Getting some good buys, 55 gallon drum setup and when did Oats get so expensive?

I finally found butane fuel for my little mini-stoves. Four 8 oz. cans cost $6.67 at Cash and Carry, each can is supposed to last about 2 hours on high heat and 4 hours  on low, so I’m figuring about 1 can per day for cooking/reheating canned foods.  I want to pick up at least three more of the mini-stoves for the BOB and the barter box. I’m going to get another 8 of the butane fuel cans for my self and the barter box this week and keep buying as I can afford more of them.  I think these little stoves are perfect for giving out to friends and family and will be quite valuable as a barter item.

My beer lady is having a sale on the the 15 gallon water barrels only $20.00 each. I’m thinking of picking up a couple more of them to have on hand. I’m in good shape for my water storage but I know most people store very little water.  While the 15 gallon barrels weigh 120 pounds full of water, that is still somewhat portable via a hand truck or a couple of strong guys could put one in my van or in a truck and deliver it to whoever needs water. Each barrel would provide a gallon a day per person for a couple of weeks and give you time to set up additional water collectors/filters for drinking water.  I worry about family members having enough water on hand. Of course I still have to get 3 more collapsible rain barrels and the water mister for staying cool this summer. I could also loan out the collapsible rain barrels to friends and family if they need it. I don’t think people pay enough attention to how critical clean drinking water is to personal health. I know I didn’t appreciate having tap water until I did my own no tap water test.

I got my first 55 gallon metal drum, pallet and 100 pounds of grain to start my 7 year food storage. It’s going to take a little longer to set up my metal drums as I’m going to work on making a safe area along with food and water barrels and I will need to move some stuff around to make it work.  I have been taking pics of the food and how I’m putting it all together but it is taking a little more effort and time than I what I first had in mind.  The two gallon food safe bags look like they are going to work out even better than I first anticipated.  Each bag will hold about 12 1/2 pounds of grain so grabbing a bag to use is going to be easy to move and place into a smaller container.

I have some oatmeal already in storage but I concentrated on getting corn and grits because of the drought/ethanol mandate and I guess I missed the rising price of oatmeal. I stopped into Cash & Carry and all they had was 25 pound bags at $15.08. You get about 8 servings per pound and it still a good energy dense food but I thought it would cost less.  I was planning on the cost on a 50 pound bags would be about $20.00 and so I will have to take a bit more time on getting the oatmeal,  I want to see if I can get a better price.   With Chinese New Year coming up in Feb. we may see some good deals on rice we can use to fill a drum.  I have it planned out for the budget to get another 100 pounds of dent corn and perhaps another drum for next month which gives me a very good start on adding some variety to my existing grain storage and add 200 pounds of grain for just over $100.00 total cost counting the cost of the first drum and bags. I’m really quite excited about this project and I think it will work out even better than I  had originally planned.

It’s going to take a little more planning, time and work . I want the metal drums filled with the latest food purchases and maintain a good food rotation. But once I build the safe area the wood platform would make a great shelf for my smaller food buckets that I have already on hand that need to be used first.  After the first 55 gallon drum or 2 are filled I should have a better concept of how everything will work overall as far as space needed and how to set it up for proper rotation of first in first out. I know these drums are for the long term food items but there is no reason to make them to hard to get at and use the stored food.  If the drums have any weakness it’s via the rotation of food as most folks won’t rotate stored food. It should not make a big difference if you fill the drums within 6 months to a year. But first in first out is a great rule for everything a prepper stores.

7 Responses to Getting some good buys, 55 gallon drum setup and when did Oats get so expensive?

  1. Wildflower says:

    there has been a slow steady rise in grain,beans, and even oatmeal over the last six months

    be certain your stash of whatever you fill the barrel with, the barrel is near or at designated storage site

    when filled, topped with cover and sealed (duct tap) that barrel is going to be heavy!

    and if your cat isn’t doing its job, mouse/rat traps with peanut butter bait will be very effective

    as for defective cat, fatten it up for a roast….

