Best Ferro Rod and Firesteel- Firestarters for 2021

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The best Ferro rod and firesteel is by far the perfect survival backup fire-starting tool for your bushcraft and prepping adventures.

These firestarters don’t rely on fuel and is easier to use than the standard methods like strike-anywhere matches.

Though small, this tool will start 1000+ fires with only one strike. It is one of the simplest yet most effective ways of starting a fire in the wild.  Every adventurer will appreciate its efficiency!

After getting in touch with many survival experts, we reviewed and tested different Ferro rods and firesteel. What we present is the best of the best; with the right balance between affordability, durability, performance, and quality.

Read and discover more!

Comparison Table

If you’re in a hurry to head into the wild, this comparison table will help you make a quick but informed purchase decision.

ImageProduct Weight Length (inches)No of Strikes
Light My Fire Swedish FireSteel 2.0 Army0.11 lbs.3.74"12,000
überleben Zünden Fire Starter0.19 lbs.5/16”12,000
Gerber Bear Grylls Fire Starter0.16 lbs.4.8”800
UST SparkForce Fire Starter 0.06 lbs.3.1”Multiple strikes
Coghlan's Waterproof Flint Striker0.12 lbs.3-⅞”Multiple strikes
Exotac nanoSTRIKER XL Ferrocerium Fire Starter0.07 lbs.3.6”3000

Top 6 Best Ferro Rod and Firesteel

  1. Light My Fire Swedish FireSteel

This Swedish Firesteel ranks as the best overall Ferro rod for preppers- and it’s for a good reason. It’s a tried-and-true fire tool will come in handy during all your survival situations.

It beats its popular contenders by far when factors like durability, hardness, and ease of use are considered. This dependability has made it a favorite option for survival experts, campers, hunters, and anglers. And more to this, the firesteel has also found its way into backyards and cabins, light gas-barbecues, and stoves.

This top-notch European-made steel boasts a tweaked handle design. The premium ergonomics of the handle gives a better grip during operation.

The striker gives a 3,000°C spark that makes fire building a breeze. Providing an impressive 12,000 fire strikes, the tiny device will fit in your chest pocket and deliver the flames you need, anytime and anywhere.

The striker also comes with an integrated emergency whistle, helpful for search & rescue situations.

And whether you’re camping in spring, summer, autumn, or winter, this tool has got you covered! It is suitable for use in any weather and at any altitude.

LMF is also available in the Army and Scout versions, which are generally similar but have different sizes. However, we’d recommend the Army LMF over the small Scout firesteel as its extra size is easier to use.


  • Suitable for any condition
  • Durable
  • It has a bright spark


  • Small and can easily get lost

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  1. überleben Zünden Fire Starter

The überleben Zünden Fire Starter consistently outperforms many fire starters by providing more than 12,000 strikes.

It contains ferrocerium, which is a metal alloy containing cerium and iron. When struck, it gives copious sparks, which is enough to ignite a bushcraft fire.

This firesteel could not be any simpler to use! It has traditionally-inspired ergonomics that make starting a fire user-friendly. The grip remains natural, giving a seasoned finish and reliable construction.

Überleben’s firesteel comes with an excellent balance between softness and durability. And what’s better than knowing that the firesteel will throw 5,500ºF molten sparks in any altitude and weather condition? This ability is thanks to its waterproof nature!

This firestarter device comes with multiple size options with varying thickness variations. These include the 5/16” Trad size with 12,000+ strikes, the 3/8” Pro size with 15,000+ strikes, and the 1/2” Fatty size with 20,000+ strikes.

It will not weigh you down because even the Fatty boats an average weight below 3 ounces.

Buy this set and get a Mil-spec 550 paracord lanyard, a multi-tool striker, and a bottle opener.


  • Multi-uses
  • Easy to use
  • Durable construction
  • Lightweight
  • Ergonomic handle design


  • You’ll need to be knowledgeable on tinder preparation to use this tool

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  1. Gerber Bear Grylls Fire Starter

Though small and compact, this fire starter will guarantee you many years of use. The first thing you’ll probably notice is the watertight construction that keeps the tinder safe, dry, and durable. So, you can use it whenever you want it.

The tool gives 8000+ strikes, which means that it can always be your go-anywhere non-stop survival device. The rod has ferrocerium, which produces a heavy dose of bright sparks when used as intended.

