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Everything posted by Pritch

  1. I believe that you train and encourage behavior you want repeated. As such, I keep "novelty" firestarting techniques in context. THey are included because they are interesting and fun, not necessarily because I want my scouts packing steel wool, rocket motors, or reactive chemicals in their fire kits. While it is important to instill in scouts the ability to "adapt, improvise & overcome," I think teaching a technique relying on a prohibited substance is just asking for trouble. While "knowledge takes up less space than gear" is commonly bandied about, the fact is, students only r
  2. Having a different opinion than yours does not make one il-informed. First, I do not consider char cloth to be a "standard" tinder. In my opinion, brought tinder should be waterproof, wind resistant, and capable of creating more than an ember. Second, a fire starting device should be more versatile than being limited to only such brought or prepared tinders. While I stress bringing tinder, I also work with my scouts to identify and use various natural tinders. Fire pistons are just too limited. That they were at one time used extensively by a certain people in a certain regio
  3. It makes an interesting demo when presenting various firestarting devices, but is highly impractical. It is expensive, bulky, somewhat finnicky and requires tinder fungus or other specialty tinder to be brought along. Fire is too important to waste time on gimmicks.
  4. Thanks for the clarification. [sigh] I guess National has recruited all of those guys that used to insist that screwdrivers have "do not stab in eye" engraved on the side.
  5. Are Boy Scouts restricted to .22 only? Several scouts in my troops own other calibers and have expressed interest in a shooting activity.
  6. Hi. May name is John. I'm a freshly minted ASM for a troop in the greater Seattle area. I was a scout in the early 70's in a troop in Saudi Arabia after having done cubs in California, but this is my first time serving as an adult leader. I think I am the only adult leader in my troop that is not a parent or grandparent of a scout. My wife and I haven't been able to have kids and things just haven't come together yet to adopt. Nevertheless, I hope to have something to offer the boys. A personal peeve of mine is that we (an a society) don't do anything to help boys become men.
  7. Thanks for the welcome, Eagle92. Yep, scouts, parents, and leaders need to keep in mind relevant laws. What may be permissable at home may be prohibited in a neighboring state where an event is taking place. Also, some municipalities may have more restrictive regulations than would apply out of town. I know that there is no outright prohibition of fixed blades, despite the persistant reptitition that there is. Nevertheless, many camps and some councils or troops have chosen to completely ban them. This strikes me as a failure to lead. Its easier to "just say no" than to educate sc
  8. This topic provoked me to finally create an account. First, a Balisong (butterfly knife) is not a suitable woods knife. They are inherently weak in the tang, are difficult to deploy under stress and present an unnecessary risk of injury to the user. Second, the appeal of butterfly knives is the flashy play involved in opening and closing the knife. This behavior is wholly incompatable with the Totin Chip statement that "knives are not playthings." While one-handed deployment of a knife is a desirable feature, there are many better choices that can achieve it. Third, carryi
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