  2. Jamie says:

    Wild, I was aware on most of the rising prices but the oats caught me off guard. I
    figured on the barrels being heavy so that’s why I’m taking my time to place the properly. I think these metal drums will do great as they are food safe and adding in the extra protection of the food safe bags and DE I think I will be about as safe as a person can be for long term storage.
    I might be going over the top on food safety but the 2 gallon bags are cheap and I already had the DE so I might as well make my storage as safe as possible. I’m a small blog so I doubt some busy body or food police wanna be will complain and since I spent over 7 years in food service learning everything from temp. control to off site catering as well as being a Field sanitation NCO for 13 years, I figure I’m fairly well educated on basic safe food storage. I’m not trying to come off as arrogant and I have no problem with learning new stuff but, I don’t care for the little goombas that state I’m wrong and can’t say why or how other than regurgitating the PTBs talking points.
    Smokey the cat is quite the little hunter. She has taken birds and even squirrels along with mice and has full time access to the storage area. I have bought extra traps just in case.

  3. lester says:

    Metal drums have issues. Primarily they sweat unless kept in low humidity and constant temp environment. Got a 55 degree cold storage room? Probably be okay. Gonna fill the air space in the drum with inert gas like CO-2 or Nitrogen? Probably be okay.

    Yet there are other issues. Drum weighs about 30 lbs maybe more. Put a couple bags of wheat or corn in there, you have LOTS of Air Space remaining. Condensation will be a problem. Condensation on inside of drum ruins your food. Got a special two-wheel dolly? Pretty hard to lift, not to mention awkward to handle a 55gal drum.

    Plastic 5gal paint buckets make more sense. Takes 3 to store 100 lbs of any grain other than oats. A bucket of oats will weigh 25lbs, so would need 4… Easy to carry 2 at a time for an adult in decent condition. Easy to pack for longterm storage using only CO-2 brick of DRY ICE you can find at many grocers. Cost per bucket about $10 brand new w/gasket seal lid. Can get a pour through lid w/spout for liquids. To preserve food using Dry Ice, you break the block of CO-2 into chips about thumbnail size. Fill bucket 1/4 full, add 9 chips, fill another 1/4 full and add more chips. When reach the top layer of chips, put lid on loosely. Wait 30-40 mins for chips to gassify & permeate the grain. The chips expel all oxygen. Then you seal the bucket by hammering down the gasket lid. Mark the bucket and your food is safe to eat whenever. We have eaten brown rice stored 12+ years and it was perfect & tasty… Wipe out bucket w/bleach & water mix or some mild vinegar to clean. Dry and you’re ready to go. No expensive bags or 02 absorbers to buy.

  4. Karen says:

    Jamie, I don’t think the using the 2 gallon bags are over the top-they are extra protection, and by portioning the food ahead of time it makes it easy to grab what you need later!

    This is completely off topic-but have you seen this yet? Thoughts?

    Nunc Pro Tunc: The Coming Day of Burn Barrels and Blessings
    Permalink | Print
    This is a standing invitation to my fellow Americans: If congress ever enacts a law mandating the registration and/or a production ban of detachable magazine semiautomatic rifles then you are hereby invited to the town square of your local community. There, burn barrels will be set up and we will publicly burn Form 4473s, FFL Bound Books, state and local registration records, and the sales receipts for every firearm in the United States. On that same day, FFL holders and public officials holding electronic firearms records will simultaneously erase those records, permanently and irretrievably. (Using special file erasure software such as Blancco, X-Ways, and Stellar Wipe, or though the physical destruction of disk drives.)

    Spontaneous Gatherings, Spontaneous Combustion

    This burn barrel day–likely to be held the day after the President signs any new draconian legislation–will include speeches, public prayers, and the blessing of those who have gathered by ministers, rabbis, and priests.

