Fire is man’s best friend, and the use of fire has provided us with our dominance and survival on earth today. But, what if you are in a place where there is no fire? You will be cold and depending on the conditions; you could die before the night ends.
That is why in the Irish villages of the past every May 1st, during Beltane, between the spring equinox and before the Summer Solstice there was a ritual putting out all the fires in the village and one large fire was kindled.
From that fire, all the rest of the homes got their hearth fires as a symbol of purification and unification of the people. Today, knowing how to make a fire on your own without using the modern conveniences of a match or lighter is an art and skill most have forgotten.
However, today, when said conveniences are lacking due to weather, power outages, and social unrest as in Syria, knowing how to light a fire can save your life. There are a plethora of ways to starting to start a fire from the rubbing of two sticks together.
Are there any other options?
The Fire drill has been taught to Boy Scouts since its inception. Other methods employ lenses made of glass and ice. A Neolithic Polynesian and Southeast Asian method is the fire piston. There are even strange techniques like using lemon, and one technique that uses a nine-volt battery and steel wool.
However, one of the most reliable is using a Ferro rod and striker that will get your fire started and burning even in adverse weather conditions where all other methods fail.
Today, you will look at 5 variations on this theme, and you can choose one of them that fits best with your needs in case you need to have the warmth of a roaring fire to keep you and your family secure for whatever reason.
10 Best Ferro Rods in 2023
1. Light My Fire Original Swedish Fire Starter
When you need, a fire lit no matter where you are. If it’s desert, a deserted island in the Pacific, or on the Arctic tundra. This little Ferro rod lights up your day like nobody’s business. All you need is some tender and then strike the metal against the rod, a 3,000 C degree spark sails into your tinder, and in a short time, you’ll have a cozy fire that will dry your clothes out, cook your food, and keep you warm while the wind is howling outside your shelter.
Made for the Swedes who have to survive in some of the harshest climates on earth, This Ferro rod fire starter is endorsed by the International Survival Instructors Association (ISIA). So, if you are an outdoorsman, hunter, hiker, and camper, this is one of the “Must Have Tools” to take with you when you head off into the wild.
- Long-lasting 12,000 strikes
- Available in multiple colors
- Will start campfires and Barbecues with ease
- Use with any flammable materials like dry grass, fire fungus, and wood shavings
- I put it in my Survival knife sheath, and when I am out in the woods, I use it to start a fire when I want to cook up some trout and catfish. My fire catches with no problems whatsoever.
- I tried it at home, and it started a wad of paper towels in the sink quicker than me doing it with a match or a lighter.
- Once a spark from the Swede hits kindling you have a fire up and going in just a few minutes.
- If you have to hit the trail with only one thing in your pocket, it better be a “Lite My Fire”.
- Dump the clasp as it is too light to handle outdoor usage.
- I feel the striker could be larger.
- Combining the strike with a whistle is a lame idea, and it isn’t all that loud.
First off, this reviewer is a fan of flint and steel. However, I always carry 2 to three other ways to start a fire. Matches in a waterproofed container, a couple of lighters, and of course some Paracord and tinder to make a fire drill.
However, to back everything up is one of these which I learned about many years ago while maintaining survival gear for a nuclear submarine. This newer model has a smaller striker, which takes a bit of practice to learn how to handle, and combining it with a whistle is a nice thought but we would prefer a striker with a larger surface area.
The clasp is not very sturdy and the one we used had it cut off and a knot substituted. However, aside from these minor problems you still have one of the best fire-starting tools around.
2. KobraGear Emergency Magnesium Fire Starter
The combination of magnesium along with the sparkling power of the Ferro rod produces fire under any circumstances. This is especially useful when you are caught in a storm, and you need to use wood that is not completely dry.
Shave off some magnesium and then strike the rod and the resulting flame will have a fire going in a short time. This Ferro rod is larger than what you usually see in other fire starters. So, it is easier to handle than other fire starters you’ve used in the past.
Once you get the hang of it, it is almost like using a lighter and you can have a fire going in no time. You also get 15,000 strikes from this Fire Starter, and that goes a long way to ensuring your safety and security if you are out in the wild.
- All-weather fire starting at your command
- All components are secure on the Paracord lanyard that you can attach to your gear to ensure everything stays together until you need it
- 3-1/8 inch Ferro rod
- 3-1/2 inch magnesium block to go with a serrated striker that shaves off what you need and then makes the spark that starts everything off
- A really big Ferro Rod that makes a ton of sparks.
- Getting a fire started with this rig is easier than striking a match on the side of the box.
- Best fire starter I’ve ever owned.
- The wind was up, and the rain was starting to fall. My matches kept going out with the wind. But, the magnesium took and held long enough to get a fire going, and we keep that fire going all night. Thanks to this little beauty you’re looking at right now.
