Saturday, August 25, 2018

Understand Your Ferro (-cerium) Rod

MY TWO CENTS

Ferro rods ( or "Flint Strikers") are one of these things nobody really knows if it`s actually a Must-Have or Nice-To-Have.


XL sized Ferrocerium rod from China. Cheap as dirt incl. shipping


The first time I seen one was in an outdoor catalog (Anno 1989) and near magical properties were more than implied:

- start up to 1000 fires!

- 4000  °C hot sparks (!)

- works in any weather!

Now, 30 year later and just marginally smarter, I can not understand why someone would pack a ferro rod but not a BIC lighter!

To use a ferro rod in anger needs either a whole lot of skill or some pre-pared carry on`s like 

Petro Jelly Cotton Balls

or

a Tinder Rasp





In the meantime you can start a fire with a flick of your thumb with a BIC lighter...or create a lot of sparks (if lighter out of gas) to use in combination with above aids.


Cotton pad with petrojelly (vaseline) as firestarter.


HOW DOES IT WORK?

When steel strikes/scrapes flint (ferrocerium) , microscopic flecks of ferrocerium are knocked off. Due to the surface to oxidation ratio these flecks rust so fast that they start to burn.


WHAT IS THIS DEMON STUFF?!

Ferrocerium is a synthetic, pyrophoric alloy made out of iron (latin: "Ferro") and the rare earth Cerrium. It is often wrongly referred to as Flint-And-Steel because of the lighters using high carbon steel and natural flint.






Saturday, August 11, 2018