Strategic Relocation: How to Remodel a Manufactured Home for Security

by | Dec 21, 2014 | Strategic Relocation | 116 comments

Do you LOVE America?


    Editor’s Note: One of the biggest challenges for those seeking insulation from disasters or serious calamities is finding a secure and affordable bug out survival retreat. If you live in the city you’ve likely gone through various possibilities from burying some supplies on a parcel of land in the middle of nowhere to building a cabin or manufactured home out in the boonies. The idea is sound because if you have to evacuate your primary residence you’ll most certainly want to have somewhere to go rather than being forced to roam the land in search of your next meal or shelter. 

    In the following briefing survival expert Joel Skousen looks at this issue and provides some ideas on how you can secure a manufactured home. It’s a challenge to be sure, but it can certainly be done. And while nothing is foolproof, an added level of security can’t hurt. 

    If you are looking for land or even existing homes in a particular area to set up your own survival retreat then take a look at the Strategic Relocation web site for regularly updated listings, property survival scores and advice. If you have questions or need to speak with a professional don’t hesitate to contact Survival Retreat Consulting for assistance. 

    Click here for previous Strategic Relocation Briefings that cover everything from how to set up the perfect survival retreat to analyses of specific locales within the United States.

    Strategic Relocation Briefing: How to Remodel a Manufactured Home for Security
    By Joel Skousen
    Author, Strategic Relocation and The Secure Home

    SR-logoA few days ago M.D. Creekmore of  asked me to do a write-up on how-to make a manufactured home more secure. As Mr. Creekmore pointed out this is the type of housing that many of his readers live in but is also generally the least secure. And yes, I know that modern manufactured homes are made much better than they were a decade ago, they are still not up to the standards of a specifically designed survival retreat.

    The main advantage with choosing a manufactured home is that you can literally have a large 1500 + square feet home set-up and ready to move into in under two days. And with a few modifications you can have a suitable home / survival retreat at far less the cash outlay, of a specifically designed and built secure home.

    Most manufactures homes are put in without a basement underneath, the rock layer under a lot of areas in the country, especially the Appalachian Mountain area, is going to make it difficult and costly to put in a true basement shelter anyway, this is a common issue along the Cumberland Plateau of Eastern Tennessee – which is my highest recommended area east of the Mississippi  but you can apply these ideas to other homes in other areas as well.

    The home / retreat that we will talk about this week, is a modern double wide manufactured home on a permanent foundation, that sets on five slightly sloping acres. There is a large deck built along the backside of the home, overlooking a large creek that runs along the backside of the property there is also a pouch on the front of the home.

    The rock layer under the property would make it difficult to put in a true basement shelter, although the sloping land provides some good alternatives to a buried basement.  An alternative would be to build a secure shelter under the rear deck – the deck could be temporarily dismantled and a concrete foundation built underneath for a secure shelter—even if it isn’t full height, it can serve as a concealed safe room, and also a fallout shelter if you install a 12” concrete ceiling.  This is best done by pouring concrete over 16 gauge steel decking, reinforced with temporary walls below, or you even do the shelter completely with concrete blocks, voids filled.  Concrete blocks also better match most existing manufactured home foundations.  Then the deck could be put back again on top of the new safe room–eliminating the normal post support system.

    The new safe room underneath the rear deck looks like it’s just part of the foundation underneath the home.  People don’t normally assume there is anything but crawl space under a manufactured home on a slope.  If they should peak inside one of the vents around the perimeter, that’s just what they will see–concrete walls surrounding a sloping dirt floor.

    Now, we have to find a way to get into the shelter in private without going outside.  You don’t want to have a door visible from the outside or even from the crawlspace.  The best way is accomplish all this is to build an access through the crawl space descending through a closet floor in the Master Bedroom (preferably) or another convenient room with a closet close to the under-deck shelter.

    Build a narrow crawl-space hallway out of block from this trapdoor to the opening into the shelter.  This way, if any one sees this from the normal foundation vents or from the original crawlspace opening, they’ll just think it’s part of the central support foundation for the house.  But this enclosed block hallway will allow you to get to the shelter and conceal the entrance to the shelter.

    Use wall to wall carpeting in this room and closet to conceal the trap door entrance.  If you leave a corner of the carpeting over the trap door loose (not tacked down), it can easily be picked up and give you quick access to the door in the floor.  Attach the carpet loosely to the trap door with a short string so that when you close the trap it after going down into the crawl space, the carpet will flop back into place and cover the entrance.

    You can’t really reinforce the walls and windows in a manufactured home as we would in new construction, but here are some key things you can do:  1) reinforce the front and back door jambs with a 1/16th inch thick metal strip so that the door latch and dead bolt are set into metal, not just wood.  2) Put a wooden rod in the base of the sliding glass door so that if the flimsy lock is pried open the door still can’t be slid open.  Also put a loose-fitting square road above the sliding door so it can’t be lifted up and out of the track.  3) Put in a solid core door with dead bolt on your master bedroom door and keep it locked at night.  This ensures anyone who breaks in won’t be able to sneak up on you while sleeping.

    For sliding window security, about the best you can do is apply the same type of blocking sticks to them like sliding glass doors.  If double hung or casement windows, the locks are usually sufficient, but on all glass (once you’ve secured the doors) you’ll need some anti-penetration resistance since hardened doors force intrudes to concentrate on windows.  Use a clear film like Shattergard on the inside so that if broken, the intruders still won’t be able to get inside.  Do this with any sliding glass doors as well.

