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Magnesium Fire Starter

by SE
| 8 answered questions

List Price: $375.95
Price: $4.39 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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  • Magnesium Fire Starter
  • Ultra lightweight: 0.6 ounces
  • Size: 2 3/4-Inch long
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Frequently Bought Together

Magnesium Fire Starter + Emergency Mylar Thermal Blankets (Pack of 10) + LifeStraw Personal Water Filter
Price for all three:$31.19

Buy the selected items together


Product Description

Campers' Magnesium Emergency Fire Starter.

Product Details

  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.2 x 3 inches ; 1.4 ounces
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Shipping: This item is also available for shipping to select countries outside the U.S.
  • Origin:Imported (China)
  • ASIN: B0010O748Q
  • Item model number: FS374
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 starsSee all reviews(1,159 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2 in Sports & Outdoors (See Top 100 in Sports & Outdoors)
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Customer Questions & Answers

Customer Reviews

This is a simple magnesium fire starter.
James Peterson
First impression: The striker seem to be made by a cut off piece of a metal saw blade - which I thought would make it easy to shave off the magnesium.
David
Buy with confidence, it is a good product.
Bobby Pynes

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

904 of 921 people found the following review helpful By S. Karl on March 28, 2010
Amazon Verified Purchase
UPDATED(3-28-2011) - SEE UPDATE SECTION AT END:

I tried this magnesium fire starting tool - SE(Emergency Fire Starter - SE - Emergency Fire Starter) out as well as the alternative from (from Doan Machinery & Equipment - "Genuine Issue Magnesium Survival Fire Starter" Genuine Issue Magnesium Survival Fire Starter).

Both tools work perfectly fine as described and were able to light up fine fibers(cotton, moss, dried grass) and paper without a problem. The Doan tool has more precise instructions and clearly states on the packaging to scrape the magnesium portion of the bar with a knife blade PERPENDICULAR to the edge of the tool. I found this to method made for the most shavings and larger shavings at that. The packaging clearly states that you want a QUARTER(U.S. Coin) sized amount (just shy of 1 inch or 2.4cm diameter) Then holding the bar at 45 degree angle to the pile of shavings drag the knife along the flint to create sparks. The directions remind you to hold the blade perpendicular to the bar while "striking" the flint. I would advise not to strike the flint as they are brittle. However, a nice quick full length drag of the blade down the flint creates a shower of sparks for easy ignition of the magnesium shavings.

Both brands work fine. They are nearly identical in shape(the SE is a few mm longer). Each brand has a different finish/coating on the bar itself is about the only difference I can tell. The performance seemed to be identical or at least close enough to not notice anything to complain about. The big difference is the price.

One other note: The SE(Chinese one) also comes with a saw blade striker that does work but you need to wear through a protective layer of lacquer for it to work and it's just small enough to annoy my large hands. I just stick with a cheap staineless steel pocket knife for this. I always carry about 3-4 blades when I'm out hiking(cheap folder that I don't care if it gets ruined, sometimes a higher quality folder, always a fixed blade that is larger with full tang, and usually a multi tool(leatherman).

You can't go wrong with either tool. I'd prefer to buy American(Doan - the \"other\" one) in the long run though, especially for something I might end up having my life depend on.

EDIT: One last note on product life- depending on how much magnesium you need to get your fire going each time, I think the flint will run out long before you ever use up all the magnesium.

UPDATED: 03-28-2011

There have been a ton of reviews mentioning that the DOAN tool being purchased is no longer made in USA or shipped as a knock off. Be careful which seller you buy from. I will be posting pictures later today that show the SE Tool side by side with the Doan tool. I no longer have the packaging to show what they look like however.

The seller I purchased the DOAN GENUINE ISSUE from was known as \"CLASSICAL FITNESS & HEALTH\" / \"Waterglider LLC\". They no longer have it stocked apparently.

