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16,000 Woodworking & Building Project Plans

How to Make Money
with a Home Based
Woodworking Business

12,000 Shed and Woodworking Plans. Free Sample Download

Welcome to Tools for Survival


Hey - I'm glad you've arrived here at If you are like me, you are worried about your present situation and future prospects - this is a good place to start. I'm no stranger to hard times and learning how to survive them. I'm also no stranger to making a living online and offline as well.

In the early 1980s, during another economic downturn, I was making and selling redwood planters to nurseries. It wasn't going great but at least I survived. During one of my delivery trips in the Sierras I happened upon a pamphlet titled Surplus and Salvage. That little book turned my life around. I've got a lot of respect for what others can teach me.

Because of that booklet I changed directions and my income increased substantially - my life got much better. I won't go into any more details here, but if you're interested you can read about my adventures in the salvage and recycling business here. Finally, I had learned how to make good money.

Things got so much better that I earned enough to take a couple of years off from work to finish up my college studies and also earn a graduate degree. Of course, during and after college I always kept doing salvage and recycling. My college work formed the basis of my website, I'm proud to say that MapCruzin has been online since 1996 and has been moderately profitable, providing me with a regular online passive income.

About two years ago I finally got around to writing my first eBook about my experience in the home based salvage and recycling business. It took me awhile, but with a lot of help from various how-to manuals, I was able to complete my eBook, How to Make Money in the Home Based Salvage and Recycling Business. It's not a best seller or anything like that, but it does provide me with a substantial regular passive income stream. I'm working now on a Kindle version.

When we were young my wife and I had both lived in the mountains and we missed it. Now that we had a good passive income from online endeavors and the skills and knowledge to do salvage and recycling wherever we were, we decided to move back to the mountains.


This website began as a sort of chronicle of our life here, detailing the tools and techniques that we employed to get this place and turn it into a self-sufficient mini-homestead. But, after some reflection, I thought that it should also be about the tools and resources that I used to get us from there to here. I've relied on a lot of eBooks, manuals and how-to books - some great and some not so good at all.

I think that after a lifetime of making a good living both offline and onlline, I have a pretty good built in "compass" that points me in the right direction most of the time. You'll find quite a few free resources here. You'll also find some information products that I have found helpful in my work and also some, that I have not yet tried, but are on my list because they are very good and come highly recommended.

I don't pretend to be some sort of get-rich-quick-online guru. In fact, a good part of most days I'm out in my truck making salvage and recycling deals. In the mornings and evenings I work on my websites, blog and write. But, though I'm no guru, I do have a lot of experience making a living both online and offline. My hope is that some of my experience will rub off on you.

A note about information products. There's no shortage of hype nowadays. All these gurus make outlandish claims, but that's okay - just the way it is. I've bought a lot of these eBooks and manuals and I've never been sorry. I don't purchase them believing that I'll really make $1,000s per day, rather I purchase them because in most cases just one small idea is worth way more than the purchase price. If you look at information products in this way, you won't be dissapointed and you will come out way ahead on the deal. Keep this in mind.

All this is to say that if I've learned anything over the past decades, I've learned that to succeed and survive in the 21st century I can't just do one thing. I still do my salvage and recycling on a regular basis, I write and blog and I make digital maps. Alongside all of this, I continue to work on our little homestead repairing and building structures, taking care of the land, trees and wildlife.

  • Building Plans for Homestead, Ranch, Farm - Self-Sufficiency

  • Food Preparation - Canning, Preserving & Storage

  • Water Resources - Storage, Pumping and Purification

  • Health & Hygiene - Medical and Dental, Supplies, First Aid, Toilets, Grey Water, Septic, Wetlands

  • Gardening - Growing Food Outdoors, Greenhouses, Hydroponics, Organic, Heirloom Seeds

  • Energy - Renewable Green Solar, Wind, Hydro, Photovoltaic, Transportation, Heating

  • Housing Alternatives - Straw Bale, Cob, Timber, Earth, Pole

  • Security - Ways to Protect Yourself and Your Land

  • Communications - Radio Systems to Stay Connected When All Else Fails

  • Livelihood - Job and Business Ideas

  • Tools & Resources for Your Self-Reliant Lifestyle

  • Maps for Learning More About the Land - Problems, Risks and Opportunities - Where You Are Now or Where You Want to Be

Thanks again for visiting. I hope that you will find useful and inspiring information here.

Mike is an educational website focusing on ways to deal with and survive hard times now and in the future.

Contact: [email protected]

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