Rural Lifestyle

Life in Rural America

Tag: firearms

Panic Buying Is Not The Time To Buy

The panic buying of December 2012 is a reminder to preppers / survivalist, if you do not have it before SHTF, you are not going to find it afterwards.

For well over a year I had been sitting on the fence on getting a new AR. Then came the Connecticut school shooting and renewed calls for banning so called “assault rifles.” At the time it seemed the crazy politicians finally had the fuel they needed to drive some form of gun control through congress.

Congress was out for the holidays, so its doubtful anything could be done until January. The president had the financial cliff to deal with, which means gun control was going to be on the back burner for a few weeks.

The actions of Adam Lanza and the venom filled words of anti-gun members of congress lead the shooting sports community to believe we were looking at a new assault rifle ban. If you do not have it now, chance are you are not going to get it. In response to the current events, I jumped off the fence and got serious about buying an AR-15.

Livestock and Firearms for SHTF

Wild boar hog in pen

Lets say SHTF tomorrow, what would be your top priorities? Besides safe drinking water, food production and property protection is at the top of my list.

One of the questions I ask myself, how do you develop a sustainable food supply, and at the same time protect your property? Well, its not really “how”, but where do you divide your resources to best serve you and your family.

Lets say you have $20. Would that $20 serve you better as ammunition, or through livestock such as chickens? What about tools and fencing supplies? Would that $20 serve you well as a hammer, wire cutters, staples for fencing wire, or as barbed wire?

If you have a few million dollars to spend, we would not have to be asking these questions. We would just buy the land, and buy all of the supplies that we need.

Unfortunately, most of us have limited resources. Due to these limited resources we need to spend wisely. And thus we ask questions to find answers.

Firearms

Then comes up the classic debate, would that money be better invested in food, livestock or ammunition?

Pick One Rifle or Shotgun For Surviving SHTF

Ruger 10/22 and Marlin model 60 side by side

Some kind of new disease has broke out, society has collapsed and no more trucks are rolling. Over the following weeks the power goes out, the water stops running, people stop driving their cars and trucks, friends, neighbors and strangers come around begging for food.

The food preps are slowly being eaten. But the food is not an issue, because you still have your backup food preps at your Bug Out Location. If your family can reach the remote location safely, you will have food, water, seeds to plant a garden, and getting a rabbit out of the field next to the creek should not be an issue. The problem is getting there.

Its been at least a month since your car or truck has had gas in it. So now you and your family has to walk to the Bug Out Location. Your family has to go through the middle of town, hit a set of railroad tracks, go about 30 miles following the tracks, hit a pipeline, go another few miles following the pipeline, then its just a short trip through the woods. Your family should be able to make the trip in about 3 days.

You grab your Bug Out Bag, go to the gun safe, open it up, and you can only take one firearm, what would it be?

Firearms Every Survivalist Should Own

AK-47 AR-15 Survival Rifles

Ok Survivalist, it’s time to talk about firearms every serious prepper should own.

Whether you are in an urban survival situation, have a homestead you plan on using as a Bug Out Location, bugging in, or bugging out to the wilderness, lets put together a solid list of well preforming firearms.

Requirements for this list require the firearm to have a long history of civilian or military service, and must have a reputation of being reliable.

Ruger 10/22 is the bees knees of 22 rifles. There are a lot of 22 rifles out there, but few of them can compare to the reliability and the customization of the Ruger 10/22.

My first experience with a Ruger 10/22 was sometime in 1984 or 1985 when 3 of my buddies and I were on a 3 day camping trip. We loaded up an aluminum boat and headed out to one of the bayous close to Bridge City, Texas.

On the second day of the camping trip after eating lunch, Allen and I took the dishes to the bayou to wash them. While we were washing the dishes, we saw a nutria rat on the other side of the slough. 1 shot with the Ruger 10/22 took care of the animal. Allen and I got in the aluminum boat we used to reach the camping spot, then paddled over to retrieve the nutria rat.

