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Barter preps?

Discussion in 'Preparedness & Survival' started by viehmann7680, Aug 6, 2012.

  1. viehmann7680

    viehmann7680 Centralia Active Member

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    So I know you are never done prepping. I've noticed over time I've gathered somethings in general and while prepping that I don't really need. So I was kicking around the idea of starting another container for stuff I would use to barter with or sell... if markets spring up. I have extra containers and instead of having things in random places, I thought about consolidating them. Does anyone else do this, or think it's a good idea? I buy preps every week... Would it hurt to buy one more of something to through in the "Barter Box"? I guess some might see it as a disadvantage, wasting money and time on things just for barter instead of things I need. Or if you're trying to barter or setup in a market would people target you just because you have stuff / think if you have things to barter you obviously have enough for yourself? As I said I'm just thinking about it, and curious about peoples thoughts and opinions. I guess even if I had it... I don't HAVE to use it for bartering either. Also, are there certain items you think would be good or not good for this?
     
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  2. Headspace

    Headspace Seattle New Member

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    Alchohol and tobacco come to mind. Not neccessites, but valuable when scarce or when people need some sort of "crutch" from the stress surrounding them. Just my $.02
     
  3. wyojeeper

    wyojeeper Lebanon, MO Member

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    Cheap bottles of booze, matches, lighters. The stuff people would need after a SHTF event. The real things we take for granted.
     
  4. coop44

    coop44 Tacoma ,WA Well-Known Member

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    toilet paper, often overlooked, but, you really notice when you're out!
     
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  5. viehmann7680

    viehmann7680 Centralia Active Member

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    Matches, toilet paper, lighters are all things I had in mind. I have actually been thinking about booze. But I was also curious is to what type of alcohol? I need some for my own preps too. I was thinking something clear and over 100 proof
     
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  6. knuckle Head

    knuckle Head southeast Well-Known Member

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    Anything to start a fire or or help get one going.

    Salt in smaller quantites I broke it down to a couple of ounce packets, sugar in small quantities, 1/2 to 2 cups.

    toothbrushes, walmart ozark trail folding knifes $1.00 ea

    I have started putting stuff that I think would be of trade value like the above in a couple of food grade 5 gallon buckets, IF and a very big if, I find myself able to part with, i may trade food, but it would have to be something of high value to get food, because once it is traded away there goes a major item required to sustain yourself, I do not think I will trade my toilet paper either, that is something that would very hard to repalces like my lentil of canned ham
     
  7. M67

    M67 NW Oregon Active Member

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    Anything people have to have, like: food, cooking gear, water containers, storage containers, medical supplies, clothing, blankets, cordage, knives, hatchets, fire starters, ammo, salt, etc..

    Or that people want, like: booze, tobacco, tp, shampoo/soap/detergent, sugar, batteries, candles, heirloom vegetable seeds, tarps, socks, bleach, spices, etc..
     
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  8. viehmann7680

    viehmann7680 Centralia Active Member

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    I've seen a couple of places online that you can buy packs of MRE contents. I.E. the little toilet paper things. I figured a bunch of those, some small bottles of Tabasco, some small pocket knives, packets of lighters, maybe pints of alcohol. I don't plan on getting too crazy with it. But I figure I can buy a couple of these things for cheap every now and then.
     
  9. coop44

    coop44 Tacoma ,WA Well-Known Member

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    as far as booze, why not look into a small still. it's not that difficult. If you have a location, all you have to have is a crop with enough sugar content. You can at least make fuel quality alchohol.

    I have considered sugar beets for some time.
     
  10. getreadyportland

    getreadyportland Portland, Oregon, United States Member

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    I would tend to agree that after a few weeks someone would trade just about anything for toilet paper.. (I personally could not imagine the women in my family with out TP.. )
    -Joshua
     
  11. Modeler

    Modeler Molalla, Oregon Soccer Fan

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    You have me convinced. 6 cases of Costco TP will be going in the attic this weekend.

    Greg
     
  12. Karvin

    Karvin Douglas County, Oregon Member

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    Tampons/Pads Not trying to be disgusting here... but both double as medical supplies in the right circumstance.
     
  13. greycobra_03

    greycobra_03 Medford Member

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    I second the still. Spend a little money now, and have a great source of alcohol. Just do a whiskey still with a thumper, and you are set! I like the one at MOONSHINE STILL | ALCOHOL STILLS | MILE HI DISTILLING |Still. Then set aside some turbo yeast etc. as prep, and you will be able to make as much alcohol as you have raw materials!
     
  14. Sun195

    Sun195 Pugetropolis, WA Well-Known Member

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    Well, personally, I think booze is a good thing to have on hand (for a variety of reasons). If strictly for barter purposes, then you could go with whatever's cheap because I doubt you'll realize that much more in barter value for good stuff vs. cheap stuff (people probably won't be picky). However, if you think about using it yourself, I'd go with something that I like drinking so I'm not stuck drinking something I don't like.

