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Survivalism & Self Sufficiency Topics => Emergency Preparations => Topic started by: FarmerJim on July 11, 2014, 10:49:02 PM

Title: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: FarmerJim on July 11, 2014, 10:49:02 PM
A lot of peppers/survivalists have a specialty or focus that goes beyond what the normal prepper would consider. Examples could be a Ham setup more closely resembling a radio station (for LONG distance transmitting/Data) or a complete blacksmiths forge. Obviously Doctors/Medical personnel tend to have a extensive medical suite.

Mine would likely be my seed bank, I've been blessed with hundreds of varieties of crop, majority of which I haven't even grown (all non GMO and most True seeding) while not the biggest most peppers would consider it excess for their needs.

What's yours? A squad sized Armory or a full bio diesel operation? Lol
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: nelson96 on July 11, 2014, 11:32:46 PM
Interesting thread, not sure I've seen one quite this specific on the question of prepping.  It made me have to think and I still couldn't come up with a single "niche" prep.

I suppose my specialty is the fact that I know a little about a lot, but it's only because I was raised as a prepper without even knowing such a title existed until I found this forum.  I certainly like technology at my beck and call but can get by on very little and am most comfortable outside working land or working with the land.
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: chrisdfw on July 11, 2014, 11:47:11 PM
I am not sure I have a niche, but I do have a lot of items that are high value and take up little space. Examples, firearms, night vision, antibiotics, even on the food side, I have a lot invested in canned meats, butter, cheese, all items with a high calorie content compared to their space.

Because I travel a lot, I tend towards light compact gear, most of it high end.
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: Morning Sunshine on July 12, 2014, 06:33:18 AM
I am going to have to go with food preservation.  Not production: our garden highlight was 4 years ago when we managed to get 15 fist-sized potatoes.  But preservation... I can, freeze, and dehydrate just about everything.  I am working on my fermenting knowledge, and want to get into dairy preservation, but first I need a source of raw milk.
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: CharlesH on July 12, 2014, 06:34:46 AM
This thread made me think, too.  To the extent a niche indicates a high level of expertise, I can't claim one either.  However, on a personally I have a "relatively" higher level of expertise in intensive grazing techniques and being able to get more protein off my property with fewer off property inputs than traditional farming.  That's kind of a niche.  My deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan have given me first hand looks at failed/stalled societies which are more insightful than the average American (many in the TSP audience excluded of course), my military training has probably given me a bit more expertise at dealing with crises than average, and maybe my full time job as a teacher (I know how TSPers feel about teachers, but there it is!!), has given me a leg up on being able to educate those around me on the previous points.
 
  But when you lay it out like that, it comes out sounding more like a jack of all trades and master of none, rather than a particular niche.
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: Morning Sunshine on July 12, 2014, 06:42:02 AM
and maybe my full time job as a teacher (I know how TSPers feel about teachers, but there it is!!), has given me a leg up on being able to educate those around me on the previous points.

I cannot speak for anyone else, but this homeschool mom has a great respect for teachers.  I think the vast majority of you guys are doing the best you can in a broken and failed system that is failing you guys as much as it is failing the poor kids trapped in that system.  And the unions do not seem to be doing you guys any favors, especially in the PR dept.
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: Nicodemus on July 12, 2014, 06:59:02 AM
My niche is probably cooking without electricity or gas with a variety of different modern and primitive methods.
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: RitaRose1945 on July 12, 2014, 07:20:32 AM
I was thinking I didn't really have one.  I mean, I have a ham radio license but I don't really have the equipment, and I can sew but not very well, and I can knit but nothing fancy, and I don't have my concealed carry yet, and I'm not a computer wiz.

But I do have one skill, and that's the ability to mediate.

I'm actually pretty good at stepping into someone else's shoes and being able to explain their point of view to another person, and then turning around and doing the same for them.

I know it sounds like a fringe skill, but the more I think about it, the more I see that being fairly useful.
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: idelphic on July 12, 2014, 08:14:13 AM
(walks up to podium) Hello, my name is iDelphic (iDel) - It's been several months since I was last here at TSP,.. I'm a prepper.

Sorry had to start with some humor.  It's interesting to see this,.. Niche - everyone really does have one.  may not realize it..

