1 October 2017

First Aid Wrap - 3M Coban

3M Coban First Aid Wrap in Assorted Colours
First let me start by saying getting older, SUCKS! At least, when it comes to recovering from minor injuries.

So, the other day I took a flying leap off a loading dock (please don't ask why) and did not land like I use to. In fact, landing wrong would be appropriate to say. Right foot - good landing!! Left foot - you suck. Poor landing, too much weight on the heel and not enough on the toes. Enough about the mechanism of injury. How do we deal with it??

3M Coban First Aid Wrap
Lucky for me, once I got home I remembered we had some 3M Coban first aid wrap in the house. Now, I really, really like this stuff. Before, it was just, I like this stuff. 

Whether, you are wrapping a finger splint in place or wrapping an ankle or wrist, this 3M Coban first aid wrap, rocks! No sticky residue like sports tape. No lost keepers or safety pins like a tensor bandage. 3M Coban first aid wrap sticks to itself and does not stick to the skin. In fact, it sticks so well I had to cut the wrap off because it would not release from the layers below. That is a good thing.
3M Coban First Aid Wrap in Action
Back to my sore foot for a second.....although, it was the bottom of my heel that took the major impact force, the whole ankle, arch and lower leg were feeling the discomfort. Sorry, coach could not walk this off like in the old days. However, once I had a small handful of Ibuprofen, a little time with a cold pack and then wrapped the offended area, I could walk again. I did start wearing my flip-flops to add a bit of a cushion below my heel, but the support to the whole foot once wrapped was amazing.

I know what you are thinking, what a candy ass, just suck it up buttercup! And that is my point, some days time off for rest and recovery are NOT an option. Some days, the mission comes first - whether it is the mission of life and paying the mortgage or more important missions, for those who work in places they can't chat about. For these inconvenient injuries that suck, having some high quality first aid wrap in the first aid kit is going to make the difference between getting home and accomplishing the mission.

So, where can you get you very own supply of this amazing 3M Coban first aid wrap?? Well, I got mine from www.staples.ca . I just checked and we paid about $20 for 12 rolls in assorted colours. Not bad price and a great product.

Until next time.....take care of yourself!!

Mountainman. 

30 July 2017

Gear Up 3 - Field Cover for Rite in the Rain 4 x 6 Notebook

Open View

Half-Open View
 It was time to make another field ready piece of gear. Please, allow me to introduce the new Field Cover for the Rite in the Rain 4"x6" Notebook (Item# 946 or 946T) (NSN 7530-01-498-2078 or NSN 7530-01-505-3660). I was able to design and make this proto-type in less than 3 hours from start to photos. 

Fabric requirements were minimal. They will all come from the same 13"x9" piece. The main body was 13" tall x 5" wide at the top, where as the bottom 6" is 9" wide. The scrap from the top left becomes the 4"x4" pen-holder and the 5"x2.5" Top insert to hold the top of the notebook. The bottom 5"x3" insert was made from clear plastic. 

I used a fair amount of 2" loop fabric to aid in attaching morale patches. 2x 4", 1x 5" and a 2" piece of 2" loop. I also incorporated a webbing strap with a 1" snaphook to make attaching the field cover to your vest, pack or drag-bag that much easier. 

Construction was straight forward. 1) Measure and chalk the fabric. Cut out the pieces. (I did not make a pattern for this project.)

2) Sew loop pieces onto the main panel of fabric.

3) Sew seam tape onto top, bottom and pen-holder pieces. Then, attach those pieces in the proper locations.

4) Attach the 1"x3" piece of hook to the outside. Hook side facing up.

5) Starting with the lower (loop side) of the 1" webbing, attach to the centre bottom of the back panel. Build the top 1" webbing (hook side) by first folding the webbing, inserting the 1" snaphook and sewing a straight stitch across to hold the snaphook in place for sewing onto the field cover. Overlap the hook tape over the loop tape and sew through the seam below the snaphook. If desired, extra seams can be added below the snaphook.

