It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.


Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.


Bunker 101 : Building Your Bunker, Forget the Bug Out Bag, Make A Fortress

page: 5
<< 2  3  4   >>

log in


posted on Dec, 14 2009 @ 11:28 PM
Everyone has an idea about how a bio-incident can wreak havoc but most people are truly unfamiliar with EMP. Below are a few articles and key excepts:

Let us say the freighter ship launches a nuclear-armed Shahab-3 missile off the coast of the U.S. and the missile explodes 300 miles over Chicago. The nuclear detonation in space creates an electromagnetic pulse (EMP).

Gamma rays from the explosion, through the Compton Effect, generate three classes of disruptive electromagnetic pulses, which permanently destroy consumer electronics, the electronics in some automobiles and, most importantly, the hundreds of large transformers that distribute power throughout the U.S. All of our lights, refrigerators, water-pumping stations, TVs and radios stop running. We have no communication and no ability to provide food and water to 300 million Americans.

This is what is referred to as an EMP attack, and such an attack would effectively throw America back technologically into the early 19th century. It would require the Iranians to be able to produce a warhead as sophisticated as we expect the Russians or the Chinese to possess. But that is certainly attainable. Common sense would suggest that, absent food and water, the number of people who could die of deprivation and as a result of social breakdown might run well into the millions.
A successful EMP attack on the U.S. would have a dramatic effect on the country, to say the least. Even one that only affected part of the country would cripple the economy for years. Dropping nuclear weapons on or retaliating against whoever caused the attack would not help. And an EMP attack is not far-fetched.

Twice in the last eight years, in the Caspian Sea, the Iranians have tested their ability to launch ballistic missiles in a way to set off an EMP. The congressionally mandated EMP Commission, with some of America's finest scientists, has released its findings and issued two separate reports, the most recent in April, describing the devastating effects of such an attack on the U.S.

Theoretically, an EMP attack is devastating because of the unprecedented cascading failures of major infrastructures that could result. Because of America's heavy reliance on electricity and electronics, the impact would be far worse than on a country less advanced technologically. Graham and the commission see the potential for failure in the financial system, the system of distribution for food and water, medical care and trade and production.

It is possible for the functional outages to become mutually reinforcing until at some point the degradation of infrastructure could have irreversible effects on the country's ability to support its population."

Graham took the EMP debate out of the realm of science fiction by reminding the committee that as recently as May 1999, during the NATO bombing of Yugoslavia, Russian leaders threatened a U.S. congressional delegation with the specter of such an attack that would paralyze the U.S.

He also quoted James J. Shinn, assistant secretary of defense for Asian and Pacific Security, who two weeks ago told the same House committee that China's arms buildup includes exotic experiments with electromagnetic weapons that can devastate electronics with bursts of energy similar to those produced by a nuclear blast.

Recovery from a widespread EMP attack could take months or years, Graham warned. The fact that key components of the U.S. electrical grid are not even manufactured in America and must be ordered a year in advance from foreign suppliers suggests just how complicated and time-consuming recovery might be. The high state of automation within America's utilities further complicates recovery. There just might not be sufficient trained manpower available to get the job done in a timely way.

Just something to think about.

[edit on 14-12-2009 by infolurker]

posted on Dec, 14 2009 @ 11:40 PM
Great thread and interesting information. Most definitely a fortified shelter of some kind is necessary eventually.

The only thing I have to disagree with you on is ditching the concept of a BOB all together. Those things are essential when you have to go this very second. If even your bunker becomes doomed (let's say imminent nuclear threat in the vicinity of your bunker or a flood is about to come), you need your BOB to bail.

In a survivalist situation, it's vital to have as many back up plans as possible. So sure, go for the bunker. But not everyone can afford it and even then your fortress can become compromised. You can focus on your bunker if desired but don't ditch on your emergency hoofing it kit.

Thanks for sharing those videos, though.

[edit on 12/14/2009 by AshleyD]

posted on Dec, 14 2009 @ 11:53 PM
I have a friend...well accuaintance I'll say.
That owns a construction outfit, and he has a contract to dig up old gas tanks from older gasoline pumps, and septics.

He lives less than 3 miles from me, and owns a good sized piece of land 500+ acres.

Long story short is after hand selecting/cleaning and deciding each ones purpose, he has burried at least 10 of these things on his land and has them inter-linked with3-4 foot diameter galvanized tube/pipe, the kind that is ribbed...sorry bad terminology.

It's very immpressive, you can enter at one end and come out a long way, away from where you think you really should be!

3 ways in/out, one at both ends and one in the "kinda" center.

