Introduction: Swedish Torch

Picture of Swedish Torch

If you have access to a chainsaw some dry softwood and a Swede here's a great way to make a self-contained camp fire with integrated pot supports!

Step 1: Cut 3 Slots in the Log.

Picture of Cut 3 Slots in the Log.

Unfortunately I am not dexterous enough to use a chainsaw and take pictures simultaneously. Sorry. Use the saw to cut at least 3/4 of the way down the length of the log.

Step 2: Build a Bundle of Kindling in the Middle of the Log

Picture of Build a Bundle of Kindling in the Middle of the Log

As this kindling burns the thin sections of the log near the top will start burning and air will be sucked through the cracks lower down

Step 3: Light Your Fire!

Picture of Light Your Fire!

You'll notice that after a couple of minutes your fire will descend down into the log completely protecting it from the wind.

Step 4: The Outer Layer of the Log Should Remain

Picture of The Outer Layer of the Log Should Remain

On these outer sections of the log you can place your pan!

Step 5: Modified Example

Picture of Modified Example

Here's another option- I you have some lumber lying around you can tie it together with spacers (nails) between the pieces to allow airflow in. It's the same concept. But with found scrap lumber!!!

Comments

OddJob (author)2013-04-11

I have, or am, all of those elements! Will give this a try. If you have to blow on it to get the fire started a bit; you now have a Swedish Blow Torch...

beers34 (author)2017-08-14

Can't wait to try it. We got a chainsaw, logs and a firepit in back yard. Tomorrow I will try it and if it works good have some logs cut and ready for our next camping trip.

jhartjen made it! (author)2017-07-29

I have wanted to make one of these for a while. Went camping with my boys (21, 14, 10) this past weekend and finally had time to make one. It was made from a eucalyptus log. It was about 18 inches long and burned for a solid four hours. We lit it with some dryer lint stuffed n the cuts. Worked awesome and gave us some heat and a place to cook our jiffy pop.

4tech (author)2017-04-24

For HM 19. Fire burn just fine from the top down. Try it sometime.

HM19 (author)2016-12-31

You do not start the fire on top of the log. You put your tinder/kindling like birch bark at the bottom, inserting it into the sides and work your way up. Fire does not "descend down into the log" lmao

HM19 (author)HM192016-12-31

I should add light it from the bottom, in case that isn't obvious lol

isanta (author)2016-09-02

Swedish torch?? Typical of the Swedes to take a brilliant Finnish idea and claim it as their own. Ha ha just kidding

Kaljakaaleppi (author)2016-08-10

I feel that if you cut the log just two times it makes a better torch, burns longer.

there
is even an option to drill one long hole from the top and one that
connects to the first from the side. Haven't tried one with just a hole
but have seen these for sale.

An easy way to light one is to drop some wax from a candle in it and light that.

They are called Jack's candles, or Lumberjacks candles over here...

Matzedoner (author)Kaljakaaleppi2016-08-23

Don't know about that one hole setup but 2 definitely works (great for cooking even better than the chainsaw option).

But I prefer it with the chainsaw because the heat also comes out from the sides which makes it warmer if you sit around it

DylanD581 (author)2016-08-10

Swedish Torches are great for cooking, and are fun to start! Did you see this featured in Make: Magazine and on their website?

Kaljakaaleppi (author)2016-08-10

I feel that if you cut the log just two times it makes a better torch, burns longer.

there
is even an option to drill one long hole from the top and one that
connects to the first from the side. Haven't tried one with just a hole
but have seen these for sale.

An easy way to light one is to drop some wax from a candle in it and light that.

They are called Jack's candles, or Lumberjacks candles over here...

Kaljakaaleppi (author)2016-08-10

I feel that if you cut the log just two times it makes a better torch, burns longer.

there
is even an option to drill one long hole from the top and one that
connects to the first from the side. Haven't tried one with just a hole
but have seen these for sale.

An easy way to light one is to drop some wax from a candle in it and light that.

They are called Jack's candles, or Lumberjacks candles over here...

Kaljakaaleppi (author)2016-08-10

I feel that if you cut the log just two times it makes a better torch, burns longer.

there
is even an option to drill one long hole from the top and one that
connects to the first from the side. Haven't tried one with just a hole
but have seen these for sale.

An easy way to light one is to drop some wax from a candle in it and light that.

They are called Jack's candles, or Lumberjacks candles over here...

Kaljakaaleppi (author)2016-08-10

I feel that if you cut the log just two times it makes a better torch, burns longer.

there
is even an option to drill one long hole from the top and one that
connects to the first from the side. Haven't tried one with just a hole
but have seen these for sale.

An easy way to light one is to drop some wax from a candle in it and light that.

They are called Jack's candles, or Lumberjacks candles over here...

Kaljakaaleppi (author)2016-08-10

I feel that if you cut the log just two times it makes a better torch, burns longer.

there
is even an option to drill one long hole from the top and one that
connects to the first from the side. Haven't tried one with just a hole
but have seen these for sale.

An easy way to light one is to drop some wax from a candle in it and light that.

They are called Jack's candles, or Lumberjacks candles over here...

Kyzz (author)2016-08-09

its a while since I took a chainsaw with me when I went camping, but I'll keep it in mind.

Angelbane (author)Kyzz2016-08-09

Well most places you can legally camp make you bring your fire wood in now so doing this would be a great idea.

SuzyM1 (author)Angelbane2016-08-09

Many places you cannot bring your own firewood because of the possibility of infestations depending on where you live.

