EZ start campfire

Posted by: oldnbold

EZ start campfire - 03/03/03 06:31 PM

If your camping gang is anything like mine where everyone is THE EXPERT on firestarting/maintenance then many an argument has started about the how-to's on firemaking. However: this was a first for me.

This group of guys fire start method consisted of kindling wood the same size as regular split fireplace wood approximately 2-3 lbs. ea.!!! I'm snickering in amusement , in my lawnchair near the firepit, while drinking an adult beverage thinking "ain't no way" as they continued to apply these 2lb kindling pieces. "How will you start this thing?" I ask. "With gas" they reply. "I don't know about ya'll, but gas just makes a big mushroom cloud after the explosion and I've yet to see one start with those size logs". "You'll see"

After a few more logs were teepee'd another guy shows up with a half beer can of gasoline! I take my chair and move back about 30 yds behind a giant pine tree and begin to plan for the carnage. The five of them are still sitting very close to the pit while the can is put into the center of the teepee. He throws in a match and a minute explosion is followed by a flame like an acetylene torch on high is spewing out of the top of the can. Within 10 mins. the whole fire is blazing! The can never exploded and, according to those guys, never has in over 50 attempts.
Posted by: Hoop

Re: EZ start campfire - 03/03/03 11:35 PM

I've seen it done. It works great. I try to use propane for heat & cooking whenever possible though. Just strike a match and you've got heat. No gathering wood. Done, just turn off the gas.
Posted by: Fender_Bender

Re: EZ start campfire - 03/04/03 12:47 AM

This way works really well if you used a gallon of race fuel with it.
Remember::: move everyone back first
Posted by: naga418

Re: EZ start campfire - 03/04/03 04:30 PM

The only comment I have for this is never ever mix regular gas with diesel to start a fire. Unless of course you really don't have a personal attachment to your hair

My personal choice is to pour the fuel on and let it soak in for awhile then light it. It seems to soak into the wood as well as displace any water on or in the wood helping it light up.
Posted by: RockMan

Re: EZ start campfire - 03/08/03 05:16 AM

If you're going to start campfires w/ gas, you might as well be drinking heavily too.

Something like 151 or moonshine. That way you can have fire in the pit, in your stomach and maybe on your head as well. There's nothing like a good "I've got fire on my head dance" to get the crowd going.

YEEeee..........Hawwww........... let the games begin..........

Now where did I leave my camera?

Posted by: Lumberjack

Re: EZ start campfire - 03/12/03 02:23 PM

Sounds borderline scary.

One (1) tablespoon of gas in a one (1) gallon closed container creates enough vapor that when ignited is equivalent to one (1) stick of dynamite!

I would be cautious lighting gasoline that is inside any type of closed or nearly closed container.
Posted by: naga418

Re: EZ start campfire - 03/12/03 04:03 PM

Your no fun Larry
Posted by: lkillebrew

Re: EZ start campfire - 03/19/03 06:00 AM

This Larry agrees with that Larry... This Larry spent 3 days in a hospital in his younger days because of a similar dumb idea that dealt with matches, fuel, heat and air... and went badly wrong... Geez guys, I dont want to camp next to you, heck I dont even want to be in the same campground.

Go get some of those fire starter logs or even some match light charcoal and use that to ignite your blaze. That way you get a nice fire, no explosions, and no trip to the hospital.
Posted by: JEEPME

Re: EZ start campfire - 03/20/03 07:03 AM

As a firefighter I can honestly say I love people who play with fire and gasoline= job security. The experts say gas vapors travel low and at a rate of 1.5 ft per second with a breeze of less than 5mph,the consumption rate or explosive rate of combustion is twice that, faster than ANY man can run much less react.That coupled with alcohol (and I hope there was alcohol involved in this)=a running,screaming,flame waving Q-Tip.Stop drop and roll will not apply here,the victim will stop,he will drop,but uh....er he won't roll.Quite fun around the camp fire, at least he'll stop screaming once all his nerve endings have been burnt past the fat tissue..mmmmmm smells great.
I think I'd stick to the fire starter logs or even carry a couple of the bigger durflame logs then add oh of course WOOD.
Posted by: RockHopper

Re: EZ start campfire - 03/20/03 06:54 PM

I am also a firefighter and understand the hazards of gasoline. Having said that, I saw the "gasoline-in-a-coke-can" trick this past weekend. It works well.. The vapors, being heavier than air do not "escape" rapidly from the open coke can, so when the can is "lit" the vapors do not go "whoosh" as you would expect from gasoline. The vapors burn slowly and for a surprisingly long time. The open can I saw burning this past weekend, with only couple of inches of fuel in the can, burned for over 10 minutes.. It worked very well... Now, having said that, just don't knock over the can

This "trick" works well.. but BE CAREFUL... no need to use large amounts of fuel... AND after a few beers, just stay away from gasoline, period.

my .02

Posted by: KeltWitch

Re: EZ start campfire - 03/20/03 07:06 PM


There are members of the RRDR that need to read this post. They'll definitely pack up and head out with y'all.

