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#202611 - 05/29/10 02:00 AM Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF?
The_Urbivalist Offline
Stranger

Registered: 05/26/10
Posts: 6
Loc: Southern California
In addition to rotating my perishables, my current focus has been trying to think of the best items to stockpile for possible barter.

In addition to food and precious metals, what are the best items to have for a possible bartering situation? Items that are small and can be stored in bulk etc...what has everyone else been stockpiling PURELY for barter purposes?
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www.the-urban-survivalist.com

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#202614 - 05/29/10 03:26 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: The_Urbivalist]
Richlacal Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 02/11/10
Posts: 778
Loc: Los Angeles, CA
Since you are also in So.Cal,I would suggest Good .22 Ammo,such as CCI-Velocitor.It normally retails for about $5-8 per box of 50,If...You can find it!The Pasadena,Ventura, OC&Ontario gunshows sell out of this same stuff,Usually the 1st day,though the prices are much lower than retail,$3-4 Usually.Re-loading supplies,i.e. Brass,primers,& Powder& Lead,are also Huge sellers,& tough to come by,as of late,At least in Central L.A. County!Whole Powdered milk has,Steadily been climbing in price,& quality/taste have gone down,as well as some Major brands are not to be found anymore.Nido by Nestle co. is about the only decent tasting Whole milk powder,Presently!Cream of Wheat/Rice & Malto-meal are at an All time high in price.Honey is/and will always be appealing to everyone,& is getting up there in price.Honey stores practically, Forever!Merino Wool Anything, is an Xlnt thing to have!Good Socks are Always Welcomed!Turkish Cotton Towels-400 thread count are sought by the elite.There is an active thread going right now,for Lodge Cast Ironware,of which is the very best thing going for "Precious"metals,Remember You can't eat/nor cook on Gold/Silver,well I wouldn't recommend it anyhow! Just some suggestions,Good Luck!

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#202615 - 05/29/10 03:34 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: The_Urbivalist]
Art_in_FL Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 09/01/07
Posts: 2432
I don't stock anything specifically for barter. But it has to be noted that if things get bad enough virtually anything might be attractive. Food and water would be needed by everyone. Of course, if things get bad enough, at least for some initial interval, until systems find things they can trade with, barter may not be entirely practical because so many have little or nothing to trade in return. People living hand-to-mouth with little other property lack the wherewithal to participate.


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#202617 - 05/29/10 03:39 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Richlacal]
MoBOB Offline
Veteran

Registered: 09/17/07
Posts: 1219
Loc: here
Hammers, nails, tarps, handsaws for structure fixing; hygiene items (esp TP), blankets, flashlights, batteries, rope/cordage, hand-crank radios.

Plenty of these things can be had inexpensive, especially if you are getting them for the sole purpose of barter.

My $.02
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"Its not a matter of being ready as it is being prepared" -- B. E. J. Taylor

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#202618 - 05/29/10 04:03 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Art_in_FL]
Richlacal Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 02/11/10
Posts: 778
Loc: Los Angeles, CA
I think Barter will always be practical,Rich/poor/otherwise.You don't have to have material to barter.Wits,info,intel,labor,even humor would be welcomed.Everybody has something to exchange!Think of the old tale,Stone soup.Now that's a fine piece of Bartering during Hard Times!

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#202619 - 05/29/10 04:06 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: MoBOB]
ireckon Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 04/01/10
Posts: 1629
Loc: Northern California
I have extra ammo, but it's not purely for barter. I can use some and then replace it. It's small and can serve as currency in whatever amount is right. Plus, the people that will want ammo are likely to have stock piled something of value that I may want, like maybe fuel, a generator, frozen meat, fishing supplies or whatever. That's the beauty of stock piling ammo.
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#202620 - 05/29/10 04:31 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: ireckon]
Art_in_FL Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 09/01/07
Posts: 2432
Originally Posted By: Richlacal
I think Barter will always be practical,Rich/poor/otherwise.You don't have to have material to barter.Wits,info,intel,labor,even humor would be welcomed.Everybody has something to exchange!Think of the old tale,Stone soup.Now that's a fine piece of Bartering during Hard Times!


Actually the story of 'Stone soup' is a object lesson in community cooperation and collectivism. The stone adds nothing other than an excuse for people to contribute hoarded food stocks.

Originally Posted By: ireckon
I have extra ammo, but it's not purely for barter. I can use some and then replace it. It's small and can serve as currency in whatever amount is right. Plus, the people that will want ammo are likely to have stock piled something of value that I may want, like maybe fuel, a generator, frozen meat, fishing supplies or whatever. That's the beauty of stock piling ammo.


It is possible that other people and groups might have other things stockpiled. But it has to be noted that when barter comes up on survival, preparation and survivalist boards invariably one of the first thing mentioned for barter, and the one thing most write about having in quantity, is ammunition.

If everyone has ammunition, and it is not being consumed very rapidly, its value might be quite low.

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#202621 - 05/29/10 04:44 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Art_in_FL]
Richlacal Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 02/11/10
Posts: 778
Loc: Los Angeles, CA
I said Practical,Not Cynical! Stone soup has Nothing to do with Community,As it is of one soldier,& one old man!Collectivism? The soldier Bartered his wit for Nourishment,in a Village ravaged by War,lol!

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#202623 - 05/29/10 04:59 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: ireckon]
ajax Offline
Member

Registered: 10/19/09
Posts: 112
One of my friends is starting to stock up on scotch.

But I'm not sure if that's for barter...


Edited by ajax (05/29/10 05:00 AM)
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#202624 - 05/29/10 05:13 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: ajax]
Richlacal Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 02/11/10
Posts: 778
Loc: Los Angeles, CA
Hey! Thats an Xlnt idea,Scotch gets better with age,& If you don't use it for awhile,No problem,the value is always there.Xlnt 1st Class idea!Thanx!

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#202625 - 05/29/10 06:19 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: The_Urbivalist]
LED Offline
Veteran

Registered: 09/01/05
Posts: 1474
Simple. What, besides money, greases the wheels of life around the world on a daily basis? Tea, Coffee, Tobacco, and Spirits. Even in times of plenty, its a wonderful treat to be offered a hot cup of coffee or a cold beer. And IIRC, a glass of speyside single malt is worth its weight in gold.

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#202632 - 05/29/10 10:37 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Richlacal]
Phaedrus Online   content
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 04/28/10
Posts: 2759
Loc: Big Sky Country
It only gets better with age while it's in the cask. Unlike wine, particularly red wines that develop structure and allow astringent tannins to mellow over time, the only maturing scotch does is while it's in contact with the barrel. At least so far as I know.
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#202633 - 05/29/10 10:43 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Richlacal]
MostlyHarmless Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 06/03/09
Posts: 982
Loc: Norway
Originally Posted By: Richlacal
Scotch gets better with age


Actually ... no, not unless you buy it by the cask for self-maturing. Whisky matures in wood barrels, but not in glass flasks. As opposed to a bottle of wine (that matures in the bottle), nothing really changes in a bottle of spirits, except for the incredible slow processes of evaporation through the cork.

Originally Posted By: Richlacal
If you don't use it for awhile,No problem,the value is always there.


Yup, that's right. If the sealant is unbroken, you're probably talking about shelf life of centuries, or at least the majority of one century.


But I'm sorry to say that in most opened and partly drunk bottles the flavor will degrade over a few years... which kind of bogs me as I love single malts, but rarely drink enough of it to keep my collection from aging.

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#202634 - 05/29/10 11:06 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Richlacal]
The_Urbivalist Offline
Stranger

Registered: 05/26/10
Posts: 6
Loc: Southern California
Originally Posted By: Richlacal
Since you are also in So.Cal,I would suggest Good .22 Ammo,such as CCI-Velocitor.It normally retails for about $5-8 per box of 50,If...You can find it!The Pasadena,Ventura, OC&Ontario gunshows sell out of this same stuff,Usually the 1st day,though the prices are much lower than retail,$3-4


Great tip on the Velocitor ammo at those shows...I'm down in San Diego, but I'll have to see if I can make it to day 1 of any of them...

