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    Off-Grid SHTF Survival: Ancient Technology for Refrigeration

    Tess Pennington
    September 25th, 2011
    Ready Nutrition
    Comments (116)
    Read by 10,126 people

    The article has been generously contributed by Tess Pennington of Ready NutritionAfter joining the Dallas chapter of the American Red Cross in 1999 Tess worked as an  Armed Forces Emergency Services Center  specialist and is well versed in emergency and disaster management & response. You can follow her regular updates on PreparednessHomesteading, and a host of other topics at www.readynutrition.com .

    Editor’s Note: We’re always on the look-out for new preparedness strategies and tools. In her latest article, Tess Pennington goes old-school (as in ancient civilizations) with a prepper innovation so cool (literally) that you’ll probably want to head out in the back yard and try it this afternoon. If you’re a preparedness minded individual, then you’ll no doubt appreciate the simplicity and usefulness of  the following technique for off-grid refrigeration. As most of our readers understand, in a collapse, be it natural or man-made, there is a distinct possibility that we may experience a cascading power-failure from which there may be no recovery for the majority of the population for weeks or months at a time. You’ll have no way of keeping short-term perishable food fresh, especially meats. But what if you were able to create a refrigerator out of just sand, water and a couple clay pots, giving you the ability to keep meat cool for a few days at a time? In our view, that could significantly alter your survival preparation plans for the better. In addition to food, for those with critical needs that require refrigeration of medicine, this could be a life saver. This ancient technique is one you’ll want to consider, test, and archive in your personal SHTFplanning and preparedness strategies G.O.O.D. Manual.


    SHTF Survival: Clay Pot Refrigeration
    by Tess Pennington

    Have you ever wondered what our ancestors did without refrigeration? How were they able to prevent their food from spoiling? Some of our ancient civilizations did in fact have refrigeration and used simple items they had on hand to create it.

    The zeer, or clay pot refrigeration keeps food cool (icy cold) without electricity by using evaporative cooling. Essentially, a porous outer earthenware pot, lined with wet sand, contains an inner pot (which can be glazed to prevent penetration by the liquid) within which the food is placed. The evaporation of the outer liquid draws heat from the inner pot.

    In a short or long-term disaster where power is out, knowing essential skills on how to prevent foods from spoiling will help you survive longer and stay healthier. Further, having this simple device can also help you have a diverse diet during a disaster and prolong food fatigue. The best part is that making this device is incredibly cheap, very effective, and doesn’t require any electricity, which is perfect for those disasters where the power is affected and you have no fuel to power your generators.

    All that is needed to create a clay pot refrigerator is two terra cotta pots, one larger than the other, as well as some sand, water, and cloth. To make the “fridge”, you just put one pot inside the other, and fill up the spaces with wet sand, which keeps the inside of the pots cold. You will also need to put a wet towel over the top to keep the warm air and light from getting in.

    Rather than re-inventing the wheel, perhaps we could learn a thing or two from our ancient ancestors. Using what they had available to them, our ancestors seemed to have many of the modern day conveniences we have today.


    This article has been contributed by Tess Pennington of Ready Nutrition. Subscribe to Tess’ Get Prepped Weekly Newsletter for more emergency preparedness tips, homesteading ideas, and insights. As a subscriber to her free newsletter you’ll receive the latest updates from her 52 Weeks to Preparedness Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Planning Series. It’s well worth your time, and oh, did we mention it’s totally free?

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    Author: Tess Pennington
    Views: Read by 10,126 people
    Date: September 25th, 2011
    Website: http://readynutrition.com/

    Copyright Information: This content has been contributed to SHTFplan by a third-party or has been republished with permission from the author. Please contact the author directly for republishing information.

     

    116 Comments...

    Vote: Click here to vote for SHTF Plan as a Top Prepper Web Site
    1. Sam not sam says:

      I ran across this several months ago and am intending to try it. One thing she mentioned which was not mentioned in the other source I had for this was the use of a NON glazed pot for the outer pot..

      I wonder how this will work in a high humidity environment.. In some place like Texas or Arizona; this would obviously work GREAT.. We’ll giver it a try some day here in So Flo and let you know.

      Rate This Comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

      • Egore says:

        Glazed is for the inner pot not the outer. Wouldn’t work without evaporation off the outer pot.