    As far as security systems the sky’s the limit on what you can spend.  In the moderate level, I like the ELK systems that allow you to monitor the home and cameras with an internet connection from you Iphone or Tablet.   If you want to monitor the outdoor approach to your home (tough for any security system because of false alarms from animals) many high-end camera systems now have “analytics” built in that can monitor the changes in the camera view and detect changes with great precision.

    For the budget minded, there are a lot of inexpensive wireless systems that allow you to put sensors on all windows and doors without intrusive wiring changes.  Even cheaper, for less than $20 you can buy a stand alone area detector that will create an electronic trap zone inside your home.  Place it in a central location or hallway that any intruder will have to pass through when they break in.  This will trigger the built in alarm which often will scare intruders away as they assume the alarm may have triggered a call to an alarm company or police.  You can put them in out buildings as well to alert you when you have an intruder rummaging through your tools.

    If you can’t afford a full-blown basement level shelter, you can build a mini-safe room using your master bath or closet.  Just take down the sheet rock and replace it with ¾” plywood and then refill the wall space with ½” gravel.  Then put on new ½” sheetrock.  Replace the door with a metal door and jamb with deadbolt.  Just a 3.5 inch normal wall now becomes bulletproof to even military rifle rounds.  I developed this system years ago and it has given hundreds of people a low tech option for security that didn’t exist before.

    With a little more work, you can even add gravel to the lower portion of the manufactured home exterior walls, as long as you back that lower portion of the wall after the gravel fill with decorative ½” plywood which then serves as a wainscot topped with a chair rail. You do lose some insulation value with the gravel, so I recommend putting half inch foam board behind the plywood.  If you don’t have the plywood backing with screws every 6 inches, the force of the bullets impacting the gravel will cause the sheetrock to break away from its fasteners.

    When Creekmore posted this idea on his website, he was barraged with criticism from arm-chair survivalists claiming a mere 3.5 inches of sharp edged gravel in a 2×4 wall would never stop a .308 rifle round.  It does—I’ve tested it in real life, although for new construction I recommend using steel studs because bullets will go right through the wood 2×4.  He decided to do a test as well.  He used particle board instead of real plywood but it still worked.  See his video results here.

    More details on gravel wall construction and all the other security recommendations I’ve mentioned plus much more are found in my 700 page Secure Home book—it’s designed for the do-it-yourselfer, so it will save you a lot in money and time.  The appendix has listings of hard to find preparedness equipment and sources for security and alternate energy too.   My High Security Shelter book may also be useful to you and is different from the Secure Home.  It’s an architectural plan book for placing a concealed Safe Room in an existing basement—the cheapest alternative for those who already have a basement.

    When looking for safe and sustainable land and homes, please contact Strategic Relocation Realty for help in the American Redoubt and referrals to fellow Prepper Realtors.

    Visit Strategic Relocation for the latest prepper property listings!



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      1. No Place Like Home Turf.

        • Gas now $2.25 a Gal. Central West Gulf Coast FL. The cost to bug out is getting cheaper. Anybody willing to predict the bottom Oil Per Barrel by March 1st 2015? I guess $45 / Barrel n gas. $1.89 gal.

          • I would rather stay more loose, sneak out a back door
            when I saw they were coming.
            Then circle around behind them and join right in as one
            of them.
            Shooting fish in a barrel?`
            Hell yah.

          • $1.719 gal regular

            • $2.05 gal. West central ohio

          • $2.25 to $2.50 here in the NW, the most expensive gas is at the interstate offramps, less as you get into town.

            Dropped 8 cents between Monday and Thursday.

          • $2.13 gas in Casa Grande, Arizona.
            I got a Manufactured home also, thanks for the hints and tips.

          • Hey.. where are you seeing $2.25? I’m not seeing it yet and I should be near you.

          • $2.57 a gallon here in the belly of the beast–DC burbs–

            Another strategic option should the SHTF– a few bridges become suddenly in disrepair and a penninsula or semi-island become inaccesible to the hordes……just a thought

        • I quit reading early, just as soon as he picked a place east of the mississippi and with some excuse of not having a basement.

          I have like no patience for there always being a reason you can’t do this or you can’t do that. Where there is a will, machinery, ingenuity and maybe some money too….then there is a way!

          • The rest of us live in the real world.

          • How to make your own Kuksa……cup/bowl

            ht tps://

      2. Get out of the cities and relocate to a place where you can raise your own food and defend your homestead with multiple family members. Anything short of this I think will ultimately fail. I know most people can’t afford it, but even renting a place when the grid goes down will be better than owning a place in the city with no self-reliant renewable resources.

        • There can be safety in numbers and steel doors. Some apartment buildings can be a great fortress. I thought that of my last place.. how easy it would be to lock the levels off.. but I moved on because safety wasn’t a real reason that I lived there.

      3. Thanks for this important information. I saw how a 3.5 inch thick wall of gravel can stop bullets from a 308 at another site and found it both interesting and useful.

        I am more and more not too sure about depending and defending fixed locations when the swarm comes. The best defense may be to have multiple bugout sites and go guerilla and live by the adage, “fight today and run away, live to fight another day.”

        • laeagle- two laters of 1/4 inch plexoglas will stop most bullets . Its alot lighter and can be installed behind the drywall .
          You can shoot through it , but you better be close and perfectly staight on . most bullets deflect.
          Tested it , installed it many times .
          I will also fill the voids between studs with stacked drywall in a walkin master closet , add the plexiglas and a solid door with lock bar inside to create a panic room type shelter.
          This is a popular and inexpensive remodel request.
          A family could lock down inside until “help” arrives.
          Wouldnt be my first choice , but i build these alot.