Small hand tools seem like another really great idea, since they're compact and just about universally useful...
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www.the-urban-survivalist.com

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#202636 - 05/29/10 11:31 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: The_Urbivalist]
JBMat Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 03/03/09
Posts: 745
Loc: NC
TP
Salt and pepper. Other spices.
Soap
Nails, screws, bolts and nuts
Vodka - not beer as it gets skunky
Tea, packed in airtight containers
.22 ammo
9mm ammo

The TP is worth more than it's weight in gold

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#202638 - 05/29/10 02:37 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: JBMat]
Jeff_M Offline
Addict

Registered: 07/18/07
Posts: 665
Loc: Northwest Florida
Post-disaster, based on experience:
Paper towels
paper plates, cups
Batteries AA, AAA, D
Garbage bags
Bleach
feminine hygiene products
Lysol spray
alcohol hand sanitizer
TP
cigarettes
gasoline
propane-camping and RV sizes
tarps



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#202641 - 05/29/10 02:55 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Jeff_M]
comms Offline
Veteran

Registered: 07/23/08
Posts: 1502
Loc: Mesa, AZ
Originally Posted By: Jeff_M
Post-disaster, based on experience:
Paper towels
paper plates, cups
Batteries AA, AAA, D
Garbage bags -thick contractor type
Bleach
feminine hygiene products
Lysol spray
alcohol hand sanitizer
TP
cigarettes -don't smoke but great barter/ice breaker
gasoline
propane-camping and RV sizes- family is on standing orders to check every yard sale for extra propane tanks as we drive by
tarps




Every week I buy a few more things:
non-pershible items like peanut butter, small canned vegs, aspirin, vitamins,
ammo (.22 mostly but many others),
ammo clips
Brandy- 'traveler' size is in plastic bottles. Personal and barter use) brandy is cheap, gives you a warmth in your belly and universally palatable taste. Doesn't need lemon or salt, doesn't matter if its hot or cold.

Kids shoes-Goodwill stores are a good place to find footwear for kids. They grow so fast that its not practical to buy new and never use. Plus kids grow fast so they can be bartered or handed down later.
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#202642 - 05/29/10 05:10 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: MostlyHarmless]
LED Offline
Veteran

Registered: 09/01/05
Posts: 1474
Originally Posted By: MostlyHarmless

But I'm sorry to say that in most opened and partly drunk bottles the flavor will degrade over a few years... which kind of bogs me as I love single malts, but rarely drink enough of it to keep my collection from aging.



You guys are right. Scotch may not mature over time in a unopened glass bottle but it does mellow, which is very nice IMO. Pretty sure its the same with burbon. Oh, and you could try one of two things with that partially opened bottle of scotch. Keep pouring the remainder into smaller bottles or put glass marbles into the bottle to raise the fluid level. The whole point is to keep the amount of air in the bottle to a minimum.


Edited by LED (05/29/10 05:10 PM)

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#202644 - 05/29/10 05:27 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Art_in_FL]
ireckon Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 04/01/10
Posts: 1629
Loc: Northern California
Originally Posted By: Art_in_FL
It is possible that other people and groups might have other things stockpiled. But it has to be noted that when barter comes up on survival, preparation and survivalist boards invariably one of the first thing mentioned for barter, and the one thing most write about having in quantity, is ammunition.

If everyone has ammunition, and it is not being consumed very rapidly, its value might be quite low.


I'm not so sure about the last thing you said because I highly doubt "everyone" will have all the ammunition they need in a massive SHTF situation. Besides, over the past couple of years, the value of ammo has gone up for me personally, and I have found myself shooting far less. Meanwhile, I have plenty of ammo. There are thousands of others like me.

Imagine a SHTF world where ammo is not being sold in stores. The value of that stuff will rise like crazy, even if some people have all that they need. No matter how much a small circle talks on Internet about stockpiling ammo, there are other normal folks who just don't talk about this stuff, but they have their one or two guns. They may not be stockpiling ammo, but they'll surely want it when SHTF and they can't get any ammo from Wally World.

Anyway, we don't have to guess. Just analyze the price of ammo in the last couple of years, and there wasn't even a massive SHTF situation.

In a SHTF environment where cash has become meaningless, guns are useful, and ammo is not being sold at retail stores, I predict ammo related items will operate as a type of currency, beyond just merely a barter.
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#202650 - 05/29/10 10:34 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: ireckon]
Art_in_FL Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 09/01/07
Posts: 2432
Quote:
In a SHTF environment where cash has become meaningless, guns are useful, and ammo is not being sold at retail stores, I predict ammo related items will operate as a type of currency, beyond just merely a barter.


Exactly when and where has that particular environment existed. As far as I can tell it has never existed in the better than 240 years the US has been around. And I have a hard time coming up with any time and place outside the US. Yes, people have bartered and traded for weapons and ammunition. But it is hard to find a time when they were when cash has been "meaningless".

Generally, throughout history, having cash has meant getting weapons, and people to wield them for you, has been easy. A good example is the Mexican drug lords. They have cash from selling drugs and people are falling all over themselves to get and use guns for them.

On the other hand there were certain groups with guns, Taliban, Al-Qaeda, the outlaw bank robbers in the 30s, who had guns but who have been relatively short of cash.

While there have been some who used money to get guns, like a small percentage of drug kingpins, who have led short, miserable and relatively violent lives. There are many more who live quite well. Often living in luxury as their underlings carry the guns and die in the conflicts.

On the other hand among those who have had guns but far less money, particularly those who use their guns to try to get money, there is a high percentage who have miserable lives and live in constant fear.

From this it can be demonstrated that in terms of having a long, happy life and controlling your destiny money is clearly more powerful than weapons. As far as I can tell this is has always been true.

Yes, it is possible to imagine a hypothetical situation where this is not true. There are several movies and a fair amount of literature based on the assumption that such a situation might come up. But it remains to be seen that that situation is really possible. It hasn't happened in over 240 years of US history. And may not have ever come up in the thousands of years of human history.

Quote:
Just analyze the price of ammo in the last couple of years, and there wasn't even a massive SHTF situation.


A few things come to mind regarding the increased price of ammunition. The first is the Mexican drug lords buying stockpiles. Second, most servicemen returning are buying guns and loads of ammunition even if they had previously had little interest. Third, one of the largest manufacturers has essentially withdrawn from the civilian market. Fourth, the existing gun culture has as an inviolable assumption that there is no such thing as too much ammunition so they just keep on buying. An assumption the dealers and manufacturers enthusiastically reinforce for obvious reasons.

It has to be noted that the growers and dealers of tulips also did their best to support the increasing price of their product. Right up until the market tanked. Bubbles are like that.

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#202651 - 05/29/10 11:17 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Art_in_FL]
Teslinhiker Offline
Veteran

Registered: 12/14/09
Posts: 1413
Loc: Cranbrook BC (Finally)
I agree with Art.

People have an almost romanticized and very misguided fantasy that modern society is going to fall apart and they will be able start bartering all that junk silver and gold and ammo they have hoarded just because some other wing nut survivalist website/forum or blogger espouses such thinking.

The simple fact is that we as people, long ago moved beyond such primitive bartering....simply because it does not work, otherwise we would still be using that system.

If you want to be prepared, take a cue from Jeff's list. From what I have read, he has been to many small and large catastrophic events and not just in the USA and has first hand experience in what is truly needed in the aftermath of disasters. His list, IMO is more realistic and is void of the Walter Mitty syndrome that so pervades the mindset of those who are almost lathering for their SHTF moment so they can play out their ammo bartering fantasies...
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Earth and sky, woods and fields, lakes and rivers, the mountain and the sea, are excellent schoolmasters, and teach some of us more than we can ever learn from books.

