Making char cloth

So I finally had some cooperative weather today and was able to get some dry wood so I could take a stab at making some char cloth from some cut up old jeans. I started by splitting some wood with my ESEE 5 and then used my Mora Companion to shave and also do a hasty and ugly feathering of one piece to get some kindling since everything is still sopping wet that I could use around the yard.

esee 5 baton
esee 5 batonning

While this isn't the best attempt at kindling for getting a fire started, I'm not trying to practice starting fires so I cheated with a little Vaseline and cotton to catch my spark.

lixada wood stove review

Alright so we have everything ready to get the fire going, Let's go ahead and move the Lixada stove over to a better place and get some fire going!

lixada stove review

I forgot to take photos of cutting the pant leg of an old pair of jeans up and placing it in the can but with a little imagination I think you can get the idea of taking scissors, and cutting jeans ha! While a lot of people prefer to use Altoid tins all I had handy was this can that a brush for my beard came in, since it does seal very well (I actually had a hell of a time getting it open after making the char cloth) I went ahead and punched a hole in the lid with a screw.

make char cloth
making char cloth

The can I was using was rather big and I put quite a bit of denim into it. This was my first time making char cloth and I did go a bit overboard, I had to feed wood into the Lixada for more than 45 minutes until smoke stopped coming out of the char cloth can. Next time I'll use a smaller can and do less material at once.

char cloth

As I said above I just used too large of a can and put too much material in, several pieces were still far from being done, especially where seams were stitched together down the side of the pant leg. Learned a few lessons and will apply them to my next attempt. I grabbed one of the pieces that felt the driest/most charred and put it in a little stainless steel sauce cup, the FIRST spark off of my ferrocerium rod got the char cloth going, VICTORY IS MINE! I'd ask you to forgive the poor photo as it's hard to hold a phone, shield the screen from direct sunlight, blow on the char cloth to keep it bright enough for the image sensor to see in the bright light, keep your long beard out of the way of everything and take the photo haha. As you can see, part of this piece still had denim that was far from being ready attached to it.

lit char cloth

Josh needs your help

On New Year's Day my friend was in his apartment bathroom, next thing he knows the room is filling with smoke and his apartment is in flames. He grabbed one dog and got him outside, he then ran back in for the second dog. The second dog did not survive, Josh received fairly bad burns to his hands trying to rescue Jack and had considerable smoke inhalation. He was taken to a top-notch burn unit, put on a respirator & feeding tube and kept sedated. He has since been released.

Josh turns 31 next month and prior to the fire was already disabled, he has zero savings and has lost the vast majority of his belongings, including clothing. While his girlfriend is trying to help raise two-thousand dollars to help him, this is a pretty terrible thing to happen right after Christmas and to start the New Year with. 2 years ago on Josh's birthday he had to have spine surgery to try and help with some of the pain from the incident has left him disabled. I'd really like to see if we can surpass the goal and help him have a bright spot in an already gloomy year. Please consider sharing this everywhere you can.

If you know Josh, he's never had good luck. Life seems to find every chance it can to drag him down and then repeatedly kick him while he's down. Let's help Josh rise from the ashes of this fire, not unlike the phoenix, and use it as a Novus Initium (a new beginning). If you can, give a dollar, if you can give more please do. If you can't afford to give (or don't want to) please consider sharing this blog post or even the link to the gofundme campaign.


You will be missed Jack.

You will be missed Jack.