A GENUINE DOAN FIRE STARTER SHOULD HAVE THIS INFORMATION STAMPED ON ONE SIDE WITH AN ADDRESS ON THE OTHER. THE FIRST LINE IS THE NSN(Nato Stock Number):
\"
4240-01-160-5618
FSCM 62561
MFR/PN 8702
FIRE STARTING TOOL
MAGNESIUM
U.S. PATENT NO. 4,188,192
\"

Reverse Side:
\"
SPARKING INSERT
MFD. BY DOAN MACH. & EQUIP. CO. INC.
P.O. BOX 21334
SO. EUCHLID, O. 44121
SHAVING EDGE
\""}">Read more ›
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209 of 223 people found the following review helpful By donpedro on July 25, 2010
Amazon Verified Purchase
I bought this along with the Swedish Firesteel to test them out. I like this product due to the fact that you can shave the magnesium off and use it to start the tender, however I found that the flint was difficult to use and did not put off much spark. It did spark, though. The swedish firesteel throws of a much bigger and hotter spark and was much easier to use, however if you do not have good tender it doesn't matter much. I think that having both of them together is good and they are both are a relatively inexpensive purchase if you consider how valuable they are when needed.
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126 of 134 people found the following review helpful By Jim on August 20, 2010
Those saying this doesn't work obviously aren't using it correctly and you're giving people bad advice in telling them not to waste their money. This product is used by outdoorsmen everywhere and is the easiest, most reliable way to start a fire. Most people who have watched some of the survival shows have seen this product. I'm not going to recommend that anyone mimic Bear Grylls with anything else he does but when you see him start a fire in about 5-10 seconds, this is what he is using.

I've used it while mountain climbing/backpacking for years and have NEVER had one bit of trouble in getting a fire started. I would rather have this product than matches or a lighter. It will last longer and can light tinder that isn't completely dry. Magnesium burns at over 1000 degrees and lights when even the smallest spark hits it making it more reliable than a simple butane lighter. I can light dry tinder without even shaving off the magnesium first and just striking the flint. Swedish Fire Steel (also in my backback) doesn't come close to this in reliability. Mine didn't come with a blade and even though I keep a small hacksaw blade taped to it, it's generally easier to just use a pocket knife. Because having a fire is so important, I always keep 3 methods of fire starting in my pack but this would be the one I would pick if I could only have one.
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190 of 210 people found the following review helpful By Mikhail in AZ on February 4, 2010
Amazon Verified Purchase
I received this today, and it works great. I would suggest using the back (non-serrated) edge of the steel to shave the magnesium and the serrated edge for striking the flint. The magnesium block and flint both have some kind of coating, so the first time you use it it'll take a few extra tries. I've seen these selling for double or triple the price and people were happy to pay it, so this is an excellent deal!
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72 of 83 people found the following review helpful By Jack W. Wolfe VINE VOICE on April 25, 2009
Amazon Verified Purchase
This fire starter works great just follow the instructions! I tried it the other day and I started a fire the first time!!
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55 of 63 people found the following review helpful By A. Rodriguez on June 10, 2009
I recently bought this and received it in the mail in about two days.
I opened the package and the instructions were very clear on how to use it. Great product it works its not expensive and very helpful.
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36 of 40 people found the following review helpful By nhbfreestyle on March 1, 2010
Get it. Works great. Replaced the dog-tag chain with paracord and wrapped it around the file for added grip.
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34 of 39 people found the following review helpful By M. Cornell on April 20, 2010
Amazon Verified Purchase
A friend and I went out today hunting for morels, and decided to try this tool in semi-moist conditions. We were able to ignite a fist-sized bundle of grass and thistle into an amazingly hot fire very quickly. We scraped the shavings onto the dented side of an aluminum can, moved them gently into the tender bundle, and ignited them with a few strokes of the flint.

We were both shocked at the ease and success of the initial attempt.

The flint seems to have a coating on it, which may need to be worn off before good sparks will be produced. After it was a bit "worn", we were getting heavy sparks which would ignite dry tinder, even without the magnesium, most likely (though this was not tested, as tinder was moist). The magnesium gave substantial heat and height to the first flames, and the bundle went up very quickly.

Even those used to using flint and strikers should think about the addition of magnesium to their kit. In wetter weather, it provides a great burst of heat that might be the critical "push" to getting a good fire started--especially lacking proper tinder.

This is a great price and item that might give substantial ease and comfort in a bad situation.
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