Improving Carpenter Pencil Technique.

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While on an errand to get some supplies at the home improvement store today, I picked up a simple, USA-made utility knife for the pencil kit.
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I am trying to master the art of sharpening carpenter pencils, using only a blade. (I don’t know why.) I think I’m getting better at it. Hopefully.

KUM Wedge as Survival Tool?


Maybe.  Dan and I were at a, ahem, local watering hole in December for his birthday.  At the rooftop bar overlooking Baltimore (literally the highest spot in Charm City) on a snowy night, Dan wondering if the magnesium of a KUM wedge was soft enough to cut.  Yes, it is, he found.  But we dared not light a fire on the newly polished wood on which our dripping Buds rested at the bar.  We drank coffee in the snow and forgot about it.

Last week, Dan shaved one down, lit it, and the flame bore straight through the work table.  In addition to giving a pencil fine points, a magnesium sharpener, it seems, can work as a fire starter.  What’s more: if you have no knife but do (for whatever reason) have a screwdriver, you can shave the magnesium with the sharpener’s own blade, in a bizarre act of pencil-gear-self-destruction.

We need to do a more thorough How-To about pencil sharpener fire starting, and soon.  Maybe our first video?

Needless to say, don’t try this at home.  Dan and are both old Eagle Scouts with fire experience and, hell, he’s a professional fireman!