For some context, we discussed the fire survival basics over here. In this post we are going to discuss ways generally for how to build a fire. To shortly recap our fire survival basics post, a fire runs mainly on three things: air (oxygen), fuel, and heat.
The Native American tribe, the Iroquois, is known as the pioneers of the pump drill method of making fires. They did so through the use of a flywheel that generated friction. This makes it share the same kind of principle behind the bow drill. Its construction is rather complex, but because of that complexity, it makes fire building an easy process.
We can start fires with air, and how does one do this you might ask? Well, one can make a fire piston, a device that’s been around for so long to start signal, camp and cooking fires. It’s mainly composed of a piston and cylinder, using compression to rapidly heat up tinder and turn it into coal. It’s most suggested for ease that one will use Charcloth as tinder.
If you remember the Hand Drill technique for building fires, this the Two Man Hand Drill technique is a modified version of that. The steps are quite similar but it’s much easier compared to the latter since, in this version, we have two people working side by side which distributes the work making it easier to create the fire.
One of the oldest and simplest techniques to build a fire, the hand drill method employs spindle rotation and downward pressure to create friction that results in heat. This heat then creates an ember which starts our fire. This primitive way of building a fire best works in climates that are dry and it basically has two major components: namely the drill and the fireboard.