urban PSK?

Posted by: Anonymous

urban PSK? - 03/27/02 08:46 PM

<blockquote><font size=1>In reply to:</font><hr><p>In a related (I hope) vein - we seem to be somewhat complacent about urban situations - not trying to be Chicken Little or alarmist, but is there a significant role for a PSK in urban settings? Does a PSK for the unskilled or unpracticed carried in an urban situation ("daily carry") need different crib sheets than a wilderness PSK or a general purpose PSK?<p><hr></blockquote><p><br><br>The urban situations that may remove us from our routine are very different from the wilderness situations. This forum has not really had a decent discussion on these differences so, in an attempt to spur a discussion I wanted to list the characteristics of an urban emergency.<br><br>People are abundant.<br><br>Infrastructure is disrupted but not missing<br>-- there may be downed power lines to worry about<br>-- there is a greater risk of structure fires<br>-- there may be leaking gas<br>-- there may be leaking water<br>-- there may be roads that are usable<br>-- there may be supplies available<br>-- -- there may be price gouging<br>-- -- there may be bartering<br>-- -- there may be sharing<br><br>Law enforcement will be disrupted or more inadequate than usual<br>-- The abundant people may pose a threat<br>-- The community may be a protective resource<br><br>Some thoughts on gear:<br>In an urban setting primitive signalling devices such as mirrors and whistles. We can usually tap the nearest person on the shoulder. OTH, in an urban setting we may have more need of concealment, evasion and defense if the emergency is social in nature.<br><br>In an urban setting most uses of fire would be a bad idea. The increased fire threat posed by damaged structures and the increased attention that the fire will bring may both negative. OTH we may have access to community responses that supply all the food and water we need after a relatively short time and long before things return to normal.<br><br>In an urban situation you could certainly use a snare to catch pigeons, squirrels, cats or dogs and stay well fed but this behavior is frowned upon by the locals and most of the non-domesticated urban stock is of questionable edibility. You might be better off including some mainstay rations in the vehicle / briefcase / purse rather than a snare in the psk.<br><br>In the urban setting during anything short of a complete disruption of civilisation with no expectation of a return to normalcy, money is useful for just about every need. In the wilderness paper money is kindling and metal money is dead weight to carry. I wouldn't expect to use a credit card in either situation during an emergency due the effect on the communications required to process credit cards.<br><br>From the write-up on urban survival that Doug put together it seems that the defense from bipeds is the primary concern for urban survival so-far expressed. Short of keeping you "urban psk" in you holster and wallet, what does one really need in an urban setting during:<br><br>earthquake,<br>fire,<br>hurricane,<br>flood,<br>industrial chemical spill,<br>terrorist caused disruption of the infrastructure.
Posted by: Schwert

Re: urban PSK? - 03/27/02 10:38 PM

Urban needs.<br><br>My preparations center around 3 main areas of concern (in order).<br><br>Earthquake or other natural disaster like Volcanic eruption, glacial melt, tsunami.<br>Terror<br>Civil Unrest<br><br>I live in Seattle. In the last 18 months We had a 6.8 deep Earthquake, WTO riots, MardiGras street violence resulting in one death, and recent Bomb threats against my worksite.<br><br>My planning centers around my responses to these primary needs. Here is my list of needs as I see them:<br><br>PrePlanning for earthquake awareness at home and work.<br>Evacuation routes and plans.<br>Basic medical attention for myself and others.<br>Shelter after building evacuation.<br>Communication with my wife.<br>Communication with my neighbors and contact persons.<br>Transportation options to my wife and then home, including known alternative bus and car routes to avoid problems with bridges, riots etc.<br><br>Once these are under control, I turn to making my immediate environment hospitable and safe for the duration of the need. This includes securing longer term shelter, water, fire if appropriate, etc.<br><br>My PSK (the actual pocket box) is similar to Doug's etc., but my Urban PSK concept includes the clothing and shoes I select EVERY day. The coat I have at my desk EVERY day even if it is nice out. The On-Body "Don't Leave Home Without" stuff in my vest. The leather gloves tucked in my belt beside the Leatherman and SureFire. The ID badge around my neck with a Fox 40 beside it. The Daily Carry Bag which includes communication options (Ham radio, Shortwave radio, batteries), and Shelter (Basha sheet, paracord, poncho, rainshell, firemaking tools and water purification options including a cook pot and 750mL of water). My under-my-desk items including a 3' prybar, hardhat, and water.<br><br>My evaluation of risk changed after Sept 11, but the basics of my thought processes to respond to an Urban emergency did not have to undergo major changes. Study of this site has been very helpful in planning and preparing with basic supplies that will make responding to an Urban or Wilderness emergency much easier.<br><br>Randy<br>
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: urban PSK? - 03/27/02 11:23 PM

miniMe,<br><br>Sorry for the length of this post.<br><br>I’d be very interested in such a discussion. We’ve skirted around it a couple of times, and I think I’ve even made some of the points that you just did. I agree wholeheartedly on the value of money in the urban PSK (UPSK?), and have said so once or twice. I also agree on the apparent limitations, and the jarring change in emphasis of the urban section of this site relative to the rest of it- but I got the distinct impression that it was not open to discussion. I also agree with your remarks on fire.<br><br>My own perspective is that of a commuter, and hence, for me, the emphasis is staying alive in the short term, and getting out of the city, possibly on foot.<br><br>Even if I was a resident of the city, I wouldn’t worry much about snares and traps. If food shipments were cut off to a major city for more than a week, you’d be competing with literally millions of other people for anything edible. I certainly don’t have snares in my UPSK. I do have water purification tablets, but they don’t take up much room in that tiny 20-tablet flask. I also carry a whistle- think “trapped in the rubble” as opposed to “lost in the woods”.<br><br>Here are some subjects that might provide fodder for discussion:<br><br>The fact that most urban emergencies tend to be amazingly localized. A few blocks away from where it seems like the end of the world, shopkeepers are open for business as usual.<br><br>The urban imperative to "bug out" (leave the trouble area quickly) vs. the wilderness strategy of "stay put". The enormous risk of staying to watch the drama unfold. The almost-unique urban need to be able to recognize a potentially life-threatening situation EARLY and react quickly and positively, even if it makes you look foolish 95 percent of the time. How many in the WTC on 9/11 didn't take the situation seriously enough soon enough- didn't think the problem could possibly reach them, didn't think trouble in one tower made it worth leaving the other, didn't think the buildings could possibly collapse- I have seen people work at their desks through fire alarms and evacuations, simply because they had work to finish and there had been too many false alarms recently.<br><br>The value of battery-powered (hand-crank?) radios, and of having one (or maybe even a TV) in your office, to know what's happening and WHERE even if the power goes out, and one that can be carried for evacuation. This came to mind again while watching the recent special on the fire departments at the WTC during 9/11. They didn’t know about the second plane or the first tower collapse until after. They said again and again that people watching TV from home knew more about what was going on than people on the site. How many times, in how many emergencies, have we heard that? Is there any excuse for it, in this day and age?<br><br>Arguably the most potentially valuable survival resource of all in an urban situation, something that if used freely and intelligently can accomplish seeming miracles, is something that's completely useless in the wilderness: cash. <br><br>The value (and limits) of using cell phones in an emergency, and possible alternatives.<br><br>The possible survival value of a phone calling card (I don’t use them- wouldn’t the numbers be enough?)<br><br>The value of thinking in 3 dimensions in an urban setting.. that potential threats, resources, or escapes can be either above or below ground level.<br><br>The value of having road maps, and of learning possible exit routes beforehand, for both vehicle and foot.<br><br>The potential value of taxicabs in an emergency situation.<br><br>The high relative value of information; names and phone numbers, emergency numbers, evacuation routes, nearest hospital, nearest police station, nearest ATM, taxi companies, nearest seller of bottled water, nearest seller of warm clothing.<br><br>The value of taking the stairs and knowing them well. Always in an emergency, but also routinely if feasible.<br><br>The value of having access to some type of athletic shoes if you must wear dress shoes.<br><br>The value of a basic compass in staying oriented in unfamiliar areas of a city, where line of sight is usually limited.<br><br>The value of flashlights in "urban" situations as opposed to wilderness.<br><br>The unique challenges of carrying useful survival gear if you must face metal detectors and x-ray machines.<br><br>The fact that, unlike the wilderness, potential fire tinder and water containers (if not exactly sanitary) are everywhere. The relatively (compared to wilderness) low utility of fire.<br><br>The fact that you might still have to deal with wind, weather and exposure, but unlike wilderness situations, you're much less likely to be dressed properly for it.<br><br>The fact that there's no place on earth where you're more likely to desperately need a weapon, nor anyplace where the law is more determined to keep you from having one.<br>
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: urban PSK? - 03/27/02 11:45 PM

P.S.- how about the HUGE potential value of NEVER letting your vehicle's fuel tank get low? I was almost caught by this once- the situation could have been a lot worse on just chance- but I'm still not very good about filling up more often.
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: urban PSK? - 03/27/02 11:55 PM

