December 17, 2017

Skills and Items for Bartering

Bartering Skills

Sometimes finding the currency or items both parties find valuable is the hardest part. Once that is complete, a fair trade isn’t a difficult task. It’s not just items that can be bartered; often skills are much more valuable. Listed below are some skillsets that could be very useful in a mid to long term survival situation.

Food Services
Cooking
Using cast iron cookware, Dutch ovens or other methods of cooking not used widely today.
Gardening
Food storage/preservation, canning, dehydrating, smoking
Farming
Foraging/wild crafting
Hunting and fishing
Making cheese
Trapper
Baker
Brew master
Winemaker
Butcher
Farm/ranch hand
Hydroponics

Security
Teaching self-defense; from shooting to hand-to-hand
Reloading ammo
Security guard
Gunsmith
Scout
Defense planner, fortifying a home or small area
Teach situational awareness

Craftsman
General Construction
General handyman
Mechanic; fixing cars, generators, small engines
Electronics repair
Plumber
Wood working
Machinist
Tool and die maker
Locksmith both traditional and someone who knows how to use picks (legally of course)
Welding
Blacksmithing
Smelter
Miner
Well driller
Water collection and purification
Yarn Work; sewing, knitting, darning, crocheting
Tailor
Seamstress
Tanner
Leather worker
Furrier
Candle maker
Glass maker
Woodland management; coppicing
Lumber maker
Brick maker
Knife maker
Pottery maker
Making soap
Alternative energy; setting up solar panels, wind turbines, making biodiesel and distilling alcohol for fuel
HAM Radio operator
Papermaker, for writing and toilet paper
Chimney sweep
Firewood collector
chemist
Cobbler
Cartwright
Wheelwright

Animal Services
Veterinarian
Animal husbandry
Bee keeping
Tending milk or egg producing animals
Dog trainer
Aquaponics (raising fish)

Medical/first aid skills
Doctor
Dentist
Nurse
Midwife
Herbalist
Pharmacist
EMT
Basic first aid and CPR training
Alternative and Complementary Medicine such as; Reflexology, Reiki, Hypnosis, Meditation (thanks Jim)

Child Services
Teachers
Daycare

 

Items to Barter

 

Here is a list of barter items that I have compiled over the years. Some were suggestions from various forums, some are my ideas. I want to make a comment up front on two items that people always make negative comments on anytime bartering is brought up.

First is liquor. I have no problem with people not wanting to store it for barter. On the other hand, it will hold value and no one is saying you have to sell to everyone. You can decide whom you sell to.

The second is guns and ammo. Every time bartering is brought up, someone says something like “I would never barter ammo or guns. They could be used against me.” While this is technically a true statement, as with liquor, you get to decide to whom you barter with. Only trade or sell guns or ammo to people you know and trust. It will be a help to them and could provide food or protection for the community.

This list could be used for filling holes in your current preps as well as being stored for barter. I’m sure I missed some, so post them in the comments and I’ll add them to the list.

I have read about bartering in countries whose economies have collapsed and in countries who were struggling after conflict and war. Some of the things they sought were the pleasantries to make them feel human again; perfume, jewelry etc. This was, of course, after their five basic needs were met. My point is that just because it’s not an item that is NEEDED for survival, that doesn’t mean it won’t be worth keeping for barter.

Water
Coffee
Tea bags
Powdered additives such as Gatorade or Kool Aid
Water purifiers

Food
Any shelf stable food, rice, wheat, beans
MRE’s
Sugar
Salt
Honey
Canning jars
Canning lids
Paraffin wax
Fishing line
Snare wire
Foil Packets of baking active dry yeast
Vitamins
Cooking grates any size and shape
Spices
Aluminum foil
Candy
Canned and Dried Food
Coffee filters, which can be used for water filters
Cooking Oil
Eating & Cooking utensils
Salt, spices
Sugar
Vegetable seeds

Security
Guns
Ammunition
Bows and arrows
Pocket knives
BB’s
Pellets (pellet gun)
Knives

Shelter
Tarps
Tents
Sleeping bags
Plywood, shingles and roofing materials
Multiple screw sizes
Misc tools (trade outright or rent)

Energy
Matches
Batteries
Candles
Kerosene (and cheap lanterns)
Coleman Fuel
Varied sizes of propane bottles
Ferrocerium Rods
Zippo lighter and lighter fluid
Bic lighters
Solar battery chargers
Flint & steel

Personal care
Toilet paper
Antiperspirant
Perfume
Shampoo
Famine hygiene products
Soap
Makeup
Dental floss
Q-tips
Safety pins
Disposable diapers
Disposable razors
Packets of laundry soap
Materials to make a clothes line to hang out washing on
Wash boards
Chap stick
Socks
Toothbrush
Toothpaste
Feminine products
Nail clippers
cigarettes, I wasn’t going to put this on the list. cigarettes do go stale, but as an ex smoker, even stale smokes would be valuable to someone needing a smnoke.

Medical
Bandages
Quick clot combat gauze
Small bottles Rubbing alcohol
Hydrogen peroxide
Antibiotic ointment tubes
Eye drops
Athletes foot spray
Antacids
Salt tablets
Aspirin
Ibuprofen
Tweezers and scissors
Combs
Scissors
Tweezers
Razors
Soap
Alcohol such as isopropyl or rubbing
Band-Aids of all sizes
Disposable gloves
Super glue
Herbs, essential oils and the supplies to make salves and tinctures. (thanks Countrymom)

Miscellaneous
Alcohol
Reading glasses
Thimbles
Thread
Small sewing kits
Rain gear
Rolls of string
Baling twine
550 paracord,
Embroidery thread
Sewing needles
Knitting yarn and needles
Nuts and bolts
Screws and nails
Zip lock bags
Garbage Bags
Hand saws and axes of any type
Bicycle tire repair kits.
Brooms
All different types of files for sharpening
Crowbars of all sizes
Leather work gloves
Fire extinguishers
Hacksaw blades
Garden tools of any type
Plastic and metal tubs of any size or shape (many uses)
Hand air pump
Wire brushes
Solar yard lights (can also be charged in daytime and used indoors for lighting at night)
Toilet plungers (the heavy duty types to agitate/wash clothes in a bucket)
Twine, rope and steel wire
Wood chisels
Roofing nails
Zip ties (all sizes and lengths)
Bleach
Rope, string, cordage
Duct tape
Glue of all kinds
Rubber bands
Silicon spray
Windup radio
Bug repellent
Knives, hatchets, axes
Magnifying glasses
Mirrors
Nails and screws
Non-electric hand-tools
Pencils and sharpeners
Paper
Playing cards or dice for games
Pocket-sized New Testaments
Liquor
Simple water filters
Toilet paper
Eye glass repair kits
Gold and silver
Lotion
Fishing tackle
Rods/reels
Books on all subjects, from how to, educational, technical, novels and even coloring books. As well as sheets of paper and magnifying glasses. (Thanks Jerry)
Gold and Silver coins; they will have their place. While true that some won’t know the value, there will be enough around that do to make these useful. Keep in mind that unless you’re making a large purchase, silver might be easier to trade then gold.

Clothes
Cloth diapers
Baby clothes
Flip-flops
Yarn and knitting needles or crochet hooks
Shoes and laces
Socks and underwear
Winter coats and rain gear
Boots
Gloves such as work, garden and winter
Shoe glue
Jewelry

The last item I’ll mention is time. Whether you offer yours in trade for something, or someone who has a skill you do not have offers theirs, time is a valuable commodity.

If you see one I missed, mention it in the comments and I’ll add it to the list.