Mullein pith with flint and steel

Discussion in 'Fire' started by Flintlock, Jun 17, 2011.

  1. Flintlock

    Flintlock Guide

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2008
    Messages:
    1,328
    Likes Received:
    0
    Mullein pith is one of those natural tinders able to catch a spark from flint and steel without speacial treatment. Perhaps I have missed it, but I dont recall seeing anyone here post a video of this techinique.
     
  2. Sweeneyguy

    Sweeneyguy Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend Bushclass II

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2010
    Messages:
    6,792
    Likes Received:
    99
    Location:
    New York
    If anyone had done it or knows about it, it would be Skab.
     
  3. Skab

    Skab Staff Staff Member Super Moderator Vendor Bushclass I Bushclass Instructor

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2009
    Messages:
    15,477
    Likes Received:
    287
    Location:
    Nebraska
    I've played around with it. Gotten to work a few times, but not near as easily as Milkweed Ovum.

    But, no I do not have a video on it.

    I think it's Flintlocks turn to make one!
     
  4. Flintlock

    Flintlock Guide

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2008
    Messages:
    1,328
    Likes Received:
    0
    :) Not a problem. Here's one from a couple of years ago. Slice it thin and put it right on the edge of the flint.

    YouTube - ‪20081231192721‬‏

    Next maybe we can discuss one hand bow drill....
     
  5. Skab

    Skab Staff Staff Member Super Moderator Vendor Bushclass I Bushclass Instructor

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2009
    Messages:
    15,477
    Likes Received:
    287
    Location:
    Nebraska
    I knew you had one! Just like your video on Milkweed Ovum you never post.

    Good stuff.
     
  6. J

    J Bushwhacker Bushclass I

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2009
    Messages:
    13,552
    Likes Received:
    9
    Location:
    here nor there
    Ive been trying milkweed ovum for a couple weeks now without luck. I need to try some pith.
     
  7. Flintlock

    Flintlock Guide

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2008
    Messages:
    1,328
    Likes Received:
    0
    The Milkweed ovum clip is from 2008. I find it works best by tearing off one end so its ragged edge is exposed to the spark.

    YouTube - ‪Catching a spark in milkweed ovum‬‏
     
  8. RoadLessTraveled

    RoadLessTraveled Guide Bushclass I

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2012
    Messages:
    1,183
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Suburban Austin TX
    Great videos, Flintlock. I saw the article you recently posted about Natural alternatives to charcloth for flint and steel. The article claims that punk wood can catch a spark:

    I agree that punk would be an excellent material to use, due to its abundance. Have you ever seen punk wood catch a spark? Do you have a video up your sleeve of using punk wood to catch a spark? Or is it Skab's turn :)
     
  9. mainewoods

    mainewoods Maine Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2010
    Messages:
    14,905
    Likes Received:
    588
    Location:
    Maine
    Out standing was going to try it one day. Thinner the better right?
     
  10. Flintlock

    Flintlock Guide

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2008
    Messages:
    1,328
    Likes Received:
    0
    This is Maple punk. Ordinary striker and flint.

    [​IMG]

    Also works in the fire piston

    [​IMG]

    "Have you ever seen punk wood catch a spark?"

    Well, yes.... I only post things I've actually done and can speak about from first hand experience. If you see it here, you can take to the bank.
     
  11. RoadLessTraveled

    RoadLessTraveled Guide Bushclass I

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2012
    Messages:
    1,183
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Suburban Austin TX
    Wow! Hey, I'm a believer! I'm very impressed, thanks for the video. I hadn't heard anywhere else that punk could catch a spark. But I'm very glad to see that punk is in the special set of natural materials that will catch sparks. That's great! Do you think that the type of wood (hard vs. soft, from a high sugar sap tree vs not) is important? Maple works, have you succeeded with punk from any other tree? How "punky" do you think is optimal (barely vs. falling apart crumbly)?
     
  12. ForestNH/VT

    ForestNH/VT Scout

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2008
    Messages:
    381
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    NH/VT border
    Appreciate the videos! Chaga has always been my go-to material, haven't been too successful with Milkweed ovum and never tried Mullein or straight punk. Need to practice more with these three. Thanks!

    Forest
     
  13. Dux

    Dux Banned Member Banned

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2011
    Messages:
    1,002
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    SE Wisconsin
    I've used punkwood (PW) from several trees as NUTs. (Natural Uncharred Tinders.) Think one was Cottonwood, another Maple (some suckers comin up from the base so I'll know once the leaves open.) n one might've been Oak.

