Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Firesteel tinder practice and paracord fun.

Been practising a few modern skills today for a change.

Firstly firesteel practice with man made tinders which were :-

Cotton wool and petroleum jelly.
Trioxane fuel tab.
Wire wool with t-cut (color restorer for car paint)
Cardboard/wax in a tin.
Jute twine.

Got the first four lit at the same time, then later on finally found the twine and set that ablaze. I must say the wire wool and t-cut went up with quite some vigour and stayed lit for a long time, with only a spot of the product. Handy things to know if you want to rely on these sorts of tinders prepared in your kit.
The cardboard and candlewax tin (shoe polish type) fits in the crusader cooker to replace the greenheat as an almost free alternative thats reuseable using the lid to snuff out, for several brews. It is a sooty fuel though.

Then thought I'd make a cobra type paracord lanyard for my keys. Quite enjoyed this one and got the folks at work making them at dinner time too.

Friday, 23 September 2011

Event pictures

There have been lots to sort through to go with the previous post of the recent work I've been doing, so I've added just a few so as not to bore.

Bushcraft walking events. These pictures came from the Shipley Country Park walk. The general idea of the day carried on with the other walks recently.

Hope you enjoy.

These next pictures were from the Elvaston Castle Woodland Festival I worked at where there were many demonstrators covering just about every traditional woodland craft and many others too. Great bunch of folks and a great weekend was had. We had an area to ourselves promoting the countryside service and some of the Bushcraft and Green woodworking skills we like to teach during other events.

Smoky old morning once our area was lit up. We had a a few cooking demonstrations too with a range over a fire, stoves and a brick built oven.

The shelters. All built by ourselves to traditional designs in Mike Abbots book "Living Wood" My shelter is on the end and came in handy during the short heavy showers.

Spoons, kuksas and bark work were the demonstations of the day from myself. As well as the cooking, we had children's activities too which was a busy old place.

Teaching the next generation of pole lathe turners. The chap on the right is Morris, a volunteer who brings a lot to the event and our little meetings when working on projects.

Heres a link http://www.bushcraftuk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=79562 to pictures of most of the demonstrators at the event that a fine chap called Steve took during his visit.

Looking forward to next years shows and events already. Just finished a batch of Rosehip Syrup for a wild food walk on Sun for folks to dip there bannock in. Even the Daughter liked this experiment so I don't expect it to last long!

Monday, 19 September 2011


Its been a very busy 2 weeks.

I led 3 guided walks for the scouts, cubs, brownies, and members of the public finding all things bushy to talk about and demonstrate along the way with a camp site set up to finish with a fire by Friction demonstration and then letting folks have a go with the set and other methods of firelighting.We all made several natural cordage bracelets each and my supply of cattail fibres is seriously depleted now.
After the Chatsworth show and the walks I just got my breath back and then helped set up and demonstrate at the Elvaston Castle woodland festival. One of the best shows going and the public and staff all had a great time by the sounds of the comments after chatting away to folks over the 2 days.

Myself and my good pal Adrian, made the trees safe in the areas around the demonstrators beforehand by climbing the large mature Ash, Beech, and Oak trees and pruning out the dangerous sections to prevent any unwanted failures while trying to be aware of the local wildlife and habitats.

It's great to be really busy again, and Ive met so many nice people along the way.

Ive not had chance to take any pictures but plenty of others have so I'll round a few up and post them in a day or two.

Wild food walk to lead this coming Sunday at Shipley country park and then some free weekends to catch up with family life and maybe some knife-making if I'm lucky.

Wednesday, 14 September 2011

Ash Spoon

After the recent demonstrations spoon carving, I finished one in a simple style out of a straight peice for eating. The bowl size and depth is just right for cereal, soups and cooking/serving basic food when camping. I'm quite pleased with it and the basic look.

Thursday, 8 September 2011

Working at Chatsworth Country Fair 2011

I was at Chatsworth promoting the upcoming woodland festival at Elvaston Castle and the work that the Countryside service at DCC do. There was general info kids activities with willow star making and a few of us wood turning and wood carving. The shelters worked really well and we let folks have a go on the lathe which proved popular with all types of people.

My little somerset shelter was just right for my spoon and kuksa carving demo with a few simple tools and sharpening gear which folks also seemed to like to talk about.

Hard work but good fun, the red bull aeroplane display, red arrows and skydivers were all in the sky above too. One of the best parts were all the hot air ballons taking off around 08 :00 in the morning. Shame I didnt get any shots of those. One nearly landed on my landy!