We skinned the nutria rat and brought it back to the camping spot where it was roasted over a camp fire and eaten. Even though we had just eaten dinner, it was just canned chili and we were still hungry. The meat from that nutria rat really hit the spot.

Firearm for Rural SHTF Bug Out Location

Shooting AK-47 with ERGO Grip SUREGRIP

What is your ideal firearm for a rural small farm (Bug Out Location)? Purpose is to protect property and livestock. For this article, lets say the setting can be during normal everyday life, and during a long term SHTF / TEOTWAWKI event.

During a SHTF setting, livestock are going to be very difficult to replace.

Its 10 pm, your chickens start making a fuss, what firearm do you grab? Do you use a shotgun, small caliber rifle, medium caliber rifle, or something else?

One of my ideal setups would be for a rifle and a pistol setup to share the same caliber. There are several manufacturers that make carbines in various pistol calibers, such as the 17 HMR, 22 long rifle, 9mm, 357 magnum and 45 acp.

This article will be divided into 3 phases, discussion on shotguns, small calibers for everyday life, larger calibers for post-SHTF / a world without law. Since followup shots may be needed rather quickly, single shot firearms will not be discussed.

Shotgun For Bug Out Location

While a shotgun may be ideal for nighttime, there is a high risk of collateral damage. We want to protect the livestock, and not take the livestock out along with the predator.

Even though the Mossberg 590 is one of my favorite SHTF shotguns, I do not think it is appropriate for livestock protection. The 590 does not have a choke that can be used to change the pattern of the shot. The short barrel of the Mossberg 590 will have a negative effect on the shot pattern as well.

Middle Ground Rifle Caliber For SHTF TEOTWAWKI

DS Arms SA58 FN/FAL

Someone on my facebook friends list posted a picture of 4 survival firearms – pistol, Ruger 10/22, Remington 870 and AR-15.

I suggested the AR-15 be replaced with an AK-47. This is why I made that suggestion,

22 Long Rifle VS 223 Remington

Calibers for SHTFWhen you look at the two calibers, the 22 long rifle bullet is not much smaller then the 223 Remington. If your shots are less then 100 yards, the 22 long rifle loaded with high grade bullets can get close to 223 Remington. Lets be honest, there is no way the 22 Long Rifle can match the ballistics of the 223 Remington.

22 long rifle, CCI mini-mag hollow points, 36 grain bullet, bullet diameter .222 inch (5.6 mm)

223 Remington, 55 grain bullet full metal jacket, bullet diameter .224 inch (5.7 mm)

There is not “that” much difference between the 22 long rifle bullet and the 223 Remington bullet. Keep in mind we are talking about bullet diameter and bullet weight, and not the cartridge length.

If You Had Seven Days Notice Before SHTF

Ruger 10/22 and Marlin model 60 side by side

Lets say the public was given a 1 week notice before the start of a major global conflict. Rarely does that kind of advance knowledge leak out to the public. For the sake of discussion lets say for once the public knows what is going to happen a week ahead of time.

One of the incidents I am referring to is the leak that Israel may attack Iran during Yum Kippor.

I have been hearing various rumors for over 2 decades, so I take them with a grain of salt and keep living life.

The word has leaked out, you do a review of your survival gear stockpile, now what?

What does your water stockpile look like?
What does your ammunition stockpile look like?
What does your fuel stockpile look like?
What about seeds for your long term survival garden, communications, livestock, livestock feed, firearms, propane,,, and other preps.

Firearms For SHTF

Some AR-15 AK-47 and Remington 1911 R1 time

WASR-10 AK-47 and Bushmaster AR-15

Tuesday, August 7, 2012 my daughter called and said her and her boyfriend wanted to drive up and visit with my wife and I. I said sure thing. My daughter starts back to school in a few days. So why not spend some time shooting an AK-47, AR-15 and Remington 1911 R1. My daughters mom and I have been divorced for close to 10 years. Even though they live in Baytown Texas, and I live in Jasper Texas, that has not stopped me from being part of my daughters life.

