I know of at least one person who does a similar thing but he makes several 'matches' - basically he will dip the stick in the resin, let it cool, dip it again until he builds a head! Several of these are excellent fire starters especially in difficult conditions.
Does anybody actually waste their money buying Maya dust?
Not daft mate, resin coated sticks will burn a treat but you know fat wood is naturally occuring? Look for standing dead wood or cut stumps (pine), you want wood that is starting to rot, clear the rotting stuff out and if youre lucky therell be some resin rich fat wood/maya in the middle
I live in the lake district and as a result of the storms I now have a large pile of logged pine trees for our woodfire. Im only back home for easter and was wanting to make my own tins of Maya Dust :wave:
I found it on a website just the other day, and had no idea what it was. Fortunately for me, a quick post on this excellent site, and I was advised to save my pennies. So, 3 quid towards my woodlore knife fund:-P
Just get the sticks and whittle or saw them to make dust.
In my neck of the woods, there's a fair chunk of forestry land with pine/ spruce you name it. There's an abundence of rotten trees that can be felled with a kick, but though I've tried dozens of times, I've never found any of the resin rich wood at the heart of the rot.
On the other hand, having to clear up a pine tree that was blown in two during one of the recent storms, resin was oozing briskly from the cut ends and damaged places where branches had snapped off. I bagged a pile of fresh resin and a three foot length of trunk to see what it's like when it dries out.
The fat wood I collected today was mostly from the centre of old chainsaw felled stumps, the few rotten trees I kicked over contained just rotten wood . I cant swear Ive got resin rich wood, havent tried it yet, everything was very wet and Im going to leave the pieces to dry out before I scrape all the rotten mush off, the hard stuff does seem to have that maya stick translucence to it though so fingers crossed!
Ive spent the evening refining my resin chips and I now have 3 nice cubes of resin each about the size of the end of my thumb from a fist sized bunch of chips, the old billy can and the spoon have had it though! Not sure how I'll use it but I'll be keeping one in my fire pouch anyway! Interestingly the refined cubes are not sticky to the touch, theyre like hard cubes of butterscotch without the stickiness! I guess if I remelted them and cast them they would loose the milky colour and clarify a bit!
All good fun, and the house smells of furniture polish!
Reminds me of Pinon pine wood we burned in New Mexico, wonderfully aromatic stuff and burns so easily you hardly need to use kindling, quite a dry climate there tho.
Has anyone ever heard of Palo Santo Wood? It's a wood we get where I work to make incense with. It's extremely resinous as I'm finding out trying to make a knife handle out of it :roll: It wasn't until I saw this thread that I thought it may be usefull for the same sort of thing as Maya dust.
ahhh...fat pine...finally something i have some experience with...down here...or over here for ya'll, we have loads of it...it forms from the resin of the pines native to our area ( 6 species of Southern Yellow Pines) when the tree dies as the sap is rising...smells like pure turpentine...there is no doubt when you stumble across it...i keep my eye open for chunks of it when i'm out and about...always gather some for use in starting a fire...
use a SAK saw blade to create some dust...mix that in with a bit of tinder and it'll catch a flame and burn both long and intense...use a few small pieces of it along with even wet wood to jump start a good roarin fire...excellent "bit of kit" (if i have interpreted that expression right)...
i got lucky and discovered an old house place way down in the woods...most of it was rotten but the floor beams were 20 inches in diameter and 16 feet long...solid fat pine...so i have a 7 lifetime supply of it...
we call it lighter knot down here in the South...and use the expression "hotter than a lighter knot fire" when we describe something that is intensely hot...like the weather here in August
You won't have much luck duplicating fatwood. Once the wood is cut the natural capillary action ceases. You could make some tinder with a paper pulp egg carton. Just blend your melted pitch with course sawdust and pour into each cup. Resin is a marvelous resource and not limited to firemaking. It is a component in traditional sealing for birchbark canoes. If anyones better half objects to it's collection present her with an amber, hopefully with some preserved insects inside. You have pitch from a truly lost world. I want to find the marketer who coined 'maya dust' and light a fire under him