          • UHH , Two LAYERS of plexiglas.
            Damn fat fingers !

            • Hammer,how was the dinner and pie eating pigout?!As a fellow carpenter,what kind of doors do you use on this panic closet?I have shown when too much extra stuff shooting at my friends that .223 chews right through older solid panel doors.On a side note,reuse solid doors whereever possible on friends homes to replace hollow units. What is the locking system that you use on the interior side and do you think a layer of plex on inside of solid door would together with door stop most bullets?

              • WAR- Solid wood door with plexi afixed to interior with two good old fashioned cross bars.
                The door is always a tough decision because it needs to match the other doors, steel would be best with steel frame.
                This aint a battle hardened room mind you, just a temporary emergency shelter.

                Great party ! BURP…..

            • Hammerhead,

              Thanks for the info.

              I send you and all the folks here my best wishes for a Merry Christmas and prayers that God will continue to bless, keep, and protect each one and their families in the coming New Year. Changes are coming that are going to surprise many of us Preppers even.

          • Would backerboard work better than drywall ?

          • Also, for door reinforcement….Back in the evil ’60s I hung out in NYC with some people who lived in an East Village tenement. Their door had what they called a “police lock”. A 3/4 inch steel bar that ran at 45 degrees from a point on the door about waist height to a steel socket in the floor. On the door was a lock which, when closed, passed a bolt across the top of the bar. Open the lock, and the bolt withdrew, and you could open the door, while the bar simply slid up until it was vertical. You could unlock it from inside or outside with the key, so it worked even when you weren’t home.

            Anybody else remember these?

            The design takes almost ALL the stress off the door frame. I’d still want a very solid wood or steel door. If the door itself is sturdy, nobody’s going to kick it in, even with a police battering ram.

            Of course in a mobile home, any strong man can just rip the siding off and kick out the drywall.

            Also true of many McMansions – look for the area next to the chimney of there is one. Code doesn’t require ANY SHEATHING at all in that area, just the vinyl siding over the studs, pink panther insulation, and sheetrock. Go thru it with a box cutter. (Ex Bro-in-law was a builder in Colorado, which is where I first noticed this.)

            • HEY COACH , I repaired a house built with foamboard sheathing.
              They had fancy alarm system on the windows and doors , but the thieves ripped off the vinyl siding and kicked a hole in the sheathing then interior dyrwall and they were in ! LOL what i shitty way to build a house , but it was very popular for a couple years.
              Big outfits still do it to cut costs.

              • I was a building contractor for a long time and in frustrated me how flimsy material has become in order to cut costs. New homes now days are a nightmare.

                • Back in 1985 a group of squatters in Philadelphia who called themselves “Move” were bombed by the city of Philadelphia using a city helicopter to drop drums of gasoline on them. Police had tried to take the building but it was too well fortified. The squatters controlled the streets around the building with 22 rifles.

                  For fortifications they took used tires, cut them in half, slit the sidewall from the tread through the bead so the tires could be stretched flat, tires were assembled with consecutive tires nested into each other like a shadow box fence. The barriers were surprisingly bulletproof.

                  The police and city with their bomb dropped from a helicopter burned down 61 homes and killed 11 people.

                  Google the story, very thought provoking.

                  • Good point. Most people (even some range officers, LOL!) don’t know it, but a 9mm won’t even pierce the sidewall of a typical pickup tire at 25 yards. Tread is even tougher.

                    Every so often we hear about somebody setting tires up as a target frame, which works until somebody hits the sidewall square on, and they get a slug coming right back at them at 850 fps. Range I used to shoot at in Michigan had that happen. Slug hit a wooden roof support column, and went in about 2 inches. Woulda killed a man with a hit to the head or throat.

                    I didn’t know that the Philly standoff included that bit of tech. Clever. Evil, but clever.

                    I fancy that 3 layers of truck tire tread would stop or deflect a 5.56 AP round.

                    I’m lucky enough to live where cast-off mine conveyor belting can be found. This is extremely tough fabric/rubber stuff about 5/16 to 3/8 thick that will stop a .22 at point-blank range. Indoor ranges around here use three or four layers just hung from the ceiling as a bullet stop for handgun rounds up to hot .45s.

                    We use shredded-tire mulch (Lowes) for bullet traps where we want to recycle the lead. About 2.5 feet in a box will stop anything below .308 hardball.

        • Hey

          Check M-14 vs. block wall at 250 yards

          on you tube.

      4. A nomad lifestyle perhaps

        • That’s My take a nomad is harder to find.

        • Glad to see you here again. Texted you last week. Hope all is well out in the fields.

        • Hey 02… I see there is a new “vehicle” in your area…property of the local spokane sheriffs office, because you guys all got lots of guns.

          • Why do builders make doors that open in? I have wondered this for a while now. It seems to me that if you wanted some extra security, have an extra strong secure door and have it open out.

            • Generally, doors open in because the landing outside would have to be pretty big in order for it to not be awkward opening the door out and still having room to get around the door as is swings out. There is usually more room inside for that. You can order an exterior door that swings out.

              • Historically doors open inward so it is harder for the occupant to be trapped inside the house (think of drifting snow or someone blocking the door and setting the house on fire).

      5. Thanks for the info Mack!! I have been contemplating how to reinforce my mobile mansion. I am sure the wife won’t be impressed with this idea. I am wanting to take the curtains down and put one way film on the windows, so folks can’t see inside. Also want to precut plywood for all the windows and have it ready to put up. If I can find cheap plexi glass to fill part of the plywood this would allow us to see outside also. Plexi glass or lexann glass is expensive here in Ok

        • Okie,seems the plexi is expensive everywhere!I lucked out on a few free sheets from a site cleanout,only 1/8 inch but used em for some custom storm door panels for friends cabin.