After my wife and I got off work, we met my daughter and her boyfriend at new Mexican restaurant here in Jasper. We ate, enjoyed each others company, then went home and watched The Dark Knight. On the way home we stopped the super walmart in Jasper and picked up 100 rounds of American Eagle 223 Remington.

I am trying to cycle out a lot of my steel cased 223 Remington and replace it with brass cased American Eagle or Federal bulk 223.

Wednesday August 8, 2012 my wife and I got up and went to work. Things were a little slow so I asked if I could take a half a day off and spend some time with my daughter. My boss said sure, take some time off. I called my daughter to ask where where she was at. She told me her and her boyfriend were at the camp. I told her I was taking 1/2 a day off so we could go do something with them.

Well Rounded Ammunition Stockpile For SHTF

white tail deer and atv

As I was stacking a new box of 30-30 Winchester (Remington core-lokt 150 grain) and a box of 12 gauge slugs on the shelf, I started thinking about having a well rounded ammunition stockpile.

When talking about ammunition, we need to realize that there is no perfect answer. I live and hunt in southeast Texas, my longest shots are in the 125 yard range. 200 yards is a long shot for this area. The only place we get to see 200 yards, much less shoot that far is either on a pipeline or a highline.

In New Mexico, west Texas, Arizona, Colorado,,, 200 yards might be a short shot.

Talking about stockpiling firearms and ammunition for a long term SHTF survival situation is like talking about trucks. Do you need a truck to pull a boat down to the local boat launch, or do you need a tractor trailer rig to pull 60 tons?

Someone in the south with dense timber will probably do just fine with a 30-30 or 308. Someone making 200 and 300 yard shots may need a 25-06, 7mm magnum, 300 Winchester magnum, 30-06,,,. Someone in Alaska where grizzly is an everyday threat, maybe something like a 338 Winchester Magnum, 375 H&H or 12 gauge slug.

Lets use this article as a generalization, rather then an exact science.

To kick off the discussion, lets start with the two boxes I bought today:

1 box – 30-30 Winchester (Remington core-lokt 150 grain).

1 box – 12 gauge 2 3/4 inch Winchester 1 ounce slug.

30-30 Winchester

Prepping For The Everyday Person

AR-15 SHTF Survival Rifle

Some people take prepping a little too far. They prepare for the worst regardless of where they are at or what they are doing. I agree with having a get home bag, but on the other side of the coin there are people that keep a complete Bug Out Bag along with a small arsenal in their vehicle.

Reading what some people post in forums, its like they are prepping for a zombie invasion to breakout at any second. Unlike what is portrayed on TV, the majority of preppers do not live on the fringe of society. We are everyday people living in the cities, suburbs and rural areas all across the world.

When people look at prepping, they get on the forum and get a little overwhelmed by what they see. It is easy to forget that some of the members of the forum have been prepping for decades.

Prepping is not for the lazy. Sure you can buy some rice and throw it in an airtight box, buy some canned foods and think you have a well rounded survival plan.

Firearm for a river camping trip

AK-47 AR-15 Survival RiflesA buddy of mine and I are planning a 100+ mile 3 – 4 day river camping trip. On this trip we will be going into some pretty remote areas. After we put our boats in the river, there are no boat launches for probably 50+ miles. The location is East Texas on the Sabine river.

I would like to bring either a rifle or shotgun for personal protection. Black bears are known to be in the area where we are going, as well as everything from coyotes to wild hogs.

I am more concerned about running into a rabid raccoon, then having problems with a black bear, but you never know.

The options are:

Is the SKS Still a Viable SHTF Survival Rifle

sks survival rifle

With SKS prices creeping close to the $300 price range, why are they considered a viable option for survivalist,,, or even anyone else? Back in the 1990s when you could pick up an SKS for less then $100, yea, I could see buying one then. But over the past 2 decades prices have steadily gone up, I think to the point where they are not worth the price.

Lets take the Remington model 770 – synthetic stock, factory scope, popular calibers that are more effective on deer sized game then the 7.62X39,,,, and the 770 cost right at the $300 price range.