Makes me nervous.....
Posted by: RockHopper

Re: EZ start campfire - 03/20/03 07:42 PM

The devil is in the details:

Earlier it was mentioned that a "half can of gasoline" was used... He meant that the 12 oz. can is actually cut in half so the can is fully OPEN on top... then only a small amount of fuel is poured inside..

Another great trick for starting fires (and a safer one) is to use deisel fuel. Deisel has a "flash point" (temperature at which a liquid gives off ignitable vapors) much HIGHER than gasoline. Flashpoint of GAS is -45 degrees. That's "minus." So, gasoline is ALWAYS giving off ignitable vapors. Deisel doesn't give off ignitable vapors until it reaches about 145 degrees... So, you can pour deisel over your logs, let it soak in a minute, and then light it up (it won't go "whooosh") you'll have to hold the match until the deisel starts, it takes a few seconds... in a couple of minutes you will have a GREAT fire... As always, be careful.. use common sense.. keep unused fuels away from all ignition sources..

Posted by: fastmonstr

Re: EZ start campfire - 03/21/03 07:23 PM

I just rub 2 sticks together.
Posted by: Dave

Re: EZ start campfire - 03/21/03 07:43 PM

Growing up in East Texas and camping deep in the piney woods....my dad would aways find "pine knots" on the ground around the base of big pine trees. He would take these pine knots which are very hard, pine resin concentrated pieces of pine branches....and splinter them up with a hachet. He would light a small pile of these splintered pine knots and stack oak hardwood on top. Pine knots burn like they have been soaked in fuel (the pine resin)....a natural kindling. They smell good when you take the hatchet to them too! Works every time.
Posted by: BobbyAdministrator

Re: EZ start campfire - 03/22/03 06:26 AM

Lighter Pine....that's what it's called in Louisiana.

There's a spot in the tree, usually down in the middle right below ground level before the root ball starts....and I would guess inside some knots....where there is lighter pine.

You can tell it by the familiar kerosene or light fuel smell. It really does work well.

I've known some backwoods boys who would carry a stick of lighter pine about 1" x 1" x 10" with them in their backpack, in the truck, every where they went....just in case. I have seen a sliver half the width of a pencil and about as long burn for 10 minutes or more and fire up a campfire long enough to get the kindling going...without any other fuel or pine needles or other hassles.

Now, how you get it is the tough part....it ain't sold at Academy...although I don't know why not!

Posted by: RockHopper

Re: EZ start campfire - 03/22/03 06:46 AM

There is something you can get at Academy.. or REI... it's a tube of firestarter... shaped like a toothpaste tube... you just put down a few inches of the gel starter and throw some kindling over it and there you go...

Excellent for camping, backpacking, etc..
Posted by: Hoop

Re: EZ start campfire - 03/22/03 07:22 PM

how about magnesium firestarters, also available at Academy, for you wimps who don't like gasoline in a can?
Posted by: Chris

Re: EZ start campfire - 03/24/03 10:46 PM

Better yet- camp with your parents in their RV!

No- I have seen Dad "start" campfires and waterheaters and many thuings over the years- Best advice- stay away from Herb in this process. Luckily he has never been hurt- just singed and blow back before-

I think I'd rather go to acadamy anyday than the hospital....
Posted by: Chris

Re: EZ start campfire - 03/25/03 06:47 PM

By the way- with all you firemen- any cool firemen calanders out there?
Posted by: JonathanXR

Re: EZ start campfire - 03/26/03 07:58 PM

Well, I would suggest a fifth of Ever Clear and a nice mullet.
First: Douse you mullet with the Ever Clear
Second: Light up a Kool Menthol and inhale deeeeeply
Third: Watch your mullet ignite
Fourth: Stop, Drop and Roll in the fire pit
Fifth: Wah-Lah, you have fire, and you don't have a mullet anymore, so DOUBLE BONUS man!