        Rate This Comment: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

      • SAZdrat says:

        Speaking for southern AZ (Sonoran Desert, mostly)… The evaporative method of cooling does work pretty well for chilling air or water (think canvas water bags), but the maximum reduction that I’ve been able to realize has been around 30 deg F even with the RH at less than 10%. So if you start off with 110 deg F ambient….

        Rate This Comment: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

    2. Sam not sam says:

      Another thing I will try someday is using clear 1 or 2 liter plastic soda bottles filled with water and one cap full of bleach as a light source. I am pasting a link to a rally good, short vid on the subject. Although there are lots of English vid’s on this subject; the one in the link is the best instructional.. even though it is in Portuguese.. they actually show the visible difference in a room between one 50 watt light bulb and a couple of bottle lights. The difference in light is amazing.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_zMAWztZ6TI&feature=player_embedded

      Rate This Comment: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

    3. eric says:

      thats why i like it if this all unfolds in the fall or winter you can leave it outside or throw it in the snow to keep it fresh. good little article. id like to know how many of you really think power will be out and total craziness is going to happen or is this more scare tatics. im in all support of this website and read it daily. I saw silver tank but I think it will rebound. if it goes down will buy more!

      Rate This Comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

      • Sam not sam says:

        Who can say ? But it doesn’t have to be TEOTWAWKI for these things to be handy and save you money..

        I live in hurricane “central”, I have been out of power for about 2 weeks following a bad one before. The floods in the NE knocked out power for some for 4-6 weeks I heard. Tornados, wild fires, etc. Stuff happens..when stuff happens and people aren’t prepared for anything, everything is worse than it had to be.

        Rate This Comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

      • RICH99 says:

        I personally think its all scare tactics !

        Rate This Comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2

        • ScoutMotto says:

          Yes, fear-mongering just to help the flower pot industry flourish!

          C’mon, Rich…

          People like this comment. Do You? Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

          • RICH99 says:

            Your a douchebag…….my comment had nothing to do with the refrigeration system ! but then again only a douchebag would get the flower pot out of my comment .

            Rate This Comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 5

        • Sam not sam says:

          Go through just ONE serious hurricane that goes directly over your house.. just ONE tornado on your block.. you’ll be scared alright.. but it won’t be a tactic.

          Rate This Comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

          • dreamer8280 says:

            I agree with Sns, we are the last customers on our power service and the last to be restored to power in hurricanes, trees down etc. Plus you never know… I had a dream this spring that an earthquake in the Madrid zone would be very bad. Thats when I started prepping before I even knew others were doing it.

            Rate This Comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

    4. Just imagine how popular the horse breeders will beater an EMP. Things like this, sand water filtration, and horsies may ride once again.

      Rate This Comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

      • eric says:

        i agree, i wonder how a emp blast may still let your car start if it doesnt fry the computer since i hear it is on tires which not makes it grounded or grounded. I wanted to get a dirt bike racer that has no computer just a kickstart to have if this all unfolds. crazy stuff you learn by hearing others talk.

        Rate This Comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

        • With regards to EMP classes and how EMP will affect certain electrical components, check out EMPact America’s website…lots of interviews and info… The dirt bike is a good idea, as well as 4 wheelers…. The only thing you might need with those is a backup electrical ignition switch, from what I understand…

          Rate This Comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

          • 45thm22 says:

            Polaris makes a diesel 4 wheeler. An old Mercedes diesel with mechanical fuel injection would be the best car in a post EMP world. Especially with a hand crank.

            Rate This Comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

      • Odd Questioner says:

        Well… it’s not that simple (EMP, that is).

        It’s a damned complex formula, and the amount of ‘oomph required to cause a national (let alone global) EMP wipe-out? Let’s just say that nuclear winter would be the least of our worries.

        Rate This Comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    5. Odd Questioner says:

      That’s actually pretty slick.

      In more northern climates, refrigeration used to require harvesting ice in the winter, then storing it in huge piles, in a deep enough cave full of sawdust. That was usually sufficient to keep a supply going throughout the summer.

      The ice was sold in 5-lb blocks, and an enterprising person with a big enough saw (and a large nearby cave or huge root cellar) could make a tidy profit.

      Rate This Comment: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

    6. SmokinOkie says:

      I had never seen this before (using the clay pots). Same principle as the swamp coolers we had years ago. I’m definitely going to try this one!

      Rate This Comment: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

    7. Mike C says:

      There is plenty of sand and water where I live in SW Fl.Would you need cold water ? I have not watched the video yet.

