This step by step tutorial of how to make a pocket tinderbox for flint and steel fires is an excellent emergency preparedness supplies project.
Our ancestors had probably one of the most fascinating ways to light a fire compared to our lighters and matchsticks today. They had something called a tinderbox (tonteldoos in Afrikaans), which was made of only a few simple materials: tinder, steel, and flint. Who would have thought this would work well for so many years? Well, actually they did.
While this tradition has slowly died away because of our modern conveniences today, there is still a need to learn this basic survival technique should we find ourselves stranded in a wooded area and need the heat only a fire can provide.
Some boy scout troops have taught their scouts how to use these materials along with other methods to build a fire while out camping without having to worry about having matches or a lighter on hand.
Granted, they probably didn’t have the design you’ll find below for a tinderbox you can carry with you. It’s too bad if they didn’t because not only is this design highly portable, but it works great.
It’s built with the basic materials in mind for a traditional tinderbox with only a few extra materials to assemble it all together. The tinder used for these tinderboxes is 100% cotton, which is encased in a copper pipe with a ¾ inch opening. You’ll also want to acquire some copper caps to keep the cotton material inside and dry as well as a drill, some scissors, a pipe cutter, and some cordage to carry it through a trek in the woods.
Material and Tools
3/4 inch copper pipe about 4 inches in length
Two 3/4 inch copper caps – bought new for about $1.50 each
100% cotton material – several strands from a mop head works well
Cordage is totally optional
Scissors or sharp knife
Copper wire if you make a loop through the end caps like mine
Drill and drill bit the diameter of the wire used to make the loop
Flint and steel
Click here to read about how to make a pocket tinderbox for flint and steel fires:
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