How to Use the Flint Method to Start a Fire

How to Use the Flint Method to Start a FireWhether you're camping in the winter or summer, knowing how to start a fire is important for cooking, warmth and safety--a campside fire may prevent accidents at night when visibility is low. When making an impromptu fire, rely only basic tools such as sticks and tinder, a flint stone and an accompanying knife to build a strong fire---one that will burn all night. The process is moderately easy and should only be performed by adults.


Difficulty: Easy

How to:

Things You’ll Need:
  • Kindling
  • Tinder
  • Flint stone
  • Steel knife
Step 1
Create a base for your fire using kindling, dried sticks and firewood. Spread the kindling loosely on the ground. There should be enough space for oxygen to pass through the kindling.
Step 2
Spread a loose layer of tinder over the kindling. Choices for tinder range from pine needles to dry leaves to other flammable materials.
Step 3
Run the blade against the flint stone using side-to-side striking action. Keep the flint stone flush with the tinder, which will ignite as the friction and sparks from the flint stone start to grow.
Step 4
Blow a gentle breath of air on the flames to build the fire. As oxygen circulates around the fire and you add more kindling, the fire will grow bigger.

Tips & Warnings

If there are very few sticks or dry leaves nearby, you can use a dry cotton shirt.

Article Written By Charlie Gaston

Charlie Gaston has written numerous instructional articles on topics ranging from business to communications and estate planning. Gaston holds a bachelor's degree in international business and a master's degree in communications. She is fluent in Spanish and has extensive travel experience.

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