He's not paranoid or doing this for bug out/sit X reasons, it started off being the cheapest way to get rid of the trash he had removed from the job site, and then that one became a storm shelter/fruit cellar.
And from that point on it just kept growing, now he has a small machine shop, reloading room, one that is kind of a vault/safe.

Other than the diesel fuel, and time he has spent, it was basically free, and just down right every lil boys dream hideout.

posted on Dec, 15 2009 @ 12:06 AM
reply to post by SpartanKingLeonidas

Hi, yeah, a bunker is right at the top of my dream home expansion list, so I usually work on planning it out when I have the time. Both of the alternative materials that you have pointed out looks impressive and quite promising, especially papercrete. It's unfortunate that I couldn't find enough data in the web with regards to performance testing of the materials. Any helpful links on websites that might contain relevant and perhaps more technical data?

It did say in Wikipedia that someone is already trying to work on setting ASTM standards for papercrete, so maybe pretty soon it might actually hit the mainstream, but hopefully as a cheaper alternative to concrete, that is.

As far as testing goes, all I can find was a Wikipedia source and from a site called regarding the compressive strength of papercrete:

Structural tests have been completed on several papercrete formulas and Fuller claims the compressive strength of papercrete to be in the 140-160 lb./sq. inch range. A more useful measure of papercrete's properties is its stiffness - i.e. the extent to which it compresses under load. Its stiffness is many times less than that of concrete, but sufficient for the support of roof loads in some low-height buildings.

You mix the dry ingredients together with water to make a slurry. This slurry dries into hard blocks that are strong (260 psi compressive strength), lightweight, and an excellent insulator (R 2 per inch). Papercrete holds its shape even when wet. Except for the cement, all the ingredients are free or almost free, which makes papercrete a very inexpensive building material.

Based on those sources, I would initially assume that papercrete has a compressive strength ranging from 150-260 psi (pounds per square inch) . Compare that to standard concrete used for steel-reinforced beams and columns (which usually goes above 1,000 psi for significant bldg. construction applications), it's still a far cry from attaining the current status that standard concrete has achieved.

When considering what materials to use for the structure of my bunker, I'd probably ask how will the material fare below ground level, assuming soil conditions are not so favorable? And those located near/within earthquake-prone areas and water tables? The issue of reliability, durability and strength quickly comes into mind.

I'm sure that given enough opportunities for testing and development, such materials can someday make it into the mainstream as cheap and reliable building materials (one can only hope it will be cheaply manufactured). Heck, it's better than just using sand bags! I'd sure want to try such a material, that's for sure. And I wonder if pykrete can be used for cooling purposes, perhaps for a makeshift a freezer which doubles as the wall for your structure.

posted on Dec, 15 2009 @ 12:35 AM
reply to post by infolurker
Hmm, I was considering a back-up generator for my "dream" bunker, and remembering how EMP is also associated with nuclear detonations, one cannot really disregard that kind of threat.

It says here:

A continuously sealed metal barrier has proven to be very effective in preventing EM/HPM energy from reaching susceptible electronic or explosive components. Exterior packaging fabricated from plastic, wood or other fibre materials provides almost no protection form EM/HPM threats. The metal enclosure can be very thin provided there are no openings (tears, pin holes, doors, incomplete seams) that would allow microwaves to enter. Sealed barrier bags that incorporate a thin layer of aluminium foil and are primarily used to provide water vapour proof protection to an item, can add a great deal of resistance to EM/HPM penetration.

I suppose my bunker will be needing a tin foil hat as well! That's why even if you do have the capability to produce your own power, each and every aspect of your bunker's design still has to be based on purely manually-driven mechanisms and applications.

posted on Dec, 15 2009 @ 09:57 AM
reply to post by SpartanKingLeonidas

Ok, more on monolithic construction:
Most nuclear facilities (domes, cooling towers) are assembled with this method. The 'sarcophagus'-dome surrounding the reactor is further lined with steel to add another layer of protection from radiation and in case the reactor bursts from pressure.
These domes are designed to withstand jet-impacts!
Bunker-busters would still be able to penetrate.

While I was serving in Iraq, I worked in one of Hussein's jet-bunkers.
Some of them were partially destroyed by bunker-busters, and then repaired by our forces to use as hangars, etc.
Those structures were basically concrete, with walls several feet thick. After that there was a layer of hard-packed dirt or sand, and another layer of concrete.