Mugsy Knuckles (author)Kyzz2016-08-09

Split the log into eight wedges with an axe and jam them back together. Either bury the bottom, pile some rocks around it, or wrap some wire around to keep it intact while it burns.
But a chainsaw is a hell of a lot easier

synthdust (author)Kyzz2016-08-09

Pre cut at home?

DiyWaterDog (author)2016-04-26

Some entrepreneurs must have seen this and started marketing your idea. Have been seeing these precut logs at big box stores for $15. Guess i should start selling off my curb for $10.

josh (author)DiyWaterDog2016-05-03

Yeah! I shoulda started a business! oh well.

josh (author)2015-11-11

I just found this grate for placing a pan on to ensure you have a level surface to cook on. I think I'll try to make one when I have a chance:

http://coolmaterial.com/gear/the-reusable-swedish-...

Cerkevicius made it! (author)2015-03-03

Well done, Josh.

I am producing 10.000 torches per month, it is called Swedish torch Vulcano.
Contact Woodbioma if anyone interested in retailing or whosale in your country.

josh (author)Cerkevicius2015-09-10

Wow! congratulations! that's quite a big operation. I guess it's much easier for some to just purchase than to make their own.

woolfie made it! (author)2015-07-08

Tried it when camping this past weekend. Worked like a charm, and everyone was impressed.

josh (author)woolfie2015-09-10

That's great! we gave a bunch to friends as christmas gifts this past year.

dsours made it! (author)2015-04-09

love it!!!

jreschke19 (author)2014-09-30

"Dexterous". I see what you did there.

99016669 (author)2014-03-26

Is this so the ashes don't blow all over the place

SlateYouthTruro (author)2013-05-29

brilliant...thanks! I will use this at my next camping trip with my youth centre teens.

whiteynut (author)2013-04-23

I've used this before and it does work well. For best results make sure the slots are clear. I usually lay the log on it's side to get long shavings used to light the fire. Place a can or something similar where the slots meet in the center, pile shavings on top of log, then remove can. Place some of the long shavings in the middle. If the center has good airflow it will catch much faster and the shavings will have some bar oil on them and lights fairly easily. If you make them a few days in advance they will light faster and smoke less on initial fire up.

ssgsteiner (author)2013-04-21

great work, this will be very useful for me!

rbbiggs (author)2013-04-17

Great tip, thanks for posting. I'll prepare a few logs before camping

Jos Instructable (author)2013-04-15

If you are lazy, you can also poor a bit of gas in the middle, or use one of these white block to light a barbeque. Just press it in the middle and push it to the bottom with a little stick.

srilyk (author)2013-04-13

You might want to point out that with the lumber bit you need to make sure it's not treated lumber, as they tend to treat it with some form of Cyanide.

The glues from plywoods are also pretty bad for one's health. But the other stuff should be fair game ;)

Switch and Lever (author)2013-04-11

Interesting tidbit, while these are called "Swedish torch" in the English speaking world the word actually comes from the German word "Schwedenfeuer", which means "Swedish fire". I've grown up in Sweden and spent considerable time hiking and among people who live closer to nature, and I've never ever seen one of these before they started popping up online a few years ago. Not to say they doesn't exist, just that they might be rare in the country from which they were named. The phenomenon seems to date back to the Thirty Years' War between the city states that would eventually become Germany and Sweden in the 1600s.

That's way cool.. And to think they had chainsaws back then too! :-p

josh (author)Switch and Lever2013-04-11

Wow! That's really cool to know the history of it!

Lorax98 (author)2013-04-11

We make these at an annual Outdoor Skills camp for our high school students. We use tree trunk sized logs about 5 or 6 feet tall. Each will burn and smoulder for the whole night. Instead of lighting it with kindling, we stuff some paper towel down the center and pour in a couple of cups of kerosene. Let soak for a couple of hours, and then remove the paper towel and light each one dramatically at our last evening's supper.

gen81465 (author)Lorax982013-04-11

If you substitute gasoline for the kerosene, you can increase the "dramatic" effect of the lighting ceremony by a factor of 100 to 1. Of course, I'm joking about this; you should never use gasoline around any fire. I am, however, curious about why you would remove the paper towels before lighting the fire: doesn't the paper help with the fire starting? I also think the smell of kerosene isn't always pleasant, so I use a cheap vegetable oil; it doesn't really smell bad, and it gives the added effect of making the log somewhat waterproof, should it start to rain.

Lorax98 (author)gen814652013-04-12

We remove the paper towel because we have had problems with the paper towel being too tightly packed and blocking the "chimney" effect of the central space cut into the log. One other note: Less is more. If you use too much accelerant on the paper towel, it will leak out the cracks at the bottom and the burning pattern will be negatively affected.

Givver112 (author)2013-04-11

Do you put the tinder IN the log slots? After you might, do you bind the log peices?

Givver112 (author)Givver1122013-04-11

Oh wait. You don't completely cut slots. It stops near the end...

FWACATA (author)2013-04-11

Really smart, put it up on my Zombie Survival blog as another way to keep warm and get to cooking. Looking forward to do this! good for Hurricane survival too (the aftermath) 

naturalsam (author)2013-04-11

Firewood: check. Chainsaw: check. Now if only I could find a swede...

pioneer518 (author)2013-04-11

As when ive done this ..ive alway turned it over when the core catch's fire that way you use the top as a hot plate pans and kettles go on top ...

thebeatonpath (author)2013-04-11

Clever! I'll be trying this one.

jackthursby (author)2013-04-11

im going to try this RIGHT NOW pyro fire fire yes

stevenvachon (author)2013-04-11

What outer layer?

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