Mine seems to be power....Not evil overlord type... Solar, low voltage, batteries.  Although I haven't done much with it of late.
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: Bolomark on July 12, 2014, 08:38:17 AM

Mine seems to be power....Not evil overlord type...

Ha! sure they all start this way, lets build a nuclear power plant or a solar plant or hydro dam,next you'll want to control the world. ;)

mine would be engine power generation/ also solar and gardening.

This thread made me think, too.  To the extent a niche indicates a high level of expertise, I can't claim one either.   
  But when you lay it out like that, it comes out sounding more like a jack of all trades and master of none, rather than a particular niche.
JACK of all trades works especially one who can teach others 8)
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: nelson96 on July 12, 2014, 08:45:08 AM
But I do have one skill, and that's the ability to mediate.

I'm actually pretty good at stepping into someone else's shoes and being able to explain their point of view to another person, and then turning around and doing the same for them.

I know it sounds like a fringe skill, but the more I think about it, the more I see that being fairly useful.

If SHTF that will be a very useful skill, emotions will be high.
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: desmond11 on July 12, 2014, 09:23:02 AM
Mine would be construction technics from welding to framing.I can build just about anything.I love working with my hands.plus I guess my biggest prep would be tools.gotta work on my other preps more.
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: Cedar on July 12, 2014, 09:24:59 AM
(walks up to podium) Hello, my name is iDelphic (iDel) - It's been several months since I was last here at TSP,.. I'm a prepper.

I was thinking about you the other day iDel.. glad to see you back.

Cedar
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: Cedar on July 12, 2014, 09:25:37 AM
I am with nelson. I don't think I have one either.. but I think I am most proud of my seed collection.

Cedar
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: RitaRose1945 on July 12, 2014, 09:34:51 AM
I am with nelson. I don't think I have one either.

Probably because you can do pretty much everything.  And if you can't, you know a guy that has a PhD in it.
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: NWPilgrim on July 12, 2014, 10:32:33 AM
My niche prep is that I am learning to do more projects around the house/yard that in the past I would have hired someone else to do.  One reason is to reinforce a mindset of do-it-myself and not immediately look for someone else to fix or build things for me.  Another reason is to have the tools, materials and skills at hand to do a variety of projects.  This improves the home, improves my skills and tools, and I have the opportunity to build in more self-sufficiency/protection ideas into these projects.  For instance, I am replacing a section of cedar fence. I decided instead of the normal construction for the fence I could slightly improve the security of the fence and greatly improve its durability by building it double layer boards, additional cross member (3 2x4s instead of 2 per panel), and stronger gate hinges and latch.

In the last ten years I've become comfortable with most type of floor replacement/fixes including complete hardwood floor installation, HVAC/vent pipe repair and replacement, most indoor plumbing jobs, most electrical outside of the breaker panel, some framing, drywall repair and replacement, tile floor and counter top installation, washer/dryer repair, microwave repair, hot water heater repair,  soundproofing, and deck repair.  Already had experience with concrete, roofing, logging/wood cutting.

Hoping to get more time to work in the yard areas to learn brick laying, build a workshop and wood shed, and tree care/pruning.

One of these skills may turn into a part-time business for semi-retirement, or in case of job disruption. In the mean time it improves our home, keeps me active and learning.
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: AvenueQ on July 12, 2014, 11:24:19 AM
I guess fiber arts counts? I've been knitting for 15 years so I can make almost anything, and I'm getting much better at spinning and weaving. Sewing is on my list for improvement.

Other than that I have good manual dexterity and am pretty mechanically minded. I can learn how to repair/take things apart easily, even though I sometimes need some help on the brute strength aspect of things.
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: FarmerJim on July 12, 2014, 11:44:30 AM
I guess fiber arts counts? I've been knitting for 15 years so I can make almost anything, and I'm getting much better at spinning and weaving. Sewing is on my list for improvement.

Other than that I have good manual dexterity and am pretty mechanically minded. I can learn how to repair/take things apart easily, even though I sometimes need some help on the brute strength aspect of things.

My wife is trying to get there, sewing is her strong suit but she'd like to move beyond basic knitting/loom work into more skilled projects.

