Typically, it is easy to start a fire using a matchbox or cigarette lighter.

However, when you don’t have these things and you are in the middle of a forest where you need to start a fire to survive the cold or cook food, then you need to start a fire with sticks.

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It is probably the best survival tactic. There are many ways to start a fire but we will discuss the best methods that you can use to quickly start a fire. After all, it is a matter of survivor and you must have some DIY skills to do this. Read on!

Method 1: The Hand Drill

The first method we are going to talk about is the hand drill technique. This is not an easy method and requires some skills. First, you need to hold a stick in your palms. Make sure your palms face each other.

The purpose is to create stronger friction so that you generate enough heat. The hand drill method requires you to use some force tactfully. There is no pause. You must keep up the pressure and rotate the stick between your palms to create friction. You need to aim for the tip and your objective is to glow the tip of the stick.

Step 1:

First, you need to select the stick. For the hand drill method, you need one straight stick. Make sure the stick you choose is a bit thicker than the pencil. We recommend finding a stick that is about 15 inches long.

Also, you need a stick that is smooth so that you don’t hurt your palms while rotating it between the palms to create greater friction. If you have a pocket knife, then you can easily shape the stick to a point.

Step 2:

The second thing you need is to choose the fireboard. It is very unlikely to find a flat piece of wood in the forest or jungle. However, you can choose a larger stick that looks a bit flat. Once you find a large piece of smooth wood, you must hold it between your feet. Don’t move this piece of wood. Keep it steady.

Step 3:

Next, we recommend you to dig out a small depression or choose a hollow in the fireboard. For this, you need to use the pocket knife. This will keep the fire-starter stick firm and in place. On the other hand, if you don’t have the pocket knife, you can find as stone with sharp edges. Use the stone with a sharp edge to dig out the depression.

Step 4:

This step is about starting the fire. You need to cut a notch into the depression edge. This is towards the wood edge that allows the ember to drop onto a bit of tinder. Make sure the notch is smaller. This will enable you to keep the fire stick intact. Also, this way, it won’t slip out of the place.

Method 2: The Blow Drill

The blow drill is an easy method that allows you to take the pressure off the hands. This method allows you to transfer the pressure to the bow. Most often, the bow is made from a piece of wood.

You must attach a string, a shoelace, leather, or drawstring cord to the piece of wood. Here, you also need a fire-stick and fireboard. You need hardwood to hold the fire-stick firm and steady.

Next, you must press down on this using one of your hands. Use the other hand to start moving the bow with the cord. You see that the fire-stick has the cord looped around it. The purpose is to create an ember.

Method 3: The Fire Plow

For this method, you need a flat piece of wood, which you can use to carve a channel with a sharp flint or knife along the wood length. Make sure the wood is soft. Use your fingernail to make a mark in the wood.

After having the channel, the next step is to hold the wood steady between your legs. The fire stick is a hardwood that is around 15-20 inches long. The thickness of the wood is a bit larger than a standard pencil.

Make sure you hold it at 45 degrees angle using both of your hands. Then, move it up and down the channel applying a stronger force. This is not an easy method and requires some energy. You may sweat while starting a fire stick using the fire plow method.

The sick is a harder wood than the board, which creates heat dust from the friction. This way, you can start the fire. Make sure you add some bushes from the surrounding to have a full-fledged fire.


Starting a fire without using a matchbox or cigarette lighter is a daunting task. If you don’t have survival skills, it won’t be easy to start the fire in the woods. So, next time, when you move to the woods for hunting or if there is an unpleasant situation, refer to the 3 methods above. Using any of these methods based on the situation you are having can help start a fire with sticks easily.

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