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  1. #1
    Senior Member
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    Pittsburgh, PA
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    Doomsday Vehicles

    We've recently been discussing getting either a motorcycle or an older truck without a computer or electric ignition--something that would probably work after an EMP, or something that would still be able to travel even if the roads were, for any reason, clogged with stalled traffic. Something with great gas mileage would be a plus. A regular bicycle might even be the best solution. Anyone have a plan for prepping their vehicles?

  2. #2
    Senior Member
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    KY
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    Hubby and I were talking about getting bicycles just last night. We currently have an old bus that is built like a tank but it is terrible on gas. Hubby has also started a hunt for an older model Jeep, Blazer type vehicle but has had no luck so far.
    Live simply so others may simply live.

  3. #3
    Senior Member
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    Jul 2011
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    Appalachian Mountains
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    In a doomsday situation, gasoline will be next to impossible to find. If you are fortunate enough
    to have some stored, it would probably be saved for their generator systems.

  4. #4
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by JAY View Post
    In a doomsday situation, gasoline will be next to impossible to find. If you are fortunate enough
    to have some stored, it would probably be saved for their generator systems.
    I think it depends on the kind of disaster. In most cases, you're probably right, gas will be in short supply. But if it really was an EMP you'd probably have thousands of cars with gas in them just sitting around. Or if it's a plague/instant super flu you'd wind up with a lot of dead people in the road, but again potentially gas in the cars/gas stations. They wouldn't be producing new gas, so you'd only be able to use it for as long as you could keep it viable, and you'd have to have a method for getting it out of one place and putting it in your working vehicle, but I think it's possible that it would be there.

  5. #5
    Senior Member
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    Appalachian Mountains
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    I agree with you concerning gas found in abandoned cars. Yet one would have to consider that in a major catastrophe, there would be mob mentality, with many
    seeking to take advantage of the situation. One would have to be very carefull concerning their safety.

  6. #6
    I think it is another case of it "depends on the situation" and "better to have than not have".

    Certain situations travel by conventional vehicle won't be viable. Could be a lot of reasons, EMP and lack of fuel the two that come to mind.

    On the other hand, there are many scenarios where travel by vehicle will be doable, but with some problems doing so, minor to major.

    I believe having a plan to evacuate and a means to do it are of paramount need. That might include non-automotive means, but for most it will mean using their Bug Out Vehicle, whether it means the family car or a specially set up vehicle. In my opinion, anything with the ability to at least cross over medians and handle gravel roads, with enough cargo and fuel capacity to get you where you're going will be suitable as a BOV.

    Mine is a 1999 GMC Sonoma High Rider 4x4 3-door pickup truck. It won't take me a few places in the mountains a custom off road vehicle will, but it will get me to where I need to go in most circumstances. And I think that is pretty good.

    Now, as a Doomsday Vehicle, or as I've referred to them in the past, a PAWV or post apocalyptic vehicle there are additional requirements, in my opinion. The additions can be from a handful of bolt on parts to a fully custom vehicle for PAW use, but hopefully usable as a utility vehicle if not daily driver.

    The following is a pick and choose list of what I consider desirable options for a PAW BOV. Most of them really aren’t needed for a simple BOV. This is definitely more for the PAW. One where about the only fuel will be biodiesel and alcohol, only salvage parts can be found, and there will be no tow-trucks to come get you. Suitable for off-road and badly deteriorated roads that probably won't get better. Options to get you through places not otherwise traversable and to recover a few useful items that might be needed or wanted. With everything you need and more for the journey for there won’t be any fuel stations or C-stores to ‘top off the tank and get a few things.’

    I came up with the list for a vehicle I wanted to use in a story, and the guy had money, so I included everything I thought might be useful. Please don’t take it as a list of what one must have. The list is just suggestions as to what might be included on a PAW vehicle in various scenarios.

