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#189253 - 11/26/09 07:30 PM Survival in vehicles
philip Offline
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Registered: 09/19/05
Posts: 639
Loc: San Francisco Bay Area
My wife and I have a commercial van we keep all our survival gear in. We live in the San Francisco Bay Area, and we expect a major earthquake followed by an even more major fire (as all the gas mains and water mains will be broken by the quake).

Jalopnik has a photo essay of some survival vehicles which are very impressive:
http://jalopnik.com/360213/the-ten-best-post+apocalyptic-survival-vehicles

I'm not sure about getting fuel, though, after a quake wipes out all the electricity. And the mileage doesn't look too good on some of these bad boys.

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#189255 - 11/26/09 07:42 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: philip]
Russ Offline
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Registered: 06/02/06
Posts: 5264
Loc: SOCAL
Originally Posted By: philip
. . .I'm not sure about getting fuel, though, after a quake wipes out all the electricity. And the mileage doesn't look too good on some of these bad boys.
That's why they make and sell big aux tanks.
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#189258 - 11/26/09 08:43 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Russ]
Dagny Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 11/25/08
Posts: 1916
Loc: Washington, DC

That's the Hall of Fame of BOVs. None of them gas sippers. I'd love to have a Sportsmobile 4x4.

Scary to try to get out of San Francisco in that situation. Ditto on the auxiliary tank. And how about gas cans on the roof, locked, and a couple bikes on the back?




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#189262 - 11/26/09 09:49 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Dagny]
comms Offline
Veteran

Registered: 07/23/08
Posts: 1502
Loc: Mesa, AZ
I saw a sportmobile 4x4 last weekend. All dolled up for bizness. Very cool . Honestly right now I'm looking for am international scout or bronco, pre 1977. No extra power options, dependable. If icould find a military cucv (6.5 Liter diesel K-5 blazer) I'd grab it.
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#189263 - 11/26/09 10:01 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: comms]
JohnE Offline
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Registered: 06/10/08
Posts: 601
Loc: Southern Cal
Met a guy with a Sportsmobile while on a too short holiday in Zion National Park a few weeks ago. A bit pricey but the coolness factor is incalculable.

With a 40 gallon tank and the diesel engine, you're looking at least 700-800 mile range, more if you carry a few cans of extra fuel.


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"and all the lousy little poets
comin round
tryin' to sound like Charlie Manson"

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#189273 - 11/27/09 01:20 AM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: JohnE]
Eugene Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/26/02
Posts: 2840
I started with a 4x4 extended cab truck. Cab is big enough to carry my family. Replaced the stock passenger rated tires with off road capable truck tires with a matching spare. Fill every open place with tools, spare parts and supplies. Under hood second battery, can jump start myself if needed.
Had a cap on the back with sleeping bags and camping gear and a tent but as my family went from 2 to 4 that was a getting kind of small. Now have a popup truck camper, beds, closet, pantry, refrigerator, stove, furnace all ready to go.

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#189296 - 11/27/09 06:41 AM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Eugene]
Art_in_FL Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 09/01/07
Posts: 2432
I would think that instead of big with a gas guzzling engine you might go for something more like the old Willys Jeep. Fairly small, compact, with a small, simple, fuel efficient engine that carries a lot of weight for its size through gearing. The old Jeep only had, depending on year, about between 20 and 60HP worth of gasoline engine with the majority or wartime production having 60HP. At capacity, considerably more than 3/4 ton, on a flat road it would only do 40 mph but, as the saying goes, it could climb a tree. Small, a tight turn radius, and narrow helps when you need to drive around obstacles and on sidewalks.

I would go for a small 1/2 ton diesel truck outfitted with a 3/4 ton rear axle. Diesel saves a lot of complication by eliminating the ignition system and diesels have become much lighter than they used to be. Something with gearing making it just capable of interstate highway speeds. Most highways are legal down to 45 or 50 mph around here but I would want at least 60 mph at half load so I can take it out on the highway before any disaster.

In an emergency the 'need for speed' is limited. After an earthquake you don't want to go flying off a broken overpass and keeping your speed at around 25 mph should increase your mileage considerably. Which further saves weight and trouble. Something with a frame. A lightweight one ton winch, rigging straps and a couple of snatch blocks should allow you to shift anything you need to.

A small trailer would add weight and save wear on the suspension. It would also allow you to bring a larger load but leave a majority behind so you can scoot up ahead and check things out. A small teardrop trailer would give you a place to sleep and keep your gear dry and relatively secure.

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#189300 - 11/27/09 12:23 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Art_in_FL]
Eugene Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/26/02
Posts: 2840
My father had a willys jeep, the old carburated engine was small but not efficient. You can't buy a 1/2 ton diesel truck, you have to get a 3/4 ton to get a diesel.
The current full size 4x4's all get over 20mpg (well the big three anyway, the japanese brands cant seem to figure out economy). Most of the mid sized v6 trucks/suv's all get about the same fuel economy, they certainly are not "gas guzzelers".


Edited by Eugene (11/27/09 12:25 PM)

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#189301 - 11/27/09 12:53 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Eugene]
Russ Offline
Geezer

Registered: 06/02/06
Posts: 5264
Loc: SOCAL
Be nice if one of the (not so) big three would market a 2.5-3 liter diesel for their small trucks such as the Ford Ranger. It would get 30+ mpg and with the standard 20 gal tanks -- 700+ miles, with a payload.
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#189302 - 11/27/09 01:17 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Russ]
Eugene Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/26/02
Posts: 2840
I think they are right that no one would buy it. The cost between a smaller truck and full size truck isn't that much anymore,if you ad the cost of a diesel to a smaller truck then its cost will be more than a full size. Thats one of the reasons I moved to a full size myself, the initial cost was about the same, economy was the same and to have room for the kids in the smaller truck I'd have to have the quad cab with the 4.5' bed where a full size I could get an extended cab with a 6' bed since the back of the extended cab was big enough to fit the child seats.