John Lubbock

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#202652 - 05/29/10 11:48 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Teslinhiker]
ireckon Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 04/01/10
Posts: 1629
Loc: Northern California
Frankly, I forgot exactly what the argument here with respect to ammo. It has gotten too complicated for me to understand. I think some folks here are trying to say that ammo will not be good barter. It's hard to tell because I do not think the posts here, with respect to ammo, have to be this long. To be clear, all I'm trying to say is that ammo will be one of many useful barter items.

To keep it simple: Either you believe ammo will have less value during SHTF or you believe ammo will have more value. That analysis goes for any predicted barter item. I really think it's that simple.

If you believe ammo will have less value during SHTF and you are currently a gun owner, I will listen to you only if you have just enough ammo around to do some hunting and have a little fun. If you have any more ammo than that, then I won't take what you are saying as being credible. It's kind of hard to tell on the Internet because we are coming here as strangers after all.
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#202653 - 05/29/10 11:56 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: ireckon]
Teslinhiker Offline
Veteran

Registered: 12/14/09
Posts: 1413
Loc: Cranbrook BC (Finally)
Originally Posted By: ireckon


To keep it simple: Either you believe ammo will have less value during SHTF or you believe it will have more value. That analysis goes for any predicted barter item. I really think it's that simple.


To keep it more simple:

Most people come to this forum so they can be prepared for more every day events that may directly affect their lives. This does not include some far flung scenario where modern society and the financial system has collapsed and evolves to a make belief era where a handful of ammo will score you a bartered chicken for dinner...
_________________________
Earth and sky, woods and fields, lakes and rivers, the mountain and the sea, are excellent schoolmasters, and teach some of us more than we can ever learn from books.

John Lubbock

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#202659 - 05/30/10 02:12 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Teslinhiker]
Richlacal Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 02/11/10
Posts: 778
Loc: Los Angeles, CA
Unfortunately this thread has taken a turn to politics,of which is Verbotten in,most cases here on the forum.Here in the USA,We haven't had our Rights taken away,So many of us,Grew up with Firearms,Many didn't, but are owners of Firearms.Without ammo,you don't use these Firearms,Simple as that!Ammo is,and will always be,a Commodity!We talk about Guns because,We Can,&That's Just The Way It Is!No Fantasies Here!

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#202661 - 05/30/10 02:31 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Richlacal]
Tarzan Offline
Member

Registered: 02/02/08
Posts: 146
Loc: Washington
Vices and luxuries- soap, perfume, alcohol, tobacco, condoms, naturally common ammunition to a smaller extent. Remember, unless it's a war, folks aren't going to be shooting 24/7.
Things like coffee, chocolate, and tea were very popular during WWII and could purchase many other "favors" or luxuries.
Canned meat is king when no other source of protein is readily available.
Think things that wear out but people typically don't put back in quantities. Things like socks, underwear, gloves, mittens, shoes, boots, etc.

Blankets and greatcoats were also coveted. In the event of a global cooling trend, many folks won't be properly clothed.

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#202664 - 05/30/10 02:50 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Tarzan]
MoBOB Offline
Veteran

Registered: 09/17/07
Posts: 1219
Loc: here
I agree with the statement about Jeff's list. It deals with more common issues of life and likely experiences: i.e. natural disasters. A good question is: "What is it that I like to have when there is a lot of induced stress and strain?" Also, ""what helps me get through the days and weeks ahead as I rebuild?" Foodstuffs, clothing, hygiene items, and rebuilding materials.

My $.02 again.
_________________________
"Its not a matter of being ready as it is being prepared" -- B. E. J. Taylor

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#202666 - 05/30/10 02:56 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Tarzan]
Susan Offline
Geezer

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 5163
Loc: W. WA
Vegetable seeds (they could conceivably be worth more than bullets or gold)
Chocolate (besides, it's a health food, now!)
Soap
Water collection stuff: plastic sheeting, rope/cord, clothes pins
Spices
Honey (buy local honey if you can; if you have to buy honey from the grocery store, always check the label to make sure of what you're getting: there should only be one ingredient listed: HONEY (and that isn't always the case).

Sue

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#202672 - 05/30/10 03:46 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Tarzan]
Arney Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 09/15/05
Posts: 2485
Loc: California
Originally Posted By: Tarzan
Things like coffee, chocolate, and tea were very popular during WWII and could purchase many other "favors" or luxuries.

Although I generally roll my eyes when someone asks about bartering a la Mad Max and "Bartertown", I don't consider the general topic of barter to necessarily involve a fantasy scenario like that.

Tarzan, I think you've pointed out the reality that bartering can certainly co-exist with the normal economy as a shadow economy, so we don't have to have some apocalyptic meltdown all of fiat currencies or nuclear war or something similarly spectacular to utilize bartering.

From what I've read, barter of services has been increasing during the economic downturn, when even skilled folks are out of work or business is very slow. Of course, the IRS officially requires their cut of the action. frown Maybe building up our skillset may actually be a more practical and likely to be used form of barter?

I think that currency is just too useful for us to ever to truly reject it in favor of barter. I'm sure that we would quickly re-establish some sort of currency-based economy if the regular economy imploded, even if it meant going back to using greenbacks as an easily recognized, hard to counterfeit medium of exchange, of course, with each denomination having a new value in the new economy.

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#202681 - 05/30/10 07:20 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Arney]
TXMark Offline
Stranger

Registered: 08/26/09
Posts: 3
The problem with trading ammo to someone is that they know you have more, and you've just potentially armed them.

Also, surprised no one added this:
http://www.thepowerhour.com/news/items_disappearfirst.htm

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#202682 - 05/30/10 07:38 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Arney]
LED Offline
Veteran

Registered: 09/01/05
Posts: 1474
The funny thing about markets is they tend to be unpredictable. IMO, its always prudent to stock extra of what you like, use, and need. If it turns out to be valuable, great. If not, oh well. For some reason this thread reminds me of the movie "Stripes" with Bill Murray. The scene where they're driving the EM-50 and he bribes a Czechoslovakian guard at a checkpoint with a bottle of Vodka. grin

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#202739 - 05/31/10 04:55 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: LED]
Susan Offline
Geezer

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 5163
Loc: W. WA
There are barter systems currently in use all over the world. Most are kept within communities for obvious reasons. Some trades are direct exchanges, and some use coupons for specified values that can be used anywhere within the barter community.

Here's a local one in MA: http://www.wickedlocal.com/brewster/homepage/x1397979015

Sue

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#202745 - 05/31/10 07:46 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: The_Urbivalist]
ironraven Offline
Cranky Geek
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/08/05
Posts: 4642
Loc: Vermont
Well new guy, I know I'm answering this a little late, but I've always said anything that is hard to impossible to make, or at least make well:

Small metal items- needles, pins, fishhooks, paperclips, nails, wire.

Cordage- everything from sewing thread to fishline to paracord to clothesline to hawser.

Salt.

Hand tools.

Basically, if you are the Americas, look to see which trade goods other than booze and firearms were the most in demand by the indigenous tribes in your area.
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-IronRaven

When a man dare not speak without malice for fear of giving insult, that is when truth starts to die. Truth is the truest freedom.

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#202748 - 05/31/10 08:38 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: ironraven]
Lono Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 10/19/06
Posts: 1013
Loc: Pacific NW, USA
I last bartered in Moscow in 1982 - friend Feliks needed windshield wiper blades for his Dad's car, so we could drive out of town for a party. There were no Car Toys auto parts stores in the USSR back then, and precious few wiper blades apparently. Folks would remove them from their cars when going inside for the night, if they didn't they would probably be gone by the morning and end up on the market the next day. Which is where we went for our wiper blades - our neighborhood source had the blades, and wanted some apples, which we had. About 4 kilos of apples bought us a pair of lightly used wiper blades. Dollars might have been cheaper than apples, but we needed those for petrol, and vodka...