One of the things I've noticed with people talking about UPSKs is that thier thinking is focused on the large scale. Terrorism, riots, earthquakes (the whistle would be good here, if you are in rubble), etc. Not the little things, like loosing your keys, having your car stolen/vandelised, flat tire, or your pocket picked- these are statistically much more likely to happen. <br><br>While a flat tire might not seem like a crisis, it can be. Trust me, I had one on the way to a job interview once.<br><br>For UPSK and it's cheatsheet, I'd reccomend some of these items:<br>-bus/subway tokens and a list of the stops (or better, a route map)<br>-change for the phone or a phone card, and a list of numbers (with the phone card, just right down the dialin number and the access code, smaller that way. BTW, include the number for your personal MD, insurance egents w/ the numbers and your lawyer, if you have one on retainer)<br>-spare keys<br>-enough cash for a cab ride and/or a burger (if you need to call a friend for a ride, you can get hypothermic waiting outside. Reserants are open at odd hours, and for ladies, they are public, but the management gets funny if you don't order anything)<br>-basic meds, especially anything improtant, but a pepto-bismal/immodeum, a non-drowsy allergy/cold med, and an anelgesic at a minimum<br>-screws for glasses and the right driver (if you have a PST of one type or another, you can use the smallest driver in that)<br>-mirror (something in the eye!)<br>-band aids (keep crude out of the wound)<br>-pair of nitrile gloves (stronger than latex and a longer shelf life)<br>-cotten swab<br>-if in a city where English might not be as common as you think, a small phrase list (make it phonetic, with the basics- shouldn't need more than 10-15 lines)<br>-a pencil stub and paper<br>-spare debit/ATM card and photo ID (even if it is old)<br><br>As always, this figures you are carrying a pocket tool/SAK, a light, and have medical dog tags/medical alert if needed. If you want more, carry you normal PSK in the other pocket of your jacket. <br><br>Most of this, other than the spare debit card and the gloves, should fit into a stripped mini-altoid tin, with the phrase list/bus scedule/phone list laminated and hot-glued to the outside. Slip the card into your PSK, and all you need to find a home for is the gloves. If you carry a pocket mask for CPR, you've got that piece down.<br><br>So, that means a PSK, a mini-tin UPSK, your EDC items in your pockets, and maybe a PMK on your person. In you bag or brief case, cell phone (if you want), a water bottle, spare glases if you need them, a dust mask, a map or two, and the PMK if you don't carry it on you. Not much, but if you can dress right and don't panic, you can deal with any minor medical issue, keep someone alive until the ambulance shows, get home if you are suddenly carless, communicate to those around you and on the other side of the world, and do all the stuff we normally do with a PSK on top of it. <br><br>Not bad for less than two pounds of stuff that can be worn with a suit without showing.
Posted by: RayW

Re: urban PSK? - 03/28/02 12:32 AM

As Cyber pointed out even a flat tire can be a crisis. Usually the crisis is that unless it has been checked lately the spare tire has less air in it that the flat. Check the spare tire at least once a year.
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: urban PSK? - 03/28/02 01:59 AM

With respect, I'm not sure I agree with all your points.<br><br>I started down that path myself, but I decided that while there are a lot of "important" things to have available during the day, I still think it's better to not dilute the concept of the urban PSK. It really is intended for life-threatening situations, and it just grows out of control if you start adding convenience items- and you raid it too often.<br><br>Not that they're not important- as you point out with the tire example, a job can depend on such things. I had a boss once who kept an entire spare suit, shirt and tie hanging behind his office door. I have a container I keep in my office desk drawer that has a sewing kit, nail clippers, disposable razor, safety pins, pain pills, disposable cutlery, napkins, folding comb/brush, duct tape, tweezers, and that sort of thing... but I wouldn't consider grabbing it if the building shudders.
Posted by: AyersTG

Re: urban PSK? - 03/28/02 03:09 AM

Hehehe - all the discussion so far greatly fascinates me and has all sorts of gears turning in my head. This is great - new viewpoints, new thoughts, new problems, new solutions - I'm learning stuff.<br><br>Chris, Doug - do we need to cart this thread off to the Campfire Forum, or is it OK to leave it here? I vote for leaving it here, but I'll support your decision either way.<br><br>I disqualify myself from making informed contributions - I live close enough to my office that most of this discussion is academic to me, and I jumped horses a year ago to something that makes business travel strictly on my terms (rare). BUT - I have family members who share many of the environmental concerns being voiced here, and I hope to learn enough to pass on to them.<br><br>Do any of us who work (or perhaps also live in) "big" urban areas keep a big walking stick at work? Or perhaps commute with a smaller "walking aid"?<br><br>Tom
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: urban PSK? - 03/28/02 03:55 AM

Well, I'm not sure that I'd consider any item that I listed there as a convience item. I'm very curious to find out which ones you would consider to be such. There are/were those here who considered matches a convience item.<br><br>In explination, not knowing which items you are speaking of, and in the order I mentioned them:<br><br>-Bus/subway tokens and map: If I have my own vehicle, I probaly won't know where most of the stops for mass transit are, except for those I might use when driving is a hassle. Being suddenly without vehicle can be a real emergency, or just a major pain, just like a busted compass. (Most of us can find north without a compass, but most of us pack one in our PSKs.)<br>-phone money and numbers: A signalling device, to put it bluntly. The number list is no different than having a frequency list if you have a two-way in a plane or on a boat<br>-Spare keys, for the obvious. Yes, you can get a locksmith, just like you can make a fishline from fine roots, and hook from thorns.<br>-Cash. For a UPSK, I do and will argue that cash is the equivelent of fire starters in a PSK.<br>-The meds are as much a luxury here as they are in any survival kit. I admit that. Most of the time. A bad belly or an allergic reaction can screw you as badly as a busted foot. Not leathal, but enough to put you in worse situations that you already are.<br>-Glasses screws. Without my glasses, I can't find my feet without feeling for them, so this is a critical item for me.<br>-band-aids: the crud in the woods is cleaner, in my opinion.<br>-gloves: ditto. Humans are an infectious substance, plain and simple. <br>-mirror & swab: here, you have the room, so I use it for these. Eye contamination and injury resulting from the contaminate were one of the most common problems at either of the Trade Center attacks, Oklahoma City, the Kobar Towers, and various and sundry building collapses and fires not started by wackos.<br>-Phrase list: another signalling device. It's like lighting three fires- one is just a fire. Someone speaking in a languageyou can't understand is just someone you can't understand. They could be wishing you good luck on this holiest of days, or telling you your backpack is on fire. :)<br>-Debit/ATM card: again, cash. This is a second form of it.<br>-ID: If there is ever a massive, multitarget attack in America, odds are that anyone who gets routed into a "refugee center" or whatever they call it will need to be able to show ID to leave. And if there is a curfew, it will be doubly important to be able to show a real ID that says you are you who you say you are, and yes, you really do live just down the block. If you can do that, the gentlemen with automatic weapons might let you go, rather than arresting you.<br><br>All emergencies can become life or death. We carry and build our kits to keep them from becoming so. Use it right, and keep your head, and a forced march through the 9 pits of hell just seem like a minor inconvience. :)<br><br>
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: urban PSK? - 03/28/02 12:40 PM

Sorry, didn’t mean to offend- I think that we actually agree on a lot of points… but… Pepto Bismal? :-)<br><br>From your message:<br><br>“the little things, like loosing your keys, having your car stolen/vandelised, flat tire, or your pocket picked- these are statistically much more likely to happen… While a flat tire might not seem like a crisis, it can be. Trust me, I had one on the way to a job interview once.”<br><br>“basic meds, especially anything improtant, but a pepto-bismal/immodeum, a non-drowsy allergy/cold med, and an anelgesic at a minimum”<br><br>You have to admit that this set more of a “coping with life in the city” tone, rather than “avoiding immanent death in the city”. <br><br>No offense, but I’m not currently considering a bottle of Pepto-Bismal for my UPSK, no matter how useful it might be in the normal course of things. Partly that’s just me- I’m not oriented toward first-aid, and as I’ve said of the wilderness kits, I tend to be skeptical of how essential any med supplies that can fit in a PSK and are legal to carry can be. Also, the potential hassle of carrying prescription medicines out of a prescription vial in the city is pretty daunting.<br><br>I tend to draw a very firm mental line between “important” in a career/avoiding hassles sense, and “important” in a life-or-death sense.. especially since it was driven home by that incident I mentioned where co-workers refused to heed a fire alarm because of an impending deadline.<br><br>One of my uncles taught me about the “Malay monkey trap”. It may be apocryphal (not qualified to say), but I consider it one of life’s great lessons.<br><br>As for items in your most recent message- well, yeah, the cotton swab and mirror aren’t in my kit, nor the gloves or band-aids.. my orientation again. As for the glasses screws, I have no argument as to it’s importance, but I opt for a very small pair of multi-fold reading glasses instead- a lot can happen to a pair other than a loose screw. I consider this so important that it’s about the second-largest item in my UPSK, and I don’t care. However, I recently saw some new folding designs that were even more compact.<br><br>No argument on the compass- I can find North much more easily in the woods than in the city. As a matter of fact, my “wilderness” PSK's carry button compasses, but I put a somewhat larger watchband/wristband compass in the “urban” PSK, on the principle that in the city I’m much more likely to be in a real hurry, with my hands occupied, while needing to check orientation on the move. Stopping and putting things down to dig something out of a pocket and get my bearings on a crowded sidewalk during an emergency doesn’t appeal to me.<br><br>Thanks for the clarification of the subway route maps. In the city I’m closest to, the “subway” maps are mostly useful for choosing trains, pretty much useless for finding stations from street level (they’re copied from the Paris Metro style). I agree, finding the station is more important- once you’re on the system, you can get oriented quickly. <br><br>Personally, I’d want more cash than you mention. My father was better at solving problems with money than I’ll ever be, but people (and cab drivers) will often come up with amazing ingenuity on your behalf for a $100 bill, offered courteously and with respect.<br><br>By far the most important (to me) item that’s in my kit that’s not on your list is the tiny FM radio with earphones. I consider that essential to my UPSK, and I plan to order one of Sir Clive Sinclair’s coin-sized FM radios soon to see if I can reduce the bulk further. I’ve been in the dark about what or where the problems were more than once, even with the news choppers hovering in sight (Rodney King riots, San Francisco, springs to mind).<br><br>I also have a Gerber LST lock-blade folder in mine. Usually it's a backup, but it fits in an Altoids tin, and I know of no place in the US where it would be illegal to carry, other than on an airliner.<br><br>Of course, you could argue that my P-38 can opener is a convenience item, and you may be right... but it’s so small, and so effective, that I would feel very silly trying to open cans with a knife instead.<br>
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: urban PSK? - 03/28/02 01:00 PM

