It's been a little nasty up here the last week. Pretty darn cold and still snowing off and on. I spent a lot of time indoors over the weekend except for a few errands and a trip to the movies (seriously expected more out of Liam Neeson's new one The Grey). To pass the time I decided to make something that I openly admit to stealing from Don's website and that, apparently, he stole from someone else's site.
I've tried a lot of different things when it comes to making fire for warmth or cooking food. Most of the time when I'm traveling light, I don't bring a stove and if I find myself needing to cook something, I get creative with a small fire and rocks. Normally, a small Bic lighter is all I bring to make the fire as we generally always have enough dry stuff up here. But...I thought these were neat so I made some up and I'll try them in the spring once the overnighters start.
You're gonna need a candle, some of those cotton facial cleansing things, something to melt the candle in, and then something to pick up the final product while it's hot. I did not have any of those disposable aluminum pie tins so I put some foil in a sauce pan so my wife wouldn't get mad at me.
Once you've got some liquid wax in the bottom of the pan, remove the candle and throw one of those cotton things in. It will quickly absorb the wax. Grab it with something and set it out to dry. Don likes to use tweezers for this but I'm more of a chopstick guy myself.
This is the finished product. You can toss these in a ziplock bag and when you need to get a fire going, you take one out and kinda rip/break it almost in half. When you do this, it will expose the cotton fiber. I was able to get one lit quite easily with a magnesium/flint starter and even easier with the Bic. One wafer will burn for about 5 minutes and you can build a really nice tipi of kindling around this and get things going. I don't know that I'll use these much as I generally don't have too much trouble with just a Bic and that would be lighter but it's always fun to make gear or take existing gear and modify it. Thanks for letting me steal this Don.