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#189310 - 11/27/09 03:27 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Art_in_FL]
Jeanette_Isabelle Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 11/13/06
Posts: 2264
Loc: Somewhere in Florida
Originally Posted By: Art_in_FL
I would think that instead of big with a gas guzzling engine you might go for something more like the old Willys Jeep. Fairly small, compact, with a small, simple, fuel efficient engine that carries a lot of weight for its size through gearing. The old Jeep only had, depending on year, about between 20 and 60HP worth of gasoline engine with the majority or wartime production having 60HP. At capacity, considerably more than 3/4 ton, on a flat road it would only do 40 mph but, as the saying goes, it could climb a tree.

I'm not a mechanic; based on what you said it sounds like it had a long stoke engine giving it ample low-end torque at minimal horse power.

Jeanette Isabelle
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#189327 - 11/27/09 08:32 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: comms]
philip Offline
Addict

Registered: 09/19/05
Posts: 639
Loc: San Francisco Bay Area
> I'm looking for am international scout or bronco, pre 1977.

It's been given away, but I had a friend who had one for sale and couldn't find a buyer (a Travelall, actually). There are no parts for them anymore except for the group of binders who make them by hand, so my friend couldn't afford to keep it running.

Check here for info on Scouts:
http://www.binderbulletin.org/

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#189338 - 11/28/09 12:43 AM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Eugene]
Art_in_FL Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 09/01/07
Posts: 2432
Originally Posted By: Eugene
My father had a willys jeep, the old carburated engine was small but not efficient. You can't buy a 1/2 ton diesel truck, you have to get a 3/4 ton to get a diesel.
The current full size 4x4's all get over 20mpg (well the big three anyway, the japanese brands cant seem to figure out economy). Most of the mid sized v6 trucks/suv's all get about the same fuel economy, they certainly are not "gas guzzelers".


By todays standard a Willys Jeep isn't fuel efficient but in its day, late 30s to very early 40s, when gas was a few cents a gallon, it was pretty competitive. I'm really not suggesting anyone get a Willys Jeep. Rather I'm suggesting that the concept of the original Jeep, a small and strong all-terrain vehicle, something Jeep forgot as their design got bloated and complex, is the right idea.

Also, while American auto companies, seemingly always behind the curve, insist that diesels only show up in large vehicles you may want to look toward small diesels, from Yanmar or Kabota perhaps, to fit into an existing small vehicle or look at something like the small end of Isuzu's light and commercial truck line as they are available with a diesel. The Elf, a light-duty commercial truck with a very good reputation for durability, is a big large by my thinking but it is a truly international truck so parts are going to be available for a very long time. Find one used and rebuilding might be the way to go.

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#189356 - 11/28/09 07:32 AM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Art_in_FL]
UpstateTom Offline
Member

Registered: 10/05/09
Posts: 165
Loc: Rens. County, NY
The Dodge Sprinter looks like it could make a great survival vehicle, but it's not inexpensive, and it isn't available in the US with the 4 cylinder diesel, just the 6.

A long wheelbase Jeep, like an M170, with a small air cooled engine, like a 20HP Honda, a big gas tank, and a synchronized transmission, would be nice. Light weight, no bells and whistles except manual 4WD, and a tiny but modern engine for quiet running and long range.

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#189361 - 11/28/09 09:54 AM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: philip]
James_Van_Artsdalen Offline
Addict

Registered: 09/13/07
Posts: 449
Loc: Texas
Originally Posted By: philip

We live in the San Francisco Bay Area, and we expect a major earthquake followed by an even more major fire (as all the gas mains and water mains will be broken by the quake).

How far do you need to go? I've always thought of earthquakes as fairly localized events: moving a dozen miles in stage 1 evac - in the right direction! - should get you out of the path of initial fires started by the earthquake, and another dozen miles out of any later after-affect fires, etc, and from there it's mainly a matter of getting far enough away to be get able to get supplies (gas, food, lodging) normally & wait for the the OK to return.

A fast truck is useless: you want a diesel that is efficient at speeds under 5 mph, and at idle, because that's all you'll achieve when a million people are also evacuating on the same road.

There won't be any fuel left at the gas station by the time you get there so you go as far as you let your tank run down before the earthquake. A big tank you let run down to the last 5 gallons goes as far as a small tank run down to the last five gallons...

A good set of up-to-date road maps, with several pre-selected routes based on which direction you need to evac, and "practicing" each along with candidate detours, is probably more important than which vehicle. Make sure it has a good radio.

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#189363 - 11/28/09 11:55 AM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Art_in_FL]
Eugene Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/26/02
Posts: 2840
Originally Posted By: Art_in_FL


By todays standard a Willys Jeep isn't fuel efficient but in its day, late 30s to very early 40s, when gas was a few cents a gallon, it was pretty competitive. I'm really not suggesting anyone get a Willys Jeep. Rather I'm suggesting that the concept of the original Jeep, a small and strong all-terrain vehicle, something Jeep forgot as their design got bloated and complex, is the right idea.

Also, while American auto companies, seemingly always behind the curve, insist that diesels only show up in large vehicles you may want to look toward small diesels, from Yanmar or Kabota perhaps, to fit into an existing small vehicle or look at something like the small end of Isuzu's light and commercial truck line as they are available with a diesel. The Elf, a light-duty commercial truck with a very good reputation for durability, is a big large by my thinking but it is a truly international truck so parts are going to be available for a very long time. Find one used and rebuilding might be the way to go.


