Strike a light!

Discussion in 'Bushcraft' started by chelloveck, Apr 2, 2011.


  1. chelloveck

    chelloveck Diabolus Causidicus

    Strike a lght!
     
    I made an interesting discovery today. I'm an inveterate scavenger when I go riding my bicycle or perambulating on my plates of meat. Today I found a discarded disposable lighter on the footpath ( I think you folk on the other side of the Big Pond refer to footpaths as side walks). Not an unusual event....they are a common enough item of detritus. This one was different. It was missing the metal cowl that protects the gas jet / flint - striker.

    I tested the lighter, and found that the spark was more intense than the sparks usually issuing from "dead" disposable lighters with their metal cowls intact. I tested a few "dead" disposable lighters by removing their cowls and found that more than a few of the lighters were still capable of producing a small but eminently usable flame, capable of igniting tinder, even though no flame was apprent when the cowl was still in place.
    In a survival situation, even an apparently "dead" disposable lighter may still be capable of saving your life by being a substitute for a flint and steel striker.

    If an intact totally dead disposable lighter is utterly incapable of producing a spark....the lighter can be deconstructed and used as a mini improvised fishing kit. When deconstructing a "dead" disposable lighter, If the iron mongery at the top end of it is removed (at least with Bic Lighters), you will get the following parts:

    1 X stainless steel tinplate cowl Use as a lure
    1 x small red plastic lever use with lure
    1 x metal wheel (used as a striker) use as a sinker
    1 x stainless steel tinplate metal wheel cover fashion into a hook.
    2 x metal springs use one as a trace and the other to construct lure
    1 x stamped aluminium assembly containing a brass pin (used as a rocker assembly) use as swivel
    1 x plastic gas reservoir. use as a float.
    1 x minute stub of steel (or maybe flint) about the size of a 5mm length of pencil lead. (no apparent adaptable use that I can think of)


    to make a "dead" disposable lighter even more useful as a survival tool, wrap a length of fishing line around the casing, stick a couple of small fish hooks on the bottom with some blutack and then wind some duc tape around the body of the lighter(including the bottom where the hooks, and maybe a couple of small split shot are. An elastic band or three wrapped around the lighter over the tape wouldn't go astray either.

    WARNING! WARNING! WARNING!

    DO NOT DECONSTRUCT A LIGHTER WITH GAS STILL IN IT.......THE GAS RESERVOIR MAY BE UNDER PRESSURE AND MAY POSSIBLY IGNITE. MY SUGGESTIONS ABOVE ARE INTENDED FOR LIFE AND DEATH SITUATIONS WHEN THE NEED TO HARVEST FISH IS GREATER THAN THE RISK OF HARM BY MISADVENTURE SHOULD THE DECONSTRUCTION PROCESS GO AWRY. NOTE, I HAVE NOT TRIED DECONSTRUCTING A DISPOSABLE LIGHTER WITH A VARIABLE FLAME HEIGHT ADJUSTMENT MECHANISM. YMMV. PEOPLE ATTEMPTING TO MODIFY ANY DISPOSABLE LIGHTER PRODUCT NEED TO UNDERSTAND THAT THEY DO SO AT THEIR OWN RISK.
     
    Spartan300 and RightHand like this.
  2. RightHand

    RightHand Pioneer in a New World Moderator Founding Member

    I hope I never have to use the results of your inventive testing but if I ever do, I will send my silent thanks your way.

    I'm sure the depleted disposable lighter is but one of many items most often ignored that could offer solutions in a survival situation. The quest begins!


    Thanks Chello
     
  3. Spartan300

    Spartan300 Monkey+

    Good post, interesting observation! It is amazing what you can do with most anything when you set your mind to thinking! That is what survivalism is all about.;)
     
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