't.
Here,

Quote:
Originally Posted by bill_k_lopez View Post
Neighborhood across the main street from us has been without power since about noon - its total darkness now on a whole city block of houses.
here

Quote:
Originally Posted by bill_k_lopez View Post
Good opportunity to take my wife outside and show her what the neighborhood looks like when its a big black hole.
and here.
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Old 02-08-2014, 9:33 AM
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Originally Posted by smle-man View Post
It will be a lot longer than a three day blackout before you have to worry about armed conflict breaking out in your neighborhood...unless you live in Mogadishu.
I wouldn't be so sure. I have seen people getting downright scary less than 48 hours into a 5-day outage.When bottled water, batteries and generators are all sold out and there is no power to pump gas, people get cranky.
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Old 02-08-2014, 1:28 PM
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Don't mess with kill bill. Just sayin
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Old 02-08-2014, 2:33 PM
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At three days I wouldn't want to run a generator and attract someone who thinks they could take it. The best gun fight is the one avoided.
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Old 02-08-2014, 4:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Dutch3 View Post
I wouldn't be so sure. I have seen people getting downright scary less than 48 hours into a 5-day outage.When bottled water, batteries and generators are all sold out and there is no power to pump gas, people get cranky.
The power was off in my neighborhood for 3 days after the Northridge earthquake. I didn't hear any gunfire. Let's be prepared but not silly.
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Old 02-08-2014, 5:17 PM
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going to sit up and watch tv?...target much?...follow the genny to the food and women

stay dark, sleep, round the clock sentries, take shifts, stay loaded, perimeter awareness.....prepare to kill

or you go to the Holiday Inn
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Old 02-08-2014, 5:37 PM
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Since I kinda hijacked this thread, perhaps it is all about where you live. At the ranch it wouldn't make a difference when and how I ran the gen set. All my neighbors are my family and we are very remote.

In town, and I live in a very small town my neighbors can hear my gen set and have asked to run a extension cord to power stuff in their homes when power has been out for longer than a day. I have extra capacity and don't mind a bit. Great neighbors, safe, and we are all friends.

Different story if you live where you don't know or don't trust the neighbors. I would never stay in town even in our little town if things got ugly.
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Old 02-08-2014, 5:58 PM
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In town, and I live in a very small town my neighbors can hear my gen set and have asked to run a extension cord to power stuff in their homes when power has been out for longer than a day. I have extra capacity and don't mind a bit. Great neighbors, safe, and we are all friends.

Different story if you live where you don't know or don't trust the neighbors. I would never stay in town even in our little town if things got ugly.
Exactly. If you have a generator and the neighbors don't, you invite them over, run extension cords to their refrigerators, put their perishables in your freezer, have a big cook-out of the stuff that doesn't fit, etc. The neighbors that you don't know (or don't like) won't bother you if you have a big houseful of people.

Last edited by lasbrg; 02-08-2014 at 6:09 PM..
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Old 03-16-2014, 5:54 AM
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I think the last thing you would would want is the lights on after three days.

Just saying.
Depends on the type of problem
Plenty of folks in the Eastern seaboard blackouts in the late 90s went weeks without power.
I don't care to emulate their experiences.

I just moved into a new neighborhood. I have figured out that the one neighbor next to me is a gun guy. The retired guy across the street seems nice enough. I doubt the rest would be dependable for any amount of help.
There are some bad folks just one block away that are a bit too close for my comfort level.
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Old 03-16-2014, 7:32 AM
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The curve of when 'people start killing you for a generator' is an interesting part of this.

After Hurricane Sandy, large chunks of the East were without power for a lot longer than 3 days, and there were no reports of pitched gunbattles over gensets. There were many reports of generator theft.

So does that mean the timeline before they start killing you over a generator is always longer than, say, a week or two?

Remember that after Sandy, many didn't have power but they didn't have habitable homes, either. They just got in their car or on a bus / plane or were smart enough to have left the week before and were reading about it all from the wi-fi in their hotels in Arizona. So when you have at outlet valve, that prevents the pressure from building up, right? That's perhaps why Sandy didn't have neighborhood gun battles over gensets at every corner -- many could just go on vacation or stay with unaffected friends / relatives or whatever.

