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Flint wheel fire starters

Discussion in 'Other Every Day Carry Items' started by SOS24, Apr 12, 2017.

  1. SOS24
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    SOS24 Loaded Pockets

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    I've always considered having a way to start a fire a crucial part of edc carry. Lighters are great, but I also think a second option is smart and have been looking at a few flint wheel fire starters considering their small size and claims to be able to use one handed. I've recently bought two different ones and thought I'd share my thoughts on them - the UST Micro Sparkwheel and the Spark-Lite military edition.

    The UST Micro Sparkwheel is really cheap at around $2.95 and made of brass which should make it pretty durable. It is really small at only 1.5" long and the handle is just the thickness required to hold the flint. Because of how short and thin it was, I found it very hard to hold in one had and spin the wheel to spark. If I used one had to hold it and the other to spin the wheel, it gave off a nice little spark and lit tinder-quick after 2-3 tries. On the bottom there is a screw for replacing the flints which sometimes will loosen on its own and if to loose then flint does not spark. It comes with 3 spare flints.

    The Spark-Lite comes in plastic, brass and aluminum with 8 tinder-quick. To initial try it out I purchased the plastic one (cheapest). It is bigger than the UST Micro but still pretty small at about 2.5" x .5" and it feels pretty durable despite being plastic. Even with the small size, I was still able to hold it in one hand and spin the wheel. It gave off a spark each time and lit the tinder-quick on first try 2 out of 3 times (once it took two tries). The flint in the plastic one is not replaceable, but I did see a tutorial on how to make it replaceable, but I have not tried it yet. The flint is supposedly a custom extra long flint that is good for over 1000 uses. I liked the Spark-Lite so much that I ordered the brass one and will update when I receive it. I am interested in seeing how long the flint actually is and whether a regular Zippo one would work. I also may try to modify the plastic one once I get the brass. The brass and aluminum come with a spare flint.

    The UST Micro Sparkwheel (left) vs Spark-Lite military edition (right)
    [​IMG]
     
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  2. Westerdutch

    Westerdutch Loaded Pockets

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    Nice writeup! I always just carry a BIC lighter, with gas in it its about the best fire starter you can want and once it runs out you can quite easily convert it to a sparker as well! Not as easy as one of those old clipper lighters but still good!

    I do like brass things tho, love to hear your thoughts about that one once it arrives!
     
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  3. Weko

    Weko Loaded Pockets

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    I have both and the only issue I've run into aside from what you mentioned is the flints turning into powder. I've also had the flints turning into powder in bic lighters. There seems to be two versions of the brass spark-lite, one requires a screwdriver or blade to open it and the second has a thumb screw. I need to round off some of the edges on mine as they are a little sharp
     
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  4. jds1

    jds1 Loaded Pockets

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    Thanks for your review. I've been meaning to add these to my kits.

    Jeff
     
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  5. SOS24
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    SOS24 Loaded Pockets

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    The Brass Spark-Lite arrived today. It works just as well as the plastic version. The changing of the flint is done by a little hex wrench that is included. The flint inside is a little over twice the size of a standard Zippo flint, but the standard flint will work in it with good results. Mine did not have the replacement flint that the description stated, so I emailed the company I bought it from and they already responded that they will be shipping one.
    [​IMG]
    Shows the flint compared to two standard size flints. The screw and spring that hold the flint in place are also shown.

    I wrapped the Sparkwheel in some tarred twine to see if it would improve the grip and it does make it so I can hold and spin in one hand. I still like the Spark-Lite better but at least I feel the UST Sparkwheel is more usable now.
    [​IMG]
     
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  6. SeanByrdman

    SeanByrdman Loaded Pockets

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    Exotac is starting up a new kickststarter to make their version of these that can store some tinder inside. I'd like to add one of these sparkers to my gear though, seem handy


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