You can probably find lots of pics online. Try 'Balad' 'Talil' 'LSA Anaconda' 'LSA Adder' in Google-Images/Maps

This image shows a double hangar:

Anyways, the alternating layers of concrete/dirt protect your bunker from bombs. If the first layer fails, then most of the explosive force has been used to crack it, and the rest is dissipated by the dirt. Never really touching the final layer. This is what the U.S. has developed bunker-busters for. But I'd guess they'd need to know the rough buildup of your bunker to time the mechanism right to get you.

EDIT: My thoughts:
Construct a series of monolithic domes inside of each other (like babuska-dolls) and alternately fill in the spaces with concrete, and dirt. (making thicker walls!) Line inside with metal (vs. EMI)

║concrete║dirt║concrete║ or whatever. (the ║ means a wall)

Prices vary, based on cost of concrete.
Easy to do, even by yourself. (courses/workshops offered at

Cover everything with lots of dirt, plant a garden, and disguise one of the entrances as an outhouse. Succeed to astonish your neighbors by transporting large, unwieldly objects through said outhouse.

[edit on 2009.12.15 by Carlthulhu]

posted on Dec, 15 2009 @ 09:32 PM

Originally posted by Carlthulhu
reply to post by SpartanKingLeonidas

Cover everything with lots of dirt, plant a garden, and disguise one of the entrances as an outhouse. Succeed to astonish your neighbors by transporting large, unwieldly objects through said outhouse.

Lol... an outhouse used to cover the identity of your bunker? Why didn't I think of that?! I can just imagine my neighbor's reaction the moment I move my "furniture" (bunker beds, generator set, water closet, chairs & tables, cargo boxes containing a year's worth of food supply and ammunition).....all inside this!


posted on Dec, 16 2009 @ 03:25 AM
hideing bunker is a real problem for us in the city,you could just turn basement into one,or dig under house, and make one , from inside house entrance.after sit-x happens your house might be wrecked,or if slightly damaged,well you could wreck it yourself then "they" could'nt search it if it looks like pile of rubble,or is a plie of rubble.yet with your bunker underneath perfectly hidden away. you can hide solar pannels under rubble. yes building bunker under house strong enough to withstand house collapse wont be easy or cheap but it can be done & from inside house away from anyones eyes. some thought ought to go into nearby buisnesses that have basements,move in and fortify and use sewer drain tunnels as escape.

[edit on 16-12-2009 by madokie]

posted on Dec, 16 2009 @ 08:10 AM
reply to post by smirnoffsky

Lol that reminds me of something a comedian said. He was at a big open air festival and to get lots of people inside for free someone had paid for a ticket put up a tent and then tunnelled outside the security fence.

Now imagine all the poor hippy types, tripping their heads off watching 30 or 40 people coming out of a 2 man tent

posted on Dec, 16 2009 @ 08:58 AM
Just a random thought/contribution on the matter of bunker building. Most people focus on building bunkers to withstand external trauma/overpressure from bombs for example. But if you want a nuke/fuel air bomb proof bunker you are going to have to think a bit deeper. It isnt too difficult to withstand the overpressure of a nuclear bomb (even if you are right underneath it). Some buildings in hiroshima like the bank and post office, were left standing despite being at the epicentre. Even a non nuclear underground bunker should survive the initial blast. But what a lot of people dont think about is the under pressure (vacuum). After the initial explosion/shock wave there is very little air (the explosion pretty much punches a whole in the air). This space needs to be equalised and the resultant vacuum can cause air containing things to explode (including yourself or your bunker). So you would have to build a bunker that is strong from the inside-out as well as outside-in. Blast valves are what we use in the military industry, they are quite a simple design and prevent over/underpressure being dangerous to a bunker:

posted on Dec, 16 2009 @ 12:06 PM
For the most part I disagree with the premise of trying to stay in one spot in a SHTF situation. That said, one cannot stay on the move forever.
While a fortified position has it's advantages for the most part they will attract attention. I figured out a great way to make semi-underground shelters in the woods that are very difficult to spot.

Find a tip-up tree, one that has been blown over with the roots sticking up.
At the base is a nice sized hole that will make a great shelter for one. Excavate the hole while digging a shelf that will make your bed. From the top of the roots sticking up, put a large log that will act as the main beam for your shelter. Keep adding logs, then finish with sod to cover the roof. You will have to dig an entryway at the easiest point.
I have built several of these shelters and while taking a full day to complete they can be easily done with nothing more than a bowie knife and a folding shovel. A sheet of plastic on the roof before adding sod or leaf debris willl make it completely waterproof. If you have rocks available you can even make a small fireplace for it. Make a few grass mats for the floor and sleeping shelf and viola!
The most difficult part is to work around the roots sticking out as they can make it hard to enclose your shelter completely but with a fire going you need some fresh air anyway. It is nearly impossible to spot these shelters unless you have a fire releasing smoke.
If desired you can raise the roof off the ground far enough to allow for slit windows to shoot from. In a real SHTF I would also fell a few trees to as to channel foot traffic around my shelter, people have certain tendencies that can be taken advantage of in this way ( also works for boobytrapping and ambushes)
Being not found is my idea of a good defense, a single person or even a small group has little hope of holding off hordes of "bad guys" as they will be in ready supply during a SHTF scenario.
Great thread SKL, you come up with some really good stuff. People need to seriously consider these problems before something happens. Cheers!