In a grid-down of larger scale (say, North America) or a grid down where movement isn't easy, the pressure-release valve gets a lot less effective. If there are no planes flying, no roads open, etc, some few of us can still leave or endure, but most can't, and that changes the calculus quite a bit.
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Old 03-17-2014, 5:08 AM
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Originally Posted by speedrrracer View Post
The curve of when 'people start killing you for a generator' is an interesting part of this.

After Hurricane Sandy, large chunks of the East were without power for a lot longer than 3 days, and there were no reports of pitched gunbattles over gensets. There were many reports of generator theft.

So does that mean the timeline before they start killing you over a generator is always longer than, say, a week or two?
I think there are two factors to consider.

Gensets might not be the thing that people are willing to kill over
Foods another matter. People can live without power once their routines adapt to the "new normal". The folks with stocks of food had better have the means to protect what they have. For instance, if you're LDS, everyone knows you guys are required to keep a years supply on hand. Six months into a breakdown when someone in your neighborhood kids are starving, watch your backs.

Secondly, as bad as the ice and windstorms are that leave folks without power, they see the crews out working, they see the mobilized Guard and other support entities in the area. They know that sooner or later their area will have power restored. In the ice storms on 98/99, we only had one whacko actually shooting at us ( I was mobilized National Guard ) out of an entire county we were in that had no power. IIRC that was about two weeks into the situation.
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Old 03-17-2014, 5:15 AM
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SHTF.... when you have a running generator on a urban neighborhood.
you might as well open the door and put all your food preps on the table, the next 3 blocks could hear that running.
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Old 03-17-2014, 6:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bill_k_lopez View Post
When the lights go out you really get an idea of who has their sh** together and who doesn't.

Neighborhood across the main street from us has been without power since about noon - its total darkness now on a whole city block of houses. Went to take a drive with my neighbor to go drop off a lantern and some flashlights to his in-laws and could only see one guy with a generator.

Unbelievable. Upper middle class neighborhood with a harbor freight about two blocks away - and nobody has ever thought to purchase a generator..

Good opportunity to take my wife outside and show her what the neighborhood looks like when its a big black hole. She was not happy, said it was very scary and dangerous looking. So I asked her what she thought it would be like after 3 days of this - and if it was city or county wide. She said she didn't want to think about it.



Same thing happened in my neighborhood back in Sept 2011.

My family practiced OPSEC that night. I did see some of my neighbors down the street having a bonfire in their front driveway. It was pretty dark and quite. I did scout around the hood per say found the Border Patrol regional office, Lowe's, and water pumping station has back up generators. The two gas stations had a line of people waiting for the power to come back on.

The outage lasted at least several hours.
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Old 03-17-2014, 6:34 AM
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Originally Posted by caburian View Post
SHTF.... when you have a running generator on a urban neighborhood.
you might as well open the door and put all your food preps on the table, the next 3 blocks could hear that running.
There are discussions, here and elsewhere, about muffling both the exhaust and the other, mechanical, sounds from generators. One example - http://thesurvivalpodcast.com/forum/...?topic=23868.0

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Old 03-17-2014, 9:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by speedrrracer View Post
The curve of when 'people start killing you for a generator' is an interesting part of this.

After Hurricane Sandy, large chunks of the East were without power for a lot longer than 3 days, and there were no reports of pitched gunbattles over gensets. There were many reports of generator theft.

So does that mean the timeline before they start killing you over a generator is always longer than, say, a week or two?

Remember that after Sandy, many didn't have power but they didn't have habitable homes, either. They just got in their car or on a bus / plane or were smart enough to have left the week before and were reading about it all from the wi-fi in their hotels in Arizona. So when you have at outlet valve, that prevents the pressure from building up, right? That's perhaps why Sandy didn't have neighborhood gun battles over gensets at every corner -- many could just go on vacation or stay with unaffected friends / relatives or whatever.

In a grid-down of larger scale (say, North America) or a grid down where movement isn't easy, the pressure-release valve gets a lot less effective. If there are no planes flying, no roads open, etc, some few of us can still leave or endure, but most can't, and that changes the calculus quite a bit.
This is a very thoughtful analysis. Thank you for posting it.