- It starts fires in seconds and is big enough to see and use.
- Sparks beat the band and it never fails.
- After a few strikes, the Ferro rod pulled out of the handle. I was able to snap it back in and later I super glued it in place. However, I expected better.
If you’ve had trouble in the past getting fire starters to work in the past, those days are over. Combining a Ferro rod with magnesium is a surefire way to get a fire starter this side of using a flamethrower. Another feature that sets this fire starter apart is the size of the implements everything is big enough to hold comfortably.
You then can get smooth, strong strikes and you do not scrape or burn your fingers in the process. Everything is on a lanyard that you can put on your wrist or tie around your neck for safekeeping. The only thing is to use some epoxy and fasten the Ferro rod securely to its handle, and you’ll be golden.
3. Schrade SCHFS1 Large Ferro Rod
When you are stuck in a car on the highway between here and nowhere, you need to have a survival kit in the trunk of your car or under a seat in your SUV. One of the things you will want to have is a Ferro rod and striker in that kit. That way you can build a fire to keep yourself warm, and you can use it to signal for help.
The same is also true when you are out in the wild when your lighter goes belly up and you forgot to bring any matches. Cold beans are edible; however, it does not get you any points with your companion who expected a romantic fire and some marshmallows along with a hot dog or two on a stick. That’s when the SCHFS1 can come to your rescue.
It will get your fire going in just a few moments, and then your outing or your discomfort waiting for a passing motorist is lessened. Being self-reliant means being ready for any eventuality and being able to start a fire outdoors is a must-have skill in these days of superstorms, tornadoes, and power outages.
Learning to use a Schrade takes just a few minutes of your time, and then you will never be without a welcoming fire in your hearth no matter what the weather is outside.
- Striker and Ferro rod are lightweight and easy to carry in a glove box, daypack, and Bug-Out-Bag
- Sparks even in the rain
- Made tough so can be used by campers, hikers, and First Responders as part of their Go-Bag
- It comes with a striker that wouldn’t chew up your hand using.
- Remember to take tinder and lint is a good choice for dipping in paraffin.
- These things are cheap enough to throw into your gym bag, the car, SUV, your backpack, and especially your coat pocket before you head out the door. You don’t know when you might need some heat and this fire starter is better than “Flicking your Bic.” (Almost).
- 90-degree edge, no serrations that cut into fingers along with a comfortable feel to it.
- I own about a dozen of them, and I have them in the RV, the cabin by the lake, inside the tent’s gear bag, as well as in my camping backpack pack. All the kids carry one and know how to use it.
- The lanyard is way too skinny. But, they made the holes big enough to accept a thicker piece of Paracord. So, ditch the lanyard and make your own.
The reviewer hasn’t had to do or die in the woods in recent years though there have been times in the last year when the B.O.B. was opened up to get some stuff to start a fire with after a couple of bad thunderstorms took the grid out here in the heart of the corn-belt.
I have used the Schrade during this time and found it to be a useful way to light the fireplace and get the wood-burning stove up to warm things up until the power came up. This is one of the 3 fire starters that are in my various kits. It is less spectacular than the magnesium/Ferro rod I use in the rain outdoors and it lets me direct the spark indoors where it is needed, better as well.
So, if you want to get a quickfire going, it does work in the rain very well, inside your camp stove or wood burner, and of course, your campfire. Then get 3 or 4 Schrades and stash them where you can get at them in the dark or your gear bag and camping equipment, and you’ll be set, and having one can save your life when the grid drops power on a winter’s night in a blizzard.
4. Ferrocerium Flint Fire Starter Survival Ferro Rod
Here is a unique take on Ferro rods. First, this one is 5″ long, and it is nestled inside a 30.06 cartridge case, and thirdly it is made in the US down Ventura way in Sunny California. Steve Kaeser has since 1989 been creating the kind of stuff that people who go into the wild have needed.
His line of fire-starting tools and kits is known far and wide. This Ferrocerium rod is just one of the many products he offers. You have a striker that is made to fit your hand, and the striker is made to get sparks without cutting your fingers at the start of your fires. It also has a bottle top opener as well.
Everything is connected by a chain that unlike many does not use a lanyard with a plastic clasp that often opens without warning.
- 5 inches long replacing the previous version
- Lasting for 1000’s lights and is 5/16″ thick. The Ferro rod is thick and durable
- The rod is encased in a 30-06 brass cartridge case that gives it a unique look
- Fits anywhere, backpacks, Bug-Out-Bags, and Go-Bags for those who need a reliable way to start a fire anytime, no matter what the weather.
- Looks great and for $10 bucks you can’t beat it along with the fact you can start a fire anywhere, and it even lights in the rain and wind.
- More sparks than on the 4th of July.