      6. Same shit, new day…

      7. The hordes make it and survive in the northlands will die defending it.I suppose could make it to the Northeast Kingdom but without a lot more practice/skills might not last too long in that area meself,the other problem being doubt I would be very alone in those parts the hordes came that far north.

      8. FALSE FLAG


        I know you’re all waiting for my fuck the pigs rant but today I actually feel pretty disgusted and sad by all the killing. I think Patrick Lynch and all the other hotheads calling for “war” need to just shut the fuck up and have a come to Jesus moment. Violence will only beget more violence. Live by the sword…

        There is no deed that can’t be forgiven except blasphemy. Let’s try to get these cops to cool out before resorting to beatings and guns. Hopefully cooler heads will prevail.

        In the spirit of Christmas, here’s a cool old guy I like:

        • Acid, your comment #329341 is very good. I also hope cooler heads can prevail.

        • How about Sharpton,Deblazio and our Attorney General and great Leader cool the rhetoric too. Takes two to tango!

      9. i plan to bug out to the woods at the first sign of trouble…

        though if trapped in town i would do this,

        a 4x8ft by 5ft high cinder block house – built w/ cinder blocks filled with pea stone and topped with 2 – 4×8 sheet of 3/4 plywood placed in a defensible room of the house or apartment covering the front door and rear hallway. with a bolt hole in the floor to access the crawl space to the outside.

        with bullet shields – rock filled bins by the front door and front windows, my back yard is a target rich area offers no one any cover or concealment and i can shoot them through the walls if necessary from the secured front of the house.

        cover all ground floor outside window with chicken wire fencing on the outside, then a junk plywood sheet, block in the window with stone, sandbag or brick and plywood sheet on the inside with only a gun port just above the sill.

        keep bucket of dirt sand and water handy to fight fires cause by bullets and tracer rounds.

        it’s something you can build in a day during a emergency and will give you the edge in a gunfight.

        * but always have a plan to flee under cover and concealment to higher ground with a natural fortification over looking your ‘6’ back trail, just in case you get over run or burned out.


          • This Video is flawed, like who hides behind loose cinder blocks?? Real house walls built with cinder blocks like here in FL, are filled solid with cement and rebar around windows and doors and the top plate sill.

            2.23 is not the True NATO round. Go look up 5.56 62 grain M88 Green Tip Steel Penetrators. It will look like the .308. That 5.56 Green Tip round punches through steel I beams. These Guys need to build a realistic wall under building codes and redo their ballistics tests.

      10. WCD. The hordes will have to survive 100 yards open ground from all sides and sniper fire from concealed location. Hopefully they will give up and think it is not worth it





        • Acid; you are worthless,always stirring the pot,always hating everybody. go away.

          • Acid, Your point is legitimate. Your passion is obvious. lol

      12. For myself i would setup concrete forms in the corner of a poured basement , peel up the subfloor and pump in concrete with a concrete cap.
        Add a vault type door with a poured in place frame and some outside ventilation and your tighter than most bank vaults.

        • Hammer, And Gasoline poured and a Road flare down the Vent pipe. Poof!!! Happy Birthday Hidy-Holers.

          • That scenario is ridiculously easy to defend against, but I ain’t giving details. If you are a pro pipe fitter, just think drip leg.

          • ya, i aint into hiding in a hole myself , but a vent would be run horizontally a hundred feet out of the building and hiden to prevent just that.

      13. It don’t matter what you do. If you cant make your home fire proof its not defendable. a small catapult can sling a flaming ball of tar great distances. Ive come to terms that I possibly might be forced to leave my place. If forced to leave Ill burn it behind me. We plan to go & buy a $1000 worth of canned goods this week. And not one can will be stored at our home. Putting all your eggs in one basket is a risky plan.

        • I have an issue with a ‘panic room’ during a time of SHTF or WROL. The panic room concept is to shelter you and your loved ones for the time it takes for help to arrive and amend the situation.

          In SHTF, no one is going to come to help, unless YOU and your community have a reaction unit to respond to an incursion. Absent this prior planning and organization, the bad guys are just going to burn your place down around your ears once they’ve looted it.

          I would not want to be inside of a concrete room when the house around it burns down.

          We need to get beyond the defense of single structures and adopt the community defense concept.

        • Old guy, my plan to bugout to my cousin’s BOL in north GA is still in place. All my family live within a twenty-square-mile area. No scum can get within 200 yards of any of my relatives’ homes without getting their asses shot off. They all grew up around guns and are better shots than I am.

        • Can’t see any zombies motivated enough to haul around a catapult. they need to be taken out well before they get to your neighborhood/street. Claymores anyone?

      14. This truly one of the better offerings from Mr. Skousen

        MTCFMF!!//RIP America.

        • Agreed. Good info provided.

