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post #31 of (permalink) Old 06-25-2012, 09:06 PM
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Quote:
quote:[i]Originally posted by Matt[/]

I like the plastic tube idea. I shall have to add it to my kit.
I should market that as an 'eyebrow saver kit'!
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post #32 of (permalink) Old 06-25-2012, 09:21 PM
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Not to quibble, but the reason wet wood does not burn, and wet ground impedes fires, is that liquid water cannot be heated above 100 degrees. No matter how fancy your fuel source or how much kindling you add, the firewood or ground will not exceed 100 degrees C until the liquid water has been vaporized. Water does not suffocate a fire - it cools the fuel and prevents thermal outgassing.

Two things that I have found useful:
  • Light the kindling, place the wet wood on top, then hold a butane stove over the wood (with stove unlit). The burning butane can sometimes dry off a thin layer of wood which may be sufficient to get started.
  • Use a different kindling material. Yellow cedar and some hardwoods burn very hot and they can dry off the bulk firewood.

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post #33 of (permalink) Old 06-25-2012, 09:31 PM
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by weedWhacker

liquid water cannot be heated above 100 degrees.
I think the critical temperature of water is higher than the flash point of wood, a point I bring up because it's altogether useless in this discussion
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post #34 of (permalink) Old 06-25-2012, 09:56 PM
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If you meant the critical temperature (ie the temperature at which liquification is no longer possible at any pressure), then you are quite right. That is quite useless.
http://www.webelements.com/periodici...l_temperature/

Or, if you are referring to the critical point (ie the combination of pressure and temperature at which all three phases co-exist) then It is equally useless.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Critica...rmodynamics%29

However, if you are trying unsuccessfully to light a large piece of wet wood, it may be helpful to know why it will not light, and by extension what to do about it. Understanding the physics would suggest heating the wood long enough to evaporate enough absorbed water. That will allow the wood to outgass, and hence light.

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post #35 of (permalink) Old 06-25-2012, 10:18 PM
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Point being you don't need to completely vaporize the water - what's important is getting wood to or beyond the flash point and sustaining it there.

Latent heat of water's a heat sink, but as long as it sucks enough heat to keep it below the flash point - even above 100 deg C - it won't ignite.
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post #36 of (permalink) Old 06-25-2012, 10:28 PM
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Ah good, so we agree.

My suggestion was to spray unlit butane on a struggling campfire to evaporate some of the absorbed liguid water from the firewood. Or, use hotter kindling like yellow cedar to achieve the same result. Both methods have worked (sometimes) for me.


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post #37 of (permalink) Old 06-25-2012, 10:46 PM
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many of my fires are started directly on snow, no issues, most good for 2 to 20 people..if fuel is available
[u]Dry hot base is needed for all</u>
many of the above basics work well, build from there.

cool fire = slow ,low lying ,lingering smoke...

Hot base may show smoke, but smoke rises swiftly, near vertical, even if not showing flame, it will catch with the right product.

Dont prod a good fire too much, it will dense up and cool off,airspace is needed between pieces.

Birchbark and cedar bits can make for a very hot fire starter, should be able to make a fire anywhere with it, even on a cold november night in BC.
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post #38 of (permalink) Old 06-25-2012, 10:59 PM
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The wettest, rottenist, mouldiest, crappiest piece of slimy birchbark pulled outta the swamp - will still burn when lit.
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post #39 of (permalink) Old 06-25-2012, 11:17 PM
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The main thing is what you are using for tinder and kindling.
It has to be small enough and obsorb heat fast enough and retain it before it can heat more substantial pieces of wood. I have tried rubber and plastic many times and I find they melt to fast and smother itself especially when placed on the ground below the kindling where there is insufficient air flow.
Even anything to do with wax combinations don't work very well because the wax melts away and needs some sort of wick to keep a flame.
Liquid fire starters I find burns to quick and the fluid is gone to fast.
Making up fire starters is just a waste of time because what happens when they run out prematurely and then you have to get two or three different ingrediants to make them up again.