I agree, the differences between Katrina/Sandy SHTF and "Kansas went bye-bye" SHTF would likely be considerable.
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Old 03-17-2014, 9:58 AM
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I'm not worried about lights. I turn all the lights off at night when I'm at home alone. I can find my way around the house fine in the dark.

Darkness has always been my friend, my night sight is good for a person my age and my ears are very good. I tend to hunt by hearing as much as by sight.

I trust in "the force"
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Old 03-17-2014, 10:10 AM
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AFTER NORTHRIDGE EVERYONE WAS TRING TO FIND BATTERIES AND WATER ....KEEP COMING OUT TO THE VALLEY FOR MY WIFES PARENTS AND FAMILY ...NO ONE WAS PREPARED..AND THEY STILL AREN'T
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Old 03-17-2014, 10:50 AM
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SHTF.... when you have a running generator on a urban neighborhood.
you might as well open the door and put all your food preps on the table, the next 3 blocks could hear that running.
Note to next 3 blocks: Do you really think a generator is the first thing I bought to achieve a high level of readiness...?
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Old 03-17-2014, 11:24 AM
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Note to next 3 blocks: Do you really think a generator is the first thing I bought to achieve a high level of readiness...?


, I am assuming that you are talking about guns.

Well then say bye to your guns too once SHTF happens.. generator for a temporary power outage to keep the fridge and heater going till the lights goes back on.. SURE! I do it too!

but if you run a generator on a urban neighborhood during a real life crisis where looting and pillaging is taking place.. NOT A GOOD IDEA.
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Old 03-17-2014, 3:50 PM
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, I am assuming that you are talking about guns.

Well then say bye to your guns too once SHTF happens.. generator for a temporary power outage to keep the fridge and heater going till the lights goes back on.. SURE! I do it too!

but if you run a generator on a urban neighborhood during a real life crisis where looting and pillaging is taking place.. NOT A GOOD IDEA.
Speculation based on what?

Quote:
Originally Posted by caburian View Post
, I am assuming that you are talking about guns.

Well then say bye to your guns too once SHTF happens.. generator for a temporary power outage to keep the fridge and heater going till the lights goes back on.. SURE! I do it too!

but if you run a generator on a urban neighborhood during a real life crisis where looting and pillaging is taking place.. NOT A GOOD IDEA.
Granted I wouldn't be looking to draw attention to myself but in an emergency situation should I be required to run it I am comfortable in doing so.
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Old 03-23-2014, 7:33 PM
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Well, I've lived here in L.A. thru three major EQs and three major riots, plus several smaller events. During the Northridge EQ, one of my relatives was right at the center of it---house looked OK when I drove up on the outside---inside the house was completely tossed. They have a pool in back, so lots of water to clean-up with, but not to drink---quite a bit of food on hand so they could eat good. What they needed was drinking water and flashlights (plus batteries) and candles---I brought these items to them plus some extra ammo. One thing to remember is that in an EQ, often the areas around the EQ are not affected that much---stores open, electrics on etc. You can just drive a bit and get some supplies unless it's a REALLY big one.
Another thing, the people who lived next door all brought out the food from their refrigerators (before it spoiled) and they had a big outdoor party. During this time, some local gang guys started cruising the hood looking for trouble---all the neighbors went into their houses and strapped on sidearms---the gang guys knew what would happen to them if they messed with these folks---no shots fired.
The situation only lasted about four days before a lot of things were restored---could have got more nasty if things went on longer...
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Old 03-23-2014, 11:41 PM
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She said she didn't want to think about it.
Good for you, that was her eye opener.. work with it. Ask her what she would do stuck at home w/o internet or phone.

Next, think about potable water.

Small, quiet, efficient genset here with a bit of fuel and a bit of lead to make sure it stays mine. No block party on my dime, genset will keep food for a bit.
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Old 03-24-2014, 2:44 PM
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The power was off in my neighborhood for 3 days after the Northridge earthquake. I didn't hear any gunfire. Let's be prepared but not silly.
I was in Chatsworth (a couple miles from Northridge for those unfamiliar with the area). No gunfire either, but there was HEAVY looting the first night and it continued thereafter. Looters were targeting the stores that had collapsed (some people who worked there had organized 5 minute "grab what you can" at the supermarkets for those who didnt have anything stored) and at night it was a free-for-all. Once houses were red-tagged, those became targets too.