      15. Peanuts: Buy a bag of raw peanuts (unsalted, unroasted) at your local grocery store and then follow the planting instructions below.
        Peanuts will grow in clusters underground to full maturity in 120 to 150 days.
        Peanuts are a good choice because you can eat them fresh and you can easily make your own peanut butter using an ordinary food blender if you have a little vegetable oil or olive oil. Only plant one variety of peanut each year.
        Planting Instructions: Plant the peanut inside its pink paper thin seed coat for the best germination results. Plant the peanut between 1.5 inches to 2 inches below the top of the ground in soil that you have dug and loosened. You will need a 12 inch diameter wide hole at least 12 inches deep for each peanut so the peanut plant can easily grow underground to its full size. Dig the hole, replace all of the dirt in the hole, step on the dirt to pack it down, and then dig a small hole in the center of the original hole that is no deeper than 2 inches for the peanut. After planting the peanut, cover the peanut with dirt, and step on the dirt above the peanut to drive out any air. Then water the ground and wait.
        Harvesting Instructions: When the above ground leaves turn yellow, dig up the entire plant and store indoors for an additional four weeks in a cool, dry area. Leave the peanuts inside their shells until you are ready to eat them or use them for seed. If you shell them for seed, be very careful to not break or tear the pink paper thin seed coat around the peanut.

        MTCFMF!!//RIP America.

        • Interesting post Copper,at first just saw peanuts and though some bulletproofing idea,thought I have to read this!Not sure how they would do in the New England region,need careful timing I guess at a minumum.

        • Peanuts only grow & produce in sandy soil. Lots of varmits like chipmunk gopher and groundhog will eat them. Rabbits and deer will eat the tops. gardening and growing crops takes Know how.

        • Quail.. nice small critters and some types are pretty quiet I think.. eggs, meat.. you get the picture.

      16. Totally off topic I read an article this morning about some jerk off calling for martial law in new York. Tried to find others seems its hard to find info on what going on there the article talks about wide spread riot across America. If this is true people these are the opening shots folks. Can someone or a few someones look into this and see if we can’t come up with some numbers and city’s that are engaged in active protests. I got a real uneasy feelin here folks

        • John for the most part protests I have read about peaceful/no riots/shooting cops/cops shooting/bullying people/no burning looting ect.There will always be a few assholes on both sides of protests,hope the calmer ones on both sides keep em in line.As for martial law,well,would view that as a declaration of war on the people of this country personally.

          • if it M/L is declared anyplace us or can know that you have brorhers and sisters that will help either by giving sanctuary or shoulder to shoulder from house to house on the streets. it is a patriots duty to make the security of the nation his PERSONAL resopsibilty. i for one will not stand by while north america burns. i accept my duty. i will not run. so remember STAND NOW oR KNELL also upset the american border patrol gunned down a canadian citizen. i dont know thise details but enough in my mind another uniform with a badge shot and killed yet another person period.

        • I think generally someone has been calling for martial law in New York City pretty much continually since 1863.

          Having said that, there are demonstrations nightly or weekly now in Oakland, Berkeley, Seattle, and Minneapolis.

          I think they will lose a lot of support now, even brain dead lefties can see killing police is not intelligent.

        • Hell we got some jerk off’s right here screaming “where is the dhs?”

          Not much different. Sheeple won’t see that today, but someday they will and they will wish they hadn’t called upon them.

      17. shtf is going to be hell no matter what. prepping is smart but not a guarantee of survival no matter what you do. to thine own self be true! if it makes you feel good do it.because the best laid plans of mice and men often go awry. the greatest prep in my mind is flexibility, and good health cuz it is going to be rough.

        • Eh,really wasn’t planning on surviving too long anyhow,hence,no personal worries for most part,oh,and,”Live for today,prepare for tomorrow”.Damn,been awhile since I said that!

        • Eh,really wasn’t planning on surviving too long anyhow,hence,no personal worries for most part,oh,and,”Live for today,prepare for tomorrow”.Damn,been awhile since I said that!

      18. It all makes for pretty depressing reading from where I stand. I am stuck in a small sized city with an elderly father who cannot move without a walker and nowhere to go. On the bright side, I do have a basement, but it’s a walkout. I tried to get the better half to build a strong-room when we were renovating but he wouldn’t hear of it. Now, two years later, his new buddies at work have views similar to mine and his attitude has softened but the resources are no longer there and he’s not going to rip apart all his hard work. So we will be stuck with some last minute shelter cadged together out of boxes of books and bottle of water to protect us from radiation. As for the ‘golden horde’, well, that’s another story.

      19. There are so many typos in this article that I had to guess what the writer was trying to say. Then I gave up. Staying put in my non-manufactured home.

        • America has outsourced grammar.

      20. I have $500-600 for shtf. Advise what to get for myself + 5 cats

        • Southside, presuming you have nothing right now, you have enough money to acquire two months worth of food and water or one defensive shotgun and 250 rounds.

          $500 will get you:

          10 six-gallon water jugs from WalMart, they look like metal Jerry cans. Fill them up at home.

          40 pounds of rice.
          10 pounds of beans.
          20 pounds of flour.
          Yeast packets for baking.
          Case of canned meats.
          Two or three cases canned vegetables.
          A sealed can of powdered milk.
          50 pounds pet foods.
          Two pounds table salt.
          10 pounds dried pasta.
          Case of canned fruits.

          You’ll have some change left over, save it for the next round. You can supplement your purchases by stocking up on cooking spices during your regular shopping trips, until you have enough to last for a year.

          If you live in a dry climate and have the space to put them, get additional water storage. The ones I use cost about $6 each, and hold six gallons.

          Food and water come first, then build on that gradually, and eventually consider a defensive shotgun or carbine.

          • Ferfal has a post up about “kibble for humans”. Basically 50% rice/wheat/corn, (I recommend grits), 30% bean flour, 10% oil. 10% sugar. Salt to taste. Boil to a mush. You’d get sick of it in a while, but it’ll keep you going for a very long time.

            Why grits? The alkali treatment releases the niacin, so you don’t get pellagra.

        • @ Southside..barbque sauce and ten more cats.