    (A 4500 or 5500 series medium duty commercial truck would work equipped the same way as the custom build and just about any good 4x4 vehicle could benefit from some of them.)

    (Only list lovers should continue...)

    1-ton Chevy pickup truck 167” wheel base frame
    reinforced/gussetted frame
    skid plates
    rock sliders
    roll cage
    extended/extra fuel tank(s) w/safety linings
    all wiring in chassis grounded metal conduit


    12 valve mechanically injected Cummins 6BT diesel engine w/high performance fuel plate & injectors, custom Whipple Twin Screw supercharger, custom 4” high flow exhaust w/super quiet mufflers

    ZF-6-650 6-speed manual transmission
    Borg Warner transfer case w/locker
    PortalTek G3 1˝ ton portal front & rear steering axles w/lockers
    Remco front axle driveline disconnect
    Sonnax front axle driveline overtorque protection
    Remco rear axle driveline disconnect
    Sonnax rear axle overtorque protection
    Stazworks 4-wheel hydraulic steering system w/mechanical rear steer lockout
    HD suspension/steering components (4” lift)
    HD/Oversize 4-wheel high capacity disk brakes with booster
    35” bead lock run-flat tires


    custom twin cyclone engine air pre-filter
    engine air intake snorkel
    K&N engine air filter
    exhaust gas snorkel
    set of vent snorkels
    Evans NPG+ waterless coolant
    HD/oversize radiator w/twin electric fans
    HD engine oil cooler
    HD transmission cooler
    HD hydraulic oil cooler
    special mounts for extra gen, air compressor, on-board welder, hydraulic pump
    2 - GM 12v generators (instead of single alternator)
    Dual HD starting batteries
    HD deep cycle battery
    battery isolator
    110v/220v inverter
    air compressor w/tank
    hydraulic pump w/tank
    On Board Welder
    Power steering pump
    A/C compressor


    Stretched ľ ton Suburban body or 1-ton crew cab & long box
    custom roll cage
    custom cockpit w/dual captain’s chairs
    custom dash w/duplicate mechanical/electronic systems
    custom floor console w/all wheel steering control
    custom roof console
    custom passenger/navigator station w/faraday cage protected laptop computer
    custom HD dual arm windshield wipers w/air brush function (for volcanic ash)
    custom rear Dutch doors (on Suburban)
    American Safe Rooms vehicle air filter system w/custom cyclone HVAC pre-filter


    heavy duty front bumper w/2" hitch receiver
    tow bar
    brush guard
    roller fairlead flush winch mount
    12,000# hydraulic winch w/tensioner and stowing protector
    bumper tool box (tree protectors, cable damper, 100' 3/8" extension cable, clevis', shackles, snatch blocks, tie-offs, etc)
    spare tire mount
    fire extinguisher mount w/20 # fire extinguisher & cover
    tool mounts (short handle round point shovel, pick/mattock)
    fog lights
    high intensity driving lights
    air, 12vDC, 110v/240v AC, hydraulic, and welding lead outlets
    tie down/tow hooks/rings
    approach/brush/sapling roller


    heavy duty rear bumper w/2" hitch receiver
    roller fairlead flush winch mount
    12,000# hydraulic winch w/tensioner and stowing protector
    bumper tool box (tow strap, cable damper, 100' 3/8" extension cable, clevis', shackles, snatch blocks, tie-offs, etc)
    fire extinguisher mount w/20 # fire extinguisher & cover
    Pull-Pal winch anchor
    stake down type winch anchor w/stakes
    high intensity backup lights
    swing away spare tire/tool/jerry can mounts (16# double jack, axe, 2 - jerry cans diesel, 1 jerry can gasoline, 1 jerry can water)
    air, 12vDC, 110v/240v AC, hydraulic, and welding lead outlets
    tie down/tow hooks/rings
    approach/brush/sapling roller


    roof rack (Suburban)/cab-over pipe rack (pickup)
    roof rack ladder(s)
    remote control spot/flood light
    high intensity spot & flood lights (front/rear/alley)
    solar battery charger panel
    PA speakers
    elastic cargo net
    strap cargo net
    custom lay over antenna mounts
    spare tire mounts
    tool mounts (Hi-Lift Jack, telescoping ladder, articulating ladder, long handle round point shovel, wall climbing/recovery pole, railroad bar, Stanley Demolition bar, 42” bolt cutters, cribbing timbers, traction pads, thermal lances, set bridging ramps w/deployment & recovery gear)