- Solid handle and is big enough to use comfortably.
- Has the tinder going in a strike or two and then with a steady puff of air you have a flame that you can build up to the size you want.
- Handmade in America and besides good looking it works to beat the band. I’ve used mine in the backyard on the Weber, and it starts things going in a few strikes.
- The casing is just the icing on the cake. I would use this rod for starting fires anyway, as it is large enough to hold and get a fire started without cramping your hands as often happens, trying to use the smaller ones you see advertised.
- Put some super glue on the rod as it can slip out of the cartridge if you aren’t careful.
- I wish the rod were another inch longer to 6″. I guess you can’t have everything.
When we looked at it first when we saw it at a Midwest Gun Show, It looked like a cute gimmick. So, we snagged one. Upon taking it out, into the back near the woodpile, we were pleasantly surprised. In a few strokes after getting through the protective coating, we had out tender glowing, and in another couple of minutes; we had a decent-sized test campfire going.
So, as not to waste it, we had the kids go in the house and bring out the weenie-roasting forks, some Ballpark Franks, and some brats. The afternoon took on a festive mood and later went online and ordered a few more to give to some of this reviewer’s buddies at the local VFW. It puts out a load of sparks; the striker is made from part of a hacksaw but in a way that wouldn’t scratch your fingers. The bottle opener is a tad much.
However, it did work when used to open a few cold ones. All in all, it is a good tool to add to your BOB, and the reviewer now carries it as a keychain, which makes it easy to find a misplaced set of car keys, as the brass cartridge catches the light. This is probably one of the best items you can buy for $10 bucks and can save your life if you lose power in the winter or after a Midwest “Tornado Alley Twister” and you need a fire to keep warm or dry out your clothes.
5. Ferrocerium Rod Flint Fire Starter
When you want to start a fire under any circumstances, you can’t do better than a Ferro rod fire starter. With this one, however, you get a deal as you get two for the price of one. The other great thing is finally you get a Ferro rod that is big enough to handle all your outdoor and fire-starting needs. 6-inches long and will give you 12,000+ strikes before you need to think about getting it replaced.
With two, you can have one in your backpack for going out in the wild along with your other gear. The second can as a backup that you attach to your knife’s sheath, so it is always there if you need or want to start a fire. So, now you are doubly protected when you go out hiking or camping with two sources of fire-making Ferro rods, and you’ll always be able to start a fire anywhere you find yourself.
- 6 inches long
- Waterproof fire-starting with just a scrape of your knife blade
- 12,000 strikes that get a fire going fast
- Predrilled hole for a lanyard or chain that you can wear around your neck or hook to your gear
- The longer the rod, the more sparks per stroke and you have a better chance of getting your fire going.
- This rod can make a spark that’s 3,000 C, which should get you a fire going in no time at all.
- Almost 1/2″ around and 6″ long, If you can’t start a fire with this baby, you wouldn’t be able to start one ever.
- The sparks burn for a second or more and that gives the tinder time to catch fire. You need to be careful though as they have a tendency to bounce about so be careful where you are aiming them.
- Great product and more bang for the buck than I ever hoped for.
- I put a flat spot on the back of my knife. That lets me ensure the right amount of spark whenever I need it.
- These rods are a bit too big for what I want. It is too long to wear on a lanyard around my neck.
- It doesn’t put out as much spark as my magnesium fire starter.
These are the top end in size that this reviewer has seen in Ferro rod fire starters. We prefer longer ones true. However, this one is also thicker in diameter as well. This adds to the weight and while makes it easy to hold in large hands.
It may be too big for someone of average-sized or smaller hands. The amount of spark put out by the rods is adequate but not overly impressive as with some of the other Ferro rod fire starters. It will start a fire reasonably well under wet conditions.
But, though we love a six-inch Ferro rod it is too weight to carry comfortably, and the lack of a striker means you need to use your knife as a striker and that can scratch a good knife. It would be a better product if it came with a striker as well. However, if you do not mind using your knife of improvising a striker you can get a lot of mileage out of two of these monsters in the field.
6. UST BlastMatch Fire Starter
Are you looking for easy to use fire starter?
If yes, this one is undoubtedly an excellent choice. It is available in 2 color variants.
It supports the one-handed operation. The weight of 2.3 ounces and dimensions of 4.1″ x 1.4″ x 1″ means that it is highly compact as well. As a result, when you want to carry it for camping or other purposes, you can do so quite easily.
With the help of Flint-based design, it can generate a hot spark almost instantaneously. That is why; the amount of effort and time required is on the lower side.
It comes along with a safety button as well, which means that accidental sparking is not a problem. The construction is such that you can direct the spark in a particular direction if you wish to do so. It can ignite tinder quite easily.
The best thing is that it can work in the rain and any other weather condition. That is why; using it around the year is certainly possible.
