Bow drill.

Discussion in 'Bushcraft' started by sticks65, May 25, 2010.

  1. sticks65

    sticks65 Monkey++

    I tried a new combo on the bow drill yesterday.

    I used Rattan for the spindle and Willow for the fire board and i got an ember really quick with this combo.




    modernwoodsman likes this.
  2. fortunateson

    fortunateson I hate Illinois Nazis!

    I tried making/using a bow drill once.
    Got plumes of smoke and a hot coal, but couldn't work out the coordination to get the coal into tinder and tinder lit before the coal went out.

    Takes practice!

    Sticks - do you use that depression in your knife to cup the drill, or something else?
  3. Saintnick001

    Saintnick001 Monkey+

    Very nice. If that is the purpose of the intent that is genious.
  4. melbo

    melbo Hunter Gatherer Administrator Founding Member

    How did you make your bow string look like it was store bought? Different color reeds and bark? [troll]
  5. Hispeedal2

    Hispeedal2 Nay Sayer

    I tried willow once. Maybe it was the moisture in the wood or the humidity, but I couldn't get a good coal to save my life. Never had trouble out of cedar. Red cedar will wear your arm out but it does work. White cedar coals up easy.

    What other woods have you guys tried?
  6. fortunateson

    fortunateson I hate Illinois Nazis!

    I did it years ago on a whim. I read an article that said soft drill wood, hard base wood. So I walked out in the back yard and picked up a pine stick to use as the drill and some type of hardwood to use as the base.
    In retrospect, I could have spent more time with it and gotten better results, but using those two, I did get a lot of smoke and a hot coal which didn't last very long. Used a boot lace and another piece of pine as the bow.
  7. vegasrandall

    vegasrandall Monkey+++

    I had real good results clamping the stick in my makita power drill,the bow drill just made a tiny bit of smoke.
  8. sticks65

    sticks65 Monkey++

    Yes I use the depression in my knife as the bearing block bud.
  9. sticks65

    sticks65 Monkey++

    Not my Idea but yes it is genious.

    I got the idea from an American friend.
  10. sticks65

    sticks65 Monkey++

    Im glad you asked that question because there is a story behind that bow string.

    I decided to go for a walk and only take my knife and a water bottle and see what i could find to make fire and a warm drink.

    As I was walking through the woods I found about 4ft of old tent cord,an old tin and some wire.

    So I made a bowdrill and got a fire going,made a couple of holes in the top of the tin and threaded the wire through it,made a billy can suspender and had a nice brew of pine needle tea.

    Ive had that piece of cord for 3 years now.
  11. sticks65

    sticks65 Monkey++


    No napalm this time then Randdall[fnny]
  12. Hispeedal2

    Hispeedal2 Nay Sayer

    Generally speaking, the fire board and spindle can be made from the same wood. I good test is to try to dent it with your thumbnail. If it will dent with slight pressure, it MAY work well. A lot of pines are too resinous to work with. The resin will come out with heat and harden on the end of the spindle. Hence the reason why Stick always makes glue from pine resin.
  13. Bear

    Bear Monkey+++ Founding Member Iron Monkey

    Great set up... and thanks for sharing the pics....
    Bow and Drill is a tough skill to master... I suck at it... I think I'm better at the fire plough...
    Good stuff..
    Oh and I've seen those bearing impressions on knives ... very handy... Fehrman does it on some of their knives....
  14. sticks65

    sticks65 Monkey++

    Ive yet to try the fire plough method.

    Any good tips tips give?
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