Woodsmonkey has a couple of new articles up featuring some of the items I sent their way.Ã‚ Their articles are fantastic (even when they aren’t linking to my stuff), with much more depth than you will see on most sites.Ã‚ Garrett, the lead simian, has a review of the revisited classic BKT BK11, better know as the Becker Necker.Ã‚ He shows some of my capsules and my favorite way to use them, storing tinder.Ã‚ As an added bonus, that tinder is fatwood shavings, one of the best and easiest way to start a fire.Ã‚ Ã‚ The Necker itself is still a slick little knife and I am happy to see it back in production after Camillus bit the dust.
The other article is from Tim and discusses zipper pull survival, which is adding small items to the zippers on your jacket or anything else with a readily accessable zipper so that you always have the items you need when and where you need them.Ã‚ The concept is a great idea, and even though I do not take it quite as far as many people I seen (your zipper items should not wear more than the jacket to which they are attached), I still like to have a whistle and LED light available when I need them.Ã‚ Having items like these might seem silly to the fast and light crowd, but a few extra grams of weight are fine by me if it means faster and easier attention grabbing and stuff finding.Ã‚ Granted, I usually have a headlamp on at night, but how about peering into a dark pack or tree nook during the day?Ã‚ A dim (compared to the rest of my flashlights) LED light is also really nice to have attached to my sleeping bag for finding my Burt’s Bees in the middle of the night or “what the hell just landed on my face” inspections.
If you have something small and light that you find yourself using on a regular basis, consider attaching it to a zipper pull instead of burying it deep inside your pack.
Are rabid squirrels a pressing concern in your neighborhood?Ã‚ They terrorize mine, attacking cats and dragging newborns into trees to feed the squirrel rabies babies.Ã‚ Concerned citizens are arming themselves in an attempt to combat this new menace.
Ugh, that sounded like a really bad movie plot, or maybe just a really bad intro.Ã‚ Either way, I’ve got a few new knives in the store, including the preorder for the Sparky knives that should be done in a couple of weeks.Ã‚ Along with their big brothers are some itty bitty baby knives for those of us that believe that no container should be without a way to cut things and a way to start fires.
These solar rechargeable batteries were built by a DIYer, not Duracell, so don’t rush to your local electronics store to find them quite yet.Ã‚ They were made with some old NiMh batteries, flexible photo voltaic cells, super glue, and a bit of wire.Ã‚ They only trickle charge for right now, but with the addition of some capacitors and a protection circuit, you could have some pretty cool little batteries.Ã‚ They might not perform as well as a flat solar charger, but it is still nice to see someone trying something new in batteries, where innovation is sorely needed thanks to our ever increasing gadget lust.
Jason Klass has a new video review up of several whistles available on the market, including a few whistles that I have in the store.Ã‚ Check it out if you are in the market for some whistles, since he demonstrates what they sound like in use and also what each one weighs.
OK, I admit, these probably aren’t the best tools to use on your next razed earth campaign, but they will help you get a little fire going to warm you and your significant other on a cold night. Here are a few new toys in the store:
I tried really hard to make a video about something other than fire.Ã‚ Those flickering little flames won out in the end though, so here is a video about making a fire starting goo with a couple of very common ingredients:
What do you do at 2 AM on a nice night?Ã‚ Probably sleep, if you have any common sense.Ã‚ Sadly, I lack that essential quality, so I go outside and take pictures of the moon.Ã‚ I have posted moon pictures before, and a few people have asked me how I get shots of the moon.Ã‚ Ã‚ I am no pro photographer by any means and these pics are not that great, but they should help illustrate a few points.Ã‚ Here are the two things you will need:
A tripod.Ã‚ You are going to be using long exposures.Ã‚ Unless you are a world class surgeon, your hands are not that steady.
A camera.Ã‚ One with a decent amount of zoom is preferred.Ã‚ I was using a 70-300mm lens on my DSLR, but there are P&S super zoom cameras that will work just fine.Ã‚ If you do not have a lot of zoom, you just have to be a little more creative in your shot composition.
Go outside on a moonlit night and start snapping away.Ã‚ The couple of shots I have in this post were on a cloudless night, so I used trees in my yard and focused on them instead of the moon.Ã‚ On cloudy nights, you can achieve some very cool effects when the clouds obscure part of the moon.Ã‚ A remote is also great to have, since you want to introduce as little vibration as possible to the camera that you have zoomed in to its limit.Ã‚ If you do not have a remote, see if your camera has a delayed activation where the picture is not captured until a second or two after you press the shutter release.Ã‚ Many cameras these days let you adjust the exposure time which will allow you to play around with different exposures to see which work best for your conditions.
You do not need a super senstive camera.Ã‚ The moon is plenty bright on its own, especially if you are zoomed in that far.Ã‚ I was shooting at ISO 100, and most cameras these days can go way higher than that.Ã‚ Go outside and see what you can get and be sure to let me know in the comments if you get some really good ones!
After my last video, I had several people ask for another video showing more detailed use of a firesteel with various tinders.Ã‚ I like playing with fire more than the average person and was happy to oblige.Ã‚ I really hope there are no arson cases in my area, because the investigators could just point to my videos and I’d be done.
I’ve been looking around for a supplier of quality paracord for a long time, and a company I’ve been in contact with for a while just came through in a big way.Ã‚ I received some samples today of their paracord and I was surprised (in a good way) by the quality.Ã‚ Take a look at the picture.Ã‚ Count the strands.Ã‚ That’s right, eight strand paracord instead of the standard seven.
The rep had mentioned in an email that the paracord was eight strand, but I just figured he had fat fingered the number, so I was expecting the regular stuff that everyone else sells.Ã‚ Paracord with inner strands is extremely useful for anyone in the outdoors, since you can use the whole cord for strong cordage when you need it, or easily dismantle it and use the outer sleeve and inner strands separately for gear repair, shelter building, fishing, or for whatever else you might need some strong fibers.
The manufacturer is a US military manufacturer that says they use the highest quality nylon they can find for the paracord, which means that it should handle use and abuse with ease.Ã‚ I hope to have six colors of it in stock over in the store in the next week.
Looking for a nice gift for the outdoorsy woman in your life?Ã‚ Try a pink knife and LED light combo, if that’s something that wouldn’t result in said knife ending up handle deep in your forehead.Ã‚ Yes, pink is stereotypical for women, blah blah blah.Ã‚ If the lady in your life actually uses pocket knives, the Doug Ritter Mini-RSK Mk1 is an excellent choice, with very high quality materials, a great design, and one of the best locking systems available.Ã‚ Also, it is pink.
The combo includes a Photon Freedom, one of the better keychain LED lights out there.Ã‚ If you just want the knife, you can find the non-Doug Ritter version cheaper on ebay or some of the knife sites.Ã‚ I guess you could get jewelry or chocolate or whatever, but can those help you prepare tinder in the dark?Ã‚ I think not.