    In terms of other utility, I suppose a clear, high-proof alcohol may have more utility (like vodka or everclear).
     
  15. chemist

    chemist Beaverton OR Well-Known Member

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    Read Dmitri Orlov - he went through the Russian collapse of '91-'92, and has some firsthand advice.
    ClubOrlov
     
  16. Sgt Nambu

    Sgt Nambu Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Fishing line and terminal tackle, needles and thread, .22LR ammo, soap, band aids and other wound dressings, triple antibiotic, zip lock bags, booze, smokes, knives, disposable razors, poly tarps, feminine hygiene products, playing cards, nails and screws, cordage, TP, cheap canteens, anything that someone's sick child might need. The list goes on. If people need it now they will need it after. Avoid trading weapons, high powered ammo or anything that could be used against you.
     
  17. Burt Gummer

    Burt Gummer Portland Completely Out of Ammo

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    Where is the cheapest place around Portland to buy bottles of booze? Vodka, whiskey, etc. I think that is a no brainer for good trade items. Lasts forever.
     
  18. MissJ

    MissJ Clackamas County Active Member

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    OK- I've thought A LOT about this topic since I am fortunate enough to actually have more money than I need; and I don't trust a FIAT monetary system....

    For me there a few criteria for ideal barter items:

    1. Cheap in today's dollars, but potentially valuable in crisis times (read: return on investment)
    2. Compact in size relative to value (unless you have unlimited and hidden on-site storage space)
    3. Long shelf life
    4. Something I would eventually need or buy anyways (in case I never end up bartering it)
    5. Serves a basic human need without putting a target on my back (read: bricks of gold and grenades are too risky for barter)

    When applying those criteria; a few items have stood out for me, and I stock up on these:

    salt (cheap, compact, useful, shelf life)
    matches (cheap, compact, useful, shelflife)
    canning lids (cheap, compact, shelf life, useful?)
    disposable lighters (compact, useful, cheap-ish, shelflife?)
    OTC meds: aspirin, ibuprofen (useful, compact, valuable, shelflife?)
    Health items: toothbrushes and rubbing alchohol (useful, cheap, compact, shelflife)
    antibiotics from a pet/vet store (VALUABLE, compact, useful, poor shelflife :-()
    cheap-ish tools like pocket knives, swiss army knives and multi tools (useful, compact, shelflife, valuable?)

    I DO NOT stock up on alcohol or tobacco because I do not have a personal use for either and they are not cheap in today's dollars. If you are a tobacco or alcohol user, then stocking up would make a lot of sense (for instance I do stock up on coffee)

    I do stock up on toilet paper, but not for barter purposes. It is too bulky to store, even though it is not too expensive. If I was desperate enough I COULD barter it though...

    I do stock up on ammo, but not for barter purposes. Not cheap in today's dollars. however it is compact, but I feel it is too risky to barter. I may consider bartering it to a trusted person who helps patrol a common border....for instance trade a neighbor some shotgun shells for some beef jerkey but I know we are both protecting a shared fenceline....

    I do stock up on food/grains but not for barter purposes. Cheap in today's dollars, and very useful but it REALLY puts a target on your back....if you are willing to give up FOOD then WHAT ELSE do you have? You have suddenly become a very lucrative target....

    I do own some precious metals, but not for barter purposes as they really don't serve any basic human need and are VERY expensive in today's dollars. The precious metals are for bugging out/emigration or for wealth preservation once society rebuilds.
     
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  19. AMProducts

    AMProducts Maple Valley, WA Jerk, Ammo Manufacturer Silver Supporter

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    Here's the problem with storing barter items: you are buying something now, that you anticipate having value in the future, at the same time you are anticipating the people who will want the items you have will have something that will be of equal value to you.

    If you have enough ammunition, food, and medical supplies what are you going to trade for? More food? More ammo? More medical supplies? Chances are most of these will be consumed long before someone shows up on your doorstep wanting to trade for that flashlight with 10 year old batteries you're selling. At the same time, lets say you need to bug out, do you try to move all your food ammo and med supplies, or do you try to take along some of those barter items you spent all that money collecting?

    If you want something to barter, barter with your labor, as long as you are alive, you shouldn't run out of labor and if that labor is valuable enough it will likely keep you alive. It's also light weight and no one can steal it from you.
     
  20. MissJ

    MissJ Clackamas County Active Member

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    excelllent point on bartering with labor! Truly lightweight and practical....clearly that implies having or learning some skills....but that is a whole different thread!

    I have learned a little bit from accounts of people who ACTUALLY lived through SHTF times and a recurring theme was that there were ALWAYS things you needed, and bartering was necessary if for nothing else to be part of the community. If you're the family on the hill who never comes down and never needs anything then eventually that could raise some eyebrows.

    Something else I learned from these guys was that charity could get you killed. If word gets out that you are able to GIVE something away then that implies you are stocked deep. Best to barter at as fair a price as possible, even if charity is your inent....maybe give yourself the short end of the stick, but don't give things away....the BEST that will happen is word spreads and tons of people start begging at your door