It’s getting dark out. There is very little in the way of shelter. The entire world just went haywire, you had to bug out and now you’re freezing. Time to build a fire.
The ability to build and maintain a camp fire is one of the most crucial survival skills anyone can have. The keys to building a fire are allowing for proper airflow and building the fire in stages with the right fuel.
The Art of Manliness describes the basics of fire starting like this,
Build a tinder nest. Your tinder nest will be used to create the flame you get from the spark you’re about to create. Make a tinder nest out of anything that catches fire easily, like dry grass, leaves, and bark.
Make your notch. Cut a v-shaped notch into your fire board and make a small depression adjacent to it.
Place bark underneath the notch. The bark will be used to catch an ember from the friction between the spindle and fireboard.
Start spinning. Place the spindle into the depression on your fire board. Your spindle should be about 2 feet long for this to work properly. Maintain pressure on the board and start rolling the spindle between your hands, running them quickly down the spindle. Keep doing this until an ember is formed on the fireboard.
Start a fire! Once you see a glowing ember, tap the fire board to drop your ember onto the piece of bark. Transfer the bark to your nest of tinder. Gently blow on it to start your flame. (Read More)
Fire provides heat, light, the ability to cook food, even protection to some extent. We all should have a basic concept of how to start a fire. Some little lighter fluid, a handful of tinder, some flint, a few matches, a lighter, a few sheets of newspaper. There is always the ability to use matches or a lighter to start a fire, but what if you don’t have either of those items? Or no lighter fluid?
Now you need a way to generate a flame and you’re out of ideas. Or are you? Because you read this article, you now have a notion of how to improvise, build and maintain a fire.
There are a variety of cool ways to start a fire out there. I am just going to give you the 8 most practical. They may be unconventional, but they are also versatile and applicable for any environment. Did you know you can start a fire with a bottle of water? True story.
1. Water Bottle: IT’s the same concept as burning ants with a magnifying glass. Using the sun and a clear water bottle filled with water, you can use the concentrated sunlight to generate enough heat on your tinder to spark a flame.
2. Vaseline Cotton balls: Personally, I think it’s a bit stinky; but I would rather be warm than not. The Vaseline covered cotton balls work as a great fire starter and will burn fairly well.
3. Reading Glasses: It’s the same concept as the water bottle trick. You use the sun to magnify and concentrate the light into a beam so you can generate enough heat to spark a flame.
4. Crayon Candle: Did you know that a crayon is flammable? It’s true. Comprised of fat and oil, a crayon can burn for up to 30 minutes. Boom! Instant reading candle.
5. Wine Corks: Dry wine corks work very well as tinder and can maintain the start of the fire long enough until you can get it going.
6. Knife and File: You can generate sparks by scraping a nail file across a knife blade. This would need to be done right next to your tinder/newspaper so it can catch the sparks and ignite.
7. Dryer Lint: Dryer lint makes excellent tinder. It burns quickly though, so get your fire going fast.
Fire will keep you warm, keep predator animals away and allow you to cook your food. It will also draw attention though too. Smoke, the smell of smoke, the glow of your fire; all these may draw unwanted attention from people that are trying to survive too. Be cautious when opting to build a fire.
As always, Stay Safe, Stay Prepared.
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