Survivalism & Self Sufficiency Topics > Primitive Skills & Earth Skills

What Skills are You Working On? Bonus - List The Top 5 Skills You Want to Learn

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So many little time.  Okay, the quote is for books, but it still applies! ;)  I thought it would be fun to discuss what skills we're currently learning and what our top 5 most desired skills to learn in the future are. 

I hate my office job and while I'm figuring out my passion I decided it would be a good idea to go through a skilled trade program to provide a better job and give me a valuable skill while I figure out what I want to do for the rest of my life.  I chose Machine Tool Technology, and right now I'm enrolled in three classes (Machine Tool Theory, Machine Tool Practice, and Blueprint Reading for the Machine Trades) that meet four nights a week.  So far we've ground a turning tool and a threading tool for lathe use, used a hydraulic bandsaw to cut barstock to size, and we're now using a metal lathe to machine a 1.5" diameter 6" long piece of steel to where it's .375" threaded on one side and .5" threaded on the other.  I've always worked in an office or retail job and was never particularly handy, so it's slower going for me than for most of the other guys, but I'm picking it up and I really enjoy the work so far.  Can't wait to learn the mill and drill press.  I had never even used a grinder before this if you can believe it.

My top 5 skills to learn that aren't affiliated with my machining program:
1. Home construction/framing - We will sell our house in about 2-3 years and hopefully buy some land and by then I'd like to have volunteered with Habitat for Humanity and have built up a lot of the skills I need to put up a small cabin.
2. Animal Husbandry - I'd also like to raise pasture-based livestock similar to what Joel Salatin is doing.
3. Basic Auto Repair and Restoration - I'd love to be able to get a wrecked Jeep or truck and bring it back to prime.
4. Acoustic Guitar - I love me some fireside music.  I have a decent voice, but can't play a stringed instrument yet.
5. Sewing - I want to make my own backapcking gear and a shirt out of a wool blanket.

I could go on and on with other skills I'd like to learn, but this is enough for now. 

Here are my top 5

* Bicycle Repair
* Auto Repair
* Digital SLR mastery
* Plant Identification
* Beer/Wine making


p.s. I love this topic and hope it gets many replies


--- Quote from: ladieu on August 29, 2010, 04:15:52 PM ---Here are my top 5

* Bicycle Repair
* Auto Repair
* Digital SLR mastery
* Plant Identification
* Beer/Wine making
--- End quote ---

I definitely want to learn Plant Identification too.  One of these days maybe I'll see if I can find an Expert and get a plant walk going. 

Beer/Wine/Mead making is a lot of fun and even if your recipe doesn't turn out perfect it's pretty good.  Usually.  If there's a homebrew store in your area, they'll probably have classes.

Oh, and I checked out DebtMD this morning before I even wrote this thread.  I'll be referring more people that way. 

Plant Identification / Wild Edibles is my top priority this year
     - I have taken a few classes and have identified 95% of the plants in my back yard.
     - Along with identification, I want to learn both medicinal and edible aspects of plants.
     - I have started making and canning Jelly.  I started with grape juice and now I have been making black raspberry jam and jelly with this years harvest.
     - Next year I will be doing canning of tomatoes and green beans as long as the harvest comes in good.
First Aid/ CPR / General medical
     - I have been learning to sucture from my father in law who is a surgeon.  I have also taken a general first aid course from ARC.
     - I am taking CPR and more first aid from ARC
     - I have signed up to volunteer with Medical Reserve Corps.  And although I have no medical background I will be doing clerical things and hopefully can learn some things.
     - Last year, with the help of SIS Wolf and the lady surviors, I learned to crochet.  Just simple things. I am going to work on that this fall and learn to make something with a little more utility than a scarf.
Tanning leather/working with hides
     - Want to learn how to work with hides


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