How To Make Fire Without A Lighter or Matches [5 Weird Ways]

For the ancient caveman, fire starting was a difficult process. Especially for hipster cavemen…

Nowadays, outdoors people may fire up a campfire by striking a lighter or using ferrocerium rods.

However, there are some accelerants and techniques that you might not be aware of if you don’t have access to regular fire-starting equipment.

Some are strange, if not outright weird. It’s good to have alternatives if you want to start a fire, and some of these techniques will most certainly do the trick in an emergency.

Below are ways on how to make fire without a lighter or matches:

How to make fire without a lighter

Start a Fire From Water

This may be the most illogical fire starting technique, given that water tends to put it out.

When you focus sunlight through the proper bottle as a lens, you may create fire with just a water bottle.

The heat absorbed by the bottle, combined with a spark from a car’s ignition or turn signal, can create a chemical reaction that generates heat. To use the water bottle as an igniter, you’ll require a smooth, clear plastic or a glass container filled with clear water.

person holding empty clear glass bottle

You’ll also need black tinder (burned with cotton balls, singed cattail fluff, char cloth, or dark fibrous bark) with a bit of age on it. Finally, you’ll need plenty of time and strong sunlight.

Glass bottles tend to give the greatest success (clear glass beer or cream soda bottles are the finest).

The bottles are filled with clear water and kept in the sun when there is plenty of it. The morning and late afternoon sun will then pass through the bottle’s circular shoulder. Place high-quality tinder that is dark in the beam of light, then wait. The tinder will smolder when the bottle gets the sun.

Place burning fuel into the fibrous tinder, then blow it into the flame after ignition has occurred.

Fresnel Lens

In the early 1800s, the Fresnel lens was invented by Augustin-Jean Fresnel French physicist.

It was a ground-breaking technique to make thin magnifying glass. Originally, it was meant to increase the light from the coastal lighthouses. Today’s Fresnel lenses are usually constructed using clear plastic with concentric grooved circles for magnification.

These lenses may be sizable, although they come in tiny sizes of credit cards as well.

Fire-making with either size will work well. However, the larger ones are preferable. You’ll need full sunshine for optimal results. You also need a dark, fluffy tinder material.

Remember, dark colors effectively absorb the light. When you’re ready to create an optical fire, just hold up the lens perpendicular to the rays of the sun. Check the distance between your tinder and the light source until you’ve produced a bright light to the tinder and wait for the smoke to start forming. Blow on your tinder for the flames to appear.

Parabolic Mirror

The focal point is found inside the flashlight’s parabolic mirror cup rather than curvatures outside. You’ll still receive blinding on the white-hot beam of light.

Remove the bulb and reflector cup from the old fixture and assemble them with this unit.

Remove the lightbulb and some of the dark tinder where it was.

Adjust the mirror to make it perpendicularly direct to the sunlight, then in and out of the cup mainly from behind. When your tinder is smoldering after you’ve placed it on the cup, you’ve got it just right. Remove it as soon as possible and put it in a bigger tinder bundle before blowing it into the flame.

Steel Wool

This is a kind of steel fiber that has been used for more than a century. This carbon steel item may be found in woodworking, blacksmithing, and other craft shops because it’s commonly utilized as an abrasive cleaning solution and for sanding.

You can find firewood, kindling, and bricks in every town. It’s also possible to build a small log cabin with them (following the plans in this book). While there are plenty of uses for it, the most eye-catching is as a fire starter.

When the finer grade of steel wool comes in contact with each other, ignition takes place. Joule heating occurs when electricity is applied to carbon in the steel substance. A battery with 3 volts or more and close-together positive and negative terminals is required. 9-volt, as well as 6-volt batteries, are wonderful. Simply touch the steel wool ball on both terminals, and it will start burning.

A 3.7-volt cellphone battery may also be used instead.

You can also use two 1.5-volt batteries in this case. Simply line them up each side, with the negative and positive terminals head to tail. To create the closed circuit that ignites the steel, you’ll need to put a ball of steel wool on the ends of the battery stack.

Car Battery, a Pencil and Jumper Cables

This is a last-ditch effort to start a fire utilizing anything you’ve tried so far.

Using the car battery to ignite a fire is hazardous, so be careful. If you decide to give it a go, start by removing the wood from one side of an ordinary wooden pencil.

black pencil on white surface

You may use the wood shavings for kindling, but ensure you have enough fuel before connecting the wires to the pencil. This technique is effective.

The pencil may be broken down into two/three pieces for many ignition attempts (or the entire thing might be burned at once).

Potassium Permanganate

It is not a good idea to rely on this as your only option in the survival scenario, but it’s still cool.

A first-aid kit has antibacterial and antiseptic properties, according to some sources. It was intended to be used as a disinfectant (and may still be utilized in that manner).

It also cleans water, and it enables the water to remain there for one hour after adding just enough of the substance to make it pink. It can also be used to start a fire when combined with some materials.

In a nutshell, the ways above will help you know how to make fire without a lighter. As you have seen, you can use potassium permanganate, parabolic mirror, Fresnel lens, and bottled water to start a fire.

Eugene Duke Pic

Hi, my name’s Eugene Duke and I love sitting by my fireplace reading a book and sipping on an adult beverage. Do you have a fireplace in your house? I’ll help you figure out the best type and style of fireplace for your home.


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