Thursday, February 12, 2009

Practically Free Egg Carton Dryer Lint Firestarters

Now I know after you read my firestarting post you wanted some of the egg carton firestarters for yourself, didn't you? Well, I'll sell you some of mine, or you can just make some of your own for almost no cost!

Here's what you'll need:
Dryer lint--any variety will do.
Egg carton--doesn't matter if it's a dozen, 18 or the "flats" as long as it's the pressed paper kind, NOT styrofoam or whatever else they might make egg cartons out of.
Wax--from old candles, crayons, or buy parafin wax at the store (although it's cheaper to buy cheapo big candles for this job--it doesn't have to be food grade wax).
A sense of adventure--just kidding, if you didn't have that already you wouldn't be here!

First, get your egg carton and collect your dryer lint by cleaning off the lint trap of your dryer. DO NOT throw it away (I actually feel bad throwing dryer lint in the trash anymore!).Next, stuff the dryer lint in the egg carton where the eggs used to be. If you don't do a lot of laundry, this may take a while to fill a carton, if you're like me and washing clothes all the time, I can fill a whole dozen with a full day's laundry. It doesn't have to be packed in tight.Now, here's the tricky part because I don't have pictures since the last time I actually did this was a few months ago even though I'm due to do it again because I have a bunch of egg cartons full of lint waiting to be waxed (total run on sentence--just like how I talk).

Set up a double boiler to melt your wax. You need a pot with water in it, and a can of some kind (I like the big V-8, tomato juice, apple juice, pineapple juice cans). Your can must be METAL and fit inside your pot of water with room to spare around it. Do not use a smaller pot that you like (or that is part of your double boiler setup) as your can--you'll be melting wax in it and will likely ruin it!

Put your wax in the can and the can in the pot of water and heat the water. The wax will melt inside the can.

When the wax is melted, scoop or pour it onto the lint in the egg carton. You'll want to put your egg carton on something that the wax can leak through onto (like waxed paper or cardboard or something you don't care about) because some of the wax will soak through the egg carton. When you're done waxing the lint, let it cool and harden and voila! Cheapo fire starters!

You can leave them all together in the shape of an egg carton and then tear them off one at a time, or tear them all apart and store them separately. They won't light with a spark, so you'll need matches or a lighter to get them burning. Throw some in your emergency kit, car kit, camping kit, whatever else kit you have that has matches in it. In our fire test, one of these little babies burned for 17 minutes and put out a good flame sufficient for even fire novices to get something burning with!

So now, what do you say to some eggs for breakfast and a day of laundry? :)

13 comments:

Krystal said...

Thanks. I was wondering how to make them after reading that firestarter post!

Chef Tess said...

Those are crazy cool! I need to make some! Loved the commentary too!

Sharla said...

I am so making some of these as soon as my eggs are gone! Maybe for lunch today... By the way, you've been tagged on my Snuggle Bunch blog!

Megan said...

Yes, I have tagged you also. So there.

scoutinlife said...

aI mske the same firestarters!

Anna said...

That is neat, but do you have any other suggestions for a base? I recycle all my egg cartons to hold more eggs. With more than 30 chickens, I just can't afford to destroy my egg cartons like that.

Angela said...

Anna--good question! I'm guessing anything paper would work--dixie cups, those little fast food condiment cups, something along those lines. Wouldn't matter if the paper cup had a waxy coating on it since you'll be dousing it with wax anyway. Thanks for asking!

Krystal said...

My L-Bow Mittens (actually my daughter's mittens) came in the mail yesterday! What a great Valentine's Day present!! The mittens are so neat. I really love them. Thank you so much for giving them to me through your fun giveaway.

Melonie said...

I love this! We don't have a fireplace but I've been thinking these would make a good gift for my folks who *do* have one. I don't know how often they actually use it though. :-( But they'd be handy to have as preps, I suppose, for when they *do* want to use it. Duh. ;-)

Melonie said...

PS If you like I can send you my dryer lint. haha

Katidids said...

Great post! I save sawdust & fine leaves and drie grasses sometimes with wood chips..mix it up and put in a old bread/cake pan. when its firm we just break it up to chunks to use

Jacqueline P Warlick said...

I love this idea and I can't wait to try it. Talk about recycling. You go.

Sierra Home Companion said...

I love your idea. My husband has me saving the lint and stuffing old milk cartons to start our fires. I told him about your trick and he said "oh yeah that works great, and put a match in the middle sticking out so you have something to light it with." clever I thought.:)