I have a couple of walking sticks (as opposed to hiking staffs), one with a large, solid, very heavy brass knob. Many years ago, I even inlet a tiny rounded gem into the side to orient the wood grain by feel.<br><br>Unfortunately, I just feel too silly carrying one. Far from having a limp, I tend to bound up stairs and such, so it's pretty suspicious.. and without a limp, it's either a weapon or you're a Tom Wolfe wannabee. Since I don't dress for the latter role, and faking a limp is very tiring, that narrows it down pretty quickly... these days, they just sit in an umbrella stand by the front door.<br><br>When they were available, I even bought one of those collapsible umbrellas with what amounts to a foot-long ice pick in the shaft. I never carried it, and finally discarded it. The quality of the umbrella was very poor, the blade was difficult to draw quickly, and despite possible deterrent value, I had doubts about any real stopping power... and it would be just too difficult to justify. So many such things, in the final analysis, are mostly novelties.<br>
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: urban PSK? - 03/28/02 02:12 PM

For me a hiking staff (or walking stick in urban mode) is a virtual essential with numerous uses, one of which could be self defense. If I had to travel on foot in an urban area after the Big One, I would want my hiking staff as much as ever, and I would probably go for the stout converted tool handle model (shades of the quarter staffs of Robin Hood and Little John), mostly because it would be a superior whacker to the collapsible, light aluminum models. Should I get a matching cloak?<br><br>Be sure to speak softly if you carry one..
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: urban PSK? - 03/28/02 02:28 PM

*pictures putting a big pink bottle into a small silver tin* You're right, getting that to fit would involve a violation of the laws of physics. :)<br><br>Actually, I was thinking of PB tablets. I think you can get them in blister packs, but I know you can get Immodeum in blisters. Not for normal purposes, but sitting in a "public recovery point" with an active stomach bug, I'd pop a couple. For general purpose, there is some in my PMK, with a last ditch stash in my PSK. <br><br>As for the compass, it was mentioned as a comparasion. I actually don't bother with a button compass in my PSK, or in my UPSK when I put it together. <br><br>I haven't thought about seeing if I could get a pair of lenses fitted into a set of folding frames, that might be an idea, but since my UPSK is a supplimental, I try to stick to a containers like a mini-Altoids tin. <br><br>Don't worry, you didn't offend me. I was just pointing out my reasonings. If I was anything, it was annoyed at myself for having been unclear in the first place.<br><br>
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: urban PSK? - 03/28/02 03:14 PM

>>*pictures putting a big pink bottle into a small silver tin* You're right, getting that to fit would involve a violation of the laws of physics. smile <<<br><br>Oh, dear. Not only have I offended, but now we’re talking physical violation. :-)<br><br>>>As for the compass, it was mentioned as a comparasion. I actually don't bother with a button compass in my PSK, or in my UPSK when I put it together. <<<br><br>You surprise me there. Have you not gotten disoriented in the city? I have a small compass on a zipper pull of my shoulder bag, and I have often consulted it when getting off the subway at an unfamiliar station, sometimes just to choose the exit. A map is not much good if you don't know which way you're facing.<br><br>Some cities, of course, are laid out in grids, and I can see an argument for not needing a compass there- though checking a compass can still be faster than walking a half block to check road signs. Some cities, after the Old World fashion, “just grew”, and the organic qualities of road directions can be very confusing… and the worst, of course, are those that were “planned”, from the warlike dreams of Pierre L’Enfant to the post-modernist city planners trying to let several thousand people per square mile live in relative isolation. I use a digital compass in my vehicle as well.<br><br>Then there’s the fact that cab drivers in some areas like to take tourists on involuntary trips around the city to separate them from cash- a compass is one of the easier ways to detect that, in a strange city.<br><br>>>I haven't thought about seeing if I could get a pair of lenses fitted into a set of folding frames, that might be an idea, but since my UPSK is a supplimental, I try to stick to a containers like a mini-Altoids tin. <<<br><br>I don’t wear them for distance, just reading, so the drug-store variety do nicely for me. I decided that if it wasn’t in the container, I’d have to carry another spare pair elsewhere anyway, and it was much more likely to be missing when I really needed it.<br>
Posted by: Anonymous

Personal Disaster Experience ( Re: urban PSK? - 03/28/02 04:45 PM

Hello, All --<br><br> Urban survival is an interesting thread. So much depends on the scenario, and whether you can leave or must stay put. You may have reasons to stay close to home -- a home, a business, relatives, or whatever. Or you may have no choice in the matter. <br><br>I had to stay put. Forgive the length, but I hope it will be of interest.<br><br> I live in the US Virgin Islands, and experienced Hurricane Hugo in 1989. 214 mph + winds created what one insurance adjuster told me was "the worst devastation he'd ever seen on US soil." <br><br> My wife and I survived (biting our nails) in a reinforced concrete condo, even though the walls hummed like guitar strings. We kept the roof, lost all the glass and sliding doors -- instant "living room stew." After the storm, there wasn't a residential roof in sight; trees were stripped and lying all over the roads, even the grass was stripped off the earth. Needless to say, it posed some interesting survival challenges. Perhaps some will be instructive to others. I learned quite a bit.<br><br> All power and phone lines down -- no contact with friends and family. Roads blocked, airport closed. Radio and TV stations off the air due to antenna loss. Only (erroneous) AM radio news from far away. Local newspaper -- down for weeks. Cops, firemen, doctors and nurses, all dealing with their own personal problems at home. Groceries and gas stations closed for days. Help far away. Anarchy for most of a week. Looters, unfortunately.<br><br> A few lessons learned (in random order):<br>--No power means no lights, including streetlights (plenty of flashlights and batteries; wish we'd had long lasting LED's then.) A Photon in your pocket's good; a better light is needed for general use. I now like the Lightwave 2000 LED for non-pocket carry. I have several, and a box of AA alkalines.<br>--No gas stations operating unless they have generators (Keep your car full!) It's a madhouse at stations open on generator power, what with pedestrians carrying gas cans, cars lined up for fill ups. A spare jerry can is handy.<br>--If you have a tarp and rope, you can make a damaged dwelling habitable. But you have to have water (we use cisterns here in every house) and either a bucket or a backup generator to pump it out. Obviously heat may be needed (fortunately not here!) but I have no advice there.<br>--Ditto cooking; a gas stove is good, but you need a generator for electric. A camping stove makes good backup. Perishables are ruined in a day or two without emergency power for the fridge/freezer.<br>--Laundry (if you have the water) means a bucket. And you have plenty of yucky, dirty stuff, including rugs, curtains, and many, many towels. Forget the underwear and socks unless it's cold. Dirty clothes are just fine for doing more cleanup work the next day, and the day after that ad nauseum. Gardening can showers take only a pint or two of water.<br>--If you're going to get a generator, don't fool around with the $200 Coleman/Dayton at Kmart; repairmen are hard to find after a disaster, and generators only break when you're using them constantly. Spend the money for a quality Onan, Honda, Yamaha, etc. 4-6 KW will run the essentials (other than heat/AC). Electric start is good, and can recharge the battery while running. Keep spare plugs and filters. (And be sure to drain the carb/run dry when you store it -- carburetor gasoline residue is the main reason they won't start.) If you're really serious, and have the budget, get a permanently installed diesel (mine's an 11.5 KW Onan.) <br>--Corollary to above: if you're going to have a generator of any kind, spend a couple hundred bucks and install a manual transfer switch by the electrical panel. That shuts off the utility and connects your house to generator power (even if you can't run everything at once off a portable). If you don't use the isolator switch, you risk electrocuting utility repairmen down the street. If you don't power the house circuitry, you'll run out of extension cords and trip over the ones you have.<br>--First trip out, I tried to drive to my business to see if it was still there. Damaged, but standing, fortunately. Unfortunately, I had TWO flat tires due to extensive debris. Lesson: Make sure you carry at least two cans of "fix a flat" in your trunk. Even better, get a $5 tire plug kit and an air canister and learn how to fix 'em yourself.<br>--Corollary to above; 20-30% of cars were not usable due to damage or blockage. Do you have access to another?<br>--While pushing the car through mud going around a downed tree, I stepped right out of my shoe and onto sharp metal. Lesson: if medical care is remote for a while, keep good supplies, and a kit in the car. An infection can put you out of action, and there's plenty of opportunity for cuts and wounds after any disaster.<br>--Sadly, firearms. My wife and I both wore sidearms for a week. When I got to my place of business, I was able to rout the looters without having to shoot anyone. The NRA is right -- showing a gun is usually threat enough. Racking a pistol or shotgun slide is understood from movies as the universal command to halt what you're doing. I became the night security guard at my business, since there were no lights, cops, alarm companies, etc. It gets tiring doing security detail after all day cleanup efforts.<br>--Cash; who takes credit cards when the authorization phone lines are down? What ATM's work then either? Keep a few hundred bucks in small bills. Small gold coins would have a place, too, although I didn't need mine.<br>--Sharing: neighbors banded together to help each other. If you have neighbors, you'll need each other. For several days we had group cookouts to use frozen meat that was going to go bad. Then a food broker dropped off several cases of filet mignons because his freezer was down, too. Keep an extra propane cylinder for your gas grill. We cooked exclusively on ours for weeks. A side burner is nice to have for boiling.<br><br> I could go on and on about the experience: it took a week for airlifted Guardsmen and Marshals to restore order; 60 days for full utility power to be restored; ten weeks on phone service (other than cellular, which is quicker and easier to repair. Own a cell phone.). Admittedly an island location slows repair efforts, but I hear it was still a huge problem in Charleston SC, with far less destruction.<br><br> You DO adjust to changed circumstances, though. I was peeing in the dark for weeks after the power came back on because I'd quit hitting the switch after the first week of outage. It was strange hearing bird calls instead of generator noise. The first restaurant to open had a sign out front: "Today's special: Food!" Ice was something we hadn't seen in weeks until a hotel gave us a cooler full.<br><br> As discussed elsewhere, I'm attuned to a lot of these issues now. I have EDC kits, off road kits, several different medical kits, etc. But if you're going to have to stay put in a non-wilderness scenario, it's a different game. You probably won't need the snares and fish hooks and compass, but you will need tarps, rope, batteries, food and water. A firearm added peace of mind for me. <br><br> And, obviously, s*** happens often without warning. The useful exercise is to picture the above scenario where almost all the infrastructure of civilization disappears. What have you done to prepare for that?<br><br> It does happen in real life. Hopefully it won't happen to you -- but, hey; then why are we all part of this forum?<br><br> Regards -- Karl<br>
Posted by: Anonymous