There is just some types of wood and conditions where a fire can not be made.
On the coast there is lots of water absorbing trees and branches, in the alpine many of the wood species are under snow pack 10 months of the year. That stuff is pretty darn hard to get burning. Where as in 40 below temperature up north in the winter most wood species will burn really well and easy to start even the green bark on some tree species.

Make sure when you use twigs and branches they snap easily and do not bend to much before they brake. That determines how dry they are even if they feel wet on the outside.
Make the beginning of your fire in a teepee style so it gets lots of air and use lots of small stuff first before progressing to larger pieces of wood.
Beware of green branches that are evergreens because they will usually flare up a fire when the needles dry but then die out to fast to keep a good solid flame as does gas.

If you buy wood or wood is provided at a campground and cut shavings and spit the wood it could be green wood that will not burn which appears to be dry. I never trust cut wood at campgrounds and look for other wood to use to get the fire going good first with coals then I add the campground cut and split wood.

Cedar sparks alot but burns pretty good, birch bark is the best, pitch on bark on trees especially pine type trees is great and I always watch for it on multiday camping trips and collect it just for fire starter.

But with all the comments and things I tried I still find those barbaque starter cubes and waffers the best. If they can get coal to burn and they hold a flame for a long time then they can dry and burn most wood except green wood and are the best fire starters in my opion.
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post #40 of (permalink) Old 06-26-2012, 12:34 PM
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You don't have to be a scientist to light a fire. But it can take some experience of lighting them to get the hang of it. I never use anything other than wood/sticks/shrubs and flame. Those that need additives to light a fire shouldn't be in the bush []. They would possibly die of hypothermia with a bic lighter in their hands.

A few keys:
Shrub, dry shrub or dry sticks/twigs/bark plenty of
Kindling, plenty of
Dry logs

Work your way up from the dry twigs, get the fire going good with the twigs first. Then once the fire is going good with put a few pieces of kindling in. Don't over do it with large pieces, and let it breath lots. As the fire grows, add bigger pieces of log/wood. So many people smother the fire with a heavy/large piece of wood which won't burn in the beginning stages of the fire.

Next grab your marshmellows and hot dogs & a stick .
Enjoy!



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post #41 of (permalink) Old 06-26-2012, 12:35 PM
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My fire kit.



The firesteel is a Gobspark Armageddon, probably the best misch metal firesteel I have ever used and much superior to the Swedish Light My Fire ones.



In my kit there is

1. A flint and steel
2. Cotton balls (real cotton)
3. Fatwood
4. Jute twine
5. Amadou (processed from tinder fungus)
6. Rubber strips
7. Char cloth
8. Stormproof matches
9. Esbit tablet
10. Tea candle

When I'm headed somewhere really wet, like my winter camp in Olympic National Park, I'll often carry an additional pouch with fatwood kindling sticks and birch bark. My little metal tin, lighter, and a candle lantern also will go in it.

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post #42 of (permalink) Old 06-26-2012, 01:18 PM
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tea lights.

They are cheap, light, burn easily and can be used for light if you don't need a fire.

Plus, if you get scented ones you can attract critters and bears.
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post #43 of (permalink) Old 06-27-2012, 11:54 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by Eryne


Plus, if you get scented ones you can attract critters and bears.
Finally someone who understands my needs. I want my campsite swarming with predators and pests.
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post #44 of (permalink) Old 06-27-2012, 12:04 PM
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by weedWhacker

Not to quibble, but the reason wet wood does not burn, and wet ground impedes fires, is that liquid water cannot be heated above 100 degrees. No matter how fancy your fuel source or how much kindling you add, the firewood or ground will not exceed 100 degrees C until the liquid water has been vaporized. Water does not suffocate a fire - it cools the fuel and prevents thermal outgassing.

Two things that I have found useful:
  • Light the kindling, place the wet wood on top, then hold a butane stove over the wood (with stove unlit). The burning butane can sometimes dry off a thin layer of wood which may be sufficient to get started.
  • Use a different kindling material. Yellow cedar and some hardwoods burn very hot and they can dry off the bulk firewood.

Your logic is way off here.
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post #45 of (permalink) Old 06-27-2012, 01:19 PM
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Actually he makes a good point. You can boil water in a paper cup held over a bunsen burner, without the paper cup bursting into flame...
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