    Mechanics tool box w/extensive hand tool kit
    Parts box w/extensive set of spare parts
    Set of hydraulic powered tools
    Set of air powered tools
    6 ton chain fall
    1 1/2 ton chain fall
    2 ton cable come-along
    2 5-ton bottle jacks
    Porta-power hydraulic system
    chainsaw
    chainsaw support kit
    burning bar support kit
    oxy/acetylene torch kit (vented case in cargo compartment if Suburban)
    self contained 2,000,000 watt spot light
    set of wheel chocks


    Pre-packed cargo containers for pickup bed
    Pre-packed cargo containers for Suburban
    Pre-packed cargo containers for roof rack
    Pre-packed cargo container for receiver hitch
    Pre-packed companion trailer (same year pickup bed trailer w/cover and/or rack)
    Pre-packed custom tandem wheel trailer
    Barge trailer with outboard motors


    Primary Communications fit:

    AM/FM/Satellite/CD/DVD/TV Video system
    NWS EAS SAME receiver
    Dakota Alert M538-HT short range handheld radio (6)
    Motorola HT 750 Business Band Low Band Handheld radio (6)
    Bearcat BCD396XT PS Band scanner w/Hustler MRM mobile scanner antenna
    Cobra 148GTL AM/SSB CB mobile w/Wilson 5000 Roof B mobile CB antenna
    Motorola CDM-750 Business Band Low Band transceiver w/Wilson 5000 Roof B mobile CB antenna cut to BB
    Yaesu FT-8900R 10m – 70cm VHF/UHF amateur, mobile w/Diamond 8900A 10m – 70cm mobile antenna w/mount & coax
    Yaesu VX-8R 6m-70cm VHF/UHF amateur radio, handheld (4)
    Yaesu FT-897D HF transceiver, portable w/KJ&U KW 6 – 160 screwdriver mobile HF antenna & Yaesu ATAS 120 w/mount, triplexer & coax


    Some optional radios

    Motorola CDM 1550 low band HF business band radio w/Wilson 5000 Roof B mobile w/Wilson 5000 CB antenna cut to BB frequency
    Motorola HT-1250 low band business band radio, handheld (4)
    Motorola CM 300 VHF 32 channel 45 watt business band radio w/gain antenna
    Motorola CP 200 VHF 4 channel 5 watt handheld (4)
    Motorola CM 300 UHF 32 channel 45 watt business band radio w/gain antenna
    Motorola CP 200 UHF 4 channel 4 watt handheld (4)
    Furuno FS1503EM SSB marine Band HF/SSB mobile radio w/KJ7U KW 6-160 screwdriver antenna adjusted for marine band
    Furuno FM3000 marine band VHF mobile w/Wilson 2m mag mount (cut to Marine band)
    Standard-Horizon HX471S handheld VHF marine band radio
    ICOM IC-A200 mobile airband radio w/mount & antenna
    ICOM A24 airband handheld radio


    Some additional ideas:

    all conventional vehicle lighting on hidden auto/off/on switch/relay panel
    high output disruptive sound & strobe light system
    gag-gas dispenser system
    Railroad track guide rollers
    Rammer/pusher bars on bumpers
    Hanging chain tire armor/deflection system
    Central tire inflation system
    Service body w/basket lift/material handling arm
    Custom body on a Chevy/GMC 5500 series 4x4 chassis

    Some over the top possibilities:

    Infra-red driving lights w/night vision goggles
    6x6 conversion
    Radiator armor with air flow deflector panels
    Body armor w/gun ports
    Window armor w/gun ports
    Engine compartment/radiator armor
    Oil slick, smoke, riot control gas, & caltrop dispensers
    Electrical shock exterior wiring system & generator
    Razor edge body edge trim
    External fire suppression system
    Anti-grenade/Molotov cocktail/RPG chain link fencing stand-off system
    Jerry D Young

    Prepare for the worst, hope for the best, and always remember TANSTASFL.