The 360 rotation of the Flint bar ensures that it is very convenient. Inside, it consists of a built-in carbide striker. Also, it is suitable for up to 4000 strikes. The excellent durability and ease of use make it the best fire starter.
- Facilitates a one-handed operation.
- Available in 2 colors.
- Sturdy construction.
- Easy to use.
- Packaging can be better.
If you’re looking for a reliable and best fire starter suitable for various purposes, it cannot get any better than this. Also, the compact size means that you can carry it wherever you go.
7. überleben Zünden Fire Starter
With three different size options, you have some choices when you’re going with this fire starter. You can choose the one which is best suitable for you.
Also, depending on the variant, it is suitable for anywhere from 12,000 strikes to 20,000 strikes. That is why; durability is on the higher side.
The waterproof construction means that using it in any weather and any surrounding is undoubtedly easy.
The weight is less than 3 ounces, which means that carrying it around is not a problem. It comes with a power cord lanyard as well. Also, with the help of a Multitool striker, you can use it as a survival fire starter.
The molten sparks of 5500ºF help you in any weather condition. The high durability ensures that once you buy it, you need not buy any other fire starter. The three size options and the long lifespan make this best fire starter an option worth buying.
- Available in 3 different size options.
- Lightweight design.
- Long lifespan.
- Easy to carry around.
- The grip could be better.
If versatility is your concern when it comes to fire starters, this one with multitool and lanyard fits your requirements perfectly.
8. Survival Spark Magnesium Survival Fire Starter
The next option on our list is a once again survival fire starter.
Also, the construction is such that it is weather-resistant, and you can use it in the harsh cold as well. It is windproof in design. It comes with a life span of 15,000 strikes.
It comes along with a magnesium fire starter stick and other tools like a whistle, lanyard, compass, and a large scraper. Thus, you can use it for a variety of purposes.
The length of 5.5 inches means that you can carry it around easily. You can incorporate it into a survival kit, which is one of the main advantages of this fire starter.
The easy-to-grip design ensures that you can generate sparks on the first attempt itself. The tools that come along with it and the excellent grip make it stand out from other fire starters for camping.
- Heavy-duty construction.
- It comes with accessories.
- Compact design.
- Suitable for a variety of applications.
- The gripping area could be longer.
The availability of accessories certainly sets it apart. Also, the compact length means that you can carry it around easily. It has the perfect combination of reliability and portability.
9. Exotac nanoSTRIKER XL Ferrocerium Fire Starter
This ferrocerium fire starter is available in 4 different color options. It is highly portable. You can use it along with the keyring, neck strap, or in your pocket.
With the help of ¼ inches rod, you can easily ignite any material. Also, it can work when wet as well. That is why the weather will not be a deterrent when using this fire starter.
The life span of 3000 strikes ensures that you won’t require replacing it anytime soon.
The collapsible design allows you to move it with ease. Also, it consists of an entirely waterproof structure that gives you no reason to complain. The sturdy 6061 aluminum construction does not disappoint. It will not suffer from any wear and tear, even on consistent use.
When you look at the grip, consists of a textured grip. The advantage of a textured grip is that you can hold it firmly. With all the necessary features, there is no reason why you shouldn’t go with this fire starter.
- Available in 4 color options.
- Ferrocerium rod on offer.
- Compact design.
- Long lifespan.
- Excellent grip.
- The striker area can be bigger.
The USP of this best fire starter is that it can work in any weather. The reliability and the heavy-duty aluminum construction of this fire starter make it a worthy choice.
10. Coghlan’s Waterproof Flint Striker
The ferrocerium rod of this fire starter makes it lightweight and waterproof. You can use it during camping trips or backpacking or trekking or any other kind of outing.
The life span is thousands of strikes. Also, it can help you create fire at any altitude or any kind of weather.
When you look at the dimensions, those are 3-7/8 inches in length and 5/16 inches in diameter. Due to the size, carrying it around is not going to be a problem. It is a great option when looking for an all-weather fire starter for camping.
- Highly versatile.
- Excellent lifespan.
- Compact size.
- Handle design can be better.
Among these fire starter reviews, this one stands out due to its compact design. When you have tons of gear to carry, a compact fire starter can come in handy. Since it can work in any weather, you will have no complaints at all when using this fire starter.
You have now seen 5 of the best Ferro Rod Fire Starters on the market today. Now it is just deciding which of them fits your needs best. But, any of them can ensure you a tasty fire when you are out in the cold where central heating is not available or conditions would let you start your campfire in the traditional manner of just lighting a match or using your lighter.
You now have a way to make sure your family can have heat when the grid and services are not there and that makes you self-reliant and peace of mind as you can take care of yourself and your loved ones in this time of uncertainties.