Make Your Matches Waterproof!





Introduction: Make Your Matches Waterproof!

About: I like to cook, I like to edit videos, and I like to make props and other useless time consuming things.

I am fortunate enough to have a friend who bought two containers of waterproof matches, just for the containers (he was making geocaches), and he gave me all the matches.

But being the little firebug I am, I used most of them just playing around...I know, I know, I shouldn't have wasted those when I had all kinds of other matches, but then I had an epiphany.

There's a couple of 'ibles that show you how to make a little spice rack that you can take with you anywhere, by using drinking straws and melting/fusing the ends. If you can do it with salt, why not matches?

So that's what I did. And for the last hour or so, they've been sitting in this little container of water, so far, no bubbles.

And I'm fairly certain that even if I left them there for a year, they'd still light when freed from their plastic confines.

The method for these little 'blister packs' is very easy.

Take the straw, hold it by one end with pliers, and bring a lighter or match very close to it so that the end melts together. Insert match. Trim the straw, making sure to leave enough room at the end so that you can still grab it with pliers, and repeat the sealing process.

To open, cut with the scissors on your multi-tool, or using a sharp knife, and open just below your melted seal. Especially if it's something like a little packet of magnesium or something that you're not going to use all of, that way you can re-seal it.



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    15 Discussions

    You could get jumbo straws and fit several matches in each, that would help the problem that the others keep pointing out; itd be better in groups than individual matches in straws.

    1 reply

    The straws I used here were thinner than most. Even in an average sized straw I've gotten three matches in. I imagine with like, a milkshake straw, you could get maybe five or six in.

    Yeah, but I figure with these, if in an emergency situation, you find the contents of your pocket or survival kit have vacated their containment area and are currently residing in a creek/river/pond/lake, these matches (and whatever else you've decided to seal in straw blister packs) float.


    Yeah, but then they're wet. Even the wood on waterproof matches can become comprised from exposure to moisture. It's still just wood.

    Sure, but I'd still rather have a group of matches, all individually waterproofed in some conventional way (like with wax or nail polish or whatever), and then kept collectively dry in some form of waterproof case. I just think that having to open up each match individually by having to fight each match out of a separate straw, especially if your hands are already wet and cold, would be a hindrance, potentially even enough of one to present a hazard to your health and well being. Sitting in your living room or in your backyard even, sure, but I could all too easily see it being next to impossible to get these things open under inclement conditions.

    Wouldn't it be easier to just dip the match heads in melted wax like everyone else does? That way you can just scrape it off with your thumbnail instead of having to use something else to cut open the straw. Most people usually carry a knife or a multi tool or something outdoors, of course, so it shouldn't be a problem, but it would suck to have lost or broken your cutting tool and then be left trying to start a fire with a pocketful of matches that you can't open because you're shivering from the cold.

    Nice take on my DIY single use antibiotic blister packs Instructable. I don't know about putting one match in a straw though, that's a lot of work or overhead. I digg your creative thinking, but in this case I personally think you'd be better off buying a packet of the windproof/stormproof matches at REI (sample video). Once lit, those things are almost impossible to extinguish - just a thought :)

    Nice idea.

    I have read that you can waterproof the matches soaking them in gasoline or kerosene. I never did that.

    I've seen this used for single serve medications (i.e. topical antibiotics, balms, etc...), but this is brilliant!

    Just as a minor safety probably want to put the match in head down such that you're doing the second seal on the wood end rather than match head just to avoid accidentally igniting with the heat.

    1 reply

    Yeah, I didn't have any un-sealed straws to demonstrate with, I actually made these a while back. But I've also paired two matches head to tail, and included a striker as well. For those I just leave a little extra space when making the second seal. Pliers make a really good heat-sink.