6) Finish the field cover by sewing 3/4" seam tape around the perimeter of the project. Remember to take your time on the corners. Turn over and ensure the seam tape is not missing any stitches on the other side. If it is, just double up on those areas.

That's it, your done. 

Now, get out in the field and take some notes!!

Until next time....if you can't find it, Make it!!

Mountainman.

Front View - Closed

Rear View - Closed

23 July 2017

I Have Posted on STEEMIT - Are You Planning To Make The Switch??

So, for those of you not ready to take the plunge and visit the otherside......here is my latest post on STEEMIT:








A Model Emergency Preparedness Community

8 hours ago
27 in emergency
We live in interesting times.......honest observation or old Chinese curse. Regardless, we do live in very interesting times - natural disasters, extreme weather, man-made crises, war, economic uncertainty....there is no limit to the source of interesting.
Now, some on planet Earth are better situated to adapt to these challenges, as they live or work in areas that routinely experience weather extremes, wildfires, earthquakes, sour gas leaks or oil spills. By living with these events on a semi-regular basis you create mitigation techniques to adapt or you abandon your home, your living, your friends and you go to an easier location.
Like those who chose to make a living in Tornado Alley, the people of High River, Alberta, are also challenged by seasonal weather conditions - although tornadoes do occur, they do not occur as often as flooding. This is a small prairie community with a high plains river running through it. The geographical feature that challenges the greatest with a high plains river system occurs when high water levels exceed the river banks to water flow out onto the prairie. Unlike, a river system confined by hills or mountains, on the high prairie once the water gets to high there are no natural features to confine the waters.
In 2013, a large portion of Southern Alberta bore witness to extreme flooding conditions. Discovered after the event, the volume of water in the Highwood River system in June 2013 was as great as the floods of 1995 & 2005 added together. These conditions were not recorded at this level ever in the past 100 years. How do people living in these conditions continue to stay,?? When others say you must move.
The short answer is community. High River has a true sense on community. Even residents who do not know each other, are still friendly to each other. With about 13,000 citizens in the town, it is truly difficult to say if this sense of community is due only to the small population or if there is something greater that binds the people of High River together. The local economy revolves around agriculture, however, many residents do make the daily commute to the city of Calgary for employment reasons. This is done out of necessity not by the choice of trying to escape the small town. I guess that is a favourable reason for being a citizen of High River......close enough to the city to enjoy the luxuries, but far enough away that the city does not follow you home.
The more indepth answer, still revolves around community. In recent years, post-2013, a number of strategic defensive devices have been constructed to defend the town of High River from future flood events. But, dykes and berms are not enough. The people have to be engaged. An involved citizenry is the only way for a community to sustain itself in hostile conditions. When the people take part in their community, an active part in their community, then & only then; can the community become stronger. A strong community can weather any hazard, and after, it is only a community that can pull together and help each other to rebuild that which has been lost, albeit temporarily. In a community that has a sense of itself, with citizens (who of their own free will) want to help make the community stronger; you will only require a bit of leadership and regular training commitment from civic authorities. Training and training resources only make a difference if there is a will to make a difference. Yet, the will power alone will eventually run out of steam. So, at the heart of any successful emergency preparedness program will be a strong community.

So, if I understand the rules correctly at STEEMIT, I can repost my own stories after they have been posted on STEEMIT. 
I look forward to seeing more of you over there one day.....soon??
Until next time....try something new!!
Mountainman.

15 July 2017

STEEMIT.....The Future Right Now

STEEMIT - Recognize it, Join it
Mornin' All,

This has been a big learning year so far for me. I have expanded outside my comfort bubble of blogging on Blogger and have learned to build my own website with a little help from WIX.com. Then, I became educated on WICKR ME messaging and now I am off to be a pioneer user of STEEMIT. 