I was looking at building up a nice small truck fora while, cummins 4b engine in an s10, etc. But it would have taken a long time to find and assemble all the parts then if I ever did need parts more hunting around to find them. Those Yanmar, Kobota, Isuzu your going to have the same problem, parts will be special order.
I found the American trucks with their gas mileage rivaling a small diesel were ahead of the curve enough and available everywhere with supplies and parts everywhere so I could have a working BOV now rather than sometime in the future when I could finish building it. I spent many hours just on R&D trying to make a comparable small truck, now I can concentrate on other survival supplies.

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#189370 - 11/28/09 02:20 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: James_Van_Artsdalen]
hikermor Offline
Geezer in Chief
Geezer

Registered: 08/26/06
Posts: 7144
Loc: southern Cal
The questions you raise are the reason my earthquake strategy centers on shelter in place/rally round the old homestead techniques, although we do have to be prepared to deal with fires and infrastructure disruption.

Although earthquakes are relatively localized, the infrastructure effects can be more widespread and this increases exponentially with greater magnitudes.
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#189375 - 11/28/09 03:32 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: hikermor]
7point82 Offline
Addict

Registered: 11/24/05
Posts: 478
Loc: Oklahoma
The primary drawback I see to a specialized bug out vehicle is that you can't count on it unless it is your daily driver. Like everything else I'm sure this is highly variable based on everyone's specific lifestyle but out here in the middle of nowhere you're unlikely to get a chance to run home or to storage or where ever you keep your BOV.

I had a family emergency pop up last night while I was on my way to a late dinner at a local restaurant. I needed to get out of town and on my way ASAP. The supplies that live in my daily driver and having more than half a tank of gas were the keys to responding to the issue effectively.

That said, the Mad Max mobiles are always fun to think about. grin
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#189386 - 11/28/09 07:43 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: James_Van_Artsdalen]
philip Offline
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Registered: 09/19/05
Posts: 639
Loc: San Francisco Bay Area
Originally Posted By: James_Van_Artsdalen

How far do you need to go? I've always thought of earthquakes as fairly localized events: moving a dozen miles in stage 1 evac - in the right direction! - should get you out of the path of initial fires started by the earthquake, and another dozen miles out of any later after-affect fires, etc, and from there it's mainly a matter of getting far enough away to be get able to get supplies (gas, food, lodging) normally & wait for the the OK to return.


There are problems. Unlike Texas, I basically have only one escape route: south. I live on a peninsula:
http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&sour...mp;t=h&z=11
The San Andreas fault is just to the west of 280 on that map, and I live near 101. 101 is crossed by overpasses, so getting a dozen miles is a problem if there are collapses of overpasses. 92 could get me west if it's overpasses haven't collapsed onto the city streets below it. Going over the San Mateo Bridge to the East Bay would be a scary thought after a major quake, even if the bridge is still standing. The city streets have over and underpasses from east/west highways and the north/south train and freeways. Think if trying to get out of New Orleans.

We have a cargo van with a month's worth of stuff in it, and my hope is that we can drive south or north out of a fire's path, but with broken gas mains and fires, you never can tell, given the number of over and under passes in our area (including the train tracks that serve San Francisco from all points south). But basically our goal is to shelter in place for a month and hope that we can be evacuated during that time - think New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. ("Wait for the OK to return"? Think again of Katrina. If our town is leveled by fire or quake, I don't bet on it ever being restored to its former glory.)

Our issue is that we don't have a 360-degree evacuation zone. It's one degree - south. Having a Mad Max vehicle that can drive over a collapsed structure is a nice daydream, though.

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#189392 - 11/28/09 10:52 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: philip]
James_Van_Artsdalen Offline
Addict

Registered: 09/13/07
Posts: 449
Loc: Texas
You need one of these: Schwimmwagen!

San Francisco would be rebuilt. It was rebuilt after 1906, as was Galveston after 1900. Katrina and New Orleans are a different kind of problem and can't really be compared to any other situation in the US.

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#189397 - 11/29/09 12:17 AM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: James_Van_Artsdalen]
Susan Offline
Geezer

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 5163
Loc: W. WA
I used to live in San Jose, CA, and the thought of trying to get out of SF after a major quake makes my stomach queasy just thinking about it. It would probably be more of a nightmare than I can even imagine, and I have a really good imagination.

Peninsula with only one direction out, part of the area built on fill (add water and jiggle), peninsula with major tidal surge hitting it from both sides, over 17,000 people per square mile, overpasses every half-mile, and the way out empties into Santa Clara County, which is almost as densely populated as SF, and it would probably have as much damage as SF but over five times the area.

Philip, you have my sympathy on trying to plan for that. Make sure you have several pairs of sturdy boots and a belt that carries a lot of water. And an AK-47 or something would be nice, too.

Sue

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#189399 - 11/29/09 12:38 AM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: James_Van_Artsdalen]
UncleGoo Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 12/06/06
Posts: 377
Loc: CT
Another Schwimmwagen...price on request...
http://www.forzamotorsports.com/scwim1/default.htm

Edit: standard disclaimer...


Edited by UncleGoo (11/29/09 02:59 PM)
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#189404 - 11/29/09 04:13 AM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Susan]
philip Offline
Addict

Registered: 09/19/05
Posts: 639
Loc: San Francisco Bay Area
:-) Nah, we'll be alright. No guns necessary, as they weren't in New Orleans. I figure we'll have rescuers in within a month, so our food and clothing will see us through if our van doesn't get trapped in a fire. And since it's parked near our condo, they'll both go up in flames.

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#189405 - 11/29/09 04:14 AM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: James_Van_Artsdalen]
philip Offline
Addict

Registered: 09/19/05
Posts: 639
Loc: San Francisco Bay Area
> Katrina and New Orleans are a different kind of problem and can't really be
> compared to any other situation in the US.

Why is that?