    Can rip chunks off with your barehands but doesn't crumble to dust is roughly what I look for. By the time it easily crumbles into dust it's worthless for any fire making. Eaten by Carpenter Ants is common but not necessary. I mainly use PW as a coal extender or to hold a coal in case I'm playing with suboptimal materials. Slice it thin n if it is also a NUT, it goes into a special waterproof container.

    Too thin n the coal goes out before I can transfer it. Too thick n sparks bounce. No micrometer on hand but say thickness of atleast two sheets of typing paper n no more than four. Cutting on an angle so the thin edge catches but the coal grows is a nifty trick. Getting it off the flint quickly like Christian points out in one of his vids is crucial as well. Simply rocking my thumb away from the edge while still keeping the NUT/char pinned to the flint is usually enough.

    Chaga is the best NUT I've ever used but lucky for it is hard to come by. Milkweed Ovum (MO) is super common n easiest to harvest, but the season is short. Try finding one now let alone getting it to produce a coal. Early fall MOs take a spark real well. Mullein seems to be generally consistent. I find variations from stalk to stalk but not near as wide of a range as PW or MO.


    Anyone else ever produce a coal in Milkweed Fluff (MF) using flint n steel?

    Most go out before I can transfer it to my tinder bundle but I have suceeded in producing flame several times. Critical aspect seems to be how dense the bunch of MF is. Too loose n nothing. Too dense n coals go out before I can transfer them. .
     
  14. Schwim

    Schwim Tracker

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2012
    Messages:
    102
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Ohio and Michigan
    I believe abo4ster did a vid of the pith. If I'm not mistaken he lit it 5 or 6 times within a couple minutes.
     
  15. Dux

    Dux Banned Member Banned

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2011
    Messages:
    1,002
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    SE Wisconsin
    Does everyone else have better success with the brown papery outside of MO? I've found that getting the pith to catch a spark is a lot tougher. Whole ovum holds a coal once it's caught the spark n is entirely consumed.

    Ever notice how awesome the coal of charred PW is? Holds it forever (most chars, especially thin cotton, are quickly consumed.) n very hot. It's great when working with suboptimal or damp tinders.

    To me there's a three step evolution with firemaking. Getting a spark or coal. Producing flame. Building a self-sustaining fire. By that last I mean it's no longer in danger of going out any time soon n has a sufficient bed of coals that getting flame again will be easy.
     
  16. actichy

    actichy Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2010
    Messages:
    1,154
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Cedar Rapids, IA
    After reading this thread today, I had to try it out, again. I tried mullein pith a couple weeks ago, but couldn't get it to light. I finally had success today. After a lot of slicing and striking, I was able to get a coal and light a cedar bark tinder bundle. Thanks everyone for the info!

    Here's a couple pics:
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  17. RoadLessTraveled

    RoadLessTraveled Guide Bushclass I

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2012
    Messages:
    1,183
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Suburban Austin TX
    actichy, nice job! This is on my near term to do list. I've been trying but haven't succeeded yet. Did you use a file or a better quality striker to light the mullein pith?
     
  18. actichy

    actichy Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2010
    Messages:
    1,154
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Cedar Rapids, IA
    I used a steel striker that I bought at a recent gun show.

    Something I should mention, too: I carved the mullein pith, so that it was thin on one end, but thicker on the other, like a wedge. I struck the spark into the thin end, so the spark would spread to the thicker end eliminating the need to transfer the spark to another material. I lit the cedar bark directly from the mullein pith.
     
  19. mainewoods

    mainewoods Maine Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2010
    Messages:
    14,905
    Likes Received:
    588
    Location:
    Maine
    actichy Out standing ! Thanks for sharing.
     
  20. mainewoods

    mainewoods Maine Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2010
    Messages:
    14,905
    Likes Received:
    588
    Location:
    Maine
    Got to Love " Chaga" For sure Brother!
     
  21. Dux

    Dux Banned Member Banned

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2011
    Messages:
    1,002
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    SE Wisconsin
    Three more fires with Milkweed Fluff, flint n steel today. Each pod gives me 4-6 coals. Can easily get a dozen fires per pod if I transfer the coal to punkwood (or anything) n extinguish the fluff right away.

    Remember when storing any parts of the Milkweed plant to let it breathe. Loves to put on a colorful mold show. I use three mesh apple bags, each inside the other.

