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PostPosted: Tue Dec 18, 2007 11:32 pm
How well have you thoughtout this subject?

How much do you know about how bartering would function under SHTF circumstances?

This is a subject which must inevitably be considered when one thinks about survival plans. It also is a very expansive subject.

I am accumulating sources, concepts, and priciples involved with the subject of Bartering.

With reference to one concept; that of bartering firearms, ammunition, and liquior, I am fast becoming convinced that such activities would only lead to eventual life threatening consequences in a SHTF type scenario.

First let me say that my caveat concerning alchohol, weapons, and amunition is the core of the restrictions I would place upon barter but not necessarily the only restriction.

Anything which would lead to altered states of mind and attitudes as well as hostile and / or violent behavior should be avoided for securities' sake if no other reason.

Perhaps the most important point, second only to handing someone items that could be used to attack you with, is the fact that once one becomes known to possess in excess such items as alcohol, weapons, ammunition, tobacco, food, etc. they would become targets for those who seek to obtain those items by force either out of despiration or greed.

An obvious point comes to mind on this subject of bartering: until one has stocked all of the expected and needed tools, supplies, and equipment, stockpilling items for barter seems to be out of place.

Now an equally obvious question arises: What likelihood is there that the kinds of vital basic tools and supplies needed to survive will be possessed by others in excess of their needs and available for them to exchange?

Another question: How would one determind that an item is surplus to their future needs?

IMHO one needs a year or two worth of food for every member of their group before they stock food for bartering.

That supply should also include rice, beans, and seeds for two years worth of gardening.

While bartering may become a necessity in order to aquire a vital piece of equipment or supplies, I can't help wondering how likely in most urban areas one is likely to find people with excess supplies of such vital items available to trade.

Best one plan on providing for their own needs. Yes this will mean sacrifices in some cases.

Bartering activities cannot help but bring security issues.

What thoughts can any of you provide on these concerns?

All contributions to my further understanding and education would be much appreciated.

PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2007 5:00 am
Some good thoughts.

I too believe that alcohol and ammunition are less-desirable bartering items, for the reasons listed above.

The thing about stockpiling for bartering is a matter of what is available. Not everyone here is thinking about and buying for survivalism every day. Some are, but I suspect many of us are not. We have women, children, school, etc. and have limited funds at any given time. So what we may be able to buy, and would like to buy, are not always the same. We may have available to us (For whatever reason) a really good deal on (non-hybrid) seeds, and this would likely be a valuable bartering item. I'm not saying that you should concentrate on stockpiling bartering supplies before your primary stockpiling is complete to your satisfaction, but there are times when you may come across a good deal, and this would be a good situation to add some Barter Stock.


The thing about bartering, or any exchange, is a matter of supply and demand. Basically, less supply, or more demand, and something becomes more valuable. This is why gold is considered valuable: everyone wants it, and there's not much of it in the world.

After SHTF, however, until civilisation rebuilds, I doubt gold is going to be worth much. The things that are going to be worth a lot are going to be the ones people want a lot.

Imagine all the factories and plants shut down tomorrow. No one's making things anymore. What will we be able to get? Food (some plants, animals), water, fibers, wood, sand. Everything else - condoms, ammunition, cars, clothes, diapers, etc. - everything else now has a finite supply. The more people want these things, the more valuable they become.

I'm not going to tell you if you should or shouldn't stockpile, or what to stockpile if you do. But keep this in mind: the things that are going to be the most valuable are the ones people want, but are in short supply. Some of these things (and these are just my thoughts, not backed by research or anything) might be:

Seeds (non-hybrid)
Water purifiers
Footwear (I like moccasins, but I bet premium footwear would be in high demand)

etc. You get the idea.

PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2007 10:46 am
when putting back things specifically for barter, look to what's been considered precious in times past. yes, alcohol is always in demand, but it's expensive to buy now and leads to problems as mentioned above. however, it is essential for making medicinal tinctures, sterilizing wounds and instruments, as well as other purposes. having a good supply of vodka for tinctures and learning to distill alcohol for other purposes is a really good idea. for consumption, beer is easy to make and would likely be an excellent barter item.

some of the items i buy strictly for bartering later are:

.22 ammunition. likely to be doled out one round at a time.

spices of any kind (especially seeds for growing them for trade)

medicinal herbs

coffee (both beans and instant)



hard candies (sugar and sugar candy never goes bad as long as it is kept dry)

OTC meds like aspirins

tobacco and smoking products like rolling papers

salt and pepper (both were used as money in times past)

sewing needles, straight pins, safety pins and thread (after TSHTF clothing will likely be harder to come by)

strike anywhere matches (can still be found at some 'mom and pop' hardware stores. they'd also be doled out one at a time)

skills. learn now how to make and do things that will be valuable afterwards. personally i have learned how to build and make furniture without metal fasteners and using only homemade glue. jointery is a fun hobby from a bygone era. post and beam construction with wood pegs instead of bolts is something to look into, as is making houses out of cob or learning to thatch a roof. making shakes and shingles would be good. knowing how to saw lumber without a sawmill or build log homes. i can sew clothing, both by hand and by machine and have made my own clothes. cobbling (making shoes) is also a valuable comodity for rough times. gunsmithing is another one. reloading (especially if they provide the components). knowing how to make gunpowder, slow match and even a crude matchlock is an excellent skill. remember, bad guys (just like now) will always be able to get weapons. trading guns or making them for your neighbors won't make them enemies...instead it will likely make them more inclined to stand with you if there's a fight. how can we support everyone being armed now but say that fellow survivors can't be trusted with the same rights after TSHTF? other good skills are casting bullets, forging iron, tanning hides, making charcoal, making tinctures (herbal medicines), cooking (if you doubt the value of a good cook you've never been in a survival situation before), etc. i've got experience in all these things, and others as well.

good hand tools will allow you to make repairs on discarded items as well as trade your skills as a builder. having a good quality grain mill could make you a wealthy person after TSHTF as many folks might be able to grow grain but few will be able to process it. the same goes for having a good canner...jars and even lids will be available but having the equipment and knowing how to use it will be invaluable.

one thing most 'survivalists' forget or never understood is that, alone, our survival is unlikely. after the fall it will be imperative that we join together with neighbors, not just for defensive purposes, but in order to help each other survive. none of us can have all the skills and things we need to get by for long. joining together and working together will be the ONLY way we'll survive. instead of looking at your neighbors with suspicion, look at them as potential allies and with a mind to working with them to survive.

PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2007 12:59 pm
One might consider in the OTC medications category such items as Gas X, Beano, Imodium AD, Alka Seltzer, Tums, Tagamet, NyQuil, Zantac, etc.

PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2007 9:31 pm
also check the dollar store for cold/flu remedies, pain killers, vitamin supplements, antacids, tooth brushes, band aids, razor blades and disposable razors, candies, bars of soap, small deodorant sticks, pens and pencils, cheap flashlights (especially button LED's), etc. you get the idea. basically, anything people take for granted now but rely on industry to produce.

PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2007 1:11 am
Great thoughts Gentlemen, THANKS !

PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2008 3:49 am
i think me and my family will just stay away from everyone and not worry
about having to barter, anything we would need i can get from the land.

PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2008 3:41 pm
Your wisdom is undeniable, I salute you. :D

PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2008 9:55 pm
I actually have a big bag of tobacco (pound or so) from a discount tobacco shop and rolling papers that I vacuum sealed and included in my bury buckets. We do not smoke. Guess what it is for? I figure a stale cig will be like gold to a person after a few, and if it gets me something, so be it. I have some items that I store excesses of for either long term consumption or barter.

Ammo ain't one.

As discussed on other groups gold and silver are a good idea. They serve a purpose pre-shtf, plus they serve a purpose post-shtf. Most sheeple in shtf situations believe it will last a short while and that uncle sugar will fix it before long. Those people will still want gold and silver because they believe it will once again be valuable. A NG member or a deputy pulling road block duty, may let you pass for a few silver bars/coins or a small gold ingot. Besides I can sell a 10gram bar for about $300 and that is a whole lot more than I paid for it.

I also vacuum seal extra quantities of salt and sugar and hard candy for potential bartering.

Powdered cocoa is a good barter/comfort item also.

Hope I helped out, if not, oh well.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 2008 3:12 am
Good points stainless and I think you should make that your signature LOL
Stainless wrote:Hope I helped out, if not, oh well.

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