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#189440 - 11/29/09 07:09 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: philip]
MostlyHarmless Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 06/03/09
Posts: 982
Loc: Norway
Originally Posted By: philip

There are problems. Unlike Texas, I basically have only one escape route: south. I live on a peninsula:


The schwimwagen ("swimming car") is a hilarious proposal, but it made me thinking. I don't know if a boat is a viable option for you? Unless you enjoy boating it would be another of those "better to have it and not need it" - items, but get far less attention than a schwimwagen....


An 17 foot boat can easily transport loads of gear and about 5 people, and is still small enough to be transported on a regular trailer pulled by an ordinary car. You would need to have some arrangements on your destination, such as friends coming to pick you up. You also need good weather forecasts - you don't want to be surprised by bad weather in a 17-footer, particular when loaded to maximum capacity.


It would give you another option to your 1-month bug-out plan: If staying around gets frustrating after a while, you still have the option of using your boat to get basically anywhere within your fuel capacity range. Which is FAR...

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#189442 - 11/29/09 08:54 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: MostlyHarmless]
wildman800 Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 11/09/06
Posts: 2818
Loc: La-USA
I think that what you are suggesting would be a 17 ft "Vest Pocket Cruiser".

The "Vest Pocket Cruiser" is a sail boat that is easily trailerable, has a cuddy cabin for 2 adults or 3 very close friends, plus room for food, water, and additional gear to be stored. They are great for gunkholing over a weekend!!

The Sovereign 5.0 is an excellent example of a vest pocket cruiser with amenities.

Hunter makes a 19 ft hybrid hull (can be a motor boat or a sail boat) with many amenities for 2 - 4 persons.

My experience has been that a weekend is the max amount of time that MORE THAN 2 people can normally stand to be on most small boats.
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#189458 - 11/30/09 12:42 AM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: wildman800]
Susan Offline
Geezer

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 5163
Loc: W. WA
I think trying to take a trailered boat through the debris after a major quake would be a joke, and not a very funny one. I would bet that getting a 4WD fifty miles south would be a real trick.

And having a boat on water soon after a quake... uh... no, thanks. Even if it didn't cause a tsunami, the probable multiple aftershocks would make rough going. Not to mention all the debris in the water.

Helicopter?

Sue


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#189467 - 11/30/09 01:58 AM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Susan]
wildman800 Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 11/09/06
Posts: 2818
Loc: La-USA
One doesn't feel earthquakes when on the water.
A tsunami only poses a threat to boats in shallow waters.

I've sailed through New Madrid, Mo many times while little shakers were occurring and we never felt a thing. We only knew that shakers had occurred because I check the USGS Earthquake site.
_________________________
QMC, USCG (Ret)
The best luck is what you make yourself!

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#189472 - 11/30/09 03:34 AM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: wildman800]
UpstateTom Offline
Member

Registered: 10/05/09
Posts: 165
Loc: Rens. County, NY
I wasn't going to suggest it, because it sounds like a joke, but what about one or two ultralight aircraft? Pretty sure some will take off in 100 feet or so, and give you up to 100 miles or so range.

On the downside, they're very much fair weather only, a little dangerous, and you can't carry any gear to speak of. But to get off a virtual island, out of a wrecked urban area and to your suburban/mainland cache, they could be just the ticket.



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#189485 - 11/30/09 05:29 AM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Eugene]
Mark_M Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 11/19/09
Posts: 295
Loc: New Jersey
Originally Posted By: Eugene
I think they are right that no one would buy it. The cost between a smaller truck and full size truck isn't that much anymore,if you ad the cost of a diesel to a smaller truck then its cost will be more than a full size.

Take a look at the newer, high-efficiency diesel engines from Volkswagen and others. Even coupled with low-ratio gears and less slipstreamed form factor of a small 4WD pickup or SUV and you could probably still get much better MPG's than any gasoline powered models. They are not big on HP, but then again, 4-cylinder SUV's like the Jeep Wrangler and Suzuki Samari still make capable off-road vehicles in most conditions you would want to deal with in a survival situation.

I'd love to own a Sportsmobile. But for the same $120k I could get a pretty nice diesel-pusher RV. Not as flexible in an emergency escape situation, but great range and long-term capabilities.

Probably the ultimate survival vehicle is a dual-purpose motorcycle with full luggage options. Good range, decent carrying capability, on/off-road capable, can easily weave around most obstacles. Only room for two, you would have to sleep in tents, and be subjected to cold/rain. But if I had to escape a sudden disaster in my area, probably my only chance at rapid evacuation will be on a bike, as the roads will be hopelessly clogged with other escapees.

Plus they are just fun to ride. grin
_________________________
2010 Jeep JKU Rubicon | 35" KM2 & 4" Lift | Skids | Winch | Recovery Gear | More ...
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#189488 - 11/30/09 06:05 AM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Art_in_FL]
Mark_M Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 11/19/09
Posts: 295
Loc: New Jersey
Originally Posted By: Art_in_FL
I'm really not suggesting anyone get a Willys Jeep. Rather I'm suggesting that the concept of the original Jeep, a small and strong all-terrain vehicle, something Jeep forgot as their design got bloated and complex, is the right idea.

Of all the vehicles I own or have recently owned, my 2000 Jeep XJ (Cherokee, original boxy shape) is my favorite. We're the 3rd owner and it's got over 150,000 miles, but it still is a wonderfully reliable vehicle. It is, for me, the perfect balance of capability and capacity. I can easily fit four adults plus enough gear and supplies to be self-sufficient in the wilderness for two weeks. I have taken it over muddy, mountainous logging roads and fire breaks, through deep mud and snow, and over loose sand and slickrock. It is all factory original, including its original 4.0L I6 engine, AW4 transmission and stock axles, rims and suspension. It is also reasonably fuel efficient, as far as 6-cylinder SUV's go, averaging around 18MPG. Though by no means luxurious, it is comfortable even on long trips. I got it for my son and neither of us have any regrets.