That and homeschooling, lol. She has curriculum for each of the kids through high school in case we needed it tomorrow.
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: doublehelix on July 12, 2014, 12:03:34 PM
Scratch cooking:
Learning to make everything from the basic ingredients

Austere sub-acute medical care:
Equipping-up
Learning more herbal remedies

Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: nelson96 on July 12, 2014, 12:05:48 PM
I guess I should have mentioned my wife's skill's. . . .  Much like my own skills (good 'ol country girl prepper) but she is also a master sewer and can even make authentic indian leather clothing, bead work and all.  She also makes thick leather chinks and chaps.  She also knows how to drive horses and has horse logged with her dad.  She's a great horse trainer too, as well as my daughters.
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: Alan Georges on July 12, 2014, 12:55:50 PM
I try sooooo hard not to have a niche, to be well-rounded in all things, but I keep coming back to all things tech: bicycle wrenching, small solar, radio, water processing, gunsmithing, etc.  If it smells like oil or solder, it's in my realm.

My cooking though... serviceable, haven't poisoned anyone (yet), but I've just got no flair for it.
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: allofthemonkeys on July 12, 2014, 03:31:15 PM
I guess you can call me a scrounger.  Due to my limited income I have had to find other ways to build my preps, and as such I find things that I can use or re purpose to fit my needs.  I have taken 2 liter bottles from parties, alum. cans from trash cans at work, fruit that would have gone to waste from trees, manure from a farm, old glass shower doors for a greenhouse, old cinderblocks, railroad ties, buckets, lumber, all free for the taking with just a question.  I wish I had root stock to graft some tree branches and take some of the trees home with me. :)
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: mountainmoma on July 12, 2014, 05:17:19 PM
I guess you can call me a scrounger.  Due to my limited income I have had to find other ways to build my preps, and as such I find things that I can use or re purpose to fit my needs.  I have taken 2 liter bottles from parties, alum. cans from trash cans at work, fruit that would have gone to waste from trees, manure from a farm, old glass shower doors for a greenhouse, old cinderblocks, railroad ties, buckets, lumber, all free for the taking with just a question.  I wish I had root stock to graft some tree branches and take some of the trees home with me. :)
rootstock is cheap, either buy quite a few or buy one of apple and one of basic stone fruit, mound dirt up agaisnt them to make them sucker, to get more rootstocks. Trees can be free pretty easily.
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: mountainmoma on July 12, 2014, 05:26:00 PM
Knowledge and experience of home skills. 1st skills : Cheese making, preserving of food, cooking.  2nd: gardening 3rd: Natural building methods, I no longer have strength but have the knowledge of how to scrounge together basic shelter with Earth building techniques and maybe a few scrap material. Give me a shovel, a tarp, and someone with a strong back, a few downed branches and we can get thru the winter. 4th: fiber/clothing manufacture and repair (mostly some sewing, with knitting and a teeny bit of weaving/spinning). 5th: years of experience educating young people from preK to 11th grade ( homeschool mom) 6th: my BSEE may or may not be worth anything, I do understand solar and power, but when Im feeling ok, I can still think logically and have some common sense and know how to learn.

But, I need to be partnered with a person/people who have strength and endurance. SO, Even if you reading this think you dont have skills, do learn some, but if you are nice to work with, a quick learner, and are a strong good worker, you are going to do fine.
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: Cedar on July 12, 2014, 05:31:25 PM
Even if you reading this think you dont have skills

Most people do have skills. They do not realize it or are too afraid to take that first step. WHO CARES IF YOU FAIL!! At least you tried! You cannot win all the time and if you mess up, oh well.. learn from it and start over from where you can start over, which might be square 1.. it might be square 6... . I get my disasters/Gong Show things happen too.... you just keep plodding along... try to laugh and still have fun doing whatever you were/are doing.

Cedar
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: Ken325 on July 12, 2014, 05:53:01 PM
I'm one of those mile wide inch deep types.  I was in the Army, but in a medical unit.  I am a decent medic, but I no longer work in this field.  I am working on a Ham license, but I am not there yet.  I am a decent mechanic and good with tools, but others are better.  There are some things I excel at.  I have a fantastic library, both paper and eBook.  I also have a science degree and I am a decent chemist.  Other than that I have no special skills. 