There's barter and then there's barter - no way would I trade guns and/or ammo to strangers or even friends of friends, its not worth it to me no matter what the exchange rate. Also, if I am a source of ammo in hard times, I'm the very kind of person I don't want to associate with, in hard times. If my brother needed some ammo then he can have some, no charge. I'm with Al, I don't foresee America going anywhere near a barter exchange economy.

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#202764 - 05/31/10 11:59 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Lono]
Am_Fear_Liath_Mor Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 08/03/07
Posts: 3078
Quote:
I'm with Al, I don't foresee America going anywhere near a barter exchange economy.


By the Power of GreySkull I bet even Goldman Sachs already has a hedged derivatives collateralized debt obligation fund product in dune doubloons for the complex exchange rate future insurance transaction Ponzi scheme for the future post Euro Greek Drachma. wink Any investors anyone. whistle I'd even be willing to triple AAA rate the product myself for just 2% commission of any transaction value.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gWuoBoeKFyo



Edited by Am_Fear_Liath_Mor (06/01/10 12:15 AM)

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#202775 - 06/01/10 01:59 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Art_in_FL]
Byrd_Huntr Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 01/28/10
Posts: 1174
Loc: MN, Land O' Lakes & Rivers ...
Along with quantities of AA batteries and .22 cal ammo, I currently maintain a minimum stock of 100 rolls of good quality TP. As stated elsewhere, it will be currency if our 'just in time' ordering system is wiped out......oops.
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#202783 - 06/01/10 09:21 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Byrd_Huntr]
Am_Fear_Liath_Mor Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 08/03/07
Posts: 3078
Quote:
I currently maintain a minimum stock of 100 rolls of good quality TP


Good Call. It would seem that the preppers are now the new yuppies. shocked

http://www.marketwatch.com/story/how-to-invest-for-the-debt-bomb-explosion-2010-02-09

Anyway as a prepper do we need to barter trade goods or haven't we prepared sufficiently well enough!!



Edited by Am_Fear_Liath_Mor (06/01/10 10:05 AM)

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#202797 - 06/01/10 03:27 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Am_Fear_Liath_Mor]
bigreddog Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 07/02/06
Posts: 253
Originally Posted By: Am_Fear_Liath_Mor
Anyway as a prepper do we need to barter trade goods or haven't we prepared sufficiently well enough!!



Always going to be something you need, even if it just a nicer version of what you already have.

Depends on how far you see the world declining - to Mad Max apocalypse levels or Zimbabwe financial meltdown levels. Either way, almost anything is suitable for barter, but it makes sense if it is something you would use yourself. Look at the things troops give to kids in warzones or tourists give to indigenous tourguides.



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#202799 - 06/01/10 04:01 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: bigreddog]
chaosmagnet Online   content
Sheriff
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/03/09
Posts: 3426
Loc: USA
I used to barter computer repairs for free treatment from my chiropractor. Her computer was in much better shape than my spine, though, so I ended up writing her a number of checks over the years.

An informal market for the barter of expertise is very common in my social circle. I've obtained free medical advice, extremely valuable legal assistance, mechanical expertise, and the names of reliable contractors. In exchange I've provided advice for preparing for emergencies, plumbing, electrical wiring, and other things.

To get back to the OP, if you have an established web of friendship and social obligation it will be much easier for you to get what you need via barter, and barter of expertise can be very valuable.

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#202802 - 06/01/10 05:02 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: chaosmagnet]
KG2V Offline

Veteran

Registered: 08/19/03
Posts: 1371
Loc: Queens, New York City
Guys - No problem with the topic, but I think it's better in Natural/Long Term than urban, so I'm gonna move it


Edited by KG2V (06/01/10 05:03 PM)
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#202804 - 06/01/10 05:28 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: KG2V]
Jeff_M Offline
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Registered: 07/18/07
Posts: 665
Loc: Northwest Florida
Just remember, bartering for either goods or services, especially for a business, commercial or professional concern, is a reportable taxable event, at the FMV of the goods or services exchanged. I know no one here would even think of denying the dev..., er, tax collector his due.

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#202805 - 06/01/10 05:44 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Jeff_M]
Am_Fear_Liath_Mor Offline
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Registered: 08/03/07
Posts: 3078

And folks always remember the words to the Fidelity Fiduciary Bank sing along song if the ATMs stop regurgitating that fiat paper, if that ever happens...within the next 12-18 months. wink


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#202830 - 06/02/10 02:09 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Am_Fear_Liath_Mor]
Art_in_FL Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 09/01/07
Posts: 2432
I have, sometimes still do, barter for goods and services. Even before any apocalyptic national/global economic meltdown. When cash is short and many businesses are suffering cash flow problems barter can allow you to still do business.

The viability of ammunition as a barter item depends on how much call for it there is (how much is being used, how much anyone desiring it may have on hand), your willingness to give it up to a potential competitor or opponent, their ability to give you something you desire in return, their ability/willingness to let you know they are in the market for it, and the location/transport to make any trade.

Lots of ifs, maybes, conditionals, provisionality in all that. And a decent chance you end up with an investment you can't gain from any time soon if you have to wait for a major meltdown that may never come.

Of course there are people out there right now with more ammunition than money. Unfortunately landlords, grocery stores, and utility companies are still demanding that worthless fiat money. Twice I've seen ammunition, at very attractive prices, at garage sales. I've seen an add for 500 rounds of 30-06 in the Discount Shopper ad sheet. I've even seen short quantities of pistol ammunition discounted on pin-up sheets on local bulletin boards.

Make of that what you will. If your sure we are heading for a Mad Max world where negotiations are conducted with lead traded hand-to-hand, or down the barrel of a gun, then you might want to check out garage sales. My estimation is that a fair number of people who were thinking similarly are now hurting because they are heavy with ammunition and light on cash. You can make a nice deal.

This isn't anything new. The whole Ruby Ridge debacle came to a head in 1992 when Randy Weaver, who was sure the revolution was near at hand, moved into a remote cabin and over a period of months found out he had a greater need for cash than he had estimated. Desperation for cash led him to make a very foolish, and quite illegal, gun deal. It was a setup but one he was vulnerable to because his predicted future was late in coming. The money ran out before the revolution, in whatever form it might take, rolled around.

Some of the original survivalists from the 70s are pushing 70. The revolution they were preparing for is running a little late. The imminent collapse of the fiat money system has been, evidently, waiting in the wings for a fairly long time.

Laying in supplies for barter I think that the most reasonable approach is to simply stock up on what you use. That way if the barter situation never develops your not stuck with your resources locked up in something you can't trade, or use yourself. Toilet paper doesn't go bad if stored properly. Everyone needs toilet paper. Buy by the case and you can get a deep discount. Look up commercial paper product suppliers to get the best deal on 96 roll case. Last I bought was $.20 a roll compared to better than $.50 a roll retail. But you have to buy a case, maybe two or three.

Needles, thread and clothespins are cheap and keep forever. Also good stuff for a low-energy/low-carbon economy. If you regularly use ammunition, a lot of people do, you could buy a few extra boxes in calibers you use. As money gets tight check out garage sales and bulletin boards for good prices. Older guys with a can full of ammo under the workbench are kicking off regularly and their widows just want it out of the house.

Carrying more of what you use, but never more than you realistically can use if things don't get apocalyptic, makes a lot of sense to me.



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#202878 - 06/02/10 10:47 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Art_in_FL]
JohnE Offline
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Registered: 06/10/08
Posts: 601
Loc: Southern Cal
Another good one Art.

But don't forget the nickels...;^)

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

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#202888 - 06/03/10 04:55 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: JohnE]
ajax Offline
Member

Registered: 10/19/09
Posts: 112
Originally Posted By: JohnE
Another good one Art.

