Who doesn't love a fire in the fireplace? But we all know that fires burn low now and then due to inattention, so sometimes you have to fan the flames and get the fire going again. The classic way of doing this is via a bellows. But bellows are a lot of work, get holes worn in them, and don't provide steady air flow. This instructable will show how to construct a simple blower that will do a better job of rekindling the fire than a manual bellows.
Here's a video comparing the efficacy of manual bellows to the blower we'll make:
Step 1: Materials and Tools
1 - battery-powered blower like the kind used to blow up air mattresses. The one I had laying around the house was the Coleman 4D Universal Quick Pump that you can get for less than $15 on Amazon.
4 - D cells for the blower, $7 at Home Depot
Fabric Tape: Duct tape or Gorilla Tape
2 - hose clamps 1" or so, about $0.70 each
18" of 1" ID plastic tubing a couple of bucks at Home Depot
9" of 3/8" copper tubing
Copper Tubing Cutter
Step 2: Cut Tubing to Length
This will be for the nozzle end. About 8 or 9 inches worked for me. If you have a deep firebox, you might need a longer nozzle. If you have a shallow firebox, like a Rumford, you can probably also use less plastic hose. Use a tubing cutter for the smoothest edge.
Step 3: Wrap Tubing with Tape
The tubing's about 3/8" in diameter, and it has to fit snugly into the 1" diameter plastic tubing. There's probably better ways of doing this: flare joins or such, but I took the simple and stupid way out and just wrapped it with tape until it was the right diameter.