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#221406 - 04/12/11 02:32 AM Re: Helping your neighbors [Re: jenks]
Aussie Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 11/12/10
Posts: 205
Loc: Australia
Regarding the baby formula, bear in mind that people will need clean water, possibly bottles and a heat source / sterilization too …. And while you’re about it there is the other end of the baby too ! I’m not trying to make it hard, but formula on its own is only part of the story.

Seems like you already have a great community established, so perhaps what you could work on is building a community response plan to an emergency. Sounds like you have school buildings / community buildings within your neighbourhood, so you could call a community meeting and try and get a few people onboard to help with a neighbourhood plan. You may even be able to raise funds to buy communal facilities like a large generator, emergency blankets, long life food, or giant bottled gas etc items to equip the school as an “evacuation centre” …. You may even find a space that you could stockpile items ?

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#221410 - 04/12/11 03:14 AM Re: Helping your neighbors [Re: Russ]
Blast Offline
INTERCEPTOR
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 07/15/02
Posts: 3561
Loc: Spring, Texas
Originally Posted By: Russ
Originally Posted By: Susan
Are solar chargers for cellphones SPECIFIC to cellphones (and iPod things), or could a solar charger for use in charging a car battery be used?

Sue, electronically challenged to the max
I have a solar panel designed to plug into my truck to charge the 12v battery. Keep that charged and then just get chargers designed to plug into a car's 12 volt system. Those are available for cell phones and some laptops. My truck has a standard lighter (optional these days) with two additional accessory jacks.


Russ, do you have one of those small solar panels that is designed to sit on your dashboard? If so, that won't charge your battery, only maintain it from losing it's charge over time. To charge a car battery in a reasonable amount of time (ie, one sunny day) you'll need something stronger, like a 20-30 watt panel or bigger.

-Blast
_________________________
Blogging the Borderlands
Wild Edibles Blog
I miss OBG.

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#221413 - 04/12/11 04:18 AM Re: Helping your neighbors [Re: jenks]
haertig Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/13/05
Posts: 2027
Loc: Colorado
I would tend more towards overstocking things for myself and family, and then giving away any excess as the need arose. I don't think I'd specifically stock stuff for neighbors. Because I just couldn't afford to. That would cost a phenominal amount of money and require a lot of storage space. I would share what I had, but doing something like buying 17 axes I couldn't use myself so I could give them away just doesn't fit into my way of thinking. Nor would I consider "sharing under threat of force". If someone trys to TAKE what I have by force, no matter how desperate they appear, then that's where I draw the line for being a nice guy.

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#221414 - 04/12/11 04:46 AM Re: Helping your neighbors [Re: haertig]
jenks Offline
Newbie

Registered: 06/16/07
Posts: 36
Haertig:
Good post. I am not independantly wealthy, nor completely altruistic.

My original thinking was more along the lines of; two for me one for you.

What would be the stuff that would benefit others if i had excess. TP? Garbage bags? The discussion has grown from there.

Well, that, and I'm justifying bins of "stuff" that is over and above my needs...

I can't afford 7 extra axes or 4 more chainsaws. In fact, I have a proper chainsaw on my list of wants, but can't drop the money to do it. But if i'm buying a box of orange garbage bags, i can afford to drop a couple into a "communal" bin.

Make sense?

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#221415 - 04/12/11 05:41 AM Re: Helping your neighbors [Re: jenks]
LED Offline
Veteran

Registered: 09/01/05
Posts: 1474
Around here you'll occasionally see red cross shipping containers which I assume contain disaster relief supplies. You could contact them about how to get one for your area or do it yourself. Shipping containers are relatively cheap and very sturdy/secure. It could be placed next to the fire dept., local school, park, etc. Good luck.

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#221424 - 04/12/11 12:36 PM Re: Helping your neighbors [Re: Blast]
Russ Online   content
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/02/06
Posts: 4963
Loc: SOCAL
Originally Posted By: Blast
Originally Posted By: Russ
Originally Posted By: Susan
Are solar chargers for cellphones SPECIFIC to cellphones (and iPod things), or could a solar charger for use in charging a car battery be used?

Sue, electronically challenged to the max
I have a solar panel designed to plug into my truck to charge the 12v battery. Keep that charged and then just get chargers designed to plug into a car's 12 volt system. Those are available for cell phones and some laptops. My truck has a standard lighter (optional these days) with two additional accessory jacks.


Russ, do you have one of those small solar panels that is designed to sit on your dashboard? If so, that won't charge your battery, only maintain it from losing it's charge over time. To charge a car battery in a reasonable amount of time (ie, one sunny day) you'll need something stronger, like a 20-30 watt panel or bigger.

-Blast
Blast -- The Sunlinq 25 Watt panel is stored in the back of my truck. The 25W panel is set up with car jack 12V output. I got a smaller one first and realized that wouldn't do what I needed and was only designed to charge AA batteries. It works, but it's limited.

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#221426 - 04/12/11 01:10 PM Re: Helping your neighbors [Re: Russ]
Am_Fear_Liath_Mor Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 08/03/07
Posts: 3077
Quote:
Blast -- The Sunlinq 25 Watt panel is stored in the back of my truck. The 25W panel is set up with car jack 12V output. I got a smaller one first and realized that wouldn't do what I needed and was only designed to charge AA batteries. It works, but it's limited.


Don't forget to use a charge controller as well if using a 5-10+ W solar PV panel with an auto SLA battery to prevent damaging overcharge condition.

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#221430 - 04/12/11 02:51 PM Re: Helping your neighbors [Re: jenks]
Pete Offline
Veteran

Registered: 02/20/09
Posts: 1360
jenks ... your plan is admirable, but i see one possible downside. If you pass out a dozen "survival gift baskets", you might very well get extra visits from other nosy neighbors demanding that you given them something too. You can't rule that out - if people get desperate. It's quite likely that word would spread that you are "giving stuff away" - and then you could get problems.

I don't think this should stop you from being altruistic. But it might be wise to have a personal plan about who exactly you are going to give these supplies to, and how you might keep it quiet.

Be aware that if you have a local school, very likely the schoolyard might function as a community center in a serious emergency. It would make sense to evacuate wounded people to that location, if hospitals are crowded. So one alternative is for you to take the spare survival gear and get it functioning at the schoolyard (or community center). That way you can help everybody, and there's no claims of personal prejudice.

cheers,
Pete #2

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#221432 - 04/12/11 02:52 PM Re: Helping your neighbors [Re: jenks]
TeacherRO Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/11/05
Posts: 2351
I think the broad answer is that you build community; meet your neighbors, be a good citizen, share knowledge (and tools) and help out.

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#221442 - 04/12/11 05:11 PM Re: Helping your neighbors [Re: jenks]
chaosmagnet Offline
Sheriff
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/03/09
Posts: 2975
Loc: USA
With regard to keeping things charged, almost everything I have plugs into either USB or 12V car cigarette lighter plugs. I have several 12V to USB adapters. I also have a couple of inverters.

If you rely heavily on rechargeable batteries, make sure you have a charger that runs on 12V. You lose a lot of efficiency (and therefore runtime) when you use an inverter.

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