Repair Unlikely

I’m a dinosaur, it’s as simple as that.
Why? Because I’m old school. Something fails, breaks, or otherwise needs attention, I’m your boy. It doesn’t need to high-tech, I’ll have a go at anything.
What does annoy me though is the modern world and its ‘throw away’ mentality.
Actually that’s not exactly true.
Through the world you’ll find mechanics taking apart truck engines on the side of the road using the most basic of hand tools, TV and computer engineers fixing things on customers premises, you name it, you’ll find it.

So what is it I’m moaning about.
I suppose it’s the lack of basic knowledge among preppers and survivalists regarding the equipment they use. Only lets not limit this moan to them.

What about gun owners.
A few don’t even know how to clean their weapons effectively!
Yes, I regard cleaning weapons as routine maintenance because if you don’t keep your weapon clean, it will fail. But here’s the thing. A little knowledge is a dangerous thing and without adequate training and practice. That’s CONSTANT PRACTICE folks.

Now let’s get high-tech for a second.
After all the professional prepper and survivalist just isn’t playing the game unless they are laden down with the latest must have gizmo.
Take the humble GPS.
I’ve got a question for you. It may sound equipment specific but it’s not.
The operating range of my little unit is (-4°F to 158°F, or -20 to 70°C).
So, the two AA (LR6) batteries I use need to be selected carefully in weather extremes.
Why? Lets look at the common battery types they recommend:-
You can use alkaline, NiCd, NiMH, or Li-ion batteries.
NiCd, NiMH work between -20 to 65 Celsius.
However they don’t do well in the cold so the manual recommends the use if Li-ion.
That works well at low temperatures i.e. -20 Celsius.

So does this sound like good advice?
Operationally yes, that’s good advice, only have you ever tried recharging a Li-ion battery below freezing (0º Celsius or under) or over 50º Celsius?
After all rechargeable batteries don’t last forever do they?

One of the lesser advertised effects of trying to charge a frozen Li-ion is cell failure, the main worry for you is the other effect, BOOM! Boom that can happen from a simple thing like rough handling, or just trying to draw too much current, A boom without warning!

As for charging it when it’s too hot (over 50º Celsius) or even too fast?
The effect is called thermal runaway.
The battery swells rapidly and self destructs, usually explosively, with acrid smoke and fire. Truly nice.

So did you know this?
Especially those living in extremes of temperature.
Because it’s not in ‘The GPS manual’ and is seldom mentioned as a hazard in a lot of other equipment IT IS A KNOWN DANGER OF LITHIUM BATTERIES.
After that I’ve got a question. How many of you knew of this?

Some will be saying no problem they have an intelligent charger thus will be able to cope with such problems. Yeah right. Tried that theory in practice yet, pre freezing a Ltihium battery in the deep freeze before hand?
Scientists have however found a way of building in a ‘pre-heater’ into a Li-ion battery to prevent BOOM but we’re talking years before it becomes commercially (and cheaply) available.

Knowledge. It’s not just reading the manual is it?
You need a broad spectrum knowledge about anything you carry, use, or will otherwise trust your life with.

Years ago I talked about the wired telephone system.
How to jack into it. Which is kinda important if calling rescue is you sat alongside a telephone line miles from anywhere. Hands up all those who could?

Your Katadyne water filter breaks.
Which parts are essential to extract in order to make a truly efficient expedient way of purifying water.  Or haven’t you thought along those lines yet?

The answer?
1 is the pre-filter,
2 is the replaceable main filter.

Plus using your smarts!

Start reading guys and girls.
Your life may just depend on the stupid question you never asked for fear of ridicule or failed to read about because you were too busy.

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4 Responses to Repair Unlikely

  1. Brittius says:

    Y’know, Mate, in the NYPD, “dinosaur”, is a term reserved for only the top old bastards. I was one.
    We used to say, “Almost Extinct – But Still Feared”.

  2. jlm990 says:

    Living in the Sonoran desert I am especially battery conscious. And not just the small ones. Vehicle batteries here drop like flies compared to temperate climates. Extremes of weather effect more than just batteries, You and I know that the rifle you zeroed at any range with any load at 80 degrees will NOT hit the same point, especially at long range when it is minus 5. I enjoy being a dinosaur. The originals died off because they couldn’t adapt. The current breed will possibly survive because we have learned how to. Good article!

    • Thank you Sir. Cold was my nemisis. First couple of shots at -30 were usually good.
      Then things began to warm up.
      1/2 a mag later and the group opened, Accuracy turns to center mass (ish) at 300.

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