In fact, when the lease is up on my Nissan Pathfinder, I hope to find another XJ in good condition so I can have one of my own.

Originally Posted By: Art_in_FL
Also, while American auto companies, seemingly always behind the curve, insist that diesels only show up in large vehicles

I don't know if I blame Detroit for that problem. American consumers are not big fans of diesel vehicles. They don't like the smell or the smoke or the noise (even though these issues are practically non-existent with current generation engines, the memories persist). They associate diesel with big, dirty and scary trucks and construction equipment, and can't perceive smaller, fuel- and emissions-efficient diesel vehicles. They don't like the cold-weather maintenance issues. They don't like the price and availability (although these would probably improve if there was a bigger market).

The US government also tends to be anti-diesel. US laws forced most auto makers to stop importing most diesel cars and trucks. Only recently, with the introduction of small, high-efficiency designs, are some foreign car makers re-entering the US market. But if you travel outside of the US, you will see huge percentage of cars and small trucks use diesel.

In a disaster situation I think a diesel-powered vehicle would be an advantage. Most people will be looking for gasoline, so diesel might be available at gas stations and truck stops after gasoline stocks are depleted. Large trucks would be land-locked due to obstacles and traffic sooner than family autos, and can be scavenged for fuel. Construction sites and farms are potential sources of fuel. Heating oil is the same as diesel. You can use vegetable oils, even waste cooking oil (with lots of filtering), in warmer weather.
_________________________
2010 Jeep JKU Rubicon | 35" KM2 & 4" Lift | Skids | Winch | Recovery Gear | More ...
'13 Wheeling: 8 Camping: 6 | "The trail was rated 5+ and our rigs were -1" -Evan@LIORClub

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#189489 - 11/30/09 08:53 AM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Susan]
MostlyHarmless Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 06/03/09
Posts: 982
Loc: Norway
Originally Posted By: Susan
I think trying to take a trailered boat through the debris after a major quake would be a joke, and not a very funny one. I would bet that getting a 4WD fifty miles south would be a real trick.


This was suggested for someone who lives on a peninsula. Lots of possible access routes to water. Only ONE direction out on land (and that one will probably be clogged due to the collapse of numerous overpasses). And as his main plan is to stay put for 30 days, he can make use of that time to explore possible routes.


Originally Posted By: Susan

And having a boat on water soon after a quake... uh... no, thanks. Even if it didn't cause a tsunami, the probable multiple aftershocks would make rough going. Not to mention all the debris in the water.


Again, this was suggested as a separate "bail-out" option for someone intended to wait out for 30 days. Debris may or may not be a problem, but after shocks shouldn't.


The boat I had in mind was a small day cruiser. A sailboat will be self-sustainable for longer periods, but the trade-off for a day cruiser is that you cover longer distances in a short time. The range is limited to how much fuel you carry. The main trade-off is their load capacity: You can't load the boat more than its rated capacity, or you won't get to economical cruising speeds. You can have 5-6 persons and the most critical gear + fuel, or 2-4 persons and lots of gear & fuel.


This will only be an option if
a) You have access to weather forecast. You need good conditions, not only for safety but also for speed. Weather radio solves this.

b) You have - or can make - arrangements at your destination. Either you go to an unharmed port, or you make arrangements for someone to pick you up somewhere. If you're willing to write off the boat any beach will do. Anyway, you need communications to make those arrangements. Or at the very least, you need updated information of how far you need to go to reach help.


c) You're willing to take the burden of maintaining the boat and using it enough to be familiar with its operation.

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#189490 - 11/30/09 11:41 AM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: philip]
James_Van_Artsdalen Offline
Addict

Registered: 09/13/07
Posts: 449
Loc: Texas
The Schwimmwagen was definitely a joke. I can't imagine taking one into the Pacific, even a few hundred feet, at a time & in sea conditions not of my choosing ... we're talking about a plan for when an earthquake happens, not necessarily on a bright & sunny day.

Originally Posted By: philip
> Katrina and New Orleans are a different kind of problem and can't really be
> compared to any other situation in the US.

Why is that?

You're going to get me in trouble with Martin. Read up on the local response efforts after Katerina there, and then the response by local officials after *any* other civil disaster in US history.

San Francisco Civil Defense has been thinking about this for a long time, and has a recent example to work with in Loma Prieta.

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#189509 - 11/30/09 04:37 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Mark_M]
Eugene Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/26/02
Posts: 2840
Originally Posted By: Mark_M
Originally Posted By: Eugene
I think they are right that no one would buy it. The cost between a smaller truck and full size truck isn't that much anymore,if you ad the cost of a diesel to a smaller truck then its cost will be more than a full size.

Take a look at the newer, high-efficiency diesel engines from Volkswagen and others. Even coupled with low-ratio gears and less slipstreamed form factor of a small 4WD pickup or SUV and you could probably still get much better MPG's than any gasoline powered models. They are not big on HP, but then again, 4-cylinder SUV's like the Jeep Wrangler and Suzuki Samari still make capable off-road vehicles in most conditions you would want to deal with in a survival situation.

I'd love to own a Sportsmobile. But for the same $120k I could get a pretty nice diesel-pusher RV. Not as flexible in an emergency escape situation, but great range and long-term capabilities.

Probably the ultimate survival vehicle is a dual-purpose motorcycle with full luggage options. Good range, decent carrying capability, on/off-road capable, can easily weave around most obstacles. Only room for two, you would have to sleep in tents, and be subjected to cold/rain. But if I had to escape a sudden disaster in my area, probably my only chance at rapid evacuation will be on a bike, as the roads will be hopelessly clogged with other escapees.

