Waterproof longlasting DIY tinders for camping or go-bag


If you have never tried to start a fire with damp or greener wood then I would definitely say now is a good time to try it out. While we all love the idea of perfect camping, dry wood, brightly lit fires and piles of pine or oak to keep the bodies warm; the reality is different. Much of the time starting a fire remains far more difficult then most will admit. After all, what separates us from the animals? Fire of course! IMG_00002721

Here is a quick and easy way to help you ensure a warm body and comfort when it gets cold out. The supplies you will need are quite easily gathered, small bic lighter, cotton swabs, paper towels/cloth towel, scissors, drinking straws, cotton balls and Vaseline. Follow the quick and easy steps and you will have a easily transported, easily used method of starting fires. IMG_00002718

  1. Cut the straws to around 1.5 inches long
  2. Melt one end with the lighter and press firmly together. (Straws melt at very low temperatures so it shouldnt burn you.)
  3. Separate each cotton ball in half
  4. Roll the half in the Vaseline and make sure it is worked into the cotton fibers, separating them a little to ensure full penetration.
  5. Roll the half ball into a long thin strand.
  6. Insert into the straw and use a cotton swab to push it in firmly.
  7. Using the towel gently clean the OUTSIDE of the straw off.
  8. Using your fingers press the open end firmly together and melt and seal. IMG_00002720_edit

Use an old pill bottle or ziplock bag to store, I recommend wide mouth pill bottles simply because there is less likliehood of the straws being crushed. IMG_00002719_editTest one of the straws to ensure it burns well, when you light it with a match or lighter it will hiss and fizzle and begin burning like a candle. If you have used enough Vaseline it should burn for 30-45 seconds which will allow kindling to catch fire if you have used medium dry/aged kindling.



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About Jesse Mathewson

Jesse Mathewson is the author of the popular blog, jessetalksback.com and provides commentary to many varied places based on a background that includes education in criminal justice, history, religion and even insurgency tactics and tactical training. His current role in his community is as an organizer of sorts and a preacher of community solidarity and agorism. He also runs Liberty Practical Training, a self defense school specializing in the practical applications of defensive approaches versus the theoretical. As an agorist, voluntaryist and atheist his life is seen as crazy and wild by many, though once they get to know him most realize he is a bluntly honest individual who will give you the shirt off his back if he believes it is necessary to help you. Very simple, "That which is voluntary between all individuals involved is always right, if it is not voluntary, it is always wrong."
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6 Responses to Waterproof longlasting DIY tinders for camping or go-bag

  1. Reblogged this on Individuals Talking Back and commented:

    Something to enjoy again!


  2. Pingback: Wednesday Miscellany

  3. Jeffrey C. Anthony says:

    Potassium permanganate + glycerin.

    not efficient, but fun in the field.

    Don’t store these two together.


  4. mannie says:

    Good write up jesse. If I may, slowly heating the petroleum jelly to liquid makes it easier when fusing it with the fibers.


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