    For fun used a golfball sized bunch of Meadow Vole nest (prairie grasses) with each coal. Put that in Paper Birch bark for the first fire, River Birch bark for the second n Juniper bark for the third. Both Birch barks were unprocessed, intact just the way it was taken off the tree. The Juniper was put in a stout sack, set on a log n pounded with a stick.

    Anyone ever see Milkweed Fluff on a Flint Fire Tinder list?

    Just playing with various possible tinders n have had such great success I decided to share. Easier to work with than the piths once you figure out the optimal density. Nicest thing about MWF is it's a whole lot easier NUT to recognize than punkwood. Biggest con is not available in all seasons like PW.

    There's a Friction Fire Tuesdays Thread, maybe a Flint Fire Thursdays thread is in order? Yeah, I know today is Tuesday. Be rude to jack/compete with that thread so a different day would be in order. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, right?

    Happy trails.
     
  22. Dux

    Dux Banned Member Banned

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2011
    Messages:
    1,002
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    SE Wisconsin
    Also find that MWF doesn't absorb moisture, which has sometimes been a problem with other NUTs. More so with PW than the Piths.
     
  23. Flintlock

    Flintlock Guide

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2008
    Messages:
    1,328
    Likes Received:
    0
  24. Western

    Western Tracker

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2012
    Messages:
    124
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Central Iowa
    Tried the mullein pith tonight and was able to get several sparks to take, but the pith would burn up faster than I could get it to the tinder bundle.
    I picked it up this winter and it has been in my garage for several months. Could it be too dry? Too old? Did I cut it too thin?
    I also tried it in the fire piston and it would instantly char the whole chunk, no coal, no smolder just black and cold. Anyone else tried it in the fire piston?
     
  25. Dux

    Dux Banned Member Banned

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2011
    Messages:
    1,002
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    SE Wisconsin
    I grade all tinders by 3 categories. For Flint Fire they are:
    1. Catches spark real easily - like primo char or Chaga. Whisper spark as you walk by n it glows!

    2. Catches spark medium difficulty - some sparks bounce or go out too quick but some will hold.

    3. Pure frustration to catch a spark but will hold a coal. Useful as a coal extender but real tough to use as primary (spark catching) tinder.

    Most NUTs I've worked with are #3. Some are #2. Only Chaga has been #1.

    Not having seen yours, my guess would be too thin. Try cutting a wedge shape, that's what I came up with last year to solve the same problem you are having. Too dry? Don't think there is any such thing. My old pith the coal wanders a lil n goes out n is harder to get a coal with. So pretty sure not too old.

    I've put a slice of #3 with the #1 right on the flint. Sometimes it works. Hopefully it will transfer the coal n hold it for you. You could use punkwood or any coal extender.

    Never used a Fire Piston.

    Happy Trails!
     
  26. Flintlock

    Flintlock Guide

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2008
    Messages:
    1,328
    Likes Received:
    0
    Absolutely! Mullein makes a good fire piston tinder. Try a larger piece and rather than attempting to transfer the coal to your nest, use the fire piston coal to ignite a much larger chunk of pith or other extender and place that in the fiber nest.
     
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2012
  27. Scott Allen

    Scott Allen Guide

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2011
    Messages:
    3,825
    Likes Received:
    7
    Location:
    Socialist Republic of Maryland
    To make it extra easy to catch a spark, I char my punk wood in a tin just like cloth. You strike your sparks down into the tin and pick up a piece that has caught the spark. Close the lid and any others will go out. I've not tried mullen pith in the raw. Thanks for the tip!

    Scott
     
  28. Western

    Western Tracker

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2012
    Messages:
    124
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Central Iowa
    Thanks for the encouragement. I tried again tonight and successfully got mullein pith to go in the fire piston. Now I just need to keep slicing and get it with the F&S.
    I was successful with punk wood and F&S but couldn't get it to work in the fire piston. It might be a little too damp yet from the rains a few days back so I'll let it dry some more and try again.
     
  29. Flintlock

    Flintlock Guide

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2008
    Messages:
    1,328
    Likes Received:
    0
    Uncharred wood punk varies in its ability to catch a spark and propagate a coal by wood species. Hard Maple works best.

    One of the desirably attributes of the fire piston is that with repeated strokes it will actually dry slight damp tinders through the heat of compression. Tinders such as cattail fluff may require 3 - 4 attempts and the fluff will char in the piston before it catches.
     
  30. Dux

    Dux Banned Member Banned

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2011
    Messages:
    1,002
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    SE Wisconsin
    Y'all light (by any means) a bit of a prospective tinder n watch the coal?