I noticed someone said cooking and I thought this is a good one.  Feeding a group with limited resources will be a challenge.  I can see a garden that produces peppers, cucumbers and squash.  You give it to the cook and say make something good with this!  Sewing is another good skill. 

I have also thought that a person's special skill could be being young, healthy, and athletic.  In a breakdown you are going to need a lot of strong backs to move stuff and do guard duty.  I noticed at a recent prepper expo that most preppers are in their 40s and 50s.  If I was putting a prepper group together I would want 5-6 young fit people in late teens or twenty's to help with this.
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: FarmerJim on July 12, 2014, 05:59:15 PM

I have also thought that a person's special skill could be being young, healthy, and athletic.  In a breakdown you are going to need a lot of strong backs to move stuff and do guard duty.  I noticed at a recent prepper expo that most preppers are in their 40s and 50s.  If I was putting a prepper group together I would want 5-6 young fit people in late teens or twenty's to help with this.

This is something we (what I would consider our Mutual Assistance group) are trying to keep in mind.

We are 3-5 families, all with at least 1 combat vet. 3 Iraq, One Afghan, 1 Vietnam (father of one of our Iraq guys)

The average age of "Working" members is around 30 with a few outliers (kids and grandparents) while a few of us may have a couple extra pounds its nothing that can't be burned off either now or when thrust into that situation (myself included)
We have no pressing medical issues with the exception of 1 diabetic (Type 2)

Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: busymomx3 on July 12, 2014, 06:12:38 PM
I am not super experienced but I would say my "focus" is cooking and food.  I'm big on making sure we have room and create a garden.  That I am learning or know how to cook from scratch.  I'm still learning the preservation side but it's where I focus.  DH tends to focus on security.
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: mountainmoma on July 12, 2014, 06:23:28 PM

I have also thought that a person's special skill could be being young, healthy, and athletic.  In a breakdown you are going to need a lot of strong backs to move stuff and do guard duty.  I noticed at a recent prepper expo that most preppers are in their 40s and 50s.  If I was putting a prepper group together I would want 5-6 young fit people in late teens or twenty's to help with this.

This is what I meant, that even if you dont have alot of experience yet, being young and fit and a hard worker, quick learner, this is a skill someone like me needs to be paired with !!
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: nelson96 on July 12, 2014, 06:35:16 PM
Don't discount us old guys (49 this month). . .  I know there are exceptions but I'd take 4 skilled old guys over teaching young muscle, while trying to get a project done, any day.

Ever heard of "old man strength"?  ;D

.
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: RitaRose1945 on July 12, 2014, 06:39:31 PM
Don't discount us old guys (49 this month).

49-year-olds ROCK!  8)

(high-fives Nelson)
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: endurance on July 12, 2014, 06:40:38 PM
Medicinal herb grown in the garden.  Every year I try to add a few varieties and see what I can successfully grow here.

Lighting is kind of a mid-term thing.  I built my own mountain bike lighting for several years and like converting old flashlights into better ones with LEDs.  Sometimes I'll get 25 old D cell metal flashlights (some are even solid copper) for $12 plus shipping on e-bay and buy the whole lot.  As I get the time, I'll tinker around and upgrade them with LEDs.  My best invention to date is getting an old 8D cell Ray-O-Vac Hunter and replacing the battery with a SLA and 1300 lumen LED head.  Over two hours of high intensity lighting for a total cost around $65.  Plus it stands on its own for area lighting.

In the long run I'd like to start experimenting with different abundant material batteries, stuff like zinc carbon using fence posts and charcoal with urine as an electrolyte.  LEDs are so efficient you might be able to get months of lighting out of an old fence post and the quenched embers from your fireplace in a five gallon bucket.
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: nelson96 on July 12, 2014, 06:40:55 PM
49-year-olds ROCK!  8)

(high-fives Nelson)

BACK AT YA !
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: endurance on July 12, 2014, 06:44:08 PM
BACK AT YA !

LOL, yep, I just did my pre-fire academy meeting and I'm the oldest guy by a decade.  This should be interesting.
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: Cedar on July 12, 2014, 06:49:17 PM
Don't discount us old guys (49 this month). . . 

And here I thought you were younger than me.

Cear
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: nelson96 on July 12, 2014, 06:54:24 PM
And here I thought you were younger than me.

