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  • Nuggets are guaranteed to light easily and burn for 7 min.
  • Unlimited shelf life makes them ideal to keep on hand for campfires, barbeques, fireplaces or emergency use
  • Safe for use in any woodburning appliance
  • Includes 8 Lightnin' Bug fire starter nuggets

Made in USA.

Before starting a fire outdoors, review Leave No Trace principles and safe extinguishing practices. Always check the land manager’s current regulations for information on where to build a fire, appropriate wood to use and potential burn bans.

View all Lightnin' Bug Tinder

REI membership


Best Use Backpacking
Material(s) Wood by-products
Dimensions (Each start) 1 x 0.9 inches
Weight 1.5 ounces
Rated 5 out of 5 by from These bugs work flawlessly for me Discovered these 6 years ago as lightweight campfire insurance for backpacking in the High Sierras in the Fall. You never know what you're going to encounter as far as wind and dampness, so I like to carry lighting backup. For a 4 night loop, I can count on a little baggie of 8 of these to get us a campfire no matter the environment. I have not experienced the lighting difficulty reported in other reviews. I find stormproof matches to be a better starting source that lighters because of their staying power. Trick is to light them alone, or on a small piece of paper, before laying on tinder. What more can I say. 6 years with no problems, lightweight, compact, and functional.
Date published: 2011-01-18
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Wont light with quick strike method By themselves, these lightnin bugs really require a lighter or heavy match to light. I tried relentlessly to start these with a LightMyFire firesteel. The most that ocured was darkening around the side of the lightnin bug where the sparks were hitting but no flame. After about 20 minutes I gave into using a lighter/torch and it lit after about 8 seconds of exposure. To it's credit it does put off a nice flame and burns hot but I prefer the Wet Tinder for a sure fire method of starting a fire when using a product to do so.
Date published: 2011-10-21
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Wouldn't catch on fire REI stopped carrying my favorite fire starters so I gave these a try. Good thing my friend had her own fire starters because I couldn't get these to catch on fire! I held a lighter to the "bug" for probably 30 seconds and couldn't get it to catch fire. My friend's home made fire starter of drier lint, wax and egg carton lasted for 15 minutes...the "bug" never caught fire, just evenually smoldered and turned to char in the fire.
Date published: 2013-10-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Dry, Light, Lasts Forever For you gram counters out there: these average 5 grams per nugget. Coast rainforest campfires benefit from a little extra kick to get the semi-damp tinder going. I keep 2 of these in 1 wax-paper bag (a 14 gm kit) for summer trips, 4 in 2 bags for winter weekends. I've tried some pellet-based starters but when they dry out they're not so good. I pack some food items in wax-paper bags and will start most fires with 1 bag in the tinder; on wet days if that's not enough, I'll place one of these small nuggets on a 2nd bag in the tinder pile. On wet winter days I'll use 2 nuggets and another bag if needed. The petroleum-jelly thing sounds nice but I don't have other uses for the jelly, and prefer not to carry the cotton ball or an extra jar. Since I do mostly beach hiking, anything that isn't dry gets fouled with sand pretty quick. These nuggets being dry is a big help; and since I can pack them in a wax-paper bag I've got another flammable item just in case.
Date published: 2011-08-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I thought these were the small ones I have used the smaller ones for backpacking which work great. I will use these larger ones for the fire pit in the backyard. i would not have bought these if I had realized they were large. i didn't pay that close of attention to the description.
Date published: 2014-09-12
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Does what it is supposed to. I bought these and decided to give them a shot. Like the other reviewer, I also mainly use cotton balls soaked in petroleum jelly kept in an old pill bottle. The thing worked like it was supposed to I guess. Meaning, I did have a fire when all was said and done. However, I usually build a teepee with tinder and small sticks to start the fire and this sawdust ball thing was a little hard to light. It was slightly windy and the teepee kept falling over because of my hand flicking the lighter in the middle of it to light this thing. The second time, I just put a little bit of my trusty petroleum jelly cotton ball on the lightnin' bug and it lit right up. So these work well enough, but I wouldn't bring ONLY these on a backpacking trip. I suggest having a backup. Also, they are kinda bulky.
Date published: 2010-06-07
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Tough to light I bought these thinking they'd be an easy/clean alternative to cotton balls and petroleum jelly... Nope! They are very difficult to light and, once lit, are extremely finicky. Stick with the cotton balls and petroleum jelly. Easier and cheaper.
Date published: 2016-08-20
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Would not light We bought these for a week-long backpacking trip and we tried to light them several nights in a row and they would never catch fire. Good thing we had another option or we would have been in trouble.
Date published: 2015-09-02
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