13 votes
Accepted

How do you make a stone axe?

There are two principal techniques for making stone tools, depending on the properties of the material you have available. The first and probably best known is knapping. This is used with glassy ...
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  • 6,172
8 votes

How to process iron in the wilderness?

Iron ore is called hematite. It's pretty simple to identify, just look for red rocks that appear to be rusting. Iron is the 4th most abundant element on earth, so it's pretty common in most areas. ...
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8 votes

Is there clay soil in the Adirondacks suitable for earthen primitive building?

I read the question more as "Does what I want exist here?" rather than "Is the stuff here going to be good enough quality?" So my answer was initially in that light. OP shows in comment that what was ...
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  • 3,436
7 votes
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How to process iron in the wilderness?

The simplest way of smelting iron is a bloomery furnace. This is essentially a beehive shaped structure, covered in clay and containing alternating layers of charcoal and iron ore with openings top ...
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7 votes

How can I make an obsidian knife?

You have to chip it. Primitive hand axes were very slowly and carefully shaped using another stone to chip away at the tool bit by bit until the desired shape was achieved. They were then sharpened ...
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5 votes

What woods have been used to build primitive shelters in northern climates, especially around the Adirondacks Mountains?

Here's an article about the Iroquois long house: https://www.thecanadianencyclopedia.ca/en/article/longhouse Woodland Cree made log cabins, generally with shed roofs covered in layers of poles, dirt,...
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5 votes

Is it possible to use a flint and steel with wet tinder?

No Well, it's probably not impossible depending on how wet, but I can pretty much guarantee you're going to spend more time striking your steel trying to get the wetter stuff lit than if you were to ...
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5 votes
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What materials can be used to make cordage in forests of the Adirondacks?

tl;dr Gather a few plants from your area. For each one, flip a coin; if it's tails, you can use it for what you describe. Where I'm coming from on this I live near the area you specify; in New York,...
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  • 3,436
5 votes

What materials can be used to make cordage in forests of the Adirondacks?

Spruce roots Spruce roots have been used as cordage since prehistorical times, they were also used by native inhabitants of North America (see here). Very short explanation: basically you dig up ...
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4 votes

How do you make a stone axe?

As an alternative to making an actual axe head you could create a simple chisel, which you then hit with a piece of wood that serves as a hammer. This can be used fairly efficiently to slowly cut ...
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3 votes

What are some usable sources of iron for producing iron tools in the wilderness?

The article Iron Production in the Viking Age on Hurstwic discusses sources of iron available in the wilderness of Scandinavia and Iceland. To my knowledge and experience, similar sources exist in ...
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2 votes

Is it possible to use a flint and steel with wet tinder?

It depends : A ferrocerium rod will produce more, hotter, larger sparks than a traditional flint and steel and with care you can shave off a small pile of material from the rod without sparking it ...
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  • 6,172
2 votes

Is it possible to use a flint and steel with wet tinder?

The standard emergency tinder in most places I have been is a lichen called Old Man's Beard. It can appear in several forms. Here are the first two from Wikipedia: Even if it is soaking wet, ...
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  • 1,319
2 votes

What are some usable sources of iron for producing iron tools in the wilderness?

In truth Iron extracted from sand with a magnet. You loose 1/2 when you melt it down. But is near pure. Slow but sure. For small scale separation of sand from iron filings, See this article: How do ...
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  • 1,980
2 votes

What in the forest is suitable as a foundation to primitive structures such as log cabins, in northeast USA?

Black locust is in some areas of the northeast now, but I don't know about the Adirondacks. It is listed as very durable for rot resistance, and is mentioned as being used for fence posts because of ...
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1 vote
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Are wattle and daub primitive shelters suitable for the Adirondacks?

Take a closer look at european construction techniques up to the invention of asphalt and steel roofing. In general, if you can keep the water off of the building, you can use a water soluble medium. ...
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1 vote

Is there clay soil in the Adirondacks suitable for earthen primitive building?

A somewhat more general answer, not focused on the Adirondacks. Most areas have an agriculture or forestry division, or natural resources division that has done extensive soil maps of the state. ...
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1 vote

What are uses of red spruce (picea rubens) by humans in a wilderness, primitive, or frontier setting?

A mix of spruce resin, lard, and wood ashes was used by both voyageurs and natives for caulking the seams of birch bark canoes. Spruce logs have smaller branches than pine, and so are easier to make ...
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