5 Practical Survival Life-Hacks to Make Off-the-Grid Life Easier
Shoe Lace Locks
There are a lot of gadgets on the market that are designed to lock shoelaces in place. However, they cost money and need to be ordered beforehand. However, you can make your own locks using two washers or small shims in just a couple of steps and keep laces from unraveling once and for all.
The first step is to make sure that the laces of your shoes or boots exit the top eye from the inside. Place two shims over one of the laces. Pull the shims out so that they are resting about an inch above where the lace exits the hole. Hold the bottom shim between your thumb and forefinger while you create a loop with the lace. Make sure the portion of the lace that exits the hole rests on top of the other as you make the loop. Hold the shim and loop in place with the same hand. Take the second shim, pull it around the loop until it touches the first one.
Pull the lace back through the first shim and under the other portion of the lace. Pull tight and the shims will force the lace to lock in place. Cut the extra lace above the shim and you have tight laces without the need to tie your shoes or boots, and they can be adjusted as needed.
Fix Zippers with Plastic Ties
If you ever have a zipper that lost it’s handle, you know how difficult it can be to open and close. You can fix this problem easily by using a small plastic zip-tie. All you need to do is loop and lock the tie through the eye-hole of the zipper and pull it tight. Decide on the appropriate length of plastic to serve as the handle for the zipper and cut away the excess. You should now have a fully-functional zipper.
Use a Pencil to Open a Stuck Lock
Lots of cheap locks, such as those you find on luggage, dressers or file cabinets easily get stuck. One way to easily open them is to use a sharpened pencil. All you need to do is rub the tip of the pencil around the contours of the key. Insert into the lock, jiggle it a bit, and it should come open without too much difficulty.
The secret is in the graphite of the pencil which acts as a form of abrasive lubricant. This can help the key to adhere to the inner-workings of the lock in order to give it a better grip. If this trick doesn’t work the first time, keep rubbing the pencil on both sides of the key and repeat. Chances are that the lock will open as more graphite gets into its mechanism. It may not work on every lock, but it is effective enough to make it worth trying.
Hammer a Nail Without Hurting Yourself
Most of us have whacked our fingers, hands or thumbs while trying to nail something together at one point or another. You can reduce the chances of this happening ever again simply by using a wooden clothespin or piece of cardboard. To use the clothespin, gently tap the nail so that it’s in the wood just enough to keep it in place. Lay the clothespin on its side against the surface of the wood. Place it’s mouth over the nail and hammer away while holding the clothespin in place. This allows you to move your hand away from the line of fire while keeping the nail steady.
To use the cardboard trick, simply place the cardboard on the wood where you will be hammering the nail. Push the nail into the cardboard with your fingers. Hold the cardboard with your free hand to keep the nail in position before you start hammering. This should prevent the nail from slipping while allowing you to keep your fingers a safe distance away as well.
You can make a single dose or a batch of the same stuff that you get from the store for a fraction of the cost. To make a batch, you will need ½ cup minus one teaspoon of baking soda, 3 tablespoons of cornstarch, ¼ cup of citric acid and ½ cup of fructose. Mix all of the ingredients together and store in an airtight container in a cool and dry place. Add two teaspoons of the mixture to an 8 ounce glass of water, stir and drink.
For a single dose, simply mix ½ teaspoon of baking soda with ½ teaspoon of fructose and ¼ teaspoon of citric acid together in a small glass of water. Stir and drink.
For some flavoring, consider adding a couple of drops of lemon juice extract, or you can also add some of your favorite fruit juice to the water as well. Try it for yourself and you should get some relief in a short amount of time.
Try these tricks out for yourself today, because they really do work, and stay tuned for more hacks that can make life easier if and when the SHTF.