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  • Budget-conscious preparedness

    Hello everyone.

    I see many people here are with a large amount of experience and rather good equipment. But considering the rest (like me... :) ) from eastern Europe, larger family to provide for and limited budget, I would like to hear your opinions on buying equipment form China, i.e. form aliexpress or similar stores...

    Anyone having some good experience with those, or they all just sell crappy tools with funny descriptions?

  • #2
    I don't have any issues with purchasing products made in China. In-fact because I live in the wilderness 100 miles from a store, much of my supplies are purchased through e-bay or amazon or direct using the internet. It can take roughly six weeks for things to be in transit after they ship them, by international mail. But........I don't have any issue with products from China.
    One day you eat the chicken.....next day the left-over chicken.....next five days you eat chicken feathers, head and feet.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Yenix View Post
      Hello everyone.

      I see many people here are with a large amount of experience and rather good equipment. But considering the rest (like me... :) ) from eastern Europe, larger family to provide for and limited budget, I would like to hear your opinions on buying equipment form China, i.e. form aliexpress or similar stores...

      Anyone having some good experience with those, or they all just sell crappy tools with funny descriptions?


      I have read of good and bad experiences with aliexpress. There are some bad sellers associated with them (along with many good ones), so it would pay to thoroughly investigate each seller before buying.

      Because I, too, am on a limited budget I make more things than I buy. I figure it makes sense to "low-tech prep" for the day when my store-bought goods are depleted (or broken beyond repair, destroyed in a fire, stolen, or just used up), and I may need to resort to my skills to do things the old-fashioned way.
      Last edited by GrizzlyetteAdams; 01-06-2019, 11:07 AM.
      Genius is making a way out of no way.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by GrizzlyetteAdams View Post



        I have read of good and bad experiences with aliexpress. There are some bad sellers associated with them (along with many good ones), so it would pay to thoroughly investigate each seller before buying.

        Because I, too, am on a limited budget I make more things than I buy. I figure it makes sense to "low-tech prep" for the day when my store-bought goods are depleted (or broken beyond repair, destroyed in a fire, stolen, or just used up), and I may need to resort to my skills to do things the old-fashioned way.
        Wau. I woud not say "odd duck", but it is a little uncommon to find a prepper girl who is able to make things by herself. Really admiring people like you. You from USA? Anywhere I can see the things you made yourself?

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        • #5

          95% of the stuff that comes from China is absolute garbage. That said, it is possible to hunt down that other 5% and it can be well worth the effort.
          I have a friend who doesn't seem to be too concerned with Chinese junk and buys a lot of stuff from Harbor Freight Tools. Every now and then he buys something that not only works but seems to last forever, and then I take advantage of that myself.

          For example, he bought an electric chainsaw sharpener that works absolutely amazingly for just $29. I then bought it. Have had it for around 6 years now, he's had his for around 10 and sharpens a lot more chains that I do. The darn thing work fantastic and the chains are as sharp as new when done.

          There are quite a few things that seem to work well that come from China, you just have to use the internet and do a bit of research on what people say about them after they've bought the item and used it for a while.

          Just be careful and make sure you find actual real people who can convey their experiences. Lots of product reviews on youtube.

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          • #6
            When buying from China, it is absolutely 'Buyer Beware". As stated before, check out and investigate the seller, that is the critical component. Most Chinese companies have no business ethnics. Once you find the good companies then investigate the products carefully on different sites. If it all matches up, then go for it.

            I would try and follow Grizzlyetta and learn to make as much as possible yourself. She can help you learn a ton. You could drop her off in the arctic in a tee shirt and shorts, empty handed and she would return wearing a polar bear outfit.
            It is better to be a warrior in a garden, than a gardener in a war!

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            • #7
              I have had some good luck with hand tools from Harbor Freight, but I don't trust their electronics, electrical, or pneumatic stuff. One exception to that is a multimeter/clamp on ammeter I bought 10+ years ago and still use daily.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by SonofLiberty View Post
                I have had some good luck with hand tools from Harbor Freight, but I don't trust their electronics, electrical, or pneumatic stuff. One exception to that is a multimeter/clamp on ammeter I bought 10+ years ago and still use daily.
                I don't use air tools much, but my buddy owns a lawn care service and is always using them to maintain his equipment. He uses his air tools more in one week than I use mine in five years. (mine are all Ingersoll Rand) He bought his impact wrench and air ratchet from Harbor Freight Tools and says they're as good as the Ingersoll Rand.

                He decided to take a chance one Sunday when his IR impact wrench finally went bad. He had to get his stuff done so he took a drive down to HF and figured they'd at least work for the next week until he could order another "good" impact wrench. Well, one thing lead to another and he's still using the same Harbor Freight air impact gun 5 years later. Any tool that will last him 5 years would probably last most people three lifetimes.

                He says their air ratchet is just as good.

                +1 on the harbor freight electronics warning though. I don't trust their stuff either.

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                • #9
                  I am a member of Harbor Freight and love their deals and prices. I have never had one of their tools fail. I have one of their small vices for my gun smithing and it works perfectly. I also get a free item every time I buy something there, so bonus on top of the low prices. They send me coupons every week and a monthly catalog filled with discount coupons. This is a win-win store.
                  It is better to be a warrior in a garden, than a gardener in a war!