I'm just now starting to get grey hair.  Since I've shaved my goat & stash people think I'm even younger than they did before.  I think it's mostly because I don't act my age.  ;D
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: FarmerJim on July 12, 2014, 07:00:39 PM
Don't discount us old guys (49 this month). . .  I know there are exceptions but I'd take 4 skilled old guys over teaching young muscle, while trying to get a project done, any day.

Ever heard of "old man strength"?  ;D

.

Hahaha. Our Vietnam vet is easily our most valuable! Skilled and experienced Operator (Force Recon), bilingual, experienced gunsmith and reloader as well as a damn competent brewer. Lol as far as physicality goes he is in the top 3 most in shape members (I'm not)
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: CharlesH on July 12, 2014, 07:43:00 PM
Youngsters... (50 myself)
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: Ms. Albatross on July 12, 2014, 08:01:41 PM
I think it's mostly because I don't act my age.  ;D

As long as you don't act your shoe size!   ;)
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: nelson96 on July 12, 2014, 08:13:31 PM
As long as you don't act your shoe size!   ;)

LOL. . .  I'm commonly mistaken to be between age 35 and 43.  But I can often keep up with the 30 year olds.  ;D
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: mountainmoma on July 12, 2014, 10:18:36 PM
Don't discount us old guys (49 this month). . .  I know there are exceptions but I'd take 4 skilled old guys over teaching young muscle, while trying to get a project done, any day.

Ever heard of "old man strength"?  ;D

.

I think 49 is young.....certainly younger than me....I was figuring the ones that needed some muscle help would be us with medical problems or the 80plus older ones..... (Not trying to offend any strong 80 year olds, just generalizing...)
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: Cedar on July 12, 2014, 11:08:20 PM
I know an 84 year old man named Joe who can dance circles around me when we are hiking hills around here.

Cedar
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: nelson96 on July 13, 2014, 01:34:49 AM
I elk hunt with a 79 year old man and he surprises me how much he can do each year.  He certainly doesn't sit around camp.
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: Robinelli on July 21, 2014, 11:39:46 AM
I don't have any particular niche but being in the medical field, ER RN, I do have a few items probably considered eccentric like a nasopharyngeal airway in my trauma kit.  I don't have that many medical items though but I do plan to get more!

I am working on my Family Nurse Practitioner degree now but I don't plan to work in the field for long after I graduate.  I plan to move West and work in herbal medicine. Eventually that will be niche :)
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: keebler on July 21, 2014, 03:46:33 PM
Not really having a "Niche" but for 30 years always had water for neighbors when the power is off, Via Generator,& I'm the only one around with solar panels (lighting) & on all my vehicles. I'm a fair mechanic, none of my vehicles have "ever been in a shop" oldest are (2) 1986's, Electrician years ago.
keeb
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: endurance on July 21, 2014, 04:01:41 PM
I don't have any particular niche but being in the medical field, ER RN, I do have a few items probably considered eccentric like a nasopharyngeal airway in my trauma kit.  I don't have that many medical items though but I do plan to get more!

I am working on my Family Nurse Practitioner degree now but I don't plan to work in the field for long after I graduate.  I plan to move West and work in herbal medicine. Eventually that will be niche :)
And I look forward to being a supplier to your apothecary. ;)
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: iam4liberty on July 21, 2014, 08:12:30 PM
What an excellent question!  Even though it is fiction, the 299 days series has really given me an appreciation for specialized contributions made to a team and community.

It sounds funny but my niche prep is math. 

Regarding 70+ year olds, two words: Samuel Whittemore.  ;)
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: theBINKYhunter on July 21, 2014, 10:26:48 PM
Well, I'm becoming more and more of a handy man and car guy, but I also roast coffee and happen to have access to a warehouse with several tons of green coffee which stores for a LONG time. So I'll be the guy fixing stuff with a hot cup of fresh coffee in my hands ;D
Title: Re: what's your "Niche" prep?
Post by: DrJohn on July 22, 2014, 07:44:32 AM
Don't discount us old guys (49 this month). . .  I know there are exceptions but I'd take 4 skilled old guys over teaching young muscle, while trying to get a project done, any day.

Ever heard of "old man strength"?  ;D

.

Work smart not hard.

My niche, pretty easy, Teeth.