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How-to

Firesteel: tips and tricks

You already know that a firesteel is handy, hip and fun. Also, that you can make a decent fire with it. But how to use a firesteel to it's full extend? Knivesandtools provides tips & tricks!

A tinder for your firesteel: alternatives

When using a firesteel, you need a tinder. The firesteel sparks ignite the tinder and start the fire. You can find many useful tinders for sale, such as tindersticks or tinderdust. But what if you don't have those on you at the time? We lined up a few good alternative fuels for you:

  • The fluff from the filter of your tumble dryer
  • Firelighters for your barbecue (roughing them up with a knife makes them even more useful)
  • Birch bark powder, made by scraping a knife along the inside of a piece of birch bark. Birch bark is particularly useful because the inside of the bark has some sort of oil.
  • Dry, scorched cotton
  • Cotton wool (dip them in petroleum jelly for a quicker ignition)
  • Dust from jute ropes
  • Dried moss

Using the firesteel: useful tips

Tips can come in handy when using a firesteel. Especially if you want to start a fire in difficult circumstances.

Tip one: if you want to direct the sparks very specifically, use the firesteel for scraping and not the supplied scraper or your knife. Pull the firesteel along the knife, this results in many sparks in the same place.

Tip two: do you have a firesteel that doesn't ignite easily? Take a critical look at your scraper or knife. If this is not sharp enough, the quality of the sprarks kan be really disappointing. You should always use the back of your knife when you use this with a firesteel.

Tip three: do you want many sparks at once? Move the knife or scraper multiple times along thefiresteel. This way a little pile of dust will form at the bottom of your firesteel. Then scrape firmly once, exercising sufficient pressure and you will get more sparks than you've ever seen before!

But most importantly: do not give up! Even if it may be difficult the first times when starting a fire. Using a firesteel just takes some practice. But here applies: practice makes perfect (and it's super much fun)!