Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Being Prepared - Making a Fire

Being able to make a fire is a necessary survival skill. If you spend large amounts of time outdoors or you are caught in an emergency situation, you will need to have more than adequate skill in making a fire to survive, especially during the colder temperatures of winter. Getting a fire lit quickly can make the difference in whether or not you survive.

Not everyone will have the time, patience or ability to make a fire by rubbing two sticks together. If you can do this, that’s great! The average person is not going to be able to do this and should be prepared ahead of time to be able to “cheat” a little when building or making a fire.

Keep a good ignition source available and a couple of backup sources in addition to your primary means of making a fire. Plain old matches in a waterproof container along with a lighter will always come in handy. It also wouldn’t hurt to keep a firesteel or some other alternate source of making a fire available as well. Having more than one way available to you in order to make a fire will give you the best chances possible in almost any survival situation.

Don’t forget to have some tinder available to help get that fire started. A cotton ball coated with Vaseline, lint or even a simple birthday candle can make all the difference in the world in your being able to get a fire started quickly. Alcohol-based hand sanitizer or a little “bug repellant” can also help get a fire started, especially if your tinder or fuel source is damp or moist. Time will be your enemy and you will need that fire as soon as possible.

Fire can provide a means to keep you warm and comfortable, purify your water if necessary and cook or heat any food that may be available and next to proper shelter is a definite requirement.

While primitive fire-making skills are great to have, you will need to master them before you rely upon these types of skills in a survival situation. Don’t risk your chance of survival without insuring adequate means of starting a fire, even if you need to “cheat” in order to get that fire started!

Staying above the water line!



Anonymous said...

One handy item to keep in your kit is a Permanent match, a small box which has lighter fluid with a metal match w/ wick and spark rod on side of box. To use, simply unscrew match body from box, and scratch on spark rod - Fire is lit on wick. Tom Hanks (Castaway) hisself would be very impressed.

Does NOT dry out nearly as quickly as a Zippo, one of mine has held its charge for a year unopened, which to me is a pretty good emergency item to keep.

About $2-$3 on the internet, I have a few, as well as Ronsonal lighting fluid which when closed will last YEARS. I kid you not on last point, we have one bottle in office that is used to clean tool pieces here. At least 15 years old, and the liquid will still ignite - thats not bad shelf life. This stuff likewise is pretty inexpensive, a good item to put back.

Anyhow, give them a try. As for firesteels and magnesium rods w/ spark rod, a good place to keep them handy is on your jacket zipper - just attach as a fob and you have handy fire items.

Mayberry said...

Don't forget magnesium fire starters, those buggers work great...

chinasyndrome said...

I usually pack 1-2 bic type lighters,1 mag stike starter. R.W. i am doing poll on outdoor knives,come by and vote. http://chinasyndrome-americanapocalypse.blogspot.com/

riverwalker said...

To: anonymous 12:32

Thanks for a great little review on those permanent matches...need to try one out!

Thanks and have a Merry Christmas!


riverwalker said...

To: Mayberry

Magnesium firestarters...CHECK!

Merry Christmas Mayberry!


riverwalker said...

To: chinasyndrome

Voted and left a comment yesterday.

Fires and knives...a great combination!

Thanks and have a Merry Christmas!


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