Episode-896- Listener Calls for 5-7-12 — 14 Comments

  1. When I was on the TSP, I mentioned that I cashed out a 403-b/401k. It allowed our family to buy our bugout/vacation home (real estate investment).

    Further, after I took out the money, the market TANKED! So, the withdrawal was really penalty free, because I ended up w/ more money in my pocket than what would have been left had I kept it in without the penalty.

    It’s your money…just use it wisely. If you want to take money out to buy JUNK–DON’T!!! If you are going to pay off debts, buy land, buy a bugout home…then by all means consider it. If you just want to buy stuff—meh…

    Dan Vamos
    Homestead Dividends

  2. Jack,

    While you were ranting about the amount of corn in Americans’ diet, don’t forget maltodextrin. That stuff is in so much processed food, and it usually comes from corn (and sometimes rice.) Corn and soy are in almost everything, and I applaud the rant, as always. 🙂

  3. On the subject of neck knives, a friend of mine wears his neck knife on a dog tag chain that is threaded through a piece of gutted 550 cord. My eight year old wears a whistle around her neck on a piece of 550 cord that is tied with a simple slip knot tied on one end and the other end is passed through the loop and then the loop is tightened. This allows the tag end to pull out of the knot with just a little pressure. This greatly reduces the choking hazard.

  4. Jack,

    I currently use a well tied 550 lanyard with my CRKT Minimalist…it has a short blade, but excellent grip for a last resort neck knife.
    …however, right after I tied it, I started thinkin’ , “I’ll never lose my knife. …but, gee, this is dumb, …it’s a little too easy to get strangled in a surprise hand to hand scenario”. ( Maybe a slim chance, but a final outcome if it happens.)

    The last thing I want to do is try to cut 550 near my “own neck” if someone is strangling me from behind.

    So, I plan to add a “weak point” seperator , in-line with the 550.
    Maybe some sort of a small plastic quick release buckle, or small thin wire rings (similar to a key ring)… strong enough to hold during extraction, but should give way if a large amount of pulling force is used….

    Any ideas on something that would fit well with 550?

  5. Hey there. I’m the fellow who originally asked the questions about the neck knives. A fair number of people seem to prefer paracord lanyards, some of them for the reason that Jack mentioned, and I can respect that. In fact, I’ve been looking further into the topic, and came across something while I was looking into a different project.

    There are break-away fasteners designed for paracord.
    You can buy them here (among other places):
    You can find a video on how to use them here:

    I’m strongly considering using these fasteners and some paracord now, if I get a neck knife. Of course I’d want at least one each at front and back, so as to avoid hazard of choking through snag, or CQC.

    I actually had a coworker, who put a scare into me, telling me of an episode where a disgruntled co-worker at one his older jobs came up behind him and choked him half to death with his own lanyard. As such, I view both front and back break points as a minimum on any new lanyard I put together.

    So, what do you guys think? Would one of these closures be secure enough for retention, but safe enough to avoid choking hazards?

    At the moment, I don’t think that I’ll be able to make a neck-knife a part of my EDC. My work-place has some anti-weapon policies, and the guidelines I got from the head of security basically limits me to 2-3 inches total. I think that this limits me to folders.

    If I can’t carry the knife at work, I really don’t think it’s a part of my EDC. I could make it a camping / bug-out knife, but it’s looking bad for EDC.

    By the way, the coworker I mentioned before has also come down with trichinosis in the past (and not from wild pig) and as a result does not eat pork that he himself has not cooked. He’s also come down with a really funky fungus from jumping in leaf piles. He’s a pretty unlucky guy, really, but was a part of my early exposure to the “no one better come onto my property” style preping.

    • Josh,
      Thanks for the tip.
      I checked out the snap fasteners,- pretty cool, but I think they may be a bit large for under the t-shirt stealth. – and may be “too easy” to pull apart, so I’ll probably just move away from fasteners all together and go with a smaller version of the rings I mentioned.

      • Well, I’ve tried them out on a lanyard I’ve made from paracord. It has two of them, one for the front, and one for the back.

        Thus far, I have yet to have an accidental disconnect, despite hanging an access badge on a retractor from the lanyard with 2 disconnect points, which means there’s sustained weight, and some tugging force, it has yet to come undone.

        Yet, when I pull at the connector, with far less force than I expect I’d create by leaning against the cord when it was caught, it pops appart.

        I’m not sure what your specific use case is, but those disconnectors work for me.

  6. Cold Steel does have another site where they sell for less than their primary site. You can still beat the pricing if you shop around but if you can’t find something elsewhere it’s worth checking. They also list factory seconds and closeouts here.


  7. Mosquitoes lay eggs in dry bottoms on land so that when it rains the eggs will hatch either in the bottoms or will be swept into a larger runoff pool of water. This is why 7 days after a rain (the time it takes for the eggs to hatch into larvae) is when the mosquito population booms.
    They will need standing water long enough for the larvae to develop. These wriggly larvae will bob up and down in the water going for air at the surface. If a small amount of oil is poured into the infected container, it willl spread over the surface and will suffocate the larvae.

  8. I was concerned that BT dunks could harm honeybees since honeybees drink from local water sources. Seems that BT does not harm honeybees:
    “The specific activity of Bt generally is considered highly beneficial. Unlike most insecticides, Bt insecticides do not have a broad spectrum of activity, so they do not kill beneficial insects. This includes the natural enemies of insects (predators and parasites), as well as beneficial pollinators, such as honeybees.”

  9. For fennel- here’s another recipe I love.
    Fennel Pilaf with Meatballs.
    1-2 fennel bulbs (Chopped)
    2-3 cups rice or rice blends (I like a wild rice blend)
    1 lb. ground meat (pork or goat is great)
    2-3 cups of broth.
    A few teaspoons or corriander

    Make small meatballs androll in corriander. Fry off the meatballs so they are brown on every side. Fry the fennel in with the meatballs.

    Add fennel, meatballs, rice, and broth to a caserole or other baking dish. Cook at 350 F for about 45 minutes to an hour. Make sure rice is done and serve. (Season with salt and pepper to taste).

  10. Jack,

    You talked about a PDC course on CD in this episode that you watch sometimes. Could you explain what this is and where it can be found to be purchased?



    • @Josiah Garber, Nice meeting you in MT! Here is the DVD set,

      Few things,

      1. It is expensive but worth the cost in my view
      2. The shipping is insane, if you can find it in the US you can save on that
      3. The parts Lawton does verge on genius beyond Einstein
      4. Often I find myself skipping Mollison’s segments, seeds of brilliance surrounded by ramblings of an older man who seems to forget why he is there sometimes. That said if you can force yourself to listen to and watch the Mollison segments you will get some real knowledge gems, it is just hard at times.

      Despite four above if I paid the same and only got the Lawton segments I would still be very happy. Kind of like reading a Holly Book, each time you watch again you pick up stuff you missed before, then the parts you got make more sense and so on. My view is every PDC should be video’d and copies provided to the students who attended. If they are all like this you will miss more then you remember, and this is from a guy with my memory.

      • Thanks Jack! I will definitely check those out.

        Also, as far as MT I think you are thinking of the other Josiah. He seems like a nice guy too though. 🙂

        Thanks for all you do.