We were all armed and our street kept people outside on the look-out as people did start coming into the neighborhood who didnt belong there looking for "targets".

So...as I agree no gun fire was ever heard, had things continued much longer, I don't agree that it would have lasted.
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Old 03-24-2014, 2:46 PM
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Another thing, the people who lived next door all brought out the food from their refrigerators (before it spoiled) and they had a big outdoor party. During this time, some local gang guys started cruising the hood looking for trouble---all the neighbors went into their houses and strapped on sidearms---the gang guys knew what would happen to them if they messed with these folks---no shots fired.
The situation only lasted about four days before a lot of things were restored---could have got more nasty if things went on longer...
Echoed what I saw and my thoughts exactly.
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Old 03-24-2014, 3:04 PM
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We have had a handful of minor blackouts in the past 9 years. Usually under an hour, a couple of times they have lasted multiple hours, never more than 6 if I'm remembering right.

Still... I take the possibility of an extended blackout seriously from a comfort and convenience standpoint. We have a small array of solar panels on the roof that feed into a modest battery bank (4 six volt golf cart batteries) for a supply of backup power. We also have the ability to charge up that bank of batteries from one of two Honda EU2000i generators which we have standing by, that are test run 2-3 times per year. We have sufficient juice to run a laptop, recharge tablets and cell phones, and can produce enough light to perform useful work, read a book, or do fine work like knitting (my wife is big into yarn mauling) or repairs.

I wouldn't expect to run into looting in a short time frame but if things drag out then you never know. After Sandy, people who didn't stay to guard their homes got broken into, robbed, and vandalized. Some homeowners stayed and protected their property, and some had confrontations with roaming packs of thugs.

Advice: Run your genset a few hours during the day when there is a lot of noise going on (cars, people doing storm cleanup, etc). Do any heavy juice consuming tasks then (freeze ice for the cooler, run the washer/dryer, use your power tools) and while doing that also have your RV charger hooked up to the battery bank so that the charge can come up to snuff. Use your cooler full of ice to keep refrigerated stuff over night, and use the battery bank for comfort and entertainment. Blackout curtains or plywood will help keep you from advertising what you have. By using solar cells you can keep the batteries mostly charged up most of the time, and only have to replace what you use at night.
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Old 03-25-2014, 9:27 AM
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Very piratical Russ, many should learn from that.
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Old 03-25-2014, 11:26 AM
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Last piece of advice, have a chain/cable lock for the generator to keep it from walking off. Bring them indoors at night where they can be secured.

I heard about some widespread power outage (probably a hurricane, can't recall just now) about people who left their generators running overnight to power the little AC window unit (which cycles on/off). Owners kept waking up when someone tried to steal it (motor stopped, owner would chase off the thieves). One thief was smart, pushed a running lawn mower into the yard, left it, stole the generator. Owner was cheesed to find his genny gone and a beat-up 2nd hand mower in the yard.

I wouldn't leave one running overnight. Use batteries and run a fan from the battery bank. I got a Ryobi cordless fan that uses the One+ batteries that run my drill/saw/etc. That puppy moves a decent amount of air, enough to make it possible to get through the night at least.
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Old 03-25-2014, 11:59 AM
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In my neighborhood, a generator would only cause noise, annoyance and attention. I have things set up for the most part to survive pretty well without power for extended periods. If I had the money though I'd get a solar kit like this: http://www.goalzero.com/p/138/goal-z...ator-kit/24:3/


I could hide this, have minimal lighting and minimal refrigeration without being noticed.

And the last thing I am worried about in my neighborhood is anyone else being armed. Benefits of living in a liberal utopia.
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Old 03-26-2014, 1:16 PM
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Quote:
$1799.95
Are you frik'n kidding me? Call it $2k with tax.

I can build four times that system with AGM's for that price!
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After watching WTC Bldg #7 being razed, and considering it's main occupants..

I stumbled onto this note while checking advanced weapons..
"911 = false flag. WTC 7 was brought down by demolition. 47 floors came down in 6 1/2 seconds - not hit by a plane. Just one of hundreds of absurdities that occurred that day. Wake up".

Last edited by sdkevin; 03-26-2014 at 1:20 PM..
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