The sides have bright paintings and graphics, and you can always notice its presence even in the dark. Together with a rubber handle, this easily-carried Bear Grylls Fire Starter remains to be an ideal choice for any practicing survivalist.

The firestarter comes with value for money, and we’d highly recommend this product to any beginner who’s in search of an affordable Ferro rod. And you can also include it in the gift package of a camper who owns everything.


  • Affordable
  • Get a fire quickly
  • It comes with a survival pocket guide


  • Small storage compartment

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  1. UST SparkForce Fire Starter

If you’re still looking for the best way to generate sparks in wind, rain, or any other adverse weather condition, do not miss out on the UST SparkForce Fire Starter!

Meet this reliable and versatile flint-based fire starter! It can ignite several tinders, including the UST Light-Me Tinder and the UST Wetfire since the flint-based bar lasts even with multiple strikes.

It is easy to use; you only need to hold the striker against its flint rod, apply pressure along the rod, create sparks, then direct them onto the prepared surface to light up your tinder.

The UST SparkForce striker has a detachable cap that protects the flint and also prevents unintended sparks.

It also features a bright and visible orange ABS case that is easy to notice when the tool falls on the ground while in the dark.

Weighing only 0.06 pounds (1 ounce), this tiny SparkForce fire starter will fit compactly in your pocket.


  • Best flint and steel
  • Great reliability
  • Easy to spark it up


  • The steel is too soft

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  1. Coghlan’s Waterproof Flint Striker

This ferro fire-starting striker by Coghlan gives 1000+ strikes in any altitude or weather. Whether you’re looking for survival gear to add to your first aid kit, a cooking kit, or a fire-starting kit, this is the way to go! It includes a striker, a fire-starter rod, a handle, and a cord.

The rod comes with a 5/16’’ diameter and a length of 3-⅞’’. The average weight of 1.92 ounces will make you forget you’re carrying the tool until you need it! It gives the right balance between being lightweight and having a generous flint surface area.

The flint striker comes with a user-friendly construction that makes it a perfect solution for your outdoor activities. It is a suitable accessory for hiking, camping, RVing, fishing, and much more.

The fire striker is the cheapest option on the list and best suited for those working with tight budgets. Though affordable, this device comes with a few compromises; it is difficult to wield and needs a bit of finesse to use. In other words, it needs more switching than striking.


  • It works if you’re patient
  • It is cheap compared to other ferro rods
  • The material doesn’t wear out as that of many ferro fire-starters
  • It throws a reliable amount of sparks when used on a separate scraper


  • The sparks aren’t as hot as a ferro rod

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  1. Exotac nanoSTRIKER XL Ferrocerium Fire Starter

The Exotac fire starter is the perfect keychain companion. The tiny size of this essential outdoor tool means it can easily slide into your pocket, especially if you’re in-a-pinch a situation. You can safely store it in your pocket, backpack, bag, or survival kit with the other bushcraft gear as you head into the wild.

The firestarter is machined from a high-grade 6061 anodized aluminum material. This robust body helps it to withstand the ruggedness of the wild and also promises durability. The beauty of the product demonstrates the careful artistry that the tool has.

This fire-starting tool features a compact and collapsible strike design that makes operation easy.

Its waterproof ferro rod supplies up to 3000 prodigious sparks when you need a fire. The rod is also replaceable, and when you need a new one, you simply need to unthread the previous one from the body and thread in the new rod and enjoy continuous use.

Carry the gear with you anywhere, and your gear anywhere, and you’ll be surprised how useful it can be, even with the tiny size.

While the striker is cutely designed and makes sparks fly, it’s more suitable as a base keychain addition or a gift for your survivalist aficionado. Otherwise, the tool’s high price vs. the small size makes it unsuitable for someone who’s looking for both usability and durability.


  • Small and compact.
  • Top-notch construction.
  • Consistent results.
  • Replaceable ferro road.
  • The housing is durable and features a water-tight seal


  • It might be ineffective for users with poor dexterity.

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Best Ferro Rod and Firesteel Buying Guide

Before purchasing the best ferro rod and firesteel, it’s necessary you consider a few factors.

These factors are the general makeups and specs of the unit, and they significantly affect the performance.

They include:

  •          Skill Level

Even though starting may seem like a breeze, its complexity comes when different variables are present in your bushcraft environment. Is it raining or snowing? Are you operating it in a desert or a swampy region?