      Rate This Comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

      • Copout says:

        Mike: I watched the video last week, I get the newsletter, during the video they stated the outside temp. to be high, and used water from tap, I showed this video to my wife and she Couldnt believe it. Thanks MAC for posting!

        Rate This Comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    8. infolode says:

      This knowledge is invaluable for the extraordinary times we do/will live in.

      I would humbly suggest an additional method involving pykrete. It also makes for an excellent bullet resistant barrier.

      It would behoove one and all to experiment with this concept.

      Rate This Comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

      • VRF says:

        with a layer of ceramic tiles moarter in place to the front (facing out) on a 3/4″ piece of plywood that will fit inside the window frame and secured with lag bolts into the window frame , makes for a very solid option for any window. hard to throw a fire bomb thru that window, or even from a respectable distance could even be ballistically sound, even better if you live in a brick home.
        Not that you would put them on now, but having them made to fit would be a smart plan., and in preps

        Rate This Comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

        • Celtacia says:

          Nice idea, but pointless in a mobile home, unless you plan to either take cover against the windows, plate the entire interior of your home with them including the floor, or merely build cubbies to seek cover in. In mobile homes you could build DOWN, if you take my point. Then bullet-proofness would be a nice cellar. Just a thought…. And for those who are fortunate enough not to have to worry about this, I congratulate you.

          Rate This Comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    9. Daisy says:

      I’m definitely giving this a whirl!

      Most of our outages have been in the winter, so refrigeration has not been an issue.

      Heat is our big concern. We rent and have no fireplace. I have a Little Buddy heater and some propane for potential outages. Does anybody have other, safer heating ideas? I worry about the Carbon Monoxide poisoning risk.

      Rate This Comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

      • We have a tent and sleeping bags on hand for a no heat type emergency. It won’t keep the pipes from freezing, but for a short term problem it will at least keep us warm.

        Rate This Comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

      • Plain Old American says:

        The My Buddy heater is supposed to be equipped with an oxygen sensor that will shut it off if need be. I never trusted it. I would get in the fartsack then turn it off. I always made sure I could reach it in the morning without having to get out.

        You can buy a hose that will allow you to run your heater from 20# bottle as opposed to the little Coleman units.

        Rate This Comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

        • Daisy says:

          POA – I have that attachment and the 20 pounders. Even with a battery operated CO detector, I’m uneasy. Also, storing a dozen of those big propane canisters adds a little adrenaline rush to my day!

          It would suck to die of stupidity instead of cold. I keep thinking there has to be a better method.

          Rate This Comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

          • Plain Old American says:

            Well I use something like this:

            http://tinyurl.com/3fsuyrv

            I have the stove pipe come out the back wall. That way I can tarp the top and the snow just slides off as long as I’ve got the stove going. I keep two chainsaws and several splitting wedges so I can go into the backwoods and stay fairly comy. My tent & frame weighs about 200# and the stove I have is about 80#.

            We’ve stayed in it in abou 15 degrees with 2 feet of snow. I’d be worried about having to be in it in real bad weather though.

            Rate This Comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

          • Brushman says:

            kerosene, as in kerosene heater,lamps,water heater,or an alternative use for kerosene could be a Flame Fougasse,or molotov cocktail.

            Rate This Comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

        • Ben Dover says:

          Good idea not to trust the sensor. Who wants to bet their life on an electronic device, especially one made in China?

          Rate This Comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

      • Mike C says:

        When the grid goes down, us people that live in Florida will be just as screwed, if not worse than the people in northern climates. Without AC and Raid Fla will go back to being a swamp in no time. The heat here is unbearable and the mosquitoes and vast amount of other insects and reptiles will make this place a living hell. People might consider Florida paradise, but let me tell you, that attitude will quickly change when the SHTF. I know, I work outside in this state.

        Rate This Comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

      • LadyHawk says:

        The Little Buddy radiant heater was designed to use indoors, tents, vans, etc. It’s vent free and comes with an oxygen depletion sensor, but do crack a window, tent flap air hole or don’t use in air tight conditions. It wouldn’t hurt to have a battery operated CO detector (I got one from Ace for $20 bucks and it is LOUD.) You can use it with the 1# or #5 LP bottles.

        It’s auto turn off if tipped over or pilot goes out or low oxygen sensed. Given it’s portability and cost, I think it is a good choice over other LP units in your setting. I’ve used one in my van since they first came out and damn glad I had one.