Even after a few days I still am not 100% sure how to explain STEEMIT dot com....but, I will do the best I can with what I have learned thus far. Understand, I could be wrong and if I learn I have written anything incorrectly, I will post an update to acknowledge the new information I have found. So, the short answer is STEEMIT is a social networking system where the users control the direction. 

The first competition that STEEMIT will surpass will be Facebook. The primary reason for that is FB uses the users to earn advertising income for FB. On STEEMIT, the users earn their share of this income. Of course, this income is paid in cryptocurrency and through a process it can be converted to fiat currency or to your PayPal account. Please, go to STEEMIT to learn more about this part, I still have not had any personal experience in this part of the system.

So, I believe I should offer a bit more of what I do understand or can surmise from my first few days of exploring STEEMIT. This is new technology, break edge technology. But, like any other system of knowledge or technology - it has to start somewhere. There is a financial component to this as well, and those who get in at the start are most likely to see the greatest return for their participation and time invested. But, STEEMIT is greater than just financial gain.....this is a place for the exchange of ideas, knowledge, and wisdom. A place where those with great/good ideas will thrive and those who are pretenders, plagiarizer, cheats, thieves or soulless scoundrels will be corrected by the crowd or driven from the site. So, trolls and shit-disturbers will not likely find a comfortable stay on STEEMIT.

So, who is currently on STEEMIT.......I would say the 80/20 rule applies here. 80% of the current users are very tech savvy - programmers, coders, and probably a few hackers, too. This 80% is needed to get this working and working well. I assume due to the security measures I have been through, that security is designed by those who use their skills to defeat security protocols.  The other 20% is made up by thrill seeking explorers who have to be first on everything, they make up say 15% and the last 5% is the group of everyday users who just happen to get invited early. I put myself in this last group. I am too far removed from the cutting edge of tech to be a creator at that level. However, I have been around long enough to recognize a glimpse into the future and know I want to be on that ship as it sails.

That ship is about to sail, I am now on-board. This is what I see for the future of this trip.....this tech is about to reach the tipping point. The tipping point is when this new technology becomes main stream - like FB, Instagram, Pinterest, Tripadvisor, etc, etc. From an investor point-of-view, the tipping point is when the profits start to rise for the pioneers who are there at the start. In less than 3 years from now the numbers will change, 80% of the users will be everyday joes and 20% will be the tech savvy. 

So, if you want to be a part of a social networking and don't want some billionaire to get richer on your hard work, then you owe it to yourself to get in on the ground floor of STEEMIT.

The signup process is longer but more secure than most social media sites. You will need an email address and a phone that receives text messages. Take your time to select a user name, your account is linked to it. This site wants new material to be posted. Slow and steady is what I am learning is the best approach. Read more than you write. Be polite to other users. Exchanges ideas or points-of-view but do not come to change the world to accept only your point-of-view.

I am using a business persona on STEEMIT and thus my user name: @satasco2017

I hope to see you on the other side. Here is the link to STEEMIT:  steemit.com

Until next time.....embrace technology,
Expand your comfort zone!!

Mountainman.

9 July 2017

Bugout Location Fire Piquet/Security Piquet Scheduling

Today, we will explore scheduling a fire piquet/security piquet at your bugout location and what will factor into an effective program with the available resources at your command.

There are many factors that will impact the effectiveness of your fire piquet/security piquet program at your BOL. Not-the-least of which, is how many persons can you muster for piquet duty?? The next most limiting factor is, in how many directions does your piquet need to keep a watch on?? I am assuming that all BOL's want/need 24 hour coverage a day, every day.

This first chart will show how many, can control, for how long. One note: The final column shows the maximum number of OP/LP's (observation post/listening post) that can be manned at minimum levels; the duration when maxed out is only for days, at most.

Chart 1
As you can see in this chart, when you have only a few persons to provide security for your BOL, you will not last very long before a lack of sleep/recovery will make all of you very vulnerable. You either need to increase your numbers of persons or limit the number of directions that must be observed and/or defended. Mutual aid agreements with neighbours or being a part of a community may offer solutions to very small groups.