    (There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch - Robert A Heinlein)

  7. #7
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Pittsburgh, PA
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    314
    That is quite a list! I love it. You should write about it, take it from another author, that would make a great book.

    I hadn't really thought about towing power, but now that you bring it up, that's a good thing to think about. We have tractors that we can plow with, but if we couldn't use the tractors we wouldn't have a good option for hitching a piece of heavy equipment.

    The end of the list is my favorite. These are really smart and I don't think I would have ever come up with these:
    Railroad track guide rollers
    Rammer/pusher bars on bumpers
    Infra-red driving lights w/night vision goggles
    Oil slick, smoke, riot control gas, & caltrop dispensers

    It's like the bat-mobile!

    Thanks for the thoughts.

  8. #8
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Talkeetna, Alaska
    Posts
    14
    I'd like to add - whatever you get, Get a Diesel. If your BOV is a diesel you have a lot of advantages:

    1.) Diesel is easier to store - it's more stable and doesn't explode like gas when subjected to flame

    2.) Diesel is not as common as gas so people are less likely to try and syphon fuel for their own vehicles

    3.) Older diesel motors can run vegetable oil without a conversion kit - they'll run rough but they'll run
    * note - people might be fighting for gas in broke down vehicles but no one's crawling around the back of McDonalds looking for oil.

    4.) Diesels are just getting broke in at 50,000 - that means an old diesel with 300,00 or more miles is perfect and not expensive

    5.) Diesel motors are built like tanks (wait a minute, that's what they use in tanks) - they just keep going and going

    6.) If you ever get caught in a snowstorm, diesels are meant to idle for hours at a time without ruining the motor - keep that heat going

    7.) Diesels generally get better gas mileage than other 4x4 vehicles.
    * note - I have a 2008 Ford F-350, that's a 1-ton 4x4 truck w/ mud and snow tires and I get an average of 19mpg on the highway. Not bad considering it weighs two to three times what a 1/2 ton gas truck weighs.

    8.) Because diesels generally have so much torque and horsepower, you can hookup to just about any trailer and pull all your supplies.

    9.) Diesels are just plain big and beefy - you'd be an imposing force plowing through dead cars or zombies

    10.) Diesel fuel makes a great fire starter. I quit using newspaper in my fires - put the logs in, a little diesel and a match - since diesel doesn't flame up like gas, there's not a lot of danger.

    Anyway, I actually own two diesels, both 1-ton trucks and they are amaaazzzzzing! I never have to worry about much of anything. I'm thinking about getting some 55gal barrels and stock piling old cooking oil, then buying a bio-diesel kit for emergency times.
    Last edited by glacier_chaser; 08-04-2011 at 12:53 PM.

  9. #9
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Pittsburgh, PA
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    Good to know glacier_chaser. I will definitely add bio-diesel to the list of things to consider. You're right, I imagine the line for the diesel pumps will be shorter than the gas ones if TSHTF. And yes, 19 mpg is pretty good considering I don't get much better in my rather useless at the end of the world sports car.

  10. #10
    Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    park falls
    Posts
    89
    I jest go an 84 jeep wagoner to keep stocked and am looking at some bikes to go with it.
    Matt Nichols
    kydexoutdoors.com soon to be grizzly-outdoors.com
    home of custom sheaths and outdoor gear

    kydexoutdoors@gmail.com

 

 

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