Personal Disaster Experience ( Re: urban PSK? - 03/28/02 05:11 PM

Thanks for the story! This is just the sort of story that is needed to remind us all that the problems are real and that they are not really new (post 911). Your experience is the most valuable experience. Please share as much as you can with the rest of us who are trying to prepare without haveing actually gone through the challenges you faced. Doug also collects stories of survival and perhaps he would want to add a story section to the Urban survival pages or Urban survival stories to the story pages.<br><br>Thanks!<br><br>Brad
Posted by: Schwert

Re: urban PSK? - 03/28/02 07:10 PM

While I am more equipped and have spent considerable time and effort planning for the major events, small changes have crept into my daily life.<br><br>Last year after the earthquake several coworkers evacuated our building without coats, purses, keys, check books, ATM cards, credit cards, phone numbers, phones etc. Many people left their coats in their car in the attached parking garage. Fortunately it was a fairly nice day (no rain) so people we not getting wet, but lack of a coat, and no access to the car could have been a much more significant problem. Lots of people had no money, no keys, and no ID. We were unable to claim our cars or enter the building to pick up personal belongings for several days after the earthquake. My workplace actually set up emergency fund dispersion for people who could not pay their rent, buy food etc without their credit cards, checkbooks etc.<br><br>I carry the basics everwhere in the building. My vest and pockets contain everything I would need if I had to immediately leave the building. If I am at my workstation, then I would evacuate with my coat, hat, and daily bag in addtion. <br><br>I always have a list of bus routes, quarters and Gold Dollars for fare, enough cash for at least one day on the street, shelter (tube tent) and paracord, wool hat, wool gloves and leather gloves, various tools and other stuff.<br><br>Planning for large events, and having contingencies for the daily aspects of our lives is what I consider the Urban PSK to consist of. While the UPSK can consist of an assortment of items, I think it primarily consists of preplanning, evaluation of various risks, and communication with your family what you intend to do and what you expect them to do in an emergency situation.<br><br>The worst thing I experienced immediately after the earthquake was not knowing if my wife was OK and not knowing where she would go if her worksite was severely damaged. We now have several communication alternatives, preplanned meeting sites, and preplanned responses if we are unable to communicate directly.<br><br>Randy
Posted by: THIRDPIG

Personal Disaster Experience ( Re: urban PSK? - 03/28/02 08:23 PM

Man I love this place.I was going to go outside than I saw this post,did not read all replies yet but I'll add some thoughts.<br><br>I see survival as many phases,if i wipeout in whitewater i must first survive the rapids,then if I lose my canoe and gear I must,survive the wilderness.Which is long term and involes shelter building and fire starting etc.<br><br>People interested in urban survival MOSTLY are interested in the first phase.Can I get out of the building,away from the fumes,falling debre,raging waters etc.I bet alot of people wished they knew all the ways out of the WTC or that they should move far away once out,or that terrorists often use a secondary device.I don't think many had to build a shelter or snare food that night.<br><br>Personally I carry in an urban setting. Cell phone,a list of phone numbers(also programed into phone),sak,stout folder,photon II w/Micra,bandanna and CASH.Can't get to your car?nobody will stop and give you a lift?Wave some cash.Your phone is dead nobody wants to give up theirs?wave some cash.<br><br>well my youngest just got home and wants to play.See ya.<br><br>WOW! just came in and read all the posts lots of things I was going to add are already there! I would have a b.o.b with sneaks,wind pants,jacket and hardhat if I worked in a highrise and wore dress clothes at work.At least change into the sneakers,the time will be more than made up in the long trip out.Good point about learning your building.Do you know all the stairs?if the doors open to all floors?Often there are internal stairs if one company has several floors,these my be an option if the main stairs are destroyed or blocked.There are also private parking floors for the "big shots"with private enterances and sometimes hallways.Do you know where they are?or how to get through them? On the job I carry a shove knife,which is a thin strip of metal with cutouts for slipping the lock bolts on doors that open toward you(like the ones in strairways and hallways).Lots of good ideas here,I enjoyed alot of theses posts.
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: urban PSK? - 03/28/02 08:50 PM

The sense that I am getting is that the Urban situation requires more planning and less gear. Not just different gear.<br><br>Info on threats and hazards can be acquired from the Red-Cross or Fire Department fairly readily for most urban areas.<br><br>Maps are available at most drugstores and online.<br><br>Subway maps are available from city officials.<br><br>For the UPSK gear seems these are considered useful.<br><br>whistle, light, compass, blades, tape, multitool, garbage bag / poncho, first aid stuff, cordage, OTC Medications, And who says you can't put a cell phone or a radio in a PSK. <br><br>Anyone who has assembled a kit that can post some pictures for us? or a complete inventory at least? We have had some other interesting discussion on this in this previous thread and this previous thread
Posted by: Schwert

