Flint-on-Flint Firestarting

For practitioners of primitive arts, flint-and-steel has long been a mainstay of fire-starting.
Better yet, is if we can hit two rocks together and light our fires.
Flint-and-steel is excellent training to learn the technique of making and catching sparks. But what if we don’t have the steel? Obviously, fire by friction remains, but it is relatively time-consuming.
I’ve been trying to identify rocks that spark when struck against each other. Last night, I made some progress.
One thing that helps, is to work in low-light conditions. That’s how I made my latest discovery.
Last night, we had a pile of rocks that we needed to move. As we were putting them in the ATV trailer, I was pleasantly surprised by an orange spark! Time to stop and identify rocks!
The rocks were both quartz, and the one definitely had a substantial amount of red iron in it.
As we continued working in the dusk, sparks were flying everywhere! As we unloaded the rocks in a muddy stretch of road, there were frequent orange flashes as the rocks clattered into place.
Now, it’s a matter of getting good charred tinder close enough to the spark to catch.

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Fix-Ups–Hunter and Chef

Here are some blades that came in poor shape, and have gotten a face lift.

The Hunter

The knife arrived with a thick, dull edge, and missing its pommel. So, I sharpened it, filled the handle cavity with epoxy, and put in a couple spent pistol cases to boot. Then, made a top-notch sheath to go with it.

If you have any information about who made this knife, I’d be interested. The etch on the front looks like “HEP” followed by a 3-legged symbol. The stamp on the back appears to be an upside-down “L”, and 0953.

The Chef

This knife appears to have been a functional “business card” from days gone by. The etched inscription reads,

“Thanks For a Slice of Your Business”
“FLOYD ASHBY — Sand Springs, Okla.”

Up in the corner, the blade is stamped with “Vernco.”

The knife arrived rusty, with a ragged edge, and a ricasso that hung down in a manner that would interfere with cutting-board use. So, after buffing off the brown, I jointed the edge to a smooth curve, and did a full-bevel grind to bring it up to shaving-sharp.

And not to be forgotten–the notch in the spine. This seems to have been intended for lifting lids off of canning jars.

Again, if you have any info regarding the origins of this knife, I’m interested.

Both knives are up for sale or trade. So, drop me a line if you’re interested.

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Starting a Fire With Water and Plastic

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Brown Canvas Buffalo Skinner, S30V Steel

This is the first knife of this style that I have made with brown canvas micarta, as far as I can remember. $395.

knife and sheath

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Because You Can…

“Because you can

and they can’t,

and that is enough reason to help a neighbor.”

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Gathering Fir Pitch

Sorry, the video got deleted accidentally, then re-uploaded. It’s back!

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Obstacle or Bulwark? The Wall of Separation


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