Sunday, May 29, 2016

Solostove Campfire

This is what a suburban campfire looks like:

It's a Swedish Torch(right) that I re-purposed as an anvil to process three segments of birch(left). I processed the wood, started a fire in my solo campfire, ate some toasted marshmallows.

My solo stove looked like:

It's the largest of the solo stoves and is great for 5-7 participants.  SUCCESS!!

In the meantime I learned a few things:

  • even though I made Vaseline and Cotton ball tinder I did not use it and I think I won't. Alternatively having unmodified cotton balls might have multiple purposes and separately hand sanitizer too.
  • skinning the bark from the birch logs and then igniting them directly with my steel worked perfectly. I had to remember to peel the coating from the rod and it still took a few strokes.
  • I had a made a featherstick just to test my Mora knife but it was ideal for getting the fire started.
  • At first my Mora hand ax seemed lite to the task but after getting into my rythm and some confidence it worked really well. I think my Schrade ax would have been too heavy and I would likely have tired quickly. (being in shape helps)
  • My mora knife was awesome. I never tried batoning or my Schrade full tang.
  • I never tried my fatwood; which I had tried last week.
I need to learn a little more about the Birch wood. It is supposed to have a resin in the bark that is good for ignition but I'm concerned about the health potential of the vaporized resin; if any. On the otherhand none of the OTHER wood offered by home depot offered their origin other than to describe it as hardwood without any indication of food safety.

Finally I totally underestimated the amount of time and energy it was going to take to process all that wood for 45 minutes of fire. Meaning I'd need a lot more more fuel for an evening of fire and at least double to make dinner for 4. I can only hope that there was also a proper campfire ring where I can make a Swedish torch.

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