Plus they are just fun to ride. grin


I'm in the USA though so those small high efficient diesels are not available from Volkswagen and others as they just can;t sell enough to make it worth their while to import them. Sure its nice to have an idea of what would be ideal but I needed somehting availbale now for while I dreamed about ideal so I chose what was the best available then wait to see what happens.

Dual purpose motorcycle won;t work yet with a family of 4 which is one of the reasons I went with the extended cab truck, has enough seat space for 4, the unfortunate issue with the small trucks to be able to put child seats in the rear you need the ful quad/4 door cab which means the short 4.5' bed (Nissan attemped a quad cab with 6' bed but forgot to make the frame strong enough for the extra length). Some of the newer smaller extended cab trucks do have forward facing rear seats but those didn't fit car seats well (larger safer ones like Britax) and can't fit a person in between them (we load up 6 people in my truck when we go out with the grandparents).

Cost is another thing, the few Diesels that companies like VW do import into the us are priced way above the cost of a comparable vehicle and are coupled to a "luxury" SUV where you can buy a pickup truck, diesel or gas, for much less price, and without a bunch of leather, cupholders and dvd players.

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#189514 - 11/30/09 05:33 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Eugene]
Jeanette_Isabelle Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 11/13/06
Posts: 2264
Loc: Somewhere in Florida
The best bug out a vehicle is the one you currently own or have access to. Sure we can dream about the ideal vehicle (such as a compact to mid-size sedan with a low horse power, high low-end torque engine, a stick shift and big tires) but it won't do us any good, we don't have it.

Jeanette Isabelle
_________________________
“Trust me, this is not gonna end well!” — Pleakley, Lilo & Stitch

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#189517 - 11/30/09 06:01 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Jeanette_Isabelle]
Eugene Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/26/02
Posts: 2840
Thats what I was trying to get at. My ideal of a small 4cyl diesel truck is probably the same thing Mark is thinking but not currently available for sale so I picjed what was available.
I had some plans drawn up and some parts in the garage and a small truck that was going to be the start. I sold it slightly upside down on the loan after realizing that I still had at while to go to pay it off before I could really start on it, then strip it down to get the frame work done, etc. Was a long way off from a finished project.

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#189534 - 11/30/09 07:29 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Eugene]
comms Offline
Veteran

Registered: 07/23/08
Posts: 1502
Loc: Mesa, AZ
I have done some of the research on this online so I know its out there, but a simple web search will show several forums that discuss converting vehicle engines from gas to diesel. I mean that you are replacing the engine.

Obviously there needs to be some compatibility involved and these guys do talk about that.

_________________________
Don't just survive. Thrive.

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#189537 - 11/30/09 07:53 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: comms]
Eugene Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/26/02
Posts: 2840
Thats something I looked into, apparently the cummins 4b engines will bolt right up to GM transmissions.

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#189554 - 11/30/09 08:49 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: MostlyHarmless]
philip Offline
Addict

Registered: 09/19/05
Posts: 639
Loc: San Francisco Bay Area
> c) You're willing to take the burden of maintaining the boat and using it enough
> to be familiar with its operation.

That's one among many problems. We have no place to keep a boat - we live in a condo in a planned community which prohibits leaving boats, trailers, even vehicles in the common parking area (the half dozen spaces are reserved for visitors since each unit has two parking spaces). We live on the other side of 101 from the Bay, and there's no guarantee that we could get to a launching point on the Bay, although we're within walking distance if the overpasses are up. Slips at marinas anywhere on the Bay cost an arm and a leg. Having a boat is having a hole in the water into which one pours money. We can justify the van for emergencies since we use it for camping and for volunteer ham radio events around the Bay Area, along with just plain transportation. Justifying owning a boat year-round is tougher, since we never use a boat. Maintenance and slip rentals are a definite burden; using it enough to maintain competence is a problem. Arrangements at the destination are a problem: what do we do after we walk away from our boat? At least at home we've got a month's worth of supplies (assuming we survive without having everything burn up). On the other side of the Bay we're just another couple out of thousands of stranded refugees vying for food and lodging.

The problems of survival in a catastrophe are manifold, and they're particular to each person's situation. Three people died of hypothermia this past weekend in two separate boating accidents where the boats overturned. Water temperatures were in the 50s, and you die fairly quickly. Of four people in the water, only one lived.

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#189560 - 11/30/09 09:19 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: philip]
Todd W Offline
Product Tester
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 11/14/04
Posts: 1928
Loc: Mountains of CA
Something like this:
http://jalopnik.com/assets/resources/2008/02/Sportsmobile_Buji.jpg

With a diesel engine in it.

Get one with a raised top and it adds more storage.

Huge fuel tanks, decent gas mileage, can live in it essentially too.

I wouldn't want to tow anything through the debris of a wrecked city. A 4x4 will help, and you can add larger tires likethat one to help ab it too.

_________________________
Self Sufficient Home - Our journey to self sufficiency.

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#189565 - 11/30/09 09:47 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Eugene]
comms Offline
Veteran

Registered: 07/23/08
Posts: 1502
Loc: Mesa, AZ
Originally Posted By: Eugene
Thats something I looked into, apparently the cummins 4b engines will bolt right up to GM transmissions.


Exactly.
_________________________
Don't just survive. Thrive.

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#189591 - 12/01/09 02:45 AM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: James_Van_Artsdalen]
UpstateTom Offline
Member

Registered: 10/05/09
Posts: 165
Loc: Rens. County, NY
Originally Posted By: James_Van_Artsdalen
The Schwimmwagen was definitely a joke. I can't imagine taking one into the Pacific, even a few hundred feet, at a time & in sea conditions not of my choosing ... we're talking about a plan for when an earthquake happens, not necessarily on a bright & sunny day.

It may only be half a joke - pun intended. An Australian named Ben Carlin took an amphibious jeep completely around the world.

http://members.iinet.net.au/~daveb/halfsafe/halfsafe.html

One of my favorite quotes is from Burt Rutan, and is along the lines of "if half the people aren't sure you're crazy, you're doing something wrong."

