Introduction: Propane Fire Pit



A simple modification I made to an old fire pit I had. It's nice to sit around the fire without the smoke and cleanup and on snow days it's great to warm up the hand during playtime.

Step 1: The Fire Ring

I made the fire ring from 1/2" copper pipe and fittings.

1.  I used 5  elbows,  3  t-pieces  and  one 1/2' female fitting to connect to a male brass air quick coupler.

2.  The first fire ring I made was  small and the nozzles to big. I made the ring  bigger and found that 1/16" nozzle holes work well ( I did have an air mixer on, But found it gave me a smaller bluer flame removing it gave a nice big yellow - orange flame). TIP: Nice video on what a flame is

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5ymAXKXhvHI


3.  All the fittings are soldered on with the standard flux and solder for water pipes (I have not had any problems with that yet)

4.  Using a hole saw I cut a hole in the bottom of the fire pit and installed the fire ring through it and used some aluminum foil to seal up the hole.

5.  Next I added some sand up to the bottom of the fire ring and then the lava rocks.

Step 2: The Propane Pipe.

I wanted the Fire pit to be somewhat portable so I used quick couplers and flexible pipe.

1.  The fire ring is held to the fire pit frame with a hose clamp.

2.  I took a propane regulator and added a female quick coupler to it. To the hose a female on one end and a male to the other.

3.  I used an old garden hose reel box with the reel drum removed to hide the propane tank.

4. I also put the flexible pipe through some PVC pipe to protect it from the sun and other damage ( this is just where the flexible pipe is exposed ).

To light the fire pit:
1. With the propane CLOSED squirt some fire lighter fluid over the fire ring and up the side of the fire pit and light it.

2. With flames in the fire pit SLOWLY open the propane valve, make sure the propane ignites.


I have been using this fire pit since the spring and have had no problems.

I recently changed the fire pit stand to  "retaining wall blocks" this lowered the fire pit to get more heat when we are seated.
 
BE SAFE and enjoy.

Comments

author
brianfss (author)2013-11-09

I like your lightening method. It's nice not risking your eyebrows by having a big dose of propane build up before lighting.
Thanks for the cool build

author
MartinMakes (author)brianfss2013-12-21

A trick I used when working on Industrial furnaces.

author
JayF49 (author)MartinMakes2016-10-20

Let you keep your eyebrows

author
wynrol (author)2014-02-13

Really great post and my next project. You mention soot because you dont have an air mixer. What is an air mixer? Thanks

author
JayF49 (author)wynrol2016-10-20

An air mixer is where the propane squirts from the orifice at the end of the flexi-tube into a larger tube that leads to the actual burner. There is often an adjustment flap there to control air-fuel mix. It is also the place that certain spiders just love to build webbing, so make sure you check that area in the spring before you try to fire up your grills.

author
aauxier (author)2013-11-14

I work in the propane business and this is not safe at all. You cant make these kinds of things on your own unless your qualified to do so.

author
hitnrun (author)aauxier2013-11-18

what is wrong with it?

author
JayF49 (author)hitnrun2016-10-20

If you don't get your connections pretty much leak-proof, the thing will blow up from a stray spark, such as you petting a cat or dog then touching the rig. It was a cat, I have the scars to prove it happens.

author
gwrober (author)aauxier2014-06-01

Could you let us know what is dangerous? I assume the quick connects may leak propane. I was also thinking of repurposing a gas grill into something like this, so the guts of the system were "factory".

author
MartinMakes (author)aauxier2013-12-21

Yes do not do this if you are not confident in your abilities.

author
MichaelKMoser (author)2015-08-20

We replaced an old stainless steel fire ring with one of these. http://www.thefirepitstore.com/warming-trends-crossfire-manual-lit-system-with-a-180k-btu-natural-gas-burner-and-plate-mls180ng/ Guaranteed for life!!

author
spiderpig16pd (author)2015-04-10

I have more of a question. Does the distance from the tank to the fire pit make a difference? Do you have to use an air mixture?

author

Yes...contact a gas guy or a plumber and find out what your water table pressure is. They will tell you the max BTU you can get with your setup.

author
dalehopper (author)2015-01-23

forget the fire, wheres the instructable for that chair?

author
MartinMakes (author)dalehopper2015-03-31

It's called a "Kentucky stick chair" Google and Youtube have many plans and instructions. Hope this helps.

author
MartinMakes (author)2014-02-15

The first 2 images are of an air mixer on a BBQ grill, the secont 2 images are of the one I made when I was testing the fire pit flame. The first of the 2 images is what it looks like apart and the second is it assembled. I started with a small hole for the nozzle and worked my way bigger with each test, but ultimately I liked the flame I got with it removed. Hope this helps.

IMG_3930.jpgIMG_3931.jpgIMG_3939.jpgIMG_3940.jpg
author
hitnrun (author)2013-11-12

I would love a more detailed size of the bigger fire ring, what was the size of each pipe cut.

author
MartinMakes (author)hitnrun2013-12-21

Its covered in snow at the moment I will try to get the sizes at a later time.

author
mr.incredible (author)2013-10-27

I bodged together something similar but I get a lot of black soot. Do you have this problem? I plan on putting it inside of chiminea to give i an innocuous place to go. I also use granite rocks in the fire to give it something to heat and look more like a campfire.

author

Yes I also get the soot, this is because there is no air mixer. Thanks for the rock idea I changed the sand to pebbles works good.

author
brdstf40 (author)2013-11-08

Really nice job, but, (there's always a but!!) how big were the gas holes? And how many worked best? Thanks

author
MartinMakes (author)brdstf402013-12-21

The final size holes I used was 1/16" and about 24 holes. I started with small holes and tested and then made them bigger until I got the the flame size and pattern I liked.

author
klincecum (author)2013-11-18

I like it. I would change out the air fittings to something safer. They will leak sooner or later and become a hazard.

author
MartinMakes (author)klincecum2013-12-21

Yes. The pipe also get damaged by the element especially the sun so I replace parts as they break.

author
mmedina9 (author)2013-11-22

How long would the propane tank last?

author
MartinMakes (author)mmedina92013-12-21

I haven't measured yet, with the next full tank I will keep track.

author
dave614 (author)2013-11-12

I want to do this if I can find a burner from a gas stove.
I admit that I haven't put a lot of effort into looking, but someday soon ...

author
willshade (author)2013-10-24

Nicely done.

author
ray74 (author)2013-10-24

Very cool.
I like the use of the quick disconnects :)

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