Re: urban PSK? - 03/28/02 10:09 PM

Here is a (somewhat embassing) list. I have taken this from an Excel spreadsheet that includes other lists of go bags, many more tips and proceedures for radio contact etc.<br><br>I have included brief lists of the type of preplanning steps I have taken with my wife. This includes the contact info and prearranged meeting places and what we both expect of each other.<br><br>It is long, but I not only carry this stuff everyday but think about my responses to Urban emergencies everyday. <br><br>03/28/2002 Version 1.10 <br> ** Maintainance Required <br>Emergency Proceedures <br> 1. Exit Building to Safe Location <br> 2. Grab Jump Bag, Coat, Radio, TV if possible <br> 3. Proceed to PrePlanned Location <br> 4. Attempt contact, evaluate options, leave messages <br> <br>PrePlanned Meeting Areas <br> 1 Primary location <br> 2 Backup locations <br>Out-of-Area Emergency Contact, information clearing house <br> 1 Wife Work <br> 2 Out of state contact--message center <br> 3 Neighbor <br> 4 Voice mails <br>Expectations <br>In all damage circumstances, Randy will attempt contact with Rosie at U or Home. Rosie will stay or evacuate to safest preplanned meeting place with Go bag plus Radios and TV. Randy will make way to University or home, using car, public transit, or walk. <br> If Rosie at Work <br> 1 Minimal damage, expect arrival by car, 60 minutes minimum <br> 2 Minor damage, expect arrival by friend or public transit, 120 minutes mimimum. <br> 3 Major damage, expect arrival by walk, 240 minutes mimimum. <br> <br> If Rosie at Home <br> 1 Minimal damage, expect arrival by car, 120 minutes minimum <br> 2 Minor damage, expect arrival by friend or public transit, 240 minutes mimimum. <br> 3 Major damage, expect arrival by walk, 8-24 hours mimimum. <br> <br>Make contact with clearing house ASAP. Leave detailed messages and note time. <br> <br>Seek or deploy shelter at earliest possible time, Wait for other party if possible. <br>Monitor Motorola Radio. <br>Monitor Public Radio, do not use TV to save battery life. <br>Information Post..Thorn Tree <br>Description of Emergency location thought to survive just about anything where a note can be left to inform other party. <br>On-Body Kit This kit consists of both pockets and a Filson Vest normally worn at all times. <br> Clothing excluding Filson Vest <br> Shirt Pockets, 2 usually Filson <br> 1 Moleskine Notebook, 9x13cm, LIST and tips, SS 2x3 Ruled card, 4 Bus Cards <br> 2 Jack the Ripper blades, sailmakers needle with red wool <br> 6m Heavy Waxed 3 strand nylon thread, Bus Route Notes <br> UTM Roamer 1:24000, William Vannerson PSK Cheet Sheet <br> 1 MicroFiber cleaning cloth in plastic pouch <br> opt Case, Mini-Trapper Amber-Bone Pocket Knife, 2.25 Clip/Spey<br> 1 Pelikan 600, Fine pt, Roller Ball Pen<br> <br> 1 Lamy 185 Scribble Lead Holder w 2 M40/43 3.15 mm leads<br> 1 Lamy Safari Ballpoint Pen<br> 1 Tube w 3 4B Graphite M40 and 2 Colored M43 3.15 mm Leads <br> 1 Tube w Aleve tablets, 10 tabs<br> 1 Pelikan Leather Pen case w 3 Pens<br> 1 Pelikan 400 Fountain Pen, EF Nib<br> 1 Pelikan M1935 #1735/4000, Green Celluloid Fountain Pen, F Nib<br> 1 Pelikan 730 Fountain Pen, Sterling Barrel 925 A9/91 JB, M Nib<br>** 1 Lighter, Butane, Colibri Pen Style<br> 1 Foster Grant +1.5 power, Folding Reading glasses in hard case<br> <br> Pant Pockets, 4 <br> 1 Keys, 2 house, 2 car, 1 door release, on 3.5 mm nylon cord ~30 cm<br>** 1 Pill fob, 7 Aspirin, 2 Aleve, 2 prescription med<br> 1 Leatherman Micra<br> 1 HotSpark, Nylon tubing cover<br> <br> 1 Victorinox MiniChamp, w Red LED light, various small tools<br> 1 Coin wallet, w 4mm Allen Wrench some coin<br> <br> 1 Filson Wallet, loads of cards, some cash<br> <br> 1 Bandana<br> 1 Comb<br> <br> Waist Band <br> 1 Emerson Model 5 Folding Knife, ATS34, 3.375<br> 1 Milt Sparks Double Cowhide Belt<br> 1 Microtech Lightfoot LLC, 154-CM, 4990, 06/2001, 3.5, Horizontal Sheath<br> 1 Pair Filson Deerskin Gloves<br> 1 SureFire 6P light w 2 A123A Lithium cells, and 120Lumen lamp<br> Leatherman Wave in Leather Pouch w (next 5) <br> 1 Leatherman Tool Adapter<br> 11 Bits, 2 std, 3 Phillips, 2 square, 1 Torx, 3/16, 5/32, 3/32 Hex<br> 1 5/32 Allen Wrench<br> 1 3/32 Allen Wrench<br> 1 BSA HotSpark Flint Rod w metal scraping tool<br> or Dix Leather Custom Triple Combo <br> 1 Leatherman Wave<br> 1 Leatherman Tool Adapter<br> 2 Bits, 2 std, 3 Phillips, 2 square, 1 Torx, 3/16, 5/32, 3/32 Hex<br> 1 SureFire 6P light w 2 A123A Lithium cells, and 120Lumen lamp<br> 2 123A Lithium Cells, spares<br> 1 5/32 Allen Wrench<br> 1 3/32 Allen Wrench<br> 1 BSA HotSpark Flint Rod w metal scraping tool<br>** 1 pager<br> <br> Neck <br> 1 ID breakaway Cord w ID badge and Fox 40 Whistle<br> 1 Cold Steel Spike, 420J, 4.00, Bead Chain<br> or Woo, 1095, w Fox40 Whistle, DoneRight Sparker, Paracord<br> or Nealy Akuchi, 3.5 Meier Damascus, #1156, Silver Bead Chain<br> <br> Wrist <br> 1 Suunto Vector Watch, Altimeter, Compass, Thermometer<br> <br> Clothing Set, Typical <br> Cotton Boxers<br> Cotton Tee Shirt<br> Wool Long Sox<br> Cotton or Cotton Blend Pants, Tilley usually <br> Filson Shirt, Alaska Guide, Moleskin, or Shelter Cloth <br> Trask Bison Shoes <br> Filson Style 8 Wool Vest, Double back, 6 Pockets <br> Silhouette Eyeglasses, 03/02/2002 prescription or Contacts <br> opt Neoprene Back Brace <br> Rings, Au Wedding Band, Au Celtic 20 yr Anniversary Band <br> <br> Filson Style 8 Wool Vest <br> Rear Pocket <br> 1 Austrian Boiled Wool Hat, Red w Ear Flaps <br> 1 Filson Fingerless Merino Wool Gloves <br> 1 Silk Scarf, 1x1m, Green <br> 1 Tacoma Mountain Rescue, Storm Shelter (tube tent) w book matches <br> 7m Paracord <br> Inside Left <br>** 1 Department Phone List <br>** 1 Neighborhood Block List <br> 2 Orange Shoestrings, ~1m ea <br> Inside Right <br> Dr Scholls plastic moleskin box <br>** 1 Bio-Barrier Face Shield <br>** 1 Pair Latex Gloves <br>** 2 Benzalkonium Chloride Towelette <br>** 2 Alcohol Towellette <br>** 4 Assorted Adhesive Bandage Strips <br>** 1 Moleskin sheet <br> Lower Left <br> 2 Bandana <br>** 1 CMG Infinity LED Light w 1 AA cell, ~0.9m lanyard <br> Nylon Snap Pouch <br>** 1 Bronica Savanna Fluid type Lighter w SS Tool, Saran Wrap <br>** 1 Potable Aqua, 50 tabs, 03/15/2002 purchase <br> 1 Platypus 1L water storage pouch <br> Lower Right <br>** 1 Mini MagLite, 2 AA cell <br> 1 Window Punch, Spring Loaded <br> Neoprene Pouch w (9 items below) <br> 1 ACR Flat Whistle <br> 1 DMT Diamond Folding Hone <br> 1 File, Teeny, V, Fine, Plastic Lanyard and clip, paper wrap <br>** 4 AA cells in plastic bag <br>** 2 123A Lithium Cells in plastic bag, tape <br> 1 Flat Contact Case <br> 1 Mini Spark rod on Wood block w scraper, DoneRight <br> 2 Rubber Bands, around Hone and File <br> 1 Paper, Write in Rain, Quarter Sheet <br> Upper Left, 4 compartment <br> 1 Chris Reeve Small Sebenza, BG42, 2.75, w nylon lanyard <br>** 1 SureFire E2, 2 123A Lithium cell, Flashlight, nylon lanyard <br> 1 Silva, Model 345, Brass Match Case w compass, lanyard, sewing needle <br> 1 Victorinox Large Army Knife, Blade, Saw, Corkscrew, Awl, mini screwdriver <br> Upper Right, 2 compartment <br> 1 Cadelli Schedule Book, 2002 <br> 1 SailMakers Needle, red wool, IN Schedule Book Binding <br> 1 Minox 6x16 Monocular, w ~1m nylon lanyard, in cloth pouch, kangaroo wrap <br> <br>Personal Survival Kits, 4 models, Shirt, Coat, or Pack <br>PSK-Pkt Personal Survival Kit, Pocket Model Packed 12/06/2001<br> 1 C&F Design Fly Box, 3.5x4.75x1.25, Plastic <br> Signaling Group <br> 1 Gerber 2x3 Signal Mirror, plastic bag, protective paper <br> 1 Fox 40 modified Whistle <br> Emergency Devices Group <br> 1 Spyderco Centofante ATS34, 2.75, Folding Knife <br> 1 HackSaw Blade, 18pt/in <br> 1 Varco Steel Wire Saw, nylon finger loops, covered w Waxed nylon twine <br> 1 #20 Scalpel Blade in foil packet <br> 1 C&F Design Needle and Tube, Magnet Tool, Sewing Awl tool <br> 1 Large SailMakers needle <br> 4 Sailmakers canvas needles, in plastic tube <br> 5m Kevlar Thread, around needle tube <br> 5m Waxed nylon thread around needles in tube <br> .6m Heavy Braided nylon <br> 3m Copper wire, braided, heavy <br> 10m SS plastic coated wire, thin necklace wire, on spool <br> 4 Premade hand braided SS wire snares, on above spool <br> 1 12' Braided Leader <br> 1 Fish Hooks, 20..2/0-6 Partridge, 25..10-18 Tiemco <br> 1 Swivels..5, Sinkers..8, Flies--Stimulator..1, Hares Ear, Muskrat..6 <br> 7m Braided Monofilament <br> 1 8/0 Gaff Hook <br> Firestarting Group <br>** 1 Bic Lighter, small <br> 1 B&L 5, 10, 20 power magnifier <br> 1 Magnesium Spark rod, small <br> 1 BSA HotSpark flint <br> 3.25 Cotton/Wax Firestarters <br> 1 Cotton Stuffing, Tinder <br> 3.5ml Potassium Permanganate, plastic cryovial <br> 3.5ml Sucrose, plastic cryovial <br> Navigation/Information Group <br> 1 Brunton Survival Cards, Fresnel lens, Floating Compass, on Outside box <br> 1 Silva Watch Band Compass <br> Miscellaneous Group <br> 1 Black Tea Bag <br> 1 P-38 Can Opener <br> 1 Black Rotring Pen Refill <br> 1 Uncle Bills Sliver Gripper Tweezer, fire starter on end to protect pt <br> 1 Scotch 33+ Black Plastic Tape to Seal Box, packed 12/06/2001 <br> <br>Daily Carry Kit, Filson Style 257 Large Briefcase <br> 1 Personal Survival Kit, Pocket Model (see above), C&F Fly Box <br> 1 Sigg Water Bottle, 750ml, tap water rotated daily <br> 1 Pry Bar, 14" x 1", in nylon pouch <br> 1 Poncho, Coated Nylon <br> 1 Basha Sheet 6x8ft Coated ripstop nylon British DPM camo/Green <br> 1 Patagonia WindShell <br> 1 Bandana <br> 1 Silk Bandana, Red <br> 1 Large Plastic Garbage Bag <br> 17m Paracord <br>** 1 Metro Transit Map, SEPT 2001 <br> 1 Manilla Folder w this list <br> 1 CReeve Shadow III, A2, 4", HotSpark, 2StrawTinder-4 cotton/vas, 2 Q, lanyard <br> 1 Jack the Ripper Emergency Knife <br> 1 Holland Brothers Wallet, JtR Blades, Stamps <br> $42 1x20, 1x10, 1x5, 7x1 <br> $36 $6.5 Quarters, $29 roll+ 4 Gold Dollars, Half Dollar, penny, Uvex bag <br> 1 EyeGlasses, Spare <br> 1 Gargoyles Safety Glasses <br> 1 Pipe Kit, see below w Peterson 65, Corona lighter, Tobacco pouch, Cleaners <br> Esbit Pocket Stove, Wax paper and Saran wrap, 5 Rubber bands <br> 4 Esbit Fuel, 4 tabs, 15 min ea in Esbit <br> 1 BSA HotSpark and scraper, in Esbit <br> 1 Cotton Ball, Gauze, Pad Stuffing around fuel tabs in Esbit <br> 1 Cup, Titanium, 600ml, SnowPeak in nylon mesh pouch <br> 4 TeaBags <br> 2 Firestarter Cubes, Strike Force <br> 1 Space Blanket Bag, 3 oz <br> 1 Sony ICF-SW100 World Band Receiver, 2 AA cells, earphones <br> 1 Sony AN-100A Active Antenna, Radio instruction Book <br> 4 AA Batteries <br> 1 Motorola Business Frequency Radio <br> 2 Motorola Spare Battery <br> 1 ICOM IC-2GAT 2m HamRadio w NiCad Battery Pack, 5/8 wave Antenna <br> 1 ICOM 6 AA Battery pack, w 6 AA cells <br> 1 ICOM HS-51 Headset Speaker/Mic <br> 1 Antenna, Rubber Duck <br> 1 AARL Repeater Directory 2000-2001 <br> 1 Moleskine Large 13x21 cm Ruled Notebook <br> 1 Sketch Book, Hemp/Cotton <br> 1 Lyra ProNatura Pencil Case, 6 Monolith, 11 PolyColor, 2 Charcoal, <br> 2-5.25mm Holder-Charcoal, graphite, 1 3mm Holder 6B graphite, Stumpf, <br> Brass Pencil Sharpener, 2 Eraser, SAK, Ruler <br> Sandpaper pencil sharpener pad <br> Filson Belt Pouch, Style 209 including <br>** 1 Quantum Butane lighter <br> 1 Aitor Skinner <br> 1 Nylon Seine Twine, 8m <br> 1 Montana Magnesium Spark rod w scraper and antler handle <br> 1 K&M MatchCase <br> 1 Storm Whistle <br> 4 AA Batteries <br> 1 Victorinox Cybertool 34 in Chamois pouch <br> 6 123A Lithium Cells in waterproof Carry Case, 80cm lanyard <br> 1 6P 60 lumen spare lamp for SureFire lights, <br> <br>HAM radio specific information: <br>K7PP Repeater System <br>147.20 Mhz + offset <br> <br>AutoPatch xxx Autopatch instructions ….. <br> <br>Puget Sound Repeater Group <br>146.96 Mhz + offset <br>103.5 hz tone <br> <br>AutoPatch codes and instructions <br> <br>Wilderness Protocol Simplex Frequencies <br>52.525 Monitor starting 0700 for 5 min, then every 3 hours on hour. <br>146.520 <br>223.500 <br>446.000 <br>1294.500 <br> <br> South Sound Region ACS (auxilary communication service) <br> Frequency Plans <br> <br> Amateur Radio Emergency Service ARES <br> Puget Sound Repeater System, Monday 1900 net <br> <br>149.960 R Seattle Fire Zone 5, Repeater, N7LYE <br>146.560 S1 Simplex auxilliary 1 <br>145.590 S2 Simplex auxilliary 2 <br>147.580 S3 Simplex auxilliary 3 <br>147.340 R Fire Zone 1, Shoreline repeater <br>146.500 S1 Simplex auxilliary 1 <br>147.340 R Fire Zone 1, Woodinville repeater <br>147.510 S1 Simplex auxilliary 1 <br>147.340 R Fire Zone 1, Kirkland repeater <br>145.610 S1 Simplex auxilliary 1 <br>147.540 S2 Simplex auxilliary 2 <br>
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: urban PSK? - 03/28/02 11:27 PM

