Archive for July, 2014

How to Start a Fire by Friction-Creating the Tools

Friday, July 11th, 2014

What do you do when you need to start a fire and your matches are wet, you have run out of matches or you forgot matches? Well, one option is to just hang it up to experience. While you do learn more from your mistakes than successes, this mistake can be a very cold one and can be dangerous. The other option is to learn how to create fire in many different ways and this includes those challenging non-traditional or modern ways.

One of these ways is learning how to start fire by friction. This may sound complicated but believe it or not, this is how fire has been started for centuries. To begin this process of making fire, one will need to first survey the environment. You will need the traditional wood for a fire, which includes tinder, small pieces of wood and larger logs. Also, while you are out looking for dry wood take a look for the wood that you will need to create the friction. You will need two types of wood. This includes softwood such as pine or hemlock and a hardwood, which includes cedar, walnut, cottonwood, and slippery elm.

Once you have your wood at your campsite, the next step of this process is to organize it. Separate the fire building materials from the friction supplies as described above. To create fire using friction, you need three different tools. This includes a spindle, fireboard, and a thunderhead. The spindle and fireboard both need to be made from a hardwood. The thunderhead, on the other hand, will need to be made from softwood.

Before starting, make sure the wood is dry. If it is not, you may need to wait a couple of days before creating your friction fire starting kit.

To begin this process, one should select a log that is about 12 to 15 inches in length. What you are going to do at this process is to whittle down the center of the log until the spindle has reached a diameter of about ? of an inch. Next, cut down the corners so that the spindle has eight sides. Once that is done, sharpen both ends so that the top end is pointy while the bottom end is more round.

The fireboard is created by taking a piece of flat wood that is about ? of an inch thick and 18 to 24 inches long. While the length is important, the truly important fact is to make sure that the wood is flat as possible. A rocking board will not create a spark.

Once you have your board, you will need to create holes by which your spindle will fit into. These holes need to be place
? of an inch from the edge of the wood. This will keep the wood from breaking while you are using the spindle. To create these fire starting holes, take a sharp lock-blade knife and dig into the wood.

To create the thunderhead, one will need a wood that contains a lot of resin. This resin will be used as a form of lubrication, which will be important when it comes time to use your spindle. While there really is no size for a thunderhead, it is the piece that fits on top of the spindle. It needs to fit well in the hand since this will create the pressure by which the spindle is forced to make contact with the fireboard. To help the spindle remain in contact with the thunderhead, make sure to create a small hole in the board.

Now that you have all tools to start a fire through friction, now learn how to use these fire making tools.