What about a zodiac and a fold up trailer in a small rented storage shed? Just thinking of escape here, not something for long term survival by itself.

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#189592 - 12/01/09 02:53 AM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: comms]
Susan Offline
Geezer

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 5163
Loc: W. WA
Maybe this is the answer to your evacuation...

http://neoterichovercraft.com/

Sue

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#189593 - 12/01/09 02:54 AM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: wildman800]
Susan Offline
Geezer

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 5163
Loc: W. WA
"I've sailed through New Madrid, Mo many times while little shakers were occurring and we never felt a thing."

How about a 6.5 aftershock?

Sue

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#189612 - 12/01/09 11:05 AM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Susan]
wildman800 Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 11/09/06
Posts: 2818
Loc: La-USA
The water will be affected when something slides into the water or if there is a large vertical slip strike under the water.

During the 1812 earthquake, the river flowed north for 3 days. That occurred because the area, now known as "Reelfoot Lake", suddenly sank, and it took the river 3 days to fill what is now the lake.

The Tsunami of 2004 was caused by a massive vertical slip strike under the Indian Ocean.
_________________________
QMC, USCG (Ret)
The best luck is what you make yourself!

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#197692 - 03/10/10 09:03 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Eugene]
Wesley Offline
Stranger

Registered: 03/07/10
Posts: 4
Here is a link for a wood fired Turbine engine. . .if you could just easily incorporate it into a hybrid!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E-8BX7dUk5c



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#198290 - 03/18/10 04:45 AM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Wesley]
firefly99 Offline
Journeyman

Registered: 05/28/06
Posts: 58
Why live in or near an earthquake zone ? To make matter worse, a place with a complicated road network of overpass, underpass, etc. But only one southern exit.

Why bother about getting any sort of vehicles ? At best the vehicle is just a storage shed on wheel. That is your condo building does not crushed it after a big quake. The vehicle is not likely to help you move far from disaster zone due to fallen overpass or broken road.

You are in a lose - lose situation.

If you prefer to stay where you are, it may be a better idea to pre-setup 2 supplies location eg. 10miles & 50miles away from your home. Then invest in a good pair of hiking boots and hike out of the disaster zone after a big quake. Proceed to your nearest re-supplies location.







Edited by firefly99 (03/18/10 04:56 AM)

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#198322 - 03/18/10 03:29 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: firefly99]
philip Offline
Addict

Registered: 09/19/05
Posts: 639
Loc: San Francisco Bay Area
> You are in a lose - lose situation.

You're right. I'll just die. Problems solved.

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#198327 - 03/18/10 04:37 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: philip]
Yuccahead Offline
Member

Registered: 07/24/08
Posts: 199
Loc: W. Texas
Originally Posted By: philip
> You are in a lose - lose situation.

You're right. I'll just die. Problems solved.


Well said.
_________________________
-- David.

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#198328 - 03/18/10 04:50 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Yuccahead]
JohnE Offline
Addict

Registered: 06/10/08
Posts: 601
Loc: Southern Cal
Philip, have you prepared your will...;^)

If you can out of that hellhole called San Francisco, I'll give you a hand here in SoCal if I can.


_________________________
JohnE

"and all the lousy little poets
comin round
tryin' to sound like Charlie Manson"

The Future/Leonard Cohen


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#198329 - 03/18/10 05:56 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Wesley]
BrianEagle Offline
Newbie

Registered: 02/27/10
Posts: 27
Loc: Northern Texas
Awesome link! It's great that we still have a lot of down-to-earth R&D being done in local garages, schools, and backyards.

Throwing lots of dollars/pounds/euros/yen at problems isn't always the answer.
_________________________
Formerly known as BrianTexas. I just couldn't remember my old password and had to create a new profile.

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#198339 - 03/18/10 07:50 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: BrianEagle]
Susan Offline
Geezer

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 5163
Loc: W. WA
Yesterday, I found myself following a Dodge Sprinter down the freeway. I would dearly have loved to see how they had the inside set up, as the OUTSIDE was quite an eyeful!

Canoe and one of those pod things on top, some pole things (awning, tent?) strapped to one side (fasteners installed), and something in a longish, narrowish canvas wrap on the opposite side, two bicycles on the back. Everything but potted plants and a lawn.

I've always thought those Sprinters looked like they had more head room than most (good for bunks or storage), and I know many of the dog show people use them because they can stack crates in them, but they look kind of susceptible to wind.

Thoughts? Not that I could afford one... Just a mental exercise.

Sue

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#198342 - 03/18/10 08:24 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Susan]
LED Offline
Veteran

Registered: 09/01/05
Posts: 1474
I agree, the Sprinter is a really nice van and comes in lots of different configurations. Its actually a 100% Mercedes van with a Dodge emblem.

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#198377 - 03/19/10 01:52 AM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: LED]
MoBOB Offline
Veteran

Registered: 09/17/07
Posts: 1219
Loc: here
Susan, I think they would be useful. The wind will cause some problems. But it should be manageable. If you wanted to stay in the same vein, but smaller, check out the Ford Transit Connect.

Standard Disclaimer.

