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Building a BUG IN

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Major, you might check out they have a forum

Note. You might have to join or buy a educational training dvd to get access. I have some of their material and it gets to the point.


As far as keeping the home front safe...while it is not always possible...remember the addage...Out of sight out of mind. The prickly plants is very good as would be a substantial fence and/or the large rocks one of the other members spoke of.

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Devildog, two websites which might be helpful: DIY and the "How do I", That gets you away from somebody who might have a financial interest in selling a product.

You could also reach out to Snake, the man has incredible knowledge.


Hey I am with regulator5 he has hit the nail on the head

my only other advise is {and regulator had the least expensive and quickest fix}


to dig around the walls wash it pump out ditch allow to dry and coat with block sealer WELL

do french drain and back fill{sounds easy right}.

the top needs same but do it first and that would be like the total makeover type deal BUT

you would still have to do everything Regulator5 has stated and I would go solar for the venting so

you have a both and a dehumidifier or small air conditioner as humidity is also part of the described

problem as I cannot eyeball it I am guessing here.


forgot need to do this in the dry season that will have a bearing on success

as water hydraulics will press water through from the back side while

your trying to fix the other.


outside humidity is also problem maybe the dehumidifier needs to be on the

vent inlet


and still the floor would attract dampness from humidity from condensation as the floor temp is lower.

and no way to place a moisture barrier under it now, without government budget / funding..


water / humidity is the hardest of all problems to defeat and it is only temporary water will win eventually

I am not a foam guy it degrades give off a gas as it breaks down and if it fails it needs to be cleaned

and sand blasted off to use something else, it also give off a deadly gas if a fire occurs.

Edited by juzcallmesnake

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Devildog: I too am going to be bugging in, but I don't have an external structure like you, I have a small tool shed which holds all the stuff I would normally keep in the garage. You know, all that stuff that we won't need after the event. Like lawn mowers. Which means I get to use the garage as storage location 4 for my prepper stuff. Storage locations 1 and 2 are two pantries in the kitchen and 3 is a super deep closet in the master bedroom divided into shelving behind the clothes for other items not food related. My home is on a concrete slab with concrete patios on both ends with ramadas, so I think I am ok.


Major Krisis: Bugging in at work if you have to is a good idea for the short term, but if the event which triggered it is longterm you might be stuck for good. If there aren't any reliable communications, contacting family could be an issue. I work in an office downtown (although my downtown is 8.9 miles from home so I can hoof it if I have to) and what I have discovered is that my workplace is filled with food. Every woman here has grub in her desk. Every one of them is on Weight Watchers or Healthy Meals and has coffee, tea, granola bars, nuts, you name it they got it. I'm thinking this is better than home, except there's no shower. So, if you carry an athletic (looking) bag with you and the morning newspaper, no one will wonder what you have in it. You can have a change of clothes and socks and undies, along with a knife, small screwdriver, flashlight, bar of soap and deodorant. Maybe a book and a candle. Wash cloth and towel and its like being at the Y, sorta. I joke to my wife that if something happens I want to be at work! After everyone runs out of the building screaming with their hair on fire I'll have all the food! Proper prior planning and all that. ;)

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This whole subject of bugging in and bugging out is fascinating to listen to. In a previous post a few years ago someone asked me what I planned to do, if anything, when the baloon went up. They were mostly interested in armament, a matter of short term use really. I said if I was running from something slower than me, then my Glock 19 ought to do the job. If I'm running from something faster than me, it won't matter soon. But the issue isn't what you have to defend yourself. Most times if you're quiet and don't draw attention to yourself that's the best defense. Loud and proud can get you eaten.


In general, I plan to navigate my way back home as quickly as possible. That is the plan. Not stopping to shoot something, skin it, make a fire, cook it and eat it while I sit down with my brothers and plan how to rebuild civilization. No. Not bugging future in being a refugee...I'm bugging in. Gas and food wouldn't last anyways. Plan is to get home now, where my shelter and safety are, and once I am home, stay home and be quiet. Feed the dogs and be quiet. At least for the first ninety days. If the power doesn't go out, whatever has happened will be short term, a few days. If the power does go out, no atms, no gas pumps, no street lights for a week or so...most people have never experienced "real" house lights, no traffic lights, could be a little cool. If it stays out for a month or more, ball game.


