Propane Bottle Lego Head

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Introduction: Propane Bottle Lego Head

One day I noticed that the humble Propane or LPG gas bottle is pretty much an exact large-scale version of a Lego Mini-fig head. So I decided to cheer up my BBQ bottle with a little Lego lovin'.

Step 1: Paint Your Gas Bottle

Starting with a basic LPG/Propane gas bottle, give it a wipe with turpentine to remove any grease and dirt, and then spray it with yellow paint. 

Step 2: Paint the Face

Wait for the yellow to dry thoroughly and then paint your face onto the bottle.  I used enamel hobby paints and painted the face freehand, but you could use a stencil and spray paint.

Step 3: Reinstall the Gas Bottle

Wait for the paint to dry and then reinstall the bottle back onto the BBQ. Then sit back and enjoy how much cheerier it makes any barbecue area.

I hope you've enjoyed this Instructable.

2 People Made This Project!

  • Kids love it!!! than...-bigmark

    bigmark made it!

  • QingdaoZhiqiang Indu...-TonyS146

    TonyS146 made it!

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117 Comments

I'm reading with interest the debate over gas bottle colour. Whilst it's each individual's decision whether or not to paint their bottle based on local regulations and/or climate, I will put a case forward for the location where this projected originated; Adelaide, South Australia.

Our regulations allow for the painting of gas bottles, and as you will see from the photo, they come standard in a variety of different colours. As for climate, Adelaide enjoys long, hot summers with extreme temperatures. We often have heat-waves of over 45c (113f), and we'll quite often have two weeks over 38c (100f).

Even under these conditions I have never heard or read of a gas bottle having any issues because of the colour it was painted. And surely if that were the case, they would change the colours allowed, which the haven't.

As I said, your local regulations and climate may differ.

Cheers, Icedvovo


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Hi everyone. My happy gas bottle eventually ran out of gas so I was finally able to answer the question "Can I refill my painted gas bottle?"

In Australia at least the answer is YES!

Here's Happy Gas Bottle being refilled at Ray's Outdoors in Adelaide, South Australia. It really made the day of the guy refilling it.

Cheers, Icedvovo

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Very interesting to read. While working with LPG bottled gas. We should want to very careful.

Do NOT do this.
Propane tanks are white and reflected to reflect sunlight better to prevent the gasses / liquids from heating up.

1> Spraypaint propane tank
2> Tank no longer reflects enough light
3> Tank heats up more in summer
4> This causes the release-valve to leak propane much much more frequently to prevent an explosion.

Aftermath:
Either you will have a Lot less propane for your buck due to leakage, Or your valve will fail much quicker, Causing the tank to rupture and explode.

No. Propane tanks often come in colors other than white, and do not leak and explode because of it. Yellow is a bright color, and reflects enough light to not make this an issue. I'm not sure it's a real issue to begin with, anyway. Propane tanks are built to hold quite a lot of pressure, and even if a tank were jet black, I don't think the sun would heat the tank enough to make the pressure rise enough to make it vent gasses.

AND, even if it did vent gasses, and those gasses found an ignition source, your result is a flaming jet out of the side of the tank, not a Walker Texas Ranger style explosion. This can cause fires, but the possibility of explosion is incredibly remote.

If your tank valve leaks, by far the most likely scenario is that you try to start your grill and you don't have any propane left. After a few times filling it up and finding that your tank runs out too quickly, you'll probably (GASP) have to get another tank.

@ mistwalker & pocketscience.

Color of the tank does matter. its a matter of safety, federal law, and state law (of those in the US). if you paint an LP Tank black, and its in a car, or out in the sun (not that it should be) it will rapidly heat up. the boiling point of LP is -44*F. this means it doesnt take much to light it on fire. Not only that, but LP ALSO expands to 270 Times its original volume as a gas. this being said, if you take 1oz of LP and just set it free, it will become 270oz of gas. thats just enough gas to do some damage. as the tank heats up, it expands RAPIDLY. if you paint the tank a color that its not meant to be painted...first off, the DOT will more than likely fine you (in the US), and the place you take the tank to may not fill it...thus...Black paint+SunlightXRapid uncontrolable Expansion=Relief Valve activation, a big headache and the possibility one hell of a fireworks show.

Mistwalker, the statement you made about the tank leaking is highly incorrect. your not taking into account the amount of gas that has leaked into the atmosphere...when that gas ignites, it will cause enough blunt force trauma to the tank that it will cause a rupture in the tank, contributing to the explosion even more.

Also if you paint the tank, you will be painting over very important relief holes that make it very difficult to judge when the tank is full. I would know. i pump propane for a living...its best just to keep the tank the color it came because it then maintains the legal specs. that your country's and state's law designates.

but like i said before, its mostly about safety, state, and federal US DOT law.

BUT in the support of the painting of tanks, as long as the color of the tank is a light color it will be fine.

I just read through the bullet vs. LP tank argument. Too bad the Mythbusters aren't around anymore, they could settle it once and for all. Most common objects would explode when a MILSPEC 50. round slams into it. I think it would be plausible that the tank would detonate.

I've never heard of any actual evidence that shows that a tank being painted black causes enough of a pressure variation to make a tank leak, be it through the normal valve or the relief valve. I don't think this is a thing backed up by any kind of real world scientific testing. Painting your propane may well be banned many places, but that doesn't mean the bans are based in a real world risk, but instead might be based in an excess of caution. Also, no one here is telling anyone to paint their propane tanks dark colors.

Also, while vented propane could presumably come to the right mix to cause an explosion, that situation would be quite unlikely, unless you were keeping your tank in an enclosed space. If it were outside, it would have to be a very bad leak to put enough propane in the air to achieve the correct mix for a proper explosion. I would still say the risk of explosion is quite remote, which was the claim I made before. Also, I've seen a ten gallon propane tank hit with an incendiary .50 cal BMG round. This is a tremendously powerful round, and it ignited the propane. It made a pair of very large holes in the tank, and quite a lot of fire, but the tank did not come apart from the shot, or the jets of flaming propane. I supremely doubt a propane leak igniting would cause the tank to rupture, unless something was wrong with the tank already. I understand there weren't gasses leaking already that were ignited, and that it's not the exact same set of circumstances, but the amount of energy that was put into that tank was tremendous, and the tank held up remarkably well.

Regardless, my comment was addressing someone who was freaking out about how painting your propane tank yellow will cause a giant fiery explosion, which is nonsense. Tanks come in yellow and orange and blue in various places.

u can legally buy it from many weapon dealers. max is 10 rounds per day day 4 non military persons.