    If the coal grows visibly as I watch w/o blowing, I consider it primo. If it grows w/ blowing, it's medium. If it shrinks despite blowing, worthless. Saves a lot of wasted time to sort it before taking out the flint n striker. Especially useful w/ punkwood but some piths n ovums are duds too. Also when rediscovering NUTs. After all, "there is nothing new under the sun."
     
  31. RoadLessTraveled

    RoadLessTraveled Guide Bushclass I

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2012
    Messages:
    1,183
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Suburban Austin TX
    I've tested materials' ability to hold an ember by using an existing fire/ember, exactly according to your logic. When experimenting with new materials, it saves a lot of time to prove whether or not there's any reason to hope that the weaker spark of flint rock and steel will succeed.
     
  32. the_finn

    the_finn Scout

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2012
    Messages:
    200
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Central Arizona
    I agree, it's nice to have a way to test for an ember before trying to catch a spark off of the flint and steel. I've been playing around with some natural tenders using a fresnel lens. Quick and easy way to test, as long as you have sunshine. Good tinders light really quick, as soon as you focus the lens. Good way for noobs, like myself, to practice preparing their birds nest, transferring the ember, and getting a flame, as well.
     
  33. GeorgeHedgepeth

    GeorgeHedgepeth Tracker

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2012
    Messages:
    117
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Michigan
    The placenta inside a gourd works very well! Not the lining, but the part in which the seeds are embedded. Domestic and wild (buffalo and coyote gourds from tje desert) gourds both seem to work. This is one I have never seen before...
     
  34. Flintlock

    Flintlock Guide

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2008
    Messages:
    1,328
    Likes Received:
    0
    You're right George. I discovered this a couple of years ago in a crossbred squash that laid out in my garden all winter. The outside had turned into a hard shell similar to a gourd. The inside had a fibrous honey comb that worked well in the fire piston also.
     
  35. RoadLessTraveled

    RoadLessTraveled Guide Bushclass I

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2012
    Messages:
    1,183
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Suburban Austin TX
    Thanks for sharing your knowledge with us! You never know how every piece of info like this might make a big difference to somebody some day.

     
  36. GeorgeHedgepeth

    GeorgeHedgepeth Tracker

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2012
    Messages:
    117
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Michigan
    Has anyone here ever tried the pith inside a corn stalk?
     
  37. Skab

    Skab Staff Staff Member Super Moderator Vendor Bushclass I Bushclass Instructor

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2009
    Messages:
    15,477
    Likes Received:
    287
    Location:
    Nebraska
  38. RoadLessTraveled

    RoadLessTraveled Guide Bushclass I

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2012
    Messages:
    1,183
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Suburban Austin TX
    How about corn stalk pith with flint & steel?

    Don't see too much corn growing here in Austin TX, or I'd harvest a few and try it myself.

    I got milkweed ovum to catch the flint rock & steel spark. I'm drying out another mullein stalk right now and will continue to try to get its pith to catch a spark. I've suspected that piths of other plants would probably catch a spark, so I'm on the look out for such.

    Also, since corn stalk has such a good pith, I wonder if the stalk would be good for the hand drill or bow drill.

    George, thanks for raising the initial question. Skab, you're awesome! Thanks for the demo!
     
  39. Skab

    Skab Staff Staff Member Super Moderator Vendor Bushclass I Bushclass Instructor

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2009
    Messages:
    15,477
    Likes Received:
    287
    Location:
    Nebraska
  40. actichy

    actichy Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2010
    Messages:
    1,154
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Cedar Rapids, IA
    The cottonwood trees in my area are releasing their seeds. I've seen the posts about using un-charred milkweed down as tinder, so I thought I'd experiment with cottonwood fluff. Sure enough, it takes a spark from flint and steel. It stays lit for a good amount of time, too. One should be able to add it directly to a tinder bundle. I tried, but I should have prepared the tinder bundle better. This is another tinder that needs to have the right amount of fluffiness versus compactness to work right. I got two coals from cottonwood fluff yesterday, but haven't been able to do it again since.

    Some other un-charred natural tinders I've read about and want to experiment with are cottonwood inner bark and elderberry pith.
     
  41. Flintlock

    Flintlock Guide

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2008
    Messages:
    1,328
    Likes Received:
    0
     
  42. RoadLessTraveled

    RoadLessTraveled Guide Bushclass I

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2012
    Messages:
    1,183
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Suburban Austin TX
    One step ahead of me, Bro!

