Lesson 89 dK2 gets struck by car passing during turn. No injuries. Live here? Visit here? Get a dash camera! -13
Lesson 89 dK2 gets struck by car passing during turn. No injuries. Live here? Visit here? Get a dash camera! -13
Bins 2 & 3, Update 10, 20 July It dawned on me editing the video that this is a good subject for school kids and I like cussing, so I’ll cuss as much as usual. Or, add a few extra to keep your on your toes, the only difference is I’ll bleep it out. I won’t use the normal bleep sound. There are all kinds of interesting and fun sound effects that are a much better substitute. I’d rather be me, do the bleeps and still have something that may have educational value that a family could watch together.
Since that’s why I started all this to begin with. Documenting examples of things I did not see on video/photo. There are always lots of words often with no photographs or video. I’ve thrown several food waste items in my bins I’m not sure how many times over the last two years successfully. Then read online at various websites how this or that is a never, no-no, ever! kind of thing. The worms in these bins have a different opinion on what they find acceptable.
Following no dogma, I like to see for myself, the who, what, when and where. Then share what is discovered with video/photographic examples. Much is edited out of my videos for brevity. I don’t want to waste time with unnecessary footage that doesn’t add anything or document an actual event. Update 10 video for bins 2 & 3 has more footage than usual because extraordinary events did happen. It will show more detail how the bins are maintained and recorded.
Bin 2 starts with a little excitement when I discover a gecko in the bin. Didn’t notice it when the cardboard was moved all the spiders were distracting me. While I was trying to figure out where and what to do the with more than 20 spiders I spotted a gecko in the bin.
Once you see them you have to move fast or loose your chance to catch them. When this happens I’m usually able to catch it and let it go outside. This time all the chaos and my unsuccessful attempt at capture and release was recorded. Maybe next time. Hope I get it before the cats do.
As can be seen in the photos in this blog and in the video, the worms and other insects have picked everything clean. It’s amazing to see. The mangos want to grow don’t they? It looks like a nursery for mangos seedlings.
There was no noticeable odor or roaches. Overall it looks good inside bin two. The addition of more worms has clearly worked.
Bin 3 Not much to note about this bin. No odor, no roaches or chaos. A single mango seedling trying like all the others.
There must be a lot of worms in bin 3 because they clean the waste in there like a boss. Look at the photo below or better, the video. What an amazing transformation.
The video has as much as the fun and excitement as the camera could capture. Would liked to have caught the lizard and moved it off the porch to think if the cats get it leaves me unsettled. But that is life in or on any porch in Florida, a deathtrap for lizards when there is no food source or in many cases, they’re on the menu. Seems like I have a few regular viewers and readers of the blog. That’s a surprise. Hope you find something useful here while you visit. -13
Update 8, Bin 1, 10th July. Need to remove the dead grass out of a planter and recycle it into the bin. Everything set up to film, before recording began I removed the lid to make sure everything was in frame when the pursuit began. Caught a roach off guard. After tearing through all the cardboard caught the only roach in sight and ended it there. Searched the bin several times and saw nothing.
The video starts soon after the roach rodeo ended. Not very good footage of the transfer. Doing any task while watching it though the camera is not as easy as one might think. No offensive odors to note. Did not add any waste there was plenty from last time.
20th July Time to check bin conditions. Set up to film, hit record before I started this time. Roach rodeo part two begins as the cardboard is removed. It nearly escaped me it moved so fast. All the gory details caught on video. There was another roach in the cardboard that was taken out of the bin and set aside. Caught that roach and it is on its way to somewhere.
The overall condition of the bin looks like its progressing well. There are worms dispersed throughout the waste. The roly-polys are thriving the evidence is visible in the bin. There are maybe 50 or more. It’s hard to tell for sure. Plenty of white dot bugs wish I could see them under magnification. No foul odors.
An observation on onions in all of my bins over time. An onion, no not just the onion, most of the root/underground grown plants take much longer to decompose in the bin. The thing to note about the onion is while it looks like not much is happening from a top view, when turned over the bottom will be full of small earth worms. Not sure if I have footage yet in any of the videos. It appears that the younger worms are attracted to them.
To wrap it up, added a small amount of mangos and greens. Covered it with cardboard as usual. Didn’t add water this time the humidity level looked good. There isn’t much soil at this point so moisture levels have to be maintained and monitored. I’ve seen the top layer dry before. It helps to keep the cardboard close to the surface of the waste yet still have air flow.
