Fire

This is a recent video I uploaded onto YouTube, about 10 wood burning camping/survival style stoves.

1) A Flint and Steel is one of the very top survival items. I hear that Swedish Firesteels like "light my fire" burn with a hotter spark. Don't be a miser, get the best one of these. Quality counts on the top few items.

NOTE:

These will corrode by oxidising after you use them if you do not protect the surface area. No one ever seems to mention this!

2) Magnesium block with flint and steel - I recommend again you buy perhaps the Original USA Army one (known for its quality) or "Friendly Swede" which I own and both seem good. Cheaper ones have lower quality magnesium and are very hard to shave off the magnesium, not good if you are weak in a survival situation. Practice using these!

3) piezo ignition on stoves - if you have a survival stove and the piezo ignition actually works on it, you will save dozens of boxes of matches over time, or many lighters. When they work they are great. I had a stove where it sparked but the piezo ignition never actually managed to ignite the gas. Watch out for that fault. A good stove is the JetBoil. Some of these stoves actually generate electrical energy and can charge phones!

4) Good lighters - among them I have very good tiny peanut lighters that do not leak fuel. A problem with old type Zippos is they leak fuel, unless they are the new type of electric inserts.

5) Matches - many choices including storm matches, waterproof matches, safety matches and strike anywhere matches. Test them!

6) Fire pistons - a bit unreliable I think.

7) Understanding what tinder is - and how to make materials ignite more easily, like rubbing paper against itself until it is more feathery, making fire sticks etc. A pencil sharpener can be used to make tinder from twigs.

8) Understand foire building - and the process of burning smaller grass and twigs first, then bigger twigs, then small branches, in a gradually bigger process.

9) New portable stoves - like the ones in the video above. At the moment my favourite are small Bush Box pocket stoves.

10) Tent stoves - wow such exciting ones out there, made of steel or Titanium. One with a glass to see the fire through is a moral booster.

11) bellows - I bought an extendable tube to help feed oxygen to fires. Perhaps that was superfluous extra weight, but not in a fixed survival camp,

12) Solid Fuel tablets - great for making a quick brew for instance out hiking.

13) Burning alcohol versus meths - burning alcohol is like rocket fuel in comparison to methylated spirits, and is more smokey. Spilling either is a big danger. The extra dangerous heat from burning alcohol made for outdoor stoves is needed in very cold places where subzero temperatures fight the efficiency of the flames.

14) Morale and health -  fire boils water until it is safe, cook food, keeps you warm, builds up morale, and is even entertaining to watch, hear and smell. It keeps you safer from wild animals, and can be used to signal for help. One man was so desperate to rescue himself and his girlfriend he set a huge forest fire to get noticed! (be careful of that one). Fire that is used properly is a best friend to a survivalist, but can be deadly misused. 

15) Hand warmers - Some like the Zippo one, slow burn lighter fuel to keep you toast warm! Others burn charcoal. Watch out gel ones heated in water do not burst and burn you.