        Mine is mounted (using the screw holes in back) on a hinged lower cabinet door which allows for it to be directed to the area most needed. I use a latch that keeps it secured. In higher elevations (over 9000 ft) I find have to use fireplace lighter to “prime” it.

        To keep the chill off, because I have solar and wind, I have used infra red heat bulbs. There are solar units for under $200 now and I have been picking up 750 watt inverters from Sam’s for $19 each. Those and a 12v battery will not only keep the chill off, but allow you to use a crock pot (Sam’s has a three crock pot unit for $40 bucks- cook rice, beans and cornbread all at same time)

        Rate This Comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

        • Anonymous says:

          Try cooking with it using a single 12v battery, you will be sorely dissapointed.

          Rate This Comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

          • LadyHawk says:

            Yes, you can. I have been it doing it for over twenty years. On the van I have mounted on top a (20 year old) 45 watt panel. I have one 12v Trojan battery dedicated to the van “house” section using one of those $19 750 watt inverters.

            There is a dual(2)crock pot unit of 270 watts. (Could use the 3 unit one of 405 watts, but space is the issue). It also covers the interior lights and a stereo. Heat is the Mr Buddy and I have a butane one burner which I seldom use.

            The crock pot is set up that I can travel and cook in it or even just keep water hot. I have another single crock pot (old style) that has an insert to bake cakes or bread. The UL sticker labels it at 75-150 watts. I’m no where near overloading the inverter or running out of power even on the cloudy, rainy or snowy days – cause even in gloom, you are still getting a charge, even though it’s less then sunny days.

            Of course I had Plan B – which was a 12v extension cord attached to the house battery that I could plug into the cigarette lighter when traveling and use the engine alternator to recharge the battery – but never needed it.

            Rate This Comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

        • 45thm22 says:

          Better make sure your inverters are the true sine wave type for fridges, freezers and some electronics. They don’t like to run very well on modified sine wave ones. Which are usually those cheap ones. Although light bulbs should work just fine.

          Rate This Comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

          • LadyHawk says:

            You are right, but the $19 unit works well for the purpose I described for an emergency situation -infra red lights and crock pots and allows those with limited means a way to look at solar as an option.

            I have a later post on where I upgrade to a better quality inverter which is also sold at Camping World and how it can be used. I was thinking for those not familiar with what solar can do and maybe later how it all comes together, it would be an introduction.

            I know when I started looking at solar, I was overwhelmed with all the tech talk until a really great guy took me through it step by step – the first step was he asked if I had a crock pot and when I said yes he had this solar panel with legs and an extension cord and a small inverter.

            He set the panel and inverter outside, ran the extension cord into my motor home and plugged it into the crock pot and said go cook something and he’d be back the next day.

            That was my first step towards becoming a dealer and installer of 12v solar systems on motor homes and travel trailers.

            My own 4500w inverter system is half true sine and half modified using Heart products (have some of the primo early stuff that is shielded against EMPs) but it took baby steps getting there.

            Rate This Comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

      • docloxvio says:

        I’m pretty sure that the Mr.Heater Buddy will turn itself off if the CO level is elevated. The ceramic element where the propane is burned acts like a catalytic converter and the CO produced by combustion is minimal.

        Rate This Comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

      • jasperone says:

        wood burners,pellet burners at tractor supply

        Rate This Comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    10. RightWingMom says:

      Off to Home Depot…thanks for the great idea! :)

      Rate This Comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    11. I am going to try this!! Great idea.

      Rate This Comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    12. Tim says:

      Prepare as best you can is what I tell people. After all that will hit the fan who knows what one will be able to do and what one will need?

      Trust God to provide the rest by using your skills and your mind along with lots of prayer. It also doesn’t hurt to be in tune and involved with like minded people if you are so blessed. Unfortunately, I am not. But even alone I put my all my trust and faith in God as best I can right along with doing what I can now, and thinking of the same for when SHTF.

      Rate This Comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

      • jasperone says:

        better store up on antibiotics…tractor supply kv pet supplies…don’t buy anything from sams club costco bj’s and farmer’s markets…flea market have cheap supplies,vegetables…honeyvillegrain.com

        Rate This Comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    13. sanityjones says:

      I plan to let my ex wife move back in after the crash and use her icy cold stare for keeping things refrigerated.