    [​IMG]

    I collected this wad about 4 days ago and was planning to experiment with it. You beat me to it!

    I just ran and tried it. I burned a pinch of it with a lighter to test it, and it burned very fast, and held an ember. But with flint(rock) and steel, my sparks only caught briefly and then went out - very similar to my results so far with mullein pith. Actually, the sparks seemed to hold a bit better than with mullein, so I'm hopeful!

    Thanks for the post!


     
  43. actichy

    actichy Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2010
    Messages:
    1,154
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Cedar Rapids, IA
    No, I mean traditional flint and steel. I tried it with a ferro rod, too, but I don't really remember how well it worked.
     
  44. Flintlock

    Flintlock Guide

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2008
    Messages:
    1,328
    Likes Received:
    0
    A video of your method would be much appreciated.
     
  45. Skab

    Skab Staff Staff Member Super Moderator Vendor Bushclass I Bushclass Instructor

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2009
    Messages:
    15,477
    Likes Received:
    287
    Location:
    Nebraska
    I have gotten cottonwood catkins to go with traditional flint and steel. But, it took a while and it has not proven to be reliable. I was using the tinder box method vs. the pinch method. I got the idea from reading about inuits using artic willow catkins with pyrite and flint. I'm still working on making it more repeatable. But, it can work.
     
    Last edited: May 9, 2012
  46. actichy

    actichy Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2010
    Messages:
    1,154
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Cedar Rapids, IA
    I have tried lighting cottonwood fluff several more times throughout the week with no real success. I can get it to catch briefly, but can't get a lasting coal. The method I used was to collect the fluff and roll it between my palms like rolling a ball of clay. Then I placed the ball of fluff on top of my flint and strike the steel against the flint. There must be some ideal state of "fluffiness" to get a spark to catch and create a coal. I agree with Skab that this isn't a very reliable method of flint and steel fire lighting.
     
  47. RoadLessTraveled

    RoadLessTraveled Guide Bushclass I

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2012
    Messages:
    1,183
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Suburban Austin TX
    I also tried some more over the weekend. I take walks around the block in the evenings with the family and we go past a cottonwood that is seeding. It's impossible to resist picking up the fluff and collecting it. No real success. The sparks catch but go out within a second. My method is to keep a pinch of the fluff as thin and fluffy as possible near the edge of the stone, to maximize air flow around the new ember as it forms. The times when a spark catches, smoke is produced, and it even spreads slightly, about a millimeter, leaving a small black spot in the fluff. So it's definitely burning, but so far, they've all gone out very quickly.

    When you succeeded, did you use the same method - rolling it into a ball?

    I'm not going to give up. My results with mullein pith are equally poor, but reliable methods of using it have been found. I'm hopeful that a reliable method for cottonwood fluff also exists.
     
  48. actichy

    actichy Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2010
    Messages:
    1,154
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Cedar Rapids, IA
    Yes, I rolled the down between my palms, like rolling a ball of clay. I tried a couple more times over the weekend. I had about the same results you did. I'm guessing one needs the right amount of air between the fibers to support combustion. The down might need the right density to propagate the coal. If the ball is too thick, it might not have the energy to spread the coal. If the ball is too thin, there might be too much space between fibers to propagate the coal.

    So far, it seems to be very finicky. I'll keep working at it and see what I can come up with.
     
  49. Flintlock

    Flintlock Guide

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2008
    Messages:
    1,328
    Likes Received:
    0
    I wouldn't be too concerned about it. I've experimented with poplar cotton for several years with both flint and steel and fire piston. I've tried it fluffed and compacted and have never seen it catch a spark or maintain a coal by flint and steel...and I have laid some pretty hot sparks on it.

    It will however, catch and propagate a coal in the fire piston when compacted. Perhaps it needs to attain a certain critical mass temperature or low moisture content for it to work. Similar to cattail fluff, the piston will first char the poplar cotton, then ignite a coal. Two or three attempts are often required.

    I dont know a thing about the nature of midwest cottonwood but in the Northeast our poplar cotton is only available for a few days each year. While good to know about, its short period of availability makes it rank pretty low on my wild tinder list. There are much more useful and readily available natural tinders to harvest.
     
  50. Woods Walker

    Woods Walker Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2011
    Messages:
    8,201
    Likes Received:
    1,043
    Location:
    Konnecticut
    Bump because I am going to give this a go soon.
     

Share This Page