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Care to do the maths?, Take away the gas, leccy and coal.............................
20 June 2013, 22:15,
RE: Care to do the maths?, Take away the gas, leccy and coal..........
Couldn't agree more guys!

Definitely got the feeling of too much to do, no time to do it (and indeed not enough funds either!), but also a feeling of running out of time before the SHTF! Sad

Seems like a common feeling on here! Big Grin
20 June 2013, 22:19, (This post was last modified: 20 June 2013, 22:27 by NorthernRaider.)
RE: Care to do the maths?, Take away the gas, leccy and coal
But you are thinking and reacting which is going to give you a huge advantage over your neighbours, Talking about disability a chap out here managed to persuade the local council that his disability was compounded by living in the town, so they shifted him out to a bungalow just round the corner from me ??? Food for thought?

If you currently cannot get a chimney and wood stove etc, consider getting a portable calor fire and a couple of the orange bottles of calor gas ?? DONT FORGET ADEQUATE VENTILATION

And yes I'm getting a bad feeling esp when I put together stories about the Met Office and govt having emrgency meetings about our weather, add that to the stories and how we MUST now plant GM crops, and generated energy shortfalls, food prices likely to go up by 30 % and a sudden interest by the govt in getting shale gas in production ASAP.ALL in the last week !!!! I dont trust those buggers.

The thing I notice most that is changing in prepper circles is the type of people coming into the community. Less and less young bucks with a bushcraft plan responding to threats from the EU and terrorism, and more and more family folks with a homestead mentality who can see the whole social infrastructure inravelling before their eyes.

EG why is the demand for allotments going through the roof
Why is the sale of wood stoves also going beserk
Why are more and more professionals and middle classes giving up their wine bars, theatres and prestige car badges for homesteads, smallholdings and other self sufficient dwellings.
Why are their ever more TV shows about moving to the country and the house always has to have a wood burner, running water etc and space to keep critters?
House prices in many rural areas now rising at £800 to a £1000 a months at the moment??
Not so long ago the charity trying to rehome battery chooks had thousands on their hands, now in many areas there is a waiting list.
Why is their a shortage of cut n dried firewood in some areas.

Just join the dots and make up your own minds folks.
Preppers willingly embrace the benefits of modern technology, but we aint daft enough to rely upon it.
20 June 2013, 22:40,
RE: Care to do the maths?
Can I ask why are you thinking of only wood, dont get me wrong wood is great, but wood alone doesnt burn very hot, it fires up good but produces a lot of ash that starts to cool down a fire,..and you use a hell of a lot

I think that the key to making saving here is to mix your fuels, I burn lots of logs, but I also mix it with coal, either lumps or cobbs, this keeps the ash to a lower content and the fire hotter, so you burn a lot less fuel, both logs and coal

If you mix your fuels, you can let your fire drop to a smolder and still hold in heat, if you only have logs, your fire will go out,... we could never keep our fire in all night by just burning logs, but we can easily by mixing the fuels
A major part of survival is invisibility.
20 June 2013, 23:20, (This post was last modified: 20 June 2013, 23:34 by Gizmo.)
RE: Care to do the maths?
I've been extending our Log Store but having read MaryN's post I think i might need to extend it some more. At the moment the burner is used as a backup to gas central heating and calor stoves so it is difficult to accurately estimate what amount we would use if the fire was the sole source for heat and cooking.

Apart from the storage issues there is also the collecting, cutting, and splitting of the wood. I think i might look into some form of mechanical splitter to help as it is hard work just cutting and splitting the amount I use now.

Am I right in thinking that normal "house coal" shouldn't be used in Multifuel burners ?

I just googled burning house coal in a multifuel stove and as usual came up with plenty of contradictory info, some places say it is fine to use and others say you shouldn't because of the high bitumen content, does anyone here burn it in their stove ?
20 June 2013, 23:42,
RE: Care to do the maths?
(20 June 2013, 23:20)Gizmo Wrote: Am I right in thinking that normal "house coal" shouldn't be used in Multifuel burners ?

Multi-fueled burners are just that,... multi-fueled burners, we use everything in ours wood, coal, coke and cobbs,..and sometimes peat blocks,... and that is the key to saving fuel, mix your fuel, it keeps the fire hotter with less fuel
A major part of survival is invisibility.
20 June 2013, 23:55,
RE: Care to do the maths?
At the moment i use a combination of wood and smokeless coal. I use the smokeless coal as I was warned off using house coal in the burner.

You've never had any problems with increased amount of deposits in the flue ?