Filmed a short video inside the bin. Not much to see. Close up view of how I like to see this bin with all the activity. Next time we’ll see if there’ll be another uninvited Roach Rodeo in town. For now everything looks good in the bin.
The title of the video was another topic I wanted to cover. I had come up with two. First was “Invaders caught, 3 Dead, Search continues” all of it true and clickbait as it gets. Sounds like and inspired by local headlines. The other choice was “Roach Rodeo Comes To Town”. That one is fun but not as headline dramatic as the first one. The next Worm bin notes will be more challenging and fun to title. Another reason why this is called the Vermicompost Experiment. -13
All Good In The Wood by Audionautix is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution license. For more check out the artist at: http://audionautix.com/
Note: 23 July 2018, as an experiment I changed the title of the video and blog to “Worm bin notes: Roach Rodeo Arrives, Chaos Ensues”. Lets see what happens. -13
I finally was able to film it! This has happened to the owner of this 2008 Dodge Caravan (original owner) and myself so many times it’s hard to believe how difficult it has been to record the event in progress. It’s all about timing, or the lack of it.
No matter it is here now. How does one explain this problem to a mechanic accurately? It really does have to be seen to comprehend what is happening. Headlight, indicator lights, and turn signals flashing. Windshield wipers flapping door/window control buttons not working.
Not one mechanic, after diagnostics at several dealerships and independent shops has ever been able to figure it out. As best as any of us can remember the battery has been changed 12 or so times. A battery would go bad, get replaced under warranty several times before deciding to try different brands. Thinking that might help since the shop performing the warranty couldn’t find any problems.
Over time is was proven this didn’t solve the issue at all. It continues to this day. The electrical issue featured in the video and battery replacements. It’s a shame, the van has 250000+ miles on it, the motor is doing well never had an issue. At this age and milage its not worth pursuing the search for a replacement has been ongoing. If anyone thinks they have an idea what the issue is we’d sure like to hear from you. We’re not looking to fix the issue simply understand it better. -13
This is a follow up to Facebook, Twitter, bye, bye: Part 2 What Happened Next.
Didn’t take long for the validation about Twitter and the kind of people who work there. Got to keep track of these things for accountability. This is better than my pocket note pad. All of us can see it. Someone with time and brains can put it all together. Found this and it will be more validation than is necessary it’s gets better as he speaks. Hardcore life facts can be hard to wrap around when the picture becomes clear, you can see it as he progresses. Felt it right in my heart. Check out the Twitter-Con and awakenings. -13
This is a follow up to Facebook, Twitter, bye, bye. blog. I thought for sure I had deleted the Twitter account. Then this happened.
Searching for “marine expeditionary boots” on Google to see what shows up after posting a few blogs and videos on the topic. This Danner Twitter post is what I found.
There it is in front of me. The reason I started using Twitter. Drive traffic to this blog with hashtags. The issue is the politics, censorship and constant notifications. I figured out the notifications thing but take issue with censorship of any kind. Here I am writing this blog because the search inspired me to do an experiment.
When I clicked on the Danner Post link I realized I still had a Twitter account. That is weird because I was sure it had been deleted. So much for that plan. Anyway that leads me to this experiment with hashtags and Twitter.
All the blogs concerning the boots were posted with two hashtags. I’ll be back in about 24 hours or so and see what happens. -13
Salmonella Infections Linked to Kellogg’s Honey Smacks Cereal Cereal? Honey Smacks, funny used to be called Sugar Smacks. Anyone watching these sources of information will know our food supply system is having major issues. Can’t eat cereal without fear of contamination. Wow!
Meat prepped/cooked at home, garden fresh produce, bone stock, home is the only safe place I know to eat. Restaurant inspection apps with terrifying results now, cereal, scary! -13
In the blog/videos Marine Expeditionary Boot: First Impressions, Marine Expeditionary Boot: Why I choose the M.E.B. for everyday wear and Marine Expeditionary Boot: Notes of the First 7 Days the topic of waterproofing new boots was left out to make this blog/video. I’ve read some product reviews stating that the nap and color of the boot had changed after using the Danner waterproofing spray. Function over aesthetics every time lets find out what happens.
Wearing the Danner Marine Expeditionary Boot for a few days indoors and deciding to keep them the waterproofing spray was applied before I wore the boots outdoors. The online reviews made me think the worst. Drastic color change, ruined nap. I’d rather have ugly waterproof dry boots than pretty khaki color wet ones.
