Friday, May 29, 2015

Making Char From Natural Materials and Flint/Steel Fire With The Char

I've always been a huge fan of flint/steel and magnification fire starting methods and to do that you generally need charred material (especially using flint/steel). While I do love using char cloth I have been wanting to experiment with some more natural materials as I don't want to have to use my cotton bandanna every time I want to make fire as it has way too many other camp uses. I plan to try doing the same process with a few other materials without a container (see how I do that here making char cloth without a container- LINK). So without further delay here is a video of the char process and then subsequently lighting a fire using that charred material.

Need Additional Help Getting Your Fire Started? Try a few of these methodsDryer Lint Tinder Bundle  (LINK); Gorilla Tape Tinder Bundle (LINK); Rub Cloth (LINK); Dragon Ball Fire Starters (LINK); Char Cloth (LINK); Solar Ignition (LINK); One Stick Fire (LINK); Fire Pad (LINK); DIY Fire Starter: Cotton & Petroleum Jelly Modification  (LINK); Camp Fire vs. Survival Fire vs. Cooking Fire (LINK); Building a Sustainable Fire In Wet Conditions (LINK); Split Match Trick (LINK); Survival Resources 4x Fresnel Magnifier (LINK); Fatwood Fire (LINK); Evolution of My Pocket Fire Kit (LINK); Split Wood Fires: Using Your Knife As A Spokeshave (LINK); Cattail Fluff Used as Flash Tinder (LINK); Wetfire Tinder (LINK); Twig Bundle Fire (LINK);What I like to Use For Tinder Bundle Materials (LINK); Fritos Tinder Bundle (LINK).

So whats in char container? Dead standing grass, punk wood, jute twine (full), jute twine as a birds nest, cattail x2, thistle x3, pine needles and tulip poplar inner bark.
I chose not to make a vent hole in the top of the container (it is a cookie tin I got for I believe $0.25) as the tin was quasi loose enough to allow for some ventilation of the gases within the container.
Lesson learned: natural materials take a good bit longer to char and also take a varying amount of time reach their optimum charring. While the cattail, tulip poplar, jute twine and thistle were all done to their optimum level the other materials were either too well done to be effective (grass and pine needles) or not quite all the way charred. 
Most of the materials took with a ferro rod, even those which were slightly over charred or under charred. when using flint/steel the most effective out of this batch were tulip poplar, jute twine and by far cat tail. So generally if it is a natural flash tinder then it will work extremely well as charred material.
The above picture is of the cattail section being utilized to blow the ember into flame with a dead grass tinder bundle.
Flame! I highly recommend that you get out there and practice with natural materials and charring without containers as this process is an essential task to long-term self reliance..... long after the ferro rods are used up or lost and lighters are gone magnification and flint/steel will still be lighting fires.

Don't Have A Fire Kit? Buy One By Clicking Below

This was a fun little post for me as I was able to hone my traditional fire starting skills once more. I found that the tulip poplar, jute twine and cattail were by far the easiest materials to both char and ignite using flint/steel. Going forward I plan to char those materials without a container to determine how long it takes and how well charring without a container will work. If you haven't been out working with your flint/steel kit, get out there and fall back in love with traditional fire starting mediums!

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1 comment:

  1. Great post! You can use a new stove! On the ground floor level inside it was filled with hard concrete material to the same height as the level of the pan. This was known as the flue level.Thanks!