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How to Start a Fire with a Soda Can

soda can
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Much of survival is using the things you find around you to your advantage. Here’s how to make a fire using an empty soda can.

The Crazy Russian Hacker – a wildly successful YouTuber with nearly 10 million subscribers – takes an empty coke or soda can and starts a fire with it.

Part of his success is clearly his low-key delivery and presentation method. Part of it is his accent. Maybe part of it is the cool huskie, Hugo? In any event, he walks you through the process – very informally walks you through the process – of making a soda can into a fire starting tool.

The real takeaway from this video is that you’ve got to spend a fair amount of time and energy polishing the bottom of the can. He uses toothpaste and a cloth to polish it for about a half hour, until he gets almost a parabolic mirror effect from the aluminum.

Once you get a mirror-like finish on the can all you need is the assistance of the sun. Tilt the can toward the sun and focus the sun’s energy into a small pinpoint of light onto a piece of char cloth, fungus or fine tinder. He uses char cloth, which is predisposed to catch and hold an ember.

Place the smoking char cloth or tinder into a tinder bundle. He uses coconut husk material here, though it’s unlikely that you’ll have coconut husks available to you in an actual survival situation. Dry grasses, moss or other fine, dry flammable material would do the trick.

Gently blow into the tinder bundle and it should burst into flame. Have your kindling and other fire making materials ready and at hand to continue to build the fire.

The real takeaway here though is to think creatively, use what you have around you and, if it is a beer or soda can, be sure to polish the heck out of it!

Like what you see here? You can read more great articles by David Smith at his facebook page, Stumpjack Outdoors.

NEXT: Remembering Ishi: How to Make a Poison Oak Hand Drill Friction Fire

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How to Start a Fire with a Soda Can