To help visualize this process I have drawn a simple map (below) which has a small town or village that is located near a more major roadway. For the ease of labeling the main road runs North/South. The town/village is entered from the North and exited from the South.

To protect a town like this will require 3 security teams. I will provide 2 staffing options for each of the three teams and provide sample schedules to man the required positions. As this is a sample with no known real example, this will be a pure planning exercise and those leaders out there who will have to use these samples, understand that you will have to mold these samples into your reality. Understand the concepts and you can adapt these ideas to fit your needs.

First questions for this exercise: What will I need to provide an effective fire piquet and security piquet?? How many persons do I require?? Where do we place them?? Who will control them?? How do I schedule for this??

Welcome to Sample Town, population 350.

Map of Sample Town

Criteria for an Effective Fire Piquet/Security Piquet Program:
  1. General Alarm – Some means of signaling danger to the town. “Stand To”
  2. Two Complete Security Teams/Shifts – one on-duty, the other off-duty
  3. Equal days on-duty to days off-duty
  4. Minimum two man teams at night. Avoid solo posts at night
  5. Maximum control through minimum posts (OP/LP, Checkpoints, CP, Etc)
  6. Command the terrain. Use natural topography and man-made obstacles to drive invaders to where you can observe them before they observe you. Create “NO GO ZONES” coloured red on our map of Sample Town – between the major roadway and the access road to town.
  7. Team structure: Team IC & Team 2IC will be (12 hours on/12 hours off)
  8. Team members hours will depend on the total number available.
  9. Allow the Team Leader (IC) to build and manage their team. Only intervene if the members of the team cannot bond. Remember the four stages of team development Forming/Storming/Norming/Performing. Not all team reach the Performing stage.
  10. Maximize the strengths of individuals when designing the teams. However, the ability to work together is more important in the long run than a collection of perfect individuals working towards their own goals.
  11. Keep internal patterns consistent and predictable. 4 on/4 off. Night Owls on nightshifts, early birds on day shifts. Of course, operational requirements like a small fire in Sample Town would require all hands on deck to prevent the fire from destroying the whole town.
  12. Operational patterns, those that can be observed by spies, want to seem as random as possible so that infiltration cannot occur without observation. Infiltration is easier to deal with, even if the infiltrator gets inside, when you know you have been infiltrated. Prevented is preferred, but dealt with will work, too.
  13. Develop Post Orders for each location that will be manned. It must be written in enough detail that a new person at that post can read through the orders and learn the job, in the event that there is no one there to training them what to do. What do I do at this post?? Primary functions?? Who do I contact if something goes wrong?? What is the alarm signal in the event of a fire/tornado/invasion?? Where is the alarm located?? What is the shift relieve procedure?? What if I am not relieved?? Are patrols out?? What is the password to let them back in??
  14. Maintain a log at each post. Record time/date of shift changes. Status reports. Observation of unusual events. Patterns may occur but will only be recognized when reviewing well kept logs. 

What does our manpower requirements look like:




Table 2 - Team One

Table 3 - Team Two

Table 4 - Team Three

Table 5 - Total Requirement

OP/LP's
  • Always has 2x Team Members.
  • At shift rotation, the Team Members from the CP or Checkpoint come to the OP/LP to relieve those on-duty. Off-duty persons return to CP or Checkpoint.

Checkpoints
  • All Team Members live/rest in the Check Point Bunker.
  • When “Stand To” alarm sounded, ALL Team Members respond
  • Maximum 4 On/4 Off schedule (Shift One/Shift Two)
  • Challenge anyone who approaches the checkpoint
  • Check-in with the Command Post (CP) every 30 Minutes
Sample Schedule 1














Sample Schedule 2




Sample Schedule 3


Sample Schedule 4
Similar to Teams One & Two, Team Three will live in the bunker at the Command Post. When not on-duty, Team Three will sleep, eat, rest near the CP. When needed, Team Members will work the CP, whether scheduled or not.