It seems reasonable in a serious situation that the first two weeks will see every WalMart, KMart, 7/11, et al, stripped to the bone. Batteries, candles, milk, diapers...gone in sixty seconds. Then the fighting in the streets will begin, and the looting, stealing things they won't be able to use, like tv sets. Lots of people with guns and those without, all of them hungry and angry and scared at the same time. People without guns will do what the people with guns tell them to do. Fires in the downtown areas will rage departments will be empty because everyone went home to their families. Cops will be non existent. Hospitals will be chaos and burn also. Some people will have common sense and occupy a Costco and strip it including the pharmacy, but most will panic and lose it.


Within four weeks those who haven't been killed will start to migrate out of the city limits searching for whatever they need. You'll be able to smell them coming. Gangs will be prevalent for a short while, till they can no longer feed themselves, then they will feed on each other. People like us will have to be quiet as a churchmouse. Democracy, liberal or otherwise, will be done. All the "rights" people will be done because that requires an infrastructure and social guilt. It won't matter what special category you're in. Everybody's options will be down to one. How are we going to survive today? What does that actually mean? And what do I have to do to make it real?


Within six weeks there probably won't be a cat or small dog left, and large dogs will gradually end up as food after a few weeks of running in packs. Wildlife near the cities will have vanished or been harvested. The noise and the stench of this kind of meltdown will make anyone with shelter stay inside and be quiet until the worst of it is over. One hundred eighty days will tell the tale.

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Uriel is correct in many ways!

Social Guilt is what keeps many from saying or doing anything NOW!

"Thats not Fair" you should share with us!


A event that happens every summer in US counties, with rides, games, and competitions for the best farm animals, best pies etc...


Wont see one of these for a while!!!!


Most people wont last a week with out Power to thier homes! Or water!

Its Not "IF" anymore but "When"....

JMO...and I have strong "GUT FEELING" I wont ignor..

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I am breaking this up into smaller pieces, to stay within the restrictions of attached pictures. There will be several installments. I hope you like it.


When we were purchasing our current house (1994) the realtor made the statement “… and believe it or not, this house has a Bomb Shelter.” It surely did have an actual block wall and poured concrete shelter. They even still had the civil defense plans and instructions on how to do it. This realtor now had my full attention. As she showed us the hidden entrance, I knew I was going to buy this house. I always have been enamored with hidey holes and mysterious passages. How cool this was going to be!


After we had purchased the house, the reality began to replace the dream. The shelter was cold and wet most of the time. It was moldy and dank, too. It had been built with fear in mind and had not been planned properly to handle drainage, temperature etc. So for the past 17 years, we had used it only as a tornado shelter, and for storing lawn furniture in the winter.


Until now! This year I had had enough! There was over 160 square feet of space in there, and we were going to reclaim it. My prepping supplies, while not excessive (by my standards) were starting to take over the house. Our bomb shelter was going to become a hidden prepper’s store room!


It had originally had concrete stairs poured as part of the construction, and the roof served as the back deck to the house. Several years ago, I cut off the concrete steps and replace them with steel “clamshell” cellar doors, to allow easy loading and unloading of the lawn furniture, and built cedar stairs and railing over the top to hide the doors. (The steps come off for access.)


So for this project of creating useable storage space, we had three main issues to fix: Cold, Wet, and Mold. After considering the alternatives, I decide to go with a spray foam insulation, which treats all those symptoms with one step.


We started with totally removing the steel clamshell doors, cleaning up the rusted surfaces and treating them inside and out with Permatex rust treatment, which bonds with any rust remaining and forms a supposedly impervious coating that prevents further rust. We’ll see. Then we reinstalled the doors, carefully applying a solid bed of silicone to seal out the elements where it married up with the concrete. Then I caulked the edges both inside and out, added a full coat of primer and painted the outside the same color as my foundation to help camouflage the doors.






