Bow Drill Firelighting – Complete Beginners Guide (Craig Fordham)

I visited Craig Fordham who’s been teaching outdoors skills for almost 30 years, at his woodland in the South East of England to film this part one of a two part series on friction fire lighting

This video is part one which is a complete beginners guide to Bow Drill in which we cover every single aspect from collecting the materials, best woods to use, how to make the actual set and finally a complete walk through on how to make an ember using the Bow Drill you have made from scratch

Craigs Website –

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Below is a timestamp of every single section in this video

(Click on the time on the left hand side to automatically be taken to that section)

00:00:19 – Introduction
00:04:35 – What is a bow drill
00:06:52 – Bow (types & varieties)
00:12:54 – Cordage (types & varieties)
00:16:00 – Bow (harvesting the wood)
00:18:25 – Bow (making the bow)
00:28:50 – Bearing block (types & varieties)
00:35:08 – Bearing block (harvesting the wood)
00:36:15 – Bearing block (making the bearing block)
00:45:10 – Hearth (types & varieties)
00:51:02 – Hearth (harvesting the wood)
00:53:59 – Hearth (making the hearth)
01:00:06 – Spindle (types & varieties)
01:07:08 – Spindle (harvesting the wood)
01:11:20 – Spindle (making the spindle)
01:19:30 – Bedding the bow drill set for the first time
01:31:19 – Carving a notch in the hearth board
01:37:47 – Producing your first bow drill ember
01:45:21 – Transferring the ember to a tinder bundle
01:47:05 – Troubleshooting (spindle keeps pinging out? – Part 1)
01:48:42 – Troubleshooting (getting lots of smoke but no ember?)
01:49:50 – Troubleshooting (transferred ember to tinder bundle but no flames)
01:50:26 – Troubleshooting (spindle keeps pinging out? – Part 2)
01:51:36 – Conclusion

As always I appreciate you watching

Take care




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