Author Topic: Backyard Materials Harvest  (Read 1453 times)

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Offline FlaMike

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Backyard Materials Harvest
« on: October 01, 2014, 02:47:53 PM »
I kidded just a bit when I've talked about having tried something out in my "Backyard Test Jungle," but the truth of it is, I was only half-kidding.

It is a jungle out there. (Cue jungle sounds, monkey screeching, Tarzan yell, etc.)

While I didn't find a pine stump, I did find a section of a fallen branch that looked likely, so I decided to run some test.

First off:



This pic was taken just as the report came back,

"Positive Cat Scan for fat lighter'd!" AKA: Fat Wood. And tell me you didn't see that "cat scan" coming a mile of!)  :) Lab report won't be in because I don't have a Lab. Got an Aussie, just no water dogs in the area.

Took a cut off one side:



And then the final test:



That's ones kind of fuzzy, but the black smoke is pretty much a give-away. When the cut was made, I was rewarded with a very heavy, turpentine smell.

I'll prob'ly cut this up into maybe 4 inch pieces and then splitting those into quarters or smaller, depending on the thickness. It really doesn't take much of this stuff to get a blaze going.

And the other "treasure" I recovered was this:



Wasn't sure it was "punky" enough, so I cooked some up and gave it a try. Works just fine!

In the tinderbox:



That downed oak was a small one, only about 8 inches in diameter. But there's a section of it that I'm hanging on to, about 10 feet long or more. Should be able to keep that tinderbox filled for some time to come! And that's not counting what can be picked up on the trail. . .

I'll be keeping some char cloth in my fire kit, just because its so easy to use. But I think I'll keep it back, for "just in case." I'll be depending upon the char punk for fire starting, as it is a material I'll never have to worry about running short on. I'll consider the char cloth to be a "luxury" item.

Since I've started on this "fire-making kick," I've become something of a pyromaniac (again.)  :D Personally, I consider it to be very useful, but its also one heck of a lot of fun!

Mike S.
Spring Hill, FL



There is no such thing as One True Way.

Offline SwampHanger

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Re: Backyard Materials Harvest
« Reply #1 on: October 02, 2014, 01:38:58 PM »
 :thumbsup: lol on the Cat Scan. I have yet to master the flint and steel. Tomorrow night we're lighting the fire pit up and I need to remember to make some char cloth so I can join y'all's club.

Offline FlaMike

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Re: Backyard Materials Harvest
« Reply #2 on: October 02, 2014, 02:31:06 PM »
Char cloth seems to be "in fashion," but you might want to take a look at this video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FYEnrbZWMaU

Seeing this, and one other, is the reason I filled that tin with char punk wood. Nice thing about the punk wood is that all I have to do to collect more is to search for some good, hard wood. Sure enough, I'll fall right into a pile of punk wood, every time.  :)

Seriously though, take a look at that video if you haven't seen it before. He does a good job of explaining why and showing how.

And another interesting take on the subject is this one. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5f9CjH7plps Kind of have to admire this guy.

I let those two explain the advantages of their method. I'm pretty much sold on it, myself.

But for making char cloth, I like the stuff I made from an old, ragged-out pair of Faded Glory jeans. The char cloth from that was a lot more substantial that the flimsy stuff that came with the kit. Made my first batch while waiting for the kit. Cooked that one on a tin can stove, outside. The next batch of char cloth and all the char punk was made inside, on the gas range.

It was raining out and my wife is out of town for a couple of days. . .  ;D

Mike S.
Spring Hill, FL

There is no such thing as One True Way.

Offline SwampHanger

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Re: Backyard Materials Harvest
« Reply #3 on: October 03, 2014, 04:13:33 AM »
Thanks for the videos. I like the second one the most. I like realist approach at the past. Cause he is right people just didn't throw clothes away. They were everything from rags to bandages. Very good info Mike I'll let you know how my attemps work.

Offline MnSportsman

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Re: Backyard Materials Harvest
« Reply #4 on: October 03, 2014, 09:26:17 AM »

I'll be keeping some char cloth in my fire kit, just because its so easy to use. But I think I'll keep it back, for "just in case." I'll be depending upon the char punk for fire starting, as it is a material I'll never have to worry about running short on. I'll consider the char cloth to be a "luxury" item.


Mike S.
Spring Hill, FL

Ditto, although I try to use non charred natural stuff as much as possible; having some charred natural stuff in a tin is a good idea. With the charcloth to fall back on, if ever needed.
 :thumbsup: 

 Keepin it Natural.
 ;D


Glad to hear you are having fun with the F&S.
 :)
I love being out in the woods!   I like this quote from Mors Kochanski - "The more you know, the less you carry". I believe in the same creed, & think  "Knowledge & honed skills" are the best things to carry with ya when you're out in the wilds. They're the ultimate "ultralight" gear! ;)