          • Dave in Idaho;
            Damn, that is good stuff. Thank you!

          • Read that one out loud, blondie and I laughed pretty hard….even the look alikes laughed at that Dave 🙂

        • go to budsgunshop( . )com

          look for the ruger 10-22 rifle 25 round clip.

          on sale today for $270.00

          put a remaining $100. on ammo an extra ammo clip , get a good solid pry bar, shovel, rambo knife and hand axe and the rest of money invested in a good flashlight, recharge batteries, solar battery charger, tarps, solar blankets and long term store dry food. rice, oats, beans, lentils, beef bullion cubes, cooking oil, etc etc. water filter – like life-straw and coffee filters. 5 gallon buckets, fishing line and hooks for fish lines and small animal traps.

          learn to build a rocket stove.

          oh and a good dark color golf umbrella.

          gotta have a umbrella.

          that’s what i’d do.


          • Southside,this is a good food start,and good for you for including your pets(family)in your preps, : ,tis bland but will get you through,as for 4 could cut in half and in theory have enuff for 2 years alone and a bunch for the kitties,think basic med kit and defense,good luck with your start!

        • Good thing about cats is they will survive longer then all of us. If we had there hunting skills we wouldn’t need to prep

      21. Off topic. On drudge a brief article that Sheryl Atkinson followed up with CDC and asked how many persons that are following for potential Ebola. That number now stands at 1400+. Ms Atkinson was told the CDC would not be publishing those numbers on the website. Flu is also moving rapidly. Stay healthy and check out this little recipe…

        Pineapple Cough Recipe

        Author: Drew Canole
        1 cup of fresh pineapple juice
        ¼ cup of fresh lemon juice
        1 piece of ginger (about 3 inches)
        1 Tbsp raw honey
        ½ tsp cayenne pepper
        Combine all ingredients
        Take ¼ cup, 2-3 x/day and repeat recipe daily until cough is gone
        – See more at: ://

        • @Nopittypartyhere….can this be kept in the fridge for any length of time? sounds good, and will make up a batch tomorrow. Thanx for sharing!

          Would like to take this opportunity to wish everyone here on the site…..also Mac, Tess&Family….and Daisy and girls the BEST Christmas ever!!

          Take care, CC

      22. There is no way to make your house bullet proof. armor piercing rounds like the 7.62X54R 30-06 308.
        also with tracers hitting some of the wood in the frame/roof you will get a fire.
        It is better to set up snipers located in area to stop a hoard of Zombies/Leaches, and if you are backed up into your house you need to lay down more fire power and rounds down range that they want to go up against.
        100 yards 22’s will make you think twice about coming any closer. 75 to 50 yards 00 buck will do the trick.

        • Sgt. Dale, I routinely use the 100 yard bay at our local range with my 10/22, but there is a guy there who can empty a 25-round magazine on his scoped Ruger 10/22 and gets ’em all in about a six-inch circle at 200 yards.

          He says he can accurately shoot it out to 500 yards. Our range runs only 200 yards, but I believe him.

          I don’t know what the .22LR punch is at 200 yards, but it’s got to hurt.

          • Seen a lot scopes out there for the 10/22

            any recommendations for a decent scope not over priced…

            that’s not more than the price of the Ruger itself..?



            • Don’t need an expensive scope for a rimfire. My favorite 10/22 came with a BSA 6x-18x on it, it’s quite good for 100 and 200 yard target work. Another has a 4x Redfield, good enough for plinking. The guy mentioned above has a Leupold centerfire scope on his, for that 500 yard stuff. He took it from a rifle he was selling, so the price was right.

              Depending on your intended use, you can get a simple 3x-9x scope for under $75, or spend $100 and up.

              Do not get a Barska. Bushnell, Tasco, BSA, are all good inexpensive rimfire scopes. You can probably find one at a gun show for a good discount from retail.

            • Possee
              Nikon make a great scope with Bullet Drop Comp on it. Around 175.00 or less.
              I have them on my Sniper rifle and I can shoot out to 600 yards. The problem is I have to use the national
              guard range to shot that far. I have my 308 set at 100 yards and it is to be good out to 600 yards. I don’t shoot that well out to 4oo yards is my max. after that It aint to good. My 300 Win Mag is set at 200 yards and it will shot to 700 yards This guy I can make it count out to 500 yards+. I use Nikon Scopes on them.

            • I love these guys who think a 10/22 is the magic rifle.

              Once you’ve spent $1000 in upgrades, and another $500 trying out ammo to see what it likes, they can be 1MOA rifles at 100 yards.

              Why not just buy a Kimber or an Anschutz and go shooting?

              Scopes intended for .22s have the objective set for 50 yards. At 100 the parallax will make it hard to hit a grapefruit. At 500 you’d have so much that the aiming uncertainty would be a couple of feet. Any scope you buy MUST have an adjustable objective, and I don’t know of any that are cheap and good.

              .22 is combat accurate to 500 yards IF there is no wind at all, or you are one hell of a wind doper. Assuming the rifle is zeroed at 100 yards, drop at 500 is 30 FEET. 10 MPH cross wind the hold-off is just over 4 feet. If the crosswind is variable between rifle and target the windage uncertainty is in feet. If the wind is not a 9 o’clock or 3 o’clock the drop changes as well as the windage. Remaining energy is 67 ft-lbs. Velocity 800 fps. Might be an annoyance to a man in a t-shirt and jockey shorts. Jeans or a light jacket would prevent penetration.

              Every shooter has to try a 10/22 at some point in his life. Sold mine a couple years ago to a coon hunter. Knocking coons out of trees at 30-40 feet….it’ll work for that.