Last year my nephew used his Remington 770 to take a doe during youth weekend. At around 50 – 75 yards, the 150 grain Remington core-lokt was devastating to the whitetail. The blood trail looked like someone turned on a waterhose.

I can see buying an SKS for its novelty, and for its history, but not for its price. The SKS is not going to be a target rifle like a modern bolt action rifle and the 7.62×39 is not as effective on deer sized game as lets say a 270 or 308.

Cost of the SKS

Stockpiling Firearms For SHTF

Whitetail deer taken with a bolt action 270 Winchester

How many people have more then firearm per caliber? What is the point of stockpiling ammo, and then have one rifle that could break? Sure people have spare parts, but spare parts do not help your buddies hunt with you.

Part of my plans call for a worse case situation, meaning I have friends or family members show up at my front door with nothing but clothes. The food starts to run out, so we head to the camp to plant a garden and do some hunting.

What firearms do you have that you can hand to a friend or family member and say “here ya go”? Its easy to pick up a spare 22 rifle from time to time, but its another thing to have 2 or 3 rifles in 308 or 30-30.

In my opinion, a well rounded plan should include the ability to provide assistance to other members of your group. Shooting ability, size of the game, shooting experience,,,, should all be considered.

Hunting after SHTF

In my eyes, hunting after some kind of SHTF / TEOTWAWKI event will be divided into 2 categories – large/medium and small game.

Depending on where you live, that will define what caliber and types of ammo you need. Someone living in Alaska will probably need a different caliber then someone in the south hunting thin skinned whitetail deer. But regardless of where you live, small game is small game. The difference between a Georgia squirrel and a Colorado squirrel is not going to be very much.

Stockpiling Beans and Bullets For Surviving SHTF

Bugging out to the wilderness

Lets say SHTF tomorrow, what would your survival gear stockpile look like? For a lot of survivalist it would be mostly beans and bullets – meaning not very much thought has been put into the plans.

When the SurvivalistBoards youtube channel was opened, I wanted to publish a wide range of videos. The plans were to post videos about everything from gardening to wilderness survival. There are certain topics that do better then others. It seems that fishing videos probably do the worst in view counts, and firearm videos do the best.

But to have a balanced channel and blog, I think one should cover a wide range of topics. It seems that example videos and articles work best. Instead of saying what people should do, I show people what I am doing, and end it with that. Then let the viewer make up their own mind.

How does all of this relate to stockpiling survival gear? When dealing with survivalism, I do not think its enough to just stockpile bullets and beans. A well rounded, long term SHTF survival plan, should cover as much information and resources as possible. It is not enough to buy a case of 7.62×39, store some rice and beans in mylar bags, and then proclaim you have a well rounded survival plan. Ammo, rice and beans are not a well rounded plan.

Quest for the Best SHTF Survival Rifle

SA-58 FN/FAL

For years, and I mean for “years”, my survival rifle list went something like this – Marlin 336 in 30-30, AR-15, Ruger mini-14, Ruger mini-30, AK-47, Ruger 10/22 and the Marlin model 60. The problem with that list, all of the rifles are short and medium caliber. The largest caliber rifle would have been the marlin 336 in 30-30 or the AK-47 in 7.62×39.

In my opinion, no survival rifle collection is complete without at least a rifle in the 308 Winchester and 30-06 range. When push comes to shove, a survivalist needs a rifle with some knock down power. In north America, the 308 and 30-06 are capable of taking just about any animal, except for the most dangerous grizzly or polar bear. For most applications – whitetail deer, hogs, prong horn, coyote, mule deer,,,,,, the 308 Winchester and 30-06 Springfield can fit the bill.

So where does this leave us? We could go with a bolt action rifle like the Remington model 700, Weatherby Vanguard or the Ruger model 70. But for a long term SHTF survival situation, I would like something with a detachable magazine.

Bolt actions rifles aside, this leaves us with the M1A, PTR-91, and the FN/FAL.

Kevin Felts © 2008 - 2018