The water based Danner waterproofing spray was easy to apply and smelled a little like Armor-all. Due to the runny nature of the spray I found it worked better if the surface was horizontal. At first I was spraying the boot in vertical. As soon as my first spray hit the leather/nylon the liquid ran off of the surface. It seemed to be better to spray the area, then distribute it evenly by hand. Washing hands first or wearing gloves will prevent dirt transfer from skin.
Two, soaking coats were applied, drying in between each coat. When first applied, before it dried, the surface of the leather did not look good. It was blotchy, light and dark spots throughout. It looked bad. Like the discoloration was permanent. Thought for sure I ruined them. After drying for several hours the color seems to be unchanged. Like disappearing ink. Remember that stuff?
A quick test under running water resulted in water beading off both boots like car wax. Not sure how much confidence I have in water based waterproofing. It worked or seems to. I’m wondering how long it will hold up. The real test will be on the fringes of the Everglades and getting the trash can to the curb. Check out the short video below if you want to see what happened. -13
My search for boots. What a change in experience over the past 40 years or so. I used to be in a place where I had access to multiple individuals wearing the best boots available at the time. Shopping for boots back then involved asking lots of questions to those who had them on their feet as we spoke. Checking out company claims then trying on a few prospects in store until I found what worked best.
2018 the search for new boots is much different. I’m no longer around multiple individuals with the best boots and trustworthy opinions. I’m surrounded by bare feet and flip-flops! Now if I need an opinion on boots I have to watch a video if I can find one or read a rating posted online. Given the nature of corporations to censor bad ratings, good rating sources must be scrutinized. Sucks not being able to ask the person wearing them the questions I’d like to.
Most retail stores won’t carry the kind of boots I would buy. They’re more of a speciality and much too expensive to have sitting around collecting dust. In the past there were only a few places that would sell them. With the internet I haven’t found any local stores that carried any of the boots I’d considered. They were only available online. That leaves me ordering boots online. If they don’t fit ship them back then order the next size or a completely different boot. Don’t like it much but that’s modern shopping.
I’m very picky about my boots. My opinions began to form in the 1970’s. From first hand experience as a Boy Scout on local hikes to my favorite, advise from infantry soldiers and pilots returning from Vietnam. I can still spit-shine boots if I have too. You? There is lace breaking, eyelets tearing out, soles falling off, laces caught in pedals, foot rot, leather or nylon/leather combo issues, vents or not, zippers and more. I could never have imagined all the possibilities of failure or discomfort, it pays to ask questions. I was really lucky.
My preferences then evolved from experiences responding to emergencies with a rescue squad, fire department, ambulance service and some related type side jobs. I no longer look for daily wear boots with NFPA ratings, nothing else has changed. My requirements are few but hard to find in one boot. Fit, comfort, materials, reputation, durability, confidence, performance and no excuses.
My requirements narrow the choices quickly. Goodyear welt fully sewn and a Vibram brand outsole. A heat fused sole as seen on most boots, once separated from the boot renders the boot useless. Unrepairable! Goodyear welt soles can be repaired multiple times. Can also be field repaired with the right materials. One should know how to fix one’s boots and have spare. I’ve never had a Goodyear welt sole fail me. Every pair of heat fused/glued boot or shoes I’ve tried failed.
Laces. How laces pass through and attach to the boot is also a major factor in my boot choice. Only two types of eyelet are acceptable. One or two piece eyelets or a loop type speed lace combination. Never, ever, hook type speed laces. One pair of boots 30 something years ago taught me everything I needed to know about them.
If I had a pair I would demonstrate the issues on video. But I made a vow then that I would never buy another pair of boots with them and support that crap ever again. Anyone who has the responsibility of life and property as a job task, hope the following helps you.
My why- never again of hook speed laces. The hook in the photo above is a good example. It’s the first hook located at the top of the boot. Items can catch that hook and pull it outward forcing the top of the boot inward flipping the lace off the hook requiring the boot to be tied again. These hooks can also be bent outward so the lace won’t hold or bent in trapping the lace preventing it from being untied. When attempting to bend it back into place the hook breaks. Also, the placement of the lace make the hook pull the boot body outward and from above. Eyelets pull lower and do not cause the inward motion caused by the hook.