But don't forget the nickels...;^)



Hah! Funny you mention that. My buddy sent Rawles an email posing a serious question about his nickel article and got a bit of a nasty gram back from him, not answering his question at all.

Guess he doesn't like his posits questioned or debated.

FYI - we're reading Patriots in our book club.
_________________________
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#202889 - 06/03/10 05:37 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: ajax]
TXMark Offline
Stranger

Registered: 08/26/09
Posts: 3
The thing that got me about the nickles is the perception he has that for some reason a bank teller is going to worry about why you want $500 in nickles. It's not illegal, and they're not going to worry about it if you don't tell them. Gimme a break, the world isn't out to get you. Those bank tellers don't make enough to care wtf you're going to do with a wheelbarrow full of change.

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#202902 - 06/03/10 01:10 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Phaedrus]
adam2 Offline
Addict

Registered: 05/23/08
Posts: 450
Loc: Somerset UK
Originally Posted By: Phaedrus
It only gets better with age while it's in the cask. Unlike wine, particularly red wines that develop structure and allow astringent tannins to mellow over time, the only maturing scotch does is while it's in contact with the barrel. At least so far as I know.


Agreed, it is generaly accepted that whiskey only improves in the cask, and not in a glass bottle.
Still well worth stocking though, since although not improving in storeage at least it does not go bad.
Many people believe that Scotch improves in bottle and will therefore pay a higher price (in cash or goods) for a long-stored bottle.
Other spirits such as brandy, vodka, rum, etc are also worth keeping, for barter or own use.
I keep 25 bottles of Scotch whiskey, 25 of vodka, and 5 each of gin, rum, and brandy.
Bottles of spirits should normally be stored upright, unlike wine which should normally be laid on its side.

Beer does not keep that well, but it would be sensible to keep as much as you can without risking spoilage. For example if you drink a case of beer a month, and it keeps for 2 years, then consider keeping 24 cases.


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#202910 - 06/03/10 02:33 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: adam2]
comms Offline
Veteran

Registered: 07/23/08
Posts: 1502
Loc: Mesa, AZ
Why would someone want $500 in today nickels? The whole Rawlesian opinion of junk coin is that pre 1964 Quarters and dimes had a decent amount of silver in it. Pre 64 nickels had a lesser %, (I think a 1/3 of content). But todays coin has none.
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#202912 - 06/03/10 02:45 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: comms]
paramedicpete Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 04/09/02
Posts: 1920
Loc: Frederick, Maryland
I think it is due to the metal content in the nickel, which now costs 7 cents to produce.

USA Today - Cost of Making Money

Pete

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#202925 - 06/03/10 04:38 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: paramedicpete]
Arney Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 09/15/05
Posts: 2485
Loc: California
Originally Posted By: paramedicpete
I think it is due to the metal content in the nickel, which now costs 7 cents to produce.

He also says they are the easiest type of coin to stockpile since there has only been one version of the nickel since WWII, so no sorting by date necessary.

In addition, he says that if the currency is ever officially devalued and old currency must be traded in for new bills, coins will likely be left alone because of the hassle. So, after the devaluation, you would've instantly made a tidy return on your coins. But really, if you seriously were thinking of that possibility, collecting nickels is a pretty inefficient way to take advantage of that particular situation.

And how many nickels would have to be melted down to pay for a large latte through the value of the metals? Sounds like trying to save up for 30 years of retirement by collecting aluminum cans. It's kind of a neat idea on paper, but very impractical in real life IMHO.

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#203130 - 06/09/10 05:28 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Teslinhiker]
ireckon Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 04/01/10
Posts: 1629
Loc: Northern California
An asset will be either more valuable or less valuable during a SHTF situation. The more valuable stuff will be good for bartering. When the time comes, you're either right or wrong.

By the way, why is it that whenever anything firearms-related is mentioned on this site, there are always a few (anti-gun) people who have to start talking about an apocalypse, zombies and whatnot? It's strange and annoying. From what I've seen, gun owners on this site have never gone anywhere in that direction. If they have, then post a link to a thread where gun owners here were talking about unusual apocalyptic scenarios. If you can't post a link, then just stop going there because it's left field territory. Ignorantly assuming that all gun owners are like David Koresh only makes you look small and narrow-minded.

I welcome anybody here to become part of the wonderful gun owner community and learn something. I became a gun owner five years ago in my mid-thirties. I've learned quite a bit since then. My education in the gun owner community has been just as valuable as my education for becoming a patent lawyer and a real estate broker. Every gun owner I know personally in real life understands how firearms are useful self-defense tools, valuable hunting devices and just fun to shoot. Gun owners are some of the most logical, most level-headed, most capable people I know. Having said all that, if all you can think about are the apocalypse and zombies when it comes to firearms, then I retract my welcome mat because we're all better off if you kindly leave the guns for us grown-ups.
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#203131 - 06/09/10 10:41 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: ireckon]
Teslinhiker Offline
Veteran

Registered: 12/14/09
Posts: 1413
Loc: Cranbrook BC (Finally)
@ireckon: Since your reply appears to be directed at me...

To set the record straight, I am far from anti-gun, and in fact I own firearms. I am not going to get into any debate past this in regards to the merits of owning a firearm and if this makes me one of "most logical, most level-headed, most capable people I know."

The purpose of original post here was what items are useful in a hypothetical worst case scenario. I voiced my opinion and my position has not and will not change regardless of whatever other people think or wish to evangelize on.

That said, can the original topic(s) get back on track here, or perhaps the MODS should consider locking this thread.
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Earth and sky, woods and fields, lakes and rivers, the mountain and the sea, are excellent schoolmasters, and teach some of us more than we can ever learn from books.

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#203137 - 06/09/10 01:51 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Teslinhiker]
chickenlittle Offline
Member

Registered: 06/06/10
Posts: 102
Loc: Canada
It might be useful to look at what people found to be worth trading in other near apocalypses.
A lot of the precious items in collapsed economies are things thought of as either trash or as luxuries in healthy economies.

Post WWII Germany saw a high demand for rubber scraps and belt leather, as well as for booze and nylon stockings.

If you look at some of the collapsed and failed economies in Africa and the East you will see other clues.
In Dem. Rep. Congo the offering was bicycles, roofing tin, and sewing machines in exchange for weapons.
This was in a country torn up with civil war.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/5180144.stm
Whether you are pro or anti-gun this should be looked at as an indicator of what is of more value.

Often the most important trade items are skills. Again there are many examples in recent events.

IMHO, Jeff and Art have it down pretty good.

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#203148 - 06/09/10 06:42 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Tarzan]
alanz Offline
Stranger

Registered: 06/07/10
Posts: 4
Originally Posted By: Tarzan
Vices and luxuries- soap, perfume, alcohol, tobacco, condoms, naturally common ammunition to a smaller extent.


I was storing some alcohol and tobacco at first, but now I'm wondering if there will be enough demand for these things if things get really bad. If people are desperate, these won't be their highest priorities.

I read Ragnar's Urban Survival recently, and here is his list of barter items to stock up on: ammo, soap, medicine, toothpaste, toothbrushes, toilet paper, underwear, aspirin, pens, pencils, paper, cooking oil, salt, wire, fertilizer, gloves, tape, knives, sharpening stones, matches, saws, files, oil, engine filters, canning lids, freezer bags, electrical supplies, nylon rope, batteries, lamp mantles, flour, yeast, detergent, needles and thread, tape, bleach, antacids, sugar, nails, screws, bolts, and shoelaces, among other things.

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#203163 - 06/09/10 11:48 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: alanz]
ponder Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 12/18/06
Posts: 367
Loc: American Redoubt
THIS IDIOTS OPINION - "DON'T PLAN ON BARTER!"

Stock every damn thing you use on a regular basis from food to boots. Only stock what YOU NEED AND USE!

Once you have your needs and consumables under control FOCUS,FOCUS,FOCUS -

HOARD $100 BILLS until you have too many!