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Inside, we started demolition of what little was still there. Removed some rotted wood shelving, rusted electrical conduits and all the receptacles and switches, etc. We used a sturdy brush and some bleach on the block walls to kill and remove any mold remaining. We pulled out a double layer of furring strips and a layer of plastic sheeting that had been on the ceiling for a moisture barrier. Then we pulled out the sump pump and pipes, and the overhead light receptacle.


Once we had bare walls and ceiling, every thing cleaned up and dry, the real fun (and the real work) began.






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We had put quite a bit of thought in where the electric needed to be, as the conduits would be inaccessible under the foam once it was applied, and moving or adding electrical would be very difficult. We ran the new conduits and pulled through the necessary wiring, leaving a generous length when cutting, again because of the foam. We added two receptacles on the ceiling, figuring they could be used for almost anything on the planned shelving or on the floor, such as fans or heaters etc. I cut some rectangles out of 2”thick styrene the same size as the electrical boxes and taped them on the boxes. The idea was to keep the foam out of the electrical stuff, and then remove it when done, leaving a spray foam “hole” around the box.


We also had the problem of adding a larger conduit to protect a circuit for the garage that ran through the shelter. It would also be under the foam.


I core drilled a hole through the wall and installed a simple pass through pipe made of PVC, with a screw on cap both inside and outside. This would allow extension cords, garden hoses, or whatever to run between the outside and the inside, but still seal up when not in use.


After taping up anything that we didn’t want to get foam on, we were ready for the contractor. (I did find some DIY kits for this foam, but they were more expensive than hiring the pros.)






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The spray foam guys showed up in fairly large trailer. Nothing much happened for the first hour. It turns out that the hose and the chemicals used need to be pre heated prior to applying to the walls, and it takes about an hour for their generator to heat things up. Then it was pretty much just point and shoot, with a big spray gun. My project was done freehand with no stud walls to use for guides, and I’m sure it turned out as well as it did due to the skill and experience of the applicator. Actual spraying took only an hour!


The product I chose was a “green” product in that it is composed of 30% soybeans. There was no objectionable smell or off gassing that I could notice. It was dry to the touch almost immediately, with full curing in 24 hours. It has a hard texture kind of like Styrofoam, but does not have the little pellet texture like Styrofoam.






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Then I re-plumbed the sump pump, this time running it along the floor, instead of along the ceiling, just in case of a leak, it should help keep my “stuff” drier. (I am still tracking a small leak along this pipe. I get just a very small leak when it rains, running in alongside the pipe where it goes through the wall. One problem is that the hole was drilled at an up angle through the wall, so water likes to run down it from the outside.


Then wired up the electricity, hung a four bulb fluorescent fixture, and added an incandescent light over the sump. Now its very light in there and its not a chore to do any work on my preps.






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Next we assembled the free standing storage shelves we had bought previously. Made from extruded plastics, they assemble with only a rubber mallet. I lucked out and got the heavy duty ones on a really good sale. Each unit is 72 inches high and each of 5 shelves on the unit will hold 200 pounds, so each unit can have 1000 pounds. I bought 6 units, but only have assembled 5 of them. (I added a drop leaf work table in its place….great for putzing with the stuff!)


I also have a freight pallet in the room which is where cardboard boxes of supplies or whatever can be stacked off the floor, just in case of a sump overflow or a leak in the walls.






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I am impressed Devildog! That is a great space now for you to use. Out of curiosity, since it started as a bomb shelter, were there any provisions for ventilation?


Thanks a lot for the narrative and the pictures. I really appreciate seeing the work.

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I am impressed Devildog! That is a great space now for you to use. Out of curiosity, since it started as a bomb shelter, were there any provisions for ventilation?


Thanks a lot for the narrative and the pictures. I really appreciate seeing the work.


There were. Two, 2" pipes: one thru the ceiling and on thru the wall, which were for intake and exhaust, using a hand operated bellows pump. I capped the one thru the wall, but both are there for whatever use can be dreamed up later. I will include pics of this when I do the next installment.


PS I am glad many of you are enjoying this series, ask away with any questions, and hopefully I know the answer???


I plan on doing one final installment, with the pictures of all the completed details. Maybe later this week end.

Edited by devildog
forgot to say...

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