Location: Northern Zone, Costa Rica - 200 to 300 meters Tropical Humid Rainforest
posted 6 years ago
We have to start up our fires everyday, and I have to know it is started. One thing I learned when I used to camp a lot was to carry with me cheap white candles, the cheaper the better. Just an inch of that will start a fire. What I do is put a piece of wood under the candle, light the candle, and put it sideways. Then I start to put wood on top, usually touch the candle at first. The wax wicks though the wood, and any wax that just melts, soaks into the wood floor. It will start just about any wood, even not so dry.
Sustainable Plantations and Agroforestry in Costa Rica
Thanks Fred for the tip.
I will light 2 small tea candles (I think they're called that) that sit in a ceramic dish.
I do this while getting ready for my fire. Then I close the stove door with damper and secondary air open. My belief is this preheats the flue when I'm doing a cold start. I roll 5 or 6 newspaper knots in this time. Then blow out candles. Add Knots and build kindling tee -pee.
When a candle won't light I add it to kindling. The small aluminum cup burns away. Kind of like the beer can sweeping log.
Location: Eastern edge of the Blue Ridge Mnts. Virginia
posted 6 years ago
I normally just grab a nice sized stick and use my draw knife to shave it into small pieces that stay attached to the stick, then use one piece of newspaper to get a flame and put the stick in on top of the paper. It seems to get hot faster and allows me to get larger pieces burning quicker. I have several acres of hardwood though, so finding wind fall pieces suitable for starting a fire is really easy for me.
I do like the "Cooking oil, scrap paper" idea a lot though. That is something that most everyone has and is not something I am buying for a single purpose.
I've seen a lot of places that sell Fatwood. Basically it's small pieces of kindling that have been soaked in hot wax or oil then cooled and bundled for sale. I suppose you could just use any waste cooking oil or parafin/bees wax and do the same. Soak twigs and wood scraps then air dry for a day or so. Build a fire stack over a few pieces of that then light it up. It's similar to the candle idea but might use less wax.