Tinder


All is now ready for creating a spark, but that spark cannot live alone,

it must have something it can ignite before there will be a flame. What

is wanted is tinder, and tinder can be made of various materials, all of

which must be _absolutely dry_. Here is one receipt for making tinder

given by Daniel C. Beard: "The tinder is composed of baked and blackened

cotton and linen rags. The best way to prepare these rags is to bake

them until they are dry as dust, then place them on the hearth and touch

a match to them. As soon as they burst into flame, smother the flame

with a folded newspaper, then carefully put your punk (baked and charred

rags) into a tin tobacco box or some other receptacle where it will keep

dry and be ready for use."



This can be prepared at home. In the woods gather some of the dry inner

bark of the cedar, the fine, stringy edges of white or yellow birch, and

dry grasses, and dry them thoroughly at the camp-fire.



Mr. Beard also says: "You can prepare tinder from dry, inflammable woods

or barks by grinding or pounding them between two flat stones. If you

grind up some charcoal (taken from your camp-fire) very fine to mix with

it, this will make it all the more inflammable. A good, safe method to

get a flame from your fine tinder is to wrap up a small amount of it in

the shredded bark of birch or cedar, so that you may hold it in your

hand until it ignites from the embers produced by the saw."



With all your material at hand for starting a fire, make one turn around

the spindle, with the bow-string, as in Fig. 76. Place the point of the

lower end of the spindle in the small hole or "fire pit" at the inside

end of a notch in the fireboard, fit the socket-block on the top end of

the spindle (Fig. 76), and hold it in place with one hand, as shown in

Fig. 77. Grasp one end of the bow with the other hand and saw it back

and forth. This will whirl the spindle rapidly and cause the friction

which makes the heat that produces the spark. When it begins to smoke,

fan it with your hand and light your tinder from the sparks.



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