I went out to the garage and measured the diameter of the propane tank - 3" diameter. Hey, I had a scrap piece of 3" pvc pipe over in the corner. Turned out to be a perfect fit. Of course, I could have bought one ready to mount for $6, but where's the fun in that. I had the materials and tools needed, so why not hone my skills, sharpen my ingenuity, and test my luck at keeping all my fingers attached? By all means, if you need to purchase materials to make this, you're better off buying one already made. If you're like me and keep the scraps from other projects, keep reading to see how to make one of these.
Step 1: Gathering...
- tape measure
- torch (propane/mapp)
- heat gun (could substitute the torch)
- utility knife
- leather gloves
- 3" pvc pipe @ 12" long
- scrap wood (1/2" plywood)
- 2" drywall screws
You could also use this process to make a mount for a fire extinguisher or flashlights or any other cylindrical item that you want to mount on the wall. You'll just need to adjust the size of the pipe used.
**The heat gun is used to heat up and soften the PVC. You could use a torch for this purpose, but an open flame will burn the PVC if held in one place for more than a split second. You must keep the flame moving if using the torch to heat the plastic. If you don't have a heat gun or a torch, you can use a pot of boiling water to soften the PVC as well.
Step 2: Making a Template
Note the fold line in the diagram. This section should not be cut. This is where you will fold the PVC to form the bottom of the mount.
Step 3: Cut the Pipe
Use a jigsaw to cut out the gray section. The remaining section of pipe below the template can cut up the center until it meets the bottom ring. Then cut around the pipe until you get to the marks made on the template.
I clamped the pipe to a table and used a heat gun to soften and unroll the middle cut sections. Again, I was designing on the fly. This flattening process is not necessarily needed for the gray section when using the template. You WILL however, need to flatten the bottom section so that it can be folded under the bottom ring to support the torch.
I tried to cut the shape of the bottom before I folded it over. You can see that I don't have a full bottom because I didn't allow for enough material. The following process is how I would do this if I were to make another one of these (no photos). Use a heat gun, torch, or boiling water to soften everything below the bottom ring. Wear gloves so you don't burn yourself. Once the pipe is nice and soft, flatten it out and then fold it under the bottom ring. You may need to place the torch in the holder at this point and apply pressure until the pipe cools and hardens. Do this process close to a sink so you can use cool water to speed up the cooling process. You should now have a bottom formed. Cut any excess PVC off so it matches the curve of the bottom ring.
Cut the section out of the top ring as needed. Again, this may already be done if using the template.
Step 4: Mounting Blocks
I used my bandsaw to do this. Not everyone has a bandsaw, but the same effect could be achieved by using a sander, a hammer & chiesel, a circular saw, a coping saw, table saw, etc. Just use the edge of the pipe to mark the curvature needed and use whatever method to remove that material. You're striving for a fairly uniform fit, but as mentioned earlier, I think a v-notch cut in some scrap wood would do the trick in a pinch.
Step 5: Finishing Up
Drill two holes through the center of the back section. Use a counter sink bit (or a razor knife) to chamfer the holes. Drill a matching hole through the middle of the support blocks.
Locate a stud (or use drywall anchors) where you want to mount it and screw it to the wall. Snap the torch into place and go grab a sammich!!