The "Rule of Threes"

Discussion in 'General Survival and Preparedness' started by recon, Jan 24, 2012.


  1. recon

    recon Senior Member Founding Member

    A different take on the Rules Of 3 from another site. [winkthumb]

    It is my opinion that a person should establish a base line of need for their ammunition stockpile. It is easy (and fun) to buy, buy, buy more ammo. However, once a standard amount is on hand, every extra round of ammunition is purchased with preparedness dollars that could be allocated to other valuable and expensive kits, sets, and outfits. We are preparedness folks, not ninjas -- we should plan our ammo the same way we plan our water. What do we need, why do we need it, and how much is enough? All the ammo in the world isn't going to feed your family. As I have done with all of my preps (and surely most of you here have as well), I apply the rule of three to everything, including ammunition.

    1. How much Ammo do I need to live three seconds? The answer is one magazine -- no more, no less. If it ain't gettin' done with that in three seconds, it ain't gettin' done. I don't stock any more than that until I have all of the air, food, water, and shelter I need for three seconds. For myself AND my family.

    2. How much ammo do I need to live three minutes? The answer is probably a couple of mags that could, at the worst case, in three minutes, allow me to remove myself from trouble. Maybe a hundred rounds for my rifle and a dozen for my pistol. I don't stock anymore than that until I have all the air, food, water, and shelter I need for three minutes. For myself AND my family.

    3. How much ammo do I need to live three hours? I think the answer here is probably enough to outfit a standard basic load -- just enough loaded magazines that can be comfortably carried on the body. This means that I add another two hundred rounds to what I have already stockpiled for my rifle and a couple dozen for my pistol. I don't stock any more than that until I have all of the air, food, water, and shelter I need for three hours. For myself AND my family.

    4. How much ammo do I need to live three days? I think the answer here is that I should plan on being able to refill my basic load at least once. We aren't combat soldiers, so we aren't looking for trouble -- we just need enough (at the three day mark) to top-off our spent magazines. Prudent preparation for unknown future calamity deems another couple hundred rounds for my rifle and another couple dozen rounds for my pistol to be appropriate. I don't stock any more than that until I have all of the air, food, water, and shelter I need for three days. For myself AND my family.

    5. How much ammo do I need to live three weeks? Apply the same logic here as applied to the previous milestones with the emphasis on 'what do I need'? Again, since we aren't combat soldiers, we aren't fighting everyday for that period of time. It seems logical to assume that we may find ourselves in at least one more fight, so to prepare for such an event, stockpiling an additional basic load seems appropriate -- a couple hundred more rounds for my rifle and a couple dozen more rounds for my pistol. I don't stock any more than that until I have all of the air, food, water, and shelter I need for three weeks. For myself AND my family.

    6. How much ammo do I need to live three months? Continuing in the same manner, after three months, there isn't likely to be continuous fighting. If there is, we are no longer preparedness folks, we are soldiers and different logistics issues come into play. For preparedness, stocking our own in advance in order to safely navigate ourselves and our families through unforeseen dramas and hardships, it would not be unwise to have a spare case of ammunition, over and above what has already been stockpiled for the previous milestones. At this stage, one should not only be stocking an additional thousand rounds for your rifle; but should be thinking at least about a spare rifle of the same caliber for back-up (please note, that I specifically waited until this milestone to bring in an additional rifle). It is fun to buy guns, but now is when they become necessary redundancy. I don't stock any more than that until I have all of the air, food, water, and shelter I need for three months. For myself AND my family.

    7. How much ammo do I need to live for a year or more? This is the point at which, for me, the rule of threes ends and a homestead lifestyle takes its place. At this level of societal disruption, it is not realistic to stockpile enough ammunition to live for three years. It is realistic, at this point in the preparation plan, to stockpile the equipment, skills, and raw materials to make ammunition. Don't stock cartridges, stock thousands of bullets, casings, powder, and reloading equipment to allow yourself to survive an indefinite period. Stock spare parts for rifles that will not be readily available. Prepare at this unprecedented level to never be able to go to a 'gun store' again.
     
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  2. Cephus

    Cephus Monkey+++ Founding Member

    I really thought this was going to be another of those several truck loads of ammo things ,but it a really good way to look at it .If I ever need more than 1000 rds of ammo I'm in way over my head and things are not looking good .
    I liked this after I read it . Thanks !!!!!
     
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  3. ghrit

    ghrit Ambulatory anachronism Administrator Founding Member


    Agree, except that if 1000 rounds is what you need as a residual for after SHTF by whatever definition you apply. Practice rounds are additional.
     
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  4. chelloveck

    chelloveck Diabolus Causidicus

    When thinking about the rule of threes

    Don't think just of timescale and quantity, but location. A vast stckpile in the one location risks discovery and theft or confiscation or destruction if the place goes up in flames. Yes, have your store of reloading stock convenient to your usual place of reloading, but cache proportions of your gear and consumables in one or more locations elsewhere in the event that your primary reloading site is compromised / lost. Sure, have your multi turret reloading press at your primary site but have hand reloading gear at your subsidiary caches.

    Think also in terms of 3 (or more) locations.
     
    tulianr likes this.
  5. Cephus

    Cephus Monkey+++ Founding Member

    There are so many rednecks between me and any city I don't think I'll see anybody but family and neighbors . LOL
     
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  6. oth47

    oth47 Monkey+

    This is a good thread,makes all kinds of sense.I've read about beginning preppers who go buy buckets of wheat..then they buy buckets of beans,then something else.I was always afraid the S would HTF before I got ready and it made no sense to start with buckets of wheat.What if SHTF and all you have is buckets of wheat?Or beans?Or whatever? Diversify,buy whatever you can of everything you think you'll need whenever you can.I'd hate to face my pantry if I didn't have a variety.Same with ammo,a million rounds isn't worth much as table fare.Buy some ammo,but not unless you have food.Diversify,diversify..who said that? Trump? Gates?
     
  7. jasonl6

    jasonl6 Monkey+

    What if you need 101 rounds 10 times.. :-( I think food is more important than ammo but i have tons of ammo :)

    Jason
     
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  8. Cephus

    Cephus Monkey+++ Founding Member

    Reread post #5 -------- LOL
     
    Dogfood likes this.
  9. Dogfood

    Dogfood Monkey+

    If need be you do a field resupply a good reason to know how to operate as many weapons as you can learn.
     
    Cephus likes this.
  10. gunbunny

    gunbunny Never Trust A Bunny

    Spot on, Dogfood. I keep trying to tell my wife that there isn't much difference in one weapon to another. All guns have some sort of sear- (trigger), a way to load the rounds- (magazines, single shot, or tubes), and a way to get the rounds into the chamber- (charging handle, by hand, or bolt, etc).

    There really hasn't been much new in the field of firearms. They all basically work the same way, they just come in different sizes and forms.
     
  11. Tikka

    Tikka Monkey+++

    Shooting skills go stale without practice.
     
  12. VisuTrac

    VisuTrac Ваша мать носит военные ботинки Site Supporter+++

    Shotguns are the original point and click interface.
     
    Cephus and Sapper John like this.
  13. Dogfood

    Dogfood Monkey+

    I would train the guys in my unit with every weapon in the arms room. It's one thing to run a course with the weapon you train with all the time but then try it with an FN FAL and a P38 or replace the MP5 with a madsen M50. I wanted they and myself to be able to fight with whatever we had be it a car15 or a 98 mauser.
     
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