            • Redfield are putting out some great scopes for the money. They are made by Leupold.

          • don’t matter what you are shooting as long as you are accurate. if someone dings me in the arm with a 22 i will be thinking about something else than killing you!!!!

            • Three or four semi-auto .22s as part of your community defense is not going to be a bad idea, if you have young teens available and not enough centerfire stuff to go around.

              Two or three hundred .22 rounds in a minute, good aimed fire, is going to make a foe duck and cover, pull his own shots, lose blood, cause pain, and good hits in joints, veins and arteries, or heads and necks is going to reduce the effectiveness of the enemy individual and give good help to the centerfire shooters on your team.

              Old Coach says energy at long range is 67 foot-pounds, I don’t doubt it. Take a 12 1/2 pound weight, raise it 5 feet, and drop it on your ankle, knee, elbow. You will not use that joint for some time.

            • A lot of people in the Crimean revolution were wounded by snipers. A lot of those snipers were ex-Russian military. The wounded would have been dead if they chose.

              The Vietcong used to try to wound soldiers because it takes more people to care for a wounded than a dead person.

              When peace returns and the fighting is over, anyone that leaves a trail of dead people could find themselves facing calls for justice. If the same person left a trail of wounded, they won’t be hunted or punished to the same extreme.

              Not talking about a trying to wound people in a firefight for your life, talking about a sniper protecting a distant outer perimeter.

              Rings of security are best. The response for trespassers entering outer rings needs to send clear messages, appropriate to convince them not to return.

              I hear a lot of tough talk, from some preppers, but people that turn into marauders or serial killers will likely find prison after they endure to survive.

        • Sarge,I can promise anyone that at 300 yards my .22 will make them think twice…thats if they get the chance to rethink it…cant imagine anyone taking that chance…but then I am above average in my marksmanship… 🙂 REB

          • I’d love to see that

            • Well BJ if you were here Id show you 🙂 …I have a 330 yard cut section I shoot in regular like…I shoot at a milk-jug out in the 250 yard area and hit it good and solid with the .22 9 times out of ten…I kill deer with one at good ranges on a regular basis…so add another 50 yards and Im still bettin I can put a man down…no brag,simple fact…my point previously is simply to get folks to drop their pre-concieved notions and think…a .22 is a effective tool for hunting and if need be itll send an enemy to hell quite effectively,without excess noise and weight,Im not taking on any military or marrauders with any gun if I can avoid it,…not saying it should be anyones main combat round just saying its an effective tool in the right hands… thanks! REB

              • Thanks for that. I know it can do a man damage, I’ve been shot twice in life, once an accident and once was by a street thug. The accident was a .22 hollow point and did a lot of damage to the arm.

                I’d love to hit spot on at 250 with a .22

        • Sgt

          Any incursion..though highly unlikely..will be met by superior marksman ship, tactical maneuvering,et al..


          Surrounding oneself with highly trained experts in the field of combat..
          and one will rest peacefully every day and night..

          Always accompany those superior to yourself in the profession you choose..and you will become professional as well..


      23. Sgt, They will sit in wait, till you go out to get the mail. lol…

        • Like they’ll be delivering mail…right.

      24. Are you real, hardening a Mobil home, good god, just 20.000 dollars of cement and labor. I own your book, and thought you were full of shit when I purchased it. You have just confirmed my initial observation.

        I actually think you beleove the shit you shovel.

        Give these US citizens a. Break, if they had 20.000 or even 10.000 do you think they would use it to harden their Mobil home. What a tard.


      25. Very good ideas because I have been considering how to improve my sites security too. For the naysayers I think the nomadic plan has serious limitations. History shows that the nomadic existence is pretty arduous and the idea of being a stranger everywhere you go doesn’t seem like a good long term plan after a collapse. Strangers will be suspect by everyone. Also you don’t have to make a fortress if you aren’t inside or close to urban centers. Staying in place with the knowledge that in a few circumstances you might have to temporarily leave seems more probable. I believe the key is OPSEC. Keeping your mouth shut and living a simple low profile life makes for a less attractive target. I like the comment about doubling back behind possible looters/marauders. Take out a few stragglers will be a huge psychological deterent. That’s why suppressors are high on my list right now.

      26. Yep I have a 7.62×54 and the metal jacket will penetrate even 1/2 inch steel.

      27. So nearly everyone here is expecting a hail of gunfire aimed at their residence sometime soon..


        And just who is committing this?

        The local pd..or the state police..sheriffs..feds.u.n.

        Get a grip on one is coming for you anytime soon..except maybe some drug induced crazy looking for a quick buck for his fix..and even that would be an easy target for most of us here..

        Relax..breathe deep..stay focused..

        Paranoia will eat you alive…be alert and confident..


        Enjoy the day


        • Who? When SHTF and there isnt any food. someone who you know that has hungry children will try and take from you. No one except you stated sometime soon. This is a prep site. Its prepping for an event that we actually hope never happens.

      28. Two more cops shot after yesterday’s brutal execution in NY.

        One in St. Louis

        One in Tarpon Springs, Florida


        There are those who are encouraging violence.

        Be safe.

        • Yes, KY Mom, the ones encouraging violence such are the ones that will benefit from it. Obola, Holder, Sharpton, CNN, NBC, NY Times, NYPD, LAPD, etc…

        • I see the media ommited the fact that the Florida one was done by a Illegal….probably swam in recently. Hope he “suicides” out too. That cop had five kids.