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PonderosaSports.com
Horseshoe Bend, ID
American Redoubt
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#203168 - 06/10/10 04:48 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: ponder]
SETI6equj5 Offline
Stranger

Registered: 06/10/10
Posts: 4
Loc: Connecticut, U.S.A
I have a few things I can add to the list just for fun:

Razor blades.
Mirrors.
Eye wear, especially reading glasses because in the post-apoco-clypse-zombie scenario, Optometrists will be among the first to go.
Religious items (non specific if barter is on your mind).
Insect and zombie repellents.
Padlocks.
Several flags of your country or otherwise (moral booster and can aid in gaining assistance).
Condoms and other forms of birth control at least equal to amount of rounds you stockpile. <laughs>
Fabrics by the yard or meter.
Small plastic pencil sharpeners.
Plastic hair combs.
Chalk. It writes on a wider variety of surfaces than pen and pencil.
Chicken wire and mesh window screening.
Bleach.
Small trowels for digging cat holes, gardening, etc.
Some of those hand held wind up style small electronics chargers w/adapters of different sizes.
25,000 Doug Ritter Pocket Survival Paks (in case you lose one)



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#203192 - 06/10/10 05:37 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: The_Urbivalist]
Brangdon Offline
Veteran

Registered: 12/12/04
Posts: 1204
Loc: Nottingham, UK
Originally Posted By: Urban_Survival_Store
what has everyone else been stockpiling PURELY for barter purposes?
Nothing. I've considered keeping cigarettes for barter, but never did anything about it, partly because as a non-smoker I wouldn't know what to buy. And I don't know how well they age. Their virtue is that if smokers run out they might become desperate for them.

The best trade items are probably irreplaceable consumables (which means most consumables nowadays). People are going to run out. The maxim, "Buy what you eat, eat what you buy" applies; it's best to stock the consumables you yourself consume.

So I have strategic surpluses, goods where I keep way more than I expect to need. I suspect they'll get given away rather than traded, which you can think of as bartering for goodwill.
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#203205 - 06/10/10 08:55 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: The_Urbivalist]
Blast Offline
INTERCEPTOR
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 07/15/02
Posts: 3593
Loc: TX
Electrons.

With solar panels capable of recharging other people's electronic devices such as radios and laptop computers, I can have a constantly renewed source of barter goods. Plus I can use the solar cells now for my own stuff so it's not wasted space/money.

Never underestimate the power of power.

-Blast
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#203259 - 06/11/10 02:16 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Blast]
adam2 Offline
Addict

Registered: 05/23/08
Posts: 450
Loc: Somerset UK
As a non smoker, I stock cigarettes since I suspect that smokers would become desperate.
Any popular brand will do, simply ask your local shop what is popular.
They keep several years.
I rotate stocks by giving them as Christmas presents to friends and family who smoke.

In the event of any serious and very sudden disaster I would buy more cigarettes, since they are the only widely used article of which I can carry say £1,000 worth.
I dont drive, therefore last minute stocking up is limited to what I can carry.
I already have fair stocks of food, water, fuel, clothes, blankets, tools and other supplies.
But if I had reason to believe that money was suddenly going to become worthless, I would quickly draw the maximum permitted from ATMs and buy as much food as I could carry, and spend the rest on cigarettes.


Edited by adam2 (06/11/10 02:26 PM)

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#203274 - 06/11/10 05:48 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: adam2]
LED Offline
Veteran

Registered: 09/01/05
Posts: 1474
Originally Posted By: adam2
But if I had reason to believe that money was suddenly going to become worthless, I would quickly draw the maximum permitted from ATMs and buy as much food as I could carry, and spend the rest on cigarettes.


FWIW, you'd get a lot more for the money by buying tobacco tins/pouches and rolling papers. Probably last longer too as they are completely sealed.

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#203278 - 06/11/10 06:28 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: LED]
comms Offline
Veteran

Registered: 07/23/08
Posts: 1502
Loc: Mesa, AZ
I've actually considered buying a copy cartons of smokes at the local rez. I've never smoked, do they stay long or should they be wrapped up in Press and Seal?
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#203311 - 06/12/10 04:06 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: comms]
Byrd_Huntr Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 01/28/10
Posts: 1174
Loc: MN, Land O' Lakes & Rivers ...
Cigarettes expire one year after manufacture. Probably still usable for a while afterward, but I don't smoke so I never tried old ones.
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#203314 - 06/12/10 06:23 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Byrd_Huntr]
Alex Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 03/01/07
Posts: 1034
Loc: -
Confirming, 1-2 years. But "Hand rolling tobacco and cigars for example can be easily reconditioned by exposing them to moisture, indeed there are commercial products available to recondition cigars. To recondition cigarettes however would be more difficult."

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#203318 - 06/12/10 08:21 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: comms]
LED Offline
Veteran

Registered: 09/01/05
Posts: 1474
Processed cigarette tobacco has so many chemicals in it, including formaldehyde, that it may last as long a twinkie. It may not be as "fresh" after a few years, but it should still be smokeable. A tobacconist would know for sure. Try a Tinderbox store. Are those still around anymore?

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#203417 - 06/14/10 03:03 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: LED]
MoBOB Offline
Veteran

Registered: 09/17/07
Posts: 1219
Loc: here
So, if cigarettes "expire" after a year does that mean they are safe to smoke? crazy
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#203422 - 06/14/10 04:39 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Richlacal]
sak45acp Offline
Stranger

Registered: 02/19/09
Posts: 16
Loc: ct
My quick .02 on the tabacco/booze thing. Having some form of tabacco product or alcohol for barter may be a good idea in the short term. In 1992 my battalion at Ft. Bragg was deployed to the Homestead area of FL after Hurricane Andrew. As we were hurrying up and waiting to move out I went to the small PX across the street and bought two rolls of Copenhagen, even though I didn't smoke or dip. Three weeks later when the dip ran out and there was no resupply, I became the man for several days and people were very nice to me. I would assume the same could be said for alcohol in a similar situation.

However, comma, using these items in the longer term (more than a few days/weeks) as a barter item may back fire. By the end of the deployment to FL, everyone knew I had the extra Cope and I found the leadership skill of several higher ranked individuals became quite lacking when they ran out of their own stash, and I found my duffel bag gone through on several occasions when I was out on patrol. After a few days or weeks when word has gotten around that you have these items, the desperate and weak that can no longer control their addictions are gonna use whatever means they can to get to your stuff. When drug use goes up, so do local burglaries and robberies, because people do what they can for their "fix." This may also apply to other items you store specifically for barter, but these two things are the biggest addictions in society and would tend to cause the most problems when they are not available. Again, my opinion based on personal observation.

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#203429 - 06/14/10 05:25 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: MoBOB]
Alex Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 03/01/07
Posts: 1034
Loc: -
Originally Posted By: MoBOB
So, if cigarettes "expire" after a year does that mean they are safe to smoke? crazy

Safe? grin They just became too dry, thus burning too fast and releasing almost no flavor. But they will still provide the necessary nicotine dose to ease the smoker's cramps. I've personally had smoked a 17 years old cigarettes once (military surplus). Not that bad at all. (Just a side note: I quit smoking 2 years ago).

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#203473 - 06/14/10 11:57 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: sak45acp]
ireckon Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 04/01/10
Posts: 1629
Loc: Northern California
Originally Posted By: sak45acp
However, comma, using these items in the longer term (more than a few days/weeks) as a barter item may back fire. By the end of the deployment to FL, everyone knew I had the extra Cope and I found the leadership skill of several higher ranked individuals became quite lacking when they ran out of their own stash, and I found my duffel bag gone through on several occasions when I was out on patrol. After a few days or weeks when word has gotten around that you have these items, the desperate and weak that can no longer control their addictions are gonna use whatever means they can to get to your stuff. When drug use goes up, so do local burglaries and robberies, because people do what they can for their "fix." This may also apply to other items you store specifically for barter, but these two things are the biggest addictions in society and would tend to cause the most problems when they are not available. Again, my opinion based on personal observation.