Actual never again with the speed lace hooks come from emergency calls I was working. I like many saw the speed laces and thought it would be great to be able to put my boots on faster when a run comes in. Until several in field experiences changed my mind.
On the roof of a house about to lower a patient down a ladder, the wire part of a Stokes litter catches the top speed hook, flips it out, unties my boot. Pain in the ass I thought as I quickly tied the boot. Good thing there were others around it was doing CPR compressions. Didn’t give it much thought after that. Seemed like not such a big deal at the time just a hassle.
Not long after that experience I had another cardiac patient untie mishap. Doing compressions on an arrest I had to quickly brace my foot on the gurney to keep from falling when the ambulance made an evasive movement to avoid an accident. I was trying to get my footing on any part of the gurney I could. As I moved my foot the top speed hook caught on the gurney and untied it instantly.
Once part of the hook system comes unlaced it all goes. That time I was pissed off. Swore off the boots “never again!” and casually started looking for another pair.
But I didn’t get the message or move quickly enough. About a month after that I’m chest deep in Spring Creek with a patient clinging to the bridge foundation. I don’t know what’s under the water but the lace hooks at some point catch on something. Can’t reach it by hand without going under water. Not a reasonable or safe option at that point. Moving my foot around didn’t work so I pulled hard as a could.
It felt like I ripped the boot. Couldn’t see anything until we got out of the water. The patient was packaged at that point all that mattered was getting up the embankment into our ambulance. The way up the embankment was the last time I ever wore boots with speed laces. On our way to the place where we get back to the road I noticed that two of the hooks were bent. During a pause as we were preparing to go up the embankment I had the bright idea to bent the hooks back and broke them both.
So, that is the why, of the never again, with speed lace hooks. There are more problems I’ve seen over the years when other people were wearing them. On the opposite end I’ve heard from many people over the years how much they love their speed lace hooks. I wonder how much they’d like them if any of that was happening while they were being rescued. Can’t do that to anyone or myself ever again. It’s hard to believe those things have made it this far on boots.
Shank is also a must have. Prefer metal over plastic. Working on a ladder or pushing a shovel you will tell you very quickly if you have them. The M.E.B has a fiberglass shank. We’ll see how that works out.
Leather is a must, some nylon is also acceptable for hotter climates. As much as I’d like to have vents I have never found them practical in any application. In some of the driest locations I’ve been there is still a need for the ability to walk through shallow bodies of water. I’d rather have a boot be a little warm and dry and have to change sweaty socks than worry about wet feet for the shift because I stepped in a puddle of possibly contaminated water in boots with vents.
That was a long ass winded way to get to this place wasn’t it? The Danner Marine Expeditionary Boot has what I’m looking for. Snug, comfortable out of the box. No excessive foot movement within the boot that needs to be filled with insoles and socks. There is enough head-room over the top part of my foot to allow comfortable movement/flexing of my foot and toes. Like a glove fit. I did add *arch support like I do with all my footwear it was no surprise.
Leather/Cordura outer for durability and comfort in hotter climates like we have in Florida. A Gore-Tex liner so I can keep my feet dry when the water isn’t deep enough for rubber boots. We often have storms that leave standing water that require wading. Eyelet and loop speed lace combination works great. It’s easy to fine tune the laces.
Goodyear welt construction with a replaceable Vibram outsole. Danner says this boot is recraftable meaning they can repair the boot but not in every case. Based on past experience a good cobbler may also fix issues if the factory wasn’t able or not available. Then there is a USMC reputation for durability and confidence when my or someone else’s life depends on it.
I made notes of wearing the boot in the blog Marine Expeditionary Boot: Notes of the First 7 Days I’ll make an update video/blog in six months. We’ll see how the boots are holding up and if my opinion changes. Also there is a video review below check it out. -13
*NOTE: Spenco Total Support Max will not fit this boot. After trimming the insole to match the factory insoles I attempted to put one into the boot. With or without the laces in place it was so difficult to get into place I was sure I would either break the plastic support of the insole or the edge of the plastic support would tear the inside of the boot or liner.
The insole seems like it might be too wide or inflexible to work properly with these boots. I was able to angle them into the boot after much trying, aggravation and fear of damaging something during the process. Once in the boot it was clear it would not work in any way at all. In place the insole wanted to push up down the length in the middle as if it was being folded in half. Not a drastic bend, just a small raised area from lateral compression making them unusable in the M.E.B.
