Light My Fire Swedish FireSteel Scout
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $4
I got one of these from Europe. At first, I was suspicious about how such a technology could light a fire (which is hard enough in good conditions when you don't know what you're doing). I tried it on some dry grass that had gotten soaked in a downpour, and after about 20 strikes, I lit my fire. So it does work. And it seems to me that the rod itself will last for many years — all my strikes hardly smoothed the surface at all.
- It works on wet fuel.
- It is highly transportable, and a good camping aid.
- I like ultra-lightweight goods, so this could have been more compactly made.
At first, this wasn't easy to use. But after a few minutes and gripping like heck, I got the movements correct. From then on, it was very easy. And it was fun watching the sparks fly.
I also felt it was safe to pack away immediately afterwards without the hazard of heat or flame erupting — and that's a good thing.
It's very simple, and it does live up to expectations.
It is well made. It's pretty hard not to make a well-made rod of iron, isn't it? You can feel it is really solid, so I have confidence in mine. Mine is new, so ask me in a few years if it's stood up to the test of time, which I am sure it will.
I've only used it 3 times, and on each occasion, I had to work to get my flame, but got it fairly easily. And that was the objective. I used it in the dry, the breeze and the wet — it works, with varying levels of success depending on the conditions, but it does light fires in all cases I tried.
A worthwhile invention.
Price Paid: $15
This is the greatest thing since sliced bread. It starts a fire quick and the fire steel even works when wet. It seems to work better the firmer the scrape is, so make sure you get a good firm scrape on the fire steel to get the most spark possible. No baby scrapes. The element also comes with a coating so before you use it for the first time make sure scrape it all off.