Survival Gear Review: Überfire Fire Starter
I don’t know of any fire starting product bold enough to flat-out guarantee their product will spark flames in the...
I don’t know of any fire starting product bold enough to flat-out guarantee their product will spark flames in the coldest, wettest extremes on the planet. But if there was a top contender for that position, I’d put Überfire in the lead. Here’s why.
I was recently invited to help out my friends during a survival training week for a few Department of Justice folks. In addition to some bad-ass training, there were also several presenters demoing products. Among them was a man named Dale Fruit, who brought samples of his fire starter material called Überfire. Dale might be the only other person I’ve encountered who likes fire as much as I do (in a good way—not a pyro way).
He explained the demand for a better fire producing product, and how he came up with the proprietary blend. Dale’s stomping grounds are the Pacific Northwest—certainly a cold wet place. His father had shared numerous secrets of fire building from the Northwest forests, including the use of natural materials. Dale couldn’t tell me what was in his secret mixture, but after seeing the Überfire in action, I can assure you: It works.
I opened the screw top can to find fibrous material drowning in a sea of resinous black goop. The fiber is essentially the “wick” to set this candle aflame, and it will light with either a spark or an open flame. The wicking material is impregnated with something oily, so it is invulnerable to moisture and lights easily—even after a dunking. Dale displayed that feature by pouring water over the open can, then lighting it with a spark rod.
The burn starts out slow, but it grows steadily until the entire can is engulfed. Within two minutes, the mystery material has become a soft, molten fireball (napalm, anyone?), which can be parceled out into separate globs for lighting purposes, or to start fires.
The can can also continue burning as-is. Unattended, a 2 ounce can’s burn time is about 30 minutes, but with a little stirring and agitation, it might squeak out a 45 minute burn. To start a fire under dire circumstances, you simply begin making a teepee arrangement of sticks directly on top of the burning Überfire. Its intense heat will dry out the dampest wood, setting your fire alight.
This canister may also be recapped at any time, which extinguishes the blaze and allows it to be reused multiple times. You will need a little fiber to restart a cold can that has been previously burned, and a cotton ball or some other fibrous natural tinder will do the job nicely.
If you want to see Überfire in action, check out the promo video below.
Here are the Überfire specs:
• The material is completely water-proof, and the entire can only weighs 2.5 ounces
• The can is 2.5 inches in diameter and .9 inches high
• It’s made in the USA with all-natural ingredients
• It burns like a fiend
• The MSRP is $29.95 for the 2-ounce can. A larger 4-ounce size is also available.
Would you want something like this in your kit? Tell us which fire starters you like best by leaving a comment.