A Single Match Survival Fire

Posted: June 9, 2013 in Survival Knowledge, Survival Skills

My wife and I decided to have a fire in our back yard fire pit last night so I took the opportunity to start the fire like I would in a survival situation.  I chose to use the parafin wax coated jute twine tinder I prepared a couple of months ago.  I carry this type of tinder in my Altoids survival tin and wanted to see how easy it would be to start a fire with it.  As you know there are many ways to give birth to fire such as a match, lighter, fire steel, magnesium bar, fire bow and so on.  For this attempt I used one match and one length of jute twine about 8 inches long to start the fire.

In the past I have used a fire steel to ignite sawdust and wood shavings as well as cotton balls coated in Vaseline to start fires.  The parafin wax treated jute twine is by far the quickest and most effective tinder I have used so far.  A couple benefits of this tinder is that it is waterproof and burns for a longer period of time than the cotton balls tend to.  Please view my Single Match Survival Fire video which demonstrates the effectiveness of parafin coated jute twine as tinder.


  1. Since becoming a more “prepared” individual I try to not ever pass up oppourtunities to try new methods. The other day I used the vaseline/cotton ball technique. I had actually never done this before, and while it worked fine, it was, as you stated, probably not the best method due to it’s relatively short burn time. I still carry a medicine bottle with some vaseline soaked cotton balls but I’ll be making some parafin coated twine this weekend.

    • The jute twine seems to be less messy as well although some of the wax flakes off so I keep it in a baggie. Thanks for commenting and let me know how your tinder works for.

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