September 25, 2019 at 7:12 am #23088DaisyKeymaster
Is starting a fire something you do frequently? If you heat with wood, you’re probably just fine. If you do not, it’s a skill and you need to practice it from time to time.
So today, practice fire-starting. It may sound silly to people who do it all the time, but if you don’t do this often, it may not be as easy as you think. When we first moved to our cabin in the woods, it took me weeks to get a proper fire going in the woodstove.
If you are an accomplished firestarter, try starting your fires with a different tool, like a fire steel. This is also a great skill to teach your children.
What is your favorite way to start a fire?
Besides a lighter or matches (the easy ways), what is your favorite way to start a fire? Do you start fires frequently? Share how today’s challenge went for you.
September 25, 2019 at 8:10 am #23089Crow BarKeymaster
Heat with wood.
So, at least once a day, sometimes twice, gotta get the fire going.
Got it down to one match only.
Will bust out the flint and steel today.
Going to hot smoke some homemade hot dogs. Will use that as a test.
September 25, 2019 at 11:34 am #23093corsaireParticipant
Not something I regularly do. I grabbed an old metal dog dish, put some dried St.Augestine grass clippings in and got out the lighter. It went well. The dried grass clippings lit up very quick and makes excellent fire starter.
September 25, 2019 at 12:04 pm #23095Farm GirlParticipant
We DO have a wood burning stove that we use for heat in the winter, but it is STILL in the 90’s around here, so it will be a couple months before we need to use it. I will use Corsaire’s idea and start a small CONTAINED fire outside. Plenty of dried grass around!! That’s why it needs to be CONTAINED!!
September 25, 2019 at 12:30 pm #23094Muffy1938Participant
Good challenge for thinking outside the box. I can definitely start fires with easy choices such as strike anywhere, waterproof matches and bic lighters, and the like. My most recent practice was learning how to use the rocket stove I bought.
However, I played the what-if game of “I do not have matches or lighters or an open flame stove top and the electricity is off.” Now what? Well, as this is a cloudy day and my efforts at starting a fire using a magnifying glass have not worked, nor do I have one of those flint thingys…bottom line in this scenario, I will be eating cold super tonight and if it were cold outside, I would also get pretty cold without fire.
Lesson learned…I’m ordering one of those
Survival Spark Magnesium Survival Fire Starter with Compass and Whistle things from Amazon today…guaranteed delivery by Friday…and I’m going to practice actually using it.
September 25, 2019 at 1:04 pm #23101
Make sure you try your magnesium bar and flint some.bars are crap and won’t light and some glints need a special type of steel to start.
September 25, 2019 at 12:52 pm #23099Dala BarnesParticipant
Good challenge. I do have some fire starter that is pretty easy to light. I also make some with used toilet paper rolls and lint. I still use a lighter to start. DH has a magnesium starter so I will practiced with that. The lint went up ok. Pine needles work great also for starters.
September 25, 2019 at 1:28 pm #23102
I have old litium batteries just open and toss on to a burn pile. lithium burns in contact with air.
We have 6 fires that burn all winter we use a char cloth (tinder box) and a carry lantern for coals to restart ones that go out for ash removal.
We always have napalm on hand it is one of the uses for old fuel. Needed for burn piles and offal disposal.
You can use plumbers torches, click start gas lanterns. Bbq with push start lighters, roofers/tiger torch. 9 volt paperclip and paper
For those of you who want to let your inner nerd shiNE through https://www.thoughtco.com/make-chemical-fire-607502
September 25, 2019 at 2:25 pm #23104Mama candoParticipant
Oh my This one will be fun. I practice with using the striker bar. Get a decent fire going, contained of course. Can do a fire with steel wool and 9v battery and the many matches and lighters I have. One thing I have to dig out /make is the bow and wood to make fire “rubbing” two sticks together. Haven’t done that one in awhile and will have to practice with DH’s magnifying glass. Used to do that as a child, no not on bugs like a brat but with kindling for Campfire Girls.
September 25, 2019 at 3:45 pm #23105Nancy E Griffith GriffithParticipant
We heat in the winter with wood. I was a Boy Scout leader and had to show how to start a fire with wat you find in the surrounding. It was good for me and helped all the boys realize they can do things without a lot of pre-planned sites.
September 25, 2019 at 4:01 pm #23106OldMt WomanParticipant
Drat….DH just went ‘into town’ and I forgot to tell him to get a big pack of Bics. Their disadvantage is that they do run out eventually….and I’ve been refreshing each of our emergency type bags this month. I’ve put in some Bics that might be nearly empty…I can’t seem to tell. The other thing about Bics is……they won’t light if you get the flint/roller-striker assembly wet. They would need to dry out and then will light.
Having multiple skills/multiple devices to start fires is a great prepper goal. As an older child, it was my job to burn the family trash in the burn pile. Even burned tin cans …then raked up the remains to bury in the pasture. Didn’t have trash disposal in those days. I was an avid camper too…till we moved up here to live in the woods. We light the pellet stove daily all winter. But a pellet stove is a miniature fire with tiny tools and kindling, fuel.
Last winter I tried…and reported here…MANY times to get my magnesium bar/flint striker device to start a fire. Failure. Whoa…that was a surprise….glad to be surprised while still safe and warm and not in emergency!! Recently ordered 2 official DOAN magnesium fire starting bars….with flint on the edge. If it’s a DOAN…there will be words inscribed on one side of the bar. If not…you don’t know what you’ve actually got. Some wise person HERE told me that! Thanks!