That story proves exactly why tobacco and booze are valuable barter items. People will behave exactly the same for any necessary item, including scarce water, scare fuel, etc. If it is known that you own anything of value, then you will always be a target to someone. If your barter items are valuable to nobody but yourself, then expect to be totally safe with all your worthless goods that you cannot barter.

People are neither inherently good nor inherently bad. People just are.
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#203497 - 06/15/10 03:56 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: ireckon]
Alex Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 03/01/07
Posts: 1034
Loc: -
Logically it must be a standard proven by ages bandit's portfolio: gold, booze, tobacco, guns, and a lot of ammo then. smile

Though, I love the Blast's idea - Electrical energy. It's not just a big solar panel on the roof but also the indispensable knowledge of how to operate and maintain it, how to store the energy, safely recharge different batteries and devices, e.t.c. So in fact that's also a skill set for trade.

By the way. Did you see the "The Book of Eli" movie recently? The guy who could recharge an iPod player is a very reputable person among bandits, and even a happy owner of a junk shop (goods he's traded for charging I believe smile ) in the middle of the post apocalyptic chaos... whistle



Edited by Alex (06/15/10 04:04 PM)

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#203502 - 06/15/10 06:31 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Alex]
JBMat Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 03/03/09
Posts: 745
Loc: NC
Gold, nope. Don't want it. Doesn't do anything but look pretty.

You want to bargain, beans, bullets, bandaids. Then luxury items that I can re-barter for the basics. Hell, if I have stock of P38 can openers and there is no power, I could be king or the world.

Something else to ponder on - Knowledge. Books. How-to and more back to basics than pure survival. You can copy this article outta my book for XX rounds of .22. Or what is it you have that I may need?

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#203503 - 06/15/10 07:54 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: JBMat]
dougwalkabout Offline
Crazy Canuck
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/03/07
Posts: 2918
Loc: Alberta, Canada
Okay, I buy this thread as an interesting "thought exercise." Though I would point out that in every historical hyper-inflation event I've read about, people still did most of their trading in cash. Yeah, the cash might not have been worth much, and you in fact may have needed a wheelbarrow to take it to the market (this has happened), but it was still a major moving force in whatever economy there was.

My guess? It's still more efficient than any barter system. It's just too hard for small buyers and sellers, each having what the other wants, to find each other. A roadside stand selling lemonade, bullets and beans on a barter system is a waste of time. (My $0.02, though I think it's true.)

Blast is right on the money. And what is he selling? A service, not a good. Like others who suggested it, services are the key (a service being a person with expertise, tools and materials to solve your particular problem).

Proof, you say? I saw news reports after the Haitian earthquake of guys recharging cell phones with bicycle-powered chargers. Seems the towers were operational but few people had off-grid means to charge their cell phones; and in the third world, everybody uses and needs their cell phones. Instant business -- cash on the barrel head, please.

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#203507 - 06/15/10 08:30 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: dougwalkabout]
Arney Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 09/15/05
Posts: 2485
Loc: California
Originally Posted By: dougwalkabout
Though I would point out that in every historical hyper-inflation event I've read about, people still did most of their trading in cash.

This actually isn't quite accurate. I was just listening to an interview online with someone from Zimbabwe. The Zimbabwe dollar is worthless but there are strict limits to how much currency you can withdraw from the bank each day (like enough to buy a can of soda a day) so even if you have a job, it's difficult to use your ever-rapidly-decreasing-in-value paycheck. Most regular folks are unemployed and do not have access to foreign currency which they can exchange on the black market for Zimbabwe dollars, so basically they are shut out of the normal currency-based economy. These folks must barter to obtain food and supplies, like trading their home-raised chickens for cooking oil. At least the value of a chicken isn't halved every few days like holding onto Zimbabwe dollars would be.

Then again, every instance of hyperinflation has its own unique peculiarities and context, so it's hard to predict future events based on what has happened before. I think we both agree, as I've stated earlier, that some sort of currency-based system would arise in such a condition since pure bartering is quite cumbersome.

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#203510 - 06/15/10 09:18 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: dougwalkabout]
Susan Offline
Geezer

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 5163
Loc: W. WA
"...in every historical hyper-inflation event I've read about, people still did most of their trading in cash."

To some extent, yes, but in those times, most people aren't buying much. Yes, if it takes a wheelbarrow full of money to buy a chicken, and your truck payment is $600, you might not have any problem making your payment.

My Mom was young teenager in a series of mining towns during the Depression. She said that while the richer people (relatively speaking) did have money and did spend it, most of the people her family knew were trading and bartering services. Her mother had chickens and traded eggs and an occasional live bird. A man down their street had three milk cows and a steady stream of customers, some trading vegetables, firewood, housecleaning, etc. Most people had wood cookstoves, so firewood was always in demand. Some women took in washing, some took in boarders; some of the boarders paid in labor.

My grandmother heard that a man nearby was going to burn down two still-decent sheds, so she hurriedly made a deal with a man who had a tractor. She said she would remove the sheds from the property (with a few live chickens to seal the deal); for hauling one shed to her property, she gave the tractor man the other shed; she used her shed as a coop so she could raise more chickens. She worked part-time at a restaurant and brought home the leavings for the chickens.

Trade and barter aren't dead, just dozing.

Sue


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#203529 - 06/16/10 03:33 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Susan]
dougwalkabout Offline
Crazy Canuck
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/03/07
Posts: 2918
Loc: Alberta, Canada
Good points, Arney and Sue. My previous post came across a little stronger than I had intended.

Absolutely, barter will be practical, to a point, within a local community. You'll be more inclined to trade with people whom you know and are nearby. I still think you'll be trading services more than straight goods, but situations vary.

I would note that in some hyper-inflation situations, an authoritarian kleptocracy grossly distorts the natural flow of the economy for political reasons (power/greed). (I don't want to get into a political rant, so I'll leave it at that.)

(BTW, Sue, The Great Depression was the opposite of a hyper-inflation event. Goods and services were massively devalued. Anybody who had cash to spend was on top of the world.)

I walked through a local country hardware store yesterday. They cater to the farm crowd, who by nature and for practical reasons have always been a little more self-sufficient. Know what you need for barter? The entire contents of a country hardware store.

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#203533 - 06/16/10 05:40 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: dougwalkabout]
Susan Offline
Geezer

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 5163
Loc: W. WA
Yes, Doug, I know that the Depression was not the event you brought up, but the line between no money and worthless money is fairly thin, IMO.

I always think that seeds for food would always have some value.

Sue

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#203551 - 06/17/10 05:19 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Susan]
Richlacal Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 02/11/10
Posts: 778
Loc: Los Angeles, CA
My father's family grew up in North Dakota during the Depression.They ate roots,grass,& Anything they could Trap or shoot.They bathed,Once a week in the Winter!All the kid's in the area,would line up along the R.R. tracks & Throw rocks at the train,& Flip the Bird at the Fireman,In turn, he would throw lumps of coal at them,they would have something to burn in the woodstove for the day,:)

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#203564 - 06/17/10 05:10 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: The_Urbivalist]
Blast Offline
INTERCEPTOR
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 07/15/02
Posts: 3593
Loc: TX
I've been reading Ferfal's book about the 2001 economic crash of Argentina and he has a lot to say about bartering. Most of which is that was cludgy and rarely worked well because it was hard to find someone who had what you wanted and wanted what you had. He did point out that the ones who did best in barter economies were the ones who owned the land where people would meet to offer their wares. They took a cut of everything.

-Blast
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#203571 - 06/17/10 07:56 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Blast]
Arney Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 09/15/05
Posts: 2485
Loc: California
Originally Posted By: Blast
They took a cut of everything.

