Saturday, December 8, 2012

Fire Starters

Fire Starters

This one works really well.  You simply fill a cardboard egg carton with 
dryer lint or other flammable things like wood chips, shredded paper, etc. 
and then fill it with wax.  It's a good way to use candles you don't like or scrap 
wax. Cut each section out and then light the cardboard. 

Another good fire starter is to put petroleum jelly on cotton balls
 I have them stored in a Mini M&M container.  ;)

Want something super simple, recycling toilet paper 
tubes and lint?  Walla!  Add a little petroleum, even better. 

You can wrap them in a piece of newspaper too, 
leaving a little tail to light.

Magnesium Stick  I haven't had the opportunity to try one of these, but they are supposed to work well.  You shave off bits of magnesium and start it with a spark. 

FireSteel  These are popular and use magnesium also.  They make a shower of sparks.  "Originally developed for the Swedish Department of Defense, Swedish FireSteel® fire starter is a flash of genius. Its 3,000°C (5400°F) spark makes fire building easy in any weather, at any altitude. Used by a number of armies around the world, Swedish FireSteel's dependability has already made it a favorite of survival experts, hunters, fishermen, and campers..."  (Quote from this site.) 

I have this now, and it works great.  Puts off some nice sparks for lighting fires.

Piston Fire Starter/Slam Rod 
Aurora Fire Starter

I try to mostly post on things I've already tried, but I don't have the money try them all yet.  I plan to try this one by spring and will do an update.  :)

On Wikipedia, it says "A fire piston, sometimes called a fire syringe or a slam rod fire starter, is a device of ancient origin which is used to kindle fire. It uses the principle of the heating of a gas (in this case air) by its rapid compression to ignite a piece of tinder, which is then used to set light to kindling..... Ancient and modern versions of fire pistons have been made from wood, animal horns, antlers, bamboo, or lead. Other metals have also been used in modern versions." To read more.... (click here)

I've done an internet search, and there are a lot of different devices out there using this piston method, many of which are pretty expensive.  I saw Les Stroud on Survivor Man give one of these a try.  I don't know which kind he used and don't remember if it used just air or if it also used magnesium or something else, but it worked really well in just one or two strikes.  I think I'd like to try the Aurora Fire Starter.  The price seems reasonable, and it sounds very durable.  My budget is tight and it's winter, but I'd like to get one and give it a try by this spring and will do an update.  This particular one says it "has even climbed Mount Everest, " "will start a lifetime of campfires for most users," and it is equipped with a built-in guided striking blade and ferrocerium flint steel rod with magnesium within its composition - yielding sparks as hot as 5000 degrees F."  

If you want to see more just do a search on "piston fire starter" or "slam rod fire starter" and many different versions come up in a wide price range.

I found this video on how to make your own (one that uses just the air), although most people won't have all the equipment and know-how to make this, it gives you a good idea how they work and gives a demonstration(click here)

Please share your experiences below if you have tried these.

Steel Wool and 9 Volt Battery:  All you do is touch a 9 volt battery to steel wool, and it will make sparks that you can use to start a fire. 

Self-Igniting Fire Starters:  I found this post on how to make "self-igniting fire" starters.  That sounds a little misleading to me.  I think I'd call them longer-burning matches or something.  lol  (click here)  

See also my post on making Char Cloth.  (click here)

I'll add more fire starter ideas later......  

Thanks for stopping by.  :)


  1. Thanks for the ideas

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    The Fire Syringe