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Yenix View Post

                    Wau. I woud not say "odd duck", but it is a little uncommon to find a prepper girl who is able to make things by herself. Really admiring people like you. You from USA? Anywhere I can see the things you made yourself?
                    Thank you, Yenix. It's nothing special to be half-wild like an old-timey aboriginal (although I am not from Australia, but a Cajun originally from South Louisiana, USA). I'm just a swamp girl who loves the old ways.

                    For some time now, I have been itching to put up a Youtube channel to demonstrate primitive living skills. There are tons of them Out There, which is one of the reasons why I am procrastinating...My little channel would just get lost in the fray.

                    However, there is something that lacking out there that I can demonstrate: how to make traditional thistle-down fletching on a dart for a Cherokee blow gun. NONE of them show how to do the job clearly. Either their big ol' fingers are in the way of viewing how the process is done, or else the cameraman does not spend enough time showing how to unroll the thistle-down into place. It is not easy to explain and it is a bit tricky to do, but once mastered, it is easy sailing!

                    If and when I ever get a Youtube channel it may include stuff like flintknapping, atlatls, blowguns, hide tanning, foraging for wild edibles and medicinals, breadmaking (tortillas too), birdcatching (and how to breast-out the birds and cook them), making flour (and more!) out of acorns, cooking when fuel (and sunlight) is limited, natural (chemical free) gardening when water is limited, theft-proof camouflage gardening for SHTF times, etc. etc. etc. and ETC.!
                    Last edited by GrizzlyetteAdams; 01-07-2019, 12:32 AM.
                    Genius is making a way out of no way.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by tmttactical View Post
                      When buying from China, it is absolutely 'Buyer Beware". As stated before, check out and investigate the seller, that is the critical component. Most Chinese companies have no business ethnics. Once you find the good companies then investigate the products carefully on different sites. If it all matches up, then go for it.

                      I would try and follow Grizzlyetta and learn to make as much as possible yourself. She can help you learn a ton. You could drop her off in the arctic in a tee shirt and shorts, empty handed and she would return wearing a polar bear outfit.

                      Aaaiiiee! Please, NO! I don't know nuthin' 'bout polar bears. Sourdough is your man for that kind of thing. I was raised in the land of banana trees, not polar bears.

                      Alligators...on the other hand, lets talk about gators, and I can tell you a thing or three, lol.

                      (But seriously though, thank you for your vote of confidence. Truth be told, I am too broke to buy a bunch of stuff, and enjoy making things anyway. And, besides, I think I was born 200 years too late.)
                      Genius is making a way out of no way.

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                      • #12
                        Is Sourdough, the same person that was on the site I left. Not trying to pry, just curious. I liked the other persons posts.
                        It is better to be a warrior in a garden, than a gardener in a war!

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          GrizzlyetteAdams If you decide to start a YT channel let me know and I will certainly subscribe and tell everybody i know about it. I would love to watch and learn some of the old ways.
                          It is better to be a warrior in a garden, than a gardener in a war!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by GrizzlyetteAdams View Post

                            Thank you, Yenix. It's nothing special to be half-wild like an old-timey aboriginal (although I am not from Australia, but a Cajun originally from South Louisiana, USA). I'm just a swamp girl who loves the old ways.

                            For some time now, I have been itching to put up a Youtube channel to demonstrate primitive living skills. There are tons of them Out There, which is one of the reasons why I am procrastinating...My little channel would just get lost in the fray.

                            However, there is something that lacking out there that I can demonstrate: how to make traditional thistle-down fletching on a dart for a Cherokee blow gun. NONE of them show how to do the job clearly. Either their big ol' fingers are in the way of viewing how the process is done, or else the cameraman does not spend enough time showing how to unroll the thistle-down into place. It is not easy to explain and it is a bit tricky to do, but once mastered, it is easy sailing!

                            If and when I ever get a Youtube channel it may include stuff like flintknapping, atlatls, blowguns, hide tanning, foraging for wild edibles and medicinals, breadmaking (tortillas too), birdcatching (and how to breast-out the birds and cook them), making flour (and more!) out of acorns, cooking when fuel (and sunlight) is limited, natural (chemical free) gardening when water is limited, theft-proof camouflage gardening for SHTF times, etc. etc. etc. and ETC.!
                            Wau, swamp girl, is sounds so mysterious it makes me wanna meet you in person... I'll drop you a note next time I fly to US. :D

                            I believe many people would like to start a youtube channel, me included, but there is just so much stuff out there, that you got a feeling all work will go to waste unless you are kinda super-lucky or super-focused. They only way is to do it better than the rest. A be a little lucky probably. :)

                            My problem with youtube is, that if world would go to waste, there will be no more youtube to watch and learn everything we did not manage before SHTF situation... So with the things which I "save for later" I try to go the old paper way".




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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by GrizzlyetteAdams View Post

                              Alligators...on the other hand, lets talk about gators, and I can tell you a thing or three, lol.
                              Hehe, why not... Spit out the gators, Dundee...

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