The Fire Thread

First, start a fire inside the fireplace. Then, watch for sparks coming out from the 200 year old Black Walnut tree just outside the house. Then, spend two hours dumping well water inside the hollow trunk. Then, call the volunteer fire department. Then, watch two trucks dump their entire tanks inside the tree trunk. Then, cut down the tree. Then, take a picture of the inside of the tree trunk and pass it along to all your kin folk.

Or not...
I did not. I purchased it used from evilbay. It's made by Rose Mountain Fire Pistons, and is made out of Red Stag. Looks wise, it's my favorite piston. I have a few:

That's one way that I can honestly say I haven't tried to light fire, is the fire piston. It looks easy enough watching folks do it, but sometimes looks can be deceiving!
I've never used a piston either, it certainly looks intriguing though. I have heard that it takes a bit of practice just like any other method of fire making, short of a Bic lighter...
Place tender in,, push down fast, pull out. That's it. If you use a string gasket, as opposed to a rubber gasket, it may take a few tries.