A guide to self reliant living












1. Food

2. Manna

3. Water

4. Sanitation

5. Medical,

6. Kerosene heaters and cookers

7. Lighting

8. Wood
cooking and heating

9. Communi-cations

10. Essential

11. Home
built items

12. Electrical; generators
and power

13. War preparedness

14. Gardening


Miles Stair's SURVIVAL










Miles Stair's SURVIVAL




by New England Gardener

New Survival Radio!

Kaito KA-200 Survival Radio AF-FM.  Excellent reception in a very tiny package. Excellent reception in a very tiny package.  Black.  It will play for over 50 hours with standard AAA batteries (not included) playing quite loudly, and play for over 100 hours with an ear bug (not included). Click on radio at left for more info. Only $12.95.

The most common type of radio receives the AM broadcast band. At night, a good quality radio will allow you to hear stations over a thousand miles away.

The GE Superadio III, mentioned elsewhere on this site, gets as many distant stations as radios costing ten times as much. It only costs around $60. It has terminals to connect a long wire antenna.

To improve AM reception, A Select-A-Tenna unit is available.

It uses no power - you place it near the radio, and by turning them you can hear stations that are on the same frequency, but in different directions. Poorer radios show dramatic improvement with this antenna, but even the GE radio is helped by it. They start around $50, and both C. Crane Radio and Universal Radio carry them.

Now is the time to make a list of news radio stations you can hear, what frequency they are on, and what city they are in. During both World Trade Center bombings, I was able to tune in to New York City stations that had there own reporters on the scene, giving live coverage. A resource to help you find these stations is www.radio-locator.com/. Here in southern New England, I can get stations from Quebec and Montreal Canada, Boston, NYC, Washington, DC, Atlanta, and Chicago. During the great northeast blackout in the 1960's, I was able to get weak local stations in the Deep South, on a cheap shirt pocket radio because the local stations on those frequencies were off the air. The same holds true for SHORTWAVE radios, without the interference from electrical power and other transmitters, even a cheap radio will get far away stations.

The GP-4L digital AM-FM-SW from the Survival Shop is a very handy, compact, and capable of getting many stations. You can easily drop this in your shirt pocket, and everybody should have several of these tucked away with a fresh pair of AA batteries. The Grundig E10 digital AM-FM-SW is a new model at a moderate price around $130. You do have to program its many features, including a fairly large memory. The Vector battery pack supplies 5 amp hours of 12 VDC and can be recharged from a lighter socket or wall charger.

Features are added to the radios design, to overcome interference. The lower half of the price range is dominated by analog models. They can perform quite well, and draw very little battery power. You want a separate fine tuning knob, and a signal strength meter or LED light. The more segments or bands the shortwave frequencies are divided into the better. Dual conversion is a desirable feature to overcome interference.

The Grundig S-350 AM-FM-SW radio. The Grundig FR-200 is a wind up or battery powered AM-FM-SW radio, It sells for $40. The Kaito AM-FM-Weather-VHF TV sound SW radio with Dynamo and Solar panel built in, is just cheap, but it does work. The Grundig Satellit 700 AM-FM-SW is no longer in production. [Lower row] The Toshiba F11 was made for many, many years, but not recently. The Grundig 305 AM-FM-SW is out of production too, but it has been replaced by a similar model. The MFJ-382 is an amplified speaker designed to filter out non-voice noises. It has an internal 9 VDC battery, or can be powered by 9-12 VDC source. It works very well with the GP-4L Miles sells, as well as any small radio you want to hear across the room. If powered by a large 9 to 12 VDC battery, the radio volume can be turned down very low, saving the batteries in the portable, and the volume on this amplified speaker turned up louder.

The next step up in performance is to have a digital readout so you can see exactly what frequency you are tuned to. Now you can really use the list.  The upper half of the price range is dominated by radios that are tuned digitally. They are offered with many convenience features like timers and clocks, but having a memory of stations stored right inside, and the ability to tune them immediately is there real advantage to me. This group is better if you will be listening not only to broadcast programs, but people talking back and forth to each other (Amateur, Military, FEMA etc.). You will want single side band for that.


Here is a collection of four sizes of Sealed Lead Acid rechargeable batteries, and alligator clips and plugs, for making power cords.

When I heard Flight 800 went down in Long Island Sound, I picked up my Grundig Satellite 700, and listened to the short wave frequencies used by the Coast Guard and by commercial aircraft over the Atlantic Ocean, stored in its memory (That model radio is out of production). The little computers inside these radios can make them do many things, but you have to study the manual, to make that happen. Sort of like programming a VCR. None of these radios have pleasant room filling sound. The very small radios become tiresome to listen to, and the midsize ones will distort, if turned up loud enough to hear across the room, but you can use headphones, or a set of computer speakers to overcome that. - New England Gardener