During the failed attempts, I got a lot of info from here, actually: …check if it’s really a flint. Check if it’s a real magnesium bar. Another possible problem I thot of and was mentioned above in this thread: I was using some composite metal cheap steak knife to scrape the magnesium and trying to ‘strike’ with…..is that an issue?? I did produce a lot of sparks but none caught. ???
OR was the problem a decent pile of tinder? I was eyeing and coveting my neighbor’s cattails on my dog walk last nite. In this season, that dry fluff would be nice tinder. Might have to snap one off, eh? It’s probably I do need to upgrade my tinder FOR MY INTENTIONAL FIRES. I don’t have char cloth but might be able to make some inside the pellet stove when we start it later this season???
Right now we are deathly DRY….praying for rain. LOT of undergrowth because we rained regularly all summer. They call these conditions “tinder-box” with good reason. So any experimenting with FIRE I do today will be inside with the door shut. Cuz it’s windy too. I can use the large brick fireplace hearth.
The other device that I bought ages ago…..and never tried using [guilty again] …is a BlastMatch. A sort of flint and steel starter on steroids. If the stories are accurate. So I can dig that out and try that too. It might become my favorite back up to the….lighters, Strike-Anywhere wood matches [have tons in a metal box], DOAN’s …if it works….
I did try the 9V battery and steel wool one time…it works but moves fast thru the steel wool.
OldMtWoman …off to bring up some dryer lint ….and the laundry.
- This reply was modified 1 year, 10 months ago by OldMt Woman.
September 25, 2019 at 4:10 pm #23107ClergyladyParticipant
<p style=”text-align: left;”>Have used a bow drill, and many other things. Had a new flint lighter so used it to make sure it throws a good spark. It was fine. I cook outside on real week often. My rocket stove has an optional pellet hopper. That takes a torch or paper and a bit of candle oil.</p>
September 25, 2019 at 8:48 pm #23115LittlesisterParticipant
We have a wood fire place but have not used it all summer. Will be using it when weather turns cold again. However, we do have a fire pit and I have made many a fire in that. Though I haven’t used the flint and steel in a while. Guess I will have to pull that out to practice on the next fire pit burn.. I do have the ever strike matches as well. They work well but do take some practice. So need to work with that some more as well.
September 25, 2019 at 9:01 pm #23118
strike anywhere… works well on metal zippers and metal rough belt buckles
September 25, 2019 at 9:13 pm #23119Jessee JonesParticipant
I have a wood stove so I’ve had a lot of practice. For fire starters that work well for me, cotton balls with a small amount of petroleum jelly, old pieces of candle that I couldn’t stand the smell, slivers of kindling saved from last winter. I practiced some this evening with a small contained fire in the BBQ grill.
September 25, 2019 at 9:39 pm #23120woodsrunnerParticipant
I’m reading this late so won’t be starting a fire tonight. I used to burn wood and I always try to make a ‘one match fire”. Still burn in the firepit and burn in the incinerate anything with my name on it. My favorite thing to use is a book of matches- easy peasy and small to carry. Other than matches I prefer a welding striker. Lots of sparks with that.
September 26, 2019 at 1:00 pm #23141Mama TParticipant
We don’t have any indoor fires, but all.of us know how to start and maintain an outdoor fire. Even using different starting methods. The kids loved learning to start a fire with lint and a magifting glass. We also learned that MANY of the magnisium starters from Harbor Freight did NOT WORK, AT ALL. But glad we found out now In stead of in an emergency.
September 26, 2019 at 1:09 pm #23143Loving LifeParticipant
Yes, I heat with wood. I have a fire going right now and keep it going almost continuously during the fall and winter. I have became quite good with starting.
When I let the fire go out for cleaning, I will use my magnesium fire starter as a change.
October 1, 2019 at 1:40 pm #23337Cinnamon GrammyParticipant
Day 25 Fire-starting
Start a fire? Do it all the time, right? Sure, outside for a campfire. But inside? No, not THE house, IN the woodstove? My hubby’s job. We have a Hearthstone Wood stove that use for supplemental heat in a room with poor insulation and few heat vents. In the winter we spend our “sitting” time there near the woodstove. He normally handles the fire starting before I awaken in the morning, then the feeding, overnight banking, and maintenance. I just enjoy the warmth.
So, my turn. “Open the vent, start with just paper to warm up the air in the chimney. If the chimney air is not warm the stove will not draft properly. Small and slow with just paper, then a couple pieces of cereal box.
“Open this, close that, see the circulation? Not too much! Use the tongs. Light the OTHER end! Close down the vent a bit. See the air coming from underneath and the flames going straight up? Chimney air is warm and the air is circulating properly.
“Ok, now the small sticks…close that, adjust the vent – or whatever that thingamajig is called, so the fire has enough air. Now the larger sticks. It is going.”
With an outside fire, you can fiddle with it all you want. With a woodstove, you don’t want the smoke to back-up into the house. It can become a skill. Our Boy Scout Grandsons have skill in using campfires, and the fireplace at the other grandpa’s house, but trouble lighting a fire in our wood stove. Just a bit tricky to get the hang of it.
I guess I’d better practice more often to keep my hand in.
October 1, 2019 at 2:50 pm #23341
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