Introduction: How to Make a Small Flaming Vortex of DOOM!

Thats right, of DOOM!

Step 1: Supplies

You will need;

Computer cooling fan (as big as possible)
square by rectangular box
duct tape
packaging tape
paper towel
twelve volt thingy
small alligator clips
motor oil (gas is too combustable)


box cutter
wait... wrong list, ignore the last three

Step 2: Cut the Box

on the right side of each face of the box draw a rectangle really thin by really long (your box is probably differently sized than mine, for me it was 1/2 in by a foot)
you should use a wood spacer to make it a whole lot easier

on one side draw a rectangle semi wide by really long (for me it was 3 1/2 in by a foot)

in the center of the top draw a circle the size of the fans blades

cut out what you drew

Step 3: Finish the Box

duct tape the fan on top

put packaging tape on both sides of the big rectangular hole

Step 4: Rig the Power

attach alligator clips to the red and black fan leads

attach the red alligator clip to the top of the jack and the black to the bottom

Step 5: Vortex Time!

soak a wad of paper towel in motor oil but leave a corner unsoaked (I used penns oil)

put on plate and place in the box

light the unsoaked corner, and after the oil is burning turn on the fan

watch the awesome flames

don't leave the fan on for more than a minute or the blades will melt


2muchtimeonmyhands made it!(author)2009-08-01

In my youth I made one of these a couple of times on the river but didn't use a box , just 1/2 gallon of gas and a whirlpool in the river . Whirlpool created by tree roots that grew out into river . Was huge about 50 foot high . Will never do that again . Caught friend that was in tree above it on fire . He was fine . Not a mark on him . He did have cold ride home from jumping in river in late October in Ohio to put himself out .

Matt+D655 made it!(author)2011-03-27

Dude! That is not good. You poluted the environment.... :(

The1andonlyDaniel made it!(author)2015-01-17

you can also use nail polish remover, better for enviornment

epicbobman52 made it!(author)2011-04-27

lol i live in ohio to... swiming in october is a bad idea

%7EAeronous%7E made it!(author)2010-02-13


RoddyTheGreat made it!(author)2009-07-29

Went up in flames but was excellent while it lasted!

music+is+my+lfe2 made it!(author)2008-09-15

can u use a small fan instead of a computer fan???

rlawrence made it!(author)2009-07-15

i am using a small computer fan and it works perfectly fine, i am also going to make a holder so i can leave it on without the blades melting lol :D

MteamyMcHotsauce made it!(author)2009-05-31

that part about cutting the holes was unclear

Arbitror made it!(author)2009-03-25

Now that's cool!

Plasmana made it!(author)2008-12-01

That looks freaking cool!

music+is+my+lfe2 made it!(author)2008-09-15

sik vortex

MrAngryPants made it!(author)2008-09-04

I already made a vortex generator for a science fair project, so could i modify that to "spin around, flaminatin' and what not"

teh uber spinnin link =>

Zippy_Pyromaniac made it!(author)2008-06-07

i made one they are awesome, but then it melted.....

RUMP3LSTILTZKIN made it!(author)2008-03-16

what if you had a fan with metal fan blades, then could you leave it on longer?

Lord+Unlikely made it!(author)2008-04-19

Yeah it would be I'm pretty sure it would need a metal case as well...

blugyblug made it!(author)2008-04-02

AWESOME Post video plz. I have to see this.

razzah made it!(author)2008-02-18


GorillazMiko made it!(author)2008-01-26

Oh man... nice job. I might try this soon most likely. +1 rating. (added to favorites)

omziG made it!(author)2007-11-04

i think im goint ot make one of these with my friend, cuz i told him only Bill Nye could do it

AlexTheGreat made it!(author)2006-07-24

I wanted to make a giant Flaming vortex of doom, by directing 8 huge room fans around a bonfire, but i only have 2.

fungus+amungus made it!(author)2006-07-24

You mean like this?

Hit up and click "Fire Vortex" then "Burning Man 2004" for more pics.

rose_red made it!(author)2007-08-15

i think they did something like that at the fire arts fesival at this place in oakland called the crucible. it was awesome.

rplatter made it!(author)2007-04-25

[HTTP://SRL.ORG SRL] If you like this, check out the one the guys at 'Survival Research Labs' did. Lots of other loud dangerous stuff there too. SRL.ORG They bill themselves as "Producing the most dangerous shows on earth"

a6t1wzbk0tb made it!(author)2007-07-13

Survival Research : Explosives + Giant Hydraulic ROBOTS fighting Closest thing to to an real Battle , just this side of deadly Mark Pauline , in the workshop , once , during assembly hammered solid propellant BOOM not much left of a Hand

toogood made it!(author)2007-05-19


lemonie made it!(author)2006-12-26

I think this needs to be scaled-up from 12v to mains, with a vacuum-cleaner motor(?)

