Maya Dust Vs. Dryer Lint

Maya Dust Fire Starter

Always on the lookout for the latest and greatest, I just had to give Maya Dust a try as a potential replacement for my standby tinder: dryer lint. As you'll see in the video, the results were somewhat disappointing and it has convinced me to stick with my instinct that paying $5 per ounce for good tinder burning money.

Unless I'm doing something wrong, Maya Dust is difficult to light and not worth it. Dryer lint doesn't burn as long but at least it's easy to light and free. Have you tried Maya Dust and what were your experiences with it? What's your preferred tinder?
Maya Dust Vs. Dryer Lint Maya Dust Vs. Dryer Lint Reviewed by Jason Klass on January 17, 2010 Rating: 5


Lance Milks said...

Hey Jason,

I have never liked Maya Dust. I have used a lot of items for little fire kits in my day. I think the best is dryer lint with 0000 steel wool mixed in. But its best to get that right after you dried cotton socks and t-shirts. If you have sythetic (like fleece)clothes in there it doesnt burn that well. I have also had good results from cotton balls rolled in a liitle vasoline. Im sure there are 100 other ways to do it.


Some old guy said...

I tried the Maya Dust (still have it around here somewhere) and was disappointed. Had little trouble lighting it, but a pinch is gone so quick it wouldn't catch anything else. Nowadays I use a tissue and some hand sanitizer if I need to light a fire -- got those hangin' around anyway.

Greg said...

Hi Jason, I find Maya Dust can be a real PITA to light with a firesteel, however it's much easier if you modify your technique a little; hold the striker still & close to your tinder, and drag the rod back towards you. This way you concentrate the sparks on your tinder pile but don't risk knicking it over.

The best tinder I've found (cost notwithstanding) is the Ultimate Survival Wetfire - simply awesome!

Greg (UK)

Northern Focus said...

Jason, your findings match what I have been told by other people who have (tried) to use Maya dust, as a result I've never bothered buying any to try it out for myself. Drier lint, cotton balls, and (my favourite) Hamarro Tandpapper - it's a kind of paper impregnated with wax. A little bit of scraping to fluff it up and it will take with a firesteel.

Robin said...

Thanks Jason,
Coincidently I was in REI a couple days ago and almost purchased this Maya Dust stuff, glad I didn't.

BackpackBaseCamp Blog

inactive blogger said...

Mayadust is kind of....never worked for me ever.

Anonymous said...

I think if you tried to place the striker with the tip directly on the maya dust it might have ignited much quicker. I realize that a shower of sparks makes lint to fairly easily but wood is a different matter. I think if you try to put the tip of the striker in the middle of the pile and strike it without jerking, slow and controlled it will light much easier.

Carl Lenocker said...

I have been carrying Trioxane bars (You can buy them on Ebay cheap) in my pack the last couple trips, in lieu of any of these other methods. Trioxane is lightweight, burns at a high temperature, and the flame lasts a very long time. Even if you just crack a bar in half, or thirds -- it's going to burn awhile. I'll give the dryer lint thing a try w/ some vaseline mixed in and see how it goes -- but so far I am loving the trioxane method! For car camping, of course -- I just douse my wood with coleman fuel, and toss on a match --- WHOOSH!!!! haha ;)


Although much more expensive than Maya Dust, I quite like Tinder-Quik.

Anonymous said...

You are doing it wrong. If you shave off some bits of the striker into the dust first, without ignite sparks. Then strike one time with sparks into the dust (and the shavings from the striker). Than it will ignite much easier.

Jason Klass said...

I think you're thinking of a different type of fire steel ot Magnesium. You don't do it that way with the Scout. Instructions from their website:

Gecko said...

Dryer lint is the best guaranteed firestarting item to carry, in my opinion. To make it stay lit longer, I will use a drop of hand sanitizer on it (say, in windier weather). I also carry an actual tea light candle, and shave off a bit of wax if necessary to help light wet wood. The tea light candle serves as a back up light. I carry a tiny bottle of hand sanitizer within easy reach with a loop around the neck. It can be used for hygiene, deodorizer, first aid, as well as firestarting. A dab on the forehead and neck is very cooling in hot weather.

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