Posted by: SheriffBufordT

Re: EZ start campfire - 08/04/03 12:49 AM

Bel-Ray at 50:1 works works and lubes the logs.
Posted by: chickenhawk

Re: EZ start campfire - 08/09/03 03:46 PM

A Coors Lite can cut open half full of gas under a teepee of wood works the best.
Posted by: tooold

Re: EZ start campfire - 01/19/04 06:27 AM

Take a few brickets of charcol - the ones that are self lighting... drop 3 or 4 of them under a stack of wood and they will do the trick. No gas... no "run for your life", no "I wonder if that beer can thingie will work" stuff.
Posted by: Traction

Re: EZ start campfire - 01/27/04 07:35 PM

As we all know...every party has a pooper! My husband has been a truck driver for 30 years hauling gasoline. 8700+ gals at a time. The stuff WILL burn, no doubt. This week a real good friend of mine was burning leaves in his yard. Got just a little cup of gas and threw it on the fire. Well, it came back in his face and he is now experiencing 1st and 2nd degree burns and almost lost his eyesight. His nose, ear, forehead and scalp are all burned. It has been miserable to see him go thru this grueling experience. He has had to return to the Dr. twice for them to 'scrape' the skin so the scarring is minimal. They do that with OUT knocking you out. I think I would knock THEM out!!!
My advise is this...either use the new "candle fire starters" or the "starter bricks" (not the starter logs, if poked or punctured the stuff inside runs everywhere).
Not worth it to me...ruining a great weekend of playing and riding by ending up in a burn center.
Oh well, spoken like a true mom!
Posted by: Kingham

Re: EZ start campfire - 02/03/04 12:40 AM

Go with the duraflame logs. I bring one on every camping trip. they even light up after a good rain.
Posted by: Irishcoffee

Re: EZ start campfire - 02/05/04 03:50 AM

Huskyboy; what do you call east Texas? For a funny sight check out the faces of a group of campers who spent the previous night around a fire built totally of pine knots. I mean the root types not the Christmas ornament things. They will look like a family of coons!
Posted by: Dave

Re: EZ start campfire - 02/05/04 04:02 PM

George, I grew up in Orange and spent nearly every weekend in the Angelina and Sabine National Forests (Rayburn and Toledo Bend). My dear ol' dad grew up around Center so he knows all those woods very well. I agree, setting a pile of pine knots on fire would be like lighting a 55 gallon drum of race fuel!! LOL!! "hold my beer and watch this!"
Posted by: naga418

Re: EZ start campfire - 02/06/04 03:27 PM


You need to get ride of that rice burner and get your old icon back I aways thought the Husky part was due to the brand of jeans you wear
Posted by: Dave

Re: EZ start campfire - 02/06/04 03:33 PM

Husky jeans? I was hoping you forgot about that. I wish I was still on a Husqvarna but they have a lot of issues to work out. Maybe one day they will have a stronger dealer network. Give up my Yamaha? I love that bike! Maybe one day I will try an orange bike but until then it's Yamaha two stroke all the way. I just wish had two more gears so I can hang with you on the straights

Posted by: Gumby

Re: EZ start campfire - 02/10/04 06:47 PM

I might have a copy of that old icon around somewhere . . . . . . HAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!

Got any money Davo???? I could forget where I put it!!!!

Posted by: dbnet

Re: EZ start campfire - 03/30/04 09:41 AM

Can I use a Pepsi can instead of Coke? :-)

Have fun fellow campers and be coooooool!
Posted by: 110s_Rich

Re: EZ start campfire - 04/09/04 02:39 AM

Well I had to try it. Also one of the riding Firefighters you have to understand some of us. To Fight it you have to love it alittle. (Yes, I stole it from Backdraft) So what the heck I'll try it. Got all my family waaay back and cut the can top off and filled her 1/2 full of gas. Lit a paper towel and threw it under the T-pee of wood and jumped back. Worked like a dream without the expected whoooosh. Stayed burning for about 20 minutes and got the big ones going great. If you can cut the can without cutting your hand, you've got it. Any campers looking to ride with families with kids we'll be out at Red River Cycle park this April 24-25. Have fun...We sure do.

Posted by: oldnbold

Re: EZ start campfire - 04/21/04 03:25 AM

Well by God I outta get a prize for the longest, slowest running post on TON. This post started Jan '01 and is still going.
Posted by: Tominator

Re: EZ start campfire - 04/23/04 11:30 PM

And not an argument in the bunch, either ! Dammm!

I have to agree with Ken on the Duraflame logs. Mostly wax, sawdust, and a little copper dust for color. They light when wet, burn well, and can be cut into chunks without any "ooze" coming out!