ILikeScience made it!(author)2007-03-31

DO IT...and show us pictures :)

lemonie made it!(author)2007-03-31

I've got the motor, would need some steel and a welder perhaps? If I do I will show you the pictures.

sumplesnoob made it!(author)2007-03-19


gizmomaster made it!(author)2007-03-05

thats awesome

Ben.land101 made it!(author)2007-02-09


15zack15ace made it!(author)2006-12-25

You are insane man!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

zack17 made it!(author)2006-11-22

that is an awesome project but, i like anything with fire (of course)

thrutraffic made it!(author)2006-11-15

The Heat n Glo site has some beautiful (expensive) vortex fire displays. Wow! I found a link with instructions for a (cheap) dry ice fog vortex display at A Tornado In A Box Display

gerg made it!(author)2006-07-25

I've seen this done with a 1 foot wide plexiglass cylinder topped off with a metal plate with a 3 inch hole in the center. The flame was produced by a dish of alcohol. The spin was created by the vacuum of the hot air pulling fresh air in slots on the plexiglass. Cool stuff.

Scurl%21 made it!(author)2006-07-25

DAMN! i was just thinking of a way to do this almost exactly like that! i was thinking that you could just drill a few holes into a metal pipe at an angle and the air being drawn in would make it cyclone naturally....maybe try this with clay? poke the holes around the base before you fire it...hmmm....

R.+Buckminster+F_cker made it!(author)2006-08-20

Yours sounds like a more elegant design. Cheaper, simpler, no moving parts, no melting plastic, etc. I wonder if it'd be possible to shoot a flaming torroidal vortex from a vortex canon. Imagine filling the smoke chamber with a flammable aerosol and shooting this past a piezo-electric spark at the mouth of the canon. The result would be awfully short lived, I guess. I guess for fire vortices you need a continuous flame, not a discrete one. hmmm...ever seen a swimmer blow a bubble ring at the bottom of a pool? As it rises, the ring grows larger because atmospheric pressure on the bubble decreases. I read about Navy divers ascending from depth with no scuba equipment - just full lungs. As they ascend they continuously exhale at a rate which under normal circumstances would empty their lungs fairly quickly. But because they took a full breath of pressurizerd air at depth, it expands in their lungs rapidly as they rise. If they didn't exhale quickly, their lungs would burst from the pressure. So anyway, the divers reach the surface just as they're finishing one very long exhalation. So does anybody see where my pyro's wet-dream is going? Can you produce a pressurized bubble ring and ignite the flammable gas filler and get everything measured out right so that a rising, expanding and continuously burning bubble is formed, and then dissipates when it reaches the surface of a liquid pool? Who here has funding and can take responsibility for writing this instructable? Anybody here from Seattle that can bring me a pack of smokes?

Scurl%21 made it!(author)2006-11-15

i'm from seattle.

R.+Buckminster+F_cker made it!(author)2006-08-21

I am a crackpot, by the way.

leevonk made it!(author)2006-08-01

someone is using rising air vortexes in a controlled setting to generate energy. (read it in a tech mag a while ago, forgot where).

bowakowa made it!(author)2006-08-10

How can you tease like that? You must remember..THIS IS AN ORDER!.........please.

leevonk made it!(author)2006-10-30

might have been the economist, not sure. I don't read other magazines..

power made it!(author)2006-10-22

finally i tried your doesn't need that box to do it because it burns easily.but you can replace the whole thing with coiled metal sheet from hardware shop.remember to throw away the fans as it will melt when the fire needs air so it sucks up from the gap and swirl just like the box technique

AlexTheGreat made it!(author)2006-10-24

cool. show pictures please

power made it!(author)2006-09-19

there are many people use water vapour,smoke,dust,powder and they really work?

AlexTheGreat made it!(author)2006-10-08

yeah, but they aren't nearly as cool as fire, and dust will statically stick to the tape window

psyteknology made it!(author)2006-10-03

I'd like to try with a standard room fan and a fog machine. Maybe put it in an acrylic box so I can put a color changing light under it. Nate Smiths Fire Vortex was AMAZING! Saw it this year at Burning Man. Nice job on this design alex! I'd be the one burning the box! lol

Brobru made it!(author)2006-09-17

Awesome, I have to build this.

kerosene-soaked-clothes-arent-fun made it!(author)2006-08-30

id love to do this but i dont reli wanna take apart my pc to do it

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