Schwert,<br>This is just the sort of information I was looking for! Thanks!<br><br>You definately have a bunch of gear there!. I noticed a great redundancy in writing gear. Is that occupational or do you consider that a survival issue? Why?<br>You certainly have the communications issues covered with the radios and repeater knowledge - Great example.<br>Your methods of carry are as important as what you carry. Seems to me that you are very well prepared but would look pretty normal as an urbanite with the Filsons vest concealing most of the items. I am in the process of ordering one of those #8 filson vests. I must say that they are very accomodating. With the trial garment option to get the sizing right and all. I will probably keep the tin-cloth version that I am using for sizing anyhow since we get a rather warm and humid summer here in NH. Thanks for putting me onto Filsons - Great place but those prices! definately not something I am going to buy a lot of.
Posted by: Schwert

Re: urban PSK? - 03/29/02 12:10 AM

MiniMe,<br><br>I am glad you appreciated the super long post. I was sort of hesitant to burden everyone with my list of junk....but hey I am not the first smile.<br><br>Among my collection of eccentric behaviors I collect and use fine fountain pens. I am also an amateur sketch artist so I have a bunch of pencils and a sketch pad. I sort of figure that if we have another earthquake and I get to sit outside for as long as last time I might as well sketch the crowd, the piles of bricks or whatever. Really my daily bag and kit is more than just survival gear, I carry my hobbies and the things that I like using. The pens pencils writing material etc cannot be construed as UPSK gear even by me. You may have also noted an abundance of cutting items...again an eccentric colllector, but a bit more directly useful.<br><br>Note the optional backsupport brace!<br><br>I guarantee that you will enjoy and treasure any clothing you purchase from Filson. The initial cash outlay is steep, but I have not yet worn out any Filson garment. I wear their shirts, vest and coat everyday. It gives me a "unique" sense of style, but I do it for the great function and value.<br><br>I recommend you size the Filson #8 vest one size larger than you may normally wear. All the junk in the back pocket and inside pockets adds a bit to your waistline.<br><br>I urge everyone to look into getting their HAM license. A Technician Class license is very easy to get. You do not have to know Morse Code anymore. The Tech license is ideally suited for local communications and participation in your community Auxillary Communication Service <br>(ACS) or Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES). Contact any repeater group in your local area or contact ARRL the Amateur Radio Relay League (www.arrl.com).<br><br><br>Very few people are aware of the number and type of items I carry everwhere. The vest and multiple pockets keep everything distributed around my Michellin Man profile!<br><br>Randy<br>
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: urban PSK? - 03/29/02 01:04 AM

I did notice the abundance of blades. I was wondering what a Jack the Ripper knife is? Can you post a link to a picture or a retailer? What makes this knife so interesting to you?<br><br>I agree with you in encouraging everyone to get their HAM license. Got mine last november and I am having a blast. Membership in any of the various civilian emergency communications groups can only help.<br><br>I didn't notice any sidearms in your list. Did I miss anything?<br><br>How much does all that weigh? Fully loaded vest? Briefcase?<br><br>Which of the Filson's coats have you got?
Posted by: Schwert

Re: urban PSK? - 03/29/02 01:49 AM

MiniMe,<br><br>A Jack the Ripper knife is an emergency response tool designed to cut shroud lines, seat belts, etc without an exposed cutting edge. There are a number of these types of knives at www.para-gear.com (item K16909, $12, item K11505 $6, item K11610 $29). My friend jumps out of perfectly good aircraft, and introduced me to these. I also have a Spyderco Rescue knife that I sometimes carry, but this JtR knife is TOTALLY non-threating, inexpensive, light weight, and very useful in extracting people from cars, or cutting clothing like pant legs. It has two opposing razor blades in a plastic handle and works with a pull action.<br><br>Firearms are absolutely not allowed at my worksite. Useful, I agree, but I need this job. My collection of edged devices is risky enough, but does not absolutely violate my company policies.<br><br>I have not weighed any of my items exactly. The vest loaded as described rides well and I am guessing comes in at about 5-6 pounds. My Daily carry bag is really too heavy. I am guessing it goes at about 20 pounds. I am constantly looking at it but cannot slim it down.<br><br>I know I can carry this bag and other assorted junk to my wifes worksite on foot. I have done this several times just for the exercise.<br><br>I wear the Filson Original Hunting Coat in waxed Tin Cloth Style 66. This was stiff as a board when new, cannot be washed so be prepared to acquire "character", but works well in our climate. I can wear a sweater under and be set for just about any conditions in Seattle (hey it is not NH). During the late spring and summer I leave this coat at my desk so I always have it.<br><br>Take a look at the Filson site and look at the Waterfowler series, Packers and Outfitter series. I am fortunate to work about 3 blocks from their store and have been drooling on a Packer.<br><br>Randy
Posted by: AyersTG