_________________________
"Its not a matter of being ready as it is being prepared" -- B. E. J. Taylor

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#198430 - 03/19/10 12:19 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: MoBOB]
oldsoldier Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 11/25/06
Posts: 742
Loc: MA
I have an 06 jeep wrangler, which I have outfitted for short term survival, just in case. Essentially, it is a bug out vehicle for me. I bought a seat cover, that has MOLLE straps & pouches on the back, which I have stuffed with all kinds of gear. I have a Swedish army stove, a sleeping bag, an E-tool, a saw, knife, emergency blankets, extensive FAK, fishing gear, and a bunch of energy bars & ramen packages, as well as instant coffee, stuffed in there. When I add my hking kit, which is always packed (unless I am drying it out), I pretty much have everything I need in the event I need to get out quick. I dont ever really foresee a need to do that, but I HAVE spent a night or two out when out four wheeling, just for fun.
_________________________
my adventures

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#198440 - 03/19/10 01:51 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Susan]
Eugene Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/26/02
Posts: 2840
Originally Posted By: Susan
Everything but potted plants and a lawn.
Sue


They usually carry those inside. smile

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#198442 - 03/19/10 02:15 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Eugene]
Compugeek Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 08/09/09
Posts: 392
Loc: San Diego, CA
Originally Posted By: Eugene
Originally Posted By: Susan
Everything but potted plants and a lawn.
Sue


They usually carry those inside. smile


Huh. And I always thought lawn chairs were for PEOPLE.
_________________________
Okey-dokey. What's plan B?

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#198455 - 03/19/10 03:48 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Compugeek]
Eugene Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/26/02
Posts: 2840
No, they carry the lawn. You can buy these big rolls of green plastic "carpet" and then roll it out once your rv is parked and put your plants and chairs on top.

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#198458 - 03/19/10 04:13 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: MostlyHarmless]
RobertRogers Offline
Survivor
Member

Registered: 12/12/06
Posts: 198
My feeling is that basic survival gear will fit into the saddle bags of a motorcycle. With a motorcycle you can more easily cut across lots, weave around clogged traffic, and get out of Dodge while the car and truck drivers are honking horns in gridlock.
_________________________
FireSteel.com

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#198464 - 03/19/10 06:59 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: RobertRogers]
oldsoldier Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 11/25/06
Posts: 742
Loc: MA
Motorcycles dont work well in 2' of snow-which is something I may have to contend with. OTherwise, I agree with you smile
_________________________
my adventures

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#198466 - 03/19/10 07:44 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: oldsoldier]
ILBob Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 02/05/10
Posts: 776
Loc: Northern IL
Originally Posted By: oldsoldier
Motorcycles dont work well in 2' of snow-which is something I may have to contend with. OTherwise, I agree with you smile

The only vehicle you are likely to have access to that works in 2' of snow is a snowmobile, and it has some serious limitations.

I am not convinced there is a perfect vehicle for GOOD. I think 4WD is good, as is above average ground clearance. Probably better to have a smaller rather than a larger vehicle in case you need to maneuver in tight spaces. More on board fuel carrying capacity is good. A roof rack gives you a lot of flexibility with cargo carrying. A vehicle has protection from the elements (and at least some from 2 legged predators) that is not available on a motorcycle. But a motorcycle does have flexibility that other vehicles do not have on just where you can take it.



_________________________
Warning - I am not an expert on anything having to do with this forum, but that won't stop me from saying what I think. smile

Bob

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#198480 - 03/20/10 01:39 AM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: ILBob]
Susan Offline
Geezer

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 5163
Loc: W. WA
I can't think of too many situations where you would have to bug out (from home) in sub-freezing weather. The conditions that would be a problem for you would also be a problems for others who might be causing you problems. Keep 'em outside long enough, let 'em freeze, then drag them off to feed to the coyotes and bears.

Sue

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#198823 - 03/24/10 03:23 AM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: JohnE]
philip Offline
Addict

Registered: 09/19/05
Posts: 639
Loc: San Francisco Bay Area
> If you can out of that hellhole called San Francisco, I'll give you a hand here
> in SoCal if I can.

The only place that rattles more the SF? No, thanks!

:->

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#198858 - 03/24/10 02:39 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Susan]
oldsoldier Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 11/25/06
Posts: 742
Loc: MA
Originally Posted By: Susan
I can't think of too many situations where you would have to bug out (from home) in sub-freezing weather. The conditions that would be a problem for you would also be a problems for others who might be causing you problems. Keep 'em outside long enough, let 'em freeze, then drag them off to feed to the coyotes and bears.

Sue


Thats my plan for a zombie attack, in a nutshell.
_________________________
my adventures

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#198861 - 03/24/10 03:10 PM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Susan]
Eugene Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/26/02
Posts: 2840
Originally Posted By: Susan
I can't think of too many situations where you would have to bug out (from home) in sub-freezing weather. The conditions that would be a problem for you would also be a problems for others who might be causing you problems. Keep 'em outside long enough, let 'em freeze, then drag them off to feed to the coyotes and bears.

Sue


We had an ice storm here a few years ago that knocked down a lot of power lines. A lot of peole had to bug out to a hotel for a week to have a warm place to stay in the freezing weather.

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#198898 - 03/25/10 12:07 AM Re: Survival in vehicles [Re: Eugene]
Byrd_Huntr Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 01/28/10
Posts: 1174
Loc: MN, Land O' Lakes & Rivers ...
Originally Posted By: Eugene
Originally Posted By: Susan
I can't think of too many situations where you would have to bug out (from home) in sub-freezing weather. The conditions that would be a problem for you would also be a problems for others who might be causing you problems. Keep 'em outside long enough, let 'em freeze, then drag them off to feed to the coyotes and bears.

Sue


We had an ice storm here a few years ago that knocked down a lot of power lines. A lot of peole had to bug out to a hotel for a week to have a warm place to stay in the freezing weather.


Here's another example:


"The Three Mile Island Nuclear Power Plant near Harrisburg, Pennsylvania was the site of America's worst commercial nuclear accident. On March 28, 1979, a combination of technical malfunctions and human error caused the reactor core of Unit Two to melt, releasing radioactivity and forcing the evacuation of thousands of local residents"..................

If I remember right, the total number of displaced people hit 140,000. You never know.


Attachments
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_________________________
The man got the powr but the byrd got the wyng

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