Regardless if you are into primitive camping or simply enjoy going out to a campground in a camper or tent, space is very important. As campers, we have to decide what to take and what to leave behind. One of the simplest techniques that I use is to decide what other uses common items can have at the campsite. As an example, let’s take a look at the humble dental floss.
Ok, I have to say I always have dental floss with me not because of its many uses but because I cannot stand to have anything in my teeth so……I make the space for this item. But as humble as dental floss is, it is also very useful without taking up much space. First, believe it or not dental floss is very strong. This is why many people use it as a thread for clothing. It is more durable for attaching buttons to clothes compared to common thread. It can also be used to sew up tears in sleeping bags, tents, and even in a pinch can be used as an emergency shoelace.
If you are using waxed dental floss, believe it or not you can use it to start a fire. The wax on the floss will act as a mild accelerant by which to give the tinder time to catch fire. To maximize the benefit of the waxed floss, tie bundles of tinder together with the floss and then light.
Another unknown use of dental floss is as an “emergency knife.” The sturdiness of this simple string is enough to cut through most meat and fruit. While this is not as efficient as a knife, it does work as a replacement if you have lost your knife.
Finally, if you need a stronger rope than you feel a single strand of dental floss can handle, you can make a rope out of this simple supply in one of two ways. The first one is to simply cut several pieces the same length. Arrange all the pieces so that they are all even and then tie one end together. Place this tied end under a rock, secure to a nail or have someone hold while you continue with the process Now divide the bunch into three sections. At this point, you simply begin to braid the dental floss like hair.
The second way starts off the same when it comes to cutting lengths and tying off. Once it is tied, divide the strands into to two sections. At this point, twist the strands or groups together going in one direction. In either technique, if you find that you need longer rope, just add more strands to the sections before you get to the end. The braiding or twisting will work the new strands into the rope.
The key to both techniques is to make sure that the strands are held tight while the rope is being made.
Once the length is reached, tie the end tight. Now your dental floss rope is ready to use.
While there are many other uses for dental floss, the few listed demonstrate the importance of packing dental floss for your next camping trip.