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Monday, April 23, 2012

DIY Firestarters

     I have been looking into find easy simple DIY projects that I can add to my BOB, and this is one that I came across and wanted to give a try. It is a DIY firestarter. Basically once the firestarter has been made all you need is a match or a lighter or something to get it going. At that point it takes the place of tinder in your fire, and it is suppose to get going if it is wet or raining out as well.

     Now I dont know yet how well it will work, much less whether it will work in the rain, but I intend to give it a try as soon as I can and when I do, I will let you all know how it works.

For these firestarters you need a couple materials:

1. Small paper cups or dixie cups. I used the ketchup cups from a fast food resturaunt.

2. Twine or rope to act as a wick.

3. Scissors to cut the rope.

4. Wax. Parafin wax from the stor, from a candle or some other source. Those wax bottle candies work well after you drain the sugar water. :)

5. Woodchips, or sawdust.

6. A source of heat for melting the wax.

     So you start with your paper cups, and you drape the wicks inside. How you do this is up to you. I made a couple of U's and placed it in the cup. This allows the wick material to stand upright and it also will give me four points to light the firestarter when I use it.

     After that I filled the cups approximately halfway with wood shavings.

     For the wax, I used a hot plate and some cans which had wax in them, and used the hot plate to liquify the wax. Another way you could do this however is simply by lighting a large candle (not the long tapered kind). As the wick burns the wax will melt in a puddle around it. Then after a while you can carefully tip the candle and the wax puddle can be poured out.

     So whether your using a hot plate, burning a candle or using some other method, you pour the wax into the paper cups, over the wood shavings. The wax will drain between them, so when it dries there will be wax mixed with sawdust.

     Because I only filled the cups up halfway I then put wood shavings up to the top and filled the cup the rest of the way with wax. This is just how I did it, but you can probebly fill the cup with wood shavings all the way to the top and then just put the wax in.

     After this you let the wax in the cups dry. After it was dry I dipped the tips of the string into the wax as well, but that step is optional.

     So there we have it, your own firestarter. Like I said I will update when I get a chance to try the firestarter out. In the meantime though should anyone else make these, let me know how it goes. Even better if you get a chance to use them, just let us know how they work by posting in the comments!

     That is all for today, but look out for the Weekly World Risk Report that will be up tommorow.

~Sara

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