Introduction: Start a Fire With a Hammer! (Strike Until Its Red Hot!)

About: My name is Chris, and I make things. Follow my makerspace on Instagram @makeeverythingshop And check out my new Youtube page

Did you know you can start a fire just by striking steel with a hammer? Check out the video below to see how, or head into this instructable for a step by step route to make fire by force (including some helpful GIFs)

Step 1: Choose Your Material and Tools

I tried doing this with several different size steels and different weight hammers. What worked best for me was 1/4” x 1/4” square bar stock. The steel I used came from home depot, and its mild steel.

I tried a few different weight hammers as well. I wound up having the most success with a 4 lb mini sledge hammer.

Your probably going to need an anvil for this. But if you don have a traditional anvil, a railroad track, or even another sledge hammer head will do fine.

The other item you will need to start a fire is something thats easily ignited. I used printer paper. ALWAYS HAVE A FIRE EXTINGUISHER NEARBY WHEN PLAYING WITH FIRE. BE CAREFUL

Step 2: Going Through the Motions

A very important part to the success of this trick is the way your rotate the steel between blows. You are going to want to rotate the steel 1/4 turn per blow. The idea here is your pushing the molecules of the material into each other from different angles, thus heating them up faster.

Step 3: Hit HARD, Not Fast

I tried to hammer steel red hot for quite a while before I finally got it, and what I learned was that speed didn't win this game, force did. At first I tried to hit the steel as fast as I could but I wound up just wearing myself out. The trick here is to hit the steel with HARD controlled strikes, and keep an even pace. As you get closer to red hot you can hit it a little softer and with more frequency.

Step 4: Don’t Give Up!

It took me over 100 tried to get the steel red hot, I am not a blacksmith, and I was learning as a went. I guarantee that trying to accomplish this will make you a better striker, so give it a try! Have questions? Ask them in the comments! Ive got this entered in the “Gif” contest, so please vote for me if you enjoyed this little instructable.

And be sure to check out my youtube channel for more cool videos!

GIFs Challenge 2017

Runner Up in the
GIFs Challenge 2017