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Fire Lighting Equipment

Ferro Rod

Fire steels all work by striking a steel surface against a ferrous rod to create a spark. They come in all different shapes and sizes, try not to get the tiny ones, best to have 6mm rod and above, they will last a lot longer. Most come with a steel for you the scrap against the rod. You can also use some knife spines (the flat bit on the top) as well. Make sure you have got some good tinder down first.



It's always good to have a backup, from the standard gas pound shop ones, to something that is quality. The one below is a windproof refillable gas and it is waterproof when closed. It's not expensive, but bear in mind the gas does run out though, you can get a small refill bottle to take with you. Also you can get the same style lighter which is a arc (electronic) which you can recharge with a battery pack or a solar charger. 


Magnifying glass

Using a glass lens (convex) or even a tiny plastic magnifying sheet and holding it in between the sun and some tinder will cause ignition to take place.

Hold the lens close to the tinder and then move it towards the sun slowly to create a tiny focal point of light on the tinder. This works very well, as long as you have some sunlight. Glasses come in all shapes and sizes.

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Matches, the all time favourite. There are many types you can get, from normal safety matches to windproof ones. Always make sure they are stored in a waterproof bag or container, as they are quite useless when wet. Again you will need a good amount of tinder once you light the match, careful with the wind though. You don't want to go through you entire supply.


Bow drill

Using a bow drill is an advanced fire lighting technique using friction. You will need practice to get it right. A bow rotates a spindle of wood into a base board. The heat generated from the friction is used to ignite the tinder. You can buy they pre-made. The type of woods used is very important to the success of the process. Once you have mastered it, you can source all the materials in the wild, having some paracord with you would be a wise move.

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Fire piston

A fire piston  uses the principle of the heating of a gas (which is air) by rapid and adiabatic compression to ignite a piece of tinder, which is then used to set light to kindling.

The compression of the air when the piston is quickly rammed into the cylinder causes the interior temperature to rise sharply. This is hot enough for the char cloth in the piston face to ignite.  The piston is then quickly withdrawn, before the now-burning tinder depletes the available oxygen inside the cylinder. The smouldering char cloth can then be removed from the face of the piston and transferred to a larger nest of fine kindling material.

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