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The Amazing Fire Piston

      The primitive Fire Piston operates on the same principle as a diesel engine. When air molecules are rapidly compressed within the cylinder, the temperature of the air becomes hot enough to cause combustion. A single thrust of the piston ignites tinder placed in the end of the shaft. Since fire pistons create fire through compression, they function even after complete submersion and make an excellent addition to survival gear. The fire-piston is capable of creating a live ember in a fraction of a second and open flames in less than 30 seconds... even in windy conditions.
      While fire pistons are difficult to construct, they are durable and reliable. A properly maintained fire piston will provide many hundreds of lights. When they eventually do become worn, original performance can be restored in minutes by replacing the rubber gasket. Complete instructions for care and use are included.

Rubber O-ring Gaskets vs. String Gaskets
      Until recently, most fire pistons were manufactured with string gaskets. Although they worked effectively, it was often necessary to wipe petroleum jelly (Vasoline) on the string gasket to get the air-tight seal required for ignition. These string gaskets also had to be replaced periodically, which required some careful handiwork. Therefore, we are pleased to upgrade to the latest fire piston technology, featuring rubber O-ring gaskets for a tighter seal, better fire-starting, and easier gasket replacement.
      Manufactured in the USA by Jeff Wagner, these are the highest quality fire pistons available anywhere in the world. Each piston comes with a roll of charcloth. The charcloth is placed on the end of the shaft that is inserted into the cylinder and ignited. The ember is placed into a tinder bundle of soft, dry fibers and blown into flame.
      All pistons are thoroughly tested to assure performance. Customer satisfaction is guaranteed. If you don't like it for any reason, simply return in original condition within 5 days for a full refund. We don't like to keep our customers waiting, so we have ordered a supply ahead to expedite the fastest possible delivery to our customers. Most models are now in stock for immediate shipment.

Scout Model
      This Scout Fire Piston is a low-cost, mass-produced model, constructed entirely from modern space age materials and engineered to hold up under the harshest outdoor environments. It features a high compression O-ring seal for dependability. It is completely waterproof and impervious to the elements.
      This is a great back-up fire-starting tool for scouts, hikers, backpackers, and survival kits. Consider picking up a five-pack for a unique gift idea!

Deluxe Vented Fire Pistons
      These fire pistons feature a brass-tipped piston with a rubber O-ring for an incredibly airtight seal, maximizing fire-starting efficiency, plus a novel pressure release valve.
      As with all O-ring fire pistons, the super-tight O-ring seal prevents full insertion of the piston for storage. The compressed air forces it back out. To compensate, the inventor/manufacturer added a brass screw to serve as a handy pressure relief valve. Turn the screw to release the air, then tighten it again to create vacuum suction on the piston, preventing accidental loss in the field. Available in hardwood and water buffalo horn.

Fire Piston, Scout Model $40.00 Quantity:
Fire Piston, Scout Model - 5 pack (Save $35) $165.00 Quantity:
Fire Piston, Deluxe Vented - Wood $70.00 Quantity:
Fire Piston, Deluxe Vented - Horn $85.00 Quantity:


      I just wanted to send my thanks for making such a beautiful and functional fire piston. This is an addition to my "possibles bag" that I will cherish for the rest of my life. Your craftsmanship is of the highest quality I have seen in many years. It is a piece of art! Thank you again.

Jimmie L. Payton

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Oakum Tinder

      Once you have a hot coal from your fire piston, bowdrill, handdrill, or flint & steel kit, you will need to place the glowing ember into a nest of light, dry, fibrous materials, called a tinder bundle. Good tinder bundles can be made from dead grass, sagebrush bark, or the inner bark of a dead cottonwood tree, and many other materials. Just look around for dry, fluffy materials and shape them into a nest-like form. In the mountains you can use "pine fluff", the dried flower parts of the pines which often accumulate in small piles around logs and boulders. As a curiosity, very fine steel wool can also be used. The steel fibers are so fine that they catch fire and burn, one of those things you almost have to see to believe.

      We hope that you the reader will learn to make your own primitive fire sets and collect your own tinder, but to get started you may want to use our quality "oakum" tinder. Oakum is made of fibers from the jute plant. Historically, oakum has been manufactured for plumbers, heavily greased and used for packing around steel pipe fittings. The oakum we have is ungreased, plain dry fibers. A small amount of "oakum" tinder is included with the flint & steel kits, and shredded cedar bark is included with the fire pistons. Tinder is sold separately for bowdrill and handdrill sets.

      Make your tinder bundle into the form of a nest with a hole in the center to place the coal. Cradle the bundle in your hands, gently closing the front to wrap the coal inside. Be careful to not smother it, but only to blanket it to keep it warm. Blow with steady, even breaths between your hands and let the smoke spill out the backside until you have a flaming bundle, a ball of fire. Then place it in the fire pit and start adding small twigs and then bigger sticks.

      Our oakum tinder is also helpful for group events, when a large amount of tinder is needed. We sell oakum by the pound. One pound makes about twelve average-size tinder bundles. Just measure about 10 to 12 inches of oakum, un-twist and pull-apart to obtain a suitable length. We ship the oakum in recycled plastic bags (bread bags, etc.).

1 lb. Oakum Tinder    $8.00    Quantity:

Also see these related pages:
Flint & Steel Sets for Primitive Fire Making
Bowdrill and Handdrill Sets for Primitive Fire Making
Fire Plow Sets for Primitive Fire Making
Swedish Fire Steel Emergency Fire Starter
Fresnel Lens Card Magnifier

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Silver Star, MT 59751

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