Thought it might be a good idea to make notes from my first week wearing the M.E.B. and keep track of how the boots felt each day. I’ve never kept notes on boots before but in the age of the internet and censored reviews it may help others make a wiser choice when purchasing vital items like boots. Don’t want company propaganda, I want real people sharing their experience. Here’s my first 7 days wearing the Danner Marine Expeditionary Boot
For those interested and for consistency I’m wearing Darn Tough Cool Max socks exclusively. I’ll blog/video about them after I’ve worn them longer. At present they are comfortable to wear and help keep my feet dry when moisture builds up.
Day one notes are in the blog and video Marine Expeditionary Boot: First Impressions
Day two feet feel good. No hot spots or rubbing. Still new stiff but soften up a little with body heat/moisture. The fit is snug and well fitting. Will need more arch support than the original insoles provide. It feels like the space is slightly empty in the arch. I have high arches I expected to add them and ordered *high arch insoles in anticipation. When standing stationary the rounding on the sole is noticeable. My ankles are wanting to tilt inward or outward. Depends on where I position my body weight.
Day 3 sat on my ass all day in front of a computer, boots on. Comfortable, so much for day 3.
Day 4 of boots on my feet. Light duty day. Grocery store, water the plants, worm bin maintenance. Really hardcore test huh? There are some notable experiences. The addition of an insole used for high arches helps the boots fit a little more snugly. Unexpectedly making the boots feel much more like they had been made for my feet. When I first put on the boots I had over tightened the lace in various places causing fatigue. Once this was addressed the comfort and fit felt good to be wearing.
Day 5 working on projects required me to be knelt down after several minutes noticed a pressure point in the same place on the inside ankle bilaterally. Not bad because I try not to spend time working like that because it is uncomfortable to work in any way. It could get uncomfortable when kneeling on the ground or in a confined space for a lengthy period of time. The shifting weight/switching sides or slightly moving could help remedy or give some relief. I make a note so if you’re in a predicament out there you won’t be surprised. It won’t keep me from wearing them and it’s a position humans don’t normally spent time much time in anyway.
Day 6 88°F/31°C, 65% or so humidity, thunderstorms on the way. Perfect time to move stuff into storage. Moving around obstacles, pushing heavy carts the tread kept traction on pavement, concrete and painted concrete. The arch or roundness of the tread is noticeable. Since the sole isn’t flat the ankle tends to tilt lateral until it settles. So far not a deal breaker it is something to be aware of. It may be the way I walk, when I do there is a rolling feeling when the toe part of the boot moves into the next step to push off. Not so sure how descriptive that was it is demonstrated in the video.
The heat build up but was never uncomfortable. I’m sure the tan color helped when in the sun. The socks and the Gore-Tex liner may be helping with moisture buildup. The socks were very wet with sweat. The liner of the boot felt dry. After a change of socks it was back to normal. No noticeable hot spots or rubbing. An issue that surprised me was the top speed lace loop on the left boot pressing into my leg. The way the boots are tied, the wrap around of excess lace presses one of the lace loops into my leg. Just the one on that boot. The right one, nothing tied the same way.
After experimenting its clear it had to do with the way the lace crossed the loop and amount of pressure on it. Fine tuning that really helped. It hasn’t been a problem after the adjustments.
Had to go through some mud and wet sand typical of Florida after the storm. Shortly after was able to hose them off. All of the dirt washed off. The leather beaded water like car wax. My feet were dry. This was after I’d changed socks. The boots stayed dry inside no problem. So far, good comfort without all the excess padding. My feet are liking these boots.
Day 7 putting the on boots is getting faster. The paracord lace has stretched and is settling into the memory spot it develops after regular use. No hot spots, rubbing or compression on the foot, ankle, arch or lower leg. As long as the laces are adjusted properly. My heel fits into heel cup well adding to the comfort. Although boot has a glove like fit on my foot there is enough space to flex the foot and toes as is sometime necessary for comfort.
The tongue stays centered like no other boot I’ve worn. With the help of a tool from the window glass industry I like to call a tongue fid I’m able to keep the tongue centered and free of bunching that causes pressure points. The tongue fid is stout but flexible plastic. The tapered end has rounded edges. It works really well for pushing the tongue into place as the boots are laced up. Those double folds can cause gnarly pressure points and be hard to move once the boot is tied. Sometimes it can also be used it for scratching parts of my leg or ankle without having to take off the boot. Some itching can’t be ignored.
