The Pine Cone Fire Starter

Ok, so maybe you’ve seen a pine cone fire starter. They are basically a dried pine cones stuck into a wax candle base with a big wick. Do they work? Where can you get them? Are they worth it or just a gimmick?

I was recently turned on to fatwood fire starters because I received a gift basket with a bundle of fatwood, some pine cone fire starters and some fireplace color cones (pine cones that turn your fire into different colors) over the holidays. They are available from several sources.

The fatwood worked great and I am hooked! You can learn more about fatwood kindling on our fatwood fire starter page.

The pine cone fire starter looked like fun! The theory is that you light the wick and the candle wax at the bottom burns slowly while igniting the pine cone to produce a nice blaze to get your firewood started.

We’ll thats the theory anyway…

Unfortunately, in the Flame Gorilla©’s opinion, these don’t work so well. They seem like a great idea, but just haven’t cut the mustard for me. I’ve tried several, and no matter what I do, the wick just does not stay lit and the pine cone itself does not ignite.

Don’t get me wrong, pine cones burn nicely once you’ve got a nice fire going already. With a healthy blaze they fire right up. But with a match, candle or lighter they just don’t burn that easily!

So what are the pros of a pine cone fire starter?

They are cheap, natural without chemical additives and they are attractive! Seems like fun for the whole family and kids should love ’em!

What are the cons?

They don’t work! I wish I could be a bit more gentle and enthusiastic, but the key to a fireplace fire starter is ease of use and consistently supplying an intense blaze to get your firewood burning well. These have just failed to perform.

I regret to say, the Flame Gorilla© gives the pine cone fire starter a thumbs down.

For other fire starter ideas, see our fire starter page!

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