Barter items? : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

In a worst case scenario, what items would be good for bartering? I've heard people say things like bicycles, but thinking about the 10 year old boy in Houston who was shot in the back for his bike 6 weeks ago, I don't know. Seems like you'd have to have a pretty big gun to protect that bike. I've also heard ammunition and toilet paper. I know there were "black markets" during rationing before, what were people most interested in? :-)-8

-- Gayla Dunbar (, August 29, 1998


From what I recall from old movies: Cigarettes, Whiskey, Medicine, Coffee, Coffee, Coffee, Tea, Gasoline. In general, things that cannot be made at home or comes from other countries. I am trying to find out where I can buy those little bottles of booze that they sell on the airlines.

-- Bill Solorzano (, August 29, 1998.


That's a pretty good beginning list Bill gave. Consider some other stuff too-

-good quality pocket knives and belt tools (like the Leatherman) -tweezers -nail clippers -razor blades or disposable razors -needles and thread -buttons -matches, lighter flints -fish hooks and line -nails, nuts, bolts, screws, staples -hand tools (hammers, saws, pliers, screwdrivers, drill brace & bits) -garden tools (rakes, shovels, hoes, machetes)

In short, anything you can't find in nature or make easily yourself will count. Look around you at the things you use daily, and think about what would cause problems to do without.

I suggest yet again to the list that everyone who hasn't seen it order a copy of Pat Frank's _Alas, Babylon_ from and read it. Even though it was written about 1959, and reflects social and racial attitudes considered inappropriate today, it is a marvelously instructive tale.


-- Lee P. Lapin (, August 29, 1998.

The item I'm going to mention may or may not be appropriate for barter, however I am told that most of the latex gloves ( used in normal medical procedures) purchased in the hospital nearest me are manufactured in Taiwan . Hospitals buy a LOT of their supplies on a just in time basis. Karen S

-- Karen Shirer (, August 30, 1998.

Yard sales are a great place to pick up stuff for barter. I've invested in several campstoves, lanterns, oil lamps, and the fuel to go with them. Tools are a must. People who normally hire out repairs on their homes and cars are going to be faced doing for themselves. So I suggest buying a volume of how-to-fix-it for the home and cars. When you become proficient, barter your skills. You are your biggest asset.

-- Bardou (, September 01, 1998.

The Sam's Club near us sells coffee in individual packets for offices. We're planning on getting a few cases of those. Many have said cigarettes would be good, but neither of us smoke, so here's a dumb question: How long will a carton of cigarettes keep? Don't they go stale after a while, even if kept air tight? My Grandpa used to buy pipe tobacco in cans and roll his own. I thought maybe having cans of tobacco and a supply of papers might be better than packaged cigarettes.

Liquor also is reportedly a valuable barter item; we were thinking of getting a bunch of the small bottles, but it's so much cheaper to buy the great big gallon size jugs of vodka. Maybe a little still in the shed would be the thing to have.... is that still (ha) illegal? Spouse-man says that it would be unwise to give any excuse for arrest or seizure. I say if it comes to that, they'll FIND an excuse!

I think that candy/chocolate might be pretty valuable, too, as well as packaged medicines, especially cold & flu type stuff.

-- Debbie (, September 01, 1998.

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