Been meaning to pick up a copy of that book. So, how did the people who had the land for these bartering exchanges get paid? In goods? I would imagine that they were paid mostly in cash--probably American dollars. Otherwise, the land owners face the same problems that you already mentioned--not having what you want, and difficult to work out a "price" based on goods alone. As a land owner, not sure I'd want a bunch of stuff that I had no use for, unless I was willing to turn around and actively barter the stuff myself.

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#203572 - 06/17/10 08:53 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Arney]
Blast Offline
INTERCEPTOR
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 07/15/02
Posts: 3593
Loc: TX
Quote:
So, how did the people who had the land for these bartering exchanges get paid?


Mainly American dollars, Euro's and precious metals.

Ferfal's book is okay, mainly it's about dealing with rampant crime. If fact, the only nugget of new information was that about owning the land where other people come to barter rather than being a barterer.

-Blast, future owner of Bartertown


Edited by Blast (06/17/10 08:56 PM)
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#203574 - 06/17/10 10:44 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Blast]
chickenlittle Offline
Member

Registered: 06/06/10
Posts: 102
Loc: Canada
Originally Posted By: Blast

Ferfal's book is okay, mainly it's about dealing with rampant crime. If fact, the only nugget of new information was that about owning the land where other people come to barter rather than being a barterer.

-Blast, future owner of Bartertown

So I suppose that would be under the services classification instead of goods.

I have to admit that I am a bit confused by the idea of hoarding up stockpiles of stuff to use for barter.

For one thing it assumes that everything has collapsed to the point that markets are closed and are going to stay closed for a long time. Yet at the same times it assumes that things will be stable enough to allow people to have a place stable enough to stache their cache and trade from.

I would think anything severe enough to force you into a barter economy might easily turn you into a refugee, and in that case skills are usually easier to transport than stores are, and have a much higher trading value per pound.

Another thing I wonder is if all the barter-trade-stockpilers are going to end up with all the same stuff.
You might find the PAW to be overstocked with tobacco, booze and guns but very short on laundry soap.


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#203580 - 06/18/10 01:03 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Blast]
dougwalkabout Offline
Crazy Canuck
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/03/07
Posts: 2918
Loc: Alberta, Canada
Originally Posted By: Blast
-Blast, future owner of Bartertown


LMAO! Nicely played, sir. laugh

Curious coincidence, I have an uncle who once flew a gyrocopter from Yukon to New York state.

I have no idea where this story arc goes ...

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#203594 - 06/18/10 07:13 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: dougwalkabout]
LED Offline
Veteran

Registered: 09/01/05
Posts: 1474
Bartertown?? Dang it! I knew I should've stocked up on black leather clothing, metal codpieces, and spikey hair gel. Hmmm, now might be the time to befriend a domineering little person who speaks in terse sentences. Now where did I put my thigh mounted crossbow holster........

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#203597 - 06/18/10 11:24 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: LED]
pezhead Offline
Journeyman

Registered: 05/18/10
Posts: 76
Loc: Minnesota
Bartertown? Maybe a pig farm might get you started?

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#203600 - 06/18/10 12:41 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: LED]
Blast Offline
INTERCEPTOR
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 07/15/02
Posts: 3593
Loc: TX
Quote:
Hmmm, now might be the time to befriend a domineering little person who speaks in terse sentences.


Befriend one?! Heck, I'm married to one!

-Blast, who also owns black leather chaps.
_________________________
Foraging Texas
Medicine Man Plant Co.
DrMerriwether on YouTube
Radio Call Sign: KI5BOG
*As an Amazon Influencer, I may earn a sales commission on Amazon links in my posts.

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#203601 - 06/18/10 12:43 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: dougwalkabout]
Blast Offline
INTERCEPTOR
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 07/15/02
Posts: 3593
Loc: TX
Quote:
I have no idea where this story arc goes ...


Probably with some damn Aussie hitting me with my own train as he escapes with a bunch of children.

Note to self: get rid of my train.

-Blast
_________________________
Foraging Texas
Medicine Man Plant Co.
DrMerriwether on YouTube
Radio Call Sign: KI5BOG
*As an Amazon Influencer, I may earn a sales commission on Amazon links in my posts.

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#203634 - 06/19/10 04:30 AM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: chickenlittle]
Susan Offline
Geezer

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 5163
Loc: W. WA
"...it assumes that everything has collapsed to the point that markets are closed and are going to stay closed for a long time."

Not necessarily. Imagine a two-week trucker's strike in our barely-in-time marketplace, with grocery stores cleared out in an hour or two. How long would it take the military to get basic supplies to the approx. 28 million (mostly unprepared) people in SoCal after a big quake shook the overpasses down? How long would it take them to just get WATER to that many people in summer?

I think the best advice was to stock things you would normally use yourself -- if you need them, other people will need them.

Sue

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#203638 - 06/19/10 12:07 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Susan]
Russ Offline
Geezer

Registered: 06/02/06
Posts: 5338
Loc: SOCAL
Originally Posted By: Susan
...I think the best advice was to stock things you would normally use yourself -- if you need them, other people will need them.

Sue
That's what we do. The stuff we eat everyday we keep in relatively large quantities. No freeze dried or MRE's, they're too expensive unless you require the light weight that freeze drying offers, or the Mil-Spec any environment lifespan of MRE's. Neither apply to food you store and use at home.
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Better is the Enemy of Good Enough.
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#203738 - 06/21/10 01:55 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: chaosmagnet]
CarlosD Offline
Stranger

Registered: 05/19/10
Posts: 22
Originally Posted By: chaosmagnet
I used to barter computer repairs for free treatment from my chiropractor. Her computer was in much better shape than my spine, though, so I ended up writing her a number of checks over the years.

An informal market for the barter of expertise is very common in my social circle. I've obtained free medical advice, extremely valuable legal assistance, mechanical expertise, and the names of reliable contractors. In exchange I've provided advice for preparing for emergencies, plumbing, electrical wiring, and other things.

To get back to the OP, if you have an established web of friendship and social obligation it will be much easier for you to get what you need via barter, and barter of expertise can be very valuable.


It's funny you mention this. We're moving to a new house where the neighbors are a contruction guy, a mechanic, a baker and a marine biologist. I make beer. I'm hoping to set up some sort of friendly barter after we've moved in though, I can't think what the marine biologist would be good for. wink

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#203741 - 06/21/10 02:11 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: CarlosD]
Blast Offline
INTERCEPTOR
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 07/15/02
Posts: 3593
Loc: TX
Quote:
I can't think what the marine biologist would be good for.


Free shrimp?

Seriously though, the biologist probably has access to government officials and other quasi-powerful people.

-Blast
_________________________
Foraging Texas
Medicine Man Plant Co.
DrMerriwether on YouTube
Radio Call Sign: KI5BOG
*As an Amazon Influencer, I may earn a sales commission on Amazon links in my posts.

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#203743 - 06/21/10 02:15 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: Blast]
CarlosD Offline
Stranger

Registered: 05/19/10
Posts: 22
Ha! I get the idea he's a prof or TA or something. Maybe I could give him beer if he maintains my marine aquarium for me?


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#203746 - 06/21/10 03:00 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: CarlosD]
chaosmagnet Online   content
Sheriff
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/03/09
Posts: 3426
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: CarlosD
It's funny you mention this. We're moving to a new house where the neighbors are a contruction guy, a mechanic, a baker and a marine biologist. I make beer. I'm hoping to set up some sort of friendly barter after we've moved in though, I can't think what the marine biologist would be good for. wink


It's too bad you're not moving to my neighborhood. Beer for computer and network consulting sounds like a great deal.

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#203748 - 06/21/10 03:24 PM Re: Best Barter Items to Stockpile for WTSHTF? [Re: chaosmagnet]
Alex Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 03/01/07
Posts: 1034
Loc: -
Be careful though. I've got ulcer and liver problems after 5 years of exactly such a trade in my neighborhood.

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