Light My Fire!

And thousands of survivalists and preppers will automatically reach for their fire steel aka ferrocerium.
ferroceriumOr do they?
I don’t, and the rod as shown lives in the bottom of the back pack.
For me that’s the last resort and I’m more likely to reach for my disposable gas lighter OR my Zippo lookalike.

Only It doesn’t stop there.
I also carry a box of strike anywhere matches too, how weird is that!
OK I’ve dipped them in candle wax but hey, I was just being prudent!
ignition

What all the above amounts to is I carry multiple ways of easily igniting things.
Incidently I also carry a couple of other things.
Half a dozen Vaseline soaked cotton wool balls stuffed into plastic straws and a couple of candle stubs. They aren’t ignition devices BUT they sure help to get a fire going.

Yet, by admitting that I don’t rub sticks together any more, use a magnifying glass, chemicals, or even use wire wool to knacker my cell phone battery, I’m probably going to find my memberships to “Purist Preppers and Bushcraft Anonymous” has been cancelled.

Like I’m really worried about that.
Only hows about you?
Are you of a practical no B.S. nature or like to make life hard for yourself to prove a point?
After all in the cold and wet, you need a fire going for heat, as quickly, and simply as you can manage and rubbing two sticks together just doesn’t work fast enough for me. Especially in the rain.

 

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12 Responses to Light My Fire!

  1. I’ve been meaning to buy a good old-fashioned box of wooden matches! Thanks for reminding me. Dipping them in candle wax does seem a little extreme. Zippo lighters are good too.

  2. Rifleman III says:

    After the flood (2012), all matches and fuel lighters were either carried out with the tide or soaked beyond use. I found 2×4 pine and in the brisk wind, I set it upright. Water flowed out the bottom and the wind started drying it out. Next morning, I used my Becker BK5, to split an inch lengthwise then split that maybe to half inch (?), then whittled it round. The rest of the split wood from the rod piece, I made countersunk bore with the knife point, and notched a “V”. Fallen trees all over the place. I grabbed as much dry leaves as possible and gnarled them up and around, keeping the leaf vein network to make a bird’s nest. Then the fun started. No bow saw. Just rubbing the rod to spin in my hand. I was at the point of giving up (on a “stupid idea” and waste of effort), when I smelled pine burning and, Hello! An ember. Carefully coaxed it onto a leaf and into the bird’s nest. Old Granny said a few disparaging things (yes, she most certainly did), as I blew into the nest material, the.., smoke. Fan that bugger into the wind, and I was like Merlin, holding a bunch of flame. I had noting good as fire material so I had bits of wood arranged into a cross with all mating surfaces gapped about half inch and into the center went the nest. Smoldering. More smoldering. Blew on it, and smoldering. I made a small windbreak by leaning a piece of building insulation found, then opened the center surface facing into the wind, and.., FIRE!

    • Well done. I applaud you.

      Yet hows this for a tale.
      I wish I has a £1 for every time I’ve dropped my lighters and matches into the river (let alone my cell phone), I’d be well rich!

      Only all I do with the lighters is shake out the water, stick them in my pocket to dry, and away they go. That includes the Zippo too. Got to be the diesel I run it from.

      As for the matches? Quick shake and away they go too. Why? Wax dipped. (Told you I was only being prudent).

      As for the ferro rod?
      That works every time.

      Back to the cell phone?
      Strip, shake, and bury in a pot of uncooked rice.
      24 hours later it’s working again.

      Now I do know (and practice) bush craft fire making. You’ve got to be adaptable when you’re a prepper haven’t you BUT speed is essential when cold and wet and I’m a wimp about getting cold.

      • Rifleman III says:

        Had considered maybe twice dipping a Zippo in diesel but doubted that it would work. Had dipped the lighter once into 93-octane gasoline and that was a flaming disaster when lit, as the metal surface was very hot and the cap did not extinguish the flame. Was thinking of mineral oil but that would not light most likely on a spark. I use Nahptha. The one butane lighter I own is a fairly priced one but constantly malfunctioning therefore used for paracord projects with the grandchildren.

      • Years of dipping my Zippo into just about every flammable fluid known to man have left it “well seasoned” to cope with anything.

      • Rifleman III says:

        Now I have learned something. Thank you, and also, enjoy your Thanksgiving; Yank holiday but everyone should part-take in being thankful to the Almighty.

  3. Like you, I feel like easy ways to start fire is one of the most important things to be able to do. Warmth, cooking, purifying water… you need all that to survive – so like you said – why make it hard on yourself?

    As always, love your posts.

  4. gamegetterII says:

    “OK I’ve dipped them in candle wax but hey, I was just being prudent!”
    I use nail polish,that way whatever you use to strike the matches doesn’t end up coated in wax,plus it works on wooden matches that are not the strike anywhere variety without gumming up the striker.
    I don’t even own a ferro rod-plenty of Bic lighters,a zippo,a block of magnesium with small piece of hacksaw blade and striker,and several of the everstryke matches-basically a piece of steel with a cotton wick that is stored inside a slightly smaller zippo size “box” that’s filled with lighter fluid-you strike it like a match on a strip of something similar to the stuff ferro rods are made of-there’s a rubber O ring that prevents fluid evaporation,and allows it to remain underwater for at least 30 minutes and still light.
    http://www.everstrykematch.com/

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