Re: precious metals question
For a SHTF scenario.
1. Food and goods for yourself and your family.
2. A means of ensuring that 1 remains safely in your possession; guns and ammo.
3. For the first few weeks, barter goods. Bags of rice, beans, etc. which you can use for trade with those having things you can use, but needing food. A few extra bags for purely humanitarian giving may be stocked up also.
4. For a later time, precious metals for trade, which was your original question.
Gold is good for compact storage of large amounts of $$, but should NOT be your only investment; if you come across a guy that is baking GREAT bread, you won't want to try to pay for one loaf with gold! For things like this, you need MUCH less valuable exchange means, like silver. Junk silver (no numismatic value) is perfect for this.
Where do you buy these?
MANY jewelry stores also deal with gold and silver. Open your yellow pages to "gold"
and you will probably find several.
I used to be heavy into gold; krugerands, maple leafs and panda's.
Sold it to survive when I was forced out of my job for whistleblowing.
Now just a bit into silver, but have 1-3 covered well.
Christ told me to arm myself. If you want me disarmed - - Molon Labe.