So, there you have it.....a basic understanding of scheduling for fire protect and security at your bugout location. If you want to minimize hazards and risks at your BOL you will adopt some sort of fire protection/security protection program. In the event of SHTF or TEOTWAWKI, this WILL be your insurance program. It will be paid in hours served not in dollars & cents. The new economy will not have fiat currency.

Plan to survive and we will see you on the other side!!
(Rebuilding our world, again.....)

Mountainman.

10 June 2017

New Forum at www.SATAS4.ME

This new website is a continued exercise in improvement. I am very pleased to announce that SATAS4.me has its own Forum.

www.satas4.me/forum

This Forum will allow for the exchange of ideas and opinions. I am sure to the betterment of all mankind. 

So, to all my supporters please feel free to drop by and post on the Forum.

See you there,

Mountainman.

3 June 2017

Rooftop Tents - Shop Local

Treeline Outdoors
 Very recently, I had the distinct pleasure of meeting Luke from Treeline Outdoors (treelineoutdoors.ca ). Luke & company, among other things, design & sell rooftop tent units from their warehouse located in Turner Valley, Alberta. I was very pleased to learn a local business was in the rooftop tent business. Until this discovery, I was only aware of rooftop tents from South Africa, Australia, the USA & China. With 3/4's of these being very, very expensive and the other 1/4 being cheap. 

I am not going to hoodwink you and say the rooftop tents from Treeline Outdoors are cheap or inexpensive. By now, you know I call 'em, as I see 'em. No sugar coating from me. In this case, I say you get what you pay for. Rooftop tents are an investment. If you want your investment to last, you need to get educated, you need to research the options, you need to know what your requirements are (like: seasons, climate, region, # of people, duration, weather conditions & whether you are mounting this permanently or just temporarily), as well as, who is the competition & what do they offer??

Once your needs assessment is done, you have to evaluate which rooftop tent meets your needs (& your vehicle's capability). Then you have to find a dealer/retailer near you to make your purchase/investment. Price is part of this but, so is service after the sale and just the helpfulness & friendliness of the staff.
Looking Out!!!
Some of the design considerations to keep in mind, was the tent intended for the Serengeti or The Outback and if it was, will that same tent work well through all four seasons here in Canada?? Maybe?? Maybe not?? Was the rooftop unit designed to shed monsoon rains, will that work well for shedding snow?? If you live in Newfoundland or on the West Coast that design may be helpful...at least during the Summer.

Fabric weight & breath-ability....in hot climates you want air movement to stay cool. In cooler climates you want to trap warm air but vent humidity. Thicker, tighter fabrics work better around here if you want/need four season use out of your shelter. When Summer heats up, you want windows with screens/mesh to keep mosquitoes out & allow a cross-breeze to cool occupants. 

The other feature I would look for would be the shelter surround at the base of the rooftop unit. This one feature, almost doubles the available living space.....And, if you have to live for a prolonged period in your rooftop tent unit, you will certainly be happier with this little foresight. This basement shelter can be used a kitchen, livingroom or a spare bedroom (better with a folding cot). Best part this space is tall enough to stand.

Now, Luke was very helpful & willing to provide me with an education of rooftop tents, not just the models offered by Treeline Outdoors. I am not a total idiot, I have thousands of hours working with industrial fabrics in different applications, so I quickly recognized many of the main differences between  tent units as pointed out by Luke. Low price does not mean good value in this industry. Likewise, expensive does not guaranty a quality build. You have to know what quality looks like. You have to know quality materials, quality construction & quality assembly look like. If you don't know, the sales rep can lead you astray and take your money and you will thank them. Remember, some lessons in life are cheaper than college....

The technology that impressed me the most with Treeline's tents were the honeycomb aluminum floor boards. Super light! Super strong! Compared to the industry standard of sandwiching a foam core between two thin aluminum panels, the honeycomb design will not fail you when you need it most, in my humble opinion.