The heat factor isn’t as bad as I thought it might be. In south Florida heat and humidity are part of life here. It’s expected. These boots don’t seem overly hot here. At this point it does seem I can feel a difference in temp where the Cordura is. It seems to be cooler than the foot. The foot area does build up moisture. The Darn Tough Cool Max socks are making a difference in a different way than I expected. Watch for a blog/video soon.
At present, they’re comfortable boots. Over the next six months I’ll take more notes and video with an update. Check out the blog Marine Expeditionary Boot: Why I choose the M.E.B. for everyday wear and video below. -13
*NOTE: Spenco Total Support Max will not fit the M.E.B. After trimming the insole to match the factory insoles I attempted to put one into the boot. With or without the laces in place it was so difficult to get into place I was sure I would either break the plastic support of the insole or the edge of the plastic support would tear the inside of the boot or liner.
The insole seems like it might be too wide or inflexible to work properly with these boots. I was able to angle them into the boot after much trying, aggravation and fear of damaging something during the process. Once in the boot it was clear it would not work in any way at all. In place the insole wanted to push up down the length as if it was being folded in half. Not a drastic bend, just a small raised area from lateral compression making them unusable in the M.E.B.
Dash Cam 85-87 and another Special Aircraft. Getting closer to catching up posting all the footage two cameras can capture. Trying an experiment with the video title format. From now going forward I’ll title the videos “Florida You Need A Dash Cam L-” with the number of the video following the “L-“. It’s an experiment to see if the videos will get more views or attract more subscribers. It will be interesting to see what happens.
Lesson 85, What happens when a driver puts a drink on top of car? Scooter and motorcycle in the middle and everywhere. Plenty of cut offs and no signal lane changes. Short ride through the Henry E. Kinney Tunnel. A couple of merge close calls.
Lesson 86, Features the I-95 North exit from 836 East where drivers like to drive past all the other drivers waiting their turn to get to 95 and cut line. They can be seen in the rearview mirror either getting out line to drive ahead or simply skip that and try to cut in line. As a rule we cut them off and won’t let them in. Some drivers can’t be made to wait for anyone this video is full of it wait until you see van driver. A cool jet crossing. dK2 where am I confusion. Jump ramp tow truck? A drawbridge break part of coastal living.
Lesson 87, Starts with a diver that cuts through the median to get past other traffic who then gets rear ended. Motorcycles in the middle stunt drivers. A scooter driver on the phone. Typical late use of turn signal. Quick trip from Fisher Island to Terminal Island. Peacock crossing. Building art. Park there you’ll get a ticket. Driving along, light traffic, no zombies in sight, almost there you realize, wrong exit!
Special 7 is all about aircraft crossings. It’s surprising how much of this kind of footage gets recorded. We had pilots in our family so I like this type of footage. It seems like some of it is really a once in a lifetime chance to capture. Like in 74 the jet is captured through the bridge with a nice flyover. The Goodyear Blimp, dam those cobra cameras! My favorite in this one might be the bird in 85. Hope you enjoy.
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In the blog What? Why? Where? Firestarter Kit Contents -Part 1 a follow up to the blog and video Vacuum Sealer Projects: FIRESTARTER topics covered what to store and carry kit contents with, this time it will be the What? Why? Where? of the content within the kit.
Kit contents will be in the order they were placed into the pouch in the video for simplicity.
The tins used to hold the pine heartwood were recycled packaging from ThruNite Ti5T penlights we use in our medical kit or on person. The unknown type metal tin measures about 3″ x 4″. They were used because they were here and the wood will most likely puncture the vacuum packaging at some point during long term storage.
Having a few on-hand I was surprised I found uses for them. I’ve looked for similar style small metal boxes online and found a few that may work for a kit like this or others. Keep in mind they may not be necessary at all. Check the one shown here it’s offered individually and in multi packs it might work for those who want to experiment.
The high pitch content pine heartwood that went into the tin boxes was wildcrafted. Whenever on the trail I keep an eye out for natural resources and collect every chance I get. Those that don’t have access to natural resources can find what they need. One place to look is a local source that sells fireplace or outdoor fire pit supplies, maybe a lumber mill. They may carry it as a fire starting aid. If not available local it can be ordered online.
Alcohol prep pads offer the pad and package for combustibles. I prefer them in case I get pine pitch stuck on my hand or tool. Pitch or tarry natural resins can foul up tools and adhere dirt and abrasives to the skin. Neither good for survival situations. They can and would be used for starting a fire however there are many other options to choose from first that might perform better. Also count on one or two being dry. It happend to us all the time in the ambulance. The pads in the photo link below are the same brand we used at many of the EMS and contract services from my past experience.
