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DIY Pine cone fire starters

Basket of fire starters

Sometime lighting a wood fire can be a real trail especially when you are cold and want it right away. Pinecones are great for getting a fire started. They catch the flame quickly and burn hot. Using one will get that fire going first time almost every time.
You can either purchase them from us or make them yourself. Pinecone fire starters are very easy to make and if you add some essential oils to the mix, they become natural room fresheners while they wait to be used. Also, unlike modern fire starters they contain no nasty chemicals and can be perched by the fireplace and around the house as decorations year-round and smell spectacular.
The first step is to gather pinecones. The best time in the UK is over the summer – July to August or after an autumn storm.
Allow the pinecones to dry until the are fully open and give them a few taps to make sure there are no insects inside. Alternatively, you can dry the pine condes in an oven at 120 degree for an hour which also eliminate any pests.
Materials

  • Pinecones
  • Candle Wick or use string, dip it in wax first and let dry
  • New (or recycled old) candles or wax chips
  • A double boiler (I use an old tin can for top boiler)
  • Grease proof paper
  • Scissors
  • Essential oils (optional)
  • Mini tart case or muffin tins (method 2)

If you are using old or new candles, break each candle into pieces. If you can retrieve the wick, you can reuse it on the pinecones. If not, it can be carefully fished out with a fork when the wax melts

Wrap the cord around the pinecone from the bottom to the top. Tie a knot on the top and leave at least an inch and a half on the top of each pinecone to light the pinecone. Once the pinecone is dipped the string will also have wax on it.

Place the wax in the double boiler to melt the wax. Melt the wax over medium heat. At this stage, if desired you can add some fragrance of your choice.


Method 1


Red pine cone fire starter

Using something to grip the cord. pick the pinecone up and dunk into the molten wax. Once the pinecone is completely coated, place on greaseproof paper to dry for at least an hour.
To increase the colour, you can dip them again


Method 2


case pine cone fire starter

Stand the pinecones in a small mould and pour the wax over the pinecone. With this method you will have a little disc of wax at the bottom of each cone.

Cone firestarter
Cone firestarter
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All purpose fire starters

Fire starter collection
Basket of fire starters
Basket of fire starters

When people mention fire starters, the image that comes to mind is of nasty strong-smelling blocks of white material or highly dangerous barbecue fluid which is quite harmful to people with continued use.
Our firelighters on the other hand, are fragranced with essential oils that can be used to freshen up a room before use. Just keep a pile near the fire and enjoy the slow release aroma.
We have a range of scents and shapes which means they are not only practical but good looking and can enhance your room.

How to use them


On the top of the Firestarter just scrape a little off the top until you see some cotton wool. Pull a few strands of cotton wool out a few centimetres. Once you are ready, light the cotton wool and let it burn for a few seconds. Then build your fire around the firelighter as normal using paper, small kindling and then larger pieces as the fire catches light.
On average a fire lighter will last for around 20 minutes which is plenty of time to get your fire going. In tests the flame has been hot enough to boil a mug of water for tea.


Where to use them


One of the amazing things about our fire starters is that they are waterproof and can even be carried in a pocket or rucksack easily. This makes them great for camping or fishing trips. They are also superb for starting Barbecues without the harmful fluid that can taste on the food.


How environmentally friendly are they?

Cone firestarter

Our fire starters are made from left over residues from our production process or items we have harvested from nature (e.g. fir cones). When we make products, we only use components which are environmentally sound as possible e.g. wood from stewarded forests, soy wax instead of paraffin wax. Inevitably the are some leftovers in the form of residues or spillages, off cuts and trimmings that reach a level that it makes it difficult and safe to use any more. At this point they are turned into fire starters, wood for heating. The only product incorporated as new is a tiny amount of Petroleum Jelly in the block fire starters. Whilst Petroleum Jelly is a by-product itself, we are looking for a greener alternative.ng or composted to grow plants. Rarely does anything of ours go to landfill.