How to Build a SHTF Survival Fire Cup
Dr. John Woods 07.13.15
All outdoors people including hunters, campers, preppers, and all travelers in the wildernesses of America need a way to start a fire in the case of an emergency. I know, all you think you need is a butane cigarette lighter and a pile of leaves, but what if it is raining or windy? There are other options to be prepared to start a fire when needed just in case.
The fire cup is a simple project that can be self-made, packaged up to put in a backpack, Bug Out Bag, the trunk of a car, or in a truck tool box. They can be put together well in advance and should last for a very long time.
Start with saving those wax coated drink cups so common from fast food restaurants. The bigger sized cups no longer allowed in New York City work the best simply because they will hold more fire starting materials. These cups serve as the self-contained fire starting kit.
Next collect all kinds of small pieces of paper and simple fire starting stuff. In my cups I use the paper magazine subscription forms that come stuffed in nearly every magazine you buy or get in the mail. You can tear or cut these into strips. I save the toilet paper rolls when they are just about finished but have a few sheets of paper left on them. These I cut in half.
I use Popsicle sticks, corn dog sticks, small twigs from the yard and even pine straws collected into a small bundle. The resources are endless. Think of hamburger wrappers, bank cash receipt envelopes, junk mail, and strips of newspaper. Be creative.
Assemble all of these materials into the drink cup. Add a small bottle of alcohol laced hand sanitizer, which makes a good fire starter. Put in some matches or a butane lighter. Fold down the top of the cup and this becomes your fire starting kit. Put several in your pack, satchel, or supply gear bag when you plan an outing.
When you get ready to start a fire, clear out a safe area, gather up other sticks and bigger pieces of wood ready to go. Form your fire ingredients into a teepee and light it up feeding the extra materials you gathered as the fire burns. Go slow to watch the glow.