Book matches can be used in several ways. The obvious, start a fire. Mix with tender for heat intensity. Or pass them to a lighterless smoker in need. Other matches could be substituted that might be more fire starting oriented but they might not have the same functionality as the book matches. Book matches by the box can also be found in most local grocery stores.
Next is the magnifying glass. I’ve only started fires with one for practice. With a little help from the sun it will get a fire started. I burned small spot on my hand without trying. It’s amazing how intense that focused light can get. This is one fire starter I do not want to be without. The one in the video I’ve had since I was a child. The only two like it I have were taken from broken binoculars found in the woods on a hike. I like the one below because of the compact 1 1/2″ size and the case to protect it.
In the video the fresnel lens is never seen. That is because its packaged with the heartwood tin to prevent damage yet is easily accessible. Thought I would put it here with the magnifying glass since they’re similar in nature. These things are so compact, flexible and lightweight there is no reason to not have one in an emergency kit. A fresnel lens is also a good backup for reading glasses.
WetFire’s claim “Lightweight, safe, and easy-to-carry, UST’s WetFire Tinder 12-pk is guaranteed to light in windy or wet conditions.” Tested, they work for this project. Some notes about handling WetFire. In use it left an oily residue on my fingers that smelt like zippo lighter fluid.
Only removed by soap and water. Water alone did not remove it. In the future I’ll only handle the cube with a barrier. In a survival situation the last thing I want on my hand is an oily flammable substance with no soap and water to wash off. They work so well and have a way to handle them they seem like a much better modern substitute for trioxane bars that are becoming more scarce and expensive as time passes.
There is one match on planet earth I do not want to be without in a survival situation requiring fire. Watching the company propaganda video and self testing would lead an individual to draw one conclusion. Must have UCO matches just in case. Check out this company video, then click the matches photo and get some.
A small bulk pack like this was used to make the individual sealed packets. Each packet of five matches contains two individually sealed strikers. From the looks of it these will work when necessary. I have a lot of confindence they’ll work.
The natural fiber tender was another wildcrafted addition. Over the years I’ve passed by cedar tree falls with bark falling off, worked in woodshops collecting planner shavings, made charcloth and sought out any fiber that will hold a spark. Never seen any store offer natural tender. I’ve always had to wildcraft the natural tender. As of this writing I have no experience with the commercially available tenders. If a suitable one is discovered I’ll write about or make a video of it. Always looking.
The Doan Magnesium Firestarter has been on my person whenever I’ve spent time away from home in the woods, hiking or in camp or wherever since a Boy Scout leader showed us how to use them in 1970’s. Lost all of them along the way. Now days, always keep a few on-hand for replacements or new kits. Note about the Doan Magnesium Firestarter: there are fakes and pure junk out there make sure you are getting the Doan brand only.
First choice for fire starting any fire if I have it is a Bic lighter. Won’t use any other lighter from bad experiences. Among all the other fire starting kit available I have some caveman fire starting skill but have no interest in ever starting a fire like that if I don’t have to. Flick my Bic or work up a neolithic sweat? Pass me the lighter!
Light my Fire Swedish FireSteel is a great way to throw some sparks at tender. A pile of Doan’s Magnesium scrapings, tender and shower of sparks from this should get it started if my lighter won’t do it. I like this as a way to put sparks into tender over the flint striker on the Doan Magnesium Firestarter.
A Victorinox Swiss Army Pioneer or Camillus 1760 knife is in each kit mostly to provide a sharp edge to use with the Doan and FireSteel and other fire preparation task. A sharp edge is required to use the Doan’s and FireSteel. Doan’s is supply your own sharp edge. The FireSteel supplies one that last all of a few second in my hand. The part I prefer to use for creating sparks is the awl. Holding the awl/knife body close to the striking surface gives good leverage to create a shower of sparks.
That is the kit contents. The lighter and book matches are the only spark generating items in the kit that won’t do well when wet. The pine heartwood, magnifying glass, WetFire, UCO matches, Doan Magnesium and FireSteel can be temporarily submerged, have the excess water shaken off then used immediately. That is the What? Why? Where? of the FIRESTARTER kit. Ever have questions click on the Contact tab or leave comments below. -13