Re: urban PSK? - 03/29/02 04:21 AM

<blockquote><font size=1>In reply to:</font><hr><p>For me a hiking staff (or walking stick in urban mode) is a virtual essential with numerous uses, one of which could be self defense<p><hr></blockquote><p> That's the way I see it - too many uses to list. Since it sounds like that may not be fashionable for many folks to lug around / keep at work, how about scanning the office cleaning supplies closet for what might be adaptable and making mental note of that? Just another option...
Posted by: johnbaker

Re: urban PSK? - 03/29/02 09:04 AM

At the risk of sounding like a lawyer...<br><br>I wholeheartedly endorse the idea of a walking stick / hiking staff / cane. It is a wonderfully useful tool. But note what I have called it. I do not ever refer to it as a club / baton / anything else remotely suggestive of a weapon, even though it might theoretically have such an possible application. <br><br>It is imperative that if one ever happens to talk to a law enforcement officer, that it be referred to only as the former. I do not mean that one should lie or mislead; only avoid terms relating to weapons and applications as such. Keep in mind that in many jurisdictions, carrying or even possessing a billy club, sap, or any of a whole host of weapons is a felony. Do not ever, facetiously or otherwise, do anything to indicate or suggest that it is anything but a walking stick / staff / cane.<br><br>I strongly urge against carrying or possessing anything such as a cane, umbrella, or the like which hides a stabbing / cutting instrument or other weapon. It is probably a felony in most jurisdictions.<br><br>I am not a criminal lawyer (only civil lawyer licensed to practice only in my own state), but my colleagues who are criminal practicioners assure me that many of their clients incriminate / entangle themselves with stupid statements or admissions. For instance, carrying a Mag-Lite for use as a flashlight is perfectly legal; on the other hand, carrying it for use as a club may be illegal. Incidentally, never volunteer statements / information in talking to a law enforcement officer. <br><br>And one final thought. Always be cautious about what you say in writing or otherwise. It really can and will be used against you.<br><br>Qualifying remarks (AKA legal weaseling):<br>These observations land in this thread, because it happens to consider such items. They are also a pet peave of mine and I probably drive my loved ones crazy with such cautions. These thoughts are put forth only generally and precautionarily, and not intended to criticize anyone, or for that matter even directed to anyone in particular. This is not legal advice or to anyone in particular since individual cases may vary. Most law enforcement officers are fine, fair, decent, ethical, humane people. But it does not make sense to verbally criminalize your own actions flagrantly. And of course consult a criminal lawyer in your own jurisdiction for information applicable to your personal situation. Law vary enormously from one state, community, or other jurisdiction to another.<br><br>Naturally I invite any criminal lawyers or law enforcement officers to feel free to comment / criticize / correct anything in this post as deemed appropriate. <br><br>In short, guys, be careful and legal.<br><br>John
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: urban PSK? - 03/29/02 03:27 PM

>>The sense that I am getting is that the Urban situation requires more planning and less gear. Not just different gear.<<<br><br>The information requirements do seem more intensive. I’m not sure I understand where the impression of less gear comes from.. my UPSK is certainly larger (bulkier) than two of my “wilderness” PSKs, even though my “urban” focus is only on escaping from downtown out to home in the suburbs, and there is some overlap and spillover between the kit and the contents of my pouch and pockets. I haven’t tried counting items to see which has more, so perhaps by that measure it's less. Most of the extra bulk seems to come from the folding reading glasses (there's much more need to read in the city than in the woods) and the FM radio with “earbud” earphones, and, as I said elsewhere, a slightly larger compass with a nylon wristband. I’m hoping to cut the size of the radio, and thinking about doing away with the wristband and just clipping it to my watchband if needed.<br><br>>>Anyone who has assembled a kit that can post some pictures for us? or a complete inventory at least? <<<br><br>Sorry, no digital camera. I’ve posted the list before.. it hasn’t changed much, although what’s in the box and what’s out varies a bit over time. Unfortunately, if I’m facing metal detectors and x-ray machines (government buildings), a LOT gets left at home. <br><br>Currently in the box:<br><br>P-38 can opener<br>Watchband compass with nylon wrist strap.<br>Sewing kit: 2 needles, strong nylon thread (from a pack mfr), one needle threader (worth it’s weight, IMHO)<br>3 safety pins, 2 sizes<br>paper clip<br>Photon 3 (white)<br>Very small pen refill<br>10 “Write in the Rain” notebook sheets<br>photocopied map<br>List of phone numbers printed out from Palm software<br>Gerber LST lockback folder<br>2 X-acto blades<br>“permanent match” lighter (I sometimes switch back to a mini-bic)<br>BSA HotSpark <br>1 Coghlan’s tinder (in plastic wrap) <br>ACR emergency whistle (sturdy- but I sometimes switch to a “toy” whistle that’s smaller and louder)<br>REI “Featherweight” thin plastic mirror with signaling hole, trimmed a to size.<br>1 oven bag (for water)<br>tiny (Blue Line) vial with 20 Potable Aqua tablets, instructions on label <br>2 plastic/wire “twist ties”<br>Paper money<br>2 quarters and 2 dimes (phone)<br>mini-FM radio and earbuds<br>multi-fold reading glasses (currently Flapjacks)<br>10 feet of thin, flat nylon cord<br>3 nylon wire bundlers<br><br>I think that’s it for the box. I have carried a Leatherman Micra in there, but it’s too useful daily to keep locked up. Currently I have a Leatherman Mini in there, which has full-size needlenose pliers, screwdrivers, openers, small knife blade, etc. but folds to 2.75 inches long. The box itself is a plastic rectangular Tupperware container at the moment, about 7x4x1.75", but I have gotten it all, except the cord, in one of the SAS tins, and might go back. That just creates more hassle with x-ray machines, though. I'm always looking for ways to reduce the bulk.<br> <br>My wallet contains another oven bag and two more twist ties, another P38 can opener, a tiny silver ballpoint pen, and a credit card Fresnel lens which I mostly hope will help if I lose all my reading glasses, and of course credit and debit cards, ID, etc. My keycase has another BSA HotSpark with heatshrink tubing to protect the rod. <br><br>My pockets almost always contain more cash, a Leatherman Micra, a Windmill lighter, and depending on where I’m going, possibly a larger folding knife. I never leave the house without my cell phone (Motorola Startac, folding, very small), on the belt unless I’m running, in which case it’s in a waterproof neck pouch. Again, depending on where I’m going, the belt may also hold a Leatherman Wave, the Palm (Pilot), or a folding knife. I usually have another pair of reading glasses in a shirt pocket, or, more usually, stuck in the neck of a polo shirt.<br><br>My shoulder pouch, aside from books, magazines, work related stuff, always carries a Platypus collapsible water bottle, a really small and flat Totes pocket umbrella, small roll of duct tape, sunglasses, map books, a couple of “lawn and leaf” plastic bags, a fleece cap and neck gaiter, more spare reading glasses, more and heavier cord, a “Write in the Rain” notebook, more pens, another compass, a full bottle of Potable Aqua tablets, a black silk bandana, and usually the UPSK box itself. It sometimes carries the Palm and/or the Leatherman Wave, if they’re not on belt or in vest pockets. In winter the pouch carries some MyCoal Grabber disposable heating pads and fingerless fleece gloves that aren't very effective and I need to upgrade.<br><br>I have a Suunto Yachtsman watch (compass, logging barometer, thermometer) that I sometimes wear for casual, but it's not really suitable for my work. YMMV.<br><br>There’s a LOT more stuff in the vehicle if I have access to it- shelter, hats, handheld CB radio, shovel.. I’m not going to inventory that unless someone needs it. Taking the subway downtown, the vehicle can be very far away, and as other have pointed out, you can never be sure of access to it.<br><br>I’ve probably missed something. Suggestions welcome. <br>
Posted by: Anonymous

Personal Disaster Experience ( Re: urban PSK? - 03/29/02 03:46 PM

Thanks for posting. Most of us are just speculating based on personal near-misses and situations that didn’t become critical on the one hand, and events that happened to others as reported by unreliable media on the other. It’s worth a lot to hear real experience first-hand.<br><br>One thing I did learn from those that had been through the hurricane in Charleston- they told me always to have plenty of cash in small bills. Apparently, after the hurricane the banks were closed, and while many stores and shops were open (especially smaller ones), NOBODY had change. If you wanted a breakfast roll, and all you had was a $20 bill, then the breakfast roll cost you $20. It wasn’t technically “gouging”, since they were willing to sell it to you for less- if you had less.<br><br>For similar reasons, I’ve chosen to stash a bit of silver instead of gold. One ounce of silver is a large coin, and was worth about $5 the last time I checked, so you wouldn’t feel too bad about trading one for a hamburger or some canned food. Five dollars worth of gold, on the other hand, is a coin the size of a sequin, just as thin, more fragile, and terribly easy to lose- even if you could convince someone to take it. Larger gold coins are just too much value at once for subsistence-level trading, and you may well end up trading a $75 coin for that hamburger.<br><br>I don’t put a lot of faith in either. Unlike most survival gear, gold and silver are pretty much useful only in one scenario- economic collapse. In any other survival situation, it’s likely that people will be taking paper dollars for quite some time.<br> <br>Thanks again.<br>
Posted by: AyersTG