Therefore, you need to go for something user-friendly, reliable, and practical to use. The skill level also includes the technique applicable to starting the fire. Different ferro rods and firesteel require different lighting mechanisms, and you’ll therefore need to be realistic on your skill level to be a success.

  • Activity

What are some of the activities that you’ll be participating in? And what is the timeframe of your bushcraft adventure? A 1-month survival activity requires multiple extensive firesteel, whereas a one-week outdoor event will need 1-2 small fire starters.

If your adventure involves prolonged use of the firestarter, for instance, lighting a fire to cook, light a cigar, clear land, or as a weapon or mode of destructing wild animals, go for a larger firesteel that will accommodate all these tasks.

  • Weight

Every survivalist will prefer a gear that shaves down weight. That is where the small and compact firesteel comes from.  Anything below 0.5 pounds is manageable and reliable. Such will easily fit in your pockets or the tiny pockets at the sides of your dump pouch.

Others like the Überleben have a “necklace” that ties comfortably around the neck, ensuring you do not lose it and it doesn’t weigh down your motion.  Only be sure that you do not make compromises on performance in the process of buying a small-sized firestarter. While the compact tools sound excellent to pick, ensure they can handle the pressure.

  • Safety and Usability

Going for a bushcraft adventure should be fun and engaging. Part of having an exciting experience is being well prepared with the necessary bushcraft tools. If you are headed into the wild, be sure to assemble your survival preparedness kit and put the fire starting tool in it. Check if your firestarter is tested for safety.

Some lighters tend to break after extended use or eventually run out, leaving you in pitch darkness. And therefore, confirm the number of strikes its firesteel gives and verify if this matches well with your needs. That way, you will get an easy-to-use firesteel that will not blow up on your face when in use.

  • Variety

The importance of having a variety of ferro rods and firesteel is that you will enjoy versatility. Multiple units give you numerous options for starting a fire. If one fails, you can always bank on the other.

  • Waterproof

Weather in the wild can be quite unpredictable; it might be rainy, snowy, or warm and sunny. Either way, equipping your survival kit with the appropriate waterproof firestarter means that you’ll rest assured that you will light a fire irrespective of the prevailing condition.

A stormproof and waterproof unit is usually durable and will give an extended flame even in windy and rainy conditions. In other words, a waterproof tool allows you to light a fire even in sub-optimal conditions, and so, you needn’t worry.

  • Try it Before Buying It.

One of the simplest yet effective ways of deciding on the best fire starter is trying them. Otherwise, you’ll get yourself stuck in a situation where the firestarter you’ve carried for your adventure doesn’t work, which is a recipe for disasters.

Testing helps you to understand the technique and usability of the fire starter works tool. You’ll also learn how it works in different environments and conditions.

Testing doesn’t necessarily mean that you’ll be starting a whole campfire. Instead, it means that you get to ignite the ferro rod and see how long they burn and its response to the prevailing weather condition. From your observation, you can determine whether or not the unit will suit your bushcraft needs.

 Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q: How long will my FireSteel last?

A:Fire steel can offer around 7,000-15,000 uses. Larger and harder steel may give 15,000+ lights, whereas the smaller and softer steel can only give  5,000 strikes or less. However, any of these units can be modified to have extended durability by using them skillfully.

Q: How do I use a firesteel to start a fire?

A: Scrap the ferro rod against a striker, and it will produce sparks. Many modern firesteels are made from ferrocerium, and it is this material has a shower of sparks from the friction-ignited ferro rod metal.

The amount of sparks produced by a firesteel varies depending on the quality of the rod and firesteel. Typically, the sparks burn at 5000° F to ignite the tinder.

Q:How many times should I use my ferro rod?

A: A standard ferro rod lasts between 8,000-12,000 strikes depending on factors like your frequency of use, the rod’s diameter, the hardness or the softness of the alloy, and your skill level.

Q:Can a ferro rod burn?

A: A ferro rod will burn up if it drops into the fire. That is why it is important to practice using the ferro rod and its firesteel to light a fire before heading into the wild for camping.

Our Top Pick

Even though all our products are tested for reliability in the wild, the Light My Fire Swedish FireSteel takes the crown home! Its dependability, durability, and affordability give it an advantage over its competitors. Furthermore, it’s one of the few units that provide the highest strikes possible on this list. The tool’s small and compact size means you can throw it in your pocket and continue your journey.


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