        • judgment is paramount in shtf. but i will ere on the side of caution. if they are not polite, they are dead

      29. Events After the One-Hour Meltdown

        The vast majority of these individuals will have been just barely surviving in a situation where they were living hand-to-mouth on government welfare or the charity of the local community (unemployment checks, welfare checks, food stamps, food pantries, etc.). The instant they realize there will be no more government welfare or charity, then these individuals will have no hope for survival unless they are able to immediately acquire the food and other resources they need before it is all gone. Anyone who tries to stand in their way, or who tries to reason with them, will have a life expectancy of less than three-seconds.

        After the stores are all emptied, and there is nothing else to be stolen, the tempers of the individuals who were not successful in obtaining what they needed will turn violent. When that happens they will form into huge mobs without being asked to. And they will begin seeking vengeance on anyone or any establishment they have a grudge against. Banks, and government buildings, and courthouses will be burned to the ground. Anyone still inside those buildings will probably be shot or hanged. Then these mobs will start looking for the high-ranking officials that they believe are the source of their misery. But the vast majority of these high-ranking officials will have already disappeared to safe places unknown to anyone but themselves.

        If you have not previously thought about the above, or if you are not intellectually prepared to deal with it, then the chances are not very good for your long-term survival.

        If you have been waiting to buy a really critical item for your family’s long-term self-sufficiency because you thought you could buy it at the very beginning of a slow gradual breakdown of society, then it will no longer be available. Your family will have to try to survive without that item, if that is possible. Since the vast majority of us have very limited financial resources it would be helpful if you could prioritize your purchases right now before it is too late.

        If the meltdown begins while you are away from home then your highest priority should be to collect the other members of your family and return home. Do not be tempted to participate in the looting. Regardless of what you think you might need, it would be foolish to risk your life and the lives of your family members at any store or business that is being looted. You should consider yourself “blessed” if you are successful at making it safely home with all your loved ones.

        In my opinion, after the meltdown begins it will take about 24-hours for the vast majority of the criminals and the looters to self-destruct to at least one-half of their original number. In fact, human greed will probably reduce their numbers by a lot more than 50%. The reason this will happen is because every criminal will want whatever the other criminal has in his or her possession and he or she will probably be willing to kill to get it. The criminals and looters that survive will be the more ruthless and savage members of our society and they will gradually form into small gangs for protection and for their own mutual survival. When that happens things will just continue to get worse.

        If you live close to the outside edge of a heavily populated area, and you can quickly and easily get onto a good road or interstate leading away from the danger area, and if you have a safe destination already planned, and if travel to that destination does not take you through another heavily populated area, then it may be possible for you to escape to your “retreat” if you act immediately and you do not hesitate.

        However, if you live inside a heavily populated area, or if you are a good distance from a safe exit road or interstate, or if you do not have a safe destination to travel to, then loading your family into your vehicle and trying to drive anywhere at this time would probably not be a very good idea. In this situation, when the meltdown begins your best chance for survival will probably be to wait out the worst part of the meltdown inside your home. You should also be prepared to defend your home and your family during this difficult transition period.

        I fully realize that the above suggestion goes against almost everyone’s recommended strategy of “getting out of Dodge” (G.O.O.D) at the last minute. You are an adult and you will need to make your own decision in this matter. But before you decide, perhaps you should thoughtfully consider your chances for long-term survival in each of the following two scenarios:
        1. Your family is trapped inside your vehicle in a traffic jam that is grid-locked and, although you don’t know it yet, the cars in front of you and behind you are not going to move one-inch for the next several years. You and your family members quickly become physically and emotionally fatigued by the long wait inside your vehicle. Everyone needs to use the bathroom. Nobody can get any real rest. And as you watch one horror story after another unfold outside the windows of your vehicle you become terrified that you will not live to see another day. You are trapped inside your vehicle many, many miles from your home and travel in any direction by foot or by bicycle at this time would be suicidal.
        2. Your family is temporarily trapped inside your home with whatever resources you have in your home. You can still use the bathroom in the privacy of your own home. You can still eat and drink in safety. Each member of your family can sleep in his or her own bed while one or more members of your family remains awake and on guard duty. On some future date, after your family has eaten a good meal and everyone is completely rested and mentally and physically alert, then perhaps on a dark rainy night your family will be able to escape by riding bicycles or by walking out of the danger zone to some safe remote place where you already have supplies pre-positioned and waiting for you.
        In my opinion, neither of the above two scenarios is a pleasant one to think about. But if I had to choose between them I would select the second option.
        Thanks Grandpappy

        This and the one hour-melt down were e-mailed to me and I’m just passing them on. Food for thought!

        MTCFMF!!//RIP America.

      30. Kula I see the POTUS is in your AO enjoy the holidays. (lol)

        MTCFMF!!//RIP America.

      31. the marauders will not be thinking clearly, you will!!!

      32. Smokey,thanks for the 411. Dan in Idaho,I just might lol

      33. Back in the Boer war the British built small block houses out on the veldt using corrigated iron with 2 ft of gravel between the iron sheets. The boers were using 8mm mausers so the Brits felt two feet of gravel was needed to stop that bullet. 308 is common but so is 30-06 as are magnum rounds. the police commonly use 458 magnum rounds placed one ft appart to take out shooters in buildings. As for the safe room under the back poarch you need two ways out or it becomes a trap if they burn the trailer like raiding Apaches. You need to know the limits of your home for defense and to accept them clearly. Wishful thinking or blinding yourself to reality will get you killed in the real world. A mobile home is a band aid concept to treating the problem. You need a Tarawa Japanese block house to have some chance of survival

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