Diesel fuel is also hard to beat, if your truck is the "glag-glag-glag" type!
Posted by: chickenhawk

Re: EZ start campfire - 06/15/04 09:30 PM

the coors light can will start while it is raining.
Posted by: Vintage_Vinnie

Re: EZ start campfire - 06/15/04 11:08 PM

If ya drink enough booze you can just pee on the woodpile and fire it up! (I don't recommend this for "rekindling" the fire the next day)

Hell it doesn't sound any more far-fetched than some of what I have read here....
Posted by: SheriffBufordT

Re: EZ start campfire - 12/23/04 08:59 PM

Posted by: Opcom

Re: EZ start campfire - 12/27/04 09:53 AM

One traffic flare near the bottom of the stack. Once it's burned, the fire is good and you can cook.
Posted by: SheriffBufordT

Re: EZ start campfire - 01/21/05 01:41 PM

2005 bump
Posted by: R_B

Re: EZ start campfire - 01/24/05 11:32 PM

wax shavings and cotton balls and spark source.
Posted by: TomXR400

Re: EZ start campfire - 10/01/05 03:15 AM

If you knock over your mortor shell tube before the mortor goes off it makes a nice little fire..... Anybody see it? 01/01/05

must have been 30 feet wide, and took 15 people and about 10 gallons of water to put out.

HAHAHAHA! Ah memories!
Posted by: spidennis

my version of a gas flare - 12/13/05 05:23 AM

I haven't tried this half can method yet
but I do have my own version of this .......
here on south padre we are able to build beach bonfires.
(not in city limits, but just north of town)
On the sand nothing else will burn, so experimenting is relatively safe ....
Gas in a plastic drinking water bottle, cap on. throw it in .....
you have a few seconds to get out of the way
the heat will melt one part of the bottle first and allow the gas to escape
that ignites into what I call a "gas flare".
On the beach, with everyone backed up,
it's quite the visual treat and very much the crowd pleaser!
Starting my bonfires I use a roll of paper towels
wadded up softball size then into a 5 gal bucket, then add oil.
old engine oil, new engine oil (cheap stuff),
or old cooking oil, say from a shrimp fry or fish fry ......
place oil soaked balls in various spots,
in the up wind areas of the wood pile.
(we usually have a breeze here)
then take your propane torch and light each oil ball.
Oil takes quite a bit to catch, so it won't flare up.
It's also a very tame fire, unlike starting gas or diesel .....
but when lit, will burn long and hot!
I do this professionally for big groups ......
and it's safe enough for me to have someone else actually do the torch lighting,
that is, after I have everything else into place first!
Many people like to refer to the A&M bad history and my work,
but A&M fooled with the formula of success ........
I build on my formula a little at a time
and not with my clients in the line of fire (so to speak) .......
There's a safe place to play with fire .....
come to south padre and have yourself your own "Burning Man" festival.
...... and don't forget to bring your bike and ride at LFMX, Sunset, or the Grove.
It makes a great family weekend ......
Posted by: yamahasix

Re: my version of a gas flare - 02/05/06 01:07 AM

I have been using the 1/2 can of gas for years and it is the best way to get a fire started and it is safe to. Unless you are on the slow side.
Posted by: 450Gunner

Re: my version of a gas flare - 03/03/06 02:48 AM

Lint from the clothes dryer. It's free and burns long enough to get the coals going. NO flash burns either.
Posted by: SheriffBufordT

Re: my version of a gas flare - 04/12/06 01:38 PM

Or from your bellybutton.
Posted by: 450Gunner

Re: my version of a gas flare - 08/21/06 08:58 PM

Yes but the belly button lint is to large for a small fire he he..
Posted by: Vintage_Vinnie

Re: my version of a gas flare - 10/27/06 04:37 PM

I usually bring "Tim the Enchanter" along- he gets the fire going no prob... at least when he's not helping people seek the Grail.
Posted by: RenegadeDude

Re: my version of a gas flare - 12/30/06 07:32 PM

In reply to:

"Gas in a plastic water bottle,cap on,throw it in,this ignites into what i call a gas flare"


WOW,Read that over several times and the 1/2 a beer can of gas or Deisel doesn't seem so bad! I was leery of this method the first time i saw it used,burt after using it to start fires in the rain camping in cloudcroft i now swear by it.
Posted by: dirtbikersMOM

Re: my version of a gas flare - 05/08/07 02:39 PM

In reply to: Lint from the clothes dryer. It's free and burns long enough to get the coals going. NO flash burns either.

WOW! I'm a log starter fan for camping...but this one I've got to try! Thanks for the idea!