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Creating a Fire Starting Kit
Nothing is as discouraging as hiking to ones campsite in the rain and trying to start a fire. While a fire is simple to start when all the conditions are right, a less then perfect situation can be disheartening and in some situations dangerous. To help start the home fire burning, a homemade fire starting kit is in order.
When camping, especially if one is primitive camping, space is a very important commodity. In doing so, this kit is designed to provide the most fire starting equipment without taking up a lot of space.
The basic premise of this kit is to fill it with fire starting tools so the first ingredient in this fire-starting recipe is the container. The best container to use is an old plastic medicine bottle or an old film canister. Both of these are small and waterproof, which is a very important factor.
The next ingredient in this recipe is something that will be a fuel source for the fire. Since a liquid is out of the question, the next source would be something that would burn just as easily. There are a couple of options at this point but two of the simplest come from common household items. The first one can be found in any dryer and that is dryer lint. This substance is a great ignition source and if do not believe that consider how many home burn up due to dryer fires.
The second ignition source is no farther then your cupboard or vending machine and that is chips. Whether you are talking about corn or potato chips, these little treats are great fire-starters. The oil that they were fried in burns very hot and long. In doing so, they make great ignition sources.
The next ingredient for a fire starting kit is something that will create a spark. A flint and steel is a good choice but it can be hard to fit into a small container. Another choice is blue-tipped strike anywhere matches. These matches, as the name describes, can be struck anywhere. As an example, they can be struck on a rock, shoe or on any other hard surface.
To make these matches even more useful, it is a good idea to waterproof them. While you can buy waterproof matches, the process is so simple why not do it yourself.
To waterproof matches, simply paint several layers of fingernail polish on the head of the matches. Make sure that each layer is dry before applying the next layer.
The last ingredient to add to the kit is something that will keep the fire going while the kindling is burning. This can be dried pine needles, dried bark from dead trees and old candles.
Once you have all your ingredients together, the next step is to fill your fire starting kit.
Organize it so that the items are easy to reach and in an order by which they will be used. As an example, place in the bottom the kindling aids, such as old candles or pine needles. Next, place a layer of some type of ignition source and then push matches around the perimeter of the container. Once this is done, place the lid on securely.
If you are using a larger container, consider adding a 9-volt battery and steel wool. Both of these can be used to create a spark.
So this year, while you are enjoying the wilds, keep your fire starting ingredients safe, dry and sound in your homemade fire starter kit.