    The core of the activities on that day will be stalwart public defiance of any new unconstitutional law(s), the open and notorious destruction of records that might be used to enslave us, and vocal public affirmations of solidarity of free men and women, in the face of tyranny. This will be a defining moment for America–a line drawn in the sand. We will forthrightly declare that we will not obey any unconstitutional law and that we will treat it dismissively, as if it had never been enacted — nunc pro tunc. We will pledge ourselves to the defense of liberty, both individually and collectively. We will vow that if ever called to jury duty, we will nullify any unconstitutional laws, vacating the charges against the accused, in accordance with our long-standing right as jurors. (See:

    The Law is On Our Side

    We will publicly re-affirm some long standing precepts of American jurisprudence, to wit:

    “The General rule is that an unconstitutional statute, though having the form and name of law is in reality no law, but is wholly void, and ineffective for any purpose; since unconstitutionality dates from the time of it’s enactment and not merely from the date of the decision so branding it. An unconstitutional law, in legal contemplation, is as inoperative as if it had never been passed. Such a statute leaves the question that it purports to settle just as it would be had the statute not been enacted.

    Since an unconstitutional law is void, the general principles follow that it imposes no duties, confers no rights, creates no office, bestows no power or authority on anyone, affords no protection, and justifies no acts performed under it…

    A void act cannot be legally consistent with a valid one. An unconstitutional law cannot operate to supersede any existing valid law. Indeed, insofar as a statute runs counter to the fundamental law of the lend, it is superseded thereby.

    No one is bound to obey an unconstitutional law and no courts are bound to enforce it.” – 16 Am Jur 2d, Sec 177 late 2d, Sec 256

    Never Again!

    Recognizing the many sad lessons of civilian disarmament and subsequent genocides in the 20th Century, we will make bold and forthright statement: Never Again! We will not submit to the unlawful decrees of tyrants. We will not meekly go their jails and internment camps. We will fight for our liberty, to our dying breath.

    Come Armed, Come Masked

    I recommend that all adults who publicly assemble at these burn barrel events do so armed, as is our right. And those who come armed should also wear masks, to protect themselves from malicious prosecution. I plan to wear a Guy Fawkes mask, but you can wear a bandana, face muffler, or the face mask of your choice. Joining you, also wearing masks, will be many mayors, sheriffs and their deputies, chiefs of police and their officers, town council members, clergy, and people of all walks of life. We vastly outnumber the tyrants. The tyrants deserve nothing but our scorn and derision. Their fate is already sealed.

    Plausible Denial

    After this fateful day has come and gone, FFL holders and public officials will be able to recount: “I had no choice. My records were taken by men with guns who were wearing masks!” (So they’ll have no excuse if they don’t cooperate with this nationwide display of civil disobedience.)

    God Bless The Republic. Down with Tyrants. We Will Prevail!

    – James Wesley, Rawles – January 28, 2013

    Note: Permission to reprint or re-post this piece in full by any method (printed or electronically) is granted by the author (James Wesley, Rawles), as a long as it is not altered in any way and it is reproduced in full.

    • Jamie says:

      Karen, I don’t care for JWR telling other what they must do. You may notice many of these people don’t lead the way and take no risks themselves.
      I am sure quite a few firearm dealers will suffer a fire or flood if a confiscation order comes from DC so I see no reason to try and push for demonstrations based on “what ifs”.
      My feeling is every American needs to decide where the stand and what they personally are willing to do if things get bad. All of talk of the internet won’t mean a darn thing. What will matter is what people actually do when the time comes.

  5. Karen says:

    I could be wrong, but I would imagine that if our government wants to disarm us, there are many ways (sadly) to coerce us into cooperation before it comes to this.

    • Jamie says:

      Karen; I believe you are correct. Just look at some of the recent gun buy backs for gift cards or a $100.00. I can imagine the same thing happening before a person got any food or water from FEMA in a disaster or if the stores are empty. That is why it is so important to prepare so you don’t rely on the PTBs.

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