By Roy Huntington
Chris from Clickspring is a delightful young man who does incredible machining videos on his website (www.clickspringprojects.com). What caught my eye initially is his talent at machining and design — and remarkable video editing. Tune in and enjoy them. I also watched him create (from scratch) the original “Fire Piston” allowing someone to start a fire using heat from compressed air. Watch the original video on his website. It was such a hit, he’s having them made in the USA and they are available for sale now. I bought one and found it to be typical of his work and designs.
It’s first-class in every respect, from the aluminum body (anodized) to the high quality brass piston and end caps. There’s also a small compass inset into one end. The kit comes with a lanyard, brass lanyard bead and “char” cloth in small plastic bags (enough for dozens of fires) to get you fire-starting right off. And, it works even better in a stiff breeze, unlike most other starting methods.
Starting a fire is easy. A tiny bit of char cloth goes into the end of the piston, then it’s driven home down the precision machined hole in the body of the tool by a quick push with your palm. It may take a bit of practice! As the air is rapidly compressed (like the fuel mixture in a diesel engine) the heat is high enough to start the char to glow into embers. It’s one small step from there to use it to light a tinder fire. It works amazingly well, and the char cloth glows as if by magic. I promise you’ll amaze the kids! Chris’ attention to detail is superb and it solves the “What am I going to get him for Christmas” conundrum completely! Here’s a link to see it in action and to purchase one at the $89 price. Well done, Chris! For more info: https://clickspring.myshopify.com/products/the-clickspring-fire-piston