store softwoods – useful wealth preservation
3 years ago, I was kicking myself as our backyard remodel plans changed and I was left with $4K-$5K worth of assorted redwood… didn’t have the time or energy to return or sell it, so I stored it on the side of my house… got it off the ground, stacked tight and well-wrapped with tarps.
I walked by it and was suddenly pleased that I had made the miscalculation. After 3 years, it hasn’t aged a bit.
In the even of a collapse, other uses will pop up, and having this on hand could help neighbors or increased barter value!
Also donned on me to load up on some other carpentry items and favorite hardware. (deck screws, nuts/bolts, etc.), and one of the first things I’d do is take down the kids play set to preserve that wood.
Would love to hear if anyone else would consider doing something similar, or if anyone has a good idea you can have on the i-pad for a bit.
I have a stash of sewing fabrics and supplies that I'm going to start calling "useful wealth preservation".
There's a bumper sticker out there: "She who dies with the most fabric is the winner!"
I have to ask, how are you protecting your redwood supplies against theft?
"Would love to hear if anyone else would consider doing something similar, or if anyone has a good idea you can have on the i-pad for a bit."
I doubt common dimensional lumber will hold value:
1. There is likely to be abundant lumber that can be salvaged from abandoned homes.
2. Depend for Lumber is largerly driven by new home construction/remodeling. I think over the long term home construction/remodeling is going to crash. Most of this industry is driven by loans since almost nobody buys or even remodels a home using cash.
That said, have a stock of lumber & hardware is a good idea, presuming that if you have an emergency need (storm damage), or the local lumber/hardware store goes out of business. I think something like 1 in 5 retail stores will be going out of business in the next 12 months.
What is annoying is when you have a small repair job and it takes you an hour or more just to go pick up the materials you need (travel time, find the items, wait on line to pay, etc), Or you need it and the store is closed. Generally I keep a spare items (hardware, Plywood, common lumber) in stock just in case I have a need in the future. Usually when I do go to the hardware store I pick up extra items if I think I may need more in the future and the costs isn't prohibitive.
If you've ever been to a woodworking store, you'll find that even the domestic hardwoods are extremely expensive. Thing is, though, there's a lot of good hardwood that you could salvage from other peoples' tree trimming. So if you really wanted to store value, you would link up with a tree-trimming company, pick the most interesting ones you didn't yet have, and then cut that down to dimensional lumber.
Well, not just dimensional lumber. I'd also say that if you can find a good way to cut various laminates, and make interesting and beautiful plywoods, that might sell very well too. I'd say work things out with the local lowes to have a little section for your product.
Then upgrade to doing your own projects, giving classes… you can greatly build on what you have done. Don't forget molding that you can make.
Of course, there's a limit to how much value you can store in hardwoods. But I'm going to guess that hardwoods are the high-value item. And yes, I have been thinking of a way to take a log and spin it for plywood. I'd love to find a way to make mulberry keep its golden color (I'm going to try CaSO4 and / or vinegar first); I would love to be able to spin a magnolia down to get at its heartwood.
Thx for your post. It underscores the need to think differently about stores of assets on a smaller scale than the biggies we so often talk about (land, farm, off grid living, PM etc). While most here have a deep pantry how many have deep stores of other things? As Yoxa points out, whomever has the most (pick your asset) wins. Not to mention having to drive/travel to get said things, perhaps when the need is great, and the ability to drive or travel is compromised.
Things to consider having a good store of that will double as barter items if needed:
- Wool and needles for knitters
- fabric, thread, buttons, zippers, patches for the sewing inclined
- spare quality shoes and boots (nothing will do you in faster than trying to survive in bare feet!)
- spare parts for toilets, taps, other plumbing, electrical, hoses, fittings, irrigation
- spare handles for shovels etc
- spare garden implements & tools, buckets and pails
- selection of assorted main sizes of screws, nuts, washers, bolts, nails
- selection of drill bits for different applications
- hand tools to do everything with extra replaceable blades for each item as applicable (Japanese pull saws are a most excellent thing to have on hand!!)
- basic power tools for while we have power available
- selection of light bulbs, grow lights, candles, lanterns, lighters, matches
- spare parts for bikes, cars, barbecues, generators
- High quality, durable pots & pans, knives, kitchen utensils
- files and sharpening stones/tools and oils
- assorted glues and tapes for every kind of application
- library of how to and resource books to help you use all old the above
- if you have room, an assortment of lumber, pvc pipe, copper pipe, irrigation pipe, conduit, spools of assorted wires and rope
I am sure there are 100's more things that can be added. A healthy level of self-sufficiency is so much more than having our deep pantries to feed us. It is also the ability to ensure we can fix the stove to cook food from our pantry, cut and build the things we need for our gardens and homes, maintain the tools we need to do the above, and clothe ourselves if needed. Each of us should have a list that is relevant to our unique circumstances. I am now in the habit whenever I buy something I buy the spare parts to maintain it at the same time. In this age of rapid obsolescence and bankruptcies are no guarantees that a year or more down the road that you will be able to get parts for something that breaks down.
Doing these things, having these things on hand is a positive thing that counteracts all the negative crap we are witnessing daily. An idle mind is the devils playground. Learning new skills, building or fixing something with my own two hands shifts my thinking away from all that is going wrong, leads to tremendous self-gratification, and builds that quiet confidence so necessary to well being. And looking at all these lovely small assets is ever so much more satisfying than seeing the paltry 0.25% on cash in the bank.
I agree with the storing of wood. I looked into the history of my local area and it seems getting a dimensional piece of lumber was of great importance and also very profitable in the 1800s. I have a loft in my barn and through blind luck was able to pick up a bunk of cherry and walnut that was bandsawed that I have sitting up there. It was stored for 14 years and I've had it for seven more. It is mostly clear and 8" to 10" by 8'. Figured I would make furniture out of it when I retired. Till then it's an investment like PM's to me. Dimensional soft wood like SPF will be in great demand in your local area when things get tough. You can salvage it for sure but having some 2"X 4"s , and other sizes on hand will make you much more capable to deal with things without having to venture out. Just my thoughts on an interesting (to me) subject.
I recently purchased a spare pair of both boots and shoes (just long enough after buying a pair of each to determine that they fit well and seemed to be of high quality). I bought Propet brand in both cases, which fit particularly well for people with feet that tend to swell. Thus these shoes and boots are VERTICALLY DEEP around the instep area. Other brands are available in extra wide (which helps some for swelling), but so far Propet seems to be unique. Clearly something that would be absolutely irreplaceable in a crisis.
A lot of the food in our deep pantry is canned goods, a lot of which have quite a bit of liquid in the cans (e.g, soups). Thus all you really need is a can opener.
We have a garden that is going great guns this year, so we are getting a lot of fresh veggies to supplement packaged food (whether or not it requires heating).
Still, I need to look into whether our gas stove has one or more points of vulnerability.
Thanks for your post.