      Rate This Comment: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

    14. Giurza says:

      Great info! will definitely try this one out!

      Rate This Comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2

    15. runvamprun says:

      thanks for the clay pot refrigeration idea and WOW on the two-liter coke bottle lights!

      Rate This Comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

      • No doubt…the coke lights are great…so simple, and staring us right in the face, and without that video we may never have though of it…. Probably hundreds of innovations out there just like it that we haven’t conceptualized yet due to our own lack of imagination. Necessity is the mother of all invention, they say….

        Rate This Comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    16. Man Up says:

      This is great stuff. The kind of thing we all need to know about. I need to get some sand.

      Thanks Mac!

      Rate This Comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

      • I hope to add some more of this kind of stuff going forward…definitely worth our time to explore these kinds of ideas…. All the kudos on this one should go to Tess over at readynutrition.com and the science guy for putting together a great video. I love ancient technologies and this one rates right up there with the Baghdad battery for me…

        Rate This Comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    17. anonymous says:

      http://www.backwoodssolar.com/

      The ultimate! Plan ahEAD.

      Rate This Comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

      • LadyHawk says:

        anonymous

        That’s a great price on blemished solar panels. You could put a decent start up set using one of their 225w solar panels @ $352 plus they had a Xantrex X-Power 1500 12v inverter for $162. Add a 8D 12v battery (forklift type) @ about $200 plus a $30 charge controller and you are in emergency generator striking range without the fuel and maintenance costs.

        What could you run with a set up like that? Look at the appliance’s UL sticker which has the amounts of watts it consumes.

        The three crock pot unit previously referenced uses 405 watts. My AM/FM cassette playing radio 10 watts, phone charger 5 watts, computer 150 watts, energy saver deep freezer 400 watts and two lamps using 75 watt light bulbs. That adds up to 970 watts on a 1200 watt inverter. This doesn’t max out the inverter and allows for “phantom load” use like radios consume more power at higher volume.

        In my daily usage, my inverters have a 4500 watt capability which include the above and additional usage of another freezer, refrigerator and clothes washer and dryer, along with a bread maker 405 watts, dehydrators (4)(25- 50 watts, 6 gallon evaporator cooler 180 watts and 5 indoor areo (vegetables grown in water) kitchen counter gardens at 42 watts each.

        Because of the power drain, I do not use things with high energy consumption or heating elements like a coffee pot or electrical heater – the clothes dryer being the exception and that set up is the apartment size stackable.

        Heating, including water heater is propane. And not everything is running at the same time when you are calculating usage. There were times when I had a smaller set up I would unplug this to run that scenario.

        Rate This Comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    18. Sam not sam says:

      The other examples of this that I’ve seen use much larger pots and a lot more sand around them. His being able to get into the solid 50′s when it was 90 out is pretty impressive. I would think that larger pots would provide a greater cooling effect as would having the rag of a cap only covering the inner pot.. but I will try this at some point and report..

      Rate This Comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    19. SmokinOkie says:

      I think the best part of innovations like these is their simplicity. Thanks again, Mac. And Tess.
      I’ll soon be visiting relatives at the old homestead and maybe some of the folks there can teach me a few things as well, about off-grid living. If I find anything worthwhile, I’ll pass it along in the upcoming ‘News from Lake Okie-Be-Gone’ It ought to be an interesting family reunion, Uncle Zeek AND his hound dog were recently arrested! I’m anxious to hear his side of the story…(Zeek’s, that is, I’m not fluent in hound)

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    20. Sam not sam says:

      URP – but related to the Frenchy-French limiting cash gold purchases.. see pasted article regarding China..

      “China, already the world’s second largest bullion consumer, has installed the country’s first gold vending machine in a busy shopping district in Beijing, state media said on Sunday.
      Shoppers in the popular Wangfujing Street can insert cash or use a bank card to withdraw gold bars or coins of various weights based on market prices, the People’s Daily said on its website.

      Each withdrawal is capped at 2.5 kilograms (5.5 pounds) or one million yuan (about $156,500) worth of gold, the report said.

      Gold vending machines already exist in Britain, the United States, the Middle East and Europe.

      The machine was launched Saturday by the Beijing Agricultural Commercial Bank and a gold trading company, the report said.

      They plan to install an unspecified number of machines in secure locations such as gold shops and upmarket private clubs.