I need to get the chimney swept so I might get a stock of house coal in afterwards and see if there is any difference, or if there is a difference is it enough to cause a problem.

Coal is certainly easier to store in large quantities than wood, but down here at least wood is easy and often free to get hold of whereas coal needs to be purchased
21 June 2013, 00:01,
The thinking behind the maths
I don't doubt your maths, NR - or anyone else's in this thread. I'm sure we've all underestimated our fuel needs, and it worries me a lot.

But I think the picture needn't be as black as we're painting. Your experience (and Mary N's in France) are probably based on living a 21st century lifestyle, and one of the biggest parts of prepping for me personally is changing the way I think about that.

Because the brutal truth is that we can't live a 21st century lifestyle in an 18th century world, and the true survivors will be those who adapt. If we go back even just to the 1960s we'll find it was normal for people to share baths in order to save the boiler fuel. People didn't wash every single garment after one day's wear. People in big houses often only had a fire in ONE room. The way we use fuel now would seem incredibly wasteful to those people - and they'd be right.

Maybe that sounds defeatist, to give up today's luxuries so easily, but many of them are things we can well do without. Yes, we must wash our clothes when they're uncomfortable or smelly or when there's a threat to personal hygiene, but we don't need to do it because there's a dirty mark we don't want the neighbours to see. Having a communal 'living room' seems intolerable in a family where everyone wants to watch their own televisions or play on their own computers, but when there's no TV or computers they're much more likely to be sitting down together playing cards - or knitting or preparing food or mending traps or any other job essential for survival.

People lived very happily that way. When it was cold, they put on another jumper. When they needed a wash and it wasn't 'bath night', they did a 'blanket bath' with no more than a mug of warm water. We can do these things too.

We can do more - and learn from people even further back in history. Before the 18th century, for instance, people insulated their houses the way we now insulate our lofts - they hung carpets and tapestries on the walls. A few blackout drapes and a staple-gun, and we can do the same thing.

They were more economical with their fires too. Before the liberation of the striking match, households had just the one central fire (in the kitchen) and this one fire fed all the others. If you wanted light, you'd light one candle from the central fire and use that one to light the rest. If you wanted heat, you took burning coal or wood from the central fire, stuck it in a metal bucket, and carried it to lay a new fire somewhere else - without the need for kindling. When you wanted warm water, you put the bowl under the grate of the fire you were already using for cooking and heated your water at the same time.

I doubt any of this is new to anyone, but I think all I'm saying is that we needn't despair. Obviously NR is right, and we should all stockpile as much as we can, but I do think we'll adapt better than we think. Especially Grumpy Grandpa, and all the other older folk who remember a world before the casually disposable one we live in now.
21 June 2013, 00:11,
RE: Care to do the maths?,
Now don't you go thinking you can get away with calling me 'older folk' just because I'm 660 years of age, young lady... Big Grin

21 June 2013, 00:39,
RE: Care to do the maths?
I think Little Lou is dead on, its a good post.

This was how I was brought up,..less the mention of `before the 18th century`,.. and it was no real problem,.. we will just re-live, and re-learn what many of our families took for granted
A major part of survival is invisibility.
21 June 2013, 07:49,
RE: Care to do the maths?
(21 June 2013, 00:39)Highlander Wrote: I think Little Lou is dead on, its a good post.

This was how I was brought up,..less the mention of `before the 18th century`,.. and it was no real problem,.. we will just re-live, and re-learn what many of our families took for granted

Agreed. The problem though is that many people live in dwellings not currently suited to that lifestyle. Having said that, a modern house with combi-boiler, etc, is likely to be better insulated than your average 18th or 19th century home.

I think my advice to people in such houses would be to start thinking about practical modifications, as has been discussed on here before. It will cost money, but not as much as moving. My first priority would be to introduce solid fuel to replace or supplement the gas boiler, then to move away from the "combi" principle and reintroduce stored hot water.

If renting, and such modifications are not possible, I'd be thinking about a portable calor heater and cooker, with spare cylinders to insulate me from gas shortages, and organising the household around a warm living area, with the rest of the house unheated.

Obviously, one can wait until TSHTF before making these lifestyle changes but, if one is convinced that things can't go on like this indefinitely, why not start making the transition now? When we put our Rayburn in last year, it was quite a shock having to tend it, clear it out, prepare the wood, carry it in, do extra cleaning in the house, etc, compared to the nice, simple oil boiler we had before. But we,ve now got into the rhythm and it's normal. It's one less transition to have to make when TS really does HTF.
Find a resilient place and way to live, then sit back and watch a momentous period in history unfold.

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