posted on Dec, 16 2009 @ 02:59 PM
I've read somewhere that a real nuclear bunker should be under a lake, swimmingpool, or other body of water.

Protects from fast neutrons.

posted on Dec, 21 2009 @ 10:13 AM
I found a site where you can order U.S. military manuals for bunker design/construction/warfare.
Mil Info/Publishing
This is the best I could find in the last 3 years (!)
Does anyone know where I could download these online?

posted on Dec, 21 2009 @ 01:02 PM

Originally posted by Carlthulhu
I found a site where you can order U.S. military manuals for bunker design/construction/warfare.
Mil Info/Publishing
This is the best I could find in the last 3 years (!)
Does anyone know where I could download these online?

While I cannot guarantee the authenticity of the downloads, specifically, I suggest going to a website I go to in order to download PDF's, military manuals being one such thing you will find there.

Scribd Upload/Download

That site is where people who want to share their writings post them.

You have to join but over all I have found many interesting articles there.

I would try various searches, by title, by author, and by specific keywords.

posted on Dec, 30 2009 @ 01:16 PM
There are several methods of building a bunker that my SO and I have been investigating. Below is a very brief summary of what we've learned.

Utilizing Cargo Containers underground can be very tricky. They require huge amounts of steel reinforcement along the sides and roof. The sides and roof of a container are pretty weak and the lateral forces from the earth will cause them to collapse.

Concrete block filled with cement & rebar reinforcement can be utilized along with surface bonding cement (instead of standard mortar) and will create a strong & waterproofed bunker. With an inexpensive concrete mixer you can mix the concrete yourself to pour into the block. This website can give you some excellent ideas. American Bombshelter

Reinforced Concrete is also another option but can be quite expensive. This also requires a concrete truck to come out to do the pour and exposes you to someone else knowing or at least guessing what you're up to.

Galvanized Culvert is an excellent choice for building underground. These things are *designed* for underground use and that lends alot to their usability. As someone mentioned previously ... if we could afford it we'd go to Utah Shelter and buy one. However, if you're experienced with welding (or know someone you can trust) you could do most of this yourself.

PSP Method (Post/Shoring/Polyetheline) - Mike Oehler wrote an awesome book on building an underground house on the cheap. Highly recommend reading it!! We have a copy and in a worst case scenario (i.e. we end up not being able to ever afford one of the other methods) this will be the way we end up going. The $50 and up Underground House


Regarding Papercrete. I think it would be fine for building "internal non-loadbearing" walls but as far as building the external structure for an underground bunker, I don't believe it has the strength required to withstand the lateral pressures that the earth can impose.

Although I did read of a gentleman who utilized it during the building of his cordwood home. His website is full of interesting "journal" entries for anyone interested in reading more about his endevor. Daycreek


One thing alot of folks need to keep in mind, is that there are some of us who cannot (for whatever reason) bug-out unless it's an absolute MUST that we do so. My SO and I plan on staying HOME unless we have absolutely NO other choice.

Keeping this in mind when our "Container Home" is built (above ground) we are taking as many precautions as we can to make it more defensable.

These steps include a second story greenhouse, 4'x4' "Decorative Planters" that will completely surround the house. Double Reinforced entry (i.e. our reinforced front door leads into a steel "box" of a room with another "reinforced" door that leads into the main living quarters). Steel Shutters made from the steel cut from the container for any and all windows on the first and second floors, etc.

Our motto is make due the best you can with what you have. Since we will have plenty of extra steel skin around from our Container Home and Container Garage we are utilizing it in numerous ways. Shutters, Internal Walls welded to steel supports, etc.

Our bunker will be our third project. Garage First, House Second, Bunker Third.

That's all I think I'm willing to say on this subject and may be more than I should have said, but when you sit down and consider "all" the possabilities all you can do is prepare for a few of the most likely.

