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Beware the free cheese !
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Don't throw away that empty lighter!

If ever you're in a situation where you need to build a fire and all you have left is an empty lighter, don't throw it away! That lighter can still easily make a fire. As long as it can make a spark, all you need is a small spark. The trick is to know how to use that spark to make a flame.

There are two ways that I know of to make a flame.

First method: If you're wearing cotton socks or a cotton shirt, pick the fine lint off of your socks or shirt and make a ball the size of a dime. Now take this ball of cotton and try to seperate the threads into very fine and fluffy threads. The finer and fluffier the threads are, the easier the spark will catch alight. Now take a (Kleenex) tissue and form one corner of the tissue to hold the cotton ball like a cup. Now take the ball of cotton and place it in this cup shape. Now spark your lighter in this ball and watch your tissue catch on fire. You can now place this flame in your prepared tinder.

Second method. open a (Kleenex) tissue and slowly and carefully grind the lighter wheel onto the tissue. Do this without creating a spark. What you want to do is make a small hill of flint pieces. Be patient, this may take a few minutes of grinding. Once you have enough flint, join them together in a small pile and create a spark that lands on this pile. Your tissue will instantly catch alight.

both methods require you to perform these actions in little or no wind conditions, so find a wind break or somewhere sheltered from the elements.

Hope this was educational and usefull!:)
 

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Banned
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455 Posts
Don't throw away that empty lighter!

If ever you're in a situation where you need to build a fire and all you have left is an empty lighter, don't throw it away! That lighter can still easily make a fire. As long as it can make a spark, all you need is a small spark. The trick is to know how to use that spark to make a flame.

There are two ways that I know of to make a flame.

First method: If you're wearing cotton socks or a cotton shirt, pick the fine lint off of your socks or shirt and make a ball the size of a dime. Now take this ball of cotton and try to seperate the threads into very fine and fluffy threads. The finer and fluffier the threads are, the easier the spark will catch alight. Now take a (Kleenex) tissue and form one corner of the tissue to hold the cotton ball like a cup. Now take the ball of cotton and place it in this cup shape. Now spark your lighter in this ball and watch your tissue catch on fire. You can now place this flame in your prepared tinder.

Second method. open a (Kleenex) tissue and slowly and carefully grind the lighter wheel onto the tissue. Do this without creating a spark. What you want to do is make a small hill of flint pieces. Be patient, this may take a few minutes of grinding. Once you have enough flint, join them together in a small pile and create a spark that lands on this pile. Your tissue will instantly catch alight.

both methods require you to perform these actions in little or no wind conditions, so find a wind break or somewhere sheltered from the elements.

Hope this was educational and usefull!:)
What if you don't have a Kleenex?
 

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For as plentiful and cheap as bic lighters are,I'm going to just carry several.I see no point in carrying empty lighters if I don't absolutely have to.The exactly same amount of space can be taken up by a full unit.
 

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Wild Edibles Expert
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10,167 Posts
You can also run the tinder along the side of your nose where the nostril meets the face. There are quite a few oil glands there and that can add to the flammability of the tinder. In olden days when men made their own pipes they would rub the finished bowl along the side of their nose to pick up the oil and add a sheen.
 

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RESET CONGRESS!!
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Interesting! Thanks.
I have noticed disgarded lighters (makes sense , 'cause they're disposable, after all), in parking lots, public trash cans,.. Maybe I'll pick one up and try this.
 

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The empty lighter isnt always empty... sometimes it is just too cold and 15 minutes in an armpit or between ur butt cheeks will get a flame...
OR pry off the little metal guard around the top, depress the gas thing and use your other hand et you to spin the wheel, that too will get you a flame (although it is a little one)
Oh, last thing, rip the little wheel off, save the flint, and use it in your zippo :)
 

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The empty lighter isnt always empty... sometimes it is just too cold and 15 minutes in an armpit or between ur butt cheeks will get a flame...
OR pry off the little metal guard around the top, depress the gas thing and use your other hand et you to spin the wheel, that too will get you a flame (although it is a little one)
Oh, last thing, rip the little wheel off, save the flint, and use it in your zippo :)
I've played with the screw-in valve before, makes a 4 inch lighter have a 6 in flame. :D: At the expense of rapid fuel consumption of course. I too save the flint from disposables for my Zippo.
 

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Update, I tried this with toilet paper, dryer lint, and kleenex. I used an empty mini bic, took the metal thing off and shredded the tinder different ways, including very finely. Tried for over 30 mins, no dice. Looks like this idea is bogus, I thought it would work as well. Putting the tinder close only resulted in it getting pulled into the flint wheel. The sparks seem too thin and weak to ignite even finely shredded tinder.
 

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It's not bogus, it works. You must be doing it wrong! Practice!
I did repeatedly, with several different tinders, i shredded the kleenex, ect into wispy pieces, I am not sure how to do it other than that. I have used firesteels, ect, so I know how to get tinder to catch a spark. With this, I got nothing, no matter how many different ways I tried it. I may try it again in the future, I would really like for this to work.
 

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I'm your huckleberry
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I did repeatedly, with several different tinders, i shredded the kleenex, ect into wispy pieces, I am not sure how to do it other than that. I have used firesteels, ect, so I know how to get tinder to catch a spark. With this, I got nothing, no matter how many different ways I tried it. I may try it again in the future, I would really like for this to work.
Firefighter's right, it works. Les stroud demonstrated the technique in order to light his seal blubber fueled lantern in his half made igloo. He used cotton fuzz and a kleenex. I think he also had a few Fritos Corn Chips or some gasoline fumes that he salvadged from his "broken down" snowmobile, to prime his tinder. But it was 20 below with ice and snow everywhere. If you need an accellerant, try using pine pitch or the Fritos. They ignite very well and are fairly available. Good luck with it.
 
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