      Gold is often used as a hedge against inflation and the machines could prove popular among Chinese consumers looking for a convenient way to safeguard their cash amid rising prices.

      Chinese consumer demand for gold soared 27 percent year-on-year to 579.5 tonnes in 2010, according to the World Gold Council.

      India, the world’s top consumer, saw a 66 percent increase to 963.1 tonnes. ”

      Found on drudgereport DOT com as a link to Breitbart DOT com

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    21. anonymous says:

      The sea monkeys are gett’in spanked! Market is open…

      Rate This Comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

      • SmokinOkie says:

        I had a prophetic vision. Or a dream…no, better make that a halucination. Anyway, I saw a ship steaming into Hong Kong. The city was beautiful. Next, I was far beyond the city, climbing high into the mountains on a narrow trail. Hours passed. The mist hung on the mountains. At a bend in the trail there was a huge metallic box with two openings. A small one shaped like a funnel and a larger one below it.
        A sign on the box said: ‘Place true wealth into this receptacle and in return you shall be given all that is required for happiness in life. The wisdom of the ages shall deliver her uttermost blessings. (no refunds)’
        I wondered what that meant. Would I recieve a book or something with the works of the great philosophers? An ancient scroll or parchment with the answers to all of humanities problems? Perhaps even some new, profound wisdom, never revealed before? I was excited just thinking about the possibilities!
        I dug in my pocket and found two quarters. I put them in the funnel but they dropped out into the bigger hole. I looked in my wallet and found several bills. I tried a dollar, it fell back out like the quarters. I tried a 100 yen note- same thing. Then a Canadian dollar, a euro, francs, lira and many other currencies- all with the same result. I was getting frantic, thinking I would miss this incredible opportunity.
        I looked at the sign again. The words ‘true wealth’ caught my eye and I remembered that I had a small gold coin stashed in my left sock. I got the coin and dropped it in. There was a hollow grating noise inside the box, then a clicking sound. I was giddy with anticipation of the great wonders about to be revealed!
        Suddenly, into the large hole, slid a 12 oz can of Dr. Pepper. I took it out. It was very cold. Wrapped around the can was a yellow post it note, held on with a rubber band since the can was sweating with condensation.
        On the note was written: “A lesser fool believes that fiat paper is money. A greater fool believes that money can buy true happiness. You are both.(and wash your socks!)”
        Feeling angry and disappointed, like I’d just paid way too much for a fortune cookie, I started back down the trail. After a few minutes I noticed something written on the back of the little note.
        It said “The best things in life truly are free. See the sunrise. Hear the laughter of a child. Gently touch the hand of your beloved. Smell the jasmine and the rose. Look into the eyes of a trusted friend. Behold The Mountains!….and the stars…and Dream”
        By the time I got back to the ship, I realized what an incredible bargain it was! And the Dr. Pepper stayed frosty cold to the last drop!

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    22. Bill S says:

      How could it possibly work very well? Look at the physics involved. A root cellar would work much better.

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    23. This is incredible!

      I recently purchased a cabin in in the mountains with no electricity.

      I am going to try this out…I will try to make one about double this size, hopefully it will work just as well.

      Thanks Mac!

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    24. durango kidd says:

      POA: I found this link at Black Listed News to Zero Hedge and track down the URL for you:

      http://www.zerohedge.com/news/five-banks-account-96-250-trillion-outstanding-derivative-exposure-morgan-stanley-sitting-fx-de

      With $250 trillion dollars in “derivatives” outstanding, it would appear that YES, its enough to keep Michael Moore in Pizza for the rest of his life.

      Lots of good data here.

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      • Plain Old American says:

        Hey thanks. I’m gonna check it out.

        Actually, when you think about the little thing known as “economy of scale” there could possibly be enough pizza for Moore AND Rosie Odonnell. :)

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    25. The Old Coach says:

      Unmentioned so far is the need to keep any swamp cooler in the shade and in a breeze. Without those two factors the efficiency goes WAY down.

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    26. Sam Adams says:

      Very interesting on the clay pot fridge. But unless you get the temp down to 40º, the food will spoil. The food danger zone where bacteria can multiply is 40º-140º. Once food is exposed to air, it must remain outside of that temp range. If it gets to that range, you have 4 hours before bacteria start to multiply to either cook it above 140º or refrigerate it.

      I wonder if anyone has done the testing and/or the math to know the optimum ratio of size of pots to sand and water content. I’m sure any size would do, but the ratio of the pot volumes and the volumes of water and sand I’m sure are important if you want to reach colder temps than 50º.

