The 3 Best DIY Survival Heat Sources
As a survivalist, I am always looking out for ingenious ideas to keep warm if I ever had to live outdoors. Three heat sources that are great to have in an emergency include Terra Cotta Pot Heaters, Waterproof Matches, and a Boy Scout Buddy Burner. Each of these are simple to make and very cost-effective ways to stay warm especially in an emergency. They should always be attempted with care and at your own risk.
TERRA COTTA POT HEATER
Terra Cotta Heaters are best created by using:
- 2 - different-sized un-glazed terra cotta pots (to prevent unwanted fumes)
- 1 - copper penny to serve as a great heat transmitter and to hold heat in the smaller pot
- 4 - unscented beeswax tea lights to prevent headaches. Beeswax has lower combustion and burns cleaner than paraffin or soy wax.
- 1 - small aluminum baking pan
- 1 - cooling rack
- 2 - bricks or evenly matched stones.
Place the tealight candles in the baking pan and light them. Situate the bricks or stones on each side of the pan and secure the cooling rack on top. Put the smaller Terra Cotta pot upside down on the cooling rack over the candles. Completely cover the bottom hole with the copper penny. Nest the second larger pot over the smaller pot. In about a ½ hour, this heat source will reach a full capacity of 300°F.
S.O.L. Fuel Free Lighter - Quickly start fires in any weather
The two most popular matches are Safety matches and Strike-Anywhere matches. Safety matches are generally made of phosphorous sulfide and either potassium chlorate or sodium chlorate and include a striking surface on the matchbox. Strike-Anywhere matches include phosphorus-sequisulfide (striking surface of the safety match boxes) in the match head.
Waterproof matches are made simply by dipping them into melted beeswax and allowing them to cool and dry before use.
Many survivalists and preppers prefer Strike-Anywhere waterproof matches. These are harder to find due to the increased safety risk but are easy to make yourself. First, scrape the striking surface off a safety match box or carefully empty the contents of a cap gun cap sheet into a mortar. Add a dropper full of water and 1 drop of waterproof wood glue. Gently mash up the ingredients with a pestle to make a thick slurry paste mixture. Dip each match head in the paste and set aside to dry overnight. Next, dip each match into melted beeswax and let cool and dry before storing in a safe airtight container.
Mr. Heater Buddy Flex Burner - Easily cooks food outdoors
BOY SCOUT BUDDY BURNERS
Buddy burners are historically a simple survival project for boy scouts to cook outdoors and create warmth. This heat source is made by taking a shallow tin, such as an empty tuna can, rolling up a strip of corrugated cardboard to fit in the tin, and pouring melted wax over the cardboard. You can either scrape a little of the wax in order to light the cardboard or include a cotton wick before pouring the wax.
*CAUTION: With each of these DIY projects, be sure to use safety precautions such as safety goggles and fire-safe rubber gloves. Create these products at your own risk. Make sure you use these heat sources in ventilated areas to reduce the build-up of toxic Carbon Monoxide. Do not use these sources while sleeping or unsupervised, especially around pets and children. The seven states where Strike-Anywhere matches are either restricted or illegal are: New Jersey, Virginia, Ohio, California, Alaska, Minnesota, and Wisconsin.
If you liked this article, check out my other useful blogs on survival, prepping for disasters, and DIY projects at https://www.everythingsurvivalsupply.com/blog.
Coleman PerfectFlow™ Single Burner Propane Stove