Good Luck to you all!

posted on Dec, 30 2009 @ 01:36 PM

Originally posted by ADVISOR
Just be careful, that when you are building your fortress, you don't inadvertently build your own prison.

Have emergency escapes planned, and always have alternative measures for sit-x.

It's good to have hatch or door jacks in case they get blocked. I don't mean something like a modified car jack, I mean something that can push 5-10 tons out of the way.

posted on Feb, 11 2010 @ 08:51 PM
One possibility in a more populated setting is to construct the bunker as the basement of a normal-appearing home. While you wouldn't be protected from government, you'd be protected from both tornadoes AND roving bands of looters.

At this point the bunker is really more of a giant "safe room" than an independent position. But again, it can allow instant refuge during say, a small (terrorist) nuke detonation, before a longer term bug-out, if that is what you're into.

Think about it. If all hell breaks loose, and you can wait 5 days before you exit, you'll encounter far less resistance as you move across the landscape. The crowds of motorists will have abandoned their cars to search for food, and the vast majority will be unarmed and desperate. Others will be short of food and fuel, whereas you'll be relatively rested. The most violent thugs will have worn themselves down and wasted ammo in useless firefights, or generally be too hung-over to harrass you much.

And then there is a scenario that few survivalists contemplate, but which is actually the most common: a natural disaster or politically-inspired upheaval, that only lasts for a week or two. If you leave during this scenario, you can assume that you will have nothing to come back to. But if you can hold out for two weeks, your home and its contents will remain intact.

Two examples are hurrican katrina, and the L.A. riots (5 days?) following the Rodney King verdict. In both cases, neighborhoods away from the epicenter of panic were able to frighten away looters, and keep their homes from being torched or burgled.

Even in the depths of the U.S. civil war, most americans were better off staying in place instead of fleeing, The one exception was populations lying in the path of large scale troop movements, like Sherman's march to the sea.

Point is, in most realistic scenarios, unless your political unit is permanently overwhelmed (and perhaps even then), fleeing only leads to starvation. Partisan units are constructed from the population that STAYS BEHIND when the enemy occupies a place; rarely, if ever are forces in exile able to retake their homelands.

But consider the very worst scenario, a civilization-ending event, like the end of the Roman Empire. In such a case, there is literally no place to flee to. Most virgin wilderness that remains is untouched because it is either remote (and thus irrelevant for the economy) or else resource-poor. Moving out into the wilderness is, in many cases, either a 1000-mile trek, or a flight into a wasteland....

Once a barter economy emerges, people who occupy a house (whether owners or squatters) can barter the contents. people in the woods only have what they can make or have carried the whole time.

What stuff do you have in your house that would barter? Everything. Blankets, purified water in the ice-maker, tools in the garage, decorative candles, firewood, lawncare (now gardening) tools. Pots and pans, bandaids, cough syrup, laundry soap, Insulation in the attic, shovels hoes, rakes, a garden plot, canned goods in the pantry, board games (now invaluable since the internet wont work), jewelry, a jar of change, and how-to books and old children's toys.

Probably enough to trade to get you some seeds and start a garden, maybe even build a fence around your neighborhood as soon as the neighbors decide to form a republic with its own militia (takes about 2 months, if history is a guide.)

posted on Jun, 20 2010 @ 08:30 AM
I see that this thread is a bit stale, but I'm going to start here anyway. I'm new to ATS, thanks for having me. Reading this last post I would like to add that all survival is relative. Whether bugging out or bunkering down, or a combination, or what have you, it is all relative as the point is whatever the means in the game of survival it’s about making it to the end of the day-if even that day has 25 hours. So, for you-those that I hope to rely on "after," who I hope will be able to rely on me, do whatever you have to do. If that means living in a safe house, and staying, GREAT, or having a safe place to go to collect previously deposited supplies, GREAT, or realizing that life has left you handicapped and the # hits the fan while flying over Baghdad and the pilot HAS to put it down at BIAP-and that is where you have to start-so be it. Whatever. See you tomorrow.

Speaking of tomorrow, I have question, so more to come. Building a bunker, bug-out-bags, best bet survivalism, what about tomorrow-smoke signals?, etc., etc., etc. Maybe I’ll find most of what I’, now looking for has already been posted. Maybe I’ll make some new friends. Ultimately, I hope to see you all tomorrow.

posted on Jun, 21 2010 @ 12:04 PM
That is a very cool fort. When it gets overrun by a thousand hungry and thirsty crazies, they'll have lots to eat.

posted on Mar, 27 2011 @ 02:28 AM

off-topic post removed to prevent thread-drift


top topics

<< 2  3  4   >>

log in