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    27. Sam not sam says:

      Check this Gallop poll out.. pretty stunning when you think about this..

      http://www.gallup.com/poll/149678/Americans-Express-Historic-Negativity-Toward-Government.aspx

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    28. Bloodyfellow says:

      :) the joke of the day! :)

      Granny’s Condom

      Two old ladies were outside their nursing home, having a smoke, when it started to rain. One of the ladies pulled out a condom, cut off the end, put it over her cigarette, and continued smoking.

      Lady 1: What’s that?

      Lady 2: A condom. This way my cigarette doesn’t get wet.

      Lady 1: Where did you get it?

      Lady 2: You can get them at any drugstore.

      The next day, Lady 1 hobbles herself into the local drugstore and announces to the pharmacist that she wants a box of condoms.

      The guy, obviously embarrassed, looks at her kind of strangely (she is, after all, over 80 years of age), but very delicately asks what brand she prefers.

      Lady 1: Doesn’t matter son, as long as it fits a Camel.
      The pharmacist fainted

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    29. anonymous says:

      One hump or two?

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    30. Daisy says:

      Here’s an interesting quote that I read ina mainstream news article about the occupation of Ghaddafi’s hometown in Libya. This is one of the residents of the city:

      “Appeals were made yesterday in the streets and mosques for urgent help. There is also a dangerous shortage of blood at hospitals for the wounded … and a shortage of foodstuffs. Drinking water is completely unavailable in some areas in Tripoli.”

      Crestani said the items needed included dressing materials, external fixators for treating fractures, anaesthetics, antibiotics and tetanus vaccine, but also drugs for chronic diseases such as diabetes, hypertension and cancer.

      “The shortage of fuel and electricity has also crippled hospitals’ ability to keep health services running.”

      This is a real world situation that just underlines the need to prep.

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    31. Durango Kidd says:

      Daisy: Yeah, Daffy Gaddaffi should have prepped, no doubt about it!

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      • Daisy says:

        Don’t be rotten, Durango. :D I’m not talking about him – I’m talking about the poor people trapped there under martial law.

        It just struck me that the things these people were talking about are all the things we prep for. It makes me feel less crazy for having 135 2 litre bottles of water in my attic!

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        • Durango Kidd says:

          Daisy: 135 two liter bottles of water? Are you nuts?! :-)

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          • Daisy says:

            Well, yeah, but isn’t being nuts beside the point???

            2 liter bottles are easy to get for free – I bring 4 home from the shop every day – so I just wash ‘em and fill them up with clean water.

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          • durango kidd says:

            Daisy: Just having a little fun with you. Yeah its a great idea. I have some filters. Real cheap from Home Depot. And they are portable in case I “bug out”.

            You can get a one for $12 dollars at HD, that will clean 7500 gallons at Dogtown Reservoir.

            So if you have a wild source of water that must be tamed you can run it through some cloth and sand before using the filter. Try SHTF WATER for some info.

            I do save 3 liter soda bottles and throw them into a black plastic garbage bag. Empty of course. They are easier to carry that way. :-)

            Where about in Canada do you live? Is that close to the US border? Is it top secret? Can you tell me without killing me?

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          • Daisy says:

            DK – I’m only 15 minutes from the US border at Niagara Falls. Beautiful country – it’s Canada’s version of Napa Valley’s Wine Country. While I like being very close to the US, being in a border town is always concerning during times of upheaval.

            You are safe since I’m in Canada and my access to weapons is limited. ;)

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        • durango kidd says:

          Daisy: I have been to Viagra Falls. It is very pretty country but a little humid for me.

          Are you the maid of the mists?

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        • prepper2 says:

          Don’t forget to put 2 drops of bleach in each bottle.

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    32. Not sure if this was mentioned or not, but the double pot method only works in areas of low humidity. After all, the water has to evaporate!

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    33. vipobviously says:

      you guys catch this one yet? Im sure most have, but will be a good one for the newbies
      http://dancingczars.wordpress.com/2011/09/23/tunnels-to-at-least-13-underground-bases-being-sealed-off/

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    34. Joerocker says:

      another great idea.

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    35. Thinker says:

      Use three pots with same method and see the results.

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    36. Righthandpath says:

      Sam not Sam

      AMAZING light link. Thank you :)

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