Re: urban PSK? - 03/29/02 03:57 PM

I may have missed this in some of the posts so far, but it seems to me that one thing missing in many lists is a pair of leather gloves. Even a pair of leather dress gloves can be invaluable (a bit spendy if one tears them up, as I have), but a pair of all-leather work gloves is best. In temperate climates the heavier cowhide gloves, perhaps with a bit of thin insulation, are very useful. In hot climates a pair of thin pigskin gloves will still afford a lot of protection for innumerable situations (need augmentation, such as a cotton bandana or some other natural material if they will be used to grasp or manipulate something hot). Lightly insulated cowhide gloves will protect long enough from even mild red heat to do something useful without injury - still, use caution.<br><br>The pigskin gloves are so compact and lightweight that I tote both types (pigskin and lightly insulated cowhide). The pigskin gloves can even easily be folded and placed in the handkerchief/bandanna pocket without discomfort.<br><br>IMHO, the cowhide gloves should be fairly flexible, so I avoid the stiff smooth types and go with split leather instead (plus they are less expensive). None of these gloves are very expensive. Hand protection is well worth any minor cost.
Posted by: Schwert

Re: urban PSK? - 03/29/02 05:00 PM

I totally agree that a leather gloves are a very valuable additon. I carry mine tucked under my belt--Cowboy style. Mine are thin deerskin, dark brown and essentially disappear under my vest. They are always with me this way. I do not expect them to survive long digging through earthquake rubble, but they would help.<br><br>
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: urban PSK? - 03/29/02 07:21 PM

Interesting thought. I confess I hadn't thought of work gloves. They certainly won't fit in the kit itself, but I suppose I could find room in the shoulder pouch. I have several pair at home, of course.<br><br>I guess I'm a little unclear of what scenario you're envisioning. Like many others, I've used a bandana for hot pot and pan handles for many years on the trail, plus I did blacksmithing as a hobby for some years and never used gloves except for forge welding. Other than digging through rubble,which I guess could be a primary survival activity if it's your rubble, was there some scenario that would justify the bulk?<br>
Posted by: Anonymous

Personal Disaster Experience ( Re: urban PSK? - 03/29/02 09:29 PM

For a PSK/UPSK, I'd agree with you about the gold and silver. MOST OF THE TIME.<br><br>If I was going someplace that is unstable, I'd want to have a wad of US$20 and US$100s, with some silver and gold coinage, in my runkit. (Like a BugOut Bag, but much smaller, beltpouch and shoulder holster sized.) <br><br>In my big bag, as it lives in my closet, I carry silver and gold coinage, along with US folding money. It's increadable how stupid people get over shiny stuff. smile
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: urban PSK? - 03/30/02 04:24 AM

I am also a fan of deerskin gloves - very light and useful for at least occasional use. For years I had a job which was basically desk work or non manual labor and then all of a sudden I would be working with wire cable, fighting fires, or other hand tool work. With hands that were not usually hard enough, deerskin increased my work effort considerably. They are handy for at least some hot objects and help to some extent in keeping your hands warm when it cools down.
Posted by: AyersTG

Re: urban PSK? - 03/30/02 04:54 AM

OK, ok - you guys made me go check (had to dig to find a "new" pair) - the thin gloves I was talking about are actually deerskin - my bad for calling them pigskin <grin> - no excuse. I knew what I meant...<br><br>Yep to everything said about them. Some pairs hold up under use better than others for no obvious reason, and all beat the heck out of bare hands for "rough work". But they're very supple - enough to allow a fairly high amount of dexterity. I like 'em because they are so useful and handy.
Posted by: AyersTG

Re: urban PSK? - 03/30/02 05:55 AM

>> was there some scenario that would justify the bulk?<<<br><br>Assume you mean the cowhide gloves. Actually, I was merely reflecting on some of my experiences, not hyothesized scenarios. I'm learning interesting things here by reading what other folks - such as yourself - are considering in the way of scenarios and how others are thinking about "being prepared" for whatever those scenarios might be. Good stuff - I hope the thread continues. I'll go back into "lurk and learn" mode...<br><br>I guess I don't consider them bulky. It's not something that I think is critical to carry; rather it is something that I have found useful many times for mundane tasks and a few times for not-so-mundane tasks. <br><br>Things get hot from energy getting dumped in them. Kinetic energy, fire, electrical current, intense sunlight, working hydraulic fluid, etc. It's amazing how hot stuff can unexpectedly get. I prefer to skip telling those first hand stories.<br><br>If not on-person, then a pair in the vehicle can be useful if for no other reason than to allow one to make an important expedient repair RIGHT NOW, and they have been useful to me in a few of those "stressful" situations as well. <br><br>Since those gloves have a little insulation, they also serve as a backup pair of cold-weather hand covers - better than nothing. <br><br>BUT the deerskin gloves will handle most potential tasks well enough in my opinion. The heavier cowhide gloves are only a suggestion based on some of my experiences.<br><br>Hmmm. You must be my evil twin (just kidding) - I've done a bit of self-taught blacksmithing as well. Hot-cutting half-track spring leaves about made me cry, even with gloves on - talk about radiant heat! <grin>. My anvil back then was a hunk of 120lbs rail. Made some neat stuff; still use the products. Got better tools now and have been talked into teaching the boys what little I know when they clear up the messes they've made in the shop over the winter. There's a nice high-carbon truck leaf spring set hidden under a bench that's been begging to be made into some forged froes, knives, and the like... after they learn a bit with some other stuff in the scrap bin.<br><br>Regards,<br><br>Tom<br>
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: urban PSK? - 03/30/02 12:00 PM

Thanks for the reply. I will certainly hie one of my pairs out to the vehicle, that's a good idea and there's no reason not to have them. I'll think about a pair of some kind in the shoulder pouch.<br><br>I loved blacksmithing, used to go out and fire up the forge in 100 degree heat, people thought I was crazy. Generally, the stock was long enough for heat not to be a problem- for other cases we had tongs, including some huge ones that required an assistant or two to hold the piece. The only time I really needed gloves, as I say, was forge-welding, and I'd have to dunk them in the bucket before I began- by the time the weld was hammered in place, the gloves would be merrily steaming. Hardens the leather real quick. :-)<br><br>In the end, I met blacksmiths that were much, much better than I that were struggling for a living, and I decided I'd better keep it a hobby. It's been many years- a forge is not the sort of thing you can set up in a suburban neighborhood.<br>
Posted by: AyersTG

Re: urban PSK? - 03/30/02 04:56 PM

Hehehe - I can relate - previously I did most of my 'smithing when we were in southern Georgia. Homemade forge, of course. I was using coal, so it was pretty ugly when I coked it - greasy black smoke and stench. One can avoid that by using coke, but I was scrounging the coal back then. Most suburban forges seem to be running propane now (bulk tank), according to the folks I've talked to.
Posted by: RayW

Re: urban PSK? - 03/30/02 11:44 PM

Propane is much cleaner than coal and the burners are easy to make. The only time my neighbors know that i'm running the forge is when i borrow their propane tank because i'm out. Haven't really done any blacksmithing with mine, i've mainly used it for casting aluminum.
Posted by: AyersTG

Re: urban PSK? - 03/31/02 12:19 AM

Yeah - I have links to a few designs. Most are intended for casting metals - also a grand pastime. My only concern is that most DIY designs tend to have an strongly oxidizing flame, which will burn the steel to worthless scrap as soon as it gets hammering hot. For 99.99% of blacksmithing I need a neutral or slightly reducing flame, which is simple using coke (the first step in using coal is to coke it). If I was confident that I could routinely regulate the combustion to avoid burning the steel... but the propane types would seem to require a lot of juggling to do that - tweak the air - oops, too much gas - not hot enuff - tweak the gas -- oops, now it's oxidixing again... BUT I could be wrong <grin> - I'm just guessing.<br><br>if you know of any plans for DIY propane forges aimed at 'smithing, I'd like to look them over. Thanks!
Posted by: Chris Kavanaugh

Re: urban PSK? - 03/31/02 02:10 AM

Thin gloves are invaluable for their weight! I use a pair daily with the horses ( one rope burn makes a believer.) Quality is essential. Cude,oversized seams make for oversized blisters. My Filson's are the wool shawl collar packer and a Tin coat. The gamepocket is a warehouse for my orange garbage sack with Topos.
Posted by: RayW

Re: urban PSK? - 03/31/02 03:14 AM

Tom, yes some of the propane forges can have a strong oxidizing flame. However once you get the gas regulator and the air control set it will pretty much stay that way all day long. I made mine primarily for melting not blacksmithing so the blower is a little larger than it really needs to be(it was free). Since you access to a lathe you might like some of the venturi style burners, a little more skill to make but more uncomplicated to use.<br><br>As far as links,<br><br>http://www.lindsaybks.com/ Has a large variety of technical books at reasonable prices.<br><br>http://www.reil1.net/design1.shtml Lots of information on forge and burner design for blacksmithing.<br><br>http://www.anvilfire.com/ The place for anything blacksmithing.<br><br>
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: urban PSK? - 03/31/02 12:47 PM

Casting is a somewhat quieter activity than forging. :-)<br><br>Although, I have to admit that I chuckle every time Hollywood portrays the sounds of a blacksmith shop with what is obviously someone just hammering an anvil.. forging hot metal just doesn't sound like that, doesn't "ring". When I was first learning, I was told that hammering cold metal was "calling the Devil". There are.. other.. good reasons not to do it. I tried it when I was young, just starting, and didn't have routine access to a forge. I managed to hammer out a few useful things with a LOT of work, but.. they didn't look like they'd been forged (mostly just bent and twisted to shape), some of them cracked and fell apart in the process, and my left hand, that was holding the stock while this was going on, swelled up to about twice it's normal size, apparently from the vibrations. Not good.<br>