Overall rooftop tent weight is not too important, unless you want to mount one on the roof rack of your vehicle. Tents don't care about weight but roof racks sure do!! (To a point your vehicle's fuel economy will also care about excess weight.)  So, the honeycomb aluminum shaves off about 50 lbs compared to a similar sized rooftop tent unit from China. 50 lbs is an extra 5 gallon jerry can of water. So, light & strong is good!!

With a strong, light floor - this affords Treeline the luxury to use heavier, more durable tent body fabrics without penalty. Durable = Longer life. The stitching quality is a minimum of double stitched. High stress areas a bit more. YKK zippers are used because, they too are durable.

Next, let's discuss design features that work for Canadians. First, the metal structure inside the tent is fabric covered. This controls condensation when tenting in cool/cold conditions. Nothing wakes you quicker than ice cold condensation raining down on your face at zero dark thirty. Fortunately, for you Treeline has already solved this for you and you will miss this experience.

Interior & exterior lashing points. All Treeline rooftop tent units have a plethora of lashing points for LED lights, solar panels, Bluetooth speakers, gear lofts and pretty much anything else you need to hang up. 

Speaking of solar power.....Treeline works with Goal Zero (goalzero.com ) to provide solar power options for your next journey. Also, all tent units have cable ports to aid in getting power from your solar panel(s) to your power cells &/or devices.

Storage. These rooftop units have multiple storage areas inside the tent and under the overhang. As well as, you can store your sleeping bags, blankets & pillows in the tent when traveling to a new location. The rooftop tent advantage over ground tents.

Windows & skylights.  These units, from smallest to largest, have plenty of windows. All have zippered covers to control how much nature you share. My only concern are the clear vinyl windows & skylight panes. My discussion with Luke assured me they only use good vinyl, but even that will have a cold crack rating of -40 to -45. Most of you would not tent in those conditions, but it is something to be aware of. For me that would not be a deal breaker. More windows = more light. 

The basement shelter. I would not purchase a rooftop tent unit if it did not offer the lower enclosure. In our neck of the woods that added space is not a luxury, it is required. Between my years of camping, time in the army/search&rescue and our Cross-Canada Tour (which included 27+ nights in tents); I can say you will need this space - it is dry & protected from the wind. I learned that Treeline Outdoors provides better pricing when you package more options together at the start. So, buying your lower shelter after the fact will cost you more. Know what you need and plan for it.
Micro Wood Stove Design

Chimney Stack Support for Micro Wood Stove
My primary purpose for wanting a basement shelter is it will provide a wind free area to house a micro-wood stove to heat the whole area. 

If the stove is designed right it should also be able to heat your water & cook/warm up food. See my drawing for a possible idea of a micro-wood stove, complete with water jackets. I would also have a draft control unit built, to regulate the stove a bit. 

The other design idea, is to have a support stake/picket hammered into the ground to keep the chimney stack from dancing in the wind. The use of muffler/exhaust pipe should make easier to source in the event of replacing a component while on expedition.

So, if you are needing a rooftop tent and you are ready to invest in one, I highly recommend supporting a local Foothills business - Treeline Outdoors. Now, you do not have to take my word on any of this. Do your own research, including a visit to Treeline Outdoors in Turner Valley, Alberta. I suggest making an appointment with Luke or staff before dropping by, it will greatly improve catching them at the showroom! 

Thanks again, Luke for taking the time to show me Treeline's products and to educate me on the industry as a whole. You did this knowing I was not going to purchase on the day of my visit. I am confident in recommending your rooftop tents to friends & strangers. When my budget allows, I know where I will be going to my rooftop tent. (The Goal Zero Tamarack Constellation with basement with no floor in Olive Green and a micro-wood stove.)

Until next time......learn what businesses are in your area
And support them....which means buy stuff from them.

Mountainman.