In a world economy based on continuous economic expansion, continuous consumption is required to keep the economy operating. This facilitates the cyclical consumption, products have very short useful lives. Some are made prematurely obsolete by design. Some are just designed to break.
In a world where things are designed to break, facing the world wide shut down of production, we will have a vast legacy of fragile products and a collapse of the system of mass production.
We will need to learn to repair things when previously we would have thrown them out.
Here a listed some skills that are quite simple to learn an allow you to repair things that might otherwise be useless.
Sewing,: this will allow you to repair things as small as a shirt to something as large as a sail. I even once read theory that packs of needles could become valuable like a currency. Hard to believe? Try to make a good needle out of anything any you see why this may be the case. Needles a very small thing to have and very useful.
Soldering: even without a vast knowledge of electronics, its pretty obvious a broken wire will mean the difference between a device working and not working. Learning the basics of soldering only takes a few hours to learn and get good at. Imagine the value it could be to you being able to turn a bunch of electronic scrap into something useful, perhaps even trade able.
Tying knots: sometimes the only way to hold something together is by tying knots. You’d be surprised how many there are and the different specific purposes they have. There are few basics that cover a lot of situations, learn them. Rope for a very long time was made from plant fibers, hemp being one of the favorites.Long after the last nylon ropes have crumbled in the sun ropes from plant fibers will be around, best that you know how to use them.
Basic mechanics: I’m not talking about cars here, I’m talking about pulleys, levers, cogs, chains, belts, pistons, pumps. fins out what these things do and the basic physics around them. learn how to take apart a small device (like an exploded diagram) and see how it is supposed to work and put back together so that it does still work. Find an old computer CD/DVD player and take it apart see if you can figure out how it opens the door and moves the disc in and out, its not magic.See if you can find out which part is the laser beam. There are book that describe how things work, read these book and find out how things work, it may mean you are able to repair and use things that would have other wise been useless.
Basic hand tools: Learn all about the hammer, the drill, the saw, the screwdriver and shifter and spanner. you probably have a rough idea but find out from someone who really knows like a mechanic, a carpenter… you’ll probably learn some of the subtleties about the techniques and the tools themselves, what makes a tool good quality and why. You’ll probably find out what tools can’t be used for and what slightly different tools can be.